Book Blast – Awaken by Vanessa MacLellan

Awaken
Vanessa MacLellan
Publication date: July 30th 2022
Genres: Adult, Dark Fantasy, Fantasy, Horror

Balin stands between two great Powers.  One will shatter his mind; the other will destroy his soul.  Only one of them can save his people.

Fort Resonbirg, a Norse stronghold in the New World, is besieged by the evil sorcerer Ursulard the Dreamspinner.  Though their fields are scorched and homes destroyed, the residents and refugees do not worry, because Fort Resonbirg is Awakened with the power to provide, protect, and grow.  But not all is as it seems when a wall of impenetrable mist surrounds the fort, and within the mist hunts the dragon, Nidhogg.  Nidhogg hungers for more than flesh and bone. It instills nightmares on its prey, feeding on fear and pain, inevitably taking lives.

Balin Tremore, a commoner bound for the militia but hoping to stay by his noble love’s side, never expected to amount to grand things.  When the great power of Cradleweaving is awakened within him, Balin unknowingly becomes the one person with the power to pierce the wall of mist and banish the deadly beast within before it destroys them all—if he can master the new power in time.  But to master the power, he must sacrifice much.  The question is, will it be his position, his Lady, or his very soul?

The Mist meets Nightmare on Elm Street in this classic tale of personal sacrifice.

Goodreads / Amazon

REVIEW:

Awaken opens up with a BANG right in the middle of the war, but then slows down as Balin is trapped in a cell for two chapters and we have our moment to get to know him and William, the prince of the keep. It’s a torturous scene and builds a lot of the world in story that skimmers might miss some things. This is not a book you would skim. There is so much going on and I love that. It doesn’t hand feed things.

It’s a story about pacts made in desperation. First Resonbirg (the magical, sentient keep) and later Balin. It’s a story of sacrifice. How far will you go to save those around you. How much time will you waste trying to find other ‘reasonable’ solutions before the big moment on the cross is all you have left.

The characters are all strongly build as well as the world. There are some Norse myth characters I didn’t know, but in the context of the story I didn’t have to know exactly who they were. I figured out the meaning just fine.

Great moodiness. There are these special chapters told from characters in present tense and you figure out they are all their last moments before Nidhogg gets them. It’s harrowing. It’s heart-breaking. A lot of breaking hearts in this story.

Perhaps not a story for everyone, I loved it and would recommend it for people who like woven storylines, amazing worldbuilding, and characters you WILL cry for. Don’t read if you need a sunshine, happy, everyone gets what they want kind of ending.

EXCERPT:

He rapped his knuckles against the wooden door, leaning against the frame to take the strain from his leg.

“Who is there?”

“It is I, Balin Tremore.” He glanced up and down the hallway. Vacant. “I request an audience.”

The door swung open. “Please enter with an open heart, Balin.” Elaine beamed at him, her joy evident in the musical laughter in her words.

Balin stepped inside, and Elaine slammed the door closed.

“Is Kirsten here?” he asked, scanning the suite for Elaine’s handmaiden.

Elaine shook her head. “She’s getting fabric.” With no warning, she threw her arms around Balin’s shoulders and hugged him close. “I’m so, so, so glad you are well,” she said, her words held stiffly, as if voicing a vow. “Don’t ever do that again. Don’t ever.” She squeezed him. His body took a moment to react, and then he melted into her hold.

He embraced her, brushing his cheek against her plum silk shirt, holding her close, praying to Baldr that she’d never be taken from his arms. He inhaled her lilac scent and closed his eyes.

She pulled back, and the intensity in her gaze captured his breath. They were of a same height, except for when she wore ball shoes and could stare down at him with haughty superiority. She’d tease him then, drape her arm over his shoulders when nobody was looking their way. He didn’t mind, he just enjoyed being close to her. Now, however, no tease twinkled in her stormy eyes. Only worry and determination resided there, and he hated to see all those emotions in turmoil over her sweet features.

“Balin, would you just give in? You don’t have to return to the field.”

Balin took in a breath and let his gaze slip from hers to stare at the side of her nose. “I can’t do that.”

“Yes. You can.” She pulled away sharply, turning her back on him as she charged into her sitting room, her strong trouser-clad legs cutting the distance to a few strides. She gleaned pieces of paper from her writing desk and tromped back towards him, shaking the papers in his face. “I’ve completed the requisition. All I need is the Hauld’s approval, and after you and William—” she waved her hands through the air in a grand gesture, the papers crackling under the abuse, “—there’s no way he wouldn’t agree to you being my steward.”

They’d had this argument before, and Balin found it harder and harder to refuse her.

But he wanted to be so much more to her than just her steward.

“I don’t even need your approval, you know.” Her eyes narrowed, and her mouth turned into a frown.

He dropped his shoulders back, attention wandering over the copper molding encircling her ceiling. “You wouldn’t do that.”

“Don’t you tempt me, Balin Tremore. If it means keeping you out of the war, I will do what I have to do.”

The command in her voice drew his attention back to her face. He scooped up her hands, papers and all, and pressed his forehead to hers. They stood that way for a moment, Elaine’s breathing fast, Balin’s heart thumping in his ears. Those weeks in the cage, cold, starving, he’d wanted her. Wanted her soft touch. Her amused smile. He’d kept her stored in his mind in the hidden places Zebbens couldn’t beat out of him.

“We have to fight him, Elaine. Every one of us, we all have to do what we can.”

“Then, Balin,” she argued, her voice a terse whisper, “that means I need to be out there, too.”

Through his bangs, he saw her looking at him. He rolled his forehead against hers until their noses touched. “You can’t go out there, Elaine,” he whispered, the words hovering between their nearly touching lips.

“I’m a better fencer than you.”

“Fencer, not swordsman, they aren’t the same.”

Behind him, the door opened.

“Oh, Miss, I’m so sorry to intrude,” Kirsten said.

The air crackled with anticipation, but Kirsten, so-sorry-to-intrude, didn’t leave.

Balin bowed his head and slowly pulled away. Then he turned to the handmaiden.  “Hello, Kirsten.”


Author Bio:

Vanessa MacLellan was born and raised in the farmlands of eastern Washington, works as an environmental engineer, and is an avid birder, naturalist and hiker living in Portland, Oregon.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter


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Book Blast and Review – AUDIO Life Lessons by Kaje Harper

AUDIOBOOK and EBOOK TOUR

Book Title: Breaking Cover (Life Lessons Book 2)

Author and Publisher: Kaje Harper

Narrator: JF Harding

Release Date: June 29, 2022

Genre: Contemporary/Mystery M/M romance

Tropes: Modest age-gap, in the closet

Themes: Coming out, gay parenting

Heat Rating:  4 flames

Length: 9 hours and 46 minutes

It is best read after book 1.

