Boy Meets Boy Meets BoyA Mad About the Brit Boys anthology by JL Merrow and Josephine Myles
Release date: 15th March 2016
Buy link: Amazon
Word Count: 15,000
Cover art: Lou Harper
Other titles in the series:
Mad About the Boys
Boys Who Go Bump in the Night
Help, My Boyfriend’s an Alien!
Truly, Madly, Boys (coming May 2016)
Menage: fantasy vs reality - A guest blog by Josephine Myles and JL MerrowToday JL Merrow and Josephine Myles are celebrating the release of their latest m/m/m anthology here, and are debating threesomes. Does all that fictional heat really translate into reality?
Jo: Ahem. Well, you’ll have to understand that any comments I make about threesomes/moresomes in reality are based on conjecture/anecdotes from others and not from my own experience, honest guvnor. I’m just not willing to share that much intimate detail from my own life (draw what conclusions you like from that!)
But anyway, it’s my opinion that menage, polyamory and orgies often comes across way more exciting in fiction than they are in reality. I mean, they might be momentarily fantastic in reality, and everyone will end up coming all over everyone else, but once the sweaty fun is out of the way and people have to put their clothes back on it can all get a bit awkward. Especially if you made the mistake of having a swinging party with your good friends when off your face on some kind of mind-altering substance (it wasn’t me, honest!)
What do you reckon, Jamie? Theoretically speaking, naturally ;-)
Jamie: Naturally. *cough* Well, to be honest I think that relationships with only two people in them are hard enough to get right, so I can’t imagine how people manage to make sure everyone’s emotional and other needs are met in threesomes or moresomes. There’s a reason cold war-era secret police always patrolled in threes: because two may conspire, but with three, one of them will always inform. (Or, as the old joke has it: One can read, one can write, and one is there to keep an eye on the two intellectuals.) But in other words, while two may be in tune with one another, it’s hard for a third not to be left slightly out in the cold.
Jo: Hmm, but at least if there’s a rift between two of the three, the other one can help them both make up. Or at the very least, relay messages when they’re not talking to each other. Or be the one who always has to sleep in the middle of the bed.
Actually, how do sleeping arrangements even work? I’d boil alive if I had to sleep between two adult bodies, and it would make it really difficult to get out of bed for a midnight snack without waking everyone up...
Jamie: Hmm. Maybe the guy in the middle has to wriggle down to the bottom of the bed and get out that way? But I hear you re overheating. I can’t stand being hot at night. And space has got to be an issue - even a king size bed can’t be all that roomy for 3 strapping, broad-shouldered men. Especially in Britain, where everything is smaller than in the US - apparently a UK king size bed is a whopping 16” narrower than a US king (visitors to Britain take note) and although we have a super king size it’s still smaller than a US king!
Jo: It’s these little niggles that add a bit of reality to a menage fantasy, methinks. I remember once listening to some people in a polyamorous relationship talking about how they managed their lives, and the answer was Google calendar. They all had to block out time to spend together, and make sure each partner was getting equal time together. That might not be such an issue in a threeway relationship when all partners are together, but I can see there would still be issues. Like if you get an invitation with “plus one”. Are you allowed to bring two? And would you want to answer all the awkward questions if you did?
Jamie: Yes, the world is really set up for couples, isn’t it? Even those Marks and Spencer romantic night in meal deals assume you’ve only got one significant other to share them with! I suppose to be fair, you’d have to strictly rotate who got to go to events with whom - but I imagine it’d be terribly confusing for all your friends and acquaintances, not least because I imagine coming out as in a poly relationship involves a great number of tedious and intrusive questions. People often seem to think that the fact of someone being a little different from them entitles them to ask all kinds of stuff that’s none of their business.
Jo: Too right. That’s why I keep all my perversions a secret. Er, not that I have any. Honest!
Jamie: Of course not. *cough*
Readers: have you ever had a fantasy (and it doesn’t have to be sexual!) that turned out very different when it became a reality? Or can you think of other situations you’ve read in fiction and thought, no way would it work like this in real life?
Giveaway: Jo and Jamie are gifting one lucky commenter with a book from each of their backlists.
photo credit: Three Investigators (CC) via photopin (license)
Good men come in threes!
Three’s definitely not a crowd in this trio of contemporary erotic male/male/male ménages with a very British flavour from gay romance favourites Josephine Myles and JL Merrow.
Let your fantasies run wild as you take in the fit bodies down at the gym, or enjoy a very special birthday present from a loving partner. And even a trip to the dentist can be enjoyable with the right sort of distraction!
These stories have all been previously published, but are now available exclusively in this anthology.
Anthology introduction by Josephine Myles (taken from the ebook):
I do love a good threesome.
Err, a fictional one, that is. Because there is such a thing as too much information, and I don’t know about you, but I sometimes I prefer not to know what people get up to behind closed doors.
