Heroes in Love – New Release

COVER - Heroes in Love

“Heroes in Love.”

David C. Dawson

MM Mystery Romance

Can forbidden love stand the test of time?

Will its strength inspire lasting love in today’s generation?

There are not only heroes, but unlikely heroes, who are determined to see love win.

Billy’s life changes in a single day when he meets Daniel, who becomes the love of his life.

Billy’s aging client Chuck has a dark and sad secret to reveal. As Billy and Daniel fight to help Chuck reunite with the love of his past, their own fledgling relationship is threatened.

Who will remain the heroes in love?

 

Get It On Amazon | Boroughs Publishing | Smashwords | Universal Link

 


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Excerpt

Daniel’s kitchen was filled with a jumble of antiquated cooking gadgets accumulated from different eras in the social history of domesticity. An ancient, blackened stove stood in the chimney alcove. Next to it, an oversized American retro blender perched precariously on a mottled red Formica work surface, alongside a vintage 1930s toaster. A Victorian clothes dryer hung from the high ceiling above an antique pine table. The walls were cluttered with framed pictures, mostly collections of actors smiling from bygone West End productions. Every surface seemed cluttered with either elaborate culinary equipment or music manuscripts.

Billy looked around him in awe. The house was narrow, but extended a long way back. There seemed to be so much space. “Can I ask a cheeky question?”

“You mean, how can I afford this?” replied Daniel. “I know. I’m very lucky. My grandfather left it for me when he died. This was where I ran to when I left my parents and came to London. Grandpa Bob was the world to me. He was my mum’s father, and the dad I never had.”

“It must be worth a fortune now.”

“Three bedroom terrace house in desirable Battersea?” Daniel turned to the worktop, and opened a cupboard in front of him. “I suppose it is. But it means more to me that this was Grandpa Bob’s home. Lots of the things I have here were actually his.”

He turned back to Billy.

“I said coffee, but would you prefer tea?”

Daniel crossed to the stove, picked up a large whistling kettle, and carried it to the sink.

“Have you got mint tea?” asked Billy.

“Ooh, there’s fancy,” replied Daniel as he filled the kettle. “Give me a second and I’ll gather some leaves from the garden. Peppermint or spearmint?”

“Now it’s my turn to say ‘ooh, there’s fancy,’” replied Billy. “I’ve got no idea, but probably peppermint.”

Daniel set the kettle down on the stove and lit the gas. He picked up a pair of scissors from the dresser, crossed to the backdoor, and undid two heavy bolts.

“Come and have a look at the outside space Maggie created for me,” he said.

Daniel swung open the door. Billy could see a hazy glow of twinkling lights beckon him into the mysterious space beyond the threshold. Leading away from the kitchen door he saw an avenue of sculpted shrubs, each festooned with tiny lanterns. The pathway seemed to be endless, disappearing into the far distance. On either side of the doorway were two Victorian lampposts. A flickering yellow light illuminated huge glass globes on top of the wrought iron posts.

Billy stepped across the threshold into the garden. The ground felt soft beneath his feet. He squatted down and gently brushed the palm of his hand over its mossy surface. His nostrils were filled with the scent of chamomile. Billy looked back over his shoulder. Daniel stood smiling in the doorway.

“This is how I keep sane in this city of madness.”

Billy stood and walked farther into the garden. After a few yards he came across a break in the avenue of shrubs. It revealed a small, half-walled patio lit by two more wrought iron lanterns. They spilled yellow flickering light onto two chairs and a neat, glass-topped table. Suspended on the walls around the patio were earthenware pots in which grew many different types of herbs.

Daniel appeared at Billy’s side with the scissors in his hand.

“I’ve come to get you your tea.”

Billy felt as if he had been transported into a film set. Every one of his five senses was overwhelmed by the magic of Daniel’s west London wonderland.

“It’s beautiful,” said Billy. “It’s so – tranquil. Surely this must have cost a fortune to build?”

Daniel bent down to the chamomile lawn.

“I’m afraid it’s mostly fake, but it’s very realistic.”

He walked across to the wall of herbs, and harvested a handful of mint leaves.

“I haven’t switched on the mist,” said Daniel. “The pump needs some fixing. If I did, the romance here would’ve been overpowering.”

Billy turned as Daniel stopped behind him. He held a handful of mint leaves to Billy’s nose, and Billy inhaled deeply.

“Peppermint,” said Daniel. “I hope I made the right choice.”

He lowered his arm, hooked it around Billy’s waist, and pulled him closer. He leaned forward and kissed Billy slowly on the mouth. Daniel’s lips parted as he said quietly:

“Shit.”

