Book Review: Bad Slave by Kay Berrisford

Bad Slave 
by Kay Berrisford
M/M Erotic Romance/Fantasy/BDSM
Amazon | BN | Loose-id

4 Stars
Review Copy from author


When the king commands former war hero Captain Jay Ghair to find him the perfect royal sex slave, Jay’s quiet new life as a librarian is shattered. Jay discovers the boy he’s looking for in Alix, a lowly miner and wannabe court scientist, whom Jay can’t help but secretly adore. However, teaching the rebellious Alix to be a docile slave is difficult. Alix will behave for just one man, and it isn’t the king. It’s Jay.

Standing by while the king’s treatment of Alix becomes cruel is torturous for Jay. He longs to return to his library, yet he can’t bear to leave Alix, or his people, unprotected. To rescue Alix—and save the realm from the increasingly tyrannical king—Jay must confront the demons of his military past and take up the sword again. But his most important battle must be won through returning Alix’s love and learning to master this bad slave who submits only for him


Ten years ago, Captain Jay Ghair lost a lot of friends and his unfaithful lover in a battle that still haunts him to this day. He gives up the sword for a quiet life as a country librarian and thinks his days of serving King and Country are long behind him.

That all changes when the King Lyam commands him to find him a new sex slave - he's bored with all the old ones and sends them to his dungeon. Jay hasn't been to court for over ten years, and is appalled at the things he sees. He has no wish to find someone else to place in the role of the king's sex slave, but knows that if he disobeys he might well end up executed.

He finds the new slave in a young man, Alix, who he saves from a lynching. Alix is eager to live and agrees readily to become one of King Lyam's sex slaves, which disconcerts Jay. How could someone agree to be a sex slave?

Alix is a miner and rather than a life of drudgery mining the karmite stones, he thinks he's in for a new life of luxury and decadence. King Lyam soon disillusions him and Alix becomes nothing more than someone the king hurts and tortures just because he can.

The populace think that Lyam has divine right to rule because of something called the Lunarstone, which everyone believes was bestowed on the royal line by their gods, the Starlords. Anyone who disagrees with Lyam is either executed or left to rot in his dungeons.

I liked this book, there isn't enough Male/Male fantasy out there so I was pleased to get this one for review.

Jay and Alix were wonderful characters, both well-rounded and believable. Lyam however didn't seem to have any redeemable features whatsoever. He was a tyrant and a bully, a spoilt brat who wants everything his own way and ignored his advisers when they warned the unfair taxes and king's luxurious excesses were making the populace want his blood. From what we gleaned of the previous king through Jay's reminisces, I couldn't imagine him spoiling Lyam, but as the book progressed you realise that King Raile had spent most of his time in battle defending his kingdom and so didn't really have a hand in his son's upbringing.

Alix wants to be a scientist and tries to get the king interested in his inventions, but the king doesn't want anything to do with science. He just wants to cause Alix pain in the most excruciating ways possible. Some of the torture scenes with Alix and Lyam were a bit uncomfortable for me to read, but they contrasted well with Jay's loving discipline and you could tell the difference. Jay's scenes were loving and consensual BDSM, Lyam's scenes were torture of an unwilling slave.

Jay and Alix start off a bit in lust with each other but Jay is wary of opening his heart again after his lover's betrayals and death. Getting to know Alix as the book progresses, Jay and Alix both find themselves in love.

Bad Slave is very well written, it almost has a poetic or lyrical feel to it and the style of the language used steeps it in the realm of fantasy rather than the mundane world. I would have liked to have seen a bit more of the world of Galataan and its religion, the Starlords. It's only mentioned very briefly and I was eager to learn more. We get brief glimpses of the palace, the city and the mines, but I would have liked more.

It is above all things a love story and you will be rooting for Jay and Alix to get their happy ending, despite the angst to get there.

Book Spotlight & Giveaway: Falling from the Sky by Nikki Goodwin

Falling From The Sky
Title: Falling From The Sky
Author: Nikki Godwin
Date of Publication: February 21, 2014
Genre: LGBT contemporary YA
All stability in sixteen-year-old Ridge McCoy’s life crashed and burned in the plane crash that killed his dad. This summer-long basketball camp is his chance to improve his skills and escape his problems back home. But his summer plans take a turn in an unexpected direction when he meets Micah Youngblood, the guy who runs the carousel at the local mall and has a reputation for devouring straight boys’ heterosexuality for breakfast, alongside his chocolate chip pancakes.
Ridge needs a way to avoid the guys at camp, whose only quest for the summer is to drown in beer and hook up with girls. So when Micah offers to explain how the ten unique horses on the carousel are significant to his tribe, Ridge takes him up on it. Still, Ridge can't decide if this is a bad thing or not. All he knows is that he hasn’t felt this alive since his dad fell from the sky, and as the horse adventures come to an end, Ridge finds himself falling as well – for Micah.
Purchase from Amazon | B&N | Smashwords
About Nikki Godwin
Nikki Godwin is a Young Adult/New Adult author. She is a city girl who can't live without Mountain Dew, black eyeliner, Hawthorne Heights, and candles from Bath & Body Works. When not writing, she's not-so-secretly stalking her favorite bands. She may or may not completely love One Direction.

Book Spotlight: A Perfect Passion by Piper Kay

A Perfect Passion
by Piper Kay
M/M Erotic Romance


For Damien, passion brings ecstasy, betrayal and danger that almost cost him his life. At the lowest point in his life, he discovers that true passion and loyalty have been staring him in the face all along. There is one problem he must surmount first, Dax is straight and carries a lot of baggage. What neither of them realize is that sometimes passion can also bring healing. That is if one is brave enough to take the first step. In a perfect passion, one must be willing to take the risk.


