Monday, September 30, 2013

Meme Monday: Personality True or False

Share one truth and one lie about your personality and let the others guess which is what.

New This Week

Blood Cries Up by Lynn Townsend (Short Story M/M)
When Dariel is accidentally possessed by a sexy ghost, the two must strive, with the help of the local cemetery cat, to return Zach's soul to its proper resting place.



Ghost of a Chance by Ari McKay (Novella M/M
Mason Beaulieu and Fort Fortenberry are ghost hunting rivals with very different philosophies on the paranormal. When they team up for a Halloween publicity stunt and are locked into a haunted house together, can they put aside their differences long enough to see that more than just ghosts can give them thrills and chills?


Grave Appeal by Kassandra Lea (Short Story M/M)
Aidan Harker’s Halloween isn’t going the way he planned. But when Dante Armitage shows up he’s in for a little treat.

Look for them on October 2 at Torquere Press!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Review Round-Up August 28-September 27, 2013

We hope you enjoy our latest review round-up. If you have any reviews that are not listed please feel free to add them in the comments.

Thank you everyone for the great 10th anniversary month we have had. We hope everyone gets a chance to grab some of our Charity Sips that are going to Outserve to help support GLBT military.

MM Good Book Reviews

Tuckersburg by Raven de Hart
Get Him to the Geek by D.C. Juris
One Warlock's Love Story: All Knight Long by Shad O. Walker 
Adding it Up by Chris Owen & Tory Temple 
Brownies by Sean Michael 
Payday by Sean Michael 
Acts of Kindness by BA Tortuga 
Ad Astra by Molly Church 
A Hidden Battle by Kathryn Scannell 
By the Book by Nancy Griffis 
Camp Spartacus by Laura Hughes 
Dog Days and Dark Nights by Emily Moreton 
Winter's Trial by Darren Endymion 
Scoring Anthology edited by Vincent Diamond 
Full Moon Dating: Aiden and Ben by Julia Talbot 
Box of Nails: This Young Stud by Sean Michael 
Heart of Stars by DC Juris


Mrs. Condit & Friends

Captive Magic by Angela Benedetti


Coffee Time Romance

Falling From a Height by AR Moler 
Loving Aidan by Ashavan Doyon 


Joyfully Jay Reviews

Roughstock: Blind Ride - Season One by BA Tortuga 
Ginger and Gentlemen by Ari McKay 
Hammer and Tongs by BA Tortuga 


Cocktails and Books

Brownies by Sean Michael 


Dark Divas Reviews

Box of Nails: This Young Stud by Sean Michael 


Long and Short Reviews

Just for Kicks by Racheal Renwick 


Elisa Rolle

The Servant's Heart by Missouri Dalton 


Hearts on Fire Reviews

Box of Nails: This Young Stud by Sean Michael
Hitched, a Hammer story by Sean Michael 
On the Clock by Chris Owen 
The Celestine Room by Jared Rackler 


Top 2 Bottom Reviews

Get Him to the Geek by DC Juris 

Amazon Review

The Second Mango by Shira Glassman 


Review Roses

The Grave Watchers by Missouri Dalton 


three am

Bareback by Chris Owen


Night Owl Reviews

Switching Sides by Beth Wylde


Rainbow Book Reviews

Hot Shot by Kate Roman
Full Moon Dating: Aiden & Ben by Julia Talbot
Balls and Strikes by Sean Michael
Winter's Trial by Darren Endymion
Brownies, a Hammer story by Sean Michael
Army Green by J. Rocci
Taction by J. Rocci
Army Green: Burning Bright by J. Rocci
A Hidden Battle by Kathryn Scannell
Flack Jacket Love by Sean Michael
Seeking Hearts by A. Catherine Noon & Rachel Wilder
First Aid by J.L. Jensen
Drama on Skyline Drive by Avery Dawes
Firestation Heat by Pelaam
Camp Spartacus by Laura Hughes
Acts of Kindness by BA Tortuga
Every Sunday at One by V.L. Locey
By the Book by Nancy M. Griffis
Ad Astra (To the Stars) by Molly Church 
Lost and Found in the Pacific by Julian Griffith 
Ranger's Luck by Serena Yates 
Dog Days and Dark Nights by Emily Moreton 
Taking Pride by Lorne Rodman 
The Immoral Use of Rubber by Kiernan Kelly 
Dog Days March by Liam Grey 
Gray and Burnished Granite Seas by Tray Ellis 
Jury Duty by John Amory 
Halcyon Hush by Indra Vaughn 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