He dropped his arm from Billy’s waist, reached into his front pocket, and pulled out the scissors.

“I wasn’t planning on giving myself a circumcision tonight.”

Daniel let the scissors and the handful of mint fall to the ground. He wrapped his arms around Billy, and pulled him close. Suddenly they were kissing, wildly, passionately. Daniel placed his hand on the back of Billy’s neck, holding the two men close as their tongues hungrily explored each other’s mouths. He wrapped his arm tight around Billy’s waist, and slipped his hand down to push their groins closer together.

Billy had never felt such immediate connection with a man before. Daniel was both passionate and tender. So many men he had met simply behaved like sexual animals. Encounters with them would start promisingly, but soon they would slip into clichéd actions copied from a badly made porn movie.

But Daniel was different. One moment he was kissing Billy with a passionate urgency. His raw aggression filled Billy with a sense of sexual danger. The next moment Daniel was gently sliding his tongue across Billy’s stubble, or tenderly kissing him on his forehead, on his eyes, or his nose.

Finally, Daniel slipped his hands onto Billy’s shoulders, and the two men stood with their foreheads touching. Their eyes locked on each other in an unblinking gaze.

“Do you still want that mint tea?”

“Maybe I’ll have a coffee after all,” said Billy. “I’d like to stay awake tonight.”


Author Bio

David C. DawsonDavid C Dawson writes contemporary thrillers featuring gay men in love. He’s an award winning author, journalist and documentary maker.

His debut novel The Necessary Deaths won Bronze for Best Mystery & Suspense in the FAPA awards. The second in the series is The Deadly Lies. His third book For the Love of Luke came out in October 2018.

David lives in London, with his boyfriend and two cats. In his spare time, he tours Europe and sings with the London Gay Men’s Chorus.

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HEROES IN LOVE – DAVID C DAWSON

Love in London

I think London is one of the most romantic cities in the world. Of course, I’m biased. I’ve loved and lost and loved again in London throughout my life. That’s why it’s the backdrop to my lovers in my latest book Heroes in Love.  Here are some of the locations the book features. Visit them next time you’re here.  I challenge you not to feel touched by their romance.

Soho is the gay capital of London. Well, just about. It used to be wonderfully Bohemian with a hint of danger. But it’s got increasingly expensive and chichi as I call it, as the people with money moved in. All the same, go for a good value dinner at Taro on Brewer Street (the inspiration for the restaurant Bento in Brewer in the story) and watch the lovers stare at each other dreamily over their meals. Or walk arm in arm down from Soho to Piccadilly Circus, and drop into the brasserie Zedel’s. Have a late night drink there in the café. You can imagine yourself in Paris, except the waiters are wonderfully attentive and polite.

The River Thames at night is far more romantic than the Seine in Paris, or the Arno in Florence in my opinion. Walk down The Strand, have dinner at the Savoy, and then walk down to Embankment tube station. There’s a footbridge over the Thames. As you get halfway across, stop, and look in wonder at the lights of London. The bizarrely Gothic Palace of Westminster, the ultra-modern concrete and steel of the City of London further down river, and the simply beautiful dome of Christopher Wren’s St Pauls. Every time my partner and I cross this bridge, we have to stop and kiss – even if it’s raining! It’s one of the most romantic spots in the whole of London.

The top deck of a London double-decker bus is supremely romantic. Make sure you sit in the very front seats, right over the head of the driver. You can imagine you’re being paraded around the streets of London like royalty. Wave regally at pedestrians below you, as your noble vehicle chunters past them. Lean back in each other’s arms, and enjoy your superior view of the beauty that is London. And fall in love all over again.

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Death of Civil Discourse

I should write a disclaimer beforehand since this is about a controversial subject. My post has nothing to do with race or religion and I feel that racism is indeed an evil that still prevails and, unfortunately, probably always will to some extent. I also want to point out that I am Lilly white (more of a pasty beige), an immigrant (who has been a US citizen now for a long time) for whom English is a second language (as attested by my misuse of prepositions) and also what people love to call a bleeding heart (I believe in being charitable even with those who probably don’t deserve it and that people can and do change as they get older). Now that is out of the way, let’s talk about the death of tolerance, civil discourse, and giving people the benefit of the doubt. Oh yeah, and also the lack of understanding that words can and do hurt a lot and can indeed destroy lives and relationships.

