Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: A Foreign Country by Alex Jane

Good Reads
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/46353750-a-foreign-country?from_search=tru

Blurb
Private Detective John Right’s life is pretty good.

He loathes paperwork and could do without wasting his weekends catching out cheating spouses, but business is booming and he’s sharing his life with Jason, a man he’s still crazy about after three years.

The only downside is his lover’s baffling choice of friends and the fact that John is convinced Jason is keeping secrets from his dark past.

When a late-night phone call leads them to a kidnap victim with amnesia, and a dangerous man from Jason’s previous life suddenly resurfaces, they have much more than just secrets to deal with.

And after their mysterious house guest starts to show more than a passing interest in the detective couple, John is left struggling when his relationship, as well as his detecting skills, are put to the test.

Are they strong enough to resist the temptation of an enigmatic stranger?

Maybe. If they don’t get killed in the meantime

Review
Wow I didn’t expect the epilogue such a teaser, but not I stress a cliffhanger. If you are anything like me I don’t like not knowing what happens next but a gentle tease into the possibilities of the next story is fine. In this story John and Jason are more settled but there are many secrets and hidden truths between them. These start to come out as the case they are investigating unfolds. It’s an unusual case and Alex Jane writes this style so well. Kept me wondering what was coming next, which is what I like. The story line in this book is wrapped up bu I just didn’t have a clue that what was revealed in the epilogue was coming.
Although you can read this as a stand-alone in my opinion you would miss out on the history between John and Jason Mr & Mr Detective book 1 Gazes into You.

4.5 of stars out of 5

Purchased by reviewer

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook: Running With Scissors By LA Witt Narrated by Michael Ferraiuolo

audiobookreview

Audible Link

https://www.audible.com/pd/Running-with-Scissors-Audiobook/B07N7Y711Q?qid=1549302973&sr=1-5&ref=a_search_c3_lProduct_1_5&pf_rd_p=e81b7c27-6880-467a-b5a7-13cef5d729fe&pf_rd_r=G56K1FPHDPT38GMSD558&

Blurb

Eighteen months ago, drummer Jude Colburn made the biggest mistake of his life when he walked away from his band just as they were on the brink of success. Now, he’s got a second chance. The band’s bassist just quit, and Jude plays bass almost as well as he plays drums. The other band members aren’t thrilled, but they are desperate.

Running with Scissors needs him, but there’s one condition: no hooking up with bandmates. That’s what ruined things eighteen months ago, after all. Jude’s on board, but no one warned him about the drummer who replaced him. A.J. Palmer is shy and unassuming . . . until he hits the stage. He gets Jude’s attention from the first beat, and suddenly that “no hookups” rule isn’t so easy to follow.

Keeping secrets on a tour bus isn’t easy either, and it’s only a matter of time before the band catches on. When everything hits the fan, Jude has to choose: a second chance at the career he’s always regretted leaving, or a shot at the man of his dreams?

Review

So I will admit that I mostly skimmed this book.

I LOVE the idea. LOVE the author. LOVE the cover. But I didn’t love the outcome.

Jude left his band high and dry and when he returns he’s told absolutely no hook-ups will be tolerated with other band members. So of course… he and AJ find themselves having to hide their developing love for each other and that causes lots of strife and on again/off again angst. Turns out Jude had a “thing” with another band member and there are unresolved feelings between the two to this day.

I didn’t really like Jude all that much and kinda felt AJ was a bit wishy-washy. So their “passion” was just as uneventful for me. In fact, I thought the most passionate thing in the book was the violent reaction to the hook-up the other band members had rather than the love between our two MCs. (The women in particular were pretty screechy.)

I was kinda hoping for this “super shy on the tour bus” guy to become this totally “hot and madly passionate” guy with his beau but it was kinda luke-warm instead. Usually LA Witt is full of hawt and sexy love scenes sometimes a little on the kinky side, but this was pretty white bread.

