Monday, 22 May 2017

Big Gay Fiction Giveaway



There are some great books on this list, including Waiting for a Spark. You've got until 29th of May to take advantage of lots of free books so don't miss out.

Click the link to see what's on offer.


Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Dreamspinner are 10 years old



And to celebrate they have 35% off across the store until 18th May. 


That means you can pick up New Lease of Life and many other goodies. 

There'll be other celebrations going on, so keep your eyes peeled on Facebook and Twitter.

Friday, 12 May 2017

Fiction Friday

Let's try and get this bi-monthly at least.

Leo Loves Aries (Signs of Love #1) & Leo Tops Aries (Signs of Love #1.5) by Anyta Sunday. Absolutely adorable. Who knows why I waited so long to read these books. This is slow burn and so delicious. And the short sequel is more than just the rumpy pumpy that the title implies. 5 stars.

The Winter Courtship Rituals of Fur-Bearing Critters (Granby Knitting #1) by Amy Lane. Another book I've had on my Kindle for ages. You know I love a grumpy, reticent MC, right? Yeah, this. Bring on the rest of the series...

Taken by the Geeks by E. Davies - PWP. Remember that fandom saying 'I'll be in my bunk'? *cough* Well you know where to find me ;)

The Locked Room by RayeAnn Carter. This is an interesting novella. I can't say too much without giving away the secret of what is behind 'the locked door'.

Bare Studs - A Dreamspinner Anthology.  Of these 10 stories I liked all but 2. Several would have benefited from being novellas rather than short stories.  My absolute favourites: Coffee a run by Jess Roth. 4*/Executive Decision by Alice Archer. 4*/Flat packed by Henrietta Clarke. 4.5*/Moonshine by Charlie Tannen. 4.5* (Gutted I can find no other work by this author)/Love on the Tarmac by Quinn Dressler 4*/How to Build a Shed by Kim Dias. - Adorable. A little white lie. It can't do much damage, right? 4*   Overall an above average anthology.

Where There's Smoke (Panopolis #1) by Cari Z. - Great take on the superhero story where the ordinary guy falls, not for the hero, but for the Villain. Can't wait t read the next one.

Prosperity (Prosperity #1) by Alexis Hall - First off this is not a traditional style romance. It's an adventure, with airships, robotic dead men, deranged priests, kraken, and the most diverse bunch of characters you'll ever fall in love with. Ruben and Milord damn near broke my heart. 5*

Not bad for less than a fortnight's worth of reading. And I've been writing this last few weeks, and beta reading.

Friday, 28 April 2017

Looks like Fiction Friday has gone monthly

Well, it looks like Fiction Friday has gone monthly. Prepare for a big post.

All four star reads unless marked otherwise.

New Status Needed by Annabeth Albert. Cute catch up with Adrian and Noah from Status Update as they cope with one of the milestones they mentioned in the original book. Oh, and did I mention it is free :)

Beta Test (#gaymers #2)by Annabeth Albert. Opposites attract. Slow burn. Road trip. Multicultural. Interracial. Do I need anymore reasons to give this 5 stars? Written by Annabeth Albert. Nuff said.

The Art of Mutual Pleasure by K.A. Merikan. If you're expecting hearts and flowers you've come to the wrong authors. The title says it all, and Benjamin gets pleasured over and over and over again.
Heed the warnings, they are not there to make up the word count ;)

Death Goes Overboard (A Detective Heath Barrington Mystery #2) by David S. Pederson. I hadn't read the first in the series but this didn't affect my enjoyment at all. I enjoyed this as a historical mystery with gay characters. I wasn't sold on the romance though. N.B. This is a Bold Strokes book and their e-books are really expensive, if you can grab this one in a sale I'd do that. I'm certainly going to look out for the first book that way.

Threshold (Whyborne & Griffin #2) by Jordan L. Hawk. Exciting, horrific entertainment. I adore these two and their second adventure was as heart-stopping as their first. 5 stars.

The Return of the Earl by Sandra Schwab. New to me author. Mostly an m/f writer., this is only their second m/m book. Firstly, the cover is awful. But the book, I enjoyed. Historical, for those of you where that will make a difference. I'd have liked alternate POV in order to get some idea of the true Bryn (Con's opinion was tainted by his mood).

At Your Service (At Your Service #1) by Ariel Tachna. That the author is invested both in Paris and publishing shined through in this novel. This is a story of second chances where everyone (including the reader) had to work for happiness all round but that made it all the more satisfying when it came.

A-Viking by Kiernan Kelly. Suspend your disbelief and fall into this cute and genuinely funny story.

Baked Fresh (Portland Heat #2) by Annabeth Albert. Change of pace from the first book. Both guys were damaged in their own way with serious self-image issues.

Take This Man (anthology). To celebrate gay marriage. A 3 star read over all but worth inclusion here for this story alone. Ink Stained by Krista Merle. Historical. I could happily read a whole book about these guys. I stalked the author for any more work. There isn't any :(

Keep Me Still by Stephen Hoppa. My surprise read of the month. I honestly didn't think I'd enjoy this as much as I did. For some reason I thought this would be a generic shifter story. Why? I don't know, It's not even a shifter story *facepalm* Recommended.

Frostbite by Alexandria Bellefleur. Short (under an hour) fairy tale of the type LT3 do so well. Adorable. And LT3 have 30% off for the next couple of days. Recommended, especially at that price.

Phew, told you that would be a long list. And that doesn't even include the comics I've read.

Thursday, 20 April 2017

First 5 star review!

I'd been so close with those 4.5s. And then this review appeared.

"Oh my. Renaissance was nothing like I expected it to be. It was so much better than whatever expectations I had!"

