Tag Archives: teacher

Blog Tour: Hardwood by K.M. Neuhold

Hardwood | K.M. Neuhold

Four Bears Construction #3

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Release Date: July 1st, 2020

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

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Blurb

I’ve spent forty-four years of my life telling the world I’m a carpet man. Is it too late to admit to myself and everyone else that deep down I’m really all about the Hardwood?

It took me over thirty-five years to admit to myself that I’m gay, another seven to find the courage to say it out loud to anyone else, and exactly thirty seconds to develop a massive crush on my daughter’s music teacher. It’s really not my fault, have you even seen those cute bowties he wears?

After everything it’s taken to get here, am I going to work up the nerve to come out to my ex-wife and my best friends? Am I ready to shake up my comfortable, simple life and take a chance on Watson? Or am I going to throw a wrench in my own chance for happily ever after?

***Hardwood is a steamy, seriously so much delicious tension, single-dad, gay awakening, low angst story, which happens to be the third in the Four Bears Construction Series. It CAN be read as a stand-alone. There are NO shifters in this series, only the OTHER kind of bears.

Hardwood teaser 2

Excerpt

It must be nice to be handy. My kitchen sink has had a small drip for a year that I’ve pretty much just ignored because I don’t know what else to do with it,” he confesses.

“I can take a quick look next time I come over. I’m no plumber, but it’s probably something basic. You might just need a good caulking.”

“Tell me about it,” he agrees. “Oh caulking. Yeah, totally, that.”

I quirk an eyebrow at him and laugh when his face goes red. “If anyone’s mind should be in the gutter, shouldn’t it be mine?”

“There’s plenty of room down here for all of us,” he assures me.

I show him to the living room, realizing once we sit down that I left my laptop out and open when I left the house earlier.

“Oh shit.” I close it quickly so he can’t see what I was looking at.

“Porn?” he guesses. “Don’t be shy, if you found something good, you really should share it with your friends.”

“It wasn’t porn. Although, that goes both ways, feel free to send me any interesting porn links you find.”

“Honey, I’m not sure you want to open that floodgate. But if you’re feeling brave, I’m sure I could fill up your inbox with links,” Watson says, grinning wickedly. My cock perks up at the image of him enjoying himself with some porn. Without my permission, my eyes dart to the crotch of his pants.

He laughs again, letting me know I’m totally busted. “And you’re claiming I’m the one with my mind in the gutter.” He tsks and shakes his head. “So, if it wasn’t porn, what’s so secret on your laptop?”

“It’s nothing,” I lie.

“Come on, we’re best friends, you said so yourself.”

“I was setting up a dating profile,” I confess. “I didn’t finish it though. It’s probably a bad idea.”

“Let me see.” he insists, waving at me to open the laptop back up.

“It’s bad,” I warn, opening it up and logging on. I pass him the computer and sit back to wait as he reads my half-finished profile.

There’s a half smile on his lips as his eyes are glued to the screen. I watch as different emotions pass over his features as he reads— amusement, tenderness, a cringe or two.

“This isn’t horrible,” he says.

“It’s not great,” I hedge.

“No, it’s not,” Watson agrees. “It’s fixable though, if you’re serious about posting it.”

“I don’t know,” I admit. “I started it on a whim this morning while I was sitting here thinking about my friend’s wedding coming up in six months and how much I’d love to have a date to take.”

“You want my honest opinion?” he asks.

“Please,” I say emphatically, sitting forward with my elbows on my knees, ready to hear whatever truth he’s about to lay on me.

“These sites are great for hookups, but not so much for finding the kind of guy you’ll want to take to a friend’s wedding.”

I sigh. “I kind of figured as much.” Leaning back, I pull my hat off and toss it onto the coffee table, dragging my fingers through my hair. “Where do I go to find the kind of guy I’d want to take to a wedding then?”

Watson snorts a laugh. “Babe, if I knew that, I wouldn’t be forty and living alone with a hedgehog.”

About The Author

KM Neuhold Logo__

K.M.Neuhold is a complete romance junkie, a total sap in every way. She started her journey as an author in new adult, MF romance, but after a chance reading of an MM book she was completely hooked on everything about lovely- and sometimes damaged- men finding their Happily Ever After together.

She has a strong passion for writing characters with a lot of heart and soul, and a bit of humor as well. And she fully admits that her OCD tendencies of making sure every side character has a full backstory will likely always lead to every book having a spin-off or series.

When she’s not writing she’s a lion tamer, an astronaut, and a superhero…just kidding, she’s likely watching Netflix and snuggling with her husky while her amazing husband brings her coffee.

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The third bear romance is a lovely later life “coming out”

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My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This series from KM is shaping up into one of my favourites quite easily.

