New releases: September 13, 2013

September 13, 2013

Like Fire Through Bone by E.E. Ottoman

Vasilios and Markos, slave and general, odd couple. Seeking a demon child-eater, they find love. But they have to stay alive to be together. Like Fire Through Bone by E.E. Ottoman, available from Dreamspinner Press.

Vasilios Eleni has learned to make the best of life as a eunuch and valued slave in the household of a wealthy silk merchant. When he begins having dreams of a demon who steals away children and eats them alive, Vasilios’s well-ordered life begins to unravel. General Markos Özdemir has been ordered by the Emperor to investigate the kidnapping and murder of children from the capital, but he’s become frustrated with the lack of progress. When he learns of Vasilios’s dreams, he begins to suspect they are the key to tracking down the demon.

Vasilios and Markos work together, and soon the attraction between them flares, leading to deeper attachment. Vasilios admits to his feelings for Markos but knows they must first find a way to exorcise the child-eating demon. Their quest takes them into the desert to seek out mystics and a half-man, half-serpent monk, as well as heretics, ex-concubines, and angels. The mission remains unsolved when Vasilios is trapped in the household of a cruel man. Things go from bad to worse for Vasilios, and getting back to freedom and the new love he has with Markos could cost him his life.

A Timeless Dreams title: While reaction to same-sex relationships throughout time and across cultures has not always been positive, these stories celebrate M/M love in a manner that may address, minimize, or ignore historical stigma.

Length: Novel (244p.) | Genre: Angel/Demon, Paranormal, Historical World, Timeless Dreams | Release Date: September 13, 2013 | Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-025-8) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-024-1)

————————————————————————————————
Hungry for Love by Rick R. Reed

Fate turns a false persona for an online dating site into real attraction, but a mountain of deceit stands square in the path of Cupid’s arrow. Hungry for Love by Rick R. Reed, available from Dreamspinner Press.

Nate Tippie and Brandon Wilde are gay, single, and both hoping to meet that special man, even though fate has not yet delivered him to their doorstep. Nate’s sister, Hannah, and her kooky best friend, Marilyn, are about to help fate with that task by creating a profile on the gay dating site, OpenHeartOpenMind. The two women are only exploring, but when they need a face and body for the persona they create, they use Nate as the model.

When Brandon comes across the false profile, he falls for the guy he sees online. Keeping up the charade, Hannah begins corresponding with him, posing as Nate. Real complications begin when Brandon wants to meet Nate, but Nate doesn’t even know he’s being used in the online dating ruse. Hannah and Marilyn concoct another story and send Nate out to let the guy down gently. But when Nate and Brandon meet, the two men feel an instant and powerful pull toward each other. Cupid seems to have shot his bow, but how do Nate and Brandon climb out from under a mountain of deceit without letting go of their chance at love?

Length: Novel (200p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: September 13, 2013 | Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-146-0) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-145-3)

Release Party for Like Fire Through Bone: Let’s Talk Cover Art

September 13, 2013

I was originally going to talk about music but I can’t figure out how to embed the media player so let’s talk about cover art first.

I’ll admit it, I totally judge books by their covers.

As a reader browsing through a brick and mortar bookstore I am far more likely to grab a book that has an exciting or beautiful cover. As a die hard fantasy  and science fiction fan I’m going to be drawn to cover to portray something new and fresh from the genre. A cover with bulky space Marines isn’t going to attract my attention the same way a cover depicting a character walking the streets of a futuristic Delhi would.

When it comes to romance novels I’m just as picky. I’m not a fan of covers which show over developed pectoral muscles as their primarily attraction since they are a dime a dozen in the m/m romance genre. I am much more likely to be attracted to interesting covers even if they are not “sexy” per say. In fact a cover which doesn’t immediately scream “romance” to me is going to be more attractive because it will grab my attention and making me at least read the blurb.

Unless I know the author or have had the book recommended to me the cover art may indeed make or break my decision to buy the book. I know this about myself therefore I take the designing of the covers for my own book very seriously.

Working with a new publisher and new set of cover artists is always a little nerve wracking and the cover art is such an important part of the process that when I sent off my survey form for the cover art of Like Fire Through Bone I was mostly just anxious about how it was going to turn out.

I tried to give as much details about each of the characters as possible along with the over all feeling I was going for.

I really wanted to cover to emphasize the plot and tone of the book over the sex appeal of the characters.

