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Title: Love between Peace and War

Author: K-Lee Klein

Genres: Gay / Nostalgic Contemporary (1960s/1970s-Era)

Heat Level: 3

Length: Novella (26k words)

Published by: Amberquill

Blurb:

Philip Dunlop grew up in a traditional family with a strict former-military father and a full-time homemaker mother. Now he’s graduated from the Air Force Academy with a promising military career ahead of him.

Dusty Baxter’s upbringing was far more unconventional, with a free-spirited single mother who encouraged Dusty to follow his heart and forge his own path in life. So he does, wearing his hair long, writing songs of peace, and going with the flow in a world at odds with itself.

In spite of their different backgrounds, Phillip and Dusty formed a firm bond of friendship as kids, a friendship that inevitably grew into love as they, and their relationship, matured. Now, Phillip’s family wants him to focus on his military career and settle down with a nice girl. They’ve known Dusty forever, but he’s still the very definition of everything they think is wrong with the turbulent world of 1970. As Phillip’s friend, Dusty’s politely tolerated. But if the truth of Dusty and Phillip’s relationship comes to light, the revelation just might be the wedge that tears apart not only Phillip’s family, but Phillip and Dusty as well.

In a time of war-mongering and peace signs, can best friends find enough common ground to save their love and move forward together into the future?

Author Bio:

I’m a writer of gay romance completely addicted to beautiful men including Sebastian Stan, Dean O’Gorman, Jared Leto, sexy Hobbit Dwarfs, Christian Kane, & Tom Hiddleston. You can check out my books at kleeklein.com and my blog at http://chaosinthemoonlight.blogspot.ca/.

Sunday – just the day to cwtch down with a good book and a Toblerone! But first please read this interview with the next author to contribute to the Foolish Encounters anthology, soon to be released by Wilde City Press. Just click on the cover to go to WCP’s website to learn more.

Or you could stay here, read the interview and comment to get a chance to win a prize!

My guest today is Tali Spencer

What inspired you to write your story for the anthology?

I wandered into a Facebook conversation one day where authors and readers were talking about creepy shifters and I quipped that spiders might be fun. Because spiders. I’ve toyed with spider stories for years. Arachnids are really quite admirable when you think about it, though not especially sexy. But they’re beautiful in their way. I used to play with tarantulas as a kid growing up in El Paso, Texas, and still love to watch web-weaving spiders in my garden. So when Marc asked me to write a spider shifter story for the anthology I thought it would be fun. I set the story in Wisconsin where I was born and called it “Well Hello, Eight Eyes.”

Could you tell me a little about it?

I went for the odd and wrote a contemporary fantasy. “Well Hello, Eight Eyes” starts out with Tanner, a young man deep in grief who risks going out on Lake Michigan despite knowing there will be storm. The storm destroys his boat and Tanner gets washed up on an island. The islanders are less than friendly but one of them—cute, quirky, and gay Cory—takes him in. Before long, they hit it off and Tanner decides to pursue the attraction. But Cory is acting mysteriously and there’s this small matter of spiders…. Actually, the spiders are a BIG matter!

Could you please tell me about your other work?

Most of my work is science fiction and fantasy, with a focus on character-driven plots. I like to have fun with the genre and some of my books are tongue-in-cheek. Thick as Thieves, for example, features a giant barbarian who uses a unicorn horn in an inappropriate way and ends up a bit sex-crazed. Some of my other work is much darker, like Sorceror’s Knot, which has violent themes. My free stories include a fun contemporary set in an Italian-American bakery, and I feature erotic serial science fiction on my blog.

What are you working on at the moment?

After a horrific year health wise, I’m putting finishing touches on the follow up to Thick as Thieves. I’m also writing two more books in my Uttor series. In addition, I’m vetting a completed epic fantasy for submission to my publisher.

Please could we have an excerpt?

