Guest Post | Autumn Books by Nell Iris

Today, we have Nell Iris back on the blog 🥳 She’s here to help you fill up your TBR for the autumn. Welcome, Nell.


I want to start by thanking my dear friend Ofelia for welcoming me back to her blog. For once, I’m not here to talk about a new release; instead, I’m spreading some love for a couple of my older books. Because older books need love too, amirite? 😊

It’s foggy outside as I write this. And chilly; the thermometer says 1 degree Celsius (34F), but I’m wearing my favorite woolly socks, an oversized thick, knitted sweater, and my softest sweatpants, so even if my nose is a bit on the cold side, the rest of me is warm and cozy. And my soul is warm, because it’s AUTUMN, baby!, and I love autumn. It’s my favorite season of them all!

Because autumn is not only the time for knitwear and fresh, crisp air, it’s also the time for steaming mugs of tea (or hot chocolate!) and, of course, books. I can’t tell you how many hours I’ve already spent on Goodreads and various other book sites, looking for the perfect books to read this season, preferably with autumn vibes. And if you’re a bookworm like me, you’ve probably done the same.

So that’s why I’m here today. To tell you a little about stories I’ve written that have autumn vibes, to help you with your TBR for the coming months. Are you ready? Do you have a cup of a hot beverage of your choice? Fuzzy socks? Alright, let’s go.

#SlidingIntoMyDMs

If you’re in the mood for characters over forty flirting on social media like two old farts, a huge but adorable rescue dog, a character with abandonment issues and a possible tool belt fetish, and an old crush being brought to life, this is the book for you. There’s also the best sister in the world and slow walks in the autumnal forest. What more could you possibly need? 😊 

Sliding into my DMs

Acquaintances-to-lovers :: bisexual representation :: characters over 40 :: reunion :: rescue dog 

Hi. I heard you’ve been sick.”

Eddy Pennington is recovering from a severe bout of pneumonia when an old acquaintance, Moss, sends him a message on social media. They haven’t spoken in years, but Eddy is pleasantly surprised. He always liked Moss even if they were never close friends.

Moss Fanning has no ulterior motive with his message: all he wants is to wish Eddy a speedy recovery. He got over the crush he used to have on Eddy a long time ago.

They reconnect easily and have even more in common now. And when they meet in person, the attraction is instant. Will an innocent, well-meaning message on social media lead to something more? Something deeper? Something…everlasting?

M/M Contemporary / 21998 words

JMS Books :: Amazon

They Met in the Park

If you like the meet cute trope, this book is for you. And if you like a loner gentle giant who’s economical with his words, a spoiled cute dog who acts as cupid, and a talkative adorable man with a huge heart, you’ll definitely want to give this book a try. Add on a heroic rescue mission and you’re sure to melt 😊 

They Met in the Park

gentle giant :: size difference :: characters over 40 :: lone wolf :: meet cute

Can a spoiled little dog bring two strangers together?

The first time Jacke sees him, it’s a happy accident. He’s taken refuge in a quiet corner of the park, decompressing after a difficult day at work, when the man, dressed in a fancy suit, passes by him walking a spoiled little dog.

As the days pass, Jacke notices the adorable pair several times. He’s unable to take his eyes off the man whose first priority is the dog, even over his own comfort. And one day, when circumstances are right, Jacke takes a chance and speaks to the man. David.

David’s personality is as adorable as his outward appearance, and a short walk in the rain results in mutual attraction and a promise to see each other again. A second meeting in the park turns into a date, and Jacke starts longing for something he thought he’d never have; a partner. But does David feel the same? Will a chance meeting in the park turn into love?  

M/M Contemporary / 17478 words

JMS Books :: Amazon

If you can’t get enough of autumn, these three stories also take place in fall to varying degrees. In My Arms Again is a fantasy story that is set when autumn slips into winter; Of Autumn Leaves and New Beginnings is contemporary and the title speaks for itself; and finally, Us Again is a shortie with a very autumnal cover. 

Us Again

In My Arms Again :: Of Autumn Leaves and New Beginnings :: Us Again

I wish you a cozy autumn season and lots of lovely reads! 

#WhatToReadWednesday | Addiction

It’s #WhatToReadWednesday time, and I can honestly say my mind is blank. I stared at the screen for a long time not coming up with any theme whatsoever, but then I hopped over to nationaltoday.com and saw that September is National Recovery Month. I didn’t know what kind of recovery, but some clicks later, and: National Recovery Month is observed every year in September to promote and find new evidence-based treatments for patients battling addiction.

I tend to avoid books about addiction, so this will be a short list 😆, but here are a few books dealing with addiction that I like.

Cut & Run Series by Abigail Roux and Madeleine Urban

I haven’t read the entire series, but since it’s one of the main characters who fight addiction, it’s gonna be there. If you haven’t read this, check your library. There was some copyright conflict between the authors, and it’s hard to get hold of the books now. I own the first three or four, but I’ve seen them at the library, so check there if you want to read them.

