Saturday, December 26, 2015

Guest Review by OJ: With This Bling (Romano and Albright3) by LB Gregg

 

With this Bling (Albright and Romano 3)
By L.B. Gregg

4 Stars
Reviewed by OJC



E-book
December 2015, Riptide Publishing
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Trade Paperback
December 2015, Riptide Publishing
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OJ -

So… occasionally I feel like taking a break from all the alpha-dudes, A-Type guys and the swashbuckling pirates and galaxy/alien/monster conquering characters and just enjoy a good, contemporary M/M Romance book, preferably something funny to lighten the mood and, always, well written. Sometimes I’m in the mood for a good comedy/rom-com, sometimes other things and then I saw that the Romano and Albright 3 had come out, finally!


Off I went and the rest is history, or so they say. Not sure who the ‘they’ is, but it seems ‘they’ are ‘everywhere’. Hmmm… I’m thinking there’s a whole conspiracy going on… just sayin’…

THE BLURB

Caesar Romano’s catering career is doing better than he’d ever dreamed. And so is his love life—even if his boyfriend’s house in Staten Island is way too far from civilization for his liking. But then in short order, Caesar is duped into helping his cousin propose, is tricked by his best friend and business partner into appearing on live television, and is harassed by a thug-like personal trainer and his far too beautiful wife. In fact, Caesar is almost too busy to notice that something is troubling his PI boyfriend, Dan Albright.

Almost.

A break-in, a gallery party, an heirloom ring, a new suit, and a stalker with bad BO are all just a typical week for Caesar Romano
.

Personal Tags: Rom-Com; Cops; Detective Story; Hot Angst; Older man/Younger man; Really funny; Exhibitionist sex.
THE CHARACTERS

Dan Albright - Laid-back, open, charming—that’s the impression hunky former NYPD Detective Dan Albright gives everyone. Caesar can add sexually adventurous and a bit of an exhibitionist. But he also knows that Dan is hiding something—something dark and a little dangerous. He’s hot, muscular, hunky, older than Caesar and a no-nonsense kind of guy. He’s been hurt and isn’t willing to risk it unless he’s sure.

Caesar Romano - Caesar Romano’s catering career is doing better than he’d ever dreamed. And so is his love life—even if his boyfriend’s house in Staten Island is way too far from civilization for his liking. But then in short order, Caesar is duped into helping his cousin propose, is tricked by his best friend and business partner into appearing on live television, and is harassed by a thug-like personal trainer and his far-too-beautiful wife. He’s handsome/cute, young, a cock tease and a typical New York gay guy. In other words, I can really relate to him in my younger years. Except for the New York part.

THE STORY

Hopefully you’re familiar with the Romano and Albright series, if not, then do yourself a favor and go get the other two episodes. Seriously. All of our beloved characters are back: Dan, Caesar, Poppy, Joey, Mallory, all of the Romano semi-mob clan (not really, but really), Shep and Jean-Luc.

In this third episode we have Dan and Caesar steadily living together, getting more and more intertwined and enjoying each other. Caesar is still his uptight self, pre-occupied with his job and Poppy and his clothes and fashion and Dan is humming along, all athletic and ex-cop persona shining brightly. It’s the difference between these characters and the ebb and flow of their relationship and the surrounding characters that makes this so much fun – along with relating to today’s real life experiences.

Caesar’s uptightness, even though he tries to be more footloose, comes out: I’d never broken a law in my life. I got light-headed even thinking about giving incorrect change, or failing to use a blinker when switching lanes, or, God forbid, making an error on my taxes. Order, Sharpies, calendars, truth: these were a few of my favorite things.

Dan’s opposite character, more self-assured and easy going, all muscular and masculine, wanting to claim what he wants (Caesar) is what makes the awesome spark between these two play-off: “Stay here.” Dan barked at me and morphed into an action figure. He strode across the lawn, his sneakers sucking up lawn clippings. His shorts fluttered around his muscular thighs. His thick hair stood crazily from digging his fingers through too many times, and when he swiped his forehead with the hem of his shirt, he flashed sculpted abs and whorls of dark hair.

It’s the interplay between all the diverse characters set upon the backdrop of today’s New York City and our infinite addiction to our cell phones, YouTube, Twitter, and all those time-sucking, obnoxious apps that makes this such a wonderful, relaxing, read.

