Here, linkity, linkity, linkity…

Contests

  • Kris is having a really incredibly complicated super cool contest in which you could win m/m romance ebooks from Wren Boudreau, Stephani Hecht, Jambrea Jo Jones, Sean Kennedy, K.Z. Snow, and Angelia Sparrow. Since no one who’s entered so far has any clue what the right answers are (even those of us who’ve read the books in question) and we’re all guessing, your odds are no worse than random! Go! Go now! Guess away! Contest closes at noon Perth Australia time, May 23. According to the World Clock, that is 11 pm CDT, May 22, and 4 am GMT/UTC, May 23.
  • Amora’s having her very first blog contest and she’s a little excited/anxious about it – stop by and help calm her down, ok? :) She’s giving away an ebook copy of Barbara Sheridan’s paranormal time travel samurai novel, Falling Through Glass, to someone who comments by May 28.
  • Nicole’s had some contest luck lately and now has duplicate books. She’s giving away the duplicates (Dear Sir, I’m Yours by Joely Sue Burkhart; Ecstasy Unveiled by Larissa Ione; Elfshadow by Elaine Cunningham) to three different people who comment on any of her posts from May 14 through midnight PDT, May 31. Make sure you mention which book you’d like in your comment!

Books & Reading

Ebooks

  • I really like this iPad/ebook reader stand. (Book stands are great for saving your wrists and for letting you knit while you read. If you swing that way. To knitting, that is.) *ahem* Apparently I’ll have a review of how this stand works with my handy, dandy ereader in the near future, since I just bought one – I can’t resist a cool book stand…

Minnesota

Learn, Do, Make, Think

  • Qwotebook is a new site that lets you save your favorite quotes and find new favorites.
  • I can’t decide if I’d love the pixelated rug or if it would drive me nuts.

LOL

  • I’m just waiting for this cat to start scratching his business and yelling for a beer…
  • Poor Basement Cat – he has minion fail. (Oh! Chaos has his very first minion! He’d like to welcome Lea to her new life of minionhood.)

Awwww

Reading Update
The Angel of 13th Street by Eden Winters. ebook. Very good m/m romance about a bar owner and former rentboy who, with help, turned his life around and now helps other young men get off the street and out of the life… and then one of his rescues really starts to get to him.
Valentine Wish by Eden Winters. ebook short. Like The Boy Under the Bridge, this was another good spinoff from The Wish. In this short m/m romance, Anton’s out with his friends and employers, celebrating his Valentine’s Day birthday. Will he be going home alone again, or will he get his birthday wish?
Mobry’s Dick by K.Z. Snow. ebook. Very good paranormal romance about guy who purchases an extremely mysterious object at a flea market and is not prepared for all of the interest it generates.
Handcuffs and Leather (Rawlings Men, Book 1) by Kim Dare. ebook. Very good kinky m/m romance about a constable who was briefly held prisoner and has to talk to a psychiatrist about the experience – the same psychiatrist he’s been dreaming of submitting to.
Lessons in Mastery 1-3: Under Control, Under Restraint, and Under Fire by Laine Williams. ebook shorts. Good m/m romances about a nurse, abused in the past, whose cop lover isn’t quite comfortable with exercising his dominance. Each of these books focuses on a critical life/relationship event.
Pool Hall Green by Sara Bell. ebook. Very good m/m romance about a former pool player whose white trash family kicked him out when he came out, yet keeps calling him to clean up their expensive messes… and he does.
Be the Air for You by T.A. Chase. ebook. So-so m/m romance about a rock star and his best friend, who he’s loved for 20 years but done nothing about. Is it time to change that? This just seemed to have a theme or two too many, and I never got emotionally invested.
Never Let Go by Jourdan Lane. ebook short. Decent short m/m romance about a writer who got tired of being the backup lay for his friend, a porn photographer, and kicked the guy to the curb six months ago.
What the Heart Wants by Cassidy Ryan. ebook short. Ok m/m romance about a guy who takes his cat Hellion to the vet and discovers that the vet is the guy he once loved… and left without a word.
Acquisitions and Mergers by Lucius Parhelion. ebook short. Ok m/m romance that I think was set in the 1950s (although I’m not sure it was ever stated). Anyway, it’s about two friends, one gay, one straight (and a widower), who own a company that’s in the process of being acquired. The story was fine, but for some reason the style kept me distanced from the whole thing.
Secret Skin by Sean Michael. ebook short. This ok short m/m encounter features Dal and Dillon from Secrets, Skin and Leather.
Nine-tenths of the Law by L.A. Witt. ebook. Very good m/m romance about two guys who start seeing each other after they discover they both had the same boyfriend… and neither was aware of the other. When something has such a messed up beginning, does it have a chance?
Carnal Intentions (Lost Shifters, Book 4) by Stephani Hecht. ebook. This was a good m/m paranormal about the continuing search for the jaguar shifter brothers who were kidnapped when they were very young. But I did realize that there’s only one more lost shifter in the immediate family this series has been about… will the next book be the last one?! There are still multiple unmated siblings…
Nothing But Trouble by Rachel Gibson. Not an ebook, not m/m. :) Ok addition to Gibson’s books about the Seattle Chinooks hockey team. This was about the embittered and difficult former team captain, who won’t ever be able to play hockey again, and the actress the team hires in lieu of a home health care assistant (since the health care assistants never last longer than an hour).


