Rec: Fourth Point of Contact (Legends of Lobe den Herren Book 1)

Title: Fourth Point of Contact (Legends of Lobe den Herren Book 1)
Author: AJ Sherwood
Format: Kindle; Paperback
Published/Free: $3.99; $13.99
Length: 335
Status: Ongoing series
Rating: Mature
Warnings: Death
Link: https://www.amazon.com/Fourth-Point-Contact-Legends-Herren-ebook/dp/B07JJZR6H9/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?crid=3866HGLRLJ0XZ&keywords=fourth+point+of+contact+aj+sherwood&qid=1560636918&s=gateway&sprefix=the+fourth+point+%2Caps%2C158&sr=8-1-spons&psc=1
Summary:

“Renjimantoro.”

Ren’s head snapped up, as Brahms only used his full name when being completely serious.

Those dark blue eyes met his levelly, penetratingly, as if he could see every thought going through Ren’s head. And he likely could. The man was exceptionally good at seeing through people. “Come with me.”

Oh hell. He really had no defenses against that plea. Brahms rarely asked anything of him, and every time he had, it turned out to be for Ren’s own good. “You realize that if I go, your reputation is never going to recover. People assume I’ve seduced you over to my side as it is.”

Brahms just stared at him.

“Right, you don’t care. Of course you don’t, silly me, why am I worrying about it?” Relief filled him, making him a little giddy with it, and he had the strangest urge to giggle. Which wasn’t manly, he stamped that out immediately, but still a grin took over his face. “Alright, alright, I’ll go home with you.”

Not once in the past five years has Castle Warden Sho Renjimantoro regretted following his best friend to Aart. How can he regret it when he finds open acceptance regarding his sexuality from everyone around him (even if they don’t understand it), and he gets to be with the man most important to him?

No, finding someone in this country is a fantasy best forgotten.

General Arman Brahms, finally home from deployment, has waited over two years to show Ren he’s wrong, that fantasies can come true. Unfortunately, his plans get put on hold to help Ren solve the crisis unfolding in the castle.

Someone is doing their level best to make sure the engagement of Prince Charles and Princess Alexandria of Scovia falls through—by fair means or foul. In addition, they’re trying to make Ren deemed incompetent and dismissed from his position. While hunting for the perpetrator, Ren and Arman do everything in their power to protect those they’re sworn to before the irredeemable occurs.

And along the way, prove that even an ordinary life can become extraordinary.

Review: A nice entertaining read. Really liked Arman and Ren. Excited to see what happens next!

Rec: Can’t A Guy Visit A Friend?

Title: Can’t A Guy Visit A Friend
Author: TheCaliMack
Format: Short Story
Published/Free: Free
Status: Complete
Rating: Teen/Mature (depends)
Warnings: mentions of suicide
Link: AO3 | GayAuthors.org
Summary: Miguel comes to visit his friend Tristan, but notices something is amiss when the man opens his door to him.

Intuition has never failed him before, but it never prepared him for what he’d see.

Review: I’m sharing my own work, but reviews so far mention it as moving and heartbreaking and one of the most emotional writings they have ever read. I felt honored and I thought I’d share it some more with the rest of you.

No one dies. That’s all I’m saying.

Rec: Strings of Fate

Title: Strings of Fate
Author: rez-zie
Format: Webcomic
Published/Free: Free
Length: ~50 pages currently up, will be several hundred by the time it’s finished
Status: WIP
Rating: Everyone
Warnings: Depressed character, illness mention
Link: Tapastic: tapas.io/series/StringsofFatecomic 
Tumblr: stringsoffatecomic.tumblr.com
Summary: STRINGS OF FATE is an angsty story about a naive boy who tries to find his place in the world. His fated path is a long one, where he experiences the joys of first love and adventure, but some aren’t so keen on where it’s taking him.

Stay with him as he unravels the bittersweet truths of the world.