Okay, so that’s a lie. I’m a writer and we’re notoriously nosy people. I’ve always been one for peeping into people’s houses—winter evenings are perfect for this, especially in December as most folk like to keep the curtains open to show off their Christmas trees. However, I’ve only once been rewarded by spying a couple shagging, and I suspect they were exhibitionists anyway as they were doing it by a busy pub.
But I digress; this is less about my voyeuristic tendencies and more about my love of a fictional ménage. Just what is it that appeals about a good threesome? Okay, so there’s all the smutty possibilities that suddenly become apparent when you add in a few extra limbs, appendages and places to shove said appendages—but it’s not all about the sex. To be honest, writing ménage sex scenes tends to give me a headache what with having to make it clear to the reader who is doing what to whom, and it’s especially complicated when all three participants are the same gender.
What makes a threesome really interesting to me as a writer is thinking through all the emotional entanglements—ones that can be brought to the surface even by a seemingly casual encounter, such as the one in my story for this anthology. Indeed, I so enjoyed the process of writing this story that I ventured into writing a full length ménage romance, which allowed me to explore the dynamics of a three-way relationship in more depth.
While Jamie has never written a novel length ménage romance, I’ve always loved reading her m/m/m shorts. Incidentally, two of the stories here were first published in an anthology of threesome shorts from Dreamspinner Press back in 2010, and that was our first ever joint anthology credit. I still remember how privileged I felt to have a story in the same anthology as her! And although we’ve had many joint anthology projects since, she’s still a writer I’m thrilled to team up with, honest guvnor (I have to put that in or Jamie will punish me! [Jamie: This is true])
We might not write many short stories these days, but we haven’t run out of old ones to republish just yet, so keep your eyes peeled for at least one more Mad About the Brit Boys anthology.
Josephine Myles, February 2016
Individual story blurbs:
Kit Bag by JL Merrow
Working late at the gym one night, Kit’s delighted when two of his fantasies made flesh come in for a workout. The guys he’s dubbed Black Muscle Vest and Grey Sweats are tall, gorgeous and insanely built, and Kit can hardly take his eyes off their glistening, pumped-up muscles.
But he’s not the only one who’s been dreaming of a little hot and sweaty man-on-man-on-man action. Harry and Sven are only too happy to make Kit’s fantasy a reality in the changing room—and Kit’s going to get a workout of his own he’ll never forget!
Unwrapped: The Birthday Gift by Josephine Myles
All Dave wants for his birthday is a threesome, and his devoted boyfriend Mark is keen to oblige. Enter Pedro, the mysterious stranger they pick up from the pub. Taking him home with them promises a scorching encounter… if only Dave can deal with his nerves first!
Getting a Filling by JL Merrow
Ivo’s terrified of going to the dentist, even with his lover, Colin, there for moral support. But when the dentist turns out to be gorgeous—and gay—fear turns to flirtation. The next time Ivo ends up in the dentist’s chair it’s a lot more fun, as the support Colin and Ted give him is very immoral indeed.
JL Merrow is that rare beast, an English person who refuses to drink tea. She read Natural Sciences at Cambridge, where she learned many things, chief amongst which was that she never wanted to see the inside of a lab ever again. Her one regret is that she never mastered the ability of punting one-handed whilst holding a glass of champagne.
She writes across genres, with a preference for contemporary gay romance and mysteries, and is frequently accused of humour. Her novel Slam! won the 2013 Rainbow Award for Best LGBT Romantic Comedy, and her novella Muscling Through and novel Relief Valve were both EPIC Awards finalists.
JL Merrow is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, International Thriller Writers, Verulam Writers’ Circle and the UK GLBTQ Fiction Meet organising team.
Find JL Merrow online at: www.jlmerrow.com, on Twitter as @jlmerrow, and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/jl.merrow
English through and through, Josephine Myles is addicted to tea and busy cultivating a reputation for eccentricity. She writes gay erotica and romance, but finds the erotica keeps cuddling up to the romance, and the romance keeps corrupting the erotica. Jo blames her rebellious muse but he never listens to her anyway, no matter how much she threatens him with a big stick. She’s beginning to suspect he enjoys it.
Jo publishes regularly with Samhain, and now has over ten novels and novellas under her belt. Her novel Stuff won the 2014 Rainbow Award for Best Bisexual Romance, and her novella Merry Gentlemen won the 2014 Rainbow Award for Best Gay Romantic Comedy. She has also been known to edit anthologies and self-publish on occasion, although she prefers to leave the “boring bits” of the ebook creation process to someone else. She loves to be busy, and is currently having fun trying to work out how she is going to fit in her love of writing, dressmaking and attending cabaret shows in fabulous clothing around the demands of a preteen with special needs and a soon-to-be toddler.
