Saturday, April 29, 2017

"Between the Lines" by KD Williamson

Do You know the feeling ? Something is a bit or perhaps a lot "off" but You can't quit put a finger on "it" or perhaps you see clearly what's "wrong", but you wonder if it's really the cause or just the effect you see.

The women with "white coats, warm hands and wondrous hearts" in our lesfic medical romance are usually quite good at sorting through cause and effect. I guess that's what made them doctors after all? But no matter how good you are at sorting out other people's troubles, it's usually so much harder to see your own life clearly. What stands out, when you focus on the problems of a patient or friend, become blurry when you look at yourself.

When life gets blurry adjust your focus, sort through cause and effect or perhaps just "read" between the lines!

I know it's not so easy to get started on this reading "between lines" thing when we try to adjust the focus on our own lives, so why not tag along as Tonya - our psychiatrist par excellence - by chance starts to look closer at her own life ?

If you venture out with KD Williamson and look up Tonya, you'll probably agree with me that it's not a spur-of-the-moment thing that made Tonya a psychiatrist. Her life story seems to have left her with a good start on this career in life as she has spent a good part of her childhood caring for her mentally ill mother and a like part of her adult life keeping her aging, bigot father and unfocused sister in the good life at least financially. Caring for others is very much the focus of Tonya's life, so much so that it has left her with little wish to pursue her own happiness.

You might ask how, what or perhaps rather whom makes the kind of difference that changes Tonya's focus in life? The answer could be Haley, a youngish rookie police officer with a habit of wearing fun T-shirts, playing video games and eating cereal..... yeah yeah I know I left out her womanising, no-realtionship kind of attitude and I guess that kind of explains why meeting Haley is not enough to change Tonya's focus.

So what did. Well, it could be her psychotherapy sessions with Dr. Finn, her good friend Stephanie pushing for an openness in their relationship or perhaps her sister finally owns up and help change the family dynamics. Somehow all of the above probably does chip in but I'll let you know that there is also a little drama involved and a hole lot of telephone calls and .... well, what ever constitutes the building of a romantic relationship, it is after all lesfic!

I think I'll leave you to explore the story of Tonya and Haley and the way they meet and come to change the focus of each others lives on your own, it is after all KD Williamson's story to tell. You might ask if it's a romantic one ? I'll say all the bits and pieces are there and a lot of readers seem to find the story satisfying their romantic bone, but it didn't quite touch mine.

You should know that I was treated to a free copy of "Between the Lines" by Ylva publishing.

If you are so inclined you could look up the women with "white coats, warm hands and wondrous hearts" in our lesfic medical romances from the world of fanfiction - look up Listmania

Thursday, April 27, 2017

"Strawberry Summer" by Melissa Brayden

Strawberries are the ultimate summer treat or simply a way of life? If you live in Tanner Peak in small town California, strawberries are all around, as in ALL around - strawberry farms, fields and farmers and The Peaks Berries festival with strawberry cake, salat, salsa, milk, ice cream, doughnuts, soup, marmalade, fried ....   STOP we are going to need someone like ... a strawberry mentor to get around this much strawberry.  

Don't worry Melissa Brayden has one picked out for us, Margaret Beringer or rather just Maggie the daughter of the largest producer of strawberries in the county, she'll do just fine in easing us into the strawberry way of small town life. So let's get on with it, the everyday life of Maggie and her family and friends or perhaps we should stick to learning the trade of strawberry picking? Whatever you chose to do, you'll probably get to meet Courtney Carrinton the daughter of the owner of Tanner Peaks new and first department store, who takes a shine to our strawberry mentor Maggie, and that's really what all this strawberry is about, the ups and downs of first love and what follows as life happens to Maggie and Courtney. 

So this i YA as in high school friends, first love, making out and coming out to family and friends, it's  an adult romance as in the ups and downs of relationships and making up your mind about your life values, how, where and with whom you want to live your life and ultimately if you are going to fight for what you want the most. 

