The entire world, all of human existence, comes to three hundred souls born and reborn again. No more and no less. Countless billions of people share these souls, each individual with a slight piece or sliver of grace. But when gods corrupt and upset the most delicate of balances, a hero must come forth to lead people toward a brighter day and a better life.
Review: This was an awesome story of epic proportions. Where being in good with GOD will give you everything you ever wanted and more. But all is not what it seems and many atrocities are taking place as those seen as lesser and labeled as sinners, orphans, and many other terms are rounded up and taken away.
As with any society where there are those that feel injustice or unfairness is at play a revolution will sometimes occur to set things right. This is what happens in this story. Many different MC’s play a significant role throughout. Too many to name in this review. We have plenty of different POV’s to understand where each is coming from and how they feel. Needless to say the road they travel is not without danger and not everyone will make it out alive at the end.
This story does contain at least one rape scene and many other brutal atrocities that take place in the name of GOD. I loved the story despite this and was riveted to my seat until the end.
Blurb: From Urban Fantasy to Contemporary, enjoy these four romances from Eric Arvin in this exclusive bundle. In Simple Men, Chip is a football coach at a small college, but his personal life is in a bit of a rut. Then he meets the new school chaplain, Foster. Chip decides to go for it, but love is never simple, and sometimes it’s a downright mess! In Another Enchanted April, three men stay at a bed-and-breakfast with a breathtakingly beautiful garden that has an air of the supernatural. Jerry’s there for love, Doug’s there for sex, and Tony is practically dragged along. Three men clinging stubbornly to their self-destructive ways… can the magic of the garden prevent love’s labors from being lost? In Woke Up in a Strange Place, Joe wakes up in a barley field with no clothes, no memories, and no idea how he got there. He sets off through a fantastical changing landscape to confront his past. If he wants to find peace—and reunite with the Stranger he is so strongly drawn to—he must continue on until the end. In Galley Proof, fiction writer Logan is perfectly happy—until he meets the editor of his next book, Brock. Soon his life and his new manuscript are in a shambles. To take his mind off the mess, Logan goes on a trip, but he might have to admit there are some things you can’t run from.
A story about two relationships, Chip and Foster, teachers and Brad and Jason, Football players, that entrance the reader with their simple chemistry and all around stunning ability to see past the day to day lives. I loved how each couple were mesmerized by their partners and wanted to do anything to make them happy. In a sports world dominated by males it cannot being easy being with the same sex but the characters made it almost seem easy, which I enjoyed. Highly recommended.
Another Enchanted April Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥ 5 Hearts
Three friends, Doug, Tony and Jerry, on vacation are hoping for different things. What culminates is a coming together, growing, and understanding that each never realised they were missing. Beautifully written, this story is chocked full of deep meanings as the three find what they were meant to throughout their journey. Highly recommended.
Woke Up in a Strange Place Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥ 5 Hearts
A revealing story about Joe a man who travels in the afterlife searching for lost memories and meeting people who he feels connected to but has no idea why. This book was emotional, thought provoking and a shred your heart strings type of story. It also has a lesson instilled into its fabric. I really loved it even though I was crying by the end. Highly recommended.
Galley Proof Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥ 5 Hearts
Logan has a semi successful writing career, a boyfriend and seems content until Brock, his new editor, challenges all he thought he wanted. It’s a book about analysing the things in life the character thought were important and self-reflecting on how much he was going through the motions. Emotional and thought provoking this story has it all. Highly recommended.
It is rare that I rate a bundle a five as usually there is at least one story I do not like. This is not the case with this one. Each story was beautifully written and self-reflecting on the characters part as we are lured to travel along with them. I love the almost simple nature of each book. It was heart-breaking, soul searching, joyous, and had me taking a deeper look into my own life. I highly recommend the entire bundle to everyone.
Blurb: Magical realism meets coming of age as four Verona College students are thrown together by choice as well as circumstance. When their lives and loves are threatened by blackmail and violence, they respond by using all the means at their disposal—including some they aren’t even aware they possess. But will that be enough to prevent tragedy or even death? Eric Arvin’s first novel is once again available, ready to set your heart racing and your mind reeling.
Note: Second Edition – this is a previously published work
Review: This story takes place on a college campus. There are a wide range of characters that interact throughout. The son, Wilder, of a prominent politician who uses blackmail to control others. He wreaks havoc among the students and four students, Tony, Sarah, Dashel and Ashley soon have their world turned upside down.
Wilder’s ruthlessness is unnerving as the four individuals face the aftermath with differing results. It’s complex yet intriguing story as we follow the story and the reasoning’s behind the actions. The four students differ from each other in every way.
