Exciting Times

I know I have been a bit quiet on here of late, but things are about to change.

As well as exciting news of signing a new contract for a novella (‘Not All Chocolate and Cuckoo Clocks’) with Dreamspinner Press, and having a flash piece selected for the Queer Sci Fi’s ‘Renewal’ anthology, I am beavering away at various WIPs.

Plus I am working on a new website – stay tuned for a new shiny blog! So bear with me, I have seen the light at the end of the tunnel and it is super shiny!

 

 

 

To Be Honest, I’m a Bit Lost

I think it would be fair to say that, like a lot of other people, 2016 has not been my best year. I’ve had some health problems that don’t seem to want to go away, we lost Mum, and the political upheavals on both sides of the Atlantic has resulted in a lot of deep thought and anxiety.

I’m currently in a mire with my writing – so many ideas but not so many words reaching the page. I’m pulled in several directions and plot lines, but when I come to sit and give them flesh they are just out of reach.

I’ve a dark future Earth novel whispering in my ear, and has been for many years, but now with Brexit and Trump it’s becoming more urgent. The spin-off crime series from this world is also vying for attention (the first of which is with a developmental editor to see where I can take it).

But then there’s the softer stuff, that panders to my romantic side. A sci-fi rom-com which is like a British Men in Black, but more biscuits less guns, and a story set in Switzerland around the frankly bonkers Basel Fasnacht (spring carnival). I even have MF story simmering which I think will barge itself to the front of the queue if my subconscious has anything to do with it.

I’ve an adventure into self-publishing on the cards for the next Crofton series. I’ve been hankering to explore the different eras and have a grand plan to write a new series called ‘The Earls of Crofton’ covering 4 Earls from 4 eras (one of which will be Anthony, the 1st Earl from the Crofton Chronicles and the earls from Victorian, Regency and Restoration periods) but I’ll reveal more about the others and the series as a whole in the coming months…

IF I CAN GET THE DAMN WORDS ON THE PAGE!

*Breathe*

 

So I’ve lots I want to write. Lots I will write – eventually. There’s no point forcing it. I’m going to be kind to myself for the rest of 2016.

 

But listen up 2017, we’re gonna be great. We’re gonna set the world on fire. You hear me?

 

Welcome back, Joe Cosentino!

Today I welcome back Joe Cosentino to my blog. This time to talk about his Cozzi Cove beach series!

 

Why I Wrote the Cozzi Cove beach series, published by NineStar Press
by Joe Cosentino

