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photo 2019-01-20 11:00
Earthly Pleasures, by Sera Trevor

Earthly Pleasures, by Sera Trevor



"Prince Paurick is a hedonistic degenerate—or at least that’s what his father and the rest of the royal family thinks of him, and he’s happy to live down to their expectations. But when the crops of their kingdom start failing, the king commands that Paurick be joined to Brother Laurel, a monk, in order to combine Paurick’s royal magic with that of the Goddess, and thus bring fertility back to the land. The union is only meant to be temporary, but Brother Laurel is so ugly and prudish that it might as well be an eternity. However, as they get to know one another, Paurick realizes he has misjudged Laurel and finds himself falling for the thoughtful and sensitive young man. The fate of the kingdom relies on their sexual union, but as time goes on, it becomes clear that the fate of their hearts is in jeopardy as well."




Reviewed for Divine Magazine


Earthly Pleasures
164 Pages

POV: 3rd person, dual POV
Would I read it again?: Of course!
Genre: MM, Romance, Fantasy/Historical
Pairings: MM, hints of off-page MMM
Heat Level: ★★★★☆ 

This book grabbed me right from the start. I was caught by the cover, the title, then the blurb. In that order. And once I started reading, I hated to put it down for a single second.

Earthly Pleasures is a sweet seduction. Though there's debauchery and sex almost immediately, it's not in an overbearing way, nor is it utterly explicit until a few chapters in. The story is actually a slow burning romance between Prince Paurick and Brother Laurel, an acolyte chosen by his High Priestess to perform a duty for the Goddess. Being thrown together – one wayward, roguish prince, and one pious, virginous priest – should spell disaster. And at first, it does. But then they begin to get to know each other and that's where the magic happens.

A unique slice of historical fantasy, that has just a touch of magic and whole lot of lovin' was exactly what I needed when I started this book. It's one of those that has a pretty cover, an intriguing title, and interesting characters – then you read the book and you discover a whole hidden depth to all of it. It's the kind of book that – when you realise what the title really means, and you realise what the cover symbolises, and you dig deep into the characters – captures every inch of your heart, all over again. The story so far pales in comparison to what you learn as you keep reading and begin to truly understand what it all means.

Though Paurick came across as hedonistic, I utterly loved the way that he treated Laurel, right from the start. While Laurel wanted to do his duty and get it over with, he was a naive virgin and didn't have a clue what it really entailed. The fact that Paurick, despite his reputation, insisted they wait and tried to seduce Laurel until he more comfortable and consenting, was beautiful. If he'd have taken Laurel when he was so clearly terrified, I could never have believed in another moment of their relationship. But, I didn't have to worry. All throughout the book, Paurick found a new side of himself that even he never knew existed, and that meant taking care of Laurel, lavishing him with time and attention and care, the way no one ever had. It made it possible for them to have a sexual relationship but still have a beautiful, slow burn of chemistry and romance.

The sweetest part, for me, was the necklace. I thought it was such a beautiful gift and it really showed the growth in both characters, when you saw how they reacted to it. It really emphasised how much they had changed, but it also proved true to how they'd become with each other – they always talked through their problems, their arguments. Even if they didn't turn out okay in the end, they had a real, open, honest communication with each other.

In fact, the growth of the characters is as big a plot point as the romance itself. Without that personal growth, that realisation of what they had been before and what they wanted to be, the romance wouldn't have been possible. Both men were so stuck in their ways until they were forced into each other's company, and found that things weren't always what they seemed. They both changed perceptions, opinions, expectations, and how they viewed themselves as well as the world.

When it comes to the secondary characters, Rion was a royal ass, Lyam was a bit too focused on his position and Egon was simply brilliant. They were real and fleshed out, beautifully represented, even right down to Granny, Lir, the High Priestess and Sister Telme. No one character was so unimportant as to not warrant a unique, well explored personality that didn't infringe upon the main story, but added to it and helped the two main characters find their way.

Though I would have loved for Laurel to find the necklace again at the end, or for the Goddess to return it to them maybe, it's the only issue I had with the plotting. I loved everything else about the story. There are a couple of editing issues, very minor and barely more than a word missing from a sentence, perhaps once every 30% of the book. That's how minimal it was, and it didn't at all ruin the flow or the understanding enough to affect my rating.

Overall, Earthly Pleasures was a beautiful story about love, growth, faith, and not judging others by their outward appearance. The beautiful thing about Paurick and Laurel isn't just their romance, but the fact that they don't change for each other, they don't seduce each other, and they don't compromise who they are for each other. They simply find in each other something they never knew they wanted or needed. And they're strong enough to accept that, to embrace it, and to welcome the love that falls into their laps, by the grace of the Goddess.


