Friday, September 20, 2019

Alex by A.M. Salinger, Blitz & Giveaway


Alex
Twilights Falls, #1
A.M. Salinger

Publication date: September 20th 2019
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, LGBTQ+, Romance

Alex Hancock needs money to salvage his career. Finn West needs a spouse to stop his aunt from sabotaging his future. Can the two men make more of the fake marriage they enter into?
When Alex’s business partner runs off to Mexico with their company funds, the lawyer has little choice but to return to his hometown of Twilight Falls to marry someone he’d never met in order to raise the money to save his business. What he didn’t expect was that the woman he was meant to wed would turn out to be a gorgeous, brooding man.
Finn had resigned himself to a life without love after his wife’s death from cancer. Wracked with guilt at never being able to satisfy her in bed, Finn is shocked when his body and his heart starts responding to the man he is tricked into marrying to stop his aunt from dissolving his trust fund.
Passions collide when the two men start exploring their relationship in ways neither of them anticipated. Can Alex convince Finn to embrace his sexuality and take a chance on them? Or will Finn run away from his only chance at true love?

Discover Alex and Finn’s story in the enthralling first novel in Twilight Falls, the new series by the author of the bestselling, contemporary romance series Nights.


EXCERPT:
Alex Hancock came out of the coffee shop opposite the courthouse and froze in his tracks.
Someone had parked their dirty, mud-streaked Jeep Wrangler close to his pristine, black and red Triumph motorcycle.
Alex’s knuckles whitened on his cup of black coffee.
When it rains, it fucking pours!
He stormed across the street, stopped in front of the offending vehicle, and glared at it as if it had committed a crime. A car slowly pulled up behind him.
“Wow,” someone murmured. “You look pissed.”
Alex turned. A pretty brunette was watching him with an amused expression from behind the wheel of a red, convertible Mini.
“You would be too if some asshole just blocked you in!” he snapped.
Izzy Batista’s green eyes sparkled impishly as she observed the grimy, four-wheel drive. “Yup, that guy must be one giant dick.”
She parked her car and joined him outside the courthouse.
“I gotta give it to you, Hancock. You sure scrub up nice.” Izzy placed her hands on her hips and scrutinized him with a critical eye.
Alex sighed irritably and downed his drink. He winced when a burst of acid rose in his throat.
“Easy on the coffee, stud,” Izzy murmured. “We don’t want you getting an ulcer on your big day.”
A fresh bout of nerves twisted Alex’s gut at Izzy’s words.
“I can’t believe I’m doing this,” he mumbled to himself. “Me, Alex Hancock, getting married.”
Izzy patted his arm. “No backsies.” A trace of steel underscored her friendly tone. “Remember, you got a lot riding on this.”
He crushed the coffee cup and tossed it in a nearby trash can.
She’s right.
It had been a month since the life Alex had carefully built in San Diego had come crashing down around him, after his business partner of two years embezzled from their law firm and ran off to Mexico. Mired in debt and with his new condo on the verge of being repossessed, Alex had desperately been trying to raise the necessary capital to salvage his career and company when Izzy Batista had called him out of the blue ten days ago. The sister of Wyatt Batista, one of Alex’s lifelong friends from his hometown of Twilight Falls, Izzy had discovered the predicament he was in through her older brother.
“I may have a solution to your problems,” Izzy said. “Word of warning though, it’s pretty unorthodox.”
Alex stilled where he sat on his couch, his cell phone in hand. “What do you mean?”
“One of my clients is in trouble,” Izzy said. “They have to get married by the end of the month or they’ll lose their estate and half of their considerable fortune.”
Alex frowned. “I don’t understand.”
Izzy sighed. “I’m saying this client needs a mail-order groom. And pronto. They’re willing to pay half a million dollars to the right candidate.”
Alex’s mouth went dry. “Half a million dollars?” His heart pounded against his ribs as he glanced at the boxes filling the apartment. He’d barely started unpacking when Ryan had pulled the rug out from under him and disappeared with half the company’s funds.
“Yup, half a million dollars,” Izzy repeated. “The contract’s for six months. Marry the client, live with them, and then walk into the sunset with the money and no strings attached.”
Alex swallowed, shocked that he was even entertaining the crazy idea Izzy had just proposed.
“Where does your client live?” he mumbled.
“Twilight Falls.”
Alex grimaced at Izzy’s answer. He raked a hand through his hair and stared at the dazzling lights of San Diego Bay through the glass doors overlooking his terrace, a storm of memories and bittersweet emotions crashing over him.
“I know you don’t like coming back here, Alex,” Izzy said quietly. “Not since the accident. But this could solve all your problems. And my client’s too.”
Alex chewed the inside of his cheek. “What’s wrong with your client?”
“What makes you think there’s anything wrong with my client?” Izzy said in a voice that Alex immediately distrusted.
“Because someone with that much money shouldn’t be struggling to find herself a fiancé, even a fake one. So what is it? Is she unattractive? Does she have a horrible personality?” He pulled a face. “Does she eat puppies for breakfast?”
