September 9, 2016
Hi everyone! I’m Shira Anthony, former opera singer, sci fi fantasy geek, anime otaku, and gay romance writer, here to introduce my latest Dreamspinner Press release, Take Two!
Take Two is a lighthearted, funny story about second chances at love. For those who have read my Blue Notes series, contemporary and very angsty stories about classical musicians, this story will be a bit of a departure. It’s low on angst, and more about pure romance, and friendship between lovers that runs deep. Two men who are very different—the geeky professor and over the top Hollywood superstar—but who were and are still attracted to each other in spite of a long separation.
I set Take Two in one of my favorite places, Bald Head Island, at North Carolina’s coast and not far from Wilmington, North Carolina. It’s a lovely island that’s as much a study in contrasts as the two main characters in my story. On the one hand, much of the island is still the way nature created it, with sand dunes, long, white sand beaches, and an inland waterway you can kayak on. On the other, the island has some of the nicest and most expensive beach houses (think more like beach mansions!) I’ve ever seen. People drive around the island on golf carts, since cars are forbidden. The grocery store in the center of the island sells foie gras, the best cuts of steak you can buy, imported wine and beer, and the sorts of foods you’ll only find in upscale stores on the mainland like Whole Foods.
But Bald Head works in spite of its strange mix, just like Wesley and Sam in my story. Yin and yang. It’s a wonderful refuge from reality, accessible only by boat. A little fantasy island. Romantic and relaxing. And a perfect place to film a movie! Because that’s what brings Wesley and Sam back together again, and it’s what literally sets the scene for their second chance at love.
To celebrate the release of Take Two, I’m offering up a copy of another lighthearted romance, First Comes Marriage, from Dreamspinner Press’s Dreamspun Desires line. For folks in the U.S., I’ll give you the choice of a paperback or ebook copy. For folks outside the U.S., you’ll receive an ebook copy.
How do you enter? Answer this question: What’s the most romantic place you wish you could travel to? I’ll choose one winner from all the comments after midnight on Sunday, September 11th. Good luck! -Shira
Check out Take Two today!
Shiver me timbers! When Professor Wesley Coolidge accepts a summer job as a historical consultant to a pirate movie being filmed in North Carolina, the last person he expects to bump into is his soon-to-be ex, movie star Sander Carson. Just like the flamboyant pirate he’s playing, Sander, aka Sam Carr, is used to getting what he wants, and he makes it clear he wants Wesley back in his life.
Sam acknowledges it’s his fault they split up. He lost Wesley when he left their life in New York City behind for a career in Hollywood. But Wesley has finally managed to put the pieces of his heart back together, and he isn’t interested in Sam and Wesley: The Sequel. Sam soon realizes that convincing Wesley to give their relationship a second chance will take much more than apologies and reminders of good times past. If he wants Wesley back, Sam will have to show Wesley that they really can sail into the sunset together—a real-life happily-ever-after that won’t end once the final credits roll.
Shira Anthony was a professional opera singer in her last incarnation, performing roles in such operas as Tosca, Pagliacci, and La Traviata, among others. She’s given up TV for evenings spent with her laptop, and she never goes anywhere without a pile of unread M/M romance on her Kindle.
Shira can be found on:
January 15, 2016
I’m Shira Anthony, and today is release day for First Comes Marriage, the second book in Dreamspinner Press’s brand new Dreamspun Desires of sweet, tropey, feel-good romances! I can’t tell you how much fun I had writing this story—it took me back to my romance roots and the days when I gobbled up Harlequin romances like they were salt and vinegar potato chips.
First Comes Marriage is a gay romance take on the classic category romance. What is a “category romance”? Honestly, I didn’t know this myself until a few years ago, but a “category romance” is also sometimes called a “series romance.” The term comes from the old tradition of publishing a certain number of books on a monthly basis in a certain category. You remember these. When I was a kid, they were the Harlequin and Silhouette romances that were shipped, 4 books a month, on subscription.
Category romances were sweet, funny, standalone stories that were low on the angst and with a feel-good happy ending. Full of classic romance tropes (millionaires, exotic locations, mistaken identity, arranged marriages, you name it), these babies were shorter than the average novel, all the covers looked alike, and some were numbered like magazines. They became a genre unto themselves.
