Solace Ames

Erotic Romance Author

The Submission Gift listed in Publishers Weekly Top Ten Romance Books of 2014

♠ Posted by Solace Ames in ,

I'm overjoyed that the book got such a great distinction and review. I'm also looking forward to checking out some of the other books on the list.

In other news, I've been keeping a low profile for a while now, finishing up The Companion Contract and distracted by assorted personal problems. I fell off a bicycle and broke my hand this summer, and that took a while to heal.

I'm going to restart my monthly newsletter soon, so please sign up if you'd like. I have some romance and SFF recs and a giveaway planned.

Loving Day Blog Hop Post: Five Favorite Interracial Romance Movies

♠ Posted by Solace Ames in
Here, in celebration of Loving Day, are five of my favorite interracial love stories in cinema form. Not all of these stories end happily, but they all pulled my heartstrings somehow, sometimes a gentle pull, sometimes a violent yank! Please let me know if you've seen any of these movies in the comments, and you can also leave a comment to win an e-copy of my interracial MMF romance, The Submission Gift, praised by Publishers Weekly: "What starts out as a sexy threesome evolves into a nuanced look at polyamory and BDSM, as Ames navigates physical disability, race, and sexuality." You can also check out some of the other amazing prizes offered this Loving Day by MC/IR writers at The Swirl Awards.

Mississippi Masala (1992) (directed by Mira Nair)
This is a lush, beautifully told story about the unlikely romance between a girl from a desi immigrant family and an African-American man, played by a young (and incredibly charismatic) Denzel Washington. I loved this movie because even though I'm East Asian not South Asian, it reflected a lot of my experiences living in the deep South, seeing two very different established communities, white and black, and knowing we didn't really belong in either. It's one of the most hopeful and positive movies on this list, and the families of the two lovers clash but do eventually find common ground.

Map of the Human Heart (1993) (directed by Vincent Ward)
This WWII epic begins in the Canadian Arctic, where a young Inuit boy is flown away from his village to be cured of tuberculosis. In the sanatorium, he strikes up an intense friendship with a mixed-blood Native American girl, also taken from her family, who will grow up to pass for white. They're separated by sickness and racism, but eventually reunite after he's become a pilot in the British RAF. There's so much tragic history wound up in the love affair that we know the odds are against the couple, but we still hold hope… Don't watch the end of this movie without a box of tissues handy, is all I'm saying. 

The Wedding Banquet (1993) (directed by Ang Lee)
One of Ang Lee's first movies, this psychologically twisty tale starts off with an already established gay couple, one white and one Taiwanese-American. When the Taiwanese family comes to town and demands an arranged marriage, the quiet course of their love turns incredibly turbulent. This is a movie where everyone has hidden depths, from the lovers to the prospective bride to the seemingly inflexible parents, and I loved how fully human and real everyone felt.

My Beautiful Laundrette (1985) (directed by Hanif Kureishi)
The premise of this British movie sounds totally over the top: an ex-Nazi-skinhead falls in love with a Pakistani boy, and together they open a laundry! And it is over the top, but still absolutely amazing and enjoyable and at several points, laugh out loud funny. The love story's trashy beginning ends in a surprisingly dignified and tender manner.

I've only seen this movie once, although I remember it vividly, and I'm not sure if I want to see it again. It was simply too intense. Halle Berry's acting made me forget to breathe at certain moments. This is very much a Southern Gothic movie, as much horror as romance, and just when you think these people's lives can't get any more fucked up… BAM. I'm still not sure if the hero really deserved his redemption at the end, but the world they lived in was so bleak, I was relieved it didn't end in a worse way.

Thanks for visiting, and I hope you'll go on to check out some of the other Loving Day posts and prizes offered by other MC/IR writers. Remember to comment on this post if you'd like to enter to win a copy of my latest book, The Submission Gift, and sign up for my monthly newsletter for more giveaways and news.

Release Day for The Submission Gift - Blog Tour and Giveaway

♠ Posted by Solace Ames in ,
It's the release day for The Submission Gift! I'll keep this post short, sweet, and packed full of information. Below is a table listing all the promo stops. The buy links and advance review snippets are here on the book page. The book page also has a list of kinks and potentially disturbing content at the bottom, spoiler-coded out so that you'll only see them if you click the "Show" button.

I always like to give away jewelry, and for this tour, I found a special piece that fits in beautifully with the theme of the book: a bracelet with three heart charms. The tour giveaway will also include chances to win a copy of the first stand-alone m/f book in the LA Doms series, The Dom Project.

Good luck if you participate in the giveaway, and thank you to all!

