Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Virtual Book Tour: Passing the Torch

Please welcome author LL Sanders, who is here to talk about her new release, Passing the Torch. LL will be giving away a $10 Amazon/BN GC and 3 PDFs of Pass the Torch to commenters via Rafflecopter during the tour. The more  you comment, the better your chances of winning. To find the other stops on the tour, go here. Look for the Rafflecopter at the end of the post


PASSING THE TORCH
by L.L. Sanders

~~~~~~~~~~~~~



BLURB:

Deep in the Arizona desert live a girl and her dad, burying secrets--and bodies.

Mesa Kingston's first memory of burying a corpse was at eight years old. Back then it had been the carcass of a large lizard her dad found that they buried in the backyard of their isolated cottage. At age fourteen, the body of a young lady accompanied the reptile's remains, and ever since, an accumulation of female bodies began to grow. Now, the only way Mesa can stop the haunting screams of the dead is by drowning them out with flames. Or is there more to the blaze than even she can perceive?


~~~~~~~~~~~~~

EXCERPT:


Good girls do anything for their fathers, including rob, cheat, and kill, and I always considered myself a good girl. The time I first came to that conclusion will stay with me forever. Years later, here I am, still fulfilling my daughterly duty.

After wiping the sweat from my palm onto my jeans, I press the bulbous tip of the match against the strike strip on the side of the small carton. My hands shake worse than Grandma's had when trying to slice her ninety-first birthday cake just a few hours ago, but I manage to run the match across it anyway. The flame comes alive at my fingertips, dancing merrily at the prospect of latching on to something and disintegrating it into smoldering embers. Although the light breeze causes the flame to flicker at the end of the matchstick, I'm aware of the control I have over it. I watch the glow change shape through a veil of tears and with that the decision was absolute.

The flame will get to perform its destructive duty.

I flick the match toward the pile of wooden planks that used to be the porch. Instantly the fire catches the fumes of the pooled liquid and expands so quickly a wall of gasoline-scented hot air rushes me before the blaze travels deeper into the house. I back away to a safe distance as the straw-like grass crunches beneath my feet. Nearing the homemade fence, which is nothing more than a double row of chicken wire, I hear the screams from the distance, cries of agony that meld with my memory like two spreading pools of melted wax. I can't stop the waterworks. I don't even make an attempt.





~~~~~~~~~~~~~

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

The L.L. stands for Leslie Lee. I write erotic romance and post-apocalyptic/dystopian fiction under Leslie Lee Sanders.

But horror and thriller fiction is what I grew up on, what inspires me, and what began my pursuit to authorship. I’ve written many short scary stories since the 6th grade. Now they’re much more mature in general, thanks to the wide range of emotion and experience I’ve encountered over the years.

I’m a huge fan of horror and psychological thrillers in every fashion, including movies, books, art, campfire tales, etc. Some of my favorite stories are those that twist at the end or are ambiguous with deep societal or morality themes. This includes dystopias like Hugh Howey’s Wool, psychological thrillers like Shutter Island, and popular and classic horror/romances like V.C. Andrews’s Flowers in the Attic, my favorite.

All my ideas start with a twist, which is exactly how most of my stories end.

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/lls4sanders
TWITTER: https://twitter.com/LeslieLSanders
WEBSITE: http://llsanders.com/

AMAZON BUY LINK: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00TNTLTZY



. a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, March 1, 2015

New release - Crossroads!

My new short story, Crossroads, just released today with eXtasy Books!


When you feel as though you've lost everything, you have everything to gain...


Blurb

Crossroads: a point at which a crucial decision must be made that will have far-reaching consequences

Clete Deveraux is a little old Southern boy a long way from home, drifting the highways with his abusive boyfriend, Vern. Tal Clark is newly graduated from the University of Missouri in Columbia, but his plans for a carefree summer have just been derailed and he’s not sure what he’s going to do.

