Posts Tagged ‘lgbtq romance’

Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt: Kasia Bacon’s THE POISON WITHIN

The Poison Within Kasia Bacon

Happy Post-St. Patrick’s Day! You’ve survived the work week and (hopefully) some partying. If you’re anything like us, you might be in desperate need of a chaser. Thankfully, we’ve got another gift from the lovely Kasia Bacon. Don’t miss this exclusive excerpt of The Poison Within, out today!


I checked my reflection in passing. A typical peasant—blue-eyed, fair-haired, rugged and brawny—looked back. I never understood what Elly saw in me. I rubbed the stubble on my jaw and did my best to slick down my spiky crop.

I was fully clothed by the time he’d managed to put on his breeches and boots. Granted, his elaborate attire involved more complexity than my stark Inspector’s garb.

I came up to him as he struggled to fasten about two dozen buttons adorning the opening of his shirt. At first glance, they looked like pearls—and probably were. The damned garment must’ve cost more than my horse.

I took the front folds of his shirt out of his hands and started doing up the buttons myself. He rolled his eyes, but patiently stood there, watching me in silence with his chin raised, one side of his lip curled. However clumsy my thick fingers might’ve looked, a childhood spent in the forge repairing intricate chains and hinges had left them surprisingly nimble.

I enjoyed dressing him almost as much as I loved peeling the clothes off him. My fixation appeared to amuse and exasperate him in equal measures. But for whatever reason, he indulged me.

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Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt: THE MUTT by Kasia Bacon

The Mutt Kasia Bacon

Rough week? Probably an understatement. Thankfully, we’ve brought you an amazing little gift from the ever-wonderful Kasia Bacon! Let us take you world away with this sneak peek from The Mutt, out right now!


 

I WANTED him from the start. From the very first time I laid eyes on him. Everyone kept talking about him in the days prior to his arrival to the camp, curious about this half-breed born to an influential Elven clan, but brought up by humans. A hybrid. A mutt.

Lochan Féyes.

I was curious as well. Maternal half-breeds such as him were a rarity. They retained all physical qualities of a pureblood and enjoyed, at least in theory, equal social status. Not that discrimination didn’t occur. The real losers in the biracial game were the paternal ones. Considered downright human and non-citizen, they constituted the lowest caste in society.

I wasn’t sure what to expect, but he exceeded my expectations. Later I discovered he had a knack for doing just that.

If I hadn’t known human blood flowed in his veins, I wouldn’t have been able to spot it. The tips of his ears were perhaps less pointy, and his eyes—not as distinctly angular as those of an average Elf.

Even back then, at seventeen, he proved every bit a killer. He made that obvious during the first training session. He was deadly. Calm. Steady. Cold. Disinterested. So self-assured that he seemed arrogant. I wanted to bring him down a peg. Teach him a lesson. Break him. Taste him. Make him beg me to kiss him.

I wanted his attention, but he refused to give it to me.

So I had to find a way to claim it.

His eyes were blue—so intensely the colour almost appeared offensive. Fuck, it offended me. I was just an unworldly Dark Elf at the time, unaccustomed to irises that weren’t obsidian. The azure hue of his gaze reminded me of the glass crystals that grew in caves in the highlands of the Black Mountain. I used to collect them as a child.

I wanted those eyes on me.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “Drawing from the Well of Soul” by Amy Lane

Summer Lessons Amy Lane

Once upon a time, I was seven years old. My parents had just split up, my dad didn’t get back from work for a couple of hours, and the rule was, I didn’t go out and play unless he was home and knew where I’d gone. Our television was black and white and back then, we got two hours of child friendly programming before the news came on and that was it. (Gilligan’s Island, I Love Lucy, The Brady Bunch—this is why everyone my age loves those shows.) I was lonely, bored, and probably hungry.

I wrote.

Not with a pen and paper, or, even better, a computer (God, what I could have done with a computer!) but by sitting my stuffed animals in a circle around me on the floor and telling them a story. They were a very good audience, except for the stuffed dog who kept falling over.

Didn’t matter. I wrote.

Several years later in a different time, I was a young-ish mother who had lost her job and had two children under two on a six-acre spread in a drafty house in the middle of nowhere. My son had a communication handicap, my husband worked and went to school eighty hours a week, and I had no car.

I wrote.

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Steals & Deals

Deal Alert: K.J. Charles, Tawna Fenske, and Jen Frederick

Would we ever send you off on a Labor Day weekend trip without something good to read? Or a lot of good things to read? Never. Get these great books by K.J. Charles, Tawna Fenske, and Jen Frederick while the sale lasts!


A Fashionable Indulgence: A Society of Gentlemen Novel by K.J. Charles

In the first novel of an explosive new series from K. J. Charles, a young gentleman and his elegant mentor fight for love in a world of wealth, power, and manipulation.

When he learns that he could be the heir to an unexpected fortune, Harry Vane rejects his past as a Radical fighting for government reform and sets about wooing his lovely cousin. But his heart is captured instead by the most beautiful, chic man he’s ever met: the dandy tasked with instructing him in the manners and style of the ton. Harry’s new station demands conformity—and yet the one thing he desires is a taste of the wrong pair of lips.

