Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Simmer, a Dreamspinner Press Anthology & Breakfast at Timothy's

Simmer, a Dreamspinner Press Anthology

Pages: 310
Release date: February 24, 2016
Details: Anthology
             Story received from author

The blurb:

There’s no denying preparing and eating food can be a sensuous experience and an experiment in pleasure. The men in these stories are about to find out just how satisfying it can be. From spicy to sweet and everything in between, things are heating up in the kitchen… and in the diner, on the food court, over the Internet, and even at a breakfast booth beyond the stars. Join them as they touch, taste, sample, and savor their way to steamy romance and maybe even a happy ever after that will last long after the dishes have been cleared.

The Cake by Ann Marie James

Former Marine and hard-working mechanic Kirk Smith can barely boil water, but that won’t stop him from baking the cake his orphaned niece wants for her birthday. When things go awry, it’s fellow single dad Eric Hallahan to the rescue. Eric’s been waiting for an opportunity to get closer to Kirk, so he’s happy to offer his help and see what they might mix up together—in and out of the kitchen.

All Is Well by Dale Cameron Lowry

When Kyle Pratt cooks a feast for his fellow Mormon missionaries near Lake Migisiwauk in the Upper Midwest, nineteen-year-old Tanner Jensen falls in love at first taste. But the church teaches romantic love between men is wrong, and Tanner knows the only way to get to the highest level of heaven is by marrying a faithful woman in a Mormon temple. Tanner is forced to reconsider his beliefs as he gets to know Kyle better and the two develop a deep connection based on their shared spirituality. The two missionaries must navigate uncharted territory, figuring out how to be true to both their faith and their love for one another.

Another Saturn Monday by R.A. Thorn

Cabbage forms the basis of the Hirculian cuisine, so when Interstellar Parking Authority employee Theo is forced to have breakfast at a Hirculian stall in the Saturn space station food court, he knows he’ll be having cabbage. But after one look at the stall’s shy but sexy proprietor, Ekain, Theo thinks he should have started eating cabbage for breakfast a long time ago.

Man of Steel by Rob Rosen

Adventurous foodie Scott is intrigued by the new Jewish diner that’s opened up in his neighborhood, and even more so by its chef and proprietor, Morty. It turns out the food is uniquely delicious, but it’s after hours in the kitchen when the heat really gets turned up.

Breakfast at Timothy’s by T.J. Masters

Twenty-four-year old post-graduate geology student Connor Wilson hopes to persuade his professor, the eminent geologist Timothy Shaw, to become his academic advisor. Forty-six-year-old Dr. Shaw is a legend in the field, although his personal life remains a mystery. Over a week of early morning breakfast meetings at Timothy’s home in the village of Grantchester, outside Cambridge, England, attraction simmers between the two men and eventually boils over into steamy passion. Connor is seduced by the food and charm of the very fit older man, and it looks like his dream could come true—in better ways than he ever expected.

A Second Season by Tali Segel

Back in high school, Chris knew Drew as the gorgeous jock with a passion for food that matched his own. Years later, after career changes and failed relationships, they reunite at Maple Creek B&B in the snowy Berkshires, and the chemistry between them is stronger than ever.

Chris isn’t sure which is sexier: Drew’s hiking-toned body or his love of authentic food made from fresh, local ingredients. He’s ready to steam up the kitchen with a spicy fling, but Drew’s past has left him questioning his love life and career. But an apple cider-scented night might signal a new season for the two locavores.

Kneading You by C.S. Poe

Christopher Hughes is new to a small town in New Hampshire. He’s been hired to save a historical library from closing, but his obstacles include not only fighting for state funding, but a Selectman who wants to tear the building down. Christopher meets Miles Sakasai, a shy, tattooed repairman who divides his time between fixing the library and baking bread. Miles’s skills in the kitchen may end up being the key to saving the library—if his bread can rise to the occasion.

If You Give An Incubus a Cookie by Ki Brightly

Incubus Hal Scand leads a hard life, and the only bright spot is the few minutes he steals at the Cookie Cart each day, where he’s able to forget his problems before it’s back to banging for a buck. Cookie stand owner Porter enjoys flirting with his mysterious regular, but he’s ready for more. And with Valentine’s Day approaching, he has the perfect opportunity to take his chance.

