Categories
5 stars adult - 18+ angels Audiobook Author Provided Bullying Dee Fade to black/No Steam Gay Gay Hurt/Abuse m/m Mid level angst Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Paranormal Part of a Series Standalone vampire

Audiobook: The Bureau by Kim Fielding narrated by Joel Leslie

audiobookreview

Audible Link

https://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/The-Bureau-Audiobook/B07FB87WNZ?qid=1533351357&sr=sr_1_1&ref=a_search_c3_lProduct_1_1&pf_rd_p=e81b7c27-6880-467a-b5a7-13cef5d729fe&pf_rd_r=ZB9XMTGMAM0FQQVEZ38X&

Blurb:

This collection contains the first three Bureau novellas:

Corruption

Once a proud demon of the night sky who carried nightmares to humans, Tenrael has spent decades in captivity as the star attraction of a traveling carnival. He exists in miserable servitude to men who plunk down ten dollars to fulfill their dark desires.
Charles Grimes is half human, half…something else. For 15 years he’s worked for the Bureau of Trans-Species Affairs, ridding the country of dangerous monsters. When his boss sends him to Kansas to chase a rumor about a captive demon, Charles figures it’s just another assignment. Until he meets Tenrael.

Clay White

Someone – or something – is murdering young men in San Francisco. Clay White has been fired from the Bureau of Trans-Species Affairs, but he’s determined to track down the killer. When he comes across a vampire named Marek, Clay assumes he’s caught the perp. But the encounter with Marek turns out to be more complicated than Clay expected, and it forces him to deal with his own troubled past and murky psyche.
As Clay discovers, sometimes the truth doesn’t come easy – and the monsters are not who we expect.

Creature

Alone in a cell and lacking memories of his past, John has no idea who – or what – he is. Alone on the streets of 1950s Los Angeles, Harry has far too many memories of his painful past and feels simply resignation in facing his empty future.

When Harry is given a chance to achieve his only dream – to become an agent with the Bureau of Trans-Species Affairs – all he has to do is prove his worth. Yet nothing has ever come easy for him.
Now he must offer himself and John as bait, enticing a man who wants to conquer death. But first he and John must learn what distinguishes a monster from a man – and what a monster truly wants.

Review

Book reviewed here previously

This is a collection of stories that introduce the Bureau of Tran Species Affairs.
The stories are a little dark, somewhat film noir-ish, but interesting. I read and enjoyed Creature, (my favourite of the 3), as a standalone, so when I saw that Joel Leslie was narrating the trio of stories, I was more than happy to experience the collection. The stories connect, but are definitely self-contained standalones.

What can I say about ‘a Joel Leslie performance’ that hasn’t been said before? He brings life, character and a wealth of acting experience to the stories he narrates; so much so, that one becomes personally invested in the characters. In this case, he made me want to take Tenrael (Corruption) home to care for. And John (Creature), you could almost ‘see’ how he bloomed under Harry’s care – I could feel the affection and emotion he felt for Harry, life (such as it was) in general.
Joel Leslie, simply put, is a pleasure to listen to.

5 stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

 

Categories
adult - 18+ Book Bullying Homophobia Hurt/Abuse Mild level angst mpreg mpreg non-shifter alpha/omega Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Paranormal Scorching/high heat Stalker/Abusive Ex Standalone

Steamy Romance: Protecting His Omega by Giovanna Reaves

Good Reads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36358610-protecting-his-omega?ac=1&from_search=true

Blurb: Phoenix Harcourt is a single father who was kicked out of his home when his parents found out that he was an omega. After losing his alpha mate, Phoenix turned his focus to his daughter and the successful company that was left in his care. With a threat to his life, Phoenix hires a bodyguard who wants to protect more than his body. He also want’s Phoenix’s heart.

Hired to protect an omega, Lucius Payne had one goal: do his job and nothing else. He was never one to mix business with pleasure. Moreover, finding an omega mate was not in his plans, especially when it is the man he is supposed to protect. Then his job becomes more complicated than he was expecting.

Can Lucius convince Phoenix to trust him with his heart as well as his body?

Review: So, I’m late to the party for non-shifter, mpreg stories, but this is a good one to get started with.
Phoenix was kicked out of his home at 16 because he was an omega and gay. After being taken in by Maxwell, a rich businessman (father/son relationship), Phoenix thrives and eventually takes over Maxwell’s business when he dies. Phoenix was mated once and has a little girl, Jasmine from the relationship.
Not everyone at Phoenix’s company is happy that he is the new owner, so when he starts receiving threatening letters Phoenix is forced to contact a private security company. This is how he meets Lucius, his mate.
What I liked about the story is that Phoenix is not a typical omega – yes, he knows he will submit to his alpha’s will – but he has a backbone and wouldn’t give in to the natural instinct to rollover for his alpha mate. Lucius is a patient alpha, who wants to care for his omega. There is a lot of sexual tension between the 2 men before they finally get together – mid book- but it’s worth the wait! Both men were a delight to read and Jasmine was realistically cute.
There is a surprise twist towards the end that also adds to the story (quite unique).

