Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Blog Hop and Tour Winners!!! 


Whew, it was a big week around here with 3 simultaneous blog events. Congratulations to the winners and a big thank you to everyone who participated. Below are the winners of different giveaways - 

The Cold Blog Tour winner is Vita.
You'll be contacted by Brandon Shire soon.

The Portrait of a Crossroads Virtual Book Tour winner is Deirdre. 
You'll be contacted by Riptide Publishing soon.

The Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia winners are
Suze, SmoochersVoice, Peggy
You'll be contacted by Riptide Publishing soon.

~ ~ ~

I want to say a very special Thank You to
 Riptide Publishing

AND to author Brandon Shire

for helping to make these events very successful and fun.
 ~ ~ ~

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Friday, May 24, 2013

Cold by Brandon Shire Blog Tour - The Character Interview with Lem

Celebrating the release of Cold 
by Brandon Shire

The Character Interview 

Author Brandon Shire has graciously given us this sneak peek into the next installment of his Cold series. While this interview comes after Cold, there are no spoilers here for either Cold or the follow up book, but this will definitely introduce you to Lem and, without question, pique your interest.

I'll reserve my review for later, but I don't think it's saying too much to tell you that Cold is a giant 5 star read for me.
Giveaway: Be sure to comment below to be entered to WIN a copy of Cold


An Interview with Lem Porter (Murderer, sentenced to life in prison):


[I’m here under the pretense of asking questions for my thesis in analyzing the effectiveness of criminal rehabilitation. The warden isn’t too happy about my presence, but my dad is his boss, so he has allowed me to pick out several inmates that caught my interest. But right at the end, as we expected, he only allowed me to interview one inmate and cited security reasons, which I know is prison speak for we don’t want you here. Lem Porter was the person I wanted to speak to from the beginning, but I am not allowed to ask about his case or his reasons for killing his brother. This was the primary reason I chose him.  He has never discussed his reasons or his case, and the people that hired me want to know.

This is my first time interviewing a convicted murderer and he is a very big, intimidating man. He’s served eighteen years in prison and I’m expecting a hard, angry criminal. So naturally I shrink back when this huge man enters the room.]

Julie: Hello Mr. Porter, thank you for speaking with me. May I call you Lem?  

[I reach out to shake his hand. He looks at it for just a moment before he reaches out. His grasp is very gentle, almost as if his is afraid to touch me.]

Lem Porter: Lem will do fine.


[I explain my supposed purpose for the visit and he seems less than impressed. Actually, he seems bored at the prospect of my questions, but is polite enough not to say so.]  

I understand that you spend a lot of your time in the greenhouse at the institution. Is there a reason that you were chosen for that duty?
Lem: It wasn’t a greenhouse when I started. It was an outbuilding that held a few lawnmowers, but I have a background in forestry and degrees in Biology and Forest Management so the administration thought they could put a program together to help inmates rehabilitate.

Julie: Excellent. How has it worked out so far?

Lem: They’re still waiting on funding, and have been for six years.



Book 1: Prison is a brutal, heartless, and demeaning environment. No one knows this better than a man sentenced to life in prison for murder. Lem Porter is a high-profile prisoner who had a solid career ahead of him in a field he loved until he killed his brother. He has spent almost eighteen years behind bars and doesn’t have much hope left.

Anderson Passero had it all. He built a career, a name, and a relationship with a man he thought he loved. Only after he very publicly landed in prison did he realize how ignorant he’d been. He has eight months left on his sentence and he is eager to go home and put prison life behind him. He doesn’t know it yet, but he will always carry these eight months with him, and they may just help him to understand what love really means.

[I was warned that Lem was a man of very few words. Maybe that’s why the warden approved of him when he wouldn’t approve of the other choices I made.]  

Can you tell me about what you did before prison?

[He looks at me curiously, likely wondering why I am really here. Now I’m beginning to wonder myself. This man is far from what I expected when I researched his case.]

Lem: I was a park naturalist, which in a nutshell means that I was an over-degreed hermit that didn’t like to come out of the woods. My job encompassed being a field scientist, teacher, zoologist, stream monitor, forester, and occasionally EMT and law enforcement officer.

Julie: My aunt is a park naturalist. 

