Teaser Tuesday: Silent Woods

I’ve been a bad blogger! Meaning I haven’t done shit in ages. But, today is the day that’s gonna change. I blame the lovely weather we’ve had here in Sweden these last weeks and my garden for stealing me away from the screen – I go voluntarily I should add. Few things make me happier than staring at the leaves of my Habanero Dulce or smelling the flowers on my lemon tree. My husband thinks I’m insane, and he might be right.

But, I’m not writing today to talk about my garden – though, I could go on for ages (my Ophelia mini aubergines are bearing fruit! LOL I had to buy them since they were named Ophelia).

The reason I’m writing is that it’s Tuesday and now when we’re getting close to midsummer I wanted to do a post on Silent Woods.

I’ve written a couple blog posts about the Silent Woods before, but the last one was back in 2016, so I figured I’d do it again. In Silent Woods we meet The Neck, a male water nymph from the Scandinavian folklore who is as his strongest around midsummer. Beware…

A married couple with two kids go camping, but what lurks in the woods is not what they’d thought they’d encounter. There, in the middle of a lake, is a man who can make the forest go quiet simply by being, and he can control you merely by playing his violin.

The wet spider webs and the light mist that could be seen between the trees should’ve made a beautiful picture, but the glade didn’t feel as it had the day before. It felt closed off, like someone had put a giant glass bubble over us. The woods were silent, no rustling winds, and no tweeting birds. The eerie stillness that surrounded us was almost oppressive. I couldn’t help but whisper as I turned to Anders, “Is it always this quiet in the mornings?”

Anders frowned a little. “I’m sure the birds will start to sing as soon as I make my way out of here.” That did not make me feel any better. “Probably just means that there isn’t anything close by to alert them.”

I didn’t buy that. Birds sang in the morning. And I could tell he only said it to comfort me—his gaze kept searching the tree line, and he had a little crease between his brows. He lit the mini stove, gave me what I’m sure was supposed to be a reassuring smile, and headed out of the campsite.

I couldn’t shake the unnerving feeling, and it only grew more intense the longer Anders was away. It wouldn’t take him more than twenty minutes or so to cover the distance. He was a practised runner, and this little round was nothing compared to what he normally ran in the mornings. Still, I found no comfort in that. I tried to distract myself by preparing breakfast on the stove.

24779481Do you believe in myths and ancient creatures?

Daniel has never felt the need to leave the city behind, so when his husband suggests a camping trip for their holiday he agrees with reluctance. Even before they step out of the car, Daniel has the feeling of something being wrong. Something about the forest is turning his stomach into knots.

He wants nothing more than returning to the safety of their home, and when their five-year-old son goes missing his fears turn into full-blown panic. What awaits them in the depths of the forest is far more sinister than anything Daniel ever could have imagined. Will they be able to find their son before it’s too late?


FridayReads | Hexbreaker

HexbreakerHave you read about Cicero the cat and his witch? In Hexbreaker by Jordan L. Hawk we’re taken on a tour through the 1890’s New York but with a little extra, like witches and hexes and familiars.

I loved this story, just like I have many of Ms Hawks stories before it, and I’m always thinking I should read them all but then I don’t – I save them. I’ve had Hexbreaker for a long time but I haven’t read it, it’s just been sitting there like a backup book for when I can’t find anything to read.

Tom grew up in a tunnel gang, he’s a hexbreaker so no hexes could keep him out, and that made it easy to steal things. But we all know that nothing good comes from stealing, right? So Tom needs to hide, he fixes himself a new identity, becomes a copper without any magic…until his past and a hex he never wanted to see again find him and he has to turn to the witch police.

There he meets Cicero, an unbonded cat familiar. Cicero needs to bond with a witch before he’s thrown out from on the streets, but he will not bond with Tom…even if it turns out that he really is Cicero’s witch. He will help him solve the case with the hex, though.

I loved this world of hexes, witches, and their familiars.

29505845Will a dark history doom their future together?

New York copper Tom Halloran is a man with a past. If anyone finds out he once ran with the notorious O’Connell tunnel gang, he’ll spend the rest of his life doing hard time behind bars. But Tom’s secret is threatened when a horrible murder on his beat seems to have been caused by the same ancient magic that killed his gang.

Cat shifter Cicero is determined to investigate the disappearance of one friend and the death of another, even though no one else believes the cases are connected. When the trail of his investigation crosses Tom’s, the very bohemian Cicero instinctively recognizes the uncultured Irish patrolman as his witch. Though they’re completely unsuited to one another, Cicero has no choice but to work alongside Tom…all the while fighting against the passion growing within.

Tom knows that taking Cicero as his familiar would only lead to discovery and disaster. Yet as the heat between them builds, Tom’s need for the other man threatens to overcome every rational argument against becoming involved.

But when their investigation uncovers a conspiracy that threatens all of New York, Tom must make the hardest decision of his life: to live a lie and gain his heart’s desire, or to confess the truth and sacrifice it all.