Luckily, I got my first taste with a good story and will likely continue to dip my toes in the sub-genre.

4 stars out of 5

Copy purchased for review

 

 

 

Categories
adult - 18+ Book Mid level angst Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Part of a Series Stalker/Abusive Ex Standalone

Release Day Review: Fire and Granite by Andrew Grey

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents
https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/searchresults?q=fire+and+granite

Blurb:
A Carlisle Deputies Novel

The heat is growing from the inside, but danger is building on the outside.

Judge Andrew Phillips runs a tight ship in his courtroom. He’s tough, and when he hands down a sentence, he expects to be obeyed. So when a fugitive named Harper escapes and threatens his life, Andrew isn’t keen on twenty-four/seven protection… especially not from Deputy Clay Brown. They have a past, one that could cause problems in their careers.

But with Clay assigned to Andrew and the two of them together every minute, there’s nowhere to hide from their attraction—or from the fact that there’s much more than chemistry blooming between them. As the threat intensifies, Clay knows he’ll do anything it takes to protect the people who are taking their places in his heart: Andrew and his young niece and nephew.

Review:
This is the second in the Carlisle Deputies series. I have not read the first one, though there are characters from the first book, this works as a standalone story.
Andrew Grey consistently delivers sweet, straight forward romances with little angst, lots of heartwarming themes and HEAs. This story is no different.
Clay and Andrew knew of each other and both thought that the other man was difficult, bossy and not likeable. They are forced to work together when an escaped convict (Clay’s cousin) manages to escape, but not before threatening Andrew’s life, (he was the judge in his conviction).
When Andrew ends up staying with Clay at his home, the 2 men get to know each other better and soon develop a mutual attraction. But, just as the romance is starting up, Andrew has to take care of his niece and nephew. Andrew worries that the sudden change will affect his budding relationship with Clay, but Clay is on board with the change. In the middle of all of this, they are still dealing with the stalking convict and the person pulling the convict’s strings.
I liked the story, no new trope/theme, but an enjoyable read. There is a bit of a twist in regards to the mystery, leading to interesting turn of events.

There were a couple of inconsistencies in my ARC copy which I hope will be fixed by the general release date; otherwise a good story, enough for me to follow the series.

3.75 stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
4.5 stars adult - 18+ Audiobook Audiobook Month Book Dee Gay Hurt/Abuse m/m Mild level angst Monthly Theme Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Purchased Scorching/high heat

Audiobook Month: The Long Way Home by Z.A. Maxfield, narrated by J.F Harding

Audible

https://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/The-Long-Way-Home-Audiobook/B01MQGGZ71?ref=a_search_c3_lProduct_1_4&pf_rd_p=e81b7c27-6880-467a-b5a7-13cef5d729fe&pf_rd_r=4GVDMJXBB991JR8MT96Z&

Blurb:
Ever since the accident that cost him his job on the Seattle police force, Kevin Quinn has been living with psychic abilities he refers to as the ‘gift that keeps on taking’. His attempts to use his talents to help the police have been met with limited success. Yet, when teenage boys start going missing from the beach cities of Southern California, Kevin gets on a plane.
Connor Dougal has every reason to believe all psychics are fakes and charlatans. He’s still numb from the disappearance of his first love, a boy who went missing 10 years earlier. Everything he aspires to is a direct result of that tragedy, even the acquisition of his detective shield. The irony of having to babysit Kevin Quinn is not lost on him.
These two suspicious men must develop trust and respect for one another to solve the case and, on the way, maybe fall in love.

Review:
A good story with great narration.
Kevin is a reluctant psychic (the ‘gift’ manifests after an accident). He’s asked to work on a missing persons case where he meets Connor. Connor is assigned to assist Kevin in the investigation; at first they don’t get along, but very quickly they develop a rapport which leads to a mutual attraction. As they grow closer, the mystery of the disappearances unfolds. There is quite a bit of wit and humour in the story that kept me engaged throughout.

Story: 4

Audio:

JF Harding was really good! This was my first time listening to him after which I bought a couple more books that he’s narrated. His pacing, inflections and timing was spot on for the characters. The subtle humour and wit of the prose was nicely voiced and he portrayed the dynamics and chemistry of the 2 MC’s very well.
Definitely a story I will listen to again.