My contribution to the Dreamspun Desires line grew out of a conversation at the Romantic Times (RT) conference in Dallas of this year, by far the biggest general romance conference in the world. I mean, that baby is HUGE, with hundreds of romance authors from every subgenre you can imagine including, of course, gay romance. I was having something to eat with Poppy Dennison, Dreamspinner Press’s PR guru, and a number of other Dreamspinner writers. With all the amazing and sexy posters of romance book covers plastered all over the hotel, I had that Harlequin vibe going. You know the one: warm and fuzzy, sexy, fun and easy reading. The very definition of a category romance.
So I kvetched to Poppy about how I was getting worn out writing angsty romances (Blue Notes or Blood Series, anyone?). You know those too—books that rip your heart out and put it back together piece by piece. Stories of heroes with deep, dark secrets, horrible childhoods, illnesses, and lots of pain. Happy endings, for sure, but very hard won happiness. Don’t get me wrong. I love angsty romance (and I’ve got plenty more planned), but they do take a lot out of me to write, especially when they deal with issues close to home.
I told Poppy I wished I could write a warm, fuzzy romance like the ones I used to read as a kid. Poppy (love that woman!) asked flat out, “Why don’t you?” She then proceeded to tell me about an idea she had to create a line of gay category romances for Dreamspinner. I took that conversation to heart and started thinking about what tropes I’d like to try writing. And on a three week vacation on our boat, I wrote about 80% of First Comes Marriage. A perfect setting to write that book, by the way. Romantic and relaxing.
My story takes a few familiar romance tropes and turns them on their head. Marriage of convenience? Check. Billionaire playboy? Conniving stepgrandmother? Check.
Jesse Donovan, the billionaire heir to his grandfather’s boat building business, must get married or he’ll lose control of his company under the terms of his grandfather’s will. Chris Valentine is a struggling novelist working as a barista in New York City. When handsome, charming Jesse proposes, Chris thinks it’s a joke! Chris finally gives in and marries Jesse. But the more time they spend together, the more Chris comes to genuinely care for New York’s most eligible “straight” bachelor. But this marriage is just business, isn’t it?
Dreamspun Desire books are available individually in paperback and ebook, and as part of a subscription where you get 2 books a month in ebook or paperback for 30% off the cover price. I’m a subscriber, by the way. Gay romance in the old category romance style? Right up my alley as a reader, too. So you bet I’ll be reading these in between working on my own projects.
What’s your favorite romance trope? Comment with your answer below and you could win your choice of any of my back catalog titles in ebook format (so anything except First Comes Marriage). I’ll choose a winner after midnight on January 17th.
I’ll leave you with a taste of First Comes Marriage. Chris’s first hint that his pretend marriage to billionaire Jesse might be a bit more of a challenge than he realized. Hope you enjoy it! -Shira
Excerpt from Chapter Six:
Now, standing in the conference room of Windview Enterprises’ corporate headquarters near South Ferry in Manhattan, one of the matching platinum bands Jesse had bought for them in his pants pocket, Chris wondered if he’d wake up from the dream. The floor-to-ceiling windows looked out over Wall Street and the East River through the forest of high-rise buildings.
“Do you, Jesse Chase Donovan, take Christopher James Valentine to be your husband, in love and in friendship, until you are parted by death?” the judge asked.
“I do.” As Jesse slipped the ring on Chris’s finger, he met Chris’s gaze with such intensity that for an instant, Chris could almost forget the entire ceremony was a ruse to ensure the future of Windview remained firmly in Jesse’s control. Damn the man for being so attractive. Damn him for being a nice guy, because that was the worst part of it. And the part that had you agreeing.
“And do you, Christopher James Valentine, take Jesse Chase Donovan to be your husband, in love and in friendship, until you are parted by death?”
Chris swallowed hard and prayed he didn’t look as incredibly nervous as he felt. “I do.” His hand shook as he took Jesse’s hand and put the ring on his finger.
“Congratulations, Chris and Jesse,” the judge said.
Chris caught Val’s eye for a split second, and he half expected her to urge him to kiss Jesse. But it was Jesse who took charge and blindsided Chris with a kiss.
It started sweetly enough, just Jesse’s lips against his, but instead of releasing Chris, Jesse pulled him tighter against him and pressed his tongue into his mouth. Jesse tasted fucking amazing. Chris didn’t hesitate—their tongues tangled and danced. This close, Jesse smelled good and felt even better. Chris was barely aware of slipping his hands around Jesse’s back before resting them on lean hips. He didn’t think twice as his body and Jesse’s responded in kind.
