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Sunday, November 27, 2016

Cattle Valley series by Carol Lynne


In celebration of our wonderful author Carol Lynne and bestselling Gay Romance fiction, we are promoting and discounting a new eBook volume of Cattle Valley: Volume One. 

This book features the first two titles in the Cattle Valley series, All Play & No Work and Mistletoe. It will be discounted to 99c from the 25th November for a limited time exclusively on Amazon.
We will also be discounting the next three titles in the series to $1.99/$2.99. 

All Play and No Work Blurb

When a three man partnership becomes too much for their small Texas town, Ryan Blackfeather knows it’s time to head for greener pastures. With a new job awaiting him in Cattle Valley, Wyoming, he convinces his men, Nate and Rio to make the move.

A community built on tolerance, Cattle Valley’s one of the few places in the country where the residents won’t bat an eyelash at the threesomes relationship. Nate, Rio and Ryan fit right in. However, with Ryan busy in his new job as town Sheriff, Rio and Nate are left to wonder how they’re supposed to make a living. What use are a highly trained mercenary and a private detective in a peaceful community the size of Cattle Valley?


Mistletoe Blurb
The Reverend Casey Sharp loves his church, his congregation and his community. He just wishes they loved him in return. Paying for the sins of his predecessor has left him feeling like an outcast.

Contractor Halden Kuckleman, loves his quiet life. After a childhood trauma, Hal gave up on love and God. When hired by the church to finish work on a new meeting room, he tells himself it's just a job like any other. He's fine working on the addition as long as Reverend Sharp doesn't try to save him.

With a tight deadline for getting the room finished, Hal begins to wonder how he's going to get the work done before the annual Christmas Eve party. When Casey offers to lend a hand however, he begins to wonder if the willowy minister will help or lead him straight into temptation.

Reader Advisory: This book is best read in sequence as part of a series


Wednesday, November 9, 2016

No Going Home by T.A. Chase

In celebration of our fabulous author, T.A. Chase and her gay erotic romance we are discounting the first in her Home series, No Going Home.

This book will be discounted to 99c from the 7th November for a limited time on the Pride Publishing website and Amazon. We will also be offering discounts on the other titles in the series.

No Going Home blurb:
Six years ago, a hoof to the head ended Leslie Hardin's showjumping career and his relationship with the man he loved. Broken, hurt and rejected, Les has focused his energies on rebuilding his life.

Les' accident has shown him that the most valuable treasures are usually found under an imperfect surface, and his reputation for taking in strays starts to grow. But it's one of these strays in particular, injured rodeo cowboy Randy Hersch, who captures more than just his compassion.
Between his disapproving father and his chosen career path, Randy has always felt the need to deny his passion. When Les takes him under his wing, Randy begins to realize that he is truly strong enough to admit his true self—to himself and to the rest of the world. But in the arms of a broken man, can he find acceptance…and love?

Reader Advisory: This book is best read in sequence as part of a series.


Monday, October 24, 2016

Samantha Cayto Book Sale


In celebration of fabulous paranormal erotic romance fiction we are discounting the first in Samantha Cayto's Alien Slave Masters series,


This book will be discounted from the 25th October for a limited time on the Pride Publishing website and Amazon. We will also be offering discounts on the other two titles in the series.
Amazon link



Book Description


When a distant planet’s ownership is in dispute, conquering aliens turn defiant human males into pampered sex slaves.

In a not-too-distant future, a lopsided war has led to aliens invading and occupying an Earth settlement. Wid is a young colonist who has been caught harassing the aliens. He and his friends are rounded up and sent to an alien warship patrolling the disputed space. His fate is to serve as a sex slave for the ship’s imposing captain. Wid, at first, fights against his enslavement, but soon learns that not only does he stand no chance against the much larger and stronger captain, he isn’t sure he even wants to.

Like all Travian males, Kell is bound by duty to defend his people. Having risen to the rank of captain, he nevertheless chafes against the boring and endless patrol of the space invaded by the humans. His misses his family and constantly guards against his scheming first officer. He sees his reward of a human sex slave as more of a nuisance. Yet the pretty, fair-haired human’s exotic allure is hard to resist. He finds far more pleasure in the use of his pet than he would like.