"This was more of a slow burn romance, a journey of sorts as Smudge and Raleigh realized that they actually could be friends and maybe even something more, if they gave themselves half a chance and if they believed they were worthy of the other's affections."

"Without a doubt, Renaissance deserves five stars. ♥"

DogEaredDaydreams





Buy Links

Amazon US // Amazon UK // Kobo // Payhip // Smashwords


Wednesday, 19 April 2017

RJ Scott’s Annual Autism Awareness Blog Hop


Today is my turn to host RJ Scott’s annual Autism Awareness blog hop.
The masterpost showing all the stops on the hop can be found here on RJ’s blog.


Is it possible that animals are the answer? Dogs. Horses. Guinea Pigs.



Research is continuing in the area of animal therapy but initial findings appear positive.

Now for the giveaway part of the hop.

Animals play a big part in one of my books. Theory Unproven is set on an elephant sanctuary in South Africa. So to celebrate this year's blog hop I'm giving away a copy of Theory Unproven. 

Leave a comment below and I will use random.org to pick a winner. 


Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Another satisfied reviewer

"Renaissance by Lillian Francis was a pure joy to read."
"...there is no sex scenes and it was perfect. Imo it shouldn’t have been different and I want to thank the author for the respect she showed to Raleigh with this choice."
"The writing was so engaging, it made the reading easy to follow and I particularly enjoyed it in the descriptive scenes. With her style Lillian brought me to Sloppy Bottom and its people and it was a great place."
"I feel to highly recommend Renaissance by Lillian Francis, one of the best book I read in 2017." 

4.5 stars from Stella at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

And well deserved praise for Garrett Leigh's cover art. 




Buy Links

Amazon US // Amazon UK // Kobo // Payhip // Smashwords



Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Love Bytes Reviews gives Renaissance 4.5 stars

"The story is well written and held my attention right up to the last page. I didn’t put it down once, which is a compliment."

"I highly recommend this series if you’re looking for a sweet, miscommunication, enemies to friends sort of book. It is totally outside my normal dark reads, but I’m enjoying the series. Give it a try."

"I’m hoping for a story that includes Bruce the big bear who loves bacon… but we’ll have to see what she brings us. I personally can’t wait to see what is next."

"I think I liked this one the best so far. The story is told with the same level of writing as the first two, and the various characters that we met previously, tie directly over into this one. I would definitely tell you to read the two previous installments before reading this one, since they aren’t long. I think it is important so that you know who everyone is. I love the residents of Slopy Bottom, and I’m sure you will as well."

4.5 hearts. Dan at Love Bytes Reviews



Buy Links

Amazon US // Amazon UK // Kobo // Payhip // Smashwords






Monday, 10 April 2017

Reviews are in for Renaissance

"This was what I would describe as a very sweet book, they very slowly develop in to friends, then friends who sometimes kiss but thats where it ends.
I know all books can't be wildly passionate and full of fun under the covers and I'm glad this one wasn't as it wouldn't have fitted the story.
We get to meet back up with Rick, Mal and the villagers from book 1 and they all play a part in bringing the two characters together.
This author always writes a good book and this didn't let me down.
Looking forward to book 3.
4 out of 5 stars." Sue at Books Laid Bare Boys 



Buy Links

Amazon US // Amazon UK // Kobo // Payhip // Smashwords


Thursday, 6 April 2017

Your questions answered

Well actually they're my questions, but I've answered them because I know they're what you guys are thinking.


About the Series
Renaissance is book 2 in my series, Village Love. Village Love is set in the fictional Sussex village of Slopy Bottom. I'll let Rick (from Resistance) tell you how Slopy Bottom got its name.

“It’s one p, Slopy Bottom. The village has been there centuries. Local historians think it started life as Slope Bottom since the oldest houses are on the low slope at the bottom of a hill. The rest of the village spread out into the valley as the years went by but the name stuck. At one point the village was all but owned by a French lord, which could account for the mispronunciation, and it appears to have been Slopy Bottom ever since.”

Who’s this Rick you mention? I notice he’s in the blurb for book two, as well.
Rick is the village gardener/handyman. His story of how he struggles to fit his sexuality and his London-born Pakistani boyfriend in to his life in his sleepy village home is told in Resistance (Village Love #1). Rick and Mal’s  meet-cute is told in a short story, Resonance. As Resonance doesn't take place in the village it has been assigned as Village Love 0.5.

Do I need to read the other books in the series to read this one?
No. Each book deals with a separate couple. However, in such as small village people bump into each other all the time. So yes, characters will appear that the reader is introduced to in the previous books. 

Where can I buy the previous books?
Resistance Universal Amazon link myBook.to/Resistance_LF
Resonance Universal Amazon link  myBook.to/ResonanceL_F

At all the other usual suspects: Kobo // B & N // Smashwords. And on my Payhip page. If you buy there and share on social media you’ll get a discount.

And if you buy before Sunday 9th April Resistance is reduced by 75% across the board and Resonance is free everywhere except Amazon.



Will there be more books in the series?
Definitely. I'm gearing up to start work on Book 3, Trevor’s tale. I have very brief story lines, if they work out, for at least a Book 4, and maybe a Book 5. If you read a particular character that you like drop me a line and let me know, I've undoubtedly got a plan to pair him with someone!
I've already been asked about Adam, the coffee shop owner. Yes, he will definitely get his story told.

Why are you telling me this now?
Because Book 2, Renaissance, is now out. So if you've read Resistance and wanted Smudge's story, it's here.

