Hey hey happy new year! And it is indeed a happy one for me, since at the moment my spinal woes seem to be settling down somewhat thanks to what feels like constant PT. Good times! Bonus: I noticed today that ARe is doing their huge Jan 1 rebate sale thing (basically you buy the books you want and then get half of the money back in your account so you can buy even more books. It is epic).
So I thought today might be a good time to do a little rundown of my offerings. For anyone wondering where to start or just looking for something new-and-weird for the New Year.
A series of erotic romance novels about people with elemental-based superpowers. Their culture is sort of just under the surface of the one we see and live in every day. It's there, y'all sleepers just don't know it. These can be read in any order, honestly. Also, there are freebies in this series that anyone can download from multiple sources.
Plusses: Nerdy vegan economist talks a lot and has super cool fire powers. Jock best friend is a well-adjusted adopted kid just figuring out his bisexuality. Having less luck figuring out his electrical super-powers. Plenty of mockery for the 'bi people are untrustworthy' trope. First mention of witch hunters--a theme that will return later in the series.
Minuses: Too many white people. Not enough use of the actual word 'bisexual'.
2: Riot Boy
Plusses: Sleeper (read: non-superpowered) bookshop manager is mega-hot. Punk-ass bass player has cold powers and was raised to be a supervillain. Malory's first incredibly cranky appearance. Handcuff sugarkink. Tattoos. Arthur Rimbaud is quoted extensively. Lots of punk rock--I still listen to the soundtrack to this one a lot. Not a lot of superpowered social stuff, since it's from the PoV of a sleeper, so I've heard it makes a good start. First mention of power augmenters, which will return later in the series.
Minuses: If things like handcuffs are uncomfortable for you, don't pick this one up. Brady is an epic brat, also, but that may be a plus depending on your personality. Also, he smokes. Again with the too many white people.
3: Nobody's Hero
Plusses: Outgoing hero leading something of a double-life--out as a superpowered dude with his family, out as a gay man with his friends, never shall the twain meet. Nerdy, awkward-hot Irish-American boy with a huge, loud family that likes to sing and pick on each other. Fun sex scenes (alcoholic whipped cream comes into play). Also has a kick-ass Paddy Rock/Dance soundtrack. Exploration of superpowered society and how weird and demanding it can get.
Minuses: If you don't like stories heavy on family drama, this one is not for you. Jamie can be frustrating but he means well.
4: Losing Better
Plusses: Snarky FBI agent with electrical superpowers has to infiltrate his one-time summer fling. Superhero guy spent his childhood feeling displaced, but now he's the toast of his small town... except, you know, he's a vigilante. Exploration of vigilantism in the superpowered world and superpowered presence in government agencies. Interracial relationship ftw. A threesome with a super-sweet guy who will be getting his own book later. Poetry, big parties, and coming to terms with your own past. Carries the power-augmenter mentions on.
Minuses: MC is an arrogant bastard--I say that with love but some do not. Also there are some issues between their families--aka their parents' sordid affair--that may make some people uncomfortable. Threesome warning. Slightly less fluffy warning.
5: Re-entry Burn
Plusses: Superpowered ex-offenders on parole trying to find their place in a world that'd rather forget them. Lots of research went into this one in re prisons and parole. Second cranky appearance of Malory, who gets to be the hero this time, in all his angry glory. Bisexual dude takes no shit. His love interest is even more broken than him, but if you're into the kind of couples who balance out each others' madness, this is the one. Also has my favorite soundtrack, since Mal's taste is basically mine. Lots of talk about superpowered people in different government positions, particularly the federal prison system. Discussion of augmenters and inhibitors.
Minuses: Way less fluffy than the rest. Actually it's pretty hardcore. Lots of discussion of what re-entry actually means/takes and the dangers that face someone in prison. Lots of smoking in this one.
6: Missed Connections: In Distress
Plusses: Super fluffy but also has cool action. D&D nerd nonbinary boy has no superpowers, but gets dragged into a superpowered screw-up when he gets rescued from his burning apartment. Mysterious ginger football-hooligan-pretty boy (bisexual love interests ftw!) is trying to clear his name... and being hunted. Lots of plays on the 'damsel in distress' trope, obviously. Also, funny sign board sayings. Part of the Missed Connections collection with Loose Id. More interracial relationships ftw, also. Significant mentions of strife within the superpowered community (all of which will obviously come up again).
Minuses: Moves really fast and is very short, so it's more a bite than a sink-your-teeth-in thing.
(In progress right now is #7, btw. Two girls and a summerstock theater. You know what superpowers are awesome for? Pyrotechnics.)
Plusses: Three books, the first of which is free, the second two are like $1 each with the rebate, so now is a great time to grab them all. Short books, quick reads, but also some complicated world and magic system building going on in there. Human culture based on the Indian Subcontinent. (Look up "Suriya" from the Tamil film industry. Face-spiration, right there.) Fun fae tropes explored: thralldom, arrogance, pacts, fae-napping, madness. Wingsex. (No really, it's fun.) Talking to plants. Gorgeous, evocative artwork by Ruxandra Lache in books 2 & 3. Series is complete.
Minuses: Aeron is an epic fae-brat. Tam, human-boy, is probably way too nice. Tight focus means the world probably doesn't get explored as much as I'd like.
1: By the River
Plusses: Something different. A weird take on magical-realism that's meant to read more like a fairy tale than anything else. Lots of water-lovin--as in, there's a bathtub scene. Sweet, short, magical, like a modern-day Selkie or Merman story... but not. Small river-town USA, family issues, and a lot of love. Bonus: bisexual PoV hero yay.
Minuses: Short, more of an HFN-seeming ending than anything else.
(In progress: #2, totally unrelated "air" element story. Very modern fairy tale in the same way!)
Plusses: Part of the super-fabulous "Designated Bottoms" collection, or available on its own. Short and sweet bit about two gamers who find what they need in a boyfriend through some online accidents. Lots of gaming fun, a few misunderstandings, and some art history nerdery. Interracial relationships ftw! Bisexual love interest! My first and so far only contemporary-sans-magic-or-fantasy-elements! Enough with the exclamation points!
Minuses: You can't see Samir's beautiful face, which my friend Jenna inspired by pointing out how hot Rami Malek is. Just saying.
Okay so even if you miss out on the huge sale today, this is probably still a pretty good resource for me to have on this here internet page of mine, so I'm glad I did that. And glad I could type long enough to do that, more than anything else. Yay!
... I gotta go buy a bunch of books now ♥