Today I am so pleased to welcome Leta Blake to Joyfully Jay. Leta has come to talk to us about her latest release, Bitter Heat (Heat of Love #3), which I reviewed here and loved! She has also brought along a great tour wide giveaway. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!


I’m so excited to be here on Joyfully Jay today to talk a little bit about Bitter Heat, the third book in my Heat of Love series.

When I wrapped up Alpha Heat, the second book in the series, I originally planned to write another couple next, one that I’d set up clearly in the prior book. However, when I sat down to do that, the character of Kerry, the MC of Bitter Heat, showed up in my head and basically said, “Oh, no, you don’t! You can’t leave me like this. Look at this position you’ve let me in. I need help.”

I took a glance at his situation and gasped. Holy heck, did he ever need some help!

That was all it took for me to throw over my plans and start writing a happy ending for Kerry. I believe he got one and I think readers will be incredibly touched and satisfied by his story as well.

What to expect from this book:

  • Pregnancy – This is the first of the main novels in this series to deal with a pregnant main character. The first two books in the series definitely dealt with heats and the implications/problems around pregnancy, but this is the first to go through a pregnancy with the main character. 
  • Hurt/comfort – Kerry, the main character of this book is in dire need of comfort after the harm done to him by his contracted alpha and his in-laws. Janus is just the man to provide that for him. 
  • Angst – Due to the nature of the fictional world, there is plenty of angst for those who love some good pain, but it isn’t relentless and there is sweetness, too.
  • Revisiting some older characters – Namely we’ll see Caleb from Alpha Heat, and Yosef from Slow Heat make an appearance to further the story of the two main characters. In addition, Janus from Alpha Heat is a main character in this book.
  • Reproductive anxiety – If you’re sensitive to issues regarding reproduction, please be aware going in that the fictional world set up in this book is oppressive in that regard. It is important, though, to see the various reproductive conundrums put on the male bodies. It brings home certain issues regarding bodily autonomy in a visceral way.

Should a reader have read the first two books in the series before diving into Bitter Heat? I’d say that Bitter Heat might be read as a stand-alone, yes, but it would be best enjoyed if the first two books, Slow Heat and Alpha Heat, were read first.  All the books in this series are available in Kindle Unlimited!

Having said all of that, I’d like to give some acknowledgement to a few of the inspiration sources behind this book.

There were a few scenes in the book that I couldn’t wrap my head around how to handle, until I heard this song by Amanda Palmer off her latest album, There Will Be No Intermission, and immediately understood that this was the message the scenes needed to convey. I listened to it on repeat for days as I worked out those scenes. It still makes me cry despite hearing it a hundred times or more. 

I knew I wanted to set this book in a setting similar to Appalachia for many reasons. First off, my family is from West Virginia and I’m from the hills of Tennessee, and I wanted to capture some of what I love and loathe about the areas. As for how I wanted to approach that, I recalled one of my favorite childhood books, Christy, and the “outsider coming in to help” point of view. I didn’t re-read this book, but I remembered how this book made me feel, and aimed for a similar vibe.


Initial reviews for Bitter Heat are exciting!

“Absolutely fantastic, and further proof of Leta Blake’s amazing storytelling skills. The story was fantastic, the characters deep and complex, the settings breathtaking… I have no words. That’s just how good it was.”

“This story was so satisfying. It reminded me all over again of why I love, no need, romance novels in my life.”

“Another lovely story from Leta  Blake in this wonderfully crafted Omegaverse series of hers.”

I hope that everyone who reads the book finds it satisfying and finds themselves feeling edified, supported, and loved. Thank you to Joyfullly Jay for hosting. I’m so pleased to have been given a chance to talk about Bitter Heat and the series as a whole.


A pregnant omega trapped in a desperate situation, an unattached alpha with a lot to prove, and an unexpected fall into love that could save them both.

Kerry Monkburn is contracted to a violent alpha in prison for brutal crimes. Now pregnant with the alpha’s child, he lives high in the mountains, far above the city that once lured him in with promises of a better life. Enduring bitterness and fear, Kerry flirts with putting an end to his life of darkness, but fate intervenes.

Janus Heelies has made mistakes in the past. In an effort to redeem himself, integrity has become the watchword for his future. Training as a nurse under the only doctor willing to take him on, Janus is resolute in his intentions: he will live cleanly in the mountains and avoid all inappropriate affairs. But he doesn’t anticipate the pull that Kerry exercises on his heart and mind.

As the question of Kerry’s future health and safety comes to an explosive head, only the intervention of fate will see these desperate men through to a happy ending.

This gay romance novel by Leta Blake is the third in the Heat of Love universe which began with Slow Heat. It’s 111,000 words, with a strong happy ending and a critically-acclaimed, non-shifter Omegaverse. It features alphas, betas, omegas, male pregnancy, mpreg, heat, and knotting. Content warning for a violent and oppressive society regarding reproductive rights.


Author of the bestselling book Smoky Mountain Dreams and the fan favorite Training Season, Leta Blake’s educational and professional background is in psychology and finance, respectively. However, her passion has always been for writing. She enjoys crafting romance stories and exploring the psyches of made up people. At home in the Southern U.S., Leta works hard at achieving balance between her day job, her writing, and her family.


Leta has brought a great tour wide giveaway. Just follow the Rafflecopter below to enter.

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