Friday, June 15, 2012

Road To RomCon with Marie Sexton + Giveaway

Marie Sexton writes M/M romance which we're semi-virgins when it comes to reading this type of romance. But we're ready to branch out! Today she is sharing two excerpts from two different books and let's just say that we'll be adding Marie to The List.

WELCOME TO THE BLOG MARIE!!!

Meet Marie:
Marie Sexton lives in Colorado. She’s a fan of just about anything that involves muscular young men piling on top of each other. In particular, she loves the Denver Broncos and enjoys going to the games with her husband. Her imaginary friends often tag along. Marie has one daughter, two cats, and one dog, all of whom seem bent on destroying what remains of her sanity. She loves them anyway.

Connect with Marie: Author Site | Facebook | Twitter

Hello, everybody! I’m very happy to be here. I’d like to start out by thanking Romancing Rakes for having me!

I’m Marie Sexton, and I write gay romance. I live in Colorado. I’m a stay-at-home mom. I’m also a fan of the Denver Broncos, a lover of coffee, and a worshiper of cheese.

I’ve spent the last couple of weeks trying to come up with some kind of witty blog post, but the truth is, I seem to be all witted out. (Not the same as being out of my wits, although that may also be true.) But then it occurred to me that you might be far more interested in a couple of excerpts than in listening to me babble, anyway.

I’d like to start out with a quick excerpt from my very first novel, Promises, a fun little contemporary romances about two alpha men falling in love.


We finally headed into the tent. We had debated bringing two, but they were all large tents, and in the end, space in the Jeep was limited, so we had agreed to share one.

“This is always the worst part,” I said as I stripped down to my boxers. “The trick is to get undressed and into your bag as fast as possible.”

“Are you crazy?” he asked. “It’s so cold.”

“You’ll be warmer in your bag without your clothes,” I told him as I climbed into my bag. “That way, it’s just your body warming the bag, and the bag warming you. The layers of clothes will get in the way. Of course, it’s hell when you have to pee in the night. But you’ll be warmer. Trust me.” I was all zipped up now, starting to feel toasty and already getting drowsy. “You can leave your thermals on if you want.” I yawned. “Weren’t you a Boy Scout?”

“No. We never stayed anywhere long enough.” He was starting to get undressed now. He raised his eyebrow at me playfully and said, “I think this is all just a ploy to get me naked.”

I laughed. “You’re right. In fact, it’s going to be so cold tonight, our only hope for survival is for you to share my bag.” He laughed a little at that, too, but then he pulled his shirt off, and it was all I could do not to stare. His body was amazing, just as I had always imagined: strong and lean and heavily muscled. There was no hair on his chest but a little around his navel and a dark trail of it that got thicker as went down to where it disappeared under the waistband of his sweats. I could picture all too clearly the thick, black hair that trail led to. Suddenly the idea of him sharing my bag, although it had been a joke, was foremost in my mind. I couldn’t help but imagine having his smooth skin against mine, following that trail with my fingers to the hair below. My body was reacting in a way that would have horrified him, and I was glad that I had managed to get into my bag before he started undressing.

I closed my eyes while he undressed the rest of the way. No need to torment myself any more than I already had. I heard him climb into his bag and zip it up, and then the lantern went off.

It was quiet for a moment, and then he said, “Jared?”

“Hmmm?”

“Good night.”

I had embarrassingly erotic dreams about him all night and woke up crazy horny in the morning. He was already up, and I took advantage of the empty tent to try and alleviate my predicament as quickly and quietly as I could. Once I was up and dressed and made it outside, I was happy to find that he had made coffee. He gave me the pseudo-grin as he handed me a cup of it.

“What’s so funny?” I asked him.

“You talk in your sleep.”

Oh shit! Of course, I knew that I sometimes talked while dreaming, and I tried to sound very casual as I asked, “What did I say?” I was hoping like hell it hadn’t been about him.

“You said, ‘let me follow it,’ and I asked ‘follow what?’, and you said, ‘the trail.’”

I turned away so he couldn’t see me turning red and said, “I was dreaming about mountain biking.”

Excerpt from Promises ©2010 by Marie Sexton
###

PROMISES:
Jared Thomas has lived his whole life in the small mountain town of Coda, Colorado. He can’t imagine living anywhere else. Unfortunately, the only other gay man in town is twice his age and used to be his teacher, so Jared is resigned to spending his life alone.

Until Matt Richards walks into his life, that is. Matt has just been hired by the Coda Police Department, and he and Jared immediately become friends. Matt claims he is straight, but for Jared, having a sexy friend like Matt is way too tempting. Facing Matt’s affair with a local woman, his disapproving family, and harassment from Matt’s co-workers, Jared fears they’ll never find a way to be together—if he can even convince Matt to try.
Get Your Own Copy: Amazon(pb) | Kindle | ARe | Dreamspinner

Promises is the first novel in my Coda series. You can get the full details about the books and what order they can be read in here.

Most of my books are contemporary romances, but more recently, I’ve been branching out. I have Blind Space, which is scifi (kinky space pirates, FTW!), and Cinder, a retelling of Cinderella. My upcoming release, Saviours of Oestend is a sequel to last year’s Song of Oestend, a sort of old west, paranormal, quasi-cowboy fantasy novel.

I know, it sounds insane. But the truth is, it was a lot of fun. It also won the 2011 Rainbow Awards for Best Gay Fantasy and Best Character Development, and received an Honourable Mention for Best Gay Novel. I think I’ll finish off by sharing the opening excerpt of Song of Oestend.


Aren had heard of the wraiths, of course. Everyone had.

