Are you looking for your next great read? I Heart Lesfic wants to help. More than 70 authors have joined forces to deeply discount more than 150 books so you don’t have to break the bank to get your reading fix.
Are you looking for your next great read? I Heart Lesfic wants to help. More than 70 authors have joined forces to deeply discount more than 150 books so you don’t have to break the bank to get your reading fix.
Hunky Nate Hathaway can’t resist the lure of private Virtual Reality rooms in a new Internet café that opens on the street where he works. He’s lonely and intrigued by the VR program offering a boyfriend experience. After only one date, Nate is hooked on Jason, the sexy, kind VR character.
Jason Graeme is the computer wizard behind the hot new VR programs. He’s a risk taker, smart and gorgeous. He’s also the body model for the boyfriend. A twist of fate brings Nate to his attention. Determined to meet dishy Nate, he reveals who he is.
Passion sizzles between the two men as they fall in love.
Trouble is Nate’s not the only guy in town who uses the boyfriend experience.
Read the teaser
“Hi, babe. It’s great to see you.” The guy greeted Nate and then kissed him.
Nate’s entire body went into meltdown. The kiss was so real he grabbed the VR man and pulled him close, crushing against him.
The man returned the kiss but gradually drew away. He held Nate’s hand and brought him to a table outside the café. “Let’s get coffee. Did you eat yet? You look tired.” He reached out a hand and swept gentle fingertips down Nate’s cheek.
Surprised at the comforting gesture, Nate closed his eyes for a second to soak up the touch. He opened them and gazed at his VR boyfriend. “I’d like to hear about your day. I’m not hungry, coffee’s fine.” What will I call him? Does he have a name or do I just assign him one? Hell, he is gorgeous.
A server brought coffee. “How lovely to see you again, Jason, and you’ve brought Nate along tonight. The usual for you both?”
Nate blinked under the beaming smile from her. How does it know my name? Must read the credit card or Cory keys it in when he sets the room going.
She placed their cups on the table.
Jason. Nate smiled at his VR man. Yeah. I like that—a mythical name for an unreal guy.
Jason locked his gaze with Nate’s. Attraction and desire flared unmistakably in the cobalt eyes.
Nate’s stomach clenched. He leaned a little forward to take in the affection from his boyfriend’s expression. Comfort, warmth, and gratitude mixed with the urgent need to kiss Jason again. He looked down at the table, unsure how to go on.
Jason stood and pulled his chair along next to Nate’s. He sat and slipped an arm around Nate’s shoulders. “Hey.” Jason held his jaw and lifted his head. “Kiss me.”
Nate looked into the blue eyes.
Jason’s lips met his. He merged his mouth on Nate’s in a soft press then lingered, dotting little kisses on Nate’s parted lips, before slipping his palm around Nate’s head and deepening the kiss.
Overwhelmed with the tenderness and sex in the kiss, Nate pulled away and stood. “I have to get back to work.”
Jason stood, too. He made a grab for Nate’s hand. “What, tonight? That’s unusual. Will I see you tomorrow?”
Nate stared at the gorgeous man, shocked at the realistic way Jason’s voice held need and worry.
“Yes, of course. I better go now.” Unable to resist, he hugged Jason close. It was just as if he held a real man to his body. He soaked up the feel, let go of Jason, and strode to the wall where the door to the room had been. The VR scene provided a row of shops along the wall. As the dreamlike quality of the experience remained, Nate sighed and tried every one of the handles on the doors, until one swung inward and he charged out of it into the corridor. His credit card popped up from the device slot. Nate snatched it. He put it into his wallet as he walked the length of the corridor.
Cory drank coffee from a paper cup at his desk. He gave Nate a wave. “See you again.”
Nate passed him, dashed up the stairs, and raced along the corridor to the young woman’s desk at the entrance.
He called, “Good night,” walking quickly by her, and wove through the tables and computer desks until he pushed open the glass door and stepped into the evening air.