Kept naked and leashed, Wid’s days are filled with boredom, while his nights wrapped in Kell’s arms turn from fear into pleasure. Even as the humans plot their escape, Wid and Kell form a bond and their growing affection cannot be ignored. When tensions boil over among the aliens, Wid and his friends may be Kell and his crew’s only chance for survival.

Reader Advisory: This book contains sex scenes of both non-consensual and dubious consent, as well as scenes of violence, abuse and torture.



Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Purrfect Protector by SA Welsh

In celebration of fabulous paranormal erotic romance fiction we are discounting the first in SA Welsh's Shifter Protection Specialists Inc. series,


Never play cat and mouse with a saber-tooth tiger.

When Kale Andrews gets disturbing mail from an obsessed fan, his brother drags him to Shifter Protection Specialists, Inc. Kale reluctantly agrees to have a bodyguard, but when a tall, muscular blond walks into the office emanating power and a sexy dose of danger, Kale’s doubts about needing the man with him twenty-four hours a day quickly disappear.

The easy babysitting job Aleksi was promised quickly changes from strange mail to threatening deliveries, so Aleksi has to become creative to keep his protectee out of danger. Everyone knows models are self-centered and shallow, so why does being with Kale make him feel like he finally has a home? Since he’s a saber-tooth tiger and naturally dominant, most people aren’t strong enough to be with him in a relationship or even as a friend. Yet Kale seems to calm his beast, simultaneously exciting the man in Aleksi.

Neither man expects nor wants a relationship with strings, but as they grow closer, Aleksi realizes that Kale might be his mate. With an obsessed fan escalating toward murder, Aleksi isn’t sure that even his tiger can keep his mate safe.


This book will be discounted to 99c from the 11th October for a limited time at
Pride Publishing website and Amazon
We will also be offering a discount on book two, Protecting His Asset, which will be $2.99 for one month.  Amazon: link

Review
Author: SA Welsh
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Publisher URL: www.pride-publishing.com
ISBN: 978-1-78430-388-4
Genre: {M/M} Paranormal Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx 

Kale Andrews is a fashion model and having admiring fans is not a problem. However, when the fan turns into a deadly stalker, Kale is in need of protection. Hired as a bodyguard, Aleksi is in for a major challenge keeping Kale safe.

Purrfect Protector is the first book in the Shifter Protection Specialists Inc. series. The plot is a thriller mystery with lots of action. Also, there are definitely discrimination issues against shifters amongst some of law enforcement.

The stalker is very creative with his murder attempts and almost succeeds in killing Aleksi and Kale. The main problem Aleksi has is nobody in law enforcement seems to be able to identify the perpetrator. The question is why does the stalker want to kill Kale? The only conclusion I could arrive at is the stalker is a sociopath who enjoys killing. 

SA Welsh has created an impressive saga that I thoroughly enjoyed. I look forward to reading the next book, Protecting His Asset which I suspect will reveal answers regarding Kale’s stalker.      


Friday, September 30, 2016

Ashe Barker's The Dark Side trilogy









In celebration of fabulous BDSM erotic romance fiction we are discounting the first in Ashe Barker's The Dark Side trilogy, Darkening.  This book will be discounted to 99c from the 30th September for a limited time on the Totally Bound website and on Amazon:  link.








Who knows where pain ends and pleasure begins?

The chance of a new life out in the wilds of the Yorkshire moors sounds too good to be true to shy musician Eva Byrne. Stifled and smothered within the cocoon of her brilliant academic career, Eva yearns for something different. Something real and exciting. Something she can feel.

Excitement. Passion. Pleasure. She finds that sexy, enigmatic Nathan Darke can provide all these and more when she moves into his home as violin tutor to his young daughter. But Eva’s sensual encounters with her demanding, domineering new employer quickly evoke her deepest fears, as he introduces her to the trauma of submission and marks her with his particularly dark brand of love.

