Tag Archives: Heidi Belleau

Tour: The Burnt Toast B&B (Bluewater Bay #5) by Heidi Belleau, Rachel Haimowitz

BurntToastBB_TourBanner

Hi, and welcome to the Burnt Toast B&B blog tour! We’re Heidi Belleau and Rachel Haimowitz, the authors of the book, and we’re so thankful to have you along for the ride, and thankful to our hosts, LeAnn’s Book Reviews, for having us here today!

Normally on a blog tour, we like to share all kinds of behind the scenes goodies to do with the book: inspiration images, glimpses into research and plotting, deleted scenes, conversations about our process, character bios, etc. For this tour, though, we’re doing something a little different, but we hope you’ll still find it worth your while.

When Heidi first pitched The Burnt Toast B&B, it was as an opposites-attract story centring around the world’s worst B&B . . . and an M/M romcom where one of the lead guys just happened to be transgender. Writing solo, she’d done a trans book before, but that was very much a Trans Book, all about exploring gender identity, defining who you are, and coming out to your friends and loved ones. This book . . . isn’t that. It’s the story of an optimistic hipster stuntman and a pessimistic lumberjack who learn to make espresso, fix up a failing B&B, and generally butt heads in between loads of laundry.

Ginsberg, our hipster, is much like many of our other favourite M/M heroes: he’s funny, resilient, romantic, and sexy as hell. He’s also transgender; secure in his identity, his body, and his sexuality; and working in a career he loves. But his life isn’t without hardships. Ginsberg made his own family after his biological one turned out to be too toxic to live with. He scrimped and saved and borrowed to pay for the medical care he needed to be happy and healthy. He found a roof over his head as a “considerate couchsurfer,” living with friends and acquaintances on a temporary basis when money got tight. In Derrick and his failing B&B, Ginsberg finally finds an opportunity to have a real home, if only he can convince Derrick to keep the place open.

Ginsberg’s background of financial hardship and lack of family support is all too common among many people who, like him, are trans and trying to live happy, fulfilling lives as their true selves. As such, we the authors, our publisher Riptide, and our generous blog tour hosts will be using the next few days to highlight the personal fundraisers of real trans people in need. We hope that if you’ve got a little extra money this month, you’ll consider donating, and if money’s tight, maybe you can help by spreading the word, too.

For our part, Rachel, Heidi, and Riptide will be giving donors a $5 Riptide credit code for every $10 in donations you make (up to $50 in codes per person, up to $5,000 in codes overall)–just email your donation receipt(s) to info@riptidepublishing.com with the subject line “Burnt Toast Tour Donation,” and Riptide will send out all $5 codes a week after the tour ends. (It’s totally cool, by the way, to spread your donations across multiple fundraisers if you’d like; we’ll add up all your receipts sent in a single email and base your credit vouchers on the grand total.)

We’re also hosting a special contest for people who donate: every dollar in donations to any of these fundraisers will earn you an entry into a drawing for a full paperback set of Riptide’s current Bluewater Bay lineup, OR two signed paperback copies of The Burnt Toast B&B. We’ll draw one week after the blog tour ends. Every dollar helps, and every dollar counts!

Lastly, we’ll randomly select three commenters from all the tour stops and donate $50 apiece in each winner’s name to the trans charity or fundraiser of their choice. (Please be sure to leave a way for us to contact you if you win!)

Today’s featured fundraiser is for Calliope Mora Wong, a young trans woman saving to pay back her parents for her gender affirming surgery. And here’s Calliope 🙂

1775933_1405918437.4721

Calliope is a nineteen-year-old student in the UConn honors program with dreams of attending medical school to become an endocrinologist. She’s an activist for the transgender community as well, and all of this was made possible with the understanding and assistance of her parents. Her father took on a second job to help her pay for her surgery, and now she wants to honor the sacrifices her parents have made and continue to make by raising funds to pay them back. To help with this, she is offering a custom digital painting to anyone who donates $20 or more. You can learn more about Calliope and help this young woman achieve her goals at her fundraiser page, http://www.gofundme.com/cwong.

Thank you so much for following our (slightly unconventional) blog tour! Be sure to leave a comment on this or any of our other tour stops for a chance to have $50 donated in your name to a trans-related fundraiser/charity of your choice. And if you choose to donate to any of the fundraisers we’ve highlighted over the course of the tour, don’t forget to forward proof of your donation to info@riptidepublishing.com with the subject line “Burnt Toast Tour Donation” to claim your $5 coupon(s) and enter your name in the extra special drawing!

Lastly, if you or someone you love is transgender and going through a difficult time, please check out the Trans Lifeline, http://www.translifeline.org/. This crisis helpline is staffed entirely by trans volunteers and runs at least twelve hours a day, seven days a week, in the US and Canada. If you’re in crisis, please call them. If you’d like to support this nonprofit, please visit http://www.gofundme.com/translifeline.