[I am not supposed to divulge any personal information about myself, but I can sense his interest immediately, and with it comes a complete shift in his attitude even though his face remains as blank as it has been from the start.]

Lem: Where is she posted?

Julie: Yosemite right now. But she’s due for a transfer.  

[He nods at me, knowing that the Forest Service moves employees around so they don’t get too attached to the land they are charged to oversee.] 

Lem: Beautiful place.

Julie: Would you like to go back into that field when you get out?

Lem: Can’t pass the background check.

Julie: Couldn’t you work as an animal rehabilitator? 

[My question has struck him. His face has frozen. Surely he must have thought of this in all the years he’s been in prison.] 

Julie: They don’t require background checks because they don’t work with the public. 

[He nods and a silence falls between us.]


[I want to ask him about the tattoo he has, but if I do I know he’ll realize that I have too much information on him.] 

Do you get many visitors?

Lem: None.

Julie: Do you have any family on the outside? Someone that could help you get back on your feet when you got out?

Lem: No.


[I know this is a lie. He has a nephew. His ex-sister-in-law’s parents testified at his trial about how close he and his brother were. In fact, the transcripts show that they repeatedly pleaded with him to explain why he did it.]

You’re coming up for parole. Do you think you’ll get out?
Lem: I had the hearing already. It was denied. I won’t come up for another 3-5 years. 

Julie: But what about then? 

[He shrugs, but doesn’t give an answer.]
How do you feel about conjugal visits? 

[I see a smile twitch at the corner of his lips before he laughs.]
Lem: There’s no such thing. They only have them in the movies.


[My question has the effect I was looking for.] 

Can you tell me about your family? More precisely, your brother?
Lem: No.


[His harsh abruptness surprises me, and it’s the first time I feel uncomfortable in his presence.] 

Okay, can you tell me what you miss most about life on the outside? Sex, food, dancing, private showers?
Lem: The space between trees and mountain tops. 


[I nod. My aunt is the same. We won’t see or hear from her for months, and when we do, you can always tell that she absolutely hates being trapped indoors. It makes me wonder how deeply confinement has affected the man before me.] 

If you’re released what is the first thing you’ll do? 
Lem: Honestly, I haven’t thought about it.


[My eyes narrow. He’s just given me the key the people who sent me here are looking for.]  

Thank you for visiting with me. 

[I nod at him and he offers a startled look. I don’t think I’ve fooled him. He knows there’s another agenda here. He’s too smart not to know.]


Cold by Brandon Shire is available for purchase at:
Brandon Shire Book Links

As always, Brandon donates 10% of Book Sales to LGBT Youth Charity

Want to see the rest of the stops on the tour? Click here:

May 14th Joyfully Jay EXCLUSIVE Excerpt & (Giveaway
May 20th - BrandonShire.com Announcement on with links to all sites and tour schedule
May 20th - The Novel Approach - Bonus
May 21st Smoocher’s Voice – Author Interview (Giveaway)
May 22nd - LeAnn’s Reviews – In-depth Back-story Questions (Giveaway)
May 23rd - Purple Rose Tea House – LGBT Youth in Prison (tie-in post) (Giveaway)
May 24th - Attention Is Arbitrary Here – Character Interview w/ Lem (Giveaway)

Okay, here's the good stuff: One random winner will be drawn from the comments below. Please be sure to add your email address dot com to be entered.  Also, be sure to let us know which format you would prefer (.mobi or .epub. Sorry, no .pdf available). Contest ends late May 26th, 2013. Winner will be notified via email.

View All My Reviews

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Portrait of a Crossroads by Kelly Rand - Guest Post

Hi Everyone, I am really happy to be hosting Riptide Publishing's first ever standalone F/F author, Kelly Rand. Portrait of a Crossroads sounds wonderful and the cover is stunning. I couldn't be more pleased that Riptide is expanding their title selection and am happy to support their growth.

Hello there! I’m Kelly Rand, and thanks for joining me on the virtual book tour for Portrait of a Crossroads, my new release from Riptide Publishing, which also happens to be Riptide’s first standalone F/F story—how exciting! As a writer of trans* fiction, f/f, m/m, and more, I’m thrilled to help Riptide expand their rainbow romance catalog. I invite you to comment on my guest posts all week long to share your thoughts on Portrait of a Crossroads, F/F fiction, the weather, or just to just say hello! One lucky commenter will even win a $5 store credit to Riptide Publishing, so don’t be shy! Comment below before midnight on 5/26 to enter.