But will Eva’s natural curiosity and thirst for new experiences be enough to withstand the sting of Nathan Darke’s exquisite touch? Will simple surrender be enough as he challenges her every inhibition, taking her on an erotic journey of self-discovery and liberation?

Reader Advisory: This book contains scenes of dominance and submission, including sex toys, pain play, anal play, nipple clamps, erotic waxing, paddling, restraints and caning. 




Friday, September 16, 2016

Sierra Cartwright, Nicole Dennis & LM Somerton



In celebration of fabulous BDSM erotic romance fiction we are discounting the first in Sierra Cartwright's Bonds series, Crave.  This book will be discounted to 99c/p from the 16th September for a limited time on the Totally Bound.
 Amazon: link





To celebrate the recent release of According to Design by Nicole Dennis we are discounting book one for a limited time - Rules of the Chef!
This title will be discounted to 99c/p for a limited time only
 Amazon: link 




To celebrate the recent release of Driven to the Edge (#7 in the Tales from the Edge series)  by LM Somerton - book one Reaching the Edge is 99c/p for a limited time only!
Amazon: link


Monday, August 22, 2016

Sierra Cartwright & Morticia Knight


Sierra Cartwright
Title: Initiation 

Series: Master Class

Genre: BDSM

Amazon: link

Release Date: 23rd August 2016




When wannabe sub Jennifer Berklee calls him Master and begs him to flog her, PI Logan Powell knows all his military training won’t be enough to keep his jaded heart safe.




Morticia Knight

Title: Grand Opening - Book 4 

Series Kiss of Leather 


Release Date: 23rd August 2016








The men of Kiss of Leather celebrate a beginning, but will the price be another ending?



Building Bonds – Book 1
Amazon: link 









Kyle’s a natural sub who builds dungeon furniture yet has no interest in BDSM. It takes a hunky Dom to show him just what he’s been missing. 

Sale Ends September 6th

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Laid 3 by A.J. Llewellyn



Title: Laid 3
Author: A.J. Llewellyn
Series Title and Number: Laid #3
Publisher: Torquere Press
Cover Artist: John Bruno
Release Date: 8/3/16
Heat Level: 5
Pairing: Male/Male, Ménage
Genre: Gay Romance, Ménage, Police Procedural, Noir



Synopsis
Supercop Jack Cannon’s met the man of his dreams and isn’t about to give up loving Lucky… even when the man is marked for death.
LAPD Swat team member, Jack Cannon, takes on an unusual assignment, Threat Management, a new crack team created to target LA’s most violent criminals, The Hollywood Ten. Then… Jack is shot and forced to take a vacation. He flies to London to spend time with his hot and sexy lover, Lucky, in London.
Jack’s man is working on an undercover assignment. Jack’s plans for a feisty little R and R don’t sit well with the hit man who’s been hired by a mysterious source to bump off Lucky.
With things heating up between Jack and Lucky all over London from public restrooms to five-star hotels, Jack lures the wild assassin into their sensual web. This is either gonna be the beginnings of a spicy, feisty threesome… or a triple homicide.

