Categories
Uncategorized

Holiday Book: The Christmas Deal by Keira Andrews

Good Reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48695309-the-christmas-deal?from_search=true&qid=rhYywnxtoV&rank=2

Blurb

Will fake boyfriends become the real deal this holiday?

It’s the most wonderful time of the year—except ex-Marine Logan is jobless and getting evicted. Worse, he’s a new single dad with a stepson who hates him. A kid needs stability—not to mention presents under the tree—and Logan’s desperate.

Then he meets lonely Seth and makes a deal.

Can Logan temporarily pretend to be live-in boyfriends to increase Seth’s chances at a promotion? If it provides a roof over their heads for the holidays, hell yeah. Logan considers himself straight—he doesn’t count occasional hookups with guys—but he can fake it. Besides, with his shy little smile, Seth is surprisingly sexy.

Make that damn sexy.

Shocked that Seth has only been with one man, Logan can’t resist sweetening their deal to teach him the joys of casual sex. No strings attached. No feelings. No kissing.

No falling for each other.

Easy, right?

The Christmas Deal is a steamy holiday gay romance novel from Keira Andrews featuring fake boyfriends, bisexual awakening, a clueless single dad with an angry preteen, and of course a happy ending.

Review
Christmas deal is a short story by Keira Andrews definitely holiday centered. It is the typical fake boyfriend scenario but of course it has some interesting elements like the fact that Logan was married very briefly to Connor’s dad and then Connor‘s mother dies and leaves Logan as a single-parent. Logan identifies as straight , however, he has some bisexual leanings that he is mostly in denial about. Seth is a sweetie who is definitely repressed due to a highly religious background. They get together through Logan’s sister and end up having to fake a relationship. Things that I loved : the relationship between Logan and Connor. The growth Seth did in regards to his family. What I didn’t necessarily see was a lot of development between Logan and Seth-  they seemed to have a relationship based mostly on the physical. However, we get a lovely epilogue that shows that they are doing really great down the line. Highly recommended. Four stars.

4 star



Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Mr. Right Now by Annabeth Albert

Goodreads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48481844-mr-right-now?ac=1&from_search=true&qid=gmVbM2DFaa&rank=1

Blurb
He’s Mr. Right Now, but for how long?

When Russ suffers a Thanksgiving disaster, his gorgeous neighbor Esteban is there to save the day. And after an innocent mix-up leads to the former Hollywood hottie playing the role of Russ’s date, Russ thinks scoring Esteban as his fake boyfriend is a huge win. The newly discharged marine is healing inside and out and could use some holiday cheer.

For his part, Esteban is intrigued by his big, bad neighbor. He likes how his matchmaking cat brings out an unexpected caring side of Russ. Desire flares as the reasons to continue their ruse pile up for both men.

And pretending feels so good. From chocolaty kisses to late night cuddles, their burgeoning friendship is getting cozier and cozier. But as the end date for their little deception looms, all the real feelings they’ve tried to ignore come tumbling in. Each must decide whether they have what it takes to ring in the New Year as a couple.

Mr. Right Now is a stand-alone holiday novella with sweet, low-angst feels, spicy love scenes, and foodie inspired, quirky Oregon romance with a military flavor. Happy ending guaranteed with no cliffhangers!

Review

This is the perfect Fake relationship trope story, I like that they stumble into it and not plan in as a scheme of some sort. Russ and Esteban have this easy friendship that gets better the more time they spend together. I also enjoyed how, despite them making plans to ‘break up’, they keep getting pushed back, until they realize this had become much more then pretend.
Russ was my favorite character, he’s doing some big life changes and I could relate to that. He’s going after his dreams, figuring out what he wants, and that includes Esteban. Never giving up and going for it even when it’s out of his comfort zone. He inspires me to dream nigger, do better.

