Tag Archives: Indra Vaughn

Blog Tour and Review: Patchwork Paradise by Indra Vaughn

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Patchwork Paradise by Indra Vaughn
Releases: March 28, 2016
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Word count: 73,300
Page count: 262
Type: Standalone
Cover by: Lou Harper

About Patchwork Paradise

Oliver and Samuel’s relationship is fairy-tale perfect. They share a gorgeous house in Antwerp, go out with their friends every weekend, and count down the days to their dream wedding. But their happy ending is shattered one late night, and just like that, Ollie is left bereft and alone.

The months that follow are long and dark, but slowly Ollie emerges from his grief. He even braves the waters of online dating, though deep down he doesn’t believe he can find that connection again. He doesn’t think to look for love right in front of him: his bisexual friend Thomas, the gentle giant with a kind heart and sad eyes who’s wanted him all along.

When Thomas suddenly discovers he has a son who needs him, he’s ill prepared. Ollie opens up his house—Sam’s house—and lets them in. Ollie doesn’t know what scares him more: the responsibility of caring for a baby, or the way Thomas is steadily winning his heart. It will take all the courage he has to discover whether or not fairy tales can happen for real.

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Our thoughts:

Indra Vaughn knows how to deliver grief. She ripped my soul in two as Ollie grieved over losing Samuel. Torn. To. Shreds. The intense guilt and grief were raw emotions that pulled tissue after tissue from the box next to me as I read. Intense. Real. Vulnerable. This is how Patchwork Paradise begins but it’s not all sadness and loss.

We endure Ollie’s grief over losing Samuel for a large part of the novel, but it’s important to Ollie’s story. During his time of sorrow and loss he has to relearn life as he knows it. He’s been with Samuel since they were kids. Friends, then lovers at age sixteen. They were to be married and would live happily ever after. That was cut short and now Ollie has to find a new normal.  Now, life is no more touches and enveloping hugs. Being alone becomes something he gets used to but the loneliness is suffocating.

During this time of struggle,  it’s pure torture to read Patchwork Paradise!  Almost every memory, whether good or bad, would provoke tears. Ollie’s emotions are so profound that they impacted me with every word. Boxes of tissues. Seriously, boxes.

Over time, Ollie realizes that missing Samuel doesn’t hurt as much and that his coping and moving on isn’t the end of the world. What he never expected was to discover that Thomas, his dear friend, had always desired him. Knowing that fact propels Ollie to really think of Thomas in a new light. To consider a potential relationship with the man he’s called a friend for so long. Just when Ollie thinks it’s possible and within reach, Thomas pulls away.

Thomas pulling away becomes a common theme from then on. He’s so badly in love with Ollie that he can’t stand the thought of losing him in any way. Nothing just might be preferable to living and losing. This is infuriating to Ollie. He’s been there. Loved deeply and lost tragically. How could Thomas be so callous?!

There’s so much that goes on in this novel. From Oliver losing Samuel to the whole friendship dynamic between Oliver, Cleo, Imran and Thomas. Samuel’s parents applying unnecessary pressures on Oliver. Lastly, a baby is added to the mix. I honestly don’t know how Oliver kept it together so well. Once he grieved, he picked himself up and started taking small steps forward. WhenThomas entered the scene as a potential love interest, things became so complicated. It was worth it though because Oliver’s life would take a turn that it never would have with Samuel. He was lucky to fall in love and be loved twice in a lifetime and each one of those loves was unique and fulfilling.

Patchwork Paradise is definitely not a lighthearted story. It’s deeply emotional. Your heart will ache from Ollie’s pain. Your eyes will swell with tears, but it all worth it in the end!

RATING: STILETTOS!!

About Indra Vaughn

After living in Michigan, USA for seven wonderful years, Indra Vaughn returned back to her Belgian roots. There she will continue to consume herbal tea, do yoga wherever the mat fits, and devour books while single parenting a little boy and working as a nurse.

The stories of boys and their unrequited love will no doubt keep finding their way onto the page—and hopefully into readers hands—even if it takes a little more time.

And if she gleefully posts pictures of snow-free streets in winter, you’ll have to forgive her. Those Michigan blizzards won’t be forgotten in a hurry.

Connect with Indra:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/indra.vaughn.7

Twitter https://twitter.com/VaughnIndra

Giveaway

To celebrate, Indra is giving away an ebook from her backlist at EVERY BLOG STOP! She’ll also be giving out a grand prize of $25 in Riptide credit. Leave a comment to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on April 2, 2016. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!

The Winter Spirit by Indra Vaughn

The Winter SpiritThe Winter Spirit by Indra Vaughn

Released November 16, 2015

Published by Indra Ink

Cover Art by WickedSmart Designs

Sales link: Amazon, All Romance eBooks

Blurb:

Nathaniel O’Donnelly likes his life quiet, his guests happy, and his ghosts well-behaved.

Although a boyfriend wouldn’t go amiss. Someone to share his beautiful B&B with, even if it is in the middle of nowhere and he’s long past the wrong side of thirty. Problem is, Nathaniel’s living with a ghost who thinks he’s cupid, and whose arrows fly a little too straight.

Gabriel Wickfield had the unfortunate luck of dying before his time, and now he’s stuck trying to make romance happen to earn his right to move along. Not that he’s bored in the meantime—Nathaniel is just too easy to tease. And also a little bit scrumptious…

With the curse reaching its expiration date, Gabriel needs to make a final match this Christmas. Without it, nothing but darkness awaits.

Love can conquer all, but can it beat death?

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Our Thoughts:

I love reading winter or holiday stories this time of year. This year there has been an interesting variety, as far as genres, to choose from. The Winter Spirit novella was a beautiful story from start to finish.

