In this Crossroads adventure, Frank gets a P.I. job that will take him to New Orleans, LA, with his partner, Rand. While there they stay at the Provincial, a hotel with a spooky past. Frank’s job is to retrieve two missing boys, who made the mistake of pissing off a Civil War soldier’s ghost–it caught them desecrating its tombstone–and are taken in to the world in between the living and the dead to wander its halls for eternity as punishment. Frank is joined by Rand, his partner and lover. Rand is a mortal Adonis and is the light to Frank’s dark.

enjoyed the introduction to main characters, in the second chapter. The shower sex scenes have always been my favorite (except for that one historical rom that I can’t name where they had hanging-from-the-chandelier sex [don't judge me]).
Frank is an alpha, who tries to hide his feelings and true desires (non-sexual) behind a mask of implacability. He’s older, more experienced and has, what I thought, a chip on his shoulder. This makes him more gruff and rugged-like. He also can communicate with the other world, kinda like a ghost whisperer.

Rand, however, is a beta. He is Frank’s softer side. He wants to communicate feelings, thoughts, desires and wants. He is a truly beautiful man, both in form and face, like a mortal Adonis. He loves Frank and wants to share all the ups and downs of life with him.

Frank and Rand are aided by Sister Francoise Genevieve, an Ursuline nun who believes that with God, anything is possible. She provides an invaluable insight to the ghost’s motivations behind his malevolence, including his identity and his need to find peace. She’s small, delicate-looking old lady but has a fire in her soul, an unbendable love of God and is a true believer that nothing is impossible. She also is motivated by Rand’s impressive beauty.

Together, Frank and Sister Francoise locate the missing boys and bring them back, while providing the soldier with the peace he spent more than 100 years searching for.

However, Frank and Rand had a falling out before this, when Frank tries to send Rand home, for his own safety. It’s the last straw for Rand and he leaves, not just New Orleans, but Frank as well. Unfortunately, he accepts a ride from someone known to him only to discover it was a trap, a potentially lethal trap, and is beaten to within an inch of his life.

With the ghost’s help, Frank is able to find Rand, just in the nick of time and gets him to the hospital, for treatment. Frank goes after Rand’s assailants and leaves them in a humiliating pose in an extremely public place and makes his way back to the hospital and Rand. Frank also finally realizes and understands that Rand is his home, because Rand has his heart.

I truly liked this story, as the plot is well-developed and the story flows smoothly and the climax(es) (pun intended) are clearly defined. The interactions between all of the characters are well-thought and very clear. Frank and Rand’s relationship dynamics are also clear to the reader and people can easily identify with either and/or both.

The action sequences and Frank’s ghost whisperer-like qualities are well-defined and very believable (which isn’t always the case in some books). They’re not over-the-top nor circus-like–they’re also not used for most of the books, just the parts where Frank needs to channel the spirit world.

What I didn’t like about this story is that it’s so short. I know, I know, but still, come on, when you start off with a shower sex scene, please include more shower sex scenes.

I also liked the ending because it was poignant, but I would have rather seen a resolution between Frank and Rand, instead of Frank realizing on his own that Rand was his home–The End. I also would have preferred that Frank make his realization without Rand’s beating.

And who am I kidding, I’d also have liked for Rand to rub it in, just a little, and a declaration of undying love, on both sides.

All in all, this was a great book, starting off with a recap of the reason the boys were kidnapped by the ghost, the shower sex scene where Frank and Rand come in to the book (which promises a steamy ride (pun intended, again)), the wonderful Sister Francoise and the smooth flow of the story. I also enjoyed the HEA (happily ever after.) although it could have been a bit more, but that’s just my preference.

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Literary Nymphs, FIVE STARS!
Crossroads: Shadowland
Author: Keta Diablo
Publisher: Phaze Books
Publisher URL:
ISBN: 978-1-60659-956-3
Genre: {M/M} Mystery, Suspense, Paranormal
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Rand has held up his end of the bargain and now he wants Frank to hold up his. Frank’s latest case means traveling to the Big Easy and in turn, bringing Rand into the fold as a part of the PI business. Rescuing two young boys from an angry ghost is making Frank uneasy. He’s never come across such a strong paranormal force and doesn’t want Rand caught in the crossfire. However, Rand is tired of Frank’s overprotective nature and it leads to events that could change their lives forever.

Crossroads: Shadowland is the fourth story of the Crossroads series. Keta Diablo’s characters are evolving with each new tale. Frank is allowing more of his emotions to surface. While I know he’s not comfortable with expressing his love, his protectiveness and willingness to give Rand what he needs says a great deal about the big man. Rand is still young, as you could tell with some of his reactions to Frank’s protectiveness, but he is starting to come into his own. I believe when Frank starts to see him as a mature adult he will loosen the reins some, but will still try to protect the man he loves.

Traveling to New Orleans for this story was a nice change of setting. I loved the secondary characters, and the plot of Crossroads: Shadowland. I have no doubt there is more to come just from the ending of this tale, but the question that I was left with is will Rand and Frank stay together? I’m anxiously awaiting the next installment to get that answer and to see if the events have left Frank more protective or if he will see the error of his ways.

