Thursday, January 31, 2013

Revelations--A Controversial New Book by Julie Lynn Hayes

I am honored to introduce Julie Lynn Hayes' newest book, Revelation. It is destined to create stimulate juicy discussions .

Judas has never been very popular, not in any incarnation that he and Jesus and the others have lived through. But he doesn’t care about that. All he cares about is following the instructions of God as set forth in the script that they follow. And Jesus. For Judas has secretly loved the son of God for over two thousand years.

But now he decides that enough is enough, and he’s tired of watching Jesus die far too early, and for what? This time Judas is determined to see that Jesus lives a long and happy life, no matter what price he has to pay to accomplish matter if he has to make a deal with the devil himself.

Revelations is a story of what could be, told by those who play it out, time after time after time, unbeknownst to the rest of mankind.  They've come back again, for yet another round.  But this time is going to be different.

I squirm away from him, for I will not permit this. Not yet. Everything on my terms. Or nothing at all. “Lucifer, I don’t have time for your nonsense, nor your juvenile groping. I have no more time for your games, none of them, do you hear me?”

“I hear you, of course, son of God,” he replies, unperturbed, as he grabs my shoulder, not heeding my words at all, spinning me about so we are face to face once more. He peers into my eyes, staring carefully into them as if he can tell something of what I’m thinking just by staring. Maybe he can. The devil has many tricks, after all.

“I’ve been waiting for this moment for a long time, Jesus,” he fairly purrs in a very self-satisfied sort of way. “You’ve decided to do it, haven’t you? To allow me to have you to myself. As I knew you would, all along.” His smile is very irritating, and I bristle, knowing I’m only serving to feed his over-inflated ego, but what help is there for it? None whatsoever, so I hold myself in check and treat it like the business deal it is. Nothing more.

“After all these years,” he continues, “two thousand plus years, and now you’re giving in. Why? Because of Judas Iscariot, the very man who continually sells you out time after time after time? If that’s not the supreme irony, I don’t know what is, Jesus. What does your father say about this, about his son the Sodomite? Maybe he would’ve preferred you celibate, like him?”

I refuse to let his words penetrate my mind. I’m beyond being hurt by anything he can say. Let him have this moment. It’s the last he shall have of this sort. I’m here for a higher cause.
“I’ve not yet named my price.” I eye him warily. “Do you not wish to know what it is before you agree to this?” There’s no doubt we both know of what I speak. But he must agree to my terms, or there shall be nothing. Nothing at all.

“All right, I’ll bite, princess, what’s your price?” he asks cockily, his hand reaching toward my crotch, but I manage to halt it before it can reach its destination, push it aside, away from me.
“My price is this. Tomorrow night, you will save Judas.”

“Save him? From what, your father?” He laughs, obviously amused at my words. “Or are the outraged citizens preparing to lynch him? Do you think my merry little band of homophobes hate him that much? Well, it is Judas we’re talking about, maybe they do.” He runs the fingers of one pale hand through his platinum tresses, tossing his head in disdain as I, once again, do not take his bait.

“You’ll make sure he gets away from here safely, I don’t care how you have to do it. But you will keep him from dying. At anyone’s hand. Do you understand me, Lucifer?”

“Oh, I understand you,” he responds, his eyes seeming to glow as from an inner hellish light. “I understand you all too well. To save Iscariot’s mortal hide from a beating, or worse, you’ll give up your own. To me. Do I have that about right?”

“Pretty much,” I reply. “He has to be completely safe from harm, and well away from here,” I continue adamantly. “No negotiation on that point. If he is not safe, and if you cannot prove it, then the deal we strike is therefore null and void.”

“Goodness, you talk such legal mumbo jumbo.” He laughs, but in the blink of an eye, he draws a parchment from his inside pocket, and presents it to me. Am I surprised at his thoroughness? Not at all. He is Lucifer, and not without tricks of his own. I read the document carefully, make sure it covers everything I wish it to. It does. I read it a second time, and then a third, just to make sure he doesn’t slide anything else into it, that’s it, just what I have agreed to and no more. And he has agreed to everything I demand. No less. When I’m satisfied the agreement is indeed airtight and unbreakable, I take the writing implement he hands to me, and sign my name.
And now it’s done. I’ve made a pact with the devil. But on my terms.

Julie Lynn Hayes was reading at the age of two and writing by the age of nine and always wanted to be a writer when she grew up. Two marriages, five children, and more than forty years later, that is still her dream. She blames her younger daughters for introducing her to yaoi and the world of M/M love, a world which has captured her imagination and her heart and fueled her writing in ways she'd never dreamed of before. She especially loves stories of two men finding true love and happiness in one another's arms and is a great believer in the happily ever after. She lives in St. Louis with her daughter Sarah and two cats, loves books and movies, and hopes to be a world traveler some day. While working a temporary day job, she continues to write her books and stories and reviews, which she posts in various places on the internet. Her family thinks she is a bit off, but she doesn't mind. Marching to the beat of one's own drummer is a good thing, after all. Her published works can be found at, Muse it Up Publishing, Dreamspinner Press, Silver Publishing and No Boundaries Publishing.  