Excerpt
“I see someone in the driver’s seat,” one of the bad guys said. They sounded very far away. It was the bulletproof glass.
Where the fuck is Zuniga?
I pulled out my phone again, texting for backup, I hated having to do it in the middle of a job but I wasn’t going to be much use to the mission if I was shot full of holes. I wasn’t invincible as much as I liked to pretend to myself that I was.
I couldn’t play cowboy and take on these pistol-packing peanuts alone. Or could I? Go down in a blaze of glory? I didn’t want a life without Lucky. They’d be doing me a big fucking favor if they shot me.
The message came back. Stay where you are. Don’t move.
“He’s texting! He’s texting!” one of the little assholes outside yelled.
“Shoot him!” the guy beside me said. I heard the one sound I didn’t want to hear. A gunshot. It bounced off the passenger window.
They started to rock the SUV back and forth.
Where the fuck is my backup?
 I drew my gun out of the holster as I heard the second sound I absolutely did not want to hear. My door releasing.
And opening.
I was ready for the little shit and shot him from my left hand, clear in the chest with my new, handy-dandy, state-of-the art, gazillion-watt Taser X26C gun. His eyes rolled up like escalator stairs and he flew back, billowing out on the ground, twitching with the force of the electro-magnetic impulse.
“Motherfucker!” his friends yelled. They ran toward the front, shooting away at me. I blasted back, getting one little fucker in the shoulder with my state-issue .32, with my right hand. The third little bastard screamed at me. What an asshole.
He jumped over his friend’s writhing body and popped off a couple of shots. One hit the driver’s door. As he neared me, I closed the door toward me and whumped him as he tried to yank at it. It smacked him in the face and I heard a satisfying crunch of bones. I let him have a little Taser juice just because I felt like it. He was on his knees calling me a pig and a honky.
No manners.
I closed and locked my door.
We’d been had.
How did he know I was a pig? And calling me a honky? He was like something out of a seventies’ blaxploitation movie.
I called my supervising unit. Nobody responded. I had three prone assholes outside and an even bigger problem on my hands. Somebody had ambushed us. Keeping my eyes on the road, I realized there’d been no traffic passing by me during the entire encounter with the three guys still sprawled on the ground.
Calling 9-1-1 was supposed to be my last resort but as far as I knew, my partner had been ambushed and the supervising unit was out of commission.
My cell phone rang. I prayed it wouldn’t be Lucky.
Purchase


Meet the Author
A.J. Llewellyn’s obsession with myth, magic, love, and romance might have led to serious stalking charges had it not been for the ability to write. Thanks to the existence of some very patient publishers, A.J.’s days are spent writing, reading and dreaming up new worlds. A.J. has definitely stopped Google-searching former boyfriends and given up all ambition to taste test every cupcake in the universe to produce over 200 published gay erotic romance novels.
A.J. wants you to read them all. A.J. can be found lurking on Facebook and Twitter—part-time class clown being another occupation. When not writing or reading, A.J.’s other passions include juggling, kite-boarding, and spending a fortune buying upgrade apps for Pearl’s Peril and Farm Heroes Saga.

Newsletter sign-up: ajllewellynnewsletter@gmail.com
I’m an app! Download my FREE A.J. Llewellyn App for Android here: tinyurl.com/lkbc4wm


Giveaway
Rafflecopter Prize: One winner will be selected to win an eBook copy of Laid3.





Monday, June 13, 2016

It's In His Smile by Shelly Alexander



Title: It's In His Smile
Book 3 in the Red River Valley series
Author: Shelly Alexander
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Montlake Romance

Release date: June 14, 2016








She’s risking it all on a dream career… until his smile convinces her to risk her heart on love.

Miranda Cruz isn’t just the best darned waitress in town anymore; she’s Red River’s newest innkeeper. All she has to do is renovate the inn, find the contractor that has disappeared with her life’s savings, and prove that she is the respectable business owner she’s always dreamed of being. Easy, right?

Especially for the intelligent Miss Cruz who never depends on anyone, including a man. Until a gorgeous old flame shows up and reignites a fire that has been simmering for seven long years and could send her dreams up in smoke.

Acclaimed environmental architect, Talmadge Oaks, returns home to Red River to settle family business. He plans to get in and get out as quickly as possible because a professional catastrophe is waiting for him back in the Pacific Northwest.

When an unforeseen snag keeps him in Red River longer than expected, he finds himself entangled with the floundering renovations of his late grandmother’s old Victorian inn. Handy with a hammer, Talmadge offers to help the inn’s beautiful new owner, but his motives aren’t completely selfless. Will his secret demolish everything they are building? Or will their undeniable passion and love be enough to hold them together? 



About the Author:
I grew up traveling the world…
...earned a BBA in Marketing, and landed a corporate job in Dallas, TX before marriage lured me to Albuquerque, NM in the early 90s. After growing up with four older brothers and having three sons of my own, I decided to escape my male-dominated world for some ‘girl time’ by reading romance novels. While reading in the New Mexico sunshine on the banks of the Jemez River, I began to dream up love stories that I’d like to write myself some day.

