Free Book Rec: A Reluctant Santa by Roan Parrish!

This week my budget book rec is “A Reluctant Santa” by Roan Parrish. It’s a free short that you can grab on a (new-to-me) site called StoryOrigin. I chose it because I’ve read Roan Parrish before so I knew to expect a good portion of angst, or at least that the story wouldn’t be 100% sweet and fluffy. It’s just sweet enough for a Scrooge like me to enjoy. Before I finished the first sentence I knew I would be recommending this one!

 

Charlie Parkingham trudged down the hallway, his apartment door offering sanctuary after a day filled with the tortures of the damned that accompanied customer service before the holidays.

 

I love that the main character is a cranky retail worker and the love interest is collecting toys for kids. They seem like opposites, but this deftly crafted story shows that they have more in common than meets the eye. I don’t want to give too much away because this short has so many layers and I want you to enjoy peeling them back as you read just like I did.

 

The door was thrown open and Charlie only had a moment to register the wide eyes and gasp of the man in the doorway before he was hit full-force with a tumbleweed of brown fur.

 

Christmas stories are another sub-genre of MM Romance that I only read occasionally. Mainly because the holidays are a difficult time for me. Sometimes reading holiday stories gives me a jolt of the holiday spirit, and sometimes it doesn’t. I’ve written a couple of winter holiday stories and they are all fairly dark and angsty (even the one I tried to make as heartwarming as possible has a loaded backstory for both of the heroes 😊). Writing them is usually much easier than reading them because I do that in July. However, reading “A Reluctant Santa” was more than easy, it was a real pleasure.  If you haven’t yet, you should definitely grab your copy—read it now or save it for a day when you need some holiday cheer.

Find Roan Parrish’s Amazon Author page here.

If you’re a fan of angsty MM Romances, you might also like my books. Subscribe to my newsletter and get a free ebook so you can decide for yourself! Click here to subscribe.

For more budget book recs, click here.

 

Sometimes we fall in love by accident …

Charlie Parkingham hates the holidays. Working as a security guard for Macy’s, he sees the worst holiday shopping has to offer, so he’s glad he doesn’t have to worry about making Christmas for himself … or for anyone else. Until the day a mysterious package arrives on his doorstep.

Thomas Blake won’t stop until he’s made the holidays wonderful for every kid in Philadelphia. But when a grouchy neighbor returns a wrongly delivered package, Thomas knows there’s someone else who needs some holiday cheer.

Two men, one dog, and more presents than you can handle!

 

Charley Descoteaux's signature rainbow rose

Advertisements

Another inviting snippet…

Hello Snippetteers! It’s been getting chilly in my neighborhood this week–hope you’re staying warm!

This week’s snip picks up immediately where last week’s left off. You can find that one here.

We’re still in Ryan’s POV. He & Glenn are outside the restaurant where they work, & Glenn has just asked if Ryan wants to change his Halloween plans (from “nothing”). 😉

 

Glenn pushed off from the doorjamb and stepped out into the alley. “How do you feel about zombies?”

“What?” I laughed, and finally the tension I’d been holding on to since that night at Kel’s place broke. “Zombies?”

“Yeah. There’s a Zombie Walk, but first they’re going to dance in Pioneer Square.”

Oh, yeah. Glenn dancing is something I’m up for. Literally, it would seem.

 

Thanks for reading!

To find links to more snippets, visit the Rainbow Snippets FB Group. It’s a public group and everyone is welcome to join.

 

Holiday Weekend, Buchanan House: Book Four

Ryan Orchard moved from small-town Idaho to Portland almost two years ago and still feels like a hick. When Paulie Nesbitt dumped him, he wasn’t even surprised. Despite losing twenty-five pounds since then, Ryan’s confidence is nonexistent and his life has stalled. Not only is he convinced the career he wants is beyond his reach, he’s given up on relationships. A new job at a familiar restaurant—and his gorgeous coworker—could be just what Ryan needs to believe in himself again.

Glenn Hernandez might be the only nineteen-year-old in Portland who dreads his days off. Between his horrible housing situation and the ever-present temptation to crawl back into the bottle, Glenn prefers to keep busy. He volunteers at the Elliott Foundation House, a homeless shelter helping LGBTQ sex workers. As an alum of the shelter, Glenn finds it hard to leave his past behind. But when the new server at the trendy restaurant where he works catches Glenn’s eye and works his way into his heart, Glenn finally has a reason to start a new life.

