Release Day Review: Hiding the Moon (Fish Out of Water #4) by Amy Lane

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/hiding-the-moon-by-amy-lane-9921-b

Blurb

A Fish Out of Water/Racing for the Sun Crossover

Can a hitman and a psychic negotiate a relationship while all hell breaks loose?

The world might not know who Lee Burton is, but it needs his black ops division and the work they do to keep it safe. Lee’s spent his life following orders—until he sees a kill jacket on Ernie Caulfield. Ernie isn’t a typical target, and something is very wrong with Burton’s chain of command.

Ernie’s life may seem adrift, but his every action helps to shelter his mind from the psychic storm raging within. When Lee Burton shows up to save him from assassins and club bunnies, Ernie seizes his hand and doesn’t look back. Burton is Ernie’s best bet in a tumultuous world, and after one day together, he’s pretty sure Lee knows Ernie is his destiny as well.

But when Burton refused Ernie’s contract, he kicked an entire piranha tank of bad guys, and Burton can’t rest until he takes down the rogue military unit that would try to kill a spacey psychic. Ernie’s in love with Burton and Burton’s confused as hell by Ernie—but Ernie’s not changing his mind and Burton can’t stay away. Psychics, assassins, and bad guys—throw them into the desert with a forbidden love affair and what could possibly go wrong?

Review by Mary
As this is a crossover story I would recommend reading (or listening to) the A Fish out of Water series and Racing for Sun before starting this book. Having said that I feel I should confess that my preference is listening to them. I was waiting for A Few Good Fish (book 3) to be released before starting it and did not realise this book overlapped it. Now that I’ve finished it I can see how they tie together. A Few Good Fish is as usual from Jackson Rivers and Ellery Cramer’s view point with Ernie, Lee, Ace, Sonny etc as secondary characters. This book is Ernie and Lee’s story (including Ace and Sonny playing a big part) and their side of the events of chasing down the mercenaries out to get them. Psychic Ernie finds his soulmate, his home and sanctuary when Lee Burton realised the kill order he received on Ernie was wrong. I liked the good v evil premise. And that the book reads like an action film, where realism is sacrificed for great action and adventure. This is a beautiful story of damaged souls finding a place and people where they can heal. Problem is they have to literally fight cruel, hateful and vindictive men to reach it.

5 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Time to get scared: Blood Guard (Mission book 1) by Megan Erickson

Good Reads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34444705-blood-guard?from_search=true

Blurb
When Tendra arrives home after her bartending job in Mission city, she doesn’t expect to meet a vampire. Said vampire also claims to need her in order to save his vampirical clan, by marrying his brother, the future king. Athan’s clan only feed on consenting humans, without killing them- a notion their enemies do not share. They want Tendra dead before she makes it to Athan’s brother, to share the power in her blood that has been growing in her bloodline for ten generations, and to her future as his queen. Hard to believe as it is, Athan shows her proof she cannot ignore and whisks her into a dangerous journey through the secret underground vampire tunnels of his clan to their family compound outside Mission city. He must protect her at all costs for she is destined to his brother, to save his clan and the human world from being enslaved to the other vampire clans.
But, with every minute they spend together the pull Athens feels for Tendra gets stronger, and the close proximity they are forced to share is not helping him keep his desire for her in line with his duty to his brother, his king, and his role as the head of guard.

Review
For the last two years I have only been reading M/M romance, and if anyone can lure me out of it for some M/F it’s Megan Erickson! She is one of my favorite authors, with a geeky infused writing style I adore! This book was a pleasant surprise, much like her M/M Shifter books: The Silver Tip Pack series (a genre I Never liked for its cliché-ness). I think Megan’s greatest talent is taking a cliché genre and writing a book that while it has many of the characteristics to make it a cliché is still refreshing and enjoyable. Not every book is a unique masterpiece, but having the ability to read a story in a plotline that have been so thoroughly chewed and re-chewed that I, as a reader well versed in this genre to the point I was sick of Twilight wannabees, loved the book is amazing to me. I credit it to the humor, banter between characters, fluidity of the plot and putting little twists throughout the story.

