Tag Archives: depression

Hiatus by L.A. Witt

Hiatus by LA WittHiatus by L.A. Witt

Released on July 19, 2016

Published by Samhain Publishing, Ltd.

Word count/pages: 244 pages

Categories: Contemporary, LGBT, Romance, Mènage

Blurb:

Three’s a disaster when things come unraveled.

Rock star Nate Keller is on top of the world, but his headlining tour has one drawback. It keeps him away from his boyfriends, Theo and Cameron, for weeks at a time. Yet after four-and-a-half years—and a lot of hard work—the trio is still going strong.

But then Cam comes to visit with devastating news. After seventeen years together, he and Theo have agreed to a trial separation. Nate tries desperately to fix his lovers’ broken relationship, but there’s only so much he can do from the road.

At home, Cam tries to carry on, but feels like his whole life is spiraling out of control. Theo struggles to cope with the split as his depression worsens. They’re both spinning their wheels, quickly losing hope they can keep it together—and keep the man they both still love.

Desperate, Nate drops everything in a last-ditch attempt to pull their trio back together before they hit rock bottom. Except their love could already be shattered beyond repair.

Warning: Contains two men who must face how broken they are before they can fix their failing marriage, and the man who loves them both—but doesn’t know how to save them.

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Amazon  •  Samhain Publishing

Our Thoughts:

I’m not usually one to grab a book with mènage, but something about Hiatus‘ synopsis sang to me. I went for it and I’m glad I did! It’s one of the few mènage stories that actually felt real to me. I could believe these three as a unit whereas usually that’s not the case.

Hiatus was a difficult novel to read because it isn’t rainbows and cupcakes and joy, joy, joy. The content is laden with conflict, separation and imminent divorce. Cam and Theo have been together for 17 years, but they both have issues that have caused too much conflict. It weighs heavily and eventually drives them to a trial separation.

Another problem is that they have a lover, Nate, of 6 years and now he’s stuck in the middle. It really felt like he was the child of a divorced couple. Seeing each of them separately. Everyone trying not to be jealous. It was just sad and stressful. But Nate, no matter how torn apart by what has happened, is determined to work towards getting Cam and Theo back together.

That’s great in theory, but the task is more draining and difficult than Nate could have ever imagined. It takes Nate leaving, Cam reaching his breaking point, and Theo truly flying apart for them to gravitate back to each other.

Basically, Cam and Theo have real life debilitating issues that came to be unmanageable thanks to stressful jobs and the market crash. That huge event in their lives put them on a runaway train towards anxiety disorder and depression. Two issues left untreated and not shared. They became the biggest obstacles between them and now they not only have to accept their problems but overcome them in order to be together.

Hiatus is sad and draining at times but then again, so if real life. If you like a bit of realness in your books this is a perfect read. If you want only happiness and roses, this probably won’t satisfy you. The chemistry between the guys is really intense and totally off the charts so if you can get through the tough times to the hot ones, it’s worth it to see the passion and love they share.

RATING:  BAD ASS BOOTS!!

Blog Tour and Review: Long Change by V.L. Locey

LongChangeBTBanner
Today we are pleased to host a spot on V.L. Locey’s tour for her newest release, Long Change. She’s generously given her fans an exclusive excerpt for this tour stop! Long Change brings a different view to the coming out process, one that tends to be less written about.  Definitely is a must read!
AboutTheBook

LongChange_MSR

Title: Long Change

Author: V.L. Locey

Publisher: Ellora`s Cave

Cover Artist: Allyse Leodra

Length: Novella

Release Date: 6/26/15

Blurb: Collegiate superstar goalie Boone Crockett seems to have the world at his feet. He’s rich, handsome, attends an elite college and is a hot prospect for the pros. Pity all that is a front for a deeply closeted and troubled young man.

All Boone’s life plans are shattered when flamboyant ex-figure skater Preston Gordon, an orange-haired twink, shows up to audition for the team’s mascot position wearing sequins, scarves and toe picks. His moves on the ice send Boone into his own pirouette of frustrated and reluctant desire.