Available only on Amazon & KU!

 

Subscribe to my newsletter and get a free ebook! Follow this link to sign up now!

Have a lovely weekend!

onlytherose

An inviting snippet…

Hello Snippetteers! Today I’m feeling the season—I cleared all the dying plants from my deck & replaced them with some pretty chrysanthemums in purple and daisy-white!

In keeping with this Autumn kind of day, I’m snipping from Holiday Weekend. Over the next few weeks I’ll share Ryan & Glenn’s Halloween. This first bit is from Ryan’s POV, which is probably obvious. 😊

 

Two days before Halloween, Glenn cornered me in the alley at the end of our shift. I had taken out the trash, and when I turned to go inside, Glenn was leaning in the doorway.

“What are you doing for Halloween?”

Damn, even that sounded naughty. “Nothing.”

“You feel like changing those plans?”

 

Thanks for reading!

To find links to more snippets, visit the Rainbow Snippets FB Group. It’s a public group and everyone is welcome to join.

 

Holiday Weekend, Buchanan House: Book Four

Ryan Orchard moved from small-town Idaho to Portland almost two years ago and still feels like a hick. When Paulie Nesbitt dumped him, he wasn’t even surprised. Despite losing twenty-five pounds since then, Ryan’s confidence is nonexistent and his life has stalled. Not only is he convinced the career he wants is beyond his reach, he’s given up on relationships. A new job at a familiar restaurant—and his gorgeous coworker—could be just what Ryan needs to believe in himself again.

Glenn Hernandez might be the only nineteen-year-old in Portland who dreads his days off. Between his horrible housing situation and the ever-present temptation to crawl back into the bottle, Glenn prefers to keep busy. He volunteers at the Elliott Foundation House, a homeless shelter helping LGBTQ sex workers. As an alum of the shelter, Glenn finds it hard to leave his past behind. But when the new server at the trendy restaurant where he works catches Glenn’s eye and works his way into his heart, Glenn finally has a reason to start a new life.

Available only on Amazon & KU!

 

Subscribe to my newsletter and get a free ebook! Follow this link to sign up now!

Have a lovely weekend!

onlytherose

Book Blast: The Northstar by Elle Keaton!

The Northstar: A Christmas Novella (Accidental Roots)

Author: Elle Keaton

Genre: Gay Romance

Pairing: Holiday

Release Date: 12/7/18

 

Synopsis:

“John was back on his knees—a position he historically enjoyed, but not in this scenario, checking under Dumpsters in foul weather. An unfamiliar voice startled him from his brooding. The sound came from the other side of the container, near the alley door John had left propped open. Focused as he was on searching for the kitten John hadn’t heard any approaching footsteps.

Dammit, he’d hoped the kitten would come inside on its own a human person was more than he wanted to deal with. Without the marquee turned on it seemed pretty obvious, to John at least, that the theater was closed, and why would anyone but him be back here in the alley? A chill ran down his spine. Was he about to get jumped? A bit hysterically, he wondered if his boxers were clean like his mother had always warned him they should be, just in case. But what hoodlum would call out a hello first? He was such an idiot.

After unsuccessfully searching the hallway and places the kitten could have gotten to inside, he’d come back outside to look more diligently, thinking he couldn’t see it because it was hiding under the other side of the container or it had found a box or something.

“Hello?” the voice repeated coming closer. “Are you all right then?”

A distinctly English accent, asking if he was okay—so he wasn’t about to be mugged and left for dead in a dark alley.

Carefully, John stood back from the trash container and turned to look over the top of it. It proved impossible for him not to stare at the handsome man waiting where he shouldn’t be. And, thankfully, he remembered taking a shower before leaving the house and putting on entirely clean clothing, including underwear, so he was good.

The stranger was backlit by security lights mounted on the opposite building, and John was standing a few feet away from him, but a trick of the light meant John could see his features clear as a sunny day. If he hadn’t been recovering from a terrible breakup and off men almost entirely, he might have thought an angel had decided John deserved a gift.

“Is there something you need?” he asked, attempting to shove aside his immediate attraction to the dark-haired man standing in his alley.

The man contemplated John for a moment before replying, “No, I think I’ve found it. I may have something of yours, however.”