The author details Tony, Ashley, Dashel and Sarah very well so that we get a true understanding of who they are and where they come from. I truly loved this well written book. It has drama, suspense and mystery that keeps the reader interested and invested to the very end.
Blurb:Chip Arnold is a well-liked football coach at a smallliberal artscollege, but his personal life is in a bit of a rut. He goes out drinking with his colleagues, gets along well with his players, and dates all the prettiest women in town—he has the life most straight men dream of. But lately none of the women he dates seem to be igniting any passion in him. Then he meets the new schoolchaplain, Foster Lewis.
Romantic attraction to another man is new and terrifying, and Chip just can’t put his finger on why he’s drawn to Foster, but it’s stronger than anything he’s felt for anyone in his life. Never one to back down from a challenge, Chip decides to go for it. But love is never simple, and sometimes it’s a downright mess!
Review:I absolutely loved every thing about this book!
Chip and Foster were so cute together and right for each other. Lynn made me a little angry but in the end, she redeemed herself. Katie with hergolf cartwas a riot! Yes, Chip and Foster had their problems, mostly Lynn’s fault, but they worked them out. I also loved the side story with Brad and Jason…loved how that unfolded…not fast but after years of being best friends.
*Note* Winner of the 2012 Gaybie for Best Speculative Fiction
Title: Woke Up in a Strange Place
Author: Eric Arvin
Genre: Contemporary Spiritual Romance
Length: 7 hours and 37 minutes
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (6-28-13)
Heat Level: Mild
Heart Rating: ♥♥♥3Hearts
Blurb: Joe wakes up in a barley field with no clothes, no memories, and no idea how he got there. Before he knows it, he’s off on the last great journey of his life. With his soul guide Baker and a charge to have courage from a mysterious, alluring, and somehow familiar Stranger, Joe sets off through a fantastical changing landscape to confront his past.
The quest is not without challenges. Joe’s past is not always an easy thing to relive, but if he wants to find peace— and reunite, with the Stranger, he is so strongly drawn to—he must continue on until the end, no matter how tempted he is to stop along the way.
Review: The blurb really does say it well for this book. The story follows Joe as he traverses what can only be perceived as the afterlife. He woke up butt naked in a field with no recollection of who he is or how he got where he is. As the story unfolds Joe along with his guide, Baker, face a series of realities and challenges that Joe must face in order to find his way. Peppered throughout are memories that keep rising to the surface. Memories of a lover that are shadowed that blend with the stranger he met when he first woke up.
And then that final memory of how Joe got to this strange place. A choice he made that he will have to come to terms with if his spirit is going to survive. This book reminded me a lot of the movie What Dreams May Come. It was very poignant and prolific almost. Definitely, a spiritual message there for those who are willing to see it. What I was most drawn to while listening to this book was the scenery. Arvin painted a picture in words that could rival any artist on display in a gallery.
Narrated by the master storyteller himself, Mr. Charlie David. I just love his voice, and I especially loved the Nashville edge he added to not only Baker’s voice, but also his entire persona. I don’t know if I would have enjoyed the print version of this book as much as I did the audible. My day just flew by listening to this one, I seriously lost track of time.
*I received a copy of this audio book from Dreamspinner Press in exchange for an honest review through MM Good Book Reviews*
Well, we have a treat in store for you today! We have joined up with other bloggers to bring to your attention Wilde City Press’s Ghoul’s Gym by Eric Arvin & T.J. Klune, we are not only helping to advertise this brilliant book but also bringing YOU a giveaway with a chance to win Christmas Kitsch by Amy Lane (such a fantastic book) and Amazon gift cards (2 x $25…. what’s that in English money???? *shrugs*).
Why am I doing this? Well, besides Portia begging, oh so prettily for me to quickly read and review the book and dropping the blog tour on my toes. It’s because Eric & T.J. have more important things to worry about and if our little site can take a bit of advertising pressure off them then I say, Hell Yes! So, Have a quick shifty through the post, click on the Rafflecopter link for a chance to win, read my review and then go and buy the book! ~Pixie~
Ghoul’s Gym, in which 5 out of 5 walking dead agree that exercise can be dangerous to your health.
Jake Howell and Uly Hoak have two hard and fast rules in their relationship: never go to bed angry and never, no matter the circumstances, ever part without saying goodbye. Little did either of them know when they said their farewells to each other on one decidedly fateful Saturday morning, it might be the last.