I think, had I not had high expectations because of my fandom for the author I wouldn’t have felt as let down, because it is still a “good” book, just not as great as I’d come to expect. (As you can tell from my previous review of Static – I am a big fan of this author.)

So, with that… I give it a fair 3 of 5 stars.

Audio

I think Michael Ferraiuolo adds a LOT to this story. He gives it more depth and makes it more engaging. I really think this is the best way to enjoy this story and recommend it in this format the most.

5 of 5 stars

Overall 4 of 5 stars

Copy Purchased for Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook: Enemies to Lovers: Hostile Ground by LA Witt and Aleksandr Voinov narrated by Nick J Russo

audiobookreview

Audible

https://www.audible.com/pd/Hostile-Ground-Audiobook/B07PJWLDBN?pf_rd_p=ae76b2bb-e63d-4a67-b357-dab3dee05ca1&pf_rd_r=QF3XHHK2W1HP2PT00E1K&ref=a_library_c4_libItem_B07PJWLDBN

Blurb

After the deaths of three undercover cops investigating a drug ring in a seedy strip club in Seattle, Detective Mahir Hussain has been sent to finish the job. He joins the club’s security team in the hopes of finding enough evidence to bust the operation before the men in charge find a reason to put him in a shallow grave. To protect the strippers, only gay men can work the club. Ridley, the cold and intimidating head of security, knows exactly how to test potential new hires-including Mahir. From the minute they meet, Mahir and Ridley engage in a dangerous dance of sex and mind games. Mahir needs to find his evidence before Ridley figures out he’s a cop-and before they both grow too close to betray one another.

As the game goes on, Mahir burrows deeper into the operation, where he learns there’s much more happening than meets the eye . . . and why every cop who made it this far has been silenced with a bullet.

Review

LA Witt is one of my must-read authors, but I had not read anything by Aleksandr Voinov before. Let me tell you, the two of them together are FANTASTIC! I will definitely be updating my TBR list with them in mind.

Hostile Ground is a full-length novel that reads like a novella because it is so fast-paced and page-turning.

What I loved about this book:

– The two MCs are both very alpha but realistic and not over the top. They are both in law enforcement, so you have that certain “cop” element/ego, but both have a nurturing side that they are not afraid to show.
– Kinza, Mahir’s nephew. He added a wonderful element of family and continuity to the story and I am really, really hoping we will see him in a future book!
– The action/mystery part of the story. Usually this part of the book is filler for me. I really like the emotions/relationship part of a romance and the rest is just a vehicle for that. In this book the mystery part of the story (catching the bad guys) was really exciting and kept my interest.
– The relationship/Sex. Super sweet relationship with very hot sex. Enough said.
– Nontraditional characters. I really enjoyed the fact that Mahir is Muslim and not a stereo-type but a full-fledged, unique character who gives us insight into a culture not typically seen in most romances.

What I didn’t love:
– That it ended!
– That I haven’t seen the sequel yet!

This is a fantastic book by a fantastic writing duo and I highly recommend it. I give it 5 out of 5 stars!

Audio

Nick is – yet again – wowing me with his talent! I loved the subtle way he chose to portray Mahir. He does a great job with the LOADS of characters in this story including the young characters and the female.

This absolutely is the best way to enjoy this story – highly recommended!

6 of 5 stars!


Copy Purchased for Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Four by Tia Fielding

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/four-by-tia-fielding-10643-

Blurb
A Love by Numbers Story When unlikely attraction blossoms between a twentysomething genderqueer tattoo artist and an older, small-town veterinarian, both are forced to face their pasts for a chance at a loving future. Four years ago Padraig Donovan lost his husband, the only man he’d ever been with. Now his life consists of the work he loves, a big empty house, and the possibility of a lonely future. Kaos’s experiments with makeup landed him in the hospital at the hands of his disapproving ex. With nowhere else to turn, he flees to Acker, Wisconsin… and runs into a sexy widower and the kindest man he’s ever met. Padraig and Kaos know there’s something worth exploring between them, and as they raise a puppy and deal with the ups and downs of their respective jobs, they fit into each other’s lives in ways they never expected. Being with Kaos—who is so different than the guys he’s always been attracted to—opens up an exciting new world for Padraig. But can he convince Kaos to trust another man with his body… let alone his heart