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Special Chocolate Contest

I have a special message from Julie Hayes about a very delicious contest....

Thanks for having me, Janie!   I’d like to give back to your readers, so let’s have a giveaway! 

If I get 25 comments or less, I’ll pick a winner to receive anything I’ve written. 

For 25 to 50 comments, there’ll be two winners.

For over 50, I’ll give away to 4 readers, and one person will get a $10 Amazon gift card! 

 Don’t forget to leave your email addy. No addy – no win!

Here’s the link for The Belgian Chocolate Remedy – enjoy!

And while you're mulling over what to comment about, here's a lovely taste of Julie's book:The Belgian Chocolate Remedy.

 Milan had gone back to his last batch of chocolate—unscathed and unburned—and removed it from the burner, where it was cooling. “Would you like to brush the molds with chocolate?” he asked.

“Sure, I guess.” Jesse shrugged. It didn’t seem that difficult, at least in theory. “What’s it for?”

“To coat them.” Milan pulled a pastry brush from a drawer. He already set the molds out; they were simply waiting to be used.  “I have some in the freezer already done,” he explained, seeing Jessie’s questioning look.  “This is not all I have.”

“Okay,” Jessie said, “just show me what you want me to do.”

“Here.” Milan carried the pot of chocolate to the center of the work table. “Set a trivet there, will you?”

“A what?”

“A trivet,” Milan repeated, nodding to the counter behind Jessie.  “That blue thing there. I will set the pot on it so it does not burn the surface.”

“Sure.” Jessie laid the round blue object onto the table, as Milan set the pot.  “Take the brush and dip it like this.” He demonstrated just how far into the chocolate he wanted him to go. “Then lightly brush over each mold, like so.”

Jesse admired the ease with which Milan worked, as if he’d been born to do nothing else. He had very nice hands, he noticed. How would those hands feel on Jesse’s cock? Would he touch it with the same care? His breath caught at the thought.

Milan offered the pastry brush to Jessie. He shook himself from his reverie and took it, pushing the forbidden image away. “So you’re selling these tomorrow. At Outfest. Right?”

“That is correct,” Milan replied. “You are coming, yes?”

“I am unless I want Reggie to tan my hide.”

Milan smiled.

“She would, you know,” Jesse continued, “You ever see her get mad?”

“Yes, I have,” Milan admitted, “I would not care to be the object of her anger.”

“Me either.” 

“A little lighter, please.” Milan had been watching Jessie work. “Here.” He laid his hand over the other man’s. “Like this. Just enough to coat it. I will fill it in after we put in the fruit.”

Their eyes met and for a moment their hands stopped moving, each acutely aware of the other. Milan broke away first. “I will do this one,” he offered, “then we can do the first freeze.”

“First freeze?”

“Yes. We are forming a shell so it will hold the weight of the candy.”

“Okay.” Jesse thought it made sense, but what did he know. He dipped the brush into the chocolate again, making his strokes lighter, earning a “bon” from Milan. He knew enough French to know that meant good. 
 He relaxed a little at the praise.

Once they had set the molds into the freezer, Milan removed the completed candies that waited there. He showed Jesse how to unmold them, and how to put them into their little paper beds, and into the waiting boxes. Then he let him apply the second coating himself.

“You are doing well,” he encouraged him.


A few minutes of companionable silence passed, Jesse concentrating on the task at hand, Milan stealing surreptitious peeks at the brunet. Whether he was willing to admit it to himself, he was glad for his company. Jesse’s presence was pushing the shadows away.


“Yes, Jesse?”

“This is your place, right?” Jessie encompassed the kitchen with his glance. He couldn’t help but feel a lot of love had gone into making this room the place it was. More than a kitchen, it was Milan’s haven. 

“It is, yes. Mine.”

“When are you going to open, then? Reggie said you were going to open your candy store after Outfest, right?”

Milan paused in the act of retrieving a container of raisins from the refrigerator. It was a legitimate question. It’s what businesspeople did—they opened for business. So why was he so hesitant to set a date? Maybe because he didn’t see it ever happening, without Ludolf’s guidance.? 

“I do not know,” he mumbled, setting the bowl on the table, not meeting Jesse’s eyes. “There is work that needs to be done, construction work and…and licenses…and I do not know what, I mean I just do not know…”

Jesse reached out his hand without thinking, but Milan had already turned away. Jesse’s heart ached for the other man—he sounded so alone, so lost. Jesse wanted to gather him up in his arms, comfort him, soothe him, stop his tears, and end his pain. And yes, he wanted to get naked with him, too—to touch him, feel him, and lose himself in Milan. He wanted to taste his lips and take away his misery.

His feet moved, as though his thoughts had manifested themselves into action. His fingers brushed across the top of the table as he edged around it, toward Milan. He had no clear purpose. He simply needed to be closer to him. 

