Tag Archives: romance

Blog Tour: Want Me by Neve Wilder

Want Me | Neve Wilder

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MM New Adult Romance

Release Date: 08.05.19

Buy Links:

Amazon US: http://bit.ly/WantMeNeveWilder

Amazon UK: http://bit.ly/WantMeNeveWilder_UK

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Want Me Cover

BLURB

Two roommates. One calculus exam. A whole lot of extracurricular activity.

Nate

Living with four other guys, it’s bound to happen.

Every guy’s been caught taking care of business at least once, right?

It shouldn’t be a big deal.

But I don’t know Eric as well as my other roommates, and things are a little awkward now.

He’s a loner. A mystery. Quietly confident. Smart.

Sexy as hell.

I’ve been happily subsisting on the typical frat guy diet of booze and sorority girls.

But the way Eric looked at me that night?

There was something there.

Something that’s got me curious.

Something that’s stirring up feelings I thought I’d left behind for good.

Something that’s making me think I’m not as straight as I thought I was.

I can’t get him off of my mind.

I don’t think I want to.

So when he offers to help me study for a midterm I’m convinced I’m going to fail,

I take him up on it.

It’s innocent.

Probably. Maybe.

There’s no way I could’ve known what it’d start…

This is a super steamy standalone new adult/college MM romance with HEA that unfolds across six “episodes” following Nate and Eric.

Now bundled up in one collection with a bonus episode for a seamless reading experience. 87,000 words.

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EXCERPT

“You all right?”

“Yeah, stressed, as usual.”

“Calculus? I can help.”

“Nope, philosophy this time.”

He wrinkled his nose in sympathy, then laced his fingers behind his head. I turned my focus back to the page I was reading, then realized I’d read the same sentence three times in a row. I could feel him watching me, and when I turned my head to check, I was right. His gaze trickled down from the crown of my head to my lap, slow as a drop of water down the glass of the window behind me. My cock jumped in my pants, and I shifted my legs restlessly. The thing needed a leash.

“You want some stress relief?” he offered.

No. It was on the tip of my tongue to say it, because I was frustrated by the whole situation, but fuck, the way he was sitting there so casually, his legs sprawled, his thickening cock starting to push at his fly… I inhaled deeply through my nose, and as I exhaled, found myself saying, “Like what?”

“Not sure yet,” he mused, posture straightening. He moved to the edge of his seat, scooting his chair in closer so he was right next to me, and even though I kind of knew what was coming, I still flinched when he laid his hand over the top of my thigh.

“Not right here,” I said, lowering my voice. But fuck if I didn’t widen my legs in the same breath, a taboo thrill running through me at being in public. Shit, regardless of Eric, I was starting to think I really did have a thing for being watched—or the threat of getting caught, at least.

Eric palmed my crotch, spreading his fingers over the bulge in my gym shorts. His warmth seeped through the silky mesh fabric and woke my cock right the fuck up.

I glanced around. There was no one to either side of us, and behind me was just a bank of windows that looked over the main quad below. But there were a trio of heads in the carrels across from me. I could hear them when they whispered or turned a page in their books, and I had to muffle a growl when Eric tucked his hand behind the waistband of my shorts, grazing his fingertips over my swollen head.

“No?” It was practically a purr, and it rolled over my skin like warm oil and flooded me with furiously spreading heat that tightened my balls.

He took my silence for the assent it was, and I clamped my lower lip between my teeth as he wedged his hand deeper into my shorts and wrapped it around the base of my cock, giving it a sharp, pulsing squeeze that made me suck in a breath.

“Freeballing?”

“Yeah,” I stuttered out, my dick jumping in his hand as he squeezed again.

“Good deal.” He gave me a few light, feathery strokes that had my hips surging up into the contact, and then his hand tightened like a vice around my shaft, thumb tracing my head in a tantalizing sweep as he leaned in. His whisper washed over me like pure, searing desert heat, the ownership in it shooting straight to my core and making me dizzy. “I want that nut you’re working up right now.”

“Fuck,” I hissed so loud that when I glanced up, I could see the person in the carrel across from me trying to subtly peer over the divider.