 

BWBlogo_Web

 

BurntToastBB_200x300

The Burnt Toast B&B (Bluewater Bay #5)
by Heidi Belleau, Rachel Haimowitz

An M/M Contemporary Romance
From Riptide Publishing
Released January 10th 2015

add-to-goodreads-button31

 

After breaking his arm on set, Wolf’s Landing stuntman Ginsberg Sloan finds himself temporarily out of work. Luckily, Bluewater Bay’s worst B&B has cheap long-term rates, and Ginsberg’s not too proud to take advantage of them.

Derrick Richards, a grizzled laid-off logger, inherited the B&B after his parents’ untimely deaths. Making beds and cooking sunny-side-up eggs is hardly Derrick’s idea of a man’s way to make a living, but just as he’s decided to shut the place down, Ginsberg shows up on his doorstep, pitiful and soaking wet, and Derrick can hardly send him packing.

Not outright, at least.

The plan? Carry on the B&B’s tradition of terrible customer service and even worse food until the pampered city-boy leaves voluntarily. What Derrick doesn’t count on, though, is that the lousier he gets at hosting, the more he convinces bored, busybody Ginsberg to try to get the B&B back on track. And he definitely doesn’t count on the growing attraction between them, or how much more he learns from Ginsberg than just how to put out kitchen fires.

 

Riptide | Amazon | B&N | ARe

 

Learn more about Heidi Belleau at http://www.riptidepublishing.com/authors/heidi-belleau
Learn more about Rachel Haimowitz at http://www.riptidepublishing.com/authors/rachel-haimowitz

Straight Shooter (Rear Entrance Video #3) by Heidi Belleau *Review*

 

 

Hello hello! I’m Heidi Belleau, and welcome to the Riptide Books “Straight Shooter” blog tour! Straight Shooter is the third (and final?) novel in my Rear Entrance Video series, and is the story of roommate Austin, a homophobic hockey player with a kinky secret . . . and the Dominant porn star who helps him get his act together. Thanks to LeAnn’s Book Reviews and to all of you for tuning in!

 

StraightShooter_500x750

add-to-goodreads-button31

 

This macho jock has a crooked little secret.

College hockey player Austin Puett is in trouble. Unless he starts treating his flamboyantly gay roommate with respect, he’ll lose his room and his job at Rear Entrance Video. But Austin’s got a not-so-straight secret of his own: nothing turns him on more than insults implying he’s gay—even though he’s definitely not!—and all his old coping methods have stopped working.

Pure desperation drives him to rent a Mischievous Pictures porn flick about straight men tricked into servicing Puck, a male dominant. Instead of letting off steam, though, it just leaves him craving more, more, more, and suddenly, Austin finds himself at Mischievous Pictures Studios for an audition. After all, you can be Gay For Pay and still be straight . . . right?

But meeting Liam Williams, the real person behind Puck, confuses Austin even more. Liam really seems to like him as a person, and Austin likes him back. And while Gay For Pay’s okay, what does it make Austin if he still wants Liam when the cameras aren’t rolling?

 

Riptide | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | ARe

Review

4 stars

 

So there was a lot of things I enjoyed about this story, but mainly I have to say that I enjoyed the hell out of the MC’s–their chemistry, their interactions, everything!

Like most followers of the series, after reading Apple Polisher and Wallflower I was curious about Austin.

I loved that Austin didn’t fit any kind of mold. Kudos to Heidi Belleau for bringing his distinct personality, needs and emotions in a way that allowed me to understand where he was coming from.

Once again, the writing was superb and the subject matter thought-inducing. It is that kind of writing that always draws me to the M/M genre. I felt as confused and conflicted as Austin and like him I pondered his situation. I also tapped the hell of my tablet in frustration and melted at some of the scenes I came across.

Needless to say that Belleau brought her trademark sex scenes. Yes, they were as hot as I anticipated and just as intricate to the story. That coupled with the interactions between Austin and Liam, Austin’s thought process and the range in emotions his struggle brought about made Austin’s story both enjoyable and interesting.

*I received a copy of this title in exchange of my honest opinion.

 

 

About the Author

Heidi Belleau was born and raised in small town New Brunswick, Canada. She now lives in the rugged oil-patch frontier of Northern BC with her husband, an Irish ex-pat whose long work hours in the trades leave her plenty of quiet time to write. She has a degree in history from Simon Fraser University with a concentration in British and Irish studies; much of her work centered on popular culture, oral folklore, and sexuality, but she was known to perplex her professors with papers on the historical roots of modern romance novel tropes. (Ask her about Highlanders!) Her writing reflects everything she loves: diverse casts of characters, a sense of history and place, equal parts witty and filthy dialogue, the occasional mythological twist, and most of all, love—in all its weird and wonderful forms. She also writes queer-flavoured M/F as Heloise Belleau.

