Pride Under Fire – LoveRomancesCafe Nominee!

I am absolutely thrilled that Pride Under Fire has been nominated in the Best Paranormal/Urban Fantasy category in the Best of 2016 LoveRomancesCafe poll. The book is part of the Lionhearts series and features a lion shifter who’s also a firefighter. When he meets a detective on the trail of a serial arsonist, things get hot!

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You can find out more about Pride Under Fire at Pride Publishing, and if you’re a member of the LRC Yahoo group and you want to cast your vote for the book, voting is open between now and February 14th. Just click on the nominee button below to vote.

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Of course, there are lots of great books up for this category, and all the others across the LRC awards. With my editor’s hat on, I’d also like to give a mention to Amy Paine’s The Turning Point, which is up for the Best Historical/Victorian/Regency. Amy is one of the authors I work with for NineStar Press, and I’ve also edited books of hers under her long-standing pen names for Xcite, and I’m delighted to see her get a nomination. You can vote for The Turning Point here. And good luck to everyone in the awards…

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It’s World Space Week

tricksterWhich seems like as good an excuse as any to give a little plug to my m/m sci-fi short story, Trickster, for all those who like a bit of dominance and submission with your space opera.

Bounty hunter Rufus is on the trail of Jobi Wade, one of the most dangerous – and cunning – men in the galaxy. But when Rufus finds Jobi in the wreckage of an unmanned space ship, his reaction isn’t quite the one he’d expected…

Turning a corner, I came across a sight that stopped me in my tracks. A man, who appeared to be somewhere in his late twenties, had been chained to the corridor wall, hands above his head. He was shirtless, and his pants had been reduced to little more than filthy rags. Dirt and sweat streaked his bare chest, and his head lolled forward, eyes closed. He was so still I assumed he was unconscious, or worse.

Moving close to him, I pressed a tentative finger to his neck, searching for a pulse. Instantly, his eyelids shot open. Only one man I knew of had eyes of that distinctive violet hue, coupled with dark hair that fell in tangled corkscrews to his shoulders. Jobi Wade.

“Ssh… Don’t try to move,” I cautioned him, as he struggled in his bonds. I had a water bottle at my hip. I unscrewed it and pressed it to his lips, watching as he drank thirstily. His mouth was puffy and bruised, as though he had taken a backhander there. Despite myself, I couldn’t help but be struck by his fierce beauty. The scent of his sweat mingled with something more earthy, unmistakably male and deeply arousing. There was a scar running across the left side of his chest, close to his heart. I longed to run my tongue along it while he told me the story of how he had come by such a wound. Abel, if he werehere, would have seen in the tender way I stroked the hair out of Jobi’s eyes the seeds of something which could easily spiral out of control. I only saw a man in need of my help.

“Hey, you’re safe now,” I told him. “I’m Rufus. Can you tell me what happened?”

“It—” His voice cracked. He spat out dust and phlegm, tried again. “It happened so quickly. We didn’t even pick the ship up on the monitors before it was on top of us. They started firing before we had time to react. There were only a handful of them, but…” He glanced round, as if properly registering his surroundings for the first time. “Have you seen them? Have you seen anyone?”

I shook my head. His full lower lip was trembling as he told his tale, and I fought the urge to take it between my teeth and nibble gently. Why was I reacting in this way to a man I’d sworn to hunt down and help bring to trial? Good men and women were dead because of the things Jobi Wade had done, and here I was, itching to soothe away his hurt. Maybe it was the strange circumstances in which I’d found him, but I doubted it. Wherever we’d met, I knew I would still be so powerfully attracted to him.

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Cover Reveal: Be My Valentine, Sir

Here’s a cover to warm you up on a cold day. Be My Valentine, Sir sees the return of sub Jason and his master Adrian from Happy Christmas, Sir – and this time the action moves to Valentine’s Day, and Jason’s attempts to give Adrian a present he’ll never forget. But just feast your eyes on this beauty, courtesy of the very talented Aria Tan at NineStar Press.

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Interview With Lesbian Fiction Writer Brooke Radley

Brooke Radley is a fiction writer with a focus on lesbian protagonists. Her new release Nightshade—available to order pre-release here—follows a young mage who’s tasked with infiltrating a criminal organisation to help stamp out a new drug that’s rampaging through her city.