5 stars out of 5

Overall 4.5 of 5 stars


Copy purchased for review

 

Categories
adult - 18+ Audiobook Gay Hurt/Abuse Mild level angst Scorching/high heat

Audiobook Month: The Long Way Home by Z.A. Maxfield, narrated by J.F Harding

Audible Link

https://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/The-Long-Way-Home-Audiobook/B01MQGGZ71?ref=a_search_c3_lProduct_1_4&pf_rd_p=e81b7c27-6880-467a-b5a7-13cef5d729fe&pf_rd_r=4GVDMJXBB991JR8MT96Z&

Blurb:
Ever since the accident that cost him his job on the Seattle police force, Kevin Quinn has been living with psychic abilities he refers to as the ‘gift that keeps on taking’. His attempts to use his talents to help the police have been met with limited success. Yet, when teenage boys start going missing from the beach cities of Southern California, Kevin gets on a plane.
Connor Dougal has every reason to believe all psychics are fakes and charlatans. He’s still numb from the disappearance of his first love, a boy who went missing 10 years earlier. Everything he aspires to is a direct result of that tragedy, even the acquisition of his detective shield. The irony of having to babysit Kevin Quinn is not lost on him.
These two suspicious men must develop trust and respect for one another to solve the case and, on the way, maybe fall in love.

Review:

A good story with great narration.
Kevin is a reluctant psychic (the ‘gift’ manifests after an accident). He’s asked to work on a missing persons case where he meets Connor. Connor is assigned to assist Kevin in the investigation; at first they don’t get along, but very quickly they develop a rapport which leads to a mutual attraction. As they grow closer, the mystery of the disappearances unfolds. There is quite a bit of wit and humour in the story that kept me engaged throughout.

Story: 4 of 5 stars

Narration:JF Harding was really good! This was my first time listening to him after which I bought a couple more books that he’s narrated. His pacing, inflections and timing was spot on for the characters. The subtle humour and wit of the prose was nicely voiced and he portrayed the dynamics and chemistry of the 2 MC’s very well.
Definitely a story I will listen to again.

 

5 of 5 stars

 

Overall: 4.5 stars out of 5

Copy Purchased for Review

 

Categories
4 stars adult - 18+ Book Dreamspinner Fade to black/No Steam Gay Gay m/m Mary D Mild level angst Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Older MCs Standalone

Release Day Review: Words by John Inman

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents
https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/words-by-john-inman-9662-

Blurb
The world of writers, readers, and reviewers is a close-knit family of friends, fans, and fiction fanatics. That’s the world Milo Cook and Logan Hunter reside in—thriving on the give and take of creativity, the sharing of stories and ideas, and forever glorying in their boundless love of books and the words that make them breathe.

But sometimes words can cut too deep. And when they do, there is inevitably a price to pay.

What begins for Milo and Logan as a time of new love and gentle romantic discoveries, becomes before it’s over a race for their lives and for the lives of everyone they know.

Who would ever suspect than an entity as beautiful as the written word could become a catalyst for revenge? And ultimately—murder

Review
This story is set in the world of writers and reviewers. It’s a story of finding love and companionship and at the same time of someone, as the saying goes ‘losing the plot’ and becoming a killer. They see themselves as righting a wrong by getting rid of the trolls in the reviewing world. Those who denigrate an author’s work with little justification. I thoroughly enjoyed this well crafted story. One of John Inman’s characters said “After all, in a really good book, the killer would be the last person you’d ever expect.” and he absolutely lived up to this. The murderer was the very last person I thought it would be. Every time I suspected someone a turn of events proved me wrong.
Milo and Logan have both been hurt by relationships in the past, Logan through the untimely death of his husband and Milo through a bad breakup. Both examine their hearts to decide if they are ready to start again and take it slow. Such a sweet loving relationship. The murders don’t really touch them until near the end when they realise who it is. The two threads run parallel until the last few characters. The pace of the story is slow and that absolutely suits the mood of the blossoming relationship and building the tension as the number of murders increase. For me this was not a story that kept me up reading eager to know what happened next but I was keen to come back as soon as I was able.

