A cruise ship captain with an unbreakable rule. A dancer
who tempts him to toss the rulebook overboard…
A cruise ship captain with an unbreakable rule. A dancer who tempts him to toss the
Will Preston lives by one edict: don’t date staff.
But the new dancer onboard has the silver fox sailing into
unchartered waters. Young, sexy, and with a penchant for lipstick and heels, the man pushes
all Will’s buttons.
It’s not just the tropical sun that’s heating things up; their
chemistry is sizzling.
Will’s been burned before. Can he throw caution to the
wind and chart a new course with Eddie by his side? Or will an interfering crew-member
steer them into stormy seas?
Yes, Captain is a stand-alone, steamy age-gap MM romance set on a cruise ship in the
South Pacific, with a flirty dancer who loves pole dancing and his shy captain. Yes, Captain
was previously published as Dance With Me. This re-release includes over 30,000 words of
never-before-seen bonus content.
The applause from the crowd was
deafening. It wasn’t the first time Eddie had danced in a theatre, but this one was bigger
than anything he’d ever been in before. Tiered seating extended up with row upon row of
filled seats. The two giant screens facing the audience illuminated the first few rows, letting
him see the faces in the crowd. He spotted his parents and brothers and sisters cheering him
on. Jess too. All of them were standing now with the other families in an ovation that
rejuvenated itself like waves on a beach—cresting and washing over them again every time
it started to peter out. The stage lights dimmed and screens blacked out, lengthening the
shadows onstage as the long red velvet curtains on either side of them began to close
Eddie couldn’t wipe the smile
from his face, even as the curtain slowed to a stop, separating the dancers and elite public
school orchestra from the audience. He never wanted the performance to end. He was
bouncing out of his skin, giddy with an adrenaline high. His shoulder had held up, thanks to
his mum strapping it tightly, and he’d pulled every move off with a perfection he’d never
dared hope for.
This was it.
About the Author
By day Ann Grech lives in the corporate world and can be
found sitting behind a desk typing away at reports and papers or lecturing to a room full of
students. She graduated with a PhD in 2016 and is now an over-qualified nerd. Glasses,
briefcase, high heels and a pencil skirt, she’s got the librarian look nailed too. If only they
knew! She swears like a sailor, so that’s got to be a hint. The other one was “the look” from
her tattoo artist when she told him that she wanted her kids initials “B” and “J” tattooed on
her foot. It took a second to register that it might be a bad idea.
She’s never entirely fit in and loves escaping into a
book—whether it’s reading or writing one. But she’s found her tribe now and loves her MM
book world family. She dislikes cooking, but loves eating, can’t figure out technology, but is
addicted to it, and her guilty pleasure is Byron Bay Cookies. Oh and shoes. And lingerie. And
maybe handbags too. Well, if we’re being honest, we’d probably have to add her library too
given the state of her credit card every month (what can she say, she’s a bookworm at
In 2019 she was an Award-Winning Finalist in the Fiction:
LGBTQ category of the 2019 Best Book Awards sponsored by American Book Fest for her
story In Safe Arms.
She also publishes her raunchier short stories under her pen
name, Olive Hiscock.
Ann loves chatting to people online, so if you’d like to keep up
with what she’s got going on:
Charlie taught me I
deserved to be loved. Will I be brave enough to claim him as mine?
Temporarily separated while Charlie is on tour, my love for
him grows. He is my future—or he will be, once we’ve made our relationship public.
Charlie has been patient—probably too patient—while I’ve
been struggling to get over my fear that history will repeat itself. An unforgiving media
destroyed my career, I don’t want the same thing to happen to the man I love.
Telling the world is one of many obstacles we have to
navigate. The only thing I’m sure of is that we’ll find our way together.
Unashamedly Us is the fourth book in Offbeat Shifters,
an m/m paranormal romance series with a continuing storyline. The series is best read in
order, however Charlie and Austin’s story begins in book 3, Unapologetically Me. This book
includes a monkey shifter who has to face his fears, an arctic fox shifter who will always
stand up for himself, extended families, steadfast friends, lots of children, and a HEA ending
for the main characters. There are pregnancy and birth scenes in this book.
“I’m feeling needy.” I walked up to him, pulling him close and kissing him while savouring his
touch and taste.
“Me too.” Charlie smiled and then leant against my body. He stroked my back and breathed
in deeply, his chest expanding against mine.
“What are you doing?”
“Memorising your scent.”
I kissed his hair and then inhaled so I could do the same. Charlie’s scent was very
distinctive—toffee apples and crisp autumn mornings. My heart squeezed tight at the
realisation that I wouldn’t get to hold, kiss, or be in the same room as Charlie for three
Staying behind and keeping our relationship secret, for now, was the right
decision. Charlie didn’t need any stress on top of the rigours of touring. It didn’t matter that
his schedule was more relaxed than most singers enjoyed; the demands of performing
two-hour sets were exhausting. Worrying about the media gossiping about us was the last
thing he needed. Or maybe it was the last thing I needed, and Charlie was an easy scapegoat
for my fear.
But the media and Charlie’s fans would gossip the moment they found out we were a
couple. I was nineteen years older than him, and we were both omegas.
Charlie slipped his hands underneath my shirt and started to walk me backwards, kissing
“This is nice,” I said during a brief break between kisses.
“I’m saying goodbye,” Charlie whispered as he tipped us both onto the sofa.
“Didn’t we do that this morning?”
“Uh-huh.” He pushed my shirt up and pressed kisses to my chest.
“And last night?”
“Yes, but I want to say it again.” He looked up at me. “I’m really gonna miss you.” He undid
my belt. “I need to feel your skin against mine one last time before I go.”
The first rule of being a bodyguard is never get involved
with your client. It should have been easy to follow, but Jesse Steele is a beautiful, kind
omega, who’s far more down to earth than a pop star has any right to be.
