Tuesday, April 26, 2022

I think I love you – #HistoricalRomance #Humor #LGBTQI #MFRWHooks

A Midsummer Night's Gender Bending cover

This Wednesday, I am celebrating yet another new release – well, a re-release – of my humorous and romantic tale A Midsummer Night’s Gender Bending. If you’re a fan of Shakespeare, you don’t want to miss this one! Here’s the blurb:

What visions I have seen! Methought I was enamoured of an ass.

The year is 1595 in the reign of Good Queen Bess. Stage-struck, young Ben Hastings leaves his father's farm for London, to join Will Shakepeare's band of players. Hugh Templeton, the handsome leading man, takes the innocent lad under his wing, but Ben soon discovers that Hugh wants more than just friendship. Meanwhile a savvy tavern maid named Jenny engineers a comedy of errors to save Ben from Hugh's lewd embrace and win him for her own.

Just for fun - I’ll give away two copies of the book to people who leave comments on this post.

The Hook

Heaven. Dear God, Ben prayed, forgive me if I have offended Thee. I am a lost lamb, wandering in the wilderness. Show me the way that I may choose what is right and good in Thy sight. A short prayer, but somehow it made Ben feel more confident. He rose and dressed then slipped downstairs to the tavern’s main room, leaving Hugh asleep.

At first, the room appeared to be empty. Then Ben spied movement by the hearth. The serving wench was stirring up the fire under a kettle of something that smelled like soup. The aroma made his stomach twist, reminding him that he hadn’t eaten since last sunset.

He watched the girl for a few minutes before making his presence known. She moved with a quiet efficiency that appealed to him, building the coals into a glowing pile, coaxing the flame with the bellows, laying two loaves by the hearth to warm. She was built as slightly as a child, with modest breasts and slender hips, but Ben thought she must be close to his age. Her features were regular; her expression suggested stubbornness. Her hair was her crowning glory, a profusion of blonde curls that tumbled halfway down her back. Even as he noticed, though, she pulled a cap out of her apron pocket and stuffed her hair into it with an impatience that made him smile.

Good morrow, Miss,” he said finally. She looked up, annoyed, guilty to have been caught unawares though her activities seemed completely innocent. When she recognised him, however, a warm smile replaced her irritation.

Ah, Master Player. Good morrow. Did you sleep well?” Ben heard the hint of laughter in her voice. Was it only because of his drunken exit the previous evening, or did she know more?

Well enough, thank you. I ask your pardon for my excessive intoxication last night. I did not behave like a gentleman.” Ben was surprised to hear himself speak so fair. It must be the influence of Master Will’s verse.

This is a drinking house. We’re quite accustomed to intoxication in all its forms.”

Even so…”

She waved him into silence, placing a steaming bowl and a hunk of bread on the trestle in front of him. Then she sat opposite, staring at him until he lowered his gaze in embarrassment.

Tell me,” she said finally. “Tell me what it’s like to be on the stage.”

Well, I have only been a player for a few weeks.” He dipped his spoon into the bowl to cover his confusion. “I’ve only played women’s parts, so far. Because I’m young and mostly unbearded. Someday, though, I’ll play a general. Or a king.”

Or even, perhaps, a god. You are handsome enough.”

Something in her voice made him look up from his breakfast. The intensity of her gaze was unnerving. It was hot, like the sun beating down on a field in high summer. Under that gaze, he began to swell and harden. That reminded him of Hugh, which only made him harder still. He blushed, hopelessly, not knowing how to handle this brazen, unladylike person.

She reached across the table to put her hand on his. “I want you, Ben. As my first lover.”

He snatched his hand away as if burned. “What?”

She sat back and brushed a wayward curl from her eyes. Her bodice was half open; he could see the way her breasts rose and fell with her breath. “I want you. I think I love you. I know that I desire you. Will you have me? I’m a far better choice for you than that old lecher Templeton.”

Ben’s stomach lurched. Only with a supreme effort did he avoid vomiting all that he had eaten. “I don’t know what you are saying,” he choked out, standing and backing away from her. “What nonsense…?”

Just because I’m a virgin doesn’t mean that I’m naïve. I saw you. The two of you. Last night.”


Don’t worry, I’ll not tell anyone. But you should forget him, Ben, forget him and choose me. Help me to escape from my dog of a father, and I’ll help make you the greatest actor of our time.”

No – I – um, I have to be going, Miss. I have a performance this afternoon.” He tried to make it to the door, but somehow, she managed to block his way.

She grabbed his two hands in hers and locked her eyes on his. “Please. Think about it. My name is Jenny.”

I’ve got to go…” Ben was close to total panic.

Jenny stood on tiptoe and lightly kissed his lips. “Go, then. But you’ll see me again, before long.”

She stepped out of his path. He raced out into the street as if pursued by the devil.

Buy Links

Kinky Literature https://www.kinkyliterature.com/book/759-a-midsummer-nights-gender-bending-bawdiness-inspired-by-the-bard/

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09Y3ZK65Y

Amazon UKhttps://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B09Y3ZK65Y

Smashwords - https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1142606

Barnes and Noblehttps://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/2940165837876


Apple Books – https://books.apple.com/us/book/x/id1619549504

Add on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/60870600-a-midsummer-night-s-gender-bending

Don’t forget to leave a comment. And I do hope you’ll click on over to visit the other authors joining today’s Book Hooks event.


bn100 said...

bn100candg at hotmail dot com

Tena Stetler said...

I liked the scene this conveyed. "She stepped out of his path. He raced out into the street as if pursued by the devil." Enjoyed the excerpt. Thanks for sharing!

Janet Lane Walters said...

Sounds like a cute story. Lots of humor

Reet Singh said...

A fab hook - I'm sure the story's a hoot - promises to be more fun than the original Midsummer...

Anonymous said...

My favorite Shakespearean play, this sounds like such a fun take on it!

Trix, vitajex(at)aol(dot)com

Lisabet Sarai said...

Congratulations to Tena and Trix, who have won the free copies of this book!

Post a Comment

Let me know your thoughts! (And if you're having trouble commenting, try enabling third-party cookies in your browser...)