Nate froze in the cool breeze. He breathed deep. This was real. The café building behind him was cream brick, chrome, and dappled glass, the bank over the street serious gray stone blocks with an ATM inserted along one wall. Nate stalked along the sidewalk glad of the traffic nearby, happy with the occasional blast of carbon monoxide until he reached the entrance to the subway. He went down to the platform.
On the train home, he gazed ahead as he hung from a ceiling strap surrounded by late commuters. It’s as if I’ve been with a real person. I can just about feel his mouth on mine. Fuck, he’s hot. I wish he was real. Should I go tomorrow?
Copyright E.D. Parr 2018 Evernight Publishing
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Just a quick note to let you know that for this weekend only, there is a whopping 30% off all eBooks at Totally Bound and Pride Publishing. So if you’d like to load your eReader with some bargain reads, look no further. My pages at each of the sites are below:
All You Need is Love: A Limited Edition Romance Collection
With stories by
Tamsin Baker, Jess Buffett, Kristine Cayne, Adriana Kraft, Cate Farren, Valerie Ullmer, Kai Tyler, Lexi Thorne, Izzy Szyn, Aeryn Jaden, Dana Kenzi, Celia Fay, and Dani Gray
Romance Collections is proud to present these thirteen stories of love that knows no boundaries. Like rivers flowing through the canvas of earth, these stories will run deep, touch softly and leave you breathless. No matter who it is with, passion is magnificent, desires are bold, and love is beautiful.
Amazon (universal link): http://mybook.to/allyouneedislove
The Omega Shift, by Tamsin Baker
Running in Circles, by Jess Buffett
Burning for Him, by Kristine Cayne
Three: A Love Story, by Adriana Kraft
Stop me Falling, by Cate Farren
Fall for You, by Valerie Ullmer
Homecoming, by Kai Tyler
Lesbian Alien Affairs, by Lexi Thorne
Bound for Landia, by Izzy Szyn
Wide Awake, by Aeryn Jaden
Once Upon a Crush, by Dana Kenzi
The Honest Change, by Celia Fay
Cupid’s Valentine, by Dani Gray
BLURB Three: A Love Story by Adriana Kraft
As erotic romance authors, my husband and I love writing ménage and polyamory stories because they offer so many options for sizzling sex scenes. We craft sexual encounters on the page that appeal to both of us in hopes they’ll appeal to the fantasies of other men and women, as well.
But what happens when these hot erotic fantasies run headlong into real-life obstacles? What does polyamory look like when it happens to ordinary people? That’s the challenge we set ourselves in “Three: A Love Story,” our contribution to the Boxed Set All You Need is Love.
Three lives—but how many loves? Two bisexual women deeply in love with each other also enjoy dating men and even arranging an occasional three-way. What if one of these women starts to fall in love with a man?
Jamie tilted her head to the side as Susan curled back in next to her. “So what do you think of Mason?”
“Ah, Mason. He’s the source of your stewing. Is he starting to wear on you? How long has it been—three months? Four months?”
“He’s not wearing on me. And it’s nearly five months.” Jamie paused to wet her lips. “You didn’t answer my question. What do you think of him? What do you really think of him?”
Susan flinched. “Well, I haven’t thought a lot about him, though I must say he has stayed around longer than any guy in recent memory.” Susan sighed. “Okay, to be honest. I think he seems like a very nice guy. When he’s over here, it’s because he’s come to see you, so I don’t really spend a lot of time with him. I’ve cooked a few dinners for you guys, but most of time he comes, you go out, you come back, and you fuck like two wildcats. I’m surprised the neighbors haven’t complained. And he’s usually gone before I’m up in the morning. And lately you’ve been spending much more time at his house than at our apartment…for your love nest activities, that is. I must say that’s easier on me. I get more sleep, and I don’t have to imagine what you and he are doing to each other.”
“What else do you want me to say? I’m an English professor, not a social worker. He doesn’t seem abusive. He’s easy to look at. He doesn’t…” Susan paused. “Uh oh. If he’s not wearing on you and yet you’re stewing about him…” She arched an eyebrow. “Jams, maybe you’d better tell me what’s really on your mind.”