New Release Day


Bar None
By: Kiernan Kelly, Sean Michael, Julia Talbot and BA Tortuga
223 pages / 59500 words
ISBN: 978-1-61040-581-2
$6.99
Buy Link: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=96&products_id=4025
Blurb:
Also available in paperback at Amazon.com
Do you like your bartenders hot and sexy? Do you like it when they get up close and personal with some of their patrons? Then you’ll love Bar None!
Kiernan Kelly goes into outer space for Kind of a D.R.A.G., the story of bartender Max and a robot who’s more than your standard nuts and bolts. On the other hand, Julia Talbot’s men stay firmly planted on earth, and in nature, as werebear Seamus deals with grumpy bar owner and werewolf Hugh and a dangerous animal poacher in The Blue Moon Bar.
BA Tortuga revisits Shane and Galen from the Stormy Weather series in Bartender Rescue. This time Shane’s the one working too hard and Galen has to remind his bartender how to have fun before they forget how to be a couple. In Flair, Sean Michael goes to the Hammer club where flair expert Nathan is hired by Xavier to teach the staff some bartending tricks, but it’s Dom Jarrod who winds up showing Nathan a few tricks of his own.
Don’t miss out on these four sexy tales of bartenders and the men who love them.

Pour Me a Triple
By: Sean Michael
158 pages / 41700 words
ISBN: 978-1-61040-584-3
$5.99
Buy Link: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=96&products_id=4023
Blurb:
When Jai and Bay meet at The Bending Willow where Bay is a bartender, they never expect that the two of them together will catch the eye of Master Storm, but that’s exactly what happens.
Bay’s been looking for a Dom ever since he started work at the Bending Willow, but Jai’s not familiar at all with the lifestyle. Can the three men find a balance that works for each of them, or will Bay have to choose between Jai and Storm?

Roughstock: Tag Team – Fais Do Do
By: BA Tortuga
185 pages / 50000 words
ISBN: 978-1-61040-582-9
$6.99
Buy Link: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=96&products_id=4024
Blurb:
Also available in paperback from Amazon.com
Landon Gaudet may not be the best bullrider on earth, but he knows that's where the money is in rodeo. His Cajun heart is more involved with horses, though, and with finding the cowboy he's been dreaming of all of his relatively short life. Adam Taggart has been around the block more than once, and while he thinks Landon is special, he also thinks the kid deserves better than a safety man with more than his share of notches on the bedpost.

Adam does everything he can to resist Landon, but there's not a man alive who doesn't love being loved, so eventually he gives in. Landon can't believe that Adam is finally with him, that his cowboy has finally come around to his way of thinking. The only problem is that Adam isn't sure he deserves love, or that he really has any to give. He questions everything from his need for Landon to his family’s assertion that he can do better than a boy from the bayou. Can Landon show Adam that sometimes magic is real, and that all you really need is to have a little faith?

Worth the Wait
By: Beth Wylde
13 pages / 3600 words
$1.99
Buy Link: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=96&products_id=4022
Blurb:
Barbara is the hot butch with her sights sets on the new femme bartender at Rainbow Junction. Up until recently Jackie has been off limits, but a bad break up has her back on the market and looking for love. The signals these two keep sending one another are enough to warrant an earthquake warning. When they finally get together will it be worth the wait?
Previously published in the charity anthology, Coming Together: Girl on Girl.
Coming Next Week...

Ghost of a Chance
by Ari McKay
Mason Beaulieu and Fort Fortenberry are ghost hunting rivals with very different philosophies on the paranormal. When they team up for a Halloween publicity stunt and are locked into a haunted house together, can they put aside their differences long enough to see that more than just ghosts can give them thrills and chills?
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal/Horror


Blood Cries Up
by Lynn Townsend
When Dariel is accidentally possessed by a sexy ghost, the two must strive, with the help of the local cemetery cat, to return Zach's soul to its proper resting place.
Genre: Paranormal/Horror
Grave Appeal
by Kassandra Lea
Aidan Harker’s Halloween isn’t going the way he planned. But when Dante Armitage shows up he’s in for a little treat.
Genre: Paranormal/Fantasy

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Illustration and excerpt from The Second Mango, a lesbian young adult fantasy novel from Prizm Books

If you're in North Central Florida, join me tonight in the Ustler Hall atrium on the University of Florida campus at 7:30 pm. I'll be talking about female and especially queer female representation in speculative fiction, and reading excerpts from my first novel, The Second Mango. It's the story of a young lesbian who becomes queen of her kingdom and rides around on a dragon in search of love, family, and her own strength. The sequel, Climbing the Date Palm, is due out in the summer of 2014.