The years passed with me helping to run the family business, volunteering for every field trip and school function imaginable, and incalculable loads of dirty laundry generated by my three active boys. When I survived invasive breast cancer, I decided it was now or never and bought my first laptop so I could start writing down my stories.

Now I spend my days writing steamy romances…
…while tending to a schnauzer named Omer, a tiny toy poodle named Mozart, and a pet boa named Zeus. My stories feature strong, independent heroines and sexy heroes, and my plots are filled with real-life issues, unexpected twists, and hefty doses of humor.

I still attend my three teenage boy’s sports events, school functions, and music performances, but they have learned to do their own laundry, providing me with more time to devote to writing.

You can follow Shelly at:
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ShellyAlexanderAuthor/
Website http://shellyalexander.net/
Twitter @ShellyCAlexande


Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Cinnamon and Cigarettes by Samantha Kate




Title:  Cinnamon and Cigarettes
Author: Samantha Kate
Publisher:  Torquere Press
Cover Artist: Kris Norris
Release Date:  June 1, 2016
Heat Level: 3
Pairing: F/F
Length: 88,800 words
Genre/Tags: Contemporary, Bisexual, Lesbian Romance, New Adult





Synopsis
Sara Clarke, recent college grad, is sweet, demure, and cautious in all things, but especially romance—until she meets Moira Estrada, a bold amateur pilot and patron at the library where Sara works. Their intimacy blooms rapidly as they share everything from a sudden medical emergency to Christmas with the Estrada family. With her dashing new girlfriend by her side, Sara learns to overcome some of her greatest fears, whether they be acknowledging her own bisexuality, flying across the sky in a Cessna, or falling in love for the first time.

But Sara’s fear of confrontation is harder to conquer. When asked about her relationship, she finds herself lying to her family, pretending to date a man so she can avoid conflict with her straight-laced and image-conscious parents. But her attempts to please everyone cannot last forever and could result in far worse than her parents’ disapproval: she might lose the respect of her new friends at the library, or become estranged from her sister—or, worst of all, Sara might lose the only person she’s ever truly loved.
Excerpt
Moira pulled her key-ring out of her pocket, plucking out a large silver key from her collection. “Fasten your seat belt. We’re starting the engine now.”

She inserted the key; the plane gave a small lurch as the engine burst to life beneath Sara’s feet, and the propeller began to spin. This engine was nothing like the smooth start of a car; it ignited with a roar, like a motorcycle gunning to maximum velocity, and within moments that sound was pierced with sharp, rhythmic bursts from the propeller’s increasing oscillation. The sound was cacophonous; Sara put her hands to her ears, to block out a fraction of the din.

Amid the noise, she heard Moira speaking into her microphone. “Fairways Air Control, this is Lamassu. Oil pressure gauge is green, transponder is on. Are you receiving transmission?…Okay, thank you. Requesting permission to taxi to Runway Three…You’re the man, sir.”

Sara smiled faintly at her pilot. Moira’s combination of aviation jargon and casual slang was, admittedly, really endearing. So was the way her eyes widened as she scanned the blinking lights and bright monitors in front of her, grinning gleefully, looking simultaneously mischievous and reverent.

“Hang on,” Moira said, removing one hand from the controller and fumbling around by her feet. “I forgot to give you your intercom.” She withdrew another pair of headphones, handing them over. “These will help with the noise.”

Sara put on her headphones; the cacophony was quelled into the distance, now just a background ambiance. In the forefront now was Moira’s voice, smooth and sanguine, every word spoken directly in Sara’s ears.

“Removing parking brake now,” Moira said, a hand reaching out to pull the brake knob near Sara’s knee. The plane slid forward, and Sara gulped, hoping to keep her stomach from lurching as well. 

“Beginning taxi.”