Twitter | Website | Blog | Goodreads | Facebook | Tumblr | Email

Rear Entrance Video series

Apple Polisher

add-to-goodreads-button31

Riptide | Amazon | ARe

18147412
add-to-goodreads-button31

Riptide | Amazon | ARe

 

Spotlight Stop: Inch by Inch by Heidi Belleau and Amelia C. Gormley *Review*

InchByInch_TourBanner

Hi, and welcome to the Inch by Inch blog tour! Inch by Inch is the third in Riptide’s BDSM erotica series The Professor’s Rule, written by Heidi Belleau and Amelia C. Gormley.  All week we’ll be touring the web giving you a behind-the-scenes look at The Professor’s Rule, including new character profiles and some very steamy excerpts.

Thanks so much to our host, LeAnn’s Book Reviews and to you readers, of course, for coming along!

 978-1-62649-095-6

Title: Inch by Inch (The Professor’s Rule #3)

Authors: Heidi Belleau and Amelia C. Gormley

Published: December 16th 2013

Publisher: Riptide Publishing

Genres: M/M Contemporary Romance, BDSM

add-to-goodreads-button31

ruler

Synopsis

After two long, kink-free years apart, James Sheridan has reunited with his Professor: the sexy, dominant Evander Carson. But this time, things will be different. James is older, more sure of himself, and confident that he can draw the line between Carson’s demands and his own principles.

One of those lines is gorgeous menswear salesman Satish Malhotra. After their steamy dressing room encounter, James feels an unexpected connection to Satish, and he wants to explore it further. But Carson’s involvement—in James’s life, and in James and Satish’s budding relationship—complicates things.

Carson’s penchant for using other men in their sex games has always troubled James, and he’s adamant that Satish not be just another notch in their whipping post. But when Satish learns what prompted James to pursue him in the first place, will James’s new ability to draw the line even matter?

ruler

My Review

5-stars

Oh yes, Heidi and Amelia sure know how to keep me guessing. Inch by Inch is the third book in the The Professor’s Rule series and it meshes the two previous stories nicely leaving the reader wondering what the hell is going to happen next.

James is both hesitant and excited to be reuniting with Professor Carson after a two-year hiatus. Hesitant because he doesn’t want to partake in the sharing aspect of the relationship they had before and excited because Carson knows just how to give James what he needs. James is looking forward to the start of something with Satish and doesn’t want his relationship with Carson to get in the middle of it. But then again, Carson can give him the thrill he needs. Yep, poor James is between a rock and a hard place.

Once again, Heidi Belleau and Amelia C. Gormley deliver in this story. I found myself pondering James’ options and analyzing his actions, something that I had not done in the previous installments. I enjoyed watching James starting something with Satish. I do believe that they have a connection that should be developed fully to see where it leads. Then again, I love Carson and his dominating ways. He gives James what he needs and although he appears to be somewhat cold and closed off, I doubt very much that he doesn’t harbor some feelings for James and vice-versa.

This pair of authors know how to bring it and how to keep me engaged. I loved the dialogue, the scenes and James’ inner musings. Needless to say that the authors brought the hotness factor to the page. Man, the sparks flew! Be it with Carson or with Satish, the sexual tension, desire and sensuality dripped off the page.

Where will this triangle of need and desire lead? Is a ménage in the works or will James have to pick the man best suited for him – love or kink? Can’t wait to find out!

All in all, another awesome addition to the series with chemistry abound and a new and intriguing romantic interest.

Click here to read an excerpt of Inch by Inch (The Professor’s Rule #3.)

*I received this title from the publisher in exchange of my honest opinion.*

ruler

Buy the Book

Riptide | ARe | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

ruler

About the Authors

Amelia C. Gormley may seem like anyone else. But the truth is she sings in the shower, dances doing laundry, and writes blisteringly hot m/m erotic romance while her son is at school. When she’s not writing in her Pacific Northwest home, Amelia single-handedly juggles her husband, her son, their home, and the obstacles of life by turning into an everyday superhero. And that, she supposes, is just like anyone else

Her self-published novel-in-three-parts, Impulse (Inertia, Book One; Acceleration, Book Two; and Velocity, Book Three) can be found at most major online book retailers, and be sure to check Riptide for her latest releases, including her Highland historical, The Laird’s Forbidden Lover, the The Professor’s Rule series of erotic novelettes (co-written with Heidi Belleau), and her upcoming post-apocalyptic romance, Strain.

TwitterFacebookGoodreadsBookLikesTumblr | Email

Heidi Belleau was born and raised in small town New Brunswick, Canada. She now lives in the rugged oil-patch frontier of Northern BC with her husband, an Irish ex-pat whose long work hours in the trades leave her plenty of quiet time to write. She has a degree in history from Simon Fraser University with a concentration in British and Irish studies; much of her work centered on popular culture, oral folklore, and sexuality, but she was known to perplex her professors with papers on the historical roots of modern romance novel tropes. (Ask her about Highlanders!) Her writing reflects everything she loves: diverse casts of characters, a sense of history and place, equal parts witty and filthy dialogue, the occasional mythological twist, and most of all, love—in all its weird and wonderful forms. She also writes queer-flavoured M/F as Heloise Belleau.