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SERIOUSLY REVIEWED RATES Crossroads: Shadowland by Keta Diablo >>
Story: 8, Presentation: 9 TOTAL 17 (out of 20 points)
Publisher: Phaze
Contemporary M/M paranormal erotic romantic suspense

Purchase Crossroads Shadowland Here:

Blurb: Frank must travel to Louisiana to solve another missing persons' case. This time, Rand insists on accompanying Frank to get a hands-on introduction to the PI business.

Evil forces are at work in the bayou. Frank is pitted against a centuries' old ghost and races against time to save two innocent young men from eternal damnation. Rand gets caught in vortex of prejudice when he encounters a sinister duo bent on violence against gays.

Wicked machinations converge in a maelstrom of retribution and hate. Frank must pull out all the stops to save the young men and the man who holds his heart.

Review: Crossroads: Shadowland is on par with the other stories in the Crossroads series. However, this one went a lot deeper into the “believable” paranormal, if you believe in the ghosts stories, psychic connections and the power of the metaphysical world. Two boys go missing in a cemetery and Frank is once again pulled into the fray. The plot is so engrossing, I forgot I was reading and simply existed within the pages, watching the suspenseful thriller unravel. Keta made me believe for the moments I was with Frank. I don’t want to spoil the ending, but once again Keta makes the risks high and the conclusion isn’t predictable.

Keta Diablo writes gritty, emotional characters. Frank and Rand aren’t on a sweet journey into love but one that leaves you a bit breathless and a bit abused. The sex is titillating and powerful. Their connection is palpable. I love how in each story, Keta has upped the stakes for these two memorable men. I would recommend reading the books in order because their relationship is layered, becoming more intense and more poignant with each installment of the Crossroads series.

Seriously Reviewed

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Four Stars – Sidney Octavian, Goodreads
Another great addition to the Crossroads series. Keta tends to dish it out on a platter, serving it up to give you just a taste with an unexpected twist and leaves you dangling with want for the main course and you haven't even hit on the dessert yet. In this one Frank heads back to New Orleans with Rand to crack the case of two boys gone missing at a local cemetery, only to discover there's more to this that meets the naked eye. The whole ghost story is freakish, keeps you captivated with the added touch of a nun into the mix and keeps your reading mojo going throughout the story. But as it goes with Frank and Rand and it always does, what will transpire in this book will get your temperature soaring to unhealthy levels and I'm not just talking about the steaming sex scenes.

This is all you’re getting on the book outta me. You'll just have to go read it yourself. :snickering: Now...I think I need to go bang down Keta's door for the next installment of Crossroads before I chew my bottom lip off!

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Title: Crossroads: Shadowland, Author: Keta Diablo
Author’s website:
Publisher: Phaze Publishing, Release Date: May 2010
ISBN: 978-1-60659-956-3, Length: Novella

Format: Electronic
Genre: Suspense, Paranormal, GLBT
Sensuality Level: 3.5
Rating: 4 STARS!

Reviewed by: BD Whitney

Tracking down a couple of missing boys takes Frank to New Orleans and the Hotel Provincial on Chartres Street, and this time, Frank is not working alone. He has Rand with him, and although Frank is not crazy about the idea, he plans to follow through on his promise to introduce his lover to the world of private investigation. The Provincial is rumored to be haunted, and something draws Frank to stay there; soon, Frank has his own ghostly encounter, and the spirits are not entirely friendly.
The two missing boys were last seen in a New Orleans cemetery. When Frank’s investigation finds clues linking the boys to the haunting at the Provincial, he begins to suspect that their disappearance has nothing to do with this world. Have the boys indeed been abducted by ghosts? Are dark forces afoot in The Big Easy? Before it is over, this case is going to take Frank to the very edge of the shadowland, test his developing relationship with his partner, and challenge his sense of justice.

The fourth and most recent installment of Keta Diablo’s Crossroads series, Crossroads: Shadowland, ramps up the paranormal, tosses in an additional dose of evil, and once again tests the bond between Frank and his lover Rand.

Ms. Diablo ensures that Frank and Rand’s relationship will never become boring, because it is constantly evolving. It ebbs and flows like the tide: sometimes the two are close, sometimes they feud, but the feelings between them will always be passionate in one way or another. I think we’ve all realized by now that Frank is not exactly a “touchy-feely” or demonstrative type of person. Rand seems to have accepted this even though he would like more. What Rand will not accept, however, is Frank’s dictatorial treatment of him. Rough he can deal with – craves, even – but not the overbearing Frank-as-God attitude. In Frank’s defense, he has obviously lightened up on Rand since the beginning of their relationship. When he calls Rand a “pretty boy,” the term is more affectionate and less of an insult than previously. This doesn’t mean that Frank can’t be a jerk; some things never change. However, we can see that he has Rand’s best interests and safety at heart, even though he finds out that the phrase “the road to Hell is paved with good intentions” is sometimes quite true.

The paranormal element in Crossroads: Shadowland is not just ghostly this time but takes on a slightly more frightening aspect. Ms. Diablo keeps her readers on their toes and takes Frank’s experience to a new level with the haunting at the Hotel Provincial. A couple of scenes can be labeled downright creepy, in fact, and horror lover that I am, I enjoyed these particularly.

Overall, this is a worthy addition to the Crossroads series. My favorite remains Showdown, but I enjoyed the intensity of this novella and will be looking forward to any additional stories Ms. Diablo may pen that feature this mismatched pair of heroes.