My friends and I are readers. We enjoy books for the stories and the emotional draw, for the characters and their situations. We don't dig for editor's mistakes. We won't trash your book for missing punctuation or slightly misused grammar. We just want to enjoy the story. And we want all our friends to know just how awesome independent authors can be. This is the place where the little guy will always shine like a star!

Without further ado, please say hello to....

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Johnny Miles

Book Title: Learning to Samba
Genre: LGBT Romance
Publisher: Loose Id
Links to purchase:
3. Amazon

Blurb: After traveling through Europe trying to recover from a loss, reclusive romance novelist Brian Oliver returns to his childhood home in order to find himself and re-establish a severed relationship with his sister. What he unexpectedly discovers, however, is that even an old dog like him can still learn new tricks. Especially if the one teaching is João da Silva, a 25-year-old Brazilian hot-ass with a major thing for Daddies.

Brian soon realizes that with forgiveness and acceptance comes great emotional freedom if he and João can rekindle the deep and burning lust for life he’d once had. Do love, sex, and passion have an expiration date, or can Brian Learn to Samba?

Reviewer: Allison

Out of all the books I’ve read lately, Learning to Samba was one of my favorites. At the beginning, we’re presented with Brian who wasn’t completely over losing his partner to cancer. He wasn’t tragic and mopey, but he clearly still missed him. He returns to his hometown and immediately we meet his sister, which feels like it might be an awkward reunion, but it really isn’t. Then João appears and trust me when I say the story turns swoon-worthy immediately.

The thing I loved about this book was it pulled me in so completely I felt like I was experiencing falling in love for the first time again. I was there with them, walking, laughing, having a beer and I experienced everything Brian felt as if they were my own feelings. I explored the city with them and had all the risqué fun. I lived in their world and I fell in love just like they did. Mr. Miles really captured the beauty of budding romance and he took me through an entire range of emotions throughout this book. It’s one I’ve found myself going back and re-reading, and I’ll probably do it again (which is a major wow for me. I don't even go back and read the big boys a second time.) 

I highly recommend Learning To Samba and I highly recommend adding Johnny Miles to your list of favorite authors. I can assure you, he won't disappoint you.


  1. Tell us a little bit about how Learning To Samba came to life. What inspired the story?
That's actually a funny story. A Facebook friend puts up photos from time to time in an attempt to inspire writers. I think she calls them plot bunnies. I've never seen one that worked for me except for this one time. The guy in the picture was, supposedly, a Brazilian. As I remember, there were a lot of shadows, a hot naked guy with a seductive smile and curtains billowing behind him. The imagery, and all the nuances that came with it just wouldn't let go of me. Which I guess was the point. However, it was an extremely difficult story for me to write because it deals with the loss of a loved one. Imagining life without my partner of 16 years was devastating.

  1. Who is your favorite character and what makes them so memorable to you?
Oh, I like them all! Brian, of course, because he's the protagonist and, in a way, there's a lot of me in him. João, of course, because I love me a Brazilian man. But I also liked writing the sister and her kids.

  1. Tell us a little bit about yourself and what made you decide to write?
About myself? I'm just an ordinary guy with sometimes unusual taste. Done a lot of stuff, some of which I'm not too proud of but, hey, we all make mistakes and they make us who we are. As for what made me decide to write, that's something I've wanted since I was a kid. I just never got very serious about it until I got laid off from my annoying customer service job three and a half years ago. Oh, I'd written before. I'd even tried to get things published but the only things that saw the light of day were my porn stories. After a while you want to do something different. Something that means something to others, you know? I was ready to give it all up when I met Treva Harte. Between her and Bobbie Michaels, they encouraged me to write something in the m/m genre. And now, here it is close to four years after meeting them. Sadly Bobbie is no longer with us but it's been a fun ride with Treva's help and guidance.

  1. Any advice for aspiring authors?
Be malleable. Be willing to compromise. Don't expect every word you put down on paper is gospel, brilliant, or memorable. Read. A LOT. Edit yourself as if you hadn't written the story. Ask yourself, does this move the story forward? Does it illuminate a moment in the book, or a character and their traits, or even why they do the things they do?

Other than that I'd have to say, don't quit your day job...YET.

Writing is extremely difficult. The editing process is even harder still. We don't become overnight sensations with one book and, regardless of how much we want it, we can't live off our royalties right away.

Even more important is to write what you really feel in your heart. This isn't about the money. It's about needing to tell a story because not doing so is not acceptable.

  1. Where is the best place to follow your work?
Probably my blog or my website. I don't update either of them as frequently as I should but I'm going to start working on that.

  1. Any additional comments?
I've no additional comments but I'd like to say thank you, Allison. I'm honored that you've asked me on your blog and I'm so delighted that you enjoyed Learning To Samba! All of my stories are special to me for different reasons but Samba, that's got a really big place in my heart.

1 comment:

  1. This looks great! I love finding authors that are new me. I added it to my wish list!

    Michelle V