Release Day | 2020 Top Ten Gay Romance

Release Day

It’s release day! 2020 Top Ten Gay Romance is released today. It’s an anthology of the ten best-selling gay romance short stories during 2020 from JMS Books.

A couple of the stories are Christmas stories, so I figured I’d snag a spot for the anthology among the other holiday posts despite it not being a holiday anthology. If you pick this up, you’ll get a little of everything. I’ll post the blurbs for the stories below so you can check them out.
2020TopTen
2020 Top Ten Gay Romance brings together the best-selling short stories published by JMS Books that year.From first love to true love, from submission to sensual, from heat to sweet and everything in between, the couples in these stories are sure to keep you turning the pages as you fall in love with them.

With stories by Kris T. Bethke, Ofelia Gränd, Nell Iris, Shawn Lane, Marco May, J.L. Merrow, Amanda Meuwissen, K.S. Murphy, Elizabeth Noble, and K.L. Noone, this head-over-heels collection goes beyond bedtime reading. Whether happily ever after or happy for now, there’s an ending for everyone in here!

Contains the stories: Once and Floral by Kris T. BethkeTurning Wood by Ofelia GrändAlways You by Nell IrisA Thankful Heart by Shawn LaneThe Sir by Marco MayThe King’s Honour by J.L. MerrowThe Immaculate Marlow King by Amanda MeuwissenPretend You Are for Five More Minutes by K.S. MurphyThe Freedom of Submission by Elizabeth Noble, and A Demon for Forever by K.L. Noone.

The stories:

Once and Floral by Kris T. Bethke 

Once and FloralFlorist West Walker loves weddings. When two gorgeous men walk into his shop for a consultation, he thinks they’re the best looking grooms. Finding out Monroe Peters is just there to support his brother makes West’s instant attraction to the man acceptable.

When Monroe shows up at the shop with a special request, West agrees. And when Monroe asks West to stay at the wedding as his guest, West is thrilled.

Can a magical wedding, the perfect arrangement, and kisses in the moonlight be all these two men need to start their own journey to a happily ever after?


Turning Wood by Ofelia Gränd

turning woodFor Otho Newcomer, the small village of Snowmelt is a haven from his old life. If he’s not exactly a changed man, he at least hopes to keep his distance from all those easy romances, and the inevitable heartache and disappointment that have always followed.

Mason Dager is an idiot. His ex has cleared out his bank account, sold his car and gotten him thrown out of his apartment. And he has no one to blame but himself. But what better way to celebrate a new chapter in his life—one that includes homelessness and the humiliation of telling his family they were right all along—than to spend Christmas at a swanky winter resort like River Cove? It’s already paid for after all.

When a very drunk Mason makes yet another dumb decision, Otho comes to the rescue, throwing the two men together during the most magical time of the year.

What should be the wrong choice for both of them, might be exactly what they need. They’ll just have to survive a nosy best friend, an asshole of an ex, and the scars of their pasts.


Always You by Nell Iris

53435223._sy475_Thom Novak feels like a walking cliché: the gay guy desperately in love with his straight best friend, Lee. But he’s willing to keep his feelings hidden, to do whatever it takes, as long as they stay friends forever.

Lee Conway loves sharing an apartment with Thom, his best friend since birth, and would be happy doing it for the rest of his life … no matter his current girlfriend’s opinion on the matter. But he’s never been known for being in contact with his emotions.

When something happens to upset the status quo, Lee pulls away. Has Lee learned how Thom feels about him? Will it mean the end of their friendship? Or is there another reason Lee needs time to think? A more … hopeful reason?


A Thankful Heart by Shawn Lane

A Thankful HeartIt’s the beginning of November and Fabian is looking to make plans to visit his family with his lawyer boyfriend, Michael, for Thanksgiving week. But when Fabian shows up at Michael’s office during the workday, Michael is rude and unreceptive to the idea, so Fabian breaks up with him.