What better way to get to know Kelly Rand than with a quick quiz? We asked Kelly to answer these questions as fast as she could. Enjoy her rapid-fire answers!

Favorite Song: Anything by Matthew Good. My favourite song and album from him alternates. Right now I’ll say “Under the Influence” from the underrated Audio of Being album.

Favorite Movie: Lilies. It’s a great Canadian film from 1997 with an LGBTQ theme. A love story acted out by prisoners. I highly encourage you to check it out.

Favorite TV Show: America’s Next Top Model. I can’t help myself.

Leather or Latex? Leather.

Naughty or Nice? Naughty from a seemingly nice person.

There you have it, folks! Kelly, thanks for stopping by. We’ll be sure to keep in mind that you only seem nice… ;)

* * *
Blurb: Since finding her father’s body at the bottom of the basement stairs, Annette’s been drifting through her days, watching cars pass down the rural Ontario crossroads beside her house. Her brothers have no great ambitions, but Annette remembers a time when she did. She just can’t remember what they are.
Then she meets her neighbour, Sadie, a tattooed, world-weary, newly single portrait artist. Something about Sadie awakens something in Annette—the essence she captures in her subjects, perhaps, or the way the old familiar crossroads seem so fresh and promising from the view out Sadie’s window.

Annette begins to help Sadie, cleaning brushes and filing invoices between long lazy afternoons of conversations and shared silences. Soon, though, Annette wants more from her enigmatic neighbor, and their slowly heating friendship melts into passionate nights. Somewhere along the way, Annette discovers that her lover has illuminated for her, as with the people Sadie paints, not just her essence but her own endless worlds of possibilities.

Purchase Portrait of a Crossroads from Riptide Publishing here.

About the Author: Kelly Rand lives in southern Ontario, Canada. She has worked as a journalist for more than fifteen years, covering court cases and elections and every kind of human interest story imaginable. She published her first erotic romance in 2012.
She has a particular interest in trans fiction, and has published some and wants to write more of it. She also writes male/male, female/female, and male/female stories that range from figure skater love to sexually disgruntled Canadian musicians. In her more highfalutin moments, she likes to think of her stories as a merger between erotic romance conventions and Southern Ontario Gothic.

When she’s not writing, she likes live music, spontaneous road trips, volunteering with street youth, obsessing over various celebrities, and looking at pictures of cats on the internet.

You can find her at http://www.kellyrand.net or on twitter as @Rand_Kelly.

Stops for this tour:

May 20, 2013 - Butterfly-O-Meter Books

May 21, 2013 - BiblioJunkies

May 23, 2013 - Fictionators

May 24, 2013 - Joyfully Jay

One lucky commenter will even win a $5 store credit to Riptide Publishing, so don’t be shy! Comment below before midnight on 5/26 to enter. Winner will be drawn randomly and will be contacted via Riptide Publishing. Good luck! Be sure to leave you email dot com.
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Sunday, May 19, 2013

Celebrating the release of Cold 
by Brandon Shire

The Character Interview 

Check back Friday, May 24th, 2013

Be sure to subscribe or become a follower for updates!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia #HAHAT

Comment to win one of three $10 gift cards from Riptide Publishing
 I hope you'll comment below, particularly about the books that have most caused you to take notice of homophobia and/or transphobia. These could be books that would be great to pass on to someone to help change their perspective. Or books that really reached you and you'd love the world to know about them. See details below.


Dear LGBTQ Fiction Author:

This blog’s for you!

Well, this post anyway. So please take a moment and pat yourself on the back. Grab something cool to drink, it's on me, because I want you to know that you do make a difference in the fight against homophobia and transphobia through your writing. Thank you for doing what you do.

This is a thank you because you have taken this middle aged, uninvolved housewife and mother of two and inspired her to do a little more. If it weren’t for the fun, fluffy, sexy, beautiful, and stirring things you write I wouldn’t have paid attention. Your words reached me.

