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Rainbow Snippets 6th Jan – Not All Chocolate and Cuckoo Clocks

The 12th Jan is release day for my Swiss-based novella ‘Not All Chocolate and Cuckoo Clocks’, so it seemed fitting to share a snippet from it.

Here Steffen is talking to his cousin Amelia about Mark:

“Since when do you see someone”—she made the annoying pointy fingers—“without it being serious? I know you fuck about, Steffen, but repeat performances are different.”

She was right, of course. Spending time with Mark was the highlight of his week, and that was a dangerous game. But that didn’t mean he was going to admit it. “He is a nice guy, lovely actually, but we have a shelf life. He is only here for a short while, so there is no point in looking any deeper.”

She clicked her tongue. “Canned meat has a shelf life, not relationships. Where’s this lovely man from?”

“The UK—Mark is here for work.”

 

Not All Chocolate and Cuckoo Clocks is now available for PRE-ORDER: ebook Dreamspinner Press and Amazon

 

 

Fancy reading snippets from other authors? Head over to the Rainbow Snippet Facebook group.

Guest spot: Joe Cosentino and ‘A Perfect Gift’

Welcome Joe Cosentino to my little corner of the web, dropping by to talk about his new holiday story ‘A Perfect Gift’.

 

Dreamspinner Press published my short novella, A Home for the Holidays, as an e-book and audiobook performed by the captivating Joel Leslie. In the story, an American law student, Bobby, visits his hilarious extended Italian family who live in a gorgeous villa in the magical and gorgeous Island of Capri. There, Bobby falls in love with his muscular and gorgeous distant cousin, Paolo. Readers loved Bobby and Paolo and begged for more. Who am I to argue?”

So, I wrote The Perfect Gift. In “December Grooms,” Bobby and Paolo, a young lawyer and young fashion designer decide on a small, simple, holiday wedding in Philly. Bobby’s comical family have something very different in mind. In “An Unexpected Gift,” a year later, the couple tour many of the quaint and wonderful holiday sites in their area featuring elaborately decorated trees and wreathes, Dickensian villages, Victorian carolers and bell ringers, vendors selling hot mulled cider and roasted chestnuts, and bay-windowed shops. While playing department store Santa, Bobby’s father suffers a heart attack. A man in a Santa suit, who Bobby assumes is his father’s replacement, brings the young couple to the hospital room of a sick little boy. Could this boy be the holiday gift leading to happily ever after for Bobby and Paolo?

Thank you, readers, for your love, support, and requests for more Bobby and Paolo’s Holiday Stories. Enjoy my special holiday gift novella to you. Please know that it comes wrapped in a huge ribbon of love.

 

THE PERFECT GIFT

(Bobby and Paolo Holiday Stories, Book 2)

by JOE COSENTINO

published by Dreamspinner Press

Back in America after finding A Home for the Holidays and each other in Capri, new couple Bobby McGrath and Paolo Mascobello are ready to tie the knot during the winter holidays. Their families, friends, and pastor offer more advice than sages on speed. So, young lawyer Bobby and fashion designer Paolo are caught in the matrimonial holiday circus. Will a shocking turn of events somehow lead to the perfect wedding for the December grooms?

The following Christmas, Bobby and Paolo aren’t feeling the holiday spirit. They have a nice apartment, designer clothes, entertaining and supportive friends and family, but little time for each other. While out shopping in their quaint local holiday village, Bobby and Paolo encounter Gregory, an adorable seven-year-old who changes their lives forever, offering them a true holiday miracle… if they’re willing to accept it.

 

Buy Links:

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/the-perfect-gift-by-joe-cosentino-9144-b

http://myBook.to/PerfectGift

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-perfect-gift-joe-cosentino/1127552663?ean=2940158891854

Short excerpt:

“Hi, Mom. What are you doing?”

“Sitting home alone like a dog.”

That’s Mom’s logic. If their house isn’t full of people eating and carrying on, she’s alone.

“Where’s Dad?”

“In his den, watching the game on TV as usual.”

