Friday, May 31, 2019

Virtual Book Tour: The Hierophant's Daughter by M.F. Sullivan

Good morning and please welcome author M.F. Sullivan to Full Moon Dreaming! She is here to talk about her new release, The Hierophant's Daughter, the first book in her Disgraced Martyr Trilogy. M.F. will be giving a $50 Amazon/BN GC to one randomly drawn commenter via Rafflecopter. The more you comment, the better your chances of winning. To find the other stops on her tour, go here. Don't forget to look for the Rafflecopter at the end of this post! Also, be sure to read my review of The Hierophant's Daughter, right before the Rafflecopter.

The Hierophant’s Daughter
(Disgraced Martyr Trilogy #1)
by M. F. Sullivan


GENRE: Sci-fi, Horror, LGBTQ



By 4042 CE, the Hierophant and his Church have risen to political dominance with his cannibalistic army of genetically modified humans: martyrs. In an era when mankind's intergenerational cold wars against their long-lived predators seem close to running hot, the Holy Family is poised on the verge of complete planetary control. It will take a miracle to save humanity from extinction.

It will also take a miracle to resurrect the wife of 331-year-old General Dominia di Mephitoli, who defects during martyr year 1997 AL in search of Lazarus, the one man rumored to bring life to the dead. With the Hierophant's Project Black Sun looming over her head, she has little choice but to believe this Lazarus is really all her new friends say he is--assuming he exists at all--and that these companions of hers are really able to help her. From the foulmouthed Japanese prostitute with a few secrets of her own to the outright sapient dog who seems to judge every move, they don't inspire a lot of confidence, but the General has to take the help she can get.

After all, Dominia is no ordinary martyr. She is THE HIEROPHANT'S DAUGHTER, and her Father won't let her switch sides without a fight. Not when she still has so much to learn.

The dystopic first entry of an epic cyberpunk trilogy, THE HIEROPHANT’S DAUGHTER is a horror/sci-fi adventure sure to delight and inspire adult readers of all stripes.



The Flight of the Governess

The Disgraced Governess of the United Front was blind in her right eye. Was that blood in the left, or was it damaged, too? The crash ringing in her ears kept her from thinking straight. Of course her left eye still worked: it worked well enough to prevent her from careening into the trees through which she plunged. Yet, for the tinted flecks of reality sometimes twinkling between crimson streaks, she could only imagine her total blindness with existential horror. Would the protein heal the damage? How severely was her left eye wounded? What about the one she knew to be blind—was it salvageable? Ichigawa could check, if she ever made it to the shore.

She couldn’t afford to think that way. It was a matter of “when,” not of “if.” She would never succumb. Neither could car accident, nor baying hounds, nor the Hierophant himself keep her from her goal. She had fourteen miles to the ship that would whisk her across the Pacific and deliver her to the relative safety of the Risen Sun. Then the Lazarene ceremony would be less than a week away. Cassandra’s diamond beat against her heart to pump it into double time, and with each double beat, she thought of her wife (smiling, laughing, weeping when she thought herself alone) and ran faster. A lucky thing the Governess wasn’t human! Though, had she remained human, she’d have died three centuries ago in some ghetto if she’d lived past twenty without becoming supper. Might have been the easier fate, or so she lamented each time her mind replayed the crash of the passenger-laden tanque at fifth gear against the side of their small car. How much she might have avoided!


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

M.F. Sullivan is the author of Delilah, My Woman, The Lightning Stenography Device, and a slew of plays in addition to the Trilogy. She lives in Ashland, Oregon with her boyfriend and her cat, where she attends the local Shakespeare Festival and experiments with the occult. Find more information about her work (and plenty of free essays) at!

Author Links:

Amazon Author Page:
Goodreads Author Page:

Buy/Review Links:

Barnes & Noble:
Hardback: 978-0-9965395-6-2
Paperback: 978-0-9965395-7-9
eBook: 978-0-9965395-8-6


The Hierophant’s Daughter

Author: M.F. Sullivan
Publisher: Painted Blind Publishing
American release date: May 19, 2019
Format/Genre/Length: Kindle/Urban Fantasy/267 pages
Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★

Disgraced Governess Dominia di Mephitoli is on the run. Member of the Holy Family and one-time ruler of the land formerly known as Italy, her sole focus is on, besides staying alive, resurrecting her dead wife, Cassandra, whom she wears in a diamond around her neck. Rumor has it that the man known as Lazarus can help her with this. But, assuming he is not a myth, no one knows where to find him.

Seeking refuge with a family in a remote farmhouse, she realizes too late that the Hierophant—her father—is there, seeking to reunite her with the family. She knows better than to trust him, however, which he proves with his actions, killing the family and taking out one of Dominia’s eyes, as well as her incisors. Dominia is no ordinary woman, she is a martyr, as are all the Holy Family—the Hierophant, who is the head of the family; brothers Cicero and Elijah (also known as the Lamb), who are husbands as well as brothers, sweet innocent sister Lavinia, and Dominia. Once Dominia’s name was Morgan, but many years have passed since she answered to that appellation. Besides possessing special strength and abilities, martyrs subsist on a diet of blood and flesh, and are restricted in their movements by the sun. The Hierophant has walked among the people of Earth for many years, and claims to come from a distant planet, but no one can either prove or disprove his story, so it remains accepted as truth. At least for now.

Once the poor family is dead, and the Hierophant gone, Dominia flees once more, taking the family dog with her. Why, she isn’t sure, but it seems like the thing to do.