Things happen for a reason…

Clete and Tal’s lives intersect at a rest stop in central Missouri, but sometimes first impressions aren’t the best. And finding the right path isn’t always easy.

Clete and Tal have reached a crossroads… and now they have to decide which way they want to go. And who they want to go with.


Excerpt

As he rounded the corner, he stopped dead in his tracks, his thought not only unfinished, but completely slammed from his head by the sight before him. A figure stood in front of one of the vending machines, slender legs encased in tight blue jeans that led to the most gorgeous ass Tal thought he’d ever seen in his life, a notion that was seconded by his dick, which twitched its agreement.

Genie who?

The girl had fine blonde hair, so pale it seemed almost white, but maybe that was just due to the harshness of the lights. Tal’s heart was beating a staccato tattoo inside his chest at the way she shifted her weight from one leg to the next. His imagination began to run rampant, as he pictured himself placing his hands on those dainty hips, drawing her to him as he nibbled on her neck. He couldn’t remember the last time he’d been this turned on. A little voice inside his head rejoiced. Genie was wrong—he wasn’t what she’d said he was, and this was proof positive of that. It was all her fault if he found more pleasure in a book than in her bed. See? The proof of his sexuality was here, staring him in the face. Well, her ass, his face.

And then she turned, and in the next moment all his illusions shattered around him.

She... was... a he.

Just damn.

This guy was pretty enough to be a girl, easily, Tal’s confused libido tried to make amends. He wore small hoop earrings in one ear that jingled lightly when he turned his head. His eyes were a blue so pale they almost disappeared into his face, his smooth skin lightly tanned, which only brought out the pinkness of his pretty lips.

Pretty lips? Where had that come from?






Friday, February 27, 2015

Virtual Book Tour: Palace Dog







Book Name: Palace Dog
Goodreads Link: February 27, 2015
Author Name: R. E. Nelson
Author Bio:
R.E. Nelson was born in Texas and raised in Southern California. He has been writing for as long as he can remember. One of his earliest recollections related to writing is winning an essay contest in sixth grade--something patriotic about the American flag. When he travels, his preference is staying in select areas for an extended period of time and learning about that place. He has lived in both Vietnam (twice, actually) and Saudi Arabia, and also spent time in Egypt, South Korea, Shanghai (his only China visit thus far), and Dubai. Now he is happy to call San Francisco home.
Where to find the author:
Twitter: @RENelson13
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Paul Richmond
Blurb(s):

In April 1975, as the government in Saigon is falling, Michael Andrews prepares to make his way back to Vietnam to find the love he was forced to leave.

But Michael’s journey begins four years earlier. He joins the Air Force to keep out of the Army and out of Vietnam, but his first assignment is teaching English in Saigon to members of the Vietnamese military in an Army program called Palace Dog.

As an artist, and a man, before his time in Vietnam, Michael found life lonely and unsatisfying. In the midst of war, Michael searches for direction and meaning. He ultimately finds love and hope with Thao, a young Vietnamese art student, only to have their already uncertain future wrenched from them when he is pulled out of the country.

For Michael, his return in 1975 is inevitable and without question, though the outcome he hopes for is anything but assured.
Categories: Gay Fiction, Historical, M/M Romance



Excerpt:
The cyclo had bumped across the bridge, following the curve in the road, then moved quickly down the final straight stretch, past houses and shops, past rows of trees and walls and occasional open spaces, past vendors who lined the street’s edge selling gasoline in glass bottles. Motorcycles, Lambretta mini-buses packed with people, cream-and-blue Renault taxis, pedestrians with baskets and boxes—all crowded the street. Noises, smells, and smoke came from everywhere, and as the driver increased his speed, I smiled, gripping the metal frame tighter and pushing slightly with my feet as the moist wind rushed around me.
Speeding through the streets of Saigon, wearing the green Air Force-issued jungle fatigues, my life of a year ago seemed unreal.