Certainly, here’s a short piece from “Well Hello, Eight Eyes”

At least the fire burning in the stove was warm and cozy. Keeping the rest of his body securely covered, Tanner unbent his legs and thrust his bare feet out from the folds of the blanket and extended them toward the radiating heat. He didn’t expect Cory to jump from the sofa and back several feet. What the hell—
Cory’s eyes were wide and scared, his hair sticking up in a hairdresser’s nightmare. Catching Tanner’s look of surprise, he looked slightly abashed.
“Are your feet cold?” He moved toward the other room, probably his bedroom. “I don’t have slippers for you. My feet are small. But I have some big socks. I layer them in winter. They’re warm.”
“No, I don’t need socks. I’m just warming my feet at your nice fire. Stop being so jumpy and just sit down, okay?”
“Okay.” Still looking embarrassed, he edged back to the sofa. Gingerly, he perched on the edge. “I’ve never had a stranger in my house.”
“I can tell.” Tanner leaned forward, half expecting Cory to leap up again. “Why are you being so twitchy? Were you in combat or something? Iraq?”
That prompted a short laugh and a shake of Cory’s head. It was dry now, red with warm golden lights. “No. I… I’ve never left the island. I just… I’m careful. Maybe too much, but it’s because I’m different. I’ve always been different, different from people like you. Fragile.”
Tanner fought a grin. “You don’t look fragile.”
“I don’t?” Cory looked pleased. “How do I look?”
“Kind of cute. And hot, in a boy next door way.” He hadn’t been seeking a reason to go there, but… it was true. Cory’s big green eyes and shy smile, boyish freckles, and compact body were definitely cute, and the boldly colored plaid shirt only added to his vibrant appeal. In fact, his bounding energy was kind of adorable when it wasn’t startling the hell out of houseguests.

Author Bio

I am fascinated by swords, mythology, and everything ancient and magical. Sword and sandals? I’m in! But I also love bodice-rippers, Regency romances, magical realism, pulpy detective stories, cozy mysteries, and South American literature.

Though I grew up as a bit of a nomad, I currently live in Pennsylvania with my husband and travel whenever I can. Every destination yields a story or three.

When not writing, I read everything (really, everything), experiment with food, and take long walks with my loving, if slightly neurotic, poodle.
You can follow Tali on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.

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Happy Saturday, peeps. Here is number three in the series of interviews with authors who have contributed stories to the Foolish Encounters anthology, which will be available from Wilde City Press on 1st April. Just click on the cover to be taken to the publisher’s website.

As usual with anthology interviews I am offering a small prize, so don’t forget to comment. The more often you comment the more bits of pape with your name on it go into my hat. I’m old school see – could be a pirate hat, a horned helmet, a Great War Tommy Atkins ‘tin titfer’ – it depends how I feel on the day. However I am prepared to take requests, if you have any preferences.

Anyhow I’ve kept my guest waiting long enough, so please join me in welcoming JC Jake Wallace.

Hi JC Jake.

What inspired you to write your story for the anthology?

I did a couple of prompts with the idea of what would happen if you tried to get someone’s attention and it went wrong. The first one involved a man who wanted to get a hot fireman’s attention so he climbed a tree and pretended he couldn’t get down. The second prompt was the one I chose to write about a skateboarder and a jogger.

 

Could you tell me a little about it?

Amateur skateboarder, Nicholas wants the attention of the hot jogger Quinn who he sees in the park every day. When nothing works he decides an impressive flip on his board is the thing he needs. Unfortunately that flip sends them both to the hospital. I’ve never written a story with a skateboarder before and had to do some research, but the focus of the story is on the evolving relationship between Nicholas and Quinn.

The late great Marc Bolan on a skateboard. Just lovely

Here is the blurb:

Skateboarder Nicholas O’Brien’s sole focus is on perfecting his sport, yet a gorgeous jogger who continually ignores him tests that concentration daily. Boarding into the jogger’s path finally gets him Quinn Matthews’ attention along with the brush off. Quinn is adamant that no man will ever take advantage of him again. When Nicholas persists, Quinn finds he can’t resist the enigmatic boarder. Just as he falls for Nicholas, Quinn learns that Nicholas just may have had an agenda all along. Devastated, Quinn pulls away, leaving Nicholas alone and confused. Can they overcome their pain and shred the heart?

Could you please tell me about your other work?

I have three novels out that are paranormal of dark fantasy. Curiosity Killed Shaney, Dare to Love Forever and Diventando: The Vessel I also have a few free contemporary short stories out as well. I try to write book length contemporary but someone always ends up imbued with an ancient power or a vampire or possessed by an Incubus, lol.

 

What are you working on at the moment?

Currently, I am finishing a dark fantasy MPREG with demons and kidnappings, experimentation and slaves. This is my longest (over 90,000 words) and most complex story to date. I started this as a short story at the request of my friend, Raine O’Tierney who wanted an MPREG story about a tattooed gay man. Longest short story I ever wrote.

