If at the end of the treasure hunt there will be still unmatched excerpts the giveaway will go to the one who matched more books.
The books are:
A Hunted Man by Jaime Reese
A Kingdom Lost by Barbara Ann Wright
A Place for Cliff by Talon ps
A Special Kind of Folk by Barry Brennessel
About Face by VK Powell
Ancient House of Cards by Bryan T. Clark
Another Healing by M. Raiya
Antidote by Jack L. Pyke
Because of Jade by Lou Sylvre
Beloved Pilgrim by Christopher Hawthorne Moss
Better Than Friends by Lane Hayes
Bird of Paradise by G.J. Paterson
Bite of the Recluse by Azalea Moone & Anais Morgan
Bonds of Denial by Lynda Aicher
Brokenhearted by Cate Ashwood
Camellia by Caitlin Ricci & Cari Z.
Carnal Sacraments by Perry Brass
Caught! By JL Merrow
Chasing the Dragon by Kate Sherwood
Chip off the Ice Block Murder by Jessie Chandler
Clean Slate by Andrea Bramhall
Corruption by Eden Winters
Desire at Dawn by Fiona Zedde
Dirty Beautiful Words by Brooklyn Brayl
Dissonance by Shira Anthony
Dudek by Taylor James
Educating Simon by Robin Reardon
Fight by Kelly Wyre
Filthy Acquisitions by Edmond Manning
Firestorm by Rory Ni Coileain
Forever Hold His Peace by Rebecca Cohen
Forgive Us by Lynn Kelling
Fractured by Mickie B. Ashling
Freak Camp: Posts From a Previously Normal Girl by Jessica V. Barnett
FutureDyke by Lea Daley
Games Boys Play by Zoe X. Rider
Gathering Storm by Alexa Land
Gin & Jazz 1- 4 (4 novellas: Hollywood Bound, Razzle Dazzle, Tarnished Glitter and Starring Role) by Morticia Knight
Girls Don't Hit by Geonn Cannon
Great Pleasures by Edward Southgate
Greg Honey by Russ Gregory
Happy Independence Day by Michael Rupured
Hard Pressed by Sharon Maria Bidwell
Hell & High Water (THIRDS, Book #1) by Charlie Cochet
Highfell Grimoires by Langley Hyde
His Fair Lady by Kimberly Gardner
Hoaley Inexplicable by Declan Sands
How Still My Love by Diane Marina
Hungry for Love by Rick R. Reed
If I Die Before I Wake by Liz McMullen
If We Shadows by D.E. Atwood
Ink & Flowers by J.K. Pendragon
It's Like This by Anne O'Gleadra
Lab Rat's Love by Ana J. Phoenix
Lesbian Crushes at School: A Diary on Growing Up Gay in the Eighties by Natasha Holme
Let the Lover Be by Sheree L. Greer
Like Jazz by Heather Blackmore
Love and Salvage: Loving Emmett by Mathew Ortiz
Love Is A Stranger by John Wiltshire
Love You Forever by Amelia Bishop
Lovers and Liars by Paul Alan Fahey
Mark of Cain by Kate Sherwood
Masquerade by Joy Lynn Fielding
Measure of Peace by Caethes Faron
Mirage by Tia Fielding
More Than Everything by Cardeno C.