Jamie didn’t miss the sudden flash of anxiety that crossed Susan’s face.
About Adriana Kraft
Winner of the 2014 Bisexual Book Award for erotic fiction, author Adriana Kraft is a married couple writing Sizzling Romantic Suspense and Erotic Romance for Two, Three, or More. Whether readers open our romantic suspense or our erotic romance, they can expect characters they care about, hot sex scenes, and a compelling story. Our suspense stories deliver one man, one woman, danger and intrigue. Our erotic romance is edgier and nearly always includes ménage or polyamory, sometimes with two women and a man, sometimes with two (or more) couples.
Together we have published more than forty romance novels and novellas to outstanding reviews. We love hearing from readers at email@example.com, and here is our website: When It’s Time to Heat Things Up http://adrianakraft.com
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Release blitz organized by Writer Marketing Services.
What would you think if the guy you were dating raced off every night before midnight and would never say why? Would you succumb to the urge to follow him one night?
Liam Hale can’t believe his luck when he meets the man of his dreams, Karl Oberon.
Hunky Karl is the sexiest man Liam has ever met, but his mysterious disappearances start to tease.
Gorgeous Liam is the only man Karl has ever loved.
Together they spark and sizzle with passion, but Karl doesn’t know how to tell Liam why he races away. Maybe keeping Liam’s mind off the question with mind-blowing erotic encounters will work.
Warning this book contains
MM sex, MM anal sex in various positions, MM oral sex, MM sex in restrooms of gay bar, MM partner masturbation, and anal play
Read a teaser 18+
Karl rested his face on Liam’s. He whispered on Liam’s mouth. “You’re hot as hell. I’m fuckin’ desperate to feel your hard cock in my hand.” Then he kissed Liam.
The passion that traveled over Liam as Karl’s lips merged with his in a slow, soft, lingering kiss, weakened his thighs. The skin between his legs under his balls throbbed. His cock jerked in his pants. He returned the kiss grabbing Karl’s head and thrusting his cock in upward strokes on the hard column in Karl’s pants. He kissed Karl until every fiber of his being screamed to come. He murmured between kisses. “The restroom here is a good place for desperados.”
Karl smiled against his mouth. “I was hoping you’d say that.” He crushed Liam close in a final hug as the song ended and then he broke away.
Liam followed Karl across the dance floor and through the door that led to a short corridor and the restrooms. These weren’t like the toilets in some gay bars that Liam disliked for their barren and sometimes grubby surrounds. The restrooms in this bar were sparkling clean and spacious. Two of the stalls at the end of the row had benches and wash basins. Liam had laughed at them when he’d first seen them, but now he walked past Karl and showed him into one.
Karl flicked the catch along on the door lock. He pushed Liam against the wall with one hand, and as his tongue forced Liam’s lips open, with the other hand he dragged Liam’s jeans zipper down.
Liam moaned, overwhelmed with the need to feel Karl’s hands on his cock. He grabbed his jeans to help, and jerked them down his ass to his thighs as he sucked Karl’s tongue into his mouth. His cock sprang free, but not for long.
Karl grasped the shaft. He drew way from Liam’s lips and gazed into his eyes. “You’re leaking. You look ready to be fucked. Do you want that? To be fucked? To have my hard dick ram into your ass until your cum spurts up your chest?”
Liam’s entire body went into meltdown. His cock throbbed and his balls lifted so tight he instinctively reached his hand down to stroke them. His fingers met Karl’s wrapped around his dick. Liam’s stomach tightened inwards and he groaned. “I need to come so bad I’m about to fall down.”
Karl knelt and pushed his fingers between Liam’s legs. He stroked Liam’s balls with his thumb and clamped his other hand around Liam’s cock tight. The helmet head poked out of his fist and Karl lapped at the slit then circled his tongue around and around until Liam was gasping and thrusting.
Karl pumped Liam’s dick fast and hard. He teased at Liam’s ass with his fingertips and his palm cradled Liam’s aching balls.