Making the trip to San Jose by himself, Fabian is welcomed home by his loving Italian family who are just eager for him to come home for good. Fabian is set to make the best of Thanksgiving, single and all, but maybe a special visit will help to make his heart thankful once more.


The Sir by Marco May

the sirTwenty-year-old Jacques fantasizes about being with much older men. All the guys he’s been with around his own age just didn’t cut it, and the one man he’s been with who was older wasn’t old enough. He wants a true silver fox, and he’s more than willing to seek out one who attracts him the right way.

That’s when he meets Sir Nicholas, who might as well be a reimagined Santa stud. After an awkward encounter at the gym where Jacques works, Nicholas offers him a job that pays far more than his janitor position. He’s to be a kept sex slave to serve Nicholas — and whomever else the sexy Sir wants him to serve. Jacques eagerly accepts. After all, Nicholas is exactly the man he’s waited so long to find.

But the more he spends time with Nicholas, the more Jacques wants exclusivity. He’s determined to win his sexy silver fox over to monogamy. Will he manage to get what Nicholas doesn’t seem willing to give? Or will he be just another temporary toy?


The King’s Honour by J.L. Merrow

The King's HonourIn this M/M retelling of the Grimm fairytale, The Twelve Dancing Princesses, Reuben, a soldier, is on his way to the castle to offer his services to the king, who is sorely troubled with the question of his family’s honour. His wayward daughters go out dancing every night, and refuse to tell how or where.

Walking through the forest, Reuben meets a handsome woodcutter, Corin, who offers to help him unravel the mystery of the dancing princesses. With the magical aid of Corin’s grandmother, the two set out together, mindful that their journey could end in sorrow. The king offers a rich prize to anyone who can discover the princesses’ secret—but the penalty for failure is death.


The Immaculate Marlow King by Amanda Meuwissen

The Immaculate Marlow KingMarlow King is a rare and powerful Storm Mage and an officer of the law, but he has a secret: he has an unfairly intense libido. And he’s a virgin.

After an embarrassing reaction during a sparring match with his rival and fellow Mage Officer, Rembrandt “Remy” Parker, Marlow stumbles upon a thief escaping the scene of her crime. Desperate to escape, she looks in Marlow’s mind to use his deepest secret against him — and curses him to lose his magic until he loses his virginity.

Enter Remy, who is definitely a very bad (very good) idea to fix things.


Pretend You Are for Five More Minutes by K.S. Murphy

pretend you are for five more minutesHenry Kato is in a really bad mood. One of his rude, annoying, and mildly offensive co-workers has been bugging him for weeks about the upcoming office party. To get him off his back, Henry enlists the help of his best friend Luke to go with him as his plus one.

What Henry doesn’t expect is for Luke to blurt out that they’re engaged. Which they’re most decidedly not. Even if Henry wishes it were true.

Do they have what it takes to convince everyone the engagement is real? Or will they burn up in smoke before the night even gets started?


The Freedom of Submission by Elizabeth Noble

The Freedom of SubmissionIan Groden loves his life. He’s happily married to the most wonderful man in the world. His career as the CEO of a thriving family business is right on track. He’s got it all. Ian is a man with a secret, however. He appears in control, but in reality, he’d rather let go and put his longings and physical pleasure in the hands of another. Being a submissive is utterly tantalizing and allows Ian to live out his every sexual whim without reservation or guilt.

Taren Murdoch is the man who fulfills Ian’s needs. He’s Ian’s husband, Dom, and protector. It’s Taren who doles out the pain Ian craves. There’s another side to that coin and that is to ensure the pain is never too much for Ian. Taren turns Ian’s pain into pleasure, a job that sometimes takes planning and creativity.

Ian and Taren have taken a break from their everyday lives and are enjoying a trip where they can indulge in their fantasies. It’s rare Ian has the freedom to spend day and night submitting to Taren. Will Taren be able to make sure he and Ian enjoy this dream vacation as much as they hope?


