Friday, 12 February 2016

Book of the week - Strong Signal by Megan Erickson and Santino Hassell

Strong Signal
Megan Erickson&Santino Hassell

Release date: 15 Feb 2016


I was counting down the months until the end of my deployment. My days were spent working on military vehicles, and I spent my nights playing video games that would distract me until I could leave Staff Sergeant Garrett Reid behind.
That was when I met him: Kai Bannon, a fellow gamer with a famous stream channel. 
I never expected to become fixated on someone who'd initially been a rival. And I'd never expected someone who oozed charm to notice me—a guy known for his brutal honesty and scowl. I hadn't planned for our online friendship to turn into something that kept me up at night—hours of chatting evolving into filthy webcam sessions.
But it did. And now I can't stop thinking about him. In my mind, our real life meeting is perfect. We kiss, we fall into bed, and it's love at first sight.
Except, like most things in my life, it doesn't go as planned.
*Strong Signal is a standalone, full-length novel with no cliffhanger*

My Review:

I adore both Megan and Santino and have read all their books. So when I found out that they'd written a book together I literally squealed! My author collaboration wet dream had come true! I had no doubt I'd love anything these two have written. And yet I was still surprised by how much I loved this book.
Silly me. I should have known better.
Strong Signal is about falling in love with someone you've met online. In this day and age we've all made friends and/or lovers online. Some more successfully than others, but we've all done it. 
The story rings true to our generation. We seem to have deeper and more meaningful connection with people we'd never met in Real Life than our own families.

In Strong Signal we have the sexy soldier - Garrett - stationed thousands of miles away from home, and the geeky twink - Kai- whose life revolves around gaming. They meet online and eventually develop a relationship deeper than friendship. Meeting in Real Life becomes a matter of 'when' not 'if'. But once they meet, the struggle to learn how to be together threatens to overwhelm them both...
I don't want to say too much because the blurb doesn't give too much away and in my opinion the book is best to be experienced without any prior knowledge of the plot. I was surprised at every turn, never knowing what to expect next and I feel that's the best way to read it.
However, I'll go ahead and say this: Strong Signal is a touching story. It really resonated with me. I have many friends I've met online - and some of them in Real Life later on - and I'm extremely thankful for them. They're there for me when I have a bad day or in a stressful situation or when I go into full meltdown mode. They're also there to share a stupid joke, buddy read a book with me or simply say Good Morning.
Kai and Garrett's story is so real, so moving and inspiring. It touches on with some very real and very scary issues, but the authors manage to deal with them in a sensitive manner. No contrived melodrama here, folks.

Garrett and Kai's story is also very funny at times, and don't even get me started on the sex scenes! Phew, these two can write a sex scene! 
Megan and Santino's writing styles complement each other perfectly! Usually when I read a co-written book I can always tell who wrote what, but in Strong Signal the words flow so seamlessly that I had a hard time figuring out who wrote what scene.
I can't recommend this book enough! It's amazing so don't even think about it - one-click and enjoy!


Oh, check out this awesome Tumblr page the authors created for Kai:

Santino Hassell was raised by a conservative family, but he was anything but traditional. He grew up to be a smart-mouthed, chool-cutting grunge kid, then a transient twenty-something, and eventually transformed into an unlikely romance author. 
Santino writes queer romance that is heavily influenced by the gritty, urban landscape of New York City, his belief that human relationships are complex and flawed, and his own life experiences.Santino writes queer romance that is heavily influenced by the gritty, urban landscape of New York City, his belief that human relationships are complex and flawed, and his own life experiences.

Santino's social media links:


Megan Erickson is a former journalist who switched to fiction when she decided she liked writing her own endings better. She likes to pretend she has control now, but usually her characters are the ones who hold the reins. Her romance novels have a touch of humor, a dash of nerdy, and always a happily ever after. She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, two kids, and two cats named after John Hughes characters. She's still waiting for the party she was promised when she grew to five feet... maybe because she never got there.

Megan's social media links: 


Thursday, 11 February 2016

Valentine's Day SALE

Dance is on sale for $0.99/£0.99 for a limited time (11-15 Feb) to celebrate Valentine's Day. After all, snuggling with a sexy book and a cup of hot chocolate is the best way to celebrate any holiday, right?
I pondered which book of mine to do a promotion on considering they're all love stories and decided to go with Dance for many reasons. It was my first MM romance novel and will always be special to me. I also wrote a short story with the characters from dance - Fenix and Jared, which you can all download for free from Smashwords. I'm trying to get it price-matched on Amazon, but for now, get your free copy in any format from Smashwords

And the cherry on top? The Dance audio book is whispersynced so you can get an ebook and audio book combo for less than $3!

Here's all the links you'll need:

Dance ebook on Amazon:
Dance ebook on Amazon UK:
Dance audio on Audible:
Dance audio on Audible UK:
Free short story:

I rarely do any sales on my books, so get it while you can!
I hope everyone has an amazing Valentine's Day, however you'll be celebrating!

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Book of the week - Kings Rising by CS Pacat


Kings Rising is the third and final instalment of the Captive prince phenomenon. It started out as an online series, but it got so popular that Penguin bought it and published it. The wait for Kings Rising has been excruciating! I'm talking years here, people! When it was finally released last week, the internet went crazy! Personally, I was excited for the book, but I was also anxious to see if the fact that it was written under big publishing contract would somehow influence the quality/storyline. It's incredibly liberating to write something for yourself and later on for the fans, without any expectation of sales, ratings and royalty statements. It's very different when you write for one of the biggest publishers. And it's even more difficult when you write a gay dystopian fantasy for one of the biggest publishers.
Having read the book 3 times since last Wednesday, I can report back and say that all my fears were for nothing! The book is absolutely amazing and everything I wanted! Damen and Laurent are even more intense together, and the love scenes were just as beautifully done as in the previous 2 books. I didn't feel any censorship at all in any aspect, and I'm incredibly happy about that!
The cover you can see above is the American/European edition cover.  I have to admit I'm not crazy about it.The cover below is the Australian edition cover. How pretty is it??

Here's the whole series together. In my opinion, the Australian ones are gorgeous and I ordered them all from Australia because I need to have them on my bookshelf!


Kings Rising didn't disappoint. It was absolutely amazing! I'm not one for rereading books, I can count the books I've reread, ever, on one hand. But this series... God, this series I can read every week. I reread the first 2 before the new one came out and I got the same book hangover as I got the first time around, 2 years ago. Days later, I can't stop rereading my favourite scenes in the whole series and can't seem to pick up anything else. My head is full of Damen and Laurent and I need an intervention.
What's more, I realised when I started rereading the first 2 books that I remembered nearly every scene to the letter! I read a lot and I forget a lot, most of the time I'm lucky if I remember the names of the main characters in a book I've read, but with Captive Prince I knew each scene play by play. The writing is that powerful.
What more can I say about the series? If you haven't read it, do it! You'll thank me later. Or maybe not... I can see a lot of obsessing and Tumblr browsing in your future...