I started reading M/M Romance purely for the sexy fun of it all. I was blissfully happy reading and "learning" about two hot, sexy, often tragically afflicted men falling in love. But, somewhere along the way I must have read something that cut a little deeper. Twisted my gut and caused me to recognize an injustice, an unfairness, an inequality. By this point it was already too late. Authors of lgbtq fiction made me care. So when injustice showed up in real life I think I paid a little more attention, listened a little more carefully and eventually began seeking out ways to make a difference. Now I know about things like:

International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia -May 17th, 2013
Human Rights Campaign 

Don't get me wrong, I still LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the fun, fluffy, sexy, thrill-rides. Please keep that, uh, coming because they're what caught my interest, turned my head and caused me to take action. But occasionally I come across a book that reaches me in a different way. I have a Goodreads shelf dedicated to books I call Bigoted Mind Changers. They’re the books that I like to recommend to friends who might not be sure about the genre. The books that get my “I need to get involved” energy up, and books that have changed my way of thinking.

I’m adding a short list of some of those books that have had that effect on me and I’m hoping that people will tell us about a book that reached them.

Thank you authors, for sharing your message, spreading the love and not laughing at the Straight, Married Woman on Twitter who needs everything clarified. Keep writing, keep being inspired and know that readers are listening. We may beg and plead for the next titillating tidbit, but all of your words get through.

Please be sure to visit the Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia website for more information. Check out the links below to visit all the blogs participating in this wonderful and important hop.

~ ~ ~

Prizes: I couldn't be more pleased to announce that Riptide Publishing had graciously donated three $10 gift cards toward ebook purchase. So I’d love it if everyone would comment below and share about a LGBTQ fiction book that changed you, opened your eyes or has that effect on others. All commenters are eligible to win one of the three gift cards. Please add your email dot com for easy contact. The contest ends late on May 27th and I’ll be announcing the winners on the blog Tuesday, May 28th. Thanks for commenting and reading.

My recommendations for Bigoted Mind Changers are:

One Boy's Shadow by Ross McCoubrey  
Talker by Amy Lane
The View from a Rusty Train Car by DeeJay Arens
Listening to Dust by Brandon Shire
Share yours :)

~ ~ ~

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Cold by Brandon Shire 5 of 5 Stars

Cold (Cold series #1)
by Brandon Shire

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Available for purchase at: Amazon
All Romance (ARe)

ebook, 214 pages
Expected publication: May 20th 2013 by TPG Books (first published May 15th 2013)
ISBN13 9781301558551
Edition Language English

Brandon Shire donates 10% of the proceeds from the sale of any of his books to:

~ ~ ~
About the only thing of beauty he had seen within these walls in a long, long time was Anderson, and like most others in his life, Anderson had looked at Lem like he was someone to fear.

When Brandon Shire said he wanted to write a character based prison story he was serious. I couldn’t believe how caught up I got in Lem and Anderson. The prison is there, no doubt, and, at least for Lem it’s not going anywhere. But the focus is on the internal dialog these two men have. The emphasis on who they are, their fears, their passions, their regrets and that’s what makes this book work.

If you’ve ever read Brandon Shire you know he connects you to the characters. This book proves his mastery of this skill.

Book 1: Prison is a brutal, heartless, and demeaning environment. No one knows this better than a man sentenced to life in prison for murder. Lem Porter is a high-profile prisoner who had a solid career ahead of him in a field he loved until he killed his brother. He has spent almost eighteen years behind bars and doesn’t have much hope left.

Anderson Passero had it all. He built a career, a name, and a relationship with a man he thought he loved. Only after he very publicly landed in prison did he realize how ignorant he’d been. He has eight months left on his sentence and he is eager to go home and put prison life behind him. He doesn’t know it yet, but he will always carry these eight months with him, and they may just help him to understand what love really means.


All these new faces he would forget when he hit the door in eight months, every single one of them. He was sure of it.
Eight months. It was the only thing that ran through his brain. Eight months.

Anderson Passero - Although we only get to see Anderson in the last eight months of his incarceration you are able to see how he changes. Always wary of others because of his smaller size, he’s been living a nightmare where he trusts no one, keeps to himself and analyzes everything.

“You’ve spent almost twenty years behind bars, don’t you think it’s time you forgave yourself?”

Lem Porter - I don’t think I have ever wanted to reach out to a character more than I do with Lem. Days, weeks later (I beta'd this book) I’m still thinking about him. A beautiful, unique human who lets his guilt rule him. How Mr. Shire created a murderer that I would trust with my children I don’t know.

