Categories
adult - 18+ Angst Level Audiobook Book Christmas Contemporary DA Exploration Friends to lovers Gay Heat Index Holiday Homophobia Hopelessly Crying Hurt/Abuse m/m Medical Mild/low level heat Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Purchased Thanksgiving Virgin

Between Sinners and Saints (Audiobook) by Marie Sexton Narrated by John Solo

sinners saints audioBlurb

Levi Binder is a Miami bartender who cares about only two things: sex and surfing. Ostracized by his Mormon family for his homosexuality, Levi is determined to live his life his own way, but everything changes when he meets massage therapist Jaime Marshall.
Jaime is used to being alone. Haunted by the horrors of his past, his only friend is his faithful dog, Dolly. He has no idea how to handle somebody as gorgeous and vibrant as Levi.
Complete opposites on the surface, Levi and Jaime both long for something they can find only together. Through love and the therapeutic power of touch, they’ll find a way to heal each other, and they’ll learn to live as sinners in a family of saints.

Review

Levi is a “Mormon” bartender who literally fucks any man willing and never goes back for seconds. He’s a surfer and when his back starts to hurt he begins to see a massage therapist in the hopes of alleviating the pain. He doesn’t count on the sweet, shy, funny man who helps him with his back and later, his heart.

Jaime has a tragic past involving sexual abuse. He locks himself away and won’t allow anyone in, but when the outgoing Levi storms into his life he can’t say no, especially when it’s Levi and his bed that make him feel the safest he’s ever felt.

In addition to navigating this sometimes awkward and painful relationship, Levi and Jaime have their family demons to overcome. Both serving as a wonderful sounding board for the other on the path to healing.

**

Wow. This is another great book by Marie Sexton. I’d avoided it even though I’m a big fan because of the religion and the pain surrounding these guys.

I have to admit that I wanted to strangle Levi’s family. I never got them. They made some great strides – sure – but they were so stubborn and ridiculous, I can’t believe they thought that offering Levi chastity was a viable option.

I loved that Jaime was the one who helped Levi heal with his family. His desire for the closeness they shared helped Levi to get past his own stubbornness and I think, vice versa for his family.

The sexual abuse part was fairly well handled, my only issue is that I think a professional counselor really would have helped Jaime get through his issues in a better way and couples therapy would have done them wonders.

Audiobook

For whatever reason, listening to this was a bit easier than reading it and I really enjoyed John Solo’s narration. He doesn’t go over the top – in fact no one even has southern accents as you’d expect – but he does a nice job of bringing the story to life.

I highly recommend this to people who have an interest in the Mormon lifestyle – the author clearly did her research and she manages to describe them without villainizing them. It’s a moving love story and very well done.

5 of 5 stars

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Audible Link

http://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/Between-Sinners-and-Saints-Audiobook/B018RG11Y2/ref=a_search_c4_1_1_srTtl?qid=1449528146&sr=1-1#publisher-summary

Categories
adult - 18+ Angst Level Bi-Sexual Book Boss/employee Christmas Contemporary Cop/Crime DA Exploration Friends to lovers Gay GFY/OFY Halloween Heat Index Holiday Homophobia Hopelessly Crying Hurt/Abuse m/m Mid level steam/heat Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Purchased second chance at love Thanksgiving Uncategorized

Restitution: A Love Story by Aubrey Cullens

restitutionBlurb

Nate Parker has spent the last few years imprisoned for a crime he didn’t commit. His wrongful conviction cost him his job, his fiancée, his reputation, and his hope for the future. His name has been cleared, but after everything he’s lost, he doesn’t know how to find his way back to the life that was taken from him.

Parker Campbell is raising his 9-year-old niece, Emma, on his own. Working for a homophobic boss in a gay-unfriendly town, he treads carefully, knowing that his job security has to be his priority when he’s all Emma has.

Parker has never considered starting a relationship with another employee… until he hires Nate. It should have been easy to avoid getting involved, since Nate keeps insisting that he’s not gay. Parker is used to life not being easy, though, and Nate may find that what he really needs isn’t at all what he thought he was looking for.

(Restitution is a standalone m/m contemporary gay romance of approximately 60,000 words containing profanity, mature adult content, two men who deserve love, and a happily ever after ending.)

Review

So I found this on Kindle Unlimited (I’m a big fan!) and I’d read one other of Aubrey Cullens books before (I liked it, didn’t love it) but I really liked the blurb and hey… Free! So I tried it. To me, that’s the beauty of KU – you get to try books you might shy away from because of the cost so…I just want to say that free or not – you should TOTALLY READ THIS BOOK!

Nate was arrested and imprisioned for a crime he didn’t comit (no spoilers but Damn – it’s a sad one!). He finally gets exonerated but is finding it hard to get his life back with a prison record, no matter that he has a paper saying he didn’t commit the crime. He finally gives in a moves in with his brother in Arkansas, hoping the change in scenery will help.