I’m Bobby McGrath. Since this is my story, I should tell you more about myself. I have frizzy red hair, green eyes, and a swimmer’s body, thanks to the pool at my gym. The swimmer’s body is thanks to the pool. The red hair and green eyes are courtesy of my dad’s side of the family, which my mom calls the Bad Seed. And I passed the bar. I don’t mean I’m a recovering alcoholic. I aced my bar exam, and I’ve been a junior lawyer for nearly a year now.

“Bobby, are you listening to me or thinking about one of your cases?”

“I’m listening, Mom.” I sat on the window seat in my Victorian apartment’s turret and gazed out at the carolers appropriately dressed in Victorian garb as they sang in front of the department store across the street. That’s the department store where my father is manager and plays Santa every December. “How did Dad’s physical go with Dr. Sherman?”

“He said Dad’s overweight. Like we didn’t know. For that we shelled out a thirty-dollar co-pay.”

“Did you mention how Dad’s been forgetting a few things lately?”

“I told him how your father forgot to take out the garbage, sweep out the garage, and chase the squirrels out of our summerhouse in the backyard.”

I couldn’t help thinking Dad’s memory lapses were intentional.

“Dr. Sherman asked Dad some questions, like Dad’s birthdate and our anniversary.”

“And?”

“Your father never remembers things like that, so I answered for him.”

“Mom, you shouldn’t have—”

“Your father’s fine, except for an enlarged prostrate.”

“That’s prostate.”

“Don’t correct your mother, especially now.”

“What’s wrong?”

“You know I don’t like to burden you with my problems.”

“All right. I should get on my laptop to do some research for a—”

“I’m worried about your sister.”

“Which one?”

“Both of them.”

I took a sip of Lemon Zinger tea and braced myself for a long story.

“They work so hard at their jobs and taking care of the kids, they never see their husbands.”

My sisters’ know-it-all spouses? “Is that a bad thing?”

“Watch your mouth, mister. I’m your mother. In my day we never disrespected our parents, no matter how wrong they were about everything. And we never took drugs.”

“I don’t take drugs, Mom; neither does Paolo.”

“But plenty of young people today are drug addicts, Bobby. They say they’re nervous. If young people are nervous, they should do what I do, and take a Prozac.”

As Mom rambled on about the sad state of our youth, I glanced over at the antique cherry coffee table to a framed picture of Paolo and me smiling in front of the Mascobello villa in Capri, Italy. That’s where I met Paolo, when I visited my extended family. Don’t freak out. Paolo is a very distant cousin. He has dreamy sapphire eyes, wavy chestnut hair, more muscles than a daytime television star, and a little-boy pout that makes me want to take care of him for the rest of his life. Which I do. Since Paolo was quite the playboy in Capri, I had my doubts about our relationship. But we’ve been living in boyfriend bliss here in Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love, for a year now.

 

About Joe:

Bestselling author Joe Cosentino wrote In My Heart/An Infatuation & A Shooting Star, the Bobby and Paolo Holiday stories: A Home for the Holidays and The Perfect Gift, The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Dreamspinner Press); the Nicky and Noah mysteries: Drama Queen, Drama Muscle, Drama Cruise, (Lethe Press), Drama Luau, Drama Detective; the Cozzi Cove series: Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back, Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward, Cozzi Cove: Stepping Out, Cozzi Cove: New Beginnings (NineStar Press); and the Jana Lane mysteries: Paper Doll, Porcelain Doll, Satin Doll, China Doll, Rag Doll (The Wild Rose Press). He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, Charles Keating, and Jason Robards. Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. He was voted 1st Place Favorite LGBT Mystery, Humorous, and Contemporary Author of 2015, and 2nd Place Favorite LGBT Romance Author of 2015 by the readers of Divine Magazine. He has also won many Rainbow Award Honorable Mentions including for In My Heart/An Infatuation & A Shooting Star. http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JoeCosentinoauthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JoeCosen

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4071647.Joe_Cosentino

Amazon: Author.to/JoeCosentino

Not All Chocolate and Cuckoo Clocks: Now Available for Pre-order from Dreamspinner Press

 

I am a very happy Rebecca. It’s been too long since I’ve had a new standalone release, but I’m very happy to say Not All Chocolate and Cuckoo Clocks – my novella based in Basel, Switzerland – is now available to pre-order from Dreamspinner Press.

