Friday, October 31, 2014

INTERVIEW: Belinda McBride plus #Giveaway! #MMRomance #Fantasy


Hello Belinda and welcome to The Hat Party <3 Thank you so much for subjecting yourself to the RANDOMNESS that is a Raine O'Tierney interview! Please don your best hat, and let's get started!

OK. Just so you know, I have a lot of hats. It’ll take a minute to choose….ah…a cowboy hat. From Texas. That’ll do.




What is your super-secret, wildest, most outlandish writing dream? (Nothing is too wild!)

Wow…it would be like the Hollywood dream…

OK, my daughter used to work for a rather well known movie star stage whisper: *Johnny Depp* and she tells him his mother writes these wild, racy sci fi and paranormal novels. OK…that part is true.

Johnny Depp knows what I write! EEK!

Now on to the dream. So Mr. D. happens to pick up a copy of Blacque/Bleu and thinks to himself, “As much fun as I had playing a vampire in Dark Shadows, it really doesn’t hold a candle to Belinda’s book.” So he options the book and casts himself as Oliver Bleu, Chris Hemsworth as Blacque and then hires Joss Wheadon to direct the whole thing. It goes on to be a massive hit and all my books fly off the shelves. Just like…you know…that person who will remain unnamed…

Give us 5 ½ words of wisdom.

Five and a half words exactly? Not four and three quarters? Or even just three? Crum. Now I have performance anxiety.  All my sayings have three words.  Or sometimes four.

“Time Wounds All Heels.”

Just pretend I managed to fit another word and a half in there. You will not fence me in! I march to the beat of…

Never mind.

Tell us about a time you were changed.

OK, I’m going philosophical here. Life is about change so I could talk about the day I fell in love with someone totally unexpected or the time I got ejected from a rolling car and landed on my head…LOL! But I’m going to share something I’m still really sensitive about. In May of 2013 I was on a panel at RT and of course pictures were taken. Then they went on the internet and I was stunned. I knew I was overweight. I knew I was having health issues from my weight but seeing the reality of myself next to other people…OMG. I was too horrified even to weigh myself, but eventually I did and realized I needed to lose over 100 pounds. So I’ve been working on it. I’m about ¾ of the way to where I want to be. I changed physically, that part is obvious. But I was also humbled and frightened. All the little warning signs were suddenly making sense…dizzy spells, injuries that wouldn’t heal and so forth. Now I’ve got my head out of the sand a little more and am grappling with problems without resorting to chocolate and pizza.

You’re writing along and you’re attacked by a horde of zombies…ON FIRE…how do you survive? Or do you become a zombie too?

Hello…the zombies are on fire? I’ll just get out of their way and let nature take its course.

You have 200 words—Make. Me. Swoon. (PLEASE!)

Shades of Bleu
I stood in the watery light of the bathroom, staring at myself in the mirror. My short black hair was a mess. Dark circles stood out under my deep black eyes.

Shit.

There were bite marks on my neck; bruises on my wrists. Whisker burns stained my lips. Dried blood crusted below my nipple piercing.

Upstairs, the phone rang. The machine picked up and my sister Dru reminded me I'm supposed to talk to my father before the pack meeting. I fisted my hands, cracking my grease-stained knuckles. I’d be missing the pack meeting this week. The scent of sex wrapped my skin like a blanket and I was reluctant to wash it away.

Looking back at my image in the mirror, I cursed again. My hair was growing in like a black haze. If it got too long, I'd never get a comb through that mess. I didn't even own a comb.

Fuck it.

I picked up the razor, buzzed it all off.

Then I went back to bedroom where I studied the tall vamp sleeping in my bed. His midnight blue eyes were closed and his chest moved steadily.

One more night and then I was alone again.

Describe yourself using lyrics.

Can it be someone else’s lyrics? Cause I’m not very good that that.
OK,  I’ll assume I can use someone else’s lyrics…

Pussy Willow By Ian Anderson:

She longs for the East and a pale dress flowing

An apartment in old Mayfair.

Or to fish the Spey, spinning the first run of Spring

Or to die for a cause somewhere.

Pussy Willow down fur-lined avenue,
Brushing the sleep from her young woman eyes.
Runs from the train. Hear her typewriter humming,
Cutting dreams down to size again.


You can go back to any point in your life to give you past self a pep-talk. How old is your past self and what do you say?

I’m 17 and I say to myself, “Belinda. I know they were your friends and it hurts so bad, but you’ll get past this. You are smart, but more than that, you have an imagination and a talent they simply cannot comprehend.“

Your thoughts on libraries: GO!