The thing was, nobody believed the stories were real. Not where he came from, anyway.

But on his first night in the town of Milton, as the wind howled outside and beat against the shuttered windows of his room, Aren Montrell lay awake and trembling in his bed. He began to remember every story he’d ever heard about the wraiths.

Every nanny—and probably every parent, too, although Aren wouldn’t know about that— told stories of children found cold and lifeless in the morning because some spiteful adult had left the window open after tucking the kids into bed. It was said that wraiths came on the darkest of nights, stealing the breath from any person fool enough not to be inside, behind closed doors. Even back home, across the sea, in the bustling cities of Lanstead, many houses had signs of protection over their front doors. Still, Aren had never had reason to believe the stories were true. He’d always believed the signs were more decorative than anything. But he’d quickly discovered upon his arrival in Oestend that every building had the signs, not just over the front door, but over every door, and the windows as well. Even the barn where weary travellers boarded their horses had been warded
against the wraiths.

He’d seen the way the hostel-keeper and his wife had systematically checked each and every window in each and every room. He’d made note of the double bars on both the front and back doors. Then, as he was finishing his dinner, the wife had stopped next to him. Her hand on his shoulder was rough and callused and her face was grim. “Don’t open your window once the generator goes on,” she’d said. “I don’t care how hot you get.”

Aren wasn’t even sure what she meant by the word ‘generator’, but she’d moved on then, before Aren could ask questions. He’d nearly jumped out of his skin when the generator had kicked on a few minutes later—not that he would have known that was what it was if the woman hadn’t warned him. It made a nagging, low-pitched drone that Aren didn’t so much hear as feel, low in the base of his skull. He found it nerve-racking, but it was obvious the locals were used to it. He’d gone to his room feeling less than
confident.

Maybe this had been a mistake. Maybe he shouldn’t have come here, to the pitiful, dusty edge of the world. But after the incident at the university, running to Oestend had seemed so logical. So obvious. A suddenly sympathetic Professor Sheldon had helped Aren secure a job at one of the large ranches on the Oestend prairie. At the time, Aren had thought Sheldon had done it out of pity. Now, as he faced the realisation that this was a life he did not know how to live, Aren began to also realise he’d been duped. No doubt Sheldon and Professor Dean Birmingham, the man Aren had thought of as his lover for the past four years, were laughing together over their brandy, pleased they’d manage to rid themselves of him.

“Fuck you,” Aren said. His voice was loud in the small room. He sounded strong, and it gave him courage. “Fuck you!” he said again, louder this time, feeling more sure of himself. “I’m not scared.”

He jumped as somebody pounded on the wall of his room. Not one of the wraiths that may or may not have been outside in the wind.
It came from the room next to Aren’s. “People trying to sleep in here!” the man on the other side of the wall yelled.

Aren couldn’t believe anybody could sleep through the buzz of the generator and the racket of the wind and yet be kept awake by somebody talking, but he didn’t want to cause trouble, so he resolved to stop cussing at people who were halfway across the world. Still, his outburst had given him the strength he needed to examine his situation rationally.

There was no point in being scared. If there really were wraiths in Oestend, it was obvious the locals knew how to handle them. The man who’d hired him had directed him to this particular hostel for the night. Presumably he wouldn’t have sent Aren to a place that was known for allowing its tenants to be killed in their sleep. Although the shutters on windows rattled, they seemed solid enough, and Aren would have bet his last coin there was a warding sign over the window as well. He had to trust those things would be enough to keep him safe.

He pulled the blanket over his head and snuggled down under the covers. At least the bed was soft and the sheets were clean. Tomorrow, a man from the ranch would arrive to take him to his new home. Whatever this backwater land wanted to throw at him, Aren was sure he was ready.

Excerpt from Song of Oestend ©2011 by Marie Sexton
###

SONG OF OESTEND:
Symbols have power…

Aren Montrell has heard tales of the Oestend wraiths – mysterious creatures which come in the night and kill anyone who’s not indoors. Aren’s never had reason to believe the stories, but when he takes a job as a bookkeeper on the BarChi, a dusty cattle ranch on the remote Oestend prairie, he soon learns that the wraiths are real. Aren suddenly finds himself living in a supposedly haunted house and depending on wards and generators to protect him from unseen things in the night. As if that’s not enough, he has to deal with a crotchety old blind woman, face “cows” that look like nothing he’s ever seen before, and try to ignore the fact that he’s apparently the most eligible bachelor around.

Aren also finds himself the one and only confidante of Deacon, the BarChi’s burly foreman. Deacon runs the BarChi with an iron fist and is obviously relieved to finally have somebody he can talk to. As their relationship grows, Aren learns there’s more to Deacon and the BarChi than he’d anticipated. Deacon seems determined to deny both his Oestend heritage and any claim he may have to the BarChi ranch, but if Aren is to survive the perils of Oestend, he’ll will have to convince Deacon to stop running from the past and finally claim everything that’s his.
Get Your Own Copy: Amazon(pb) | Kindle | ARe | Total*e*Bound

I’ll give away an ebook today – winner’s choice from my backlist. You can see the options here.

Thanks again for stopping by! I look forward to meeting everybody at RomCon!


So Marie is giving away one(1) winner's choice of book from her backlist. *International* Here's how to enter:
  • Leave a comment for Marie about M/M romance, RomCon or your favorite genres.
  • Fill out the rafflecopter form below. You must leave a comment. All other entries are optional.
Don't forget to keep up with all the Road to RomCon posts and to enter our grand prize giveaway.

A huge thank you to Marie for celebrating with us as well as donating the winner's choice of book from her backlist.

a Rafflecopter giveaway




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