Favourite Quotes

“Laurel bit his lip. “I’ve done nothing but insult you. Why would you be kind to me at all?”
“It so happens that I enjoy it when lads are a little mean. There are very few people who have the courage to be rude to a prince. I find it rather refreshing.”
Was he really serious? Laurel pulled away. He couldn’t think clearly when the prince was around. “I would like some time alone.”
The prince dramatically clapped his hands over his heart, as if struck by an arrow. “Oh yes, that’s perfect. You’re driving me wild! Now tell me that you find my company intolerable.”
Laurel paused. “But I don’t.” And it was true. He didn’t anymore.
The prince smiled. “Then we are making progress.””

“He felt like he was dying. Perhaps he was. The palace felt like a tomb now, with Paurick a mummified prince, doomed forever to be surrounded by luxury he could never truly enjoy. It was all pointless without someone to share it with. He understood that now.”"


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text 2019-01-20 11:00
A Step-by-Step Guide to Writing a Novel, Part One – Introduction

Whether you are starting a new novel, thinking about writing a novel, or stuck half way through the process, this series of articles is designed to offer help and new ways of looking at your craft.


Carmilla Voiez is a horror and fantasy author. Her novels have been published by indie publishing companies including Vamptasy Publishing, CHBB and Stone Circle Publishing and her short stories have been included in anthologies by Clash Books, Weird Punk Books, Stitched Smile, Siren Magazine, and Dragones Mecanicos. Her award-winning Starblood series is being adapted into a series of graphic novels illustrated by Anna Prashkovich. She has studied creative writing with the Open University and proof-reading with Chapterhouse. Carmilla also offers individually tailored editing packages for self-publishing authors.


This blog series will take you through the nine steps of writing and publishing your novel. It is designed for those of you planning your first adventure in writing, and those who feel they are missing something as they write but don’t know what. It may have some relevance to writers working on short stories, but it is designed to cover the challenges of longer pieces (50k words and over).


This introduction will set out the format of the course, and list the resources I will refer to throughout the articles. You may wish to add some of these books to your own reading list, but it is not obligatory.


Part Two – The Blank Page 

Includes: where to find inspiration for your - story, characters, and settings.

To plan or not to plan, that is one of many questions.

A cost-benefit analysis of NaNoWriMo.


Part Three – Content and Themes 

Character-based vs plot-based.

What do you want people to think about as and after they read the story?


Part Four – Style 

Perspective, language, tenses and chapter lengths.


Part Five – Writer's Block 

Keeping going when it gets tough.


Part Six – The End?

Rewriting, foregrounding the themes, deciding whose story this is.


Part Seven – Editing

Checking for consistency and avoiding unwanted repetition. Style sheets. Plugging the plot holes. Character arcs.


Part Eight – Proofreading

Understanding grammar. Use a dictionary. Common errors. The role of beta readers. Do you need to pay a professional editor?


Part Nine – Delivery

Traditional vs self publishing. How to find an agent. How to snag a publisher. The elevator pitch. The dreaded synopsis. Starting something new.


Part Ten – Promotion

Release parties. Paid adverts. Building connections. Book signings. Your Facebook page. Your website. Anthologies. Goodreads.


Join me on this journey through the writing process and feel free to comment on my blog if you have any specific questions related to the content or your own process. Learn the importance of a closed and an open door as you progress and start building a community of like-minded individuals who support each other’s efforts.


The resources I will be using while writing this course include:-


“Creative Writing” - Linda Anderson,

“On Writers and Writing” - Margaret Atwood,

“Becoming a writer” - Dorothea Brande,

“On Writing” - Stephen King,

“The Art of Fiction” - David Lodge,

“A Creative Writing Handbook” - Derek Neale,

“Story Structure Architect” - Victoria Lynn Schmidt,

“The Writer’s Journey” - Christopher Volger,

“Writing a Novel” - Nigel Watts,

and my own experiences.


Carmilla Voiez.


Check out my full bibliography on Amazon.

Follow me on Twitter.

Like my page on Facebook.

Connect with me on Goodreads

Subscribe to my newsletter.

Source: carmillavoiez.wixsite.com/carmillavoiez/single-post/2018/10/04/A-Step-by-Step-Guide-to-Writing-a-Novel-Part-One-%E2%80%93-Introduction
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video 2019-01-19 13:26

Carmilla Voiez talks about Starblood and what inspired her to write the book.

Source: vimeo.com/304786745
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text 2019-01-18 19:31
Friday Featured Spotlight

Friday Featured Spotlight ~ Norse Mythology | Fantasy | Mystery



Source: imavoraciousreader.blogspot.com/2019/01/friday-featured-spotlight-norse.html
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quote 2019-01-18 11:00
“You're a special kind of something, aren't you?” Oliver whispered, leaning so close that Mason's brain immediately shut down and focused solely on his companion. And the hand that slid onto his thigh and gently squeezed. And the tongue that flicked out to briefly wet those tempting lips. “You want to take this upstairs?”
Good God! If he knew the Backstreet Boys could do that, he'd have belted out a little shameless 'If You Want It To Be Good Girl' hours ago!



Part of the 'All You Need Is Love' Anthology

#anthology #geek #indieauthor #contemporary #lgbt #authorsofig


Source: smarturl.it/Encompass.AllYouNeed
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