They are both well rounded characters for such a short story, with specific interests, tastes and personalities. Annabeth puts her unique touch into every story, with military heroes I always enjoy reading about. Also, there was just enough heat to keep satisfied, even though I would love more, but in a novella you have to balance every story component.
Sweet HEA, Romantic with just the right amount of taste for more, Mr. Right Now is the perfect Christmas Romance to bring a smile and warmth to your heart this holiday season.

Number of stars out of 5
3.5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Best Man (Close Proximity #1) by Lily Morton

GOOD READS

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48316789-best-man

Blurb
Zeb Evans doesn’t do messy.

The product of a disorganized and chaotic childhood, Zeb likes order and control, and as the boss of his own employment agency he can give that to himself. Life runs along strict lines and he never mixes business with pleasure. Everything in his life lives in neat, alphabetized boxes. Until Jesse.

Jesse Reed is Zeb’s complete opposite. He’s chaos personified. A whirling cyclone of disorder. He’s also charming and funny and a very unwanted distraction.

Which is why it comes as a complete surprise to Zeb to find himself asking Jesse to pose as his boyfriend for a few days in the country at a wedding.

Zeb doesn’t do impulsive, but as the time away progresses, he finds himself increasingly drawn to the merry and irreverent Jesse. But can he bring himself to break the hard-won lessons he’s learnt in life? And even if he can, how could Jesse be attracted to him anyway? He’s so much older than Jesse, not to mention being his boss.

From the bestselling author of the Mixed Messages and Finding Home series comes a warm and funny romance about one man’s fight for control and another man’s determination to circumvent it.

This is the first book in the Close Proximity series, but it can be read as a standalone.

Review
This book was a fun, sweet read…everything I expect from Lily Morton!!
I loved all the pining in this book. Both Jesse and Zeb have mutual crushes on each other but don’t act on it for years!!! I don’t always like fake boyfriend stories, since they all seem the same, but Lily weaved a lot of humor into this story so this one standout. There are some wonderful side characters introduced in this story, hopefully they all get their happy endings too!
Cannot recommend this one enough!!!

5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook: Wake Up Married Serial, Episodes 1-3 By: Leta Blake, Alice Griffiths Narrated by: John Solo

audiobookreview

Audible

https://www.audible.com/pd/Wake-Up-Married-Serial-Episodes-1-3-Audiobook/B07S66BB4J?qid=1561171689&sr=1-1&pf_rd_p=e81b7c27-6880-467a-b5a7-13cef5d729fe&pf_rd_r=M0H3ARN2V3TZQKACZQYQ&ref=a_search_c3_lProduct_1_1

Blurb

Join the fun in this soapy serial by best-selling author Leta Blake and newcomer Alice Griffiths!

Episode 1: Will & Patrick Wake Up Married

After a drunken night of hot sex in Vegas, strangers Will Patterson and Dr. Patrick McCloud wake up married. A quickie divorce is the most obvious way out – unless you’re the heir of a staunchly Catholic mafia boss with a draconian position on the sanctity of marriage. Throw their simmering attraction into the mix and all bets are off!

Episode 2: Will & Patrick Meet the Family

Meeting the family is challenging for every new couple. But for Will and Patrick, the awkward family moments only grow more hilarious – and painful – when they must hide the truth of their predicament from the people they care about most. Throw in the sexual tension flaring between them and you’ve got a recipe for madcap laughs and surprisingly heartwarming feels.

Episode 3: Will & Patrick Do the Holidays

A couple’s first holiday season is always a special time. Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve are magical when you’re in love. Too bad Will and Patrick’s marriage is a sham and they’re only faking their affection for each other. Or are they? Sparks fly in this episode of the Wake Up Married serial. Will the sexual tension between Will and Patrick finally explode in a needy night of passion? Or will they continue to deny their feelings?

Review

This was one of those audios that, while I thoroughly enjoyed John Solo’s narration, I had some issues with the story. I had a real hard time getting drawn into the story. I actually had to stop and go back quite a few times. My big issue was with the characters. Patrick was obnoxious and Will, with his constant pining for his jerk of an ex was really frustrating. I might pick up the remaining books in this series just to see how it wraps up but I found this one lacking.

