June 28th, 2011

andrew potter

Brac Pack, Volume 1 by Lynn Hagen

Maverick’s Mate (Brac Pack 1) by Lynn Hagen

I decided to start this series from the first book even if the author has already published more than 10 books in the same series. And I’m glad I did that since I was able to understand the settings Lynn Hagen has outlined, more or less a pack of shapeshifter timber wolf made of 1 Alpha, 1 Beta, 1 Commander and 12 warriors, 15 men in total, and I think the author is heading out to write a story for each of them.

The first book is pretty classic, big Alpha man who is waiting for his mate and once he finds him, he doesn’t let it pass one minute to claim him. True, I was a little bit taken aback from the fact that Maverick claims Cecil while the other man is sleeping, hypnotizing him and basically, according to me, not giving him much choice. Again, true to the author, Maverick said it’s only sex, the true mating will happen later, and if Cecil doesn’t agree, nothing is definitive, but still, while the other man is sleeping?

In the end Cecil will come out like a funny and overactive young man (20 years old) and so maybe Maverick “wall” attitude (nothing seems to move him) will be a good balance to the other man; of course, like the more classic Alpha/omega relationship, nothing can touch Maverick if not his little mate, and he will do everything, even killing if necessary, to protect the other man. This is another point that probably is worthy highlighting: there is violence in this novel, but it’s in the background. Maverick and his men have to do bad things, but that doesn’t touch their little men (we will find later in the series that the timber wolf, big wolf in animal form, big man in human form, tend to mate with diminutive human male).

The sex tends to be light more than erotic, the author doesn’t put weight in any of the “differences” between Maverick and Cecil (Maverick is a shapeshifter timber wolf, he is way stronger and bigger than Cecil, and so on) and prefers to have good, but quite ordinary sex scenes between them. Probably the main point of them is for Cecil to be a little (only a little) “easy”, sex for him is like yet another game, something he likes much doing. Again, after the first sex scene, with Cecil sleeping, he becomes the one in “control”: he is the initiator, the one who wraps his big man around his little finger.

All in all, this first story was good, some really minor editing issues (like when Maverick is complaining he doesn’t know his mate name, and then suddenly he comes out with a thought “He would send him to befriend his mate and have the two become friends. Next, the Sentry will invite Cecil over”, and “my” thought was, well, they have just had sex in Cecil’s home, maybe he read the name on the postbox… but right on the next page, Maverick thinks “What was his mate’s name? Maverick was dying to find out.”) that sincerely I wouldn’t have noticed if the author didn’t use that as an element of the story (Cecil’s name).

http://www.bookstrand.com/mavericks-mate

Amazon Kindle: Maverick's Mate [Brac Pack 1]
Publisher: Siren Publishing (March 29, 2011)

Hawk’s Pretty Baby (Brac Pack 2) by Lynn Hagen

Lynn Hagen managed something that very few authors did in these past years, to convince me to read second book in a series as soon as I finished the first one. How did she manage to? Simply she introduced the character of Johnny in book 1 and I was fascinated by him, so much that I had the temptation to drop book 1 and go directly to read book 2.

I was always interested in reading a love story between a very protective man and someone who has a different perception of the reality… yes, this is a way to describe a simpleton, someone who is not totally retarded, but that is not even completely aware of everything around him. Sincerely I don’t like the word “retarded”, since it’s not like I see this character, it’s more something related to the perception of reality. Johnny knows what is good and what is bad, he knows the right and wrong (usually that is the way to understand if a man is emancipated), but he is bereaved of any protective layer, of that hardness deriving from experience. Johnny is completely exposed to the big bad world, and like that, I think it’s plenty right that his perfect match is a uber-protective man, someone who wants to shield Johnny from most of the ugly things of life, not since Johnny doesn’t have to know they exist, but since Johnny would not be able to react and protect himself.

Aside from this, second book in the series is pretty much similar to book 1. Actually, since I was more involved in the story, I didn’t notice any major editing issue this time, maybe they were not there, or maybe they were not so noticeable.