Dominia reunites with an acquaintance of hers, René Ichigawa, a Franco Japanese professor, who is helping her to reach Lazarus. First, they have to get to safety, which is a challenge considering both Dominia’s restrictions and her infamy. Her reputation as a ruthless general precedes her, and not in a good way. René’s plan is for them to go to Japan, which is one of the few areas not under the Hierophant’s control, via boat. When Dominia awakens in the hold, she is surprised to find the dog still there. René assumed he was hers since he wouldn’t leave her and followed them onto the boat.

All Dominia has to do is find Lazarus—assuming he actually exists—have him resurrect Cassandra—assuming he can actually do that—and keep from being killed by a member of the Holy Family… or anyone else, for that matter. This is one journey Dominia won’t soon forget.

The Hierophant’s Daughter is the first book in the Disgraced Martyr Trilogy. I received a Kindle copy of the book in exchange for my review.  Before I had even finished reading the book, I had placed a pre-order for the paperback, which will show how very much I liked it, since I’d already been given a copy. The Hierophant’s Daughter turned out to be much more than I expected. M.F. Sullivan did a fabulous job of world-building, and gives us a creative and unique take on this world. The Hierophant is the benevolent (somewhat) holy father who has managed to gain control of most of the planet. It’s not hard to guess what his ultimate goal is. Martyrs are a unique spin on vampires. In this world, humans know they exist and co-exist with them… for the most part.

The Holy Family is most fascinating, especially the Hierophant. While I know in my head he’s the villain, it’s not quite so cut-and-dried as that, since he is at the same time terrible and compelling, a very charming man indeed. I found myself looking forward to seeing more of his scenes. Cicero is cruel and vicious but when it comes to his husband, Elijah (the Lamb, an obvious reference to Jesus), he would do anything for him, and the feeling is mutual (before anyone gets squicked out by them being brothers, they are not blood brothers, vampires don’t have children, and they were together as a couple before they even met the Hierophant). Lavinia is an unusual case in that she died while an infant, too young to become a martyr, yet she ended up growing even after death… so she is looked upon as very holy. Well, still waters do run deep.

Dominia is someone you have to admire for her strength and her character. She’s done many terrible things in her long life and she knows it. And yet, despite being a martyr, she is quite human in many ways, and vulnerable to making mistakes. Sometimes she just has no choice.

The more I read of this book, the deeper into it I got. The characters draw you in and make you want to know more. It’s a horrible world, and I wouldn’t want to live there, but reading about it is a different matter entirely. The biggest criticism I can make is that the author would have benefited from better editing. There are some especially stupid errors which should have been caught. But these do not detract from the overall value of the story.

There are so many things about it that I love, including the religious allegory. It’s a terrifying glimpse into a future that could be if vampires existed on other planets and came here to make this their new home. At the end of the book is a timeline that chronicles the Hierophant’s ascent, from the time of his arrival. It’s well worth reading.

I highly recommend this book, and can’t wait for the next volume in the trilogy to come out.

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Thursday, May 30, 2019

Book Review: Blue Morning, Vol 2 by Shoko Hidaka

Blue Morning, Vol 2        

Author: Shoko Hidaka
Publisher: SuBLime Publishing
American release date: August 13, 2013
Format/Genre/Length: Paperback/Manga/Yaoi/186 pages
Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★

As a young boy, Katsuragi believed he was being groomed by Viscount Kuze to be his successor, until the viscount leaves for his other home and Katsuragi learns an heir has been born. Years later, he finds himself in the bed of his new young master and questions what he is doing and what he should do. Akihito hasn’t been to school in a few days and shows no inclination toward going. Meanwhile, Akihito’s friend, Ishizaki,  concerned about his health, is buying him some fruit when a chance meeting with Katsuragi’s brother affords him transportation to the Kuze manor.

Akihito and Katsuragi are in the library. Katsuragi is gauging how far his charge has read. When questioned by Akihito, he admits to having read all the books up until a certain point. When the decision was made to bring Akihito to the mansion, Katsuragi was forbidden the use of the library. Akihito can’t keep his hands off the butler, even in the library, and Katsuragi can do not less than obey. He has promised to stand by Akihito’s side forever, as long as he strives to fulfill the hopes of the Kuze family.

Akihito has received an invitation to a formal event being given by Marquise Moriyama, and he wants Katsuragi to go with him. Katsuragi says that as his butler, that isn’t possible, but Akihito insists that it is – if the invitation is sent to Katsuragi as a representative of the Katsuragi family and not as his butler. When Akihito returns to his room, Katsuragi learns of a visitor – Ishizaki – and receives him, telling him Akihito is unable to receive visitors in his current condition. Katsuragi and Ishizaki get into a serious discussion concerning Akihito, Ishizaki questioning Katsuragi’s intentions, which Akihito overhears.

A member of the Kuze household from many years before has arrived from Yokohama, a previous houseboy. Meanwhile, at the Katsuragi bank, the brothers suspect that their younger brother has been involved in some dealings they may not be in favor of. Perhaps it’s time that they see him.

As Akihito is being fitted for his clothes for the event, he makes an inquiry regarding Katsuragi’s measurements, and requests a suit be made for him as well. Katsuragi doesn’t want to go, but Akihito tells him he procured a personal invitation for him from the Marquise, and that cannot be ignored. He also reminds Katsuragi of his promise to stay with him forever and questions whether Katsuragi is working on Akihito’s future engagement. He promises Katsuragi that he won’t question whatever methods he uses to make it happen.