After the uneasy way things ended between Dax and I last night, I’m not sure what to think. I know I was probably out of line, but it just kind of happened. It wasn’t like I planned to grope all over him like a stray cat in heat. What was I even thinking? Dax and I haven’t talked about it, we pretended like nothing happen, but it made everything very awkward. The silent dinner was horrible.

I’m not sure how to act, or what to say. It’s not like I can walk up him, and say ‘Geez, Dax. Thanks for letting me cop a feel on your junk last night, you’re a real pal.’  God, I need coffee bad. Someone shoot me!

Downstairs, I let my dog out and continue my mission to find caffeine. Talk about a hangover from hell, my head is throbbing. As I round the corner to the kitchen, I run smack-dab into Dax.

“Oh, crap…sorry man.” I step to the side.

“My fault.” Dax sidesteps too, his expression full of shock.

After last night, he probably thinks I’m about to hit my knees for an encore performance.

We both move, but in same direction. Oh god! Face to face, we block one another’s path again. We're having a stand-off in the doorway, this isn't going to work. Eventually we have to talk about it.

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Book Spotlight & Giveaway: Stronger than This by David Matthew Barnes

Stronger Than This
by David-Matthew Barnes
Genre: Literary Fiction/LGBT/Death/Dying/Grief
Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
Date of Publication: February 18, 2014
ISBN: 978-1602829886
Number of pages: 216
Word Count: 55,000
Amazon | BN | Books-A-Million

Book Description: 

Charlene’s soul mate, Samantha, has been killed in a car accident. Daniel’s partner, Martin, has been murdered in a robbery gone wrong. Seeking comfort, Charlene and Daniel attend a support group where they meet for the first time.

Emotionally devastated and discarded by their loved ones’ conservative families, Charlene and Daniel feel an immediate connection. Rather than reveal their pain to a room full of strangers, they decide to see each other through their shared anguish.

As a beautiful friendship emerges from grief, slivers of new hope are found.



An Unspoken Eulogy

For those of you who do not know me, my name is Daniel Pryor. We are here today to celebrate the life of Martin Thalberg.

Martin was many things to many people, but to me, he was my partner. My soul mate. The absolute love of my life.

I think it’s strange. I’m a man who writes words for a living. I can come up with a winning campaign slogan. I can create the best ad copy in the industry. I can convince you in the shortest amount of time possible to buy a product you don’t even need. But to describe Martin Felix Thalberg to you? To do this wonderful man justice and speak the perfect words to tell you about our love, our beautiful life together, the luminescence of his very magical soul? It is impossible. Words have failed me. And in this time of the greatest sorrow of my life, so has love.

What I can tell you is this: Martin was the kindest man I ever knew. He loved people. He loved life. He loved me. And for that, I am eternally grateful. When I met Martin Thalberg, he was a junior in college. He was twenty-one. He already knew who he was. He was an artist. He was a photographer. He was a gay man. He was the son of a very important woman who was ashamed of him. He tried to keep to himself—he was always sort of an under-the-radar kind of guy—but he was too handsome to go unnoticed. Everyone wanted to know Martin. They wanted to be in his presence. Especially me. From the very moment I laid eyes on him.

I was clueless and fumbling. I had just turned twenty-eight. My life was shit. I was flunking out of grad school and finally coming to terms with the death of my parents. I was accepting the fact I’d turned out to be a major disappointment to anyone I’d ever met. Pure and simple, I was a screw-up. I’d blown shot after shot, chance after chance. I’d depleted every ounce of luck. It was to the point I’d thought about running away somewhere that summer. I wasn’t sure where I wanted to go. Europe. Alaska. Jupiter. As far away from my loneliness as I could possibly get.

Before I met Martin in that university library on that fateful spring day in May, I’d given up on many things. I’d resigned to the fact that true love would always elude me. I would never find someone—a man—who would be satisfied to love me, and only me. It seemed every man I met suffered from the same disease—infidelity. I would never have the type of storybook love my parents had. I would be miserable and unhappy, just like my sister Julie. She just knows how to fake it a lot better than I do. I would forever be the guy everyone felt sorry for, the poor pitiful man who sat alone at dinner parties, who always stayed longer than he was supposed to, the one who just needed to meet the right guy. I’d sworn off blind dates and online hook-ups. Both left me exhausted and angry. Why didn’t I have the same thing everyone else did? Where was my shot?

Lucky for me, love was sitting all alone. As if he was waiting for me to show up. I found him sitting at a table not far from the German philosophy section. His eyes were cast downward, staring intently at the photograph of a painting in a book. It was Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus, I believe. One of his favorites. And he looked up at me and said, “Isn’t it beautiful?” And I thought he was talking about the instant connection between us. Because it was there and it was intense and I know we both felt it. So I sat down beside him. I looked at the painting. I looked at his hands. And then into his eyes. Deeply. And I knew.

How can I put into words the beauty of his smile? The gentleness of his touch? The incredible sound of his laughter? How can I stand here and describe to you the way Martin made me feel? The way he made everyone feel? He was an artist who possessed the beautiful ability to capture the poetry and humanity in the world around him through his exquisite photographs. I just hope that today we can do the same for him. Yet I fear it will not happen. We cannot do him justice. No matter who stands up here and speaks to you, we cannot convey the true essence of his being.

Sure, we can try to summarize him in the simplest terms. Martin was a man who loved his friends, his dog, his art, this world, his life.