Someone giggled—Chris recognized Val’s voice—and Jesse pulled abruptly away. Their eyes met for a split second, and Chris thought he saw a mixture of desire and surprise in Jesse’s deep blue eyes. The next thing Chris knew, Val had thrown her arms around him and only his racing heart and tingling lips told him he hadn’t imagined the entire thing.
“Oh, Chris,” Val cooed. “You really did it!”
“Yeah” was the only response Chris could manage. He was still thinking about Jesse’s mouth.
“I guess I was wrong about him being straight,” she whispered mischievously.
Chris was thrilled when Terry grabbed him in a bear hug, because he had no idea how to respond to Val’s comment. He also wasn’t sure if he should be pissed off with Jesse for the show. He supposed if this was going to work, Jesse needed to make the marriage look real. Still, how difficult would it have been to warn Chris that he had that up his sleeve?
About Shira: In her last incarnation, Shira Anthony was a professional opera singer, performing roles in such operas as Tosca, Pagliacci, and La Traviata, among others. She’s given up TV for evenings spent with her laptop, and she never goes anywhere without a pile of unread M/M romance on her Kindle.
Shira is married with two children and two insane dogs, and when she’s not writing, she is usually in a courtroom trying to make the world safer for children. When she’s not working, she can be found aboard Land’s Zen, a 35’ catamaran, at the Carolina coast with her favorite sexy captain at the wheel.
Get your copy of First Comes Marriage today!
June 8, 2015
Cherish the Land by Ariel Tachna
When Seth comes home to stay, Jason takes it as the boon it is. Until he realizes how deep Seth’s issues run and how Seth chooses to cope.
Seth Simms never wanted to be a cowboy, although to listen to his best friend, Jason Thompson, tell it, he isn’t one. He just happens to have lucked out in coming to live on Lang Downs with his brother ten years ago. He found enough stability to finish high school and go off to university, but he never really believed Lang Downs would be the same haven for him that it had become for so many others. He’s too messed up in the head. No one would accept someone with his issues.
All his life, Jason has had one goal: to come home to Lang Downs as resident veterinarian when they need his skills and jackaroo when they don’t. And it means he gets to spend time with Seth during his occasional visits, even though his dream of going from friends to lovers is hopeless since Seth is straight.
When Seth unexpectedly comes home to stay, Jason takes it as the boon it is. But juggling a relationship with another jackaroo and his friendship with Seth isn’t easy, and that’s before Jason realizes how deep Seth’s issues run and how dangerously Seth chooses to cope with them.
Length: Novel (220p.) | Genre: Western | Release Date: June 8, 2015
Running with the Wind by Shira Anthony
To save the merfolk of Ea, Taren must call upon the rune stone he commands. But Ian fears the stone’s power will cost Taren his life.
With the final confrontation between the island and mainland Ea factions looming, Taren and Ian sail with Odhrán to investigate a lost colony of merfolk in the Eastern Lands. Upon their arrival, the King of Astenya welcomes them as friends. Odhrán, however, isn’t so quick to trust the descendent of the man who held him prisoner for nearly a decade, especially now that he has someone to cherish and protect—the mysterious winged boy he rescued from the depths.
Armed with the knowledge he believes will save the Ea, Taren returns to the mainland. With Ian at his side, Taren convinces Vurin that their people must unite with their island brethren before it’s too late. When Seria and his men attack, Taren must call upon the ancient power of the rune stone to protect his comrades. But using the stone’s immeasurable power commands a hefty price—and Ian fears that price is Taren’s life.
Length: Novella (220p.) | Genre: Paranormal, Werewolves/Shapeshifters, High Fantasy
Release Date: June 8, 2015
April 20, 2015
Blood and Ghosts by Shira Anthony
With the war between hunters and vampires blazing, Adrien thinks hope for a future with Nicolas is lost—until Adrien learns his true gift.
With vampire Nicolas Lambert’s marriage to a rival clanswoman only weeks away, Adrien Gilbert struggles to come to terms with his defeat at the hands of Verel Pelletier, a vampire hunter and an immortal like himself. Adrien and his former teacher, Roland Günter, begin to explore his newly acquired abilities. But without his soul’s sword, Adrien flounders.