The strawberries are a nice and sweet touch to the storyline, but strawberries are easy to spoile and I'm not convinced that they survive the lengthy flashback way of storytelling in "Strawberry summer" or even if the rich taste of the ripe strawberry match the depth or rather lack of such in the romance. On the other hand, you could read this just for the strawberries, they are magnificent!

You should know that I was treated to a free copy of "Strawberry Summer" by Bold Strokes Books.

Friday, April 14, 2017

The Golden rule of office pranks or "You're Fired" by Shaya Crabtree

Do You like to play a prank on your co-workers? And did you ever have one backfire as in someone getting seriously pissed or perhaps paying you back in equal terms? 

Most people are good humoured and like a laugh even at their own expense, but beware of the "golden rule" of life and office pranks "do to others as you would have them do to you" otherwise you might find yourself in a spot of trouble ...

Now let's visit with a troublemaker, her name is Rose, but she is nothing like her name. Discontent with the job that will pay her college tuition and blissfully unaware of the golden rule, she makes a rather unwise choice of gift for the secret Santa gift exchange at the office. You might ask if it's really that important, what gift you chose for a coworker at an uninspiring and short term workplace but hey ! Think again ! Your coworkers are people too - even if you think that they are boring and need a laugh ... perhaps not at their own expense?

I guess you might want to know what Rose chose for her secret Santa gift? I'll give you a few pointers. It's an 8 inches long, hyper-realistic and RED ..... toy, that you will most likely NOT find useful in the kitchen, but really what do I know .... it might come in handy with the right kind of woman?

Now imagine the scene. Christmas party at the office, secret Santa gift exchange unfoldes and Rose realizes that "Vivian" who receives her "gift" is not just som bussy buddy co-worker but the good looking woman who is ........ surprise .... the CEO!

I know bosses need to have some sense of humor and not take everything at face value, especially at a Christmas party when people usually let their hair down a little, but even if Vivian is good natured she has reason to do ... well something? What you or Rose for that matter might not expect is that this "something" is less like handling Rose her "pink slip" and more like enlisting her help in sorting out some company business.

I think I'll leave You the reader to chose if you want to unfold the rest of the storyline by picking up "You're Fired", but I'll let you know that it's a lesfic romance as usual with just the basic ingredients of love found when you least expect it.

You should know that I was treated to a free copy by courtsey of Ylva Publishing.

.... I don't tell lies!

I know it's a little late for April's Fools Day so I won't be telling any lies and I promis NO pranks! 

But you know not everyone adhere to that rule, some actually do "Tell Me Lies" this time in SX Meaghers pen - so maybe you'll be curious enough to take a peek? 

Anyway this is just one of a number of short fic's posted at "The Academy of Bards as an April's Fool or whatever special" go look around and let me know if you have a favourite.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

"Wishing on a Dream" by Julie Cannon

You might be a fool to dream of wealth or to be forever Young, but you are quite right in hoping for love, happiness or perhaps just a hug from a loved one on a rainy day. The difference between a hope and dream is that your hope is a desire for something attainable, something that you might believe you can get even if it's difficult or take time. A dream on the other hand might just be a dream, one to harbour in your heart knowing, that it will in all likelihood never come true.

If you ask me, you might be better off saying goodbye to a far-fetched dream that will never come true, but to give up hope that's what's going to knock you off your feet. If you ask where I'm going with this then sit back and let me introduce you to Kiersten and Tobin who might be the women to prove my rambling wrong. Kiersten is a successful business woman, who has made her energy drink ICE a multimillion dollar success, while Tobin is a top of the charts singer touring the US with her band followed by the hot gazes of women looking to be her partner of choice even if just for a short tryst. Those two has made every dream come true - have they not? Wealth and success on any scale !

So I was wrong, was I not? Any dream can come true ! Go go go make that dream of yours come true! Well, perhaps you should take a closer look. Did all this success really make for a couple of happy women? You might have guessed by now that to both Kiersten and Tobin success does not spell H A P P I N E S S. Something is missing and while it's easy to see that they both lack love and companionship in their lives, it's perhaps not quite as clear to the eye, that they have both given up hope of finding just that. That's really what this story is about finding the courage to hope for more and believing that YOU are worthy of love! If you give up hope how will you ever trust yourself enough to reach out an ask for what you want?

