Friday, July 28, 2017

Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: TREADING WATER by Jessie G.


Treading Water
Series: Forgotten Soldier #2
Author: Jessie G
Genre: M/M Romance
Release Date: July 18, 2017




After devoting eighteen years of his life to the US Navy, Petty Officer First Class Shane Parker is struggling with the very real possibility of becoming unnecessary. If he doesn’t make Chief Petty Officer before his twenty—and it doesn’t seem likely that he will—he’ll be retired from active service and placed on the Fleet Reserve list until his mooring lines are officially cut forever. While it would all be very honorable and ceremonial, he simply wasn’t civilian material.


Before even swearing-in, Julian Brand knew he wasn’t cut out to be a soldier, but refusing wasn’t an option. Generations of Brand man made careers in the military and the expectation of every Brand son was to follow in those prestigious footsteps. Though the prospect of being rolled back dodged his every step, somehow he made it through boot camp and did his time. Six years after not reenlisting, Julian still struggles to find familial acceptance as he fights to live life on his terms.

On the surface, they couldn’t be more different, but when Jared Ramos calls, neither are capable of refusing. If they can find a way to work together, they might be able to save a wounded warrior and each other in the process.

NOTE: The first story in this series is a 6K word short story originally written for an anthology. While it's a different couple, I'm happy to provide that to reviewers as they have a brief appearance in the new book and are central characters to this benefit series.







Happily Ever Chapter - “Well-written story, strong characters.”

Bookobsessed - “Wonderful read”





10% of royalties earned from this and future books in the Forgotten Soldier series will benefit the Gary Sinise Foundation, but I'm not content to stop there. I've set up a fundraising page directly on the Foundation's website and I'm asking for your help in reaching (and maybe surpassing) my goal. Every donation of $10 equals 1 entry to win signed books. If you donate more than that, every multiple of 10 will be an additional entry (so $20 = 2 entries and so forth).

1 Grand Prize Winner will receive all my paperbacks signed (8 books) 
4 Runner Up Winners will win a signed copy of Treading Water






Seeing Sean fall apart was something Shane wasn’t likely to forget. Never could he have imagined a single scenario that included this big, strong, strapping sailor curled up in his blankets sobbing. As Julian climbed back onto the bed, absorbing that pain as if it were his own, Shane feared he was the wrong man to help them. He was barely treading water and the overwhelming emotions coming off both men were like a rip tide threatening to pull him away.

Over the years, he heard Sean worry over his cousin’s emotional stability enough that he thought he was doing the right thing by offering Julian a safe place to vent. It wasn’t like his own emotions were in danger of getting involved—he only had a couple and none of them were tied up in a man he didn’t know. The same couldn’t be said for Sean. They were more than friends, more than the honorary brothers, and this breakdown had his own eyes itching in an alarming way. 

Were those tears? It had been decades. For sure, never in his adult life. Not since…no, it was best not to think about that now. Talk about being useless. If he went down that path, Sean and Julian would be taking care of him. 

A warm hand slid along his and the ease in which their fingers twined gave him pause. Cautiously, he looked over and found brown eyes filled with understanding and invitation. He had promised Julian he wouldn’t be alone and the quiet reciprocation had been nice, but nothing he expected to count on. Without consciously thinking about it, Shane found himself sitting on the edge of the bed. Though it wasn’t built for three grown men, he was able to wrap his arm around his little unit and was surprised how right it felt. 

“We’re going to get through this, Sean. Will you let us take care of you?” Julian was still speaking when Shane felt Sean nodding against them. 

For better or worse, they were in it together now and Shane refused to let them down no matter how uncomfortable it might get for him.



Talk about a story to tug at your heart...Treading Water was everything I've come to expect from this author, and is a perfect example of why I read her books.  It has the ideal balance of serious and emotional while giving the reader a realistic, if abbreviated, insight into the issues facing military personnel.  Not only do we get to enjoy Julian and Shane's journey to each other, but we also get an inside glimpse into Sean's turmoil as well as his revival.