It’s not that Like Fire Through Bone isn’t a sexy book because I think there is great chemistry between Vasilios and Markos and multiple hot sex scenes. On the other hand though the book is not all about the romance as much as it is about combining plot with romance I wanted a cover to reflect that.

What I got back from the talented Brooke Albrecht was four different but equally lovely covers. Two of them really jumped out at me though. In one I loved the cover model and felt like he was closest to my mental picture of Vasilios. The other I was totally in love with the color scene and lettering.

I asked if they could be combined and the cover that resulted was the one we went with. I love it. I think it is a beautiful cover.


“Wow” my brother said to me when I showed it to him “I could see that being a paperback novel in the fantasy section of any bookstore. I’d probably pick it up and read the back too.”

That made me so happy for all sorts of reasons.

So what do people think? What role does the cover art play in your decision whether to buy a book? What kinds of things do you love or hate to see on covers of m/m romance book?

Harmony Ink New Release: September 12, 2013

September 12, 2013

All the Colors of Love by Jessica Freely

A Harmony Ink Press Young Adult Title

Harry and Antonin’s odd families are vastly different. They find common ground, but if they’re to be a couple, they’ve got grim problems. All the Colors of Love by Jessica Freely, a Harmony Ink Press Young Adult title available from Dreamspinner Press.

It sucks being the son of a super villain. At home, Harry spends half of his time getting medical treatments and the other half tied up in his father’s underwater lair. It was different when his mother was alive, but she disappeared when Harry was six. He can’t seem to stay out of trouble at school, and his new roommate, Antonin, thinks he’s a spaz, but somehow Harry has to find a way to stop his father’s evil plans.

Antonin Karganilla wants to become a comic book artist, but other than that, being gay is the most normal thing about him. His uncle is an aquatic plant man, his aunt is a molecular biologist back from the dead, and his mom is an overprotective pain in the butt. Antonin’s in boarding school and it’s starting to look like he and this Harry kid might have a lot in common… and that means a whole new set of problems.

Length: Novel (240p.) | Genre: Science Fiction | Release Date: September 12, 2013

Buy as an eBook (ISBN: 978-1-62798-153-8) | Buy as a paperback (ISBN: 978-1-62798-152-1)

New releases: September 9, 2013

September 9, 2013

Anything Could Happen by B.G. Thomas

Austin moves to Kansas City to find Todd, the love of his life. Instead he meets Guy and things get even more confusing. Anything Could Happen by B.G. Thomas, available from Dreamspinner Press.

Moving to Kansas City could be the best thing Austin Shelbourne has ever done. For a start, he can stop living a lie and finally come out of the closet. And there’s a chance, though slim, that he might be able to locate the love of his life, Todd Burton. It had seemed like a good idea when he seduced his friend, but Todd freaked out and vanished. Austin hopes to find Todd, make things right between them, and win his love. But when he meets actor Guy Campbell, things get even more confusing.

The moment Guy sets eyes on Austin, he knows Austin is The One. But Austin makes it clear he feels a responsibility to Todd, and Guy has some dark secrets of his own. He’s found redemption in acting and directing, but worries that if Austin learns the truth, he might not be able to bear it.  And what if Todd accepts Austin’s apology and the love Austin offers? Guy wants Austin desperately, but he also wants him to be happy. In the play of life, with the happiness of good men in the balance, anything could happen.

Length: Novel (244p.) | Genre: Contemporary, Coming of Age | Release Date: September 9, 2013 | Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-027-2) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-026-5)

————————————————————————————–

Shirewode by J Tullos Hennig

Rob of Loxley befriended Gamelyn against insurmountable odds. They’ve faced tragedy and death. But what about the reality of love? Shirewode by J Tullos Hennig, available from Dreamspinner Press.

Book Two of the Wode

The King of the Shire Wode. That is what they will call you.

Years ago, a pagan commoner named Rob of Loxley befriended Gamelyn Boundys, a nobleman’s son, against seemingly insurmountable odds—and with horrific consequences. His home razed by order of the Church, Rob was left for dead, believing his sister, Marion, and his lover, Gamelyn, had perished.

But Gamelyn yet lives. Guilt-ridden by his unwitting betrayal of Loxley, one of the last bastions of the Old Religion, Gamelyn rides off to seek absolution in the Holy Land. Rob vanishes into the greenwode and emerges as leader of a tight-knit band of outcasts who revolt against the powers that be.