3 stars for story and 5 for narration


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Coming Soon: The Doctor’s Date By Heidi Cullinan

June 18

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/the-doctors-date-by-heidi-cullinan-10557-b

Blurb

Sequel to The Doctor’s Secret

Copper Point Medical: Book Two

The hospital’s least eligible bachelor and its aloof administrator hate each other… so why are they pretending to date?

Dr. Owen Gagnon and HR director Erin Andreas are infamous for their hospital hallway shouting matches. So imagine the town’s surprise when Erin bids an obscene amount of money to win Owen in the hospital bachelor auction—and Owen ups the ante by insisting Erin move in with him.

Copper Point may not know what’s going on, but neither do Erin and Owen. Erin intends his gesture to let Owen know he’s interested. Owen, on the other hand, suspects ulterior motives—that Erin wants a fake relationship as a refuge from his overbearing father.

With Erin suddenly heading a messy internal investigation, Owen wants to step up and be the hero Erin’s never had. Too bad Erin would rather spend his energy trying to rescue Owen from the shadows of a past he doesn’t talk about.

This relationship may be fake, but the feelings aren’t. Still, what Erin and Owen have won’t last unless they put their respective demons to rest. To do that, they’ll have to do more than work together—they’ll have to trust they can heal each other’s hearts.

Review
I absolutely loved this story!!! Heidi gives us her take on two men going from enemies to fake boyfriend to sweet, loving partners.
Erin and Owen spend a lot of their time together snarking and stepping on each other’s toes but they both end up wanting to protect and rescue the other from their demons. I felt so much anguish learning about their pasts.
This book was pure emotional romance. Erin and Owen had such a strong emotional connection. There are a few make out scenes that are extremely mild considering this is a Heidi Cullinan book.
I suggest reading the first book, The Doctor’s Secret since almost all of the characters in this story are in that one as well. This book also continues the arc from the first book about the overbearing hospital board.
This was a great story with lots of emotions and sweetness. I strongly recommend it!
5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
New Adult

Recent Release: Living on a Dare (Shore Thing #1) by Grace Kilian Delaney

Good Reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/44835269-living-on-a-dare?from_search=true

Blurb

Stuntman Draven O’Connor never turns down a dare—even if it means getting down on one knee to propose to his former college roommate and friend. The same man he’s been crushing on since the first day they met. The same man that has grown distant over the past year. And the same man who just agreed to be his fiancé.

Julien Bouchard is tired of living a lie. He spent the past year exploring his sexuality in secret, enduring countless dates with women to appease his mother, and dodging his best friend, Draven, who knows everything there is to know about him, except the one thing that could change their friendship. Ready to face his friend, he meets him at a bar and is greeted by an unexpected marriage proposal. The dare isn’t surprising; it’s the scorching hot kiss that sends Julien’s head and heart in a tailspin—and gives him an idea for the perfect plan.

But his plan hits a bump when news of their fake engagement spreads to their families as fast as a wildfire, forcing them to confront their true feelings about each other and hope they don’t get burned.

Review

Phenomenal book. You meet college roommates and best friends Julian and Draven. Both men have pined for the other, though Julian hadn’t realized until later. Julian’s mother and father made me cringe every time I read their parts. Hated how Julian let them treat him, but it’s relatable. Especially the “what ifs”. What started as a harmless prank proposal brought the real feelings to the surface along with Julian learning the extent of his family’s tolerance. Not many steamy moments, but the ones that were there are very hot. I loved reading how sweet and easy flowing things are with the guys. Draven had a really bad relationship that caused him to be very guarded, but both laid their insecurities in their own time. Was a nail biter when Draven had an accident. Happy when things smoothed out for the couple. Definitely recommend this book.

