Tag Archives: #ownvoices

Release Blitz: Bring Me Home by Nicola Haken

Bring Me Home | Nicola Haken

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Release Date: October 11th, 2021

Cover Design: Golden Czermak at FuriousFotog

Universal Link: https://bit.ly/3alAccc

Add to Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/58914491-bring-me-home

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Bring Me Home Ebook Cover

Blurb

Hugo Hayes has it all; the voice, the money, the looks. Adored by fans all over the world, there’s nothing more he could ever wish for. Or so it appears. But no one sees what happens off stage. Nobody knows where he came from, what he goes through, where he’s heading…

Except the girl he left behind. She’ll know. She always did.

Helen Jenkins is starting over. Back on the diet and heading for a career change, it’s time to stop wallowing in the past and give up missing the best friend who traded her in for fame and glory eight years ago. Harder than it sounds when his image and voice seem to follow her wherever she goes…

Harder still when he appears at her front door one rainy spring night.

Hugo is falling. After all these years, will Helen still be prepared to catch him before the inevitable crash? Or has he lost the only home he’s ever known, forever?

Bring Me Home Teaser 1

Excerpt

We had to wait for the cameras to capture an appropriate amount of applause before someone shouted, “Cut!” and when they did, I was outta that chair before the word had finished leaving their mouth. I stormed from the set, ripping the mic pack from my back, eyes focused on my target.

Drew.

He raised his hands in a protective stance, his mouth melting into an apologetic frown.

“Don’t ever do that to me again,” I barked, shoving the mic pack into his chest. I didn’t wait around to listen to his excuses or apologies. I needed out. Out of the studio, out of the heat, the whole fucking building. I barged past crew members, blustered through mazes of corridors lined with framed photos of stars from the various TV shows produced here, until I found a set of exit doors.

The rush of air smacking me in the face as I pushed open the double doors felt like breaking the surface of the ocean. Finally, I could breathe again, after being pinned under water for almost an hour, splashing, screaming, begging, too far from the shore for anyone to notice. Outside, I leaned back against a wall, closed my eyes. I had about a minute before hyperventilation set in and I lost control of my senses.

Breathe,I told myself. One, two, three, four…hold… I inhaled slowly, focused on my diaphragm, the vision of it expanding a little more with every breath. One, two, three, four… Box breathing, a therapist had called it back in my high school days. Belly breathing, said another. Sometimes it worked, if I noticed myself slipping in time. Other times, the anxiety flourished so quickly it retained all the power, leaving me helpless. Scared.

“There you are.” I was vaguely aware of Helen’s voice, but I couldn’t distract myself enough to focus on it. “Hugo?”

One, two, three, four…

“It’s okay, Hugo. I’m right here.”

I heard her footsteps come closer. It made my heart rate spike, the nerves under my skin feel like barbed wire. No. Not Helen. If I couldn’t bear Helen’s touch…where did that leave me?

Alone. Forever.

One, two, three, four…

“It’ll be over soon,” Helen whispered, cupping my cheek.

I felt the muscles freeze inside my body. Nausea tore through my stomach. Irritation tightened my lips. “Get off,” I mouthed, teeth gritted. I felt like a bastard, a useless and selfish motherfucker, but I couldn’t stand it. Her skin on my skin. The sound of her breath. “I’m sorry,” I choked out, because I was. Truly fucking sorry. I lovedher…but I couldn’t be near her, couldn’t even look at her. Not yet.

“It’s okay, it’s okay,” she said softly, footsteps retreating. She understood. She fucking understood.

Why?Why was she still here? She deserved better than this.

The end befell eventually. Always did. After what could’ve been several minutes or an hour, a sense of calm encircled me, floated from above like weightless chiffon and moulded itself to my body. Breathing became natural again. I could smell the brine from the canal that ran the length of the studios and beyond. I could hear Helen…and appreciate her.

My eyes peeled open. “Hey.”

She smiled, though her eyes looked heavy. Sad. “Hey.”

Bring Me Home Collage

About The Author

Born in Manchester, England, Nicola Haken is an author of multiple genre-hopping romance novels, including Bring Me Home, Broken, and Goodbye Kate.

She lives in Rochdale with her husband, four children, and a menagerie of pets, is addicted to Pepsi Max and chicken nuggets, and wishes Harry Styles was her best friend. Like one of her characters, Hugo Hayes, Nicola is autistic, and has battled with her mental health her entire life – winning every time…eventually. With two of her kids also on the spectrum, life can get pretty…interesting!

When she’s not locked in her office playing with her imaginary friends, she can usually be found reading, binge-watching boxsets, or belting out great songs and pretending she doesn’t sound like a cat in distress.

Oh, and if the kids ever ask, she moonlights as the Pink Power Ranger while they’re sleeping…

Social Media

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nicolahakenauthor

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/NicolaHaken

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nicolahaken

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/nicolahaken

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/nicola-haken

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/nicolahaken

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/author/nicolahaken

Website: https://www.nicolahaken.co.uk

Bring Me Home Available Now

Learned Reactions is another powerful POC romance from Jayce Ellis

55364873._SY475_Learned Reactions by Jayce Ellis

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Jayce Ellis is rapidly becoming an auto read author for me with her superb glimpses into the lives and loves of queer men of colour.

I hadn’t realised when I started this ons that it would have an element of overlapping on the timeframe of book one, but now it makes perfect sense.

Carlton and Deion were already in their strange, mixed up non relationship when they were introduced in Jaq and Matt’s story and here we get the full tale.

And there were times I wanted to shake them both so hard and make them just get over themselves.

But, at the same time, Carlton’s fears that the only solid and permanent rock in his adult life would somehow find him lacking if he admitted he’d been in love with him for as long as Deion had felt the same, were heartbreakingly real.