I hunched over my desktop to conceal the view of Eric’s hand as it plunged deeper, scooping up my balls and kneading them.

“That sounded like a yes to me.”

“Not here,” I whispered again and yanked his hand from my pants. Even though by then, shit, I was definitely seeing the appeal in letting him get me off right there. But I knew I wouldn’t be able to stay quiet enough, and though the thrill of possibly getting caught was hot, the reality of a charge for public indecency was not. I needed some ninja skills for that, or a lot more experience, and the whole novelty of getting off with a dude who knew what the hell he was doing was still so keen-edged that I didn’t have a shot.

“Spoilsport. I was enjoying the challenge, but I guess you’re right.” Eric picked up his sucker again, stuffing the wrapper in his back pocket. “You’re a noisy fucker, so maybe a little more buffer is a good idea. Come on.”

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About the Author

Neve Wilder lives in the southern US, where the summers are hot and the winters are…sometimes cold. She is a mom to three rambunctious weebeasts who have joined forces in a mission to carpet the family home with toys and small items that really suck to step on at six in the morning.

She reads promiscuously across multiple genres, but her favorite stories always contain an element of romance. Incidentally, this is also what she likes to write. Slow-burners with delicious tension? Yes. Whiplash-inducing page-turners, also yes. Down and dirty scorchers? Yes. And every flavor in between.

She believes David Bowie was the sexiest musician to ever live, and she’s always game to nerd out on anything from music to writing.

And finally, she believes that love conquers all. Except the heat index in July. Nothing can conquer that bastard.

Social Media

Web site: www.nevewilder.com

FB author page: www.facebook.com/nevewilderwrites

FB Reader Group: www.facebook.com/groups/WildersWildOnes

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Neve-Wilder/e/B07HY29JMG

Bookbub Author page: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/neve-wilder

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18429115.Neve_Wilder

Instagram: www.instagram.com/nevewilder


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Blog Tour: Eight Lives by Autumn Breeze & Ashley Chamblee

Eight Lives | Autumn Breeze & Ashley Chamblee

Match Made in Hell #1

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Cover Artist: Raven Brooks

Release Date: May 20, 2019

Heat Rating: 3 flames

Buy Links

Universal Link: mybook.to/EightLives

Amazon US  https://amzn.to/2Hx85br

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Eight-Lives-Match-Made-Hell-ebook/dp/B07RT6XYK7

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Blurb

Two Hearts. One Curse. Zero Time.

A century ago, a spiteful witch cursed Edmund.

Ever since then, he has lived as an immortal house cat—short one life.

Anselm is a mildly depressed vampire with a soft spot for the feline he calls friend.

They live together as equals, companions for eternity—or so they hope.

But their lives take a dark turn when the witch who cursed Edmund long ago dies.

And suddenly, he is human again.

In a race against time’s cruel hand, Anselm and Edmund must make a decision.

Do they find a dark witch and re-enact the curse that plagued Edmund so they can be together for an eternity? Or . . . does Edmund give up forever as a cat to be with Anselm for now as a man?

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Excerpt

I clenched my jaw. If this stranger had hurt Edmund, there would be hell to pay.

My immortal cat, as irritating as he could be sometimes, was my best friend. We’d been a pair since the beginning of the twentieth century and . . . in reality, he was all I had.

Everything changed but not Edmund. Nor me.

He was a cursed cat, once a young man in the prime of his life. I was the vampire he called friend.

“Edmund,” I called, dropping the bags I held. The fresh fish and blood I’d bought cascaded to the floor. Some of the packets burst open, but I didn’t care about the mess the blood would make or the smell that would linger for days; I cared about my best friend. “Edmund?!”

The stranger turned; his sharp gaze followed me though he was rooted to the spot.

I rushed through the living room, heading deeper into my home, knowing that if my heart still beat, it would be pounding against my chest like a sledgehammer.

Where was Edmund? Why wasn’t he answering?

Hunting through the rooms, I checked in all of Edmund’s favorite hiding spots—on top of the bookshelf, on my side of the bed, behind my pillow, in the perfect patch of moonlight that streamed through the bay windows in my office—but Edmund was nowhere to be found.