Friday Reads | Free Falling

Free-FallingI saw Free Falling by S.E. Jakes in my list of ebooks and thought ‘yeah, I’ll read me some Tom and Prophet’…make that Mick and Blue. I’ve read this before and yet I can’t remember it. I always remember books I’ve read – or so I thought. And it’s not that I don’t enjoy it, so I really should remember it.

Mick is a former CIA agent working for EE and Blue is a thief. Things turn tricky when Blue is drugged by drinking from a glass meant for Mick. There are bad guys, drugs, and then there is Prophet – you got to love Prophet, it’s a rule.

When I went to check what books I had read by S.E. Jakes I realised that one, they were more than I thought, and two, there are others I don’t remember. What’s up with that?! For example, I remember Mal and Cillian from Prophet and Tom’s adventures but I can’t remember having read their story…apparently I have.

If you like stubborn men who are a lot more emotional they want to let on, who kill bad guys and make stuff explode, you should read the books in the EE Ltd. Universe.

51oigfjwmelFrom New York Times bestselling author Stephanie Tyler, writing as SE Jakes….

Sometimes falling in love is the most dangerous thing of all.

Blue is a thief who lives for adrenaline and danger. And when he meets Mick, a mercenary, he’s hit with a buzz of attraction like the rush of a high-rise job without a safety rope. But after making plans to get together, Mick leaves him hanging, and Blue vows never again.

A year later, Mick watches helplessly as Blue stumbles into the middle of one of Mick’s jobs. Risking his cover and their lives, Mick saves Blue and cares for him as he recuperates, but neither man has any idea how to handle the intimacy this forces them into.

Once Blue is safe, Mick redoubles his efforts to take down the drug lord responsible — and disappears. Blue goes after him, determined to return the favor and rescue the man he loves, no matter the cost.

Friday Reads | Oskar Blows a Gasket

OskarBlowsAGasketToday isn’t just another Friday, it’s the release day of Oskar Blows a Gasket by Claire Davis and Al Stewart.

Now, if you’ve read anything by this duo you know you’re in for a ride, this time to the tunes of Duran Duran, A-Ha and other bands from the 80s. What did you expect when one of the main characters is the secret love child of Simon Le Bon – no it’s true, it’s such big secret, not even Simon himself knows it LOL.

Oskar Braithwaite is a sassy kid who wears his makeup as armour and spins his lies like a pro – everything is better than the reality, right? There were so many times I wanted to strangle Oskar because while I started out really feeling for the kid (he has a lot of baggage to carry around), he is just plain mean at times.  And I know he’s just a kid, but I couldn’t quite forgive for how he treated Bear.

Bear is the sweetest person, but the lies Oskar is making up aren’t far from Bear’s reality. Not that he wants the attention, all he wasn’t is Oskar.

I love the language and the character development in this story, both Oskar and Bear come out different from how they started – they are stronger, more mature, and in love. I’ve read all Davis & Stewart books, most of them make me cry rivers, this one didn’t, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t an emotional read. Neither Oskar nor Bear has had an easy life, and sometimes you have to do what you have to do to survive…and if that means that you have to pretend you’re Simon Le Bon’s kid, then so be it.

Don’t miss it, it’s…. Bodacious!

39461426Oskar Braithwaite is bold, brash and gorgeous. Just ask him.

Armed with designer backpack full of make-up and retro music galore, Oskar sets off for college. And, with attitude even spikier than his heels, nothing is going to hold him back. Except maybe one thing…his past is shouting louder than the 80s songs he adores and it won’t be ignored. Behind the effervescence are secrets, lies and sadness. Try as he might, not even Oskar can hide forever, and one day it isn’t only pop icon Simon Le Bon who’s going to catch up.

Who is writing letters? And why is a spy secretly following?

Enter Bear, with dancing eyes and secrets of his own. Bear’s kindness sparkles brighter than Lycra leggings, and everyone knows Oskar loves shiny things. Like every prophecy, their fates seem inevitably linked. As the walls of Oskar’s defence crumble, Bear shows his hidden strength, but will it be enough to save them?

Find out in this far-out, zany tale of fame, first love and retro DJs.

Friday Reads | A Casual Weekend Thing

ACasualWeekendThingI just finished reading A Casual Weekend Thing by A.J. Thomas. I read it back when it was new but didn’t remember much more than one of the MCs being an ultra marathon runner.

Christopher Hayes is a San Diego Detective who’s brother is a paedophile who kills himself on Christopher’s birthday. He leaves a note behind that lets Christopher know there’s another paedophile in town and that he has to stop it.

I liked the beginning of the book a lot, but it’s pretty easy to figure out who the bad guy is, and despite the FBI agents telling Christopher, the love interest Doug, and Christopher’s partner from San Diego what good Detectives they are, I found them to be pretty slow on figuring it out.

But, if you’re in the mood for some creepy bad guys, some hot Detectives, and a lot of running you should give it a go.