Pages or Words: 206 pages

Tour Dates: February 27, 2015

Tour Stops:

Sales Links:




Rafflecopter Prize: E-copy of ‘Palace Dog’
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Book Blast/Cover Reveal Questions



FULL MOON DREAMING:
59 – Best gift you ever gave?  Computer

60 – What’s your favorite cookie?  Chocolate chip or oatmeal (without raisins)


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Wednesday Briefs: Don't Look Back #35 (7.2)

Good morning and Happy Hump Day! If it's Wednesday, it must be time for flash fiction from the Wednesday Briefers. Every week, we offer an assortment of flash fiction, between 500 and 1000 words, inspired by one of our prompts.

This week, on Don't Look Back, the confusion continues as Marshall and Lee discover they're on You Tube! Wonder what that means? Don't miss this week's chapter! And don't forget to see what the other Briefers have to offer. Their links follow my tale. Enjoy!

Don't Look Back #35 (7.2)


“You Tube? What the hell are you talking about?” Marshall asked.

“Boy, what have you been smoking?” Slim demanded to know, and everyone laughed. Everyone except Denver, who pulled out his phone, indignation shining in his eyes.

“I’ll show you what I’m talking about. Hold your horses for just a minute, willya?”

Marshall leaned in to Lee, lowering his voice for his ears alone. “I bet he’s going to pop up with some kind of birthday video or something, and then yell surprise.”

“You never know, that might just be it,” Lee agreed. Marshall caught a hint of something in Lee’s voice, though, something that wasn’t entirely amusement. Before he could ask what was wrong, he heard Denver’s cry of triumph.

“Found it!” He pushed his phone at Marshall. “There it is. Just press play. I turned up the sound already.”

Marshall took the phone, holding it between him and Lee, so they could both watch. He heard the scrape of chairs as the others rose and grouped behind them, everyone’s attention on the phone.
Marshall pressed play, prepared for anything. What he saw was the familiar crowded dance floor of Partners. People were moving back, out of the line of sight of the camera, to a respectful distance from a couple. The camera shifted, focusing on that couple.

Marshall realized with a start that it was indeed him and Lee. They were dancing together, and the crowd was watching appreciatively, shouting encouragements, along with whistles and catcalls. 

Marshall remembered the dance, of course, and the way Lee had bent him over and kissed him long and hard. He even remembered people taking pictures of them. What he hadn’t expected was to end up in a video on You Tube.

“Well, I’ll be damned.” Only after the clip ended did he notice the title given it by whoever had uploaded it: Two hot men and a great kiss at Partners. He felt his cheeks go warm, but he wasn’t exactly displeased about the video. Not like he was embarrassed about his love for Lee, or of having people see them together. Then he looked at the view count. Holy shit. “There’s almost a million views on this thing.” He looked up to find Denver grinning widely at him.

“Oh yeah, you’re quite the sensation. I think they call that going viral. You two are gonna be famous.”

Marshall snorted with laughter, until he caught a glimpse of Lee’s face. Lee wasn’t smiling, and he didn’t look very happy. Come to think of it, neither did Roy.

Marshall pushed the phone into Denver’s hand. “The answer is still no,” he responded to the unspoken question he could read in Denver’s eyes. “Still got plans. It’s our anniversary, you know.”

“I know,” Denver grumbled, pocketing the phone. “Can’t blame a guy for trying.”

Everyone laughed, as they resumed their seats.  Marshall took advantage of the momentary confusion to whisper in Lee’s ear. “Is something wrong?”

Lee didn’t answer immediately, heightening Marshall’s unease. He pulled back enough to look at Lee’s face. “What is it?” he asked.

Lee’s brows drew together before he relaxed his expression and forced a smile. “Probably nothing,” he admitted.

“Afraid I’ll get famous on You Tube and take off for Hollywood?” Marshall joked.

Lee leaned forward and kissed him. “I think I know better than that.”

“I should hope so. You know I was just kidding, right?”

“I know that. Look, we can talk about it later, okay?”

