Review: In the Distance

In the Distance, the third book in the In the Kitchen series from Eileen Griffin and Nikka Michaels, releases today! I’ve read the previous two books, In the Raw and In the Fire, and loved both of them. So I was eager to read more! Here’s my review of the third book, which includes a suggestion of whose story I think these two lovely ladies should write next. 🙂


In the Distance (In the Kitchen, #3)It’s always a joy to return to a familiar setting in the hands of the authors who introduced you to it. I knew before picking up this book that my trip back to Seattle wouldn’t be super cozy and comfortable though. Much as I would like to read about Ethan and Jamie watching TV and eating cereal (and probably defiling the couch and perhaps the TV console), that’s not really a book, is it? So I was prepared for something to rock their cozy little world.

That something is Trevor falling for Tyler.

In the Distance begins in the kitchen. New Guy, Tyler Mitchell, is watching Ethan and Jamie interact with his usual mix of respect and envy. He wants what they have, but he’s so busy with school, work and his volunteer work, he doesn’t have time to go out there and look for it. That’s what he tells himself, anyway. Really, it’s a trust issue. For someone so young, he’s already been knocked back too many times—by parents who kicked him out of his home for being gay, to a world that is not kind to homeless kids. But it’s hard to ignore a good looking guy like Trevor, who oozes the sort of confidence and charm Tyler knows he’ll never have, especially when that charm is directed at him.

Trevor Pratt (not-so-lovingly called “Trustfund” by Ethan) might seem as if he has it all: looks, wealth, supportive parents, and a career he enjoys. Nearly losing Jamie left a big hole in his life, though, and while they’re repairing their friendship, Trevor has had to face some hard truths. His one-sided love affair has exposed a very unpleasant fact: Loving Jamie might have been painful and losing him broke his heart, but it hadn’t been a relationship. Not really. An actual relationship would require him to give up something more than his heart. Yeah, it’s another trust issue.

I really loved that Tyler and Trevor—two men from vastly different backgrounds—had so much in common, were battling the same demon. From either perspective, the struggle was both real and heartfelt. Add in Ethan and Jamie, who both want to keep Tyler bundled up in bubble wrap—and think Trevor is the last person who should be allowed to pop any of those bubbles, and the tension is the sort that leaves you breathless and obsessively turning the pages.

Then there’s the sexual tension. Holy guacamole, waiting for Trevor to make a move nearly killed me. And thank goodness Tyler has more gumption (yes, I said gumption) than anyone has ever given him credit for.

Another five-star read from Eileen Griffin and Nikka Michaels.

(Do we get Nick’s story next?)

Great reviews for LONELY SHORE (Chaos Station 2)!

Jenn has done a round up of the really great reviews we’ve seen for LONELY SHORE.

Jenn Burke

LSCover600LONELY SHORE has been out for almost two weeks and we’ve gotten some great reviews!

Library Journal: “With their beat-up ship and eclectic group, comparisons with the fan favorite TV show Firefly are inevitable, but in more of the way of homage, since Burke and Jensen’s characters take center stage all on their own.”

Joyfully Jay (and it’s one of their favourite books for May 2015!): “This is really an amazing novel and I would encourage even those who normally don’t enjoy science fiction to give it a try. Felix and Zed make a fantastic couple and following their adventures is a true pleasure!”

Prism Book Alliance: “If you love sci-fi and space operas, you need to read this series! Looking forward to book three!”

The Jeep Diva: “Oh readers, grab that jumbo box of tissues once the Chaos takes its crew to Ashushsk Prime.”

Smitten With…

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Available Now: Lonely Shore (Chaos Station, #2)

Last week, I celebrated a birthday. At my age, birthdays are a fairly low key affair. If I didn’t have a child, I’d probably skip celebrating altogether. It’s just another day. This week, I’m celebrating the release of my third book, my second novel. It’s a BIG DEAL. I woke up with butterflies in my stomach and the realization that I probably wouldn’t be very productive today. It’s much more exciting than turning *cough*, and while birthdays and other anniversaries continue to slip by unnoticed, I hope this feeling of excitement never fades. Today, I get to share something  special with my family, friends, and with readers who enjoy my stories. That’s more fun than counting candles on the cake. 😉

Co-written with Jenn Burke, LONELY SHORE is the second book in the Chaos Station series. Set two hundred years in the future, the series is a mixture of science fiction and romance. We have super soldiers, aliens, space stations, far flung colonies, criminal cartels, and the best little crew in the galaxy aboard an ugly Corvette called the Chaos. In CHAOS STATION, Zed and Felix find each other again after nine years apart. It’s six months after the end of the brutal Human-Stin war, and both men bear significant scars. In LONELY SHORE they must battle the more recent past to ensure their future together.