“None of the above,” Izzy replied in a cheerful tone. “The client is gorgeous. They’re just a bit…eccentric, is all.”
Alex mulled Izzy’s words over. Eccentric he could deal with.
“Are they expecting sex?”
A soft chuckle travelled down the line.
“No, it isn’t that kind of arrangement. Besides, I know you’re more into dicks than vaginas.”
“Yeah, well, my dick hasn’t seen much action lately,” Alex muttered.
“And here I thought you moved to San Diego for all the gay guys,” Izzy said drily. “You know, since you’d pretty much fucked all the hot ones here in Twilight Falls.”
Alex scowled. “I only fucked one hot guy in that town.”
Izzy laughed. Alex found his lips curving in a faint smile at her bubbly voice. Truth be told, he missed Izzy and Wyatt. He missed all the friends he’d left behind when he decided to move to San Diego, after the accident that had changed all of their lives.
A comfortable silence settled between them.
“So, what will it be, Alex?” Izzy finally said.
Alex hesitated. “The end of the month is only ten days away.”
“Your math is spot on. I knew there was a reason why you became a lawyer.”
Alex ignored her sarcastic words. “Give me a few days to think about it.”
It had taken him three days to make his decision. Six days later, he’d put his stuff in storage, returned his apartment keys to his realtor, and climbed on the beautifully restored, classic motorcycle he’d owned since he was seventeen for the one-hundred-and-fifty-mile ride to the San Bernardino Mountains and the quaint, historic town of Twilight Falls.
Nestled in a valley of towering pine forests and home to the picturesque waterfall and rapids from which it took its name, Twilight Falls started life as a nineteenth-century trading post and mining settlement, during the California Gold Rush. After a slump following the two World Wars, the place saw a strong revival in the second half of the twentieth century, as a result of a sustained campaign by the city council to turn it into a tourist town. The rise in outdoor sports activities meant it now stayed busy pretty much all year around, with the briefest of lulls at Thanksgiving and the New Year.
Alex had reached Twilight Falls late last night. Having refused Izzy and Wyatt’s offer to put him up at their place, he’d booked himself into a motel outside town; the spring tourist season was just getting started and there’d still been rooms available at short notice. Not that he would have wanted to stay in town. Even though it had been twelve years since he’d left the place, he was bound to bump into someone he knew and he wasn’t in the mood for small talk.
“Are you ready?” Izzie said presently, excitement raising the pitch of her voice.
“Not really,” Alex murmured.
Izzy grinned. “Yeah, well, if you’d stayed at our place, we could have gotten you wasted and you’d be doing this drunk right now.”
“I really don’t think the county clerk would be impressed if the groom turned up with a hangover,” Alex said sternly. “Besides, I’m entering a legal agreement with this woman. The least I can do is show up sober.”
He looked up at the two-story, cream stucco and red-brick building before them and squared his shoulders.
Whoever this broad is, I only have to live with her for six months. How bad can it be?
An odd expression danced across Izzy’s face.
“What is it?” Alex said.
“Nothing.” Izzy flashed him a bright smile, hooked her arm through his elbow, and guided him up the short flight of steps and into the building.
They checked in at reception and headed in the direction of the court rooms. Surprise darted through Alex when Izzy walked past the austere wooden doors and continued down the hall.
“Where are we going?” he said, puzzled.
“To the chapel,” Izzy replied breezily.
He arched an eyebrow.
“The client insisted,” she explained with a mysterious smile.
The first tendrils of unease started coiling through Alex. Izzy was acting strange. And he wasn’t sure he liked the hint of devilment in the depths of her eyes.
The chapel doors appeared up ahead. Alex’s pulse speeded up when they opened them and stepped inside a large, airy chamber. The chapel was a relatively new addition to the courthouse and had been designed along the traditional lines of a church, with an altar, a chancel, and a nave split by a central aisle. But it wasn’t the charming ecclesiastical interior or the delightful pastel colors around them that caused Alex to draw a sharp breath and rock to a stop on the checkered marble flooring.
He stared beyond the bright posies and white lace decorating the wooden pews to the two figures rising to their feet from the front right row.
“Jesus, Izzy!” Alex hissed, shock reverberating through him. “I can’t marry her! She’s older than my grandmother!”
The elderly dame in the pink brocade dress and pale floral hat arched an eyebrow.
“You were right,” she told Izzy. “That one has a smart mouth on him.” The woman’s eyes fairly twinkled with glee as she studied Alex’s stunned expression. “I’m not the one you’re marrying, sonny.”
Alex’s heart stuttered. His gaze switched to the tall, dark-haired man in the smart, navy-blue suit and the ivory, rose boutonnière next to the woman. A thunderous expression clouded the stranger’s handsome, stubbled features.
Shit. You’re kidding me.
“What the hell is going on, Izzy?” the man growled.