As senior year progresses Boone slides deeper and deeper into a dangerous depression, Preston’s sensual strength the only thing he has to hold on to. If Boone can’t keep from plunging through the thin ice he’s skating on, it could take a twink to make the big save.

Reader Advisory: This story has graphic sexual language and scenes—no closed bedroom doors (or other rooms) here!

CommonExcerpt

 

We stood side by side at the sliding door that looked out over a snow-covered campus. It was beautiful, untouched and pure. I was rather glad now that I hadn’t done the head in the stove thing. We talked between swallows, spoons hitting bowls the only noise aside from the heater coming on from time to time. I liked watching the way Preston’s hair fluttered around his face when hot air blew down from the vent directly above us. He handed me his empty bowl, then unlocked and opened the slider.

“Dude, heater’s on,” I pointed out. He crouched down. I inhaled. The air was brittle like a dead leaf and cold with a light scent of snow on pine. It was an odd sensation, the cold blowing in to blend with the warm cascading down from above. It wasn’t unpleasant at all. The patio was blanketed in four to five wet inches. Preston stood up. His head turned slowly. I looked over at him, a sated smile trying to curl the corners of my mouth. He was patting a perfectly formed snowball.

“Don’t even think about it you mother—”

Snow filled my mouth, nose and eyes. Preston shrieked. I sputtered, shaking snow out of my eyes, then dashed after him. He was fast and proved hard to get a hand on. After a few laps around the furniture in my living room, the dipshit ran out into the hall. I didn’t hesitate. I couldn’t. I had ice particles dangling from my eyelashes. Vengeance would be mine. We thundered down the steps, his high-pitched squeals of laughter and my warning growls seeming extra loud in the ghost town of a dorm building. The side exit flew open. I barreled out on his heels. The snow was freezing on my bare soles. Preston hissed a nasty curse when his naked tootsies hit the white stuff. He slowed just enough. I tackled him from behind. He went face first into the fresh fluff, all the air leaving his lungs with a loud “Oof!” when I landed on his back.

I clawed up a nice handful of snow as he frantically tried to free himself. I had him pinned, one arm picking up wet powder, the other holding his face into the drift. Wicked laughter boiled out of me when I shoved that snowball down his back. His scream was piercing. He kicked like a wild man, his arms flailing to the sides. I flopped down on him to ensure the snow was plastered to his back.

“Get off! Oh, fuck me, that is so cold! You asshole!” he shouted.

I stayed where I was, splayed over his back, my hand down the back of his shirt, chuckling steadily. I rolled off a moment later still bubbling with laughter. The sky overhead was filled with snow clouds. You know those huge white ones that blow over, drop some flakes, then continue on to let the sun shine down on the freshly carpeted world? Eyes closed, chest heaving, heart lighter than it had been in months, I spread my arms and legs out, inhaled the unique scents of winter and Preston and enjoyed the tickle of new snowflakes touching my cheeks.

“I hate you.”

I rolled my head in his direction and opened my eyes. “Really?”

His mouth rolled into a perfect pout. He was such a pretty thing, even with snow-frosted bangs.

“No,” he huffed as he dashed at the melting snow on his chin. “I should, though. That was heartless!”

“I’ll warm you back up if you want.” The offer slid out of me before I could stop it. A snowflake landed on the tip of Preston’s pixie-like nose. I so wanted to reach out, touch the perfect flake, dry his nose then pull him down for long, wet kiss. Instead I got to my bare feet, standing now in the shadow of the moisture-laden cloud overhead. “I didn’t mean to say that out here.”

“You can, you know,” he said, extending his hand to me. I looked around the quad, the creeping stink of worry now mucking up what had been a perfect moment.

“You can say you want to warm me up, or that I have a cute ass, or anything else you want to say. Go ahead. Say it again.”

I shook my head as I hauled him to his feet. Damn, my feet were cold. I turned from him then walked inside, my head low, my mind filling up with concern over my stupid behavior. What the hell had I been thinking, chasing him outside then rolling around in the snow with him as if we were straight lovers.