For the rest of mine, I will never be able to make sense of what happened to Martin on that night in that store. Do the men who murdered him know that the second they decided to pull their triggers, none of our lives would ever be the same? Now we must try to fathom a world without Martin in it. I, for one, find that unbearable to do.

When I leave this church, I will go home. Back to the apartment we shared. Back to our dog Luther, who has no idea when his other father is coming home but for whom he’s patiently waiting. Back to Martin’s clothes that still smell like him. His pillow. His toothbrush. His razor. His favorite cologne. Those black-and-white photographs that were an extension of his brilliant mind. The half-empty yellow cup of peppermint tea he left sitting on the kitchen counter. To all of these things I will return. But I do so alone. Without him. Without the man I’ve woken up next to every morning for the last six years of my life. I go home to silence. To an empty chair where my best friend used to sit. To no laughter. To no touch. To the absence of love. I return to the state I was before the very second I met Martin.

Again, I will become nothing. For without him, that is all that I am.


About the Author: 

David-Matthew Barnes is the bestselling author of ten novels, including the young adult novels Swimming to Chicago and Wonderland, which were nominated by the American Library Association for their annual Rainbow Books, a list of quality books with significant and authentic GLBTQ content for children and teens. 

He is also the author of a collection of short stories, Boys Like Me, and two collections of poetry, Roadside Attractions and Souvenir Boys. He has written over forty stage plays that have been performed in three languages in eight countries. Collections of his theatrical works include Deuces: Stage Plays for Two Actors, Monologues That Kick Ass, You Think You Know Us: Stage Plays for Teen Actors, and more. He is the writer and director of the feature film Frozen Stars and the dramatic short film Threnody. 

His literary work has been featured in over one hundred publications including The Best Stage Scenes, The Best Men's Stage Monologues, The Best Women's Stage Monologues, The Comstock Review, and The Southeast Review. He earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing at Queens University of Charlotte in North Carolina. 

He teaches college courses in writing, literature, and the arts.



10 eBooks (in PDF format)
 2 autographed paperback copies

Valentine's Giveaway: M/M Romance Books to be won

Bad Slave
by Kay Berrisford
M/M Fantasy/BDSM
Prize: ebook

When the king commands former war hero Captain Jay Ghair to find him the perfect royal slave, Jay’s quiet new life as a librarian is shattered. Jay discovers the boy he’s looking for in Alix, a lowly miner and wannabe court scientist, whom Jay can’t help but secretly adore. However, teaching the rebellious Alix to be a docile slave is difficult. Alix will behave for just one man, and it isn’t the king. It’s Jay.

Standing by while the king’s treatment of Alix becomes cruel is torturous for Jay. He longs to return to his library, yet he can’t bear to leave Alix, or his people, unprotected. To rescue Alix--and save the realm from the increasingly tyrannical king--Jay must confront the demons of his military past and take up the sword again. But his most important battle must be won through returning Alix’s love and learning to master this bad slave who submits only for him.


The Chosen
by Annette Gisby
M/M Fantasy Romance
Prize: ebook

The neighbouring kingdoms of Oscia and Arcathia have been at a tentative peace for three years after centuries of warfare. Prince Severin of Arcathia has been brought up to put duty before all else and as the only son of the King and Queen, it is his duty to marry and produce an heir. His parents want him to marry an Oscian princess to cement that tentative peace. Unfortunately Severin isn't interested in princesses. Now, if he had his pick of princes that would be another matter.

Havyn has been a slave all his life. When his aptitude for wizardry is discovered, he finds himself purchased and freed by Prince Severin and apprenticed to the royal wizard, Ildar. His duty is to stay chaste to keep his powers strong, but his feelings for Severin sorely test his resolve.

With kingdoms at war, the throne hanging in the balance, magic in the air, and outside forces trying to keep them apart, can the two men find happiness together, or is duty more important than love?


The Emperor's Entertainment
by Dawn South
M/M Erotic Historical
Prize: ebook

Marcus is an ambitious young legionary serving in Europe. When he's called to the Emperor's private tent, he's expected to perform for the Roman ruler's pleasure. If Marcus is up to the task, he might be facing a promotion...but can he measure up to what the Emperor needs?


The Hardest Part
by Lex Valentine
M/M Contemporary
Prize: ebook

Waiting for Love is hard. Waiting for a commitment is hard. Luckily, Trevor isn't afraid to wait for either. Life has a plan for him and Trevor is positive that if he waits patiently, everything he ever dreamed of could be his. When his thirtieth birthday rolls around and he's still alone, he doesn't give up. And then Life gives him a birthday cupcake...and so much more.


Kissing Joan Collins
by Lex Valentine
M/M Contemporary
MLR Books
Prize: Audio Book

Gay suspense author Logan Moore fell in love with the most perfect gay man ever during his freshman year in college. But his roommate and best friend Chase Courtland never showed an interest in him. Twelve years and a handful of failed relationships later, Logan acknowledges that he still loves Chase. When Chase puts on a designer dress, four-inch heels and a wig and transforms himself into Joan Collins for a Valentine's Day masquerade party, Logan's libido rockets out of control. One look at Chase's perfect ass in the skin tight dress and Logan is ready to drag him off to bed. But can two best friends bridge the gap of a dozen years of denial and build a life together after one amazing night of revelations, confessions and love?


by by T.D. McKinney & Terry Wylis
M/M Contemporary Romance
Amber Allure Books
Prize: ebook

It was everything college graduate Joshua Huggins could have dreamed and more. A new job on a big Southern estate called Laure, a generous salary, and the perfect boss, Adrien Brette, a scion of deep-rooted Mobile society, older, stunningly handsome, and just a little mysterious. But the mystery may be darker than Joshua imagined. Something ominous is stalking Laure. Adrien lives in seclusion, and his sister hides under the care of a strange nurse. Even Adrien's aunt and her boyfriend are oddly protective.