Each one has its own unique selling point and here it’s Everett, a 44-year-old who has pretty much always known he was gay but whose circumstances saw him end up married with a kid.

And I really loved that Kyleen didn’t make Val a “horrible bitch” or that Ev didn’t really love her. He did, he just wasn’t in love like he knows he should have been.

Instead, they were best friends and he’d used her as he reason for never coming out after they’d divorced because he didn’t want to cause her any pain. He’s also not come out to his three best gay friends and work partners because he thinks he’s left it too late after 10 years running a business together.

There’s relatively low angst, although I did get a wee bit frustrated with Ev, at the same time I absolutely could understand why he couldn’t ever quite get the words out to tell his ex-wife and his friends that he actually was gay.

This book still has the humour that the other two in the series were filled with, but it’s a more subdued and gentle type because Ev is just all ends up a sweetheart. When he falls, he falls hard and fast and I loved the dynamics in the pairing.

Watson is 40, so I very much appreciated this more mature pairing, and I loved how kind he was and what a massive capacity for love he had in his heart, not only for the kids he teaches, but for his foster siblings and for Everett.

Watching them fall head over heels and then try and deny the fact they were doing just that was sweet and exasperating at the same time. The build up to the big outing was done well and the fall-out from it felt wholly believable to me.

Now, having read this one, I’m even more desperate to get Ollie’s book because that poor guy really, really needs a man who’s willing to shout from the rooftops that he loves him and wants to spoil him rotten.

Please KM?!

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

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New Release Blitz: Breaking the Surface by Rebecca Langham

Breaking the Surface | Rebecca Langham

The Outsider Project #2

Publisher: NineStar Press

Release Date: January 13, 2020

Heat Level: 2 – Fade to Black Sex

Pairing: Female/Female

Length: 81,300

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Blurb

Alessia is an Outsider—a member of the not-quite-human community that has recently been released from their underground prison. Shortly after their liberation, Alessia is given an ultimatum: obey all the United Earth Alliance’s demands, or her mother will forever remain a hostage—a mother she’d believed dead for fifteen years. Reluctantly, she agrees, though she has no idea what those demands may be or how she will balance her obligations to the UEA with her responsibilities to her people and her family.

As the UEA tightens its grip on humans and Outsiders alike, it becomes clear that meaningful social change will not be possible without a revolution. Alessia and her peers embark on a mission to discover just how far the government is willing to go to maintain their monopoly on power.

What Alessia and her comrades discover, however, goes much deeper than they’d ever anticipated. Who are the Outsiders, really? What secrets of their destiny lay hidden within a top-secret space station? And why are the Outsiders linked to an emerging disease the UEA seems desperate to keep secret? As they delve deeper, it isn’t only Alessia’s identity that will be called into question, but the fate of the entire planet.

Excerpt

Breaking the Surface
Rebecca Langham © 2020
All Rights Reserved

Lydia wanted so badly to pace, to burn away her fear one exaggerated step at a time, but there was nowhere to go, no floor space to haunt. The Camp had been a sanctuary for them all, keeping her friends safe from unwanted attention since they’d taken their first steps as free people, but now it suffocated her. It may have been off-the-grid, but the complex was also small. Too small.

Given the number of people in the control room, she had to settle for crossing her arms over her stomach and gritting her teeth. But even then, she couldn’t silence the dissenting voice in her head. Something wasn’t right. Why would the United Earth Alliance be demanding a meeting so forcefully?

The UEA had been quiet in the two weeks since the Outsiders relocated from the colonies, granting an eerie yet welcome period of radio silence. Now they’d not only made contact, but threatened legal action if Alessia and the Green Hats didn’t acquiesce to an immediate communication with one of the government’s top advisers.

Lydia’s stomach churned.

As though reading her thoughts, Alessia slid her hand into Lydia’s and squeezed her fingers. Lydia forced a weak smile as she turned. “I don’t trust them.”

Alessia’s face—which, more than ever, reminded Lydia of a finely carved alabaster statue— softened.

“Of course not,” she replied, her tone sympathetic yet firm. “But it may not be wise to ignore the request. This could be nothing more than an administrative issue and I don’t want to invite trouble, not so soon after the release.”

“I don’t think you can ignore it, Ly-dee.” Helen swivelled gently in an office chair, forearms resting on her thighs as she considered her daughter. After all those years without Helen’s presence, hearing that fruity voice still managed to surprise her from time to time. Lydia had believed her mother to be dead for years. Finding out she hadn’t died, but rather become a kind of political hacker, was unsettling to say the least.

Life had changed so much in the last nine months. Alessia did not remain trapped beneath the ground, and Helen had re-emerged from the void.

No longer living with her politician father, even Lydia had been partially freed from the web of her old insecurities and frustrations. Sometimes though, it seemed like those frustrations had dissolved only to be replaced by a whole slew of new concerns. It had been a lot to process.