If you can't make it to the event, here's one of the pictures I'll be showing, and the accompanying excerpt that I'll read.


Art credit Jane Dominguez

Aviva took her to the palace herb garden to teach her what all the herbs looked like. She plucked a handful of rippled green leaves and crushed them beneath Shulamit’s nose. The cold, fresh scent flowed forth. “Is it singing to you?”

“It’s mint!”

Aviva smiled in affirmation. “She smells cool because she keeps a secret part of herself always hidden away from the sun. She’s strong enough to remain cold even in the hottest weather. She has principles and she sticks to ’em.”

Shulamit giggled. “You always talk in poetry. Do you ever write anything down?”

A warm but slightly self-conscious smile spread over the cook’s face. “I never thought of it as poetry—it just happens on its own when I talk. I get in a hurry to say what I’m feeling, and before I know it, I’ve said something goofy.”

Monday, September 23, 2013

Author Extra: A Hidden Battle by Kathryn Scannell

A Hidden Battle by Kathryn Scannell

Drafted into a secret British unit dedicated to defeating Hitler's occult
forces, American GI's Sam Rutherford and Charlie Watson have found comfort
in each other's arms. But will their love endure past the end of the war
that brought them together? Charlie wants it to, but Sam isn't so sure. It
may not even matter, because Charlie is a marked man. He learned dangerous
Nazi secrets on a scouting mission, and now they're just waiting to get a
shot at him.

Buy link:
http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_111&products_id=4009

Author Extra:

One of the things I really love about writing historical fiction with a
hidden magical element is how many well documented events you can find to
support that hidden element. This one is no exception. 

This story grew in part out of my interest in occult history. Not long
before the call for this year's sips went out I'd picked up a book by Dion
Fortune called "The Magical Battle for Britain". It's a collection of
letters she sent out during World War II to a variety of interested people
across the country containing instructions for performing synchronized
magical ritual and meditation, which the aim of countering the occult forces
being marshaled by Hitler to attack Britain. 

In one of the early letters she remarks that because of the extremity of the
situation, she makes available to anyone who wishes to lend their aid,
secrets and techniques that would normally be shared only with advanced
students in her Society of Inner Light. (As an aside, that group continues
to exist, and if you're curious, you can find them on the internet:
http://www.innerlight.org.uk/ ). This is an important point – in the first
half of the 20th century, esoteric arts in Britain were very much the domain
of the upper classes and the well-educated. Now, suddenly she's opening to
door to anyone. From the perspective of a proper British occultist, it's
completely shocking.

Of course her participants, as far as we know, were generally civilians,
meditating in their homes. But it's not a very large leap to consider that
perhaps there were people in the intelligence community taking Hitler's
occult efforts very seriously and that perhaps they were well justified in
doing so. Also her efforts were purely defensive in nature, in keeping with
her ethical position regarding the use of magic, but there's no reason to
think that a military or intelligence service associate group would limit
themselves that way.

>From there, I considered the notion that Britain was probably as hard
pressed on the occult front as on the air and sea fronts, making them
willing to enlist anyone who had a modicum of aptitude for the work. I
extended that to getting select American soldiers who had the talent for the
work seconded to the host intelligence agency (the Special Operations
Executive). Now you have completely untrained, blue-collar Americans mixing
with high-society British occultists. The possibilities for
misunderstandings and friction are endless. 
You may note when you read the story that Sam occasionally does magical
things by himself, not as part of the group. He's from Tennessee, on the
edge of the Appalachian Mountains, and his family has its own traditions of
magic, which he draws on. His Granny practices a tradition known locally as
"root doctoring", hoodoo, or just conjuring. It's a folk tradition, often
practiced by poor and relatively uneducated people, focused on practical
things – protecting yourself and your loved ones, healing, and making every
day sorts of things happen. It gives the proper British occultists hives
just thinking about it. If you're interested in reading more about it,
Catherine Yronwode has a web page that's a good start:
http://www.luckymojo.com/hoodoo.html

Author Extra: Dog Days and Dark Nights by Emily Moreton

Dog Days and Dark Nights by Emily Moreton

Patrick wouldn't say that the last thing he's expecting while walking his
dog is to run into his ex-partner -- he did move to Jasper's favorite town,
after all -- but it's still a shock to the system. Maybe even more so when
they end up on a coffee date. Patrick's disabilities, caused by the accident
that took him out of the Army, combined with Jasper's lingering resentment
over the secrecy that eventually broke them up, make for a rocky first date.
Is practice enough to make perfect this time?

buy link:
http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_111&products_id=4006

Author Extra:

In my head, Jasper likes to bake (Patrick, of course, prefers to grill), so
here's the recipe for Sussex Honey Cake, which is a gateway cake for all my
childhood memories.