The end of June through the beginning of September was a special time for my sister and me. We were lucky enough to spend our summers in our family’s bungalow at the New Jersey shore. We swam and made sandcastles at the beach, waded in the bay, played miniature golf, ate salt water taffy and jumped up and down on trampolines until we (literally) saw green, and dined with our parents, aunt, and uncle at our favorite seafood restaurant with a colorful player piano. All those places and experiences are in the novels set in a fictitious place I call Cozzi Cove, a gay resort of eight bungalows in a private cove on the Jersey Shore. Each bungalow is based on my aunt and uncle’s, and is furnished with hand-carved nautical furnishings, and has a stunning view of the bay and lighthouse in the distance. The main beach and boardwalk are only a mile away. It’s a place I love to visit, and I know you will too.
The bungalows on Cozzi Cove are set on a stretch of cove formed when softer rocks were worn away by the sun and salty water faster than the harder rocks surrounding them. This created a gorgeous bay of turquoise water shielded by large rocks in the distance and smaller rocks near the water’s edge.
My leading character is Cal Cozzi. Cal, short for Calvin, is thirty years old, tall, and muscular. His Italian and Scottish heritage left him with striking auburn hair and a strong features. He dabbled as a professional football player then restaurant owner, but neither was a good fit. After Cal’s parents died in an automobile accident, he found his calling: managing Cozzi Cove in the New Jersey shore town named after his great-grandfather. Sensing Cal’s sexual orientation as a boy, Cal’s father had turned Cozzi Cove into a gay resort. Cal is honored to follow in his father’s footsteps. Since Cozzi Cove is a magical place, the novels are full of humor, tragedy, mysteries, and passions. Everyone has a secret at Cozzi Cove, and nothing is what it seems.
The supporting cast is headed by Cal’s young husband, Lance Wiley, who is an African American grade school teacher with exotic eyes, a stocky build, and a loving heart.
Connor, the college student assisting Cal, is packed with muscles and hormones. He revels in Cozzi Cove, and in checking out each resident for a possible fling on the cove—which he occasionally enjoys.
Tommy, the bald, muscular, tattooed resident of Cozzi Cove who owns the local bar has held a torch for Cal since high school. Carla Mangione who runs Carla’s Seafood Restaurant holds a similar torch for Cal’s sister.
Cal’s sister, Taylor, drops in from Rome, Paris, Wall Street, or Palm Springs. As a tough as nails top one-percenter, the world revolves around her, which makes her hysterically funny. I also admire her devotion to her brother. Taylor is in for a huge surprise in books two and three.
After my novella An Infatuation (2nd Place Divine Magazine Readers’ Choice Award of 2015 for Best MM Romance and Rainbow Award Honorable Mention) was published by Dreamspinner Press, countless readers begged me for more time with one of the characters. So that character and his brother are the first guests in book one. The summer vacationers in book one are two brothers/college students who look alike, but couldn’t be more different. Mario is searching for love, and Harold is searching for lust. A wealthy older couple, Josh and Greg, play matchmakers for their gorgeous son Christopher. Opposites attract as multifaceted Tim meets shy Mark, and porn star Chuck Caliber connects with Sean, a virgin romance novelist. Finally, computer game designer Arthur has a midnight sea rendezvous with a merman. Even Cal faces an emotional upheaval when a gay bashing turns into something quite unexpected for him.
COZZI COVE: BOUNCING BACK was a huge hit, being chosen TRB Pile Book of the Month! Readers wanted more. Many readers also asked me for more time with two of the leading characters, college theatre majors Jonathan and Barry, in my novella A Shooting Star published by Dreamspinner Press (Rainbow Award Honorable Mention). So two of the guests in book two COZZI COVE: MOVING FORWARD are loosely based on how Jonathan and Barry might be as middle-aged men. I call them Rodney Maxwell and Dennis O’Halloran. In book two the summer vacationers include Rodney and Dennis, a Tony Award winning actor and his estranged producer/husband with their two hired bodybuilder studs, Jarek and Zeus. Computer analyst, Sam, enlists his best friend Chase in a scheme to attract Sam’s hunky, unsuspecting best friend, Raul. Hunter, a female gay romance novel enthusiast, hoping to experience gay life off the page. Middle aged Gil Van Truren wants to end it all—until he sees a vision of his first love from college. Cal also has his hands full with Michael’s study buddy the gorgeous and muscular Carlo, and resident man of mystery George Valis who seems to know a great deal about Cal’s past. What secrets, humor, tragedy, mysteries, and passions lie in the magical place called Cozzi Cove this summer?
I am currently editing book 3, COZZI COVE: STEPPING OUT, which releases in January 2017 and writing book 4, COZZI COVE: NEW BEGINNINGS. I can also see COZZI COVE as a television series. Make me an offer, producers!
I love hearing from readers. Please contact me at: http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com.
So grab your Speedos, suntan lotion, and shades and head to Cozzi Cove. I hope to see you there again and again!
COZZI COVE: BOUNCING BACK
by JOE COSENTINO published by NineStar Press
e-book and paperback purchase links:
http://ninestarpress.com/product/cozzi-cove-bouncing-back/
http://myBook.to/Cozzi_Cove_BB
https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-cozzicovebouncingback-2001509-149.html
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/cozzi-cove-joe-cosentino/1123562716?ean=9781911153825

cozzicovebouncingbackcover

On Cozzi Cove at the New Jersey shore, handsome Cal Cozzi’s seven bungalows are open for summer and love. Mario and Harold are brothers and college students who happen to look alike, but couldn’t be more different: Mario is searching for love, and Harold is searching for lust. Josh and Greg, a wealthy older couple, are matchmakers for their son, Christopher. When it comes to Connor, the maid, packed with muscles and a roving sponge, anything can happen. Opposites attract as wild Tim with the secret past meets shy Mark, and porn star Chuck Caliber connects with Sean, a virgin romance novelist. And what will happen when computer-game designer Arthur has a midnight sea rendezvous with a merman? Even married Cal faces an emotional upheaval when a gay bashing turns into something quite unexpected. What secrets and passions lie in magical Cozzi Cove?

