Categories
3 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level Book Contemporary Dreamspinner Gay Gay Heat Index Holiday Homophobia Hurt/Abuse m/m Mary D Medical Mild level angst Mild/low level heat Novella 20-160 pgs (20k-40k words) second chance at love Single Parent Valentine's Day

Earning His Trust by Alicia Nordwell

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/earning-his-trust-by-alicia-nordwell-8830-b

Blurb
Evin lost the only two men he ever loved. But he might get a second chance with one of them—if he’s willing to take the risk.

Following the death of his husband, Evin is living in Portland and raising the infant son they had through a surrogate. Six-month-old Micah is his life, and if it means no time for activities or friendships beyond his minuscule support network, that’s a sacrifice Evin is willing to make. When he suffers a burn baking teething biscuits, the last person Evin expects to encounter in the ER is Ben, his lover from college—and the man who left him without a word of explanation.

Ben knows it won’t be easy to earn Evin’s trust and prove he’s not the same man Evin once knew, but he can’t bear to watch Evin struggle to care for Micah, hurting and alone. He wants back in Evin’s life, as a friend and hopefully more, but Evin’s heart is fragile, and the years have changed him too

Review

I love manny stories, so a single dad and a second chance at love is right up my street. But to be honest there is something missing. I found it hard empathise with Evin and
a lot of times I found myself asking questions, that were addressed later in the book, like the circumstances and details around Daniel’s (Evin’s husband) death and what about a family network. Evin said his family was still in Georgia but what about Daniel’s family? I would have liked that kind of background earlier on in the story. Just to understand why he was struggling alone as a single parent. How Evin earned a living was also left unexplained until halfway through. Because I had these unanswered questions rattling around my head I found it hard to concentrate on the storyline.

I understand that this story is about Ben rebuilding his relationship with Evin after he walked away from him when they graduated college but it’s 3/4 of the book before Ben even explains himself and asked for a second chance. There is more focus on the friendship rather than the romance. Which would be fine in a slow burn where you know it’s going to happen but in this case I could see them just being friends and nothing else. I’m not really sure how much use bringing a homophobic incident was to moving the relationship along, seemed to just be another cause of misunderstanding between them. The cutest character is baby Micha. At least in this story he was not the perfect angel I seem to read in other books with babies.

I’m in two minds about this book. It’s not terrible but it’s less than I was expecting after reading the blurb. Overall I’m giving this book a generous three stars.

 

3 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
4 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level Audiobook Author Provided BDSM Book Contemporary Established Couple Established Couple/Sequel Fantasies Gay Heat Index Little to no angst m/m Mary D Medical Scorching/high heat Short Story 1-20 pages (1-5k words)

Audiobook: Doctor’s Orders by Lucy Felthouse Narrated by Peter Revel-Walsh

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Audible Link

https://www.audible.com/pd/Erotica-Sexuality/Doctors-Orders-Audiobook/B0723BYFP1/ref=a_search_c4_1_1_srTtl?qid=1503453634&sr=1-1

Blurb

Hospital porter Aaron Miller isn’t expecting a very exciting birthday. He and his doctor boyfriend, Blake Colville, are working opposite shifts, leaving Aaron to go home to an empty house and the prospect of another shift the following day. Just as he’s leaving work, however, an unexpected sexy encounter in a supply cupboard leaves him feeling in a much more celebratory mood. And an impending dirty weekend away with Blake just puts the icing on the non-existent cake. But who needs cake when you’re dating a dominant doctor?

 

Review

A real sexy short break.
What a little gem of a story. Blake and Aaron play in the bedroom rather than 24/7, so this glimpse into their busy life was perfect. Aaron wasn’t really expecting to celebrate his birthday their working schedules made it difficult to be together, so being pulled into a cupboard by his Doctor boyfriend Blake started the story off in the perfect way. I loved how Lucy Felthouse conveyed the depth of their relationship so quickly at the start and established the nature of their D/S relationship as well. The games they played on their weekend away were hot and fun.

