Hi, everyone! I’m Antonia, and I write predominantly fantasy romance with LGBTQ characters. I want to thank Nix so much for running this celebration of romance and for letting me be a part of it. I’m excited to be here!
I read my first romance novel at twelve, though even before then I always wanted a story where the characters lived happily ever after. My mom loaned the Nora Roberts book to me, telling me to skip the sex scenes…I didn’t. I’ve been a voracious romance reader ever since, and I still share books with my mom. Romance is where I go when I want to the comfort of that HEA, and the hope and happiness it brings. That’s what romance gives us. That’s why I write romance too—I want to write a little more hope and joy and love into the world for everyone. I think we all need it.
I didn’t expect it, but in some ways, romance also taught me something more about who I am. I don’t think I’d ever heard the word demisexual before I read it in relation to a romance novel. But once I did and found out what it was, I realized it fit me really well. I’d spent my life thinking I was just different and strange, so it was lovely and something of a relief to realize that wasn’t the case.
It took me until last year to write a romance with a demisexual main character, though. I’m not sure why I waited so long or why I felt so hesitant to write someone who shared this aspect of my identity, but I really was and I worried the whole time while I was writing about whether I was getting across what I needed to about Faelen’s demisexuality. But I love this character and this book so much, and if you give it a try, I hope you’ll love Faelen and The Merchant’s Love just as much.
I’ll leave you with recommendations for a few romances with demisexual main characters that I enjoyed:
- The Gentleman’s Position by KJ Charles: This m/m historical is part of the author’s Society of Gentlemen series, which I loved. Richard is demisexual, and a lord who’s fallen in love with his valet.
- Far From Home by Lorelie Brown: This is an f/f contemporary with a marriage of convenience trope. It’s part of a series but stands alone.
- Empty Net by Avon Gale: Another m/m, this time a contemporary. I love Avon’s hockey romances, and this one is really good. It’s an enemies to lovers between two goalies.
Do you have any romances with demisexual characters to recommend?
Giveaway: An ebook copy of a winner’s choice book from my backlist.
Love was nothing they expected, but everything they needed.
Faelen, cousin to the prince and son of a diplomat, has finally come home to Tournai after years away. The pull to return was almost tangible, and the sense of rightness at being back is absolute. He wants nothing more than to put down roots and build a life among family while pursuing his linguistic studies. Becoming involved in magic meant to protect Tournai isn’t part of his plans…and falling in love is even more unexpected and unfamiliar, but he finds himself doing just that as his friendship with Maxen deepens into something more.
Maxen, second son of a wealthy merchant family, longs to leave Tournai and visit everywhere he can. All his life, he’s found places on maps and dreamed, planning out routes to get to them. For now, he’s tied to Tournai’s capital city by family obligations and his position in their shipping business. Someday, though, he’ll be able to travel. His sudden attraction to Faelen shocks him, but their friendship soon becomes a necessary part of his life. Love, however, has no place in his plans, especially not love for a royal cousin with secrets who wants nothing more than to stay in one place.
For Faelen and Maxen to build something real between them, they must resolve their differences, but when magic goes awry and all Faelen’s secrets are revealed, will Maxen remain at his side?
The Merchant’s Love will be available from NineStar Press on June 18, 2018.
Antonia Aquilante has been making up stories for as long as she can remember, and at the age of twelve, decided she would be a writer when she grew up. After many years and a few career detours, she has returned to that original plan. Her stories have changed over the years, but one thing has remained consistent – they all end in happily ever after.
She has a fondness for travel (and a long list of places she wants to visit and revisit), taking photos, family history, fabulous shoes, baking treats which she shares with friends and family, and of course reading. She usually has at least two books started at once and never goes anywhere without her Kindle. Though she is a convert to ebooks, she still loves paper books the best, and there are a couple thousand of them residing in her home with her.
Born and raised in New Jersey, she is living there again after years in Washington, DC, and North Carolina for school and work. She enjoys being back in the Garden State but admits to being tempted every so often to run away from home and live in Italy.
She is a member of the Romance Writers of America, the New Jersey Romance Writers, and the Rainbow Romance Writers.