Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: The Evolution of Love by Phillip William Stover

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/the-evolution-of-love-by-philip-william-stover-10763-b

Blurb:
When a charming but misguided account manager gets stuck on a cruise to the Galapagos Islands with his hunky zoologist ex, he might rediscover his true passion—in and out of the bedroom.
After art school, Mike Davis gave up on his dream in favor of a stable job. But when he gets an opportunity to teach wealthy travelers how to paint stunning sunsets, it seems like the perfect break. Until he finds out he’ll be sharing a suite with his ex, charismatic Benton Aldridge—a British scientist cuter than the baby animals he studies. Mike makes it clear he has no intention of getting back together with Benton, but sharing a suite makes it almost impossible keep his distance.

As they climb over volcanic peaks and swim with manatees through sparkling jade-colored water, can they also heal past wounds and take the next step in the evolution of love?

Review: Mike has pretty much given up his dream of being an artist – he has a ‘proper’ job and this was one of the main reasons he and his then boyfriend, (Benton), broke up. When a chance arises for Mike to visit the Galapagos as the cruise artist, he jumps at the chance. Little does he know that his aunt Penny has a surprise – in the form of Benton being the resident scientist!
I really liked this second chance at love story. Benton was still trying to push Mike to be an artist, which still hurt Mike, but in the end, Mike realised that was where his true passion lay, (as well as with Benton ☺).
There’s not a lot of steam to the story, but it wasn’t really wasn’t needed. The story is fun, humourous and sweet, with fun characters like Penny, as well as some of the passengers.
I enjoyed the story and will look for more from this author.

3.5 stars out of 5


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Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Milo (Finding Home #2) by Lily Morton

Good Reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43971325-milo?ac=1&from_search=true

Blurb: Once upon a time a brave knight rescued a young man. Unfortunately, he then spent the next few years bossing the young man around and treating him like a child.
Milo has been burying himself at Chi an Mor, hiding from the wreckage of his once promising career and running from a bad relationship that destroyed what little confidence he had. Niall, his big brother’s best friend, has been there for him that entire time. An arrogant and funny man, Niall couldn’t be any more different from the shy and occasionally stuttering Milo, which has never stopped Milo from crushing wildly on the man who saved him.

However, just as Milo makes the decision to move on from his hopeless crush, he and Niall are thrown into close contact, and for the first time ever Niall seems to be returning his interest. But it can never work. How can it when Milo always needs rescuing?
From the bestselling author of the Mixed Messages series comes a story about a man who needs to write his own happily ever after.

Review:
This is another Lily Morton story that ticked all my boxes: snark/banter, engaging characters Niall and Milo and seeing friends like Silas, Oz (although kind of hard not to see the latter seeing as both MCs work for Silas ☺ )

But this story has a bit more of a hurt/comfort theme, although still quite funny.
Milo was always seen as a shy type, especially because he had a speech impediment as a child. Being in an abusive relationship also compounded that. Once he was able to escape that – Niall to the rescue – he started to show his true self; a sassy/pert, quick-witted and stronger-than-given-credit-for young man.
Niall is Milo’s older brother’s (Gideon) friend and occasional hook-up. At first, all Niall sees is the little brother that needs rescuing, but as Milo grows in confidence and snark (the latter thanks to Oz), he starts to notice that Milo is all man, grown up man, at that!
My heart stuttered for Milo when Gideon showed up unannounced, but they start to resolve their somewhat strained relationship and Niall makes it clear that his hookup arrangement is over. Niall learns that in order to have Milo, he has to let him go on to be independent.
Overall, I loved this addition to the series ☺
I highly recommend this story.


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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


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Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Spark in the Stars by Foster Bridget Cassidy

Dreamspinner: https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/spark-in-the-stars-by-foster-bridget-cassidy-10559-b

Blurb:
A case of mistaken identity could lead to love for an aloof starship captain and a brilliant if underappreciated mechanic from the sticks—if they can survive the dangerous mission assigned to them.

Ginnovi Oshwald just needs someone to give him a chance. He can keep anything running, despite the “spark” his body produces that sometimes wreaks havoc with electronics. Gin gets his chance when Captain Lian Hartford comes to Tallahassee in search of a mechanic. The trouble is, he’s looking for Gin’s sister. But since he only has a name to go by, Gin tells a little white lie. What could go wrong?
Lian loves his ship and his work as a diplomat but has difficulty connecting with others—only partly because of his mixed human and alien heritage. Something about the eccentric mechanic intrigues him, though, and their easy friendship could become more… if they live long enough to broker peace between humanity and a hostile race while pacifying a crew that thinks Gin belongs in prison.

Review:
It’s an interesting read at the start especially when Gin is mistaken for his sister and the dialogue switches between his and his sister’s name – I liked that, once I got used to it ☺
However, the story got to be a little confusing to me; how did Temina know what ship her brother was on? Then there were the secondary characters, they had been introduced but I had a hard time keeping track of many of them – Doc was also called Mother, but I wasn’t sure if she was really Lian’s mum and Pip turned out to be a deity.
Gin and Lian were likeable characters, but I didn’t feel that they any chemistry together.
It’s a good story, just not for me.