Praise for COZZI COVE: BOUNCING BACK: Book of the Month at The TBR Pile

“I loved this story. It carries you through the full range of emotions, from joy to sadness, from happiness to anger. The characters are beautifully written.” “I look forward to a return visit to the Cove.” TBR Pile

“Heartbreaking and heartwarming, sweet beginnings for some, sour endings for others, emotions jumping off the page as you turn eagerly to read more, welcome to Cozzi Cove. The author measured his scales to perfection in delivering the perfect balance of love, laughter and tears in this sexy, fun filled holiday romance entwined with some sadness. Summer magic waved it’s wand at all who visited and stayed at Cozzi Cove and I was one of those who wanted to stay.” Three Books Over the Rainbow

“poignant and full of beautiful imagery. It’s one crazy mix of characters, all weird and wonderful in their own way” “It made me laugh out loud, cry and want to snuggle up with someone I loved. I couldn’t have asked for more.” Divine Magazine

“In true Joe Cosentino style, this book is packed full of drama! This cast of characters will have you laughing out loud one minute before ripping your heart out the next.” Joyfully Jay

“If you like a lot of angst, some humor, love, sadness (be sure to have a couple of boxes of tissue handy), and some hot sensual man-sex, I highly, highly recommend this book. I loved all of the Joe Cosentino’s books, but I think this is my favorite to date! I am ready for book 2!” Cathy Brockman Romance & MM Good Book Reviews

“Joe Cosentino has the amazing ability to combine heartwarming, feel good moments with droll, sometimes biting humor, along with insights into the frailties and peccadillos of being human.” “Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back is the very finest in literary fiction with a romance theme, yet it’s more than just that—it’s about human connections and empathy and finding a way out of the fear and inertia faced by so many. It’s also about courage and strength, about respect and coming to terms with all that life has to offer, and it’s about letting go. I loved this book and look forward to the next in the series. This is a highly recommended read, well-deserving of Five Stars.” GGR Reviews

“Cosentino tells the stories of the guests and owners at Cozzi Cove as separate yet intertwining stories, a delivery style that’s genius. It’s a bit like watching segments unfold in soap opera fashion.” “While the story is rife with the humor and lighthearted romance I’ve come to associate with Joe Cosentino, it also addresses several serious topics associated with the gay community: homophobia, stereotyping and coming out.” 3 Chicks After Dark

“The humour is full of double entendres and tongue in cheek wit. I can’t help but grin my way through his novels.” “Beneath the comings and goings and toings and froings and sex and arguments and innuendo are real issues. Coping with the death or illness or betrayal. Learning to love. Hoping. Yearning. Becoming different. Growing. Accepting.” “This author has yet to disappoint me with his stories.” “For me it’s love all the way.” Boy Meets Boy Reviews

“There were parts that were hilarious, parts that were serious, parts that were happy and parts that were sad. Regardless of the emotion that the character was portraying at that moment, I was able to feel it myself.” “an amazing book.” “I also truly loved the storyline.” Inked Rainbow Reads

“Cal (Cozzi) is clever, sweet, funny, and loyal.” “Cosentino’s writing is well done and clever.” Jo & Isa Love Books

“readers will meet a variety of characters that creates a soap opera intrigue, unlike any other novel read. This story will definitely keep readers guessing with every page. Only when readers reach the last page does everything become known. It’s addictive. Cozzi Cove is a brand new series that will keep Joe Cosentino’s readers on their toes and begging for more. I laughed, cried, and fell in love with this latest novel.” Urban Book Reviews

 