Get it here: ebook from DSP

Release date: 12th Jan 2018

 

Blurb:

Neither of them wants to fall in love, but getting exactly what they don’t want might be the best thing to ever happen to them.

Mark hopes his boredom with his current job will be alleviated by a short stint in Basel, Switzerland. When he meets Steffen, who struck out on his own from an old-money family to establish an IT firm, Mark expects some fun, great sex, and a clean break when his job is done. The arrangement is perfect for Steffen, who has been content with casual after a betrayal—and has a taste for British men after attending university in the UK. But as they explore the city’s rich history and traditions, Mark begins to see Steffen as much more than a tour guide with benefits. If he isn’t careful, the trip meant to break the lull in his career might end up breaking his heart instead….

 

 

Rainbow Snippets 9th December – Earls of Crofton: James

The last few weeks have not been my best, but I’m just about up and running and writing again.

I’d like to share a snippet from Earls of Crofton: James – set in 1670, this will be the 2nd of the Earls of Crofton series. Also know as the one with the highwayman 🙂

This snippet comes from the opening scene where James and his cousin are accosted on their way back to London:

 

The sight that greeted him was one to behold, and one he would savour in the privacy of his bedchamber for many nights to come. Despite his fears, James recognised beauty when he saw it. He had no care whether the of subject of his gaze was male or female, distracted equally by a smooth décolletage as by a pair of firm thighs. And the exquisite pair of thighs that gripped the saddle were a cause for celebration.

The flintlock pistol less so.

Dressed in black from head to foot, in fashions most definitely current and expensive, James could understand how this man had caused the hearts of his fellow nobles to flutter.

 

Fancy reading snippets from other authors? Head over to the Rainbow Snippet Facebook group.

Welcome Anna Butler and her new release The Jackal’s House

Visiting to today is fellow author Anna Butler, sharing with me an except of her new novel The Jackal’s House.

Something is stalking the Aegyptian night and endangering the archaeologists excavating the mysterious temple ruins in Abydos. But is it a vengeful ancient spirit or a very modern conspiracy…

Rafe Lancaster’s relationship with Gallowglass First Heir, Ned Winter, flourishes over the summer of 1900, and when Rafe’s House encourages him to join Ned’s next archaeological expedition, he sees a chance for it to deepen further. Since all the Houses of the Britannic Imperium, Rafe’s included, view assassination as a convenient solution to most problems, he packs his aether pistol—just in case.

Trouble finds them in Abydos. Rafe and Ned begin to wonder if they’re facing opposition to the Temple of Seti being disturbed. What begins as tricks and pranks escalates to attacks and death, while the figure of the Dog—the jackal-headed god Anubis, ruler of death—casts a long shadow over the desert sands. Destruction follows in his wake as he returns to reclaim his place in Abydos. Can Rafe and Ned stand against both the god and House plots when the life of Ned’s son is on the line?

Title:                           The Jackal’s House

                                    Sequel to The Gilded Scarab

Series:                        Lancaster’s Luck: Book II.

Publisher:                  Dreamspinner Press

Publication Date:      30 October 2017

Genre:                        Steampunk adventure m/m romance

Wordcount:                c111,600

Cover Artist:             Reese Dante

Illustrator (Map):     Margaret Warner

Goodreads

Find out more about the Lancaster’s Luck books and the world of Rafe and Ned

Excerpt

We didn’t stay up late. It was barely ten when we headed up to our rooms on the second floor, trailed by Sam and Hugh. Todd was out at the aerodrome, keeping watch with his men over the Brunel.

“I’ll be glad to get back to the dig tomorrow,” Ned said. “Come and have a cigar and some brandy, Rafe.”

Which invitation I was quick to accept, as you might imagine. Hugh gave me a knowing grin and went off to his own room with nary a backward glance. Ned’s room, beside mine, overlooked the Ezbekieh Gardens. Sam had left the floor-to-ceiling windows open when we went down to dinner, the billowing muslin curtains filtering the sounds and smells of the Cairo night. The faint scent of woodsmoke and tarry aether rolled in as an autocar went by on its way to the Abdeen Palace where the Khedive held court.