He was missing, gone, disappeared.

“Where is he?!” I demanded as I raged into the living room and caught the stranger by the throat. My fingers tightened as my anger—my fear—tainted the air, sending the thick stench of decay curling around us. The strange young man’s lips parted, opening and closing like a fish out of water as he grasped my wrist and fought for breath. “If you hurt him—” I couldn’t even finish the thought, much less the sentence.

The very idea of not having Edmund, of being without him . . .

I shook the man impatiently. “Where is he?!” I bellowed, shaking the boy.

He appeared desperate as he clutched my wrist and tugged on my arm, attempting to remove my hold, but my grasp was absolute as my fingers tightened around his neck.

Panic danced across his face. His wide eyes shined, a familiar neon blue that I knew.

My lips parted. “Edmund?”

I loosened my hold. It wasn’t possible. Edmund was . . .

The man I held by the neck trembled in my grasp, one minute a man, and in the next, thick black fur sprouted out of his transformed body.

“Y . . . You choked me,” he gasped as I gathered him close.

“You turned into a-a-a man!” I pulled him away from my chest, inspecting him as I did so.

How was this possible? He was cursed by a witch to live the rest of his life, or at least nine lives—eight now that he’d died once—as a cat. Right now, the fluffy black thing I peered down at looked like my housecat, but seconds ago . . .

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About the Authors

Autumn Breeze is a bestselling LGBT+ author, and current Radish Content Provider. She is also the winner of a 2015 Watty Award, a former Wattpad Star, with more than 70K followers on Wattpad who was featured in Cosmo in 2017 “My Lessons with the Sexy Dance Instructor.”

In 2017 she worked as a Freelance Writer for 20th Century Fox on, “A Cure for Wellness: Seeking A Cure.”

Blog/Website

Facebook

Twitter

Instagram

Wattpad

Wattpad

Ashley Chamblee is a bestselling author with 10+ years of experience who specializes in writing horror, fantasy, paranormal, and romance with LGBT themes. Currently, she has 35K+ followers on her combined Wattpad accounts EzraWinn and HonestDying.

When Ashley isn’t writing she is either working with special needs adults, playing video games, reading or spending time with friends and family.

Blood Prize, her bestselling novel is available on Amazon.

Twitter

Instagram


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After the I Do: Meeting at the Fault Line #1

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Release Blitz: Torn by Rick R. Reed

Torn | Rick R. Reed

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Buy Links:

Dreamspinner Press

Amazon US | Amazon UK

Universal Link

Length: 63,424 words

Cover Design: Reese Dante

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

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Blurb

Ever been torn between two lovers? That’s Ricky Comparetto’s problem.

It’s 1995, and Ricky is making his very first trip across the pond with his best friend. Ricky, hungry for love and looking for it in all the wrong places, finds it in the beach city of Brighton.

His new love has the curious name of Walt Whitman and is also an American, which only serves to make him sexier and more intriguing. By the time Walt and Ricky part, promises are made for a reunion in Boston.

But the course of true love never runs smooth. In Chicago Ricky almost immediately falls in love again. Tom Green is a sexy blue-collar beast with the kindest heart Ricky has ever run across.

What’s he to do? With a visit to the East Coast on the horizon and a new love blossoming in Ricky’s home of Chicago, Ricky truly is torn.

Excerpt

In which our hero, Ricky Comparetto, finds himself lost on his very first time in London in the wee hours of the morning. It serves him right, after his shameless behavior at an after-hours sex club.

Much later, I found myself wandering the streets of London near New Scotland Yard, searching through its labyrinthine corridors for Trevor’s building. In the quiet darkness of London’s wee small hours, it seemed the world had paused to take a breath. Again, a feeling of things being surreal overcame me; I wondered if I’d ever find my way back to Boutros again, or if I’d be doomed to wander endlessly through this curving warren of streets.

It was maybe three o’clock in the morning, and Westminster felt almost like a movie set, perhaps something dystopian, where the main character wakes to find the world empty. The light of Big Ben shone in the distance, but I had no idea how to get back to Trevor’s.