3 stars out of 5


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Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Come Back Around by BA Tortuga

Dreamspinner: https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/come-back-around-by-ba-tortuga-10588-b

Blurb:
Can two divorced dads get a second chance at a redneck wedding?

When Reid Porter agrees to be his best friend’s man of honor, he never considers that his ex, Mateo, will be there too. Which is ridiculous, because Jennifer is marrying Mat’s brother. Reid would never let Jen down, though, so he finds himself at the Leaning N Ranch with his two daughters and a whole lot of baggage about seeing Mat again.
Mat loves his baby brother and would do anything for him, including face the love of his life, whom he’s sure has moved on. When he and Reid come face-to-face after more than two years apart, they realize they’ve never let go. Now they have to do what they never could before—balance work, home, and children, while finding a way to come back around to each other’s love.

Review:
This was a comfort read – it gave me the warm fuzzies reading how a divorced couple found their way back to each other. One of the things I enjoy about Ms. Tortuga’s stories is how there is a cast of characters that make the story larger than life – in this case – Mat’s mum and dad, Mat and Reid’s daughters, even the groomsmen. There are characters from a previous Leaning N book (Stoney and Ford) – but one doesn’t have to have read their story to enjoy this one.
As the blurb says, both men are going to have to bury their differences as their sibling (Mat’s) and best friend (Reid) are getting married. As soon as they see each other again, the love they never lost rekindles. Sure there are some doubts and yes, they need to hash out why they got a divorce, but they are sure that their love for each other and their kids will see them through this time.
A sweet story!

3.5 stars out of 5


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Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Larry Boots, Exterminator by John Inman

Dreamspinner: https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/larry-boots-exterminator-by-john-inman-10514-b

Blurb:
Kenny Long is living a new life. Blinded in an accident, he has taken control of his unexpected reality the best way he can, and it’s working out better than he hoped. Of course Larry Boots doesn’t know any of that. All he sees is a beautiful man sitting on a park bench. Larry has a few problems of his own: His mother. His job. The lack of romance in his life. His job. In the course of that job, Larry strikes up a friendship with Kenny. The next thing he knows, he’s so head over heels in love, even his mother doesn’t seem so bad. Of course his career is still a problem, but he’s working on that. Hopefully he’ll have the problem resolved before the man he’s being paid to murder succeeds in murdering him first. And before the man he loves finds out he’s a cold-blooded killer.

Review: This is a fun story, despite some of the darker elements related to Larry’s line of ‘work’ ☺
Larry, as the title suggests, gets rid of unsavoury things. Unsavoury people, if one is to be accurate. He stumbled into this line of work by accident, but as long as he’s needed, he’ll do it. That is, until he finds a reason to quit, in the form of Kenny.
Kenny is blind, but that doesn’t stop Larry from falling for him. When the two men strike up a conversation, Larry is intrigued by how self-sufficient Kenny is. As they get to know one another, Kenny has to navigate meeting Larry’s mum (she’s a hoot), his 2 dogs and Larry’s odd hours. When one of Larry’s marks hits a little close to home, Larry has to decide what is more important to him.
There were some dark/sad aspects as to why Larry is an exterminator, but these were deftly interwoven with the humour and romance of the story. I really enjoyed it. It’s a good, lighthearted story that I enjoyed a lot.

4 stars out of 5


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Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Fake Dating the Prince by Ashlyn Kane

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/fake-dating-the-prince-by-ashlyn-kane-10555-b

Blurb:
A royal deception. An accidental romance.

When fast-living flight attendant Brayden Wood agrees to accompany a first-class passenger to a swanky charity ball, he discovers his date—“Call me Flip”—is actually His Royal Highness Prince Antoine-Philipe. And he wants Brayden to pretend to be his boyfriend.

Being Europe’s only prince of Indian descent—and its only openly gay one—has led Flip to select “appropriate” men first and worry about attraction later. Still, flirty, irreverent Brayden captivates him right away, and Flip needs a date to survive the ball without being match-made.
Before Flip can pursue Brayden in earnest, the paparazzi forces his hand, and the charade is extended for the remainder of Brayden’s vacation.

Posh, gorgeous, thoughtful Prince Flip is way out of Brayden’s league. If Brayden survives three weeks of platonically sharing a bed with him during the romantic holiday season, going home afterward might break his heart….

Review:
A really fun story, an easy read with very little angst!
This is a fake boyfriend story with very likeable characters – Flip is the crown prince of a small European country. He is unusual in that he’s quite down to earth and is of mixed heritage – his dad, the prince consort is Indian.
Flips travels to Canada frequently, enough to know Brayden. Brayden is usually the flight attendant on Flips flights.
When Flip needs a date to a charity ball he’s hosting, Brayden is happy to assist. Both men get to know each other and find themselves slowly wanting a real relationship.
The story is sweet, with humour. The characters are well developed and while the story doesn’t break new grounds in the fake BF trope, it is definitely distinct with the variety of characters. This is a story I’ll reread if I need an easy, fun read.