Also, I am working on my prompt from Goodreads annual Don’t Read in the Closet event. My prompt involves a recluse man who was scarred in a car accident and the rehabilitation therapist who takes the challenge to save him. Very angsty stuff. My specialty.

 

Please could we have an excerpt?

Excerpt

Nicholas’s gaze was jerky as he gazed out over the water. Quinn wondered if he was nervous. He took in Nicholas’s profile—the milky white skin, the barely noticeable freckles on his cheeks, the full red lips. He imagined their softness against his own lips, taking possession of him, owning him. But he needed to be strong. Never weak or needy or wanton. Never vulnerable again.

Nicholas looked to Quinn and the lusty gaze stole Quinn’s breath. There was a question in Nicholas’s eyes as he leaned closer, no doubt wondering if…

When their lips touched, Quinn couldn’t suppress his gasp. As if sensing Quinn’s hesitancy, Nicholas hovered, head tilted to the side, their lips brushing, but he ceased any other movement. Was he seeking permission to kiss him? A cold shudder raced down Quinn’s spine with the thoughts of hot tongues tangling in wet mouths. A sign was all Nicholas probably needed to go for it. Quinn closed his eyes and licked lightly across Nicholas’s bottom lip. The groaned response from Nicholas and the resulting crush of lips fueled his desire, raced his heart, and guided his hands to Nicholas’s hips, clutching, holding, wanting.

Nicholas grasped Quinn at the nape of his neck, controlling the kiss, eating at his lips, and devouring his whimpers. Nicholas pushed him higher, and Quinn’s cock throbbed in his dress pants, begging for any friction, any touch. Anything… everything. At that moment, his body belonged to Nicholas O’Brien, and he wanted whatever the man desired, wanted so much more than he could ever hope to have, could risk having again.

Author Bio:

JC “Jake” Wallace started writing from a young age, but took a break for marriage, kids, and college (in that order). A few years ago, he rediscovered his passion and ventured out into the brave new world of publishing. He now has several novels and short stories published. At night and on the weekends, Jake writes about all things men, believing there is nothing hotter than two men finding and loving one another, whether for a night or forever. An avid reader of M/M romance, Jake loves a good twist of a plot, HEA, HFN, or tragic ending. He also writes what his bestie calls HUNK (Happy Until the Next Kidnapping). In his daytime hours, Jake works with individuals with autism and behavior problems. He is owned by a beautiful partner, three kids, two grandchildren, two dogs and one cat. He lives in the Adirondack Mountains in Northern NY.

Also by Jake:

Amber Allure

Dare to Love Forever  Book 1 New Vampire Justice

Diventando: The Vessel

 

R&P Publishing

Curiosity Killed Shaney

 

Amazon

Pink Lace and Stolen Hearts

Pink Lace and a Stolen Proposal

Waiting for Snow

 

Author Info:
Website: http://www.jcwallacebooks.com

Twitter: http://twitter.com/jcwallacebooks.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/jcwallacebooks

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7237038.J_C_Wallace

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/jcwallace

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Good day – and here’s number 2 in our interview series from authors who have contributed stories to the Foolish Encounters anthology which will be available on April 1st from Wilde City Press.

Want to know more details – just click on the cover.

Please note: there is a small contest – comment to the post for a chance to win a small prize, provided by me personally. This is in no way affiliated to Wilde City Press’s formal book launch and blog tour which will taking place via Pride Promotions from April 8th. Look out for that, it’ll be rocking.

My guest today is Freddy MacKay, another prime mover in the inception of the anthology.

~

What inspired you to write your story for the anthology?

I picked a prompt from a Rainbow Gold Review event that had to do with an alien being the Easter Bunny. I grabbed the absurdity and ran with it. If an alien was the Easter Bunny then what else is possible? *mwahahaha*

Could you tell me a little about The Nut Job.

The Nut Job is a science fiction, absurdist story starring aliens from the IMP Universe (I shouldered into Angel Martinez’s Universe – the boys needed to know each other). We have have our Napoleon-complex captain, Spencer, who is awfully squirrelly. Bikkas, his first officer, who tends to get Sasquatch hunters after him when he visits our lovely planet. Bope, our timid bunny-shifter who is a helmsman and scout that doesn’t actually scout. And Krapor, the ship mechanic whose bending ability surpasses all expectations.

These four lovely Nutcracker crewmen are visiting Earth to collect nuts, specifically Walnuts from the Canadian wilderness. Of course, things don’t exactly go as planned.