He’s a smart, tender, gentle man who is one with the natural world. Locked within cement walls, he has given up on beauty. Lem’s nature will speak to you and reach you in ways only very memorable characters do. He truly touched me.


You need to know this isn’t about prison brutality or guard dominance, this is a beautiful love story in a prison setting. While there is a brutal act, it isn’t the focus. While there is heart-ache that had me crying for a full chapter, you shouldn’t be afraid to read this because of the setting.

I’ve said it before, I have a true fear of prison. This book made me want to stay inside.


Brandon Shire uses this technique which counts down the time until Anderson is released. It is extremely effective in causing a certain tension. It plays with your head because you want Anderson out, but there’s not enough time, he's short. I know that doesn’t make sense, but that’s why its brilliant.

Shire’s writing feels perfectly paced. I didn’t find any lag. He weaves in enough questions to have us demanding another book, while completing everything he set out to accomplish. I think this author has found his stride here. There’s less poetry than in his previous books, but more solid story-telling. He drove this with perfect pacing, stellar characters and gripping emotions. A must read!

"It’s the god of vegetation and plant life, the Green Man. He symbolizes life and rebirth after the long hard winter and predates many religions,” Lem offered.
“So why do you have him on your back?” Anderson pressed him.
Lem held him for a moment before he answered. “Because when I looked out at a forest from the top of a ridge, I saw the cycle and beauty of life. It was something I used to believe in.”
“And you don’t now?”
“It’s a cycle I’m not a part of anymore,” Lem finally replied.
What about us, right here and now?” Anderson asked, […]
Lem cupped the side of his head and ran his fingers through his hair. “A false spring,” Lem answered, a sincere sadness in his eyes.

Available for purchase at: 

~ ~ ~

I sincerely thank Brandon Shire for allowing me to beta-read this book and providing me an ARC in exchange for my honest review.

~ ~ ~

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Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Cambion #4 by Cari Z - 5/5 Stars

Dark Around the Edges: Put the Gun Down (Cambion #4) 
Dark Around the Edges: Put the Gun Down by Cari Z.

Available at Storm Moon Press and Amazon
ebook, 43 pages
Published May 10th 2013 by Storm Moon Press LLC
ISBN13 9781627570084
edition language English

5 Stars – Yeah, five stars for a serial!

Well, well, well call me a liar. Before reading this episode I think I said this series couldn’t get any better. Was I ever wrong. Cari Z just keeps delivering. This episode goes from pure fun, to sexy cross dressing, to absolute catastrophe.


Devon Harper - As a cambion Dev is empowered by orgasms... other peoples orgasms. He loves getting people off. But there’s no one he loves pleasing more than Rio.

Rio Pagani - We’ve learned a lot about Rio in the last few books, but the man is still a mystery. In this book we learn that Rio’s inner calm can be shattered after all.


In this episode Dev is back in action, and oh boy, am I ever glad. He has to do a little cross-dressing for the good of the mission, of course, and it’s an absolute pleasure to read all about it. Steven, the new side-kick is the beneficiary of Devon’s little performance. What a lucky, lucky guy.

"What--I--why're we looking at ladies' knickers?" Steven demanded.
"Contingency plan," was all Devon said.
"But come on, give me your opinion." He waved the bra around again.
Steven rolled his eyes but finally took the question seriously. "Black lace is boring. So's white. Go bold if you're gonna go at all."
"Good idea," Devon agreed. He looked through the other options in his chest size. Red was obvious, green always made him feel like a hooker, pink was too teenage girl... he finally decided on violet satin, with matching garters and stockings.

Meanwhile, Rio makes sure that Dev knows exactly who he’s coming back to.

The closing scene ends in a huge twist and is a total game changer. Very exciting!


As I said above there is a lot going on in this book, but it never feels rushed. It moves along very smoothly, with the right action and the right dialog in all the right places. Are there cliff-hangers each episode? Yeah, sure. It wouldn’t be a serial if there weren’t. And that’s what makes this so much fun; knowing that you’re going to get more of this sexy, tender thrill-ride in the next episode.

Note: If you order the 'Season Pass' from Storm Moon Press you get bonus episodes and a final compiled ebook of all the episodes. And I think you save money that way too.