Twitter |Heidi’s Website or HeloiseBelleau.com | Goodreads | Facebook | Tumblr | Email

ruler

 

Virtual Blog Tour: Wallflower by Heidi Belleau

Wallflower_TourBanner

Hello hello! I’m Heidi Belleau, and all week I’m touring the interwebs promoting my new novel Wallflower, which is book two of my New Adult m/m series Rear Entrance Video, all about a group of roommates working at a seedy porn store. Every day this week I’ll be stopping by different blogs with new tidbits, behind-the-scenes info, and of course a contest! Read on!

Today, I’m talking art! Wallflower, being the story of a couple of art students, references several works and styles of art. Here are just a few, from the traditional to the traditionally-influenced to the (post) modern:

 The Art of Wallflower 

 Inuit Soapstone Carving 

inuit
Mother and Child, by Toona Iquliq

Sculpture produced by Inuit artists. The term “soapstone carving” often refers to any carved Inuit sculpture, whether it is from soapstone or not.

Coast Salish Art 

Legends, by Jody Wilson
Legends, by Jody Wilson

When I think “Native Art”, this is the first stuff to come to my mind. It might be yours, too, because Coast Salish art also includes totem poles. Coast Salish art refers to artwork (carved or graphic) produced by the Coast Salish peoples of the Pacific Northwest, which includes areas in British Columbia and Washington state. It incorporates the very traditional right up to contemporary reinterpretations, such as can be seen in the work of Louie Gong.

Ink Wash Paintings 

Shōrin-zu byōbu, by Hasegawa Tohaku
Shōrin-zu byōbu, by Hasegawa Tohaku

A traditional form of Chinese art that later spread to other East Asian nations (as seen in the Japanese example above) uses some of the same techniques and materials as calligraphy, where shape and form are suggested using varying densities of ink.

The Raven and the First Men 

th

This massive sculpture by Haida artist Bill Reid (with contributions by several other artists) depicts the story of human creation according to Haida legend: Raven, an important figure, finds a clamshell full of human beings, whom he coaxes to come out into the wider world.

Jingoistic Comic Covers 

Superman_17_9-2_edited

During World War II, superhero comics got political (warning, link contains racist imagery and language), with popular heroes like Superman and Batman fighting the villains of the day. These covers were meant as propaganda to drum up support for the Allies and hatred for their enemies, and while there’s nothing wrong with painting Hitler as a villain, the racialized nature of the Asia-Pacific theatre of war meant that these images often took on a racist nature; not satisfied with just lampooning Emperor Hirohito, they stereotyped and dehumanized the Japanese people as a whole. Comics as propaganda has continued right into the current century.

Andy Warhol’s Marilyn Monroe 

thCAS2VMRE

After her death, Andy Warhol made several silk-screen images depicting Marilyn Monroe, all sourced from the same publicity photograph, imperfectly reproduced in a myriad of colours and sizes. These images are probably some of the most famous of the entire Pop Art movement.

My Marilyn 

My Marilyn 1965 by Richard Hamilton 1922-2011

This image, by Richard Hamilton, like Andy Warhol’s above, was also produced following Marilyn Monroe’s death. It depicts a series of photos of Marilyn Monroe from one photoshoot, which she personally looked over and marked acceptable or not. The markings on the photo, as crass and almost disrespectful as they seem to us now, are her own marks.

Alternative/Indie Comics 

From Blankets, by Craig Thompson
From Blankets, by Craig Thompson

This doesn’t refer to an art style, per se, but an artistic movement: that is, comics (or graphic novels) created outside of the mainstream super-hero narrative. They can be dark or funny, sci-fi or autobiographical. They might even include super heroes . . . except reinterpreted. Some famous examples: Persepolis, Ghost World, the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Walking Dead.

About Wallflower
This gamer geek has a lacy little secret.

Art student and MMORPG addict Robert Ng has always been a loner, but he’s recently made it his goal to make more (IRL) friends. Which is how he winds up working nights at Rear Entrance Video, shilling sketchy porn and blowup dolls as a favor to his roommate. The longer he works there, though, the more he realizes he’ll never be truly happy until he becomes the person he is online: his female persona, Bobby.

Bobby is cuter and funnier than Rob is, and a thousand times more popular with boys. Becoming Bobby IRL presents its own set of challenges, though . . . especially when you’re sitting on the fence between two genders, only one of which has caught the attention of your seriously cute customer/classmate.

Dylan Ford is a six-foot Inuit comic book artist who always says what’s on his mind, and screw anyone who doesn’t like it. As rough as he appears, though, Dylan has a soft spot for Rob. But will out-and-proud Dylan still want Rob if he’s not all man?