4 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Categories
4 stars adult - 18+ Bullying Dreamspinner Gay Gay Hurt/Abuse m/m Mary D Mild level angst Mild/low level heat Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Part of a Series PTSD Re-Release Uncategorized

Release Day Review: Wight Mischief by JL Merrow

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents
https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/wight-mischief-by-jl-merrow-9635-

Blurb

A ghost of a chance at love.
Personal trainer Will Golding has been looking forward to a getaway with his best friend, Baz, a journalist researching a book on ghosts. But on the first day of their camping trip on the Isle of Wight, Will takes a walk on a secluded beach and spies a beautiful young man skinny-dipping by moonlight. Ethereally pale, he’s too perfect to be real—or is he?

Lonely author Marcus Devereux is just as entranced by the tall athlete he encounters on the beach, but he’s spent the years since his parents’ violent death building a wall around his heart, and the thought of letting Will scale it is terrifying. Marcus’s albinism gives him his otherworldly appearance and leaves him reluctant to go out in daylight, his reclusiveness encouraged by his guardian—who warns him to stay away from Will and Baz.

The attraction between Will and Marcus can’t be denied—but neither can the danger of the secrets haunting Marcus’s past, as one “accident” after another strikes Will and Baz. If they don’t watch their step, they could end up added to the island’s ghostly population.

Review
This book is a mystery with a gentle romance wrapped up within it. Whilst his best friend Baz is researching his book on ghosts Will meets enigmatic Marcus, a reclusive writer. Will doesn’t know that Baz has another story he’s investigating involving Marcus and his family. Both sides of the investigation dove tail together taking Will and Baz all over the Island. I loved the descriptions of places and attractions on the island, they evoke a wonderful atmosphere when reading those parts of the story. The beautiful coastline with rugged cliffs and sandy beaches, tales of the ghosts of smugglers and soldiers, pubs in historic settings. Makes me want to go there right now. The romance is full of English reserve, Will and Marcus don’t properly get together until towards the end but it was totally fitting with their characters and what was going on around them. The mystery side kept me entertained, the bad guy was obvious from the outset and it ws good seeing the characters playing catch-up. At times Baz provides the comic element, he’s a very self centred character and in that regard I didn’t like him. But you can see the depth of friendship between them. Overall I felt this was a very enjoyable story.

4 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
4 stars adult - 18+ Book Dreamspinner Gay Gay m/m Mary D Mid level angst Mid level steam/heat Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Older MCs Standalone

Audiobook: Hell and Back by Dirk Greyson
Narrated by Dorian Bane

audiobookreview

Dreamspinner Presents
https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/hell-and-back-by-dirk-greyson-8979-

Blurb

Seventeen years ago, Forge Reynolds fell in love… and had his heart broken. When Staff Sergeant Gage Livingston was brought into Forge’s Army field hospital, temporarily paralyzed, Forge sat with him, read his letters, answered his mail, and formed a connection he thought would last. But Gage was sent home, Forge transferred to a new post, and his letters to Gage went unanswered.

Now in the middle of a bitter divorce, Forge is sick and tired of his husband’s manipulation. He’s almost ready to make any sacrifice to get closure—then he finds Granger murdered execution-style in their home. Forge had no idea about Granger’s illicit activities, but the killers don’t believe that. They think Forge has something they want, and they’re coming after him.

When Forge’s lawyer arranges for professional protection, the last face Forge expects to see is Gage’s. Can he even contemplate a second chance for them after almost two decades, or will hoping only lead to more heartache? Before they can explore the possibilities, they must figure out what information Granger had—that others are willing to kill for—or that possible heartache could become a certainty

Review
Dirk Greyson always provides a well paced story and this mystery was no different. I loved the reconnection between Forge and Granger. It didn’t feel contrived and developed as naturally as it could considering the circumstances under which they meet again. The mystery of what Gage was involved in that led to his murder kept me guessing. I had my suspicions but I liked how the story led to so many possibilities. That along with the romance made it for a very enjoyable story.
Wow Dorian Bane has given Forge such a ruff smokey voice that felt a bit too harsh for me at times. I have listened to a few books narrated by Dorian before but the voice he has given to Forge sounded quite harsh on his vocal cords. Granger’s voice was more mellow and the tone I’ve heard in his other work. There we good characterisations of the other characters, particularly Harvey. One measure I use for Male narrators is how well they portray females. In this case it was extremely well done with both female characters having their own distinct voices.

4 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
3 stars adult - 18+ Book Dee Dreamspinner Fantasy Gay Gay Little to no angst Mid level steam/heat Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Standalone

Release Day Review: My Fair Captain by J.L. Langley

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/my-fair-captain-by-jl-langley-9628-b

Blurb: When Intergalactic Navy Captain Nathaniel Hawkins goes undercover to investigate the theft of an IN weapons stash, the mission raises painful memories from his past. Using a title he fled nearly two decades earlier, Nate once again becomes the Earl of Deverell, heir to the Duke of Hawthorne, in order to navigate the ins and outs of a Regency world. But planet Regelence—where young lords are supposed to remain pure until marriage—has a few surprises for Nate, not least of which is his attraction to Prince Aiden.