Buy Links: Kobo // Payhip // B&N // Smashwords

Universal Amazon link: myBook.to/Renaissance_LF










Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Renaissance at Kobo

For all those readers that prefer an epub, Renaissance is now available at Kobo.

If you do chose to buy there, could I ask for you to leave a review. In fact if you've bought any of my books from Kobo a review would be appreciated. The review facility there is hardly ever used.





Opposites Attract

It's opposites attract week over at Joyfully Jay. I'm there giving away a copy of Resistance.

There are loads of other brilliant prizes too. Pop on over and see what you could win.


Monday, 3 April 2017

Renaissance - Out today

It's finally here. Release day for Renaissance, book 2 in the Village Love series, and Smudge's story.

Cover Art: Garrett Leigh
Smudge really needs to get laid, if only to stop himself wondering about the softness of Raleigh’s curls and why he keeps running away.

After his tumultuous teenage years, Smudge has settled into his quiet life in the sleepy English village of Slopy Bottom. He’s his own boss with the time and space to indulge his artistic creativity. And he has friends. He’s happy. Satisfied. Lonely. And the pool of potential soulmates is almost non-existent. His friends, Rick and Mal, flush with their own happy romance, keep trying to set him up with the most incompatible men, and he's never finding true love on Grindr. Hell, he's not even going to manage a hook up based on the kinky messages he’s been getting recently. He'll just have to slake his desire to find his own HEA in the pages of bosom-heaving romance novels.

Raleigh is the darling of Slopy Bottom’s blue rinse brigade: church organist, mobile librarian, and apparently wedded to his trademark cardigans. He seems to be the polar opposite of the artistic Smudge, whose brightly coloured mohawk and piercings should be a red flag to Raleigh. Yet he’s yearning for company too. It’s just that Raleigh has less expectation and definitely less courage to chase after it, for reasons that he keeps very close to his chest. Reasons that don’t stop him from being drawn irresistibly to Smudge.

Smudge is sure that the way Raleigh runs from him whenever he sees him is cruelly deliberate. A reflection on his bad boy looks and his disdain for Raleigh’s precious church. So why can’t he stop thinking about the softness of Raleigh’s curls and his delicate body? Then Raleigh offers an olive branch of sugar and caffeine, Smudge’s favourite combination, starting them on a road to an awkward truce. And when they are conned into working together on a community project at the local hospital, the proximity ignites a spark that can’t be ignored. But navigating the murky waters that could take their relationship beyond tentative friendship all depends on whether Raleigh can release his secret fears – and whether Smudge is the man to share and allay them.

Buy Links

Amazon US // Amazon UK // Kobo // Payhip // Smashwords



Friday, 31 March 2017

Fiction Friday

I’ve been a bit quiet this month. Lots going on IRL. I’m afraid I got a bit behind with my Fiction Friday posts. Let’s see if I can do a quick round-up for you guys now.

Hexmaker by Jordan L Hawk. (Hexworld #2). This is probably my favourite series of Jordan’s. I like having a different couple in each story but still having contact with the other couples in a shared world. This one is Owen’s story. When we met him in Hexbreaker, Owen seems very standoffish. Of course, there are reasons for his behaviour that we discover here. Owen is all about doing ‘the right thing’ for his family’s honour. Shame that his familiar is a common thief. Even more infuriating he is everything that Owen wants. Only one problem, Owen’s getting married in a week.  Well plotted and exciting. And so many more people whose stories I want to read, especially Nathan, Owen’s transgender brother.  All the stars!

He’s Behind You by Rebecca Cohen. (Treading the Boards #3) This final book deals with a Christmas panto for the Players. It also has an older MC, who is recently divorced and just starting to embrace his sexuality, and a gaming nerd. I’d have liked more from the Players side of things.

The Laird’s Forbidden Lover by Amelia C Gormley. Men in kilts, what’s not to like. This one is historical. It has a format that I enjoyed but might put other readers off.

I Hate Summer by HT Pantu. This one was hard work but ultimately worth it. At first you wonder why Idrys is attracted to Trystan but it soon becomes clear that Idrys is an unreliable narrator. This one was hard going but I ultimately worth it. I'm surprised there have been no more books from this author.

The Last Grand Master by Andrew Q Gordon. (Champion of the Gods #1) Fantasy adventure. Relationship-wise this is pretty much instalove/fated mates but the relationship isn't really the story. And this is actually a Book One. The story is in no way finished at the end, just at a semi satisfactory conclusion. I’ve already bought book two.

Winter Kill by Josh Lanyon. There’s no use pretending that I’m not a huge Lanyon fangirl. I adore her work and she can get away with a barely-there romance plot because the mystery is so often strong. Honestly her books could have been written just for me. These are the books I wish I could have read in my twenties when I was devouring murder mysteries like chocolate. This one is strong in plot with a slow, low burn romance. Loved it.

When to Hold Them by GB Gordon (Bluewater Bay #9) The Bluewater Bay series general hits all the right buttons for me. This one is no exception. First class hurt/comfort with hot as hell sex scenes.

Laid to Ruins by Isabelle Arden (Lancelot’s Fall #1). Surprise read of the month for me.  This was a freebie purchase. After the first chapter I was seriously considering this as a dnf but I persevered and by the 50% mark I was sucked in and devouring every page. I think my issue with the beginning was that the start felt quite insular and info dumpy, then I couldn’t get my head around this portrayal of Arthur or Lancelot (Merlin has a lot to answer for and fan fiction only makes it worse). Warning: the pov MC is a wanker, the sex borders on dub con (certainly at the beginning), and love doesn’t change people. I have added the sequel to my ‘to read’ list for April (and to buy, because I don’t own it). I can’t think of higher praise than that.