These past years, besides the mess brought on by politics, has seen a surge of intolerance that bothers me to no end. I am old. I still remember when I was trying to figure out what career to follow and had very few options open to me as a woman. I was sexually harassed and even assaulted many times (not raped thankfully) from the age of thirteen until I left my country as an adult. I was in South Africa during the apartheid. I lived in what was then Zaire and witnessed all kinds of injustices committed by humans against fellow humans of every color, shape or form. When I first moved to the US I was shocked by the almost palpable racial bigotry in the area where I lived back then. But things have changed, they have evolved and, for the most part, gotten a lot better. Are we where we should be yet? Not really, but there has been a lot of progress in the right direction.

Suddenly though we seem to have taken a few steps backwards. Under the guise of being inclusive we, as a society, have began excluding people for all kinds of reasons. I don’t like your ideas so I’m going to call you a few names and unfriend you. Oh wait, I’ll go further and will tweet about how horrible you are because you have different ideas from me. But, hold on, I’ll do even better; I will damage your career and life because I think you are a despicable person who supports a politician I hate and/or because you said or did something twenty years ago that could be construed as racist or biased nowadays.

 

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Come on, people, we are better than this. We are all humans and, as such, imperfect. We all make mistakes and even those of us who think have no prejudices, I have news for you; you do. We all do. You can’t escape it, we learn it unconsciously from those around us or from events in our lives that shaped the way we think. The old proverb, people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones, is good advice for all of us because let’s face it, we all live in glass houses. Jesus had the same idea when he said, let him who is without sin cast the first stone.

I have witnessed friends and family members cutting themselves off each other’s lives because of different opinions about some issues. I’m not going to lie; I disagree with many things friends and relatives think or do, sometimes enough to make me angry. However, I can’t forget that these are good people, imperfect but basically good. I’ll give you an example that made me very angry at the time. Not angry enough to cut myself off completely from my friend, but enough to put a bit of space between us for a while. My son is gay and this friend of mine, who is a wonderful, loving woman, posted somethings inspired by the teachings in her church that labeled my son and all other queers as sinners who needed to repent and change their ways. I was angry, I was disappointed in her because I respect her and I know she has a heart of gold and is always willing to do whatever it takes to help those in need. So I gave ourselves a little space. No words of anger, no unfriending. After some time, anger faded to a manageable level and I’m so glad I can still call her my friend. I know we will never agree on some things, but that doesn’t make her or me a bad person.

Obviously there are extreme cases. I’m not talking about people who post nothing but hate and indiscriminate bigotry or who incite violence. I decided to write this post because of the upheaval going on right now in the romance world. I don’t have all the facts and I am probably too ignorant of certain legalities to be able to judge things clearly but I can’t help but notice that most parties involved in this mess have let their anger (justified or not) tint their words and actions. In today’s world, words stick around forever thanks to social media (which I love and hate in equal parts) where people seem to think they can say whatever they want with impunity, forgetting all along that they are often hurting others.

I will end my ramblings here. Take this for what it is, a vent from someone who is so tired of the fights and strife brought on by differences of opinions, different perspectives, looking at things so closely and through tinted lenses that you are almost certain to find fault in everything.

Can we hit the pause button for a while and spend some time admiring the world around us, this magical planet we live in and the amazing and diverse creatures that populate it? Can we just agree to disagree on a few things? I’m not suggesting you shouldn’t stand up for your beliefs, I’m just saying let’s do it in a civil, empathetic, courteous way. Anger and meanness does nothing but create more anger.

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Becoming Us – New Release

Catch up with Kirkby residents Scott and Davis!

Author: Becca Seymour

Book: Becoming Us
Genre: M/M Romance
Cover Designer: Booksmith Design

Catch up with Kirkby residents Scott and Davis as they navigate through the ups and downs of fatherhood, relationships, and juggling… balls.

In two years, it’s clear love can last, just as it can grow.

Davis’s business remains successful, Scott’s clinic is going strong, and Libby is happy and content.

But that doesn’t mean real life is always perfect, nor does it mean fatherhood isn’t as exhausting as it is wonderful.

Needing a break from their daily routines, Davis and Scott head away for a weekend of uninhibited fun. With lots of laughter and dancing, Davis has never seen Scott so relaxed and comfortable in public.

And he’s not quite sure how to handle that.

Worried that life in Kirkby is holding Scott back, Davis nearly makes the biggest mistake of his life.

But Scott has other ideas. He doesn’t need saving. What he needs is his man to step up and fight for their family and their future.

And he has just the plan to do it.

A True-Blue novella. I’ve Got You MUST be read prior to reading this story.