Growing up, the library was my home away from home. I used to have my mother take me there on the pretext of doing homework, but I’d really just troll along the shelves and snag anything and everything that caught my attention. History. Literature. Maps. Old music collections. Ethnographies. Romance novels. Libraries shaped the person I became. Walking into a library is like a treasure hunt, but you’re surrounded by the treasure already!

What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made in your career and what did you learn from it?

I accepted a contract because I was in too much of a hurry to get that book published. It really wasn’t ready to be published and they put it out without the necessary edits. Now that book is out of print, waiting for me to return and revise it. What I learned is that you can’t rush the process. Obviously that wasn’t the best publishing house and they were in it for a quick buck. So I investigate potential publishers and I try to always learn to do better with every book.  Just recently, I realized a book I’d been subbing wasn’t really ready so instead of grasping at any house that’ll take it, I’m humbling myself and tearing back into the book to make major revisions.

And finally, for THE most important question of all: what kinds of dachshunds are the BEST kinds of dachshunds?

The best dachshunds belong to Treva Harte.

~ ~ ~

Book Name: An Uncommon Whore 3: Prince of Faith
Author Name: Belinda McBride
Publisher: Loose ID
Cover Artist: PL Nunn



Held captive in a whorehouse, Markus Dayspring wakes every morning with a thirst for revenge, and collapses every night with a prayer for strength. He lives on in spite of deadly addictions and a crippling, shameful secret. When he’s rescued by a man from his past, his reawakened love threatens to crush his damaged soul.

Caius also has a secret, one that could ultimately kill him. But his vow to rescue Markus is stronger than guilt, fear and even his loyalty to King Helios. Too many have died because of Caius and rescuing the missing prince might allow him to sleep without nightmares.

Old habits are hard to break and new pain threatens their growing love. Yet one gleaming ray of hope continues to guide them to safety, even in the face of an unexpected violation of trust. With the stakes growing higher by the hour, Markus and Caius must learn to have faith before they can heal and face the future together.

Categories: Fantasy, M/M Romance, Romance, Science Fiction

Excerpt:


The next time I see Griffin Hawke, I’m going to kick his stubborn ass from one end of the galaxy to the other. 

The refrain ran through his head, day in and day out. For how long now? Markus Dayspring wasn’t certain. Over a year, surely. Longer, given the events that had transpired since Griffin Hawke had shanghaied him into the service of the skeezy bastard, U’shma. Once the shock of the assault wore off and Markus recovered a degree of lucidity, he remembered the other man he’d glimpsed, a beautiful face gazing down at him in horror. Betrayal. 

It was Helios staring at him without a trace of recognition on his face. 

Gone was the choppy hair and ruggedly handsome face, so similar to Markus’s own. They’d looked so similar they’d often been mistaken for brothers rather than cousins. This new Helios wore the gowns of a whore of Warlan, his copper-red hair hanging to his hips, his gray eyes lined with tattoos. In all, he hadn’t looked bad. He’d been spared most of the hardware that decorated a sex slave. Markus had caught a glimpse of Helios Dayspring before falling under Griffin’s blows. Those few seconds still had the power to chill him to the heart. 

In spite of the fury, the frustration of being betrayed, Markus took comfort in the knowledge of Helios’s safety. While Grif played a deep game, Markus had as well, hiding the intelligence he’d gathered during their travels together. That information ultimately pointed to Warlan and their missing king. In spite of everything, the gruff bodyguard would never let harm come to Helios. The knowledge allowed him to focus on his own plight, and how to escape. So far no strokes of luck or genius had come to his rescue. So he languished here, day after day, bound hand and foot to a ridiculously comfortable bed. 

Things could always be worse. 

The door unlocked and creaked open; Markus automatically tested the deceptively light chains holding his wrists in place. His jaw went tight, already fighting the battle he faced. His heart pounded, and his breathing accelerated in fury. In anticipation. In shame. 

A wizened old creature shuffled into the room, bearing a heavy tray in her bent, twisted hands. She grinned toothlessly. She’d once told Markus her teeth had been knocked out when she’d accidently clipped a customer during a blowjob. To her delight, the missing teeth made her job much easier. 

He figured she must work in the dark. He couldn’t imagine anyone paying for her company. 

She kicked the door closed, set the tray on a table, and turned to him. “You got a big night ahead, Your Highness. Boss wants you fed and prepped.” She double-checked his bindings, making an occasional adjustment. “We’ve moved outside coalition space. First day orbiting a new settlement. You’re in for a ride.” Her Common was fluent enough, though heavily accented. Of course, that could have been the missing teeth. 