Liam orgasmed with such intensity he grabbed Karl’s shoulders bending his head, and groaned open mouthed against the white linen shirt Karl wore. He thrust up into Karl’s fist and only stopped as the waves of delicious pleasure waned and left him drowning in satisfaction and gratitude.
Karl pushed Liam’s shirt up with strong hands and licked up his stomach.
The trail of exquisite sensation he left made Liam wince and sigh. He grasped Karl’s head, his fingers slipping through Karl’s soft, abundant hair, trying to bring Karl’s face to his for a kiss. “Kiss me, please…”
Copyright E.D.Parr Evernight Publishing 2017
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An ocean of possibility. For love, revenge and murder.
Daniel Blake, a handsome young singer, boards the Atlantic Anthem in Portugal for the final voyage of her maiden season. The state-of-the-art ship is the jewel in the Royal Atlantic cruise fleet. For Daniel, a one-time boy band member and TV talent show winner, it’s an honor to perform aboard such a vessel. Daniel loves the freedom and adventure of the sea. He began his solo career as a cruise ship entertainer and returning to the ocean as a headline act brings him full circle. He isn’t looking for love.
Neither is comedian Elijah Mann. Working at sea has given Elijah’s career the boost it desperately needed. Often considered too good-looking and sexy to be funny, work has been hard to come by since his TV show was canceled. With a potential new career opening up, he must remain focused. But when Elijah meets Daniel the attraction is mutual and instant. As the ship sets sail for England they have three days to get to know each other. Elijah can’t let that opportunity pass.
The voyage home is far from smooth. Also on board is a figure from Daniel’s past. A man who’s been holding a grudge for years, waiting for his moment. As a storm builds in the North Atlantic, Daniel and Elijah discover that the trip of a lifetime could be their last.
Pride Publishing: https://www.pride-publishing.com/book/anthem-of-the-sea
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2rvgeTr
Amazon USA: http://amzn.to/2rh1Bnt
The taxi collected Daniel Blake from the hotel on time. He liked that. Punctuality, efficiency and professionalism—three things he valued in all areas of his career. Be on time and be prepared—that had been his motto since he was fourteen years old. Fifteen years later, he continued to live by it.
He helped the driver load his gear into the trunk. There wasn’t much of it. When on the road, he traveled light with just a medium-sized case, a holdall and a suit carrier. He’d arrived in Lisbon the previous morning, disembarking from a cruise ship, where he’d performed for two nights. His shirts would need washing and his suit pressing before his next show. There was plenty of time.
He gave the driver directions to his designated cruise terminal and climbed onto the back seat. Thankfully, the air conditioning was running. Though it was late October, the outside temperature remained in the mid-eighties and it wasn’t even eleven o’clock. Last night he had heard some of the hotel staff complain about the weather turning cold, but for a boy like him, born and raised in the northeast of England, these climates were well above average. Back home, this would be a hot day in June or July.
It was a short drive to the port. Early in the day, but the streets were busy. Three massive cruise ships were anchored in the harbor, discharging thousands of eager tourists into the city. British, American, German, Japanese, they scurried through the streets, clutching backpacks and maps, keen to explore as much as they could of the historic Portuguese city in the few hours they had here.
Daniel smiled at their faces as they zipped by.
Lisbon, his last stop before home.
The car arrived at the port and within ten minutes Daniel stood beside the gangway with his luggage, waiting for the necessary security calls to be made that would allow him to board the ship. The enormous vessel towered above him, casting a huge shadow across the dock. The Atlantic was one of the biggest and most spectacular cruise ships in the world.
There were a lot of criticisms for super ships such as this. He’d heard them described as floating shopping malls, grotesque monstrosities and budget hotels at sea, but for Daniel there was something quite majestic about the craft and its design, to say nothing of the engineering that went into the construction of such a huge vessel.
“Those things are so top heavy,” a jobbing magician once had told him in a bar. “I hear they roll right over in high seas.”
Daniel had laughed at the man’s ignorance. “And when did you last hear of that happening?”
The man had floundered. “I’m just saying that something so uneven can’t be safe, can it? You won’t ever catch me on one of them things. Mug’s game, isn’t it?”