100g butter
100 caster sugar
2 beaten eggs
100g honey (doesn't have to be Sussex honey, don’t worry!)
200g self-raising flour
1.5 teaspoon mixed spice

1. Cream butter and sugar together
2. Add eggs and honey; beat well
3. Sieve flour and spice together and fold into mixture
4. Pour into greased and lined baking tin (8inches square)
5. Bake at 200C/400F for 20-25 mins.

Meme Monday: Alphabet Traits

Which letter of the alphabet describes you best?

New This Week

Bar None by Kiernan Kelly, Sean Michael, Julia Talbot and BA Tortuga (Anthology, M/M) 
Join Kiernan Kelly, Sean Michael, Julia Talbot and BA Tortuga as they tell four sexy tales of bartenders and the men who love them.

Pour Me a Triple by Sean Michael (Novella, M/M)
When Jai and Bay meet at The Bending Willow where Bay is a bartender, they never expect that the two of them together will catch the eye of Master Storm, but that’s exactly what happens.

Roughstock: Tag Team - Fais Do Do by BA Tortuga (Novel, M/M)
Landon Gaudet has been dreaming of the cowboy made for him since he was a baby in the Bayou. Too bad Adam Taggart is a stubborn, grumpy, Texan safety man with a reputation of burning through every willing bullrider on the circuit. 


Worth the Wait by Beth Wylde (Short Story, F/F)
Barbara has her sights set on the sexy new bartender at Rainbow Junction, and after a heated make-out session, Barbara is even more determined. Will all her hard work make it worth the wait?


Look for them at Torquere Books on Wednesday September 25.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Author Extra: By the Book by Nancy M. Griffis

By the Book by Nancy M. Griffis

Boston Police Detective Kyle Kearney’s been burned by love before and takes
a hands-off approach to his love life... until he meets book expert Roman
Archambault. After Roman's invaluable assistance with a troubling murder
case, and egged on by his police partner, Kyle asks Roman out. Their instant
attraction sweetly develops into much more.

buy link:
http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_111&products_id=4008

Author Extra:

The Barbeque

Roman took a deep breath as Kyle parked in the driveway in front of a
triplex. They were at Kyle’s parents’ home for the ‘meet the family’ moment
that he’d looked forward to, and dreaded, for the last month. The original
dinner plans had fallen through thanks to a murder Kyle had been called out
for and Roman had stewed about it ever since. 
Kyle took his hand and said, “You’re going to be fine. I promise they won’t
eat you alive.”
“The fact that you implied they would kill me first does not reassure,”
Roman muttered. 
Kyle chuckled and kissed the back of Roman’s hand. “C’mon. Let’s go in.”
Roman took a breath and climbed out of the car. He reached into the backseat
to pick up the bottle of wine he’d purchased just for this occasion. They
walked up the front path to the door which Kyle opened and then shouted,
“We’re here, Ma!” 
It didn’t look like the living room had been decorated in the last twenty
years, but everything was neat and cheerful. The wall next to the front door
was covered in family photos with so many children at different ages, there
was no chance Roman would be able to sort them out on his own.
An older woman with short, dark hair and the same pale, blue eyes as Kyle
walked into the living room. She was of average height and comfortably
round. She smiled brilliantly at them. “It’s about time! And you must be
Roman. It’s great to finally meet you.”
Roman found himself the recipient of a tight hug and kiss on the cheek. “And
you, Mrs. Kearney.”
She took the wine from him and said, “None of that, now. It’s Mariana to
you. And you! Keep your father outta the kitchen before I kill him!”
Roman had time to shoot Kyle a bemused look before Mariana’s surprisingly
strong arm wrapped around his waist and tugged him into the kitchen. 
“Everyone, this is Roman. Roman, this is Janey, Sarah, Mia, Renee, Cody, and
Danielle. Janey and Sarah are married to the twins, Jason and Steve. Mia’s
married to George, our second eldest. Renee’s engaged to my good-for-nothing
Navy son, Danny. Cody’s dating Sam, my baby. And Danielle is practically
engaged to Mike, if the dimwit ever gets off his ass to propose, which we
expect when, Christmas?”
“Thereabouts, Ma,” Cody said agreeably. “Welcome to the family, Roman.”
The woman hugged him or gave him a firm handshake, but were all welcoming
with smiles and warm hellos. The kitchen smelled heavenly, with sausages and
meatballs simmering in an Italian sauce on the stove.
A passel of children ran screaming through the kitchen just then and Sarah
shouted, “Not in the house!”
Mariana rolled her eyes and handed Roman a large basket of hotdog and
hamburger buns. “Be a good son and bring that out to the grill, will you?
And keep those savages out of my kitchen. You’re probably the only civilized
man I know, so you, I trust.”
Flabbergasted by the words ‘son’ and ‘trust’ after knowing her ten minutes,
Roman nodded dumbly and brought the basket outside and stopped short. Kyle
wrestled with four men of varying ages in the yard. An older man with white
hair and a mustache yelled at them from the safety of a picnic table. The
last two of the Kearney brothers – obviously the twins – stood at the grill
watching the spectacle.
Mr. Kearney’s green-blue eyes were sharp as he looked Roman over. He must’ve
liked what he saw, because he shook Roman’s hand and said, “Hot day for it.”
Roman nodded and agreed, “Oui. Thank you for inviting me to your home.”
Mr. Kearney shrugged and said, “Family barbeque. Mike! Act your god damn age
and put your brother down!”
Roman jumped at the abrupt shout and then laughed when one of the brothers
dumped Kyle on his backside into the kiddie pool.
Welcome to the family indeed. 