Someone discovering our tryst becomes the least of our
worries when it becomes clear Jesse has a stalker.
Can I love Jesse and protect him, or will my emotions cloud
my judgement and put him in danger?
Secretly Mine is an m/m paranormal romance with a
protective tiger shifter, a sweet monkey shifter, lots of cuddles, secret kisses, and piggy back
rides. Whilst it is set in an alternate universe where omegas give birth, there are no
pregnancy or birth scenes in this book.
Trigger warning for mentions of infertility.
Openly Yours (Offbeat
Book 2 is a direct follow-on
from book 1 and will not have the same impact without having read book 1.
Now the tour is over, Isaac has to adapt to depending
financially on someone else for the first time.
When my world gets thrown into turmoil again, I need to
learn that relying emotionally on others isn’t a bad thing.
We have to face our biggest challenge together—creating a
different dream from the one we had envisioned.
Openly Yours is an m/m paranormal romance with a
loving tiger shifter, a sweet monkey shifter, enthusiastic family members, and lots of
cuddles. Whilst it is set in an alternate universe where omegas give birth, there are no
pregnancy or birth scenes in this book.
Trigger warning for scenes revolving around
(Offbeat Shifters #3)
Book 3 could be read as a
but has spoilers for the other
two so is definitely better read as part of the series.
Austin Steele is my idol. He’s also the guy I can’t get enough of.
Everyone thinks they know who I am—one of pop’s biggest divos. They don’t know me at
all. Austin Steele makes me want to see the real me, only there’s some problems:
We’re both omegas, he’s nineteen years my senior, he’s nursing old wounds, and he wants
to keep what’s happening between us a secret.
I thought a one-night stand was all I wanted. Now it’s becoming so much more. But how can
we look to the future when we can’t let go of our pasts?
Unapologetically Me is the third book in Offbeat Shifters, an m/m paranormal
romance series with a continuing storyline. This book includes a misunderstood and
unapologetic Arctic fox shifter, a caring capuchin monkey shifter, and a HFN ending. While
it’s set in an alternate universe where omegas give birth, there are no pregnancy or birth
scenes in this book.
About the Author
Colette’s personal love story began at university, where she
met her future husband. An evening of flirting, in the shadow of Lancaster castle, eventually
led to a fairytale wedding. She’s enjoying her own ‘happy ever after’ in the north of England
with her husband, two beautiful children and her writing.
Tate Ward is in a bind. His food truck hasn’t been the
runaway success he’d always dreamt it would be. When he tries to join a new food truck
collective to gain a larger following, his sales aren’t even high enough to win a spot. What he
needs is a high profile endorsement—and he knows just the guy. Tate hasn’t seen Chase Riley since high school. It’s
been ten long years of watching from a distance as Chase conquers football fields and fan’s
hearts. Tate never wanted Chase to know that he had the
world’s stupidest crush on him, because he always believed Chase was
straight. But desperate times call for desperate measures . .
. When Chase offers a tempting plan that could fulfill
all his dreams, Tate knows he can’t say no. All he has to do is pretend that his very real
feelings are actually fake. But faking it with Chase, while leading to wild
success and even wilder nights, is everything that Tate feared it would be. All it’s done is
leave him wanting the impossible: Chase’s heart.
A few minutes later, Tate re-emerged from the shiny silver truck, carrying a paper plate in
one hand and a bottle of water in the other.
He headed in Chase’s direction, and without saying a word, sat down opposite him and slid
the plate across the table.
“Rachel’s heating up the mac and cheese. It’ll be out in a second.”
“No soup?” Chase wondered.
“We’re out.” Tate shrugged. “Busy day. Shouldn’t have come at the end of lunch hour.”
“I had a meeting,” Chase said. One he probably could’ve canceled, but he also knew what
would happen if he’d shown up when there was a crowd here. It’d have become a circus,
and he wouldn’t have gotten a moment alone to talk to Tate.
The grilled cheese was perfectly browned and crispy, glistening at the edges with butter and
melted cheese. It looked just as good as Chase remembered, and when he bit into it . . . bliss.
He chewed and swallowed. Wished he had about a thousand other bites. “This is even
better than I remember it,” Chase said.
Tate drummed his fingers against the worn wooden grain of the tabletop impatiently. “It’s
been ten years. I was a kid. I’ve refined the recipe since then.”
“I don’t suppose you’d tell me your secret ingredient,” Chase wondered.
Tell me all your secrets. Please.
“Secret ingredient? Time? Patience?” Tate seemed annoyed he was here, and maybe it was
his fear of being found out but, deep down, Chase was worried it was something else.
Maybe it had only been Chase who’d been so affected by their classes together twice a
week. He hadn’t wanted to believe that was true, because he knew flirting and Tate had
undeniably flirted with him. Had always responded, even when Chase hadn’t really known
what they were doing.
Honestly, he still didn’t know what they’d been doing.
Chase finished one triangular half with three more big bites. “Well, I thought about this
sandwich a lot,” he said.
I thought about you.
Tate looked incredulous. “I made you one grilled cheese sandwich, in high
school, and you’ve been thinking about it ever since? For ten years?”
It sounded ridiculous when Tate put it like that. “Well, it was a good sandwich,” Chase
retorted. “And so is this one.”
“Does this mean you’re not going to sue us?”
Chase groaned. “I never planned on suing you. I just wanted . . .” What had he wanted? He hadn’t let himself contemplate exactly what it was that he
wanted from Tate, hadn’t given himself the chance, but now, even with Tate seemingly
annoyed, that indescribable tension hummed between them.
He’d wanted to know that he hadn’t misremembered or imagined it after all. He’d wanted to
know if it had been real.
“No? You just came here to intimidate me?”
“Oh for God’s sake,” Chase said. “I’m not here to sue you or intimidate you or any of that
crap. Is it so hard to believe I just wanted to see you again? See how you’re doing?”