THE WRITING

This is L.B. Gregg. She has this formula that really, really works well for her most of the time and this is an excellent example of it working and firing on all cylinders! It’s her highly descriptive writing that draws me in, and I’m a sucker for good writing: My phone buzzed on the kitchen counter, and I raced downstairs at full speed, haphazardly tucking a bath towel around my naked ass as I hit the landing. I was alone in Dan Albright’s sleepy house on Staten Island, while Dan—who had “nothing pressing today”—braved the late June humidity for his daily run. Sunshine poured into the kitchen, warming a row of spiny potted herbs on the windowsill. Outside, the neat suburban backyard burst with green shrubbery and midsummer flowers. A plump gray bird sat on the clothesline and a squirrel frolicked in the grass, both a reminder that I needed to get the hell back to the city because, honest to God, it was like the country out here.

OK, when you start a book with writing like that I can’t help it. Ya gots me lock, stock, and barrel. I’m OCD about the editing and spelling/grammatical errors and this is excellent. I got one – count it, one – spelling error in this book, and no, I’m not going to tell you. See if you can find it. Let me know if you find any others, K?

For a Rom-Com contemporary series with lots of action, laughs, and plot twists, this is about as good as it gets.  Highly recommended as a ‘palate cleanser’, as I call it, and as a great, entertaining read.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

When not working from her home in the rolling hills of Northwestern Connecticut, 
author L.B. Gregg can be spotted in coffee shops from Berlin to Singapore to 
Panama-- sipping lattes and writing sweet, hot, often funny, stories about men who 
love men.
For more info on L.B., because surely one can never get too much of a good thing, you 
can follow her on her preferred social media, FacebookYou can also e-mail 
L.B. at lbgregg at lbgregg dot com, be her Goodreads pal or follow her sporadic 
appearances on Twitter.

copyright 2009-15, l.b. gregg

~ ~ ~


Monday, December 21, 2015

Taboo Book Tour - Quillon's Covert #Excerpt Kindle Fire #GiveAway #MM #Erotica #GayRomance




I am ridiculously excited to host Joseph and Louis today. Quillon's Covert  (my review here) is a very special book and I hope that if you will help me welcome both of these talented authors. The guys have brought some fabulous goodies including an excerpt from the book and an amazing chance to win a Kindle Fire 7 Prize Pack! 

Note: This book contains incest.

Tags: GAY, EROTICA, ROMANCE, TABOO, INCEST
Incest in m/m, or…

My intent for this post was to talk about incest in m/m - particularly between a father and son. I thought it'd be cool to do a bit of research, compile a list of books, and then talk a bit about them. Weeeell, that was easier said than done.


I researched for several hours, and when I came up short, I called on several of my reading buddies. And, describing them simply as 'reading buddies' isn't doing their voracious consumption of m/m books justice; these guys devour books like nobody's business! In the end, I was pretty disappointed when wasn't able to come up a list sufficient enough to talk about. Maybe it was the search criteria I was using; the proper keywords can make huge difference. Thus, this is as much a call to action (for your recommendations) as it is a post. Please comment and tell me about your favorite father/son book(s)...I'd love some great stories to add to my TBR!


So, if this post isn't about 'incest in m/m' then what I am going to talk about? Perhaps why Louis and I decided upon a father/son story to begin with.

At the end of the day, my greatest desire with writing is to author stories I myself would like to read. While, admittedly, drifting toward the darker side of the spectrum. Working from that perspective really gets my creative juices flowing and my blood pumping. My second goal is to tell stories that are different. Be that a story about a lovable, under-endowed character, or a psychopath who basically keeps his brother prisoner, or a father and son who develop a rather rare relationship. Yeah, exploring those characters whose motivations and/or desires have a bit of a twist is incredibly interesting. Hence, it wasn't so much about writing a father/son book specifically, as it was about writing from place that allowed the above to shine through and flourish.

Martin and Marty, the protagonists of Quillon's Covert, undoubtedly got me pumped. It's a story about a father and son whose love grows far beyond what's deemed socially acceptable...but it IS who these characters are. Witnessing their truth unfold itself onto the page was nothing short of thrilling.


Excerpt -

     His son’s fingers slid down his neck and came to rest on his collarbone, and he stepped closer, their bodies lightly brushing one another’s thighs and groins and chests. “You’ll tell me if…if you’re uncomfortable, right?”

     Martin looked into his son’s loving eyes. “I promise, if you’ll promise to do the same.”      God, Martin couldn’t believe he was standing here, touching his son in an incredibly intimate way—and enjoying it—and talking about sex. Talking about the two of them having sex. He didn’t want to say it, didn’t want to ask it, but he had to.