Her gnarled hands wandered his body in a rude exam, searching for weapons or anything he could use to injure a client. She slipped a hand into the cloth covering his groin, pinching a testicle. He gasped and writhed, and she cackled her amusement. 

“Guess the last dose wore off.” 

His heart dropped. 

“Don’t. I can function without it.” He broke out in a cold sweat, and he wasn’t sure if need or dread caused his skin to prickle. The hag loosened his chains, using a single anchored length to guide his movements. Stiffly, he rose from the bed, eyeing her balefully. She was old, decrepit, and the most evil being he’d met in his life. No, she was the employee of the most evil person ever. The hag was merely his tool. That didn’t excuse the woman’s crimes against him. She was a beast. 

With a jerk on the line, she guided him to the tiny toilet. A hiss of vapor released in his face, and he coughed, bracing himself for pain. 

“Do your business.” 

On command, his gut cramped. He pushed the loincloth to the side and collapsed onto the toilet, his intestines gripping like ropes of concrete. He groaned, hating the drugs, hating the old woman…hating everything. Everyone. Through pain-hazed vision he glared at her until the ordeal was completed. 

She jangled the chain. “Get in the shower.” 

Slowly he obeyed, flinching against the harsh, tearing scream of the poorly functioning sonic unit. If it’d been water, she’d force him to strip fully naked before her greedy gaze. She’d seen him naked many times before, but it didn’t matter. When there was so little dignity left in life, Markus held desperately to what he could. 

He stepped out of the unit on trembling legs, cold sweat blossoming over his skin. He clenched his fist in fury. He could easily break away and kill the woman, but the price would be too steep. The time to escape would eventually come, but not now. She was ready for him. He’d learned the lesson in the harshest manner possible and wasn’t prepared to face the consequences again. There was a reason the hag had grown old in her dangerous profession. He ground his teeth, reluctantly taking his position on the bed. He carefully arranged a fold of fabric over his groin. 

Ludicrous. 

“Drink up.” She shoved a battered tin at him, and Markus looked at it with suspicion. He sniffed cautiously. After all this time, he still didn’t know what they were dosing him with. “It’s water. You humans need it. Scans say you’re too dry.” 

With a prayer he gulped it down, choking, but loath to waste a drop. A minute passed, and another while she worked at his restraints. He felt unaffected and began to relax. 

Shit. Relaxed. The goose bumps faded, and his body went warm with euphoria. In panic, he jerked the chains, too late to break away. 

“Fuck!” he shouted. 

“Open up.” She dangled some unidentifiable morsel in front of his mouth, and then pulled her hand away as Markus bit savagely. He chewed, glaring at her the entire time. He swallowed, and the feeding proceeded. “You’re lookin’ a little sleepy. How you feelin’?” 

He didn’t answer. She was vanishing behind a blissful haze. He fought to hold on to his anger. 

“You’re gettin’ sleepy. Can’t have that.” She floated through his vision, across the room, and then suddenly back in his face. Before Markus could react, his jaw was trapped in her shockingly strong grip, and a wand was cruelly inserted into a nostril. He flinched, but already the pungent, musky fumes overpowered him. 

His erection was instantaneous. He howled in anger, fury. Pain. Fire licked his body, starting deep in his pelvis, reaching out to consume his cock and balls, his belly and chest. It burned from the inside right out to the skin, and his vision went red. His hips thrust uselessly, and Markus was fairly certain he begged for mercy. For relief. 

For death. 

The old woman laughed. 


Available from Loose id


BONUS QUESTIONS:
*What inspired you to write Prince of Faith?

Well. I want to finish Helios and Griffin’s last book, but before I could throw a big shindig for their wedding, I had to tie up some loose plot threads. Like…what happened to Markus and how do I undo the terrible thing that happened to him? So I decided to write his book and integrate it into the Helios/Griffin arc. So while the book is about Markus and Caius, it actually affects the final book in the Uncommon Whore series. Also, I wanted to examine the personality differences between Markus and Helios…how they react differently to similar situations. They look alike but are very different people.

*Is there anything special you’d like us to know about your book?

Its dark and the themes are difficult. These men are grappling with sexual abuse, addiction, guilt, betrayal and so forth. It’s not fluffy. It’s not Helios’s brand of light irony. But there’s hope and joy and light at the end of the story for these two. People have commented that addiction is a major theme in some of my books. That’s true, largely because I come from a family where there’s a lot of addiction. When I wrote this, a sibling was struggling through rehab. I guess maybe I’m writing happy endings for other people by proxy.

*What are your hopes for this title?