Lord save him, the man had a smooth, deep voice and an English accent.”

About Elle:

Hi there, I’m Elle Keaton and I hail from the northwet (hahaha) corner of the US where we are known for rain, rain and more rain. I write the Accidental Roots series, set here in the Pacific Northwest featuring hot mm romance and the guarantee of a happy ending for my men. They start out broken, and maybe they end up that way too, but they always find the other half of their hearts.

I started writing way back when but only began publishing about two years ago and now have seven (almost eight) books out. Each features a couple in my little universe, sometimes there is added mystery and suspense.

Currently, I am working on the ninth in the series as well as a mm paranormal romance. I’m dabbling with an m/f set in the same universe as Accidental Roots, featuring a character who has been around from the beginning who really needs her own HEA. Feel free to email me with questions about the series or my writing elle@ellekeaton.com

Social Media Links:

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/ElleKeatonWrites

Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/thebookingroomconvo/

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/elle-keaton
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/elle.keaton_author/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/PirateQueenRdz1

MeWe: https://mewe.com/profile/5ac2766f310a7853d4ce8ad4

Website: https://www.ellekeaton.com/

Amazon: https://amzn.to/ek-amazon-profile

Goodreads: https://bit.ly/ek-gr-profile

A Christmasy snippet…

Hello Snippetteers! I’m late posting this week because of the holiday, and something I did to prep for it that made my right hand swell up Friday afternoon! Probably all the OT. I don’t regret it, but will be glad when both hands are the same size again!

Since it’s officially the Christmas season now I’m posting from Holiday Weekend, Buchanan House: Book Five. It’s a standalone novella but series readers will recognize the MC, Ryan. We’re in his head now.

 

The bar was decorated for Christmas, with lights and garlands everywhere. They even had a tree in the corner. It went beyond kitsch, but I wasn’t there for the decor. The tree was oddly fascinating, though. Green and gold lights twinkled bravely around the Timbers scarves, red plastic roses, and “No Pity” ornaments that looked handmade. Soccer really wasn’t my thing, but you can’t live in Portland and not recognize Timbers Army paraphernalia.

 

Thanks for reading!

To find links to more snippets, visit the Rainbow Snippets FB Group. It’s a public group and everyone is welcome to join.

For more about Holiday Weekend, check out the Buchanan House series page at Dreamspinner or use this Amazon Universal Link.

Have a lovely weekend!

onlytherose

Happy Halloween ~ no tricks, only a treat!

skulls-1253378_640Happy Halloween!

I love the fall, it still feels like the beginning of a new year to me–more so than January 1st ever has. In the coming weeks I’ll have some announcements and giveaways and to kick it all off here’s a group giveaway from Authors Speak.

 

We’ve set up a bunch of ways you can enter to win a bunch of books.
Get one backlist book from each of our nine regular bloggers. For more info about each author, check them out on Authors Speak, either on their posts or visit their personal blogs.

  • Grace R. Duncan
  • Sarah Madison
  • Anne Barwell
  • Rebecca Cohen
  • Elizabeth Noble
  • Tempe O’Reilly
  • Lou Hoffmann
  • Lou Sylvre
  • Charley Descoteaux

The Rafflecopter is open 10/25-11/22 so there’s plenty of time, but why wait?

Have fun and be safe out there!

 

Happy Indigenous Peoples’ Day!

This post has nothing to do with my books, it’s political in nature. It’s also tl;dr.

I’m old. I grew up in the 1970s and 80s, and even though I lived in a diverse area I can’t deny that casual bigotry was a part of everyday life, of popular culture. People made racist, sexist, homophobic─and every other offensive category you can think of─comments and didn’t think anything of it. They were rarely, if ever, called out.

This past Saturday I had a long conversation with my kiddo (who informed me that pushing 30 isn’t really a kid, but whatever) and we covered, among other things, that kind of casual bigotry. That particular thread was prompted by a search I ran on the Merriam Webster site while editing. I don’t even remember what I went there to look up because at the bottom of the page was a question: Do you know the racist origins of the phrase “tipping point”? After admitting that I did not, I clicked. (If you’d like to read for yourself, click here.)

The gist: white families moved out of neighborhoods when the percentage of black families reached 10-15%, which was their “tipping point” in an exodus nicknamed “white flight”. Just typing that sentence felt awful. That was in 1959 and sometimes it feels like as a nation, as a planet, we haven’t made much progress.