Tate stared at him. Those gray eyes—usually so warm but opaque now—had always
unnerved him. Before, in the best possible ways. But now? Chase didn’t know what to think.
“You really aren’t here to demand I stop talking about you?”
Chase shrugged. “You posted that you make my favorite sandwich in LA. Technically, it was true. You did, just ten years ago. And now I’ve confirmed, officially, that you still do.”
Tate tugged off his beanie and ran his hand through his hair, the auburn strands of it shining
in the mid-afternoon California sunshine. “I’m sorry, it’s just hard for me to believe that
you’re not pissed.”
“I could pretend to be pissed off if it’d make you feel better,” Chase offered.
Tate chuckled. “No, no, that’s okay. I’m . . . I guess I’m just surprised. I’d have thought you’d
hate people who use your name.”
“Most people, yeah,” Chase admitted, biting into the second half of his sandwich. “But
you’re not most people. Never have been.”
About the Author
A lifelong Pacific
Northwester, Beth Bolden has just recently moved to North Carolina with her supportive
husband. Beth still believes in Keeping Portland Weird, and intends to be just as weird in
Beth has been writing
practically since she learned the alphabet. Unfortunately, her first foray into novel writing,
titled Big Bear with Sparkly Earrings, wasn’t a bestseller, but hope springs eternal. She’s
published twenty-three novels and seven novellas.
A Hollywood executive. A
sexy barista. A bold proposition.
Crossing Lines is a sexy and sweet age-gap, opposites-attract mm
romance set in Hollywood.
When Matt is propositioned by Jasper, a hot older guy, he’s
more than down. That is until he realizes Jasper has a boyfriend, and Matt would be joining
them both. He’s not into it, especially since the boyfriend is a jerk. What Matt doesn’t
expect is the lingering disappointment that the handsome man who approached him wasn’t
Jasper is not used to rejection. He didn’t become one of
the most successful executives in Hollywood by accepting defeat. So when Matt, the sexy
young barista, turns him down flat, he’s determined to find out why, especially when there
is such undeniable chemistry between them.
Crossing Lines is the third book in the Hollywood Hopefuls series, but it works as a standalone
Jasper turned in Reid’s arms and simply nodded. Reid’s face
lit up, and he drug Jasper off the dance floor. They made their way to the bar to reload on
drinks, then they found a small table in the bar area to scope out their options. After quickly
scanning the bar, Jasper knew they’d have no trouble finding a willing third. While he was
probably a solid 8, even at his age, Reid was a fucking 10, taking tall, dark and handsome to
a whole other level. Jasper could already see guys shooting them the Pick me! Pick me!
eyes. They were practically licking their lips.
“How about him,” Reid said, nodding his head toward a
table near the back. Jasper followed his gaze to a table with three young guys, seemingly in
jovial conversation. He watched the three men for a few minutes, trying to gauge their
relationship to one another. It certainly seemed like they were close, but the vibe was very
platonic. Easy laughs, casual postures, but not sitting close or touching at all. They appeared
to be oblivious to the entire club around them, and from what Jasper could tell, they were
celebrating. Judging by the baby face on the one guy, it could be his 21st birthday. Jesus. I’m old enough to be that kid’s
“I hope you’re not talking about the ginger, because if you
are, I’m going to have to institute a must be old
enough to rent a car policy.” He shot Reid a
Reid laughed. “Not the baby gay. The blonde.”
Jasper considered this. The blonde was also really young,
early twenties at best. He was good looking in a boy-next-door sort of way, but Jasper wasn’t
particularly attracted to the innocent type. If they were going to have a threesome, he
wanted someone who would know what to do. And when his eyes flicked to the third man
at the table, all Jasper could think was “Bingo.”
“Him,” Jasper said, not phrasing it as a question.
“Lip Ring?” Reid lifted an eyebrow.
Jasper slowly raked his eyes over the man, considering his
appearance. There was something about him that seemed vaguely familiar, thought he was
sure they didn’t know one another. He’d certainly have remembered meeting him. He was
young, too, but older than the other two. Definitely still in his twenties. He had black hair
that was shaved on the sides and longer on top, and it had a few streaks of blue in it. He had
piercings in his eyebrow and lip, and while the black hair and piercings would make a lot of
guys look rough, the man’s clear blue-grey eyes and easy smile made him seem
approachable, kind even. He was long and lean, dressed in all black, tight jeans and a t-shirt
that was rolled at the sleeves. His exposed arms were all creamy-pale skin contrasted with
stark, bold tattoos, all black and grey and striking blue.
“Yeah,” Jasper croaked, realizing he had been staring for
longer than he probably should have been, “him.”
Reid grinned. “Fuck yeah. I’ll go say hi. You go grab a…looks
like he’s drinking a beer?”
Jasper stood up quickly. “I’ll go talk to him. You get the
About the Author
Jeris Jean is a life-long
Minnesotan with an obsessive love of books. She has a master’s degree in English Literature
but didn’t write her first novel until she was in her mid-thirties. Something just “clicked,”
and all fell into its rightful place.
Jeris is a lover of cats, coffee,
binge-watching tv shows, her bffs, puzzles, knitting, white sunglasses, black nail polish,
purple hair, and reading and writing like it’s going out of style, especially mm
She lives with her husband,
two sons and their cat, Fluffy Cat Love, in a lovely little suburb of Minneapolis.
A lonely Daddy. An innocent boy. A twenty-year age gap. Whatever happens next is in Daddy’s hands.
Finding his way in life all on his own hadn’t been easy for eighteen-year-old Elliot Hedrick, but he’d managed to hold it all together so far.
Even though it was just by the skin of his teeth.
Between his warehouse job and pursuing a career as a professional ballet dancer, he’d been working sixteen-hour days and was still barely making ends meet.
He was fraying at the seams. And he was so damn lonely.