///

This story focuses on a POLY ship! But there will be many twists and turns, seeing as life can throw you in unusual directions.

Review: Very upbeat and gay, so there’s no shortage of fun, but there are hints of disabilities and issues that will greatly impact the series later ! I wanted to give a face to depression and abandonment issues to give the reader something to relate to, but also happy themes like security and friendship. Strings of Fate is an LGBT+ coming of age story that i’ve dedicated well over a year to and i hope that people find comfort it !

Rec: Tunnel Vision

Title: Tunnel Vision
Author: NomNomNami
Format: Visual Novel
Published/Free: free/name your own price
Length: 20min
Status: Complete
Rating: Everyone
Warnings: death mention
Link:  https://nomnomnami.itch.io/tunnel-vision
Summary: Two girls go on a cave expedition searching for ghosts. As they get separated, a ghost appears.

Review: Cute short story! The two main characters form an interesting pair. An alternative font for dyslexic people is available, just like translations into Korean and Portuguese.

Rec: First Kiss at a Spooky Soirée

Title: First Kiss at a Spooky Soirée
Author: NomNomNami
Format: Visual novel
Published/Free: free/name your own price
Length: 25min~
Status: Complete
Rating: Teen
Warnings: some strong language and screen shakes
Link: https://nomnomnami.itch.io/first-kiss-at-a-spooky-soiree
Summary:You play Marzipan, a light witch who’s gone her whole life without kissing anyone–UNTIL TONIGHT!

Review: Marzipan tastes great and that’s reason enough to play… no? The art is super cute and I loved the different endings. Even characters I didn’t really like at first got to me. Kinda sad we can’t date ourselves because Marzipan is a sugarbomb. Or a pumpkin latte. If you like Halloween and girls, that’s the game for you. Got translated into Korean and German, and there’s an option to change the font for dyslexic players.

Rec: Girl Crush

Title: Girl Crush
Author: Bix Lewd
Format: visual novel (Windows/Mac/browser)
Published/Free: Free
Length: 20-30min?
Status: Complete
Rating: Mature
Warnings: explicit sex, including spanking
Link: https://girlcrush.itch.io/girl-crush
Summary: You are a female university student who becomes friends with Quinn, a straight-laced overachiever. As you visit Quinn’s dorm room each day to study together your friendship evolves into a steamy romance

Review: This is the kind of game you’ll go back to, even after playing it all, because the sweetness of it will make your day brighter. It’s slightly repetitive, short and doesn’t offer that much art, but its defaults are also its strengths: you don’t have to think much after a long day, it always ends well and you get to cheer on those  two cuties! The art is really good and the writing totally gets you into it. As nice as candy!

Rec: A Game of Wings and Marks

Title: A Game of Wings and Marks
Author: Rebecca Crunden
Format: Standalone novel
Published/Free: Published // Free if you have Kindle Unlimited.
Length: 76K~, 240 pages
Status: Finished
Rating: Mature
Warnings: mentions of past abuse, fight scenes, sex scenes
Link: Amazon // Goodreads
Summary: When Octavia Coal goes to the mountains to clear her head, she doesn’t expect to find an angel in trouble.

He tells her his name is Tamiel and he’s one of the Irin – the army of angels tasked with keeping demons from overwhelming humanity. But Tamiel broke a sacred law – he fell in love with a human – and now he’s being hunted by the same angels he once served.

With nowhere else to go, Octavia and Tamiel – along with Jack, the human in question, and her brother Caleb – appeal directly to Zev, the Demon of Games. A trickster of unparalleled power, Zev gives nothing for free, and the gift he offers Octavia to keep Tamiel alive comes with a confusing catch: He makes her the Healer of Raphael, archangel and Commander of the Irin.

Suddenly a target for both angels and demons, Octavia quickly learns that the only way to survive is to play the game better than they do.

The only problem is, she doesn’t know whose game she’s playing …

Review: This book’s central focus is a m/f pairing, but the m/m pairing are a huge part of the story and are a driving force of most of the plotline. 