Buy it now or read an excerpt at Riptide Publishing!

Check out my Review

About the Author

Heidi Belleau was born and raised in small town New Brunswick, Canada, but now lives in the rugged oil-patch frontier of Northern BC with her husband and daughter. She has a degree in history from Simon Fraser University with a concentration in British and Irish studies. Her writing reflects everything she loves: diverse casts of characters, a sense of history and place, equal parts witty and filthy dialogue, the occasional mythological twist, and most of all, love—in all its weird and wonderful forms. Visit her online at www.HeidiBelleau.com, or chat with her on twitter: @HeidiBelleau.

Contest

Win an e-copy of Rear Entrance Video #1: Apple Polisher! All you have to do is leave a comment on this or any of the other Wallflower tour posts. Each comment counts for another entry, so be sure to follow the entire tour. Just make sure your comment includes a way for me to contact you, be it email, twitter, or facebook. On October 27th, I’ll randomly draw a winner from all the entries who will receive a copy of Apple Polisher in their choice of format. Good luck!

Wallflower_150x300October 21 ~ Cup O’ Porn – Spotlight Stop

October 21 ~ Book Reviews & More by Kathy

October 22 ~ That’s What I’m Talking About

October 22 ~ Pants Off Reviews – Spotlight Stop

October 23 ~ The Jeep Diva

October 24 ~ LeAnn’s Book Reviews

October 24 ~ Mrs. Condit & Friends Reads Books – Spotlight Stop

October 25 ~ Words of Wisdom From the Scarf Princess

Wallflower (Rear Entrance Video #2) by Heidi Belleau

18147412Rating: 3.75 stars

Publisher: Riptide Publishing (October 19, 2013)

Synopsis: This gamer geek has a lacy little secret.

Art student and MMORPG addict Robert Ng has always been a loner, but he’s recently made it his goal to make more (IRL) friends. Which is how he winds up working nights at Rear Entrance Video, shilling sketchy porn and blowup dolls as a favor to his roommate. The longer he works there, though, the more he realizes he’ll never be truly happy until he becomes the person he is online: his female persona, Bobby.

Bobby is cuter and funnier than Rob is, and a thousand times more popular with boys. Becoming Bobby IRL presents its own set of challenges, though . . . especially when you’re sitting on the fence between two genders, only one of which has caught the attention of your seriously cute customer/classmate.

Dylan Ford is a six-foot Inuit comic book artist who always says what’s on his mind, and screw anyone who doesn’t like it. As rough as he appears, though, Dylan has a soft spot for Rob. But will out-and-proud Dylan still want Rob if he’s not all man?

Review: I’ve been sitting on this review for a week trying to make up my mind about my rating. On the one hand, it had all the elements I look for in a great book.

  • Complex and compelling main characters that kept my attention throughout.
  • A unique approach to an issue that is rarely dealt in books.
  • Heidi Belleau’s usual sizzling factor to her sex scenes.
  • Humorous and engaging interactions.

Then there were the things that I couldn’t overlook.

  • Slow-paced start that made it a bit hard for me to stay on course.
  • Not enough emphasis on the ‘romance’ between the main characters.

As you can see the pros outweigh the cons at first glace, but for me the focus of the story should have been the romance aspect in the story. That’s why I arrived at a middle ground and settled on a rating that I think balances what I loved and disliked about the story.

Rob’s struggles to embrace his Bobby ‘persona’ was not like anything I have read before, so maybe that factored in my enjoyment of this story. This applies mainly to the beginning of the story where I wasn’t clear on what Rob was struggling with. Once, I understood what Rob was struggling with, I was able get through this hurdle.

I admired Heidi Belleau’s efforts in bringing to the page a unique storyline to the page. The story was packed-full of emotions and engaging moments. She made it easy for me to understand where Rob was coming from by giving me direct insight into his struggles accepting his other half. I enjoyed how Rob grew as a person and came to accept his needs.

Rob was shy and sweet and very passionate. His Bobby persona was more outgoing and confident and I was happy to see him finally find a happy medium between the two. As an extremely shy person myself, I wanted to comfort him while he struggled with letting go of his insecurities.

I think Rob and Dylan were perfect for each other. I loved Dylan’s personality, which contrasted so much with Rob’s that it balanced them out and complimented the connection they had. I wish I had gotten the chance to experience more of them together.

And here in lies my biggest problem with this story.

Maybe if more of the time Dylan and Rob spent together made it into the page, I could get over this aspect of the story that bothered me. I don’t deny that they had a connection, I just wanted to see it developed further. There’s also no denying the chemistry they shared. Despite being shy, Rob was a very passionate person and when he unleashed that side of him…holy hell, those were some steamy scenes that Heidi Belleau wrote!

However, I still think that as a romance, Wallflower lacked that essential element of ‘getting to know’ one another as individuals before declarations of love come into play.

