Maggie Blackbird

Romancing Canada's Indigenous People

Today, I’m hosting author K.L. Hiers and her latest release Hard Earned Cash, a m/m contemporary romance and sequel to Cold Hard Cash.  I’m also reviewing Cold Hard Cash and Hard Earned Cash.  Don’t forget to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway.

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BANNER

About-the-Book

hardearnedcash_goldBook Title:  Hard Earned Cash (Cold Hard Cash 2)
Author:  K.L. Hiers
Release Date:  June 26, 2020
Genre/s:  Contemporary M/M Romance, BDSM, Mafia
Trope/s:  May/December, Kink, Getting Away With Murder, Fake Marriage
Themes:  Revenge, Trust, Bad Guy Very Good At Being Bad
Publisher:  Stormy Night Publications
Heat Rating:  5 flames
Length:  112 000 words/ 385 pages

Blurb: When you belong to a man like Boss Cold, you take what he gives you. Jimmy Poe has known that since he first offered himself to the feared mob boss in payment of a debt, yet over the past year he has gotten to see a very different side of Cold. A side that made Jimmy fall in love.

But their love will be put to the test when Cold is arrested. Can the bond between them endure even as the dark shadows of Cold’s past come to light and Jimmy’s life is put at risk as well?

Publisher’s Note: Hard Earned Cash is a sequel to Cold Hard Cash. It includes spankings and rough, intense sexual scenes. If such material offends you, please don’t buy this book.

Buy Links – Available on Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

Excerpt

Jimmy Poe was absolutely trembling in the back of the limousine, staring anxiously out the window up at Westchester Prison. His foot was tapping, fingers twitching, and his teeth were working at his lower lip with a carnivorous ferocity.

“Jimmy,” Boss Cold said softly, a cool hand pressing against his leg and squeezing. “Calm down.”

Eyes fluttering, Jimmy nodded frantically, but he still continued to fidget.

“Breathe for me,” Cold said more firmly, his thumb slowly stroking Jimmy’s inner thigh. He squeezed his leg again. “Now.”

Taking a few deep breaths, Jimmy’s pulse began to descend. Cold’s voice was beautiful and strong, and there was a very distinct purr that it took on when he gave orders. It worked its way directly into Jimmy’s brain, and he was powerless to resist.

Boss Cold, also known as Roderick Legrand, the mob ruler of Strassen Springs, was not a man who tolerated any amount of disobedience in any aspect of his life. From his criminal empire to the bedroom, his word was law.

It was the foundation of their relationship, and it gave Jimmy purpose and confidence, and it was a love like no other.

“I know you’re excited,” Cold said soothingly, “but you’ll put yourself in a fit if you don’t calm yourself.”

“There’s a part of me that still thinks this is all a dream,” Jimmy gushed, looking back out the window to the prison where his father had been trapped for so many years.

Today was the day David Poe was finally being freed.

He had been wrongly convicted for the murder of Jimmy’s mother nineteen years ago, and Cold had recently discovered that the killer was a traitorous member of his own gang. Justice was brutally served as the result of meticulous planning that not only granted David’s freedom, but also destroyed Cold’s enemies and left him completely untouchable.

“It’s very real,” Cold promised, patting his knee.

“Thank you,” Jimmy beamed happily. “Thank you for everything.” He leaned forward, trying to steal a kiss.

Cold caught his jaw before he could, smirking faintly as he looked over Jimmy’s lips. He hummed, pretending to consider whether or not he was going to allow it.

“Please, sir?” Jimmy pleaded playfully.

Cold growled softly at the ‘sir’, pressing a heated kiss against Jimmy’s mouth. “You wicked thing,” he snarled. “Teasing me right before I’m going to meet your father.”

“You’ll have to punish me later,” Jimmy chuckled.

“Careful,” Cold warned him, his thumb gently stroking over his chin, “or it’ll be a punishment you may not enjoy.”

Heat prickled beneath Jimmy’s collar as he asked, “Mmm, your belt?”

“Keep pushing me and you’ll find out,” Cold warned.

Jimmy knew he could only tease Cold so much before he got truly aggravated with him.

Although that did come with its own unique set of pleasures, he wanted his boyfriend in a good mood to meet his father.

“I’ll behave,” Jimmy said, smiling when Cold kissed him again. He sat back in his seat, eyes focused out the window once more for any sign of his father.

“Perhaps you should have come alone,” Cold mused.

“Why? Never met anyone’s parents before?”

“No,” was the flat reply.

“Are you nervous?” Jimmy teased, delighted by the idea.

“You really want the belt tonight, don’t you?” Cold scowled. “I do not get nervous.”

Jimmy grinned and resisted the urge to giggle. He wasn’t about to argue, gasping excitedly when he saw the gates of the prison finally open and his father step outside. “He’s here! He’s really here!”

Jerry was already opening the door of the limo, Jimmy tumbling out and breaking into a dead run to greet his father.

“Hey, slugger!” David exclaimed, dropping his bag to embrace his son. He squeezed him tight and pressed tearful kisses into his hair.

Jimmy’s own eyes were stinging with tears as he hugged his father as hard as he could. He was absolutely thrilled to be holding his father as a free man.

“My boy,” David said, his voice cracking from so much emotion. “Thank you. Thank you for never giving up on me. I love you so much, kiddo.”

“I love you, too!” Jimmy exclaimed with a big grin. “Oh, my God. You’re here. You’re really free, and, and, and my God. No more inch of glass, no more phone calls, you’re really here!”

“Damn right,” David chuckled warmly, kissing his son’s forehead and giving him one last big hug. He nodded towards the limo, teasing, “I think your boyfriend is waiting for us.”