*sunbeam blissout* -Chaos

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So many book links, so little time…

Stop by my contest post or The Thrillionth Page by 10 am CST, December 6, to vote for the Softest Kitteh Evah on Our Street! Oh, dear, the taunting has begun. Can escalation be far behind?

Um, that would be no. ;)


Smart Bitches, Trashy Books is giving away a Sony Pocket Digital Reader if you leave an appropriately tagged quote over at the Sony Style Words Move Me page. Contest closes midnight EST, 12/3.

Smexy Books is giving away an ebook copy of Penny Watson’s new romance, Sweet Inspiration, which is about Santa’s sexy sons looking for love, plus a box of Williams-Sonoma hot chocolate mix. Contest runs through 12/3.

SciFiGuy’s giving away a copy of Lili(th) Saintcrow’s new young adult urban fantasy, Betrayals. Contest closes midnight EST, 12/4.

Literary Escapism is giving away a signed copy of Kelly Meding’s intriguing new urban fantasy, Three Days to Dead. Contest closes midnight, 12/8. SciFiGuy’s giving away three copies of the same book (not signed), plus a copy of Kelly Gay’s new urban fantasy, The Better Part of Darkness. This contest closes at midnight EST, 12/8.

Book Junkie’s celebrating her birthday month by giving away 35 books. Read the directions and fill out the form – she’ll choose a winner on 1/1.

Check out the list of December 1 paranormal and urban fantasy releases over at Fantasy Dreamer and her links to contests and free reads. SciFiGuy’s weekend urban fantasy report always has a staggering amount of information. Heh, looks like Jackie at Literary Escapism got sucked into the whole “how evil is my blog?” thing while doing her weekend update. (Don’t miss her December edition of the Escapist Newsletter.)

TeddyPig reports that AllRomanceEbooks is giving away three free first-in-series ebooks from Loose Id, including the first Dark Elves book by Jet Mykles.

Free holiday m/m romance by T.A. Chase featuring the guys from the Love of Sports – grab it over at the Samhellion blog.

This list of DRM-free ebook publishers is a good reference.

Oh, dear, looks like Barnes & Noble is having problems getting the Nook out there. It’s hurting their stock, too.

Speaking of which, TeleRead has a list of reasons why it might be better to wait on getting an ebook reader if you don’t already have one. Check out their ebook reader predictions for 2010, too.

Awful Library Books manages to amuse and horrify me nearly every day.

Package delivery company secrets revealed in this amusing “training manual”. *snort*

The Washington Post on the Twilight craze (via Mary Lou), which inspired me to look back at these posts from Smart Bitches and Lilith Saintcrow about some of the less obvious messages in Twilight.

Hmm. Maybe this is part of my problem with the whole dating thing…

And here I thought Chaos had patented that glare as a kitten.