All in all, Wallflower was a touching story about a young man struggling with accepting himself. I commend the author for bringing Rob’s struggles to the page and making him shine. Yes, Wallflower had its flaws but in the end it was worthy addition to the Rear Entrance Video series where, so far, the characters have fallen out of the norm of what’s expected in the M/M genre.

I received this title from the publisher in exchange of my honest opinion.

An Inch at a Time (The Professor’s Rule #2) by Heidi Belleau, Amelia C. Gormley

18274414Rating: 5 stars

Publisher: Riptide Publishing (September 16, 2013)

Synopsis: James Sheridan is failing history. Luckily, his professor is a rumored pervert, and James isn’t too proud to pay for a better grade with his body. Professor Carson lives up to his reputation, but he’s not unethical enough to take sexual bribes. What he can offer is some highly unconventional tutoring . . . creative use of a ruler included.

The deal? Studying, followed by a “quiz.” Wrong answer? Spanking. Right answer? Reward. Ace the final, earn some mindblowing sex. It’s harder work than sexual bribery, but it beats the volunteer tutors at the student center.

After a few study sessions, James realizes he wants way more than a grade from Professor Carson, even if he’s not sure what that is. Carson’s a silver fox, all right, but James isn’t “bent” the way Carson is, and for him, the spankings are only supposed to be a means to an end. But the better he gets at history, the more he realizes he likes getting answers wrong just as much as getting them right.

Review: Hell yes, studying history has never been more interesting!

This time around Heidi Belleau and Amelia C. Gormley show us how James Sheridan from Giving an Inch came to be under Professor Carson’s tutelage.

And what a show that was!

From the start I could feel the undercurrent of attraction between James and Carson. Even underneath James’ hesitations I could feel how much he needed to be guided. He craved it and it confused the hell out of him.

Just as clearly, I could feel Carson’s desire to make James give into him. Underneath all that cool demeanor, the man lusted after James. Hell, that part where he unleashed all that pent up lust on poor James…

Crap, got side-tracked.

Hmmm, ah yes, the story.

It was interesting to see how it all began between James and Carson. Now I see why James was putting up boundaries in the previous installment when he inadvertently reconnected with Carson. Poor James, he becomes putty under Carson’s ruler!

The writing was superb and just as I expected. With just 60 pages to the story, Heidi Belleau and Amelia C. Gormley packed one hell of a punch and didn’t disappoint in the least. With hotter-than-hell scenes that had me encouraging James to answer wrong and one un-freaking-believable student/teacher meeting, these author brought one extremely enticing story to the page.

But if that were all, I don’t think I would have been so pleased with it. Yes, they delivered on that erotic aspect of the story, but yet they went deeper. They also gave insight into James’ history. And THAT and Carson’s reaction to it was what made a difference to me. That’s what made it an extraordinary story. That little bit of vulnerability and humanity they brought out of both James and Carson was what made this an fantastic read for me.

An Inch at a Time is the second book in the The Professor’s Rule series and although it can certainly be read as a stand alone I encourage you to pick up a copy of Giving an Inch. You won’t be disappointed, I assure you!

I received this title through NetGalley in exchange of my honest opinion.

Apple Polisher (Rear Entrance Video #1) by Heidi Belleau

Apple PolisherRating: 4 stars

Publisher: Riptide Publishing (July 29th 2013)

Synopsis: This straight-A student has a dirty little secret.

Christian Blake dreams of being a kindergarten teacher, but making the grade means maintaining a squeaky clean image: no drinking, no drugs, no swearing, no sex. And definitely no falling for his new roommate—tattooed bad-boy Max, who may or may not be a drug dealer.

Most of all, it means no working at a porn store. But Christian’s aunt has cancer, and her beloved Rear Entrance Video will go bankrupt if Christian doesn’t take over managerial duties. Soon enough, Christian finds himself juggling sticky twenty-five cent peepshow booths, a blackmailing employee, and a demanding professor who likes to make an example of him.

And then there’s Max, who doesn’t know anything about the store, but hates Christian’s preppy sweater vests and the closet Christian forces him into when they’re together. Max just wants Christian to be himself—even though Max is keeping secrets of his own. Christian struggles to find the impossible balance between his real life and the ideal one he thinks a teacher needs to live . . . all while trying to keep his aunt’s dream alive without losing his own.

Review: Christian is trying to achieve his dream of being a teacher, only he’s losing himself in order to attain it. Between school, his aunt’s illness and paying his bills he has enough to worry about without adding to it an enigmatic roommate he can’t stop thinking about. Max is everything Christian vowed to stay away from since beginning his teaching program – the clothes, the look, the lifestyle – but he is the very person he needs to keep his head on straight. Now the question is, will Christian get his head out of his ass before he looses himself, his aunt’s business and his chance at love?