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ExclusiveExcerpt

 

The pizza delivery twink arrived ten minutes later. No shit, it took me three minutes to get off my couch and to the door. I glanced up and down the hall then let Preston inside. His coat, as well as the hood pulled over his head, was covered with sleet.

He handed me the pizza, then took off his coat. I made my way back to the sofa.

“You’re walking just like my grandfather,” he said. I grunted. “And you’re sounding like him as well.”

“Hockey. Stop worrying,” I said, then flopped onto the sofa, the smell of pizza making my mouth water. Or perhaps that was the sight of Preston in my space. “You look good.”

“Oh this old thing?” he laughed then gave me a spin. Sure, he was only in black jeans, a white shirt with a purple vest over top and those ugly blue boots, but he looked beautiful to me. “So, how are you? I was terribly anxious all day but I told myself that not hearing from you was a good thing. Tell me about your day.”

He swished over, sat beside me, placed his tiny hand on my thigh and listened. And that was how nights went for the next three weeks. I survived late October and early November on pizza and Preston kisses.

My student advisor pulled me in two days before Thanksgiving break was to start. I was failing three classes and barely squeaking through the other two. If I didn’t hike up my GPA I’d be kicked off the team. That just wasn’t an option. Beside Preston, hockey was all I had that gave me any joy. The fear of being dropped from the team sent me back to my room. Preston found me that night, in my bed, my wet boots melting all over the covers. He got my boots and coat off, then crawled into bed with me.

“Boone,” he whispered as I played ocular catch-me-if-you-can with moon shadows.

“Boone?”

“Yeah.”

“Honey, you need to talk to someone.” He lay curled under my arm. His hand rested on my stomach. We had not fucked yet. Hell, we hadn’t even sucked each other off. The farthest we had gotten was a heavy petting session on the couch one night after watching TV. Preston said we needed to move extremely slowly, for both our sakes.

“Please come to a meeting with me. Just one. You don’t have to talk, just listen.”

I rolled to my left, away from him. He spooned up behind me, his hand resting on my abdomen.

“Why?” I asked.

“Why what? Come to a meeting?”

“Yeah,” I said staring at the pulsations of the red numerals of my alarm clock. The light ebbed and flowed. His fingers flattened over my belly. I wanted him to go lower but he never would. He kept telling me I had to love myself first. Once I did that, then he and I could do more, would do more. Emotional fucking blackmail is what it was. I hated him for that. Yet I craved hearing him say it every single night.

AboutTheAuthor

 

V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, belly laughs, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, two dogs, two cats, a flock of assorted goofy domestic fowl, and three Jersey steers.

When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand. She can also be found online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and GoodReads.

AUTHOR LINKS

Facebook- https://www.facebook.com/pages/VL-Locey/124405447678452

Twitter- https://twitter.com/vllocey

Pinterest- http://www.pinterest.com/vllocey/

Goodreads- http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5807700.V_L_Locey

My blog- http://thoughtsfromayodelinggoatherder.blogspot.com/

tsú - https://www.tsu.co/vllocey

 

BookReview

 

V.L Locey can really pack a punch with her stories. I found Long Change to have a bit more of a darker tone to it but that’s probably why I liked it.

This isn’t some happy-go-lucky coming out story. We have a closeted hockey goalie named Boone. He’s known since middle school that he’s gay but he has goals. Finish college, get a NHL contract and distance himself from his homophobic, asshole father and finally live as an out gay man. Of course this plan relies on Boone finishing his last year without any disruptions to the plan.

But a disruption does appear, in the form of a flamboyant twink named Preston. He’s the new team mascot and he’s caught Boone’s attention. Now, all Boone can think about is his attraction to Preston. The stress and mixed feeling are more than Boone can deal with.

Every emotion, touch, denial eats away at Boone. Psychologically he’s a mess. Physically, he’s wasting away. Preston tries so hard to get Boone to accept himself and deal with who he is and be proud but Boone struggles. Boone really gets into a dark place. He suffers from some serious depression and that’s not something you can change with the flip of a switch.