Link Guest Post? Review Interview Spotlight Exclusive Excerpt
3/21/14 Heroes and Heartbreakers
3/23/14 Fiction Vixen
3/24/14 Divas of Desire "Electric Pleasures"
3/24/14 Words of Wisdom from The Scarf Princess "Heroine Chefs"
3/24/14 All I Want and More
3/24/14 The Creatively Green Write at Home Mom
3/24/14 Roxanne's Realm
3/24/14 The Book Cellar
3/24/14 Musings of Mistress of the Dark Path
3/24/14 Paranormal Romance And Authors That Rock
3/24/14 Night Owl Reviews
3/24/14 Booklover Sue
3/24/14 Melissa Stevens
3/24/14 Lisa’s World of Books
3/24/14 Fang-tastic Books
3/24/14 Lissette E. Manning » The random musings of a writer
3/24/14 That’s Erotica
3/24/14 Musings In Fiction Alley
3/26/14 Carina Press "Would You Ever Pay For Sex?"
3/31/14 Maria's Book Blog
4/1/14 Scorching Book Reviews LGBT Month "Bisexual Humor"
4/2/14 AReCafe "Soundtracks for a Threesome"
4/3/14 Romance Novels in Color "Two Sentences in Spanish"


Beyond Jealousy by Kit Rocha - Special Spotlight and Giveaway

♠ Posted by Solace Ames in

This isn’t a review, although I’ve read Beyond Jealousy, and it’s everything I expected it would be: adrenaline-laced, blazing hot, and achingly emotional. Instead, I’m going to talk about why I think the series as a whole is so original and interesting, what kept me from reading it in the beginning, and why I’m hooked now.

I held off on reading Kit Rocha's Beyond series for a long time. I have major misgivings about the recent trend towards post-apocalyptic worlds, and I won't go into detail here, but I think these two posts (one short, one long) sum up my misgivings nicely. The specific kind of escapism in modern post-apocalyptic worlds leaves an odd taste in my mouth, and not in a sexy way...

But once I finally dived in, the series turns out to strike a fantastic balance between escapism and realism. There's loads of deliciously hot sex, women aren’t erased, and the violence is a necessary part of the world, but not too overwhelming. And this world feels grounded. We're somewhere in the desert, in the American Southwest, and the diversity of the series keeps scaling up to reflect that fact. Beyond Jealousy features not one but two Latino characters in the main triad romance, which makes it an MC/IR too! 

The death of the old world in the apocalyptic event brings a lot of misery, but it also brings a radical kind of freedom, and that’s what makes these books so exciting. Sexual freedom. Public sex just for the hell of it. Women with women, women with men, men with men, getting high off sex and pain and love, whatever. It’s going down at Broken Circle tonight.
Get the book. Get all the books. Start at the beginning and work your way up to Ace, Cruz and Rachel. They’re worth the journey. This is erotic romance done right.

She’s been looking for the perfect man. She found two.
When Rachel Riley sacrificed a life in Eden to protect the O’Kanes, she earned her place in the powerful Sector Four gang. But the former crime princess is tired of being everyone’s sweet little sister . It’s time for her to get wild, to embrace her fantasies as only an O’Kane can—with a delicious exiled soldier and the gang’s wickedly sinful tattoo artist.
A saint...
Lorenzo Cruz is a warrior, taught by his commanding officers in Eden that involvement equals distraction. Emotion is a liability, and desire a sin.  In Sector Four, he finds decadence, shameless sex—and his own dark urges. No battle strategy prepared him for how Rachel makes his heart race…or the way his rival for her affections sets his blood on fire.
...and a sinner.
Ace Santana has a dirty reputation and a mind to match, especially where his new lovers are concerned.  He’s eager to help Cruz embrace his dominant side, and to explore the lines between pleasure and pain with Rachel. But corrupting them quickly becomes an obsession, a need he can’t deny—and a love he never imagined.
Three hearts on the line means a hundred ways their ménage a trois could go wrong. After all, even O’Kanes do forever two-by-two.  One of them could be the missing piece that makes them all whole…or a temporary diversion destined for a broken heart.

Love Plus One - A Quick Introduction to Ménage Romance (Valentine's Day Post)

♠ Posted by Solace Ames in ,
I love ménage.

I love reading it, and I love writing it. Sure, a lot of ménage romances are highly unrealistic, but romance as a genre shouldn't be judged on faithfulness to mundane reality any more than science fiction or mystery. Whether it's fighting off an alien invasion, solving a locked-room whodunnit or fucking a bunch of firefighters, we love to vicariously experience really intense and unusual emotions through fiction!

Still, I do like a fair degree of realism in my ménage romance, because the messiness of it—both sexual and psychological—is a huge part of what attracts me.