I love Tendra’s personality, she is independent while still being dependent on Athan for her survival, and is realistic in that sense but she can and will protect herself when needed. Tendra is a badass heroine that does not spend days mourning what she lost while still understanding she is in a new situation and learning to deal with it. Athan is both though and soft, with a gentleness and emotional depth I credit to Megan’s M/M writing. The fast pace the story starts out at does not mean the characters get it on within the first chapter, another strong point to me. I feel like they really see each other before sex gets thrown in the mix. The fantasy world setting is interesting and believable and well rounded.
If you love the supernatural romance genre, vampires and great characters you should definitely read this book, it is everything Twilight and its look a likes wanted to be and are not with a splash of humor and sass.

Number of stars:
4.5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Audiobook: The Wolf’s Man Friday by Julia Talbot Narrated by Joseph Morgan

audiobookreview

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/the-wolfs-man-friday-by-julia-talbot-9904-b

Blurb
The last thing Sebastian Zeller wants is to be pack Alpha. But when the pack leader, his uncle Ron, is attacked, he has no choice but to leave his beloved Colorado mountains and fulfill his duty as Ron’s heir—at least until his uncle recovers. In the meantime, he intends to lure the attacker out… and make them pay.

When Ron gets wind of Sebastian’s plan to catch the attacker, he doesn’t like the idea of risking his heir. That’s where Jaxon Reedis comes in—he’ll balance protecting the dark and sexy werewolf with pretending to be his personal assistant. He’s walking a fine line that requires all his foxy wit and craftiness… and that’s on top of the inescapable feeling that he and Sebastian are meant for each other. When the attacker returns, will they be able to maintain their deepening bond when danger threatens to tear down everything they’re building

Review
This is the second book in Julia Talbot’s Nose to Tail Inc series. It is completely a stand-alone book, although it’s worth reading (or listening) to the first book. Both are entertaining shifter books in completely different ways. Sebastian and his best friend Alan are putting themselves in danger looking for Ron’s attackers. Jaxon works for Nose to Tail inc and is hired to protect Sebastian, acting as Sebastian’s assistant as his cover. I never thought a wolf and fox would fit together so perfectly. Sebastian and Jaxon’s outlook and personalities work well together because Sebastian just wants to work on his art and find the people responsible for attacking Ron. Whilst Jaxon is a speedy fox, always organised with his finger on the button sorting Sebastian out. At the same time he is monitoring Sebastian’s movements to keep him safe. There are two threads to this story the mystery over who attacked Ron, also the subsequent threat to Sebastian for pursuing it, and the bubbling building romance between Sebastian and Jaxon. Add to the pot Ron’s determination to name Sebastian the next Alpha and you have an enjoyable story.

Joseph Morgan‘s has a good tone and speed with his narration. He provides a good portrayal of Jaxon as a fox shifter with a slight edge to his voice as if he was ready to leap into action at a moments notice. Whilst his portrayal of Sebastian’s character added to the frustrated artist vibe but also someone who was fun to be with.

3 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Time to go Dark: Dax’s Desire (Avanti Chronicles Book 5) by Hannah Walker

Good Reads Link
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29873466-dax-s-desire?from_search=true

Blurb
The Avanti have made their way to Berinias, the capital and heart of Landran society. Not only is it King Kastain’s home ground, but it’s the seat of the Conclave’s power.
Dax finally gets to see Kastain in all his glory— regal, confident, powerful and downright sexy. As events unfold, Dax and Kastain realize everything happening with the Derin, with Martellon, Nestor and Teriva, is linked. Their enemies draw closer and the plots and machinations of the Conclave deepen. They just need to work out who is behind it all and what they hope to gain.
Kastain finds himself turning to Dax, the one person he seems to be able to count on more than anything. The bond between the two leaders is stronger than they expected, and they long for rare times alone so they can explore it. Instead their time is taken up trying to work out which Chieftains they can count on and who is attempting to undermine them at every turn.
When plots and betrayals run deep within the heart of the capital, who will succeed and who will pay the ultimate price?