The book does not end on a cliffhanger. It has a solid HFN ending, not yet a HEA. Audiobooks 3 and 4 scheduled for later this summer.

Goodreads

Issue Heavy but a Good Addition to the Series

I am a huge fan of Kaje Harper. Not only is she an amazing writer, but she is also a wonderful person. I’ve read several of her books, including the first book of this series. First, let me say, the audio version of this book is astounding. JF Harding has a wonderful voice and he adds so much emotion and dimension to the characters. Quite superb.

The best thing about the book: the kids. I love the ‘found child’ or ‘thrust upon child’ tropes (that’s what I call them.) and I thought the kids were great and the parental figures almost too perfect to be real. Quite a delight and Harding brought them to life just as well as the adults.

I loved Life Lessons, but this second book, Breaking Cover hits personal pet peeves/things I don’t enjoy. It was just too close to real life. There is a lot of gay bashing/troubled LGBT teens/bigotry in the work place/talk of therapy. This takes up quite a bit of the novel, so much so the detective plot got lost. And yes, this happens and is a real thing, but it stresses me out. Much of this book stressed me out and I like to read to relax. One reason I read fantasy more, it isn’t so much overly political.

Another thing I didn’t care for was Tony’s demand for Mac to be open about his sexuality when Mac obviously wasn’t ready. And how the book played it, he was right to keep himself safe however he felt he should. But Tony pushed and pushed and I think I would have enjoyed the story if Mac’s coming out was caused more by the plot and Tony was supportive of him from the get go, versus having Tony put pressure on him and then have the plot play its part. Tony’s focus on his own wants, going back on what he previously promised Mac, were my least favorite parts.

But, they are both out and living with it now. The novel had a good strong conclusion. The mystery/detective plot did fade for awhile, but by the end it was going full force and had a descent conclusion I didn’t quite see coming but was totally laid out! Fans of contemporary gay romance will love it. Great job!

Buy Links – Audible, KU and Paperback

Audible US  |  Audible UK

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

Sometimes one moment defines a man

Blurb

For homicide detective Mac, it’s been a good year. Having Tony to go home to makes him a better cop and a better person. For Tony, it’s been hard being in love with a man he can’t touch in public. Evasions and outright lying to friends and family take a little of the shine off his relationship with Mac, but Tony is determined to make it work.

As the Minneapolis Police Department moves into a hot, humid summer, Mac is faced with a different challenge. A killer has murdered two blond women, and the police have no real clues. Mac hates to think that another murder may be the only way they’ll make progress with the case. But when that murder happens, it hits close to home for Tony. And suddenly Mac faces an ultimatum: come out into the sunlight and stand beside Tony as his lover, or walk away and live without a piece of his heart.

About the Author  

I get asked about my name a lot. It’s not something exotic, though. “Kaje” is pronounced just like “cage” – it’s an old nickname, and my pronouns are she/her/hers. I’ve been writing far longer than I care to admit (*whispers – forty-five years*), although mostly for my own entertainment. I write M/M romance, often with added mystery, fantasy, historical, SciFi, paranormal… I also have Young Adult short stories (some released under the pen name Kira Harp.)  

After decades of writing just for fun, my husband convinced me I really should submit something, somewhere. My first professionally published book, Life Lessons, came out in May 2011. I now have a good-sized backlist in ebooks and print, both free and professionally published, including Amazon bestseller The Rebuilding Year and Rainbow Award Best Mystery-Thriller Tracefinder: Contact. A complete list with links can be found on my website “Books” page at https://kajeharper.com/books/

Social Media Links

Audible Profile  |  Blog/Website  |  Newsletter Sign-up

Facebook | Facebook Group: Kaje’s Conversation Corner  

Goodreads Author page  | BookBub

Meet the Narrator

JF Harding Facebook Page  |  Facebook Group

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Book Blast and Review – AUDIO Life Lessons by Kaje Harper

AUDIOBOOK TOUR

Book Title: Life Lessons

Author: Kaje Harper

Publisher: Self-published rerelease

Narrator: JF Harding

Review

I’ve been a huge fan of Kaje Harper since I read her Tracefinder series. She has a great knack for creating characters with depth and slowly revealing their inner dimensions.

Tony is out and proud and a confident younger man, who is in a position of authority as a teacher. Mac is so not out, but very proud of the man and police detective he is. He’s carrying for his child and sacrificing everything for her. When Tony is a near witness to a murder, Mac is the detective who is given the case. It was inevitable that the two be drawn together. But it’s not insta-love. It’s insta interest, that evolves into a realistic journey between two men with very different needs and comfort zones. I enjoyed how each was given unique personalities and were confident enough to know his limits.

The mystery was fun and satisfying–we were given the right amount of hints to figure it out if we were looking. I’m not a reader of simple romance, but the story about the killer, the constant threats, the emotional turmoils, were all super engaging for a plotty reader like me.

The audio reader was SO GOOD! I am sorry to hear I have to wait for the next audiobook.
He had distinct voices and a steady delivery that was very expressive when needed. Love him and would seek him out for other audiobooks.

All in all, a great listen/read and I would highly recommend this MM mystery to any fan of the genre.

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Audible, KU and Paperback

Audible US  |  Audible UK 

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

 

Mac’s three goals: keep Tony safe, catch the killer, don’t come out.

 

Blurb 

Tony Hart’s a dedicated teacher, though he’s not much older than his high-school students. Between his profession, a few good friends, and plenty of books, he’s content with his quiet life. Then the murdered body of another teacher falls into the elevator at his feet, and Tony’s life becomes all too exciting.

Jared MacLean is a homicide detective, widowed father to a young daughter, and deeply in the closet. But from the moment he meets Tony’s blue eyes in that high school hallway, Mac can’t help wanting this man in his life. Mac’s not out ― can’t afford to be out ― but Tony makes him want the impossible.

Mac isn’t the only one with their eyes on Tony, though. As the murderer tries to cover their tracks, Mac has to work fast or lose Tony, permanently.

(This is a rerelease of the 2011 original with light editing.)

 

Excerpt

Tony said after a pause. “You’re not the only person trapped in the closet. All those guys in the military, stuck with don’task, don’t tell; other guys with macho jobs or religious families. Lots of guys are doing it.”

“But you don’t want to,” Mac acknowledged.