COZZI COVE: MOVING FORWARD
by JOE COSENTINO published by NineStar Press
e-book and paperback purchase links:
http://ninestarpress.com/product/cozzi-cove-moving-foreward/
http://myBook.to/Cozzi_Cove_MF
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/cozzi-cove-joe-cosentino/1123663661?ean=9781911153832
https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-cozzicovemovingforward-2018883-149.html

cozzicovemovingforwardcover

On Cozzi Cove at the New Jersey Shore, handsome Cal Cozzi’s seven bungalows are once again open for summer and love. The vacationers include Rodney Maxwell and Dennis O’Halloran, a Tony Award winning actor and his estranged producer/husband with their two hired studs, Jarek and Zeus. Computer analyst Sam enlists his best friend Chase in a scheme to attract hunky Raul. Middle aged Gil Van Truren wants to end it all—until he sees a vision of his first love. Cal also has his hands full with college student Michael—his new young lover—Michael’s study buddy Carlo, man of mystery George Valis, and Connor, the houseboy packed with muscles and a wondering sponge. All the while Hunter, a female gay romance novel enthusiast, experiences gay life off the page. What secrets, humor, tragedy, mysteries, and passions lie in the magical place called Cozzi Cove?

Praise for COZZI COVE: MOVING FORWARD

“Beautifully written, the story pulls me in and keeps me in Cozzi Cove. I look forward to my next visit there.” TBR Pile

“Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward delivers a strong cast of characters and a few surprising denouements to individual story lines that will bring a smile to your face and perhaps even a heartfelt sigh.” GGR Reviews
“Who knew that 7 bungalows set surrounding a beautiful cove, could hold so many secrets, love and intrigue?” “The humour, whether subtle or not-so-subtle was superb, the timing delivered with perfection, Joe Cosentino is a natural comedian and another reason why I love reading his books. He is also very clever, he weaved moral messages throughout the entire storyline,” “Great fun entwined with the Cosentino romantic magic that brings his books alive, I loved it.” Three Books Over the Rainbow
“visiting Cozzi Cove is like coming home or revisiting a beloved holiday destination. I know everyone, by now, who is a permanent fixture and I sincerely hope that Cosentino continues this series forever. As before, the characters are a hoot. They’re a mixture of funny, quirky, sad, lonely individuals who come together to make a riotously brilliant cast.” Divine Magazine
“Oh, Cozzi Cove, you are fast becoming a favorite vacation destination with your action and excitement! Joe Cosentino once again wins his way into your heart and soul with this fun, flirtatious romance. Love, laughter and smoldering intimacy await all who dare to venture to the clear blue waters of the Cove.” 3 Chicks After Dark
“I absolutely love this series and loved all of the romance that happens at Cozzi Cove. You don’t just have one romance you have seven (really eight when you count Cal & Michael).” “I love an author that can inject humor in just the right places. Joe Cosentino is fast becoming a must read author for me.” “I can’t wait to read more from Cozzi Cove.” Inked Rainbow Reads
“it was nice to revisit Cozzi Cove as it reopened for its second season. If you loved the first book, you won’t want to miss this one!” Joyfully Jay Reviews
“Cozzi Cove is a special place where magic happens and the guests find love, sometimes in the most surprising places.” Jo & Isa Love Books
“Imagine a beautiful getaway where the hot, sexy, and wealthy gay men go…it’s a place where there’s never a dull moment. Every page of this new title brings readers nothing but excitement, intrigue, and an intensity that will burn away the night’s quiet. Most novels offer readers one journey in which readers travel upon, however, readers are brought not one but several journeys that will leave them breathless and hooked. As with all of Joe Cosentino’s novels, humor comes in abundance and fits in perfectly with all of this stunning characters.” “Joe sweeps his readers into his characters’ lives by creating realistic characters with real issues. It’s easy to get lost in it all. The book automatically captures your heart from page one and forever holds it. After reading the story, readers will be begging for the next grand adventure. Funny, heart melting, and swoon worthy, readers will finish reading this in one sitting. I loved reading this riveting tale, and I highly recommend it to readers everywhere.” Urban Reviews.
“In the magical world of Cozzi Cove, a vacation paradise for gay men in a very gay-friendly town, anything and everything can happen.” “If you like interracial romance, angst, a touch of humor, jealousy, personal trainers, architects, beach resorts, and lots of sexy men you will love this story.” Cathy Brockman Romance
Author’s Bio:
Bestselling author Joe Cosentino won Divine Magazine’s Readers Poll of 2015 for Best LGBT Mystery Novel, Best LGBT Humorous Novel, and Best LGBT Contemporary Novel. He wrote Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back, Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward, and the upcoming Cozzi Cove: Stepping Out in the Cozzi Cove beach series (NineStar Press); Drama Queen, Drama Muscle and the upcoming Drama Cruise and Drama Aloha in the Nicky and Noah mysteries (Lethe Press); In My Heart/An Infatuation & A Shooting Star, A Home for the Holidays, The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Dreamspinner Press); Paper Doll, Porcelain Doll, Satin Doll, China Doll and the upcoming Rag Doll Jana Lane mysteries (The Wild Rose Press), and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King (Eldridge Plays and Musicals). He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, and Jason Robards. Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. Joe was voted 2nd Place for Best MM Author of the Year in Divine Magazine’s Readers’ Choice Awards for 2015.