Motel. Pool. By Kim Fielding
Murder and the Hurdy Gurdy Girl by Kate McLachlan
Murder on the Mountain by Jamie Fessenden
My Brother's Lover by Lynn Kelling
Nightingale by Andrea Bramhall
No Angel by Clare London
Omorphi by C. Kennedy
On Archimedes Street by Jefferson Parrish
Paradise at Main and Elm by Barry Brennessel
Paris Connection by J.P. Bowie
Passage by Evey Brett
Pick Up the Pieces by Tinnean
Piper by Leona Carver
Rapture, Sins of the Sinners by Fran Heckrotte & A.C. Henley
Rarely Pure and Never Simple by Angel Martinez
Rasputin's Kiss by L.M. Somerton
Rest Home Runaways by Clifford Henderson
Resurrection Man by K.Z. Snow
Return of an Impetuous Pilot by Kate McLachlan
Rocky Mountain Freedom by Vivian Arend
Running Through A Dark Place by Michael J. Bowler
Saving Liam by DP Denman
Serpentine Walls by CJane Elliott
Shades of Sepia by Anne Barwell
Shameful Desires 3: Unbound by P.J. Proud
Shirewode by J Tullos Hennig
Silent by Sara Alva
Slide by Garrett Leigh
Something Like Spring by Jay Bell
Splinters by Thorny Sterling
Stitch by Eli Easton, Sue Brown, Jamie Fessenden & Kim Fielding
Summerville by H.L. Sudler
The 42nd Street Jerking-off Club by Mykola Dementiuk
The Calm Before by Neena Jaydon
The Dead Past by Kate Aaron
The Empath by Jody Klaire
The Engineered Throne by Megan Derr
The Family We Make by Kaje Harper
The Genealogy of Understanding by Daniel M. Jaffe
The House on Hancock Hill by Indra Vaughn
The Last Conception by Gabriel Constans
The Line by J.D. Horn
The Mating of Michael by Eli Easton
The Memory of Blood & Lotuses by E.E. Ottoman
The Opera House by Hans M. Hirschi
The River Within by Baxter Clare Trautman
The Seventh Pleiade by Andrew J. Peters
The Thief Taker by William Holden
This Is Not a Love Story by Suki Fleet
Tournament of Shadows by S.A. Meade
True Stories Too: People and Places From My Past by Felice Picano
Turnbull House by Jess Faraday
Zenith by Arshad Ahsanuddin
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Today excerpts are:
A decent-enough chap of middling age, Reverend Brown had taken over when the previous incumbent, Revered Pottle, had at long last been called to meet his Maker at the ripe old age of seventy-two. Reverend Pottle had been the priest of Hugo’s childhood, a fire and brimstone man who much preferred the Old Testament to the New. The Reverend Brown, by contrast, seemed a far staider cleric, never much of one to involve himself in anything more taxing than the dates of the jumble sales or praising the ladies’ flower arrangements, leaving matters requiring greater diplomacy to his wife, the very capable Edith, who had so neatly annexed Hugo in the greengrocer’s the previous day.
The Reverend kept the service brief, for which Hugo was grateful. He owned a dark sort of disappointment that the casket was closed, its high-polished wooden top bedecked with a spray of winter flowers, no doubt gathered by the church ladies from their hothouses for the occasion. A sole relative sat on the front pew, a man of advancing years whom Hugo assumed to be a younger brother or cousin of the deceased, both her children having succumbed to influenza in the months following the First War.
Hugo stopped listening to the sermon after the first prayer. He had heard it all before, at his mama’s funeral, and had no wish to relive the experience for the sake of someone who, after all was said and done, was almost a stranger to him. Instead he looked around the church, admiring not for the first time the grand old edifice, the earliest wing of which dated back to Norman times, or so they said. Constructed of weathered red sandstone, slate-roofed, with an imposing bell tower at the north end, it was an impressive sight both inside and out, certainly for a town as unprepossessing as Puddledown. Dedicated to St. George, its stained glass window on the south wall bore a striking mural of the slaying of the dragon, the mighty beast clutching at a spear lodged deep in its throat while above it, the Saint’s white steed reared and kicked its hooves. There was no sign of the distressed damsel in the scene, but then Hugo didn’t suppose the story was really about her, anyway. The sun flashed through the coloured panes as it tracked its way across the sky, throwing rainbows of light down onto the dull stone pulpit below.
He had buried his mama in the churchyard, a small ceremony held in remembrance of a small, unassuming woman from a small, unassuming town. He had visited her grave once a week at first, as that seemed most appropriate for a dutiful, loving son. He’d brought her flowers from the garden and tidied the grasses which in spring grew tall enough to obscure her simple headstone, but eventually he realised nobody was watching him, nobody keeping track, and his visits languished to once a fortnight, once a month, then stopped altogether.
To the sombre notes of organ music, the coffin was carried at the head of the slow procession of townsfolk out into the churchyard to the freshly-exhumed grave of the late Mr Fairchild, where Mrs Fairchild would be laid to rest, flanked by her children. Not so much time had passed that the letters of the weathered stones had become illegible, and Hugo read them now. ‘Annie Fairchild, Beloved Daughter. 1901-1919’ and ‘William Fairchild, Beloved Son, 1903-1919’. For we are the children of God.