~ ~ ~

Thank you Storm Moon Press and Cari Z for providing me with an ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review.

~ ~ ~

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Friday, May 10, 2013

Interview with author Anna Zabo - Slow Waltz

We’re talking today with Anna Zabo, the author of CloseQuarter and Slow Waltz available at Loose Id and Amazon.
Be sure to comment below to be 
entered for the $10 Gift Certificate!!!
Slow Waltz, a Spring Fling short story comes out on Tuesday, May 7th! From May 7th until the 12th, Slow Waltz will be FREE at Loose Id, and then 99 cents after that. Also, only at the Loose Id site, from the 7th to the 12th, Close Quarter will be $2 off the cover price! They have every e-reader format imaginable at the site, too!

Here's the blurb for Slow Waltz:

New lovers Rhys Matherton and Silas Quint finally have a chance to breath easy and enjoy a well-earned respite on board a transatlantic cruise to New York City. But the lack of danger gives Rhys too much time to think about the enormity of falling in love with a man who isn’t human. He’s not sure love at first sight can last, especially when your lover is fae. Sure, the sex is fantastic, but that’s not enough to hang the rest of your potentially immortal life upon.
To distract himself, Rhys suggests he and Silas take a set of lessons to learn to waltz. The plan backfires when they are paired with two older women—one of whom reminds Rhys of his recently deceased mother. Instead of being able to ignore thinking about his future with Silas, he’s actively questioned about his lover. And it seems the whole boat knows who he’s sleeping with.
As Rhys learns the steps of the waltz, he has to decide if he’ll continue to dance around what he feels for Silas or if he’ll finally learn to trust in his partner’s love for him.

Lisa: Hi Anna, thank you for being here today. It’s great to be part of your itty bitty Blog Tour.

Anna: Thank you! It’s great to be here! 

L: Please tell us a little about yourself, why you write m/m erotica and, if you don’t mind, a random tidbit about yourself or your characters.

A: Let’s see...I live in Pittsburgh, which is far more fun that it sounds! I drive a yellow Mini Cooper, which is exactly as fun as it sounds, and when I’m not writing, I like to get down and dirty...gardening. 

I kind of fell into writing M/M and romance...I was much more of a fantasy author (which I still write as well) but I was reading a lot of hotter m/m romance. I’ve had gay and bi characters in my fantasy novels, so the shift to romance wasn’t all that hard...and if I was going to dive into a genre, I might as well go all the way. Uh. As it were... 

I do like the dynamic of m/m fiction and some of the romance tropes I can play with or turn sideways. You’re not as constrained by gender and genre expectations in m/m, I’ve found.A tidbit... hmm. Of all the characters in Close Quarter, there’s probably the most of “me” in Vasil, the erstwhile waiter. You know, if I were male and from Eastern Europe, rather than female and merely descended from Eastern Europeans. But there’s usually a little of me in ever character I write. 

L: You know I read and loved Close Quarter, see my review here, but tell me can readers read Slow Waltz before Close Quarter?

A: I think so. I tried to balance the interest of new readers with the interest of folks who have read Close Quarter, which was a bit challenging. I don’t go into any great detail about the events in Close Quarter...at least no more than the blurb for the book does.

It’s more about Rhys coming to terms with himself and his relationship now that he’s not running for his life any more.
L: The cover art for Slow Waltz is mmmm, delicious. I just want to lick those whiskers right off his face. Oh wait! That wasn’t a question (and oops, I am a married woman). Is that Silas? ‘Cus that could be my Silas.

A: It’s actually a shared cover for all the Loose Id Spring Flings. But he does look very much like I’d picture Silas, so I’d like to think that it is him! And yeah, he’s very lickable, isn’t he?

L: Two guys dancing, especially waltzing together is pretty damn sexy. Is there anything else that they get up to in Slow Waltz?

A: Lets see...well they take dance lessons and meet some nice older ladies. They have a bit of dessert. Oh! And they take an elevator ride. A long one. Because of a bet. And, um. Yeah. *cough* 
L: [I've gotten a chance to read Slow Waltz since conducting this interview and trust me, you will want to play on the elevator just like you wanted to as a kid, ...but for entirely different reasons. Super hot scene!]