There was nobody for him to lean on, nobody to come to his rescue when things fell apart—it was all up to him to achieve his dreams.
Then suddenly Grant Weston charged into Elliot’s life, his knight in shining armor—literally and figuratively—and despite their twenty-year age gap, Grant couldn’t seem to leave the boy alone. Even though Grant knew he should.
There were too many obstacles between them—and not just their ages. Grant had secrets of his own, ghosts from his past that made him hold back from taking what he really wanted from Elliot.
And what Grant wanted was to make Elliot his boy.
To have a true partner.
But Grant was afraid to trust himself—afraid that history would repeat itself and leave him with a broken heart yet again.
Is age really just a number, or will the years between them end their relationship before it can even start?
Finding His Boy is the first book in a duet taking place in the Safe Harbor universe but can be read as a stand-alone and has an HFN ending. This book is a 90+K word slow burn, steamy romance that features a Daddy/boy relationship between two consenting adult men. No age play. Dual POV. There are explicit descriptions of sexual acts, so this book is intened for a mature audience (18+).
Trigger Warning: On-page physical assault (not between MCs), mention of sexual assault.
Grant knew he should pull back, he should close the door—that would be the smart thing to do. He should be respectful of Elliot’s privacy.
Because if he crossed this line, there would be no going back—all of his noble rationalizing about not taking advantage of Elliot’s vulnerability would be out the window.
But fuck, the boy was incredibly gorgeous—the planes of his slim muscular body highlighted in a soft blue glow from the moon, his face a study in shadow and light. He looked so young, so vulnerable, and so ripe for the taking. Exposed, ready for Grant to sink his teeth into the pale expanse of flesh on display, to mark Elliot as his.
If Grant stepped further into the room now—and he wanted to, oh he’d never wanted anything so badly in his life, he could taste the wanting like metal on his tongue—where would that choice bring them?
Because the boy had no clue what Grant wanted to do to him.
He couldn’t know how Grant wanted to use him. To flay him wide open with word and action and touch, and pick apart the soft tender insides of him, to leave him wanting and vulnerable and his. To deliver the safety and comfort and pleasure that his boy craved and that only he—Grant—could give.
Grant’s own possession.
Those words—his boy—they acted like a bucket of cold water—a wave of uncertainty and apprehension to temporarily subdue his lust. Was this just history repeating itself? Would Elliot realize a year down the line that Grant couldn’t give him what he wanted, and Grant would be left high and dry once again?
Could Grant risk his heart like that again? The thought of sharing that experience with someone, only for his heart to be trampled, handled carelessly, and discarded…
He should leave now, back out and pretend he’d never been here. Just leave and act like nothing had changed the next day. Leave this beautiful boy whole and innocent and let someone else break him in gently, softly, like he deserved. Someone he could grow with, change with, learn with.
Fuck, he was a coward.
But then Elliot opened his eyes. And he parted his lips. And he kept on pumping his hand up and down as he locked his eyes with Grant’s, his heated gaze burning with open desire.
Desire for Grant.
And Grant knew he couldn’t walk away.
About the Author
Just a dreamer fueled by coffee who’s been writing about love that comes in all forms since she got her first word processor. Passionate bibliophile and lover of science, caretaker of humans and friend to dogs.
Ashley Mostrich gets one heck of a birthday surprise when
the guy he brought home for the night turns out to be the twin brother of the prince he
didn’t know he was supposed to marry. Unbeknownst to Ashley, his grandpa made a deal
with a jinn and promised him off to the royal family before he was even born.
Zamir is the heir to the mystical kingdom of Palmyra and
promises he will love Ashley in time, while his younger brother, Zaire, is trying to get into
Ashley ‘s bed again. Ashley wants to be a faithful fiancé to Zamir, but he cannot deny the
powerful chemistry he feels with Zaire. Additional jealousy flares when Ashley discovers that
Zamir’s heart already belongs to another, but the pressure for the wedding is on because
the future of the Palmyran people hinges on a royal union magically producing an
Once Ashley realizes that Zaire’s feelings for him might be
more than physical, he finds himself falling in love with the wrong brother and risking the
fate of the entire kingdom. It’ll take a miracle—or one very powerful wish—for everyone to
have a happy ending.
“Why does everyone keep calling me ‘savior’?”
“You don’t know? About the prophecy?” Zaire questioned
Zaire made a sour face, mumbling a few soft curses before
clearing his throat. “My brother is truly an idiot. Come with me,” he said, taking Ashley’s
arm and guiding him back toward where the little girl was.
People were bringing her little trinkets and baubles,
receiving a slice of the cake from her in exchange. She had a crown of flowers in her hair,
well dressed, and seemed to be of some importance despite her youth.
Ashley watched for a few moments. “Who is that?”
“That is Lady Alana,” Zaire replied, waiting for the name to
settle in Ashley’s brain.
“Lady Alana. Wait, she’s the birthday girl?”
“Yes,” Zaire said, something sad in his voice. “Our people
are dying, Ashley. Slowly but surely, jinn are fading away. Every generation has gotten
smaller and smaller, and there hasn’t been a new jinn child born in over thirty
“Thirty years… Alana was the last one?”
“Yes. Even with all our proper breeding and perfect little
arranged marriages, every mating ritual since her birth has failed. But there’s a prophecy,
you see, that a royal wedding will bless the entire kingdom with an entire new generation of
“Wait a damn second, that little girl is freakin’
“Yes,” Zaire huffed impatiently. “We don’t age as humans
do. Now, do you understand why you are so important?”
“Everyone actually believes that me getting knocked up by
your brother or me knocking him up is the future of your entire race?”
“Mmm, pretty much. It’ll probably be you getting knocked
up, to be honest. But you know, no pressure!”
“Fuck,” Ashley mumbled, rubbing a hand over his face and
chugging his drink.