Review
This is a slow and steady story about two men who have suffered in their life. Because of this the story contains triggers which are sensitively dealt with. I like that this is not a story where finding ‘the one’ means all is cured. Both Kaos and Padraig work work hard at building their relationship. Bonding over the care of a cute puppy. I think that because the story is so steady where there’s no drama or misunderstandings it took me a while to get into it. When I did I found it easy reading and fell for Kaos’s determination and Padraig’s gentleness. Kaos has found a place where he can be himself and found acceptance. Padraig is ready to let go of his husband who died four years ago and move on. Not having read the first book, Ten, I thought the town of Acker was portrayed very well. There are a lot of characters that I assume were introduced in Ten, especially Makai and Emil with secondary parts. I think Four can be read as a stand alone story.

3.5 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Raze (Riven #3) by Roan Parrish

Good reads
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42274594-raze?from_search=true

Blurb

Sometimes the walls we build to save ourselves have to come tumbling down.

For the last ten years, Huey has built his life around his sobriety. If that means he doesn’t give a damn about finding love or companionship for himself, well, it’s probably better that way. After all, the last thing he wants is to hurt anyone else. Until Felix Rainey walks into his bar, fresh-faced, unbearably sweet—and, for some reason Huey can’t fathom, interested in him.

As the eldest of five kids, Felix Rainey spent his childhood cooking dinner, checking homework, and working after-school jobs. Now in his twenties, he’s still scrambling to make ends meet and wondering what the hell he’s doing with his life. When he meets Huey, he’s intimidated . . . and enamored. Huey’s strong and confident, he owns his own business—hell, he’s friends with rock stars. What could he ever see in Felix?

As Huey and Felix get closer, the spark catches and soon they can’t get enough of each other. But Huey’s worked hard to avoid intimacy, and Felix threatens his carefully constructed defenses. Huey realizes he needs to change if he wants to truly put his past behind him—and build a future with Felix.

Review

This was so, so good!
It took me awhile to get into this because I was really nervous about the entire “sobriety” thing that is a recurring theme in the series but – though it is definitely a main theme – it almost took a back seat to the really sweet and awkward romance between these two totally mismatched heroes.

I loved that Felix had to really dig deep and find his own happiness and how Huey had to admit his “patterns” were no longer helpful.

The heat is just right – a fair amount of steam but this is really more about the feels.

Highly recommended! I think it’s best when read as part of the series but it can absolutely stand on its own.

5 of 5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook: Embracing His Syn by A.E Via; narrated by Aiden Snow

audiobookreview

Audible

https://www.audible.com/search?keywords=embracing+syn&ref=

Blurb:
Sergeant Corbin ‘Syn’ Sydney had dedicated his life to becoming the best detective. So when he heard there was an opening on the notorious Atlanta Narcotics Task Force, he jumped at the chance. But, what he wasn’t ready for was realizing just how lonely he’d made himself, when he observed the loving and dedicated relationship between the two men he served under: Lieutenant Cashel ‘God’ Godfrey and Lieutenant Leonidis Day.
Syn prepared himself to accept his lonely fate until he walked into a small pub and met the long-haired, tattooed bartender, Furious Barkley. Before Syn can even understand why, he’s overcome with feelings he barely recognizes: passion, yearning, craving. And if the dark, lustful gazes are anything to go by, Furious might be feeling the same things for him.
Just two thing needs to happen before Syn and Furi can give each other what’s been missing from their lives for so long… Syn needs to find the evidence that proves Furi’s innocence of murder, as well as protect him from a past that refuses to let go.