     “Son, don’t you feel…like this is wrong? That it’s somehow…perverted?”

     Marty shook his head. “I don’t, Dad. I’ve had years to think about this. I know what I want, and I’m sure of how I feel. But, I guess the more important question is does it feel wrong to you?”

     Martin wanted to ask if Marty had also thought about his mother. He wanted to ask what he thought it’d do to Allie if they went ahead with this and she ever found out, what it’d do to their family. But Martin knew his son, knew the kind of person he was. Of course Marty had thought about those things, and Martin didn’t feel it was right to make those inquiries. No, if they moved forward with this—and it certainly seemed like that’s what was happening—then they’d each have to deal with Allie in their own individual way. Admittedly, Marty had had years to think about this, where Martin had only had twelve months. But, he’d thought of little else in his quiet, alone times, and he’d come to a decision, a decision he was at peace with. If Marty wanted to move forward, Martin felt he was as ready as he’d ever be, and he’d allow them both to deal with their respective decisions and consciences privately.

     When he didn’t answer right away, Marty ran his hands over Martin’s furry chest. “You are the kindest person I know. There’s not a single thing I’d change about you. Not one. Make no mistake, I do love you, and I’ve thought of this moment since I was fourteen. If it ends up happening…there’s no one I’d rather share my first experience with than you.”

     Martin considered his son’s words. Did this moment feel wrong? He became a bit more daring and allowed his palms to trace the curve of his son’s ass, and had to admit, nothing felt wrong about that. Before he could contemplate any further, Marty’s last words sunk in; he’d be his first?

     “You’re a virgin?” he asked in surprise. “What about the boys you’ve been dating?”

     Marty mimicked his dad’s touch and ran his hands tentatively over Martin’s firm ass.

     “Kissing. All I ever did was kiss the boys I dated. And not even all of them. I wuh-wuh-wanted to wait.”

     Martin’s dick continued to swell and nudged against his son’s. “To wait for me?”

     Marty’s shoulders lifted in a small shrug. “What’s wrong with waiting for the one you love?”

As of this writing, Quillon's Covert has only been available for a few days, yet y'all have showed up in an absolutely incredible way. In fact, the day after it was published you pushed it onto ARe's bestseller list. Who knows, perhaps other authors will see your amazing support and give us a whole slew of awesome father/son stories. And wouldn't that be fucking awesome!

Peace, JLT #pleasurethroughdenial
Author of M/M Erotica

AUTHORS:
Joseph Lance Tonlet & Louis Stevens

BOOK TITLE:
Quillon’s Covert

EMAIL ADDRESSES:

RELEASE DATE:
12/18/2015

PUBLISHER:
JLT Publishing

COVER GRAPHIC ARTISTS:

GENRE:
M/M, Romance, Erotica, Taboo

BLURB:
Martin is a guy’s guy, one who enjoys the simple things in life: baseball games with his son, family days, barbecues, and date nights with his lovely wife. Once a year for two weeks, Martin takes his son, Marty, to Quillon’s Covert, a rustic family cabin secluded in the beautiful California mountains. Since before those long days of learning to play ball, Marty has loved his dad, but as Marty matures, Martin starts to see something else settle in his son’s uncertain gaze. What’s there lingers a little more than it should, and it seems far more appraising than it once was. As Marty shows every sign of taking the lead, Martin is faced with the tough choices most parents never see: lose his son by being a father, or try to balance what’s best for their relationship by being something… more. But with another trip to Quillon’s Covert on the horizon, has the point of no return already begun?
  
MISC INFO:
 - Novella
- 44k Words / 186 Pages

ABOUT THE AUTHORS:
JOSEPH is a born and raised Southern Californian—with a twenty-year stint of living in the Midwest. He loves the laid-back lifestyle of San Diego and considers himself lucky to live where people dream of vacationing.

A lifelong reader of m/m fiction, he began his writing career one night sitting at his MacBook and has never looked back. He writes to bring the characters he dreams about to life.

LOUIS is a gay romance author born and raised in South Africa. He was a shy outcast who had few friends in school; generally feeling excluded and on the fringe of society. However, when he discovered gay romance and erotica in 2007, at the age of seventeen, his mind and world opened up.