 Akihito returns to school, and has a discussion with Ishizaki, who is concerned about his relationship with Katsuragi. Meanwhile, the former houseboy, Amamiya, has gone to the mansion and reveals why he is there.

The night of the marquise’s event arrives, and Akihito ensures Katsuragi’s presence by taking him with him. Once there, they seem destined to go their separate ways, to Akihito’s chagrin. A jealous Akihito watches Katsuragi’s interactions with the other guests, particularly those he knows the butler has slept with. Katsuragi is trying to make plans for a future fiancé for Akihito, but he is uncustomarily distracted by thoughts of his young master and is surprised by the unexpected appearance of his brother. His brother drops a surprising bombshell regarding Katsuragi’s heritage, but is everyone really surprised? What would Akihito think if he saw them?

The second volume of this series is every bit as good as the first. This is not a typical yaoi romance, assuming it will end up a romance at all, which is anyone’s guess, although I devoutly hope so. There is nothing stereotypical about this story at all, and a great deal to sink your teeth into and enjoy. I’m rooting for Akihito, who unabashedly loves Katsuragi and would do anything for him I believe Katsuragi has feelings for him, despite how tightly he’s wrapped up and the way he holds himself aloof. There are moments when he gives himself away in little ways.

Akihito knows he has to marry, and he’s good with that, as long as it furthers Katsuragi’s plans. I’m wondering how he will manage to keep his relationship with Katsuragi going while he’s married, and how open can they afford to be in front of a wife. Ishizaki already knows Akihito cares too much for his butler and is against their relationship, but will he do anything to jeopardize it, perhaps in the mistaken belief that he needs to rescue his friend from Katsuragi’s grip?

Looking forward to seeing where this goes in the next volume!

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Wednesday Briefs: In Pieces #54 (13.2)

Good morning and Happy Hump Day! If it's Wednesday, then it must be time for more flash fiction from the Wednesday Briefers! We're a group of authors who bring you our finest flash fiction every week, 500 to 1000 words, inspired by one of our prompts.

Ben and Ryan and the rest of Salvation put Mandeville and all unpleasantness behind them as they head out on their first road trip! Everyone is in high spirits, including Abby. A chance sighting of a billboard near Baton Rouge initiates a conversation about Ryan's late father. See how the boys are doing in this chapter of In Pieces. Don't forget to visit the other Briefers and see what's up with them! Their links follow my tale! Enjoy!

In Pieces #54 (13.2)

Heading north out of Mandeville, they stopped at a gas station/convenience store on the outskirts of town in order to fill the tanks for the trip to Lake Charles. Ryan was glad their route didn’t take them across Lake Pontchartrain for a change, although he felt as though he was starting to get used to the long bridge. Of course, a lot of that had to do with Ben’s presence.

 After pumping gas, they went inside and bought breakfast sandwiches and hot coffee, as well as bags of chips and pretzels and sweet treats for later, dividing them between the two vehicles. Deacon was in charge of driving the van, as usual. While it wasn’t equipped with GPS, Keanu’s phone was, and he was happy to play navigator for his lover. Ben decided the sedan would follow behind the van. That way, in case of trouble, they’d be in a better position to help, seeing as the van was the older of the two vehicles.

Ryan was happy to see Abby showed no ill effects from the night before and actually seemed to be her usual happy self. She took great delight in teasing Aiden about the shorts he was wearing, telling him they belonged on a school boy and not a grown ass man, and he retaliated in kind, asking if she thought she was Daisy Dukes.  Ryan thought Abby was prettier than Daisy Dukes, to be honest, and since she had the legs to carry off short shorts, why not? Everyone was casually dressed, a far cry from their stage personas. That only made sense in a state like Louisiana, that was more often than not humid, especially in the summer.  Ben had even persuaded Ryan to follow suit. He felt self-conscious at first about his legs, which he thought were too thin and far too pale. But Ben quickly put him at his ease, telling him they were sexy and anybody could have a tan, and he soon forgot about anything except this road trip, and being with Ben.

Ryan had left his laptop with the rest of their luggage, in the trunk, but he’d thought to bring his notebook and a pen, in case he wanted to take notes on the drive. When Ben saw the notebook, he immediately removed it from Ryan’s hand and set it behind them. “Maybe later,” he said, snuggling close to Ryan, claiming his hand with a grin. Ryan certainly wasn’t about to argue. Whatever Ben wanted, he could have.

Ben rubbed his face against Ryan’s arm, purring like a contented kitten. “We have time for that later,” he said. “Right now is you and me time.”

“Sounds good to me.”

“Me too,” Abby chimed in with a grin. “Let us know if you want us to go for a walk or something.” She winked at them broadly, and they had to laugh. Ryan heard Aiden snort his laughter.

Undeterred, Ben replied, “We’ll let you know.” He nuzzled Ryan without hesitation, as if they were truly alone in their own little world.

Baton Rouge was the first big city on their route from Mandeville. As they drew closer, Ryan spotted a billboard on the side of the highway, that had a picture of a naval destroyer. USS Kidd, the legend read. Located in beautiful downtown Baton Rouge. Come visit history!

“Dad was in the Navy,” Ryan blurted out the first thing that came to his mind.

“I didn’t know that.” Ben had been lying with his head in Ryan’s lap, while Ryan stroked his hair. He pivoted his position in order to look up into Ryan’s eyes. “What made you think of that?”

“Oh, a billboard we passed, that’s all.” Ryan was sometimes hesitant to bring up Dad around Ben. He knew Ben had loved him, and he was sure their separation had to be painful for him. Coupled with his inability to even come to Dad’s funeral. “USS Kidd. It’s moored in Baton Rouge, apparently.”