I’ll be honest and say that I didn’t like Christian much in the beginning. I couldn’t believe he was so clueless – so wrapped up in his life that he got his priorities messed up in the process. Thankfully, Heidi Belleau did an amazing job of developing his character. Slowly but surely she brought to life a different, more caring Christian to the page. This Christian finally realized what he was doing and went about fixing it.

Max was adorable. I loved him from the start. he wouldn’t take Christian’s bullshit, nor did he try to preach to Christian. he simply told it like it was and left it up to Christian to make up his mind. I could easily see how he cared about Christian and could understand why he acted the way he did.

The secondary characters were great too. I enjoyed the interactions between the roommates. They were so different from one another, but yet they got along and pulled together when they needed to. I can’t wait to read Rob’s story in Wallflower.

I have to say that I loved it when Christian and Max finally got together. I was eagerly awaiting this coupling and was not disappointed at all. Who knew the all-too-proper Christian had that in him!? I think that scene was what kick-started my change of heart about him. Yes, I am that easy.

I also enjoyed the events that took place in the video store. I was a hoot to read Christian’s reactions to the store itself, the different DVD titles and the collection of toys. And I won’t even mention what took place there. Holy crap! Heidi Belleau blew my mind with that…that…’scene’ is not the word I want to use, because it was much more than that. I love my sex scenes, but I especially love the ones that add something more to the story. I believe this one was fundamental to Christian and Max’s story and Heidi Belleau hit it out of the park.

All in all, Apple Polisher was a fun yet touching read about finding yourself and getting your priorities straight with a whole lot of hot, sexy man-love thrown in to make it an awesome read.

I received this title from Riptide through NetGalley in exchange of my honest opinion.

Giving an Inch (The Professor’s Rule #1) by Heidi Belleau, Amelia C. Gormley

Giving an InchRating: 4 stars

Publisher: Riptide Publishing (April 15, 2013)

Synopsis: School is back in session.

History grad James Sheridan thinks his biggest problem in life is trying to find a suitable outfit for his upcoming Ph.D. candidacy exam. That is, until he accidentally texts a changing-room selfie meant for his fashionable sister to his ex, the domineering Professor Carson.

James and Carson haven’t seen each since James fled their power games two years ago. Back in his undergrad days, Carson was his Professor, and not just in the academic sense: a man of unusual tastes and extreme sexual demands, James had been happy to sate Carson’s savage appetites. Too happy, in fact. He never could trust himself not to let Carson push too far.

Now James is older and wiser, and sharing some seriously flirtatious vibes with a cute menswear rep. When Carson replies to James’s errant text, ready to pick up where they left off, James can’t help being drawn back into Carson’s control. It’s only when Carson suggests involving the salesman that James has to ask himself how far is too far, and whether he’s willing to go there with Carson again.

Review: James ended his relationship with Carson, a former professor of his, because he didn’t trust himself to set boundaries as to what lengths he would go to please the man. Although he recognizes that Carson helped him not only in getting his life under control but with his academic discipline as well, James is still afraid of how far he can be pushed. These struggles come back to him once he acknowledges Carson’s response to his text and engages in a text conversation with Carson.

Oh my, never I have read such HOT text messages!

I loved how Amelia Gormley and Heidi Belleau went about setting up this encounter. It really gave James the opportunity to inform the reader about his past with Carson and gave insight into why he was having doubts that caused him to hesitate when Carson made demands.

Even though James did participate and complied with most of Carson’s demands I was glad to see that he did set some boundaries and analyzed his responses before acting out Carson’s demands. This showed that although he held a great deal of respect towards Carson and owed him a lot for all he’d done for him, James had indeed matured and was not going into this blind.

I am not even going to talk about what went on in that changing room, that is something that should be experienced by the reader first-hand. I’ll just say that my shopping expeditions are seriously lacking!

Giving an Inch is a great first installment in The Professor’s Rule series and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The concept behind the story was interesting and the mix of sexting, humor, sexy man-love and a domineering Professor helped the collaboration between these two authors to go off without a glitch. I can’t wait to read more.

I received this title from Riptide Publishing through NetGalley in exchange of my honest opinion.

The Flesh Cartel Season 1: Damnation Rachel Haimowitz, Heidi Belleau

Rating: 5 stars

Publisher: Riptide Publishing

Synopsis: The Flesh Cartel: an international, multi-billion-dollar black market that trades in lost souls. Or more specifically, their bodies.

Highly organized and frighteningly efficient, the Flesh Cartel could teach even the KGB a thing or two about breaking a human mind. Fortunately for their ultra-rich clients, they’re just as skilled at putting people back together again—as perfect pets, well-trained and eager to please.

No matter what your secret tastes or dark desires, the Flesh Cartel—for the right price, of course—will hand-design the plaything of your dreams.

Note: This collection contains the first 2 episodes of The Flesh Cartel: The Flesh Cartel #1: Capture and The Flesh Cartel #2: Auction.