“Okay. Good.” Marshall felt somewhat relieved. They’d talk about it, whatever it was, and Lee would make everything all right, like he always did.

“Hey you two, break it up!” Slim’s voice broke into their moment. Lee slid an arm about Marshall’s shoulders and grinned at their friend.

“What’s the matter, Slim? Tell us how you really feel!”

More laughter. Slim raised a glass of beer. “Kinda hard to make a toast if you’re not paying attention. To Lee and Marshall! Happy anniversary, and happy birthday to Marshall. May you always be happy and together.”

Glasses were lifted around the table, and everyone echoed the sentiment. A short time later, Lee rose, reaching for Marshall’s hand. “Time for us to go,” he said in his no-nonsense way, “but we’ll get together again soon. Agreed?”

They made their good-nights and said their thank yous for a fine evening. Roy left with them, citing the need to work the next day. He accompanied them to their car, leaning against it as Lee unlocked it. A look passed between the two men that Marshall didn’t understand. His unease, which had subsided, began to return.

“Doesn’t have to mean anything,” Roy said.

“Yeah, I know that. But then again, it might.”

“I know.” Roy removed his hat and scratched the side of his head before replacing it. “I’ll get on it soon as I get home, Lee, ‘kay?”

“I appreciate that, Roy.” The two men shook hands before Lee opened the door and motioned Marshall inside. Marshall started to ask a question, but decided against it, and let Lee close the door without comment. Roy headed to his car and Lee slid behind the wheel.

They drove in silence for a few minutes, Lee staring out at the highway, once they left Tucker Falls. Marshall gazed out his side window, but there wasn’t a whole lot to see at this time of night. Finally, he couldn’t wait any longer.

“Want to tell me what’s going on? Something about that video’s got you spooked. What is it?”

Lee took a deep breath, then let it out. “Just don’t like having us out there on the Internet like that.”

Marshall was sure there was more to the story than that. “We advertise on the Internet, that’s how we get a lot of our business. What else is there?”

Lee hesitated. “I just don’t want our past catching up with us, that’s all.”

Suddenly Marshall understood, his stomach knotting. “Oh hell no,” he whispered.

to be continued

Don't forget to visit the other Briefers and see what's up with them!






Monday, February 23, 2015

Virtual Book Tour: Inclination




The Questions for Inclination Blog Tour with Mia Kerick. Full Moon Dreaming
Hi, and thanks so much for welcoming me on your blog!! I have answered a few interview questions, some in a bit too much detail, but I often get carried away.

1) You’re marooned on a small island with one person and one item of your choice—who is that person and what item do you have?
I’m going to have to go with my husband, Mr. Mia, as my person of choice. I secretly always thought he would be the guy to win Survivor, if he went on that TV show. Mr. Mia is skillful and industrious, and very outdoorsy. He is often quite clever with people. I think he’d keep me safe and he’d keep me comfortable, and for my one “luxury item” it would have to be a huge bar of chocolate, which would keep me sane.

2) Which musical would you say best exemplifies your life – and which character in that musical are you?
I don’t really think that Grease exemplifies my life very well, but I’ve always felt a certain affinity to Sandra Dee. A little bit too sweet, not particularly cool, wears her heart on her sleeve—yeah, that’s me. I guess that would make Mr. Mia John Travolta, huh?






3)            What is your idea of how to spend romantic time with your significant other?
Mr. Mia and I don’t have a lot of time to spend on romance. So, if we were able to do whatever we wanted, romantically speaking, it would start with my older kids coming home from college to watch my younger kids so I didn’t have to worry about them. (Excessive worry over children’s safety and happiness is not conducive to romance.) Once that was taken care of I would pack a bag for Mr. Mia and me, and we’d head to the nearby resort town of Meredith, NH. There, we would check into Church Landing for a long and relaxing weekend stay.







We would first share some wine and cheese in our cozy lakefront room.