Somewhere near was his mother’s grave, although Hugo studiously avoided looking in that direction, as though, if he looked, her neglected headstone would reproach him for his long absence; as though her very ghost would rise up and demand to know why he had forsaken her. The dead had no lives on their own. It made sense they would try to suck life from the living.
Went to see Miss Williams’s new form room (the needlework room). I suddenly had the idea to write something with drawing pins on her notice board. I had to collect more drawing pins from other form rooms. I wrote out:
I LOVE YOU
I wanted to add ‘NATASHA’ at the bottom, but ran out of drawing pins. This took me from 12:30pm till after 1pm. Really felt like a burglar. Thought I might get locked in, or that the cleaners might come, or that she might. ...
As I went out of the doors at the end of the corridor leading to the needlework room, about to go downstairs, I saw Miss Williams’s white handbag and the edge of her dress. I could hear her and Mr. Gilbert’s voices.
I took off my shoes ready to dash off upstairs if necessary. But she went off in another direction, calling back to Mr. Gilbert an extremely un-Miss-Williams thing: “If you can’t be good, be careful.”
I waited until I felt it was safe, then made my escape.
Sat on the window sill in the sixth form block till 4:20pm when a bloke came to lock up.
Went to visit Sara, told her I’d taken loads of photos of Miss Williams.
Sara said, “Oh, you don’t still fancy her, do you?” and she bought me a chocolate chip ice-cream.
“You’re new.” He turned to find a man, roughly his age, staring at him.
“Uh, yeah. Hi. Oliver,” he introduced himself as he extended his hand toward the stranger.
“Haydn,” the man replied, shaking Oliver’s hand firmly. “Ooh, nice grip. I love a man with good hands,” he cooed.
Oliver blinked. Was this guy coming on to him?
“Not too much fresh meat comes through here man. It’s nice to see a pretty face in the crowd. So what’s your deal anyway?” Haydn asked. “Gay? Straight? Bi? Single? Married? What?”
Haydn reached up close, supporting himself on the arm he placed on the tree beside Oliver’s head. Oliver swallowed hard. Haydn was shorter than him by a couple of inches and the resulting angle put Haydn’s mouth awfully close to his.
Wow, okay, so yes, this guy was definitely hitting on him. “You always this forward?” he asked.
Haydn didn’t seem to be bothered by Oliver’s less-than- welcoming tone. “Yup. Don’t see any point in beating around the bush or being coy. I don’t like games. Honesty is always best and in my experience tends to save a lot of hearts from being broken,” he said matter-of-factly. “Not that I would mind getting my heart a little manhandled, especially if you were the one doing the manhandling.”
Oliver laughed in spite of himself. He’d never met anyone quite like Haydn before. He liked him instantly. “Most decidedly gay, but not decided on the single/taken question.”
“You don’t know if you’re seeing someone?”
“For you or for him?”
“Both, I guess. I’m not staying long and he’s deeply closeted.”
“Oooh, so it’s someone in town,” Haydn said in a sing-song voice.
“Shit. No. I didn’t….”
“Don’t sweat it. I won’t tell a soul.”
He did not, Neferhotep had decided by the next evening, enjoy travel by chariot. He thought he might have ridden in a chariot before, but he only had the vaguest sense of it, something that shifted and swirled at the back of his mind but gave him no strong memories to latch onto. Either way, he did not care for it much now at all. It was bumpy, jerking him back and forth so that he was forced to cling to one side of the thing. The horses made him nervous. After the first time when they had startled, they had been quiet and docile, but Neferhotep was still keenly aware that they could be spooked again at any minute and throw both him and Iunmet.
The chariot went over another patch of rocky ground and Neferhotep almost fell forward, catching hold of Iunmet for support. Iunmet didn't seem to be having a problem staying upright and steady, Neferhotep noticed irritably as Iunmet took one hand from the reins to wrap his arm around Neferhotep' shoulders. He pulled him close, too close, too intimate; Neferhotep could smell the scented oil Iunmet had anointed himself with the first day they'd made camp. It smelled sweet and spicy at the same time, overlaying the darker, richer scent of Iunmet's blood.
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