Totally Bound Is Ten!

Yep, in what feels like the blink of an eye, the Totally Entwined group has reached the grand old age of ten, and to mark the anniversary, there’s a whopping 25 per cent off just about everything in the Totally Bound and Pride Publishing bookstores. Take a moment to recall all the fun and exciting things you’ve done in the past decade, and if one of those isn’t reading as many ebooks as you’d like, you can rectify that and stock up with titles from some of the best writers in the business. But you’ll need to hurry, as the sale ends tonight.

Click on the top book cover (possibly my favourite of my Totally Bound covers) to go to the TB bookstore and the bottom (ditto for my Pride Publishing books) to go to the Pride bookstore. Oh, I love a good anniversary…

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Superhero Corner

Behind the Mask, my story from the Pride Publishing MM superhero anthology I Need A Hero, is now available as an early download, with a full release on July 18th. So I thought I’d spotlight some of the stories about characters with superpowers that inspired me as I wrote.

The Incredibles

Ask me what’s my favourite of the Pixar films, and I’ll reply The Incredibles without hesitation. Mr Incredible, aka Bob Parr, and his family have been forced to give up their crimefighting ways because the damage they cause while repeatedly saving the city has got too expensive. They hate having to hide their real identities, but when a crisis forces them to put on their costumes once more (minus capes, because those things are dangerous…), they unite to save the world as they were always meant to. It has a great story that mixes superhero lore with the thrills of a James Bond story, is stunning to look at and, in supersuit designer Edna Mode, has one of the greatest animated characters ever.

Ben Macallan

Ben Macallan from Chaz Brenchley’s Dead of Light may not technically be a superhero, but to my mind he fits the definition. (And I really enjoy the book, so who’s counting?) He’s part of a family that hold sway over a Northern English city which bears more than a passing resemblance to Newcastle. They take their powers from moonlight, and use them to threaten, intimidate and punish, like a supernatural version of the Krays. Ben’s the odd one out, because he apparently has no powers at all, which makes him an easy target for his family’s wrath. But once he discovers his own source of power, he sees a chance to turn the tables and start fighting back…

Stretch Dude and Clobber Girl

Appearing in Desperately Seeking Xena, one of the Treehouse of Horror segments on The Simpsons, Stretch Dude and Clobber Girl are the superhero alter egos of Bart and Lisa Simpson. They acquire their powers when they’re zapped by a portable X-ray machine, and while Lisa, of course, wants to do good, Bart uses his newfound elasticity to play pranks. Eventually, they’re forced to face off against The Collector, better known as Comic Book Guy, who wants to add Xena the Warrior Princess to his collection of living action figures. Best line goes to Lucy Lawless, playing herself, whose response to the nerds who pick holes in Xena’s plot lines is to tell them ‘a wizard did it’. So if you’ve spotted any mistakes in this little round-up, a wizard did it…

So, what are your favourite superheroes, or characters with unusual powers? Leave me a comment as I’d love to know.

Keeping Him Safe Is Released Today

Keeping Him Safe, my MM contemporary novella that mixes suspense with just a hint of the paranormal, goes on general release today. This is, of course, an excuse to show off the ab-tastic cover once more, and share an excerpt from the book.

Here’s the blurb:  Jon is the man of his dreams, but can he prevent those dreams from becoming a nightmare?

Every night, Xander Craig has the same dream. He’s in the shower with a gorgeous stranger, who is shot by a mystery assassin and dies in Xander’s arms. Xander believes this dream is tied to his guilt over failing to prevent the death of his husband, Gary, but his latest assignment as a top-level bodyguard causes him to reassess that belief. He’s charged with looking after wealthy and successful entrepreneur, Jon Kovacs, who’s being stalked by an obsessive, dangerous ex-boyfriend. As soon as Xander sees Jon’s photo, he knows this is the man in his dream.

Xander escorts Jon to a remote safe house on the cliffs, as a police manhunt for Jon’s ex, Cody, takes place. He and Jon start to fall for each other. Xander knows he’s crossing a line, but he can’t help acting on that attraction. While he and Jon are sharing intimate moments, is Xander’s dream about to become violent reality?

Reader Advisory: This book contains references to stalking, one scene of violence with some gore.

And here is the opening of the book –  and this excerpt is hot!

He woke to the aroma of fresh coffee. It had a been a while—long enough for him to almost forget how good it smelled. Almost, but not quite.

Xander hauled himself into a sitting position. Beside him, the sheets were rumpled but still warm. Gary could only have been out of bed long enough to make the coffee, and maybe put some pastries in the oven to heat.

The clock on the nightstand showed that it had gone eight. Xander never slept so late when he was alone. He swung his feet out of the bed. Sunlight slanted in through a crack in the curtain and the polished floorboards were warm beneath his bare feet. Looks like it’s shaping up to be a beautiful day.

Had Gary told him he would be arriving back from Portland last night? He couldn’t remember. Given that he’d been asleep when Gary had arrived, he doubted it. If he’d known, he’d have waited up for the moment his lover had come through the door, so he could have made up for all the time they’d spent apart. And Gary had slipped between the sheets without waking him, even managing to avoid the creaky board on his side of the bed. Xander often joked that Gary would make the perfect ninja assassin.