I am the Highway by Jason Huffman-Black. Gorgeously well written with obvious affection between the MCs. Free for Don't read in the Closet event.

I'll Be Your Drill, Soldier by Crystal Rose. I laughed, I loved. I cried. I cried even more when I realised this author had published nothing else. I wanted a sequel that should us how our boys got to that epilogue hint.

And I finally finished Jack of Thorns. So good. Don't worry that it took me so long to read. I was savouring this one. If you don't plan to read the next book straight away then don't read the epilogue.

Only two 5 star read this month (Hexmaker & Jack of Thorns) but plenty of fours.


Saturday, 25 March 2017

Grab a bargain

To celebrate the upcoming release of Renaissance, all the other books in the Village Love series will be reduced in price leading up to the release on 3rd April.

Resistance will be $0.99. That's 75% off! A reduction of $3.
And Resonance will be free.

Amazon
Resistance 

Kobo
Resistance 

Payhip - To obtain the discount use the 'share' button.
Resonance 
Resistance 

Smashwords
Resonance 
Resistance




NB apologies to anyone that has tried to grab Resonance at Amazon for free. Despite me contacting them for a price match, Amazon have yet to reduce the price :( Unfortunately all the power is with the authors in Kindle Unlimited.


Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Cover reveal - Renaissance

Renaissance, Book 2 in the Village Love series will be hitting the virtual bookshelves early in April. and I have an amazing cover and the blurb for your perusal.
As with the rest of the series the cover art is by the multi-talented Garrett Leigh.




The Book

Smudge really needs to get laid, if only to stop himself wondering about the softness of Raleigh’s curls and why he keeps running away.

After his tumultuous teenage years, Smudge has settled into his quiet life in the sleepy English village of Slopy Bottom. He’s his own boss with the time and space to indulge his artistic creativity. And he has friends. He’s happy. Satisfied. Lonely. And the pool of potential soulmates is almost non-existent. His friends, Rick and Mal, flush with their own happy romance, keep trying to set him up with the most incompatible men, and he's never finding true love on Grindr. Hell, he's not even going to manage a hook up based on the kinky messages he’s been getting recently. He'll just have to slake his desire to find his own HEA in the pages of bosom-heaving romance novels.

Raleigh is the darling of Slopy Bottom’s blue rinse brigade: church organist, mobile librarian, and apparently wedded to his trademark cardigans. He seems to be the polar opposite of the artistic Smudge, whose brightly coloured mohawk and piercings should be a red flag to Raleigh. Yet he’s yearning for company too. It’s just that Raleigh has less expectation and definitely less courage to chase after it, for reasons that he keeps very close to his chest. Reasons that don’t stop him from being drawn irresistibly to Smudge.

Smudge is sure that the way Raleigh runs from him whenever he sees him is cruelly deliberate. A reflection on his bad boy looks and his disdain for Raleigh’s precious church.  So why can’t he stop thinking about the softness of Raleigh’s curls and his delicate body? Then Raleigh offers an olive branch of sugar and caffeine, Smudge’s favourite combination, starting them on a road to an awkward truce. And when they are conned into working together on a community project at the local hospital, the proximity ignites a spark that can’t be ignored. But navigating the murky waters that could take their relationship beyond tentative friendship all depends on whether Raleigh can release his secret fears – and whether Smudge is the man to share and allay them.



Monday, 13 March 2017

Missing England – a Theory Unproven extra


Missing England – a Theory Unproven extra 


Eric carefully slit the brown tape on the parcel that Tyaan had delivered earlier. He pulled back the flaps slowly, savouring the reveal of whatever items his gran had sent him over from England this month. While he never asked for anything outright, she had the knack of gleaning from his letters what he was missing the most and sending that over in her monthly parcel. Of course, she was the thing he missed the most but it was unlikely that she would ever jump out of the box herself—figuratively rather than literally, at 5 foot nothing his gran was small but not that small—since she was petrified of flying. 

His fingers closed around a familiar shaped jar and he tugged it from the box. Marmite. Amazing. He’d been craving the savoury, salty spread for weeks now. He couldn’t say why. That and Star Bars. Maybe with a couple of months in the bushveld under his belt he was missing home, just a little bit. Fish and Chips. Ant and Dec on the telly. Slipping his boots on without having to check for venomous creatures first. Porn at the click of a mouse. Mrs Harris’ scones. His gran’s neighbour made the best scones. 

The rain. Eric couldn’t believe he was saying this but he missed the sudden downpour that could blight even the sunniest summer’s day back in London. The days when rain fell in sheets, dripping off your hair and down your collar. When hay and muck was heavy with the added weight of the water, and dampness mingled with the smell of elephant and rhino, monkeys and zebra, goats and pot bellied pigs as he made his way around the zoo. 

No one would ever believe he missed the rain. 

They would have rain later in the year, Tyaan had reassured him, when Eric had mentioned the dust and his concerns about the watering hole drying up. 

Summer—and didn’t Eric struggle to get his head around the fact that Tyaan was talking October through to March rather than a couple of weeks in late July, early August—would bring even hotter temperatures than Eric had experienced so far, coupled with an increase in humidity. And thunderstorms. By December the bushveld would be more green than brown and flowers would spring up under foot like a carpet. And apparently, if he thought the bushveld was noisy now it was nothing compared to the sounds of nature at its most vibrant, with newborn impala and wildebeest and the influx of migrating birds. Rain almost every afternoon, torrential storms with fantastic lightning displays—fantastic, if you weren’t out trying to fix a fence in it or fly a plane—and flash floods as rivers burst their banks. 