“It wouldn’t be my first choice, no. I’ve put a lot of effort and pain into being out so I wouldn’t have to hide. But I do want you, and I know that comes on your terms.”

“They’re not my terms,” Mac protested.

“Whatever. It comes with being secret and hiding whatever we have together. The question is whether that’s better than not having anything together.”

Mac wanted to shout that of course it was, but he bit his tongue.

Tony looked at him hard. “The other question you have to ask yourself is whether you want to take the risk. No matter how careful we are, you may get caught. A wrong look, a note in your pocket, someone tracking down your cell in an emergency; there are lots of ways this could come out in the open. It’s not a problem for me. But is that a risk that you want to take?”

Mac opened his mouth to say yes, and hesitated. How have I come this far this fast? He’d been willing to cut away anything in his life that risked his daughter Anna or the job. And sex had never been that important. But this wasn’t about sex; it was about Tony. And Tony had somehow become too important to cut away. It might hurt less to give up breathing.

“There’s never been anyone I could go to, to just be myself. I’ve never had a lover, or even a fuck-buddy. I thought I could live without that, but now… I don’t want to. Even with Mai, I wasn’t… I couldn’t relax completely. With you, I’m just me.”

“Yeah.” Tony smiled at him. “That’s part of being gay, you know. It’s not just who you want in bed. It’s who your emotional relationships are with the other twenty-three hours of the day, whose arms you want around you when life hands you shit.”

 

About the Author  

I get asked about my name a lot. It’s not something exotic, though. “Kaje” is pronounced just like “cage” – it’s an old nickname, and my pronouns are she/her/hers. I’ve been writing far longer than I care to admit (*whispers – forty-five years*), although mostly for my own entertainment. I write M/M romance, often with added mystery, fantasy, historical, SciFi, paranormal… I also have Young Adult short stories (some released under the pen name Kira Harp.)  

After decades of writing just for fun, my husband convinced me I really should submit something, somewhere. My first professionally published book, Life Lessons, came out in May 2011. I now have a good-sized backlist in ebooks and print, both free and professionally published, including Amazon bestseller The Rebuilding Year and Rainbow Award Best Mystery-Thriller Tracefinder: Contact. A complete list with links can be found on my website “Books” page at https://kajeharper.com/books/

 

 

Social Media Links

Audible Profile  |  Blog/Website  |  Newsletter Sign-up

FacebookFacebook Group: Kaje’s Conversation Corner  

Goodreads Author page  | BookBub

 

 

About the Narrator

JF Harding Facebook Page  |  Facebook Group

 

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Review: The Schoolmaster’s Spy by Ruby Moone

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: The Schoolmaster’s Spy

Author: Ruby Moone 

Publisher: Self-Published 

Cover Artist: Meredith Russell 

Release Date: October 28, 2021 

Genre: Regency MM 

Tropes: School Crushes / King’s spy with trust issues & geeky school master 

Themes: Trust, love, finding a family, self-acceptance 

Heat Rating:  4 flames

Length: 93 000 words

It is book three in the Winsford Green Series and does not end on a cliffhanger.

Book 1 – Dances Long Forgotten

Book 2 – People Like Us 

Goodreads Series 

Review:

Dexter is a spy, who used to be deep in the trenches (so to speak) in France. Now the French war is over and he’s sent on other odd jobs, like looking for French spies on British soil. He meets up with his old instructor, back when he was a rambunctious youth, and there is INSTANT attraction. It’s cute how the playboy is immediately smitten with his old instructor, who is also equally taken by him.

I was drawn to this book, because like my recent release, it has the past student/teacher relationship that I adore. The story was sweet with not too much unnecessary drama (But it’s a book, so of course there is drama!), but in general, the two men get along and want to be honest and protect each other, and I appreciated that. The plot was a backdrop to watch these two get past the initial lie that was the foundation of their coming together and their eventual admission about with how they feel about each other. A delightful historical romance.

The book did have two properties that kept throwing me out of the story, though. My guess is most readers won’t even be bothered by these. First, though it’s historical, it was flush with modern sentimentality and expectations. Second, if I go by the statistics in this book, I’d guess about 80% of England at this time was gay. It appeared to be a bloodline trait as well.

Definitely a recommendation for those who enjoy gay historical romance. You get your HEA, sweet love, action, intrigue and above it all, Heroes.

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Universal Link   |  Amazon US  |   Amazon UK 

Mark Dexter was the one boy that schoolmaster, Felix Brook, never forgot. Ten years later, he’s back… 

Blurb

With Bonaparte defeated, King’s spy, Captain Mark Dexter is furious at being sent to investigate the latest headmaster of his old school, rather than a smuggling ring on the south coast. Things look up considerably when he realises that the schoolmaster he admired above all others, Felix Brook, is still there. The man who listened to him, the man who cared about him, the man who is still out of bounds. With only half an eye on the job, Dexter puts Felix in a compromising position. The mission goes catastrophically wrong, leaving Felix to bear the brunt of the repercussions. With his commanding officer after his blood, and Felix running from him, Dexter is desperate to put things right.

Felix Brook, schoolmaster, is devoted to Hestingley’s school and its pupils. His life is quiet and unremarkable, but When Mark Dexter turns up at an Old Boys’ dinner, he turns Felix’s life inside out. In the decade since he last saw him, the wild, unpredictable schoolboy has become a devastatingly handsome man. Felix can scarcely believe it when Dexter makes his attraction clear, it’s like a dream come true. Until it all goes wrong.

Reluctantly thrown together at the Winsford Green annual Summer Fete, Felix and Dexter attempt to piece together what happened, rebuild trust, and deal with the searing passion that still burns between them. When the truth is finally revealed, Felix must not only prove his innocence, but hold tightly to love as Dexter’s world crumbles beneath him.

Excerpt

Felix yelled aloud at the shock of running into someone in the dark corridor. A firm hand clamped over his mouth and Felix clutched the strong arm that held him. When the hand eased a little, he was wondering frantically what to say by way of explanation for his presence, when a wave of sandalwood mingled with leather hit him. There was only one person in the world who smelled like that. Only one person with that underlying scent of manliness. He swallowed and stared at the floor, gathering his composure. Why would Dexter be here? Why? The conclusion he drew both terrified and exhilarated him.

The hand over his mouth lifted and Felix had to make himself not lick his lips.

“Brook?” It was him. Mark Dexter was standing in front of him, one arm holding him tight. Felix had regretted not taking up the earlier, blatant invitation with every fibre of his being. Castigated himself as an abject looby for not responding with at least a smidgeon of sophistication and behaving like the insular, lonely schoolmaster he was.