Despite all the barriers Adrien puts up, he's still the most compelling man Joshua has ever met, and the younger man can't help following his heart. Even though Adrien can't return his love. Even though the truth of Adrien's wife's death could destroy everyone at Laure.

Now, Joshua must choose between sacrificing the honor and naïveté Adrien so adores, or losing everything he's come to love. Among the Spanish moss and azalea blossoms of Laure, the past is never dead...

Author website:



Lord of the Forest
by Kay Berrisford
M/M Historical Fantasy
Prize: ebook

Dark forces are rising. Under the Greenwood trees, foul spirits grow powerful, and greedy barons plunder the lands. Only one man dares fight back--Robin Hood.

Robin's band of brothers is broken. Now a lone warrior, he denies his famous name and laments the friends and lovers he's lost. When the fair folk capture Cal, a beautiful young forester descended from the Greenwood's ancient protectors, Robin rescues him and forges a new alliance.

Despite a sizzling attraction, Robin senses Cal isn't like his old comrades, and he's right. Cal's been raised as a royal spy. He plans to seduce and betray Robin, but can't harm the man he's falling hard for. Mistrust and arguments spill into passionate lovemaking, as Cal learns the meaning of loyalty, fighting beside Robin, the only friend he's ever known. Even the enchanted forest seeks to bind Robin and the returned protector ever tighter.

Their connection will be tested by nature's wildest forces, Robin's past, Cal's lies, and in a baron's darkest dungeon. To survive, Robin and Cal must admit their love and embrace their true destinies. Only then can they save England and each other--and win their happiness ever after.


Love and Go
M/M Contemporary
Prize: ebook
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Winning a Go game is hard, but winning the game of love is harder. 

Luke Collier knows too well he's damaged. His mom never failed to remind him of his childhood sin until the day she died. Three months after her death, he is stoned in guilt and grief.

Hao Chen-Li, a Go game genius and self-styled Mandarin Asshole is determined to shake some life into Luke by force-feeding him Go lessons. His methods are pushy and grouchy and unconventional, but they work--too well.

Their tenuous Go bond becomes an irrefutable attraction.

Luke can’t risk it; he knows too well his dysfunction. A simple bond is good enough. But simple isn't so easy when Hao is determined to make his heart submit. Even though Luke can't deny his heart's need, he is gripped with indecision: trust love's power to heal or its power to destroy?


The Prince's Guard
by Annette Gisby
M/M Fantasy Short Story
Prize: ebook

Prince Dashan has been used to getting things his own way, with servants to cater to his every whim. As the crown prince, it is essential that he is protected and he is followed everywhere by his bodyguard, Ryland. Dashan can't even head to a tavern with his friends without Ryland somehow turning up and spoiling his fun.

Dashan disguises himself as a peasant one night and sneaks off to the brothel that he's heard rumours about - a brothel that caters for men who like men. The prince finds it difficult to admit to himself what his true desires are - he yearns to submit his will to someone else. And Ryland is just the man to show him what that truly means.


Solitude & Sea Glass
by T. D. McKinney & Terry Wylis
M/M Contemporary
Prize: ebook

Since his discovery as a child star by a big Hollywood studio, Holland Faust has known he has no value beyond his pretty face. When a crazed fan with a knife ended his acting career, he withdrew to a secluded island off the coast of Maine. There he remains locked away, his solitary existence lightened only by his dog, his garden, and the rare sea glass washed up on shore, communicating only with his two estate keepers and his agent. Without his legendary face, what does he have to offer anyone? Especially someone as vital and beautiful as Ruby Keagan. The young man mistakenly hired as his personal assistant for the summer is the last thing Holland's fragile self-image needs.
Ruby never really thought about his teenage crush on Holland Faust. The poster on his wall had become nothing more than a memory until Ruby took a summer internship for the Faust Charitable Foundation. Hol far exceeds those youthful daydreams; a sensitive, caring man who deserves so much more than his lonely existence.
Now, if Ruby can just get Hol to realize he doesn't need to hide any longer...


You Were Always the One
by Hollis Shiloh
M/M Contemporary
Prize: ebook

Max struggled through every day in high school, especially when his hormones seemed to crave boys rather than girls. His best friend Mason and Mason’s younger brother Jamie made a bright spot in his teen life, until he confessed to Mason he was gay. Mason responded by ripping away all his joy, ending their friendship, and warning Max against seeing Jamie. Max is a policeman now, comfortable in his sexuality but private and wary, taking solace in his job and the friendship of his golden retriever, Alex. But the past he thought was behind him demands resolution when a prickly, wounded, shockingly sexy Jamie gets arrested, and Max comes to the rescue.


One lucky winner will win all of the books mentioned above along with a $25 Allromance Gift Card, so the romance can last long after Valentine's Day :)

Guest Post & Giveaway: Worth Keeping by Susan Mac Nicol

Susan Mac Nicol
Guest Post for Worth Keeping Book Tour
How friends and family react to my work as a M/M Romance author

I've noticed in forums and Facebook conversations that some M/M and erotic authors have to keep their real identity a secret for fear of being 'outed' as a writer of erotic or sexy works. I'm sad that has to happen, but I understand it completely. One of the authors I know lives in a fairly conservative area of the Bible belt in the US and to proclaim herself as a writer of such fiction would not go down well.