When the two lovers meet again, it will be in a brutal, blindfolded game of foxes and hounds that pits Templar assassin against Heathen outlaw. Yet the past cannot be denied, and when Rob discovers Marion is also still alive, the game turns. History will chronicle Robyn Hood and Guy of Gisbourne as the deadliest of enemies, but the reality is more complicated—and infinitely more tragic.

Length: Novel (370p.) | Genre: Historical European, High Fantasy | Release Date: September 9, 2013 | Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-62380-664-4) | Buy as Paperback ($17.99 ISBN: 978-1-62380-663-7)

Spark: Release Party & Sensitive Topics

September 2, 2013

As I finish up my release party today, I’m getting ready to send my daughter off to middle school, one of those things that many parents dread. It’s more scary than it is to release a new book out into the wild, but I’m so glad you’ve been here to help me celebrate this wonderful day. Thank you. I’ll give you another little taste from Spark, one that deals with family, but first, I’d like to talk about sensitive subject matter.

I’m used to writing about sensitive issues, controversial topics, and even kinks that are squick-worthy to some, but not to all. When I wrote Spark, knowing from the start that it was going to be a trilogy inspired by something that actually happens in Fusion of North Star (book 2), I knew I was going to need to touch on sensitive topics.

Bisexuality. What? How is bisexuality a sensitive issue? To me, it’s not, but it is often one of the less visible letters in GLBT. And there are a lot of assumptions made about bisexuals that are far from true. Kevin Magnus just so happens to be bi. When we meet him in high school, he’s only dated girls. He’s never even been attracted to boys, until he meets Hugo Thorson. (Ooo, just writing that makes me excited! Self-discovery is wonderful.)

Kids. Wait. Before you run away, please hear me out. Over the years I’ve heard people talk about their dislike of kids in fiction. Spark (and all of North Star) is not centered around kids, but Kevin does have children who are part of the story. No matter what, Kevin is their dad, and one of his internal struggles his entire life has been to not turn into his distant father. Kevin would never abandon his children, so his kids are present. I’ve occasionally been the reader who rolls her eyes when a three-year-old talks like she’s twenty-three, but hopefully my child development degrees have helped me create kids who act developmentally appropriate.

The over-arching theme of North Star is family. I use that term loosely at times, meaning community, neighborhoods, and chosen family. I also use it in the more formal sense: family of origin as well as the family you create when you move away from your family of origin.

As an adult, Hugo’s family (aside from his mom and sister) really consists of Summer and Gilbert. Summer is Hugo’s best friend who is practically a sister, and Gilbert is the friend who understands Hugo in a way he doesn’t even know himself.

Kevin’s family consists of his almost-ex-wife Erin and their two kids, Brooke (10) and Finn (5). Brooke and Finn meet Hugo, who isn’t sure he wants anything to do with kids, and Summer, who is a kindergarten teacher that thinks kids are the greatest thing on earth. So how do you start a romance between a guy who’s not sure he even likes kids and a man who already has two kids of his own? You’ll have to read.

Separation/Divorce. That’s the third sensitive topic Spark deals with. Kevin is weeks away from finalizing his divorce when he meets up with Hugo seventeen years after their high school romance ended. Erin and Kevin have both agreed to start dating other people. Their romance was over long before Kevin asked for a divorce. They’d had a loveless marriage for years, and Erin even buys him a box of condoms (scene from book 2, Fusion), reminding him how often newborns wake up in the middle of the night. Erin is dating as well, so neither Erin nor Kevin see dating as cheating because of their agreement.

Erin is part of this story as well. She needs to be, because Kevin and Erin are still raising their kids together. That parenting relationship doesn’t dissolve as easily as a marriage does, or at least that’s the hope, even if in real life that happens a lot.

I truly enjoy writing about more than just a couple. I like writing about all the people surrounding the couple, because they make life richer, more complicated, and certainly more colorful. I can’t help but think of the saying “No man is an island” right now. It’s very true. We are shaped by the people around us and our experiences with them. I find writing about all those players to be very rewarding, and I believe it gives readers a richer understanding of the characters they get to know in fiction.

Here’s an excerpt from Chapter 16 where Kevin and Hugo’s families meet.