3.75 stars out of 5


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Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Eye of the Dragon by BA Tortuga

Dreamspinner: https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/eye-of-the-dragon-by-ba-tortuga-10438-b

Blurb:
The Wildcatters: Book Two
Graduate student Cameron is on the trail of an ancient Chinese artifact, a ruby with a history. When he meets adventurer Poe in Mexico, he spills the beans on his quest, and Poe sees dollar signs as well as the hottest professor he’s ever met.

They head off to the salt flats and mountains of Utah, searching for a lost wagon train from the eighteen hundreds. What they find is danger beyond normal comprehension and a stone that drives men to insanity.

Soon Poe’s only concern is saving Cam, but to do that, he’ll need help from some old friends and a few new ones. When it becomes too late to turn away from their quest, Poe and Cam put themselves and their friends in deadly peril. It will take every bit of their talents and courage to make it through and survive the Dragon’s Eye.

Review: This was an OK story. The blurb drew me in, but the execution wasn’t quite there (IMO). There was quite a bit of sex (never thought I’d complain about that!), almost to the point that the plot hardly took off. When Poe and Cam weren’t horizontal, the adventure story – searching for the Eye of the Dragon – was fun. There was a bit of magic with the things the Eye could do.
I liked Poe – a rogue with a good heart and sweet Cam, who was able to hold his own with Poe and Poe’s friends. I love BA Tortuga’s books, but this one was not one of my favourites.

3 stars out of 5


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Categories
Uncategorized

Recent Release: Midnight Flit (The Carstairs Affairs #2) by Elin Gregory

Good Reads

Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43714501-midnight-flit

Blurb: Miles Siward and Briers Allerdale return for another thrilling Jazz Age adventure.
“Silk stockings on expenses.”
Miles’s aristocratic mother has information of importance to the British Government and he must escort her home from Bucharest immediately, but their plans go violently awry and Miles and Lady Siward find themselves on a train to Belgrade – where Miles’s lover is posted. Since their pursuers are looking for a man and a woman, might two women slip past them unnoticed?

“Is anyone on this train who they say they are?”
Briers doesn’t know whether to kiss Miles or punch him but is delighted to accompany him and his mother on their journey. All he has to do is keep an eye open for their enemies – but who exactly are they; the enormous Russian, the sinister priest, the handsome jazz pianist, or maybe the winsome young movie star? And his mother-in-law might just be the most terrifying of all!
All aboard for the ride of a lifetime, with a cast of characters you’ll never forget!

Review:
Briers, Miles and Millie back with a bang! This time they’re in Eastern Europe. It all starts with Lady Siward (Miles mother) getting some sensitive information that endangers her life. Miles is sent from London to accompany her home, ostensibly for a visit to the doctor. As they prepare for their journey home, they’re attacked and end up seeking refuge with Briers.
Briers has been on assignment in Budapest and is relieved to have his lover safe. But the adventure doesn’t stop there – all 3 (4 if you count Millie☺ ) have to make it back to London – alive.
This is such a good story, the historical and social settings well researched, down to the way people spoke and addressed others. I really loved it and as a history buff, I learnt a few more things about that era.
The relationship between Briers and Miles is still strong, although Briers does have a tendency to underestimate Miles (but only because he cares!). And let’s not forget Pritchard, he’s definitely a good egg!
Looking forward to reading about their next adventure.

5 stars out of 5


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Uncategorized

Recent Release: Copper Creek (Sawyer Ferry #3) by Cate Ashwood

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/44600188-copper-creek?from_search=true

Blurb:
Frankie:
My life sucks.
After spending a year jobless and on the edge of becoming homeless, I’d officially reached a level of desperation that, even if I wasn’t completely broke, retail therapy couldn’t fix.
While Sawyer’s Ferry, Alaska, is the last place on earth I’d ever want to visit, when my best friend, Holden, begs me to fly out and plan his wedding, I can’t say no. What I didn’t expect was to stumble into the administrative chaos at Copper Creek Brewing—or its too-hot-to-be-legal owner.
Clearly the man needs my help, and I’m willing to go above and beyond.
Way beyond.

Barrett:
I am screwed.
Six months after my assistant up and quit, I’m not any closer to finding a replacement, and things at the brewery are starting to fall apart.
And then in walks Frankie. He’s not the typical guy you’d find in these parts, and he brings with him a world of confusion. Because as much as I need his help, I can’t seem to keep my eyes—or hands—off him.
He’s supposed to be getting my life in order, but instead there’s a chance he could turn everything upside down.

Review: I was so looking forward to Frankie’s story and I was NOT disappointed! He is a fabulous character with a heart of gold, and funny as heck! I really liked Barrett as well, he was a bit gruff at first, but in the face of all the fabulousness that is Frankie, he couldn’t help but soften up. The romance between the two men was well developed, I especially loved the trip to Juneau and the spa.
The story is an easy read, very little angst, but so much fun!

4 stars out of 5


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