“My brother knows what’s at stake,” Zaire said gently, a
tone meant to be comforting. “He will make amends for his behavior, I know it.”
“Do you believe the prophecy?”
Zaire’s brows furrowed, and he glanced down at his mug as
he thought over the question. He took a small sip before he said, “I believe that other
people believe it’s true. I’ve never been much for fate or destiny. I much prefer the idea that
I’m in control of my own life.”
“You realize this makes what you did even more screwed
“If the prophecy is real, you risked the future of your race
just to piss off your brother.”
“First of all,” Zaire drawled, wagging his finger, “I never
planned for ‘what we did’ to go that far. I truly had no intentions of having sex with you. I
was expecting to find a blushing virgin, not an insatiable bedroom hellcat—”
“A bedroom what now?”
“And second of all,” Zaire went on with a smirk, “it was
quite impossible to think about the good of my people once I had tasted your gorgeous
“Zaire!” Ashley protested, whipping around to see if
anyone was listening. He stared back at Zaire, and he suddenly realized that although he
could hear his voice, his lips were not moving.
“When you were screaming my name, all I thought about
was wanting to hear that sweet sound as many times as I possibly could.”
Ashley gulped, blood creeping up into his cheeks as he
stammered, “That’s… that’s, uhm, that was very s-selfish of you.”
“I know,” Zaire said out loud with a smug little smile. “I’m a
very selfish person. At times, quite envious as well.”
“Seeing my brother get all the things I want for myself has
become a bit tiresome,” Zaire replied, his lips not moving again, and yet his voice was fully in
Ashley’s ear as he stepped into his space. “Not very fair at all.”
“How, how are you doing that?” Ashley hissed, instinctively
“The talking without talking.”
“Magic,” replied Zaire’s voice in his ear.
“You’ve gotta stop saying those kinds of things,” Ashley
barked, cringing when he noticed his raised voice earned them several curious
“Hmm, I didn’t actually say a thing,” Zaire pointed out
“Fine! Stop not saying those things!”
About the Author
K.L. “Kat” Hiers is an
embalmer, restorative artist, and queer writer. Licensed in both funeral directing and funeral
service, she’s been working in the death industry for nearly a decade. Her first love was
always telling stories, and she has been writing for over twenty years, penning her very first
book at just eight years old. Publishers generally do not accept manuscripts in Hello Kitty
notebooks, however, but she never gave up.
Following the success of her
first novel, Cold Hard Cash, she now enjoys writing professionally, focusing on spinning tales
of sultry passion, exotic worlds, and emotional journeys. She loves attending horror movie
conventions and indulging in cosplay of her favorite characters. She lives in Zebulon, NC,
with her husband and their children, some of whom have paws and a few that only pretend
to because they think it’s cute.
Will the past come back to destroy everything they are building? Two strangers meeting by chance, searching for somebody to love, and finding each other.
Rhys had it all…for the most part. He didn’t mind leaving people or dreams in the past because he was determined to carve out a new future with his fiancé, Nick. But like a house of cards, it all came crashing down around him. Nick found someone else to love, and Rhys suddenly found himself with nothing. Will Rhys open his heart again or keep it sealed shut?
Declan experienced a lot as an Army doctor, but once he was able, he got out, tired of war and suffering. When he meets Rhys, Declan sees a brokenness in the other man’s eyes and wants to do anything he can to drive away Rhys’s ghosts. Even if it means risking his own heart.
“Nothing yet.” I breathed deeply and let it out through my nose. “Listen, Declan, I’m fine. Yeah, I’m hurt and heartbroken because I expected more from someone who claimed to love me, but I’m not completely down and out. Eventually, I’ll bounce back better than ever. Period. I know Baker is worried about me, but he doesn’t need to be. As soon as I can, I’ll get out of his hair, and everyone will be happy. You won’t have to worry that I’m using him for my own gain or anything else. Who knows, maybe Montana is where I belong. I have family and friends there, people who care about me, and I wouldn’t be a nuisance. Maybe I could even go back to school and figure out what I want to do with my life. So, you don’t have to pretend to be interested in talking to me any longer. I’ll tell Baker you were nice and tried, but I told you to get lost.”
“You haven’t said that yet.” He grinned.
I turned my head and met his gaze. “Please leave. I need a few minutes to myself.” I should have felt bad for demanding such a thing since he was only trying to be nice, but I didn’t. I’d had enough and needed him gone to lick my wounds. Everything was still too fresh, too raw, too painful, and he kept bringing it up, making it impossible to break away from it at all.
“Sure.” Getting up, he didn’t take his eyes off of me. “For the record, I think it would be a mistake to go back to Montana.” After saying that, he left the room, the door closing with a soft snick.
A mistake? This was the man who admitted he didn’t like me moving in with Baker, not that I had much of a choice. It hadn’t been my plan, but I was glad I had. Getting out of that apartment and not being around certain people has helped to pull me out of the black hole I’d found myself free-falling in; however, I still felt like I was continually clawing my way out, inch by slow inch. At this point, I couldn’t even see a pinprick of light, but I knew it existed, somewhere, hovering above me.
Setting the controller on the table in front of me next to my forgotten drink, I wiped away another tear that had decided to fall. “Why did he have to come in here?” I pulled my legs up again and curled in on myself.
Today, I’d been able to forget, for a time, and pretend I wasn’t hanging on by a thread. Today, I’d been nervous and anxious about meeting new people, but Nick and everything he did to me was pushed to the back of my mind. Today, in some strange way, I’d felt lighter. And then Declan busted through the door like the Kool-Aid Man and broke the glass walls I’d erected to protect myself. He couldn’t let me have just one day? He couldn’t allow me to forget my pain and embarrassment for one stupid, measly day? Was it too much to ask?
My shoulders shook as I silently cried, my tears staining my jeans. When would the wound stop bleeding?