He drank deeply from the mug that had been left for him, savoring the strong, rich taste of the coffee. The beans were some crazily expensive mountain blend Gary bought from a high-end deli in the East Village. Xander would have called him a fool for spending that much if it hadn’t tasted so damn good.

The sound of running water came from the adjoining bathroom. Xander’s cock, already swollen in his usual morning hard-on, stirred further at the thought of Gary in the shower. Something else he hadn’t been able to enjoy in far too long. Leaving his coffee half drunk, Xander went to join him.

Even through the steamed-up door of the shower stall, the outline of Gary’s wet, naked body was visible. He had his face turned to the wall, giving Xander a mouthwatering view of his muscled back and rounded ass. Xander ached to bury his length in the crack between those full, firm butt cheeks.

“You got room for one more in here?” he asked, pulling open the shower door.

Gary didn’t turn around, but he gave a murmur of assent. The spray had plastered his dark curls to his scalp and Xander pushed the wet hair aside so he could nip at Gary’s neck.

“Fuck, I’ve missed you.” He sighed. “You smell so good, you know. And you taste…” To emphasize his words, he licked along Gary’s shoulder blade. “I was thinking we should go somewhere, just the two of us. I can’t remember the last time we took a vacation together. And God knows I need to take some time away from work. I mean, I love working for the agency, but…”

Gary said nothing. One of the many things Xander loved about him was that he was content to listen, only offering his advice if Xander needed it. It made him a great personal counselor to his students.

“Though next semester you’ll be back in New York, right? No more of that visiting professor nonsense. And maybe I’ll get an assignment that keeps me here for a while.”

Xander trailed his fingertip down Gary’s arm. He brought it to an abrupt halt as he noticed the tattoo adorning his lover’s biceps. A swirling, vaguely Chinese pattern in black and red which Xander had never seen before. When the hell did you get that done? He bit back the comment, though he couldn’t help wondering if Gary had been living a secret life in Portland. A life that involved getting ink done. Maybe it’s not a joke. Maybe he is some kind of ninja…

That was ridiculous. Gary had obviously wanted to surprise him. Hadn’t Xander mentioned a number of times how sexy he found tattooed skin? Still, he couldn’t help thinking something wasn’t quite right.

You need that vacation, he told himself. You spend too much time around paranoid people and you’re getting as crazy as they are.

Reaching around their pressed-together bodies, he took hold of Gary’s cock. Some things, at least, didn’t change. It was already half hard, growing even bigger as Xander ran his hand along it. For a moment, he wondered if he might find a ring piercing its tip—more evidence that Gary had gotten in touch with his wild side while he’d been out of town. The thought was oddly sexy and Xander tugged harder, caressing Gary from root to crown, almost causing him to rise on his toes with every stroke.

“I’m gonna make you come so hard,” he growled in Gary’s ear. “Gonna have you screaming my name as I fuck you. You like the sound of that, huh?”

Keeping Him Safe is available from Amazon US, Amazon UK and Pride Publishing.

 

Cover Reveal – Behind The Mask

As promised, here’s the dark and brooding cover for Behind The Mask, my story from the Pride Publishing anthology, I Need A Hero.

Here’s the blurb for the story, to give you a flavour of what to expect:

Twenty years ago, superheroes were outlawed by the mayor of Mokum City. Christopher Chase has grown up knowing that he has all the strength and speed of Sprint, his superhero father, who died attempting to save the mayor’s niece from being kidnapped. But, unlike his father, he is unable to fulfil his destiny and become a masked crimefighter. Even Christopher’s boyfriend, bar owner Johnny Brennan, doesn’t know Christopher’s true identity.

A chance encounter with a purse snatcher in the city cemetery gives Christopher a taste of what it’s like to use his powers for good. And when Johnny becomes caught up in a hostage situation, Christopher can no longer stand by. Even if it means losing his own life, he must pull on the costume of Sprint to save the man he loves.

And if you want to know more, I’ll be sharing an extract from the story and filling in a little of the background behind it nearer the time – so watch this space!

Cover Reveal – Keeping Him Safe

Here’s the gorgeous cover for Keeping Him Safe, my new m/m novella which is released by Pride Publishing later in the year.

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Keeping Him Safe is the story of Xander, a bodyguard tasked with protecting a man who’s being stalked by an obsessive ex-boyfriend, and the lines he crosses when duty and desire become entangled. Thanks to the lovely Posh Gosh at Pride for her superb work on the cover design (including finding a model with super-crunchy abs!), and more information about the story nearer the time of release…

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…

I’m At The ARE Cafe Today…

…talking about the dreaded writers’ block. I’m sharing some tips on getting past that barrier, as well as revealing how writers’ block affects the two hot rock stars in my Pride Publishing MM novella, Power Chords.

Click on the cover image below to go to the article, and don’t forget to leave your own tips on dealing with the block.

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