Ben didn’t say anything immediately, and Ryan wanted to kick himself. He needed to edit his words a little better in future. But before he could make any sort of amends, Ben spoke first.

“You know we’re playing Baton Rouge on the way back, don’t you?”

“We are?”

“Yeah. Want to visit the ship when we do? I mean, even if Dad didn’t serve on that particular ship, it could be interesting, don’t you think? Something to remind us of him?”

Ryan was touched by Ben’s words. “I-I hope it doesn’t bother you when I mention Dad,” he said. “I know you must miss him as much as I do. Maybe more. I mean, I got to see him, up until… when he… “ He didn’t want to say the word all of a sudden. Dad’s death was still too fresh. He might know intellectually that his father was gone, but in his heart, sometimes it seemed as though he was just a phone call away.

“Not at all,” Ben assured him. He sat up until he was sitting in Ryan’s lap. Ryan was pretty sure that was illegal, but he wasn’t about to say anything and ruin the moment. He could see that Ben’s eyes were wet, even as he felt a tear fall down his own cheek. 

Ben used his thumb to brush away Ryan’s tear, then kissed him softly. “He was a good man. I’d love to hear more about him, when you’re ready to tell me.”

“I’d like that,” Ryan said, returning the kiss. It was on the tip of his tongue to ask about Ben’s mother, it almost made sense since they were discussing the past, but the words refused to form. Even now, he didn’t want to think about her. Maybe Ben would bring her up. But he didn’t, and the moment passed.

to be continued

Now go see what the other Briefers are up to!


Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Book Review: Ten Count, Vol 6 by Rihito Takarai

Ten Count, Vol 6                          

Author: Rihito Takarai
Publisher: SuBLime Manga
American release date: December 11, 2018
Format/Genre/Length: Paperback/manga/GLBT/186 pages
Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★

While out with Kurose, Shirotani has a chance encounter with Ueda, the woman who is responsible for his germophobia. As Kurose returns the keys she dropped, she tells the two men she’d like to buy them a drink, as a thank you. Shirotani is reluctant, but he is also reluctant to explain anything to Kurose, who can tell he’s uneasy. They compromise by saying they can go, but just until it’s time to leave for their lunch reservation. Something Ueda says strikes a nerve, and Shirotani excuses himself. Once he’s gone, Ueda makes a blatantly obvious attempt at seducing Kurose, but he has a few choice words for her.

Kurose and Shirotani miss their reservation, but they do share their first kiss. Afterward, Kurose says he’s just as happy with food from a mini-mart, so that’s what they do. They find a place to eat outside, and have a long talk about their relationship. Shirotani admits to his feelings for Kurose, and that his reluctance to fill in the tenth number on his list was in order to keep seeing Kurose forever. Then they both shed tears of happiness.

Kurose is browsing in a book store and notices a table set up for an author signing. A startled Kurose recognized the author, and enters into conversation with him, but doesn’t reveal himself until the end. By the time the author realizes it, Kurose has gone, having found closure on a part of his life he’d never found before.

Shirotani has changed. Not only does he stop wearing his gloves, to the amazement of his boss and his co-worker, he openly seeks out Kurose at the clinic, only to learn he traded his shift for that day. Kurose’s co-worker mentions that Kurose will be missed, since he is leaving psychotherapy, to Shirotani’s great surprise. A fearful Shirotani rushes to Kurose’s apartment. When they make love, Shirotani wants to show his love for Kurose by doing something for him he’s never been able to do before.

This is the last volume of the series, sadly. I have come to love these two guys, and watching them on their journey has been amazing. However, I’m happy with where they are, working on a new list, and even though I don’t think they’ve told each other everything just yet, I think they will. So they’re in a good place, and they have each other.

I think the writing is very good, the author tells her story very well, and these characters come to life on every page. I would definitely watch an anime, if they ever make one. It would definitely need to be explicit, though. This is not a story for minors. I found it realistic, in that her characters are very human and very imperfect. But they are perfect for one another, and that’s what counts. With love, all things are possible.

I highly recommend this series if you want a yaoi romance that goes beyond the sexual (but includes that as well).

Friday, May 24, 2019

Book Blast: Murder by Munchausen by MT Bass

 Good morning!  Please welcome author MT Bass, who is here to talk about his new release, Murder by Munchausen. MT will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to one randomly drawn commenter via Rafflecopter. The more often you comment, the better your chances of winning. To find the other stops on his tour, go here.Don't forget to look for the Rafflecopter at the end of this post!

by   MT Bass


GENRE: Mystery/Sci-Fi/Police Procedural



A police procedural sci fi thriller ripped from future headlines!

After Jake shoots and kills a murder suspect who turns out to be the son of a powerful city councilman, he finds himself demoted to the Artificial Crimes Unit, tracking down androids hacked and programmed to be hit men.

When his case of an “extra-judicial” divorce settlement takes a nasty turn with DNA from a hundred-year-old murder in Boston and a signature that harkens back to the very first serial killer ever in London, Jake finds himself tangled up in the brutal slayings of prostitutes being investigated by his former Robbery/Homicide partner, Maddie–who is now his lover.

But a madman, The Baron, is just getting started with his AI recreations of Jack the Ripper's brutal crimes.  And Maddie and Jake are teamed up again to stop the carnage as the Baron's army of human replicants imitate history's most notorious serial killers.