The narrative never drags though, even while the two are not so much mis-communicating as utterly failing to deal with the serious consequences that pretending to be a family to help Carlton’s adoption of his niece caused.

It’s usually one of my most hated tropes, but Jayce gives it such weight and meaning that it would have felt completely wrong if they had just sat down and talked.

When it eventually happens, the blast point sets off a chain of events which ultimately leads to one of the sweetest chapters in the book and a fabulous ending that actually made me tear up – something I rarely do!

Wait til you read those words that pass between them and see if you can hold out better than I did!

Now, I am soooo hoping Lawrence will be next and we’ll get to find out what happened with Vance.

Given the age gap, I’m betting it’ll be a riot 😁

#ARC kindly received from the publisher Carina Press via NetGalley in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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Release Blitz: Enough by A.L. Williams

Enough | A. L. Williams

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Release Date: August 1st, 2020

Universal Link: https://books2read.com/EnoughbyALWilliams

Enough Ebook

Blurb

He can go fuck himself…

Dexter spends his days in class and working. He has goals and a future to work for, but he can’t deny the loneliness. When he ran into Isabella he’s pulled into an emotional rollercoaster he didn’t ask for. One that involves an overprotective brute he wishes would go away. It’s not like he’s her boyfriend, so what’s his issue?

Then why this time?

Rashawn shouldn’t be surprised. Picking up random guys was Isabella’s MO. It was nothing new. However, why was this one so infuriating? He wasn’t anything special. Just some college guy who was probably after nothing other than sex. Once she gets her fill, he’ll be old news and things would return to normal. Right?

Both men have been pulled into a triangle they didn’t ask for. They are forced to fight for what they want. There’s one problem. As time goes on neither of them is sure what that is anymore.

Excerpt

A warm body slammed into me and I grabbed at the person’s shoulders to steady them and myself. My hand landed on something soft and I jumped back when I realized. I had grabbed a breast. I gawked at the woman who was staring at me with her head cocked to the side. 

She was stunning. She had a thin frame, but the curves were present due to the tightness of her black skirt and red satin blouse, that looked delicious against all that golden skin. My eyes trailed down to her chest with a single button open, revealing perfect breasts. “I’m up here,” she said. 

I whipped my head up, my face warm. What the fuck was wrong with me? “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to—” 

She held up a well manicured hand. “It’s fine. I know I’m sexy.” Her dark brown eyes danced with amusement. I must have looked like a fish, but I couldn’t help myself. Not only was this woman drop dead gorgeous, but she carried herself with a confidence that I envied.

“What’s your name?” she asked, inching closer. Her long dark brown curls swayed with her movements.

I glanced at a group of giggling girls that walked by and then turned back. “Dex,” I said.

A wide smile spread across her face. “I’m Isabel.”

She reached out and brushed my arm, sending goosebumps along it. I really needed to get laid. I was far too responsive to the woman. My cock was already taking notice. The last thing I needed was for her to see how desperate I was. 

“Would you like to get coffee sometime?” she asked. 

I blinked and bobbed my head, feeling like an idiot moments later. What was I, twelve?  “Yeah, that would be great.” 

She smirked. “I’m glad.” She leaned in close, her lips only inches from mine. “I’m looking forward to it.” She looked up at me from below her long eyelashes. I swallowed. 

“Izzy, what are you doing?”  I jumped back startled by the male voice. A man with dark bronzed skin stocked over, his forehead creased and dark eyes flashing with anger. He glared down at me, towering over us both. He had to be at the least six foot three.  I looked aside, unable to do much else under the intense presence. Who the fuck was this guy?

“Calm down, Rashawn. You’re scaring the poor guy,” Isabel said as if there wasn’t a giant before her, glaring daggers that would kill if allowed. 

She moved back and wrapped her arms around his bicep which was far too large for its own good. I mean, come on, it had to be a size too small. Guys like this I knew well from high school. Big and tough with far too many muscles and a bad attitude. I wasn’t here for it. “I have to go. I have homework to do and then I have to get to work.” I said, taking a step back. 

Isabel poked out her lip which would have made me laugh if it wasn’t for hulk in the shade of brown looking at me as if he wanted to strangle me. I shifted and swallowed around the dryness in my throat.

“We’re still on for coffee right?” she asked. 

I want to say no, but I did need to get out more and do things with people. Who cared if this Rashawn guy was her…I don’t know…he definitely wasn’t her boyfriend or she wouldn’t have asked me out in such a proactive way. Not completely convinced I nodded, trying to ignore the giants hard eyes boring into me. I shifted again.

She reached in her shirt and pulled out a phone, unlocked the screen and handed it to me. “Great! Here put your number in my phone. We can meet at the student union tomorrow around four? I have classes all morning and homework to grade, but after that I will meet you there.”

“Okay.” I handed her phone back and glanced at Rashawn who had his arms crossed in front of his chest in a stance very similar to my father’s. He hadn’t said a word, but I could see the vein in his neck working. He wasn’t happy. Why? She was asking me out on a date. Which meant she was single. What was his problem? 

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About The Author

My name is Alec Lee Williams, a black trans #ownvoices artist. My pronouns are He/him/his.  I have loved creating things ever since I can remember. My art is the visual and written expression of what is in my heart and mind. Show the world what social expectation and stigma it has created in regards to mental health. Mental illness and discrimination are a part of our history, and it’s time the world sees it.  The beautiful and the dirty.

With my art, I want to show those who don’t have mental illness what it’s like. I want those that do have a mental illness, specifically queer POC, to relate and maybe even letting go of their trauma and triggers by seeing it displayed. I want them to know they are not alone.

Now that I have decided to pursue writing my novels I hope will do the same.

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