Milan was a few inches taller than Jesse, he discovered, as he came up behind him. Jesse’s lips were at about the level of Milan’s jaw, and he found it hard not to simply kiss him there, to stop his shoulders from shaking, to stem the tears he suspected were falling. He reached up his arms, wanting to hug Milan to him tightly, to take the first step—

The tinkle of the shop bell. Jesse retreated, stumbling back to his side of the table. In his haste, his hand knocked a spoon off the table. It clattered onto the floor. Milan spun around, dabbing at one eye with his right hand.  He left a small smear of chocolate on his cheekbone. Jesse bent to retrieve the spoon, resisting the urge to wipe the chocolate away. The moment passed; he felt like a coward.


Monday, January 21, 2013

Dipping Into Chocolate!

This week we are happy to host Julie Lynn Hayes and her delicious new book, The Belgian Chocolate Remedy, published by MuseItUp Publishing.

Here's what Julie has to say about a most tantalizing topic........

What's one word that;s sure to grab people's attention, make them perk up, and put a smile on their faces?

No, I don't mean sex.   


Who doesn't like… no, I mean LOVE chocolate? I can count on the fingers of one hand the people I know that don't like this delicious treat, and have fingers left over! So, it's pretty universal, this love of chocolate. And it isn’t a recent phenomenon. No indeed, it's been around for a long long time!

Chocolate has been around the Americas for a good three thousand years. It was fermented and used in beverages to take away the bitterness of the cocoa bean. The Aztecs called it xocolātl, from a Nahuatl word that meant 'bitter water.'  They also ate chocolate and used it in religious ceremonies. Wow, what a great incentive to go to those, right?

It's only appropriate to discuss chocolate during any holiday season because it makes such a great gift—not just for the people on your gift lists, but for yourself as a treat for running yourself ragged with holiday rituals—cleaning and cooking and shopping and wrapping and decorating, the whole nine yards! [And, yes, we do the same for any holiday, including Valentine's Day coming up---though we all want to be pampered---jf]

There are different types of chocolate, and each is determined by the amounts of cocoa powder, chocolate liquor and sugar involved.  

·         Cocoa powder is for baking, and doesn't taste good on its own. Unsweetened chocolate is also called baking chocolate or bitter chocolate.  It is pure chocolate liquor, made up solely of ground cocoa beans. It;s not meant to be eaten solo, but forms the base of the other chocolates, except for white chocolate. 

·         Dark chocolate has  chocolate liquor, sugar, cocoa butter, vanilla and lecithin, with a cocoa content ranging from 30% to 70-80%. This category also includes bittersweet chocolate and semi-sweet chocolate. 

·         Bittersweet chocolate has at least 35% cocoa solids; most contain at least 50% chocolate liquors, some as high as 70-80%. Since there is no regulation on the amount of sugar, the taste can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. 

·         Semi-sweet chocolate contains at least 35% cocoa solids and is primarily an American term, popularized by Nestle and their Toll House morsels. Usually, it's darker than sweet dark chocolate, but sweeter than bittersweet.

·         Sweet dark chocolate has a high percentage of sugar and is sweeter than other dark chocolates, and might have only 20-40% cocoa solids.

·         Milk chocolate, besides containing cocoa butter and chocolate liquor, must contain condensed milk or dry milk solids. While it's easier to overheat, it's a very popular type of chocolate and has a rich creamy taste and texture.

·         White chocolate has cocoa butter but no chocolate liquor or other cocoa products.  Not surprisingly, it has no actual chocolate taste, and may taste like vanilla. It must contain at least 20% cocoa butter, 14% milk solids, and no more than 55% sugar. If you see white chocolate that contains vegetable fats instead of cocoa butter, this isn't really white chocolate and won't taste the same.

[   [All of this talk about chocolate, as tempting as it may be, isn't all that Julie Lynn Hayes connects with this delicious confection. She has another delicious chocolate offering....jf]

I have a new release with MuseItUp Publishing, my first with them. It's just out today, actually, and I'm excited to tell you about it. It's called The Belgian Chocolate Remedy. There's that chocolate theme again!   Milan is my Belgian chocolatier. He and his brother Ludolf came to America after Milan had studied hard in Europe to become a chocolatier, and they ended up settling in the Midwest, in a small town in Indiana. The plan was that Ludolf would help fix up the shop where Milan would make the chocolates, and they would make a good life for themselves. But life doesn't always work out the way you want it to. On the other hand, there's Jesse, who has no interest in his life since his boyfriend dumped him. He lives in St. Louis, but comes to Lafayette, Indiana, at his best friend Reggie’s request (read: demand!). They're going to help her friend Milan get his booth ready for Outfest. Has Reggie got something else in mind?

I hope you like the story, and it wouldn't hurt to eat some chocolate while you read it, maybe drink some too!

Thanks for having me, Janie! 

Here’s the link for The Belgian Chocolate Remedy – enjoy!

Julie has a special surprise--a give away--she'll tell you about tomorrow so please stop by again.