They slid along the main “road” at a slow crawl. Sara noted each white stripe that passed by until they’d arrived at one of the runways; they did a slow 90-degree turn until they faced the open road. It was barely wide enough to accommodate the plane’s wings, and the forest was perhaps a mile ahead. Was that really enough space for them to take off? Even in such a small aircraft? Wouldn’t it take a massive amount of acceleration to lift them into the air? Was this even possible? Was it—

“Trim and flaps set,” said the voice in Sara’s ear, shaking her out of her fretting. Moira had a more “official” tone now, like one might hear over an automated line, with measured rising and falling inflections. 

“Engine temperature normal. Wingtip strobes on. Airspeed indicator reads zero.”

Sara fidgeted with the boom mic on her headphones. “That’s a lot of things to know about,” she whispered into it.

Moira turned her head, smiled, and put one hand on Sara’s knee. “That it is. But I’ve had my license for almost four years now, and if I were a shit pilot, they wouldn’t let me waltz back in those doors.” She grinned. “I’m going to bring you home safe, Sara. I promise.”

Sara nodded slowly.

“Okay,” Moira continued, pulling her hand back and gripping the throttle, “Lamassu departing now.
She pushed the throttle in, gradually but firmly, and they lurched forward, slowly at first, but soon they were gathering speed—the pine trees lining the runway lost the detail of their branches and needles, and soon they were a blur of dark teal and mossy green, punctuated by open field—and Sara’s stomach was shoved down and back into the seat; she felt like where she once had flesh and sinew and blood there was now only a void, an empty space filling itself with nothing but the rush of incoming air—

“Okay, Sara, we’re going to lift off—now!

Sara hadn’t known what it was like to lose the ground beneath her until this moment, when Lamassu’s nose flicked up and an anchor tied around her feet her whole life came undone, evaporated, dissipated into the afternoon sunlight—she realized it existed only when it ceased to exist. Suddenly there was space around her in every direction; she was now bound by nothing. The seat belt wrapped snug around her waist, the windshield ahead, the pane of glass a few inches from her right cheek—they seemed trivial, insignificant, incapable of truly binding her when the space beneath her feet was exponentially expanding.

“You’ve taken flight, dear.”

Soon the white lines beneath them vanished as well, as the runway shrank down, becoming a tiny part of a tiny complex that was quickly passing beneath and behind, no longer required, no longer relevant. She needed nothing in the air, only that constant whir of propeller oscillation, the humming of the engine, and the whipping of wind through the microscopic crack between the window and the fuselage. She almost thought she might float above her own seat, no longer subject to earth’s gravitational force.

“How are you feeling?”

Even Moira’s voice was distant now.

“I’m fine,” she said, in a tone that was half hummed, half spoken. She reached one hand up to the windowpane, tracing random curves along the glass with a couple of fingers. “I…I’m flying.”

“That you are.” Moira dropped her professional tone, her voice wrapping snugly around Sara’s head again. “And how does it feel?”

Even the trees were shrinking away now, becoming indistinct clusters of viridian mixed with a soft palette of mossy and earthy hues, separated by strips of gray asphalt drawing mechanical grids along the earth. She looked ahead, and for the first time took in the sky; its cerulean blue spread out infinitely across the horizon, accented with a few wispy cirrus clouds and an occasional burst of gold light reflecting from nearby lakes.

“It’s liberating.”

“Perfect.” Moira pressed a few more buttons, and the plane gently pitched forward, sliding into a consistent altitude. Within a few minutes they leveled off, thousands of feet above the earth, the bustling metropolis a mere memory behind them.
Purchase




Meet the Author
Samantha Kate works as a paralibrarian (that’s library support staff) for her day job. In her free time, she tries to pursue more creative projects than is humanly possible. Cinnamon and Cigarettes is her first novel; her short story, “Bottom of the River,” was published in Torquere Press’ Twisted Fables anthology in February 2016.




 Giveaway
Rafflecopter Prize: One winner will be selected to win an eBook copy of Cinnamon and Cigarettes.





Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Strong Medicine by J.K. Hogan




Title:  Strong Medicine
Author:  J.K. Hogan
Publisher:  Wilde City Press
Cover Artist: J.K. Hogan (KHD Graphics)
Release Date:  5/11/16
Genre/Tags: Psychological, Dark, M/M Romance










Synopsis
Two men who meet in a psychiatric institution couldn’t possibly find happiness together—could they?

The world seemed to be telling disgraced former child star and singer Cameron Fox that he would never be happy again. A drunken car accident gets him sentenced to a work-release at Riverbend Behavioral Health Facility.

Reclusive, traumatized writer Jonah Radley has an entire graveyard of skeletons in his closet. Jonah regularly hospitalizes himself for psychotic episodes caused by a horrific childhood trauma, his biggest secret—one he refuses to speak about in therapy.

Jonah and Cameron form a bond inside the hospital, forged in mutual pain and hope for a better life. Once they leave the hospital, they must decide if they are brave enough to explore the intricacies of living with mental illness—and find a new normal together.



 Excerpt
Jonah was feeling particularly lucid that day. He hadn’t seen any dead relatives, nothing had burned, and he actually felt like he was inside his own body, for once. He knew it wouldn’t last. It was a constant feeling of dancing on the edge of the cliff, just waiting for the one misstep that would send him plummeting into the void again.

He sat in the rocking chair, the one that had become known as ‘Jonah’s chair,’ and watched Harry the groundskeeper shovel snow off the patio next to the picture window. The scoliotic old man bent to sprinkle handfuls of rock salt over the pavers before moving on farther into the courtyard.

As usual, Jonah lost himself in the warmth of the blanket of sunlight, so much so that he was startled when he sensed a presence behind him. It was just a change in the air, a shift of the molecules, and then a new scent—sharp and heady, a mixture of cedar smoke and Old Spice. Jonah had smelled it before, yesterday. He didn’t need to see to know that the sparkly new probie was standing behind him.

And just like that, just picturing the man in his mind with his weird, shaggy blond hair, dark blue eyes, and boyish features, Jonah remembered. He’d been much younger then, the boy on the TV that his mother had sat him in front of when she couldn’t deal with his damning silence anymore. That boy, his sweet face, and even sweeter voice, had saved Jonah more times than he could count, just kept him hanging on for one more day.

Staring unblinking out the window, Jonah breathed deep of that fragrance and addressed the spectral memory of Kyle Chase. “I know you,” he whispered.

The air stilled as the movement behind him ceased, as if the other man had turned to stone.
“I loved you once.”

Footsteps. Soft, padding, staccato beats of leather against linoleum, until Jonah was face to face with his boyhood crush. Well, more like face to chest, since Jonah was seated and Kyle was looming over him. He wasn’t Kyle, of course, not really. Though Jonah strained, digging through layers of memory, he couldn’t extract the boy—man’s real name.

“Excuse me?” Not-Kyle asked, bushy eyebrows raised toward his hairline.

Jonah tried for a rueful smile, and he could practically hear his skin cracking with the effort. “Sorry, probie. It’s well known around here that I don’t make any sense. What I meant was ‘I used to watch your show.’”

“Oh. I, uh… really?”

Jonah half coughed, half grunted, because it was as close as he ever got to a laugh. 

“That surprises you?”

“Yes—No! I just sometimes forget that the people who used to watch my show are all grown-up now. Most of the time, I still feel like a kid, so it kind of catches me off guard.” He ran a hand through that mop of messy hair—bleached blond like he was still playing a Cali surfer boy on TV—then squatted down so that he was on Jonah’s level.

“I think you’d be the first one to call me a grown-up. I’ve been called a lot of things, but never that. Besides, I’m not as old as I look.”

“Yeah? How old?”

“Twenty-three.”

“Oh. Wow.”

“Yeah, I know. That’s what hard living and insanity will do to you,” Jonah explained without a hint of malice.

“Oh, no. I’m sorry, that came out wrong… You don’t look bad. It’s the opposite, really. You look… yeah, anyway, you’re right, you do just look older than twenty-three. Not in a bad way.”