If you want the plot you can read it here, but basically it goes like this - top of the charts singer Tobin wants Kierstens company as her sponsor and takes up in hot pursuit of Kiersten to get what she wants..... which might be just a bit more intimate than a sponsorship.

"Wishing on a Dream" has an uneven story line graced with a good and witty dialog in the first parts of the book, and this is by far the best feature of this story. I found the character of Kiersten likable and with some depth, even if you might stop and wonder if it's likely that you will find a long time out lesbian woman of 36 who has done little more than kiss a date goodnight at her front door? But hey each to their own, even if it's the "love them and leave them" type of short sexual encounters Tobin prefer. On the other hand I have a slight problem with all the success cramped into the life of a 25 year old woman like Tobin, but who know's how the music industry works? Enough said - it's lesfic, no drama, no real angst and a little light on the romance. All in all a standard read.

I'll leave it up to you to decide if "Wishing on a dream" is where you'll spend your reading time and money. You should know that I was treated to a free copy of the book by Bold Strokes Books.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

One day someone ... or "Secret Hearts" by Radclyffe

Our lives are full of defining moments. Some clear to see and some only recognizable with hindsight. Some are of our own making defined by our choices, and some are just the unstoppable maelstrom of events that sizes us up and lead us along. The beauty of it all is that, however our lives turn out, and whomever we become, nothing is ever final. Every part of life and who we are can change. Maybe the moment that defined an upcoming change has already taken place without our knowledge?  

Enough said Radclyffe is here to let us meet up with a pair of women with defining moments buried in their past, and perhaps she'll let us in on a time in their lives when change is a possibility? Ok, I know you want facts so let's get on with it. I'll give you the basics. First meet Kid as she takes charge yet again for her brother Randy's ill advised choices in life and land herself a night in a cell and 400 hours of community service. If you want to know how that choice affects her life, then follow her as she meets Jordan, who is about to trash her with a hoe for breaking into the small parcel of land in New York that Jordan has turned into a community garden. 

Now, don't worry Kid is no criminal and Jordan is really not one to charge around and beat up anyone, least of all a good looking woman, so there is ample chance that Kid and Jordan will make more of the meeting not least of all because Kid's about to spend her community service doing chores in Jordan's garden project. This might sound as a dire punishment to those of you not interested in gardening, but in Radclyffe ample hands it turns out that the chance bureaucratic decision to have Kid volunteer at Jordan's garden project is really a defining moment in both woman' lives at least if they choose to take the opportunities that arise to make friends and perhaps .... more?

Well, this is where I'll leave you to decide if you want to spend your reading time and money discovering the secrets defining Kid and Jordan's choices in life and love. If you chose to do so, you'll be treated to a short romantic tale of loss and love, focused on our protagonist of choice and with only a few roughly sketched supporting characters. 

The garden project and the entrepreneurship needed to get it up and running as a more permanent feature of the comunity is a nice backdrop to the romance, but the character of Kid do seem a bit constructed and not quit Radclyffe like. 

Kid is somewhat young with her 25 years and her professional skills and recognition, but if you leave aside the age issue the romance is believable enough to entertain. On the other hand, I never thought that I would ask for a bit more of the Radclyffelike stereotypes of a butch woman with a soft heart so amply available in her other novels, but this time I do, and I'm going to ask all of the Radclyffe fan's out there "Am I the only one thinking that "Secret Hearts" and "Color of Love" reads different than earlier Radclyffe novels - it's almost a different pen, but still a nice one ?"

You should know that I was treated to a free copy of "Secreat Hearts" by Bold Strokes Books.

And for those of you looking for a free read maybe K.C. MacGregors "Community Service" might be a nice way to spend a little reading time. This story was writen for The Academy of Bards 2007 Valentines Day Specials. Sadly I haven' found one of those this year!

