Thursday, May 29, 2008

Safe Word by Me!! - coming this summer!

My first short story to be published is being released this summer in loveyoudivine's His & His Kisses, an anthology of gay erotica!

The naked body of a young man is found as Provincetown prepares for Mates weekend, a popular leather gathering. The police suspect a random murder but Corey thinks it was an extreme bdsm scene that went beyond its limit. He tours the town’s dark dungeons, looking for a murderer preying on young men. He becomes immersed in the local scene and discovers a side of himself he never explored before. In a sea of muscular leather masters and slaves, he realizes hidden urges in an environment where every fantasy can be fulfilled. He must set aside his sadomasochism desires to locate someone who takes the bdsm to the extreme before he kills again. Can Corey find him before becoming a victim to the ultimate bdsm fantasy of execution?

More information on Safe Word and His & His Kisses can be found at or at the link below:

Monday, May 19, 2008

Murder in Scorpio by Martha C. Lawrence

Murder in Scorpio is the first appearance of psychic private investigator Dr. Elizabeth Chase, who is gifted with paranormal abilities. She uses these powers to solve mysteries and is called upon by a detective with the San Diego Police Department, unofficially of course, to investigate the death of a friend.

All indications are that Janice Freeman died in a tragic car accident. Tom McGowan is convinced that there is more to this ‘accident’ than meets the eye. He describes a paranormal experience that led him to Elizabeth Chase.

Her powers tell her that Tom is correct and begins to investigate Janice’s death. The trails take Elizabeth from the halls of a multi-million dollar real estate corporation to the broken-down shack inhabited by potheads to a secluded house in the desert, sitting in a sea of junk.

One thing that becomes clear to Elizabeth is her growing attraction to her benefactor, the handsome Tom McGowan. When an attempt on her life luckily fails, Elizabeth is forced to take refuge in Tom’s house, a situation that neither finds uncomfortable.

The key to the whole mystery comes from the murdered Janice, herself. She appears to Elizabeth in a dream and shows her the location of this ‘key’. Elizabeth discovers real estate fraud and a meth lab but at the peril of her life.

I found myself turning the pages rapidly at the end of the book as Elizabeth gets trapped by the responsible party and barely escapes with a young girl in tow, rescued by Tom her knight in shining armor.

The fast pace doesn’t help the reader much as Elizabeth unravels the mystery. Lawrence piles on the facts and those of us without a basic knowledge of real estate ownership and business ownership details are left re-reading Elizabeth’s logic to keep up.

There are places where a section feels as if it were inserted only for the sake of lengthening the novel with no added value to the story. For example, an interview with a waitress, who claims to be an eyewitness to the crash, is ominous and appears to hold a vital clue. However, after the scene, no more mention is made of the waitress or her story.

None of these detract significantly from the novel with is an enjoyable and easy read. The story is interlaced with intriguing paranormal events but never gets bogged down or burdens the reader with the feeling of a science fiction or fantasy tale. Lawrence keeps the novel believable and exciting. The reader will fall in love with the divine Dr. Chase.
(originally published on

Monday, May 12, 2008

The Novice's Tale by Margaret Frazer

Margaret Frazer has a long and successful series of medieval mysteries featuring nun sleuth Dame Frevisse and it all started with The Novice’s Tale. Set in 1431, the ninth year of Henry VI disastrous reign, Frazer’s novel portrays a vivid picture of the simple lives of nuns during that era.

The novice of the title is Thomasine, the young frail girl who is two weeks shy of her final vows when her great-aunt Lady Ermentrude bursts into St. Frideswide unannounced. The lady is no lady. Loud, boozing and bossy, Ermentrude is impressed however when she meets Dame Frevisse’s uncle, Thomas Chaucer, untitled but very well connected. Even she won’t dare snub him.

Soon after Ermentrude departs on a sudden unplanned trip to Thomasine’s sister’s estate, and then returns, just as surprising, to St. Frideswide, the next day. Shortly after she returns, a woman who was formerly in Ermentrude’s employ dies under mysterious circumstances. Then the lady, the stuck-up crab herself meets her demise.

Dame Claire the infirmian declares that the cause of death in both cases was poison. The crowner quickly decides that Thomasine is the vicious killer and Frevisse’s problems are confounded by Ermentrude’s son, who is a chip off the old block. She is forced to take the novice into sanctuary to keep her from being nabbed by the crowner and his men at the angry command of the son.

The prioress of St. Frideswide, Domina Edith, aged but shrewd and intelligent, charges Frevisse to clear Thomasine’s name and find the real culprit.

Frazer’s eye for detail and her ability to portray the political nuances of life at court and elsewhere give the reader a sense of realism for life without the modern conveniences and nuisances. It was simple but not necessarily miserable.

Earlier, I criticized Ms. Frazer’s work A Play of Dux Moraud for its lack of suspense and action but The Novice’s Tale has no shortage of intrigue and mystery. I’m glad to start reading Dame Frevisse’s adventures from the beginning, since Ms. Frazer is a wonderful and talented writer and Dame Frevisse is an exciting sleuth on a par with Ellis Peters’s Brother Cadfael.