Review
And the storyline continues!

With each of the previous books we have seen the political posturing of all the groups and in this story it all centers around the King , the Capital and the Avanti. Some questions are answered and more are asked. And while all of this is going on another of the Avanti finds the love of his life.

King Kastain and Avanti leader Dax are both strong personalities yet when they get the chance to be alone they really are both soft and caring men. With all the political intrigue weaved through the story there is also comic relief and also truly hot sex scenes.

Many questions are answered but nothing is truly solved. The story does end in a HEA for the couple, but those of us who are following series are waiting impatiently for the next book and the next set of clues to the ongoing storyline.

5 of 5 stars

Copy Purchased for Review

Friends to Lovers: The Wolf’s Man Friday by Julia Talbot

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/the-wolfs-man-friday-by-julia-talbot-9466-b

Blurb
The last thing Sebastian Zeller wants is to be pack Alpha. But when the pack leader, his uncle Ron, is attacked, he has no choice but to leave his beloved Colorado mountains and fulfill his duty as Ron’s heir—at least until his uncle recovers. In the meantime, he intends to lure the attacker out… and make them pay.
When Ron gets wind of Sebastian’s plan to catch the attacker, he doesn’t like the idea of risking his heir.That’s where Jaxon Reedis comes in—he’ll balance protecting the dark and sexy werewolf with pretending to be his personal assistant. He’s walking a fine line that requires all his foxy wit and craftiness… and that’s on top of the inescapable feeling that he and Sebastian are meant for each other. When the attacker returns, will they be able to maintain their deepening bond when danger threatens to tear down everything they’re building?

Review
A delightful, snappy, story about a wolf who doesn’t want to be alpha and a bodyguard pretending to be a personal assistant.

The banter between Sebastian and Jaxon is great. I had a hard time at first when they started talking mind to mind. Thought that would unsettle them more, but it just flowed. Also I’m not sure if Sebastian ever put together that Jaxon was more than a personal assistant. Yes the guy had mad skills, but that issue never came up in conversation. Nobody called Jaxon on him moving from personal assistant/bodyguard to mate. Nothing from the alpha that hired him, or Jaxon’s boss.

The things I liked was how well they played off of each other, mentally, physically and emotionally. I loved their playful side. Running around Dallas following whatever whim was suggested. Julia Talbot was masterful in blending both the human side with the animal. The sex scenes were both hot and tender, and the cuddle times included both skin and fur. I loved how she incorporated the need for touch so deeply into the story.

The main supporting characters really pulled the story together. I’m sure Alan will have a story, and I would love to see Tyrone have one too. I mean really an elk working for a pack of wolves!

This is definitely a fun read, and I look forward to more from the author.

4.5 of 5 stars

4.5-stars-small


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Enemies to Lovers: The Vampire’s Werewolf Bodyguard by Liv Rider

GoodReads Link
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33156639-the-vampire-s-werewolf-bodyguard?ac=1&from_search=true

 

Free on KU!

Blurb

What happens when an out-of-control werewolf is hired to guard his immortal enemy?

Simon Caley barely survived an assassin’s strike. The reclusive vampire trusts no one, but he’s still in danger, and the attack left him too weak to defend himself. He needs protection while he hunts for the mastermind behind the attack.

Cody Weston’s werewolf instincts make him a good bodyguard—but only if he can control his wolf. After an accidental shift on the job, he’s on probation, until his boss calls about a very unusual client.

Instincts and tempers flare when they meet, along with something unexpected: desire. Simon’s not just Cody’s fated enemy, he’s his fated mate too. Can the vampire and his werewolf bodyguard work past their differences and save each other, or will Cody lose control—and hurt the man he’s sworn to protect?