I realize for some people “tipping point” has moved into popular culture with a more generic meaning. But maybe not for everyone. I don’t remember ever using it casually before, but my intent is to stay away from it from now on.

I’m not trying to say I understand how hearing this (or similar words/phrases) feels from anywhere other than my own perspective, which is as a white woman who grew up queer in public housing. I’m not saying I’ve never made a remark or used an idiom with racist undertones─most of us have at one time or another, especially folks my age or older. Whenever I come across one, though, like I did on Saturday, I do the work to unpack it and educate myself so I can strike it from my lexicon. Without asking someone in the affected group to explain it to me. As someone who doesn’t really get the value of small talk (in a socially awkward kind of way), I would welcome the chance to make a new friend or chat with someone I already know by discussing a word or phrase, but educating me on how not to hurt them is not anyone’s job.

My contribution to Indigenous Peoples’ Day—as a descendant of immigrants—is to ask my friends to do the same. If you see a statement or word or phrase that had seemed innocuous but turns out to be otherwise, research it (using reputable sources); if it turns out to be offensive, let it fade from use.

I’ve turned off comments for this post because I don’t want any cookies for saying this publicly. If you agree with me please don’t share this post, instead please raise the voice of someone who’s talking about this from a closer perspective, someone who’s been personally affected by the casual racism and intolerance that so many seem not to hear or see.

 

 

 

Picture courtesy of BogdanaLS at pixabay.com

Happy Bi Visibility Day!

bi-pride-flag

As this post goes live, I’m somewhere in Seattle enjoying that lovely city and preparing for the Gay Romance Northwest Meet-up! If you’re in the area please consider joining us at the Central Library for a day of panels and fun, and it’s all about queer books! If GRNW is sold out you can still visit the Book Fest. The room is open 12-6, come after 4 p.m. to meet authors, get your books signed and maybe pick up some cool swag. Visit me if you’re looking to de-stress. 😉

The past week has been loaded with promotion for my latest release, Safe House, so I haven’t said much here about Bi Week. As an out and loud bisexual, I can’t let this day go by like that. I’ve been reevaluating my writing goals lately and that ties in with this week’s theme so here goes.

You may have heard me say before that I’m an old broad who’s been writing for manymany (many) years, or that my early works weren’t as queer as I would have liked. Since that’s not true anymore I can be picky about the stories I choose to tell.

That’s pretty huge so I’ll say it again: I can be picky about which stories I choose to tell.

Why the hell not? Queer Romance is thriving, gay and lesbian stories are being told—being read—so what can I bring to the table that’s unique? You can probably see where this is going: bisexual stories. A lot of my love stories so far have had bi characters, and dealt with bi issues, and I don’t see that stopping anytime soon.

While I’m writing this I have a lot to get done: an empty suitcase in the middle of my floor, a book on deadline (yes, with a bisexual main character!), more promo to do for Safe House, and hopefully a little relaxing—I am on vacation this week, after all! So I’ll leave you with a mention of the bi characters I’ve written so far and a teaser for what’s to come.

 

Joe Prescott from Not the Doctor (2014), is an accident reconstructionist who was injured on the job with a huge crush on his next door neighbor.

Eric Allen from Buchanan House (2015) is a late-blooming line cook who, for many reasons, has avoided relationships and resisted defining his sexuality.

Justice “JB” Bishop from Cascades (2015) is a small-town bartender who tells himself he’s satisfied with his life in a tiny logging town, but is pining for the one who got away.

Doug Stevens is the one who got away.

Mick Randall from Torque (2016) is on the run from the San Francisco Bay Area and his past, and finds more than he’d ever thought to ask for in an old wrecking yard in NW Portland.

Coming in December, Holiday Weekend is Ryan Orchard’s story. Chapter One is included in the back of Safe House.

The last book in the Buchanan House series, which I’m calling BH#6 for now, is Chase Holland’s story. He’s gay but his long-time partner, Garrett, is bi.

I’m also working on an upmarket contemporary that I won’t be shopping under this pen name because it’s not Male-Male. This book isn’t even trying to be a Romance and features a bisexual genderqueer main character.

 

That’s all—so far!

Happy Bi Visibility Day!

 

onlytherose

 

Cascades Release Day!