Maybe he should look into stockpiling sand bags and check the maps of the preserve for dried up river banks. Maybe Tyaan could help him; after all a local’s knowledge wouldn’t hurt. Maybe by January he would be cursing the rain once again. 

Eric placed the Marmite on the table in front of him and reached back into the box. A couple of packets of Golden Wonder Cheese and Onion crisps, the DVD of Mama Mia, and a piece of paper. His gran always wrote a letter but that was in an envelope waiting to be opened at Eric’s leisure. Perhaps she'd thought of something after she’d sealed the envelope. Eric glanced at the note and grinned as he read the first line. 

Mrs Harris’ scone recipe. 

Now, if he only knew someone who could bake. 





Universal Amazon link myBook.to/TheoryUnproven_LF

Payhip // Smashwords // Kobo // B&N


Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Reading Plan - March

Yes, a lot of these title are carried over from February.

To finish:
Jack of Thorns by Amelia Faulkner
Ghost Star Night by Nicole Kimberling

Focus reads:
I'll Be Your Drill, Soldier by Crystal Rose
Hexmaker by Jordan L Hawk
Loving Hector by John Inman

Books by John Inman
Books by Jordan L Hawk
Books beginning with I
Books beginning with H
Books beginning with L

Bluewater Bay:
When to Hold them by GB Gordon
Rain Shadow by LA Witt
How the Cookie Crumbles by Jamie Samms

Next in series:
Stormin Norman by Sue Brown (Bk 4 & finish)
He's Behind You by Rebecca Cohen (Bk 3 & finish)
Threshold by Jordon L Hawk (Bk 2)
Us by Sarina Bowen (Bk 2 & finish)

Now if all publishers could please remain in business I might meet the challenges this month.

Monday, 6 March 2017

Reading Round Up - February

As you may have seen in my previous post my reading plans were scuppered by the announcement that Samhain were closing on 28th February. Regardless, let's see how I did.

Focus books:
Duty to the Crown & Forever Hold his Peace by Rebecca Cohen. Read.
Hexmaker and I'll be your Drill, Soldier have been transferred to next month.

Theme books read:
Rebecca Cohen titles - 2 plus a beta read
Jordan L Hawk titles - 0
John Inman titles - 0
Books beginning with D - 3
Books beginning with H - 5
Series finished - Jewel Bonds by Megan Derr
Bluewater Bay reads - 1
Off list reads - 5 (these were mostly Samhain publishing books.)
Currently reading (books I started in Jan and carried over) - 2 (Jack of Thorns by Amelia Faulkner and Ghost Star Night Nicole Kimberling)
DNFs - 2
Comics (collections not issues) - 3
Fanfic - 2

Total read - 20
Not a bad haul for February. FYI one of those DNFs was a really popular book in the genre. Never be afraid to give up just because everyone else loves it!

Friday, 3 March 2017

Fiction Friday

Whoa! Looks like I've managed to let February pass me by.
First off I have to confess that February's reading plan more or less went out of the window with the announcement that Samhain Publishing was finally closing its doors on 28th February. I knew I had no chance of buying all the books on my wishlist but I had some sequels on the list where I still hadn't read the first book so these took precedent.

So what books can I pull out of those I read to recommend to you this month?

Back in January I started Megan Derr's Jewel Bond's series with a very sweet secret admirer story called 'The Admirer'. This is the first of four books loosely connected by being written in the same 'world'. To quote the author these are 'tales of mages, warriors, and the unbreakable bonds between them'.They are all set in different time periods and the only overlap is the occasional mention of characters from other books. Also the order of the books is not chronological. Each story could easily be read a standalone, although I believe that the depth of world building is only enhanced by having read the previous books.
Kiss the Rain (Jewel Bonds #2) - This is a prequel of sorts to The Admirer. It takes us back in time and tells the story of how the Heads of combat and magic at the Royal University met. Selsor (mage) is disillusioned and finds it hard to trust and believe what is right in front of him. Jenohn (soldier) is like an adorable puppy, never taking no for an answer and meeting Selsor's negativity with laughter and a go to attitude.
An Exception (Jewel Bonds #3) - This was a short read (under an hour) and I think that is where particular story suffered. There were several time jumps and these could have been utilised to squeeze in an extra scene or two to eek out that delicious sexual tension that I needed to bump this read from satisfying to perfect.
How to Court a Librarian (Jewel Bonds, #4) - This last story in the series is a freebie from the author's website. As such it is in no way as polished as the rest of the stories (in fact it starts at Chapter 2). The story, however, is adorable. We only get Elendt's pov from his journal excerpts at the beginning of each chapter. He's cute and manages to break through the wall that grumpy mage librarian, Carlis, has built around himself.
Honestly I'd love a longer novel in this series, something that maybe ties all these couples together, but the series has been around a while now so I think it is unlikely to happen. I'd definitely recommend this series for short, (mostly) sweet fantasy reads with little to no steam.

In January I also read The Actor and The Earl by Rebecca Cohen, book 1 in the Crofton Chronicles. I followed this up by finishing the remaining historical books in this series.
18359995
Even though I haven't reviewed this I'm leaving it here
 because the artwork is amazing and
it was by far my favourite comic book read of the month.
Duty to the Crown (The Crofton Chronicles #2) - Enjoyed this even more than the first. Still only Sebastian's POV but there is no doubt from Anthony's actions that he loves Sebastian and how badly the Queen's request hurts him.
Forever Hold His Peace (The Crofton Chronicles #3) - When 'Bronwyn' is accused of witchcraft it is time to lay her to rest before Anthony and Sebastian's ruse is discovered. The baddies were obvious in this one and maybe the retribution was a little too pat but I enjoyed the relationship development and Bronwyn was given a decent send off.
Book Two was my favourite book in the series, but in this case you really can't read one without the others and they must be read in order. Despite the epilogue at the end of book 3 there is another book in the pipeline with these characters, I know, because I have read it. And it may just be my favourite of the lot because we finally get Anthony's POV.
I plan to read the contemporary Crofton book, Saving Crofton Hall, in March.

