Contemporary Romance books

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Blue Moon

Blue Moon and Red Sunset
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Daredevil wrestler Brad Fraser throws his body around the ring to the cheers of the crowd, but when the lights go dark, he throws it from bed to bed to alleviate the boredom of travel. It all comes crashing down one night at the hands of the resident bad guy, but Brad finds himself rescued by the cool, suave Scott O’Doul, and the two men make a pact based on the illusion of control.

Though their relationship begins as an arrangement of pleasure rather than commitment, over the course of a year on and off the road, Brad finds himself trusting Scott more and more. But Scott plays things close to the chest, and Brad isn't sure where he stands—until the night Scott nearly pushes him too far.

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After a year apart, teacher Jacob Peters and county judge Beau Braedon decide they can’t live without each other. There are just a few small obstacles to their Alabama love story. Jacob resents Beau’s paranoia about being outed, but Beau is convinced he’ll lose his seat on the bench if he admits to their relationship, and as a teacher at a Christian school, Jacob’s job is even more at risk. They could relocate, but Beau’s mother has Alzheimer’s and can’t be moved. And then there’s the tiny issue of Jacob’s infant son, Finn, and his mother, whom Jacob wed out of duty. In short, they are stuck.

But Beau has a long-term plan, and he’s prepared to swallow his fears and compromise with Jacob, because sharing stolen moments is no longer enough.

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Love Means... Family

Love Means... Series
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A Love Means... Story

Four months ago Robert Edward “Arie” Hawkins lost his sister and the rest of her family in a plane crash. Now his parents have decided it’s time for him to marry and carry on the family name. Arie knows it’s most likely the grief talking—especially from his mother, who’s taken to putting more than ice in her iced tea—so to escape Mississippi, Arie calls his best friend, Robbie, and arranges for a visit.

Life is always changing at the Michigan farm where Robbie lives. Owner Geoff Laughton and his partner, Eli, have started a therapeutic riding program and adopted a little boy, creating a family. It’s while feeding Jakey that Arie meets Officer Hunky.

Officer Hunky’s real name is Deputy Duane Keenan, and he has troubles of his own, but not enough to stop him from pursuing Arie. But Duane’s and Arie’s families are pulling them in opposite directions. Trying to build a connection to support their mutual attraction may prove to be more than difficult… it may be impossible.

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Gentle and shy, William has lived life on the sidelines. Solitude and his tiny bookshop have been a safe haven, and he's watched New York evolve from Stonewall to the gay marriage bill. At 61, he falls in love with Tommy, a young veteran going to school on the GI Bill. William doesn't believe Tommy could possibly care for him, and he begins to fear that Tommy and his troubled roommate Marley are setting him up for a heartbreaking fall. When Tommy disappears, William has to risk leaving his safe haven and walking into danger, maybe into betrayal, to save the boy he loves.

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Ryan’s entire life changed the night Scott surprised him in a bathroom at a party.  Now Ryan’s soulless climb up the corporate ladder has stalled—but his quality life has become a whirlwind of laughter, joy and surprises, thanks to Scotty’s playful, gentle heart.

After three years together, they’re going to Ryan’s parents’ cabin to spend Christmas.  Snowed in by the weather and locked under the icy glare of his mother’s disapproval, can Ryan show he has found the most profound happiness in the simplest of things?

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Years ago, Wes Stanhope fled his hometown of Charleston to escape the constraints of society and his controlling father, Colonel Robert Lee Stanhope IV. After completing medical school and building a successful practice in pediatric oncology in Seattle, Wes is called home for his mother’s funeral and presented with an opportunity to build and run a children’s hospital—his mother’s legacy—a choice he ultimately makes despite his misgivings about his father’s role as chairman of the hospital’s board of directors.

When Wes begins to build his team, he is introduced to a young, handsome black  architect named Tyler Williams. Sparks begin to fly between the two men, and although Wes doesn’t identify as gay, denying his attraction to Ty becomes impossible. But Ty won’t be a dirty secret: if Wes wants to build a relationship, he’ll have to come out, brave his father’s racism and homophobia, and risk his chance to continue as the hospital’s CEO and realize his mother’s dream.

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It only takes one night with Ash Gallagher to make Eli Hollister think he’s finally met the right man at the right time. Good thing he doesn’t bet on it, because Ash turns out to be a student in Eli’s class at the local college. Eli can’t deny he’s attracted, but now it’s complicated. He’s already in enough trouble with the department head, a man who would like to see Eli denied his tenure and fired.