Jake is fighting the Green-Eyed monster, feeling a little less than physically adequate next to his ultra-buff gym bunny, Uly, and it doesn’t help that Uly’s boss at the gym, Stephen Fucking Dorian, can’t resist taking potshots at Jake’s rather unimpressive physique, making Jake feel all the more lacking and all the more jealous of the fact Dorian wants Uly for himself.
Turns out that’s the least of Jake’s problems, however, as strange things are afoot in this once sleepy and pristine little town. Unusual outbreaks of violence quickly reach apocalyptic proportions and pit Jake and Uly in a race against time to find each other before it’s too late.
Could a conspiracy be at the heart of the disaster? If so, the mechanics and manipulators of this plot to rid the world of the compulsively fit had better be prepared. They’re about to get a taste of vengeance.
About Eric Arvin:
Eric Arvin resides in the same sleepy Indiana river town where he grew up. He graduated from Hanover College with a Bachelors in History. He has lived, for brief periods, in Italy and Australia. He has survived brain surgery and his own loud-mouthed personal demons. Eric is the author of Woke Up In A Strange Place, Subsurdity, Simple Men, Galley Proof,and various other sundry and not-so-sundry writings. He intends to live the rest of his days with tongue in cheek and eyes set to roam.
About TJ Klune:
When TJ Klune was eight, he picked up a pen and paper and began to write his first story (which turned out to be his own sweeping epic version of the video game Super Metroid—he didn’t think the game ended very well and wanted to offer his own take on it. He never heard back from the video game company, much to his chagrin). Now, two decades later, the cast of characters in his head have only gotten louder, wondering why he has to go to work as a claims examiner for an insurance company during the day when he could just stay home and write.
He lives with a neurotic cat in the middle of the Sonoran Desert. It’s hot there, but he doesn’t mind. He dreams about one day standing at Stonehenge, just so he can say he did
Giveaway: Enter at each stop to win that blog’s free download code by commenting on their post. Winner for this post to be drawn and contacted by Portia *sly grin*. Must be 18 or older to enter. No purchase necessary. To win one of two $25 Amazon gift cards, please enter at: a Rafflecopter giveaway
Title: Ghoul’s Gym
Author: Eric Arvin & T.J. Klune
Genre: Horror, Erotic, Zombies
Length: Novella (113pgs)
Publisher: Wilde City Press (18th December 2013)
Heat Level: Explicit
Heart Rating: 4 ½ Hearts
Blurb: (Blurb nicked from T.J. Klune’s author page on Facebook 🙂 )
Who knew being sexy could be so dangerous?
Some people will do anything to obtain the perfect body. When Uly goes to work at the Art Of Man Fitness center, it’s a day like any other. But then a strange illness transforms some of the patrons into horned-up, flesh hungry monsters, causing a lockdown and mass hysteria. Banding together with a small group of friends, all Uly can do is fight to survive and hope that his boyfriend, Jake, is safe on the outside world.
What Uly doesn’t know is that Jake has got problems of his own. From a drug dealer with misplaced ideals, to a harem of muscle twinks, Jake is learning just how far he’ll go to become the man he thinks his boyfriend wants. With the line crossed and time running out, Jake must descend into the hell that is the Art Of Man. What he finds there is only the beginning.
Review: Jake and Uly have been together for a year and they have lived together for six months but that doesn’t stop Jake from feeling inadequate. Uly is built, he works in a gym and has the body of a muscled god, while Jake is smaller and can’t get bigger no matter how hard he tries. Jake takes matters into his own hands and things get ugly when he discovers that the man who coverts his lover is connected with the tainted drugs. Uly is in the middle of things when everything falls apart, and if he is to survive he has to make the greatest sacrifice of all.
Holy hell!!! I loved this gory story with its bittersweet ending and I can only hope that we will be seeing a sequel as Uly takes up the mantle in Jakes name. Jake and Uly are madly in love but that doesn’t stop Jake from feeling jealous and inadequate when Uly’s boss won’t stop sniffing around his lover. Uly doesn’t realise how Jake really feels and heads off to work, not realising that something is happening with some of the population. Jake heads out to find something to help him bulk up and ends up infected, and his only thought is to get to Uly because he will fix everything.
How do you describe a book that blows away your expectations and makes you crave more but also makes you feel icky and has you cringing as you remember lingering scenes of goriness? I know, it’s hard, but hell it’s a brilliant zombie story that has love and devastation and GORE!!!! Jake is a man who has security issues, he believes Uly deserves a man more like himself and doesn’t get that Uly loves him just as he is. Uly loves Jake and doesn’t realise that Jake doesn’t think he is good enough for Uly, the beginning of the story throws us straight into the issue and it leads through the jealousy and the actions that find Jake in hot water.