Number of stars out of 5

5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook: Wanted – Bad Boyfriend by TA Moore narrated by Michael Mola

audiobookreview

Dreamspinner

Link: https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/wanted-bad-boyfriend-by-ta-moore-9824-b

Blurb: Island Classifieds: Book One

His mother. His best friend. The barmaid at the local pub. Everyone is determined to find Nathan Moffatt a boyfriend. It’s the last thing Nathan wants. After spending every day making sure his clients experience nothing but romantic magic, the Granshire Hotel’s wedding organizer just wants to go home, binge watch crime dramas, and eat pizza in his underwear.
Unfortunately, no one believes him, and he’s stuck with lectures about dying alone. Then inspiration strikes. He needs the people in his life to want him to stay single as much as he does. He needs a bad boyfriend.

There’s only one man for the job.

Flynn Delaney is used to people on the island of Ceremony thinking the worst of him. But he isn’t sure he wants the dubious honor of worst boyfriend on the entire island. On the other hand, if he plays along, he gets to hang out with the gorgeous Nathan and piss off the owners of the Granshire Hotel. It’s a win-win.

There’s only one problem—Flynn’s actually quite a good boyfriend, and now Nathan’s wondering if getting off the sofa occasionally is really the worst thing in the world.

Review:
Book reviewed earlier. https://openskyebookreviews.com/release-day-review-wanted-bad-boyfriend-by-ta-moore/
This is a story set in the UK, so I was surprised (and disappointed) that the narration was done in an American accent. Once I got over that, I settled into listening.
Michael Mola did a good job with the character voices, capturing the sarcasm, humour and much of emotions of both MCs. Unfortunately, I had imagined the characters with English accents, so that took away from my enjoyment.
Otherwise, it’s not a bad way to experience the book.

Story: 4 stars out of 5
Narration: 3.5 stars out of 5
Reviewer Name: Dee



Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Release Day Review: My Fair Brady By K.C. Wells

release day review

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/my-fair-brady-by-kc-wells-10232-b

Blurb

A spur of the moment invitation changes two lives.

Jordan Wolf’s company runs like a well-oiled machine. At least until his PA, Brady Donovan, comes down with the flu and takes sick leave. Then Jordan discovers what a treasure Brady is and who really keeps his business—and Jordan in particular—moving like clockwork. So when Jordan needs a plus-one, Brady seems the obvious choice to accompany him. After a major shopping trip to get Brady looking the part, however…. Wow.

Brady has a whole new wardrobe, and now his boss is whisking him away for a weekend party. Something is going on, something Brady never expected: Jordan is looking at him like he’s never seen him before, electrifying Brady’s long-hidden desires.

But can the romantic magic last when the weekend is over and it’s back to reality?

 

Review

Jordan leads an extremely well-organized life thanks to his very efficient personal assistant Brady. Jordan never realized how much Brady did for him until one day Brady fell ill and started missing work. After spending time nursing Brady back to health Jordan started feeling the beginning of attraction. Brady has been in love with Jordan almost since the beginning of working for him. When Jordan asks him to come with him to a party as a “fake boyfriend” he jumps at the chance. The sparks fly between these two men. My Fair Brady was a sweet angst free read that I highly recommend.

4.5 out of 5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook: Love Happens Anyway by RJ Scott Narrated by Sean Crisden

audiobookreview

Audible Link

https://www.audible.com/pd/Love-Happens-Anyway-Audiobook/B07KFPTB1Q?qid=1545259106&sr=sr_1_11&ref=a_search_c3_lProduct_1_11&pf_rd_p=e81b7c27-6880-467a-b5a7-13cef5d729fe&pf_rd_r=YHWG1TZ8336AY89GBJ7V&

Blurb

Hiring a boyfriend for Christmas, what could possibly go wrong?
Derek is facing yet another Christmas where his life feels out of control. He has a new career that doesn’t feel like his, and parents who would just love to see him settled down. All he needs is a temporary buffer for the parties he has to attend, and for his parents to leave him alone. Enter, Luke.
Luke is 20,000 dollars short for the renovations on Halligans, his family’s bar in New York’s Financial District. A favor for a buddy has him agreeing to play the part of boyfriend to a guy with more money than sense.
But when the spirit of Christmas works its magic on the two men, and they begin to fall for each other, Derek runs scared, and Luke needs space.
It doesn’t matter what obstacles you throw in the way of love, or how much you run in the other direction, because, when you’re least expecting it, whether you want it or not, love happens anyway.