As Hugo and Kevin chopped a variety of veggies to wrap in foil packets for the grill and Summer added seasoning, the adults took some time getting to know each other, covering what they did for work and fun as well as where they were originally from. They inevitably tried to play Six Degrees of Separation with the people they knew from the various towns in Minnesota they’d each lived in over the years but could only come up with one connection which seemed to be at least eight degrees away. Unless you counted Myles, but they didn’t.

“I should get Brooke and Finn down here. I put in The Princess Bride so we could have a few uninterrupted adult minutes. You ready to meet them?” he directed at Hugo and Hugo alone.

He finished a swallow of wine and nodded. “Sure.”

Kevin climbed the stairs two at a time, Hugo watching after him, unable to keep from noticing how Kevin’s pants seemed to hug him in all the right places. And the bare feet on the wooden stairs distracted him again, so he missed Summer’s patter of conversation beside him. Kevin disappeared around the corner, no longer visible from the dining area where they were now seated. Hugo’s knee started bouncing, and Summer pressed a warm, calming hand to it.

“You’re not here on an interview to be their dad, okay?” she reminded him. “You’re just an old friend. Nothing else, so don’t work yourself up.”

“You’re right,” he whispered. “You’re always right.” He took a deep breath and slowly let it out through his nose, relaxing the muscles in his neck at the same time. With all the thinking he’d done in the last day about their past, his feelings for Kevin seemed to be reignited and burning white-hot, but he couldn’t get ahead of himself. “What do you think so far?” he asked, beyond curious.

“He’s hot and nice. His smile is amazing, and so are his gray eyes.”

Grey, ringed in midnight, he thought and was glad he’d kept his description to himself. “Okay, I already know all that. What do you think of him?”

“So far, so good. He seems… kind, warm. But I’m withholding my judgment like you asked me to. I’m going to give him the whole night until I’m even going to let myself go there and just be your best friend, okay?” Hugo nodded and took a quick, nervous sip. “Really, I’ve spent most of my time watching you, so far. Considering you haven’t seen him since you were eighteen, barring the other night, I’d think you guys had known each other forever. Well, except for the little moment you had back there where you were drooling over him.”

Hugo threw a cocktail napkin at Summer’s face and shook his head, ready to start berating her for being too harsh when a tall but slight girl with waist-length dark hair slowly walked down the stairs as if she had just woken up from a nap. Behind her, following quickly, was a cherubic-faced, strawberry-blond boy who easily overtook her. Kevin trotted down in bouncy movements to land at the bottom of the stairs at the same time as the girl.

“Brooke and Finn, I’d like you to meet my good friend Hugo and his friend Summer.”

The children were very polite, saying, “Pleased to meet you,” in unison. Obviously Kevin’s father had ingrained good manners into these kids before he died. More likely, it was Kevin and his ex, Hugo corrected his thoughts. Kevin rested his large hands on his kids’ shoulders in what seemed like a comforting gesture and gently squeezed when they spoke. All his motions did was distract Hugo from the children and draw all attention to Kevin’s hands. When had they gotten to be so big? The sight took his mind to dirty places it shouldn’t be while meeting children.

Hugo returned to pleasantries as best he could but was more than relieved when the teacher side of Summer came out, naturally moving the conversation on to things the kids were engaged in. It was as if a switch had been flipped, and Kevin’s kids came to life, talking animatedly and pulling Summer into the backyard to show her their sea glass collection.

“Sea glass?” Hugo asked Kevin skeptically. “Don’t you need a sea for that?”

“It’s just tumbled glass they find washed up on the beach. They love the stuff, and we spent most of today digging in the sand. I think Brooke wants to make some jewelry for her friend. Something about BFF necklaces, whatever those are. Finn just likes to dig in the sand and water. He’d be just as happy finding fish skeletons and chunks of concrete.”

“Best friends forever,” Hugo informed, but Kevin looked at him with a very puzzled expression on his face. “BFF means ‘best friends forever.’ Just thought I’d help decode the kid-speak for you.”

“Thanks. They say things I have no clue about sometimes. Well, at least Brooke does. Finn isn’t quite there yet, but Brooke is using abbreviations that make no sense to me half the time. I just figured out what ‘LOL’ meant on our drive back to the lake.”

“Seriously?”

“Yeah. I’m kinda pathetic when it comes to pop culture.”