Fanfic next? How about some Stucky? haha, jk by relenafanel. I cried gentle tears all the way through this one as Bucky struggled to figure out how he felt about Steve. Non-superhero AU.

And I'll finish with the most surprising read of the month, Hell's End by Ally Blue. I honestly thought I wouldn't like this. Post-apocalyptic and scifi. Both are very low on my genre reads. It didn't help that the it started with the possibility of cannibal activity, in fact there is little doubt that one of the MCs has eaten human flesh, more than that, his former camp mates. Welcome to dystopian romance, people. But what we actually had was an exciting, plotty conspiracy with two leads who were really cute together, loving in love while trying to convince themselves that caring was the one thing they couldn't allow themselves. There were even tears. Mine, that is. And I certainly wasn't expecting that from this book. I enjoyed this so much I bought the sequel, even though the lead in that one creeped me out so much every time he appeared in this book.

I feel bad leaving you with a rec for a book that has just gone out of print, but maybe you have been sitting on it for a while, in which case, read it. Or maybe you want to stalk the author to find out when it will reappear, because it would be a shame to lose this book from bookshelves everywhere.













Friday, 17 February 2017

Reading plan - February

The title doesn't lie this is my reading plan for February.

To finish:
Jack of Thorns by Amelia Faulkner
Astounding by Kim Fielding

Focus reads:
Duty to the crown by Rebecca Cohen (followed by Forever Hold his Peace)
Hexmaker by Jordan L Hawk

Books by Rebecca Cohen
Books by Jordan L Hawk
Books beginning with D
Books beginning with H

Loving Hector by John Inman

Blueswater Bay:
The Deep of the Sound by Amy Lane
When to Hold them by GB Gordon
Rain Shadow by LA Witt

Next in series:
Stormin Norman by Sue Brown (Bk 4 & finish)
He's Behind You by Rebecca Cohen (Bk 3 & finish)
Threshold by Jordon L Hawk (Bk 2)
Us by Sarina Bowen (Bk 2 & finish)
Kiss the Rain by Megan Derr (Bk 2)

Optimistic I think, especially since at the time of writing Samhain have just announced they are closing at the end of the month and under my new purchasing restrictions (in a pointless attempt to control my TBR pile) there are at least 4 books that need to be read before I commit to buy the sequels and only two week to do that in. And I have a book to beta by the 24th, which obviously isn't on this list.


Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Reading Round-up - January

As you know if you've been following this blog I set myself a reading plan for January. Time to see how I did.

Focus books:
Alpha Barman by Sue Brown and Romancing the Wrong Twin by Clare London. Read them both.

Theme books read:
Dreamspun Desire titles - 1
Sue Brown titles - 2
Megan Derr titles - 3
Books beginning with R - 1
Books beginning with A - 9
Sue Brown series - none finished but made progress on 1
Off list reads - 6 (these were mostly because next book in series was on sale and my resolution is to stop buying recklessly.)
Currently reading (books I started in Jan and carried over) - 2 (Jack of Thorns by Amelia Faulkner and Astounding by Kim Fielding)
DNFs - 3
Comics (collections not issues) - 3
Fanfic - 2

Total read - 19
Not a bad haul for January. I should probably keep a log of how many I bought, but I'm not that brave!


Monday, 13 February 2017

More Fiction Friday - still catching up on a Monday

In the last post I left you having read Rebecca Cohen's excellent cross-dressing (for plot not kink) historical set in Elizabethan England. From there I moved to post WW1 America. (Yes, books give me the power of time travel and I don't even need to find somewhere to hide my TARDIS.) Aunt Adeline's Bequest by Amy Rae Durreson was a beautifully written short story. The mystery itself was easily solved but the emotions and the love story were gorgeously portrayed.

This amazing read was followed by a couple of awful reads. One where I skimmed to the end and the other that I dnf'd. I retreated to the wonderful world of Merlin fanfic. Ashes, Embers, Flames by unpossible. Gorgeous, broken, stoic Arthur is one of my favourite things and he is perfect in this as an ex-para with a dark secret, who doesn't think he's good enough for Merlin. I was sobbing like a baby while they muddled through from friendship to a relationship.Sweet, angsty, slow burn relationship with an exciting plot and a hint of magic.

Then I moved on to something so OTT and cracky that I wasn't sure if I'd fallen into an alternate reality. Frat House Troopers by Xavier Mayne. Suspend your disbelief before you open this book and hen fall down the rabbit hole and hold on for the ride. I had some issues in the first 20% with the way the guys expressed themselves in regard to gay porn and gay guys in general, but after that it was ridiculous and fun.

And I finished January with Served Hot by Annabeth Albert. A sweet quick read that was just perfect for those times when what you really need is fluff. We all need that so I bought the rest of the series.

And that rounds up January. Phew!





Friday, 10 February 2017

Fiction Friday - a catch up

So I totally failed at rounding up January's reads. My excuse is I was so focused on getting Theory Unproven back out and available for you to purchase that I just didn't get the time.

