First Chapter Fridays: Megan Slayer

I absolutely love this chapter that Megan Slayer has sent to me for this week’s First Chapter Friday. It is so very different from anything that I write, but it’s so beautiful. The way Megan captures the atmosphere of suburban life as a single gay dad, the moments Bobby shares with his kids, the quiet dignity of the whole piece– I’m head over heels for this chapter, and can’t wait to read the whole book and see how the romance develops.

The book from which the chapter comes is  Together in Cedarwood. This chapter revolves around Bobby Gagnon, a single father of two children who returns to his hometown after coming out of the closet, divorcing his wife, and experiencing some as-yet-mysterious emotional fallout after a couple failed relationships with men. As I mentioned above, I love watching Bobby interact with his kids. I find myself rooting for Bobby as a father, and for his little family, and I love how Megan constructs a compelling romance that still has space for the moments of everyday family life. But, of course, the family is not the whole story here. This is how Megan describes the plot of this book:

Bobby Gagnon came back to town in the hopes of starting over. He’s got his kids and his accounting business, but he wants more. One look at the hot guy sharing the running trail with him is enough to stoke Bobby’s fire. He wants to hook up with the sexy runner, but he doesn’t even know the guy’s name. Will the man even want to be with a single father?

Remy Bard never considered himself a kid person or parent material. He’s happy with his job at the Cedarwood Tribune, but it’s not enough. Something’s always been missing in his life. He keeps seeing the same guy at the park– tall, dark, handsome and hot as hell in those running shorts. Although he’s shy, Remy isn’t about to let this guy get away without at least one night together.

These opposites certainly attract, but will their differences be enough to keep them apart or will they find a way to come together in Cedarwood?

As always, I’ve given you a small excerpt from Megan’s chapter below. If you like it, you can click through to Megan’s website, where she’s graciously shared the entire chapter. If you REALLY like it, you can buy Together in Cedarwood at the Loose Id website, or wherever Ebooks are sold.


Bobby headed off in the direction of the trails. He liked to start at the north end and work his way back around the serpentine track. The sound of the crushed limestone under his shoes lulled him. He could get lost in his thoughts during his runs and preferred things that way. As he rounded through the woods, he noticed a pair of runners coming toward him.

A woman and a man. He didn’t mind sharing the track with others, but liked the solitary qualities. He wasn’t one for talking while he worked out.

The pair hustled up to him, and he made eye contact with the guy. A shiver ran the length of his spine and he could’ve sworn he’d been hit by lightning. He’d never felt so off balance in his life.

The man smiled and nodded but didn’t stop running. The woman seemed to look right through him.

To read the entire chapter, go to Megan’s website.

First Chapter Fridays: Roxanne D. Howard

First First Chapter Friday of the year! (Try saying that five times fast.) Seriously, though, happy 2017 to all, and I hope this week’s first chapter makes your new year even happier.

This week’s incredibly hot selection comes from Roxanne D. Howard, who has gifted us with the first chapter of Overboard, book 3 from her Costa Mesa series. A little more about that book, as told to me by Roxanne herself:

At the end of their romantic holiday getaway, Piper is one loved-up woman, and she can’t get enough of the sizzling passion she’s found with Jack after all they’ve been through. The two lovers board Jack’s yacht and leave the idyllic hamlet of Catalina Island, California to head home for New Year’s Eve, and it seems nothing could be more perfect… until the day turns on a dime, and the waters rise. When Jack receives a radio distress call from an old friend out on the open ocean, their initial efforts to free a trapped, massive blue whale soon becomes a dangerous struggle for life or death when Jack risks everything to save it.

It’s a New Year’s Eve fraught with harrowing danger, narrow escapes, daring rescue missions, and heart-pounding passion. During their countless obstacles, Piper secretly discovers something shocking slipped into Jack’s coat pocket one time after they make love, and it threatens to change everything and rock the foundation of all they’ve built together. With the weight of the knowledge pressing down upon her, can their love survive? This New Year’s Eve, get ready for some fireworks, because it’s all going Overboard.