“Well, I can help with that,” Hugo flirted, smiling over his wine glass as he took another sip. “They seem like great kids. I have two nieces. The youngest is about Brooke’s age, but the oldest is getting into the testy teen years. Nothing seems to please her unless it’s related to technology. Sometimes I just end up texting her while in the same room to draw her out. It’s unconventional, but worth doing to be a part of her life.”

“Do you see them much?”

“Yeah. Quite often. Charisse and her family live in Robbinsdale, right on Twin Lake. I’m their unofficial baby-sitter and chauffeur when she or her husband needs help. They’re almost too old for a baby-sitter now, but I go and hang out with them.”

“So you’re good with kids?”

“I’m… I’m good with my nieces because I know them,” Hugo answered with uncertainty in his tone due to his lack of confidence in where the conversation was going. “I mean. I don’t have a ton of experience with kids aside from the girls. It’s hard to say if I’m good with kids or not based on nieces I held before they were even an hour old. They’ve never not known me.”

“Well, don’t be intimidated by my kids. Brooke is a bit slow to warm up to new people, but once she does, you won’t be able to get her to stop talking about things that interest her. Not so much about herself. And Finn is pretty much a bundle of energy all the time, but easily entertained.”

“I’m sure Summer will be able to keep up with them.”

“It already looks like it. She seems to know you really well,” Kevin observed.

“Yeah. Probably better than anyone aside from my sister.”

Kevin sipped his wine and took a quick look down toward the water. Hugo looked as well and saw Summer and the kids huddled over what must’ve been the beach glass. Summer picked up a piece of something cobalt-blue and held it up to the sun. Brooke’s face lit up, and Hugo watched as she animatedly told a story he couldn’t hear, but he suspected from all her pointing and mimed swimming that Brooke had seen the piece deep in the water and had to dive to get her hands on it. Summer beamed, smiling and laughing. Finn seemed to try to get in on the retelling of the story, but Brooke rolled her eyes and sat next to Summer while Finn took center stage. Hugo loved watching Summer with kids.

I’ve lived away from my hometown and family since right after my eighteenth birthday, so I’ve had to create a chosen family. I have friends nearly 20 years younger as well as 20 years older and everything in between. What sort of people make up your own chosen family?

This is the last chance to enter to win by commenting. I’ll post winners tomorrow. Thank you so much for allowing me to play with you today. I hope you enjoy Spark as much as I enjoyed writing it, and look for Fusion coming out sometime in November.

Spark: Character Inspiration & More

September 2, 2013

Spark is story about Hugo Thorson and Kevin Magnus at two different times in their lives: their teens and their mid-thirties. Gladly, I no longer look like I did when I was sixteen, because it was the eighties and I permed my hair, wore more makeup than was good for me, and thought shoulder pads were still cool. At least Hugo and Kevin were teens in the nineties and missed out on mullets, but that did leave me with the opportunity to find two very different looks for both of my main characters.

I had a lot of different faces representing Hugo and Kevin at different stages, and I also had a lot of hairstyles as well. Kevin had longer hair in his youth; Hugo had shorter. As adults, they switched. I knew the overall look I was going for with both of my characters, even if I couldn’t always find the exact face to fit. I’d like to share a few with you here.

Hugo has blue eyes, pale skin, and dark hair that is almost blue-black. As an adult, he has very defined cheekbones, and the model, Miles McMillan really became Hugo to me. While Miles has hazel eyes, in my head I always made them blue.

I described Kevin as an all-American golden boy. And while his long hair in his youth made him look more rebellious than he ever was, his father hated that image. Kevin secretly loved that his father hated his longer hair, but as you can see by the photo on the right, he cut his blond waves off as he matured into adulthood.

I could look at photos of these men for a very long time and not tire of it, but I realize some people may not quite get the Hugo in my head being represented by these photos. The joy of reading a book is that we get to create our own dream man, so if the images that inspired me to write don’t work for you, make your own. I’d love to see those images, in fact.

I also made very good use of my Pinterest boards to keep track of other images I wrote about in Spark. I have locations, items used by characters, food, dishes, and even images that just give the feel of a scene or two.

Since I live within driving distance of most of the locations in Spark, I was able to take several day trips and photograph important places. I used some of those photos of where Hugo and Kevin lived as teens to help create a video while I read an excerpt. If you’d like, go here to see it. I know the production value has a lot to be desired.