“You followed me.” He hadn’t a clue what else to say.

“Is that what you think?”

Felix had to look up at that. “Well, why else are you here?”

Moonlight shone through the window beside them, casting a ghostly glow over Dexter’s head, making his hair look darker and his eyes gleam.

“Why else indeed,” Dexter whispered and stepped closer. Felix’s instinct was to run, but he held his ground. This was probably the last chance he would get to spend time with him. Who was he fooling? Spend time? He didn’t want to spend time, he wanted to… Well, he didn’t know what in God’s name he wanted but it involved Captain Mark Dexter in his rooms. In his bed, leaning over him, kissing him, feeling the weight of him. Christ, he wanted him naked.

“Do you want me to leave?” Dexter was so close he could feel the warmth from his body.

This was it. All he had to do was say ‘yes’ and he was sure that Dexter would leave. He had done so last time.

“Mr. Brook?”

“My name is Felix,” he said, surprised at how deep and rough his voice was.

A smile spread across Dexter’s sculpted features. “Felix,” he whispered as though tasting the word on his tongue.

“You can’t be calling me Mr. Brook. That man was your teacher.”

“And this man, Felix?”

Felix shivered as Dexter moved closer. He touched his nose to Felix’s ear and the breath left Felix’s chest. His eyes fluttered closed, his mouth opened on a soundless word, and he leaned into the contact.

Dexter’s hand slid around Felix’s waist, and he pulled him a tiny bit nearer. He pushed his nose against Felix’s cheek and nuzzled. Felix felt the soft warmth of his breath, the scent of his skin, and the latent strength in the body that stood so, so close.

“Might this man, Felix, be my lover for tonight?”

About the Author

Ruby Moone lives in the wilds of Lancashire with her husband and writes historical and contemporary romance. At school, her teachers said that she lived with her head in the clouds and if she didn’t stop daydreaming she would never get anywhere. She never did stop daydreaming, and after years of happily living in the clouds, decided to write the stories down.

Social Media links

Facebook Page  |  Facebook Group – Ruby’s Room  

Twitter  |  Instagram  |  Tumblr

Webpage and Newsletter sign up

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Review: Best Laid Plaids


Best Laid Plaids (Kilty Pleasures) by Ella Stainton

Rating: 5 stars
Buy Link:
Amazon | Carina Press | Kobo

Length: Novel (283 pages)

As a Scotch/Irish descendent, I was drawn to the delightfully fun title of this book. This book hits the ground running in a superbly masterful unveiling of character balancing fun, heat, and the struggles of hiding one’s true feelings. Once I picked it up, I found it difficult to set aside.

Dr. Ainsley Graham is a wealthy Scot, full of energy, who jumps from bedmate to bedmate in an era where it’s illegal to love other men. Oh, and he hears ghosts. Joachim Cockburn is the older man, a student of psychology, coming to prove Ainsley is a bit off his rocker due to his belief in ghosts.

The steam hits early, but the characters go back and forth, trying to hide their growing feelings for each other. Ainsley is a playboy, and Joachim doesn’t want to push him away by revealing his attachment. Together they cross the Scottish countryside looking for ghosts, grasping at intimate moments while convincing themselves it will all end in a week.

The culture and world building really bring Scotland and the characters alive on the page. Ainsley’s grief and guilt about his dead brother keeps him from reaching out and getting close to other people. Joachim’s desire to get his phd and make something of himself works against his realization that Ainsley isn’t mad. There really are ghosts.

The ghosts flit in and out of the story and play a major role for the characters’ growth and the plot, but I’d have loved a bit more play with them. Hopefully in the next story, well see more ghosts.

Note: this is a Dom/sub style story, but it’s not whips and chains BDSM. The dynamics unfold naturally and fit the characters in believable ways. It hits on some hurt comfort, facing falling in love, loyalty, all in a post WWI historical atmosphere.

Guest Post: Aldrea Alien author of To Target the Heart (Spellster Series Book 2)

Book Title: To Target the Heart (Spellster Series Book 2)

Author: Aldrea Alien

Cover Artist: Leonardo Borazio

World Building

Building the Kingdom of Tirglas

One of the things I love about high fantasy, both in writing and reading, is the world building. From landscapes, to weather, to history and politics… everything is free game. But it’s also a lot of work, even though my newest release, To Target the Heart, is part of the spellster series and set in the Known World (which consists of a single giant continent and a few outlying islands).

The story itself involves a pair of princes from two realms that might as well be oil and water. Prince Hamish of the Mathan Clan is from the rustic Kingdom of Tirglas, whereas Darshan vris Mhanek comes from the gluttonous Udynea Empire.

The latter was fleshed out a fair bit whilst I wrote In Pain and Blood (which was set elsewhere, but clashed with Udynea), but Tirglas had little fleshed out beyond it being a largely rural place full of forests and home to big people that kind of spoke with a brogue. That was all right when the kingdom was a faraway land the MC had only academic knowledge of, not so much when the story is set there.

So, off I went to craft me a new kingdom.

It became obvious to me quite early on that there’d be a fair few differences between the two lands. Tirglas is a kingdom that abhors slavery and confines its spellsters, whereas Udynea is widely known for slavery and its nobility is full of spellsters. Added to how Tirglas leans heavily on its Scottish and Celtic influences whilst Udynea influences come from several cultures (sprinkles of India, Ancient Rome, a dash of Victorian England being the top three)… a few clashes and misunderstandings were bound to happen.

I already knew Tirglas’ history was full of clan skirmishes, border disputes, plagues and even an almost complete extermination of the royal line during a coup (I had fleshed out that information whilst writing In Pain and Blood). I tend to build as I write when it comes to new worlds, but I couldn’t quite get to the underbelly of Tirglas as swiftly as I had done with Udynea or Demarn. I especially couldn’t find the reason why Hamish’s mother was so virulently against him being with a guy (beyond her obvious longing to control everyone and everything) except for a vague mention of ancient scriptures.

Following that thread had me reaching a point where facts finally started to knit together, leading me to a history of deep-seated homophobia throughout the kingdom as a whole that it has yet to fully shake off. Just like the real world, the outlook isn’t universal.

When I reached the knowledge that a certain law legalising their deaths was abolished only half a century back… it coloured a lot of the world building; be it how Hamish sees himself, the individual reactions of his family, their deity’s views on such unions, or even how people see an innocent kiss between the two MCs. Alongside this serious core, I mixed in details that sounded more-or-less innocuous without that knowledge and ran with it.