And now, without further adieu, I give you… an excerpt from Chapter 1 of Overboard. At the end of the excerpt, you can find a link to the whole chapter. (Do not read this at work. Trust me. If the text on the page doesn’t give your true pastime away, your glazed-over eyes surely will.) You can also find out where else to catch Roxanne and her amazing, amazing work online. Happy reading:

They’d made love once this morning when they awoke, but they were alone out here on the open sea. Her time in Catalina with Jack had taught her that if she asserted herself and showed him what she wanted, he gave it back to her tenfold. And right now, she was ready for it.

Read the whole chapter here.

Finding Roxanne D. Howard online:
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

First Chapter Fridays: Kryssie Fortune

Happy Friday, friends! This is such an exciting and frustrating time of year for so many of us: on the one hand, so many fantastic new books are coming out. On the other, many of us have presents and holiday gatherings to prepare for, and it’s hard to find the time and money to enjoy the new crop of books. If you’re feeling a little bit frazzled by the end of the year, I hope this First Chapter Friday series provides gives you permission to spend just a little bit of free time pursuing your own pleasures. And when the holiday rush is over, I hope you get a chance to spend some more thorough time with these books.

This week’s First Chapter Friday comes courtesy of Kryssie Fortune. Like me, she just had a new book come out. Sex, Scandal, and the Sheriff is unbelievably hot. If you are, indeed, in the midst of holiday preparations, I hereby give you permission to sit in your favorite chair of your favorite room, lock your door, and tell all your loved ones to back off for a bit while you take care of yourself first. You can buy Sex, Scandal, and the Sheriff at the Loose Id website. Alternatively, Kryssie is hosting a promo at the moment. If you comment on this post, or about this post on any of Kryssie’s or my social media, you can enter to win a copy of any of Kryssie’s books– your choice.

A little bit more about Sex, Scandal, and the Sheriff, the second book in Kryssie’s Heroes of Westhorpe Ridge series, just to prepare your palate:

Jasmine Stewart (Jazz to her friends) falls for the blond stranger when he spanks and seduces her at a Washington soiree. Later, when she discovers her flatmate is trying to draw her into a spy ring, she goes to the authorities. The ensuing publicity costs her her job, her security, and her future. Starting over in Westhorpe Ridge is her only option.

Sean Matthews, former SEAL and Westhorpe Ridge’s sheriff, can’t forget the woman he spanked when he visited Washington, but he thinks she’s a spy. When she turns up in Westhorpe Ridge, he tries everything to make her leave town. Despite their misunderstandings, though, they can’t keep their hands off each other.

As New Year’s Eve looms, the spy ring resurfaces. Jazz will need all of Sean’s SEAL prowess to survive. But because his wounded leg cost him his speed in the water, will it be enough?


All right, enough with the delays. Let’s get to the chapter! I’ll post the opening paragraphs below, and if you like, you can click on the link at the end to download the entire chapter(!) from Kryssie’s website.

* * *

Jasmine Stewart, Jazz to her friends, stood back and watched couples pair off. The room with its crystal chandelier and beautifully laid-out buffet was everything she’d expect from a high-class Washington soiree, not that she’d ever attended one before. The ladies in their long evening dresses and slightly overdone makeup looked like they’d stepped off a film set. Maybe it was the fancy up-do the hairdresser had twisted her hair into, but Jazz’s head hurt. The men, supposedly the capital city’s movers and shakers, stalked the room like sexual predators.

That last glass of champagne had been so bitter she couldn’t finish it, but it had set her libido blazing. Not usually jealous, she wanted to thrust the women aside and fight for her man. Any man would do. This sexual hunger wasn’t her, but right now she craved a hard, masculine body to grind her pussy against as she stripped off his clothes. Once she’d freed his cock, he’d pump it inside her until she came so many times she begged him to stop. If the musky smell of sex percolating through the room meant anything, the women here had gone into collective heat. Jazz’s breasts ached, and her pussy dampened with need. If she didn’t come soon, she’d explode…

* * *

If (like me) you find it totally unbearable to stop there, download the entire chapter from Kryssie’s website. Happy reading!