Cascades_headerbanner

Cascades is out today! Not only that, it’s 25% off at the Dreamspinner store!

I’m over at the Dreamspinner Blog, giving away a backlist book and talking about unpopular tropes. Hope to see you there!

Before you leave, see if you can find the photo hidden somewhere on my blog for the 25 Days of Christmas Scavenger Hunt from A Writer’s Odyssey. You could win a prize, and your TBR list will probably get a little bigger too. 🙂

CascadesFSCascades by Charley Descoteaux

Justice “JB” Bishop tells himself he’s satisfied with life in the small town of Upright, Oregon. He was born and raised there, and has settled into a comfortable, if lonely, routine working at his uncle’s bar. JB doesn’t expect anything to change after he turns fifty, until an old friend drops in. She suggests he get out of town for the holidays, and soon JB finds himself on an Amtrak to Canada. JB expected to feel different in Canada, to see things he couldn’t see at home. He never expected to find the one who got away.

11075219_847298572001162_8375401131888521203_n

Book Blast: A Trip to Remember by Meg Harding!

Happy Friday! Please help me welcome fellow Dreamspinner author Meg Harding. She’s brought an excerpt from her Advent story, A Trip to Remember.

Thanks for visiting, Meg!

 

A Trip to Remember by Meg Harding

Where he ends up might be better than where he was going.

Colin wants to spend the Christmas holiday with his family, but a blizzard settles in and his flight is cancelled. Unwilling to accept this, he strikes out on his own and crashes his car. Where he ends up might be better than where he was going, though.

Logan was content to wait out the blizzard and spend the holiday alone, but when a frozen-solid Colin ends up on his doorstep he’s not going to turn him away. He takes him in and shows him Christmas spent with a stranger really doesn’t have to be awkward after all.

Excerpt:

Left alone, and more aware of the situation than he had been since he’d woken up, Colin took the opportunity to look at the room more thoroughly. In the corner stood a large Christmas tree, the lights and ornaments all red and white, and a couple presents scattered beneath. From the mantle above the fireplace hung several stockings, and little glass reindeer were placed on the mantle itself. Christmas knickknacks were spread throughout the room, placed on shelves and tables. A spinning snowflake dangled from the ceiling fan.

“Your family was supposed to come here, weren’t they?” he asked when Logan came back into the room.

“Yeah.” He handed the wet cloth to Colin with a small smile. “They’re smart, though, they didn’t try to travel through a blizzard.” He winked, his smile turning into a pleased smirk.

Colin rolled his eyes and scrubbed the cloth along his neck, hoping he was getting everything. “Are you ever going to let that go?”

“Considering I’ve only been harping on it for about ten minutes, I think you’ve got a ways to go.” Logan sat down next to him, his hip pressing into Colin’s stomach. “Give me that. You look so pathetic.” It sounded like he was trying not to laugh. He tugged the cloth from Colin’s grip, leaning over him to start dragging it over his skin.

Colin froze for a second, his neck tilted back vulnerably. He swallowed heavily. Logan was very much in his space, his face hovering right over Colin’s. He could see the striations in his irises, the way his pupils had expanded. If he respired out his mouth, he’d be breathing right into his face. He felt like he was holding his breath.

Get a grip. He tried to subtly exhale out his nose. “I thought you weren’t going to play nurse,” he said.

“I had no idea you’d make it look so difficult,” said Logan, brushing his thumb over the skin he’d just scrubbed, soothing irritated flesh. “It seemed wrong to let you keep trying.”

 

Buy Link: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=7183

 

Author Bio:

Meg Harding is a graduate of UCF, and is completing a masters program for Publishing in the UK. For as long as she can remember, writing has always been her passion, but she had an inability to ever actually finish anything. She’s immensely happy that her inability has fled and looks forward to where her mind will take her next. She’s a sucker for happy endings, the beach, and superheroes. In her dream life she owns a wildlife conservation and is surrounded by puppies. She’s a film buff, voracious reader, and a massive geek.

WordPress / Twitter / Facebook / DreamSpinner / Amazon / Google + / Goodreads

A Trip to Remember

Meg Harding

Holiday Novella, Sleigh Ride Anthology

17,514 words

Contemporary Romance

Published by Dreamspinner

Cover by Bree Archer

11075219_847298572001162_8375401131888521203_n