When I first started the book, I thought I might have gotten my characters mixed up as Jared and Aiden are front and center, but then it transitioned to the real stars of the story after the background and setup (oh, but please tell me we'll be getting more for Jared and Aiden...please!).  Julian is so sweet and an emotional person, with so much capacity to feel.  Shane is the opposite, keeping things quiet and inside, controlling his emotion instead.  Perfect complement?  Definitely.  And their physical attraction and strong chemistry added in makes for the complete package--as long as Shane is ready to hop off the hookup mentality.

Then we also get to follow along with Sean as he is adapting to his new reality, and honestly following along with his part of the story doesn't at all detract from the relationship development between Julian and Shane.  Sean is the reason the two of them had the opportunity to come together, so having his story included fit well with the rest of the story for me.

The writing was excellent, clear and concise while easily conveying what all three men were going through.  Everything flowed so smoothly that I didn't realize the time passing as I read.  I was quickly pulled in to the story from the start, and was fully engrossed until the very end.

I loved Treading Water, and it's getting a full 5 stars from me.  I highly recommend this book to any M/M romance fan, particularly if you love stories involving military men.  It does set a good stage to continue on with more stories, and I'm hoping we get to see a lot more from this series going forward.  This book is meant for readers 18+ for adult language and sexual content.







Like many readers, the dream of being a writer has been with me a long time. After three decades of trying, I'd begun to doubt. Thanks to social media, I followed my favorite authors hoping to glean some words of wisdom as I pounded out half-formed ideas with alarming regularity. Two repetitive themes emerged: to be a great writer you must read a lot and your butt must be in the chair every day like it's a job. The more you write, the easier it will be to write and the better you will be at writing. I took that advice to heart and write every day. With three series in the works and a full schedule of releases planned for the next two years, it's been amazing to have made this dream my reality.

I am a firm believer in marriage equality, love at first sight, power dynamics, and happily ever after. I'm a lover of strong secondary characters, and series filled with families—biological or chosen. All are themes you'll find throughout my books.








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Thursday, July 27, 2017

New Release: A LITTLE BIT LIKE LOVE by Brooke Blaine

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A Little Bit Like Love, an all-new sexy STANDALONE M/M romance from Brooke Blaine is LIVE!

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A Little Bit Like Love 

by Brooke Blaine

Publication Date: July 27th, 2017

Genre: Contemporary Romance/M/M Romance


What if you had everything in the world you wanted…except the man you’d left behind?

Jackson Davenport, the charismatic, strait-laced heir to the Davenport fortune, has a secret. One he’s been hiding since he graduated from South Haven all-boys academy—and that secret’s name is Lucas.

When a work trip takes Jackson back to his old stomping grounds, memories of the year he shared with Lucas come crashing to the surface. With growing pressure from his father to settle down and take over the family business, Jackson knows he’s on borrowed time, and sets out to find the free-spirited daredevil he once knew.

But Lucas isn’t the same man he was eight years ago.

One night. A shattered heart. And an endless parade of nameless faces. Lucas Sullivan is South Haven’s ultimate playboy, a reputation he’s honed since the only boy he ever loved left without a trace. To the world, he’s brash and confident, an in-demand artist who spends his days designing one-of-a-kind pieces and his nights as king of the downtown scene.

Many have tried and failed to get past the barrier he’s carefully constructed, but it’s the shy, studious boy he once coaxed out of his shell who still haunts him.

Maybe it was a mistake. Maybe it was lust. Or maybe…it was a little bit like love.

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Read Today!

(Free in Kindle Unlimited)



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About Brooke Blaine:

You could say Brooke Blaine was a book-a-holic from the time she knew how to read; she used to tell her mother that curling up with one at 4 a.m. before elementary school was her ‘quiet time.’ Not much has changed except for the espresso I.V. pump she now carries around and the size of her onesie pajamas.

She is the author of Flash Point, a romantic suspense standalone, as well as the co-author of the erotic series, A Desperate Man, with Ella Frank. The latter has scarred her conservative southern family for life, bless their hearts. Licked, a romantic comedy, will be released November 11th, 2015 and is the first in the L.A. Liaisons series.

If you’d like to get in touch with her, she’s easy to find - just keep an ear out for the Rick Astley ringtone that’s dominated her cell phone for ten years.

Ella Frank

Connect with Brooke:





New Release-Excerpt & Giveaway: LOSING MY RELIGION by A.S. Tucker


Losing My Religion
Author: A.S. Tucker
Genre: M/M Romance
Release Date: July 27, 2017




Jaden Barker is a good boy.