I was too exhausted to panic, however, even though I felt like a rat in a maze, a charming, historic maze, but a maze nonetheless. Looking back, I recall that I felt serene, strange as that is to remember.

I had just decided to see if I could find a park bench or curb to lie down on—to await morning’s light and new clarity to get back to my friends—when I discovered that there was such a thing as a bobby, the Brits’ word for a patrolman on foot. This bobby, who was dressed all in black with a tall hat adorned with a shield, and I appeared to be the only ones about, other than the black cabs that passed by stealthily, similar to the one that had deposited me in a place I’d believed was close to Trevor’s.

I approached the bobby and told him, a little abashed, that I was lost. I supplied him with the name of the street I sought and, for good measure, what Trevor’s building looked like.

He nodded, all business. “You need to cross the Thames”—he pointed that way—“and then make your way back in the opposite direction from where you were going. You’re not far.”

I thanked him, but his directions simply didn’t feel right. I didn’t want to argue with him, and I certainly didn’t want to believe he was fucking with me, so I didn’t question him. I may have been lost, but I wasn’t that lost. I let him continue on his rounds. I stood still, not wanting him to see me continue on what he’d most likely perceive as my misguided path. Why’d you bother asking him if you weren’t going to listen? I wondered but had no good answer for myself.

I plopped down on a bench to ponder what I should do. I supposed that, with morning’s light, Boutros would be worried (or worse, would believe I’d shacked up with yet another man) and come looking.

I questioned my decision to part from Boutros and Trevor earlier in the evening, when the gay club we were drinking at closed its doors way too early for me. I mean, really, eleven o’clock? And this was “swingin’” London? Trevor suggested I go to an “after-hours” club called the Brick. He told me it was a no-holds-barred kind of place. Or was it “no-holes-barred”? Whatever. The idea of the “Felliniesque” club, as Trevor described it, appealed to me.

So I went, met a few nice boys, and ended the evening by being showered with come in a cloakroom, courtesy of one half of a couple I’d met who were visiting London from Liverpool.

I thought it would be easy to get home because Trevor’s building was within walking distance of New Scotland Yard, which is where I told my cabbie to drop me.

I hadn’t counted on streets that curved, and ended and began with no rhyme or reason. I hadn’t counted on the buildings and streets all looking so alike.

I should have.

After a while, I got up from the bench and started wandering again. And then I stopped… and sighed with relief. Just ahead was one of those iconic red phone booths you might imagine when you think of London—or Doctor Who.

“Oh thank God,” I whispered, making my way to the booth. I groped in my pocket, hoping the receipt upon which Trevor had written his phone number earlier was still there. What if it isn’t? I thought, the panic already causing my pulse rate to quicken despite my fatigue, the copious amounts of alcohol I’d imbibed, and the two orgasms I’d had at the Brick.

But my hand curled around the little slip of paper, and I brought it out and squinted at the scrawled number in the wan light. I lifted the phone off the hook, deposited a mystifying array of coins that I hoped would be enough, and dialed.

Trevor answered, voice heavy with sleep.

I told him my problem and described where I was, along with the cross streets nearby.

He didn’t seem fazed, for which I was grateful. “Hang on, sweetie. I’ll be right there.” He disconnected before I could say anything else.

I left the phone booth and sat down on a curb. I regarded the crescent moon above for only the shortest of times. Trevor appeared before me, like an angel, within a matter of fewer than five minutes.

I didn’t have much to say, other than to express my gratitude… and embarrassment.

His building turned out to be around the next corner.

About The Author

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Real Men. True Love.

Rick R. Reed draws inspiration from the lives of gay men to craft stories that quicken the heartbeat, engage emotions, and keep the pages turning. Although he dabbles in horror, dark suspense, and comedy, his attention always returns to the power of love.

He’s the award-winning and bestselling author of more than fifty works of published fiction and is forever at work on yet another book. Lambda Literary has called him: “A writer that doesn’t disappoint…”

Rick lives in Palm Springs, CA with his beloved husband and their fierce Chihuahua/Shiba Inu mix.