The Vampire’s Werewolf Bodyguard is a standalone M/M paranormal vampire/wolf shifter romance with no cliffhangers.(less)

Review

I thought this was really good! We get animosity, super-charged sexual chemistry, a mysterious and powerful “ex”, great villains, and some interesting world building.

These vampires are “old school” and are both powerful but have some exploitable weaknesses. The juxtaposition with modern “bodyguards” and security was well done. Mix in the age old enemy of werewolf vs vampire and mix in some fated mate and – viola! Great story.

I’d have given it perfect marks but I wanted to see more of the “mate/mine” dynamic.

Highly recommended to fans of shifter/vampire romance. I’ll be looking for more from this author.

4.25 of 5 stars

4-stars-small

Morgan - Signature-small

Copy Purchased for Review

Enemies to Lovers: Into the Lyons Den (Assassin/Shifter #16) by Sandrine Gasq-Dion

Good Reads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17313739-into-the-lyons-den?from_search=true

Blurb

FBI Special Agent Devin Lyons and Russian mob boss/FBI ally Andrei Panchenko have been at each others’ throats for years. Literally. They’ve had their hands around the other’s throat lots of times. When Andrei barely escapes a bold attempt on his life, government big shot James Jacobs decides to put Devin in charge of Andrei’s safety. After all, who better to keep the Russian alive than the man who wants to do the killing himself?

Andrei Panchenko knows two things as fact: Devin Lyons hates him. And the FBI agent is the sexiest man he’s ever seen. Forced into cohabitation, Andrei tries to figure out why the agent wants him dead. He has been nothing but honest in owning up to his crimes and kills only the vilest men who manage to escape justice. But still Lyons (who has his own violent record) treats him with contempt. In the meantime, Andrei notices a touching side to the man that he’s never seen before. And THAT scares him more than any gun.

Devin Lyons hates Andrei Panchenko. It’s one of the things in his life that he can count on. Until he’s forced to spend time with the ridiculously beautiful and sexy man. Seeing the “real” Andrei turns Devin’s world upside down until he’s not sure whether he wants to kill Andrei or make love to him.

A common enemy of both men is determined that neither will have the chance to do anything except die. When a life-changing secret is revealed, will the resulting fallout bring the two men together or separate them forever?

Review

This is one of my favorite books in the Assasin/Shifter series – which is saying a lot because I love the series and I frequently re-read them. ( I was devastated when I found out of Sandrine’s death. I sincerely hope that we will get to see all of these books made into audiobooks and that maybe somebody will pick up the thread of her many series and continue where she left off. Undoubtedly it won’t be the same but I feel as though these are real people and I will miss not learning more about them.)

As for this, we have the classic enemies to lovers trope, mixed with some excitement and intrigue and amnesia! We have two men who are mortal enemies but who find out that there is more to one another than meets the eye. Since Devon Lyons ends up being a bodyguard for Andrei, he learns that Andrei is not the cold-blooded killer he portrays.

 

When you add in the sub-plot about Devon’s background you get a fully enthralling romance with loads of chemistry, humor and excitement.

 

Highly Recommended!

4.5-stars-small
Morgan - Signature-small

Copy Purchased For Review

Audiobook: A Kind of Home (A Kind of Stories #4) by Lane Hayes Narrated by Seth Clayton

audiobookreview

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/a-kind-of-home-by-lane-hayes-8585-b

Blurb

A Kind Of Story

Isaac Dalton is the guitarist for Spiral, arguably the biggest rock band in the world. The band’s meteoric rise to superstardom has its perks, but fame and fortune aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Nonstop touring and performing exhaust him, and when an overzealous fan makes it imperative that Isaac travel with a clingy bodyguard, he is ready for a break from the madness. More so when his newly single first crush shows up on his doorstep. The man is strictly off-limits. He’s a memory from a place Isaac would rather leave behind. And he’s straight.