Could you please tell me about your other work?

I write a variety of works in the Queer fiction genre, everything from contemporary to fantasy to science fiction. So, yeah, not a whole lot of focus on genre, but the core to my stories is the same. I want interesting literature showing a variety of characters, and emphasis is always the story, the characters and their journey. I love to explore human nature and all its facets.

What are you working on at the moment?

I am working on a fantasy short story and the third book in my Finding Peace series, Days Gone By.

Please could we have an excerpt?

The Nut Job

Thank the stars.
Finally, they could leave the outpost and not have to worry about delivering Rcrred anymore. He had been dropped off and signed for by their OIL contact, Sissal. Spencer normally felt a pang of guilt when the cobra shifter got stuck with a shit job, but not this time. As captain of the Nutcracker, all Spencer felt was relief that the dik-dik shifter couldn’t step foot on his bridge again.
“It’s peaceful.” Spencer exhaled, slumping in his chair. “No frantic yelling or nervous pacing.”
“Now that Rcrred is gone, yes,” Bikkas agreed. “Do you know he made me clean the kitchen three times after each meal? Three! Who in their right mind does that?”
Bope snorted. “The little Yervath definitely had issues.”
“Issues with a degree in bantering,” Spencer added.
They all nodded in agreement.
“I can’t believe the Home Office made us bring him.” Bikkas shoved away from his post, chair swinging in Spencer’s direction.
“We were on the way here. We couldn’t exactly say no,” he replied.
“I wanted to wring his neck when he organized the fitness station,” Bikkas grumbled.
“Same here.” Bope patted Bikkas’s arm. “Like when he reorganized my navigation files.”
Spencer’s tail flicked. “He alphabetized the kitchen pantry too.”
“Gods, how could one little dik-dik cause so much havoc?” Bikkas sighed.
“Spencer got even… stunned the little Yervath plenty of times.” Bope grinned, long ears swiveling. “I think Rcrred was building a tolerance.”
“He shouldn’t have gone near my chair.” Spencer sniffed and crossed his arms.
Bikkas wagged his finger at Spencer. “Rcrred had a twitch by the time we left him at Sissal’s. He’s going to report you.”
“He won’t,” Spencer said with more certainty than he felt. I hope. “Rcrred’s too em-barrassed about the first time I stunned him.”
They all nodded together again.
“That was pretty rough,” Bope shuddered. “You really shouldn’t have had the stun gun set that high.”
“I do not feel sorry for him.” Spencer tapped his claws against the armrests. “He was unbolting my chair.”

Author Bio

Freddy grew up in the Midwest, playing sports and running around outside. And honestly, that much has not changed since Freddy was small and throwing worms at other kids, expect worm throwing has been replaced with a healthy geocaching addiction. Freddy enjoys traveling and holds the view a person should continually to learn about new things and people whenever possible.

Freddy’s contemporary LGBTQ book, Incubation: Finding Peace 2, won 3rd Place – Best Gay Erotic Fiction in the 2012 Rainbow Awards. In 2013, Freddy’s story, Internment, tied for 3rd Place – Best Gay Fantasy in the Rainbow Awards. Freddy’s steampunk/SF story, Feel Me, was a Finalist and honorable mention in the 2014 Rainbow Awards for SF.

Author Links

Email: freddy.m.mackay@gmail.com
Website: http://freddysstereograph.weebly.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/FreddyMacKay
Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/FreddyMacKay

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DEFINED BY DECEIT
~ A.E. Via ~
M/M GAY ROMANCE CONTEMPORARY
Edited by: Tina Adamski
Cover Art by: Jay Aheer
PAGE COUNT – 300 pages
Release Date: March 27, 2015

ABOUT THE BOOK

Life isn’t always fair, and that’s something that Llewellyn Gardner knows about first hand. His life was on the fast track until one night of extreme passion changed everything.
Now eight years later, he’s still living with the aftershocks of that night. Everywhere he turns or runs, there’s another reminder. What the hell do you do when you try to drown your demons only to find out they can swim?
Shane Smith, Jr. owner of Smith Construction, could see the emotional turmoil within his new employee — it’s why he hired him. There was something about the gorgeous, misunderstood man with the overly expressive eyes that came to their small town with a past no one was willing to overlook. Shane could see the good in Llewellyn, and those eyes of his were a clear window to his soul. Shane wasn’t going to let the man live a future of solitude because his past had been plagued with deceit.
Llewellyn wasn’t sure what to think about Shane. After years of protecting himself from being tricked twice, he was now faced with worry again. What would happen to him if Shane didn’t believe his truth, and walked away? Llewellyn wasn’t sure he’d be able to survive being left alone. Again.