This story was beautifully written, the details of Jake’s experience was fantastic and made you see clearly that it was his love for Uly that helped keep his head clear-ish even when Jake didn’t understand why. Uly’s experience was a lot more brutal and harsh but you ran through the gym with him every step of the way as he dodged zombies, saw the horror and tried to protect friends. You couldn’t help but hope that there would be a miracle, that Uly could save Jake, that Jake’s love for Uly would keep his head clear and keep the urges at bay and that the sacrifice that was to come could be avoided. Although I would love to say we see a happy ending we don’t, it’s bittersweet with a love that would overcome anything if it could and an ending that both shocks and angers but makes you yearn for a sequel just so we can witness the revenge.
I recommend this to those who love horror, bloody gruesome scenes, hot men fighting for their lives, a love that lasts till the end and a harsh heartfelt ending.
And for you who still don’t believe that this is a fabulous book, here is a little taste. If you are good, we might post a few more excerpt today, so check back. ~ Portia
Excerpt One from Ghoul’s Gym:
What the fuck is wrong with me?
What the fuck isn’t wrong with me?
I try and school my face. Relax my shoulders. Not seem so combative. It’s not working. I clench my fists. Grit my teeth. My dick is still half hard, like it’s mocking me, still slick with lube and come. Go down, I tell it. Just fucking go down.
“I asked you a question,” Uly says from behind me. He’s trying to use what he calls his redneck polite voice, but we’ve been together a year now. Lived with each other half that time. I know he’s pissed. At me. Not that I blame him. I just fucked him within an inch of his life and couldn’t be bothered to make sure he enjoyed it. Uly doesn’t take shit like that lying down. Well, not figuratively.
“I heard you,” I tell him, keeping my voice low. The bathroom door is only feet away, and I have to resist the urge to go through it and close the door behind me. Lock it all out. Including him. Goddammit.
“Well?” His patience is wearing thin.
“Can we not do this now?” Or ever. That would be awesome too.
“Oh? Then when do you wanna do it? Seems to me the only time we talk now is when you tell me if you want me on my back or on my knees.”
I try not to shrink back at the bitterness in his words. He’s right, of course. How could I have let this get so bad? But then that fucker Stephen pops back into my head, and I see red again. I swear to fucking Christ I could tear him apart with my hands if I ever have to see him again. Twinkie, he calls me. Uly’s little princess. The Prince and the pea.
Yeah, Uly’s a big fucker, muscles piled on top of muscles. Some people might think it’s gross how jacked he is, but not me. There’s something about the way his veins look so pronounced that gets my cock hard. The cut and defined lines of his arms and thighs. The massive chest. Everything about him is big. Every single part of him. Personality, body, mind. Everything.
Except for me.
He says he doesn’t care. He says he doesn’t care that I’m a third his size, that he outweighs me by a good hundred pounds. He says he doesn’t care that I’m not cut, or ripped, or jacked. He says he doesn’t care that next to him, I’m just a shadow. I see you just fine, he told me once. I don’t need you big like me. I just need you to be you.
Many of us woke up this morning to discover that Eric Arvin was a lot more poorly than was first thought, family and friends are pulling together to support both Eric & Tj and authors & readers across the MM genre are doing what they can to gather more support as it looks like a lengthily hospital stay.
Eric Arvin & Tj Klune need our support today, so instead of buying my usual stack of books I am donating my book pennies to Eric & Tj so they have less to worry about and can concentrate on each other. If you can donate then please do, even if it is just the price of a book every penny counts.
We have watched Eric & Tj over the last couple of years as these two great authors flirted on Facebook, met at GLR 2012, fell in love, moved in together, entertained us and finally at GLR 2013 they got engaged.
So lets show these guys how much we love them!
Message on Facebook from Tj. Klune: Eric will have to be in the hospital for a while. Surgery is most likely on his brain stem. We are waiting for his previous scans to be sent to compare to the ones we had last night.
I am sad and scared and tired, but I remember it is all worth it when he opens his eyes and smiles at me.
He is comfortable now, and he just went to sleep while I played him some music next to his bed.
Keep your posts coming to him because I read them all to him he loves that you guys are doing your music lists for him too.
So boys & girls lets help these two wonderful men as best we can whether it’s pennies or well wishes every thought counts.