First Chapter Fridays: Lex Valentine

Happy Winter and Assorted Holidays to all my readers! I know I’ve been a little tight-lipped about my own work lately, but it’s just because we’re in that calm moment before excitement comes bursting out. Right now, I’m prepping for the release of the next book in the Dragons Schooled series, and in the very beginning stages of a completely new and different writing project. All shall be revealed soon, I assure you.

In the meantime, though, it’s time for another edition of First Chapter Fridays. This week’s episode comes from the incomparable Lex Valentine, who has been gracious enough to share a chapter from her novel The Pixie PrinceHold on to your mattresses, folks, because Lex is about to take you for the ride of your life.

About The Pixie Prince:

Max LeFevre, known to his fans as Max Fever, is on the hunt for a new mattress. Becoming the Pixie Prince means Max has inherited big gold wings that he must keep hidden. But the wings, and his sudden, unexpected sensitivities, have made it impossible for Max to sleep. His mattress leaves him bruised and that’s a bad thing for a guy who makes his living modeling designer underwear. So when the waiter at Max’s favorite restaurant tells him he knows about a special mattress, Max can’t resist trying it.

Bliss Wilde never expected to meet Max in her own club. The fact that he’s there to try out her mattress doesn’t matter. Watching the big golden pixie roll around on her bed sets her libido on fire. When Max turns up later that night, unable to sleep, Bliss invites him to her bed. During the sexual romp that ensues, Bliss and Max discover they are mates. But they both know people for whom bonding has gone wrong, making them cautious about the process. Still, their desire for each other rages high and with Max getting a new mattress, he figures maybe he should break it in with a bonding.

Excerpt:

“That would be the weirdest thing ever, Maxie. Our waiter solving your sleep issue.” Alexa wheezed as she tried to stop laughing.

Taking a deep breath to push the laughter down, Max shook his head and reached for his drink. “I don’t care who solves it, as long as it gets solved.”

“I just don’t get why it’s so important.” Alexa rubbed her finger down the stem of the glass.

Max couldn’t explain it to her in a public place so he made light of the situation. “It’s important because I never get to be on the bottom.”

Alexa choked on her drink. “Max, you’re not even seeing anyone.”

He gave her an arch look. “If I meet someone today, I don’t get to be on the bottom.”

She rolled her eyes and groaned. “You’re incorrigible,” she muttered.”

******

For the entire chapter, go to Lex’s website.

For the entire book, go here to buy from the vendor of your choice.

Happy First Chapter Friday!

First Chapter Fridays: Kelly Wyre

Whoa, what’s this? A First Chapter Friday that actually goes up on Friday?! Alert the presses!

kellywyre_amsterdam_earthquakesOkay, seriously, though. This week– and actually on Friday, no less– it is my pleasure to bring you the talented Kelly Wyre, author of, among other things, the New Amsterdam stories. This chapter is from Earthquakes, and it seriously had me glued to my screen from start to finish. The overall story of the novel is as follows:

**********************************************

Ellis Parker is a lucky man: he escaped his persecuting family, survived his tour of duty, and met Maxwell Clark in the city of New Amsterdam. Clark showed Ellis more than the ropes: Clark helped Ellis figure out who he is– a gay submissive with a massive fixation on a beautiful, mysterious ballet dancer named Bryn Rothe. Ellis knows a Good Man when he sees one, and he wants nothing more than to score a first date with Bryn.

Little does Ellis know that Bryn has a violent past that is crawling out of shallow graves to haunt him. Even his hectic schedule and beloved stage aren’t enough to distract him. It’s impossible for Bryn to figure out how he feels about Ellis with his demons between them, but when Ellis saves Bryn not one but twice, Bryn is forced to admit that there’s something about Ellis that Bryn might not merely want but need.