EXCERPT

“Thinking of going in? Or are you just gonna block the entrance?”
Llew turned at the sound of the sure voice behind him. Since he seemed to tower over everyone he looked down at the pretty brunette with dark brown eyes to match. “Um. Sorry.” Llew mumbled quickly moving out of her way.
“Well don’t be sorry shuga’, just escort a lady inside.” Llew didn’t blink as he watched the lady stalk towards him. Her full chest sat above an extremely narrow waist. It almost looked unnatural. She dressed and wore the amount of makeup that a grown woman would, but her smooth face and approach screamed her real age. She was jailbait if he’d ever seen one. Llew gave her a slight head nod and turned to leave when his elbow was hooked.
“I saw you in the general store applying for a job. You musta’ jus’ got into town, because if not I’d have known, honey. So you got kin here?”
Silence.
The laugh was an all-out immature giggle and it graded on his nerves. “Cat got your tongue, darlin’”. She moved in even closer and dragged a long red nail down Llew’s arm, tilting her head back to look up at him. “You want me to beg, huh? Come on now, handsome. Escort a lady to a movie… then maybe -”
“Maybe when he sees’ a lady… he’ll escort one.”
Llew diverted his attention away from the overzealous minx that was practically humping his leg and focused on the beautiful man approaching with another guy in tow. His voice wasn’t overly deep like his own, it was a smooth and melodic southern drawl. Like he could be a singer or a poet. He walked with an unhurried gait that was a mixture of ‘I’m in charge’ and ‘you’re on my time, not the other way around’, and Llew found it sexy as fuck. His tall friend chuckled behind him, moving away to purchase their tickets. Is he on a date? No, their demeanor definitely said ‘friends.’
“Mind ya’ own business Smith, Jr. I saw him first.”
Smith, Jr.
The man hooked one thumb in his pocket not the slightest bit fazed at the remark. But Llew was thrown. Was this guy actually gay or was she being a smart aleck? The man gave him nothing to go on. He moved closer towards them and Llew got a nice whiff of his spicy, bold cologne when a cool breeze blew his way. It was an interesting contradiction, because the man’s entire persona said ‘cool and composed’.
“Mosey along, Sallie Ann. Don’t make me ring ya’ daddy. He told me keep an eye on you while he’s gone and I agreed. He’d be rather put out if I didn’t follow through on my promise.”
She reluctantly let go of his arm, letting loose a long drawn out huff of annoyance. Llew didn’t bother watching her walk away. She was irrelevant. With his hands tucked deep in his pockets he eyed the man in front of him with a mixture of curiosity and wistfulness.
“Sometimes a person has gotta’ run interference with that girl. She’s usually not that bad but her daddy’s outta’ town, so ya’ know how young girls can be.”
Actually, not really.
“Hi. I’m Shane Smith, Jr.” he stuck out a large, calloused hand and it took Llew a couple seconds to process that he was going to touch him. Llew shook his hand, his mouth still closed tight as he watched the man’s eyes. They were light brown and full of humor and amusement. He immediately thought that this was obviously a guy who had little worries if any in life. Wait a minute…Smith….Jr. Is he the owner of? He let go of the strong grip on his hand and wished he’d been able to hold it a little longer.
“And you are?”
Llew swallowed before answering. “Llew.”
Those eyes twinkled again and dark brown brows rose up in question. “Llew…just Llew.”
It was a humiliation when a man hated to tell someone his name. But by doing so it meant that they would soon know who he really was. Know who he was classified as. He didn’t want this man to know that, god help him he didn’t. But lying wasn’t an option. Fuck it. “Llewellyn Gardner.”
So many broke eye contact with him and Llew was more than intrigued that Mr. Shane Smith, Jr. was staring at him just as hard as he was staring back. He didn’t know why he was looking at him that way but he didn’t mind it.
“Now that’s a name.” Smith smiled beautifully.
Llew wasn’t sure if this guy was flirting with him or not, he’d been in a place where flirting didn’t exist for so long, he’d forgotten what it looked like…what it sounded like. The way Shane Smith, Jr. was smiling at him it sure seemed like it. Llew could imagine himself with a strong man like this. A man who was gorgeous but didn’t know it. Not overly done up in fancy digs, he was dressed like a working man but he wore that look well. He appeared simple but confident, like a man that followed his own counsel and was not easily persuaded. But Llew wouldn’t dare get his hopes up. As soon as word got out that there was a newly registered sex offender in their quaint little town, Smith, Jr. might be leading the lynch mob to run him out of there.