Obviously I’d like it to be successful. However, I hope readers understand that sometimes in life, things get hard and terrible, but at the end, we survive. Before she died of cancer, I asked my aunt how she coped with all the pain and heartbreak of her illness. She said, “Belinda, it’s been hard, but there’s no better way to learn about  joy than by experiencing despair.”  So Markus walks a hard path but by the end, he’s got a great life ahead of him.

About the Author: Belinda is an award-winning, top selling author of erotic romance, speculative fiction and LGBTQ romance. She lives in far Northern California with her family and a pack of Siberian Huskies. 

A graduate of CSU Chico, she managed to attend the notorious party school without once getting drunk, arrested or appearing in a "Girls Gone Wild" video. Her main focus of study was classical and archival history, cultural anthropology and theatre arts.

After several years in the workforce. Belinda purchased a laptop computer and from there, knew that her childhood dream of being an author would come to life. 

Belinda's books are available at all the typical distributors as well as on the publisher's homepages. 

Author Contact:
@Belinda_McBride 

 Tour Dates/Stops:
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Thursday, October 30, 2014

BOOK BLAST: Iyana Jenna's Love's Home plus #Giveaway!


Book Name: Love’s Home
Author Name: Iyana Jenna
Publisher: JMS Books
Cover Artist: Written Ink Designs | http://written-ink.com
Pages: 268 pages

Sometimes you need a break, to get away somewhere, but in the end you always return to a place you call home. The saying goes, “Home is where the heart is.” It doesn’t matter if it’s big or small, pretty or shabby, what matters is it’s your Love’s Home.

This collection features five of Iyana Jenna’s best-selling gay contemporary romance stories. A homeless PA finds a home in an actor’s life. An abduction almost steals a man from his loving boyfriend. A love triangle nearly ruins everything. A sex slave is rescued by an unlikely savior. A young man discovers a new home after he loses everything.

Contains the stories:
A Home for Jesse
A Single Black Rose
Misunderstandings
Will and Pleasure
Ya Like That?


Excerpt:

A Home for Jesse
This ain’t so bad. Jesse pats his laden backpack. He stretches himself on the bench and lowers his head onto the bag, grimacing at the bumps pressing against his head and neck. Awesome. He is going to have major cricks and headaches come morning. That is if he’s not suffering from early signs of pneumonia.

Jesse shifts and grunts and finally gives up. He sits up, takes off his jacket, and spreads it over his front before he lies down again. Moving a bit again to find the most comfortable position, he thinks, Fuck, now my shorts are stuck in the crack of my ass. Jesse reaches down and pulls them free -- ah, that’s better.

He takes a deep breath. So he’s a bum now, is he? His ma would be heartbroken if she knew. She could blame him for being such a hard head and insisting on having his own way. Jesse stares blankly at the leaves swaying on treetops, at the shadows of the swings dancing in the dark, at the stars blinking mockingly down at him. At least the fact that they are up there means that the sky is cloudless and Jesse doesn’t need to worry about the possibility of rain tonight. Getting soaked when the only place he has to sleep is this park would be a pain in the ass, not to mention hazardous to his health. Jesse also hopes no cops will come patrolling tonight.

Weary to the bone, Jesse curls both hands under the side of his face and gives in to slumber.

Available from Amazon US | Amazon UK | JMS Books

About the Author:

Iyana writes M/M short stories and novellas. Her works have been published by Evernight Publishing, JMS Books, Books to Go Now, Torquere Press, Bitten Press, Leap of Faith Publishing, Breathless Press, and Alfie Dog Fiction.

Iyana lives in Jakarta, a city famous for its traffic jams, a lot of cars and motorcycles, and people selling stuff on the roads. You can spend two hours on the road going to a place you can reach in half an hour in a normal situation. Thanks to the traffic jams, though, Iyana can come up with a lot of stories, mostly shorties, as she prefers to spend the time during her trips writing into her cell phone rather than sleeping.

Another thing Iyana loves is kitties. Right now she has three of them. Their names are Cil, Horus, and Betsy, and one kitten. When she doesn’t write, she plays with them, or they would play with her when she writes.

Author Contact:


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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

BOOK BLAST: Lila Bruce's The Scent of Jasmine plus #Giveaway! #LesbianRomance



Book Name: The Scent of Jasmine
Author Name: Lila Bruce
Categories: Contemporary, Lesbian Romance
Words: 16,930

Four years ago Jessica Taylor thought she was ready to leave small town living behind and headed West. Now she's back in Cedar Creek, a little older, a lot wiser, and ready to live the quiet life for a while.

It's been eight months since her fiancée walked out and shattered Grace Donnelly's dreams of a happily ever after. Her friends tell her it's time to start living again, but the breakup with Emma was still just too raw for Grace to wash her hands and move on.