We have a lot planned this week to celebrate our release, including giveaways, exclusive excerpts and a new short story. I’ll update links in the calendar below daily so they point to the action.

LSCover600Lonely Shore

Book two of Chaos Station

All they can do is live day to day…

Felix Ingesson has returned to his duties as the Chaos‘s engineer with Zander Anatolius, his ex-boyfriend-turned-broken-super-soldier, at his side. Hope means something again. But there’s nothing Felix can do to battle the alien poison flowing through Zander’s veins, or his imminent mental decline. With each passing day, the side effects of Zander’s experimental training are becoming more difficult to ignore.

When the ruthless Agrius Cartel seeks their revenge—including an ambush and an attempt to kidnap the Chaos’s crew—Zander is pushed over the edge. He can no longer hide his symptoms, nor does he want to. But hurting Felix when he’s not in control of himself is Zander’s worst nightmare—when it nearly happens, he agrees to seek help. Even if that means trusting the unknown.

As Zander places his life in alien hands, Felix appoints himself his lover’s keeper. And though he tries to be strong, he can’t ignore the fact that he might lose Zander…forever this time.

Read the first chapter!

Available now at:

Amazon | Amazon UK | B&N | Kobo | iBooksCarina Press

Release Week Events


Aliens! Blog post and giveaway at The Purple Rose Tea House.

“Felix, I’m fine. I’m going to be fine.” Read an exclusive excerpt of LONELY SHORE at Stein’s Station.

“Is it normal for humans to share sexual partners?” Another exclusive excerpt at Queer Sci Fi.


Quotable Tuesday on Carina Press Facebook.

Sexuality in the Future on the Carina Press Blog.


Kiss the Guardian (Part One). A new short story, featured on Here Be Magic.


Kiss the Guardian (Part Two). Second half of the story. 😉


Choose your Ashushk Name. Here, on this blog, choose your ashushk name and enter to win another copy of CHAOS STATION.

Still Searching. Meet Zed’s brother Brennan on Boosting the Signal.

Read the first chapter of Lonely Shore!

Zander and Felix return May 25 in book two of Chaos Station: Lonely Shore. You can read the first chapter on our website now.


Jenn and I are really excited to share the next chapter in the story of Zed and Flick (as we like to call them), and the first reviews have been super positive:

“Fantastic, even better than the first book.” – Angela, Fiction Vixen

“With their beat-up ship and eclectic group, comparisons with the fan favorite TV show Firefly are inevitable, but in more of the way of homage, since Burke and Jensen’s characters take center stage all on their own.” – Melanie C. Duncan, The Library Journal

If you haven’t read Chaos Station yet, there’s still time! Here’s what readers are saying about the first book in our series:

“This book was so good, riveting, and I didn’t want to put it down as I devoured it. This series is definitely on my auto-buy list.” – Smitten With Reading

“This series is going to be so epic, you don’t even understand.” – The Novel Approach

“I would recommend Chaos Station to anyone who wants some quality sci-fi and a great romance.” – Joyfully Jay

Chaos Station would make a great movie!” – Prism Book Alliance®

“I liked how this book leaves several interesting hints to be developed further…while still leaving the men in a pretty good place and together.” – Dear Author Recommended Read

SOUL OF SMOKE Cover Reveal!

The team at Carina Press really does produce awesome covers. I love this one! The book sounds great too and has been added to my never ending, always growing, To Be Read list. 😀

Caitlyn H. McFarland

This is it!

Are you guys ready to see the cover for Soul of Smoke?!

Here it is!


Soul of Smoke Final

Wooo! I LOVE IT! Thank you so much to the Carina Press team for this awesome design!

For good measure, here’s the back cover copy:

On a hike deep in the Rocky Mountains, Kai Monahan watches as a dozen dragons—actual freaking dragons—battle beneath a fat white moon. When one crashes nearly dead at her feet and transforms into a man, Kai does the only thing a decent person could: she grabs the nearest sword and saves his life.

As the dragon/man, Rhys, recovers from the attack, a chance brush of skin against skin binds him inextricably to Kai. Becoming heartsworn to a human—especially such a compelling one—is the last thing Rhys wants. But with an ancient enemy gathering to pit dragons against humanity and his strength nearly depleted, Kai has…

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