BUY LINKS
Amazon Buy Link: http://www.amazon.com/Defined-By-Deceit-A-E-Via-ebook/dp/B00UZDNRJI/ref=zg_bs_7588788011_13


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

A.E. Via is still a fairly new author in the beautiful gay erotic genre. Her writing embodies everything from hopelessly romantic to spicy to scandalous. Her stories often include intriguing edges and twists that take readers to new, thought-provoking depths.

When she’s not clicking away at her laptop, she devotes herself to her family—a husband and four children.

While this is only her seventh novel, she has plenty more to come. So stalk her – she loves that – because the male on male action is just heating up!

Go to A.E. Via’s official website http://authoraevia.com for more detailed information on how to contact her, follow her, or a sneak peak on upcoming work, free reads, and where she’ll appear next.

Author Official Website: http://authoraevia.com

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7354860.A_E_Via

Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/aeviaauthor

Facebook (Friend me): https://www.facebook.com/authoraevia

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorAEVia

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/A.-E.-Via/e/B00GMNMS4U/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1

GIVEAWAY

Click the graphic below to be taken to the Rafflecopter page.

It is with very great pleasure that I introduce the first of the authors who have contributed stories to the Foolish Encounters anthology, which will be available from Wilde City Press on April 1st.

Foolish Encounters began it’s life as a April Fools dare from Marc of Rainbow Gold Book reviews – what’s the silliest story idea you can think of? Naturally everyone pitched in with the daftest scenarios  and we all read each others ideas, cackled with laughter then forgot about it.

A month or so later we were contacted again with the challenge to write our story to be included in an anthology to be produced in time for April first this year. The brave souls at Wilde City Press had agreed to publish it

Months later and the release of the anthology is just a few days away.

As usual with these anthology interviews I will provide a prize for one lucky commenter – their name to be selected old school style with bits of paper drawn out of a hat – it could be a WW2 tin helmet, a pirate hat, or something fetching in straw, depending on the time of day, direction of wind and just how I feel. the more comments the more chances you have to win.

So please join me in welcoming guest number one – Angel Martinez

~

What inspired you to write your story for the anthology?
I suppose you could say this anthology is partly my fault, er, that is, partly because of my interference. Wait. This isn’t coming out right at all. Marc was hosting a series of events for Rainbow Gold with authors and their books. Mine just happened to fall around the time that my Brimstone series (science fiction humor) was out and Marc scheduled me for April 1st. Appropriate. What he did before the day, though, was to ask me to come up with as many outrageous story prompts as I could. There were some doozies. Other authors were encouraged to add prompts as well and later claim them.

Not normally regarded as cuddly

What prompt did I end up with? A cobra shifter who can only come when he sings, which was actually a combination of two prompts. This was not my idea. Marc insisted I had to write this one. Hmm, I said to myself. What the hell have I done? While I have written characters who change form, I’ve never written, and probably never will write, the pop culture shifter story that people would expect. Not that route. But what if this dual-natured person was an alien and what if he was stuck on Earth and what would he need to sing in order to climax? And how could I make his eventual love interest as annoying as possible… Sissal Naganos, alien diplomat in disgrace and sexually troubled cobra shifter, was born in “A Message from the Home Office.”

Could you tell me a little about it?
Sure! For a few years now, Sissal has been assigned as the OIL (Onsite Interspecies Liaison) to Earth, which is considered a backwater, no open contact with the natives world. It’s essentially a career dead end, but he’s willing to be patient. The assignment has to end some day. But his quiet, boring routine is shattered when a certain ship’s captain dumps a new assistant on his doorstep, an assistant who is so regulation bound, high-strung, and OCD that the calm and patient Sissal seriously contemplates violence.

Could you please tell me about your other work?
I write gay fantasy and science fiction, almost exclusively. Some of it like Brimstone and A Message from the Home Office are comedic pieces, while others like the Endangered Fae series and the ESTO novels are deadly serious. I tend toward science fiction plots with biological/neuroscience or anthropological frameworks, while my fantasy tends to explore (read: twist, tilt, mutilate and bend) folktale, myth and legend.

