Blog Tour – Priest and Pariahs by Mann Ramblings
Title: Priest and Pariahs
Author: Mann Ramblings
Series: Ship Logs of the Santa Claus, Book Three
Genre: Gay Romance, Science Fiction
Publisher: Wayward Ink Publishing
Synopsis – Priest and Pariahs
Ship Logs of the Santa Claus, Book Three
Costa McQuillen is a Pariah, a para-human with tech empathic abilities who has escaped from Earth, where being para-human is illegal—and marks him for extermination. Arrogant and standoffish, Costa is unable to trust anyone, but is willing to risk everyone's safety to reach the planet Omoikane. His best solution: gaining passage on board the Santa Claus.
Arbor Kittering, the crew's newest coding tech, is a medical oddity. With the technologies available to prevent birth defects, Arbor's status as a dwarf brings the kind of attention he could happily do without. Having spent a short time in prison for data hacking and falsifying government files doesn't help. The Santa Claus is his last chance at a new start, if he can decipher the strange malfunctions plaguing the ship.
Priest, the Santa Claus’ Head Pilot, is a bit of a scoundrel. Perpetually single, Priest is attracted to Costa for his exotic looks, and to Arbor for his unique qualities. In truth, he'd like to have both, but it's clear such a thing isn't in the cards. Now Priest needs to make a choice, before it's too late.
BLOWING OUT THROUGH his pursed lips, Arbor Kittering scrubbed his small hands on his pant legs. His palms refused to stay dry; he was so nervous. This job interview was too important. No other employer had been willing to return his application requests and his currency was dwindling. Despite his exceptional tech-coding skills, the mistakes he’d made in the recent past had smeared his reputation. All he needed was a fresh opportunity to undo the damage.
Reaching into his shoulder bag—that always appeared too large for his size—he pulled out a small metal rectangle. With a flick of his wrist, it snapped out, expanding into a small step stool. Climbing on top of it in the middle of the men’s restroom gave him a better vantage point in the mirror. If he stretched out to the tips of his toes, his chin would barely reach the standard counter height, and he had no intention of doing anything of the sort. He had some small amount of pride left.
Such was the life of a dwarf in a universe full of normals.
Arbor was accustomed to the odd stares of folks trying not to be obvious. Some were fine, but others treated his condition as something communicable. As if achondroplasia was catching. If it were, he would run rampant through crowds in public transports, touching everyone he could reach, in a millisecond.
He was fortunate not to be more disfigured. A disheveled thatch of mud-brown hair helped reduce the appearance of his pronounced forehead. Thankfully, his head was not grotesquely large. His limbs were short in proportion to his torso, but the possible spinal curvature was minimal. Growing up, his research brought him medical images of conditions beyond his ability to stomach.
It made him thank whatever gods he didn’t believe in.
Occasionally, he would meet a person who was fascinated by his unnatural stature. It was often exhausting, but he couldn’t blame their morbid curiosity at times. How could you not gawk at something so abnormal, which barely existed beyond obscure medical histories in the last few centuries? From his Subspace Link research, only four cases of dwarfism were catalogued in the last fifty years. It wasn’t surprising. Medical technologies were more than capable of detecting and correcting the birth defect well before a child was born.
After checking the time on his handheld pad, he smoothed down his clothing with his stubby fingers as best he could, trying not to grimace at the juvenile style. With his funds so low, he was forced to shop at secondhand stores in the husky children’s departments. There was no currency to spare for custom-altered garments anymore. The fact did nothing to reinforce his self-confidence.
Damn, he really needed this job.
Hopping down, Arbor collapsed and collected his step stool, stowing it in his bag. He shook himself to bolster his courage before heading for the door.
So many twists and turns, and the character growth shown by Priest over the course of the book was phenomenal. When you step into Mann’s universe, you know you’re in for some steamy thrills, but the thing that always keeps me hooked and eager to come back for more, is the depth to each story and the layers to each of the characters. Priest and Pariah is the third story set on the Santa Claus, and one of the biggest treats of each story is having a chance to see where characters like Erron and Danverse are and what is going on with them.