Website and blog: http://josephinemyles.com/
Excerpt from Getting a Filling by JL Merrow
“You,” Colin said decisively, prodding Ivo painfully in the ribs, “are the world’s biggest wuss.”
Ivo glared at his lover. “Excuse me? I think you’ll find, actually, I’m being extremely brave here. I’m not trembling in fright at home, pretending it’s all going to go away. Oh, no. I’m here. Standing tall—”
“Sitting on a comfy chair, actually.”
“—and facing up to my fears. I think you’ll find that’s the very definition of bravery.”
Colin made an annoying sort of tsk sound with his tongue. “And I think you’ll find that most grown men in your situation would not call this anything even remotely like bravery. Especially seeing as you dragged me along to hold your hand. You’re not marching into battle, Ivo. You’re not about to have experimental brain surgery. You’re not even going bloody bungee jumping. You’re at the dentist’s! For a check-up. How terrifying can it be?”
Ivo was wounded. “I had a bad experience at the dentist’s when I was little, I’ll have you know. It scarred me for life.” He shuddered at the memory. “You never saw the dentist I used to have to go to. His surgery was in a big old house like the one in the Amityville horror films.”
“A perfectly ordinary terraced house in the High Street, no doubt.”
“Well, it looked scary enough when I was a kid. All Masonic patterned tiles and Gothic windows. And the dentist was an absolute ringer for Vincent Price. It was bloody terrifying, seeing him looming over you with a drill.”
“Well, it should have taught you not to eat so many sweeties, then, shouldn’t it?” Colin said with the smug air of one blessed with a take-it-or-leave-it attitude to sugar and naturally strong teeth. “If it wasn’t for your chocolate addiction, we wouldn’t even be here. I’ve never had to have a filling in my life.”
“Which is why there’s nothing intrinsically manly about you being so bloody blasé about trips to the dentist. You’ve never had reason to be scared.” A shiver ran through Ivo’s frame. “All the times I had gas at the dentist’s, feeling that horrible taste in my mouth and wondering if I’d ever wake up…”
“You can’t feel a taste, Ivo,” Colin put in dismissively, picking up a battered copy of Reader’s Digest apparently for the sole purpose of dropping it again with a shudder.
“Maybe I’m synaesthetic,” Ivo muttered sulkily. “Just because you haven’t experienced something doesn’t mean it isn’t a perfectly valid—”
“Would you like to come in now, Mr Eccles?” The nurse smiled around the waiting room door. Ivo felt a sudden flash of loathing for her, with her starched white uniform and her perfect nails and her friendly manner. He took a deep breath. No. The nurse was not the enemy.
Merely a collaborator. Ivo wondered what she’d look like with that artfully highlighted hair shorn off and a badge of shame hung around her neck reading Dentist Lover.
Scrambling to his feet, Ivo squared his shoulders. He might be heading towards unimaginable terror and suffering, but by God he’d show some good old-fashioned British backbone. Unfortunately, his voice didn’t seem to be playing along. It came out in a bit of a squeak. “You’re coming with me, right, Colin?”
Colin sighed. “If I have to.”
As Ivo walked into the surgery, the smell hit him. A mix of antiseptic and that horrid pink stuff they made you rinse your mouth out with after they’d finished their sadistic little round of torture. And a faint whiff of mint. Uniquely dentist, it transported Ivo back to his childhood and his mother’s harassed voice, promising him a whole box of Smarties if he’d only, please, just try to be good at the dentist’s this time.
“Ivo, you’re hurting my hand,” Colin hissed in his ear. Ivo let go hurriedly.
And then he looked at the dentist, and all his anxiety seemed to drain away. Right along with most of the blood in the upper portions of his body. It seemed to be heading south so fast Ivo was vaguely surprised he didn’t keel straight over on the floor, leaving just his dick standing up and waving enthusiastically. The dentist was absolutely bloody gorgeous. Well, what could be seen of him was, at any rate. Green eyes twinkled above his surgical mask, and dark, almost black curls poked out from under his cap. The whole effect was Pan, gone middle-class professional. Ivo found himself wondering if there might be two tiny horns nestling in those curls under the cap. And as for the rest of him… His tight white tunic (and how come Ivo had never realised just how sexy a tunic could be?) seemed to strain to contain his muscular chest, and his trousers clung lovingly to rock-hard thighs.
Ivo heard Colin’s sharp intake of breath and knew his lover was just as affected by the sight as he was. It was one of the many reasons he felt so lucky having Colin; they had very similar tastes in men.
“Ah, Mr Eccles? If you’d like to take a seat.” The dentist waved politely at the chair, which looked more like a couch in its present semi-reclined state. Really, you could get up to all sorts of things in a chair like that.
“Ivo,” Ivo told him as he moved forward, drawn by the lure of that mellow voice. “Please, call me Ivo.”