Monday, May 25, 2015

Wild After Dark anthology

Cracking the Love Triangle
Helena Maeve

Why are romantic rivalries so much easier to write than friendships? Part of me wants to blame our cultural obsession with love triangles or monogamy, but I think that’s too easy. I’m pretty sure they’re just fun to read and watch—and write about, for those of us who wear that hat.

Maybe it’s as simple as there being something about a character, male or female, who’s struggling to pick between two partners that helps us crystallize the attributes we value in an ideal mate. Is it the Lamborghini or the great sex? Is it the flowers or the DIY handiness around the house? Is it that they’re good with children?

I’ve never enjoyed a story more than when I can shout at a character because I see her—or him—making the wrong choice. The more I identify with the protagonist and the more passionate I feel about this. But recently I’ve found myself reading and writing about relationships that don’t require that choice to be made in the first place. It’s very much the case with Beyond the Poison Chalice, my contribution to the Wild After Dark anthology.

Claudia, my heroine and badass vampire sheriff, has little thought for romance when she meets Lucan and Silver. Yet the attraction is immediate and not simply because Silver could slake her thirst in a very literal way. Both Lucan and Silver are handsome and interesting, and at her mercy until she can safely escort them out of her territory. Naturally, Claudia’s thorny history with Lucan, lycan and lone wolf, should propel her into his companion’s arms. But it’s also true that Silver’s uncanny appeal should frighten her as it threatens to unravel her hard-won discipline. And both of them should fear Claudia for the tantalizing menace she represents.

Complicating matters are the tensions between their disparate factions and Claudia’s commitment to keeping the peace—through force, if necessary.

Claudia can ill afford a partner, let alone one not of her kind, and the sensible thing to do would be to usher Lucan and Silver on their way. But it wouldn’t be much of a story if characters did the sensible thing, now would it? Cooped up in Claudia’s austere home as they wait out the daylight, the trio soon do away with better judgment and inevitably surrender to their desires, which doesn’t help at all.  

Lucan and Silver’s friendship is still fairly green and, although wrapped up in duty and gratitude, it shouldn’t take much to turn the two men into rivals for Claudia’s affections. Yet Claudia isn’t the kind of woman to content herself with half measures. From the moment Lucan and Silver cross her path to the point where they find their way into her bed, she understands that the two are a package deal. And if they’re happy to share, who’s she to complain?

“What was that you swore about laying a hand on him?” Lucan growled in my ear. His warm breath gusted into the inner labyrinths hidden deep within my skull, eliciting a shiver. The part of me not so willing to fight off his hold wanted to sink down to my knees and reciprocate that small sliver of pleasure the only way I knew how.
“I said I was sorry,” I gritted out.
“Not good enough.”
“Maybe if you had a taste?” Silver suggested nebulously, our eyes locking over Lucan’s shoulder.
“What?” Lucan and I asked nearly at the same time.
I wanted to laugh. Lucan was bearing down on my trachea, which made it harder than usual to force air into my lifeless lungs.
Silver held his ground. “Maybe you’d build tolerance if you…you know.”
“Out of the question.”
Lucan.” Silver stepped closer, tension evident in the lines of his mouth. “How long do you think you can restrain her? An hour? Two? What happens when she’s worked herself into a frenzy and can’t hold back?”
“Um, I’m right here?”
Silver went on as though uninterrupted. “What happens when you can’t help me?” When she puts you out of commission went unsaid. As much as I appreciated his faith in my ability to kick Lucan’s ass, my pride smarted at the implication that I’d lose control like that. Silver laid a hand on Lucan’s shoulder, fingers pale in contrast to Lucan’s leather jacket. “Trust me on this.”
Lucan gnashed his teeth, but however reluctantly, he retreated.

Blurb for the Wild After Dark anthology:

Beyond the Poison Chalice by Helena Maeve
Coveting the enemy is simply to die for.