About the Author
Maria Vickers is a bestselling and award-winning author who currently resides in St. Louis, MO with her pug, Spencer Tracy. She has always had a passion for writing and after she became disabled in 2010, she decided to use writing as her escape. Life is about what you make of it, you have to live it to the fullest no matter the circumstances.
From a young age, she has always loved books and even dreamed of being an author when she was younger. Growing up in the Navy, she used to weave tales for her siblings and her friends about anything and everything. And when she wasn’t creating her own stories, she had a book in her hand. They transported her to another world. She hopes that her readers will have the same experience when reading her stories, and that, in some way, they can relate to her characters.
Getting sick changed her life forever, but it also opened doors for her that she thought would always be out of reach.
My first relationship ended with a dramatic event, and police involvement. Needless to say, I wasn’t keen starting a new one. But a knock on the door one random night changed everything. After exchanging some witty banter through my closed oak door, safety first, I threw it open to find an exquisite bearded man, hair tied back, muscles on display… all-in-all, my fantasy come to life.
I wove elaborate dreams around the two of us within minutes, yet my illusion shattered when I learned he was straight. But the protective and intense man became a fixture in my life, and no matter how many times I tell myself he’s not available, I stubbornly hold out hope.
I can’t figure out what shocked me more. The realization I’m not only attracted to a man, but to my dazzling, openly gay, younger next-door neighbor who makes every protective instinct in me flare. Or at the ripe old age of thirty-four, I’m stupidly fighting against my one chance at happiness.
Despite my grumpy and staid personality, the brilliant and funny man introduced me to his world, his family, and worked his way into my heart. The more I’m immersed in everything Neko, my desire for him only grows.
Yep, completely screwed.
Gamer’s Choice features an age gap, bisexual awakening romance between a professional let’s player and his new neighbor. It’s a standalone gay/bisexual romance with an instant connection and a ten-year age difference.
~Descriptions of domestic violence and stalking, includes abuse from an ex-partner, descriptions of an attempted assault with a weapon. Please avoid if the subject matter is triggering.~
I don’t know why I did this to myself.
The situation was not tenable. I hunched my shoulders close to my ears, spine frozen in place and arched away from the back of my ergonomic chair, and if I tensed any more, I’m sure I would sprain something.
My gaze darted around the darkened room and I listened out for any signs of the upcoming attack, and I realized I hadn’t spoken in several minutes. I found a locker for a momentary reprieve and slipped inside.
But as I opened my mouth, hoping whatever words I spewed forth came across as witty and brilliant, the ghost girl who’d stalked me for two hours popped up in front of my hiding space with no warning, baring her teeth with a growl.
To add to my humiliation, she surged toward me with a screech. An embarrassing scream punched up from my chest and past my throat as I wretched the headphones from my ears and covered my eyes with my hands.
I listened to my heart thumping hard in my chest, worrying me for a long minute, until the rhythm decreased and my fear dissipated.
It’s not real. So not real.
By the time I opened my eyes, I caught sight of the screen as the fake blood dripped down from the top of the monitor and the words ‘Game Over’ flashed at me.
My eyes tracked up toward the camera and I said, “Well, that’s all I have time for today. Yes, I am going to pass the last few minutes off as though they never happened. I hope you enjoyed that as much as Echo will, and I’ll catch you next time. Later.”
I held up two fingers, flashing the peace sign, my signature, I stopped the recording before reaching for the stainless steel bottle I kept handy. With the last remnants of the ice-cold water swirling around, enough to sustain me and sooth my sore throat until I dragged myself downstairs for a refill and cooked myself dinner, I tilted the bottle back and swallowed.
My best friend, who was the greatest editor I’ve ever known, was waiting for my text. She’d handle everything for the upload.
It’s ready for you. Don’t laugh too hard.
Got it. I’ll laugh the right amount, thank you very much.
I shook my head and stood.
Like me, Echo started her career because of an interest in something she loved. She cut her own movie trailers, which she somehow included proper voice overs, and they were so much better than what a normal Hollywood production churned out.
When I started gaming online, she offered to edit my videos, which involved me rambling through whatever game I was playing, hoping whoever watched paid more attention to the game than my acne covered face and squeaky voice. My excuse for the awkwardness… I was sixteen.
Since then, I’ve developed into a lanky, long-limbed, acne-free, deep-voiced man who enjoys speaking to others through the internet and connecting them to a community they are proud of. I thank the deities above I moved past puberty without causing harm to myself or others.
But Echo followed my channel and realized before I did that I’d gained subscribers at a steady rate. She promoted herself to my full-time editor when we were nineteen. Although she has her own successful channel, a fashion and beauty one, I keep her busy with my upload schedule.
My stomach growled, and I shot a glance at the clock. Two hours past my normal recording time. I stretched my arms over my head, hearing the usual popping sounds in my joints from whenever I sat too long at my desk.
Done for the day, I tucked in my chair and reached over to shut off the three monitors, but as I turned to exit, I noticed my opened office door.
Although my house was on the corner of a cul-de-sac with a gigantic yard surrounding it, I attempted to keep my profession from bothering my neighbors. So I closed the door whenever I recorded because I’m not quiet. And when I remodeled the house a few years before, I added soundproofing to the entire top floor.
I’d chosen to buy the house because the bedrooms were on the second floor. The rooms were spacious enough my setup was away from the windows, and the bonus had been the rest of the place. Curved doorways, wooden floors throughout, the modern kitchen that included a farmhouse sink along with the dual oven gas range, and the sunroom that faced the backyard.
The three-bedroom house was enormous for only me. But my family lived close by and on the weekends, and sometimes during the week when mom and dad hounded them about homework and the possibility of their interest in either boys or girls, my parents weren’t picky, my twin sisters stayed over with me.
It wasn’t as if I had a social life they could interrupt. I’d tried years before, and it turned out to be a disaster, so I’d given up. Instead, I concentrated on my career. And when I wasn’t working, I divided my time between Echo or my family.