God, Day, Ronowski, and Johnson are still as entertaining as ever…

Review:
Story: I read this story a while back – I liked it, a lot but it wasn’t my favourite in the series. It’s an interesting story – Syn transferred to God and Day’s team to forge his own path, separate from his family of policemen. Because he’s always been focused on his career, he has never been in a relationship, let alone with a man, but when he meets Furi, his feelings change. Syn is bent on becoming a part of Furi’s life, meanwhile, Furi is intent on keeping a low profile after escaping from an abusive relationship. There is a lot of heat and chemistry between the 2 men, and it was interesting to see how their romance developed. It was fun to see God and Day; Ro and Johnson and some new faces in their alpha and sometimes hilarious element ☺

Narration: Aiden Snow made me love the book! He has a gorgeous voice, so well suited for the growly, alpha men that dominate the story. He has been great for the series so far ☺ The only (minor) observation is that there is not that much distinction between most of the men, but the story is well written enough that you always know which character is talking.

Story: 4 stars
Narration: 4.5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Survive and Conquer by Andrew Grey

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/survive-and-conquer-by-andrew-grey-10614-b

Blurb

Newton DeSantis was on the ground when the towers collapsed on 9/11. Though he still carries the scars on his body and his heart, he’s determined to ease some of the world’s suffering. Now a social worker and father to two children with special needs, he’s doing his best. But when one of his cases needs a good lawyer, Newton turns to Chase for help.

Family law attorney Chase Matthews is a rising star, and he’s in high demand. Still, Newton is very persuasive, and Chase takes his case pro bono. Everything about the other man appeals to Chase, but he’s determined to keep the relationship professional—even though, after meeting Newton’s kids, he wants to be a part of their lives.

Chase’s job doesn’t always allow him to pick his clients, though, and a case that could make him partner will put him on the opposite side of the courtroom from Newton—along with everything he believes in and the future they could build together.

Review

Another great story by Andrew Grey. Newton and Chase are both dealing with demons from their past. Newton is struggling with PTSD, while dealing with the stress of working as a social worker and being a father to two special needs children. While Newton seems a bit meek, he starts off the story almost bullying Chase, a well-respected attorney into helping him with one of his cases. Chase is so understanding and sweet with the children. Like most of Andrew’s stories there is some drama stirred up by a family member but it’s not overtly angsty. You really can’t go wrong with an Andrew Grey book!!

4 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook: Don’t by Jack L. Pyke Narrator: Dan Calley

audiobookreview

Good Reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43832948-don-t?from_search=tru

Blurb
“Don’t… bleed for me.” ~ the Unknown.

Saying Don’t around Jack Harrison always did lead him into dangerous grounds on London streets. But now someone knows Jack’s head inside and out, and they’re about to twist all perception and lead him into an underground depravity that nearly sent him down in his youth. As Jack slips further into a dark psychological minefield, only two men offer different paths back to sanity: Gray, a man who knows Jack’s every dark thought, and Jan, the first man to show Jack a “soft lad” approach to head and heart. But with deadly games and ghosts bleeding through into Jack’s reality, it’s a fight to see who out of the three of them will survive long enough to find a way out of the vicious game played by someone known only as… the Unknown.

Review
Just finished and I’m missing Dan Calley‘s wonderfully smokey voice that’s smooth for Grey and rough for Jack. Perfect. I am a fan of this series. I love this psychological thriller with all the suspense and the twists and turns the story takes. Jack is a salt of the earth Londoner, tough but fair with a soft side for those he cares about. He falls for Jan and didn’t mean to pull him into the other part of Jack’s life. That of a Master Sub to Grey. Grey is a man of power and mystery.
Dan Calley is a new narrator to me but with him narrating it they all sound like I imagined they would. Jack is dark and gravelly, Grey is strong sure and smooth with Jan sort of in between. The narration suits the story so well that for me it’s like experiencing the excitement of the book all over again. I wish I could give more than five stars.
Now I’ve got to be patient and wait for Antidote to come out.

