Categories
adult - 18+

The Captain and the Baker (The Captivating Captains #7) by Catherine Curzon and Eleanor Harkstead

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/54451031-the-captain-and-the-baker?ac=1&from_search=true&qid=3fYNEGJETN&rank=1

Blurb
When a hot-tempered TV chef and a mild-mannered baker meet on the rugged Cornish coast, they’ve got the perfect ingredients for a red-hot snack.

Sweary and stressed celebrity chef Jake Brantham is the captain of several floating restaurants. When he’s sent to the idyllic village of Porthavel to turn a pirate ship into the next gastronomic sensation, it’s the last place on earth he wants to be.

Locryn Trevorrow is the bakery king of Cornwall. From the humble pasty to a wedding cake fit for a mermaid queen, there’s nothing he doesn’t know about the art of baking. He lives in a cosy world of gingham and ganache, but at night he goes home to his smugglers’ cottage alone.

When he’s adopted by a lost kitten, Jake soon discovers that there’s more to Portavel than cream teas, lobster pots, and the annoyingly fastidious Locryn. As the village prepares for the wedding of its favourite young couple, Jake and Locryn find themselves as unlikely matchmakers for two locals who’d given up on love.

Torn between the call of Hollywood and the kisses of Locryn, will Jake choose a mansion in Beverly Hills or a cottage on the Cornish coast?

Review
The Captain and the Baker was another delightful read in the Captivating Captains series. I am obsessed with cooking shows and competitions, add in British humour and this book had everything I like.
The main characters, Loc and Jake are complete opposites. I loved all the banter between these two. My only negative about this book was that it was told from only one point of view, I really would have loved to get some scenes from Loc’s view. Otherwise this is a fun, quick read.
I highly recommend this book!!
4 stars



Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Abstract Love by: Sara Dobie Bauer

Publisher and link to book (i.e. Goodreads)
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/53977278-abstract-love

Blurb
Sam never expected to move back to Cleveland.
Donovan never expected to be attracted to a man.
Well, shit happens.

After high school, Sam Shelby moved to New York. Eight years later, he returns to Cleveland and lands a job at the best ad firm in town. It would be the perfect gig, if his boss weren’t such an ass.

After his wife leaves, Donovan Cooper questions everything. The arrival of a young, arrogant, gifted graphic designer at Donovan’s firm is the last straw.

Tempers flare over office gossip, and following a nasty argument and scathing kiss, Donovan flails away from heterosexuality while Sam struggles to keep his “no relationship” rule intact.

Despite ugly socks, fiery fights, and their best intentions to not fall in love, these bullheaded coworkers can’t deny their chemistry. Donovan seeks happiness while Sam seeks success, but is there room for more?

Review
I had no idea what I was getting into when I chose this book. The blurb intrigued me. I am so very happy I did. This book is going on my read again list. Both Donovan and Sam are such real characters. Each of them are going through their own problems and never expected to be drawn to each other. The push and pull between them was captivating. Donovan realises he is stuck in a rut, so stuck he doesn’t know how to get out until he meets Sam. Sam is fighting old demons. What I like about this book is that neither of them is the answer to each other’s problems but together they make coping with them more bearable. I admit in the beginning I wasn’t certain about the gay for you aspect of the story but it completely works. The secondary characters of Zen and Monica provide humour making the story less heavy.
This book impressed me enough that I’m now going to check out other works by Sara Dobie Bauer, can’t believe I haven’t found her work before.

Number of stars out of 5 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Deadman’s Hand By: Cindy Dees

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/dead-mans-hand-by-cindy-dees-11680-

Blurb
Temptation, peril, and dirty poker.

Love is a high-stakes game.

When Collin Callahan, British secret agent, goes up against math genius turned surfer bum Oliver Elliot, the battle is epic—and so is the attraction. They’re pitted against each other in an exclusive, ultra-secret—and ultra-illegal—poker match in Gibraltar, but when players start dying and they could be next, they find a common goal: catch the killer before it’s too late.

Evenly matched at poker and romance, they each wrestle personal demons that threaten to consume them as the stakes climb. It’s an all-or-nothing gamble with both life and love on the line as they fight to be the last seven-card studs standing.