I’ve never listened anything narrated by Peter Revel-Walsh before. I admit his accent took me awhile to settle into but once I had he was perfect for these two British lads. My view of the narration is that the story was read me rather than performed, which was fine. I had no difficulty identifying who was speaking in this style and I think it suited the story. Overall I think it’s perfect if you want to listen to a short steamy feel good story.

4 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
5 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level BDSM Book Contemporary Cop/Crime DA Gay Heat Index High but not hopeless Homophobia Hurt/Abuse Kinks m/m Mary D May/December May/December Medical Monthly Theme Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Opposites attract Part of a Series Purchased Reconcilliation Scorching/high heat slave/master Uncategorized

Kink Month: Saving Sebastian (Custos Securities #3) by Luna David

Amazon Link

https://www.amazon.com/Saving-Sebastian-Catharsis-Custos-Securities-ebook/dp/B073S99K3H/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1501509300&sr=8-1&keywords=saving+sebastian

Blurb:

Gideon McCade—weighed down by memories of his previous life as a Navy SEAL and a CIA agent—has blood on his hands. He turns to his BDSM club, Catharsis, and Dominating submissives to get him through the daily grind of civilian life. Knowing his past is too much to inflict on a life partner, he keeps his connections brief and superficial. When his former life comes back to haunt him, his desire for revenge pulls him back into the shadows, darkening his hopes for a future in the light.

Temporarily sidelining his career as a tattoo artist, Sebastian Phillips works as a composite artist for the local police department. To alleviate the inescapable burden of a congenital medical condition, he immerses himself in his art and seeks the catharsis of submission. But with life weighing heavily on his shoulders and darkness encroaching, he yearns for a contract with a Dominant that sees past the protective barriers he’s erected to the vulnerable submissive within.

When happenstance brings Gideon and Sebastian together, their connection is undeniable. The knowledge that they are both too damaged to form permanent bonds of love causes them to rely on an impersonal contract to fulfil their physical needs. But staying emotionally detached becomes impossible, and breaking their contract seems the only option. Will Gideon’s need for vengeance and Sebastian’s declining health destroy what’s grown between them, or will they help each other find their way back into the light

Review:

Saving Sebastian can be read as a standalone book. I had not read the previous two books before starting this one and I didn’t feel like I had missed out on any dynamics between the main characters and other characters.

So hot. I’m a sucker for a strong caring Alpha Dom and Gideon hits the spot. Sebastian is strong and fragile at the same time you just want to hug and protect him, though he’d hate that! Great combination of a suspense drama where Gideon is out to catch the guy who killed his platoon and the evolving BDSM relationship with Sebastian. The story told in the two different points of view, Sebastian’s and Gideon’s worked really well for me. It gave me a better depth of understanding of Gideon and Sebastian.

Gideon believes that his former life makes him unsuitable for a relationship and holds back. Sebastian has health issues and similarly does not feel he could have a full relationship. They agree to enter into a temporary without knowing about each other’s past. The secrets they carry from their past and present miscommunications pulls their relationship apart and it makes compelling reading. The D/S scenes between them are sublimely erotic. Luna David has created such detailed scenes of tenderness, control and seductive beauty that it was hard to put down. Through both Gideon and Sebastian’s personal and D/S the journey together we see them grow, facing their demons both apart and together. Sebastian’s health makes Gideon re-evaluate his feelings for Sebastian. I found this part particularly well written with such insight and understanding. Usually in a story I find myself drawn to one main character over the other but in this book I found both Gideon and Sebastian equally compelling.