Author Extra: It's Good to be Home by Delilah Storm

It's Good to be Home by Delilah Storm

During this last 14 month tour of duty, Jason has missed a lot, including
the adoption of his and Ridley’s baby girl, Barbara. While Ridley is
ecstatic to have his husband home again, Jason’s remark that he has
something they need to discuss has Ridley’s insides all knotted up. How can
he convince Jason to stay home with him and their baby and be a part of
loving family, just the way they’ve always dreamed?

Buy link:
http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_111&products_id=3996

Author Extra:

Hot and Spicy Buffalo Wings

Ingredients:
• 5 lbs whole chicken wings, cut into pieces (about 40 pieces)
• Salt and pepper to taste
• 1 cup hot sauce
• 1/2 cup unsalted butter
• 2 tbsp white vinegar
• 1 tbsp brown sugar
• Cayenne pepper to taste for spicier wings
Preparation:
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

Cut whole wings into two pieces, toss the tips away (or save for making
chicken stock). 

Rub the salt and pepper into the cut wings and spread out evenly on baking
pan(s), making sure the pieces aren’t touching. 

Bake for about 20 minutes, turn the wings over and cook for another 20
minutes until the wings are cooked through and well-browned.

In the meantime, mix the remaining ingredients in a saucepan. Over medium
heat bring the ingredients to a simmer, stir, and turn off. Taste and add
more spice if so desired (remember it’s easier to add more several times
rather than trying to reduce the spice). 

After the wings are cooked, transfer to a large mixing bowl. Pour the sauce
over the hot wings and toss with a spoon or spatula to completely coat. Let
sit for 10 minutes and toss again, keeping the wings in the oven or warmer
to keep them hot. The chicken wings will soak in the sauce as they rest. If
you don’t have a bowl, use a large freezer bag to mix the sauce and the
chicken pieces.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Author Extra: Dog Days March by Liam Grey

Dog Days March by Liam Grey

Five years after an accident in the Army left Jim blind, he's braving the
summer heat and a new guide dog to walk in the 4th of July parade with the
other Wounded Warriors. In Jim's imagination, he finished the parade, got
down on one knee in his uniform, and asked Milo The Question. But a touch of
heatstroke wasn't in his plan, and he still hasn't found Milo in the crowded
fairgrounds. It's going to take perseverance, strength, and a little love
from Milo to get Jim through this Dog Days March.

buy link:
http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_111&products_id=4005

Author Extra:

Because of this year's Charity Sip supporting OutServe, I knew I wanted to
include a military character in the story, which came to be Jim. I also
wanted his partner to be in a uniform, but maybe an unconventional one. I
chose mechanic's overalls. With a secondary 'uniform' of his rockabilly
aesthetic, Milo came into being.

The story went through three versions before I got to the final setting and
point of view. Originally, the story was from Milo's point-of-view at their
wedding (a story that still may get told at some point.) It just wasn't
working the way I wanted. The next version was Milo's POV at the parade.

The last version I flipped into Jimmy's point of view, which worked much
better. Milo was pretty relaxed, and I found I was adding conflict (a
bigoted classic car aficionado) for him to react to. Jimmy was where the
internal tension lay, so he made a much better focus for the story, letting
me keep it focused and streamlined.

