Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Press Release! Men - available from!

From loveyoudivine Alterotica

To be released 1 August 2008, MEN, the hottest anthology of the summer from loveyoudivine Alterotica. lyd's first His and His Kisses print anthology is all MEN cover to cover. If you enjoy gay fiction, these stories will scorch your senses!

In Voyeur, Jon Michaelsen invites the reader into the obsessive depths of voyeurism. While Kevin enjoys gardening on the balcony of his high-rise condo, he notices a chiseled Adonis staring out the window of the penthouse across the street. What begins as innocent glances soon spirals into an obsession that changes his life forever.

Dive into passion and explore all five senses with Anastasia Rabiyah in Blindfold. Blindfolded in the basement at the mercy of a coworker, Leo's senses are put to the test, as well as his broken heart.

Max Griffin offers a wild ride into another time dimension with The Other Side of the Window, and a look at David who spends his life pursuing Truth through physics, sex, and gin. One morning, after hot sex with an anonymous stranger, the three beacons in his life conjoin when a hole in space and time appears in his room. In Dream a Little Dream of Me, Max plunges into an exploration of the dark side of perfect love. Sean and Gil, polar opposites, seek in one another the perfect lover. In a forbidden dungeon in Gil's apartment, Sean finds secrets coiled within mysteries. Soon enough, he learns the horrifying truth about Gil, and himself.

Carol McKenzie explores a man's first experience in Pure Artistry. Cameron Bracy is just out of a relationship...or so he thinks. Needing to ease his stress, he enrolls in a drawing class. However, the tension increases when he becomes acquainted with the gorgeous hunk, Eli Thompson.

Take a walk on the wilder side of things with Alex Morgan in Safe Word. The body of a man is found as Provincetown prepares for Mates Weekend, a popular leather gathering. Corey thinks a BDSM scene went past it's extreme limit. He tours the town's dark dungeons, looking for a murderer preying on young men. Can Corey find him before becoming a victim to the ultimate BDSM fantasy of execution?

With Graphic Intentions, Patricia Oshier Bruening takes you into the tortured memories of two men who meet in a coffee shop, neither thinking the other is gay. Scarred by past events, Scott and Derek find each other when neither is looking for a partner. It takes a confrontation from a loud-mouthed bigot before each realizes the other is interested in more than artwork. Can they discover a way to battle their demons together, rather than alone?

ISBN 978-1-60054-240-4

Published by loveyoudivine Alterotica

Available 1 August 2008 Publisher Direct

Ghost Ships: True Stories of Nautical Nightmares, Hauntings and Disasters by Richard Winer

The cover of Winer’s Ghost Ships trumpets him as the New York Times best-selling author of The Devil’s Triangle, released in the early seventies. A quick search on shows not many works since then until Ghost Ships, copyrighted in 2000.

Although Winer cites one ‘ghost ship’ incident in 1998, the remainder of paranormal episodes in his 33-chapter, 265-page chronology occur prior to 1978. The lion’s share of the spooky events takes place between the beginning of the twentieth century and the completion of World War II. The one post-1978 story is about a ship that disappeared without a trace in 1998 during Hurricane Mitch, one of the most powerful and deadliest hurricanes recorded in the Atlantic basin. Gasp.

It seems as though Winer conducted his research into the ghost ships immediately after the success of The Devil’s Triangle, but never carried through on the project. Until now. I got the feeling that Winer needed to publish again after a long dry spell, so he pulled his notes from long ago, threw in a couple of recent incidents and released Ghost Ships.

The book focuses on vessels found with no one on board or that vanished without a trace. Only a handful of the stories actually chronicle paranormal phenomenon.

Winer’s work has few surprises and no scares but is rich in history. Although the book doesn’t deliver on ghosts, it does have a number of interesting chapters in maritime history, including a number of WWII tales that weren’t mentioned in the history books.
If you’re looking for ghosts or horror, search elsewhere. Unsolved mysteries? This can be the place.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

The Alehouse Murders by Maureen Ash

In her first of a new mystery series, Maureen Ash introduces the reader to Templar Knight Bascot de Marins, who has returned to England after years of captivity in the Holy Land at the hands of the Saracen. Injured in his escape to freedom, de Marins is on sojourn from the Order at the castle of Lincoln, to allow his leg to heal. The leave from the Templar Knights also gives him a chance to question and renew his fading faith.

Nicolaa de la Haye, the lady in charge of the castle and wife to the sheriff, charges Bascot to find the murderer of four people found dead in the alehouse. The deaths come on the eve of Lincoln’s huge midsummer faire and she is concerned that the person responsible could disappear into the crowds.

As the temperature rises, so does the body count and Bascot finds himself dealing with a ruthless and very determined killer.

Ash creates a vivid picture of medieval life and culture against the backdrop of King John I’s reign. Although the monarch does not appear in the story, his pressure is felt by all and his influence is palpable. It is interesting to read Ash’s portrayal of John as king which is in contrast to the depiction of him as prince to his brother, Richard I. Sharon K. Penman’s excellent Justin de Quincy series lays John’s perfidy and malice (some of which seems genuinely justified) unapologetically open and exposed.

The most engaging of Ash’s characters besides Bascot are his young ward Gianni, and the aging matriarch Hilde, who also recognizes the intelligence of the wounded Templar and becomes instrumental in helping him solve the mystery. Gianni, the mute Italian orphan rescued from the streets and starvation by Bascot, communicates with the Templar through a series of hand signals and captures the readers’ hearts as well as attention. Gianni is devoted to Bascot as a son is to a father and the sentiment is returned. Bascot lost an eye during his captivity (reminding the reader of Candace Robb’s one-eyed hero Owen Archer) and relies on the boy’s visual acuity for finding clues.

Bascot de Marins is a complex character like another Templar sleuth, Michael Jecks’s Sir Baldwin Furnshill.

Ash received kudos from Penman and another medieval mystery legend, Margaret Frazer, along with other accolades printed everywhere on the paperback edition. The glowing reports are deserved as this book is worthy enough to be put along side the other medieval whodunits from Frazer and Penman. Ash’s writing style tends to be heavy on the passive voice, but this does not distract from the reading pleasure. I look forward to reading the next one.