Here’s another little taste of Hugo’s impression of Kevin that takes place right after the reading in the video. You can read Chapter 1 here.

Kevin’s hair was much shorter than it had been when they first met, now cropped along the sides and back with thick, long strands pushed back off his forehead. It was still the same golden-blond that had attracted Hugo so many years ago when they introduced themselves on Kevin’s first day working at Hormel. When Kevin had stepped into the room where a nearly sixteen-year-old Hugo was just starting to hand-wash the delicate blown-glass vessels used in research and taste testing, Hugo almost broke a large beaker which probably cost more than he made in a week.

Nineteen years prior, Kevin had silky blond hair just skimming past his shoulders, which he had pulled back to look more office appropriate, but wispy bangs escaped the binding, framing his eyes and dark-blond brows. His eyes were gray and piercing, ringed in blue so dark it looked like the color of the sky at dusk right before it turned black. He was beautiful, but not classically so. His lips were too full for a man’s face, too full for him to not be called pretty, at least. But his long nose, high cheekbones, and strong jaw gave his face masculinity, even if all those distinctive lines did were draw Hugo’s focus right back to those pink, parted lips.

Question time: In your youth did you have a regrettable hairstyle? I certainly did. Answer and I’ll enter you in a drawing for one of three free eBook copies of Spark.

I can be found a number of other places too. My websiteFacebook, and Twitter. My website has a listing of everywhere else I can be found.

New releases: September 2, 2013

September 2, 2013

Fighting for Love by Serena Yates

Danny and Halldor turn mutual loathing into love and unite to fight the greed that would stop their plan to build a children’s hospital. Fighting for Love by Serena Yates, available from Dreamspinner Press.

Modern Battles: Book Two

Danny McBrae is a super-rich playboy, but his devil-may-care lifestyle hides an artist with a sensitive heart who gave up on love after years of hurt. When his beloved great-grandfather, the eccentric Sir Malcolm Witherspoon, dies and leaves a rare piece of land to Oxford Hospital Trust, Danny finds new purpose. He uses some of his inherited wealth to help finance the planned children’s hospital, supporting his best friend, Dr. Grayson Burrows, who heads the project team.

When Grayson is seriously injured, Danny meets Dr. Halldor Magnusson, the neurologist who treats Grayson. Halldor has some weird ideas about keeping Grayson away from James, his lover, so Danny initially dislikes him. But Halldor also has his own deeply personal reasons for wanting the children’s hospital to become a reality, and the initial mutual distrust changes into interest and attraction. When Danny’s jealous ex-lover tries to tear them apart and someone is trying to get Halldor removed from the project team, they decide to join forces so they can win the battle.

Length: Novel (204p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: September 2, 2013 | Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-140-8) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-139-2)

——————————————————————————————————

Spark by Posy Roberts

High school love was long ago for Hugo and Kevin. They’re worlds apart now, but if it’s not hidden, the spark might still turn to flame. Spark by Posy Roberts, available from Dreamspinner Press.

North Star: Book One

In their small-town high school, Hugo and Kevin became closeted lovers who kept their secret even from parents. Hugo didn’t want to disappoint his terminally ill father, and Kevin’s controlling father would never tolerate a bisexual son. When college took them in different directions, they promised to reunite, but that didn’t happen for seventeen years.

By the time they meet again, Hugo has become an out-and-proud actor and director who occasionally performs in drag—a secret that has cost him in past relationships. Kevin, still closeted, has followed his father’s path and now, in the shadow of divorce, is striving to be a better father to his own children.

When Hugo and Kevin meet by chance at a party, the spark of attraction reignites, as does their genuine friendship. Rekindling a romance may mean Hugo must compromise the openness he values, but Kevin will need a patient partner as he adapts to living outside the closet. With such different lifestyles, the odds seem stacked against them, and Hugo fears that if his secret comes to light, it may drive Kevin away completely.

Length: Novel (304p.) | Genre: Coming of age, Contemporary | Release Date: September 2, 2013 | Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-126-2) | Buy as Paperback ($17.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-125-5)

Release Party – Spark by Posy Roberts

September 2, 2013

In their small-town high school, Hugo and Kevin became closeted lovers who kept their secret even from parents. Hugo didn’t want to disappoint his terminally ill father, and Kevin’s controlling father would never tolerate a bisexual son. When college took them in different directions, they promised to reunite, but that didn’t happen for seventeen years.