There is a lot of details in this book and I have the feeling that it will still feel fresh each time I read it. One of the best BDSM books I’ve read. Books one and two are now on my reading list.
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Copy Purchased for Review

 

Categories
4 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level Book Bullying Contemporary DA drag queen Dreamspinner Gay GFY/OFY Heat Index Homophobia Hurt/Abuse Hurt/comfort Insta Love m/m Medical Mid level angst Mild/low level heat Morgan Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Part of a Series PTSD Standalone

Mascara & Bandages (Mary’s Boys #3) by Brandon Witt

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/mascara-bandages-by-brandon-witt-8652-b

Blurb

Ariel Merman is a new drag queen who’s already finding a family at Hamburger Mary’s. After a performance as Ariel, Zachary Cooper walks home in his makeup and is assaulted by homophobes. Zachary’s worry that the attack has thrown a wrench in his good fortune is eased when he looks into the eyes of his doctor.

Dr. Teegan Chau is a little lost after divorcing his wife and coming out of the closet, but he can’t deny the pull he feels toward the young man he patches up. Luckily, Zachary takes the initiative and asks Teegan out. But attraction is the easy part of their blossoming relationship—as they deal with an ex-wife and child, being a drag queen in a heteronormative culture, Zachary’s lingering trauma from his attack, and Teegan acclimating to life as part of an out-and-proud gay couple.

The challenges seem daunting at the start of a romance. Can Zachary and Teegan make it through the rough patches and take a chance on the love that’s been missing from both their lives?

Review
Continuing the theme of this series, we have Zachary – a drag queen – who gets HORRIBLY attacked on the way home one night while still in drag. He meets a recently out of the closet doctor and the two fairly easily fall for one another.

There isn’t a lot of relationship angst and the ex wife is a dear! – but there is a lot of emotional trauma for Zachary to work through.

While I think the entire issue of masculinity could have really been delved into in a deeper fashion, I appreciated that there wasn’t a lot of hang wringing and tears. The cultural issues Teegan felt could have been expanded upon, but I was actually glad it was dealt with so matter-of-factly.
(It was a little light on steam and I wanted to see more of these guys physically since that was such an important thing for Zachary.)

I thought this was a very romantic and sweet story with a nice amount of kick to give it some depth.

(I loved all the mermaid mentions and I pictured Brandon’s Christmas tree the entire time!)

Recommended!

4 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Categories
4 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level Author Provided BDSM Book Christmas Contemporary Gay Heat Index Holiday Homophobia Humor Hurt/Abuse Length m/m Mary D May/December May/December Medical Mid level steam/heat Mild level angst Misunderstanding Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Part of a Series Rugby Standalone Virgin

The Caretaker (Sin Bin #2) 
by Dahlia Donovan


release day review

Amazon Link

https://www.amazon.com/Caretaker-Sin-Bin-Book-ebook/dp/B06Y5XBG1D/ref=la_B00KFNZFHU_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1498481604&sr=1-3

 

Blurb

Nurse Freddie Whittle devotes every fibre of his being to his work with cancer patients. Their pain weighs heavily on his shoulders. Between losing clients, the expectations of his fathers, and bigot neighbours, he’s slowly reaching his breaking point.

Taine Afoa retires from a storied career as an international rugby star. He’s moved away from London for a change of pace, never expecting to meet a man who’s far too young for him. No matter how hard he tries, it’s impossible to get Freddie out of his mind.

Will Taine’s resistance dissolve in time for him to give love the chance to flourish?

 

 

Review

This book can be read as a standalone story. I hadn’t read book 1 of the series, The Wanderer, before reading this book and I didn’t feel I had missed out on anything. The Series is about a group of ex Rugby players finding a new future for themselves and finding love. The characters from the first book (Boyce “BC” Brooks and Graham Hodson) are in this story. As is Caddock Stanford, his story can be found in After the Scrum (not part of the series).

Freddie gives everything to his job caring for terminally I’ll cancer patients. Although he tries not to get too emotionally involved the job is taking its toll on him. He meets Taine whilst visiting Graham and from then on Freddie and Taine’s friends keep ensuring they get together. Freddie looks younger than his age and Taine is initially unsure about the age gap of 15-20 years but it smooths out. I found this a very easy story to read and I got invested in Freddie and Taine’s budding romance. Both are likeable characters in their own way. Both are strong characters but in different ways that compliment each other. At times I did get a little muddled over who was who with the secondary characters, Taine’s friends the group of ex-Rugby players. My favourite characters are Freddie’s dads they are such fun to read. There is a lot of humour in this story making it a light and enjoyable to read.