I don't consider going through this process a waste. Many of the elements
from my second version made it into the final one, and all three drafts
helped inform the characters. The wedding version, for instance, solidified
my thoughts on Milo and Jimmy's mothers. The latter figure is the voice of
much of Jimmy's self-doubt.

The wedding version also saw me doing a fair amount of Internet research on
Rockabilly clothing, music, and cars. (I was really only familiar with Brian
Setzer beforehand.) Only a little of that shows here, and we don't really
get into Milo's passion of restoring classic autos. I admit I fell in love a
little with the Mercury Eight while researching. It's just such a cool
looking car, with those odd suicide doors. However, my personal favorite
classic car is still the '67/'68 Mustang hardtop. (Sorry, Milo!)

Writing Process is such a vague and personal thing. Everyone does it a
little differently. I love hearing about other writer's processes, the
little decisions that they make that add up to something greater. It's why I
like buying DVD's, so I can listen to the writer/director commentary. I hope
you've enjoyed this little peek into my process.

Thanks for supporting OutServe!

Author Extra: Firestation Heat by Pelaam

Firestation Heat by Pelaam

Aaron is a small town fire captain, and his passion for his lover, Zak, is
hotter than any fire he might be called to tackle. He weaves his home and
work life effortlessly together, knowing that no matter what he may be
called to deal with, his lover will be waiting at home, ready to take good
care of him. 

buy link:
http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_111&products_id=4001

Author Extra:

Chili con carne recipe - Pelaam
• 1 tbsp oil
• 1 large onion
• 1 red pepper
• 2 garlic cloves, peeled
• 1 heaped tsp hot chili powder (or 1 level tbsp if you only have mild)
• 1 tsp paprika
• 1 tsp ground cumin
• 500g lean minced beef
• 1 beef stock cube
• 400g can chopped tomatoes
• ½ tsp dried marjoram
• couple of squares of good quality dark chocolate
• 2 tbsp tomato purée
• glass of red wine
• 410g can red kidney beans
• plain boiled long grain rice, sour cream, and some fresh crusty bread to
serve

• Prepare your vegetables. Chop onion into small dice. Cut pepper in half
lengthways, remove stalk and wash the seeds away, then chop. Peel and finely
chop 2 garlic cloves.
• Start cooking. Put your pan on the hob over a medium heat, add oil and
after a minute add the onions and cook, stirring fairly frequently, for
about 5 minutes, or until the onions are soft, squidgy and slightly
translucent. Tip in the garlic, red pepper, chili powder, paprika and ground
cumin. Give it a good stir, and leave it to cook for another 5 minutes,
stirring occasionally.
• Brown the mince. Turn the heat up a bit, add the meat to the pan and break
it up with your spoon or spatula for at least 5 minutes, until all the mince
is uniform size and not pink. Keep it hot enough to fry not stew.
• Crumble beef stock cube into 200ml hot water. Add to mince with the red
wine, can of chopped tomatoes (400g can), dried marjoram and chocolate, and
add a good dash of salt and pepper. Add about 2 tbsp tomato purée and stir
well.
• Bring to the boil, give it a good stir and put a lid on the pan. Turn down
the heat until it is gently bubbling and leave it for 20 minutes. Check on
the pan occasionally to stir it, and make sure the sauce isn’t catching or
drying out. If it is, add a couple of tablespoons of water and reduce the
heat. 
• Drain and rinse can of red kidney beans (410g can) and stir them into the
chili. Bring to the boil again, and gently simmer without the lid for
another 10 minutes, adding a little more water or wine if it looks too dry.
Taste a bit of the chili and season. Replace the lid, turn off the heat and
leave your chili to stand for 10 minutes to allow the flavours to mingle.
• Serve with soured cream, crusty bread and plain boiled long grain rice.

Love, Peanut Butter Jars & Purple Hearts

People are always asking authors “Where do you come up with your ideas?”

Sometimes the creative process is a random shot between the eyes with a two-by-four from your muse. Other times, a song, picture, word, or smell can send an active imagination into overdrive.  For this year`s Charity Sip Blitz, the inspiration was far less painful than timber to the skull. As soon as I saw the call for submissions for Torquere Press, I knew where my submission would take place. The title ‘Every Sunday at One’ also jumped out immediately.