Tired of my depressing thoughts of being alone with no man in my bed, I headed out of the room and downstairs, wondering what I might make for dinner. After, I would indulge in a true crime YouTube marathon.
The moment I hit the last step, a knock from the front door stopped me in my tracks. At close to nine on a school night ruled out my sisters dropping in for a visit, and Echo was busy editing. Curious, I padded over to the front door.
Thinking myself stealthy in my woolen-clad feet, I stopped about a half a foot in front of solid oak and placed my hands on the smooth wood before inching forward. Through the peephole, my eye focused on a solid figure facing away from me. He was tall, so my tired brain played out a fantasy where a gorgeous man realized he could no longer live without me and was waiting outside to declare his feelings.
But what’s the likelihood of that?
Still freaked out from being immersed in a horror game and catching the damp chill of the night air from the thunderstorm earlier, I opened my mouth and forced words through my tight throat.
“You are unfamiliar to me, so before I open this door I have to ask, are you a serial killer?”
Yeah, my conversation skills rock.
The man turned toward the door, but his height prevented me from seeing any defining features. The deeper voice on the other side answered, “Um, that’s a new one. I’m not, but I don’t know if you’re going to take my word for it.”
“Shit! You make a good point. Well, let me ask you this? Are you here to use my phone because your car broke down and your mobile ‘died’?”
My dumb ass used air quotes as if he could see me. To be honest, I’m surprised I’m still alive.
The stranger huffed out a snicker. The sound did not send flutters of pleasure through me.
“Are you always this suspicious?”
My head nodded up and down before I slapped my forehead and replied, “I think that’s what an untrustworthy, immoral man would say, using reverse psychology to make me feel guilty for being unhelpful, which would make me lower my inhibitions and let you inside.”
The man had the nerve to laugh, a deep, throaty, sexy sound. He asked, “You read that in a book, right?”
“Well, I didn’t read it, per se, I heard it in an audiobook from a retired FBI agent about how following your instincts could save your life and the only reason I listened to it because both of my sisters refused. I admit, it scared the poop out of me, but if I can keep them safe, I would do it again.”
“That’s fair, I suppose. But no, I’m not here to harm you and I’m not a criminal. I heard a scream and thought it was a woman in distress, so I thought I would check.”
My hesitation forgotten in that moment, I jerked open the door and glared at the chest in front of me.
Sometimes I hated being short.
I gulped as my eyes traveled upward until I met amused gray eyes, one eyebrow arched in question.
“I knew that would do it?” The tall man who I would love to climb said.
“Shit, did I say that aloud?”
Another chuckle and I forced my eyes up again.
About the Author
Valerie resides in Denver, Colorado with her husband. While she had been interested in writing a romance novel for years, it wasn’t until she wrote her first book that she really became hooked, and now she can’t stop. She has notebooks full of ideas, and she plans to write most of them in the years to come.
When she’s not writing or learning about the craft of writing, she can be found surfing the internet way too much, watching Investigation Discovery and thinking that her neighbors are up to no good, and finding new ways to get her husband to laugh.
Austin Steele is my idol. He’s also the guy I can’t get enough of.
Austin Steele is my idol. He’s also the guy I can’t get enough of.
Everyone thinks they know who I am—one of pop’s biggest divos. They don’t know me at all. Austin Steele makes me want to see the real me, only there’s some problems:
We’re both omegas, he’s nineteen years my senior, he’s nursing old wounds, and he wants to keep what’s happening between us a secret.
I thought a one-night stand was all I wanted. Now it’s becoming so much more. But how can we look to the future when we can’t let go of our pasts?
Unapologetically Me is the third book in Offbeat Shifters, an m/m paranormal romance series with a continuing storyline. This book includes a misunderstood and unapologetic Arctic fox shifter, a caring capuchin monkey shifter, and a HFN ending. While it’s set in an alternate universe where omegas give birth, there are no pregnancy or birth scenes in this book.
“I can’t remember the last time I just hung out with someone before this week.” I laid my head on his shoulder. “That’s not true. It was right before my first album went viral.”
“That’s a long time.” Austin didn’t sound even remotely surprised.
“I guess you know how that feels, huh?”
“The cupcakes will be cool enough to decorate.” I cleared my throat and stood.
We’d been having fun, and I didn’t want to drag the day down with drama about how lonely I was. Had been. Could I consign my loneliness to past tense now that I was spending time with Austin?
“I’ll help you make some icing if you want.”
“That might help,” Austin said around a chuckle.
I showed him the recipe I liked to use, loaded up a piping bag for him, and hand over hand showed him how to use it.
“You’ve gotta be gentle,” I said as I left him to it.
I carefully cut a hole out of the centre of each of my cupcakes, into which I pushed a fresh strawberry. Then I popped the top back on and began to ice them. I’d coloured my icing a soft shade of pink, much paler than the bright red of the strawberries. Using a controlled motion, I spiralled the icing onto the top of each cupcake.
“Bollocks!” Austin said.
I looked around to see that his hands were covered in icing, and the nozzle had shot off the piping bag onto one of his cupcakes. Icing dripped everywhere.
I couldn’t help but laugh. “You squeezed too hard, didn’t you?”
“It wasn’t coming out,” he grumbled.
He put the piping bag into a bowl, washed his hands, and grabbed a spoon. I watched for a moment as he dolloped icing onto the top of each cupcake. They looked anything but pretty. Still chuckling to myself, I finished mine off by sprinkling the tiny pieces of chopped strawberry over the icing.
“It’s obvious who’s won,” Austin said.
“No, it’s not. Don’t we have to do a taste test or something?”
“I guess so.”
“Get a couple of plates out.”
He complied. I cut one of his cupcakes in half and put a piece on each plate, then did the same with one of my own.