I finished the last post with Hazel Takes Over. From their I moved on to one of Dreamspinner's Dreamspun Desire titles. The few of these I've already read are pure 'fantasy' romance (as opposed to fantasy/romance, which I'll come to in a moment), full of romance tropes, instalove, and work out perfectly endings. They're akin to gay Mills and Boon (Harlequin for those of you across the pond) but that is their point; if you want realism and angst-ridden stories then move along, because these are books are unapologetically sappy. Enough with the summing up of the DS line, which title did I read:

The Duke in Hiding by MJ O'Shea - Fits the lines brief perfectly. And managed to make me cry. My only complaint (apart from a bit of miscommunication that annoyed me) was that we didn't get enough time with Theo at the end before the big moment. I'd have like the reactions of his friends, and a more public declaration.

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Now on to some fantasy/romance (see, I told you it was coming). Pirates of Fathoms Deep by Megan Derr. The first book in this series, The High King's Golden Tongue, was one of my favourite reads last year. If anything this one is even better; a pirate and a one-eyed captain of the guard, second chances, a plot, and, of course, a King that nobody pays any heed to, despite his gruff and bluster. And this series has some glorious covers. I mean, look at this one.

Suffering from a serious book hangover after this one I decided to try something completely different. Deadpool's Art of War. Overall the story was meh, with Deadpool playing devils advocate to increase sales of his new book by starting a war between Thor and Loki that ended up including a whole host of Marvel characters. There were some excellent moments though and worth the read for those bright spots alone. And another title with Deadpool in (yes, he's everywhere at Marvel atm) Uncanny Avengers: Unity Vol 2. Better than volume one but I'm disappointed about the direction they are taking Hank Pym.

The Actor and the Earl by Rebecca Cohen. I've been sitting on this book for ages. Who knows why? It was excellent, with that constant low level worry that they might get found out and sentenced to the tower and execution. The rest of the series awaits (yay!) and I may even have a new book to beta *grins*

Have I only made it to reading day 23 Jan? *sigh* I read too much. Hah! No such thing... But I'll end this post here and bring you up to date next week. I'll leave you with a question.
The next book in Megan Derr's Tales of the High Court series, The Heart of the Lost Star, isn't due out until August. I don't know if I can wait that long. Is there any book that you just can't wait to read but have to because it's yet to be published?




Friday, 3 February 2017

I know this is supposed to be Fiction friday...

but I forgot to prep the post.

Instead have a quick round up of what's happening in my quiet corner of the publishing world.

The first newsletter went out, only a week late and with only one formatting issue that I've had reported back to me (which I had caught when it was too late, and didn't see the point of reissuing). I'd hoped giving away a free book would generate some reviews for said sadly neglected short but it was not to be. Still, it's good to have Waiting for a Spark back on the virtual bookshelves.

Talking of returning to the shelves, I managed to get Theory Unproven re-released just days before my self-imposed deadline. I also flirted with sending out ARC copies. I've had a few reviews from that but I'm not sure how much impact that has had on sales.

This month I intend to re-release Lesson Learned, my very first book from back in 2012. In fact it was originally released 5 years ago yesterday. I'll be sharing the cover in a week or so. This one has had a bit of a rewrite and has taken more work to get it back on the shelves. Thanks to Clare London, Alex Jane, and Katherine Halle for helping with this. I WILL have this on sale by the end of the month.

I've signed all my books up to Payhip. But I've yet to have any sales there. I think there is a post here but I'll save it for another time.

Anyway, that's just a quick catch-up on what's happening with me. Oh, and my hair is purple.
I'll leave you with a banner for Theory Unproven, because who can resist looking at those boys...and Eric and Tyaan aren't bad to look at either.


Universal Amazon link: myBook.to/TheoryUnproven_LF

Monday, 30 January 2017

Theory Unproven Re-released

I'm so happy that the story of Eric, Tyaan, and the elephants is available to buy again after three months off the shelf. If you're wondering there have been no changes to the content. Only the publisher has changed.

For anyone that doesn't know what I'm talking about, here's the lowdown.

Theory Unproven

Artwork by Meredith Russell

Working with elephants in their natural habitat has always been Eric Phillips dream. Getting what he’s always desired introduces him to Tyaan Bouwer, the bush pilot that flies in his supplies, and Eric discovers the allure of South Africa goes beyond the wildlife and the scenery.

But in an area where bushveld prejudices and hatred bleed across the borders, realising their love will be a hard fought battle. Keeping hold of it might just kill them.

* * * * *

An unexpected job offer finds zoologist Eric Phillips transported from the elephant house at a zoo just outside London to the wildlife reserves in the South African bushveld. Being able to work with his own herd of elephants, and analysing their behaviour, more than makes up for the remote nature of the research station. The one bright spot on the horizon, quite literally if the sun hits it at the right angle, is the silver freight plane that brings his supplies and half an hour in the company of Tyaan, the gorgeous but taciturn pilot.

With wide open spaces and clear skies, Tyaan Bouwer is never be happier than when he’s flying over the bushveld, the landscape beneath him a changing vista of colour and texture. It’s that view and the freedom to be able to climb in his plane and fly that’s kept him in the small town where he was born and raised. South Africa might be a rainbow nation but in the northern regions where neighbouring countries are far from liberal minded, prejudices and hatred bleed across the borders. Tyaan’s not in the closet, not really. Get him to the city and with his strong, silent routine he can pull a guy without even trying. He’s fine with that as long as they don’t press him into trying to see them again. It’s not like he wants a relationship. And just maybe when he gets home he’s hovering in the doorway of that closet, but he’s never met anyone worth taking the risk for.

The day he’s sent to Limpopo to collect Eric that all changes. He tries to bury the feelings of want that Eric conjures in him, but he can’t resist the bonds of friendship that forms between them.