Author Bio:
Ava Marie Salinger is the pen name of an Amazon bestselling author who has always wanted to write scorching hot contemporary romance. In 2018, she finally decided to venture to the steamy side. NIGHTS is the first of several sizzling series featuring sweet, sexy men with dark pasts and a whole lot of love to give to the ones brave enough to fight for their hearts. When she’s not dreaming up hotties to write about, you’ll find Ava creating kickass music playlists to write to, spying on the wildlife in her garden, drooling over gadgets, and eating Chinese.
Want to be the first to know about Ava’s new releases and get access to exclusive content, sneak previews, sales, and giveaways? Then sign up to her Reader Group here and join her VIP Facebook Fan Group here.
Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Bookbub / Instagram / Pinterest / Amazon / Book and Main Bites




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Relatively Happy by Whitney Dineen, Blitz & Giveaway


Relatively Happy
Relativity Series, #3
Whitney Dineen


Publication date: September 18th 2019
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Romance


Sarah Hastings’ life is chaotic. Between running her organic farm, her yurt-style holistic B&B, and her vegan café Eat Me!, she barely has time for an aura cleanse. What’s more, her spirit guide just announced the universe is sending her a man.
Suddenly, a sexy pro-football player, a hipster photojournalist, and fellow organic farmer practically fall from the sky onto her doorstep. But which one is her cosmic soulmate?
While Sarah meditates on the answer, her parents show up unexpectedly throwing the mother of all monkey wrenches into her carefully laid plans.
With only morning yoga and her erotic book club to keep her sane, no wonder she’s chucked her vegan diet in search of bacon. Will the stars of love align, or will the universe let her down in the biggest way possible?
Relatively Happy is a laugh-out-loud, cry-your-heart-out tale that will have you believing in the beauty of life’s journey.


Relatively Happy hit my happy spot. This story is not only funny, but it will tug at your heartstrings. Whitney Dineen has another winner on her hands. Bravo!” -Jennifer Peel, Amazon bestselling author of My Not So Wicked Boss

Relatively Happy touches on love, life, dreams, and wishes. Dineen brings a new perspective which ends this series with a laugh-out-loud, cry-your-heart-out tale. Life is more like a roller coaster rather than a merry-go-round. I loved it!” – 5 Stars, AJ Book Remarks

Another delightful, yet deep page turner by the talented Ms. Dineen! I laughed, I cried, I swooned, and I pouted that I have to wait for more from one of America’s most fabulous romcom voices.” -Melanie Summers, author of the bestselling Crown Jewel Series

So many emotions in this book! I laughed out loud and I cried. I loved every second of this fantastic read!” – Becky Monson, author of Just a Name