Review: First, I want you to understand that The Flesh Cartel is a serial story. Think of it as a TV show and like the title states Damnation is Season 1 where Capture is the first episode of the series and Auction is the second episode.

Having stated that, I will say that The Flesh Cartel #1: Capture was simply AWESOME! Through the first couple of pages I was intrigued. What is this world I’ve been plunged into?

On I went to the first chapter. I got to know Mat while he was doing his thing and really liked his voice. He came across as a no-nonsense kind of guy, straight forward and always looking out for his brother. I liked him instantly. Tough, assertive – my kind of guy. Later on I met Dougie. A 23-year old PhD student and Mat’s younger brother. Through his point of view I saw a bright, young man. I found him adorable and I could not wait to get to know him.

This was an emotional roller coaster that dragged me through every single emotion imaginable and some I had yet to tap into while reading. Forget the tapping of my fingers! I was biting my nails, bouncing my foot and gripping the tablet as if it were going to fly out the door at any moment.

Like any good show, this episode gripped me from the start and didn’t let up on its hold of me even after I finished reading it. I wanted more. I needed more. The emotions these authors brought to the page were overwhelming in their intensity – fear, loyalty, confusion and determination. I got to see how devoted these brothers were to each other and how strong their will was.  I was hanging onto every word, crying my eyes out and cursing like a sailor. I was disgusted, afraid, angry, sad.  Every time I was about to give up I reminded myself that this was fiction and that even though I was a mess I was still loving it! It was incredible how I could feel so connected to these guys. These were MY guys and I was sticking by them through every step of this tortuous experience.  My heart was breaking, my anger escalating and I was seriously ready to kill someone! The doctor, the ‘Madame’. I was feeling a bit maniacal and I.DID.NOT.CARE.  I just wanted to throttle one of THEM!!! I needed to do something, I felt so helpless. Reading, crying, angry, exhausted, and excited.

Needless to say that the writing was exceptional, the pace was perfect, the characters were wonderful and the emotions plentiful. Rachel Haimowitz and Heidi Belleau brought an astonishing story to the page. They introduced Mat and Dougie to me, made me care for them and then tipped their world and mine off its axis in just a couple of pages. I wanted to keep on reading, because I needed to know how my guys were doing.

I was so vested in these characters, that I found myself eagerly turning the page so that I could start the next episode.

A heartbreaking, intriguing read that left me stunned and curious in The Flesh Cartel #2: Auction I got to discover the reason behind Mat and Dougie’s capture. And I have to tell you this one was as brutal as the first one. At least I already knew what to expect and prepared myself mentally for the onslaught. I’m glad I did, because this book goes places that I never could have imagined...

The authors drop me right where I left off in Capture. Dougie and Mat are brought to their ‘rooms’ and it begins. The torture, the humiliation, the emotional abuse. It’s horrible and degrading and exciting and completely engrossing. From the start, you are placed in a state of utter expectancy. What more can they do to them? How much can they take before they finally crumble? Are they better of dead?

These were some of the questions I asked myself as I progressed in my reading. With every strike and every sexual assault I fell deeper into the story. I was there. I was suffering right along with them. I wanted to hit the guards. I wanted to kick the ever loving shit of the Madame. Poison her with chocolate. Anything at all, to save these two from her grasp. I was beside myself with anger, grief and every other emotion in between. Why do I read this? Why put myself through this emotional overhaul? The answer is simple enough. I NEED to be there, I NEED to know how my guys are doing. I have to see if there is anything worth looking forward to. It is distressing, to say the least, but the payback is in seeing that their will to survive is still intact. That they have not given up. That although they may have chipped in places, they have not been broken.

The abuse these two endured was excruciating. I felt Mat’s protectiveness, his loyalty to his brother and his reluctance to give up the fight. In the same manner, I felt Dougie’s heartache at being the source of Mat’s pain, his hope that he could keep them together and his sorrow at knowing that Mat’s fate depended on his decisions. While Mat received most of the physical and sexual abuse it was Dougie who my heart went out to most. I wanted to shelter him and keep him from having to make those decisions. And Mat, well, I just wanted to get him out of there, feed and pamper him into recovery and then unleash him on EVERY SINGLE one of the guards.

As the title states, there is an auction where Mat and Dougie are the main attraction. Actually, Dougie is the star and Mat’s the extra. This is the scene that broke me. Yes, I cried, yelled and went on a murderous rant throughout the book, but this scene right here was where I sobbed. Wretched, out of control sobbing. That’s what it came down to at this point. And then I turned the page and all I thought was “Oh shit!”

I said it before and I will say it again, these authors are awesome! They grabbed me in Capture, took me into that dreadful compound where Dougie and Mat were being held and brought out every type of emotion known to me while making me a bawling mess during Auction. And like the last time, they left me wanting more.

I received this collection from Riptide Publishing through NetGalley in exchange of my honest opinion.