After witnessing firsthand the horrors of Waterloo, Julius Norreys sought refuge behind the luxurious facade of the upper crust. Now he concerns himself exclusively with the cut of his coat and the quality of his boots. And yet his protégé is so unblemished by cynicism that he inspires the first flare of genuine desire Julius has felt in years. He cannot protect Harry from the worst excesses of society. But together they can withstand the high price of passion.


About That Fling Tawna Fenske
About That Fling by Tawna Fenske

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Autumn Thorns Yasmine Galenorn
Guest Post

Recommended Reading: LGBT Spins on Classic Romance Tropes from Megan Derr

Hello!

My name is Megan Derr. I am an author of queer romance. I am also co-owner of Less Than Three Press, in the interests of full disclosure since some of my recs are from there. But they are honestly among my favorites – that’s why I contracted them!

But I did pull recs from all over the place. I tried to keep things short and failed miserably, but if you are looking for some LGBT spins on some classic romance tropes, here are some excellent places to start (I actually have many, many more, but nobody wants to read a fifty-page post). I tried to keep to just 3-4 per trope, but some get bonuses.

I will likely be doing more of these in the future, on my own blog so as not to plague Ever After, if you should need more recs down the road.

In no particular order:

MAY/DECEMBER

Just a Bit Ruthless by Alessandra Hazard (M/M, Gay, Bisexual, Contemporary) is about a young man who is kidnapped by his father’s enemy. My favorite part of this book is that the MC has always had to suppress who he is because he lives in such a macho world, where even his friends unintentionally say hurtful things, and this big, brusque man who kidnaps him is the first to understand and accept all that the MC wants, needs, and is.

a boy called cinA Boy Called Cin by Cecil Wilde (Genderqueer, Trans, Bisexual, Contemporary) – one of the books I published, about a business tycoon billionaire and a college student, so two tropes! It’s a lot of fun and #ownvoices

Room at the Top by Jane Davitt and Alexa Snow (M/M/M, Gay, Bisexual, Contemporary) – This book is one of my comfort reads. I’ve read it 500 times at least, as well as its sequel. The only thing I hate is that they’re not in print so I can put them on my bookcase of favorites. It is BDSM, if that’s of interest/not interest, and done well by people who know what they’re talking about.

Bonus recs:

Breakaway by Avon Gale (M/M, Bisexual, Contemporary)

Return on Investment by Aleksandr Voinov (M/M, Gay, Contemporary)

On the Trail to Moonlight Gulch by Shelter Sommerset (MM, Gay, Historical)

(I am supremely frustrated I apparently have not read any F/F May/December, if YOU have recs, I would appreciate them. This is one of my fav tropes)

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “Not ‘Just Another'” by Sarah Nicolas

Keeping Her Secret by Sarah Nicholas

A couple of weeks ago, I saw author Dahlia Adler tweet about how important it is that diverse books are finally putting more faces on some of the “same old” stories, and I’ve been thinking about it ever since. From many people, especially those who have been able to see themselves represented in media thousands of times, there comes this assumption that we should all be happy with the white cishet versions of stories. But what Adler said — and I agree with — was that the creation of diverse stories within these established frameworks is incredibly important.

When I tell someone about a court intrigue fantasy I’m reading, where the princess starts falling for her betrothed prince’s sister, I get so many unenthusiastic responses of “oh that sounds like [insert one of a dozen court intrigue fantasies here], but just with two girls.” While I tamper down my initial response of, “heck yeah, it does!” and move right past my mind asking, “What do you mean just with two girls??” I wonder why that person doesn’t also object to the twelve-thousandth* YA court intrigue fantasy where a white cishet princess is engaged to a white cishet prince and ends up falling for the white cishet gardener/stable boy/musician/other prince/soldier/etc. (*12,000 might be an exaggeration. Maybe.)

Given that there are only seven basic plots (according to Christopher Booker), most books can be described as “just another ____ but with _____,” but that’s only a problem if the main characters are diverse. Even if a concept or hook is similar to another book (which, again, it always will be), the story isn’t the same. The background of the characters informs the characters’ actions in both overt and subtle ways.

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Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt: L.A. Witt’s HIATUS

Hiatus L.A. Witt

Fans of M/M Romance, we’ve got a  taste of something special just for you! We fell in love with this emotional little sneak peek into L.A. Witt’s Hiatus the minute we jumped in. And now? You get to too! (Congrats!)


I couldn’t decide if I should take off my wedding ring or leave it on.

Lying in a small, borderline shitty hotel off the interstate in Amarillo, waiting for Nate to text me, I turned the gold band over and over between my fingers.

Cam had stopped wearing his almost immediately. No one asked him questions if he showed up without it. His clients were used to him not wearing one—he never wore his ring or his watch while he was working.