"It might not make sense, but the beloved Media tags it 'Murder by Munchausen.' For a price, there are hackers out there who will reprogram a synthoid to do your dirty work. The bad news: no fingerprints or DNA left at the crime scene. The good news—at least for us—is that they’re like missiles: once they hit their target, they’re usually as harmless as empty brass. The trick is to get them before they melt down their core OS data, so you can get the unit into forensics for analysis and, hopefully, an arrest." [excerpt from Murder by Munchausen]

Artificial Intelligence? Fuhgeddaboudit!

Artificial Evil has a name…Munchausen.



From The Invisible Mind (#3)

It sat on a bench outside the dormitory of nursing students, waiting with its kind’s infinite patience. Originally acquired and programmed for landscaping at the Cleveland Clinic, the synthoid was one of a brigade of units which had been hacked and Munchausened, then returned to their menial daily services to mankind to await the Baron’s call.

There was no adrenalin surge behind the extremely life-like facade of humanity when that call came. Data packets, sent scatter-shot through the Atlas Grid, coalesced at the location outside the Cole Eye Institute, where it methodically trimmed and shaped the immaculate shrubbery around the building. To avoid Q’s metadata sniffing algorithms from detecting a download spike in the grid, the information came in digital sprinkles over the course of its human handler’s work shift, slowly building a malevolent intent to be executed that night. In the middle of the afternoon, it left the topiary unfinished to melt into the hospital shift change and disappeared.
Personality modules were a Gen-3 feature upgrade, which is why the earlier models were initially preferred. Swapping out a few IC chips and uploading hacked firmware was a relatively easy way to turn a quick buck with an automated contract killing.  But evil innovates, too, and the same features that made synthoids even more human-like in their behavior also helped create robotic assassins which could better camouflage their malicious intents and evade the reach of the Artificial Crimes Unit by melting into and moving undetected through the humanity that surrounded them. For the Baron, it allowed for a greater measure of artistic expression in programming the synthoid’s behavior to not only recreate infamous crimes of the past, but to mimic the behavior of their perpetrators, which intensified the thrill of watching the video feed through the eyes of Jack the Ripper, Ted Bundy or, this particular evening, Richard Speck. Jake wasn’t the only history buff and it amused Jamal that London police had photographed the eyes of Jack the Ripper’s victims, hoping to capture the last thing they ever saw: their killer’s face. If only Scotland Yard could have imagined the future.

The Gen-3 personality modules also supported the ANSI Adaptive Artificial Intelligence Protocol #9 to enhance the artificial human experience of real men and women who interacted with synthoids. The constant writing and rewriting of code in the personality/experience loop formed unique individual synthoid consciousnesses, which manufacturers uploaded to their servers for product improvement teams to study.  In Munchausened units, that feed was hijacked and routed to another portal in the Darknet to build a collective id of evil.

At eleven PM, it rose from the bench and entered the dormitory. The bodies of nine women would be found the next day, having been strangled and stabbed to death. Unlike 1966, no eyewitness was left alive, though the phrase "Born to Raise Hell" was written on the wall in blood.


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

M.T. Bass is a scribbler of fiction who holds fast to the notion that while victors may get to write history, novelists get to write/right reality. He lives, writes, flies and makes music in Mudcat Falls, USA.

Born in Athens, Ohio, M.T. Bass grew up in St. Louis, Missouri. He graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University, majoring in English and Philosophy, then worked in the private sector (where they expect “results”) mainly in the Aerospace & Defense manufacturing market. During those years, Bass continued to write fiction. He is the author of eight novels: My Brother’s Keeper, Crossroads, In the Black, Somethin’ for Nothin’, Murder by Munchausen, The Darknet (Murder by Munchausen Mystery #2), The Invisible Mind (Murder by Munchausen Mystery #3) and Article 15. His writing spans various genres, including Mystery, Adventure, Romance, Black Comedy and TechnoThrillers. A Commercial Pilot and Certified Flight Instructor, airplanes and pilots are featured in many of his stories. Bass currently lives on the shores of Lake Erie near Lorain, Ohio.

M.T. Bass Author Links
Amazon Author Page:

Murder by Munchausen Trilogy Purchase Links


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Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Wednesday Briefs: In Pieces #53 (13.1)

Good morning and Happy Hump Day! If it's Wednesday, then it must be time for more flash fiction from the Wednesday Briefers! We're a group of authors who bring you our finest flash fiction every week, 500 to 1000 words, inspired by one of our prompts.

Last week saw Abby's boyfriend Brandon get his comeuppance after he said hurtful things about Ryan and Ben. Good riddance! Now it's time to get ready for their road trip. First stop - Lake Charles. See what's going on with the boys in this week's chapter of In Pieces. Don't forget to visit the other Briefers and see what's going on with them. Their links follow my tale! Enjoy!

In Pieces #53 (13.1)

Sleeping in felt nice, especially after the rough time they’d gone through the night before. After Brandon’s precipitate departure, the band had gone on to play their last set. Ryan kept a careful eye on the door, in case Brandon came back, although what he would have done if he had he didn’t know, but there was no sign of the asshole. Everything went well, the crowd loved Salvation, and they ended the evening on a positive note. After they finished and packed up the van, the owner, Clete, had invited them for a drink. Not wanting to be rude to someone who’d given them the chance to play, they spent a few minutes talking to him before they finally left. Clete had nothing but nice things to say about them, and he told them they were welcome to come back to his place and play any time.  Nothing was said of the incident with Brandon on the drive back to Mandeville, at least not in the car. Impossible to tell what Deacon and Keanu were discussing in the van.  Once they reached Cameron’s house, everyone had parted company and gone to bed without the usual nightcap, or even a recap of the night’s performance, deciding  the need for sleep trumped everything else.