Previously published by Dreamspinner Press as Seven-Card Stud by Ava Drake, November 2016

Review
I pondered how to write a 3 * review for a book I really liked. In book 1 Wild Cards Inc provides personal security. In this story their operative Colin Callahan is an inexperienced undercover agent. The story is a mix of suspense, who done it, and thriller. Colin is pretending to be an expert card player in very high stake game. It did keep my at I really wanted to know what happened next. Colin meets Gun (Oliver) and falls for him but can he trust him. I enjoyed the way the story played out up until the end. This is where my review drops. I want to know what happens next. I don’t have the imagination of an author to create the rest of the story myself. I had hoping that since this is a republished series the ending was fleshed out or if not another book is added that gives Colin and Gun’s next adventure bringing down the Consortium. Fingers crossed that happens.


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Omega Replaced (Omega Reimagined #5) by Tanya Chris

Good Reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50996431-omega-replaced

Blurb
Alpha Donovan is certain about one thing. His work recovering missing omegas who’ve been separated from their protectors is a service—to the alphas who hire him and to the omegas themselves. What he’s less confident about is his unconventional desire to be dominated by someone as strong as he is. No alpha is supposed to want that.

When Donovan arrives in North Leland, he expects it to be just another job. Find the omega, bring her home. Then he meets Judge Tarek, the gorgeous alpha determined to thwart his mission. Tarek disapproves of his job, but not his fantasies, which he’s ready and oh-so-able to fulfill.

Everything is backwards in this strange town. Wanting another alpha’s teeth in your neck is okay, but returning an omega to their rightful place isn’t? Donovan has a lot to learn, and if he can’t change his way of thinking fast enough, he’s going to lose what he’s never allowed himself to believe he could have.

Omega Replaced is an alpha/alpha novella with BDSM components in the Omega Reimagined series. It can be read as part of the series or as a standalone. This is a non-MPREG omegaverse.

Review

Wonderful omegaverse romance. It had everything I wanted in this genre: well-rounded main characters, a strong attraction between the potential mates but an important enough conflict to make things difficult for them, intriguing secondary characters and a good storyline.
I really liked the world-building in this book and thought it was very interesting how the author played around with stereotypes and societal conventions based on gender and sexual orientation. Donovan has a hard time breaking away from the toxic ideas that were instilled in him at childhood, even though they go counter to his own needs and identity, and that inner struggle to me added a welcome sense of realism and depth to the story. The chemistry between Tarek and Donovan is absolutely sizzling, but I also liked the patience and vulnerability Tarek showed to Donovan. Tarek is very open about his feelings and intentions, but Donovan still has a hard time daring to trust in the possibility of a future where he can be himself, be happy. Very enjoyable read, definitely recommend it.

 

Number of stars out of 5: 4


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: The Captain and the Squire (The Captivating Captains #5) by Catherine Curzon, Eleanor Harkstead

Pride Publishing

https://www.pride-publishing.com/book/the-captain-and-the-squire

Blurb

A sexy city boy and a country squire will set the countryside alight!

Tarquin Bough is a tweedy squire with an ambitious fiancée who controls his every move. He’s also the owner of the finest collection of saucy artefacts in the world. From Christine Keeler’s eyelash to the Virgin Queen’s dildo, they’re all safe in Tarquin’s care.

Christopher Hardacre is a city-slicker with the tighest jodhpurs and the most smackable bottom in London. He’s given up the ratrace for a country life as captain of the village rowing team. The only trouble is, he’s lost his money to a ruthless scam and Bough Bottoms is his last hope of a home.

But Chris hasn’t reckoned on his late uncle’s will. The house comes with a sitting porcine tenant and if Chris can’t look after his newly-acquired pet pig, he’ll lose his inheritance and his last chance at happiness.

When Tarquin sees Chris it’s lust at first sight, but dare he be honest about his feelings in a village where being gay is bound to be a hot topic? As soon as Chris and Tarquin get together, it’s the hottest summer this little corner of England has ever known.

With a scheming local hotshot out to turn the beloved pig into sausages, can the captain and the squire save everybody’s bacon?

Review

The Captain and the Squire is the fifth installment of the Captivating Captains series. Each book is a delightful standalone story.
This book is extremely well written. It is full of humorous banter and witty characters. I admit it took a bit for me to get into the story. It reads very much like an old historical romance. Tarquin, who comes off as a very eccentric character, talks like he belongs in Victorian England. Christopher, the other main character, has come to collect his inheritance but gets thrown for a loop when he finds out that he has become a caretaker to one very spoiled pig!!
This was a very fun read!

4.5 star


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Heartward by Andrew Grey

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/heartward-by-andrew-grey-10879-b

Blurb
He doesn’t know that home is where his heart will be….

Firefighter Tyler Banik has seen his share of adventure while working disaster relief with the Red Cross. But now that he’s adopted Abey, he’s ready to leave the danger behind and put down roots. That means returning to his hometown—where the last thing he anticipates is falling for his high school nemesis.