Demon for Forever by K.L. Noone

A Demon for ForeverA demon, a rock star, and wedding bells!

Justin Moore and Kris Starr have their happy ending: a life together, full of magic and music. Justin’s always wanted to get married, and ever since Kris proposed, he’s thrown himself into wedding planning. But planning a wedding’s not easy when the whole world’s watching their choices — including whether to invite Kris’s estranged father.

Kris wants Justin to have that perfect day. He’ll support the man he loves, whether that means agreeing to carrot cake or writing a new love song or getting excited when Justin shyly wants to wear a wedding dress. But Justin also wants him to reconcile with his father. And Kris loves Justin.

So, with their wedding weeks away, Kris will try to face the ghosts of his past … with his demon at his side.

Cover Reveal | Mind Scrambler

Cover-Reveal

Can you guess what I have?? I cover! Yeah, I know the title of the post sort of gave it away, but I’m super excited about this one.

Mind Scrambler is the sequel to Soul Eater, and when I submitted it, I told my publisher there would be three stories, and that I wanted the covers to be similar. We talked about using an image without a person on it and change the colours for each story. We talked about being smart and picking three similar pictures right from the get-go, but nothing we found felt right. In the end, we decided to push the ‘cover problem’ on the future and focus on finding an image for Soul Eater that we thought fit.

We did. I’m glad we did. I like the Soul Eater cover, like the colours, like the energy ball. Thaddeus throws them around, so it was a good fit.

Cover-reveal-Mind-ScramblerBut… How the heck would we fix a matching cover for the next story? And not only matching. The main characters in Mind Scrambler aren’t wizards. How would we get that feeling of the covers belonging together when I couldn’t find any stock images that did?

I talked to my publisher about it while writing the story. I talked to my publisher about it when it was time to submit the story. The lovely people in my morning office looked at stock images with me, and in the end, my publisher told me to send in the story with some images I liked, and we’d go from there.

I’d sort of given up. I figured we’d use the same font and that would be enough, so when it appeared in my inbox, I was so happy.

Want to see?

 

Aren’t they pretty together? I love them! So now I have to write the third…

Pre-order in the JMS shop (20% off)


Blurb:

Years ago, empath Elijah Long made a bad decision, and he is still paying for it. He’s kept hidden from his abusive werewolf ex for years, but when he wakes in a dark room, cuffed to a wall, he knows he’s out of luck. Elora, his psychic sister, will come for him, he just has to endure long enough to give her a chance to find him.

Captain Kol Jaecar of Rockshade’s Paranormal Investigations Department detests slow times at work, so when Elora wants time off to search for her brother, Kol treats it as if it’s a real case and starts an investigation. What he assumed was a brother not picking up when his sister called turns out to be something else.

Elijah experiences people’s emotions so strongly, it prohibits him from living a normal life. Spending time in the city is out of the question, yet it’s where Elora takes him once she finds him. Elijah does his best to keep his distance, especially from the growling man Elora brought to his rescue. Elijah will never make the mistake of getting close to a shifter again.

The moment Kol smells Elijah, he knows he’s his mate, but how to get close to someone who doesn’t want to be near you? The man who abused Elijah is still on the loose, and Kol calls in the entire team to hunt him down. But how are they to keep Elijah safe when he can’t be around people? And how will Kol stay sane if he can’t touch his mate?

Up North | Dates That Never Happened

X-mas-readI was talking with my office buddies (Nell Iris and A.L. Lester) about 24 Dates and said it’s a miracle I manage to come up with twenty-four dates for the story since I’m the least romantic person in the world.

I had a list with date-suggestion I’d written and crossed them off as I went. I even had dates that never happened left. I said I couldn’t remember what they were since the list now was gone.  Nell told me I should’ve saved it, and I thought to myself yeah, I should have.