As a zoologist Eric likes to think that he’s adept at anticipating how a creature will react in any given situation, and they don’t come any more beautiful and skittish than Tyaan. Despite Tyaan’s jittery behaviour Eric has a theory they could be good together but when things go catastrophically wrong it appears their relationship will remain a theory unproven.



Second Edition 
Publisher: Finally Love Press
Released: January 2017


Buy Links

Universal Amazon link 
myBook.to/TheoryUnproven_LF


Reviews for Theory Unproven (first edition)

5 elephant review from Bike Book Reviews.

The opening line is a cracker in itself.

OH MY GOODNESS, I AM REALLY EXCITED FOR US TO BE HOSTING A BOOK BLAST FOR THIS EPIC, WONDERFUL, MASTERFULLY WRITTEN LITERARY ENTREE KNOWN AS 'THEORY UNPROVEN' BY LILLIAN FRANCIS! 

Okay, I'm blushing (and grinning, just a little bit) and we haven't even got to the review yet. Right off the bat she hits on a point that I'm already concerned will deter readers... the length.

When I started this book and realized how many pages it had, I said to myself, "How in the world is this book gonna hold my interest for this long, it has to be a dang good one", (but I needn't have worried) let me assure you my friends, it is a dang good one and more!

And a few more choice quotes:

...a wonderful passionate story 

Get this book and get ready for passion, devotion, and yes suspense all rolled up in a nice package! 

Thank you Lillian, for making me realize it isn't the length, long or short of a book, it is the heart of it that matters!

Read the review in full here.


Another 5 star review from MM Good Book Reviews.

The passion between Eric and Tyaan is both sweet and explosive. 

...the first half of the book is rather light hearted and relaxed before really going into the action.

There is a lot of sweetness to be had set in an amazing landscape with some pretty damn intelligent animals. In fact, a couple of the elephants are minor characters in their own right and thoroughly enjoyable.

Read the full review here.


Former reviewer Tina gave Theory Unproven 4.5 stars. Check out her review in full here at Leafmarks.

"Both characters are just wonderfully elaborated, and they have this freaking hot chemistry, despite all the things popping up to mess with them. Lillian Francis did a wonderful job of conveying the heart and soul of these two guys, and when the heat turns up, it gets damn hot! It’s either slow and romantic, rough and steamy, or smoking hot and passionate."

"Lillian’s writing is powerful, gripping, emotional and captivating, she creates enticing characters and a sexy, emotionally charged story line."

"I lived within the story, I felt the South African heat, smelled the elephants and tasted the dust on my tongue, I laughed, smiled and cursed with the guys. How they managed to overcome their challenges to form a deep and everlasting love and build such a strong relationship touched me deeply."

"Highly recommended for those who share my love for the beautiful African continent... and want a well done, sweet, funny, suspenseful and delicious romance without too much angst."


A 4.25 star review at scatteredthoughtsandroguewords.

With a zoologist, Eric Phillips, as one half of the main couple, I loved the realistic way his life and work with the elephants was portrayed.  Dirty, all consuming, and soul satisfying…the readers understands through the many passages what it must be like to have that deep connection with another species. 

All good characters, all people the reader will want to spend time with.

Tyaan is a character that will draw conflicted feelings among the readers.  I thought his was a character grounded in the reality of the changing times in South Africa...Got it, you understand him even if you don’t like his actions, it makes him human.

While I was reading it, I was hooked on the elephants, Eric and Tyaan’s attraction for each other and strained journey towards a relationship.  

This is a long book yet most of the time I spent reading it flew by.  And I could easily book a flight back to this universe.  

...this story is so lush, so vibrant in feeling and scope that I am still so very much in love with Theory Unproven weeks later.

I recommend this story for all who love romance, foreign lands and a landscape of adventure where the search for love can be rough, affectionate, and hard won.  

Read the review in full here.

A 5 heart review from Hearts on Fire reviews

...the story was well paced, with great main characters and secondary characters...

The chemistry between the two main characters has a great build up, with compassion for Tyaan..., and hope for Eric that he won’t get his heart broken, since you love him pretty much from the start of the story!

If you like animals, you are going to love these two characters! (Jack and Ianto, the elephants)

I would recommend this book for romance lovers who really enjoy the development of the story as much as the romance and hot scenes...

Read the full review here


Thursday, 26 January 2017

Theory Unproven returning to a virtual bookshelf near you

I'm pleased to confirm that after a brief hiatus Theory Unproven is to be re-released under my publishing label, Finally love Press. 
Nothing has changed in the book, and it even retains its gorgeous cover, thanks to RJ and the generosity of LLB. (Eagle eyed readers may notice the change of logo but that is it.)

Release is scheduled for 31st January and with that in mind I am offering ARC copies of the ebook in exchange for an honest review. I appreciate that many of you that come here may already own the book but for those who don't the offer is there.

The requirements (such as they are): 

ARC Reviews to be posted within two weeks of release (31st Jan). Reviews to be posted on Amazon and where possible Goodreads (and any other places that take your fancy). If you post reviews in your blog please let me know. I'll be sending the book out via email. Please leave a note in comments below if you are interested or email me on lillianfrancis (at) rocketmail (dot) com with the subject line ARC request.
If any review sites are interested please contact me separately and I can arrange to send a promo pack.

The book:

Working with elephants in their natural habitat has always been Eric Phillips dream. Getting what he’s always desired introduces him to Tyaan Bouwer, the bush pilot that flies in his supplies, and Eric discovers the allure of South Africa goes beyond the wildlife and the scenery.
But in an area where bushveld prejudices and hatred bleed across the borders, realising their love will be a hard fought battle. Keeping hold of it might just kill them.


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