Cut and runA series of murders in New York City has stymied the police and FBI alike, and they suspect the culprit is a single killer sending an indecipherable message. But when the two federal agents assigned to the investigation are taken out, the FBI takes a more personal interest in the case.

Special Agent Ty Grady is pulled out of undercover work after his case blows up in his face. He’s cocky, abrasive, and indisputably the best at what he does. But when he’s paired with Special Agent Zane Garrett, it’s hate at first sight. Garrett is the perfect image of an agent: serious, sober, and focused, which makes their partnership a classic cliche: total opposites, good cop-bad cop, the odd couple. They both know immediately that their partnership will pose more of an obstacle than the lack of evidence left by the murderer.

Practically before their special assignment starts, the murderer strikes again this time at them. Now on the run, trying to track down a man who has focused on killing his pursuers, Grady and Garrett will have to figure out how to work together before they become two more notches in the murderer’s knife.

PsyCop Series by Jordan Castillo Price

Oh… Vic. As awesome as he is, there is a certain addiction to those pills. I think these books are in KU now.

Among the LivingOnce upon a time if you told doctors you heard voices,
they’d diagnose you as schizophrenic, put you on heavy drugs,
and lock you away in a cozy state institution
to keep you from hurting yourself or others.
Nowadays they test you first to see if you’re psychic.


Victor Bayne, the psychic half of a PsyCop team, is a gay medium who’s more concerned with flying under the radar than making waves.

He hooks up with handsome Jacob Marks, a non-psychic (or “Stiff”) from an adjacent precinct at his ex-partner’s retirement party, and it seems like his dubious luck has taken a turn for the better. But then a serial killer surfaces who can change his appearance to match any witness’ idea of the world’s hottest guy.

Solving murders is a snap when you can ask the victims whodunit, but this killer’s not leaving any spirits behind.

Amazon

This Is Not a Love Story by Suki Fleet

It’s been a long time since I read this, and I don’t even like YA/NA…unless it’s Suki Fleet or Al Stewart 😁 Read this if you haven’t!

This is not a love storyWhen fifteen-year-old Romeo’s mother leaves one day and doesn’t return, he finds himself homeless and trying to survive on the streets. Mute and terrified, his silence makes him vulnerable, and one night he is beaten by a gang of other kids, only to be rescued by a boy who pledges to take care of him.

Julian is barely two years older than Romeo. A runaway from an abusive home, he has had to make some difficult choices and sells himself on the street to survive. Taking care of Romeo changes him, gives him a purpose in life, gives him hope, and he tries to be strong and keep his troubles with drugs behind him. But living as they do is slowly destroying him, and he begins to doubt he can be strong enough.

This is the story of their struggle to find a way off the streets and stay together at all costs. But when events threaten to tear them apart, it is Romeo who must find the strength within himself to help Julian (and not let their love story turn into a Shakespearean tragedy).

https://books2read.com/ThisisNotaLoveStory

Harper Fox

While trying to come up with books with addiction, two of Harper fox’s came to mind. Driftwood, I reread not too long ago, and Rowan in Half Moon Chambers is someone who pops up in my mind now and then.

Driftwood

Thomas Penrose is a village doctor in rural Cornwall. Popular with patients and friends alike, and handsome into the bargain, he lives in a romantic clifftop tower by the sea. It’s a wonderful life – if only Dr Tom could enjoy it. He’s a veteran of the conflict in Afghanistan, fighting a lonely battle against alcoholism and PTSD.
Determined not to inflict his troubles on anyone else, Tom keeps himself to himself. But fate has other ideas, and brings a handsome surfer crashing to his feet after a dreadful wipe-out on Porth Beach. Just another crazy surf bunny? Not a bit of it – Flynn Summers is one of Cornwall’s heroes, a fearless search-and-rescue helicopter man. Why is he risking his beautiful neck in the stormy off-season waves?
Despite the rocky beginning, Tom and Flynn become friends. Both are concealing sorrows behind a tough facade, and for once in his life Tom thinks he’s met someone who can handle him, shadow-side and all. But Flynn isn’t a free man. He’s unhappily locked into a bond of obligations and bad memories with formidable pilot Rob Tremaine – and Rob has no intention of letting Flynn go.
As Tom and Flynn begin their high-risk, high-reward romance, will the tides of the past sweep in to destroy their new love?

https://books2read.com/Driftwood

Half Moon Chambers

A cop and a recovering addict – no chance for romance there.

Yet Vince, a street-hardened narcotics officer, is having to reassess his life. Six months ago, he hit rock-bottom. A bullet brought him down, and his beloved partner Jack betrayed him. Badly disabled and in constant pain, Vince is flying a desk these days, and it doesn’t suit him at all. His world is looking grim when he meets Rowan Clyde, sole surviving witness to a vicious drugs-related killing.

Rowan doesn’t want to talk. He’s vulnerable, trying to hold his own life together in the wake of a crippling addiction. Vince should have no time for him, and Rowan certainly shouldn’t trust a cop with an agenda to get him onto the witness stand at any cost.

