Thursday, February 23, 2012

It Can Always Get Worse by Shandy L. Kurth

Have you ever jumped? Have you ever lay in an alley clinging to consciousness, bleeding to death, knowing you could die where you lay? I have. The streets are a dangerous place, watch over your shoulder while you walk or you may just find out what I'm talking about.Horrors lurk in the shadows, evil prickles the back of your neck, forgotten that gut feeling...waiting to catch you off guard. Friends can't help you, although they may try. I watch them fall around me and I wonder how we got here. How did we enter this hell?

Nowhere is safe in the neighborhood. Clay and his gang, the Locals, can't walk the streets alone these days. Fighting for everything and nothing at all, the Locals struggle on the streets trying to build a safe life around each other. Haker and his followers, another neighborhood gang, have set a vendetta against them, trying to tear down their protection, but the Locals aren't backing down--they're going down swinging. Clay's life will never be the same when a chain of events turns deadly and leaves all of the Locals changed forever.

                                                                   My Review

Shandy L. Kurth will take you on a wild amazing ride in this gripping tail of survival. She teaches us all the lesson, no matter how bad things are it can always get worse. Once I picked up this book, I couldn't put it down till I read the final page! Shandy did a wonderful job putting her story in my mind. I was held on the very edge of my seat till the very end. If your the kind of person that likes a happily ever after story then don't bother with this book. It reminded me of The Outsiders. Her writing style is simple and to the point. I believe teenage boys would very much enjoy this book. It is packed full of  nerve racking action. And it teaches that violent it not the answer.  Her characters will break your heart and have you aching to help them along their path of pain and terror.  I highly recommend this book to people of every age group, I'm am honored to have read such a ripping novel by a very talented author! I applaud you Shandy L. Kurth for a job well done and look forward to reading more of your work.
 If you would like to learn more about Shandy, here are links to her Facebook author page and Goodreads page. Thank you for taking the time to read my review of It Can Always Get Worse. 

Facebook page: 
Goodreads page: 
Link to buy: 

Saturday, February 18, 2012

DC Juris Guest Post

Ok Bookworms today I have a special guest who stopped by the blog to introduce his self to you all. Her is his Bio and guest post enjoy!

A Southern transplant who has retained none of his accent but all of his charm,
DC Juris is an out and proud transgender bisexual living in Upstate New York
with his husband, four dogs, three cats, and a menagerie of Halloween props just
creepy enough to keep people guessing about his sanity. He's still hopelessly
single when it comes to the woman in his life, and he'll gladly entertain offers
or applications for the position! In the rare event that he's not writing, DC
can be found surfing the internet for random research, killing things on his
Xbox, reading, taking pictures of the world around him, or playing Farmville, to
which he admits a complete and totally blissful addiction.

Hi folks! I'm DC Juris, and I'll be your guest blogger today. For those of you who don't know me, I'm a transgender guy who writes GLBTQ and heterosexual romance - typically fantasy or contemporary.

Typically, my stories are full of hot, steamy sex. Some of them, I've been told, are "more sex than story." While a lot of authors would take that as an insult, I'm fine with it. You see, I like sex. I like to read it and I like to write it.

So why, you ask, did I write "Who Better Than Canyon?" without any sex?

The answer is because that's how the characters dictated it would go. I've been frequently told that a romance without sex wouldn’t sell. Based on that notion, I'd always had it in the back of my mind to do one - but not this one. I was thinking in a couple years. But as I kept writing, I realized these guys just weren't getting in bed with each other - at least not in the carnal sense. Because there wasn't any sex involved, I made sure to have the cover artist do a rather "tame" cover - no half naked men, nothing sexual or erotic. And I'm really glad I did.

I've gotten a lot of good feedback. Reviewers have said things like "unexpected" and "refreshing" and "nice change of pace." That's all well and good, but what's really important to me is the reader response - which has been wonderful as well. I've been inundated with e-mails thanking me for writing something without "all the embarrassing extra stuff." One woman appreciated the lack of sex because she felt she could share the book with her teenage son, who is gay. She said she knew "he is eventually going to have sex" but she'd "rather not think about it…not because he's gay but because he's my baby. At least he can read this story, see a positive gay relationship, and realize he's worth more than his penis."

It never occurred to me that someone might share one of my stories with their kids. Let's face it, as an erotic romance writer, I don't have that opportunity. They can't even visit my website, since it contains graphic content and is strictly age eighteen and over. It was nice to think that maybe my work might reach the next generation. Not that I think they can learn from it or anything like that. I'm a firm believer that if you want sex advice or instruction, you don't pick up a romance novel, whether you're male or female. I can remember reading bodice ripper type stories when I was a teenager, and the only information I walked away with was that a woman wasn't anything without a man, sex was always either excruciatingly painful or amazingly wonderful with no middle ground, and that every man came complete with hands calloused in "all the right places" and a huge, throbbing rod. Definitely nothing they covered in Sex-Ed.