I'm relieved that I can be myself and not have to worry about any of this. I've always been a 'take me as I am' kind of person and to have to hide who I am and what I write would be anathema to me. I'm lucky not to have think about this and I am extremely vocal and a bit of a tart when it comes to telling people what I write about.

I LOVE to shock people.

I went to a convention once which was full of really venerated historical and male/female writers and one of them asked me what I write. I said 'I write about gay man sex and I love it." Well, there was a little flickering of eyes and a slight turn down of the lips of the lady that asked but everyone else thought it was funny.

My husband embraces my quirky foray into the world of man on man love with a sigh, a shrug of the shoulders and a wonderful resignation. He is used to me talking about topics that as a straight man, he'd never even heard of and probably never did. But unfortunately he is not left immune to the research delights of topping, bottoming, rimming, BDSM, hot man kissing and the study of penises in various states of arousal.

My mother is seventy-nine. She blinked a little when I told her what I was writing but her first question was 'Does it make more money that your other books that you've written? If so, it's the right choice." My mum can be a little materialistic on my behalf as mothers are.  She has yet to read one of my books, not because she doesn't want to but because they are only digital at the moment and mum will NOT invest in anything like a Kindle. But when they get into print, she'll be the first to buy the box set :)

OMG I'm going to bloody horrify her. Best have the paddles and someone experienced in CPR on hand when she gets to the first sex scene.

My son and daughter are true troopers, extremely proud of their mum and telling anyone that will listen how I used to own a sex shop (yes, hubby and I did, but it was online gift boxes with saucy toys - vibrators, beads -you get the drift) and writes books all about sex, whether it be man/woman or man/man. My daughter takes great pleasure in telling everyone her mother is an erotic gay sex writer, similar to the one who wrote Fifty Shades. No matter how much I tell her this is not so, she insists. It appeals to her to see men's eyes glaze over, and she's even been asked for my number so some dude can get his rocks off with me in his 'swing.'

So not an avenue I want to go down. Not unless it's Benedict Cumberbatch doing the asking.

My older sister is less enthusiastic about my choice of genre. She's a bit old fashioned that way. But she still supports me every step of the way and I can't ask for more. Friends are like voyeurs, wanting all the dirty details and when I go out and visit them the conversation invariably turns to sex. I get asked by straight men regularly to please write Lesbian Romances so they can read them. My answer is always a resounding, “No.” Not because I have anything against it, obviously, it's just I really fancy my man love genre and have no intention of stepping outside it for the time being.

I've been a lucky lass to be able to do what I do, love it, promote it and proclaim it from the rooftops without fear of being isolated, harassed or treated like a venereal disease. I think I'm one of the fortunate ones.


Title: Worth Keeping
Author: Susan Mac Nicol
Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance
Publisher: Boroughs Publishing Group
Bookseller: Boroughs Publishing Group

Nick Mathers pulls Owen Butler from the freezing waters off the Norfolk coast, but Owen’s love can carry Nick back from the edge of oblivion.

Abused horrifically as a boy, Nick Mathers has come to terms with his existence as a man. Mostly. Other days life seems a little much. Especially when Nick knows he’ll always be alone.

On those days his thoughts turn black. He walks the Norfolk coast and considers the frigid embrace of the waves. And then, one stormy night, he finds someone who’s tasted just that. The beautiful stranger on the beach is near death, and Nick rushes him home to slowly nurse back to health. As he does, he finds a love unlike any other. Owen Butler’s body is as warm as the sea was cold, his heart as big as an ocean. And Owen is a man who swears to repay the favor. Nick can yet be saved from himself, and he will see that he is indeed a man…


"We have to re-iterate that this Author will always be an automatic one-click for us. Her writing is flawless and her flawed characters are completely lovable. There’s always something quirky and fun in her stories as well as drama, angst and heaps of passion! We can highly recommend!!” – Gitte & Jenny – Totally Booked Blog

“The cast of supporting characters adds depth and color, and the subplot of impending danger is artfully woven into the fabric of two men learning to overcome their own limitations, to open to the possibility of love and to redefine who they are. … this is a novel… Worth Keeping.” – Beach Bum Books

“Susan has written what I found to be a truly wonderful story about two damaged men that fit together in a way that gives them a relationship that can be everything they never dared to dream of.” – T. Kurtz, Book Addict

“…it is a beautiful story of survival. It is a story of two men who fought for their lives and there are times they can trip and fall, but somehow they do manage to pick themselves up and face life. Embrace it. Enjoy it. Love it.“ – Johanna Alba Bilbao

“Susan has been hailed as a genius writer of male/male literature. Her Saving Alexander has been nominated for several awards and has been reviewed widely. Congrats on all your success, Susan. You have earned it.” – Gay Lit Authors


About the Author:

Susan Mac Nicol was born in Leeds, UK, and left for South Africa when she was eight. She returned to the UK thirty years later and now lives in Essex. Her debut novel Cassandra by Starlight, the first in a trilogy, was published last year by Boroughs Publishing Group in the US. Sue’s latest story, Worth Keeping is her third m/m romance.

Sue has written since she was very young, and never thought she would see herself being a Romance writer, being a horror/psychological thriller reader all her life. But the Romance genre is now something very close to her heart and she intends continuing the trend.

Sue is a member of the Romance Writers of America and the Romantic Novelists Association here in the UK.

To learn more, visit Susan on her website and blog on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads and Pinterest.

Susan Mac Nicol is also author of The Magick of Christmas, Confounding Cupid, Cassandra by Starlight , Together in Starlight, Stripped Bare and Saving Alexander.