O noes! Flee, flee, before the evil horde swarms across the land.

Poor Basement Cat!

What if Hewlett-Packard built R2-D2?

Reading Update
Blood Vice: Nightfall Syndicate, Book 1 by Keith Melton. ebook. Very good, very intense paranormal romance about a vampire who does mob hits because he doesn’t want to kill innocents. Things are complicated a bit by an ancient enemy and a mob leader’s daughter. This one just came out in print, too. Recommended.
The Ultimate Kink (Quinn Security, Book 2) by Cameron Dane. ebook. Brace yourselves – this was an m/f romance ebook! ;) The first Quinn Security book was an m/m romance and I enjoyed it quite a bit more than I enjoyed this one, for what it’s worth. But this was ok. And I’m guessing that the next Quinn Security will be m/m.
Aussie Rules by Jill Shalvis. Ok contemporary romance. Mel’s barely holding her struggling aviation business together when Australian Bo shows up after ten years, raising all sorts of uncomfortable questions about Mel’s missing mentor and her possible role in Bo’s father’s death.
Snow on the Mountain by P.D. Singer. ebook. Very good m/m romance. After an exciting summer in Fire on the Mountain, Jake and Kurt are working at a ski resort for the winter and, of course, there are complications. Maybe it’s just me, but this cover sort of freaks me out. (Of course, after I finished reading this, I had to go back and reread Fire on the Mountain.)
Forgotten Song by Ally Blue. ebook. Ok m/m romance. Can a singer with a tortured past escape it to trust and love again? (Another sort of weird cover, although this is more in a 1970s sort of way.)
Diving in Deep by K.A. Mitchell. ebook. Very good m/m romance about getting a second chance with that guy you had a crush on as a teenager, who’s grown into an emotionally unavailable adult. I definitely got sniffly on this one. (This is also the precursor to Mitchell’s book Collision Course.)
Regularly Scheduled Life by K.A. Mitchell. ebook. Another really good m/m romance by Mitchell that had me crying pretty hard more than once. After becoming famous after being wounded during a school shooting, will Sean be able to return to his regular life with his partner of six years, Kyle? Recommended, but keep the tissues handy. (And does this cover have it going on or what?!)
Between Friends by Sean Michael. ebook. This m/m romance never really grabbed me, although it’s well rated and obviously enjoyed by others.
Win and Lose by T.C. Blue. ebook. The title of this pretty good m/m romance is a play on the nicknames of the two main characters: Winston and Lucien. Win’s a tattoo artist in the middle of nowhere and Luz’s the lead singer of a band who is lost in a snowstorm in the middle nowhere.
Spilled Ink by Rob Knight. ebook. Hmm. Musta been tattoo parlor week. Shortish but enjoyable m/m romance about a cop who goes to get a tattoo to commemorate his slain partner and ends up falling for the tattoo artist.
Take Me Out by Gabrina Garza. ebook. Meh m/m romance about two baseball players on a minor-league team.
Doggy Style by Ashely Ladd. ebook. Minds out of the gutter – it’s the name of a store that sells fashions for dogs. Of course, that’s not necessarily so clear when “Doggy Style” is emblazoned across the baseball team’s jerseys as the team sponsor. So, while the name was clever, that was the only clever bit about this m/m romance. I was laughing out loud about how hokey it was, plus I kept paging back to see if I’d skipped paragraphs or chapters. This wasn’t something that a few transitions could’ve fixed. Probably would’ve been a DNF, except I kept going to find out if the whole story was a disjointed dream sequence or something. (It wasn’t, more’s the pity.)
Love in an Elevator by Sean Michael. ebook. Ok m/m romance about a photographer and a high-powered businessman. Hmm. Not sure an elevator phobia was really enough to carry the story and balance all the steam. And oh, this book had a doozy of an editing miss – a completely random name switched in once for one of the characters at an inopportune moment. (“Samuel?! Who the *blip* is Samuel?!”)
Bad Case of Loving You by Laney Cairo. ebook. Very good, very steamy m/m romance about a resident and the doctor supervising him at the hospital. They just can’t seem to keep their hands off each other…
Undercover Blues by Laney Cairo. ebook. Hmm. Whose bright idea was it to send the allegedly straight cop undercover to hook up with the crime lord’s brother? Nicely done, even if I had to guess what some of the Aussie slang meant. ;)
Another Fine Mess, edited by Syd McGynley. ebook. I picked up this m/m romance collection primarily to read the story by Laney Cairo, which was related to Undercover Blues. Some of the other stories were fine, although I definitely skipped two or three.
I Can’t Drive 55 by Jade Falconer. ebook. Pretty sure that this method of getting out of a ticket should not be attempted outside of a fictional setting!
This Time for Keeps by Christiane France. ebook. Ok paranormal m/m romance about a man whose partner dies… so why do the pillows still smell like his shower gel? And who keeps changing the tv channel?
Interlude by Vivien Dean. ebook. Ok m/m romance about piano players with a dueling pianos gig in Nevada.
Off the Beaten Path by Katrina Strauss. ebook. Good m/m romance about a jock and an environmentalist who are sure they have nothing in common until they end up sharing a tent while working on a trail project.