For as long as he can remember, he’s been preparing for the day he’ll be called as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He’s ready. He’s more than willing. And he can’t wait to spend the next two years serving the Lord and his church. But when a new proclamation from the church is announced, it leaves him questioning everything.

Quinn Owens is trouble with a capital T.

An aspiring actor living in the bowels of Los Angeles, he’s fought long and hard to get where he is, and he’s not willing to give it up for anything. Working for a homophobic boss presents quite a challenge when you’re a gay man, but Quinn knows losing this job means losing his dream. 

Jaden is lost and confused.

Quinn won’t let anything stand in his way.

But when Jaden finds himself living downstairs from the enticing Quinn, neither are prepared for what happens next.

Will Jaden be able to resist Quinn’s charms and remain a devoted Mormon missionary? Or will he fall, finding himself face to face with losing his religion?







5 Stars from Millsy Loves Books - “I loved this read with passion i'll be honest i really wasn't expecting it to effect me as much as it did. The words the story the emotions weather good or bad left me not being able to put this book down. I would highly recommend this read.”

5 Stars from Konny on Goodreads - “Losing My Religion is an intense emotional read. I give 5 stars, thank you AS Tucker!”
5 Stars from Amo & Sarah’s Book Corner - “A very different love story, that is beautifully written.”









As I step into the room, I drop my suitcase on the floor, my duffel bag sliding off my shoulder and falling on top of it. Six bunk beds are crowded into the tiny space, each bed made neatly with a thin comforter stretched tautly across the mattress. It reminds of the dorm rooms I’ve seen in movies and TV shows throughout the years. Except, instead of posters of half-naked women and sports stars adorning the walls, there are pictures of Jesus Christ. Instead of math books and dirty laundry strewed about, there are scriptures and pamphlets about the church. 

So, yeah, it’s just like a dorm room—if the dorm room were in a parallel universe where teenage boys read the Bible and The Book of Mormon instead of play video games and drink beer. 

Welcome to the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah.
Elder Scott, the leader of the district I’ve been assigned to, points to the bottom bunk on the left side of the room, indicating I should put my stuff there. All the missionaries in this district of the MTC are going to be serving in the California Los Angeles mission or somewhere in the vicinity. We’re split by the area we’ll be serving in, by the language we’ll be speaking, and, of course, by sex. The sister missionaries are housed in a separate part of the MTC with clear guidelines of what will happen if those borders are breached after hours. 

I pick up my bag and toss it onto the bed before leaning over to grab my heavier suitcase with both hands. Elder Scott bends over to help, and together, we lift the monstrosity onto the bunk. 

“You can hang your suits in the closet,” he says, pointing to a tiny accordion door next to the beds on the right. “Each of you has one drawer in the dresser. Yours will be one up from the bottom. Go ahead and get your things unpacked. I’m going to head to Elder Burke’s class and see if I can borrow Elder Daniels. He’ll be your companion while you’re here.”

Without another word, Elder Scott turns and exits the room, leaving me in the silent, foreign room by myself. An all-too recognizable pang fills my chest as I look around, and once again, I’m left wondering if I’ve made the right choice.

It’s just nerves, my inner Jiminy reminds me, trying to soothe my budding panic.

Or it’s the fact that you’re a total fraud, and you have no business being here, his less than delightful counterpart retorts.

I shake my head as I sit down on the edge of the bed, grateful for the moment alone. It might be the last one I get for the next two years. Once your companion is assigned, the two of you stick together like the pages of a dirty magazine.

I chuckle softly at my poor attempt at a joke, but then guilt immediately sets in at the thought, considering my surroundings. I can almost feel Jesus’s disapproving eyes boring into me. So, instead of lifting my head to meet his gaze, I unzip my suitcase and begin to unpack my things.







A military brat growing up, A.S. Tucker now resides in Utah with her loving husband. When not writing, you'll find her reading, binge watching Netflix, or drinking wine. Her three favorite things are animals, coffee, and Harry Potter, not necessarily in that order. She is the author of three other novels, published under a different pen name. She loves hearing from her readers, so please drop her a line!





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