Alan Pettaprin isn’t the boy he used to be. As a business owner and council member, he’s working hard to improve life in Scottville for everyone. Nobody is more surprised than Alan when Tyler returns, but he’s glad. For him, it’s a chance to set things right. Little does he guess he and Tyler will find the missing pieces of themselves in each other. Old rivalries are left in the ashes, passion burns bright, and the possibility for a future together stretches in front of them….

But not everyone in town is glad to see Tyler return….

Review
Another winner by Andrew Grey!!!

Heartward is a wonderful story. I adored the characters in this story. Tyler has come back to town to try and make a home for his young son Abey. After taking his father’s position on the town council, Alan is determined to help improve life in town for all members of the community. Alan and Tyler weren’t friendly as kids but when they reunite as adults the attraction is mutual and luckily neither let their past hold them back. I absolutely loved the story surrounding Tyler’s son Abey. I was happy to see Geoff and Eli from the Love Means…series show up. There is a little drama in the background in the form of Tyler’s boss who may or may not be up to no good.

I highly recommend this heartwarming story!!

5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Retro Read: Cold War (Cold War #1) by Keira Andrews

Good Reads
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20493931-cold-war?from_search=true&qid=NXt5XKrdKj&rank=1

Blurb

After an explosive locker room confrontation with his Russian rival ends in the most surprising and intense sex of his life, American pairs skater Dev Avira needs to refocus. He’s worked for years to win Olympic gold, and he can’t let himself—or his partner—down. Distraction in the form of steely and smoldering Mikhail Reznikov is the last thing he needs as he prepares for the biggest competition of his life.

But with the Games only days away, they can’t keep their hands off each other. Dev soon learns that beneath Mikhail’s arrogant and aloof exterior is Misha, a passionate man who warms Dev’s heart and scorches his bed. They’re both determined to win, but for Misha his freedom could be on the line. Can Dev put his deepening feelings on ice as he goes for gold?

Review

I’d read this a long time ago and when I recently read another by the author and found there was a book 2 I’d missed I re-read this so I could enjoy book 2. What a find! I forgot about these two and though so much has happened over the last few years – especially at the Olympic level, I feel this is still very apt.

I really loved how willing they both are to keep their relationship going when they really shouldn’t. The way that Misha is willing to go all in – despite the horrible consequences is what romance is all about – in my book.

Highly recommended to fans of the author, angst, skating, toppy tops and athletic bottoms.

4.5 stars


Copy Purchased for Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook: Deal maker by Lily Morton Audiobook narrated by Joel Leslie

audiobookreview

Audible
https://www.audible.com/pd/Deal-Maker-Audiobook/B07YGWH9MT?pf_rd_p=f7d83ab4-b13f-4b8d-8333-ba0de3107275&pf_rd_r=XT0YA13M5730HHKA4GGJ&ref=a_pd_Rule-B_c5_adblp13nABCD_1_1

Blurb

Sometimes your mouth makes deals that your heart can’t honour.

Jude is a highly successful model, but a very reluctant one. His life is full of casual hook-ups with pretty men in glamorous locations, but it’s still empty. However, circumstances decreed a long time ago that this was his path, so he’s resolutely stayed on it and accepted his fate with good grace. He made a deal with himself and his hook-ups. Get in, get out and no ties with anyone.

However, an accident at home one night leads to him making a new deal and accepting the offer of help from an unlikely source. It leads to an unexpected summer of falling in love with a larger than life man and his child.

But by the end of the summer his reasons for not staying are still valid. Will he turn away? Can he?

Asa is a talented actor who has spent time away from the scene to look after his son. But now he’s back, and the last thing he needs are complications from the gorgeous man who is staying with him. Scarred from too many betrayals, he has no intention of forming a lasting tie with anyone. However, he can’t resist the beautiful man with secrets, and to his horror he develops feelings.

But a deal’s a deal and they said it was just for the summer. What can Asa do with a man who has forever in his eyes and goodbye on his lips?

From the Amazon bestselling author of ‘Rule Breaker’ comes another scorchingly hot romantic comedy.