What are you working on at the moment?
Right now, I’m finishing the second in a pair of paranormal humor stories for a new world/series called Offbeat Crimes. This is about a police squad manned entirely by paranormal misfits –the vampire who can only drink “skim blood,” the firestarter who can’t get a spark when it’s damp, the officer who can teleport objects with his mind, but only if those objects are fruit, and so on. The first story, Lime Gelatin and Other Monsters, is complete and with the editors, the second, The Pill Bugs of Time, is about 2/3 complete.

Please could we have an excerpt?
This is a teensy excerpt from A Message from the Home Office:

“What was that?” Rcrred spoke up directly behind him. “The lighting in here is at least a hundred lumens above efficiency recommendations. I don’t understand why you’ve been left here without inspections. Move out of the chair so I can call the PLIC.”

“I am the Planetary Liaison in Charge. There is no one else.”

“No. No…you can’t. This is an outpost. There’s a central office in orbit?”

Sissal rested his aching head in both hands. “Do you even understand what a Class Five outpost is, kid?”

“Covert operations,” Rcrred offered stiffly. “Undetectable to the planetary population. With a need for liaisons to blend in, which, if you would have read my file, you would see I have already begun to do by taking the local name Richard.”

“Great. That’s just perfect.” Sissal managed a sour chuckle.

Rcrred…Richard glared at him. “Why?”

“Don’t suppose in all your pre-assignment work, you figured out that Dick is a common nickname for Richard? Dick the dik dik dick. It’s perfect. Really, bloody perfect.”

Author Bio:

While Angel Martinez is the erotic fiction pen name of a writer of several genres, she writes both kinds of gay romance – Science Fiction and Fantasy. Currently living part time in the hectic sprawl of northern Delaware, (and full time inside the author’s head) Angel has one husband, one son, two cats, a changing variety of other furred and scaled companions, a love of all things beautiful and a terrible addiction to the consumption of both knowledge and chocolate.

Website: Angel Martinez

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/amartinez2

Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/angelmartinez/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AngelMartinezrr

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Late again but – ah well. Better late than never.

This week I have read a lot of non-fiction – boning up on stuff for work plus a couple of those terrific serendipitous finds on a market stall – but I have fitted in a couple of fiction titles too. It’s one of those I want to wax fulsome about today and a rare and fabulous thing it is too.

Gyrfalcon by Anna Butler

Oh look at that cover!! What a thing of beauty. This book is published by Wilde City Press, rapidly becoming my go to place for finding books with LGBTTQ protagonists that are a bit out of the ordinary. And this book too is something a bit different. What I found here is genuine old school military science fiction, every bit as good as the Vorkosigan Saga, and promising to be as long and as enthralling.

The first of a proposed six book series, Gyrfalcon follows the adventures of Bennett, a highly trained operative in Shield, a special forces organisation that, in addition to regular armed forces, protects the last remaining colony of long lost Earth. Shield seems to be an amalgamation of the SAS and commandos but with a high level of technical training and the ability to formulate long term strategies against the enemy, Maess – aliens that nobody has ever seen who wage war on the surviving humans with the aid of robotic drones built in a parody of human shape.

As if this ongoing war wasn’t trouble enough, Bennett is undergoing a lot of personal conflict in his estrangement from his family and the impossible demands from his long term partner, Joss, who wants Bennett to give up his Shield commission and come home to share in a life of luxurious academia.

But Bennett has another mission – a really crazy one, it’s his idea and it has taken 2 years to line up all his ducks – and he needs a ship. The massive dreadnought Gyrfalcon is commandeered on his behalf, and there he finds the other thing he needs – a team of superb pilots and the best of the bunch, Flynn, who is nearly as crazy as Bennett.

The world building is terrific but I was left wanting more. I don’t think it’s a bad thing at this stage in a series. I don’t need to know the whole history of the human diaspora and I’m certainly given enough to be going on with. Because this book isn’t a mass of dry exposition – it is action from page one. A glance at the blurb will reassure potential readers that there is a romance component but it is most definitely NOT a Romance. This is action, adventure, military drama and thriller combined with exciting hardware and some nicely judged psychological crises. Not all the good people are nice, not all the bad people are villains. Flynn, in particular has his moments where I was muttering Wheaton’s Law to myself. But it’s a very satisfying start to what I hope will be a nice long and complex series.

All I need to know now is how long I have to wait until the next episode!

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