EXCERPT:
I try to regain control of the class and reiterate, “Time to thank our breasts.”
“Out loud?” Emily gasps.
“Totally, out loud. We’re here in a healing sisterhood. There shouldn’t be anything we’re afraid to say in front of each other. Why don’t I start?” I take a deep breath before stating, “I want to thank my breasts for being strong and healthy and pretty darn cute, if I do say so myself.”
Nan pipes in. “Girls, I want to thank you for hiding my belly from me. It’s nice of you to block that little pooch from my view.”
The other gals add their two cents, before Emily says, “Um, thanks for helping me look better in swimming suits?”
Nothing from Dorcas. I nudge, “Your turn, Mrs. A. How have your breasts served you?”
“Well, I guess they fed my babies. So, thanks for that.” Then she adds, “I’m guessing you don’t want me to thank them for the infected milk ducts, all the backaches, and the years of leering men.”
I ignore the unexpected sarcasm and ask, “Anyone else?”
There are no takers, so I jump up and announce, “It’s time to encourage our lymph nodes to open up and drain!”
“How are we gonna do that?” Nan demands.
“Follow me.” I keep my promise and help Nan to her feet before lending a hand to the minister’s wife. Sarah takes care of helping the other ladies. When we’re all ready, I start to skip around the field in zigzagging lines. I feel the warm sun on my face and the soft dandelions underfoot, then I start to wave my arms around like I’m an exotic bird about to take flight. It’s a deliriously freeing sensation.
When I look behind me to see if the others are following my lead, I find my regulars are doing their part, but Nan’s laughing her head off, and Dorcas and Emily look borderline appalled.
“Girl, if Dorcas does that, she’s gonna have black eyes for a month,” Nan declares before doubling over with renewed hilarity.
Dorcas smacks her friend’s arm and snaps, “Don’t be nasty, Bridget. I don’t see you out there flapping around like a lunatic.”
That’s all the encouragement Nan needs to take off like a slightly wounded, elderly, bird of prey. She starts slow, but eventually catches her rhythm and starts to hoot like an owl before she begins clucking like a chicken. “Sarah, this is the most fun I’ve had in ages!”
I hear Emily giggle and mumble, “What the heck?” before she joins in.
Dorcas is totally immobile until Nan runs up behind her and pinches the back of her leg while yelling, “Dorcas, you got a bee up your shirt, gal.” That’s all that is needed to set her in motion.
“Thank your breasts,” I yell. “Tell them how much you love them.”
Nan starts to sing out at the top of her lungs, “Do your boobs hang low, do they wiggle to and fro? Can you tie ’em in a knot? Can you tie ’em in a bow? Can you throw them over your shoulder like a continental soldier? Do your boobs hang low?”
I don’t know how long we skip around the field with our breasts flapping in the wind, but it was a good long while—we probably could have gone a lot longer—but I hear Nan call out, “Hendrix Greer, is that you, boy? As I live and breathe, come over here and give me some sugar!”
Hendrix Greer? Nan’s got to be hallucinating. Rix Greer hasn’t set foot in Gelson since his grandfather’s funeral six years ago. I turn around to tell Nan to quit playing games when I come face-to-face with an image that filled many of my adolescent fantasies.
I stop dead in my tracks with my mouth hanging open like a hungry baby bird. The Adonis standing in front of us is no mirage, it really is Hendrix Greer, the biggest football star to ever call Gelson home. The biggest star of any kind, actually. He played for Notre Dame before turning pro.
Rix was four years older than me, so we were never in the same school at the same time. But man, his legend reigned supreme over our whole town. It still does. It’s just that he’s never here to feed local gossip. Don’t get me wrong, we still talk about him, but not with firsthand knowledge anymore. Whenever Rix shows up in the tabloids with a new woman on his arm, it’s all over the Wash-n-Curl like turkey vultures to a fresh kill.
And here he is, standing right in front of me. I don’t say anything and yet I can’t seem to close my mouth.

Author Bio:
Whitney loves to laugh, play with her kids, bake, and eat french fries -- not always in that order.
Whitney is a multi-award-winning author of romcoms, non-fiction humor, and middle reader fiction. Basically, she writes whatever the voices in her head tell her to.
She lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her husband, Jimmy, where they raise children, chickens, and organic vegetables.
Gold Medal winner at the International Readers' Favorite Awards, 2017.
Silver medal winner at the International Readers' Favorite Awards, 2015, 2016.
Finalist RONE Awards, 2016.
Finalist at the IRFA 2016, 2017.
Finalist at the Book Excellence Awards, 2017
Finalist Top Shelf Indie Book Awards, 2017
Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram




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No Saint by Rie Warren, Release Blitz

Title: No Saint
Series: Blood Legion MC
Author: Rie Warren
Genre: MC Romance
Release Date: September 16, 2019


SAINT
With a rap sheet about as long as the inked sleeves on my arms, I’ve been a misfit with a questionable track record. But I’ve fought for and found a home with the Blood Legion MC. Through thick and thin, brawls and bloodletting, I’ve created a rep: I’m the man.
I’m the man, and Honoré’s the only woman I want. This obsession with her is irrational and stupid considering she’s prickly, pissed off with me before I can even make a move, and definitely not my type. Except the beautiful New Orleans street busker takes my breath away—all untapped passion simmering just beneath the surface.
Something much darker simmers just beneath the surface of her life too.
HONORÉ
Being someone’s old lady is the last thing on my mind. Been there, done that, along with the obligatory bourbon shots, random ink, and riding bitch on some guy’s bike. I can’t slip away from my life, or spare time for a surly biker who has crawled under my skin and rattled my last nerve in a sexy, delicious way.
Saint. As if. I’ve known my fair share of outlaw MC dudes, and not a single one of them was anything close to righteous. I want to hate him and everything he stands for, but he’s ridiculously hot. He’s annoyingly persistent. And he’s surprisingly kind.
There’s no way I can sacrifice all I’ve fought for to be with him. When Saint brings danger to my door, it’s only a matter of time before my secrets spill over to rip us apart.

I raised to sitting, the top of my dress still barely covering both beaded nipples and little else. My hands roamed up Saint’s jean clad legs, and his muscles flexed beneath my fingers. When I reached the waist, I tugged him closer to me. The line of darker hair bisecting the planes of his stomach and the arrows of deep muscle from his pelvis were just teasing glimpses of what lay lower, beneath the faded denim. Peering up at him lids, I rubbed my cheek against the long hard length of his cock. “My turn.” Eyes slanted down, he groaned. “I didn’t bring you here to blow me.” My fingers at the tabs of his jeans, I opened the next one. “I want to.” Quickly plucking the rest of the buttons free, I pulled the fabric wider. All I could see was the nest of hair framing the wide base of his cock that throbbed with veins. “Off. Take these off!” I tugged hastily, my mouth already watering. With one of his wicked grins, he finally complied. Not one ounce shy, he kicked off his last article of clothing and stood there in front of me, all bold muscular masculinity . . . no apologies, and no apologies needed. I felt limp with wanting him, especially when my gaze roved from the strapping sinews of his legs to his . . . to his cock. He was fit. Hung. Huge. Inked. And that long thick dick was . . . pierced. Ohhhh. Another trickle of juice drizzled from my slit as I imagined Saint—big, pierced Saint—driving up inside of me. Precum slickened his completely erect, completely huge cock, and the Prince Albert piercing gleamed too. I perched closer, dress still hiked around my naked waist. “You’re pierced.” His head notched down, he nodded once. “You’re big.” “Touch me,” he ordered in a rugged voice. My hand on him, I tried to encircle the hot male flesh. His cock stood rigidly upright against his abs, and I anchored the heavy rod down slowly. Another drop of precum drizzled from the bloated crown to my fingers. Saint grunted, rocking closer to my face. Every muscle in his body tensed, and I ran my tongue over his clear jism, taking his essence into my mouth. Then I set my lips against the underside, rubbing my lips all over the turgid veiny flesh. I loved the taste. I loved the heady musky smell. “I’m gonna suck you now, Saint. And if you say no again, I’m going to tie you up.”







Badass, sassafras Rie Warren is an OG Amazon All Star author of Bad Boy books and MC romance. She delivers five star sex, suspense, and the best banter around. Her stories are one hundred percent original, do not contain fluffy plots or virgin brides, and wring every last emotion from readers to leave them with a satisfied smile. Rie’s tough alpha males are never brought to heel, but are instead healed by the feisty femme fatale of their perfect match. She grew up in Maine, went to college in Iowa (Iowa, what?), lived in Scotland, and married in Englishman. In true roundabout fashion, they came back to the States, settled in South Carolina’s lowcountry, putting down southern roots and pursuing their arty endeavors. Tale spinner and character diviner, Rie is a lover of sleep, wine, and rude memes often involving either Disney characters or Winnie the Pooh. She is raising two teen daughters along with an entire brain full of unruly characters.
Rough-talking alpha men? Rie has that on tap.
Stubborn sassy heroines? You bet.
Smoldering sex scenes that’ll set your Kindle on fire? Check, check, check.
Keep a fan handy, you’ll need it.
Follow the signup link below to her romance newsletter for sneak peeks, new releases, first looks, and her quirky sense of humor.
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And, as always, happy sexy reading to you!