“Easy there. It’s really okay. I’m pretty hard to insult. Most of the things you could think of to say about me would be true anyway.” Jonah wiped his sweaty palms on his sweatpants and reached on out to him. “Jonah Radley.”

“Cameron Fox.” Cameron took his hand, shook it, lingered just a second longer than was proper.

“I have to admit, I was wrangling for an introduction because I couldn’t remember your real name. I figure you probably wouldn’t want me calling you Kyle.”

Cameron’s laugh was soft, cozy, like a splash of honey in some warm Earl Grey. “No, I guess not. It’s nice to meet you, Jonah Radley. 

Radley, that’s an unusual name.”

“Indeed it is. Not as unusual as you’d think, but yes… I did have to deal with the well-read students in school calling me ‘Boo’ all the time. But this is rural Appalachia, so it wasn’t always a problem if you get my drift.”

Jonah could see it took Cameron a moment to get the reference, but when he did, he chuckled again. “So what made you decide to join the wonderful world of psychiatric care?” Jonah asked.

Something flashed in Cameron’s eyes, a cloud, a moment of indecision, before he answered. “I got arrested.”

“Ah, you’re one of Rohan’s boys.” Jonah kept his voice neutral, careful not to seem like he was judging, because people in glass houses and all that… “A probie in every sense of the word.”

Cameron lowered his head, studied the ugly, weathered linoleum. “Unfortunately.”
“Hey, we all have pasts. At least you have a future.”

That blond head snapped up, and Cameron gaped at him. “So do you, Jonah.”

Jonah shook his head sadly, then caught sight of a pair of dark, yawning eye sockets peering through the window. One of the dead girls, of course, just when he was starting to feel human again.

He didn’t make eye contact when he spoke to Cameron. “You should go now,” he whispered.

“Jonah…”

“Go!” Jonah shouted it, his voice tinged with desperation. He never cared before, but he didn’t want this man to see him disappear, to see him float. His eyes welled up, something that hadn’t ever happened at Riverbend before, and he felt ashamed. “Please.”

“Probie!” Rohan’s rich tenor rang out across the buzzing air, slicing the tension between them. Cameron tensed, and his feet seemed to obey Rohan before the rest of him caught up. He cast one more sad, sidelong look at Jonah before he was led away.

Once he was alone, Jonah began to shake. Shivering violently though he was burning up inside, Jonah felt tears sear flaming rivulets down his cheeks. He dug the heels of his hands into his eye sockets until they ached, and eventually the tears stopped. 
Then there was nothing left but smoke.



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Meet the Author
J.K. Hogan has been telling stories for as long as she can remember, beginning with writing cast lists and storylines for her toys growing up. When she finally decided to put pen to paper, magic happened. She is greatly inspired by all kinds of music and often creates a “soundtrack” for her stories as she writes them. J.K. is hoping to one day have a little something for everyone, so she’s branched out from m/f paranormal romance and added m/m contemporary romance. Who knows what’s next?

J.K. resides in North Carolina, where she was born and raised. A true southern girl at heart, she lives in the country with her husband and two sons, a cat, and two champion agility dogs. If she isn’t on the agility field, J.K. can often be found chasing waterfalls in the mountains with her husband, or down in front at a blues concert. In addition to writing, she enjoys training and competing in dog sports, spending time with her large southern family, camping, boating and, of course, reading! For more information, please visit www.jkhogan.com.






Strong Medicine – Playlist
After each of my books is finished, I post a text copy of my playlist, and an iTunes widget where most of the songs can be played. I sincerely hope I’ve led some of my readers to discover new music over the course of my writing.

http://jkhogan.com/sm_playlist/


Songs that reminded me of Jonah’s need for love and the pain that he lived with daily, Gently by You + Me, 



I See Fire by Ed Sheeran was an often played song, as Jonah’s main hallucination was seeing everything on fire.


                                                    


Hear Me by Imagine Dragons really got to me because it reminded me of Jonah’s fear of sleeping because he was afraid he’d die




 Trigger by Phillip Phillips just reminded me of exactly what it felt like to be inside Jonah’s head