Sex was again good but light, and in a way, it was even more right to Johnny’s character: how he doesn’t have protective layers, he also doesn’t have inhibitions; for Johnny sex is something good, normal and joyful. Sex is again like a game, but it’s also something Johnny can do without being worried if he is doing it right or wrong. Sex for Johnny is freedom, and a playing field where he is at the same level of Hawk, of course being again the little omega man who is wrapping his big Alpha man around his pinkie finger.

http://www.bookstrand.com/hawks-pretty-baby

Amazon Kindle: Hawk's Pretty Baby [Brac Pack 2]
Publisher: Siren Publishing (April 5, 2011)

Amazon: Brac Pack, Volume 1
Paperback: 180 pages
Publisher: Siren Publishing, Inc. (June 28, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1610344936
ISBN-13: 978-1610344937

Reading List:

http://www.librarything.com/catalog_bottom.php?tag=reading list&view=elisa.rolle
andrew potter

Juliet Dymoke (June 28, 1919 - 2001)

Juliet DYMOKE de Schanschieff was an historical novelist (b. 28 June 1919, Enfield, England - d. before 2001). She married Hugo de Schanschieff on May 9, 1942. She was a membership of Romantic Novelist Association.

Her latest address was Heronswood, Chapel Lane, Forest Row, East Sussex RH18 5BS, England.

Her daughter Patricia Juliet de Schanschieff (d. 1989) married Kenneth Cavendish Fitzroy, of Forest Row, East Sussex, a descendants of William the Conqueror, on 1980.

I haven't found any more personal info about Juliet Dymoke, but Forest Row, where she lived, is a very interesting old England village, so let talk about it.

Forest Row is so called from its proximity to the great Forest of Ashdown, and originated in the building of hunting lodges for the use of noblemen and gentlemen who made sport there when "Lancaster Great Park" was in existence. A more desirable spot could scarcely be found; the venison was plentiful, and the scenery and bracing air delightful. The district abounds in picturesque beauty. (extract from M.A. Lower's A Compendious History of Sussex published in 1870)

The Ashdown Forest became a favourable and idyllic place for hunting in the 14th century. The King and his Lords would use Forest Row as their base. Such as the king Edward III and his son, John Of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster were regular enthusiasts. Timber framed houses began to replace the simple shelters, of which some can still be seen today: The Rose Cottages, The Square, Chequers, Post House and The Swan are but a few. The first mansion built in the area was the Brambletye in 1631. However, by 1680 the stately home was unfortunately destroyed, and today only the ruins stand to be seen bleakly in a field.

It was not until the 18th century that there was a substantial change once again, with the new roads to London, Brighton and Tunbridge Wells. More estates began to appear over the surrounding areas, the grand Kidbrooke Park, as an early example, was built in 1724 and then extended in the 19th century. Over two hundred years, this land was occupied by many successive families. Other such houses were the Ashdown House, Hammerwood, and Thornhill, which were being established for the pleasure of living away from the black smoke of the city.

Time went on, and by 1866 a railway linked the ever growing village, firstly to East Grinstead and then extending to reach London and Tunbridge Wells by 1882. Forest Row had become the perfect place for leisurely weekends, for playing golf on the fine greens or simply for the admirable countryside. In 1911 it had become a resort as popular and expensive as Ascot and Virginia Water.

With the two World Wars it continued to be an attractive point, providing a pleasant atmosphere in which to retire. And by the end of the Second World War, with the expansion of both Gatwick and Crawley, and the arrival of Michael Hall School, there was a rise in population and a demand for more housing.

Forest Row, with nearly 150 small shops and businesses, provides its community with a large variety of different trades and skills with a personal service.

I tried to find info about Juliet Dymoke online, and noticing that she was a Romantic Novelist Association member like Liz Fielding, who I have had the luck to interview some years ago and then meet in Matera at the Women's Fiction Festival, I wrote to her asking if she maybe had some more info about Juliet Dymoke and with my big surprise, here is what she answered me (I don't believe that England was so small...)

From Liz Fielding (in memory of Juliet Dymoke for Elisa - My Reviews & Ramblings): "Dear Elisa

This is most extraordinary. I worked with Patricia more than thirty years ago and met her lovely parents on many occasions -- I even went to her engagement party.