I had to learn about the many flavors of ménage when I first started reading erotic romance. There's M/F/M—notice how the M's don't touch? That's because the two Ms in question aren't crossing the streams, so to speak. It's a relationship absolutely centered on the heroine. The men have close emotional bonds but no sexual contact. I've read at least one M/F/M I thought was believable and interesting, but my favorite of all is still M/M/F, which is where the streams do cross, and all three have lots of awesome erotic interaction.

There's no handy abbreviation for a V-shaped relationship with a man at the center. These stories aren't as popular as M/F/M or typical M/M/F, but they do exist out there. I read a fantastic one—Steal Away by Amber Green—where the bisexual man in the middle has a gay lover and woman lover too, and at first they're wary of each other, but they end up developing a wonderfully close though non-sexual relationship.

M/F/F stories are rarer, but they're also out there. I even wrote one myself, although it's more erotica than romance.

There are so many other possibilities, too, and territory where "traditional" and ménage romance cross streams. In the LA Doms series, The Dom Project starts with an open relationship agreed to by both parties and ends up with an M/F happy ever after.

The use of those M and F letters is helpful for marketing, but kind of limiting in a complicated world where gender is way more than a binary switch. The second LA Doms book, The Submission Gift, ends up as a committed M/M/F but definitely touches on some gender issues along the way.

I'd like to close out this brief introduction to ménage with a link to a lovely lesbian polyamorous wedding shoot from Offbeat Bride.

Happy Valentine's Day everyone!

(If you came here from the Scorching Reviews blog hop, good luck on winning the $50 prize below. If you're interested in my books, you can also sign up for my monthly newsletter for more giveaways.)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Dom Project Release Day December 23rd - Blog Tour, Giveaway and Free Story

♠ Posted by Solace Ames in ,
Since this is the holiday season and I imagine a lot of you are holiday-frazzled like me, I'm going to keep this release day post nice and short and sweet. The Dom Project is out in all ebook formats at major retailers, and also as an audiobook. I'm incredibly proud of our story. It has a light touch but some heavy emotions, and I'm happy to see that readers are already picking up on that. 

Advance Reviews:
Dear Author:
"I really enjoyed this, as a smokin’ hot story and as a vivid portrait of people leading unconventional lives."

Way Too Hot Books:
"Perfect for readers who like a little bit of power play and a lot of romantic gestures."

3 Chicks After Dark:
"Prepare to swoon! THIS BOOK IS HOT, HOT, HOT!"

Nocturnal Book Reviews:
"When they discover that their interests align both are wary of losing their friendship if their other relationship fails, so John goes very slowly trying to help Robin with her fantasies while both become increasingly unsatisfied with the boundaries they set for each other. I don't have to tell you that when their boiling point is reached, it's all very satisfying. "

We've got some great posts coming up on the blog tour, including a neat one tomorrow at Carina Press by Heloise detailing some of the shoes and toys that Robin and John play with. You'll also have a chance to win a grey pearl jewelry set. And finally, as an advance present, I'm putting up "Tomorrow's Much Too Long", the short prequel story that placed in Hyphen Magazine's Asian-American erotica competition. It's a free femdom MFF… funfest. Yeah ;-) You can download it at my free story section or head over to Smashwords to read it there.

Have a wonderful holiday and a happy New Year!

By day, Robin Lessing has a successful career as a university archivist. By night, she blogs about her less-than-successful search for Mr. Tall, Dark and Dominant. Living up to her handle "The Picky Submissive," she's on the verge of giving up and settling for vanilla with a side of fuzzy handcuffs when she discovers her best friend and colleague has a kinky side, too.

Sexy, tattooed techie John Sun is an experienced Dom who never lacks for playmates, male or female. If he can't satisfy Robin's cravings, maybe no one can—after all, he knows her better than anyone. So he offers to help her master the art of submission for one month.

Robin eagerly agrees to John's terms, even the pesky little rule forbidding any friendship-ruining sex. But rules are made to be broken, and once they begin their stimulating sessions, it's not long before she's ready to beg him for more—much more…

I placed in the Hyphen Magazine Erotic Writing Contest

♠ Posted by Solace Ames in
I'm happy to report that my writing has just won an award from the excellent Hyphen Magazine. I'm a runner-up in their Erotic Writing Contest! Head over there to read what erotica writer Teresa Lo has to say about my story, "Tomorrow's Much Too Long."

It's a backstory prequel to The Dom Project novel, which is coming from Carina Press this December. If you like the hero of TDP, you'll like this short story too. Please note that although it also stars a lesbian couple, it's by no means a typical straight dude porn fantasy—in fact, John isn't even straight, although he doesn't find that out until later. "Tomorrow's Much Too Long" is a unique story (I certainly haven't read any other all-Asian-American femdom threesomes) and I had a hell of a lot of fun writing it.

I won't tease the story anymore, since it's still not published. But you can check out the first place winner over at Hyphen's site: Thien-Kim Lam's “Pho for Two.”