For well over a year, my daughter and I have been volunteering at a local charity that packages goodies for our troops. My daughter, who is a high school senior this year, did her forty hours of community service for with this local charity. I have donated copies of my self-published books, and have helped with a wildly successful chicken & biscuit dinner to raise funds for this wonderful organization. We give our time as often as possible and encourage others to do the same. To find how you can help our troops, check online. This is just one site that has a wonderful list of volunteer opportunities.


I was honored to have my short story chosen for this anthology. It is my sincere hope that we here at Torquere Press can raise a substantial amount of money for Outserve SLDN. OS-SLDN is dedicated to bringing full LGBT equality to America's military and ending all forms of discrimination and harassment of military personnel on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. 


 I hope you`ll join us by grabbing your copy of this year`s Charity Sip Blitz. All authors involved donate all royalties from the sale of this anthology with Torquere Press matching 100%. It`s a wonderful way to help a very worthy organization while getting some great reads.

Here`s a small excerpt from my story ‘Every Sunday at One’—

Okay, this was the day I was going to do it. I was going to get my balls out of my purse . . . uhm, wallet, and go over and talk to him. No more sitting around making moon eyes at him. No more dreaming of touching those high cheekbones and that pouty bottom lip. No more fantasizing about staring into his arboreal green eyes or running my palms over the neat, black, military hair. Yep. As soon as I got the razor to fit into the empty plastic peanut butter jar we used for shipping, I was going to be the man that my mother gave birth to and saunter over to PFC Andrew Fraser and shake his hand and thank him, yet again, for giving more than most could ever imagine.

I planned to do all of this just as soon as I could stop gawking like a 'tween. I glanced up from my jar with the tiny bottles of shampoo and conditioner. Those emerald eyes were on me. A flash of pink ran up my cheeks and I quickly returned to my packing duty. Funny how I came to this little basement shop under Carol's Candles & Crafts to volunteer, helping to pack goodies for our men and women overseas. I hadn't thought much about their sacrifices until a cousin of mine enlisted right out of high school. That jarred me from my complacency in a hurry, let me tell you. Instead of spending Sunday afternoon lying on my couch watching football, I was now here, with ten other volunteers, wrapping up care packages for our troops.

Who knew that one of our little goodie boxes would reach the handsome Purple Heart recipient Andrew Fraser as he recuperated from a near-death encounter with an IED on some sandy stretch of desert? Not me. I hadn't even known the man, yet he had come from my hometown in northwest Pennsylvania. Different high schools, same graduating class, both of us were twenty-four but Andrew had served and lost a leg in those six years. What the hell had I done? I had gotten a job and beaten my buddies in several MMOs. Yeah, big stuff, huh? Well, at least I felt like I'd seen the light. Let it never be said that Carter Preston was incurably stupid. Painfully slow perhaps, but not incurably stupid. It only took me six years to see what Andrew had known in high school. The real heroes are those who give all they have to give, not the ones you find in a video game.






Friday, September 20, 2013

Author Extra: Seeking Hearts by A. Catherine Noon and Rachel Wilder

Seeking Hearts by A. Catherine Noon and Rachel Wilder

On the harsh desert world of Persis, most of the inhabitants flee to the
cliff cities during the searing heat of Daymonth. A young hosteller and his
grandparents choose to remain in their waystation as caretakers. This proves
to be a wise decision, as a Truth Seeker is stranded there with them.
Isolated, the Seeker and the hosteller begin to develop feelings for each
other, but the discovery that they are not alone could threaten more than
their relationship.

buy link:
http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=79_111&products_id=3991

Author Extra:

Galos Caves – the Inspiration for the Grotto in Seeking Hearts

http://youtu.be/kjtCgLujUbA

In our short story, Seeking Hearts, the characters Rik and Marc visit a
grotto deep within the caves that house Rik’s family’s waystation. The
inspiration for this cave came from Galos Caves, a salt cave in Chicago that
you can visit yourself.

The amazing thing about the Galos Cave is how you feel when you’ve been in
it for little more than an hour. You emerge feeling refreshed and
revitalized, cleansed from the stresses of the day.