Alone in their room, Ryan and Ben made love, despite the lateness of the hour, reveling in each other’s touch, washing away the vestiges of Brandon’s hateful words with their love. By the time they got out of bed the next morning, they found the rest of the band was already up and were in the process of packing for the road trip. Glancing out the front window, Ryan noticed Cameron’s truck was still missing. Ryan didn’t really mind. Cameron’s presence was sometimes disruptive, and they didn’t need more of that.

They headed to the kitchen to see what was there they could make breakfast from. As Ben was looking through the shelves, Ryan took advantage of his position to admire his very fine ass. He was still staring at it when Ben glanced up unexpectedly and caught him. A wide grin spread across Ben’s face.

“See something you like?” He gave a little wiggle for good measure. Ryan felt his cheeks grow warm, but he couldn’t deny the sentiment.

“Very much,” he said. “Think we have time to go back upstairs?” Being with Ben made him feel like a horny teenager again. Before Ben could respond, Abby cleared her throat behind them, startling Ryan. He hadn’t been aware of her presence, too absorbed in Ben to notice.

“Sorry to interrupt, guys. Just wanted to let you know the equipment’s in the van. Are we taking Cameron’s car or what?”

Ryan hadn’t even thought about that. If they were going to be away for a while, would he want them to use his car?

“I don’t even know where he is,” Ben said, yawning as he closed the door of the refrigerator. “There’s nothing in there, by the way. We’ll have to stop on the road.” As if on cue, Ryan heard a distinct ding.
Ben pulled his phone from his pocket. “Speak of the devil,” he murmured.  He glanced at the screen before looking up at them. “He says good luck on the tour, go ahead and use his car and gas card, and he’ll catch up with us later.”

“That answers that,” Abby said. “Did you guys pack yet?”

Ryan had been planning to do that this morning. He was fairly sure Ben was too. So, of course, the answer was no. Abby must have seen the truth in his face. “Don’t worry, you’re not the only ones. Keanu isn’t ready either, Deacon’s been reminding him of it all morning.” She snorted a laugh.

“Well, then, I guess we should take care of that.” Ben turned so his back was to Abby and gave Ryan a wink. Ryan instantly understood what Ben had in mind. At the thought alone, his dick began to swell.

“Maybe you should,” Abby agreed. “But maybe you should do it one at a time, if you know what I mean?”

“We’re grown men, I think we can control ourselves,” Ben said, giving Ryan another surreptitious wink before facing Abby. “How old do you think we are?”

“Age has nothing to do with it, sweetie.” She patted his cheek. “You’re the one who said you wanted to be on the road by noon, that’s all I’m saying.”

Aiden entered the kitchen, stopping beside his twin. “What are we doing?” he asked. “You find out what we’re supposed to be driving?”

“Cameron’s car,” Ben interjected. “He texted and told us to take it. I figured he would.”

“Cool.” Aiden nodded. “Abs, want me to get the bags and load them?”

“Well, I’m not sure if there’s a rush.” She arched her brows at Ben and Ryan.

“Yeah, go ahead and get your bags. Ryan and I are going up now. To pack,” he hastily inserted before Abby could question his motives any further. “We should get going. I want to get something to eat too, before we hit the road. Maybe pick up some snacks and drinks so we don’t have to stop for a while.”

“You still want me to drive?” Aiden asked.

“If you don’t mind,” Ben replied. “We can trade off later.”

“It’s only three hours, no big deal.” Aiden shrugged.

“You know, I can drive too,” Abby said. “Just throwing that out there.”

“I know you can,” Aiden responded with a grin.

“I was telling them more than you, bro.”

“Well all righty then. I’ll go get our bags while you two pack.” He headed toward the stairs.
Guess that wasn’t going to happen then. He’d have to wait until they got to the motel. At least they’d be alone then. Where were they going, again? Oh yeah, Lake Charles.

“C’mon, cutie,” Ben said. He took Ryan’s hand and they followed Aiden toward the stairs.

to be continued

Now go see what the other Briefers are up to:

Friday, May 17, 2019

Book Review: Ten Count, Vol 5 by Rihito Takarai

Ten Count, Vol 5       

Author: Rihito Takarai
Publisher: SuBLime Manga
American release date: August 8, 2017
Format/Genre/Length: Paperback/mangaGLBT/162 pages
Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★

Shirotani and Kurose are rescued from their elevator ordeal and emerge into falling rain. Cabs are scarce, so Kurose says he’ll walk, but Shirotani speaks up and offers to share a cab with him, which is a major step for him. Once inside the cab, Kurose prompts Shirotani to continue with what he began to say earlier, but Shirotani claims not to remember what that was, when the reality is he doesn’t feel comfortable bringing it up in that place. A disappointed Kurose has the driver pull over and gets out, since they are right by his apartment.  As he waits for the elevator, he’s surprised to hear his name and turns to find Shirotani there. Shirotani gives him an obviously fake story as to why he’s there before finally making what is a major admission for him, even if it’s phrased hypothetically. They go up to Kurose’s apartment and Shirotani requests that Kurose “make him dirty inside”.

As a child, Kurose’s parents were very busy, and he was left on his own most of the time. He strikes up an acquaintance with an older man named Nishigaki, and begins to hang out with him, even if the man claims Kurose is a pain. Kurose doesn’t understand Nishigaki’s idiosyncrasies, why he makes Kurose follow certain rules. Too late, he begins to understand what Nishigaki’s problem is. When Nishigaki disappears, Kurose blames himself. He studies all he can about germophobes, and makes a promise to himself to save the next Nishigaki.