Yet despite their differences, there’s an instant pull of attraction between these two damaged men. Their new bond is put to the ultimate test on the tough streets of Newcastle during a dark northern winter, as each turns out to hold the keys to the other’s survival – and to his destruction.

https://books2read.com/HalfMoonChambers

Out of Nowhere by Roan Parrish

I might have to reread this. I love the first book in this series, but I never could forgive Colin for how he treated Daniel in that first book, so when I read this, I held on to that. Maybe I wouldn’t be as angry with him if I read it now as I was when I read it back then. Maybe… or maybe I would, because fuck him! LOL

Out of NowhereThe only thing in Colin Mulligan’s life that makes sense is taking cars apart and putting them back together. In the auto shop where he works with his father and brothers, he tries to get through the day without having a panic attack or flying into a rage. Drinking helps. So do running and lifting weights until he can hardly stand. But none of it can change the fact that he’s gay, a secret he has kept from everyone.

Rafael Guerrera has found ways to live with the past he’s ashamed of. He’s dedicated his life to social justice work and to helping youth who, like him, had very little growing up. He has no time for love. Hell, he barely has time for himself. Somehow, everything about miserable, self-destructive Colin cries out to him. But down that path lie the troubles Rafe has worked so hard to leave behind. And as their relationship intensifies, Rafe and Colin are forced to dredge up secrets that both men would prefer stay buried.

https://books2read.com/Out-of-Nowhere

The Disassembled Life of Duncan Cole by S. Hart

I’ll sneak in a little Duncan here toward the end because Duncan is awesome even though he’s crazy and has a weakness for morphine and caffeine 😆

The Disassembled Life of Duncan ColeIn which we meet Duncan: professional nobody who presents himself to the public as a scowling, smoking pile of contempt. Against his will, he meets Sam: a less than professional coal miner who inspires the worst in men. Together they take on one malicious train and a most insidious re-animator, and along the way Duncan remembers a few things that he’d previously forgotten.

https://books2read.com/DuncanCole

I don’t think I have written a single book dealing with addiction. Not in any other way than running away from an addicted parent, at least.

Guest Post | Dear Diary by Holly Day

Stalker

Hello, everyone! I’m Holly Day, and Ofelia doesn’t mind me stealing a spot here since she’s my alter ego 🤪 This month, we’re celebrating Dear Diary Day.

Unless you’ve forgotten or never stumbled upon the explanation before, as Holly Day, I write stories for specific days. They’re all gay romance stories in every possible and impossible subgenre, but the idea comes from a specific day.

This month, that day is Dear Diary Day. I could have done it by someone finding a diary and learning something important. I could have done a love story in the past time – think The Bridges of Madison County. But I didn’t. I wrote a diary.

Telling a story in diary format was a challenge, but a fun one! I most often write in third person and with dual points of view, but I couldn’t do that in a diary, so I had to rethink my usual strategies.

I have to say I’m quite fond of the result. It’s just a short little thing. A slice of life. A guy fighting depression one day at a time with the ups and downs that come with it.

Dear Diary

deardiaryDear Diary, 
 
My therapist wants me to write a diary to help me manage my depression. I have no idea how it’ll work, but I didn’t have the energy to argue with her. 
 
All I want is for life to go back to the way it was before I walked in on Christopher and Jason. Or maybe not because I don’t think I’ll ever be able to forgive Christopher for cheating on me in our bed, but I want to function as I did before that moment. Before I lost everything. 
 
Do you remember Lars Olsen from school? I do my best to stay away, but it’s like he’s magnetic and pulls me in every time I see him. I shouldn’t be dating. I don’t want to force my crazy on anyone, but he’s asked me to dinner. He deserves a sane partner, so it would be unfair to go, wouldn’t it? 

Buy links: 

Contemporary Gay Romance: 9,219 words 

JMS Book :: Amazon :: books2read.com/DearDiaryDay 

Excerpt:

Monday, September 12th

Dear Diary,

Remember Lars Olsen from school? Damn, he looks good now he’s grown into those arms, so good I forgot to stop walking once I spotted him. Yup. I walked right into him, spilled my walking-home-from-work Caramel Latte all over his chest. He only screamed for a few seconds. Not embarrassing at all. I swear. I wished for lightning to strike right then and there.

It was a clear blue sky.

Aliens would’ve worked too. They could’ve beamed me up, and I would have gone willingly. It would’ve been a rescue mission, after all. Everyone knows I don’t belong in this world.

Fuck, I suck. Why do I always do things like this?

Anyway, Lars claimed to be okay, and the once-white T-shirt clung nicely to his abs. When the hell did Lars get abs? Why don’t I have abs? Well, I know the answer: Caramel Lattes and a fetish for moving as little as possible. Now, now, no need to be insulting.

Still, though… Abs would’ve been nice. I’m aware of having abs, thank you for reminding me, you fucking know-it-all, but they’re buried under a soft layer.

1. My breakfast coffee was okay.

2. My lunch coffee was okay.

3. Lars Olsen’s abs—I’d forgotten how much I love looking at abs.