“Come to the black kitty side. We have cookies. Unless the big kitty ate them.” -Mayhem

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Linkin’ to books, bookin’ to links

Donna’s giving away two copies of John Brown’s new fantasy novel, Servant of a Dark God. Contest closes 8 pm CST, November 29. Plus, check out her post that’s chock full of giveaway and free read info. (Many thanks to Donna – I won a $10 Amazon gift certificate in a recent contest over at Fantasy Dreamer.)

Pat (of Pat’s Fantasy Hotlist) is giving away a smorgasbord of fantasy (including some urban fantasy) books, such as The City and the City by China Mieville, Black and White by Jackie Kessler & Caitlin Kittredge, and an ARC of Kim Stanley Robinson’s Galileo’s Dream.

Former Samhain editor and current Carina Press editor Angela James is having a contest to celebrate her four years at Samhain and new job at Carina. She’s giving away several goodie bags and will draw winners on December 7.

Amazon’s giving away $3 worth of mp3s (your choice, use by November 30) (via Lifehacker).

Don’t miss SciFiGuy’s weekly overview of contests, news, and more.

Dear Author suspects there are some unannounced Kindle book sales going on and provides tips on how to find them.

Some numbers on ebook piracy, again pointing out that ditching DRM and getting ebook buyers used to the idea of buying easy-to-use content is probably the best way to handle piracy.

Top 10 myths about ebooks, from literary agent Nathan Bransford.

Jackie at Literary Escapism (as part of Weekly Geeks) is interested in your lists of the top 10 books you’ve read in 2009. (She has info on how to submit your list.)

Harlequin manages to spectacularly damage their brand with an ill-considered venture into offering vanity publishing services. Whoops.

One reader charts her path from reading m/f romances to reading m/m romances.

Hee hee – a fine bit of book geekery at xkcd.

How good or evil is your blog? Discovered via the more-evil-than-me Kris’n’Good Books. ;)

Aw, look at the cute black kitty, all prepared for the possible pumpkin shortage.

All teh tiem!

Yay! Google Reader added favicon support!

If you’re thinking of shopping on Black Friday (are you crazy?!?), you might want to read Gizmodo’s tips on anti-deals.