Web site: http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JoeCosentinoauthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JoeCosen
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4071647.Joe_Cosentino

Excerpt of COZZI COVE: BOUNCING BACK by Joe Cosentino, published by NineStar Press:

As Lance rested in bed and Cal was putting on jeans, sandals, and a canary polo shirt, they heard Connor enter the living room and call out to Cal. After giving Lance a kiss on the cheek, Cal begrudgingly left his lover, shut the front bedroom door after himself, and then met up with Connor, who was standing next to the living room sofa.
Connor said, “It’s good to be back at work.”
“How were your grades at college this year?”
Connor shrugged his muscular shoulders. “Pretty average.”
Cal thought, If average is getting Cs and Ds. “I’m guessing you were quite involved with extracurricular activities.”
“One or two.” He giggled. “Maybe, three.”
Cal had a soft spot for the kid. “You did a nice job preparing the bungalows yesterday.”
“I aim to please.”
Cal thought the nineteen-year-old looked like an American flag in cutoff blue jeans that matched his eyes, a T-shirt and sneakers that matched his red hair, and pale skin with freckles.
“How can I be of service to you today, boss?”
Cal ignored Connor’s obvious double meaning.
“Just the usual routine.” Cal wasn’t immune to Connor’s charm, but Connor was a kid, and Cal was a one-man man. “Carry their luggage into the bungalows when the guests arrive. Turn down beds at four p.m.” He attempted to look sternly at the boy. “… Without you in them.”
“Me come on to a guest?” Connor feigned surprise.
“Yes, you, Connor. This is a vacation resort, not the baths.” Cal moved behind his desk. “After today, make up the rooms late mornings and early afternoons. Leave the sheets and towels in front of the garage for the laundry pickup. And don’t forget to sweep out the parking area.”
Connor saluted. “Aye, aye, Capitán .”
They heard a knock at the front door. Cal shouted, “It’s open.”
“Is this the office?”
“We’re informal here,” Cal explained. He typed into his computer, and then motioned for the young man to join him.
“I’m Mario Ginnetti.” He placed a piece of luggage at his feet. “Is it okay to park in the lot?”
Connor seemed to nearly salivate at Mario’s arms in his violet short-sleeved shirt. “You can park anywhere you like.”
Ignoring Connor, Cal said, “Yes, that’s the lot for the bungalows.” Cal handed Mario a key. “You’re in Bungalow One. I’ve got your credit card, so you’re all set.” He took a map from the topmost desk drawer. “The ocean beach is open to the public and is only minutes away. You can swim, surf, snorkel, or go on a glass-bottom boat there.” He pointed to various black dots on the map. “You’ll want to get some groceries here. Tommy Malone’s is a good bar, and Carla’s is my favorite seafood restaurant. This place has killer ice cream, which you can work off here at the gym.”
Connor interjected with, “If you need help finding anything, just ask me. I’m a native.”
“Or you can come into the office and ask me.” Cal handed Mario the map and then pointed outside. “The cove is private property. You can sit out there all you like. The bay water is calm and warm. As you can see, the view is amazing.”
Connor added with a grin, “Nude sunbathing is permitted.”
Mario was visibly trying to take it all in.
“Any questions?” asked Cal.
Mario’s dimples appeared. “Will the weather always be this nice?”
“From your lips to the sea gods’ ears.” Cal smiled. “The weather report calls for rain, so that means it’s going to be sunny all week. Connor will take you to your bungalow.”
Connor looked like the wolf meeting Little Red Riding Hood as he took Mario’s luggage. “Follow me, Mario.”