Such a lovely romance but I was a little surprised to find BDSM, it did however fit in well with the characters. There is some slight angst due to Freddie’s job and homophobic harassment. The path of true love is never smooth and that is case for Taine and Freddie. Overall I found this story to be quite enjoyable with what I would say is a happy for now ending. They may get their happy ever after as the series continues.

4 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Book 1 on sale now!

https://www.amazon.com/Wanderer-Sin-Bin-Book-ebook/dp/B01N19DQG2/ref=pd_sim_351_2?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=S240ZR5ZS6WFD5X2TQTB

Also by the author on sale now!

https://www.amazon.com/After-Scrum-Dahlia-Donovan-ebook/dp/B01DIF79W0/ref=la_B00KFNZFHU_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1498481757&sr=1-2

 

Categories
1.5 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level Anna Book Christmas class difference Contemporary Dreamspinner Fade to black/No Steam Friends to lovers Gay Heat Index m/m Medical Mild level angst Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Part of a Series

Two for Trust by Elle Brownlee

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/two-for-trust-by-elle-brownlee-8405-b

Blurb

A fairy-tale vacation—if he can get the ending right.

American nurse Finch Mason steps beyond the comfort of his orderly life and takes a dream trip to England, complete with a National Trust Pass so he can visit numerous historical sites. At the first one on his list, he’s warmly welcomed—and told he bought a pass good for two.

Finch doesn’t hesitate to offer the pass to Benedict, a handsome Brit also there on an outing. They spend a magical week touring the countryside, and while it’s too soon to get attached, Finch wishes their time together would never end.

Then Finch finds himself stuck abroad with no money, and he has no one to turn to but Benedict. Benedict is happy to help, but he also owes Finch some answers—such as who he really is and why he was at the estate where they first met.

Review
Another Dreamspun story for me. I love the concept behind this series, but so far the books I have read have been a mixed bunch. This one unfortunately falls somewhere between ‘meh’ and ‘bad’ in the mix.

The trope of commoner meets lord of the manor (but doesn’t know it), is taken up in this MM story. However, the fact that the two MCs are the same sex is completely irrelevant to the story and they are both so incredibly bland, that I think the only thing hinting at their gender was their names.

I will be the first to admit, that I like my sexy times on page, but I can live with off page or fade to black scenes, as long as I get chemistry between the characters and the tension leading up to the bedroom door closing in my face. That was completely missing in this book. There was no chemistry, no tension and absolutely no bedroom doors. In fact, this book is so completely devoid of intimacy, that I am hard pressed to even call it romance. There are the exact number of 4 kisses in this book, none of them passionate, and absolutely none of them sexually charged. You could publish this as an inspirational romance and no one would bat an eyelid, well you might have had to throw in some prayer now and again, or the mention of God, but other than that, you’d be set.

The two wander around the countryside together, they visit heritage sites together, they look after ailing grandmothers, pet the dogs together and they deliver handwritten correspondence together. And that’s it, folks! For 252 pages! And somehow this leads to a proposal and them being in love! How? I couldn’t tell you. I wasn’t in love, I was in tears, from boredom.

This was not for me. But if you enjoy your romance 100% steam free, very sweet and with a healthy dose of insta-love and English Heritage sites, this will be right up your alley.