6 of stars out of 5



Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Recently Released: Home Improvement By: Tara Lain

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/home-improvement-a-love-story-by-tara-lain-10627-b

Blurb
Romance on Aisle Sixteen—opposites attract amid the hammers and screws of the home improvement store.

Gabe Mason became a father at seventeen, and his daughter, Ellie, is the most important thing in his life. But being the parent the courts demand means Gabe has given up most of his dreams—education, making furniture, a gay social life—to be a model dad with a steady, reliable job in a home improvement store. Life’s predictable until Jerry, a shy, eccentric guy in a hat and sunglasses, begs Gabe to oversee the renovation of his run-down mansion.

Gabe loves the house and the work, and Jerry’s pretty lovable too, but when Gabe discovers Jerry’s secret identity, he fears their passion could overturn both their lives forever

Review
Sweet cute story. Gabe’s focus has always been on his daughter. He maintains a steady job but no social life. Gabe’s daughter Ellie is an old soul, she is much more mature than her age and looks out for her Dad. Jerry wants a quiet life. He comes across as a shy, awkward introverted character but it’s more the situation than his true nature. I loved the slow blooming attraction between Gabe and Jerry. The way they met is lovely. The fun they have together is delightful to read. Ellie supports them all the way. The only things standing in their way is the attitude of Gabe’s ex wife and the secret Jerry is keeping. Jerry’s secret comes out in an interesting way and from there it all comes to ahead. The story ends with a happy ever after and a contented smile on my face.

4 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook: Sweet Clematis by R. Cooper narrated by Dominic Carlos

audiobookreview

Dreamspinner press
https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/sweet-clematis-by-r-cooper-10617-b

 

Blurb

A Being(s) in Love Story

Can a curse be a blessing?

Clematis works hard to embody every fairy stereotype. He can be a sulky prince or a submissive flirt, slutty and arrogant or silly and soft. He makes himself into whatever causes someone to want him. Combine that with beauty that’s incredible even for a fairy, and everyone wants him sooner or later… just not for long.

Well, everyone except the fairy Clematis secretly adores. But then, he’s never expected happily ever after, not when he’s spent years burying his emotions and making himself unlovable to push people away and protect his heart.

But his curse changes all that, and Clematis can no longer prevent his feelings from rising to the surface. He’s terrified that when his few friends see him for who he really is, they’ll abandon him, just like his parents did.

It’s hard to imagine friends who see past his act to the sweet person within, but maybe happiness has been in front of him the entire time, waiting for the real Clematis to break free and blossom.

REVIEW

Does a fairy find love with another fairy? Clematis has always thought that the shiny humans were the ones that you find happiness with. When he meets Flor, he sees so much shine, but Flor is only interested in David. Clematis hides so much for so long and when he and Flor begin a tentative friendship years after they meet Clematis cannot hide his emotions anymore. He believes that he is not worthy of any kind of friendship or love and pushes Flor away before he can be hurt but the feelings have already begun and cannot be denied.

I enjoyed this story from the Beings in Love series. It was nice to see Flor and Clematis get their own story. We get to see the softer sides of Flor and Clematis. We see what makes Clematis do what he does. As their relationship grows and deepens, we get to see what is underneath the façade that they each show the world. Their story is full of emotions and strong characters. Flor and Clematis figure things out with the help of their friends. I enjoyed the friendships and camaraderie between everyone. Clematis and Flor’s story is a beautiful read. We are treated to emotions and revelations throughout this book. Not only do we get to see their relationship unfold but we also get to see more of the political strife that is going on for the beings of this world and especially at the school. I hope that there is more to come from this world.
Narrator Dominic Carlos does a wonderful job of bringing these characters and their world to life. I was quickly absorbed into the story as soon as I began to listen.

4 stars out of 5



Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review