“What made the book for me? One word: Gristle.
Gristle, the straight boy, Jay’s best friend, his « bro, » is one of the best characters I’ve had the joy to read this year. His devotion to Jay is breathtaking, his snark so very snappy […]. Read this book if nothing for the character of Gristle. […] Spectacular.”
–T.J. Klune, Author of For Real, Bear, Otter, and the Kid, and Lightning-Struck Heart
Publisher: Anyta Sunday & Andy Gallo (Self-Published)
Release Date (Print & Ebook): October 30, 2017
Subgenre: MM gay paranormal romance, magical realism, new adult
Walker has two wishes: to perform the play of his dreams alongside his best friend at Wellington’s Tory Street Theatre, and to meet that special someone. Someone he’d go to the ends of the earth for. Someone who might only exist in fairy tales.
When Jay meets accordion busker Lethe Cross, it’s like living a dream come true. Lethe’s music captivates Jay, and he resolves to meet the man who plays so beautifully. But then he discovers Lethe’s life is more like a nightmare. The phrase “down on his luck” can’t begin to cover it. Determined to help, Jay does some snooping for answers—and winds up on the wrong end of a centuries-old curse. The good news is there’s a way to break it. The bad news is it might cost Jay his life.
This book was previously published by Dreamspinner Press. This updated 2nd edition has some rewritten parts and has been line edited again.
Buy Links: http://www.anytasunday.com/#unmasked
His music sailed over me, beautiful, seductive; the call of a siren—and I went willingly.
He stood on a concrete wall dividing the beach and pavement, cutting notes into a thousand beautiful fragments that the air caught and whipped around me.
His hips twisted and his fingers slid over the accordion keyboard as he commanded the bellows. Like magic, the disappointment that had clung to me all morning dulled, and I sank against a pylon across and watched him. Watched, and wished the lip of the hoodie he wore would lift so I could see his face.
He swayed with the music, and I glimpsed blond hair and a scar splitting one brow.
Nearer and nearer, I inched, until I stood before him.
His song ended abruptly, and he stared down at me with haunted, tired eyes.
I opened my mouth to ask him to play again, to tell him he was truly talented, but he jumped onto the beach and fled.
My soul prickled, and I knew I would never be the same again.
One never was, when death lurked nearby.
Knuckles hit his cheek, forcing him to his knees.
My busker took another hit, going with the force, doing nothing to defend himself.
“What the hell is going on here?”
My voice ripped through the air, startling the older man. He stopped midpunch and twisted in my direction, a deep frown etched into his face.
“Get away from him!” I yelled, but he was already on his way, barreling down the hill.
I moved in front of my busker, who was slowly pushing himself to his feet. “Are you okay?”
He lifted his head as he rose upright. Dark green eyes met mine, and he smiled. My breath hovered a moment at seeing the blood spilling from his lip and down his chin. He pulled something from his pocket and began dabbing the spot, still staring at me as if waiting for something.
His stare seemed to reach deep inside me and pull at chords like I was an instrument. One he was curious about, though weary.
A dog’s excited bark echoed in the car park.
I glanced down to see the attacker walking away with his dog, and a sudden urge to chase the man down and hurt him flared through me.
“It’s not his fault.” The voice was light and curious, and I looked at him.
“His fists, his fault.”
My gaze flickered to the scar running through his right brow.
His smile faltered “Not always. Don’t you recognize me?”
“You played the accordion earlier. At Oriental Parade.”
He studied me, cocking his head to the side. The simple tilt made his hair fall slightly, covering half of one eye.
“Look,” I said. “I don’t want to pry, but why didn’t you block any of his punches? Why didn’t you run?”
The blood he’d wiped off left a smear on his chin. I reached in my pocket, ready to offer him the soap, when he said in a light tone, “I’ll never let him see me again. You can be sure on that.”
“Why did he do that?”
My busker shrugged. “He’s not a bad person. He lost his son.”
“That’s sad, but still no excuse.”
He stuffed his hanky back into his pocket. I watched his eyes narrow, as if he was hesitating to say something more. Then he shook his head and broadened his smile. “I’ve got to go. Maybe we’ll meet again.” He started toward the path.
“Thank you,” was the last thing he said before he dashed down the hill.