Reading Update
Brokeback Mountain by Annie Proulx. A bit more literary m/m than what I’ve been reading. No HEA (happily ever after) or even HFN (happy for now) with this one. But y’all know that already.
A Really Nice Prom Mess by Brian Sloan. I’m pretty sure this young adult novel plays homage to the shenanigans in all those teen movies like Sixteen Candles. The narrator, Cameron, is going to his senior prom with his boyfriend… sort of. Funny and heartfelt – it’s not often that a book has me alternately laughing and sniffling.
Shady Ridge and the Neon Sky by Chris Owen. ebook. Good m/m romance about two cops in a small-town in Texas. Bit of a rough start, but fortunately the menagey bit wasn’t ongoing. :o
Carbon and Ash by Chris Owen. ebook. This was a short but sweet m/m romance about slowing sliding into something other than friendship without being fully aware.
Cheek to Cheek (911, Book 2) by Chris Owen. ebook. Another sweet m/m romance from Owen, this time about ballroom dancing firefighters. :)
Collision Course by K.A. Mitchell. ebook. Wow! Really well done m/m romance about a social worker and a paramedic who has a lot of issues with social workers. Recommended. I’m definitely picking up more K.A. Mitchell titles. (And yes, I now know that I should’ve read Diving in Deep first, but darn it, Samhain sure doesn’t make that clear on their site…)
Inking Aaron by Cheryl Dragon. Ok, very weird that there was an Aaron Chase in Collision Course and now in this book… Sadly, while the premise of this m/m romance was intriguing (a seemingly uptight hotel manager gets involved with the guy who owns the tattoo shop in the lobby), the writing was extremely choppy (transitions aren’t a bad thing, really). Additionally, it seemed like the story needed to be fleshed out more. And then there were the unclear pronoun references, which I’ve mentioned is a very bad thing in m/m romance.
Lord and Master and Taking Work Home (Lord and Master 2) by Jules Jones. ebooks. Comfortable m/m romances about a PhD student working as a research and personal assistant for the owner of a London company. A nice break from the usual high angst of many m/m romances! (“Lord and master” refers simply to being the boss…)
Out of the Past by Sean Michael. ebook. Hmm. This one’s hard to summarize. Ten years ago, Andy was in a bad car accident and when he woke up in the hospital, a lawyer told him that his boyfriend Steven didn’t want to see him anymore because of his injuries and scars. However, Steven was told that Andy died – went to his funeral and everything. Quite the surprise when they run into each other again…
Making Your Own Luck by Sean Michael. ebook. Fun short m/m romance about Friday the Thirteenth and trying to break a string of very bad luck. (Here’s a good place to confess that I get squicked out by tooth injuries. Stephen King and The Tommyknockers, I’m looking at you!) But hey, there’s a gigantic black cat named Demon in the story, too. It’s all good, right?
Quarterback Sneak by Pepper Espinoza. ebook. Touching m/m romance about two pro quarterbacks in a decade-long relationship who are outed.
Kegs and Dorms by Stephanie Vaughan, Tory Temple, Jane Davitt, & Kiernan Kelly. ebook. The title of this m/m romance collection does it a disservice. It is about guys in college, but the stories are much better than one would guess from the title!
Hemovore by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. This paranormal m/m romance was definitely a cracktastic read (as in completely addictive and will keep you up too late). What if vampirism was caused by a virus? A really, really contagious virus? There’s a reason Price is on my must-read list!
Payback, Vertigo, Manikin, Tainted, & Rebirth (Channeling Morpheus, Books 1-5) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebooks. All five of these paranormal m/m ebooks probably equal one regular paperback, so don’t get too excited about my reading five books here! These are the first five books in the raunchy adventures of vampire Wild Bill and non-vampire Michael, which continue with the Sweet Oblivion series.


“Sheesh, now you want me to move so you can wear the socks? I grow weary of your unreasonable requests, Mom!” -Mayhem

For those in the US, have a happy Thanksgiving tomorrow! To all, this is the last post until Monday, November 30. :)

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In which you can discover sordid details about my past if you follow the (in)correct link

Congrats to MrsPao and Cecile, who were winners in my Rain Mix contest! Don’t forget to leave a comment on the other contest post before 7 pm CDT, Friday, October 16, for your chance to win a copy of Shannon K. Butcher’s new romantic suspense novel, Love You To Death!


Remember I mentioned that I hung out with CJ at Uncle Hugo’s on Saturday? Well, CJ blogged about it, too, complete with photographic evidence:

Not only does she have mad Photoshop skillz, her post is funnier than mine. Curses.

And then I discovered that what happens at Estes does not stay at Estes

Dang, Donna (Fantasy Dreamer) has an absolutely amazing list of bookish contests posted. Wow. (Plus links to interviews, new release news, and more!)