Excerpt of COZZI COVE: MOVING FORWARD by Joe Cosentino, published by NineStar Press:

Cal Cozzi sat on the white sandy beach like a king on his throne. The thirty-one-year-old thought about his great-grandfather, Calvin Cozzi III, who had built the eight bungalows, seven of which Cal’s father, Calvin Cozzi II, had rented to guys like Cal when Cal was a boy. With both men long gone, Cozzi Cove was Cal’s heritage, lifeblood, and oasis. As he gazed out at the ancient lighthouse near the horizon, Cal filled his lungs with salty sea air. He was happy to be home.
A familiar yawn and warm breath on his neck caused Cal to turn around and throw his arms around the stocky young man who plopped down next to him. Over a decade younger than Cal, Michael Rodgers rubbed his fingers over dark eyes. Resting his head with its chestnut-colored locks on Cal’s chest, Michael said, “I missed waking up in your arms.”
They shared a long kiss and then rose and stood at the water’s edge, watching the seagulls fly across shades of amber, violet, and flame that were fading to reveal a bright-blue sky. With Cal’s Italian and Scottish heritage and Michael’s Swedish and African lineage, Cal thought their skin glistened in the sun like jewels.
Shorter than Cal, Michael licked Cal’s neck.
“Hey, stop licking. I don’t have any pets.”
“You do now.”
Cal took the boy in his arms and smothered his youthful face with kisses. Though Cal would never forget Lance, the soul mate he’d lost to cancer two years prior, he couldn’t escape the fact that he was growing more and more in love with Michael every day they lived together. Michael’s high-energy zest for life and brutal honesty in speaking his mind both infuriated and delighted Cal. And Cal was well aware that his straightforward, hardworking masculinity still made Michael weak at the knees after living together in the main bungalow for nearly a year.
“Let’s get some breakfast.” Cal ran his fingers through Michael’s curly hair.
Michael kneaded the muscles in Cal’s back. “What are we having?”
“I’m having the honey buckwheat pancakes I made. What are you having?” Cal slapped Michael’s firm buttocks playfully, and then ran away as Michael chased him, laughing.
As they headed for the main bungalow, Cal scanned the row of seven guest bungalows on the cove. Cozzi Cove itself was a quiet stretch of beach with waves tickling jagged rocks perched on white sand only a mile away from the open ocean. Though he was excited about the start of the summer rental season, Cal knew he’d miss the tranquility of having the cove to himself—with Michael.
Michael followed Cal into the kitchen. As Cal gazed at the lantern-shaped kitchen clock on the wall, he admired his grandfather’s taste in decorating all of the bungalows with wood-carved, nautical-themed furnishings.
Sitting at the table, Michael said, “When do the guests arrive?”
“Check-in starts at eleven a.m.”
Michael giggled. “Do I have to check in?”
Cal kissed the top of his head. “Yeah, into my bedroom.” He served the pancakes and orange juice before sitting next to Michael. “What time do you have to leave for school?”
Michael answered with his mouth full. “College! I’m taking a summer class at State, not going to morning kindergarten. I’m a junior.”
“Okay, Junior.”
“Very funny. In the fall I’ll be a senior, like you.” He kissed Cal’s wide nose.
“Hey, your lips are covered in honey.”
“So they tell me.” Michael continued eating.
“Does your study buddy tell you that?”
Michael raised his eyes to the mermaid-shaped lighting fixture as if gathering patience. “Carlo is my partner.”
“Really?”
“In my advanced photography class.”
“Is that what they call it at State?”
“Maybe in your day.” Michael’s eyes gleamed devilishly. “Hey, did they have college back then?”
“I’ll put you over my knee, young man.”