Sunday, February 05, 2017

This and that...

Grab a cup of coffee, put up your feet and relax while I ramble a bit about this and that.
  • Ylva Publishing has announced a "Romance Month" due to the upcoming Valentines Day. If you are inclined to pay for your Lesfic romance addiction you get a discount on your romance purchases in February.
  • Lee Winters (Lesfic writer) has ventured out with a guest blog at Ylva's and taken a guess as to how we want our Lesfic romance. Do take a look - perhaps you'll find time to put up a comment ?
  •  And while we are on the topic of making someone happy. You could look into how to score with your favourite Lesfic writers. Fletcher DeLancey otherwise know as The Oregon Expat (an American living in Portugal) will give you a hint. Fletcher is a writer of Lesfic Scifi but I've found a few of her contemporary romantic stories quite nice. Look up "The Essay"and "Mach vs. PC"
  • If you want to sample Jae's writing before you decide to put money on the table and purchase one of her books at Ylva's romance sale, you could try out the free short story "The Midnight Couch". It's a well written short romance on how to move on your secret infatuation with a co worker. If you want to know how Jae handles the "heavy breathing" parts of her romantic Lesfic writing the try out the equally free "Dress-tease" a short add-on to her Hollywood series romance "Damage Control".
  • Should you be wondering if all our usual hunting grounds of free quality online lesfic has dried out the answer is yes - almost. I came across yet another fic by Kelly Aten on Acadamy of Bards recently "Rules of the Road". It's well written, with a couple of soft butch protagonists and a slow moving romance - so cheer up! 
  • If you want to rest up with a lesbian themed movie you could look up the list provided by Bitch Media in the "One-Sentence Review". If you have access to Netflix US you might still find some of the titles available to stream. You'll find a more extensive blog on Lesbian interest movies, web-series, short films etc. here

Saturday, January 28, 2017

"Dark Horse" by A.L. Brooks

You can live in darkness content to just be or You can reach out, take a chance and change the course of your life. What you reach for, which chances you take and how you life change, that's a matter of .... chance? Well, perhaps not purely but to the extent that You can't plan the outcome and get exactly what you want. Perhaps that's what makes life interesting? or just daunting?

Sadie didn't plan to be shipped off to live with her grandmother at age seventeen, cut off from family and friends, but she did take the chance to make the most of these new circumstances in life. 

Some might just let bygones be bygones and forget about unhappy times, but sometimes the question WHY needs an answer, and when it comes to family you can't leave the question hanging forever. Which is why we find Sadie taking a chance on getting an answer to the defining question of her life by returning home to visit with her mother. 

Sometimes one thing leads to another and that is also true for Sadie. Spending time alone might be nice if you have a lot to ponder, but if those thoughts are dark and worrisome, it's nice to see a  friendly face and have your mind taken somewhere else. Holly is just the woman to do that - friendly, good looking and conveniently close by as she man the reception at Sadie's hotel during daytime. Which leaves her free for a run, a meal or a beer at night! Ups, probably forgot to say that Sadie's hotel is well not HER hotel - guess you knew that - but rather Holly's parents hotel and Sadies temporary home, while back in her home town, and yes that do leave Sadie and Holly open to a bit of family intervention into a butting relationship!

That's all I'm going to say about Holly and Sadie. This is after all a romantic lesfic so I guess that you know what happens next ... a bit of getting to know each other, a bit of "she loves me ,she loves me not" and some mind blowing ... well you know what. I get the impression that A.L.Brooks might have tried her hand at erotica ? As we do get to share a fair bit of bedroom action.

The romance is fast moving and perhaps a little too fast for my taste. I'm not the "instant attraction" kind of romance reader, but each to her own, so if this is your thing, you might want to look up "Dark Horse" and see if Holly will change the course of her life to give love a chance.