As always, Dear Author has great links to all sorts of ebook news, including to an article about upcoming ebook readers.

Eeeeek!!

Doesn’t the kitty in this moderncat contest (for an eco-friendly scratcher/lounger) look like Chaos?! (Although, according to CarrieK, this would be more his style.)

Reading Update
The Pregnancy Test by Erin McCarthy. A sweet romance about a woman, pregnant and on her own, and her boss, who has a lot of emotional baggage.
Storm Watch (Harlequin Blaze) by Jill Shalvis. I had a lot of trouble with suspension of disbelief on this one. The hero (National Guard guy) and heroine (ER nurse) spent way too much stopping to make out and have heart-to-heart talks while struggling through flood waters to rescue a woman who was nine months pregnant. Focus, people, focus! Stay alive and rescue people now, nookie later.
Damned By Blood (Faustin Brothers, Book 3) by Evie Byrne. ebook. Alas, poor Mikhail is not a happy vampire prince when his mother prophesizes that his mate is none other than the first girl he loved, who now, 30 years later, is his sworn enemy. If you like well-written, enjoyable, and hot vampire romances, I highly recommend this trilogy.
As You Are by Ethan Day. ebook. Very good m/m romance. This one totally sucked me in. I was sniffly. Definitely recommended! (No, I’m not going to tell you anything more about it, because if you know what happens, it won’t have as much impact. Really, there is a method to my madness.)
Self-Preservation by Ethan Day. ebook. Good m/m romance, but dammit, I cried. I can see that Ethan Day’s going on my “must-buy” list.
Alternative Treatment by Claire Thompson. ebook. Another good m/m romance, about a doctor and a guy doing community service because of a DUI.
Gobsmacked, Happy Ending, and Cover Me (Men of Smithfield, Books 1-3) by L. B. Gregg. More good m/m romance. If you’re brave and not at work, I highly recommend Miss Doreen and CJ’s take on the opening scene in Cover Me. (That’s a totally NSFW link, people.)
Pas de Deux by Jamie Craig. ebook. Dang, I was totally on a roll this week! Intense m/m romantic suspense about a cop and a lawyer seemingly on opposing sides of a high-profile case. Highly recommended. (Trivially, “Jamie Craig” is actually Vivien Dean and Pepper Espinoza.)
Wranglers: Discovery and Wranglers: Voir Dire by Vivien Dean. ebooks. These are the first two parts of the three-part Wranglers story, which is an m/m romance about two adversarial lawyers. The third part will be out later this year.
What We May Be by Vivien Dean. ebook. Ok m/m romance about a former model turned fashion designer who gets involved with a guy who’d rather wear t-shirts and jeans than high fashion.
My Only Home by Pepper Espinoza. ebook. This m/m romance had enough impact on me to have me crying… So, have you figured out yet that I’m a big mushpot and that it takes very little emotional trauma in a book to set me off?! Just get me engaged with the characters enough to care…
Most Likely To Succeed and At Long Last by Shawn Lane. Hmm. This was apparently m/m lawyer romance week! Yup, two more (unrelated) lawyers in love stories.
White Flag by Thom Lane. ebook. Sweet and powerful m/m romance about a travel writer and a French vintner.
Unlikely Hero by Sean Michael. Another sweet m/m romance – this one’s about a teacher whose daughter is abducted, and the only person he can think to turn to for help is his ex.
Unholy Matrimony by Audra Beagle & Chloe West. ebook. Decent m/m romance… sometimes what happens in Vegas follows you home. Whoops.
Dreaming in Color by Cameron Dane. ebook. Very good m/m romance. For the past two years, Colin’s been having very hot and vivid dreams of a faceless man and a house with a red door. Will fate help bring them together outside of his dreams?
The One That Got Away by T. C. Blue. ebook. Lots of assumptions and miscommunication made things rocky for two roommates in this ok m/m romance. (Really, so many problems in fiction could be solved by a short conversation. Hmm. Probably in real life, too, huh?)


“ROWR!!!” -Mayhem

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