Fun-loving former athlete slash construction worker Adam McBride desperately needs a new beginning. And New York City is the perfect place to start over and think about how to rebuild his life. A short stint as roommates with his brother’s best friend from high school seems like a mutually beneficial arrangement. However, when friendship gives way to fierce attraction, both men find themselves in unchartered and possibly dangerous territory. Isaac has to decide if he’s willing to take the ultimate risk for a kind of love and a kind of home he never dreamed possible.

Review
(Book Reviewed Here Previously)

This is another amazing addition to Lane Hayes’ “A Kind of” series. It follows a rock band from their origins playing gigs in bars to being on the top of the charts. None of the other books are required reading to understand/enjoy this book, but having read them will give you a more thorough understanding of the characters’ development and their history.

In this case we have Isaac, the lead guitarist, who finds music an easier language than words at times. He breathes easier through his music and roots himself in it’s notes.

Though he’s had a crush on his BFF’s straight brother for years, he’s never acted on it. When the two are forced into close company some secrets are revealed that push them into the other’s arms.

When I think of Lane Hayes’ work, I think always of emotional connections, really hot sex scenes, New York, and in this case- music. That’s what pervades this story. Lane is a really talented writer and she knows how to give the reader well-developed characters and while her stories are fairy-tales in the sense of wonderful things happening to good people, there’s a healthy dose of reality in the mix to make it seem plausible.

For fans of the author and the series this is a must, but you don’t have to fall into those categories to enjoy this. I think fans of musicians, coming-out stories, small towns, and friends to lovers will also love this, too.

Highly recommended!

Audio

Seth Clayton narrates this entire series, and as I’ve said before I think he’s a really great narrator. He handles the story well – all the emotions and action and the music really capably. He doesn’t do much with accents and he does mispronounce words now and again (ie Perrier!) but I think this is a really great way to experience this story and is highly recommended.

4.5-stars-small

Morgan - Signature-small

Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Unexpected By Sloane Kennedy

GoodReads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36064274-unexpected?ac=1&from_search=true

Blurb

Protectors Book 10

I finally had the chance at a perfect life when I met the man I was supposed to be with. But he’s gone and chances like that don’t come along twice in one lifetime. Right?
Former president Everett Shaw had his whole life laid out for him from the time he was a child and he lived out every expectation to complete and utter perfection… until he met the one man who changed everything. With plans to leave public life behind after finishing his term in office, Everett was looking forward to a quiet life with the man of his dreams at his side. But one brutal act of violence stole that bright future away, leaving Everett struggling just to get through each day.

A decade later finds Everett nearing the age of sixty and living a shell of a life. Haunted by his loss, he finds solace in his roses and evenings sitting in front of the television. But when his estranged son is horribly injured while saving the life of another, Everett leaves everything behind in the hopes of mending the broken relationship and helping his son heal in more ways than one.

My job is to protect and there are rules that have to be followed. Even if there weren’t, I wouldn’t risk letting anyone close… not again.
Special Agent Jonathan Nash’s job is to keep the former president safe, not be his friend. Even if something about the lonely older man draws him in, he’s not about to risk what’s left of his career for anything. And it’s not like a guy like Everett Shaw would really see him anyway. Nor would he want him to, considering the ugly past Nash left behind to pursue his dream. No, he’s better off following protocol and doing his job. Let someone else deal with the broken man. It’s not his problem… it can’t be.

I learned a long time ago to live life on my terms and that sometimes you have to take that leap of faith to get what you want. But wanting two men at the same time? That’s new, even for me.
At forty-five years old, former Navy SEAL Gage Fortier has experienced success and loss in equal measure, and while his life has taken a direction he never planned, he wouldn’t have it any other way. When Reese, the young man he’s partnered with in the underground vigilante group they both work for, is injured on the job, he sees an opportunity to build on the friendship with the bitter former soldier while giving him a place to recover. But when he discovers that the young man is actually the estranged son of a former U.S. president, Gage realizes he has the chance to give both father and son so much more. There’s only one problem with his plan… how to ignore his growing attraction for the devishly handsome Everett Shaw.