You should know that I was treated to a free copy of "Dark Horse" courtesy of Ylva Publishing and A.L.Brooks.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Missing link or perhaps a "Scissor Link" by Georgette Kaplan

Links are everywhere, some obivous and clear-cut, others less apparent and perhaps not even recognizable, because we don't know what to look for. A Scissor Link might just be that essential part of a helicopter that keeps it in the air, as the heart is what's keeping us alive. If the Scissor Link snaps the chopper goes down, and if our hearts stop pumping our lives come to an abrupt halt. That's the easy parts of engineering and life, but what about the links we don't see quite so clearly or value quite as much?

To Wendy it's important to earn her place in the world and to be recognized for her achievements. So I guess it's not really surprising that we find her interning in Savin Arospace's Safety and Risk Managment deparment in-stead of just lazing about doing .... well, whatever 26 year old engineering graduates do with their free time - build model planes? Well, I know that the lack of surprise on my part might very well be based on the fact, that I know that Wendy has earned a degree in structural dynamic engineering and really do find risk managment and choppers interesting!

If you ask if that is all there is to be said about Wendy, I'm inclined to say..... NO, at least after Wendy sets her eyes on the 40'ish Janet Lace, vice president of Savin Arospace's production division, and goes all in on her risk assessment of Savin's latest chopper, the stress test of its scissor link and catching Janets eye.

The scissor link that keeps Janet's life spinning out of control or the missing link that will allow Janet to find love and happiness, well that might just be our Wendy, but realizing that something is missing in your life is not the same as realizing what's missing or deciding that you'll go all in, and take a chance on love .... at least not for Janet with her bagage of .... well "this and that".

You'll have to stop by "Scissor Link" by Georgette Kaplan to learn more about Wendy and the kinks she plays on to make an impact on Janet's frame of mind and perhaps her life. Let it be said that Wendy has more than sex on her mind, but "boy" do we have to go through a lot of kinky forplay to get from office affair to romantic love, so if this is how you like your romance, then do go and spend time with Wendy and Janet, "Scissor Link" is a light, funny and entertaining read, but I have to say that I take my romantic lesfic reading with a little more emphasise on the romance.

You should know that I was treated to a free copy of "Scissor Link" courtesy of Ylva Publishing and Georgette Kaplan.

Saturday, January 07, 2017

In the dark all cats are grey or "Night Voice" by CF Frizzell

"In the dark all cats are grey" they say, but are you sure that you can't tell one from the other? The anonymity of the night or the web might hide our identity and physical appearance, but the distinct tone of voice on a blog or the slight timbre of a voice on the radio can be perceived as an individual quality that distinguish one person from another, and Sables voice might just be the one you could tell apart from any other voice. Well, I guess that requires you to be one of the numerous Provincetown women who tune into "Nightlight" and listen to the radio talk show, but most of all to Sable the elusive and anonymous confidante of women in the night. 

The anonymity of the night is a safe place as long as you don't take your relationships into the real world. One might ask why that is. Why does the anonymity equals a safe haven, a place to refurbish with a new personality or perhaps just emphasize different parts of your character. To Sable the answer is straight forward, she likes to mingle with women on the air because it's safe, no strings attached, least of all the stings that require you to look into your heart and find room for a new love where an old love lingers.

This is where I have to introduce Riley the softest of soft butch women in Provincetown, and for those of you who have an affinity for "woman with a tool belt" let it be known that Riley is a "Jack of all traits" able to save a damsel in a snowbank of distress at 4 o'clock in the morning with a smile and run a successful business doing odd repairs at all times of the day or night, and that's how they meet, Sable and Riley, in the anonymity of the winter night and on air.

I'll leave it to CF Frizzell to get the two women and their multitude of persona's to actually meet up and put in some quality time getting to know each other in broad daylight. It's sufficient to say that they take their time building the intimacy that are the foundation of the first kiss and those to come.

I say that venturing out into the night with Sable and Riley is an enjoyable ride not least of all because Fizzell has the pen that can create the intimacy needed to make a romance ring true. This is not something that every published lesfic romance writer masters, which I for one find quite odd!

I'll leave it up to you to decide if "Night Voice" is where you'll spend your reading time and money. You should know that I was treated to a free copy of curtsy of Bold Strokes Books.