Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Valentine’s Day Recipe Roundup: BEST LAID PLANS by Roan Parrish
Author Guest / February 12, 2021

Thank you SO much for celebrating Valentine’s Day with us this week! We hope you discovered some great new books and will try a recipe or two that have been shared. Don’t forget to leave comments on the posts for chances to win amazing books by these wonderful authors. Today, Roan Parrish brings this roundup to a close with more about her book, BEST LAID PLANS and a recipe for decadent truffles! Best Laid Plans is the second book in my Garnet Run series, which features cozy, queer romances that take place in a beautiful small town. We met Charlie Matheson briefly in Better Than People, the first book in the series, which featured his brother, grouchy children’s book illustrator Jack. When Charlie Matheson’s parents died just days before his eighteenth birthday, he learned to fend for himself and take care of his younger brother, Jack. That included learning how to cook. He was always competent, but he never saw food as anything more than fuel to get him through the day, repeating the same five meals every week for the last fifteen years. When tattooed new arrival, Rye Janssen, inherits a house in Garnet Run, Wyoming, he brings much-needed…

Everina Maxwell | 20 Questions: WINTER’S ORBIT
Author Guest / February 4, 2021

1–What is the title of your latest release? WINTER’S ORBIT 2–What is it about? In an intergalactic empire, charismatic social butterfly Prince Kiem is commanded to marry Count Jainan, a serious and duty-conscious diplomat from a vassal planet. But Jainan’s last husband died unexpectedly, and Jainan himself is under suspicion of murder. The pair must work together to solve the mystery of his last husband’s death, while they find themselves unexpectedly falling for each other. 3–What do you love about the setting of your book?  I had fun writing a royal family under a media spotlight and what that meant for the public perception of the main relationship. And while I was working on it, I enjoyed living in a world where queer relationships are so normalized they’re totally unremarkable. 4–How did your main character(s) surprise you?  Prince Kiem is one of those people who reacts to every situation by opening his mouth and starting to talk—some of the time I had no idea what he was going to say, but it always took the scene to fun places. 5–Why will readers relate to your characters?  I found it very easy to write Jainan, a habitual overthinker completely baffled by…

Philip William Stover | Exclusive Excerpt: THE BEAUTIFUL THINGS SHOPPE
Author Guest / January 22, 2021

In this excerpt, Danny tries to convince Prescott to take a closer look at the town’s mid-century architecture. Danny Before we walk out of the shop, Prescott stops to put on a pair of leather gloves that are so tight each finger needs to wriggle in on its own until he uses the opposite hand to yank the taut creamy leather down on to his hand in one fell swoop. The leather scene has never really been my turn-on of choice but something about seeing his skin covered in the supple gloves make me think I should revisit that situation. “Well, shall we go?” he asks, holding the door open. “We shouldn’t keep the shop closed too long.” There’s still snow on the ground, but the sidewalks are clear enough for us to walk side by side. The air is cold and clear. We walk a few blocks past Bridge Street until we’re standing in front of the First Bank of Bucks. “Isn’t it wonderful?” I ask, admiring the gorgeous mid-century marvel. Four tall windows make up the facade. They are uninterrupted by adornment—pure open glass that reflects the snowy street. Between each massive window is a stone and cement…

Sidney Bell | Author-Reader Match: THIS IS NOT THE END
Author Guest / January 12, 2021

Instead of trying to find your perfect match in a dating app, we bring you the “Author-Reader Match” where we introduce you to authors as a reader you may fall in love with. It’s our great pleasure to present Sidney Bell! Writes: While I normally write M/M Romantic Suspense, I’m branching out a bit with a polyamorous contemporary this time. THIS IS NOT THE END is about a fiercely devoted—if untraditional—married couple and the man who unexpectedly complicates their lives. Zac and Anya may welcome other men into their bed occasionally, but they only have room in their hearts for each other. Until, that is, Anya offers her husband a threesome with his deeply reserved best friend, Cal. But what starts as an invitation for a casual night of pleasure soon transforms into something that could risk every bond that exists between them. About: Author who writes character-driven, emotionally-complicated stories is in search of readers who like same. Lovers of beta heroes, competent women, and loud arguments about alfredo (which, to be clear, are only about alfredo because arguing about your fears and vulnerabilities is way harder) should apply early and often. I’d say that I like candlelit dinners and walks…

A.M. Arthur | Title Challenge: RIGHT MOVE
Author Guest / December 29, 2020

RIGHT MOVE is a slow-burn, friends-to-lovers gay romance about George Thompson, a former figure skater and shut-in who is slowly trying to have a life again, and Levi Peletier, a trick rider at a ghost town near Clean Slate Ranch. An unexpected vacation together at the working dude ranch draws the pair closer together, but both men have secrets, and opening up isn’t easy for either man. They both have demons to face and futures to decide on if they’re going to make their fragile relationship work. Clean Slate Ranch is a special place where broken men who’ve used up their first chance at life are able to start over—and maybe even find their happily-ever-afters. Opposites attract, second-chance romance, BDSM, friends-to-lovers, slow-burn, fake boyfriend are all things you can find in this series about friends, found family, and acceptance. *** R is for Ranch, of course. George and Levi spend quite a lot of time there. I is for Independent. Levi doesn’t like to stay in one place too long, and he owns a tiny home he can travel around in with his three cats. G is for George Thompson, our shy but determined hero. H is for Hero, because…

Kim Fielding | 20 Questions: TEDDY SPENSER ISN’T LOOKING FOR LOVE
Author Guest / December 29, 2020