Together, they journey to the scene of Bryn’s original crime– Charles Towne, South Carolina. There they will dig up secrets that might explain Bryn’s tortured life but might also be his– and Ellis’s– undoing.

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To read the whole chapter, click on the quote below. At the end of the full chapter, you can find more information about how to buy Earthquakes, and where to connect with Kelly online.

Gail Koger: A Day with a First Chapter

At this point, it’s feeling a bit silly to call my series where I share writing excerpts from my favorite authors First Chapter Fridays. Today, as I write this, it is Wednesday. I am hoping to get back on track this week. In the meantime, though, I couldn’t wait one day more to share with you an excerpt from Wulf and the Bounty Hunter, an AMAZING new sci-fi romance novel by none other than Gail KogerWulf and the Bounty Hunter came out in October, and I am positively hooked. Koger is an exquisite world-builder–not to mention, amazing at building chemistry and tension between characters. A++ would recommend, as the kids say these days.

wulfThe story:  Wulf knows Yakira is his soul mate. The only person he needs to convince is her, but with intergalactic terrorists on Yakira’s trail, there’s little time for romance. What’s a hot-blooded Coletti warlord to do?

Yakira feels safe and cherished with Wulf, but he is a Coletti; the ultimate predator with a taste for blood, a passion for battle and the need to control everything in his life. The big question is; how does she make Wulf understand she’s a powerful psychic with kick-ass bionic limbs and quite capable of taking care of herself?
If you like what you read, you can buy Wulf and the Bounty Hunter on Amazon, and you can connect further with Gail Koger on her Goodreads page. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
*********
I was ten years old, alone on an alien planet and desperate. I hadn’t eaten in two days and I was so hungry. I knew sneaking into a space port tavern was a bad idea, but if something went wrong, I could outrun a drunk male easily. I sucked up my courage and slipped inside….
Leaving suddenly seemed like a good idea. My gaze fixed on the grimy counter. Oh thank the Goddess, some fool had left his credit chip laying out. Edging closer, I mentally scanned the huge Coletti warrior sitting on the bar stool. It was probably his. One of the dancers was rubbing her breasts all over his face. The warrior really liked it. I frowned. Huh? He wanted his snake thingy inside the dancer’s tunnel? He had a snake? And why would he want to put it in her tunnel?
Read the entire chapter at Gail Koger’s Goodreads page.

First Chapter Fridays: Erica Lynn

Good afternoon, friends. I know you’re probably scratching your heads at the title of this post, as it is clearly not Friday. There was a bit of confusion this week over who to post, but as the post-Thanksgiving tryptophan-induced haze has cleared, all is well, and we are forging ahead with First Chapter Fridays. And a bit.

her-husbands-brotherThis week’s author is the talented Erica Lynn, who has graciously agreed to share with us the first chapter of Her Husband’s Brother, a novella in her Love and Justice series, which is published by Loose Id. The overall plot of Her Husband’s Brother is as follows:

Lexie Hayes knows her marriage is over. After working endlessly to fix things, she’s decided to move on and find happiness elsewhere. The last thing she needs is to run into her sexy-as-hell brother-in-law at a nightclub on her birthday. He’s cocky, arrogant, and so damn kissable she can barely hold onto her sanity.

Jonathon Hayes has always wanted his sister-in-law. She’s gorgeous, feisty, and unbeknownst to her, married to the largest drug supplier in the Houston and San Antonio areas. When fate puts them side by side, lust and tensions run high. He wants her and he knows she wants him.

Can he keep his feelings on a shelf long enough to keep her safe while he dethrones his drug lord brother, or will temptation overwhelm good sense and put them both on a path to destruction?

******

Right now, Erica is running a contest. If you like her Facebook page, you will be automatically entered for a chance to win a free copy of the Erica Lynn book of your choice. So get to liking! You will be so glad you did.