On Nicolas’s wedding day, a two-hundred-year old secret is revealed, sending the wedding party into a blazing battle between hunters and vampires. Once again Adrien finds himself facing Pelletier’s superior strength. Just as Adrien believes all hope of a future with Nicolas is lost, he finally learns his true gift—he can turn back time. But time travel comes with a high cost. To save Nicolas, Adrien must become strong enough to use his power without descending into madness.
Length: Novel (230p.) | Genre: Historical European, Vampires, Urban fantasy, Time Travel, Paranormal | Release Date: April 20, 2015
The House on the Cliff by Jade Astor
Noah vows to protect Tristan from a dead lover’s ghost and find a way for them to be together despite the secrets of Cliff House.
A small-engine repair degree can only get you so far in a seaside tourist town—just ask Noah Camden. But his luck takes a turn when he stops to help a man change a tire. Obviously wealthy, the man offers Noah a job at the imposing manor, Cliff House. Noah is to care for the man’s vehicles and chauffeur the man’s son, Tristan Peterson, for the summer. Tristan is afraid to drive because of a mysterious accident–and no one will tell Noah the details.
Though the young men come from vastly different social backgrounds, Tristan and Noah slowly bond. One day Tristan confesses the truth: his first love, Martin Praxley, an estate handyman, was killed in the accident. Tristan believes Martin’s ghost is haunting him, bent on revenge. Noah vows to figure out what really happened, how it’s possible Martin is back from the dead to torment Tristan, and how they can find peace and happiness together with the secrets of Cliff House looming over them.
Length: Novel (200p.) | Genre: Mystery/Suspense | Release Date: April 20, 2015
A Most Unusual Wedding by Nancy M. Griffis
Unlikely lovers Lord Leo Harris and Master Leathersmith Gerald Smithson face a plague wrought by dark magic while trying to plan a wedding.
Adventure brought unlikely lovers Lord Leonard “Leo” Harris and Master Leathersmith Gerald Smithson together. Now it threatens to tear them apart. Three weeks before their wedding, a plague strikes Victorian London—the worst to engulf the city in five hundred years. The symptoms are eerily reminiscent of the Black Death with boils, a horrific death, and immunity to magical cures. As one of the most powerful mages in the country, Leo searches for a cure and the person behind the scourge all while Gerald must finalize wedding plans and try to thwart a persistent—and unwanted—“admirer.” It’s a race against time as Gerald shows symptoms, and Leo must fight a powerful Dark Mage to get the cure before he loses the love of his life.
Length: Novel (350p.) | Genre: Urban Fantasy, Historical European | Release Date: April 20, 2015
May 5, 2014
Into the Wind by Shira Anthony
Taren will have to put his life on the line to find Ian, and recover a fabled rune stone, a weapon the Ea believe will protect them.
Since learning of his merman shifter heritage, Taren has begun building a life with Ian Dunaidh among the mainland Ea. But memories of his past life still haunt him, and as the threat of war with the hostile island merfolk looms ever closer, Taren fears he will lose Ian the same way he lost his beloved centuries before. Together they sail to the Gateway Islands in search of the fabled rune stone—a weapon of great power the Ea believe will protect them—and Odhrán, the pirate rumored to possess it.
After humans attack the Phantom, Taren finds himself washed up on an island, faced with a mysterious boy named Brynn who promises to lead him to Odhrán. But Taren isn’t sure if he can trust Brynn, and Odhrán is rumored to enslave Ea to protect his stronghold. Taren will have to put his life on the line to find his way back to Ian and attempt to recover the stone. Even if he does find it, his troubles are far from over: he and Ian are being stalked by an enemy who wants them dead at all costs.
Length: Novel (216p.) | Genre: High Fantasy, Paranormal, Werewolves/Shapeshifters
Release Date: May 5, 2014
Perfect Imperfections by Cardeno C.
Jeremy meets Reg in a middle-of-nowhere bar and makes an offer: keep him company on a concert tour and play the part of his boyfriend.
Hollywood royalty Jeremy Jameson has lived a sheltered life with music as his sole focus and only friend. Before embarking on yet another international concert tour, he wanders into a bar in what he considers the middle of nowhere and meets a man who wins him over with his friendly smile and easy-going nature. Accountant slash bartender slash adventure-seeker Reg Moore has fun talking and drinking with The Jeremy Jameson and can’t say no when the supposedly straight rock star makes him a once in a lifetime offer: keep him company on his tour by playing the part of his boyfriend.