“It’s your loss,” Daniel had told him cheerily. He felt safer at sea, even in the roughest weather, than he ever had on a plane. Motorways too. It might not be the quickest, but without a doubt it was the most luxurious and extravagant way to travel. He loved being at sea.
Waiting for the security guy to return with his passport, Daniel realized he’d drawn some attention.
A slow stream of passengers was returning to the ship. They couldn’t have seen much of Lisbon, coming back already. Among them was an English family. While the parents lit cigarettes before joining the embarkation queue, the daughter, who looked around fourteen, stared directly at him.
“Hi.” He smiled. “Good day out?”
The girl was plump and pretty with wavy brown hair that fell around her shoulders. She wore a sweet, flowery sundress and red Converse shoes. She blushed as she realized she’d been caught gawking.
“Are you…? Oh, my God, you are, aren’t you? You’re Daniel Blake.”
He raised his hands in mock surrender. “Guilty as charged. Don’t shoot me.”
The girl nervously stepped forward, looking at him with wide, hazel eyes. “What are you doing here?”
“I’m waiting to join the ship. I’m performing on board.”
Her jaw fell. “The Anthem? You’re coming on the Anthem?”
He nodded. He didn’t mind being recognized like this. Daniel was famous enough in the UK, but not so much that it ever became an inconvenience. His fame came from a TV talent show. The public had made him and he appreciated all the support he got.
“Oh my God.” The girl’s face became highly animated. “Mam! Dad! Come here. Oh my God, you won’t believe it. Daniel Blake. It’s actually him.”
Her bemused parents stubbed out their cigarettes and came over. They were an attractive-looking couple of around forty. The girl looked a lot like her father.
“I hope she’s not bothering you,” the dad said, looking cautiously between Daniel and his daughter.
“Not a bit,” Daniel assured him. “It’s a pleasure.”
“Daniel is going to be singing on the ship. Can you believe it? How cool is that?” She grinned a mile wide.
“Starting tomorrow,” he said. “Make certain you get yourselves a great seat down front. I can use all the support I can get.”
“I will, I will. I voted for you every week on The One. You were my favorite from the start.”
“So it’s you I need to thank for winning. What’s your name, sweetie?”
“Well, thank you, Julieann. Your votes changed my life.”
The girl blushed violently.
The security officer came back to escort Daniel onto the ship. Before boarding, he posed for photographs with Julieann and her family.
“The girls at school will have a fit when they see these on Instagram,” Julieann said proudly as they took a selfie together.
“See you at the shows,” Daniel said as he walked on board. “And don’t forget—front row. Be there. I’ll look out for you.”
“We’ll definitely be there.”
Once on board, he passed his luggage through the security scanner and was equipped with his sea pass ID, the plastic card that would enable him to move around the ship, access his accommodation and run a tab in the bars and shops. He was greeted on the far side of security by a young woman in a blue shirt and khaki shorts. Her soft blonde hair was tied back from her round, attractive face. She was vaguely familiar from his engagement earlier in the season. He checked her name badge to refresh his memory. Belle Hodges, entertainment crew, from South Australia.
“Hi,” Belle said cheerily. “It’s wonderful to have you back on board.”
She extended her hand and he shook it. “It’s great to be back. Honestly, I’ve been looking forward to this since I left in May. How has your maiden season gone?”
“Over too quickly and totally ace. I can’t believe it’s been that long since you were here. Yikes, the time has flown. Let me give you a hand with your stuff.”
“That’s okay. I can manage. Just point me in the right direction and I’ll find my way.”
Ignoring his protests, Belle took up the suit carrier.
“You’re in real luck,” she said. “You’ve been allocated a large stateroom on one of the passenger decks. Balcony and all.”
“You’re joking? Wow. Am I sharing with the house band or a football team?”
Belle giggled, wrinkling her nose. “Silly. You’ve got the whole place to yourself.”
“Seriously? What gives? I never get accommodation like that.”