Social Media

Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/rickrreedbooks

Twitter: www.twitter.com/rickrreed

Blog: http://rickrreedreality.blogspot.com/

Website: www.rickrreed.com

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/rick-r-reed

Email: rickrreedbooks@gmail.com


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Top class romp through the spy catalogue!

Killer Bond (Ward Security #5)Killer Bond by Jocelynn Drake & Rinda Elliott

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Another five-star romp through the adventure catalogue with this spy entry in the Ward Security series.

I know I keep saying it, but these books would make brilliant TV and this one’s no exception as it trips around the world from Bermuda to mainland Europe.

Abe and Dom remain my favourite pairing from the Ward boys but I have to say Daniel and his CIA agent came close to lifting the crown.

The pacing is superb, the plot an interesting one which certainly wouldn’t be out of place as a James Bond and the two men have an amazing connection which leaps from the page.

***Spoiler***

A guest appearance by everyone’s favourite cat burglar come porn star Angelo was just the icing on the cake.

#ARC kindly received from the authors in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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Release Blitz: Under The Jasmine Flowers by W.S. Long

Under The Jasmine Flowers | W.S. Long

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Publisher: JMS Books

Cover Artist: Written Ink Design

Release Date: May 18, 2019

Heat Rating: 3 flames

Length: 73,321 words/154 pages

Buy Links

Amazon US | Amazon UK

Add on Goodreads

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Blurb

Jojo Arias, a Spanish-Filipino mestizo, didn’t expect to meet a US Marine in a swank bar in the Philippines. But Jojo can’t deny the electricity they have once he meets Adam.

Although they come from different worlds, they struggle to keep their relationship private to protect Jojo’s status, and position as part of one of the wealthiest and powerful in Filipino society.

Billions of dollars could be easily lost if his family business was jeopardized by Jojo’s secret. Jojo is pressured to abandon Adam and live a life in the closet.

When the struggle to maintain their secret romance unravels, Jojo is left with a life-changing decision to leave his family or to pursue his love.

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Excerpt

James Joseph Garcia Arias savored the last few drops, then set the now empty pilsner down, right next to two other empty bottles of San Miguel beer. Despite the thick glass windows in the swank Makati bar that should have offered some soundproofing, Saturday Manila traffic passed noisily one floor below. The rumble of buses, cars honking, and steady stream of headlights never bored him. He preferred the noise of the city to the quiet stillness that his parents called home.

He glanced at his Patek Phillipe Nautilus watch his grandmother had given him. He texted Erwin. Ready. Barely a second or two passed, when his phone received the reply text. Be right there, boss. He sighed. He’d asked Erwin not to call him that for the longest time, but Erwin insisted.

Jojo stood, fished out the right amount of pesos, plus a slightly larger gratuity than what was expected, then headed for the men’s room. A large group of Americans sat around the glass-tiled bar, laughing loudly. He guessed they were military, based on their crew cuts, hanging out to blow off steam. When he returned a few minutes later, after peeing an hour’s worth of beer, one of the military guys glanced up, and smiled at him. The man’s eyes followed Jojo.

Walk on by. Don’t stop.

He wanted to listen to the voice inside his head but he couldn’t. Maybe the alcohol made him less inhibited, maybe he was still reeling from the breakup with his fiancee and maybe he wanted to talk to someone who wasn’t an employee or a family member, or maybe because no one left in the bar knew him because the next thing he did was he stopped, inches away from the blond.

“Is this seat taken?” Jojo asked.

The stranger smiled more broadly and shook his head. “No.”

Jojo waited a second to see if the handsome man would say something else, but all the blond man did was smile even more. “American right?” Jojo asked.

“Yes.”

“I’m guessing you guys are U.S. military?”

“Marines, yeah. We’re sending one of our guys off, rotating from the Embassy here. My name’s Adam, by the way.” Adam offered his hand, which Jojo shook.

“James Arias, but my friends call me ‘Jojo’.”