Listening to music, traveling the world, and jumping off cliffs is fun. Falling in love is even better. But to stay with Jeremy after the stage lights dim, Reg will need to help him realize there’s nothing pretend about their relationship.
Length: Novel (210p.) | Genre: Contemporary, Erotic Romance | Release Date: May 5, 2014
The Protector by Cooper West
Alex Taylor is a Protector and a widower. He bonds unexpectedly with Marcus, a Handler, and the two must learn to trust their bond.
Guardsmen are always matched in a bonded pair. The Protector can shift into a weredog, and the human partner is his Handler. They are incredibly rare and highly valued, but people also fear them for their mystical abilities. No Protector in living memory has outlived his Handler—until Alex Taylor.
Now a widower, Alex lives a lonely half-life and faces day after day of grief with no hope for happiness in the future. When he unexpectedly bonds with the young and vibrant Handler Marcus Stephanek, Alex is angry and unwilling to leave the memory of his former Handler behind. He pushes Marcus away and tries to distance himself from their bond. But then a mysterious villain who has been secretly shadowing Alex for years sets his plan in motion. Alex and Marcus must learn to trust their bond and love each other, or risk not only their own lives but the lives of those closest to them.
Length: Novel (250p.) | Genre: Mystery/Suspense, Paranormal, Werewolves/Shapeshifters
Release Date: May 5, 2014
February 19, 2014
Blue Notes by Shira Anthony
After finding his fiancée cheating, Jason flees to Paris for a leave of absence. Leave becomes a journey of the heart when he meets Jules.
Blame it on jet lag. Jason Greene thought he had everything: a dream job as a partner in a large Philadelphia law firm, a beautiful fiancée, and more money than he could ever hope to spend. Then he finds his future wife in bed with another man, and he’s forced to rethink his life and his choices. On a moment’s notice, he runs away to Paris, hoping to make peace with his life.
But Jason’s leave of absence becomes a true journey of the heart when he meets Jules, a struggling jazz violinist with his own cross to bear. In the City of Love, it doesn’t take them long to fall into bed, but as they’re both about to learn, they can’t run from the past. Sooner or later, they’ll have to face the music.
1st Edition published by Dreamspinner Press, December 2011
Length: Novel (250p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 19, 2014
Broken by Raine Norman
After breaking his leg in a skiing accident, Oliver is bitter and insecure. Joel, his lover of four years, tries to lift his spirits.
More than Oliver’s leg is broken after a skiing accident. The months spent in the hospital and enduring physical therapy leaves him bitter and insecure. His lover of four years, Joel, represents all he fears his weak and disfigured leg has stolen – the ability to live an active and carefree life.
Joel endlessly tries to lift Oliver from his despair, but after being rebuffed one too many times, he suggests they take a break and moves out.
After a long lonely week, Oliver is both delighted and terrified when Joel suggests they meet to talk things through. He discovers that Joel plans to make amends by helping Oliver realize he can still enjoy the snow. From Joel’s old apartment to the snowy peaks of a Canadian ski resort, Oliver and Joel will face their greatest fears together and with a little luck and a lot of trust, rekindle their love.
Length: Novella (66p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 19, 2014
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-483-6)
Clockwork Tangerine by Rhys Ford
Robin is a young inventor responsible for the death of Marcus’s father. Robin expects Marcus to run, but Marcus reaches for him instead.
The British Empire reigns supreme, and its young Queen Victoria has expanded her realm to St. Francisco, a bustling city of English lords and Chinese ghettos. St. Francisco is a jewel in the Empire’s crown and as deeply embroiled in the conflict between the Arcane and Science as its sister city, London—a very dark and dangerous battle.
Marcus Stenhill, Viscount of Westwood, stumbles upon that darkness when he encounters a pack of young bloods beating a man senseless. Westwood’s duty and honor demand he save the man, but he’s taken aback to discover the man is Robin Harris, a handsome young inventor indirectly responsible for the death of Marcus’s father.
Living in the shadows following a failed coup, Robin devotes his life to easing others’ pain, even though his creations are considered mechanical abominations of magicks and science. Branded a deviant and a murderer, Robin expects the viscount to run as far as he can—and is amazed when Marcus reaches for him instead.