The struggles felt more realistic to me than the perfect coming out stories usually found in mm romance. People want HEAs and fun, sexy times. Sometimes it’s nice to read a story that is a bit more true to other experiences. Those of people rejected by their families. Those who lose a lot for loving who they love. Those who struggle with depression due to a tough childhood and the lack of love and affection as children. Those who have to fight bullies and bigots. Those who find their strength to survive in the face of a hate crime.

Is Long Change more serious and deep? Yes, it’s also a richer experience. The ending is sad and upsetting but that’s where we see Preston and Boone’s strength and love really shine.

RATING: BAD ASS BOOTS!!

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Winner’s Prize: A Digital Copy of “LONG CHANGE”.

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TourSchedule

July 6:

The Purple Rose Tea House

July 7:

Sid Love Writes

July 8:

Lisa Worrall

Bayou Book Junkie

July 9:

Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents

July 10:

The Hat Party

My Fiction Nook

July 13:

Wicked Faeries Tales And Reviews
Cheekypee Reads and Reviews

July 14:

Diverse Reader

Hearts on Fire

July 15:

Prism Book Alliance

BFD Book Blog

July 16:

Drops of Ink
Nautical Star Books

July 17:

3 Chicks After Dark
Love Bytes Reviews

GUEST POST: Training Complex by Leta Blake

We’re thrilled to welcome Leta Blake to 3 Chicks After Dark yet again to talk music! You might remember we featured a playlist for Smoky Mountain Dreams and we thought it would be a hit with her fans to know what songs influenced such emotion and trials for Matty and Rob in Training Complex.  Thanks for joining us Leta, we hope to have you back here soon!

From Leta Blake:

I’m one of those writers who has a playlist for every book she’s working on. Not only do I find music important to my creativity, but it is a fast-track back into the world of the book when I’ve had to exit it for real life. (Which happens, oh, every few hours, basically.)

When a playlist is first crafted, it’s often vast as I search for the right inspiration. Eventually, I start a secondary list of songs and music that seem most applicable. They must be songs I can cope with hearing as well as appealing to the characters. Sometimes making a playlist is interesting because my characters have different taste than my usual choices.

For example, for my most recent release, Training Complex (Training Season Series #2), I found out that the character of Rob is a big early 2000s Matchbox 20 fan. Who knew? He also likes U2. A lot. Luckily, he also liked Depeche Mode and Hurts (gosh, did he ever love those groups!), otherwise, Rob and I might have had words about his songs. :D Matty, on the other hand, was all like, “Nope! Give me Gaga and Katy Perry and Mika and St. Vincent and Alex Winston.”

I’ve curated a short version of the playlist for 3 Chicks today. It has 55 songs and each of them has a reason for being on the list. I won’t bore you by discussing them all. I’ll just focus on four and let readers/listeners decide on the rest. :D

Unconditionally by Katy Perry

Every book ends up having a defining song, one that comes to encapsulate what I’m trying to accomplish with the story, and what the characters are trying to express. Originally, when I first added this song to the list, it was a Rob song. He was all about it and considered it his song for Matty. But as I listened, I realized it was a Matty song, too, and it is basically how he feels about Rob. As a recent review put it, Matty and Rob have that FOREVER kind of love that is captured well by this pop song.

Dope by Lady Gaga

Sometimes books have an origin song, too, and that’s definitely this song. When I started trying to write this book, I was hunting desperately for the right motivations. This song came on and I put it on repeat. It had all the elements I needed for this book. It’s all right here.

Somebody to Die For by Hurts

This was definitely a Rob song. The make-up of who he is could probably be found in this song. I’m not sure that’s exactly healthy, but it is what it is.

Celebrate by Mika

Lastly, there was this song. It was basically the happy ending that the characters (and readers) are looking for, and there’s something about the, “I remember those two letters, it will be OK” line that I returned to again and again. It was a feeling of commitment and dedication to outcome that I wanted in every line of the book–even when it was hard or angsty.

So, these are the four foundational songs of the book for me. I will probably never be able to hear these songs without thinking of this book and these characters. Just the opening notes of them throws me right back into it.