Susan and her publisher, Boroughs Publishing Group, will be awarding a copy of Stripped Bare and a copy of Saving Alexander to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour.

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Author Interview: Kay Berrisford

About the Author:

Kay loves writing stories where she can indulge her love for research while imagining two hot guys getting it on. Her m/m love stories are based in historical fantasy universes or explore paranormal happenings in the present day.

She lives in Southampton, UK, with her beloved "other half," in a very small flat that blesses them on occasion with outbreaks of moths. When they aren’t both madly working, they enjoy visiting castles and gorgeous countryside. She loves cats, but because her home is so small, she has to moggy-share with her parents.  She also travels a lot, which never fails to inspire her writing muses. Her favourite cities are Melbourne, Venice, and Berlin -- plus York and London (she went to uni in the last two.)

Kay was once okay at tennis and has forgotten how to play the violin and piano. She currently jogs -- but not very far -- and enjoys reading all kinds of romance and long, rambling historical novels big enough to commit murder with.

Do you plan everything or just let the story flow?

Haha, yes, I plan—honest—but the process of writing is always organic. My endings *never* turn out as planned!

I find the final third of books the hardest, because you have to tie up all the disparate plot threads. In the case of Bad Slave, my latest, the pressure was on, because I was due to go to Australia in August, and was desperate to wrap the story before we left. In my rush, I plowed ahead with a version of the ending that just didn't work and had to scrap a whole chapter and start it again *sobs*. It was worth it, though. I rethought the ending and was way happier with it, plus I did get the draft finished before Australia...just!

Do your characters ever want to take over the story?

Oh yes. I’m always going back and editing parts of the plot as they tell themselves more about me, and I realize the actions I had originally planned for them no longer suit. In the case of Bad Slave, I was so in love and tune with the characters of Alix and Jay that they pretty much stuck to what I wanted them to do…till that disaster toward the end. However, in my current WIP, a contemporary m/m, I’m going to go back and change parts. One of my MCs informed me after I started writing that he suffers with anxiety problems, which are going to alter his whole attitude to his work trip abroad, where he also has to do some public speaking.

What drew you to the M/M genre in particular?

Mine’s a simple story, told many times. I was dissatisfied all my life with the love stories presented to me in mainstream books and film until I discovered fanfic and slash and then m/m. I still like to read het sometime, but m/m and glbtq fiction is where my heart belongs. It’s just one of those preferences I was born with and I can’t seem to change. Not that I’d ever want to!

Do you write in other genres besides M/M?

No.  I’d like to write a historical or fantasy novel someday, but I doubt the characters will want to conform to cultural conventions gender-wise. - oh, you should definitely write an m/m fantasy novel, there aren't enough of those ;)

What is your favourite food?

Cake with yummy icing accompanied by strong cup of coffee.

Are you a morning person or a night owl?

Very much a morning person, though I’m married to a night owl. We live together in a tiny one bedroom flat and have done for nearly ten years. I remember somebody said our relationship wouldn’t last because of that difference alone. So I guess its true love. I don’t mind him crawling into bed at 2am.

Where do you dream of travelling to and why?

I’m really lucky in that I’ve traveled a lot over the past few years, courtesy of my “other half’s” job. I’ve been to Australia and New Zealand, but only really spent time in Melbourne and Auckland so far. I loved both, so I’d like to spend more time exploring the continent “down under.”

Right now, though, I’d just love to travel out of the city to somewhere with a big garden and some sunshine where I could unwind and dream.

Do distant places feature in your books?

Yes! In fact, places are often the trigger for a story idea in my head. I recently spent some time on the beautiful Pembrokeshire coast in Wales. When I got home I launched straight in to a story about a merman and a pirate which I dreamed up when there (that story will be out this year, from Less Than Three Press.) My most recent story was inspired by a trip to Florence.

I love conjuring up fantasy landscapes too. Bad Slave, my new release, is set in an entirely imaginary realm called Galataan, which was inspired by Dubrovnik, Tuscany, and reading too much Terry Prachett.

Do you listen to music while writing?

Oh, I wish. I just can’t though. I’m a concentrate in silence sort of person. Boring, huh?

Could you tell us a bit about your latest release?

With pleasure! Bad Slave is a BDSM love story set in a fantasy universe (the realm of Galataan) where the rule of the king is absolute. The current king, Lyam, just happens to have an appetite for pretty, male sex slaves, and what the king wants the king gets.

Jay and Alix, our heroes, become embroiled in the machinations of Lyam’s court, as a reluctant slave trainer and his slave respectively. The story explores the awakenings of their true desires as a Dom and his sub, while they learn to resist Lyam’s increasingly cruel demands and fall in love. Though, of course, defying the king is going to get them in a *lot* of trouble…

So, there’s a lot of spanking, bondage, sword fights and rescues, and a fair bit of angst… but ultimately it’s a romance. Jay and Alix both have a lot of heart, and I hope their story does too.

What have you learned about writing and publishing since you first started?

Today is one of those days when I’m not entirely sure! I still feel very much like an outsider looking in, and that everybody else knows what they ought to be doing in this business, but I just can’t figure it out. Maybe everyone feels like that sometimes?  So I suppose they key is this: you’ve got to love writing a hell of a lot to be here. Fortunately, I still do.

In terms of good writing and basics such as grammar, I’ve learned more from my editor at Loose Id, Serena Stokes, than I did in many years of school and university education!

Is there anything you would do differently?