Review

Soooo cute! This is adorable! We have a really sweet guy who has hit a rough patch and an adorable but weaker guy who hasn’t really stood up to his folks like he should.

This is pretty much the ideal set up for a “fake boyfriend” and it plays out pretty wonderfully.

I found it easy to fall into and was mostly swept away – the narration helped make this so easy!

There were a couple of things that brought me out of the story. Derek’s life is too easy and I didn’t always understand why his super sweet family was the cause of such angst. I also felt like he was offering a huge sum of money for 4 dates without sex.

But… it was pretty fun and I enjoyed it – especially with Sean Crisden’s narration – his voice is so sexy and easy to listen to!

4 of 5 stars for the story and 5 of 5 for the narration

4.5 of 5 stars overall


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Time to Comfort: Love Me Louder by Christina Lee

Good Reads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40663475-love-me-louder?from_search=true

Blurb
Noah Dixon is damaged goods. After an accident leaves him physically scarred and emotionally vulnerable, dating isn’t in the cards, so he throws himself head-first into his retail job. When he’s obligated to attend his best friend’s engagement party on Fire Island, it dawns on him he’s about to spend yet another weekend feeling totally invisible and alone among a swarm of gorgeous men.

That’s when the idea of an escort comes in.

After Will Crossen was forced to put his theater major on hold in favor of two jobs to tackle his ailing mother’s hospital bills, he tells himself becoming an escort isn’t that big of a deal. It’s just another form of acting, right? He doesn’t expect his newest customer to be the cheery, overconfident sales associate he avoids like the plague at his day job. Talk about awkward.

But what happens on Fire Island stays on Fire Island…especially when a smoldering attraction sparks into flames. Will doesn’t feel so alone anymore, and for the first time, Noah realizes someone is seeing him behind all the scars. But between their jobs, Will’s massive familial responsibilities, and Noah’s vulnerabilities, they don’t stand a chance unless they find a way to let love speak louder than their demons.

Review
I enjoyed this story immensely!!

It had everything I want in a romance: emotional depth and a real connection between the MC’s, great chemistry and a lovely slow-burn hurt/comfort theme.
Throw in the excitement and angst that comes with falling for a fake boyfriend and I knew I was in for an allnighter because no way was I putting this book down!

Noah feels inadequate and has a very low self-image, especially with regards to his appearance. Initially, this skews his view on the world, read Will, and he has a difficult time accepting that Will might be genuinely attracted to him.

Will takes care of his mother and works two jobs to make ends meet, giving up his dream of a career in the theatre. I love his sense of responsibility and family.

Noah and Will dance around each other and their true feelings for quite some time, afraid to give too much away and get hurt, hesitant to believe that what they share between them could be real.

I love how the fake boyfriend trope was written here, with the closed-off colleague turning out to be an escort! The author didn’t take the easy way out by turning the route of insta-lust, but slowly let the feelings build, raising the emotional stakes bit by bit.

We get to reconnect with some of my all-time favorite characters as well, which was a delightful surprise!
Tate & Sebastian are such an adorable couple and I loved that Tate’s alter ego, Frieda Love, was the one to give Noah and Will that final little nudge to help them confess their true feelings to one another!

As is the case in all her books, Christina Lee surrounds her MC’s with engaging, three-dimensional secondary characters, be they family, friends or co-workers, drawing us into the wonderful fictional world she created. If only there was a portal the reader could step through to make their acquaintance!

I loved the title of this book so much!! Its message is incredibly apt and feels so true to these two amazing characters.
The extraordinary Frieda Love sums it up marvelously:

“Sometimes people need you to love them a little louder!”

Number of stars out of 5: 5


Review copy provided by Author