“Promises, promises.” Michael swallowed his last piece of pancake and then gulped down the rest of his orange juice. “Carlo is coming here before our class. We’re taking some shots of the cove.”
Cal felt his expression harden. “I thought you were going to mow the lawn, rake the pebbles, and hose down the sidewalk around the bungalows.”
“Done.” Michael put his plate, glass, and fork in the sink.
“When?”
“Last night, when you were in the shower.”
“That’s why you didn’t come in with me.”
Michael wrapped his arms around Cal. “Can I take a rain check for tonight?”
“Maybe you should ask Carlo.”
“Carlo doesn’t shower. He takes baths.”
Cal did a double take. “And you know this how?”
“He told me.” Michael ran into the back bedroom, the home of his computer and photography equipment.
Cal felt his blood boil. Taking in some deep breaths, he told himself to calm down.
Michael came back holding a number of prints and placed them on the kitchen table. “What do you think?”
Cal looked down at photographs. “Nice composition, proportions, and shading.”
“Thanks!”
He pointed at the dark-haired, dark-eyed, olive-skinned, very muscular young man with a stoic Roman nose, dimples like craters, and a cleft chin like the San Andreas Fault. “Your professor brought in an Italian porn star?”
“Watch many Italian porn films, do you, Cal?”
“Obviously you don’t have to.”
“That’s Carlo. I took them in class.”
Cal offered a weak smile, trying hard not to let the anger and jealously he was feeling show on his face.
Michael ran his finger over the photographs. “Our professor complimented me on the line and shape.”
“I can see why.”
“And the contour and shading.”
“Yup.”
“I’m really proud of them. Tommy loved them too.”
Cal rose and put his breakfast things in the sink. “When did you show these to Tommy?”
“Yesterday afternoon when I was working at Tommy’s bar. The pictures of Cozzi Cove are for our next assignment.”
“‘Hot Italian guy on the beach’?”
“‘Summer magic.’ ” He hugged Cal’s neck. “And there’s no place more magical or more romantic than Cozzi Cove in the summer.”
After Michael headed into the bathroom, Cal heard Connor’s jeep pull up into the parking lot.
A minute later, Connor’s voice rang out. “Hi, boss. Private Connor O’Riley reporting for duty.”
Cal met Connor in the living room. “Hi, Connor. Good job cleaning the bungalows yesterday. I aired them out last night. Do me a favor. Get some fresh towels from the bin outside and put them in the bungalows.”
In his usual skintight white T-shirt and short-shorts, the freckled twenty-year-old saluted. “Aye, aye, Capitán.” Connor licked his red lips, which matched his frizzy hair. “Where’s Michael?”
“In the shower.”
“Does he need more towels?” Connor headed toward the bathroom.
Cal grabbed his muscular arm. “Down, boy. And keep it in your pants when the guests get here.”
Connor feigned shock. “Me? Make a play for a guest? Never! Cal, you wound me to the heart.”
“You must have studied dramatics at the college this year.”
Connor batted the long lashes over his sky-blue eyes. “How else could I have dated all the gay dudes?”
Cal laughed. “I’m sure you dated them.”
“I did.” Connor revealed his pearly-white teeth. “It was the football team last year who went straight, pardon the pun, for the touchdown.”
Cal put his arm around the boy’s wide shoulders and walked him to the front porch. “Please get straight to work so everything is ready when the guests arrive.”
Connor said with the eagerness of a child at Christmas, “I can’t wait to see our pick of the litter.”
“Look, don’t touch.”
Connor opened the front door and bumped into Carlo, whose crimson dress shirt had enough buttons open to reveal impressive pectoral muscles. “Welcome to Cozzi Cove!”
As he entered the front porch, his dark eyes glistened in the morning sun. “I’m Carlo. I’m looking for Michael Rodgers.”
Cal shut the door behind him and shook Carlo’s hand, noticing the bulge in Carlo’s black slacks. “Please come in.”