In advance of the book’s release, Brooke discusses Nightshade, writing fiction, and her experiences with brand-new LGBTQA publisher, NineStar Press.

Only a very special book could be chosen to help launch a brand new press. But when it came to launching nightshadeLGBTQA-focused NineStar Press, its directors knew that Brooke Radley’s novel Nightshade would be one of its earliest and brightest stars.

“When I started reading Brooke’s book, I was enraptured,” executive director Erica Mills says. “From the moment the female protagonist, Eleanor, was introduced on the first page, I knew this was a book we needed to have as part of our opening line-up.”

Nightshade, a fantasy novel that centres on a lesbian central character, is a page-turner from start to finish. So what made Brooke want to tell this story?

“I got my start in fanfiction when I was twelve,” she says, “but I’ve always thought about writing fantasy. I started reading Female/Female (F/F) fiction in college, and I noticed there were very few F/F fantasy novels. It’s gotten better in recent years, but I never could shake the desire to write one for myself. So I thought, why not?”

Her desire resulted in a breathless, mystery-soaked fantasy novel that rivals any written with a straight protagonist.

As a keen reader, Brooke took inspiration from books—experiencing a moment of revelation while reading.

“I had just finished reading The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch and was halfway through Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige when I realized that my favorite stories always involve a character pretending to be something they aren’t. The next thing I knew, I wanted to write about a woman going undercover into an evil organization and attempting to bring it down from the inside.”

So that’s exactly what she did. The story of Nightshade centers around a young mage named Eleanor who infiltrates the criminal guild, the Nightshade Brotherhood. She’s tasked by her city’s council with proving they’re the ones responsible for the distribution of a hallucinogenic drug called tangleweed.

But once she starts her mission, Eleanor learns quickly that an attractive distraction could sway her from her purpose.

While on a trial mission for the thieves’ guild, she meets the elusive Cassandra. From there, things get complicated for Eleanor. “There’s an instant spark between them,” Brooke explains. “Eleanor makes it her objective to learn more about Cassandra—for her mission and her own curiosity.”

After crafting such a labor of love, Brooke knew she had to find just the right home for Nightshade. Finding a publishing house that would appreciate her book proved harder than she thought.

“I did a lot of research before submitting, and I saw that while a lot of publishers were interested in LGBTQA fiction, many of them were more focused on other genres,” she says. “Very few were interested in a fantasy novel featuring LGBTQA characters.

“I stumbled upon NineStar Press. When I saw how passionate they were about LGBTQA fiction, I knew I wanted to submit to them.”

The experience proved to be a very positive one for the nascent author.

“I enjoyed working with my editor. From the beginning, she was open with me about what worked and what didn’t. Her feedback really helped improve my writing. I’m also really pleased with how the cover of Nightshade turned out.”

Though she’s earned a break, the author isn’t resting on her laurels when it comes to writing. She’s already completed another book and has another in the pipeline.

“My next book that’s coming out with NineStar is called But First Must Come the Storm. It’s about a student and her relationship with her professor.”

She’s also working on a sequel to Nightshade with the working title of Sunstalker.

About the author: Brooke Radley is an office manager who lives in Chesapeake, Virginia. She has a degree in English from Virginia Tech. When she’s not writing, she’s either reading or spending time with her dogs, Rio and Gabby.

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Check out NineStar Press to pre-order Nightshade now. Or to see what else is available to buy, check out the full complement of pre-release books now at www.ninestarpress.com.

Cover Reveal: Trickster

Here’s another beautiful cover courtesy of the very talented Aria at NineStar Press. Trickster is a male/make sci-fi story that came out briefly a few years ago, but certainly didn’t come in such an eyecatching package. It features a galactic bounty hunter in hot pursuit a very charismatic thief and con man – and when they meet, things get even hotter…

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Find out more at the NineStar website.

Cover Reveal: Happy Christmas, Sir

Here’s a stunning cover for you – it’s for Happy Christmas, Sir, an erotic short story which is my first release with NineStar Press, a new imprint launching in November that specializes in LGBTQA fiction. The story tells of what happens when a sub decides to treat his stressed-out master to a very special Christmas getaway, and discovers what happens once Santa decides whether you’ve been naughty or nice over the course of the year. I’ll let you feast your eyes on this, because it’s very beautiful…

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And you can find out more about NineStar here.