And that is how I wound up with a rural, magic-confining kingdom that’s still struggling to adapt under the rule of a controlling, homophobic queen.


Add on Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available on Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK 

 

How can he win with the odds stacked against him?

 

Blurb 

Prince Hamish has no interest in fulfilling his duty of marrying. Not to a woman, at least. That doesn’t stop his mother, Queen Fiona, from presenting him with every eligible noblewoman that enters their castle. He’s certain it’ll be no different with the representative of the Udynea Empire.

So when they do arrive, Hamish is relieved the imperial prince, Darshan, is not the woman everyone expected. Until the man kisses him and Hamish is confronted by the very emotions he has been forced to conceal or be punished for. Emotions he is eager to explore.

But the kiss proves to be a little too public and leads his mother to take drastic measures to ensure Hamish adheres to her family vision. The contest of arms will force Hamish to make a choice: give up his happiness for convention’s sake or send the kingdom spiralling into civil war for the right to love his own way.

 

About the Author 

Aldrea Alien is an award-winning, bisexual author of fantasy romance with varying heat levels. Born and raised in New Zealand, she lives on a small farm with her family, including a menagerie of animals, who are all convinced they’re just as human as the next person. Especially the cats. Since discovering a love of writing at the age of twelve, she hasn’t found an ounce of peace from the characters plaguing her mind with all of them clamouring for her to tell their story first.

 

Social Media Links

Blog/Website  |  Facebook  |  Facebook Group  |  Twitter

Newsletter Sign-Up  |  Instagram  |  BookBub

 

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Release Blitz – Space Fox by L.M. Brown

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Space Fox (G-Force Federation Book 1)

Author: L.M. Brown

Publisher: Self-published

Cover Artist: Fantasia Frog Designs

Release Date: January 31, 2020

Genre/s: M/M Sci-fi Shifter MPreg romance

Trope/s: MPreg, biological urge to mate

Themes: Sacrifice for the one you love, forced together

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Length: 54,000 words

This is part of a shared universe series and Space Fox is the first to be released.

It is a standalone story.

 

Buy Links – Available on Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US | Amazon UK

 

 

Protecting his shifter from threats is easy, but can he protect him from his own ambition?

Blurb

As part of the G-Force Federation, gargoyle Jude is a newly promoted pilot eager to prove himself on his first solo assignment. Unfortunately, his plans go awry when his craft is shot down, leaving him stranded in the desert.

Kirby is a fennec fox shifter on the desert world of Cairo. When Jude’s ship comes under attack he races to help him, and after the crash he offers to guide him back to the base.

Their journey across the harsh desert is fraught with dangers, one of which is the lure of Kirby’s scent as he goes into heat for the first time. Jude’s protective attitude towards him pushes all the right buttons with Kirby, and it doesn’t take much for him to persuade the gargoyle to be his first lover.

When Kirby discovers he is pregnant they know one of them will have to make a sacrifice if they want to raise their baby together, but can either of them give up everything they have ever known?

 

Excerpt

Jude almost tripped over Kirby when the young shifter did a sudden about-face, darted through his legs, and crouched behind him.

“What is it?” He kept his voice low. Something must have startled Kirby, and he trusted the shifter’s hearing to be far more acute than his own.

He took a few steps, cautiously scanning their surroundings.

By keeping a close eye on the direction Kirby appeared to be focusing on, he was ready for company. The two fennec foxes were larger than Kirby and had a haggard appearance that told of fights and rough living.

Kirby growled and hunched lower.

Jude crouched and placed a hand on Kirby’s furry back. “I don’t like the look of them either,” he whispered. “Do you want me to carry you?”

Kirby hesitated for a moment, before shaking his head and shifting back to human form.

The two newcomers did likewise. The change didn’t improve their appearances. They were older than Kirby, perhaps in their thirties. The larger of them leered at Kirby. “It must be our lucky day. Such a ripe little treasure crossing our path.” He sniffed loudly. “Ah, yes, and untasted. There’s nothing like being the first.”

Jude didn’t like the sound of that, and from Kirby’s shiver, neither did he. He took a step in front of Kirby. “Back off.”

“Stay out of this, human.”

Jude felt Kirby’s hands on his arm, the grip tight. “Don’t worry Kirby, I won’t let them hurt you.”

“You hear that, Sandy? He thinks we want to hurt him.”

Sandy laughed and shook his head. “No, we’re going to make him feel good. I mean, it might hurt him a little, since it’s his first time, but he’ll get over that quick enough.”

Kirby whimpered and Jude reached behind to give him a reassuring pat. “You won’t touch him.”

Sandy smirked. “Do you think you can stop us? His scent is a beacon, drawing us to him—along with every other fennec fox for miles around.”

Jude glanced over his shoulder. Kirby’s expression was one of fear and… guilt? “What is it, Kirby?”

The shifter hung his head. “I’m sorry. I hoped we would make it back to my den before I went into heat.”

“You mean you didn’t realise it was so soon?” Jude asked. He had been able to tell how close Kirby’s heat was from the day they’d met. How had the shifter not realised?

Kirby nodded. “Back on Earth, my kind used to go into heat at certain times of the year, but on this world the seasons are different and it’s hard to tell when one finishes and another starts. Predicting your first heat is kind of hit and miss.”

Sandy coughed to get their attention. “As nice as it is that you’re educating the ignorant human, I’d rather we just get down to business. Right, Flick?”

Flick nodded. “Who gets the honour of going first?”

“You went first last time, so it’s my turn,” Sandy replied.

“But last time it wasn’t such a fresh piece as now. Who went first the last time it was one like him?”

Jude backed up a little, urging Kirby along with him. Maybe they could make a run for it while the two of them were arguing.

They made it about five meters before Sandy noticed.

In a flash the shifter pounced towards them, Flick right behind him.

Jude pushed Kirby out of their way and altered his stance, ready to take on the two shifters. He might not know everything about shifters and their heats, but he knew more than enough about fighting to protect the innocent to handle this pair of would-be rapists.

He concentrated his energy and hardened his body, letting Sandy hit him just as he turned his chest to stone. Other than a slight tearing of the seams of his shirt, the partial shift didn’t cause too much damage to his clothes. The same could not be said for Sandy’s fist.

The shifter screamed and clutched his hand to his chest. “What are you?”

Jude grinned. “I’m one charged with protecting the inhabitants of this world. And Kirby is under my protection.”

Sandy glared at him. “You’re not human or shifter.”

“No, I’m not.”