Review

Unlike the first book in the series that took some effort to get into, I liked this one from the start. Jude is the perfect snarky character to ever grace a books pages, he does his outmost to be a ditzy, clueless model parody to make Asa’s life difficult. And as funny as that was, I liked that the author didn’t take it too far or it could have been annoying. Asa, for his part, is also a clever witty man and catches on to Jude’s act, shifting their relationship to a new territory.
Asa is just a big old cuddly softy that makes the ultimate book boyfriend, and his relationship with his son is sweet and touching. Billy is the cutest, most conniving little boy you can imagine and seeing how Asa and Jude orbit around his was wonderful.
I liked how much Jude was a well-rounded character, he had many good reasons to be the way he was, and Asa did too. It made the conflict of the story that much more interesting because you could clearly take either side. Finding their HEA was not easy and they each had to fight old scars and pain from past relationships to get it.
This book is both funny and genuinely touching, with great supporting characters too. The replies to fan mail Jude writes in Asa’s name at the beginning of ever chapter are hilarious! Choosing to read them out in Asa’s voice is even more so!

The narration by Joel Leslie is, like always fantastic! He fits characters like Jude and Dylan so well and his accent work his so good! I cannot get enough of his accents, he’s like a chameleon, smoothly moving from character to character. This book was hilarious and he just made it that much better with his nuances and acting skills.

Number of stars out of 5
4


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Suckerpunch (Hockey Gods and Monsters #1) by Elyse Springer

Dreamspinner
https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/suckerpunch-by-elyse-springer-10800-b

Blurb

A rookie goalie with a secret and a handsome yet hotheaded defenseman clash in the locker room and on the ice—but their shared desire to make the playoffs might help them move from enemies to lovers.

When the goalie for the Seattle Cascades hockey team is injured while drunk driving and Alex Fanning is recruited to take his place, Alex thinks his dream has come true. But to hold on to his hopes, he must keep his vampire heritage secret as the sport moves to ban Paranormals. The sexy but infuriating defenseman Sasha Petrov won’t make that easy. The injured goalie was his best friend, and he resents Alex’s presence—maybe even enough to use his bloodline against him.

Tensions mount, but the realization that there’s more to their feelings than animosity hits both men like a punch to the gut. Alex and Sasha’s newfound friendship promises passion, but a shocking betrayal could cost them all the ground they’ve gained

Review

This was so much fun! It was great hockey with lots of authentic information that illustrated the author’s knowledge of the sport. It had a compelling alt universe that demonstrated a layer of bigotry that can be used to illustrate any number of biases that are surely occurring in the sport (and in our nation).

The romance was so sweet – slow burn, full of miscommunication and sexual tension.

I loved the HEA and I really hope this is the beginning of a long series because I can’t wait to see more from this world!

Recommended!

5 of 5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook: Troubled Water by: HJ Welch narrated by Nick J. Russo

audiobookreview

Audible

https://www.audible.com/pd/Troubled-Waters-Audiobook/B07YY7VRL2?qid=1571592234&sr=1-3&pf_rd_p=e81b7c27-6880-467a-b5a7-13cef5d729fe&pf_rd_r=ECNKBEQF2EWH204J6ZFM&ref=a_search_c3_lProduct_1_3

Blurb
Scout Duffy doesn’t know what’s worse. The fact that his scorching one-night stand is his bratty new client, or the fact that he doesn’t even remember Scout. But beneath all the bravado, Scout can see Emery is terrified, and he’ll do anything to protect him from his attacker. If only he would lower his walls and let Scout into his heart as easily as he lets him dominate in the bedroom…

Being out and proud his whole life means Emery Klein has never been safe. But now, his charity work and social media fame have put a target on his back from bigots, and his friends force him to hire a private bodyguard. Emery doesn’t need to be judged by some straight former boxer, but his attraction to the gorgeous hunk is insatiable. When Emery finally recognizes Scout, they can’t keep their damn hands off one another, if only for as long as Scout’s in town.

There’s a reason Emery never looks too closely at the men he sleeps with, just like there’s a reason Scout lives out of a suitcase in motel rooms. Will two men hiding from hurt realize the love that could heal them both is right in front of them? Or will Emery’s attacker take everything before they have the chance?

Review
There is wealth and depth of stories weaving together in this book. insert have an enemy to lover, employer to employee not to mention the mystery of who was out to get Emery. In the beginning I found Emery so annoying and frivolous. He felt like a character that didn’t care about anything that didn’t affect him. I was firmly on Scout’s side, he’s such a sweetheart. Except it started to become tangled. Neither would give ground and I could see that fault lay on both sides. I found it to be a very good twist between the two very different characters. Scout has ethical work decisions to make and Emery has his own reasons for being an absolute princess. In amongst this intriguing will they won’t they romance there is the mystery of who is after Emery. This aspect was in the background but it was never forgotten. I never had a clue who the perpetrator could be.
As always Nick J. Russo gave the characters life and spirit. He brings their personalities to the forefront giving us another dimension.

5 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review