Sam was suddenly the perfect servant. He brought Ned and me glasses of a fine champagne cognac and a box of fragrant cigars before moving on silent feet to close the window shutters against the night and light the lamp on a small table near the bed. The little screw-valve at the side of the globe squeaked as he turned it clockwise to open the pipe, the luminiferous aether hissing louder than a snake at the zoo when someone taps the glass sides of its terrarium. Sam adjusted each lamp to a warm glow inside the big glass globe by passing his hand over it. The lightning in the globe sprang into life, crackling and spitting as it followed his palm. He was careful not to make the room too bright, leaving thick dark shadows inhabiting the corners.

“I’ve locked the outer door, and I’ll sleep in there.” He nodded to a sort of anteroom that led to the main corridor. “I’ll close the door, but keep the noise down. I don’t want to hear nothing. G’night.”

It was difficult not to laugh. Dear Sam. I felt really quite mellow toward him, a sentiment he’d no doubt resent intensely. Ned grinned at me as soon as the door closed behind Sam, and dear Lord, but I just had to kiss him. Couldn’t help myself.

We took our time getting down to our skin. It wasn’t something to be rushed. Aesop’s tortoise had it almost right: less haste, more pleasure.

For a while I was content with kisses, Ned’s face so close that drowning in those hazel eyes was a real possibility. The touch of Ned’s tongue against mine had me making rather embarrassingly soft noises in the back of my throat. You know, getting lost for all eternity in those kisses, in the feel of Ned’s body pressed against mine… I couldn’t think of anything finer.

Our jackets were on the floor somewhere, long abandoned. Now all my attention was on tugging Ned’s shirt out from his trousers and running my hands up underneath it and over the heated skin beneath. Ned moaned and bucked his hips so hard that, laughing, I pulled my mouth from his. “Ah, you liked that, did you?”

Ned moistened his lips and pulled me in closer. “It wasn’t entirely disagreeable.”

Pfft!

Buy Links

Dreamspinner Press ebook  |  Dreamspinner Press paperback

Universal link to other digital stores (not DSP)

Individual Store Links (if you prefer them):

Amazon.com  |  Amazon.co.uk  |  Apple iBooks  |  B&NIndigo | Kobo

Giveaway

Enter the Rafflecoptor draw for

1st prize—$25 or equivalent Amazon gift card

2nd prize—a signed paperback of the first Lancaster’s Luck book, the Gilded Scarab.

 

Raffelcoptor link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/a6cd54479/?

About Anna

Anna was a communications specialist for many years, working in various UK government departments on everything from marketing employment schemes to organizing conferences for 10,000 civil servants to running an internal TV service. These days, though, she is writing full time. She recently moved out of the ethnic and cultural melting pot of East London to the rather slower environs of a quiet village tucked deep in the Nottinghamshire countryside, where she lives with her husband and the Deputy Editor, aka Molly the cockerpoo.

Website and Blog

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Rainbow Snippets 14th October: Captain Merric

Busy times at Chez Cohen with visitors, edits and the day job, but I have managed to get some time to put together a quick snippet. This is once again from the Pirate WIP Captain Merric – probably the last one from this story for a while as it’s very nearly finished (only one scene to write!).

Here Daniel has returned to England and is trying to find a way back to the Caribbean and Edward, but his father is keen to marry him off to the daughter of Viscount Roth.

 

Daniel was cornered, and with no way out, he had to face his fate. At least when facing a Frenchman he only wanted to kill him not shackle him for life. Viscount Roth was a man who considered himself to have the misfortune of a long-lived father blocking the way to his earldom. Daniel had met him twice before, and today Roth’s demeanour was no less mellowed: a stiff man in his late forties, he looked like he had perpetual indigestion. Stood behind him was a young woman who was the very definition of demure.

 

Fancy reading snippets from other authors? Head over to the Rainbow Snippet Facebook group.

Rainbow Snippets 30th Sept 2017 – Captain Merric

How the time flies! I’m running to keep up but here’s another snippet from my Pirate WIP, Captain Merric.