Moon Cakes by T. Neilson

Connor started his YouTube nearly-naked cooking show, Peas, Bitch as a joke. He never expected it to get so popular, and now he’s quit his job and is low-level celebrity cheffing for a living.

The problem is, he doesn’t have time for a relationships or a life, people aren't so keen on his show any more, and he's worried about how he's going to get back into professional cooking after having spent the last few years nearly naked in front of the whole Internet.

When he decides to meet a stranger for dinner at the end of a long day, Connor doesn't expect much more than awkward conversation and another failed date, but instead he comes face to face with his single biggest problem and gets exactly what he needs to put the fun back into the kitchen.

Tortilla Pie by Rick R. Reed

When Anderson, homeless on the streets of Seattle, first spies Josh, a volunteer kitchen worker at TeenCare, he falls for him, despite TeenCare’s policy against interaction between staff and clients. Josh doesn’t miss the way Anderson looks at him, and he can’t deny his interest. Anderson and Josh bond over food, and especially the center's awesome tortilla pie, but will they be able to find a way around the restrictions to see if they’re hungry for more?

Taste of the Forest, Dark and Sweet by Charles Payseur

Bastian's kitchen, normally his sanctuary, has become anything but since Colin began working with him. There's just something… distracting about the line chef that Bastian is drawn to but won't let himself act on because he needs to concentrate on work. Then a series of disasters draw Bastian into a magical world he never knew existed—a world Colin is part of. If they can overcome the barriers between them, they might find the sweet taste of success… and set the kitchen on fire in the process.

Operation Wild Thumb by Tray Ellis

Zucchini and squash have sprouted at the home Heath shares with his divorced sister, Sara, and are growing in abundance. Never one to pass up the opportunity for a prank, Heath decides to leave the vegetables on his neighbors’ doorsteps. One neighbor catches him in the act, but luckily Alex seems as into the humor as he is into Heath. When the night comes to an end, there might be more on the burner than zucchini pancakes.

And Everything Nice by Ada Marie Soto

Computer programmer Angelo is as good at baking as he is bad at talking to people—especially guys he finds attractive, like Simon, the new tech writer at work. Falling back on his habit of using his culinary creations as a distraction, Angelo whips up a batch of chocolate chip cookies. But Simon refuses to touch them. Frustrated but not ready to give up, Angelo searches for the perfect recipe to tempt both Simon and his taste buds.

My thoughts on Breakfast at Timothy’s by T.J. Masters

Breakfast at Timothy’s is an adorable story; there really is no other way to put it. It was such fun watching Connor (never Con) trying to make sense of Timothy (not Tim) and his breakfast invitations.

The first day Connor arrives at Professor Timothy Shaw’s house for breakfast, all he wants to do is convince the man to be his academic advisor. By the time he leaves again he can’t deny he is deeply attracted to the man. Mixed messages and cryptic answers have Connor second guessing both the professor and himself until suddenly there is no room for doubt anymore. 

Except that even when it seems that all the pieces have slotted into place, there’s still room for a surprise for Connor and the reader. And of course I have a weak spot for stories in which what you (think you) see isn’t always what you end up getting.

I literally smiled my way through reading this story. The banter between Connor and Timothy was both intelligent and fun, the various breakfasts the professor prepared and served made my mouth water, the chemistry between the two men was almost palatable not to mention hot, and Connor was a charming and captivating narrator.

I would have loved to spend more time with these two men. Not because I felt there was anything missing in this story, but because I enjoyed my time with them and wouldn’t have minded a longer visit. I can’t help feeling these two men have an interesting journey ahead of them.

On a side-note, I’ve decided that one day I will be brave and prepare ‘Timothy’s French Toast Americaine’ because if it tastes only half as good as it reads, it will be an amazing eating experience. J

Now that I’ve read one of the stories in Simmer I’m rather curious about the rest of them. Curious and also a little bit worried. They say you should never go shopping while hungry; I think the same may well apply here: Don’t read Simmer while hungry.

Buy links:

Amazon       Amazon UK            Dreamspinner Press            ARe

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