As many of you know already, this has been a rough week for our little GLBT romance community. In case you haven’t heard, author Santino Hassell has been revealed as a catfisher who lied about his identity and background. Along with that, there are countless victim accounts of bullying, abuse, gaslighting, and attacks aimed at people who questioned him or spoke out against him, going back years. There are also serious questions about the authenticity of medical claims Hassell made, claims that in many cases led to donations or gifts by readers and fans. Both Riptide and Dreamspinner Press have pulled all of his books, and Riptide has cancelled all future contracts. You can read more details all over social media, but this thread on Goodreads outlines a lot of the issues and has over a thousand comments from readers, if you want someplace to start.
Given that, we have made the decision to no longer review anything by Hassell. We have also removed all previous reviews and guest posts from the blog, and all reviews from Goodreads. I am not comfortable doing anything that might support him given the frankly horrifying stories that are coming out about his behavior. My heart goes out to everyone who was hurt in this situation, particularly those who were brave enough to share their stories, even knowing they would likely face abuse and backlash.
Ok, so whew. Moving forward…
ICYMI, I posted an update on Paranormal Week coming in April. You can check it out here. Among other things, the post includes a link for anyone who wants to donate a prize to our big giveaway. So be sure to check that out if you are interested in contributing.
And now, here is what we have planned this week:
- Review: Forsaken by J.R. Gray (Jay)
- Review: His Irish Detective by Summer Devon (Kris)
- Audiobook Review: Tied Up in Knots by Mary Calmes
- Guest Post and Giveaway: New Heights by Quinn Anderson
- Review: Twisted and Tied by Mary Calmes (Jay)
- Review: New Heights by Quinn Anderson (Kenna)
- Guest Post: Teacher’s Pet Anthology
- Review: Promise Me We’ll Be Okay by Nell Iris (Michelle)
- Review: The Sun Guardian by T.S. Cleveland (Elizabeth)
- Review: A Scot’s Surrender by Lily Maxton (Jay)
- Review: Dead Wrong by Gillian St. Kevern (Kirsty)
- Cover Reveal and Giveaway: Captain Merric by Rebecca Cohen
- Review: Livingston by J.M. Dabney (Sue)
- Review: Broken Protocol by A.R. Barley (Kenna)
- Audiobook Review: Ante Up by Kim Fielding (Elizabeth)
- Review: The Witch Stone by Jasmine Hong (Camille)
- Guest Post: Shatterproof Bond series by Isobel Starling
- Review: Undone by You by Kate Meader (Michelle)
- Review: Breaker of Chains by Jordan L. Hawk (Jay)
- Review: American Road Trip by Sarah Black (Kris)
- Review: Joshua’s Rainbow by Victoria Sue (Sammy)
- Review: Undone by R. Phoenix and Morgan Noel (Elizabeth)
- Guest Post with D.J. Jamison
And that should do it for this week!
I only had two books from SH in my e-reader and I have deleted them. This past week I learned about SH’s abominable behavior through Twitter. I have spent many hours reading through the Goodreads thread, heartbreaking. Thank you for supporting the people victimized by this author.
Thank you for stepping up and taking a stand. It’s really a horrific situation. I’ve removed all my GR ratings and shelved them. Peace and love to all who suffer.
FYI: I’ve gotten my money back from Audible for the 4 audiobooks she authored and am, as I type, online with Amazon to get my money back for the 5 ebooks.
Glad to hear you were able to get your money back. I heard reports from others with success at Amazon. Also Riptide is giving $5 credit for folks who bought from them (one time credit, not per book).
While I have never been directly impacted by Santino Hassell and his posse but I knew of the people he hurt — they were my long-distance acquaintance on social media. It was HORRIBLE what had happened. Thank you for retracting your reviews and any kind of promotion of Hassell. They (I’m referring to Marvin/Alicia) didn’t deserve it.
Thank you so much for doing this. It means a lot that you’:ve mase this choice. -<3
That you’ve made this choice. (Typing on my tablet can be frustrating)