Adam opened his mouth to say something but was interrupted by his friends who came over to meet Jojo. It didn’t take Jojo long to figure that Adam was probably the only sober one in the group, as the four other guys slurred their words, and often laughed uncontrollably at each other’s jokes. When Adam’s friends returned to their seats at the bar, Adam leaned in. “Your English is perfect, no trace of an accent, so I’m guessing you’re American too?”

“You’re partly right. I was born in America. My mother was a medical student in the U.S., and we lived in San Francisco but we moved back here after she got her degree.”

“So your mom’s a doctor?”

Jojo smiled. He wanted to tell Adam the whole long story of why his mother had never practiced medicine after she completed medical school because the family had seen no need of her working at a hospital or a clinic, and that these days her mother was busy hosting, or attending social and charitable events, but he thought the better of it and just answered simply. “Yeah, she is.”

“So you live here. . . I mean the Philippines?” Adam asked.

“Yes, I do.”

“I’m sorry I’m asking stupid questions because you don’t look Filipino. I hope I’m not offending you by saying that. Most Filipinos are short and very Asian looking. You look more like my Latino friends from Southern California and in a good way.”

Jojo laughed. “It’s probably the lighting, but my father and mother are both parts Spanish and Filipino so maybe that’s why my features are different than most.” Jojo’s cell phone vibrated. I’m downstairs, boss. Jojo palmed the phone for a second, aware that Adam was studying him. Erwin, something’s come up. Head back to the garage until I text you again.

“Girlfriend?”

Jojo shook his head without looking up from his phone.

“Boyfriend then?”

Jojo raised his head and laughed at the handsome man’s brazenness. He liked how Adam’s strong jawline, full lips and dark eyebrows peered at him, waiting on every word. Maybe it was the alcohol. He moved within earshot so that only the Marine could hear. “No, I haven’t had a boyfriend in a long time. But, I did just break up with my fiancée.”

“Is that why you were nursing several beers over in that corner after your friends left you?”

Jojo narrowed his eyes. “You’re very perceptive, Adam. Except they weren’t my friends, they were . . . co-workers.” Jojo almost said employees, but stopped himself. Maybe it was the Arias family tendency to be secretive, and not give out too much information, but here he was on a Saturday night in a bar, drinking, when he was usually still in the office poring over engineering details, building plans, and contract proposals.

“I’m sorry about the break-up. You look torn up about it. I couldn’t help but notice earlier when we first arrived. Can I buy you a beer?”

Jojo smiled, then laughed without meaning to. The last time a guy had bought him a beer was in a dive bar right outside CalPoly, after an engineering final.

“What’s so funny?” Adam asked, as he chuckled along.

“It’s been a while since another guy offered to buy me a beer.”

“No worries. It looked like earlier you needed it. Did she break your heart?” Jojo faced toward the bar, away from Adam. Jojo didn’t say anything, but he wanted to respond.

Adam spoke again. “You don’t have to answer that if you don’t want to.”

Jojo pondered Adam’s question as Adam’s friends got louder and louder on their end of the bar.

“Don’t worry about them,” Adam said as he pointed to his friends. “I’m the designated driver, and in about an hour they’ll all be sound asleep snoring in the government issued van I’m driving.”

So he’s brazen without alcohol.

Jojo faced Adam and breathed deeply. He couldn’t tell the color of Adam’s piercing eyes but Jojo couldn’t deny his own intense interest in the serviceman. Adam leaned in and prolonged his gaze. Jojo was mesmerized. Adam seemed genuinely concerned. And maybe he was wrong, but Adam appeared compassionate. “She asked me if I was ever going to marry her. If I loved her, and if we were only together because both our families wanted it. I had to tell her the truth, and that as much as I had feelings for her, I didn’t love her.”

“Ouch!” Then Adam smiled, his voice took on a tone of playfulness. “And you’re here, living and breathing with no scratch on you.”

“She is a very logical, rational person. That’s why I liked her when we first met. She was so completely different from the other girls my parents tried to set me up with.”

“You have a picture of her? I’m curious.”

Jojo nodded, fished out his phone, and scrolled through some pictures before showing a good one of his ex, Lani.

“Wow. She’s hot. Your parents had good taste if they thought she would be a good wife.”