After a chance meeting at her brother's bakery, Jessica finds herself unable to get Grace off of mind. She's sure she feels an attraction from Grace as well, but will Jessica be able to convince Grace to stop living in the past and take a chance on a future together with her...


Excerpt:

Jessica Taylor stood there grinning, a slight dusting of flour decorating the bridge of her nose. She held a rack of cinnamon rolls at chest level, drawing Grace’s gaze to the slender woman’s chest, the white t-shirt and bright green apron seeming to accentuate the fullness of her breasts. She had long, dark hair that was tied back into a pony tail. And her eyes…her eyes seemed to dance as they stared at Grace from other the display case.
Holy hell, she is fucking gorgeous.
Grace opened her mouth to respond but looking at the other woman’s emerald eyes, could suddenly think of nothing but purple dildos. Mortified, she just stood there, saying nothing.
Keeping her gaze on Grace, Jessica slid the rack of cinnamon rolls into the case.
“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to embarrass you.”
Grace flushed briefly and the shook her head. “Oh no, that’s ok, you just startled me, that’s all. I didn’t hear you come out from the back.”
“So how would you like it?” the woman drawled. Gone was the nerdy teenager with wire-rimmed glasses. This woman looked more like she had just stepped off the runway rather than out of a kitchen.
Grace shook her head and blinked at her. “Um, I…um, excuse me?”
“Your cinnamon roll. Would you like it in a box or bag?”
“Oh. A box please,” she said quickly. “And I need sex…I mean six! I need six cinnamon rolls,” Grace added, reddening as she spoke.
Oh my word, I have got to get out of here, she thought to herself.

Available from Amazon


About the Author:

Lila Bruce lives in the North Georgia Mountains, where the air is sweet and the summers are hot. When not writing, she spends her time adding to her ever-growing pack of basset hounds and dreaming of being able one day to leave behind her evil day job.

Tour Dates: October 29, 2014

Tour Stops:


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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

BOOK BLAST: Alexis Duran's To Catch A Threeve plus #Giveaway! #Fantasy #MMRomance


Book Name: To Catch A Threeve
Author Name: Alexis Duran
Publisher: Loose ID
Cover Artist: Fiona Jayde
Pages: 43,000 words/135 pages
Categories: Erotica, Fantasy, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance

Axel Blackwood catches a thief and is astounded to see that he closely resembles Liam Alloway, the love he lost seven years ago in an attack by the evil woodland folk known as threeves. Axel suspects he's fallen prey to dark magic, but can't help becoming infatuated with his prisoner. He's overwhelmed with the hope that he can at last bring his lost lover home, despite everything that warns him it's all a diabolical trick. Bryn Darrow, the half-threeve, half human orphan sent to trick Axel and rob him of much more than a simple gem finds himself equally as fascinated with his handsome human captor and the lure of someplace to call home, but he knows deep down that the constable is in love with a dangerous illusion. When he's commanded by the threeves to murder Axel and steal a witch's powerful grimoire, he's forced to decide between the only family he's ever known and the one person who might rescue him from a life of isolation and pain.

Will Axel and Bryn be forced into a deadly confrontation before they can discover the truth?

Excerpt:

“What are you, Bryn Darrow?” Axel asked.

“Wish I knew,” Bryn answered, shaking his head and chuckling. “You can go on pretending I’m this Liam person if you want.”

“If you ever try to act like Liam again, I’ll let Drummond lop your head off. He’s itching to, you know.”

“You started it,” Bryn snapped. “And now you’re getting friendly again.”

Axel jerked his hands away from Bryn’s back as if he’d been burned. “I’m looking for your clan sign. Why’d you remove it?”

“Looking with your fingers instead of your eyes? Don’t get me wrong. I don’t mind it.” Bryn looked over his shoulder with that annoying, delectable smile. Only the memory of being spelled senseless stopped Axel from resuming his exploration of Bryn’s skin, kissing his neck, pushing him down into the grass—  

Available from Loose Id | Amazon

Author Bio:

Alexis Duran was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest. At the University of Oregon, her fascination with people and relationships led her to major in Sociology, but her main love has always been creative writing.  She's worked in museums, fashion, finance and film production. Her favorite job so far was Administrative Assistant in a haunted Victorian Mansion.  She's had several short stories published in the mystery, horror and literary genres and is the author of the Masters and Mages erotic fantasy series.  Her fiction has won several awards including the Rupert Hughes Award from the Maui Writers Conference. She lives with one dog and four and half cats.  She is currently working on the next Masters and Mages novella and several other erotic novellas.

Author Contact:



Tour Dates: October 28, 2014

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