As compared to Seattle, Nate is finding Arkansas to be very restrictive and judgmental but… he loves his brother and his wife and he manages to find a great job with Parker at a Lumberyard.

Parker is 26 and raising his 9 year old niece because his sister can’t (another spoiler alert – that’s also sad!). He decides to hire Nate because of his prison record and he isn’t disappointed.

Now Nate claims over and over he’s not gay and he means it, but he’s seriously attracted to Parker and vice versa.

Over the course of weeks and months they become friends and when things look like they’re beginning to change, that’s when things get very interesting.

Eventually, both Nate and Parker have decide just what’s important to them and learn to trust again.

**

I loved this story. It grabbed me from the start. Nate is a great character, so easy to love – he’s open, honest, simple and affectionate. Parker has been burned, so he’s a little more closed off, but he’s got this amazing niece and between the two of them they charm the socks off ya!

Though there’s sexual tension and the smexy times are hot – that’s not what makes this book so good. It’s the FEELS. There’s so much real emotion and it feels so organic and authentic. I can see this unfolding in real life, though maybe with a few more pot holes in the road but still… it feels very plausible.

It was great that the author took pains to show that though there are assholes in the South and it can be restrictive, there are some great souls there, as well.

Emma absolutely won me over – what a kid! I loved her and the energy she brought to the story.

I highly recommend this book – hell it’s free on KU! But even if you buy it – you won’t regret it!

5 of 5 stars

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Amazon Link

http://www.amazon.com/Restitution-Love-Story-Aubrey-Cullens-ebook/dp/B017E3KYOC/ref=pd_sim_351_27?ie=UTF8&dpID=512FYp0xf5L&dpSrc=sims&preST=_UX300_PJku-sticker-v3%2CTopRight%2C0%2C-44_AC_UL160_SR107%2C160_&refRID=1B7JZSYQM1S8GK9GPSYN

Categories
adult - 18+ Angst Level Book Christmas coming of age Contemporary Exploration Friends to lovers GFY/OFY Heat Index Homophobia m/m Mid level steam/heat Mild level angst NetGalley Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Part of a Series Thanksgiving Virgin

Status Update by Annabeth Albert

release day review

status update 2

 

Blurb

Book 1 of the #gaymers series

Adrian Gottlieb is winning at life. He’s a successful video game designer with everything a man could ask for, including a warm comfy ride to Denver and a date for his sister’s wedding. But he finds himself in need of a total reboot when he’s left stranded at a snowy campground in Utah. Holiday plans? Epic fail.

That is until Noah Walters offers him shelter for the night and a reluctant cross-country ride. Nothing about the ultraconservative geoarchaeologist should attract Adrian, but once he discovers Noah’s hidden love for video games, the two connect on a new level. Soon, a quiet but undeniable chemistry sparks.

Something doesn’t add up, though. As the miles accumulate and time runs out, Noah must face the most difficult choice of his life. Meanwhile, Adrian must decide whether he’s ready to level up. Is their relationship status worth fighting for, or has this game ended before it’s even begun?

Review

Noah is a professor at a Christian University. He’s in totally denial of his sexuality and has never had sex with anyone. Nothing. Not even a kiss.

Adrian is a very flamboyant and out and proud game designer. He gets left in Utah by his online boyfriend on their way to Denver for Thanksgiving. Noah is kind enough to rescue him and drive him to his family.

While on the road they find that they have way more in common than they thought.

**

This was a very sweet and sometimes HOT OFY/first time romance. Noah fights Adrian at first, but really, who can resist one’s soul mate for long?

Adrian – luckily- has a pretty solid head on his shoulders and doesn’t give up easily.

There was a bit of waffling here and there, but most of this was simply two guys working through the beginnings of a relationship and one guy finally admitting that being gay isn’t wrong.

The Epilogue (often my favorite part of any story) was amazing!

I enjoyed it and think fans of OFY/first time romances will too!

4.5 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided by NetGalley for Honest Review

Carina Press Presents

http://www.carinapress.com/shop/books/9781459290594_status-update.html

Categories
adult - 18+ Angst Level artists Book coming of age Contemporary Exploration Fan Art Gay GFY/OFY Heat Index Homophobia Hopelessly Crying Karrie Jax m/m Mid level steam/heat NetGalley Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Riptide Publishing Thanksgiving Virgin

Blueberry Boys by Vanessa North

release day review

 

 

 

blueberry boys

Blurb

Connor Graham is a city boy—a celebrated fashion photographer in New York. When his uncle’s death drags him back to the family blueberry farm, all he wants to do is sell it as quickly as he can. Until he meets his uncle’s tenant farmer.

Jed Jones, shy and stammering, devout and dedicated, has always yearned for land of his own and a man to share it with. Kept in the closet by his church, family, and disastrous first love, he longs to be accepted for who he is. But now, with his farm and his future in Connor’s careless hands, he stands to lose even the little he has.