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Thursday, September 19, 2019

Rick R. Reed's The Secrets We Keep, Release Blitz & Giveaway


Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Universal Link

Length: 195 pages

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Cover Design: Reese Dante

Blurb
Jasper Warren is a happy-go-lucky young man in spite of the tragedy that’s marred his life. He’s on a road to nowhere with his roommate, Lacy, whom he adores, and a dead-end retail job in Chicago.
And then everything changes in a single night. Though Jasper doesn’t know it, his road is going somewhere after all. This time when tragedy strikes, it brings with it Lacy’s older, wealthy, sexy uncle Rob. Despite the heart-wrenching circumstances, an immediate connection forms between the two men.
But the secrets between them test their attraction. Will their revelations destroy the bloom of new love... or encourage it to grow?

Excerpt
It’s always exciting for me, both as a writer and as a reader, when the two main lovers in a book first meet. In THE SECRETS WE KEEP, that first meeting is at a funeral home wake, for someone both men loved deeply (and for whom many of the secrets in the book are kept).
When he stepped out of the bathroom, someone was waiting for him. An older man.
Jasper tried to thread his way around the guy. “Did you want to go in?” Jasper gestured toward the open bathroom.
“No. I was waiting for you.” The guy eyed him. He was probably a good twenty years older than Jasper, but as inappropriate as it was at a time like this, Jasper couldn’t help noticing how sexy he was. Trim, a little on the short side, it was obvious, even in his impeccably tailored black suit, he was in very good, and very powerful, shape. Jasper was certain those weren’t shoulder pads testing the seams at the tops of his arms.
He had kind eyes. And they were the most amazing shade of pale gray. Jasper had seen a husky once with eyes like that; he couldn’t say he’d ever seen anything like it on a human being. Those eyes were mesmerizing, arresting, and chilling, framed in long, black lashes.
His hair was silver, shorn close on the sides with a bit more on top, spiked with some gel.
He wore a fashionable five-o’clock shadow that Jasper couldn’t deny he wanted to feel—either with his fingers or against his own smooth cheeks.
“For me?” Jasper smiled. “I’m sorry. Do I know you?”
He simply smiled enigmatically. “Probably not. But I bet I know you. You’re Jasper, Heather’s roommate, right?”
“Yeah. And you are?”
“I’m Robert. Robert Burroughs.” He extended his hand.
Jasper gripped the warm hand, slightly soft and a little damp. He didn’t take his eyes off Robert the whole time, and the “whole time” was much longer than the duration of a handshake for most guys. It sent a shiver through Jasper.
“Burroughs?” Jasper had a terrifying thought. What if this is her dad? Good Lord, I’m flirting with Lacy’s dad! At her funeral! The very thought caused beads of sweat to pop out on Jasper’s forehead. He held in a giddy burst of laughter. “Are you, um, related to Lacy? Er, Heather?”
Please don’t say you’re her father.
“I’m her uncle Rob. Did she never mention me?”
Jasper wracked his brain. One thing neither of them did much of was talk about their respective families. They liked to believe they were each other’s family now, “chosen family” was the term they used. The idea, the memory of this, brought a lump to Jasper’s throat, bringing home for real that his best friend was gone. “I’m not sure.”
“It’s okay if she didn’t. I hadn’t seen her in quite some time. My schedule doesn’t afford me much opportunity to see family, as much as I might want to.” He smiled, and Jasper noticed the sadness around his eyes despite it. Robert went on softly, “I wish I’d had one more chance to talk to her, to tell her how I loved her. I’m afraid she didn’t know.”
Jasper nodded. “Me too. If I could just talk to her one more time, maybe we wouldn’t be here.”
Robert cocked his head. “No?”
Jasper didn’t want to disabuse him of the notion that Lacy had not killed herself, if that was what he was choosing to believe. So he simply said, “Who knows?”
“Heather used to write sometimes, a long time ago. She’d shoot me a text, you know, a birthday emoji or a holiday one. We were close when she was a kid. I used to take her places with me whenever I could. Her parents never really got her, you know?”
“Oh, I know.”
“They were always trying to change her. Like, she was left-handed naturally, and they worked and worked and worked on getting her to use her right. They tried to get her to hang out with what they deemed the popular girls. They bought her American Girl dolls when all she wanted was a set of paints and a good book, preferably horror. I could stand here all day and tell you how little my brother and sister-in-law knew their girl. But I won’t.
“I just wish I’d stayed in better touch with her. Once my career took off, back when she was just becoming a teenybopper, I kind of got preoccupied and we lost touch.” He paused and Jasper noticed the tears standing in his incredible eyes. Unexpectedly, he laughed. “When she was a little girl, and I mean like three or four, she would sigh and say, ‘Woe is me.’ What little girl says that?”
“Lacy. It so figures.”
“You call her Lacy. Why?”
“That’s how she referred to herself. She was even thinking of legally changing her name. She hated Heather.”
Robert nodded. “I get that. I never thought of her as a Heather. I’m glad she found something else.” He glanced over his shoulder into the viewing room. “I wish they’d respected that.”
I do too. Jasper felt, suddenly, even sadder. For his own loss, sure, but more for Lacy’s loss. The rest of her life. She could have done so much. She could have been happy. He just knew it.
He placed his hand on Robert’s shoulder. “Look, I intended to stay longer, but I need to get out of here. This place is too oppressive. And it honestly feels like someone else is being waked, not the girl I know. So I’m gonna book. But it was nice to talk to you.”
Robert nodded. “Will you be at the funeral tomorrow morning?”
The funeral was set for one of Rogers Park’s Catholic churches. Then they’d fly the body back to California for burial in the family plot.
It was all wrong. All not what Lacy would have chosen.
Jasper shook his head. “No. I don’t think so. This isn’t her. I think I’ll just remember her as I knew her.”
Jasper turned away, feeling on the verge of tears. He didn’t want to cry in front of Lacy’s uncle—or anyone else gathered at the funeral home, for that matter.
As he reached the door, Robert’s voice stopped him.
“Jasper?”
He turned.
“Would you mind if I came with you? I need to get out of here too.”