Rec: Can’t a Guy Visit a Friend?

Title: Can’t a Guy Visit a Friend?
Author: TheCaliMack
Format: Short Story
Published/Free: Free
Length: 2779 words
Status: Complete
Rating: T
Warnings: Mentions of Attempted Suicide (though not graphic at all)
Link: AO3 link  GayAuthors link
Summary: Miguel comes to visit his friend Tristan, but notices something is amiss when the man opens his door to him.

Intuition has never failed him before, but it never prepared him for what he’d see.

Review: Reviewing my own story seems sort of moot, but the comments and reviews I got from the websites all tell me that my work was quite the tear-jerker. It’s a cathartic piece that is a great blend of sweetness and angst, ending on a heart-warming note. Read and you’ll see what I mean.

Rec: Spidersilk

Title: Spidersilk
Author: Pamela Kotila (Alakotila)
Format: Webcomic
Published/Free: Free. Two volumes available for purchase on Kickstarter
Length: 20 chapters and counting
Status: WIP
Rating: Teen
Warnings: Torture in flashbacks, combative violence, and sexual references
Link: https://tapastic.com/series/Spidersilk
Summary: Prentice, a former soldier struggling with events a year before the story’s start, is introduced to a city’s criminal system by new friends. Attacks during his training reveal threads to a large trap for their system.

Review: Spidersilk is Social Fantasy. While the primary relationship is a sweet romance between a warrior-mage and a golden-hearted thief, the story follows other relationships, most notably friendships and chosen family. Because of the interwoven story lines, I feel as if the comic’s title is as descriptive of the story’s structure as the network of criminals accepted by the city.

The large cast can be hard to follow, especially when background characters are referred to by name. Original character designs makes remembering the big players easier. It’s obvious their creator cares about showing their unique identities.

One aspect I really appreciate about the cast is the mix of masculinity and femininity in the characters. After jumping in from a reading break, remembering the gender of the secondary characters can be a challenge but it ultimately doesn’t matter. They treat each other differently based on skill, affiliation, and attraction rather than on gender.

The characters are beautiful. All of them. I suspect every reader develops a crush on at least one character. It’s not only their pretty faces, lean bodies, lush hair, and intricately-drawn clothing; many of the characters have lovely personalities. Excepting the occasional racist guard and mysterious strangers attacking the city’s system, the characters are accepting, supportive, and interesting.

I wouldn’t mind living in their world.

There’s both beauty and humor. The physical humor is actually what first hooked me. This summoned creature called Ambassador is a big contributor. He seems to change size to loom threateningly or to offer up hugs. He has to share the funny moments with a guard llama (my favorite), an owl, and even clothing as an impromptu weapon.

That this comic is culturally rich is quickly apparent. While Prentice (and the reader) is introduced to the city of Kalviva. The clash and blend of cultures from outside the city adds to the rich tapestry of the world.

Speaking of, I wish for a faster-moving plot. That’s because I’m more action-oriented and more interested in the main couple than any of their friends and allies. More patient readers might delight in the time spent exploring the side relationships.

What many of us fans have in common is that we wait like spiders, ready to pounce on each new page.

MON★STAR Studios

Title: MON★STAR Studios
Author: vampmilk
Format: Webcomic
Published/Free: Free
Length: Ongoing
Status: WIP
Rating: Teen
Warnings: Mentions of/implied sexual content
Link: https://tapastic.com/series/monstarstudios
Summary: In a modern city where humans and monsters live together peacefully, college dropout Ramone Garcia makes some strange and exciting friends when he becomes the first human employee at MON★STAR Studios, a monster-centric gay adult film studio.

Review: This comic will focus on themes of sexual positivity, open mindedness and the freedom to shamelessly enjoy one’s interests. The entire cast is made up of LGBTQ+ characters. It is made to be fun and lighthearted.