By the time they meet again, Hugo has become an out-and-proud actor and director who occasionally performs in drag—a secret that has cost him in past relationships. Kevin, still closeted, has followed his father’s path and now, in the shadow of divorce, is striving to be a better father to his own children.

When Hugo and Kevin meet by chance at a party, the spark of attraction reignites, as does their genuine friendship. Rekindling a romance may mean Hugo must compromise the openness he values, but Kevin will need a patient partner as he adapts to living outside the closet. With such different lifestyles, the odds seem stacked against them, and Hugo fears that if his secret comes to light, it may drive Kevin away completely.

Hello readers. I’m Posy Roberts, and I’m here to celebrate the release of my book Spark, which is released today, September 2nd. It’s the first book in my North Star trilogy. Here’s the blurb to give you a taste of what the story is about.

I never in my wildest dreams thought I’d write a trilogy. They seemed too big and too involved. With the amount of notes I have scattered around my writing studio, stuck to my computer monitor, and tucked away in journals, I was right about them being very involved. When I first started talking about this story with my friend who actually inspired it, I quickly realized there was no way I could tell it in just one book unless I wanted it to be mammoth. The entire trilogy covers two time periods in Hugo Thorson and Kevin Magnus’s lives and several years. Spark deals with both time periods—high school and adulthood—and covers about two months of modern day. The rest of the trilogy is modern day.

I’m so excited I’m finally able to share this story. I wrote it in the summer of 2012, so it seems like I’ve known Hugo and Kevin for ages. Of course, they’re very new to you.

I quickly found out that writing over three books allowed me to leave unfinished threads drifting in the breeze that I could easily pick up again and start weaving into the next book. That was fun. There are issues I introduce in Spark that aren’t even discussed again, let alone resolved, until book three. In many ways, that was like a treasure hunt for me as I wrote. That’s also why there were (still are, actually) so many notes all over my house. But it was fun, and I’m glad I took up the challenge.

Today I’ll be celebrating the release of Spark here on the Dreamspinner Press blog. I’m going to writing about what inspired the cover art, what it was like to essentially write two love stories in one book, discuss some of the images that inspired me along the way, and also what it was like to write about some sensitive topics. There will be several excerpts from the book, and if technology is on my side, I will share some clips of a few readings from Spark as well. I’d love it if you could stick around and help me celebrate.

But first, since this is a story about having a second chance at love, I’d love to hear from you. Have you had or wish you’d had another chance with someone you once loved? I’d love to hear about it. As a bonus for sharing, I’ll enter you in a drawing for one of three free eBook copies of Spark.

Thanks so much.

~Posy Roberts

New releases: August 30, 2013

August 31, 2013

A Heart Without Borders by Andrew Grey

Wes may face adopting a boy from Haiti without the support of Anthony, the one person he’s come to rely on most and may never see again. A Heart Without Borders by Andrew Grey, available from Dreamspinner Press.

Pediatrician Wes Gordon will do just about anything to escape his grief. When opportunity knocks, he signs on to work at a hospital in a tent camp in Haiti. One night while returning to his quarters, he comes across a gang of kids attempting to set fire to an underage rentboy and intervenes, taking the injured René under his wing. At the hospital, diplomat Anthony Crowley tells Wes that the kids involved in the attack are from prominent families and trying to hold them responsible will cause a firestorm.

In spite of the official position Anthony must take, Wes’s compassion captures his attention. Anthony pursues him, and they grow closer during the stolen moments between Anthony’s assignments, escaping earthquake destruction for glimpses of Caribbean paradise. When Wes realizes the only way to save René is to adopt him, Anthony is supportive, but time is running out: Wes must leave the country, and Anthony is called out on a dangerous secret mission. Now Wes must face adopting a boy from Haiti who has no papers without the support of the one person he’s come to rely on most and may never see again.

Length: Novel (200p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: August 30, 2013 | Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-020-3) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-019-7)

————————————————————————————————————-

A Royal Bind by Sui Lynn

Lance wants to tear apart the abusive vampire, Stephon, and free his mate, Andrew, and their family for good. A Royal Bind by Sui Lynn, available from Dreamspinner Press.