1.5 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided by Publisher For Honest Review

Categories
4.5 stars Action/Adventure adult - 18+ Angst Level Book Contemporary Enemies to Lovers Fated Mates Gay Heat Index High but not hopeless Hurt/comfort Insta Love m/m May/December May/December Medical Mid level steam/heat Morgan NetGalley New Adult Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Paranormal Race/Species Difference Riptide Publishing Shifter Virgin

Forest of Thorns and Claws by J.T. Hall

release day review 

Riptide Presents
http://www.riptidepublishing.com/titles/forest-of-thorns-and-claws

Blurb

Donovan McGinnis, a veterinarian and conservationist at a research center in Sumatra, is fighting to save the rainforest from poachers and politicians alike. One day he discovers a tigress trapped by a snare, and while treating her injuries, she bites him. He becomes ill with strange symptoms that leave him feverish and dreaming of the jungle and blood.

Kersen and his family are part of the Harimau jadian, a clan of tiger shifters hidden away in a secret village near the rainforest. When Kersen’s sister is caught, he knows he must free her before she infects someone with their magic and reveals their secret.

But Donovan has already been turned, and only time will tell if he can control the tiger within. Kersen must help him, but will the fierce attraction between the pair bring ruin to them all? With the rainforest under threat from outside forces, they may be doomed anyway, unless Kersen and Donovan can find a way to defeat the danger from inside and out.

Review

This was an exceptional book!

First, I learned a lot about the culture and habits and habitat of Indonesia and yet it never felt didactic. I thought it was very well done, the way the author wove in details about the people and the plight of the rainforest. I was saddened – as I always am- by the difficulties faced by the conservationists, but hopeful, too.

Second, the shifter elements were just a bit unique – sort of like you expect a “werewolf” story to be – uncontrollable instincts and aggression – tempered with the typical abilities to later control the shift and manage the instincts. I thought the “mate” part was satisfying even though it didn’t completely fall into the delicious “mine, mine, mine” category.

Third, the romance was sweet. I wish our MCs had gotten to know one another better – beyond sexually – but there was enough romance to satisfy me.

Fourth, the secondary characters and secondary plot was well done, fully developed and supported without eclipsing the main love story – though it was close. The conservation efforts and shifter politics did come very close to overshadowing the love story – but in the end I think the romance prevailed.

I was not familiar with this author before, but I’d definitely look for more from them in the future.

Highly recommended! 4.5 of 5 stars

4.5 stars
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Copy Generously Provided by NetGalley for Honest Review

Categories
5 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level Audiobook Book class difference coming of age Contemporary DA Dreamspinner Gay Heat Index Homophobia Hurt/Abuse Hurt/comfort Length m/m Medical Mid level steam/heat Mild level angst Morgan Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Opposites attract Part of a Series PTSD Rating Review Copies Reviewer Virgin

Just Add Argyle (Fabric Hearts #3) by K.C. Burn

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/just-add-argyle-by-kc-burn-8391-b

Blurb

Tate Buchanan is a troublemaker who can’t keep a job, no matter how many times his lucky argyle sweater gets him hired. Add to that a learning disability and an impetuous nature that sends him into altercations to protect the defenseless, and he hardly manages to make friends, let alone find a man who’s interested in him for more than one night.

Most people think EMT Jaime Escobar is a player, but the truth is he wants a serious partner—he just can’t justify wasting time on guys he knows aren’t a match. But when he treats a gorgeous redhead after a fight, he finds the spark he’s spent so many years looking for.

Jaime wants to take the next step with Tate, but it’s clear Tate’s not going to curb his impulsive behavior—his next fight sends him to the hospital. Jaime’s relationship with a near criminal isn’t something his family is ready to accept, not any more than Tate is willing to be kept a secret. Jaime will need a lot of understanding—and some luck of his own—to keep them both. But this is one fight he’s going to see through to the end.

Review

(Previous books in the series reviewed here:  https://openskyebookreviews.com/tartan-candy-audiobook-by-kc-burn-narrated-by-david-ross/ )

I absolutely ADORED this book. It reached me at EVERY level and I couldn’t read it fast enough!

I think it’s clear that a romance is best when the readers are invested in the characters – first and foremost. Tate – as a character – had me by the heart right from page one. He’s scrappy, got a short fuse, a low self-esteem – but the absolute biggest heart you’ll find.