Claudia Salizar has given blood, sweat and tears to the tenuous armistice between the factions that inhabit St. Louis. She rules the north side with an iron fist, striving to keep the peace between vampires, werewolves and humans no matter the cost. Stumbling across two mysterious intruders who may jeopardize everything she’s worked for is no small inconvenience.

Steal Your Soul Away by Elizabeth Coldwell
In Brighton, the undead come alive when the sun goes down. Can a vampire and a werewolf put their differences aside and enjoy the ultimate threesome?

Angelique is not like other burlesque dancers—she’s been a vampire for over two hundred years. She meets hot, young sculptor Tom, and his friend, Lucas, a lycan. Desire and distrust mix in an explosive combination as Angelique is drawn closer to both.

Taken in by Wendi Zwaduk
Find what you need at the Store Front. Blood, sex...we have it all just for you.

The Supernaturals have taken over the earth, leaving the humans to serve them. The Store Front is one place for the Supernaturals to find partners for feeding and sexual needs. Vic, a wolf shifter, and Gale, a vampire, have a special human female they love to visit.

Intervention by Aurelia T. Evans
It starts as an intervention for a friend. It ends in bloodshed, lust, betrayal and death, as love often does after dark.

When Emily’s husband, Land, calls her to come down to the warehouse district at sunset, she thinks it’s just another job for their para-extermination company. However, he tells her that he’s finally caught Matt, the third member of their team, who was bitten by a werewolf a few weeks ago.

Darker Nights by Nan Comargue
Lawyer Delia Darker’s world becomes very dark when two new clients turn out to be immortal vampires – and her long-time fantasy.

Delia Darker works at her family’s law firm serving vampires and other immortals. She’s suddenly thrown into the nighttime world of music, partying and incredible sex. How can she resist spending the night with Mark Lyons and Caleb Jennings?

Sated by Lucy Felthouse
A human, a vampire and a werewolf walked into a bar. Sexy is what happens next.

Since getting together with her vampire boyfriend, Ace, Aneesa is enjoying a sex life she could never have with a human. Aneesa is checking things off her sexual bucket list at a rate of knots. So when Ace proposes a threesome with his werewolf friend, Barton, Aneesa’s definitely up for it.

Like the sound of Wild After Dark? Buy it here.

About Helena Maeve:
Helena Maeve has always been a globe trotter with a fondness for adventure, but only recently has she started putting to paper the many stories she's collected in her excursions. When she isn't writing erotic romance novels, she can usually be found in an airport or on a plane, furiously penning in her trusty little notebook.

Enter Totally Bound’s May blog tour competition for the chance to win an eBook of your choice! Not including boxsets or anthologies.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Phoenix by Elle King

Title: Phoenix
Author: Elle King
Publisher: Voodoo Lily Press

Note from the author: This is an international crime mystery/thriller, and there are two LGBT characters: Talis is bisexual (MC) and Artemis is gay (strong supporting character). It can be posted on some m/m sites, but it should be made clear this is a second edition and was previously published under a different name/title/publisher.  I don’t want to confuse anyone or make them feel ripped off. The front pages do include a note to this effect.

Full blurb:
New York City homicide detectives Rachel Wayland and Artemis Gregory are first on the murder scene of a beautiful young gay man, the third victim of a serial killer dubbed the Moon Killer by the department. Their investigation leads them to Talis Kehk, charismatic lead singer of the rock group Phoenix Rising.

As the next full moon approaches, Rachel and her partner uncover clues that lead straight to Talis, even as Talis, exhibiting behavior Rachel finds strange indeed, considering the circumstances, uses every means possible to keep her close. Innocent or not, Talis has a secret, and discovering what it is will change Rachel’s world forever.

“It bugs me that there’s no obvious motive,” Rachel said. “Why kill these young people? Thrill seeker? Lunatic? Someone who’s taking revenge because of some slight, real or imagined? Except they all appear to have died peacefully. No trauma, so it couldn’t be revenge, could it?” She stared hard at her picture of the tattoo, as if it might whisper something to her. “What do you know about Phoenix Rising?”