Helen sighed, a little too dramatically. She reached for a cup of tea she’d left cooling on a nearby bench and cradled it between her hands. “We knew they’d get their claws back in sooner or later.”

“Two weeks,” Lydia huffed. “They only waited two weeks. Please can’t we refuse?” The frustration in her voice exposed Lydia’s raw emotional state in a way she wasn’t comfortable with. Until recently, she’d worked hard to present a subdued version of her thoughts to the outside world. With such a prominent father, she’d had to if she had any hope of protecting herself from those who sought to exploit her. Whether it be to splash her personal life about the goss-channels, or to pressure her to influence her father regarding some political issue or another, there had been no shortage of people trying to use Lydia. It had been a kind of self-preservation to surround herself in the dark veil she’d become enveloped in, making it harder for people to really see her. But then Alessia had burst into her life, a quiet yet powerful blaze of light.

Alessia and the other Outsiders had reached right into her and reawakened feelings and sensations she’d muted long ago.

“Is refusing a good idea?” Peleus looked up from where he sat cross-legged on the floor a couple of metres away from Helen. Peleus had been one of her earliest and most faithful followers and friends, embracing her efforts to slowly change culture in the colony by sharing positive stories and messages with the children. “They’re providing accommodations and integration assistance to the four thousand Os who’ve had their entire existence uprooted. Not taking their meeting might give the UEA reason to withdraw support.” As Alessia’s confidante, Peleus’s presence always lent a certain sense of thoughtful tranquillity to a situation.

Alessia pulled Lydia closer until their bodies pressed together, banishing the air between them and soothing Lydia’s nerves a little. They’d barely had time to catch their breath since Release Day. When they had finally pushed their way through the obscenely large crowd of onlookers in Thracia after the ceremony, they’d boarded an air-transport and come directly here to the Green Hat headquarters in Quadrant Four.

Affectionately known by its inhabitants as the Camp, the secure underground complex supported a community of approximately a hundred people. Every one of them had dedicated their lives to undermining the UEA’s ever-worsening abuses of its own laws.

The main control room at the Camp was capacious and circular, with curved desks and ergonomic chairs that hugged the wall. Each workstation offered a user access to the G-Hat virtual network, but to connect with the outside world, one had to utilise the cylindrical, glassy tower in the centre of the room. A reflective pillar when inactive, the hub featured a projector that sent holograms into the middle of the tower as required.

The hub worked much the same way as any Hive wall, but with some modifications helping to prevent hacks into the rest of their system. It was also perfect for situations in which more than one person needed to participate in a communication link. Lydia believed the entire setup was nothing short of spectacular. No doubt they’d been able to develop the untraceable consoles only because of whatever financial support the MacNay Corporation had been providing.

Still, Alessia and Lydia had traded one isolated abode for another. At least this one wasn’t full of protectors or tainted by decades of oppression. Greys had been replaced with blues, locked doors with open spaces, and obstacles with possibilities.

The dormitory was unfortunate, though. Each night, the enticing heat of Alessia’s body rejuvenated Lydia, yet they were acutely aware of the other people sleeping nearby, and so Lydia had accepted the fact they’d have no privacy for the foreseeable future.

In truth, she experienced relief and disappointment in equal measure. They’d only spent a few weeks getting to know one another in the Q4C, after a month of silent glances in crowded corridors. The six months of separation following Lydia’s departure had done little to quiet Lydia’s fears her connection to Alessia wasn’t as strong as she’d thought, that perhaps she’d imagined the whole thing given the immediacy of their attraction. Slowing things down, being with one another without expectation, could be the best way for Lydia to validate the tether between the two of them.

The rest of the refugees had been relocated to government-sponsored accommodations in the major cities of Thracia and New Sydney. Only Peleus and Fermi knew exactly where to find Alessia, and Lydia wanted it to stay that way for the moment, regardless of Alessia’s initial protestations.

The entire world knew Alessia’s face now, and there was no way to predict how she’d be received by the mainstream population or what her own people might expect from her as their de facto leader. Leader.

Lydia rested the side of her face against Alessia’s bicep. Her stomach clenched as she capitulated. “Peleus is right, isn’t he? We should hear them out.”

Alessia kissed the top of Lydia’s head, then nodded. “Yes.” She looked at Lydia’s mother. “Helen, I’m ready.”

Don’t miss Book #1 in the The Outsider Project series, Beneath the Surface, available from NineStar Press

Meet the Author

Rebecca Langham lives in the Blue Mountains (Australia) with her partner, three children, and menagerie of pets. A Xenite, a Whovian and all-round general nerd, she’s a lover of science fiction, comic books, and caffeine.

When she isn’t teaching History to high schoolers or wrangling children, Rebecca enjoys playing broomball and reading.

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