Length: Novella (90p.) | Genre: Steampunk | Release Date: February 19, 2014
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-419-5)
February 12, 2014
The Dark Chocolate Caramels have a hard outer shell but the rich inside reminds us that even swashbuckling heroes need a dash of romance.
1. Checkmate by Nicki Bennett and Ariel Tachna
2. Greenwode by J Tullos Hennig
3. Mark of a Man by Maggie Lee
4. Beyond the Spanish Road by Annie Kaye
5. The Jouster’s Lance by A.J. Marcus
6. Stealing the Wind by Shira Anthony
7. Cross Bones anthology
8. Dash and Dingo by Catt Ford and Sean Kennedy
9. The King’s Heart by Rowena Sudbury
10. Beloved Pilgrim by Christopher Hawthorne Moss
Have we left out your favorite dark chocolate caramel? There were too many to choose from so complete our list in the comments below!
December 25, 2013
Going Up by Amy Lane
Sean and Zach meet when the elevator in Zach’s building breaks. Sean laughs his way into Zach’s heart one elevator ride at a time.
Every dreary day, Zach Driscoll takes the elevator from the penthouse apartment of his father’s building to his coldly charmed life where being a union lawyer instead of a corporate lawyer is an act of rebellion. Every day, that is, until the day the elevator breaks and Sean Mallory practically runs into his arms.
Substitute teacher Sean Mallory is everything Zach is not—poor, happy, and goofily charming. With a disarming smile and a penchant for drama, Sean laughs his way into Zach’s heart one elevator ride at a time. Zach would love to get to know Sean better, but first he needs the courage to leave his ivory tower and face a relationship that doesn’t end at the “Ding!”
Length: Novella (94p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: December 25, 2013
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-477-5)
Symphony in Blue by Shira Anthony
The Blue Notes series couples are back! David orchestrates a reunion in Milan, a symphony of friendship and love, and thanks giving.
Are you a fan of the Blue Notes series? Would you like to know where the couples from the first four books are now? This is your chance to catch up! Aiden and Sam are finally getting married. But when Cary and Antonio’s baby daughter makes her appearance a bit earlier than planned, the big reception is put on hold. David Somers normally conducts orchestras, but this time he devotes his energy to “conducting” his friends so that everyone can join him at his Milan villa for a reunion at an intimate Thanksgiving dinner.
Sam and Aiden, Jules and Jason, David and Alex, and Cary and Antonio are soon assembled, and each couple shares something they are thankful for. Played out in four movements, this symphony is a celebration of friendship and love, orchestrated by David.
Length: Novella (73p.) | Genre: Contemporary, Holiday | Release Date: December 25, 2013
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-394-5)
Where You Lead by Mary Calmes
Carver must leave Chicago for Colt, Kentucky, and wants to do it with Peter by his side. He hopes Peter will fall in love with his family.
ATF agent Peter Lomax isn’t a hearts and flowers kind of guy, but he can be possessive, and it caused problems until Carver Fleming. Carver may be part of the art world, but he gets Peter, loves belonging to the man, and Peter treasures the way Carver understands them together.
Carver loves Peter, but he’s fully aware that six months doth not a commitment make. Carver wants to make the relationship last forever, but he’ll have to leave their life in Chicago to take care of the family he loves. He wants to do it with Peter by his side, but going from the city of Chicago to tiny Colt, Kentucky is a big change.
Carver has only one Christmas wish: Please, oh please, let Peter fall enough in love with Carver’s family to follow Carver home.
Length: Novella (82p.) | Genre: Contemporary, Holiday | Release Date: December 25, 2013
Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-476-8)
December 11, 2013
As many of my regular readers know, I absolutely love cooking and eating, and I enjoy putting food into all of my stories in some way or another. I considered going to culinary school and decided against it, but I do cook complicated and exotic dishes fairly regularly. People love to invite me to potluck parties because I tend to bring something really amazing. I once saw two grown men arguing over who would lick the plate from one of my apple tarts. (Stay tuned, I’m putting that recipe in the next Delectable book!)
It didn’t take much for me to realize what a fun idea it would be to have a series where a main character in each book is in the world of food or wine. Elizabeth North, owner of Dreamspinner Press helped me create and name the series, and the rest is history.
If you haven’t seen the series, here are the other books. You can read them in any order!