I worked in one of those offices where people noticed. A coworker had come in without his wedding ring once, and the whispers had started flying before he’d even reached his desk. Turned out he’d smashed his hand on something over the weekend. He’d wisely removed the ring before his finger had swelled up too much. A week later, the ring was back on, and when he brought his wife to the Christmas party a few months later, people finally stopped speculating about trouble in paradise.

If I didn’t wear mine, people would notice. And I really, really didn’t want to talk about it.

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Q&A

Q&A: Ralph Josiah Bardsley of THE PHOTOGRAPHER’S TRUTH

The Photographers Truth Ralph Josiah Bardsley

We are so happy to have Ralph Josiah Bardsley as our guest today! One of our favorite M/M Romance authors, Bardsley’s so good at capturing emotion it’s hard to bring one of his books with you on the subway. There’s just too much to wistfully sigh at—which is great at home, less so on public transportation. But it’s also exactly why we just had to know more about him and The Process! Check out our QA below and don’t miss The Photographer’s Truth, out now!


What would you say is the easiest part of writing?

For me, the easiest part is the first draft.  I give myself a lot of leeway during this part of the process – I let my imagination go wherever it wants to.  That’s also where I have the most fun.

 

What’s the most difficult part?

The editing process is definitely the most difficult process for me.  Some writers love that phase – honing the language, cleaning up grammar and plot.  While I respect the focus and the effort it takes, it doesn’t come naturally to me.  Thankfully, I’ve got an amazing editor at Bold Strokes Books by the name of Jerry Wheeler who makes that process much smoother.

 

What love story stands out in your mind as the most compelling?

In general, I like a love story that requires the characters to struggle with their own demons as part of the process of falling in love.  Specifically, Mary Renault’s The Charioteer is my favorite love story. It is set in WWII and the characters are at war – both in the literal sense and within themselves.  Another more recent love story that I found absolutely compelling was A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara.  But have a box of tissue and a glass of wine handy if you read that one – you’ll need it.

 

Are there certain moods or scenes that are easier to write for you?

I’ve been told that I write descriptive scenes well – that I can make someone feel as if they’re walking down a street in Paris or Boston.  I’ll be honest; I think my best scenes tend to be the ones that take place in Boston.  Though I haven’t lived there for years, I spent most of my twenties in the city and everything about it is still absolutely visceral in my memory.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “That One Time at Camp” by Jenny Holiday

His Heart’s Revenge Jenny Holiday

Ah, summer camp. The idea of summer camp appeals to me so much. A break from school and parents. Stargazing, canoeing, idolizing the counselors, sharing secrets by the campfire while you promise to be BEST FRIENDS FOREVER AND EVER AMEN with your crew.

So when I got a chance to write a book that included some flashbacks to summer camp (and some modern-day camping, too), I jumped at it.

The only problem was that, like many things I tend to get excited about, there’s fantasy and then there’s reality.

I only went to camp once. It was the Girl Scout variety. I think it was the summer between second and third grade. My friend Kim and I packed up our sleeping bags and bug repellant and headed for the north woods.

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Q&A

Q&A: Sacchi Green of ME AND MY BOI

Me and My Boi Cover

We’re so excited for this one, guys. One of the most talented and respected queer writers and editors has stopped by to answer a barrage of questions from us. Welcome Sacchi Green, editor of Me and My Boi, out today!


FAVORITE MOVIES:

What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

Describe your favorite scene from each one (you can include a Youtube clip if you want as well).

Since I write for and edit lesbian erotica anthologies, my preference is for GLBTQ-themed movies, but, since there aren’t all that many of those to choose from, some of my choices are more of a mainstream nature.

  1. Bound: A thriller with a romantic core. Violet (Jennifer Tilly), longs to escape her relationship with her mafioso boyfriend Caesar (Joe Pantoliano), and enters into a clandestine affair with alluring ex-con Corky (Gina Gershon.) There are plenty of memorable (and often violent) themes, but my favorite part is the extended sex scene between the two women, which I’ve discovered was directed and “choreographed” by Susie Bright, the well-known feminist writer and sex educator. I’ll just say that she made sure they got it right.
  1. Cloudburst: Stella (Olympia Dukakis) and Dotty (Brenda Fricker) are a longtime couple separated when the daughter of Brenda’s character (who is blind) forces her mother into a nursing home—until Stella springs her from the place and they head for Canada where they can be legally married. Every scene deserves to be a favorite, especially those where Stella displays a vocabulary worthy of any sailor (which is pretty much every scene), but my favorite is possibly when Stella tries to describe a seashore sunset to her blind lover.
  1. Always: Everybody is straight in this movie, but that doesn’t keep it from being gripping. Pete Sandich is a daredevil aerial forest-fire fighter. Pete finds True Love with Dorinda (Holly Hunter) but won’t give up the job. When he takes one risk too many, Dorinda faces deep grief and cannot easily put her life back together. In a crucial scene Dorinda takes a plane up by herself to rescue trapped firefighters, but almost doesn’t make it back, until Pete’s spirit, left temporarily on earth for this very purpose, guides and strengthens her, as well as encouraging her to take advantage of a new potential love that has entered her life.

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