Ash is looking forward to taking his life in a new direction. After serving one active-duty stint in the Marine Corps and another in the Reserves, he’s ready to put his military life behind him. The last new experience he’d planned for this semester was to fall in lust with his English professor, but the more Eli resists, the more Ash is determined to have him. Then he discovers Eli’s playing for keeps, and Ash is only interested in a fling... or is he? Between these two, when it comes to life and love, all bets are off.

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The Winter Courtship Rituals of Fur-Bearing Critters

Granby Knitting Series
2011 Advent Calendar | I'll Be Home for Christmas
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A Granby Knitting Novella

Rance Crawford is an alpaca rancher, fiber mill owner, and self-proclaimed grumpy bastard. When sweet, charming tenderfoot Ben McCutcheon moves onto Crawford’s rural road, Rance is very aware that Ben makes it a grand total of two gay men in their tiny town, and even though he is instantly, painfully smitten, any move he makes could be simply chalked up to being hard up. Using his best weapon and favorite skill, Crawford launches an awkward, wordless effort to make sure Ben is kept warm during the cold Colorado winter, every last piece of him—especially his heart.

 

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2011 Advent Calendar package "I'll Be Home for Christmas."

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Love Means... Healing

Love Means... Series
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A Love Means... Story

Seven months ago, Len Parker lost his partner of more than twenty years, and he isn’t sure how to feel about his blossoming attraction to Chris, one of his farmhands. Hesitant and still hurt, Len remains aloof and distant until he’s goaded into teaching Chris to ride.

Fresh out of a thirty-year career with the Marines, Chris can explore his sexuality openly for the first time in his life, but what he needs more than anything is peace. He’s convinced Len doesn’t like him until he digs a little deeper, and then, armed with hope, Chris sets out to prove that love can provide the healing he and Len so desperately need.

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Cop Out

Toronto Tales | Book One
2012 Award Winners
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Toronto Tales: Book One

Detective Kurt O’Donnell is used to digging up other people’s secrets, but when he discovers his slain partner was married to another man, it shakes him. Determined to do the right thing, Kurt offers the mourning Davy his assistance. Helping Davy through his grief helps Kurt deal with the guilt that his partner didn’t trust him enough to tell him the truth, and somewhere along the way Davy stops being an obligation and becomes a friend, the closest friend Kurt has ever had.

His growing attraction to Davy complicates matters, leaving Kurt struggling to reevaluate his sexuality. Then a sensual encounter neither man is ready for confuses them further. To be with Davy, Kurt must face the prospect of coming out, but his job and his relationship with his Catholic family are on the line. Can he risk destroying his life for the uncertain possibility of a relationship with a newly widowed man?

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College professor James Richards is in a rut and feeling his age. He moved to northern California to escape heartbreak and humiliation, but so far the only good thing to happen to him has been his Boston terrier, Marlowe.

Then James’s toughest student sets him up with her best friend. Rafael Ochoa is worlds apart from James—chronologically, culturally, and philosophically—but he’s also beautiful, kind, and a shot of adrenaline to James’s not-quite-middle-aged heart. Together, the two of them forge a bridge between James’s East Coast sensibilities and Rafael’s West Coast casualness, but can their meeting of the hearts survive James’s lack of faith in happy-ever-after?

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Dylan Rojers is excited about Dragon*Con—a huge convention in Atlanta celebrating pop culture, science fiction, and fantasy—but he and his last-minute roommate, Brendan Stone, get off on the wrong foot. It seems that every time they manage a tentative truce, something happens to set them back, and by their second day at the convention, both think there’s no way they can get along.

But maybe Dylan and Brendan have more in common than they thought. Once they start talking, the sparks that were starting arguments ignite a different sort of passion. Through the four fabulous days of parties, shopping in the Dealers Room, costume parades, and discussion panels, Dylan and Brendan grow ever closer. There’s just one problem: they live in different cities, and Dragon*Con doesn’t last forever. Will Dylan and Brendan risk a long-distance romance or is a lasting relationship just one more all-too-brief fantasy?

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An Art Series novel

Brian Watson knows close friends Gerald Young and Dieter Krumpf have an ulterior motive when they invite him to their Christmas party. Brian has taken over the case to secure the return of the famous painting called The Woman in Blue to Dieter, but they don’t want Brian to be all work and no play. They intend to set him up with a friend, but he’s not who catches Brian’s eye. Instead, it’s Nicolai, the deaf art restorer caring for the works already returned to Dieter.