In The Winter Spirit, Nathaniel, the proprietor of the Lake House Bed and Breakfast in Michigan has an interesting visitor. Gabriel is a ghost that has appeared through mirrors in the B&B since Nathaniel took over the place after his uncle passed away. At first Gabriel comes across as a prankster. Locking Nate and Elisa, Nate’s only employee, in closets and rooms. Sometimes Gabriel will rattle items or turn off lights. A prankster. In reality, Gabriel is a matchmaker. He tries to match couples visiting the B&B and he’s tried tirelessly to find love for Elisa and Nate.

Nathaniel and Gabriel start to have a deeper connection and a different relationship as time nears the 100th anniversary of Gabriel’s death. Gabriel becomes less ethereal and more solid, real. Now there’s nothing to keep the feelings back. Nathaniel and Gabriel give into their carnal needs and give with all their heart. But, Gabriel is still dead. He’s still a ghost and what happens after he returns to his ethereal state again?

The Winter Spirit is a pleasantly captivating story of unlikely love. It stretches your thoughts and preconceived notions on death and spirits. It’s also a sweet love story that is told with calm and light. The moments between Gabriel and Nathaniel are tasteful, discreet and extremely sensual. A nice blend of past traditions and present inhibitions, these two define a slow, deep love.

Another pleasantly perfect holiday story!

RATING: BAD ASS BOOTS!!

Vespertine by Leta Blake and Indra Vaughn

VespertineReleased 10 September 2015

Published by Ledra

Cover design by Dar Albert at Wicked Smart Designs

Genres: Contemporary, M/M, Romance

Length: 401 pages, 132,657 words

Sales links: Amazon

Blurb:

Can a priest and a rock star obey love’s call?

Seventeen years ago, Jasper Hendricks and Nicholas Blumfeld’s childhood friendship turned into a secret, blissful love affair. They spent several idyllic months together until Jasper’s calling to the Catholic priesthood became impossible to ignore. Left floundering, Nicky followed his own trajectory into rock stardom, but he never stopped looking back.

Today, Jasper pushes boundaries as an out, gay priest, working hard to help vulnerable LGBTQ youth. He’s determined to bring change to the church and the world. Respected, admired, and settled in his skin, Jasper has long ignored his loneliness.

As Nico Blue, guitarist and songwriter for the band Vespertine, Nicky owns the hearts of millions. He and his bandmates have toured the world, lighting their fans on fire with their music. Numbed by drugs and fueled by simmering anger, Nicky feels completely alone. When Vespertine is forced to get sober, Nicky returns home to where it all started.

Jasper and Nicky’s careers have ruled their lives since they parted as teens. When they come face to face again, they must choose between the past’s lingering ghosts or the promise of a new future.

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Our thoughts:

I will be honest. I was nervous going into this novel due to the religious content I expected. I mean, how can one of the main protagonists be a Catholic priest and not have religious tones! I didn’t fear it to be preachy, just uncomfortable. Within a few pages I knew my fear was unwarranted.

Blake and Vaughn weave a story of love, loss, bad decisions, rash decisions, trials, hurt, pain, and redemption. One of a rock star scorn and still spinning out of control after the loss. One of a man who became a priest when he feared what he should do and now lives with the weight of expectation every day.

Nicholas Blumfeld, or Nico Blue and his fans know him, is in a deep downward spiral toward hell. He’s severely addicted to drugs and is a shell of himself. It’s been so long since he’s been clean or sober enough to feel anything. When he does feel, it’s still pain from his lover, Jasper, leaving him to join the priesthood. At the height of their love, Jasper just drops the bomb on Nicky that he’s leaving to be a priest. All the years following are Nicky leaving home, joining a band and writing his pain and hatred for Jasper in the lyrics of Vespertine’s songs. But now that’s even gone as his drug addled brain struggles to even write any music of worth.

The band, Vespertine, is crippled from addiction and when three of its members are sent to dry out and detox, Nicky decides to go home to get better.

Going home means not only his parents, but also Jazz. Can Nicky really be in the same town, the same space with the one man who sent him on the drug addicted path he’s on? Nicky gets his moment to give the riot act to Jasper but it’s more infuriating than therapeutic.

Jasper is the epitome of poise and calm. He wears that priest collar tight and with the full entirety of its weight of expectation. His belief has helped him get through leaving Nicky and eventually presiding over his congregational flock and Blue Oasis (a children’s home for abandoned LGBT youth). Jasper helps others because he cannot help himself, or Nicky.

When their worlds collide again it’s not without sparks and hurt. There’s a lot of pain to heal from. There’s also the fact that the hurt and hate from what happened is just a bandage on an open wound. A wound that will never heal because they both still care so deeply for each other.

Nicky is so broken. His tough start in life, his early entry into music and his addictions. Guys coming and going and nothing of meaning. For all he’s endured and overcome, he’s surprisingly the stronger one when it comes down to it. He knows what he wants and needs. He doesn’t kid himself. He’s an addict, will always be an addict, but he knows he doesn’t want to live that way ever again. He has inner strength and with a support system he just might make it out of this whole situation better off than the rest of them.

Jasper exudes strength but he’s really just a crumbled mess within a stone shell. He’s managed to gird himself enough to put up the front everyone from the diocese, parish, center, family and friends expect from him, Father Hendricks. For once instead of taking the high road and praying through his doubts or troubles, he let’s himself feel. To be touched, to be loved, this is what he’s missed and needed and it just might be Nicky that wins out over all else in the end. If Jasper would let go of expectation and let his heart guide him through.

Vespertine was a phenomenal story. Some stories just have the power to move me from page to page and Vespertine is one of those stories. So much emotion, pain and love. It’s not easy and perfect, just like life. These two men must suffer a bit but it’s just part of the journey and makes the final moments that much more sweeter.

RATING: STILETTOS!!