“You want to forget that race?” I asked. Lethe nodded.
His need pressed up against mine and I wished there was something to brace ourselves against so we could stay close like this. Lethe shifted back slightly and took me in hand. I gasped as the first waves of shock somersaulted through me.
Recovering, I returned the favor, gently stroking him, absorbing the heat that coursed through my hand. I’d waited for the chance to be this close with Lethe, and it fueled my hunger for him. Closing the few inches between us, I pressed my lips against his, asking—no demanding—him to let me have my fill. The salt on his lips only added to my lust. It was him. This was where we bonded.
We gently stroked each other, while we waged a back-and-forth battle with our tongues neither wanted to win. My control was slipping as our breathing quickened. Waves lapping against our waists muffled the growing moans we evoked from each other.
Kissing him like no one before, I poured my soul into him, accepting his in return. This was right. He was right.
My attempt to kiss over his word was met with Lethe turning his head. “Lethe?”
“I don’t want our first time—my first time—to be here.”
“I thought you have—”
He brushed his wet, salty fingers against my trembling lips. “I have, but never with someone who cared about me. You’re the first person who doesn’t see the person they most want.”
“Yes, I do.” My whisper carried over the churning water, softening his eyes even more.
“Even more reason I want to feel your body on mine without shivering from cold. Come back with me?”
I pressed my lips against his ear. “I’m going to take my time kissing every inch of you. I’m going to say your name when we come.”
Lethe turned, and I reached to the beginning of the strap. I was tired. It’d been so long now. I missed seeing him. “Really look at me, Lethe.”
“We’ve talked about this.”
“It’ll hurt you.” He stopped, swinging away from me, shoulders curving. “I’ll be hurting you. And—”
I rested my forehead on the back of his neck. “When you take it off, I’ll be seeing you. Please, look at me.”
His back shuddered, and his voice came out strained. “I can’t take that risk.”
I tightened my grip on his shoulder and moved my head away. “Don’t you trust me?”
“Yes, I trust you.”
“What is this, then?” My insides hitched with my voice, showing the cracks of the broken me that I struggled to keep together. “I’m sick of looking at that stupid mask, Lethe. It’s been too long.”
Heart-stopping slow burn.[Saut de retour à la ligne][Saut de retour à la ligne]Anyta Sunday is a big, BIG fan of slow-burn romances. She loves to read and write stories with characters who slowly fall in love.[Saut de retour à la ligne][Saut de retour à la ligne]Some of her favorite tropes to read and write are: Enemies to Lovers, Friends to Lovers, Clueless Guys, Bisexual, Pansexual, Demisexual, Oblivious MCs, Everyone (Else) Can See It, Slow Burn, Love Has No Boundaries.[Saut de retour à la ligne][Saut de retour à la ligne]Anyta writes a variety of stories, Contemporary MM Romances with a good dollop of angst, Contemporary lighthearted MM Romances, and even a splash of fantasy. Her books have been translated into German, Italian and French. [Saut de retour à la ligne][Saut de retour à la ligne]Member of Romance Writers of America.[Saut de retour à la ligne][Saut de retour à la ligne]Connect with Anyta: Website | Twitter | Facebook | To receive a free e-book, sign up for Anyta’s newsletter here!
Andy Gallo’s stories capture how he wished he’d spent his formative years, instead of how it really happened. Unfortunately for his characters, they find themselves infused with some of Andy’s less noble qualities.
A hopeless romantic, Andy writes seated next to a hundred year old Smith Brothers typewriter he inherited from his grandfather. He also dreams of superheroes and wizards and sees no reason why two men with superpowers can’t fall in love just like everyone else. Although not all of his stories have a paranormal bent, a touch of the supernatural never derailed a good read in his mind.
Married and living his happy every after, Andy helps others find their happy endings in the pages of his stories. He and his husband of more than twenty years spend their days rubbing elbows with other parents as they raise their daughter. Embracing his status as the gay dad, Andy sometimes has to remind others that one does want a hint of color even when chasing after their child.
Connect with Andy: Website | Facebook
Giveaway: 3 e-copies of any backlist book by either Anyta Sunday or Andy Gallo:
Direct link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/88d45f0332/