Jaime is another amazing character who is so filled with love and also gratitude that he can literally do no wrong – but – this is important – he doesn’t come across as a goody two shoes or “too perfect”. He’s just a great guy.

I was surpised by the relative lack of smexy times – but what we do get is very HOT and very, very sweet, too. There was enough in here that I was satisfied – but I’m used to more from this author and this series.

I loved the “slow reveal” of all of Tate’s secrets. It wasn’t obvious – nor was it hidden in a fake way. It felt very natural and I learned something, too!

If I have any complaint at all – it’s the ending. Tate and Jaime felt so good together and the ending we get is amazingly sweet and wonderful – but I did want to see them a little further down the road- specifically so I could see where Tate ends up!

Seriously, Tate is my current favorite MC – and I highly recommend this book to fans of the author, fans of gingers, fans of scrappy MCs and anyone who needs a good book to warm your heart.

5 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided by Publisher for Honest Review

Categories
6 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level Audiobook Book coming of age Contemporary Cowboys Established Couple Gay Heat Index Little to no angst m/m Medical Morgan Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Opposites attract Purchased Scorching/high heat second chance at love Single Parent

Frog Audiobook by Mary Calmes Narrated by KC Kelly

audiobookreview

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/frog-by-mary-calmes-3838-b

Blurb:
Weber Yates’s dreams of stardom are about to be reduced to a ranch hand’s job in Texas, and his one relationship is with a guy so far out of his league he might as well be on the moon. Or at least in San Francisco, where Weber stops to see him one last time before settling down to the humble, lonely life he figures a frog like him has coming. Cyrus Benning is a successful neurosurgeon, so details are never lost on him. He spotted the prince in a broken-down bull rider’s clothing from day one. But watching Weber walk out on him keeps getting harder, and he’s not sure how much more his heart can take. Now Cyrus has one last chance to prove to Weber that it’s not Weber’s job that makes him Cyrus’s perfect man, it’s Weber himself. With the help of his sister’s newly broken family, he’s ready to show Weber that the home the man’s been searching for has always been right there, with him. Cyrus might have laid down an ultimatum once, but now it’s turned into a vow-he’s never going to let Weber out of his life again.

Review:
Frog is one of my all time favorite audiobooks EVER.

It is amazingly beautiful and hits on all the right notes, no matter how many times I’ve listened to it. This, more than some, is a case where the audiobook transformed a good story – one I liked a lot – into one that I absolutely adore and listen to when I want a comfort, an old friend, my heart lifted, a smile put on my face.

Mary and KC have given us an amazingly beautiful, sometimes gritty, heart rending story full of hope and honor and most of all – love. I was so pleased to find out that Mary requested KC specifically for this book- he is perfect! KC’s rich, vaguely southern cadence as he slowly drawls out the words spoken by Web were perfect. His fast paced, sometimes frenetic version of Cy was equally spot on. His narration feels intimate and he draws the reader into the story along with the characters.

Both men are over forty, which I adore, and KC’s voice fits that age well. It’s so rare to see a story about older men and this one stands out among one of the best. The sex/chemistry between them is also scorching, but most of what stays with you, when you read Frog, is the love and the tenderness the two men share.
Web’s vision of himself is skewed, and when he finally comes around to seeing himself – first through the eyes of Micah, then Carolyn and finally Cyrus – it’s like he’s actually understanding who he is after all these years.
My heart literally breaks when Cy practically breaks down and thanks Web so much for coming back to him despite their fight the previous visit. I picture him, alone (in his busy world) wondering where and what Web is doing and kicking himself for not doing things differently. KC does the emotion here absolutely perfectly.
Another amazing part is when Cy is drunk and Web is “handling” him – OMG – hysterical, touching, sweet, sexy – absolutely perfect!
Because it’s Mary we get some standard Mary things: pea coats, eyebrow waggles, an MC who is totally unaware of how amazing he is, strong women secondary characters and a big, fierce but loving dog!
I’m including in this the pictures Mary has on her Pinterest of who she visioned as Cy and Web – they fit!