One of Adam’s friends sauntered over and peered at Lani’s photo. “Dude, your girlfriend?”

“Ex,” Adam said. “That’s his ex.”

“How about giving me her number? She’s pretty.”

Jojo shook his head. If Lani, a black belt in tae kwon do, found out he’d ever given her number to someone, she’d probably roundhouse kick him in the head before he knew anything about it. “Sorry, I can’t do that.”

“Well, at least I tried,” the Marine said. “Hey, Adam, we’re thinking we should head on over to the bars downtown.”

“Downtown?” Adam asked.

“Ermita,” the man said.

Adam turned away so that only Jojo could see his face as he rolled his eyes.

“What do you say? For old time’s sake?” his friend asked. “You’re welcome to come along––’’

“––Jojo, my name’s, Jojo,” as they both shook hands.

“Mine’s Nate. Yeah, come along with us, I’m sure Adam won’t mind,” the Marine continued. “It’ll keep him company, and his mind off his ex-boyfriend he’s probably still pining after.”

Adam slouched. Adam’s reaction to his Marine buddy’s comment must have hit a chord and Jojo was compelled to find out more about Adam. Jojo hesitated for a moment. He wasn’t used to spontaneously accepting strangers offers to hang out, but Adam’s eyes beckoned him to say yes. Besides, maybe a few more hours out on the town would make him feel better for breaking up with Lani.

“If you’re sure I won’t be a fifth wheel, yeah, I’ll join you.”

Adam smiled. “Nate’s a little bit of a douche bag. So sorry about that.”

“Well, your friend’s had a little too much to drink.” Jojo leaned closer, sticking a hand in his pants pocket, his lips almost touching Adam’s ear, and whispered. “But to be honest, that scene is a little too, I’m trying to find the right words to say it––”

“––Red light? Yeah, I hate going down there.” Adam put his hand on top of Jojo’s wrist, squeezed it, and then removed it. The quick touch happened in a blink of an eye. “Do you have any other suggestions?”

Jojo didn’t say anything. He was shocked that Adam had just placed his hand on him, so casually, so friendly like. He couldn’t deny the electricity he felt when Adam touched him either. “If they’re looking for dancing women, there’s a club two blocks from here, more upscale but not so red light, as you say.”

“Well, lead the way, Jojo.” Adam smiled. “I’ll rustle them from the bar and we’ll follow you.” Adam stood and moved to where Nate and the other guys were huddled.

Jojo motioned to the bartender. “I’ll pay their tab.”

“Thanks, Mr. Arias. Shall I add it to your monthly bill?”

Jojo nodded. Before he could say anything else, Adam appeared at his elbow. Standing, he towered over Jojo by a few inches.

“The boys are cool checking out a new place. Thanks for the offer.”

“So who’s leaving that you’re having this party for?” Jojo asked.

“His name’s John.” Adam pointed him out. “He’s been stationed at the Embassy for more than three years now. Overdue for his new assignment back to San Diego.”

Jojo signed the chit the bartender handed him without even looking at the total bill.

“Hey, is that our bill? You shouldn’t have done that. What do we owe you?”

Jojo shook his head. “Don’t worry about it. I come here often enough that they actually give me a discount, and I’m glad to pay. Thanks for your service. All of you.”

Adam walked to where Nate stood, clapped him on the shoulder, and shouted something in his ear. All the guys around Nate, including John, turned to Jojo and raised their glasses and beer bottles, some empty and others not so empty. “Thanks!” they shouted in unison.

Adam took two steps back to Jojo. “Now, they’ll follow you to the ends of the earth. Buying their drinks bought you some loyalty. Lead the way, fine sir!” Adam gestured with a bow, holding an invisible cap in his hands as his head followed the gesture.

Jojo laughed at the dramatic flourish and walked out of the bar, Adam right next to him as the other Marines followed them. As they took the steps down one level to the street, Jojo recognized the SUV parked on the side. “Hold on,” he said to Adam.

Jojo approached the Lexus with dark tinted windows. The whir of the window revealed Erwin’s face. “I didn’t go back to the garage, boss. They said I could just wait here until you were done, however long it lasted.”