Flick, who had stalled his assault at the last moment, drew near. “I think I know what he is. There were stories, from back on Earth, about his kind. Hideous creatures of stone, who had the ability to take human form. They were even rarer than shifters. They were known as gargoyles.”

Jude wondered briefly what the stories said about his kind. From the look of hesitation on Flick’s face, he suspected not all of them were flattering. Not that the reputation of the gargoyles mattered to Jude, in fact it helped to have a fearsome reputation.

 

 

About the Author

L.M. Brown is an English writer of gay romances.

She believes mermen live in the undiscovered areas of the ocean.

She believes life exists on other planets.

She believes in fairy tales, magic, and dreams.

Most of all, she believes in love.

When L.M. Brown isn’t bribing her fur babies for control of the laptop, she can usually be found with her nose in a book.

She loves hearing from readers and can be contacted

via her website or by email at lmbrownauthor@gmail.com

 

Social Media Links

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Guest Post: Taylin Clavelli, Author of Hathonatum

Setting

Setting is one of the pillars of any good story. To find a place to set the story, one that fits the theme, stirs the senses and opens the author’s eyes in wonder is an art form. Hathanatum’s main setting is Egypt and part of it at an archaeological dig. I have a personal love for Egypt and was immediately drawn to this book due to the setting and the themes (star-crossed lovers, reincarnation, alien love) I asked Taylin about why she chose this setting for her new book.

BLOG TOUR

Book Title: Hathonatum

Author: Taylin Clavelli

Why Egypt?

By Taylin Clavelli

History has always been a passion of mine. I am a historian at the manor house hotel, where I work. But Egyptian history has a special place in my heart. Since childhood, I have lost count of the TV programs I’ve watched featuring Egypt. Documentaries, films, series are just a few avenues. Stargate is a favourite of mine along with other sci-fi series such as Star Trek and the awesome Star Wars. So, I believe that subconsciously I’ve been looking for an opportunity to feature Egyptian history in a story.

I have seen many an archaeological program uncovering artefacts and mummies. I also own several books about Egypt, its tombs, pharaohs, and its people. A while ago, for fun (in the days of floppy disks), I completed a family tree of the first pharaoh to the last, including relatives. Did you know that the famous Cleopatra wasn’t the first Cleopatra – she was the seventh. Although, Greek by birth, she embraced all that was Egypt. Alexandria has a small feature in the story.

Many years ago, I was one of those who queued to see the Tutankhamun display when it came to London. Then, in 2014, I had the pleasure of visiting the Cairo museum, and the pyramids, followed by a boat trip down the Nile. I have personally looked upon the mummies of Seti I, Ramses the Great and many others. I love going to the British Museum in London, but, The Liverpool Museum has a particularly good Egyptian display, too.

I originally planned a story involving the ancient pharaohs in a more active capacity. However, I discovered that I had to be careful. Egyptian authorities do not look kindly on anyone depicting their pharaohs in alternate ways, especially as the country isn’t especially LGBTQ tolerant. So, I had a rethink. I decided to stay factually correct regarding the essentials of Egyptian history. Records show that the ancient people were a nomadic race who could be brutal over territory, particularly water holes.

Given that so much remains hidden or is lost beneath the desert, I went back to a period where little is written. Before the first recognised pharaohs – To those times where, when historians talk about them, they start with, “very little is known about this period.” In the same way that in the film The Mummy Returns, Evie says that there very little is known about the Scorpion King. She is correct because at the time the film was made, Scorpion was only a name on a piece of parchment. Therefore, they invented a world for him. The era where I created King Sahakemwy was a window of opportunity where I could add some characters of my own within a believable world.

I am not out to teach anyone about archaeology, as the focus is on Ben and Ashari Hathonatum. So, having already watched much about excavating in Egypt, all I needed was maps. I downloaded many pictures of cities, tombs, digs and temples. Once I had my plans in place, I could insert my main characters.

Science fiction enters the story in several places, with the use of alternative dimensions. Although while reading, it isn’t actively noticeable until later. Science fiction links the past with the present before my characters get to have their future. Therefore, Egypt heavily features, especially Abydos, Alexandria, and Cairo.

Because Hathonatum is a science fiction set in the present day, I am hoping that some of the events and theories make people think – “Yeah, that’s possible.”

Buy Links

Publisher: MLR Press | Smashwords

Hathonatum is a love story that spans time, dimension, universe and death.

Blurb

Have you ever wondered if that little voice inside you is actually your voice?

Egypt captivates Benjamin. As an adult, he immerses himself in his chosen profession, as an archaeologist in the ancient city of Abydos. For Ben, the hieroglyphs, and paintings unlock dreams of a time long lost.

The dig Ben works on is financed by Ashari Hathonatum. For many years, the man has been looking for the one who completes him. He initially saw his heart’s match from a distance. But that was a long time ago and from an alternate universe. When Ashari encounters Ben, he wonders if he is the reincarnation of the man he saw, through another’s eyes, all those years ago. Will the secrets Ashari hides about his heritage stop their love blooming, or will others from his dimension, determined to keep Ashari from his heart’s match, rule the day?

**The story is written with British spelling/grammar. **

Excerpt

Though Ben loved the thought of studying Seti, he was part of a small crew concentrating on Narmer (3180-3120 BC), whose tomb was located to the west of the dig, almost as far away from Seti as a tomb could get. Not much was known about the first pharaoh of the combined kingdoms, and Ben wanted to help discover something new. He wanted to shed light on a life that no one knew about—a new phenomenon to capture the imagination.

Ben had been on-site for a little over a week when he saw an intriguing man talking to Terry, his dig leader. Judging by his skin, Ben suspected the man to be local, but it was difficult to tell. Other than his face, the only other exposed part of him was his hands. The rest of him was covered with clothing designed to keep out the worst of the sand—layered, lightweight, loose, and black.

When the man locked gazes with him, Ben found himself staring into a vibrant blue sea of lapis lazuli, framed with black lashes and dark eyebrows. It wasn’t until a fellow worker walked between them that the connection was broken. When Ben sought to re-establish contact, the other had his back to him. Ben returned to his work, clearing out a trench of sand. The heat and excitement over what his group might find overshadowed any musings concerning the stranger.

At the end of the day, Ben was so tired he clambered onto the city-bound truck with as much grace as a stumbling mummy.

That night, while lounging on his bed, images of dark blue assaulted him. The event was rare for him, considering Egypt was his prime…prime everything.