“Played all over Europe before coming here—did you see that asshole cut me off? I oughta give him a ticket.” Artemis laid on the horn. “He wouldn’t have done that if we’d been in a squad car.”

Phoenix Rising,” she reminded him, hiding a smile. He was all about road rage. She shouldn’t let him drive, but she enjoyed the frequent adrenalin rushes it provided her.

“Yeah. They’re huge right now, very popular. Lead singer is hot as hell.”

“Do you really have tickets to their concert, or were you bullshitting Creed?”

“I really have tickets.” He shot her a suspicious look. “Why?”

“When is it?”

“Saturday night.”

It was Thursday. “I suppose you’re going with Steve.”

“I suppose I am,” he said, eyes narrowing. “Don’t you dare.”


“Don’t give me that innocent look. You want me to dump him and take you.”

“I think I should experience them firsthand, considering they’re on the periphery of our cases.”

“That is such shit.” He raced through an intersection on yellow. “A couple of bodies have bird tats and right away, you’re making a connection? I would guess that general design is in demand right now, given how popular the band is, and exclusive flash or not, plenty of shops are offering something similar. And let me remind you, the second victim didn’t have one. I am not dumping Steve in favor of you.”

Rachel grinned. “Where is this band staying? Let’s check them out.”

“How the hell are you going to justify that?”

“Call it a hunch, and I’m a detective doing legwork for a series of murders. They won’t say no.” She called the number Creed had provided, introduced herself, spoke briefly, and hung up. “That was too easy; the guy was ├╝ber cooperative. They’re at the Waldorf Towers.”

“Do you know how much that place costs? A goddamn fortune, that’s what it costs.”

“I guess they have one then.” She tapped an index finger against her knee. “It’s on our way. Let’s drop by and welcome them to the neighborhood.”

“It’s not on our way, and you are not getting Steve’s ticket.” But he obediently turned right at the next light, headed for the Waldorf-Astoria.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Welcome to Lobster Cove By Carol Lynne

Changing Characters
By Carol Lynne

When writing a series, characters are often introduced early as secondary characters. Many times, these characters remain true to their history, but there are times when a metamorphous seems to happen. Suddenly, the shy guy in town becomes a vigorous and outrageous lover when it comes the time to write his story.

I never let a character’s past get in the way of exploring who he truly is. I know that everyone in my everyday life believes I’m a sweet forty-nine-year old prude. That’s not really the case, but I don’t care what others think.

I have a story coming up in the Cattle Valley series that I’ve been dying to write. A man by the name of Guy Hoisington has been a secondary character in the series since early on. Through the years, Guy has not endeared himself to the town.

The once Olympic Gold Medalist has battled with the bottle, his own sense of superiority and a disgusting use-them-then-lose-them mentality when it came to other men.

When last I checked in with Guy, he not only caused a horrific car wreck while drunk driving, but he was in a coma. Yes! Perfect. I can’t think of a single reader who wants Guy to survive the accident, but that’s when the fun happens because no one really knows Guy.

What happened to make him the man he’s become? Is he truly as nasty as everyone believes or is he a lost soul searching for redemption in all the wrong places?

You’ll find out soon, but I have to say, I’m more excited to start his story than I have been in a very long time.

In the meantime, you’ll be introduced to characters in the new Lobster Cove series. It’ll be interesting to see how the secondary characters evolve because even I don’t know. That’s the joy of writing series, in my opinion.

In Lobster Cove, I’m anxious to see how Ava Hughs evolves, so I thought I’d leave you with a snippet of Dante’s best friend Ava from Welcome to Lobster Cove.