Priest really caught my attention in A Cook’s Tale, so it was with great joy that I sat down to read Priest and Pariah. There’s just something about Priest that’s endearing even when he’s cheating at cards, putting his foot in his mouth, overstepping boundaries, and getting into shit. I wanted to see him find happiness, experience self-discovery, open himself up to a relationship and not just a one night stand and generally express feelings rather than being a little overbearing and lecherous and Mann certainly did not disappoint.
In both Arbor and Costa Priest finds something that attracts and hold his attention, makes him think about why he does the things he does, makes him want to try to do better. They peel back the shell of Priest to reveal the man underneath, instincts and emotions typically kept hidden, that allow the reader to understand what kind of man he truly is. His interactions with them are one part slow burn and one part sizzling heat, with an amazing mix of storyline to pull it all together.
The only question I was left with was what’s next for the Santa Claus and her crew. This was a five star read for me.
Don’t miss the discounted release prices on all retailer sites!
Start with Books One and Two of Ship Logs of the Santa Claus!
Sergeant Liam Jacks is the security chief of transport vessel, The Santa Claus. He travels the planetary cluster with Marc Danverse, his best friend and captain, seeking to escape his tortured past and find some peace of mind.
Having been through a civil war together, Danverse and Liam are close. Maybe too close....
All that changes when mysterious stranger, Hadrian Jamison, an escaped Adonirati, books passage to Alpha Centauri. Can he be trusted? Can the stories of his past be believed?
As Liam’s fascination with Hadrian grows, jealousy threatens to tear apart his friendship with Danverse.
When Hadrian’s owner shows up, Liam is forced to go against orders in order to launch a rescue mission to save him.
The ensuing conflict may be more than any of them expected.
The trials and tribulations of the crew and passengers of interplanetary transport vessel, The Santa Claus continues in A Cook’s Tale.
After a horrific breakup, Erron Murfin is bitter, homeless, and friendless. When the cook’s position on the Santa Claus presents itself, Erron decides to escape his current circumstances and join the crew. On board he reconnects with family friend Gamin Wells, whose own secrets and issues begin to surface upon Erron’s arrival. The least of which is the reason the pair haven’t laid eyes on one another in over twelve years.
As Erron settles into his new duties, the men on board take an interest in their newest crew member. Among those intrigued by Erron are polyamorous couple, Barrus and James. Despite Erron’s cautious nature, he’s drawn into a triad relationship with the pair.
But there’s something about Gamin…
Is Erron too damaged to confront his own feelings?
Will his past prevent him from finding what he needs?
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B017I26RXG/
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B017I26RXG/
Amazon AU: http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B017I26RXG/
Amazon DE: http://www.amazon.de/dp/B017I26RXG/
About the Author
Like many gay men, when Mann Ramblings grew up, there weren’t any heroes he could relate to. The world held him back while he tried futilely to hide the real person inside. So much has changed since those hollow days. He finally found his voice, the voice that says it’s all right to revel in the so-called inappropriate joys, laughs, and loves that storm inside a man’s head. It took a long time to find that courage and now that it’s here, he plans to use it well.
While spending years more focused on visual arts, he never let go of his innate passion for storytelling—he wanted to write and draw comic books when he grew up. Once he discovered M/M fiction, a whole new world opened with new possibilities. Why couldn’t you have fantastic and dynamic tales with an M/M cast?
He started reading the online tales of authors like, Night Tempest, Rob Colton, and Alicia Nordwell, which only fueled within him the need to create. Eventually he found GayAuthors.org, and with a little coercive nudge from Night Tempest, started sharing his tales with an unexpected level of positive response. That experience and support gave him the courage to cross his fingers and aim for the world of M/M publishing.
Born and raised in Michigan, Mann Ramblings continues to type away, wishing it was practical to use a noisy, old fashioned keyboard that clacks with each strike, if only to annoy his loving partner and spoiled miniature dachshund.