L: Close Quarter is m/m erotica. There is a lot of hot, steamy, visual sex. Uhm, again not a question. Just a PSA, because it’s my duty to inform as a blogger.

A: There is. I kind of took the erotic part of erotic romance to heart with Close Quarter. *laughs*
L: Uh huh, and I am SO glad you did ;)

L: Questions like, “what inspired you to write Close Quarter?”, are pretty mundane. But, I am dying to know if you took a cruise and were stirred? If you've discovered a cruise line that provides Fae for entertainment, please let me know.

A: The idea actually came from a snippet of a dream where there was this fae vampire hunter taking out vampires onboard a Victorian-era cruise ship...much more action-oriented and steampunky than Close Quarter turned out to be. I got to thinking that the idea of a ship full of vampires was pretty darn scary, even for a fae with a sword.
When I started the book, I’d never been on a cruise. However, I was lucky enough to go on a Mediterranean cruise while I was writing Close Quarter. So there’s a whole chunk of the book that was written while sitting on a deck chair, watching the world go by. I wish I could find a line with fae entertainment. Truly. You’d probably never get me home again.

L: Readers need to discover the absolute magic that is Rhys and Silas, and how, these guys just can’t stop touching each other. You had them practically jumping off the pages in these scenes. Was this really your first experience writing m/m?

A: Kind of, sort of, yes? It was my first time writing full-on m/m sex scenes. There’s a piece of Shakespeare fan fiction I wrote that has implied m/m sex (there’s a link on my website here: http://annazabo.com/free-fiction/), but it’s more sweet than steamy. And I’ve written a fantasy novel that has obvious m/m influences, but no sex. I read quite a bit of m/m, though, and a lot of it is on the hotter side. I suspect that helped a lot!
L: What should we expect in a sequel? There will be a sequel right?

A: There will be a sequel. Actually, I have at least two planned. At the moment, I’m working on a book that follows up on what happens to Vasil, the very human waiter who ends up seeing far more than he should have seen of the paranormal in Close Quarter. He’s never quite the same after that...
L: [*squee I've heard readers begging for Vasil's story, so that's gonna be a hit!]
And then there will be the book that follows Rhys and Silas in New York, where all their problems come home to roost, in large unfortunate ways. On the other hand, they’ll be on dry land with access to their own element, so the sex should be fantastic. If no one kills or captures them first. *chuckles*

L: Beside Fae, what other paranormal characters show up on your pages?

A: Vampires and angels. I’ve also hinted at the existence of daemons and phoenix, but they don’t show up in Close Quarter...

L: Your vampires are definitely not twinkly. In fact they’re downright vicious. Do you have personal experience with the bloodsuckers or do you just have really bad dreams?

A: *laughs* Actually, that’s all from hanging out with horror writers! Great folks with very dark ideas in their writing. A bit of that wore off onto me, I think! But I did want to have vampires that were true monsters out to kill their prey, even if they were beautiful and attractive on some level.
Lisa: Once again, thank you so much for spending time with us. Most of all thank you for creating Rhys and Silas, and letting us (me) enjoy them over and over and over.

Anna: Thank you so much for having me! It’s been a pleasure.
Web: http://www.annazabo.com

Be sure to comment below to be entered in the give-a-way!!!

Here’s the info on the hop:

I’m holding a giveaway for a $10 (or currency equivalent) gift card to either All Romance Ebooks, Amazon, or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) for folks that comment on any of my itty bitty blog tour. If you comment here or at any of the three other stops on my tour, you’ll be entered in a random drawing to win a gift card. (One entry per blog stop! So if you comment on all four blogs, that’s four entries.)

Please add your email dot com to your comment so we can contact you.

I’ll be drawing the winner on my blog, AnnaZabo.com on May 13th.

The dates and stops are:
Tuesday, May 7th, I’ll be at Jessica Freely’s blog [http://www.friskbiskit.com/]
Thursday, May 9th, I’ll be at Kay Berrisford’s blog. [http://kayberrisford.com/]
Friday, May 10th, I’ll be at Attention is Arbitrary. (That’s here!)
Saturday, May 11th, I’ll be at MC Hana’s blog. [http://www.cranehanabooks.com/blog/]

Visit them all and enter for more chances to win and to learn more about Anna's writing.

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