“Well, we’re headed to my cousin’s VIP club down the block. You know the one. If you want to meet me there, that’s fine.” Jojo ignored his driver’s raised eyebrow. Jojo’s cousin, Tiny, owned a lounge with a rooftop bar.

Jojo hadn’t talked to Tiny in a week or so, since Tiny asked for a loan from Arias Holdings to help his deep in the red bar.

Tiny’s club had boxing on one floor, Ukrainian and Russian models on the second floor, and Filipino women, working as cocktail waitresses, dressed in Vietnamese ao dais whose skirts were mini-skirts rather than full-length dresses. The male bartenders were all selectively picked for the discreet crowd. Cousin Tiny interviewed the entire bar and wait staff himself, making sure that they were attractive. The truth was, if they could flirt with Tiny and the head waitress, they were hired if they had a pretty face. Jojo didn’t care for the little people fighting in a small area that took up most of the dance floor, but his cousin assured him that he never exploited them, and that they were being paid handsomely to pretend to hit each other very hard.

The walk to the building where the lounge was didn’t take long. Security at the front recognized Jojo immediately. “They’re with me,” Jojo pointed to Adam and the Marines. The large security guard at the front, who Jojo guessed was probably part Samoan and part Filipino, was dressed in a heavy wool jacket and pants, nodded and then radioed the two equally large security guards by the door. They were shown to the marbled main floor of the building. As soon as they took the elevators, again escorted by another security guard, Adam and the Marines were quiet and didn’t say much. When they arrived at the final floor, loud music greeted them before the elevator doors opened.

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About the Author

A military brat, who joined the military himself, W.S. Long now practices law during the day, but at night reads and writes male-male romance.

When he’s not writing, W.S. Long travels and dreams of traveling far off distant lands with his mild-mannered college professor husband.

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I struggled with one of the MCs but loved the quality of the writing

Top Shelf (Seacroft, #1)Top Shelf by Allison Temple

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

I struggled for quite a bit of this book. Not with the quality of the writing, that is excellent, but with the characters.

While I could find sympathy for Martin, for the vast majority of the narrative I thought Seb was an utter arse and didn’t feel any connection to him as a character I wanted to root for.

This is very clever writing on the part of the author, it bucks the trend in romance to have the reader fighting for the couple over everything else.

But, I wasn’t sure really whether I actually wanted them to be together. Even finding out why Seb behaved as he did wasn’t enough justification for me. For most of the book he just comes across as a whiny and entitled drama queen (sorry!)

Strangely though, I loved Seb when he talked about his art, when he encouraged his young friend Cassandra with her artwork, when he oozed charm to help the efforts of the fund-raising Blues Festival, I wish I’d seen more of that Seb.

Even when he and Martin get together, he still behaves like an arse and, for me anyway, I just couldn’t believe he was justified in it and that took the edge of what could have been a really great slow burn romance.

So, great writing, a good solid narrative, but a character who proved just a bit too unsympathetic to win me over made me drop down a star for my rating. I will definitely be checking out the second book in the series about Seb’s brother Oliver though.

#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review

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Aimee Nicole hits the target with another brilliant Road to Blissville romance

Prescription for love completePrescription for Love by Aimee Nicole Walker

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I don’t know how she does it but each time I think I’ve just read my favourite book from Aimee Nicole Walker, out she pops with another one!

This latest Road to Blissville novel is my kind of read, light on the angst but with just enough to keep a layer of tension going, heavy on the emotional connections and perfectly pitched with the necessary steam to burn up the sheets.

Josh’s old college boyfriend Trent aka Doctor Love, is the one under the spotlight here as we follow his second chance romance with firefighter/EMT Tucker and it really is a beautiful tale of romance, of finding your person, of being able to be yourself.

There’s the usual great group of secondary characters and I am totally in love with both Trent’s sister Mercedes and Tuck’s grammie Shirleen, who are both everything I want to see in a strong female.

On the other hand, Trent’s parents can take a long walk off a short cliff and that’s all I’m saying there!

Wonderful book in an outstanding series.

#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review

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