Oh, everything?  Haha, no not really. I wrote a book called Lord of the Forest, a Robin Hood m/m, which got lovely reviews overall, but that nobody wanted to read. Maybe it would have been best if I’d not written that and focused on something else for the many months it took me. But I can’t quite bring myself to regret it. It’s one of my two favorites of my own books. -oh, I loved that book, I reviewed it a while back :)

Who, or what, if anything has influenced your writing?

My lovely editor has had a very strong influence and I enjoy reading many other m/m writers. Right now, I’m lapping up J.A.Rock and Lisa Henry’s latest. It’s great to understand what other readers’ enjoy, though I don’t try and emulate other writers. I fear the voice in my books is always strongly my own, whether I wish it to be or not! I also love beautiful descriptive prose, by classic authors such as Virginia Woolf. I like to paint pictures with words.

Anything you would say to those just starting out in the craft?

I think I’ve said it above. You’ve got to love writing above all and be prepared to work hard for no or little reward. The rest is in the hands of fate.

What are three words that describe you?

Friendly. Untidy. Insecure.

What's your favourite book or who is your favourite writer?

This is always the hardest question in the world! Today, I’m going to go for The Hobbit as my book, because I just reread it and loved it all over again. Favourite writer?  Sarah Waters.

Blurb of your latest release or coming soon book

Bad Slave by Kay Berrisford

When the king commands former war hero Captain Jay Ghair to find him the perfect royal sex slave, Jay’s quiet new life as a librarian is shattered. Jay discovers the boy he’s looking for in Alix, a lowly miner and wannabe court scientist, whom Jay can’t help but secretly adore. However, teaching the rebellious Alix to be a docile slave is difficult. Alix will behave for just one man, and it isn’t the king. It’s Jay.

Standing by while the king’s treatment of Alix becomes cruel is torturous for Jay. He longs to return to his library, yet he can’t bear to leave Alix, or his people, unprotected. To rescue Alix—and save the realm from the increasingly tyrannical king—Jay must confront the demons of his military past and take up the sword again. But his most important battle must be won through returning Alix’s love and learning to master this bad slave who submits only for him.


List of previous books:

Bound for the Forest
Bound to the Beast
Lord of the Forest
Locking Horns
Catching Kit
Simon, Sex, and the Solstice Stone

Any websites/places readers can find you on the web:

Thank you, Kay!

There'll be a review of Bad Slave at Zipper Rippers shortly, and readers pop back on Feb 14th for a chance to win 2 of Kay's books along with lots more m/m books in the Valentine's Day giveaway :)

Book Spotlight & Giveaway: Love in the Shadows by Dylan Madrid

Love in the Shadows
Dylan Madrid
Genre: LGBT/Romance/Suspense/
Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
Date of Publication:  January 14, 2014
ISBN: 978-1602829817
Number of pages: 192
Word Count: 50,000
Amazon | BN

Book Description: 

Quintin Pearson, an American living in London, has spent the last two years working as a magazine staff writer and nursing a broken heart. Craving a change in his quiet life, Quintin accepts an invitation to an exclusive party hosted by Regina Bremington, the U.S. ambassador’s glamorous wife. At the party, terror takes over when the electricity suddenly goes out and the ambassador is assassinated.

In the safety of a dark bedroom, Quintin meets a mysterious stranger named Luca, an Italian spy. Even though the two men can’t see each other, a spark is ignited that soon becomes a mutual lust. Within days, Luca arranges for them to meet again at a remote seaside town in Belgium. There, Luca confesses his true identity and convinces Quintin they must team up to bring the ambassador’s killer to justice.

Love in the Shadows was inspired by a dream I had and a song of the same title.

Original Version of the song by E.G. Daily:
New Version of the song  by Circuit 21:


About the Author: 

Dylan Madrid is the author of the novels Mind Fields, Love in the Shadows, and Backstrokes. A California native, Dylan grew up in the Bay Area. He opted to backpack through seven countries before heading to college and spent a year living in Europe, primarily on the Greek island of Ios. When he's not dreaming about living on the Italian Riviera or running away to Belgium, Dylan teaches college courses in writing and the arts.

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Book Spotlight & Giveaway Prince of Tricks by Jane Kindred

Prince of Tricks
Demons of Elysium 
Book 1
Jane Kindred
Genre: M/M paranormal erotic romance
Publisher: Samhain
Date of Publication: January 7, 2014
ISBN: 978-1-61922-089-8
Number of pages: 283
Word Count: 93,000
Cover Artist: Kanaxa
Amazon | BN | Kobo

When desire rises, angels will fall. One, by one, by one…

Over the past century, Belphagor has made a name for himself in Heaven’s Demon District as a cardsharp, thief, and charming rogue.

Though the airspirit is content with his own company, he enjoys applying the sweet sting of discipline to a willing backside. Angel, demon, even the occasional human. He’s not particular. Until a hotheaded young firespirit steals his purse—and his heart. Now he’s not sure who owns whom.

A former rent boy and cutpurse from the streets of Raqia, Vasily has never felt safer than in the arms—and at the feet—of the Prince of Tricks. He’s just not sure if Belphagor returns those feelings. There’s only one way to find out, but using a handsome, angelic duke to stir Belphagor’s jealousy backfires on them both.

When the duke frames Vasily for an attempted assassination as part of a revolutionary conspiracy, Belphagor will do whatever it takes to clear his boy’s name and expose the real traitor. Because for the first time in his life, the Prince of Tricks has something to lose.