“We could use our fingers?”
“I’m pretty sure that’s not how they do it on cooking shows.”
Austin smiled and grabbed a couple of forks. “We should taste the same one.” He handed me a fork. “Mine first.”
“So we’re saving the best until last? We’ll need to eat yours to get rid of the taste of mine.”
“They can’t be that bad.”
He raised his eyebrows. We both took a bite.
“Oh.” The cupcake was like a dry rock in my mouth.
“See what I mean?” Austin said around his own mouthful.
I grabbed some water to wash it down. “They’re not bad for a beginner. A little dry.”
“You might want to try adding a bit of milk when you’re mixing the ingredients. It helps to make the mixture light and fluffy.”
“What would help the taste?”
“Some vanilla-bean paste. It’s much better than vanilla extract,” I added, glancing at the small brown bottle of extract that Austin had bought but obviously not used in his own cakes.
Austin nodded thoughtfully before trying my cake. He closed his eyes and murmured his approval. “Now this is like an orgasm in my mouth.”
I snorted a laugh. “A what?”
“An orgasm in my mouth.” He devoured the rest of his half of the cupcake and then put his plate down. “You win.” He wrapped his arms around my waist.
“What do I win?”
“A kiss.” His lips and tongue tasted of strawberries and icing.
Check out the first two books in the Offbeat Shifters Series
Colette’s personal love story began at university, where she met her future husband. An evening of flirting, in the shadow of Lancaster castle, eventually led to a fairytale wedding. She’s enjoying her own ‘happy ever after’ in the north of England with her husband, two beautiful children and her writing.
For one sentinel, tradition is everything until he meets a pointy-eared photographer who is no elf.
Teverild is a man who refuses to allow anyone to call him an elf, despite his pointy ears. Having left his tribe behind centuries ago, Teverild is now a successful photographer. Although his phone contains the numbers of powerful people within the Council of Sorcery and Shifters, and they endeavor to include him in family and other important events, he rebuffs friendship. The concept of mates eludes him, and he doesn’t want that connection either.
As a sentinel, Skeleton Lord Cassius Daray strives for perfection. His purpose is to aid his people, and he works diligently to further the goals of the Sentinel Brotherhood. At home, Cassius enjoys being with his family and throws himself into his hobbies, but there is something missing. What Cassius wants most is to find a mate.
With a penchant for trouble, Teverild winds up on the wrong side of the law. His penance is to teach a group of sentinels the basics of his craft. Teverild wants to get the class over with, but his life changes forever when he meets Cassius. Drawn together immediately, they must overcome their ghosts if they want to forge a future and build a love that will sustain them both.
“Hi, again,” Teverild offered.
“Your class was wonderful; I learned a lot,” Cassius remarked as everyone teleported away.
“Thanks, I don’t even know half of what I said,” Teverild confessed, again surprising himself with his candidness.
“I’m so glad we finally met and that you’re my mate. Did you want to come and meet my family now?”
Teverild didn’t want to disappoint the smiling man in front of him, but his entire being recoiled at the word family. It was nothing personal against Cassius—in fact, Teverild already knew at least one member of his family. Arch Lich Chander Daray had saved Teverild by allowing him to join the Council, and he and Drystan had offered help in countless ways.
It was their attention that had inspired him to ink his skin with images of skulls that most people found macabre. To Teverild, they represented second chances, and he wondered, as he stared into the hopeful face of a man who had once been a skeleton, if Fate had kept him fascinated by such images because of Cassius. While that might’ve been a hopeful or fanciful thought, Teverild was too deeply rooted in grim reality to let it flourish.
“I can’t. I have an appointment to keep,” Teverild lied. Cassius’s crestfallen expression caused words to continue to sputter out. “Some other time maybe.”
“Are you free tomorrow?”
“I’d have to check my calendar,” said Teverild, sneaking in a step toward the door.
“I guess you must be really busy.”
“I prefer to be.”
Cassius’s grinned, making Teverild want to melt at his giant boots. “Which makes it that much more awesome that we finally met. I could kick myself for not going to Elf’s first shift now. We could’ve been together for years.”
It was a bit unsettling to Teverild that Cassius assumed they were simply going to be together because Fate had decreed it—but it also warmed him for some inexplicable reason.
“That was a spectacular day.”
“You took really great photos of Elf.”
“Thanks,” Teverild responded, edging closer to the hallway.
“Where are you going?”
Teverild blinked heavily. “I told you. I have an appointment.”
“I mean, do you have a car or are you using Dérive? I could walk you to the parking garage or to the teleporting station.”
“Oh, you don’t have to do that.”
“You didn’t answer my question, and I want to,” Cassius argued.
His mind filling with images of being stalked by a cloaked assassin, Teverild wondered how in the world he was supposed to get out of this mess he’d stumbled into. “I can walk on my own. It’s no big deal.”
The big shoulders slumped again, and Teverild acknowledged that he was already learning how easy it was to disappoint his mate.
“Okay, if that’s what you want, then I won’t keep pestering you. Can I text you later?”
“Sure…if you want.”
“Can I ask you one last question before you go?”
Teverild had a hand on the door, and he was somehow unsurprised that his attempt at an easy escape hadn’t succeeded. “Yeah. Okay.”
“Are you interested in trying to be mates, or would you prefer it if I didn’t bother you again?”
About the Author
Jessamyn Kingley lives in Nevada where she begs the men in her head to tell her their amazing stories which she dutifully writes it all down in what has become a small mountain of notebooks. She falls in love with each couple and swears whatever book she wrote last is her absolute favorite.
Jessamyn is married and working toward remembering to start the dishwasher without being distracted by the scent of the magical detergent. For personal enjoyment, she aids in cat rescue while slashing and gashing her way through mobs in various MMORPGs. Caffeine is her very best friend and is only cast aside briefly for the sin better known as BBQ potato chips.