Cyrus:

Weber:


If you haven’t read or listened to this you are truly missing out on something beautiful.

6 of 5 stars

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Copy Purchased for Review

Categories
6 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level Audiobook Book Christmas Contemporary Gay Heat Index Homophobia Humor Little to no angst m/m May/December May/December Medical Morgan Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Older MCs Opposites attract Part of a Series Purchased Scorching/high heat Single Parent Teacher

Retro Review: The Half of Us Audiobook (Family Collection #4) by Cardeno C Narrated by Ezekiel Robinson

audiobookreview

Audible Link
http://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/The-Half-of-Us-Audiobook/B018W4GYTQ/ref=a_search_c4_1_5_srTtl?qid=1490730853&sr=1-5

Blurb

A Story in the Family Collection

If short-tempered Jason can open his heart and life to optimistic Abe, he might finally find the family he craves.

Short-tempered, arrogant heart surgeon Jason Garcia grew up wanting a close-knit family, but believes he ruined those dreams when he broke up his marriage. The benefit of divorce is having as much random sex as he wants, and it’s a benefit Jason is exploiting when he meets a sweet, shy man at a bar and convinces him to go home for a no-strings-attached night of fun.

Eight years living in Las Vegas hasn’t dimmed Abe Green’s optimism, earnestness, or desire to find the one. When a sexy man with lonely eyes propositions him, Abe decides to give himself a birthday present—one night of spontaneous fun with no thoughts of the future. But one night turns into two and then three, and Abe realizes his heart is involved.

For the first time, Abe feels safe enough with someone he respects and adores to let go of his inhibitions in the bedroom. If Jason can get past his own inhibitions and open his heart and his life to Abe, he might finally find the family he craves.

Review

There are some books that I go back to over and over again. It can be because they are comforting, they move me, they make me laugh or – in the case of audiobooks – because I just love the narration so much.

In this case, I think it’s a few things. First and foremost it’s Ezekiel Robinson’s narration that keeps me returning to this as many times as once a month! He is simply so gifted at drawing the listener in to the story and really making them “feel” what the characters are feeling.

If you’re a fan of Cardeno C, you know that there is never a lack of emotion in these books. Though it may take awhile for our MCs to admit it, the love, affection and devotion are clear in other ways.

Jason, on the surface, is not a very likable character. He’s self-centered, narcissistic, selfish, a bad father, a worse (ex) husband, and a self-proclaimed man-whore.

However, his actions, once he gets over his “one and done” rule, with Abe, are the exact opposite. He’s (mostly) considerate, affectionate, sweet, caring… and what I appreciate about the writing here, is that none of this is pointed out (well, not directly) but instead we are really along for the ride and “seeing” it as Abe does.

Abe, on the other hand, could not be more sweet, caring, loving, smart, manipulative?, and big-hearted. He’s the perfect foil for Jason but he needs what Jason has to offer to feel whole. Conversely, Jason needs Abe to soften his edges.

Another thing I really appreciate about this story is Angela, Jason’s ex. She’s not evil and in fact is a great person. So often the women (especially ex-wives) in these stories are portrayed as vindictive and bitter – and Angela would have a good reason to be so! – but she isn’t. The kids seem realistic as well and that’s another amazing touch.

Our MCs have incredible sexy times, but also very sweet and tender feels, too. It’s that lovely combination that make a good book excellent, in my opinion.

Ezekiel does a fantastic job with giving Abe a light yet not “femme” voice – appropriate to his character, and Jason a gruff and yummy growl. He handles the women and children well, and he’s great with timing and knowing how to “play” a moment. He’s easily in the top 5 of my favorite narrators and I hope we see more from him in the future!

I highly recommend this book and the entire series. It’s wonderful!

6 of 5 stars

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