******

Here’s my favorite excerpt from the chapter (click on it, it’s a link to the entire chapter at Erica’s website):

BLISS. PURE. FUCKING. Bliss. Jonathon Hayes watched Lexie from his spot in the corner of the bar, willing to bet money she hadn’t felt that relaxed in a long time. In the past, she’d always been tense, as if she carried the weight of the world on her shoulders. Seeing her like this was a thing of beauty. Dancing and laughing with her friends, not a care in the world, shaking her ass and probably never realizing that all it did was tease every poor bastard’s cock in the room. His included.

First Chapter Fridays: Ellie Masters

I apologize for the lateness of this–I have been out of town, and my relationship to time has consequently been somewhat skewed. So with much apologies, and without further adieu, it is my pleasure to bring you the incredible Ellie Masters for this week’s First Chapter Friday. Er, Saturday.

This week’s excerpt comes from Ellie’s book Changing Roles:

em_changing-roles_coverinKate Summers’s career on the Police Force came to an implosive end when she was outed as a noted Domme. She now subsists at the fringes, scraping by as she feeds off the misery of others. Catching cheating spouses for divorce lawyers has become her paycheck, and a case brought by the woman who destroyed her career will bring many challenges. To follow the leads and solve a murder, she must reenter the world that cost her career and change roles. There’s only problem, she swore she’d never submit to a man—at least never again.

If you like what you read– and I think you will– you can buy the book here.

Changing Roles by Ellie Masters
Chapter 1

Kate

A sharp dividing line separated work and play. I hunted men during the day and toyed with them at night. My life was in perfect balance– until it all fell apart. That was two years ago. I struggled for a time, gave up everything I loved. Now I’ve adjusted to a new normal. A very featureless and bland vanilla existence.

Read the rest at Ellie’s website.

 

Dragon + Genie = Fiery Passion

Dear Readers, Welcome to the SearchLight universe. Here dragons kill as well as cure, and not all genies have their master’s happiness in mind. .DragonFood_CoverfromKatie[1] Dragon FireEC_DragonsBane_covertn

Dragon + Genie = Passion

Dragon + Genie + Crazy Ex = Fear/Triumph

Dragon + Dragon + Genie = Attempted Murder

Dragon + Genie + Genie = Immortality

Peace,

–Emily

Scarlet Stilettos

Dear Readers,

Please welcome Ash Penn.

What’s your latest release? Tell us about it.

 

My latest book is called Scarlet Stilettos and is available from Loose Id. It’s a romance between a trans woman and a gay man.  Here’s the blurb:

 

Although Laine Lawson is physically male, she’s spent much of her life expressing the feminine side of her nature. She’s also well-skilled at hiding her romantic feelings for her best friend.

Life’s sweet for waiter and ex-stripper Tony Barton. He’s met a guy who’s everything he wants in a lover, both in and out of bed. Will Thompson isn’t the love of Tony’s life, but he’s fun and doesn’t take their relationship too seriously. At least, not until Will discovers Tony’s best friend isn’t quite as she seems.

When Laine’s ex-boyfriend contacts her about a past she’d sooner forget, and with Will’s jealousy threatening her friendship with Tony, the only thing she can do is run.

Her absence forces Tony into acknowledging his feelings for Laine aren’t entirely platonic. But Laine’s a woman, no matter what lies beneath her skirt. They might have shared one night together when they first met, but that was business. A relationship could never work, even if she hadn’t disappeared.

After Laine makes a major life-changing decision, she returns home to say goodbye. But Tony can’t say goodbye back. He can’t say much at all, not with Will doing the talking for him.

 

The novel is a follow on from the short story I wrote for my writing group’s anthology a couple of years ago. Trick of the Night is told from the point of view of Tony, a stripper dabbling in prostitution. I needed a first client for him, and Laine is the result.