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My-Review

This novel picks up a year after Cold Hard Cash.  There is a prologue of about thirty pages that isn’t necessary unless you haven’t read the first book.  The prologue simply gives an overview of what happens right after the first novel finishes.

I really liked Jimmy’s character development in this novel.  He’s come a long way from being the insecure, hesitant, naïve man we met in the first book.  He has confidence.  And a big conscience.  At times, his conscience doesn’t shut down.  I wish this would have been fully explored because this could have made for great tension between Jimmy and Cold, instead of what was given to the reader of the push and pull over an upcoming wedding and Cold’s constant “keeping things to himself.”

With those two quibbles aside, this is another great read.  The author brings back the characters we met in the first novel.  It was great seeing Rowena, Maury, and David.  The Gentlemen.  And there’s a new character Charlie.  Charlie was a great introduction because he kept me guessing.  Just when I thought I had him figured out, the author took me on another twist and turn with this character.  Well done.

The plot was well-balanced and full of romance, suspense, and action.  I especially enjoyed the court case.  The author also did a great job of keeping the main characters and secondary characters fresh and interesting.

For a series, the author did her job well.  She took two characters and fleshed out their romance into a tangled web of morals, growth, and addressing the past to move forward to a bright new future.

It also hints there might be another book coming.

If you’re new to the series, read Cold Hard Cash first, because Hard Earned Cash is the sequel.  I highly recommend this book.

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About-the-Book

51977245._SX318_SY475_Book Title:  Cold Hard Cash (Cold Hard Cash 1)
Author:  K.L. Hiers
Release Date:  August 15, 2019
Genre/s:  Contemporary M/M Romance, BDSM, Mafia
Publisher:   Stormy Night Publications
Heat Rating:   5 flames
Length:  112 000 words/ 387 pages

Blurb:  When you owe money to a powerful mafia kingpin, you find a way to pay it back or you get hurt, and the only thing twenty-six-year-old Jimmy Poe has to offer a man like Boss Cold is himself. Cold agrees to give Jimmy a chance to have his debt cancelled, but it will mean surrendering his body to Cold’s rough, ruthless demands every night until the very last penny has been repaid.

Over the coming days, Jimmy learns what it means to be truly mastered, and Cold’s stern dominance arouses him far more intensely than he would have thought possible. But as their business arrangement grows into a romance, can Cold keep Jimmy safe in his dangerous world?

Publisher’s Note: Cold Hard Cash includes spankings and rough, intense sexual scenes. If such material offends you, please don’t buy this book.

A Dark Mafia Romance.

My-Review

I always enjoy a good m/m mafia romance, and Cold Hard Cash doesn’t disappoint.  Not only is it a romance, it spins a tale of suspense.

I will admit the first few opening paragraphs confused me.  I think this happens when authors try to be too clever.  Don’t be clever.  Just tell me what’s going on, because after the author began letting the story roll, her natural voice came through and I found myself knee-deep in the story.

Since the blurb is available to read, I’ll get straight to my review.  Jimmy took some time to grow on me, but once I knew his circumstances, everything changed.  He was naïve and gullible, but loyal and determined.  Determined is right because he never gave up on his father, or what happened to his mother.  He even went waaaay into debt because he refused to let his father rot in prison for a crime he didn’t commit.

Jimmy was a character I couldn’t think of as the hero. More like a starstruck kid in search of someone to care about him, and given what he’d endured during the early part of his life, of course he was searching for someone to love him.  He was wonderfully drawn for such a tough backstory he had going on.

As for Roderick “Roddy” Legrand aka Boss Cold, I instantly liked him.  I know some found his given name a bit porn-starry, but I thought it was a refreshing change from the crafty or trendy names I come across in romance.  So three cheers for christening him Roddy.  The same goes for Jimmy’s name.  Nothing fancy.  Just a nice name.

There were many characters in the book, and I did get a wee bit confused at times, but that was okay.  Because the ones who were supposed to stand out shone like they were supposed to.  I had a soft spot for Maury.  He really shone as the fatherly-figure loan shark.  Rowena was also welcome character in the novel.  I always enjoy a wonderful female poking her head into a m/m romance.  Augustus had me going “hmm” at times, because I wasn’t sure if he was friend or foe, so this is a great part on the author for keeping me guessing.  Well done.

Both main characters (Jimmy/Cold) begin to change as their relationship progresses.  This was a nice touch because relationships always change us.  It was nice to see Cold finally let down his guard, all because of Jimmy.

The climax was well executed.  Up until the end, I had no idea who was responsible for the mother’s death.  I thought the author would fall back on the “reliable” but she fooled me LOL.

The book keeps you turning pages.  It’s a great story, and I’m looking forward to reading and reviewing the sequel.

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About-the-Author

K.L. Hiers is an embalmer, restorative artist, and queer writer. Licensed in both funeral directing and funeral service, she’s been working in the death industry for nearly a decade. Her first love was always telling stories, and she has been writing for over twenty years, penning her very first book at just eight years old. Publishers generally do not accept manuscripts in Hello Kitty notebooks, however, but she never gave up.

Following the success of her first novel, Cold Hard Cash, she now enjoys writing professionally, focusing on spinning tales of sultry passion, exotic worlds, and emotional journeys. She loves attending horror movie conventions and indulging in cosplay of her favorite characters. She lives in Zebulon, NC, with her husband and their six children, three of whom have paws and one who sometimes thinks he does.

Find K.L. Hiers:  Blog/Website | Facebook | Instagram | Newsletter Sign-up

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Giveaway

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win a $15 Amazon Gift Card or one of 7 ebook copies of Hard Earned Cash.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the tour and check out the other blog posts and reviews here

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