   Limited Time “Wide” Availability – Moving to KU Dec 1st!  
Swoon-worthy low-angst contemporary M/M romances

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Pure Dumb Luck-Review

Pure Dumb LuckPure Dumb Luck by Dahlia Donovan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

As usual Donovan created two lovable (however clueless) main characters that you can’t help but love to pieces. The writing is flawless and the whole story is imbued in the kind of humor I came to expect from this writer. I did cringe a little about these guys’ nutritional (or lack thereof) choices and worried about the future state of their health, lol.
I loved their relationship, how they helped each other face the world, and their suspiciously growing and one-track-minded to-do checklist. An easy, sexy, and funny read.

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A Lady’s Guide to Celestial Mechanics- A Review

The Lady's Guide to Celestial Mechanics (Feminine Pursuits, #1)The Lady’s Guide to Celestial Mechanics by Olivia Waite

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Three and a half star. First, I absolutely love the title. In fact that’s what first drew me in, but the actual story is so worth a read. I enjoyed the progression of Catherine’s and Lucy’s love for each other and also Catherine’s self-discovery journey out of a bad marriage to a relationship that freed her from all the shackles imposed on her by a controlling husband and a patriarchal society. The descriptions were beautiful and detailed even though they sort of interrupted the flow of the story for me at times. That surprise at the end made my day (you’ll have to read it to find out), some kind of karma. I was outraged right along with the two female main characters by the way Lucy and her work were treated by a society of men who were too afraid to admit women were their equals just as I loved the strong feminist tone of the whole story. For my reading taste it was a bit slow at times, thus the half star instead of a full four stars, but that’s just a personal preference, not a reflection on Ms. Waite’s work. Well done.

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Austen—A Romance Trope Creator?

Austen—A Romance Trope Creator?

Jane Austen

The other day I was looking for one of my favorite TV adaptations of Jane Austen’s Emma (the one where Mr. Knightley is played by Johnny Lee Miller) on Netflix (don’t bother; it’s not available there) and it got me thinking about how Austen basically created some of the most popular romance tropes to this day. Nothing new, I know, but I had never thought about it that way before.

Of course, not everyone is a fan or has read Austen’s books but I love them. She was ahead of her time, writing strong, willful women who fought for (and won) what they wanted and loved. It’s no wonder her popularity has survived for so long.

But less thought of when discussing Austen and her books is the fact that she was the “inventor” of at least three of the most popular tropes in romance literature today. The romance style is largely reviled by the “serious” readers today as crap or smut, but Austen is here to remind us that romance can be, and often is, a weapon against society’s prejudices and preconceived ideas about women (among other things). Not to mention the fact that romance can be well written and worth of as much praise and attention as any other genre of literature.

romance book

Pride and Prejudice, arguably the most famous of her works, is an enemies to lovers romance. Elizabeth Bennet begins as hating and being disliked by the handsome but brooding and often obnoxious Darcy. We all know how that ended.

In Persuasion (possibly my personal favorite) Anne Elliot unwisely shuns Captain Wentworth despite her love for him, but eventually gets her second chance with him. A second chance romance.

Emma is clearly a friends to lovers romance. Emma has a best friend in Mr. Knightley and despite her attempts at matching every single woman in town with the perfect bachelor, totally misses the fact that the one she loves has always been right in front of her.

Mansfield Park is both an example of forbidden romance and love triangle with poor young woman Fanny who is loved by one man but in love with her cousin who is promised in marriage to another woman. In fact, this is also a friends to lovers romance since Fanny was best friends with her cousin with whom she grew up.

Nowadays these tropes are still being written with varying degrees of success. I am personally partial to the friends-to-lovers and second chances tropes and have written a couple books along those lines. Which kind of proves that a good love story never goes out of style if Jane Austen’s vast popularity even today is anything to go by.

Do you read romance? Do you have a favorite trope? I’d love to hear from you.

Love potion

Rainbow Snippet of the Week

From  That Brew That You Do releasing next year.

I realized my mouth had dropped open and that I looked like an idiot. “How did you know I could see magicals?” The languid movement of his long, blue tail was having some unexpected effects on my favorite body part. I wiggled on the seat, my jeans feeling uncomfortably tight all of a sudden.
Naël peered at me from underneath half-closed lids, that damned sensual smile still hanging from the corner of his lips. The bastard knew exactly what he was doing to me. “All magicals around here know about you, Mr. Mercer. You’re sort of a celebrity.”

Visit Rainbow Snippets for more.