And Everett’s perpetual shadow, Agent Nash.

Three men on very separate courses. Until something unexpected happens and three become one…

*TRIGGER WARNING: This book as a couple of triggers. You can check out what they are by downloading the sample or using the “Look Inside” feature and scrolling to the appropriate page. Note that reading the trigger warnings could cause spoilers.

Can be read as a standalone novel.

The Protectors series crosses over with some of my other series, so for the most enjoyment, they should be read in order, but it is not required. You can find the correct reading order at the beginning of each book. I’ve also bundled all my series in the correct reading order under the title of A Family Chosen: The Protectors and Barrettis.

Review

Sloane Kennedy’s ability to take a broken man and build a heartwarming, enticing and deeply moving story makes her one of my favorite authors. Although broken these men still have strength and unusually strong wills.

This time she has 2 broken men, Everett who has never come to terms of his grief for his dead lover and the loss of his son in his life. Nash from growing up as a foster kid and then a malicious lie that derailed his career. The third man, Gage, in this ménage, is actually well adjusted, calm and level headed. We also have 2 children involved, although one is a grown man, as do many of Sloane’s stories.

Sloane Kennedy takes us through a roller coaster of emotions and has us surprised with twists and turns throughout. I loved how she really had two stories twisted together and held us in suspense until the very end. The Story moves at a good pace yet there are times you should have a tissue handy.

The sex scenes are HOT, HOT, HOTTER! As only Sloane can do, it’s like you are sitting in a darkened corner watching it all happen. Did I say HOT!

5 of 5 stars

5-stars-small


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Stryke First (The Rock Series #5) by Sandrine Gasq-Dion

Amazon Link

https://www.amazon.com/Stryke-First-Rock-book-5-ebook/dp/B076GBCJR3/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1509465911&sr=8-1&keywords=stryke+first

 

Free on KU!

Blurb

This book is part of a series. It contains homosexual relations, violence and coarse language. It is preceded by Falcon’s Fox.

Rebel Stryker has had to fight to survive from the moment he was born to a heroin-addicted mother. Raised by his grandparents, his only mission in life was to succeed where his mother had failed. Now, he and his childhood best friends tour the world as a famous heavy metal band. Like any rags-to-riches young man, Rebel definitely enjoys the perks of being in the limelight.

But now something has changed.

Rebel never wanted to fall in love, shying away from relationships and relishing his ‘no worries’ rock-star persona. But there’s something about the band’s new manager that catches Rebel’s eye. Despite fighting it with everything he has, Rebel finds himself succumbing to man’s quiet ways. It doesn’t hurt that the guy loves Rebel’s grandpa — the one relationship that means the world to him.

Staying true to his name, Rebel fights against the tide of attraction drawing him in. But it’s only a matter of time before love finally strikes.

Stan Jackson is hiding a secret. A Very Big Secret. One he prays will never come to light, especially since life is pretty good now. He finally has a good job, and he considers the people around him friends — even if they don’t see him the same way. All he’s ever wanted in life is to blend in, not make waves, and move on through. Now, as the manager of the internationally famous Skull Blasters rock band, he is put squarely into bassist Rebel Stryker’s orbit. He spends a lot of time with Rebel’s grandfather, which is not only fun, but rewarding. Another big benefit is that Stan gets to see Rebel all the time. When his past catches up to him, Stan learns that he isn’t just the Skull Blasters’ manager.

He’s a part of their family.

Review

(I am crushed by the loss of this amazing author. This is her last book (that I know about) and I know I will miss all the amazing characters and “worlds” she built – but I am grateful to be able to re-visit them and often. I hope everyone goes out and buys this book to support her family in this troubling time.)

Sandrine is so gifted at giving us real characters and humor and excitement and I think this follows suit. I laughed and was touched – it’s both sweet and sexy.

Highly recommended for fans of the author bodyguard romances and rock star romances.

4-stars-small

Morgan - Signature-small
Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review