But pursuing Nicolai won’t be easy. A year ago Nicolai had to fight to regain his independence after a bad break-up, and he’s reluctant to give up his freedom a second time. Plus, Brian has competition in Justin, Nicolai’s ex, who wants him back badly.

Nicolai’s reluctance isn’t the only roadblock. Brian was married to a woman for almost ten years. Now he has to confess to his mother, his ex-wife, and his young daughter that he loves a man—all while conducting a potentially groundbreaking court case and trying to convince Nicolai that love isn’t about co-dependence, it’s about support.

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The Zero Knot

2012 Award Winners
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Eighteen-year-old Jess Bonner is casting off pretense—and, with it, some friends from his past who aren’t particularly trustworthy. In just a few months he’ll be starting college, and it’s time for him to admit the truth: he’s gay, not bi, and only one of his old friends holds any kind of real interest for him. When Dylan Finch, aka Mig, follows his lead and puts some distance between himself and the old crowd, he and Jess give in to a mutual attraction that’s been building for years.

But navigating a fledgling relationship isn’t easy for beginners, and forces they can’t seem to control keep tripping them up: sexual appetite, personal insecurities, fear of discovery, and more. They need clarity. They need courage. Just as they’re on the verge of finding both, a vindictive act of jealousy sends one of them to jail. All their hard-won victories are in danger of falling to dust. And the only way to save what they have is to recognize it for what it is… and fight for its integrity.

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Talker's Graduation

Talker Series | Book Three
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Sequel to Talker’s Redemption
Book Three of the Talker series

When you get past the basics of survival, what next? Brian Cooper recovered from the attack that almost killed him, and Tate Walker faced down his own demons. Now all that’s left is... each other. Growing up together and growing into their love is everything but easy.

Talker’s eternal optimism and Brian’s quiet faith just might be able to conquer the obstacles, big and small, in their way—as well as overcome the complications of having all their dreams come true.

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Breaking Faith

Breaking Faith and Passing Shadows
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Brett Derwent thinks he has life all planned out. With the freedom of college life just months away, Brett’s eagerly awaiting some fun and independence… until he meets Tommy Hawks. Over the course of one northern Montana summer, an intense romance blooms between the young men, but Tommy has a painful secret—one that even first love can’t mitigate. Continually brutalized by his violent father, Tommy is pushed to the edge, torn between the desire to protect his mother and four siblings, and his fear of losing the love he never expected to find.

When the unthinkable happens and Tommy’s father is found dead, Brett is afraid to learn the truth. Appalled to think that his lover may be responsible, Brett must face impossible questions: how much of his life—of his youth—is he willing to sacrifice for Tommy, and will having faith in him be enough?

 

Second Edition
First Edition published by Freya’s Bower in 2008 under the same title.

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Between Two Promises

Between Two Worlds | Book Two
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Sequel to Between Two Worlds

Daniel Schrock and Aiden Cermak have forged a life in the rural Montana foothills, but a shadow still lingers, made stronger when a letter arrives from Daniel's brother Mark inviting him to his Christmas wedding. Daniel fears returning home might force what he wants to avoid: telling his family about Aiden and facing the dreaded Amish shunning.

Despite the uncertainties, Daniel and Aiden head to Illinois, where frustration will not only endanger Daniel’s relationship with his family and the church community, but his bond with his boyfriend, who leaves Daniel with a choice: him or the Amish. Before Daniel can stop Aiden, he’s gone… and threats from the past resurface, crystallizing Daniel’s fears about a murderer still at large.

As he desperately searches for Aiden and the identity of the suspected killer, Daniel will have to decide if love is important enough to risk losing everything he knows. Will Daniel choose to keep his commitment to the Amish church or will he stand by the promise he made to Aiden that first night they made love?

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Legal Artistry

Art Series
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An Art Series novel

Years ago, Dieter Krumpf’s grandmother died and left him everything, including a photo album containing pictures of the art collection she left behind when her family fled the Nazis. Now, Dieter is calling on the services of a lawyer, Gerald Young, to determine whether his family’s legacy might be returned to him.

Gerald doesn’t hold out much hope that the paintings will be returned, but Dieter’s earnestness speaks to him and he agrees to help. At first he concludes that while Dieter has a case, suing in Austria isn’t practical.  But Gerald is a good lawyer, and as his feelings for Dieter develop, so does his determination to win the case. Together, Gerald and Dieter navigate research, hearings, and a dysfunctional family in the pursuit of fine art—and discover the art of love along the way.

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