Blurb: Welcome to the Valley, a liminal landscape that lies somewhere in the fringes of the world; a place with such secret magic that only the very observant can see it. Into this world comes the Lone family. To them, the magic of the Valley is not at first apparent, at least not to all. But the youngest son Lucifer is the most open to the river’s pulse. He converses with the trees and an angel named Azrael, all the while being taught by the midwife Mother True to hone his talents. Meanwhile, Lucifer’s older brother Uriel rejects the valley altogether and, with the help of his lover—a raft boy named Roman—flees the place only to be caught up in the corrupt big city world of a Madame named Ute Dragal.
And so begins a tale of wonder and danger, filled with a cast of characters ranging from the strong to the stoic to the sinister, in a place where a dark power awaits them all. Venture again to the Valley in this prequel to Eric Arvin’s acclaimed epic The Mingled Destinies of Crocodiles and Men.
Review: This was a difficult book to read. At first, it was of a child who had such a gift to talk to trees, but then to find out that he had been killed, by a demon sort. Azrael was there to help him cross over, but he refuses. He spends time with Azrael talking about the story his brother told him, the preacher, his mother, and father. Azrael is an angel like no other. If you like, angels then you will definitely like Azrael.
This story is not only about how Azrael and Lucifer decided to stop evil about the lives of so many other characters. So much evil and darkness throughout the book and one special angel and spirit of a young child to fight it. It has a wonderful story line and great characters, but I just couldn’t really get into it.
Author: TJ Klune, Eric Arvin, Ethan Stone, Daniel A Kaine, Ethan Day and Geoffrey Knight
Genre: M/M Zombie Romance
Length: Anthology (93,000 words)
Publisher: Wilde City Press (July 17th 2013)
Heat Level: Mild to Moderate
Heart Rating: The sex is a 3Hearts. The scare factor climbs from a 3 to a 5 by the end.
Blurb: Board up the windows, push an old dresser against the door and load your shotgun. A zombie apocalypse is about to hit Wilde City, and if you want the best survival tips, six of Wilde City’s boys are here to help.
You’ll never want to exercise again as Eric Arvin and TJ Klune turn a gym full of hunks into a smorgasbord of terror in GHOUL’S GYM.
Gather your friends and fight for the man you love, as Ethan Stone and Daniel A Kaine turn Vegas into a zombie nightmare in SURVIVING SIN CITY.
And bring a date to dinner to celebrate Grumpy Grampy’s 90th birthday and introduce your family to your new zombie boyfriend in Geoffrey Knight and Ethan Day’s GUESS WHO’SCOMING AT DINNER.
You’ll scream with terror and howl with laughter as Wilde City’s boys bring you our first undead anthology ZOMBIE BOYZ.
Review: Guess Who’s Coming at Dinner is more comedy than sexy M/M Romance with some fantastic one-liners and an absolutely hysterical chapter around the dinner table. 19-year-old Chandler has crushed on Zane for as long as he can remember. When Zane is infected by the recent zombie pandemic, it doesn’t stand in the way of true love. Knight and Day weave a tale that is so farfetched it’s actually believable with GWCAD. Chandlers ongoing commentary will have you giggling and Zane with steal your heart (figuratively speaking, of course). Flesh eating zombies, mad cows and sexiness are kept to a minimum in this first part of Zombie Boyz.
Surviving Sin City is more the traditional zombie story, with two consenting adult males pounding each other into oblivion as an added bonus! Cooper is a Brit on vacation in Las Vegas when he finds himself smack dab in the middle of a zombie apocalypse. While trying to get out of Vegas and back to England he runs into Kaleb, an American trying to stay alive and hide while he looks for his brother. The sexual chemistry is evident from the start and it doesn’t take long for Kaleb to find a safe place to bury himself, if you catch my drift. Can these two find Kaleb’s brother as well as safety while surrounded by hoards of zombies that get smarter with each brain they eat? This second story of Zombie Boyz is definitely more hard-core with lots of blood, guts, brains and some sexy guy on guy action when Cooper and Kaleb redefine the term “mile high club”!
Ghouls Gym is full on zombie bloody and scary. There is a wee bit of sex and a whole lot of naked men throughout the story. A manipulated strain of a virus goes rogue resulting in a gym full of naked, horny, gay zombies. There wasn’t nearly enough sex in this part for me, and although I loved the concept that Klune and Arvin were aiming for the story was slightly chaotic and disjointed. Ghouls Gym is “B” horror movie meets gay movie.
I’d recommend fans of the M/M genre give this one a go. If you like zombie stories as well that is a definite plus! I’d love to see a full story for Chandler/Zane and Cooper/Kaleb, sadly I’d have to pass on Uly and Jake.