17796292Doug Heavy Runner left the life of an openly gay Miami police officer and returned to his home on the Salish-Kootenai Indian Reservation when his mother got sick. In the two years since she passed, he’s carved out an empty life as a small-town deputy, relying on out-of-town one-night stands to keep him sane. Then he meets Detective Christopher Hayes, and they share a wild night so incredible Doug breaks his own rule and allows a one-night stand to grow into a weekend of amazing sex.

When Christopher travels from San Diego to Montana to deal with his abusive brother’s suicide, he doesn’t expect to find the man he spent the weekend with to be handling his brother’s case. He certainly doesn’t mind spending more time with Doug—but then an arsonist destroys the house Christopher inherited from his brother, and Christopher and Doug discover they are the primary suspects.

As they investigate, they discover Christopher’s dead brother has set them on the trail of a psychotic pedophile who will stop at nothing to silence his last victim. However, the search for the victim goes horribly wrong, leaving Doug hospitalized and Christopher at the mercy of the killer….

Friday Reads | A Matter of Time

AMatterofTimeUsually, I never check the author of the month in the Goodreads M/M Romance group, but I went in to look at something and the first thing I saw was the cover of Frog by Mary Calmes. I’ve read and was sure I had it, but I’m hopeless when it comes to backing up my files and I can’t find it so… So instead I read A Matter of Time Vol 1…and then Vol 2 because Jory has this ability to make me forget the world around me.

It’s many years ago I first read A Matter of Time #1, it was one of the first M/M books I read and even though it’s been years since I read any Sam and Jory they’ve always stayed with me.

I’ll admit that I was bit afraid to start reading them again because what if I didn’t like the books anymore? I do, Jory will always be Jory, and it’s few series where you actually get to follow the character through their partying days, to their moving in together, to being married, to starting a family, to being kidnapped, blown up, punched, arrested etc etc.

There is never a dull moment, and if you haven’t read these books, and like a strong possessive Detective and a golden, pretty boy with a knack for getting people to do what he wants then you definitely should.

8585948Vol. 2 (Books Three and Four)

Three years ago, Jory Harcourt changed his name and shut the door on a past full of pain, only to emerge stronger on the other side. He has a new career, a great working partner, and a satisfying life—except for the hole in his chest left behind when police Detective Sam Kage walked out with his heart.

Now Sam’s back and he knows what he wants… and what he wants is Jory. Jory, who doesn’t know if he can survive another break up or losing Sam to his dangerous job, resists returning to the arms of the only man he has ever truly loved. But when a serial killer with a score to settle targets Jory, he will have to decide if love is worth the danger as he tries to solve the case and keep Sam safe.

Friday Reads | Dance With Me

DanceWithMeFor today’s post, I’ve re-read Dance With Me by Heidi Cullinan. I read it the first time many years ago. I went to check my GR profile and it says 2014, but that’s only because I added it then, I read it long before that, and when the second addition came a few years ago I got that too. Didn’t read it, but hey, pretty cover – don’t judge! – so I have two copies.

I’ve read about half of Ms Cullinan’s books and liked most of them. I most often have a funny thing going on when reading her stories, though. She often puts in a character that’s just too much for me. Apparently, I’m fine with gory violence, dub-con, non-con etc etc, but as soon as there is someone who, say, tries to persuade someone into having a foursome I skim the pages until I’m safely back with just the two characters I want to read about LOL.

This is a lovely story. Laurie is a dancer, all grace and talent. Ed is a former football player who got injured and can’t play anymore. Both men have lost their way and their drive, both are fighting apathy, both are telling everyone they’re fine – they’re not, but together they can be.

Laurie has the most terrible family and the creepiest godfather in the world (though if you aren’t as great a fan of monogamy as I am you might find him hot…maybe. I wish I can unread him LOL)

I love this story despite icy mothers and pervy men, I loved it last time I read it and I loved it now. I wonder if I’m up for Special Delivery again…or maybe Nowhere Ranch (that I also got a second copy of – the cover, people, the cover! LOL).

What are your favourite dancer stories??

26153131Sometimes life requires a partner.

Ed Maurer has bounced back, more or less, from the neck injury that permanently benched his semipro football career. He hates his soul-killing office job, but he loves volunteering at a local community center. The only fly in his ointment is the dance instructor, Laurie Parker, who can’t seem to stay out of his way.

Laurie was once one of the most celebrated ballet dancers in the world, but now he volunteers at Halcyon Center to avoid his society mother’s machinations. It would be a perfect escape, except for the oaf of a football player cutting him glares from across the room.

When Laurie has a ballroom dancing emergency and Ed stands in as his partner, their perceptions of each other turn upside down. Dancing leads to friendship, being friends leads to becoming lovers, but most important of all, their partnership shows them how to heal the pain of their pasts. Because with every turn across the floor, Ed and Laurie realize the only escape from their personal demons is to keep dancing—together.