2nd Edition

Changing Moon: Book Two

Lance Fitz and Andrew Reed are a blissfully mated pair, but Andrew’s benefactor Stephon, a born vampire, isn’t happy with the pairing, especially after he discovers Lance’s pedigree. Stephon attempts to find answers using his mental connection with Andrew, and when his efforts fail, he goes after Lance’s new shifter family. Enraged, Lance severs the tie to Stephon. He wants to tear apart the abusive vampire and free his mate and family for good. But before he can try, the family reminds Lance that the death of one vampire won’t change the social status of shifters as an enslaved people. The fight won’t end with Stephon, even if Lance succeeds.

1st Edition published by Silver Publishing, 2012.

Length: Novel (200p.) | Genre: Paranormal, Vampires, Shapeshifters, Mystery/Suspense | Release Date: August 30, 2013 | Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-062-3) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-061-6)

————————————————————————————————————-

Strong Enough by Cardeno C.

With a prize like Spencer on the line, Emilio faces a challenge; Spencer must slay his personal demons and learn to trust again. Strong Enough by Cardeno C, available from Dreamspinner Press.

A Book in the Family Series

When twenty-two-year-old Emilio Sanchez sees handsome Spencer Derdinger walking by his construction site, Emilio makes it his goal to seduce the shy professor. Getting Spencer into bed isn’t difficult, but Emilio soon learns that earning the trust of a man deeply hurt will take time and patience. With a prize like brilliant, sweet Spencer on the line, Emilio decides he is strong enough to face the challenge.

Spencer is surprised when he’s approached by the gorgeous construction worker he’s admired from the safety of his office window. Acting spontaneously for the first time in his thirty-eight years, Spencer takes Emilio home. When the casual hookup turns into the potential for love, Spencer realizes that if he wants to build a life with Emilio, he’ll need to be strong enough to slay his personal demons and learn to trust again.

Length: Novel (200p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: August 30, 2013 | Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-052-4) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-051-7)

New releases: August 28, 2013

August 28, 2013

Call Me But Love by Tracy Rowan

In these four stories, Mercutio’s love for Romeo goes far deeper, always somehow entwined with the fates of Romeo and Juliet. Call Me But Love by Tracy Rowan, available from Dreamspinner Press.

Mercutio is a funny, moody, complex foil for Romeo in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, but in the four stories presented here, each an independent tale, Mercutio’s love for his friend goes far deeper, always somehow entwined with the fates of Romeo and Juliet.

The first tale sets the trio back in Renaissance Verona, where Mercutio vies for Romeo’s love. Romeo is oblivious, but the love triangle has deadly consequences. Next, we find Romeo and Mercutio in Victorian England. Though Romeo knows Mercutio loves him and returns his passion, he struggles to fit his desires into the strict mores of the day. The third story takes us to post-WWII America, where war-weary Romeo, Juliet, and Mercutio long for the right to love whom they choose. The final story in the collection brings the three characters into contemporary times, a band on a road trip that will change their lives forever.

Length: Novella (74p.) | Genre: Contemporary, Historical (European, Americas) | Release Date: August 28, 2013 |Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-014-2)

————————————————————————————————–

Ride the Wind by Anne Dudley

Alex meets the confident and outgoing Jordon at the Sturgis motorcycle rally, finds new experiences, and faces fear and love. Ride the Wind by Anne Dudley, available from Dreamspinner Press.

Alex Durant lives in a room behind the motorcycle repair shop where he works as an underpaid mechanic, bullied by his boss. There’s a truth he’s ignored most of his twenty-three years: men on their bikes turn him on, not women on the pin-up calendars that line the shop walls. It’s during a well-earned vacation to Sturgis, South Dakota, to attend the motorcycle rally where he comes face to face with his truth.

He meets the confident and outgoing Jordon Baker, who races motorcycles as a career. Alex is overwhelmed by Jordon’s incredible smile and kind eyes and his need to live life to the fullest. In the week they spend together, it’s Jordon who shows Alex things he’s never experienced: concerts, races, and the stars. It’s Jordon who shows him that two male bodies can ignite in pleasure when they come together. By the end of the week, Alex sees in Jordon’s eyes what he feels in his heart, and the truth of that scares him to the core.

But Sturgis week has ended, and Alex is back to the grind. He’s now stuck with making a difficult choice: continue to live his sad life alone and in hiding, or live his truth with the man who has big eyes for the world.

Length: Novel (246p.) | Genre: Contemporary, Coming of Age | Release Date: August 28, 2013 | Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-033-3) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-62798-032-6)