Juliet Dymoke was a member of the RNA for many years and I'm sure was short-listed for their main award, the Romantic Novel of the Year, for her book Holland House in the early 90s. I loved her books, particularly a trilogy of early medieval books Of the Ring of Earls -- about the invasion of William the Conqueror; Henry of the High Rock about Henry 1 -- I can't remember the other title.

Juliet also worked on historical film scripts in Hollywood, including El Cid.

I left England after Patricia's engagement to work in Africa and the Middle East and lost contact with the family, but Juliet was the most charming woman.

With warmest wishes for Christmas and the New Year

Liz"

Juliet Dymoke's Books on Amazon: Juliet Dymoke
andrew potter

LGBT Ebook and Print Releases June, 2011

AMAZON DIGITAL SERVICES
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AMBER ALLURE (http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure/)
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AMIRA PRESS
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BARBARIANSPY
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BEAU TO BEAU BOOKS
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BELLA BOOKS (http://www.bellabooks.com/)
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BITTEN PEACH PRESS
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BLUE FEATHER BOOKS
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BOLD STROKES BOOKS (http://www.boldstrokesbooks.com/)
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BREATHLESS PRESS (http://www.breathlesspress.com/)
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BRUNO GMUNDER (http://www.brunogmuender.com/)
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BYWATER BOOKS
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CARINA PRESS (http://ebooks.carinapress.com/)
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CHANGELING PRESS (http://www.changelingpress.com/)
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CHELSEA STATION EDITIONS (http://www.chelseastationeditions.com/)
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CHEYENNE PUBLISHING (http://www.cheyennepublishing.com/)
Awake by Brian Katcher, Robin Reardon, Jordan Taylor and Nancy Garden - all net proceeds for "Awake" from Cheyenne Publishing go to The Trevor Project, the organization which works to prevent suicide among LGBTQ youth

CLEIS PRESS (http://www.cleispress.com/)
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CREATESPACE PUBLISHING
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DARK SENSATION
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DECADENT PUBLISHING COMPANY
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DREAMSPINNER PRESS (http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/)
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ETOPIA PRESS (http://www.etopia-press.net/)
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EXCESSICA PUBLISHING (http://excessica.com/)
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EXTASY BOOKS (http://www.extasybooks.net/)
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FAITH IN THE MOON
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FREYA’S BOWER
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JMS BOOKS (http://www.jms-books.com/)
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KENSINGTON BOOKS (http://www.kensingtonbooks.com/)
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LESS THAN THREE PRESS
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LETHE PRESS (http://www.lethepressbooks.com/)
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LIQUID SILVER BOOKS (http://www.liquidsilverbooks.com/)
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LLS BOOKS
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LOOSE ID (http://www.loose-id.com/)
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LOVEYOUDIVINE (http://www.loveyoudivine.com/)
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MAD BOOKS
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MLR PRESS (http://www.mlrbooks.com/)
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NAZCA PLAINS CORPORATION
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NOBLE ROMANCE PUBLISHING (http://www.nobleromance.com/)
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PHAZE BOOKS (http://www.phaze.com/)
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PINE WOOD PRESS
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PINK PETAL BOOKS (http://pinkpetalbooks.com/)
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POISON PIXIE PUBLISHING
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PRIZM BOOKS (http://www.prizmbooks.com/)
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RAVENOUS ROMANCE (http://www.ravenousromance.com/)
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RAZOR’S EDGE PRESS
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RUNNING PRESS
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SECRET CRAVINGS PUBLISHING
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SILVER PUBLISHING (http://silverpublishing.info/)
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STORM MOON PRESS (http://www.stormmoonpress.com/)
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SUMMERHOUSE PUBLISHING
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SWEET NOTHINGS
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THE GA HAUSER COLLECTION
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TORQUERE BOOKS (http://www.torquerebooks.com/)
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TOTAL-E-BOUND (http://www.total-e-bound.com/)
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UNIVERSITY OF WISCOUNSIN PRESS
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WICKED NIGHTS
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WHITE LAKE PRESS
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XARA X. XANAKAS
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XCITE BOOKS
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ZUMAYA (http://www.zumayapublications.com/)
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