Real Men. True Love.
Rick R. Reed draws inspiration from the lives of gay men to craft stories that quicken the heartbeat, engage emotions, and keep the pages turning. Although he dabbles in horror, dark suspense, and comedy, his attention always returns to the power of love. He’s the award-winning and bestselling author of more than fifty works of published fiction and is forever at work on yet another book. Lambda Literary has called him: “A writer that doesn’t disappoint…” Rick lives in Palm Springs, CA with his beloved husband and their fierce Chihuahua/Shiba Inu mix.
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Email: rickrreedbooks@gmail.com


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Romancing The Rough Diamond by Clare London, Release Blitz & Giveaway

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Universal Link

Length: 244 pages

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Cover Design: Alexandria Corza

Blurb
Romancing The...
Trust is the most precious jewel of all.
When Mayfair jewelers Starsmith Stones wins the commission for a gay royal wedding, CEO Joel Sterling is recommended to the brilliant young designer Matt Barth—only to discover Matt’s the man with whom he shared an anonymous and passionate kiss on the celebration night.
Disenchanted with the commercial jewelry industry, Matt nowadays prefers muddy archaeological digs to designing. Openly resentful of Starsmith’s hostile takeover of his family’s firm, he is horrified at the realization he’ll be working with the man who engineered that deal—but the opportunity to create something fabulous and unique for the royal couple is too tempting to refuse.
Working as a team reignites the spark between Joel and Matt. But when betrayal from within Starsmith threatens both the project and Joel’s confidence, will they have built enough trust to keep their newfound love as precious as the royal jewels?

Clare London took her pen name from the city where she lives, loves, and writes. A lone, brave female in a frenetic, testosterone-fueled family home, she juggles her writing with her other day job as an accountant.
She’s written in many genres and across many settings, with award-winning novels and short stories published both online and in print. Most of her work features male/male romance and drama with a healthy serving of physical passion, as she enjoys both reading and writing about strong, sympathetic, and sexy characters.
All the details and free fiction are available at her website. Visit her today and say hello!
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