He wrote his first story, A Better Life, longhand in a 197 page spiral notebook, on his bed every night with a pillow curled under his chin. Although the book wouldn’t be published until 2011, with the now defunct Silver Publishing, he found the experience entirely liberating. He's considered himself a writer ever since.

e-book BUY LINKS:
Websites:

Preferred buy option (Author's Direct Store) - PayHip:


Smashwords:

PAPERBACK BUY LINK:


GOODREADS:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27400631-quillon-s-covert

JOSEPH’S SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS:


LOUIS’ SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS:
Goodreads - http://ow.ly/SQo2x
Facebook - http://ow.ly/SQoo5
Website - http://ow.ly/SQoHA
Youtube - http://ow.ly/SQnPl



RAFFLECOPTER INFO:


Thursday, December 17, 2015

Book Tour: Champagne Kisses with Lynda Aicher #gayromance #giveaway



Hi! I’m Lynda Aicher, and I’m currently touring the internet talking about my latest release Champagne Kisses. Thanks to the wonderful blog hosts for having me and to you for joining the fun. Don’t forget to check out the full list of tour stops and leave comments along the way for a chance to win a $50 Amazon gift card.

About Champagne Kisses

The Christmas Eve wedding Evan Cleary pulled together in four weeks is crashing down around him and taking his fledgling event planning business with it. With an empty altar and over a hundred guests arriving soon, he turns to the resistant, gorgeous brother of the runaway groom for help.

When Richard Patterson’s flamboyant brother storms out hours before he’s scheduled to marry his equally dramatic partner, Richard is left dealing with the fallout. The last thing he wants is more drama, yet he can’t deny his attraction to the effeminate event planner trying to salvage the wedding.

Evan thinks his crush on Richard is a lost cause, but one steaming kiss later, he learns different. What starts as a night of hot sex turns into a connection neither expected. But Evan knows their relationship is hopeless unless the ultra-conservative Richard can embrace every part of him—both in private and in public.

About Lynda Aicher

I love to read. It's a simple fact about me that has been true since I discovered the worlds of Judy Blume at the age of ten. This love of reading transferred to young romance (the early version of Young Adult when the stories weren't plagued by vampires, werewolves, and death) which hooked me on the romance genre and the fulfillment that comes with a happy-ever-after ending.

Twenty-five years later, I'm still an avid reader of all types of romance. The diversity of writing in the market ensures that there is always something new to read. I'm still a sucker for the happy-ever-after because there are more than enough not-so-happy endings in the real world that I don't need to read about them. I read a book for enjoyment and I want to feel good when the story ends.

I have the luxury of being a full-time writer, that is, a full-time writer around my duties as mom, wife, cleaner, cook, chauffeur, master scheduler, banker, cheerleader, volunteer, and tutor. Writing has to be a priority, or it would never happen.

I live in the Pacific Northwest which provides many months of rain-filled incentive to stay indoors and write. However, I'm a Midwesterner at heart. A perfect day has the snow falling outside, a fire warming the room, a football game on the television, a roast cooking in the oven, my family hanging out around me and a good book to read.

I'm thrilled to be nominated for a 2015 Romance Writers of America RITA® award (that's the Oscars of the romance world) for my Male/Male book Bonds of Denial. This is the first time any M/M books have been nominated and I'm humbled to be a part of such a great event.

Connect with Lynda:

•Website: lyndaaicher.com •Facebook: www.facebook.com/lyndaaicherauthor •Twitter: @lyndaaicher

Giveaway

To celebrate the release of Champagne Kisses, Lynda Aicher is giving away a $50 gift card to Amazon! Your first comment at each stop on this tour enters you in the drawing. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on December 19, 2015. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. Entries. Follow the tour for more opportunities to enter the giveaway, and don’t forget to leave your email or method of contact so Riptide can reach you if you win!

Monday, December 7, 2015

Review: Quillon's Covert by Joseph Lance Tonlet and Louis Stevens - 4.5 Stars


Quillon's Covert

4.5 Stars

Available Dec 18, 2015 at


ebook - 186 pages
Expected publication: December 18th 2015 by Freedom Island Investments Publishing
Edition language - English 

**Incest (not inbreeding. Incest)
**Adultery

Blurb-
Please see the tags below.

Martin is a guy’s guy, one who enjoys the simple things in life: baseball games with his son, family days, barbecues, and date nights with his lovely wife.