We would head for the indoor pool and sauna and splash around together without looking at a clock once.










This would be followed by a leisurely dinner at the hotel restaurant, The Lakehouse Grille… with more wine.


And then back to the cozy hotel room for time spent together with no CELL PHONES or COMPUTERS. Maybe a movie…or maybe not.




4)    When you start a new story, do you begin with a character, or a plot?
I always start with a plot. I usually get an idea for a story from a song, or a current event that is on my mind. So I start with the idea, and then I create the characters I want to live out my story.
5)    If they were to make the story of your life into a movie, who should play you?
I think I would like Angelina Jolie to play me. I think she would do a very good job. (Well, you asked, and I figured, why not reach very high?)
6)    Who’s your favorite horror villain and why?
Jack Torrance of The Shining. It is all in the eyebrows. They are sooo… creepy.







7)    Do you have an historical crush and if so, who is it?
I am a huge Mahatma Gandhi fan. I can’t get enough of his philosophical statements. Read The Red Sheet and you can see some of my favorites in action.



8)            Is there a story that you’d like to tell but you think the world isn’t ready to receive it?
I truly think I have already told some of these cutting edge stories—for example Us Three, with a YA threesome, and A Package Deal, with an unconventional “family”, of sorts, and now Inclination, a YA gay Christian work of fiction. Maybe some people are ready for them, but there are definitely many readers who are skeptical. My job is to help them to see love—romantic, religious, and friendship—from my perspective. And if an idea strikes me in the future that is possibly a bit ahead of its time, I will not hesitate to write it.






Book Name: Inclination
Release Date: February 25, 2015
Author Name: Mia Kerick
Author Bio:

Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children—all named after saints—and five nonpedigreed cats—all named after the next best thing to saints, Boston Red Sox players. Her husband of twenty-two years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about that, as it is a sensitive subject.

Mia focuses her stories on the emotional growth of troubled young people and their relationships, and she believes that physical intimacy has a place in a love story, but not until it is firmly established as a love story. As a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with romantic tales of tortured heroes (most of whom happened to strongly resemble lead vocalists of 1980s big-hair bands) and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. She is thankful to Dreamspinner Press, Harmony Ink Press, Cool Dudes, and CreateSpace for providing her with alternate places to stash her stories.

Mia is a social liberal and cheers for each and every victory made in the name of human rights, especially marital equality. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology.

Where to find the author:
Twitter: @MiaKerick

Publisher: Cool Dudes Publishing
Cover Artist: Louis C. Harris
Blurb:
Sixteen-year-old Anthony Duck-Young Del Vecchio is a nice Catholic boy with a very big problem. It’s not the challenge of fitting in as the lone adopted South Korean in a close-knit family of Italian-Americans.  Nor is it being the one introverted son in a family jam-packed with gregarious daughters. Anthony’s problem is far more serious—he is the only gay kid in Our Way, his church’s youth group. As a high school junior, Anthony has finally come to accept his sexual orientation, but he struggles to determine if a gay man can live as a faithful Christian. And as he faces his dilemma, there are complications. After confiding his gayness to his intolerant adult youth group leader, he’s asked to find a new organization with which to worship. He’s beaten up in the church parking lot by a fanatical teen. His former best pal bullies him in the locker room. His Catholic friends even stage an intervention to lead him back to the “right path.” Meanwhile, Anthony develops romantic feelings for David Gandy, an emo, out and proud junior at his high school, who seems to have all the answers about how someone can be gay and Christian, too.
Will Anthony be able to balance his family, friends and new feelings for David with his changing beliefs about his faith so he can live a satisfying life and not risk his soul in the process?