Brand New Flavor, featuring a food critic and a guy who makes the most amazing ice cream you could imagine
Lighting the Way Home (co-written with the wonderful Shira Anthony), a holiday story set in New York at Chanukah. A world-class chef comes back for a family holiday and discovers love much closer to home.
An Intoxication Crush. I spent 7 years working in the California wine business, so I had to write a book featuring a winemaker. Austin Kelvin’s family winery is in financial trouble and the target of a corporate takeover, but will the investment analyst he’s falling for help or hurt his bid to stay independent?
Do you like to cook or do you avoid cooking if possible? What’s your favorite food to cook? Please leave a comment to add to the discussion.
Don’t forget today’s COUPON CODE
To celebrate the release of Gingerbread Palace, Dreamspinner Press is giving a special coupon code to get an additional 25% off any of my titles. Use coupon code: LynleyBlog (case sensitive) when you checkout from the Dreamspinner Website on December 11 and 12 only. See all of my DSP titles.
August 12, 2013
Appearances Matter by Jeff Erno
It’s up to Todd to decide whether Galen is the gay boy of his dreams or just another dumb jock. Appearances Matter by Jeff Erno, available from Dreamspinner Press.
At age sixteen, Todd Hoffman is a social outcast. He lives with his mother in a rundown mobile home and doesn’t wear the nice clothes or drive fancy cars like the other students. He has one outlet: he secretly writes fan fiction about a boy falling in love with another boy he’s crushing on, and posts it online.
When Galen Caulfield, Todd’s real life object of affection, notices him and asks him out, Todd feels like he’s living his fantasy. Soon enough he realizes that fantasy and reality are two very different propositions.
Galen is the high school soccer team captain, clearly out of Todd’s league. On top of that, he’s popular, good-looking, and confident, so everyone thinks he’s straight. Now it’s up to Todd to decide whether Galen is the boy of his dreams or just another dumb jock.
1st Edition published by Amazon Digital Services, Aug 24, 2012.
Stealing the Wind by Shira Anthony
Taren dives overboard and is saved by a pirate captain—his people are Ea, shape-shifting merfolk… and Taren is one of them too. Stealing the Wind by Shira Anthony, available from Dreamspinner Press.
Taren Laxley has never known anything but life as a slave. When a lusty pirate kidnaps him and holds him prisoner on his ship, Taren embraces the chance to realize his dream of a seagoing life. Not only does the pirate captain offer him freedom in exchange for three years of labor and sexual servitude, but the pleasures Taren finds when he joins the captain and first mate in bed far surpass his greatest fantasies.
Then, during a storm, Taren dives overboard to save another sailor and is lost at sea. He’s rescued by Ian Dunaidh, the enigmatic and seemingly ageless captain of a rival ship, the Phantom, and Taren feels an overwhelming attraction to Ian that Ian appears to share. Soon Taren learns a secret that will change his life forever: Ian and his people are Ea, shape-shifting merfolk… and Taren is one of them too. Bound to each other by a fierce passion neither can explain or deny, Taren and Ian are soon embroiled in a war and forced to fight for a future—not only for themselves but for all their kind.
Length: Novel (214p.) | Genre: High Fantasy, Paranormal, Shapeshifter, M/M/M or More | Release Date: August 12, 2013
Anthology: Cuddling Edited by Anne Regan
These men face the challenges of keeping the spark alive with humor, creativity, and romance. Anthology: Cuddling Edited by Anne Regan, available from Dreamspinner Press.
What happens after “happily ever after”? No matter how long they’ve been together, the couples in this anthology find that keeping a relationship alive takes work. Whether it’s job conflicts or family issues, the seven-year-itch or just plain stuck-in-a-rut routine, these men face the challenges of keeping the spark alive with humor, creativity, and romance.
At First Sound by G.S. Wiley
Change of Heart by Rhidian Brenig Jones
Cupcakes for Two by K. Lynn
Dream Lover by Nico Jaye
Happy Holidays by Anna Butler
Home on the Range by Anna Martin
How to Date Your Husband by AC Valentine
Like an Old Sweater by Elizabella Gold
Looking Back by Rob Rosen
Quarter Moon Over a Ten Cent Town by Stephen Osborne
Reboot by S. H. Allan
Remember When by River Clair
The Cat’s Out of the Bag by Rowan McAllister
The Making of a Family by Caitlin Ricci
The Responsible One by Eva Clancy
The Thing I Love Best About Mitch by Dawn Douglas