Once a year for two weeks, Martin takes his son, Marty, to Quillon’s Covert, a rustic family cabin secluded in the beautiful California mountains. Since before those long days of learning to play ball, Marty has loved his dad, but as Marty matures, Martin starts to see something else settle in his son’s uncertain gaze. What’s there lingers a little more than it should, and it seems far more appraising than it once was.

As Marty shows every sign of taking the lead, Martin is faced with the tough choices most parents never see: lose his son by being a father, or try to balance what’s best for their relationship by being something… more.

But with another trip to Quillon’s Covert on the horizon, has the point of no return already begun?

Note: This book contains incest Tags: GAY, EROTICA, ROMANCE, TABOO, INCEST


There. Done. If you read this book knowing that and then bitch about it it’s on you.

Tags, tags, tags, read the tags!

This book is about an incestuous relationship and you should know that before choosing this book. I did. And while I questioned myself before choosing to read it and deciding that, yes, I wanted to, I did give pause. I’ve challenged myself to try a lot of reads that I never thought I’d broach and have been both rewarded and disappointed. This book was a reward! And I have to add my appreciation for authors who choose to tackle risky subjects. Approaching this from a entirely compassionate perspective made it no less kinky and stimulating.

I feel a need to write two reviews for this book. Look, it’s without question taboo and that warrants its own thought process. But it’s also so tender and sweet that I keep being lulled into writing a tender and sweet review.

That, right there, the lulling, the tenderness, the warmth that surrounds this story is what makes this book entirely unique. If it were straight-up depraved with non-consensual acts then I’d know how to tell you about it. Instead this review may prove to be as twisted as the story. Heh, I wish.
Initially, it had been the kissing, of all things, which had wigged Martin out the most. Turns out, it was now one of his favorite things to do.

THE CHARACTERS

Martin Quillon – Handsome, dependable, mature, unassumingly sexy, and a dad.
"D?"
"Yeah, right here, buddy.
Marty Quillon – From youth to maturity we watch Marty become a man and explore all that that means. And he’s kinky. 


THE STORY
There was nothing perverted about the trust, or the love, or their shared history.
This is no daddy role play. Nope, this is fully involved relationship exploration with benefits.
Spanning some 23 years you get to know both of these men through a series of father-son getaways to Quillon’s Covert, a family owned vacation property in an idyllic, private wooded setting. Year after year the family has been making these trips, but this year is the first time Martin and Marty Junior make the trip alone, giving mom her own vacation time, uh oh (more on this later).
Fishing, swimming, barbecuing and just spending time together is an excellent way for father and son to bond, and Martin and Marty’s already close relationship flourishes during their time alone.
At age fourteen Marty begins to realize just how much his dad means to him. His deep respect leads to deeper considerations. The comfort and closeness he shares with his dad is built on a solid foundation of trust. But Marty’s youthful pubescent body seemingly has thoughts all its own when he looks at his father. From here both Marty and Martin have to deal head on with taboo subjects and overwhelming desires.
"I was just tryin' to be a good dad, Marty."

Consensual, Consensual, Consensual. The challenge here was to convince the reader that father and son were in love and if that was achieved then some of the taboo connotations could be alleviated. And for me, that happened. In fact it turns out that it wasn’t the incest that was bothersome, but the adultery aspect that kept pecking at me. After much consideration I’ve decided that I wanted Marty and Martin together despite the adultery. I imagine if we’d had “mom’s” POV I might have entirely different thoughts. Then again, maybe not. There were optional paths the characters could have taken, but ultimately I felt comfortable with their decisions. 

THE WRITING

I am familiar with Joseph Lance Tonlet’s work, but this is my first encounter with Louis Stevens’ writing. Knowing Tonlet’s abilities and penchant for challenging, psychological narrative, I assume that the authors conscientiously chose to use a more straightforward, easy going style here. Given the subject matter and the setting I think this choice suited the story well. I found this easy to read and grasp the unnerving, perilous subject matter.

I’ll be honest and tell you that a buzz of uncomfortableness (but never awkwardness) runs throughout most of the story, and that was both enticing and vexing at once. The presumed depravity is a strong chemical; intoxicating and toxic. But this didn’t mess with my head. I’m not conflicted or questioning and I put that down to the fact that this was presented entirely consensually and absolutely sweetly, lovingly, caringly, respectfully and even endearingly. Not what I expected, but I am no less pleased.


Recommended for a mature reader open to exploring new paths, thoughts and considerations.

~ ~ ~

I would like to thank the authors, Joseph Lance Tonlet and Louis Stevens for providing me with a review copy in exchange for my honest review.





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