Every day, the journey to the ruins was like being transported back in time. Ben could close his eyes and almost feel like he was there, in ancient Egypt. Often, he imagined he could see a partial image of the hustle and bustle of the ancient civilization continuing around him. At other times, he was in the quiet solitude of a temple. The images were odd, considering ancient Abydos was a graveyard.

From the drop-off point the next day, Ben made his way to tombs B17 and B18—the tombs attributed to Narmer. He worked there all morning with his small, square trowel and brush, slowly moving away the sands of eons.

As lunchtime approached, he relocated to the edge of the main dig and took his break. From there, he would imagine life in ancient Egypt.

Daydreaming, he chose to walk back to his station.

Suddenly, an alarm sounded. It was the warning for a sandstorm. It was similar to what his grandparents had described as the air raid warning from the war.

There was a flurry of activity while people efficiently covered artefacts and other areas of importance. Ben glanced around, noticing the storm was a lot closer than he’d originally thought. It had come out of nowhere. What crept toward the dig seemed like a moving wall of cloud, dense enough to shield the view and engulf anything below it. If it wasn’t for the cottonlike plumes of wheat colours, Ben could have believed a curtain of rain was heading his way. The screen of rapid shadow was making quick progress toward the dig, swallowing all in its path. Briefly, Ben went rigid, unable to move. When the sound of hissing reached his consciousness, and sand stung his feet and face, he dashed toward shelter. He was running a losing race.

Abruptly, he was grabbed and pulled to the floor behind a shallow wall. In a spell of activity as sleek as the sandstorm, a mask was put over his face, and his body along with that of his saviour rolled together. Over and over, they turned. Coming to a halt, and dizzy, Ben found himself cocooned, head to toe in a thick blanket. From the outside, the two of them probably resembled a fat, discarded mummy.

As Ben regained his senses, he could feel a wall to his back and secure arms around him. The only thing between them was his messenger bag containing the bottles of water he was required to keep on him to prevent dehydration in the desert sun.

Panting, he opened his eyes to a familiar sea of lazuli.

About the Author

I am proud to be British and proud to be an author of gay romance stories from varying genres. I write under the pseudonym Taylin Clavelli, not because I don’t want my real name out there, but because I think my real name is unmemorable for an author. The name came about from a night of Skype and a lot of wine.

My first published work – a comedy called Boys Toys and Carpet Fitters – came out in 2012. It was part of a Dreamspinners anthology called Don’t Do This At Home. Since then, I have produced a further two novels and five short stories, not including Hathonatum.

As well as being married for close to thirty years, and have a grown-up family, who I adore – I work part-time at a Manor Hotel, where I am also the resident historian. I am a book reviewer, too for a well-known site.

Not being a spring chicken anymore, I have a few hobbies that over the years have come, gone and resurfaced again. I am an experienced horse rider, and 2nd Degree Black Belt in Taekwondo. I help my husband with DIY projects, upcycle as much as possible and love my garden. As for those simple things that make me stop in my tracks. The dawn chorus, baking bread, lasagne, and the scene where Shadowfax makes his screen entrance.

Author Links

Blog/Website | Facebook | Twitter

Giveaway

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win:

A choice of paperback + swag from Dakota Skies, Secret Of The Manor or 5 shorts from Taylin – 3 winners

A choice of 1 ecopy from Dakota Skies, Secret Of The Manor or 5 shorts from Taylin – 5 winners

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Release Blitz – Awakening (Wild Oak, Book 1) by JJ Harper

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Awakening (Wild Oak, Book 1)

Author: JJ Harper

Publisher: Self-Published

Cover Artist: Tammy Clarke

Release Date: November 26, 2019

Genre/s: Contemporary M/M Romance, MM shifter romance

Trope/s: Wolf shifter, mild fantasy, mention of Mpreg

Themes: Coming of age

Heat Rating: 3.5 flames

Length: 60 000 words/ 240 approx. pages

Add on Goodreads

Buy Links – Available on Kindle Unlimited

Universal Amazon Link   |  Amazon US   |  Amazon UK

 

 

Blurb

A prophecy, a True Alpha, and fates mates. Can Ascha accept that his life has changed forever?

At twenty-one, Ascha Stanton has it all: a wonderful family, great friends, a long-term girlfriend, and a promising career as an NFL star.

The appearance of three unknown men in his small town changes everything. Not only his life and future but also what he always thought himself to be: straight. Why then is he attracted to the handsome auburn-haired Thaddeus? How can Ascha hear his thoughts? And even more intriguing, what does the mark on both their chests mean?

Thaddeus explains a new path has been paved for him, one with the Wild Oak pack, who has been waiting for seventy years for the True Alpha to show himself and fulfill the prophecy.

Will Ascha accept that Thaddeus is the man he’s destined to be with, and will the rival pack accept him as their new leader?

Awakening is an MM wolf shifter book with elements of fantasy and mention of Mpreg. It includes some sexual content and is suitable for adult readers.

 

Excerpt

I stomp through the house, dodging my friends, and out to my truck. I slow down as I get closer. The dark-haired guy with the cold eyes I saw earlier is here, leaning against the side of the flatbed.

“Nice truck,” he says and rights himself. He’s taller than my six foot, but not by too much.

“Thanks. Do you mind moving away? I like to get going.” The guy gives me the creeps, and I remember Jared’s words. In my head, I try to reach out to Thaddeus, although I don’t why. Why would I trust him? I don’t even know if I can. “He’s here,” I tell him. I feel dumb, but it’s done. I reach for the handle of the cab.

“Hey, Ascha, you forgot your coat,” a voice behind me calls out. I look over my shoulder. Thaddeus is running toward me, holding a leather jacket I’ve never seen before. The dark-haired guy lets out a hiss and curses under his breath.

“Thanks, man.” As I take it from him, my fingers graze over his, and fireworks shoot up my arm. “Get out of here. I’ll get rid of him.”

“Sure, no problem. See you around,” Thaddeus says.

I drive straight home and park in my usual spot next to Dad’s BMW. Mom’s Prius is parked closer to the house. I climb out, but instead of hurrying inside, I stand still for a minute. I’m not alone. Someone is watching me. I can’t see anything in the pitch black surrounding me, but I know it, sense it. Tiny pinpricks are piercing my skin. The clammy feeling is all over me again. I’m burning up. I stagger inside and stumble through the kitchen. I need to get to my bedroom and my bed. If I lie down, I’ll feel better.

“Ascha? Are you okay?” It’s my dad, but I can’t see him properly. My vision is cloudy.

“No, it hurts. Every-fucking-thing hurts. I’m so hot.” I pant.