Rainbow Snippets: ‘Making History at Crofton Hall’ (2)

Thankfully life is settling down a bit. I’ve just returned from a trip back to the UK, including a visit to Hatfield House, the beautiful stately home that inspired Crofton Hall.

20160910_133309

So since the creative juices are flowing again I thought I would share another snippet of ‘Making History at Crofton Hall’ – the sequel to ‘Saving Crofton Hall‘.

Here Nathan (TV producer of the upcoming Secret History Special on Crofton Hall) and Dara (Crofton Hall’s new historian) are getting friendly over a pint at the pub in the nearby village.

 

“I’m not looking for a boyfriend.” Dara sipped his pint. “I’ve had enough changes in my life, a new relationship isn’t on the cards, but I’m up for some mutual stress relief.”

Nathan looked into Dara earnest blue eyes. If only all men were so straightforward, he probably wouldn’t have been so reticent. The coming weeks would be full of tension, bickering and nerve-fraying annoyance, maybe what he needed was a little distraction. “Fine.”

“Fine?” Dara laughed. “That’s hardly the ringing endorsement I was expecting. I’m offering to suck your cock, not pick up a box of teabags.”

“Nothing stopping you doing both. I’m rather partial to a cup of tea.”

 

Stop by at the Rainbow Snippets FB group to read more snippets!

 

 

 

A Summer’s Day Anthology or How Rebecca Couldn’t Resist Playing With Shakespeare … Again!

Those of you who have read my writing, especially my historicals, will have noticed that I have a certain love for the Bard of Avon and the Tudor and Stuart period of English history. So when I heard about an anthology that combined Shakespeare, M/M romance and a great charity I was delighted to be able to contribute.

You may notice that unlike my fellow contributors, I didn’t chose one play to base my story on, and the reason for this was, in part, because I couldn’t make up my mind about which play to choose (I love so many of them), but also because I also wanted to play with the setting Shakespeare would have been living in. So my offering is about two actors in the King’s Men (Shakespeare’s own theatre company) competing for roles. My leading men are looking for that last big female role before they get too old to play them and move on to the male roles, and none better than the marvellous Lady Macbeth.

Shakespeare Antho promo

Giveaway!

As part of the blog tour that the contributors are running there is a giveaway… head over to the Rafflecopter link below to win!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Here’s the blurb:

MUCH ADO ABOUT LADY MACBETH

Competition for roles is always high when the King’s Men put on a play, but David seems to come up against Jacob time and time again, no matter what part he is auditioning for.
But now they both want to be Lady Macbeth and it’s more than simple rivalry that causes the sparks to fly.
(Shakespeare’s Theatre)

 

And how about an excerpt?

SURELY DAVID WAS not the only one who could see Jacob’s complete lack of talent. Jacob might be pretty enough to pass as Juliet, in the right light and squinting, but the minute the petulant popinjay opened his mouth his ineptitude had to be clear to all. How Jacob had ever become a player in the King’s Men was beyond David’s comprehension. He seethed quietly to himself as he watched Jacob prance from one side of the stage to the other, supposedly a sprightly fairy but looking more like he was suffering from ague. David clicked his tongue in annoyance as Jacob fumbled his words.

A soft sigh to his right made him turn to see his friend Gwilliam shake his head. “What?” David demanded.

“You grind your teeth so loudly I thought it was a carpenter at work. Yet, the reason for it is so absurd you cannot see the ridiculousness from where you are, deep in your cave of wilful denial.”

“Denial? What gibberish knots your tongue?”

Gwilliam tutted and returned to reading the pamphlet he was holding. “Your animosity for Jacob is no more real than the fairy he is currently playing.”

David spluttered, almost swallowing his tongue at the implication of Gwilliam’s words. A “shush” from the stage prevented him from answering and he sank lower in his seat, his gaze fixed on the annoying Jacob and his annoyingly perfect bottom. David couldn’t grumble about the importance of his role, but thought he should be playing Titania, not the dull-witted Helena. A pining maiden was no match for the queen of the fairies.

Details:

Title: A Summer’s Day: Shakespearean Anthology with a Twist

Authors: Nephy Heart, Louise Lyons, Rebecca Cohen, JL Merrow, Charlie Cochrane, Asta Idonea, Dianne Hartsock, Rory Ni Coileain, Kathy Griffith, M LeAnne Phoenix, Phetra H Novak, Rian Durant

Genre: Gay Romance/Fiction

Length: Anthology, 115 K

Cover Art: Jay Aheer Simply Defined Art

 

A collection of 12 stories celebrating the Bard’s legacy with modern retelling of some of his works and delightful referencing of anything Shakespeare.

There is gentle YA romance next to hot sexy stories and all kinds of relationships – first love, May/December, interracial, second chances, happy endings and even a tragic one.

We’re travelling from Ancient Rome through Renaissance England to modern day UK, Venice Beach and other places in USA, Vancouver and Havana.

There’s fun, drama, tears, joy and, above all, lots of true love.

All proceeds of this collection go to the It Gets Better Project™.

  

Buy Links:

Amazon.com | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AUS

Smashwords