Scarlet Stilettos carries on about a year where Trick of the Night left off. It details how Tony and Laine go from friends to lovers. It’s a long journey for them, and I wanted to show both characters’ vulnerabilities as well as their strengths. At the time the novel takes place, Tony is in a relationship with Will and Laine is coming to terms with the fact that the man she loves (Tony) will never see her in a romantic light. That changes as the story progresses, but it’s not until Laine goes missing that Tony realises he’s in love with her too, despite their differences. Both characters go through some pretty traumatic times before finally reuniting. I admit I put the pair of them through hell, but I’m hoping the result is a page turner. As the story is about 105k long, there are a lot of digital pages to turn.

 

What are the challenges and rewards of writing transgender romance?

 

First of all, when I was looking for transgender erotic romances to see how other authors wrote them, I found that there weren’t that many on the market. I found a few that involved crossing-dressing, which wasn’t really what I was looking for.

Initially, I intended Laine to be a gender-fluid character, but when I started writing her she had other ideas. Her gender is definitely female, but she chooses not to undergo surgery. She doesn’t outright reject her physical body, but she has no desire to be male. The problem is she tends to fall for gay men. Her first serious lover refused to accept her any part of her femininity, and Tony sees her as completely female. I wanted to bring the two characters together because of their love for each other, irrespective of gender. At first I wasn’t sure if it would be possible. I wasn’t sure if there were people out there whose gender and sex didn’t line up, but who could still find acceptance within themselves without hormones or surgery.

The greatest challenge was always being conscious of the ability to offend and obviously wanting to avoid that at all costs. Laine’s head was fairly easy to get into, probably more so than Tony’s.

 

Many authors write people different from themselves in so many ways. For example, when I started writing gay romance I talked to all my gay male friends for almost six months before I ever submitted a story. And whenever I start a story about a topic I don’t understand, I talk to those who do. How do you conduct your research?

 

I didn’t do any research into the transgender aspects of this story until after I’d finished writing. And only then did I check out various forums to see if I’d made any glaring errors. I was surprised by how many people don’t go opt for surgery, and that’s how I wrote Laine who has reconciled d her gender to her physical body. There was a reason I did my checks after I’d written the book, mainly because I didn’t want to turn Laine into a checklist, or textbook case. I wanted her to be an individual, and that her feelings and emotion and choices are hers. I didn’t want her (or me) to come across as preachy. And I didn’t want the transgender aspect to be the sole focus of the story.

 

Generally though, I don’t research people. My characters usually come to me most of the way fully formed so I have a good idea of who they are and what they want right away. The only research I tend to do will be information places, jobs and rules and regulations that sort of thing. Right now I’m researching the NHS (National Health Service) and issues concerning care funding for people with brain injuries.

 

How long have you been writing, and why did you start?

 

I’ve always written, for as long as I can remember anyway. I first started writing gay fiction in the early nineties.  At the time I read a lot of paranormal and sci-fi, so that’s the kind of thing I wrote. I tend to write more contemporary fiction now, although I have dabbled with vampires. I also have an idea for a new paranormal book I hope to start later this year.

Writing provides a bit of escapism for me. I’ve always had quite an active imagination, and writing is the best way I know to indulge that side of my brain.

 

Do you have other hobbies or interests that influence your writing? (i.e. cooking, politics, 4-H)

 

I don’t really have time for other hobbies/interests. Writing takes up the majority of my time. If I did, though, I’d probably use those other interests as excuses not to write when a story gets difficult. I like to walk, just for the exercise aspect if nothing else. Walking helps me think, especially when I get stuck on a certain part of a story. In my case, it’s usually the end that takes a lot of working out. I’ve also been mulling over the idea of taking some painting classes, just to stimulate some other creative areas of my brain.

 

 

Where are you published?

I am published with Loose Id and Totally Bound. I have a new story coming out from Totally Bound called Chasing the Dragon, which is on early-release from  4th April and general release from 2nd May.

 

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