Which is not to say that, nowadays, some authors don't strive for as much reality as possible. But, really - it's a fictional story. It's not an instruction manual. A lot of today's m/m romance contains gay men who fall head-over-heels in love at first sight (some without even speaking to the other man first), who are unable to keep their hands off the object of their obsession (even at the risk of losing their jobs), and who frequently engage in beyond-human acrobatic sexual acts and anal sex without lube. Clearly, we're not writing Sex 101 here.

No, the reason I'm touched about her son being able to read my work is that he had characters to identify with. Growing up, none of the romances contained any characters I understood. I had a female body, but I didn't feel like a female. I didn't swoon, I didn't need to be rescued. I wasn't hard headed to a fault, or ditzy and stupid. I felt like a man - but not the men in those books. I wasn't overbearing and powerful, or rude and aloof. I longed for pages that contained people I could relate to. Why were there no gay characters? Where were the characters who questioned their gender - surely I couldn't be the only person in the world doing that? And surely, I wasn't the only person like me who read stories?

I'm thrilled to have found a genre where I can write about characters I like - characters like me. Flawed and real, with "alternative" views and lifestyles (at least "alternative" according to society.) If they're having raging hot sex (therein lies the fantasy LOL) then that's even better.

But I'm glad that young man got a glimpse of romance outside the cookie cutter norm. I'm glad he got to have his happily ever after fantasy in the pages of my work. After all, that's all any young person wants - the illusion of the happily ever after.

Monday, February 06, 2012

Gastien Part !: The Cost of the Dream by Caddy Rowland

Caddy Rowland grew up in the Midwest with a stack of books that almost reached the ceiling before she was five. Books, along with her vivid imagination, have always been her closest friends.
She lives in Minnesota with her husband, who was her high school sweetheart. They are owned by two parrots. Yes, they can talk, and yes, they can bite! Melanie, the African Grey has such an extensive vocabulary that Caddy sometimes thinks Melly is preparing to become an author.
After over 20 twenty years in advertising sales, Caddy decided to pursue her childhood dream of becoming an author in 2011. There are four books planned for the Gastien series, and many other books in her head. Now, if only she can learn to type 2000 words a minute...
Her goal as an author is to make readers laugh, cry, think, and become intimately connected with her main characters. To her, a good main character stays in the mind long after the story has been read. They should become as real in the mind as the person next door.

In this both dark and hopeful first book, young Gastien Beauchamp begins his journey to Paris with tow goals in life.  The first is to become an artist with his own studio, following his own rules. That is an almost impossible dream for a peasant.. Gastien has no money,no formal training, and is a naive eighteen year old fresh off the farm. Paris spits out talented men into the gutters every day. "Good" gets you nowhere. "Great" maybe gets you a bowl of soup.

The second is to become the greatest lover in France. That should be easy.. With his stunning looks, and his willingness to learn, the women of paris are about to be awakened in a way they have only dreamt about in the 19th century!

Gastien swears that he has no interest in love. Love would only take away his dreams. But he is innocent and does not realize that sex without love can be quite empty. Before he can learn that, he must face obstacles and heartaches that will threaten to destroy his very soul.

Insatiable, burning passion. Focus and drive. Raw, natural talent. Armed with those, Gastien is determined to succeed at any cost. Poor Gastien. If he could only know in advance what struggles lay before him, he might think twice about leaving home. However, he is young and full of hope. The dreams burn relentlessly inside of him, not allowing him a moments rest. And so the journey begins.  


My Review

Caddy Rowland will take you on a trip back in time to 19th Paris, where you have to be rich to have running water and electric lights. Where men and women starve to death in the streets on a daily basis., I felt like I was right there in the 19th  Paris with Gastien. Gastien is a charming, handsome man that you will be drawn to. Caddy's writing style is very smooth and easy to follow. I was afraid with all the French words it would be confusing and hard to understand. But with glossary in the front, plus the footnotes at the bottom of the pages it was easy to follow right along with Gastien's story. 
  With such a great storyline, this book deserves to be put to the top of your to read list. But if you are the kind of person who is offended  by strong sexual content and crude language then this is not the book for you. I know that as a writer, these things had to be written to show all the heartache and pain Gastien suffered. I have to admit, there was a part in the book I had to skip over because of all the detail and awkwardness of the situation. Don't take this the wrong way, I don't want to discourage you from reading this book, it just shows how great Caddy is at describing her story. I just felt that I should warn the faint of heart.

 All in all Gastien Part1: The Cost of the Dream, is a very amazing story worth you time and attention. So on my 5 star scale I give Caddy Rowland 4 and a half stars :) Here are the links on Amazon to buy either the paperback issue or the Kindle version.