Belphagor pushed him onto his back and straddled him, his own unfulfilled erection poised between them like an exclamation point. “I told you, you’re my boy. Mine.” There was an implication in the words that Vasily couldn’t miss. The firespirit had been earning his bed and his supper on the streets of Raqia since the word “boy” had been applied to him more literally, likely from an even earlier age than had Belphagor himself. When Vasily had come to him after the night Belphagor caught him trying to cut his purse, he’d attempted to continue with his street business as usual until Belphagor forbade him selling himself to angels or to rough trade demons. He wouldn’t stop Vasily bartering his favors if that was what he chose to do, but he would see to it he was treated as the valuable commodity he was if he insisted on continuing in the trade.

This hadn’t sat well with a firespirit just coming into his prime. Angels in particular desired him, finding his rough looks and the wild coloring of his tangled hair the epitome of what they pictured as demonic. Mostly students out on their own for the first time with purses of crystal facets to burn, they wanted the quintessential Raqia experience. They crossed Elysium’s River Acheron to slum in Heaven’s Demon District, and in their eyes, Vasily was as low-rent as they could get. Which was all the more reason they were to keep their filthy angelic paws off Belphagor’s boy.

A red glimmer of flame threatened in the black depths of Vasily’s pupils, giving the hazel irises an amber cast. This evidence of his defiant anger, despite the fact that Belphagor had finally given him what he wanted—or broken down and caved to his charms, more like—was a Pavlovian bell to Belphagor’s hunger for him. It had nearly driven him mad to keep Vasily at arm’s length this long, telling himself he didn’t deserve him, that Vasily couldn’t possibly want him—the Vasily in his head still the same skinny cutpurse youth he’d first encountered, though his “boy” had long been nothing of the sort. Even now, his heart fluttered like a panicked bird caged in his chest, waiting for something terrible to happen, for Vasily to realize Belphagor wasn’t as young as he appeared and to ridicule the helpless state to which he’d reduced him—hopelessly enamored of another demon after the equivalent of a human lifetime of solitude.

For Belphagor, solitude had been his strength. He hadn’t needed anyone since the earliest betrayals of youthful love. But Vasily had brought him to his knees. Never mind that it was Vasily on his knees that had done it to him.

“What’s got your fire up, malchik?” He kissed the spot he’d cleaned with his tongue beneath Vasily’s Adam’s apple. “I thought you wanted to be mine.

I hate it when you treat me like a child.”

Belphagor raised an eyebrow. “I’m fairly certain I treated you as rather the opposite last night. Was it not satisfactory?”

The natural pink of Vasily’s cheeks reddened more obviously. “Of course it was. I mean, it was more than satisfactory. Way more. Dammit, Beli.” He crooked his arm over his eyes as if looking up into Belphagor’s embarrassed him during such talk. He was utterly charming. As was the little endearment that had just slipped out, though Belphagor might have decked another demon for it.

He kissed Vasily’s sullen mouth. “It was far more than satisfactory for me.” The soft words were almost a whisper. “You’ve absolutely spoiled me for anyone else.”

“Good.” The word was delivered with a sudden sharpness. So that was what was bothering him. It sparked a bit of defiance of his own. He wasn’t used to having anyone put restraints on him. That was Belphagor’s specialty.

“Don’t seek to possess me, malchik. I’m an airspirit.”

Vasily moved his arm away from his eyes, and they were glowing with furious heat. “So that’s how it is. You own me, you tell me what I can and can’t do, but you can do as you like.” The roiling anger in the firespirit eyes heated Belphagor like combustion from the inside out. The thought of putting Vasily over his knee once more made him almost painfully hard. Without equivocation, he was a slave to this brutally beautiful young demon.

“Yes, Vasya. That’s how it is.”

The violent rebuff wasn’t unexpected, but Belphagor, nonetheless, had failed to brace for it, too absorbed in the feel of the body beneath him and the thoughts of what he wished to do with it. He found himself forcefully ejected from the cot and sprawled on the cold wooden floor, with Vasily standing over him, magnificent in his literally naked anger.

“Then maybe you should just skip the foreplay and go fuck yourself!” Vasily delivered the Germanic hardness of the lovely verb “fuck” as if he were demonstrating it. As Vasily jerked his jeans onto his legs like he was punishing the fabric, Belphagor watched with unabashed admiration of the musculature being regretfully hidden away. Hooray at least for his lazy laundering habits that had resulted in this morning’s “commando” mode.

He picked himself up, along with the black T-shirt on the floor beside him, which he handed to Vasily as if he couldn’t care less whether the demon walked out on him. Vasily snatched it from his grip and yanked it on over the tangled red locks he’d been cultivating. The shirt had once been Belphagor’s. It had stretched to its limits and was now much too small on the firespirit frame. Belphagor wished there were cameras in Heaven. He could just about die from gazing at the image Vasily struck.

Vasily was waiting for him to apologize or take back what he’d said, to placate him into staying. He had no intention of doing so. Vasily was his. It was an indisputable fact. He’d be back.

The younger demon turned and yanked open the rickety door in danger of coming right off the hinges at his grip, cast one last furious, fiery glare in Belphagor’s direction, and left him with a fierce slam. The bottom hinge bent.

Belphagor glanced down at his relentless and unameliorated state of arousal with a sigh of resignation. His masochistic streak might be at an all-time high.


About the Author: 

Jane Kindred is the author of The House of Arkhangel’sk trilogy, the Demons of Elysium series, and The Devil’s Garden. Born in Billings, Montana, she spent her formative years ruining her eyes reading romance novels in the Tucson sun and watching Star Trek marathons in the dark. She now writes to the sound of San Francisco foghorns while two cats slowly but surely edge her off the side of the bed.


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