Shirotani wakes the next morning in a strange bed. Kurose is already up and is very attentive to him, anticipating his every need. Shirotani tells Kurose he’s filled in number ten on his list and wants him to guess what it is, so then Kurose has to tell him why he is doing this. Kurose says he has feelings for Shirotani, but Shirotani knows there is more to the story than that, that it has to do with his being a germophobe. Will Kurose come clean with Shirotani?

The story is almost done, one more volume to go, and it’s so good as Shirotani and Kurose’s relationship grows stronger and stronger.  Now we know more about Kurose, and why he was initially drawn to Shirotani. It almost feels like closure for him with regard to Nishigaki. But he also says that Shirotani being a germophobe is not the only reason he is drawn to him, that he would love him anyway. Shirotani hasn’t told Kurose about his father, and what he witnessed that helped to make him the germophobe he is now. Hopefully he’ll do it in the next volume.  Ideally, I would love to see them move in together, and have an open and loving relationship. I think they can heal each other. I’m crossing my fingers for them.

Only one more to go, can’t wait!

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Wednesday Briefs: In Pieces #52 (12.6)

Good morning and Happy Hump Day! If it's Wednesday, then it must be time for more flash fiction from the Wednesday Briefers! We're a group of authors who bring you our finest flash fiction every week, 500 to 1000 words, inspired by one of our prompts.

Last week, as you'll recall, Abby's boyfriend Brandon made some rather rude and crude remarks to Ryan, concerning Ryan and Ben's relationship, which upset him greatly. Ben takes Ryan outside, on the band's break, to see what's up, only to have Abby seeking to discover the same thing. When she hears what he said, she punches Ryan. See what comes next in this week's chapter of In Pieces. Don't forget to visit the other Briefers and see what's up with them. Their links follow my tale! Enjoy!

In Pieces #52 (12.6)

“C’mon, Abs, it was just a joke,” Brandon continued to protest. “Baby, I’ll apologize to them. It’s no big deal, honestly. Okay, guys?” He took a tentative step toward her, then another  toward Ryan and Ben, only stopping when she raised her fist again.

“A joke? You call what you said a joke?” Abby repeated in disbelief. “You’re unbelievable, Brandon. And you’re a complete asshole.  I want you to go. As in now.”

Watching Brandon roll his eyes at Abby’s words, as if he didn’t take her seriously, Ryan wanted to go after the smarmy bastard and punch him in the mouth himself. But some instinct told him this was becoming their own personal fight, one which had nothing to do with what Brandon had said about him and Ben, so he held his peace, holding tightly to Ben’s hand.

“Tell you what, I’ll wait for you at the motel,” Brandon said. “Let you guys finish the last set.” He rubbed his jaw, moving it about as if to test how much damage she’d done. “We can grab a quick bite when you get off. Whatever you want. Sky’s the limit.” He offered her a cheesy smile, but Ryan noticed no sincerity in his eyes.

“Are you kidding me? I am not going back to that motel with you,” Abby said, disbelief evident in her voice. How dense was this man, Ryan wondered, that he would think she’d want to, after all of this. A smarter man would have given her time to cool off before he tried to get back into her good graces, tuck his tail between his legs and get out of her sight, but obviously Brandon wasn’t that man.
Ryan noticed someone round the corner of the building, coming up behind Brandon. Spying a brown monk’s robe, he realized at once who it was. Now there would truly be hell to pay.

Aiden’s casual stroll became a brisk stride as he took in the tableau before him. He hurried to his sister’s side.  “Are you all right? What’s going on? Do I need to kick someone’s dumb ass?”

“Brandon was just leaving,” Abby said.  “Weren’t you, dickhead?”

Even in the questionable light thrown by the lighting standards in the parking lot, Ryan could see the building fury in Brandon’s face. He glanced around him, as if wondering what the odds were he’d get his ass kicked if he started anything. By this time, Deacon and Keanu had also arrived. They glared at Brandon menacingly. He obviously decided if he ran away, he’d live to fight another day.

“Safety in numbers, I see,” he sneered. “That’s okay. I don’t need you motherfuckers. Or should I say brotherfuckers?” With that last moment of stupidity, he beat a hasty retreat , narrowly dodging Keanu and Deacon. The usually placid Deacon looked ready to strangle him, while Keanu’s face was a veritable storm cloud. Of one accord, they chased after him, out of sight.

Ryan and Ben hurried to Abby, who was already encircled in Aiden’s arms. Her brave front had collapsed and she was sobbing quietly. Aiden stroked her hair, attempting to calm her. “It’s okay, he’s gone. Shh, shh…”

“Abby, I’m so sorry.” Ben gently touched her arm. Ryan felt helpless, unsure what he could or should do, so he let Ben take the lead.

Abby turned her head. Mascara and tears streaked her cheeks as she struggled to bring her breathing under control. “Don’t be. It’s not your fault, either one of you. This has been a long time coming. A long time.”

“It’s not your fault,” Aiden echoed. “I’m sorry about the things he said to you. He’s just a dick, always has been.”

“You deserve better than him,” Ben said. “He isn’t good enough for you by a long shot. You’re an amazing woman. Thank you for standing up for us.”

“I’d fight anyone for you, Ben. You’re like family.”

The next thing Ryan knew, Abby had pulled Ben in and Ben pulled in Ryan, until all four were involved in a large group hug. Ryan’s heart filled with love—a protective love for Abby and Aiden, as well as an everlasting love for Ben. He would fight for these people, no matter what.