Then Christmas came and the pile of papers on my desk needed to if not get thrown away, then at least put in a nicer pile LOL. I ruffled through the papers, most of the sheets with something printed on one side, and me having scrawled down dates on the backside for when to post, pin, and schedule things.

And there it was! Wrinkly and with a folded corner and with hubby having written on it too and then crossed it out. It has name suggestions of characters for other stories, numbers added together than I can’t remember what they were for, and at the bottom it says:

The most fish
The biggest

Which, I guess, it’s for the date on the 12th of December.

So, Jian and Victor had twenty-four dates from December 1st to December 24th. What they didn’t have was:

  • A museum date – When I wrote it down, I figured Jian would take Victor to a museum where they would see some cool things. Hubby and I went to Naturhistoriska in Gothenburg a few times when we lived on the west coast. There’s a whale hall that always has me in awe. That awe is mixed though, part of me think it’s so cool to get to see how big a blue whale really is, another part is outraged we’re making exhibitions out of dead animals.
  • Concert – Jian and Victor go to Whiteport to watch a musical, so I skipped going to a concert because it felt like too much of a repeat. But I had it on the list of suggestions.
  • Beach Walk – I figured they could go to the coast and stroll on the wintery beach. I miss beach walks. The sea in the wintertime is amazing. It’s amazing any time of the year, but that dark grey, raging sea crashing towards the deserted beach – it fills my soul with freedom. The wind tearing at your hair, the scent of salt in the air… *sigh* I want to go home.
  • Coffee Date – They have a dessert-tasting date, so I figured going to a coffee house was a bit of a repeat. They don’t do much people watching, though, so maybe I should have included some date where they go out in public just the two of them.
  • Scavenger Hunt – Let’s be honest. I was too lazy to include this one. A scavenger hunt could be a lot of fun, but I’d have to come up with the rules. Still, I could see Jian doing it for Victor LOL.
  • Fake Tour Guide – I figured Jian could pretend to be a guide and show Victor around either a museum or if they went to a city where he could guide him up and down the streets talking about interesting historical facts that had happened.
  • Sunset and Eggnog – Here I pictured them sitting out in the cold and watch the sun set while having eggnog, but since they have a rooftop stargazing date it felt a bit like a repeat.
  • Drive-in Movie – The idea was that Jian should take help from his friends and set up a drive-in movie for Victor and him, but they’re up north, and winters are cold LOL
  • Amusement Park – Normally, we go to Liseberg with the kids on Christmas. This year it’s closed, but it’s beautiful. There are lights everywhere, they have an ice skating show, Santa is there, and some years there’s been real reindeers.
  • Poetry Night – The last thing on the list is poetry night. I painted a picture of a cosy pub where they held poetry readings, but I chickened out. Poetry isn’t my strong suit, I think it’s amazing, but to write a poetry night date I figured I’d have to write some poetry, and that won’t happen.

See, 24 Dates could’ve been 34 Dates…maybe LOL.

Of all the dates I wrote, my favourite (to write) was December 5th. I laughed. And it just so happens that Angel Martinez did a Friday Reading of that date over at her site, so hop on over there and listen to it!


24datesWhen Victor Hill bought a house with his boyfriend, Jian Kouri it was a dream come true. But now, two years later, instead of living their happily ever after, they hardly see the other awake.

With Jian out the door before Victor gets up in the morning, and asleep on the couch nearly as soon as he walks in the door, the life Victor imagined couldn’t be further from reality. They don’t talk; they don’t touch, and Victor fears he and Jian have already drifted too far apart.

The holiday season is a time for hope, but when Victor comes home to find Jian with a plan to woo him for Christmas, is it too little, too late? The dates are great, and there are filled with Christmas fun to get Victor in the right spirit for the holiday, but are they enough for the two of them to fall in love again? Or is there just too much in their relationship that needs fixing?

books2read.com/24Dates

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