Belle looked around cautiously and lowered her voice. “We had a family thrown off the ship in Gran Canaria so you’ve got their room. They caused a fight in the martini bar and punched an officer who tried to intervene. Captain Rassimov put them off at the next port. No second chances.”
“Good to know we’re in such firm hands.”
“Captain Rassimov is the best,” Belle gushed.
Daniel didn’t doubt it. He’d met the dashing captain on his last trip. Tall, dark, handsome and extremely charismatic, he sent hearts beating fast among the passengers and crew. If he wasn’t so straight, Daniel would fancy him too. Rassimov was the perfect man to master such a grand vessel.
Launched in May, with a rumored cost of over one-point-five billion, the Atlantic Anthem was coming to the end of its inaugural European season. It was the newest and biggest vessel in the Royal Atlantic fleet. Daniel had spent two nights on board when he’d performed a headline set on the maiden voyage. He’d worked for cruise companies all over the world, but he couldn’t fail to be impressed by the Anthem. It was billed as the ship with everything. From his own experience that was certainly true.
As he walked through the decks with Belle, his sense of excitement increased. The interior was truly splendid. Not a penny had been spared, from the lush carpets to the paintings and sculptures that graced every deck. Before coming on board, he’d read all the specs—about the spa and fitness center, two swimming pools and a solarium, the Royal Theater with nine-hundred-sixty seats, the bars—eight of them across the ship—the main dining room plus three specialty restaurants and a twenty-four-hour café. Several public entertainment areas were situated on Decks Four and Five around a jaw-dropping central staircase. Knowing all of that in advance, he still had been blown away when he’d came upon the ship for the first time. And he felt it now, all over again.
Only the most jaded, spoiled and hard-to-please traveler could fail to be inspired by the Anthem.
They rode one of the glass elevators to the tenth floor where Belle led him down a long corridor to his stateroom in the forward section of the ship.
“Last time, I had an interior cabin in the crew quarters.” He laughed.
“Yep, that’s where they like to cram us in. But now you’ve got this.”
Daniel swiped his sea pass card to enter the room. A major step up from crew class, the room was bright and contemporary, to the standard of any good hotel. He had an enormous double bed all to himself and a sitting area with a long, cream leather sofa. There was a dressing table, minibar, TV, private bathroom and balcony.
“I hope I don’t get lost in here,” he joked, dumping his luggage by the wardrobe.
“As long as you’re on stage for your shows tomorrow night, no one will mind what you get up to in here,” Belle said.
“You can put your mind at ease on that count,” he said. “I’ve been performing since I was fourteen and I’ve never missed a show in my life.”
Belle left him to settle in. Daniel unpacked his clothes first and filled a plastic bag with stuff that needed washing immediately—shirts, socks and underwear. Another great thing about working on a luxury cruise liner—everything was to hand. If he left the bag out today, all the items would be washed, ironed and returned by tomorrow.
He went into the bathroom next, laying out his razor, toothbrush and skincare products. He brought everything with him when he traveled. Though he wasn’t particularly vain, it was important to look good in public.
He didn’t have to worry. At twenty-nine years old—five months shy of thirty—he was in prime condition. He’d never looked better. For years he used to hate the way he looked. Everything about him had been out of proportion, especially his face. Eyes, teeth, nose, chin, they were always too big. But throughout his twenties, the rest of his body had caught up. He’d filled out and gained muscle and his face, which had seemed so awkward in his teens, had developed an extraordinary handsomeness. He had a strong jaw with a cowboy cleft, while his mouth was wide and masculine. With sky-blue eyes and thick brown hair, he had become a good-looking man. Very good-looking.
His confidence hadn’t grown to match his looks. A part of him would always be that skinny, peculiar kid. But only he could see it.
Finally unpacked, he relaxed and walked onto the balcony. He had a great view of the city and the people below, streaming like ants around the port terminals. Daniel took a moment to enjoy it all. He loved just about every part of the cruise experience.
Every ship, every voyage, was a new adventure.
The Atlantic Anthem promised a greater adventure than any other.
He couldn’t wait to get started.