Bonus: Water by The Hurts, but not just the song. This performance by Stephane Lambiel was something I came back to again and again as I tried to get the feelings and emotions right for the book.

Training Complex Spotify Playlist Link –
https://open.spotify.com/user/12122330928/playlist/0Pmt4UTfNqdy5PAZQ5ERFr

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Leta Blake’s book, Training Complex, is the sequel to 2013’s fan favorite, Training Season.

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Blurb:

Buckle up – Matty’s back!

Figure skater Matty Marcus didn’t capture Olympic gold, but he won rancher Rob Lovely’s heart.

After Rob sold his ranch and Matty hung up his skates, they started a new life together in New York City. Now Matty has taken on a fresh challenge as a figure skating coach, and Rob’s second career as a physical therapist should be everything he’s dreamed of. But in the brutal heat of their third summer in the city, Rob yearns for the wide-open country, and the intensity of city life awakens Matty’s demons.

Matty asks for increasingly intense BDSM scenes, and his disordered eating and erratic behavior ramp up the stakes. Rob struggles to stay in control, and after a well-intentioned anniversary gift goes awry, he still thinks he can handle the fallout. But the concrete jungle is closing in and his coping skills are unraveling.

Their love is deep, but Rob will have to admit the truth about what he really wants before they both tumble into chaos.

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Sales link:

Amazon - http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00XIDBMNA/

Meet the Author:

Author of the bestselling book Smoky Mountain Dreams and the fan favorite Training Season, Leta Blake’s educational and professional background is in psychology and finance, respectively. However, her passion has always been for writing. She enjoys crafting romance stories and exploring the psyches of made up people. At home in the Southern U.S., Leta works hard at achieving balance between her day job, her writing, and her family.

BLOG TOUR: Carry the Ocean by Heidi Cullinan

Heidi Cullinan is well known for writing great stories with unique characters, so when we saw the info for Carry the Ocean, we knew we had to be part of the tour. Thanks for joining us as we celebrate this amazing story featuring real life characters. We’re happy to share an exclusive teaser with all of our readers, and as always, be sure to enter the giveaway for a chance to win! Enjoy!

ABOUT THE BOOK:
Carry the Ocean coverNormal is just a setting on the dryer.

High school graduate Jeremey Samson is looking forward to burying his head under the covers and sleeping until it’s time to leave for college. Then a tornado named Emmet Washington enters his life. The double major in math and computer science is handsome, forward, wicked smart, interested in dating Jeremey—and he’s autistic.

But Jeremey doesn’t judge him for that. He’s too busy judging himself, as are his parents, who don’t believe in things like clinical depression. When his untreated illness reaches a critical breaking point, Emmet is the white knight who rescues him and brings him along as a roommate to The Roosevelt, a quirky new assisted living facility nearby.

As Jeremey finds his feet at The Roosevelt, Emmet slowly begins to believe he can be loved for the man he is behind the autism. But before he can trust enough to fall head over heels, he must trust his own conviction that friendship is a healing force, and love can overcome any obstacle.

Warning: Contains characters obsessed with trains and counting, positive representations of autism and mental illness, a very dark moment, and Elwood Blues.

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Genre: Contemporary New Adult
Series: Roosevelt
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, April 14, 2015
Book Length: 89,300 words

 PURCHASE A COPY AT:  SAMHAIN (ebook & paperback)/ ARe / AMAZON US (ebookpaperback) / AMAZON UK / BARNES & NOBLE (Nook & paperback) / GOOGLE PLAY /  iTUNES / KOBO

EXCERPT/TEASER:

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Heidi CullinanHeidi Cullinan has always loved a good love story, provided it has a happy ending. She enjoys writing across many genres but loves above all to write happy, romantic endings for LGBT characters because there just aren’t enough of those stories out there. When Heidi isn’t writing, she enjoys cooking, reading, knitting, listening to music, and watching television with her husband and teenaged daughter. Heidi is a vocal advocate for LGBT rights and is proud to be from the first Midwestern state with full marriage equality. Find out more about Heidi, including her social networks, at www.heidicullinan.com.

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