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©2019 Natalina Reis All Rights Reserved

Dark and Bright- Review

Dark and BrightDark and Bright by P.M. Hernandez

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book surprised the crap out of me–in a good way. Don’t want to reveal any spoilers but the plot was flowing away and I kind of knew (or thought I knew) what the truth was behind all the meds Carrie was taking but then about half way through the book, bam! Hernandez hit me over the head with something I certainly didn’t see coming. It reminded me of the old TV show, Dollhouse, and I’m going to leave it at that so I don’t give anything away. I was shocked and disgusted (with one of the characters, not the book) and my only critique is in connection with that. I thought Carrie didn’t react as strongly as I thought she would when she found out what had been done to her. I was expecting more fireworks than what I got. But other than that, this was a great read with great likable characters (Luis was the sweetest thing ever. Loved him.) who you really care about and feel for. Can’t wait to see what the second book brings.

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Finding Your Way-Blog Tour

Title: Finding Your Way
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: May 25, 2019
Cover Designer: Claire Smith
 Add to TBR
 Available now! 
With a touch of paranormal interference, a lost love seems to be working to help Perry and Manny find their happy ever after, while hinting that some things may not be as they seem.
Two years after the death of the first woman to hold his heart, Manny meets a woman who fires his desire to love again, but to do so, must he say goodbye the ghost of his first love?
Perry’s social anxiety causes her to isolate herself from everyone, including the man she’s inexplicably drawn to. As desperately as she wants to break free from her self-imposed prison, she can’t overcome her own insecurities.
Manny is determined to prove to Perry she is worthy of love. And just when he thinks he has succeeded, he’s forced to keep a difficult promise that will forever impact their lives.
Can a little divine intervention from Manny’s first love help Perry and Manny find their way to a happily ever after?
 Available now! 
As I glanced out over the vast span of water in front of me, I imagined sitting on the shore with my arm wrapped around the beauty beside me. Her pixie-cut hairstyle matched her Tinkerbell laugh. As the sun began to set, she peered up at me through long dark lashes. Leaning down, I gently kissed her, tasting the bubble gum lip gloss she applied earlier. “I love you,” she whispered against my lips. Sighing, I pressed my forehead against hers. “I love you.”
The dream was the same every night. And every morning I woke up missing Connie even more. Two years ago, almost to the day, she died from a congenital heart defect. I’d met her by chance through my best friend Brady who, at the same time, was dating her best friend Marie. Our romance was short lived, but in the small amount of time we had, I fell hard. As Connie would have wanted, I did my best to live life to the fullest, but some days were harder than others. Her image haunted me everywhere. Each time I saw her beautiful face, I ached to touch her again.

 

Amy McClung was born in Nashville, TN. She is the second oldest of four girls and occasionally suffers from middle-child syndrome. She met the love of her life online in August of 2004, on his birthday of all days, and married him in September 2005.Currently they have no human children, only the room full of colorful robots that transform into vehicles and the large headed Pop Funkos who represent their favorite characters. Collecting movies, shot glasses, Pop Funkos, and dust bunnies are some of her favorite pastimes.

Amy began writing in September of 2011 and independently published her first YA novel, Cascades of Moonlight, Book one of the Parker Harris series the following May. Her first book was a means of therapy for her, enabling her to escape reality for a while during a difficult transition in her life.

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Finding Your Way-New Release

Title: Finding Your Way
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: May 25, 2019
Cover Designer: Claire Smith
 Add to TBR
 Available now! 
With a touch of paranormal interference, a lost love seems to be working to help Perry and Manny find their happy ever after, while hinting that some things may not be as they seem.
Two years after the death of the first woman to hold his heart, Manny meets a woman who fires his desire to love again, but to do so, must he say goodbye the ghost of his first love?
Perry’s social anxiety causes her to isolate herself from everyone, including the man she’s inexplicably drawn to. As desperately as she wants to break free from her self-imposed prison, she can’t overcome her own insecurities.
Manny is determined to prove to Perry she is worthy of love. And just when he thinks he has succeeded, he’s forced to keep a difficult promise that will forever impact their lives.
Can a little divine intervention from Manny’s first love help Perry and Manny find their way to a happily ever after?
 Available now! 
FREE!
May 23rd – 27th

Amy McClung was born in Nashville, TN. She is the second oldest of four girls and occasionally suffers from middle-child syndrome. She met the love of her life online in August of 2004, on his birthday of all days, and married him in September 2005.Currently they have no human children, only the room full of colorful robots that transform into vehicles and the large headed Pop Funkos who represent their favorite characters. Collecting movies, shot glasses, Pop Funkos, and dust bunnies are some of her favorite pastimes.

Amy began writing in September of 2011 and independently published her first YA novel, Cascades of Moonlight, Book one of the Parker Harris series the following May. Her first book was a means of therapy for her, enabling her to escape reality for a while during a difficult transition in her life.

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 Submissions