Thom Collins Bio
Thom Collins is the author of the novel Closer by Morning, with Pride Publishing. His love of page turning thrillers began at an early age when his mother caught him reading the latest Jackie Collins book and promptly confiscated it, sparking a life-long love of raunchy novels.
The novellas Gods of Vengeance and Silent Voices were published by Pride in early 2017, followed by the novel Anthem of the Sea, the first book in the Anthem Trilogy. He has recently finished writing the second book in a series and is working on the third.
Thom has lived in the North East of England his whole life. He grew up in Northumberland and now lives in County Durham with his husband and two cats. He loves all kinds of genre fiction, especially bonk-busters, thrillers, romance and horror. He is also a cookery book addict with far too many titles cluttering his shelves. When not writing he can be found in the kitchen trying out new recipes. He’s a keen traveler but with a fear of flying that gets worse with age. Since taking his first cruise in 2013 he realized that sailing is the way to go.
Twitter: @thomwolf and @realthomcollins
Release blitz organised by Writer Marketing Services.
You may have heard the news coming out of Chechnya, part of the Russian Federation, where police are kidnapping gay men (and those they perceive to be gay) and taking them to camps for torture. Several state-sanctioned murders have also been reported.
Readers & Writers for LGBT Chechens is raising money for organizations working directly with gay men and other persecuted LGBT people in Chechnya and the northern Caucasus. We do this through direct donations, donating royalties to these charitable organizations, and an online auction that runs through Saturday, May 13, at 12 noon CDT (6 pm BST and 3 am Sunday morning AEST).
MM romance and YA author Kaje Harper has donated a complete ebook set of her Hidden Wolves paranormal romance series to the auction. Here, she talks about why she got involved:
Why I Got Involved in Helping LGBT Chechens
This feels like the year of injustice. Not that the world hasn’t always been a place where people suffered unjustly for who they are and who they love. But now, more than ever, those who represent me on the national and international stage are betraying their responsibility to speak up for rights, for compassion, for human worth and dignity.
This is also the year of the individual. So many of us, in a thousand venues, lifting our individual voices, volunteering, contributing, protesting, speaking up, trying to fill the needs that the wealthy and powerful are abandoning.
LGBTQ Chechens are not the only folk on the rainbow spectrum in grave danger if they’re discovered, but in some ways they represent the darkest of our current fears. These men have been taken, put in camps, disowned by their own families, abused, tortured killed, for being gay.
With a few exceptions (Bless you, Angela Merkel) our governments have remained silent. The leader of Chechnya has stated there are no gay men in the whole region to deserve rights, and the loud response of logic, of compassion, of protest — a hundred nations who should be speaking out with the clear understanding, shouting that hate does not erase 5% of the population… echoes only in our heads. That lovely sentiment of “never again” is shown to be only paper words to our leaders.
We can’t save them all privately. Donations can’t move 5% of the population of a region to safety, nor even the much smaller fraction who might come out and request it. But every person we can move is one fewer lost to hate. Every voice that is raised increases the chance that we might shame others with more power to speak up internationally. The worst crime is when this kind of human rights abuse happens in silence, and the most painful is to know we could have saved lives but turned our backs.
So why participate in Readers & Writers for LGBT Chechens? Because I can. Because it gives me one more chance, beyond all the other things I do, to make a difference. Because it is a rainbow splash of hope, in a dark year that needs it. Because even one man spared torture and death would still be worth it.
And last, perhaps least, but worth remembering – if we do not speak up now, whose voices will be raised when they come for us?
I have two LGBTQ kids, and I would pray that if we lived in Chechnya, and some other author lived here, that author would be trying in ways simple and creative, to fight the evil of violent bigotry, whether it impacted them or not.
We are one world, and none of us are a solitary, untouched island within it. We live and die, together.
Authors, Publishers and Artists
If you’re an author or artist who would like help out, please sign up at Authors & Publishers for LGBT Chechens. There, you can also find answers to frequently asked questions about royalty donations, the charitable organizations that are helping LGBT Chechens, and more.
Kaje Harper is an M/M romance author, writes a little YA, and moderates a YA LGBT Books group on Goodreads.