“We should probably get back in, break must be over,” Abby said. “How bad do I look?” She gave Aiden a searching look.

“A little repair, nothing major,” he said. “You sure you’re up to it?” He glanced at Ben.

“Maybe we should cancel the last set,” Ben began, but Abby shook her head adamantly.

“No, no way. I can handle this. We have a job to do, and we’re going to do it.”

“Abby, it’s the last set, we can—”

At that moment, Deacon and Keanu reappeared, breathing hard, as if they’d been running. Keanu wore a particularly satisfied expression. “He won’t be coming around any time soon.” Ryan noticed he cradled one hand in the other.

“Let me see that, killer,” Deacon took Keanu’s hand and brought it to his lips, kissing it. “I wouldn’t want to get on your bad side.”

Keanu laughed. “Like you could.”

“What did you do to him?” Aiden asked.

“Just taught him some of the manners his mama neglected to teach him,” Keanu said. “Not enough to cause any real damage, but enough to make him think twice about coming around.”

“Good,” Abby said. “Thanks, guys. You’re the best.”

“Yeah, I know.” Keanu’s statement elicited laughter, lightening the tense atmosphere somewhat.

“Give me a few minutes to get to the lady’s room and I’ll be ready,” Abby said, her voice thickening.

“What’s wrong? You okay?” Aiden asked with concern.

‘I’m fine,” she assured him. “Just thinking how much I love you all.”

“Back at you,” Ben said. 

Forming a phalanx around Abby, who walked beside her brother, they headed back inside to finish their final set.

to be continued

Now go visit the other Briefers and see what's up with them!

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Book Review: Bleach, Vol 1 by Tite Kubo

Bleach, Vol 1      

Author: Tite Kubo
Publisher: Viz Media
American release date: May 19, 2004
Format/Genre/Length: Paperback/Manga/Supernatural/200 pages
Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★

Ichigo Kurosaki can see ghosts. This is something he’s lived with all his life, so dead people are a normal part of his existence. He’s sensitive to their sufferings. When punks break a floral offering for a young child, Ichigo shows them the error of their ways by beating it into them.  Ichigo lives with his father and two sisters, Karin and Yuzu, his mother having died some time ago. They run the Kurosaki Clinic. His father is strict, in that he demands the teen-aged Ichigo be home by 7, and he has a disconcerting habit of attacking his son without warning. It’s become something of a male ritual with them, each trying to get over on the other. The girls just roll their eyes and shakes their heads at them.

When a mysterious girl in black robes appears suddenly in Ichigo’s room, he is thrown for a loss. She is equally flabbergasted that not only can he see her, he was able to kick her. She explains to him that she is Rukia Kuchiki, and she is a Soul Reaper from the Soul Society. When Ichigo tries to have his dad remove the intruder, his father looks at him like he’s crazy. Apparently no one can see her but him, lending credence to her story. Rukia explains to Ichigo that there are two kinds of souls – the normal kind, whom she performs konso on so they can pass on to the Soul Society, and the hollows, who must be vaporized. Rukia is looking for a hollow now, in Ichigo’s house.

Ichigo realizes to his horror that his family is in danger, and they are being attacked by a Hollow. His guilt only grows when Rukia surmises the Hollow is looking for Ichigo because of his strong spirit pressure, unlike other humans. Ichigo is determined to fight for his family. Rukia only intends to lend Ichigo half of her power so he can combat this enemy, but to her dismay, he absorbs all of it, rendering her unable to use them.

The next day Ichigo is confused to find his family have no memory of the attack and believe a truck drove into their home, causing extensive damage. He goes to school, wondering what’s become of Rukia. Did she return to her Soul Society? To his surprise and dismay he finds her as a new student in his class. What’s up with that? He confronts her in private and asks why she didn’t return to where she belongs, only to learn that she can’t because he took all her powers. So until she can get them back, he has to perform soul reaper duties in her place!

Ichigo and Rukia run into Ichigo’s friend, Orihime, who is something of a space cadet and a klutz but a super sweet girl. Rukia notices a strange bruise on Orihime’s leg, which she laughingly attributes to clumsiness, but Rukia isn’t sure that’s really the case. That night, Ichigo’s sister questions him about some missing items, such as her pajamas and a dress, but he has no idea where they are, why should he? In his room, he hears a phone go off, which turns out to be Rukia’s, and she is sleeping in his closet? No time to argue, a Hollow is nearby and they must confront it! When they find the monster, Ichigo is appalled when he recognizes who it is!

I’ve been watching the anime for several months now but am just starting to read the manga. It’s every bit as good as the anime, and I love seeing the characters in print. One thing I didn’t realize from the anime is that Ichigo has a nickname, which is Strawberry. My daughter explained that it’s because his name translates to strawberry. Learn something new every day!

In this first volume, we are meeting people, such as Orihime and Chad, and of course Rukia. Her sensing Ichigo’s spirit pressure is what starts everything moving.  The Kurosaki family is great, I love their interactions. Dad is really something else. But everything is done with love, and it shows. Ichigo may have been reluctant to take on the duties of a soul reaper, but once he’s agreed to do it, he goes into it wholeheartedly, as it’s his nature to stand up for other people who might not be able to stand up for themselves. He’s a good boy, he is.  The only criticism I can make (and it’s not something unusual to Kubo alone, it’s most of the male manga artists) is the tendency to draw women with huge breasts. But what can you do? I guess their primary target audience are teen-aged males.

Great first volume, lots to go, looking forward to it!