If you don’t live near Chicago and don’t have salt caves nearby, try taking
a bath with natural salts like Epsom salt, Ceara sea salt, or even Dead Sea
salts. Their healing properties have been known for centuries. You’ll be
glad you gave it a try!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Hunter's Hunt by Chris T. Kat



This is my first time posting on Torquere's blog, which pretty much outed me as a first time author with Torquere Press. :-) Hunter's Hunt was released today and I couldn't be more excited about it.
Hunter's Hunt is only a novelette and I know many people only like longer books. As for me, I do like long books but I enjoy short stories or novellas a lot too. Sometimes there's just not enough time or calmness to indulge in a book with 300 pages. There are times when I want to be entertained for an hour or two and a short book works well for that purpose.
Most of the short books I read fall into the category of BDSM books. I don't really know why, it just happens this way. I've written free fiction with d/s themes (which you can find on my blog, listed with pairing names: Steven & Shawn and Ben& Joey) but Hunter's Hunt is my first published story in this genre. It also includes a trope I'm rather fond of—a considerable age gap between the characters (although it's only seven years in Hunter and Adrian's case). Oh, and I also indulged in giving one of the main characters deep dimples, a feature I adore.


Here's the blurb for Hunter's Hunt:
Wanted: one bear. Must be burly and hairy, and strong enough to paddle. Hunter Bell is on the prowl, and he knows just where to find his prey: at the Bear Trap, a gay leather bar he’s more than a little familiar with. So many men, so little time. He’s just about to pounce on his choice of the evening when a newcomer enters the bar, turning everyone’s head. Adrian Michaels is everything Hunter despises in a man. He’s lean and boyish looking, and he has the deepest dimples Hunter’s ever seen.
And yet there is an immediate attraction, one that neither man can deny. They’re both too astonished to do anything about this apparent interest in one another, and they waste their opportunity. Now it’s up to Hunter to forget about his stereotypical preference and go for the guy that’s just entered his dreams. If only he can admit to himself that Adrian’s what he really wants...




Excerpt:
It took a moment for the newcomer to absorb his surroundings and, when he did, he flinched. A few men chuckled upon discovering the baffled look on the guy's face, which proved that he indeed hadn't known about the nature of the Bear's Trap. Hunter watched him shift from one foot to the other while most men turned back and resumed their conversations. The new guy remained rooted to the spot, dripping water all over the floor, before he squared his shoulders and pushed through the mass of bodies. At last he reached the bar, where Hunter was still standing, for some unknown reason interested in this guy.

The newcomer waved at the bartender. "Is there a phone anywhere?"

"You don't have a cell phone?" another guy asked, perplexed.

The newcomer shot him a 'drop-dead' look, startling Hunter into a laugh. The new guy turned toward him with a quizzical look. Hunter was face-to-face with an irritated man, whose dark blue eyes were blazing.

"Bad day?" Hunter heard himself ask.

"Craptastic."

Hunter pulled his cell phone from his pocket and held it out to him. "You might better go to the back. Otherwise, you won't be able to understand anything."

Baffled, the other man took the phone. "Thank you, uh, what's your name?"

"Hunter." He held out his hand for the other man to shake.

"Last name or first name?"

"First."

"Thanks, Hunter. I'm Adrian."

"Hey, Adrian."

Adrian gestured with the phone toward the end of the bar and raised one delicate eyebrow. "This way?"

Hunter nodded and beckoned Adrian to go past him. Adrian only made it a few feet before one of the other men groped him, drawing out a surprised yelp from Adrian. He shoved the guy aside then proceeded farther into the back. On his way, he struggled with advances from more guys than Hunter could count. At some point, Adrian whirled around and, even from that distance Hunter could see the fast heaving of his chest, the free hand balled into a fist, and the stressed look on his face.

With a sigh, Hunter pushed away from the bar and strolled after Adrian. He caught up with him right when another man, a regular customer called Dean, made a pass at him.

"Hey, knock it off. He's with me, Dean."

"With you? Since when are you going for his type, Hunter?" Dean asked with a sneer.

Hunter shrugged while he sent a dark glower toward Dean, which caused the other man to drop his eyes and inspect the contents of his glass thoroughly. Hunter laid a hand on Adrian's shoulder and pushed him ahead. Adrian cast him a worried look but walked where Hunter steered him. After opening a door to a private room at the end, he ushered Adrian through and switched on the light.

"Go ahead."

Adrian clutched the cell phone in his hands, staring at Hunter with an apprehensive look. Hunter noticed that Adrian's eyes were of a dark, almost navy, blue. He swallowed. Even behind the glasses, Adrian's eyes seemed large and expressive. He had to concentrate on listening to Adrian's question. "Is this... is this some kind of leather bar?"

"Yeah. Never been in one before, have you?" Hunter asked.

"No. No offense and all, but I'm not very fond of it."

"Scared?"

"Yes."

"Need a bodyguard?"

Adrian eyed him before he obviously came to some kind of decision. "You free for bodyguard duty for maybe an hour?"

"Sure." Hunter grinned. "I won't even try to molest you."





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