Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Bitter Heat (Heat of Love #3) by Leta Blake

Good reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/47888575-bitter-heat?from_search=true

Blurb

A pregnant omega trapped in a desperate situation, an unattached alpha with a lot to prove, and an unexpected fall into love that could save them both.

Kerry Monkburn is contracted to a violent alpha in prison for brutal crimes. Now pregnant with the alpha’s child, he lives high in the mountains, far above the city that once lured him in with promises of a better life. Enduring bitterness and fear, Kerry flirts with putting an end to his life of darkness, but fate intervenes.

Janus Heelies has made mistakes in the past. In an effort to redeem himself, integrity has become the watchword for his future. Training as a nurse under the only doctor willing to take him on, Janus is resolute in his intentions: he will live cleanly in the mountains and avoid all inappropriate affairs. But he doesn’t anticipate the pull that Kerry exercises on his heart and mind.

As the question of Kerry’s future health and safety comes to an explosive head, only the intervention of fate will see these desperate men through to a happy ending.

This gay romance novel by Leta Blake is the third in the Heat of Love universe which began with Slow Heat. It’s 111,000 words, with a strong happy ending and a critically-acclaimed, non-shifter Omegaverse. It features alphas, betas, omegas, male pregnancy, mpreg, heat, and knotting. Content warning for a violent and oppressive society regarding reproductive rights.

Review

Finally!! Finally we get a new story in this amazing series.

Ever since Alpha Heat I’ve been anxiously waiting to find out how Janus would fare and if he’d get a chance to redeem himself and find the happiness and love he yearns for. He was such an awful, but also such a tormented, almost tragic character. We only got hints of Kerry in Alpha Heat, but enough to know he is a very deserving candidate for true love.

Kerry, as an omega, has very little rights and no way out of his hellish contract with the man who tormented and abused him and so many other omega’s for years. Kerry goes through some really dark times when he discovers he’s pregnant with the child of a man he considers a monster. His pregnancy and all the turmoil and difficult decisions that come with it are handled so very thoughtfully in this story. I loved that Janus did his utmost to be there for Kerry instead of judging him from a place of ignorance and privilege.

Kerry is a man without hope and seeing him ever so slowly fall for Janus, learning to trust, taking that leap of faith, was so satisfying. It reminded me all over again of why I love, no need, romance novels in my life. The draw between Janus and Kerry is undeniable, even when their love seems doomed from the start, so there’s certainly a lot of angst but also the absolute wonder of falling in love, and all the heat and tantalizing sensuality that comes with that.
The world-building in this book, and series, is amazingly intricate, with so much food for thought in its approach to religion (“mainstream” and pagan), family, love and last but not least, gender roles in society. The omega freedom groups are facing almost impossible odds, but I sincerely hope we’ll get to see some changes for the better in coming books.

I loved seeing Caleb and Janus together as friends and the glimpses we get of Caleb’s happy life with Xan, Urho and their children were a treat. I only wish we could’ve gotten a scene with Janus and Xan bonding or finding more on page closure.

The epilogue was surprising in its focus and brought tears to my eyes, because it was so moving and unexpectedly emotional instead of just a sweetly fluffy look into Janus’ and Kerry’s HEA.

Recommend, obviously.

 

Number of stars out of 5: 5

 


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Wrong Way Home – Criminal Delights: Taken by K.A. Merikan

Good Reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42622237-wrong-way-home—criminal-delights

Blurb

— ONE WRONG TURN. ONE RIGHT MAN. —

Colin. Rule-follower. Future doctor. Witness to murder. Captive.
Taron. Survivalist. Mute. Murderer. Captor.

Like every other weekend, Colin is on his way home from university, but he’s taunted by the notion that he never takes risks in life and always follows the beaten path. On impulse, he decides to take a different route. Just this one time. What he doesn’t realize is that it’s the last time he has a choice.
He ends up taking a detour into the darkest pit of horror, abducted by a silent, imposing man with a blood-stained axe. But what seems like his worst nightmare might just prove to be a path to the kind of freedom Colin never knew existed.

Taron has lived alone for years. His land, his rules. He’d given up on company long ago. After all, attachment is a liability. He deals with his problems on his own, but the night he needs to dispose of an enemy, he ends up with a witness to his crime.

The last thing Taron needs is a nuisance of a captive. Colin doesn’t deserve death for setting foot on Taron’s land, but keeping him isn’t optimal either. It’s only when he finds out the city boy is gay that an altogether different option arises. One that isn’t right, yet tempts him every time Colin’s pretty eyes glare at him from the cage.

*
“When Taron looped the heavy metal collar around the slender neck and closed the padlock, his body throbbed with the excitement of knowing he owned this boy.
Was it wrong? Yes, yes it was.
Was it so, so good? Definitely.”

Review

This is an incredibly intense, dark romance, and I absolutely loved it. The darkness doesn’t come solely from the violence in the story, nor Colin’s abduction, but is in large part also a psychological and emotional darkness and that’s what makes this story so gripping. I love that the authors constantly kept the reader on their toes! The story is unnerving and unpredictable and just such a compelling read.

Taron has a really skewed view of reality and is trapped in a solitude of his own making. He’s completely unprepared for Colin and how the other man will change his life. The bond that slowly, ever so slowly, develops between Colin and Taron is profound and deeply emotional, if rooted in a rather difficult, highly unusual and quite frightening situation.

This is definitely something else. Very different from anything I’ve read before. I loved the original ending and where the MC’s ended up. The way to their HEA is fraught with violence, captivity and manipulation, but it also has lots of cats, quiet camaraderie and a scorching hot physical connection.

Definitely recommend!

 

5 stars

 


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review