My mom lays her hand on me. I pull my arm away. Her touch is soft but still painful on my burning skin. “It’s happening, Tom. Dear lord, it’s happening to Ascha. I thought it was too late, that it had passed him by. What should we do?” Her voice is laced with worry, and tears fill her eyes. I wobble past them and make it to my bedroom, where I tear my clothes off. My T-shirt weighs too much on my skin, and I rip it from my chest. My jeans are next. They are too thick, too coarse, hurting me. Then another wave of pain overwhelms me. The pressure on my chest is like a branding iron, stamping marks on my skin, so hot, so deep, but it’s coming from inside me.

What’s happening? What the fuck is happening? I cry out, but it sounds more like a howl. My throat tightens. Too much pain, too much… my legs buckle, and I collapse, landing on my hands and knees. I cry out again. “Thaddeus.”

 

 

About the Author

You will normally find her in the living room—typing away—with her dogs, Maud and Siddiqi. As a hopeless romantic, JJ dives into her stories, always falling in love with her men, making sure they get the happy ever after they deserve, even if they do have to work hard for it.

As a bona fide bookaholic, coffee-addicted, wine-drinking and swear-like-a-sailor type of girl, she has yet to work out how to act her age!! LOL. And she has no intentions of growing up or growing old gracefully.

JJ lives in a small, very quiet, village in Lincolnshire, UK, with her husband and dogs, and spends all day dreaming up stories full of really hot men.

 

 

Social Media Links

Blog/Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Newsletter Sign-up | Pinterest | BookBub | Amazon Author Page

 

Giveaway

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card

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Release Blitz – Magic & Mirrors by L.M. Brown

BOOK BLAST

Book Title: Magic & Mirrors

Author: L.M. Brown

Publisher: Self-Published

Cover Artist: Studioenp

Release Date: November 2, 2019

Genre/s: Fairy Tale / Fantasy M/M Romance

Trope/s: Class differences

Themes: Fairy Tale Ending, redemption

Heat Rating: 3 flames

Length: 22 461 words/67 pages

Add on Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Universal Amazon Link | Amazon US | Amazon UK

 

Only the assassin sent to kill him can free him from the mirror.

Blurb

When King Lucius is imprisoned in a magic mirror by an evil wizard, he is forced to watch as his life is destroyed and his kingdom brought to the brink of ruin. Trapped in his own reflection, he only has the freedom to move and talk when the wizard sleeps.

With his subjects under the dark spell of the wizard, Lucius is forced to rely on the most unlikely of heroes if he hopes to get his life back.

Harry comes from a long line of assassins and prides himself on being one of the best in the kingdom, but when he is hired to kill King Lucius he discovers that all is not as it seems in the Kingdom of Cinders.

Harry agrees to help Lucius in return for a full pardon for his crimes, but to complete his quest he may have to give up everything, including his freedom and the king he has come to love.

 

Excerpt

King Lucius sat in the chair in his bedchamber, reading the book he’d started the previous year. He was making slow progress since all the text was a mirror image of the writing he had grown up with.

On the other side of the barrier, his body slept. The evil wizard who had taken over his life four years ago had finished his dastardly deeds for the day, freeing Lucius to wander through the world of mirrors, instead of being stuck reflecting the actions of the wizard.

It was a frustrating existence and one he was eager to escape from.

Unfortunately, he could see no way out of his miserable prison.

A noise from the bedchamber in the real world tore his attention away from his book, and he set it aside. It wasn’t the wizard who had stirred. That was the one thing he knew for sure. He was always the first to know when the wizard woke to start the day.

Creeping towards the barrier, Lucius peered out into the darkened room. The only light came from the candle on the bedside table, the counterpart of which Lucius had been using to read by.

A movement near the balcony caught his eye. Someone was stealing into his chambers, and considering they had decided not to enter by the door, he had to assume they had mischief on their agenda.

Lucius waited in silence, observing the intruder as he stumbled about in the dark. He was lucky the wizard was such a heavy sleeper. Had Lucius been in his own body, the uninvited guest’s bumbling around the bedchamber would have woken him for sure.

Stifling his amusement and keeping as still as possible, Lucius watched as the intruder tiptoed closer to the bed. He clearly hadn’t spotted the living reflection in the dressing table mirror, but few people did. In the dark hours of the night most people chalked it up to imagination, or having mixed up the portraits and mirrors adorning the walls.

The flash of metal in the candlelight doused his amusement in an instant. This was no thief. This was an assassin.

“Stop!” Lucius ordered. He tried not to raise his voice too loud, lest the wizard woke.

The assassin ducked and rolled under the bed in a move that Lucius couldn’t help admiring.

“You can’t stay there all night,” Lucius said. “You might as well come out before he wakes up.”

“Who said that?” the intruder whispered from under the bed.

“I did,” Lucius replied. “Are you going to come out from under there, or are the contents of the chamber pot that interesting?”

“Who are you?”

Lucius sighed heavily. “I’m King Lucius the fourth, and you won’t be delivering the killing blow to me this night.”

The assassin crawled out from under the bed. He stood up and looked at the sleeping figure. “Are you awake?” he asked.

Lucius rolled his eyes. “Behind you.”

Finally the dagger-wielding idiot turned and saw who had spoken. “What magic is this?” he whispered.

“The blackest kind,” Lucius replied. “Would you mind going through the door behind you and following the corridor to the left?”

“Why?”

“So we can talk properly without him waking up,” Lucius explained. “You seem to be quite a resourceful chap, and I think maybe you can help me with a little problem I have.”

“What sort of problem?”

Suddenly, voices shouted from outside in the castle grounds. “Intruder! Call out the guards!”

“Dammit,” Lucius swore.

A grunt and snort from the bed caused the assassin to startle and Lucius sensed the king was about to wake. “Hide in the closet,” he said, pointing to another door.

The assassin didn’t argue with him this time. He ran for cover, only just sliding the door closed when the wizard sat up, awake.

Lucius, trapped in the mirror, lost control of his body the moment the wizard rose. He was a reflection once more, albeit a conscious one.

 

About the Author

L.M. Brown is an English writer of gay romances. She believes mermen live in the undiscovered areas of the ocean. She believes life exists on other planets. She believes in fairy tales, magic, and dreams. Most of all, she believes in love.

When L.M. Brown isn’t bribing her fur babies for control of the laptop, she can usually be found with her nose in a book.

 

Social Media Links

Blog/Website | Facebook Page | Facebook Group

 

 

Follow the tour and check out the other blog posts and reviews here

 

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