This is book one in the Lobster Cove series, see the full series listing here

When following your dream lands you in Lobster Cove, Maine, anything is possible.
After gaining custody of his younger brother, Boone Jensen moves to a unique LGBT community on the coast of Maine. There, he hopes to find work as a stonemason, heal his broken heart and give his brother a safe place to call home.

Life was good in New York City for chef Dante Madia, until his business partner betrayed him. Determined to trust only himself, Dante risks everything on a new restaurant venture in a small fishing village built on acceptance.

Neither man is looking for love, but in a town like Lobster Cove, secret dreams have the ability to become realities.

Like the sound of Welcome to Lobster Cove? Buy it here

Stepping out onto the sidewalk, Dante was confronted by a short, curvy woman with long blonde hair. With her hand on her cocked hip, Ava Hughes narrowed her eyes. Shit. He knew that expression well. After nearly nineteen years of being on the receiving end of Ava’s scowl, he knew he wasn’t going anywhere until he’d heard her out.

“What’re you doing here?” he asked.

Ava jerked her head toward a large pickup full of furniture, boxes and a drooling Rottweiler named Daisy. “I’m coming with you.”

Dante started at the announcement. “Excuse me?” He knew she’d been in a funk since Scott had taken off without notice, but he seriously doubted whether Lobster Cove was the right place for her. Ava deserved to find a good man who wanted to settle down and have an entire passel of kids. 

“How the hell’re you gonna get over Scott in a town full of gay men and lesbians?”

“I just wasted eight years of my life on a cheating, stealing, scum-sucking, couldn’t-find-my-clit-worth-shit asshole. 

So excuse me if the idea of a town full of hot guys who have absolutely no interest in me is perfect.” 

Ava took a step toward Dante. “Besides, you’re the only family I have, and I know for a fact you don’t know jack about managing a restaurant.”

His first instinct was to tell her no way in hell would he allow her to make such a drastic change in her life over a man like Scott, but, as he lowered his head to stare at the sidewalk, he knew she needed out of New York as badly as he did.

When he’d initially decided to pull up stakes and head north, he’d visited the small, picturesque town of Lobster Cove in order to lease a plot of land to build his dream restaurant and rent a house.

He’d ended up finding a nice place with four bedrooms and three bathrooms at one-fourth the price he paid each month for his one-bedroom apartment in New York. No way did he need all the space, but after living in under a thousand square feet for the last ten years, spreading out sounded nice.

He studied Ava for several moments. He’d loved the cute pain in the ass since the day her social worker had dropped her off at the foster home he’d lived in for fifteen months. 

“You can stay with me until you figure your shit out,” he mumbled.

After clapping in excitement, Ava launched herself at Dante, giving him no choice but to wrap his arms around her. He heard Daisy barking and turned his attention to the truck.

“What’s with the new wheels?” he asked.

Ava released Dante before grinning up at him. “I’ve always wanted one, and I needed something to haul my stuff.”

Dante walked toward the pickup. There was a dent in the front quarter panel as well as a large section of rust running along the bed. 

“You sure this thing’ll make it to Maine?”

Ava waved her hand. “It may look like shit, but I took it to a mechanic and he said it has at least another twenty thousand miles in it before it’ll need to be either replaced or rebuilt.”

Resigned, Dante pointed to the large, yellow moving-truck parked down the block. 

“You have your phone?”

Ava patted her pocket. “Got it. I wasn’t sure of your new address, so I punched the location of the post office in Lobster Cove into my GPS.”

“What were you planning to do if I turned you down?” Dante asked, already knowing the answer.

“Follow you anyway,” she stated.

“Yeah, that’s what I figured.”

About Carol Lynne: 

An avid reader for years, one day Carol Lynne decided to write her own brand of erotic romance. Carol juggles between being a full-time mother and a full-time writer. These days, you can usually find Carol either cleaning jelly out of the carpet or nestled in her favourite chair writing steamy love scenes.

Enter Totally Bound’s May blog tour competition for the chance to win an eBook of your choice! Not including boxsets or anthologies.