Neither man expects the connection between them. Jed sees Connor—appreciates his art and passion like no one else in this godforsaken town ever has. Connor hears Jed—looks past his stutter to listen to the man inside. The time they share is idyllic, but with the farm sale pending, even their sanctuary is a source of tension. As work, family, and their town’s old-fashioned attitudes pull them apart, they must find a way to reconcile commitments to their careers and to each other.

Review

Connor has been living in New York, he’s a successful photographer and really happy with his life. When his uncle dies, leaving him a 1/3 of the blueberry farm he never wanted, he returns only to do what’s necessary to expedite the sale. There he meets Jed.

Jed is a tenant farmer, reliant on good weather and luck to make his livelihood. He loves growing things and though he’s gay, closeted, and resents the fact that he’s made to feel his life is “wrong”, he still hasn’t turned away from his religion.

Jed and Connor strike an interest in one another right from the start. That is never the problem. The problem is making their lives mesh given geography, politics, religion and convictions.

Fortunately – the universe is a funny place – and in a moment of sadness we find what we’ve most been searching for.

**

Blueberry Boys - Vanessa North

Vanessa North amazes me! If you look at the books she’s written, they cover all sorts of topics, themes, characters – you name it. This is an absolutely unique story and different from her others.

The theme of religion and coming home at first put me off reading this book. But I love her work, so I decided to trust (or as Jed would say – have faith). It totally paid out.

Yes – there are some stiff and uncomfortable scenes wherein we watch Jed wrestle with what he’s been taught and what he feels to be true. But – the religion aspect isn’t hit over the head, nor is it vilified. In fact, the new pastor- Brenda – actually steps up to help when nobody else can.

I loved how Jed trusted Connor and how Connor always respected Jed’s limits, tried to make his life easier and never tried to “change” him.  Just acceptance, all the time.

The sweet smexy times are appropriate and meaningful. The feels are abundant. And the Epilogue is OUTSTANDING!

I loved this book and highly recommend it!

5 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided by NetGalley

Riptide Presents (Tomorrow!)

http://riptidepublishing.com/titles/blueberry-boys

Categories
adult - 18+ Angst Level artists Book College/University coming of age Contemporary Dreamspinner Established Couple Friends to lovers Gay m/m Mid level steam/heat Mild level angst Novella 20-160 pgs (20k-40k words) Part of a Series second chance at love Thanksgiving

A Guy’s Thanksgiving by Skylar M. Cates

Dreamspinner Presents http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=7011

GuysThanksgiving[A]LGBlurb

A Work in The Guy Series

Two proposals. One giant dog. Reunited lovers.

Welcome to Glamour, Arizona, where the holidays are never dull. Glamour may be a small town, but the surprises keep coming.

Everybody’s looking forward to Thanksgiving. Only Mac Sharma is a reluctant guest. Even as Anthony and Dean make him feel welcome at the Carrino table, Mac feels awkward among the close-knit group of friends. Life gets even more complicated when Conor Harvey shows up in town.

Mac has been in love with Conor since his university days. Too bad Conor broke his heart—right before he fled to his hometown in Ireland without explanation. Conor’s still a wild artist and as sexy as Mac remembers. But they’re no longer kids. This Thanksgiving, Mac must decide if he can give Conor a second chance.

Review

If you are a fan of “The Guy Series”, you will absolutely love this!

All of the couples are in this sweet holiday “epilogue” and we get a boyfriend for Jesse’s agent, Mac!

Aaron and Jesse go to Arizona for an art show (with Mac, the agent) and end up engaged!

Dean and Anthony plan a huge Thanksgiving meal with all their friends and newly expanded family only to find Anthony down with the flu. Now Dean “I can burn water” has to cook the meal!

Henry and Locke decide to expand their family with a new, small dog. Or… life gives them what they “need” in the form of a Great Dane whose been abused.

Finally, Mac reminisces about his first and lost love, Conor, another artist. Conor, it turns out, has always regretted his actions where Mac is concerned and decides to try to re-connect by showing up at the art show he knows Mac will be attending with Jesse.

This was just enough “new” mixed with the “old”.  It was great seeing the other couples and touching base with their lives.  Jesse and Aaron’s proposal was so amazingly sweet!  Seeing Mac settled was just an added bonus, and imagining Conor’s sexy accent was a treat in itself.

I really loved this series, you can see my reviews for those books (and audiobooks!) here:

The Guy from Glamour http://kimichanexperience.com/guy-glamour-audiobook-skylar-m-cates-narrated-matt-baca/

The Only Guy http://kimichanexperience.com/guy-audiobook-skylar-m-cates-narrated-matt-baca/

The Last Guy Breathing http://kimichanexperience.com/last-guy-breathing-novel-audiobook-skylar-m-cates-narrated-matt-baca/

I highly recommend this to fans of the series and give it 4.25 of 5 stars!

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