1–What’s the name of your latest release? Teddy Spenser Isn’t Looking for Love 2–What is it about? Teddy thinks he can’t stand his coworker, Romeo. But they get stuck together on a business trip that involves some ridiculous ordeals, and Teddy learns that Romeo’s very different than he’d assumed. And, of course, there’s only one bed. 3–What word best describes Teddy? Creative 4–What makes Romeo irresistible? He doesn’t quite realize how charming and irresistible he is. 5–Who are the people your main characters turn to when they need help? Family! Teddy’s grandmother lives far away but gives good advice via phone calls. Romeo has a big, close family that sometimes “helps” more than he might like, but he loves them anyway. 6–What do you love about the setting of your book? It’s set in two of my favorite cities, Seattle and Chicago, both of which have lots of fun, quirky things to do. I also intentionally set it in February, which feels pretty bleak in both cities. Who wouldn’t want some love amid the cold and gray? (Well, Teddy wouldn’t—or so he tells himself.) 7–Are you a plotter (follow an outline) or a pantster (write by the seat of your…

Cari Z | Exclusive Excerpt: HIS HOLIDAY CRUSH
Author Guest / December 18, 2020

Chapter Two Dominic Dinah’s Diner was the first place you saw coming into Edgewood, and the last place you passed leaving it. It was the unofficial hangout of the force, with good food that was fairly cheap, as long as you didn’t mind Dinah listening over your shoulder as calls came in over the radio. I was halfway through a plate of meatloaf and mashed potatoes when I got the call from dispatch with word of a car accident on Route Ten. No injuries, but the car was undriveable, from the sound of things, and the guy needed someone to come and pick him up. I sighed and put my fork down. I was the only person in the diner tonight other than Dinah and her husband Troy, who doubled as the line cook. It was just seven-thirty, but with this weather, nobody else was dumb enough to be out and about. As Edgewood’s officer on call until tomorrow morning, it meant that this and whatever any other unlucky soul or drunk dumbass decided to do in the next twelve hours was all on me. Dinah, a plump redhead in her sixties wearing a handmade gingham apron over her Metallica…

Cole McCade | Exclusive Excerpt: JUST LIKE THIS
Author Guest / November 24, 2020

Damon Louis couldn’t quite believe Rian Falwell had just thrown a f*cking balled-up paper towel at his head, like they were in grade school trading spitballs. But then he couldn’t believe Falwell was staring at him like he’d happily gut Damon, too, his imperious little pale mouth twisted in a knot and his previously bone-white cheeks flushed with anger that reflected in glittering hazel eyes. People didn’t glare at Damon. They didn’t even make eye contact. But Falwell didn’t have the slightest qualms about glaring at him, standing there like the lord of his five by five domain, slender presence bristling fit to fill the tiny cubicle he’d commandeered as his… Damon didn’t even know what to call it. Studio. Workroom. Junk closet. Dumpster. Especially when Falwell had cluttered it wall to wall with kitsch, this kind of…whirlwind of clay and paint and pictures and deli­cate bits of papercraft that fit together in a bizarre aesthetic chaos, where it all coalesced in an esoteric pattern like some strange art installation in and of itself. While Rian himself was part of it, lit in white and amber by the single naked bulb hanging from the ceiling and the golden sunlight falling…

Jayce Ellis | Author-Reader Match: LEARNED BEHAVIORS
Author Guest / November 13, 2020

Instead of trying to find your perfect match in a dating app, we bring you the “Author-Reader Match” where we introduce you to authors as a reader you may fall in love with. It’s our great pleasure to present Jayce Ellis! Writes: Hey y’all! I’m Jayce, and I write super sensual, contemporary Black and IR queer romance. What does that mean? All pairings, but at least one, if not both (or more. . .) MCs will be LGBTQ+. I write real people, living real lives, that don’t end just because romance is in the air. In my latest, LEARNED BEHAVIORS, JaQuan–Jaq to his friends–has just dropped his daughter off for her freshman year of college, and is ready to figure out the next stage of his life. That gets rudely interrupted when his company lands a major project, and he’s forced to work with the irritatingly sexy, hyper-business-focused Matt Donaldson, up close and in person, for the next three months to get it ready. Matt is determined to keep their relationship strictly business, but their personal lives collide, that becomes impossible, and they find that maybe, if they work at it, they can truly have it all. About: You’ve got…

Shae Connor | 20 Questions: ROUGH AND TUMBLE
Author Guest / November 10, 2020

1–What’s the name of your latest release?  Rough and Tumble 2–What is it about?  Grant and Darryn, two friends, college roommates, and gymnastics teammates who discover they’ve fallen for each other–but one of them has already moved on with someone else. What happens when that relationship turns sour? 3–What word best describes your POV hero?  Snarky! 4–What makes your love interest hero irresistible?  Sweetness. 5–Who are the people your main characters turn to when they need help?  Grant turns to his twin sister, Annie, his parents–and Darryn. Darryn turns to Grant and to his parents. 6–What do you love about the setting of your book?  It’s in my city, Atlanta! The University of Atlanta is fictional, but its location is near where another college sits, and I used to live across the street. 7–Are you a plotter (follow an outline) or a pantster (write by the seat of your pants)? I’m a plantser. I do some planning/plotting before I start writing, but then I make changes and add/remove elements while I’m writing. 8–What is an ideal writing day for you?  A quiet cabin in the woods or a beach house. 9–Do you listen to music while you write, need total…