Categories: Contemporary, Gay Fiction, Romance, Young Adult, Christian, Spiritual

Excerpt:
I’ll pass on the Kool-Aid, thank you

It sounds like a joke, but it’s all true. Every student who volunteers his or her time on a weekly basis at an animal shelter, a hospital, or a home for the elderly receives a free lunch on the last Monday of the month, putting to rest the veracity (got that word on the last SAT practice test I took at my desk in my bedroom the other day) of the old idiom, “There’s no such thing as a free lunch.”  And as I spend every Sunday afternoon patting and playing with cats at the Centerton Humane Society, I qualify. If nothing else, it gives Mom a day off from making me lunch.
“It was so disgusting.”
I drop down into my usual seat in the cafeteria beside Laz, my tray with the bowl of free macaroni and cheese, a slice of bread, and milk, sliding onto the lunch table in front of me. “The mac and cheese?” I ask. “Last time I had it the stuff wasn’t too bad.” It’s not one of Mom’s gourmet lunches, but it gets the job done.
“No, Anthony.” Emma Gillis rolls her eyes and swallows her bite of free mac and cheese she earned by reading classics to the elderly on Saturday mornings at the New Horizons Elderly Center. She gulps in a breath and informs me with her usual haughtiness, “I was telling everybody about these two old men I read to last Saturday who think they are some kind of couple. They actually kissed each other.” She fake-gags.
“I threw up a little in my mouth when I saw that!”
For my own personal reasons, I gasp, while everybody else snickers.
“Those old dudes must be losing it, as in, they could have Alzheimer’s or something, and they forgot that dudes belong with ladies, not other dudes.” I glance over at Lazarus, who abruptly stops babbling to suck down the first of three cartons of chocolate milk. “But seriously, that’s messed up.” Laz wrinkles his nose in distaste and runs his hands through his shaggy dark hair, before moving on to carton number two.
I’m basically frozen, my hand still hovering over the slice of wheat bread on the corner of my tray, my mouth hanging open. I might even be drooling.
“It’s not their fault, Emma.” Elizabeth-the-devout always takes the case of the underdog. It’s how she’s wired. “They’re just sick in their minds.” She sends Emma a you-ought-to-be-ashamed-of yourself sort of frown. “We, as Catholics, are called to compassion.”
Everyday single day at lunch since freshman year, I’ve sat with the kids from the Our Way youth group. In fact, the other kids in my grade have long referred to our lunch table as “Our Way to Survive Cafeteria Food”, which somewhere along the line got shortened to the “OWSCF Table”, which eventually morphed into “awe-scoff”. I have always felt safe and secure sitting at the awe-scoff table. These are the kids I’ve prayed with three times a week at Our Way, and the ones who I was confirmed with in ninth grade. I’ve collected toys for the poor with these kids—in fact, for three years running we’ve made sure that no child in Wedgewood missed out on having a small stack of Christmas gifts, and that brings about some major bonding. We’ve shared weekends camping in the Maine woods, singing and holding hands and sometimes crying when the Spirit moved us.
This is my safe spot at school, like my tiny room is my alone spot at home.
“If you ask me, all fags deserve to die for going against Christ and everything that’s natural. They should be forced to drink poison Kool-Aid, like those cultists had to do down in Jonestown…’member that?” Is that Rinaldo Vera who just suggested mass murder as the “final solution” to the gay problem?
Sweet, passive Rinaldo—the gentle giant. Um, not so much.
“I saw a TV movie called the Jonestown Massacre.”
“I caught that too…those people were warped.”
The conversation drifts away from the vileness of homosexuality, toward the disturbing personal stories of the few survivors of the Jim Jones Cult Kool-Aid Massacre. But I’ve heard more than enough, in terms of stuff that pertains to me.
Feeling as if I’m going to lose what little lunch I ate, I jump up off my chair and race toward the boys’ room in the hall near the cafeteria.
Maybe there really is no such thing as a free lunch.

Pages or Words: 70,000 words

Tour Dates/Tour Stops:
23-Feb

24-Feb

25-Feb

26-Feb

27-Feb

2-Mar

3-Mar

4-Mar

5-Mar

6-Mar

9-Mar

10-Mar

11-Mar

12-Mar

13-Mar


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