Daniel is back in Port Royal and needs to get a message to Edward – his contact is none other than Jean-Pierre… who you make remember from the last snippet 😉

 

“Whatever Edward’s passion, it is none of your concern.”

“Ah, feisty, now it becomes clear.” Jean-Pierre leaned over the table. “He was always such a passionate man, he could make my blood boil with just a look.”

Daniel glowered. “I hope you relish the memories, because there will be no chance for future opportunity. Now if you don’t want me to punch you in your perfect nose, you’ll calm your ardour and agree to deliver my message.”

Jean-Pierre threw himself back in his chair and laughed. “Your great love affair is in no threat from me. Edward is smitten and no one man or woman could tempt him. Come, tell me your message and I will ensure he receives it with urgency.”

 

 

Fancy reading snippets from other authors? Head over to the Rainbow Snippet Facebook group.

Rainbow Snippets 23rd Sept 2017 – Captain Merric

It’s a glorious Saturday here in Basel, and now I’m emerging from edits of a different story, I thought I’d share another snippet of my pirate WIP Captain Merric.

Daniel has returned to England, with a promise to come back, and Edward is trying his best to behave himself…

 

“Has someone really tamed the untameable Captain Merric?” Jean-Pierre looked more amused than annoyed. “I would not have believed it possible.”

“Even the strangest things can happen at sea. I have made my pledge, and my word means a great deal to me.”

“That I don’t doubt.” Jean-Pierre’s eyes danced with mirth. “But your pleasure as always meant more.”

God Lord, Jean-Pierre could tempt a saint. It didn’t help that Edward knew exactly how talented he was in bed, or how through half-lidded eyes he could pass for Daniel, as long as he kept his mouth shut as there was no mistaking his French accent for a British one. “Let us simply say, my pleasure and my word are extrinsically linked.”

 

Fancy reading snippets from other authors? Head over to the Facebook Group!

Rainbow Snippets 9th Sept 2017 – Captain Merric

It’s that time again, Rainbow Snippets!

I’ve had a few plot twists of my own to deal with the last week, but thought I’d share another bit of my current WIP, Captain Merric. If nothing else, writing swashbuckling pirates has cheered my spirits.

If you’re interested in reading other snippets head over to the Rainbow Snippets Facebook group.

Edward a.k.a. Captain Merric is trying to offer an olive branch to Daniel while his aboard the Opal:

“I thought you might like a shave. You could never bear to have beard when you were younger, I doubt that has changed.” He set down his shaving articles on the small table, pouring out some of the water into a bowl.

Daniel didn’t move. “What do you want?”

Suspicious bastard. “Can I not do something nice for you without a motive?”

“Unlikely.”

Edward pulled out a chair. “Come on. I know your beginnings of a beard will be driving you mad. Let me help.”

“You could help by giving me a looking glass, and I could do it myself.”

Edward patted down his person and grinned. “It seems I forgot to bring one.”

 

 

Rainbow Snippets 26th Aug 2017 – Captain Merric

So it is has been a while since I’ve taken part in Rainbow Snippets. Many factors contributed to my absence, including generally trying to sort out my writing life and setting up this blog. But now I’m back.

I received the rights back to a short story and I have decided to expand it, and use it as my first adventure into self-publishing. So here’s my snippet from the rapidly expanding ‘Captain Merric’ – a tale of roguish pirates, annoyed naval offices and long lost love on the high seas.

 

Daniel struggled to his knees, looking up to get a view of the pirate. For a moment he thought the sun must have affected him more than he had realised, but the figure that stood before him was no illusion. The face was older but unmistakably that of the man whom he’d thought had died over fifteen years ago. A man he’d grieved for, a man he had once loved. Edward Merriston was alive and well, playing pirates in the Caribbean. His frame had always been tall and broad, but the years at sea had made him stronger, and the sun had bleached his hair so it was much blonder than Daniel remembered, making his blue eyes even more striking.

“You’re meant to be dead,” were all the words he could manage.

Daniel saw Edward’s eyes widen as he recognised his prisoner.

“You’re not the first one to have said that, and certainly won’t be the last to wish it.”

 

You can read other snippets here.