A talented artist, Prince Aiden Townsend isn’t interested in politics and the machinations of society gentlemen, and he adamantly rejects the idea of marriage and a consort. Aiden wants the freedom to pursue his art and determine his own future. But the arrival of the dashing and mysterious Deverell awakens feelings of passion and longing the young prince can’t deny.

As Nate uncovers a conspiracy reaching far beyond the stolen weapons, his future is irrevocably altered by the temptations of a life he never thought he could have. Drawn into the web of intrigue, Aiden is in danger of losing his life… and his heart.

Review:
I liked the premise of the story – almost a reversal of the female Georgian/Victorian romances; in this case, it’s the male virtue (snicker) that needs to be protected.
However, the main story got lost in too many threads.
The story starts with Nate fighting a duel. He is wounded, but kills his opponent, requiring him to flee his home planet. Fast forward 18 years later, Nate is now a captain in the IN and has a son called Trouble (aka Jeremy). Nate is tasked to investigate a situation involving a weapons cache, so he’s sent undercover to another planet where he meets the prince of the realm, Aiden.
On Aiden’s planet, the men are treated like Regency misses until they are of age; the society is based on a class system and is very male-oriented, going so far as to ensure that upperclass males have a preference for other men only. The 2 MC’s meet when Aiden has a mishap, leading to an instant attraction. Their romance plays out the same way a MF regency romance would (which I liked).
The story starts to falter when it tries to tie up the mystery of weapons cache – new characters are introduced but not fully explained, like the valets and their involvement. The whole premise for the weapons was glossed over in a few lines (and not to my satisfaction).
Then there’s Trouble and his backstory. I couldn’t get a grip on his age- sometimes he was written as a precocious youngster, then he seems like an older adolescent, (especially when he swore!). The circumstances of his birth, his current status were a surprise, but his eventual acceptance of being betrothed to a prince seemed a little far-fetched.
Overall, I liked it and will look for the next book in the hopes that the story line is better organized and fleshed out.

3 stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
5 stars adult - 18+ Beth Jumper Dee Dreamspinner Gay Gay m/m Mid level angst Mild/low level heat Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Standalone

Release Day Review: A Little Side of Geek by Marguerite Labbe

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/a-little-side-of-geek-by-marguerite-labbe-9611-b

Blurb

When opposite worlds collide, it’s anyone’s game.
Proud geek and comic book artist Morris Proctor wants nothing more than to live in semi-seclusion with his devil cat and gamer friends. Despite what his well-meaning family thinks, he’s perfectly content with his status quo. The last thing he needs is to date another non-geek hell-bent on changing him.
Then he meets his adorkable new neighbor, Theo Boarman, who doesn’t know Star Trek from Star Wars, but who tempts him like no other.
Theo has spent the last year recovering from the loss of his parents and trying to play both roles for his teenage brother, while working to keep the family restaurant afloat. Dating is the last thing on the menu, especially with a man who thinks the height of dining is shoving a packaged meal into the microwave.
But if Morris gives him one more shy smile or flaunts that kilt he wears so well, Theo will be forced to convince him that a hot summer fling is just the recipe to let off a little steam.
When that fling gets serious fast, Morris has to decide if he’s willing to give his heart to Theo on the chance that they’re a perfect mix.

Review by Beth
This is a story that slowly sucks you in. It is both a story of falling in love and healing from tragdy. A story about family both blood and found.

Marguerite does a wonderful job laying out the story to tease us into all of what life can throw at us and how we work our way through it. This is not a hot and heavy, all sexy times book. This is how life really does happen. An ebb and flow of side stories and romance as it happens over a summer. The author shows us that it’s not all fireworks and spotlights. I think she did a fabulous job.

The MC’s are well thought out and multidimensional, but I really liked the character of Lincoln. This is Theo’s younger brother and he really does carry a third of the story. Teenage angst, insecurities and dealing with loss at an early age, Lincoln is as well developed as Morris and Theo.

I liked this story, I liked how comfortable it felt, how realistic it was and I quietly got to root for things to work out between Morris and Theo.

5 of 5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Review by Dee

I absolutely loved this story for its simplicity. That is not to say that there was no depth to the romance, no, just the opposite. All the characters were well developed, even the secondary ones. The story is also funny and heartwarming.

Morris, a simple soul who loves his geekiness, has been through relationships where the boyfriend has tried to ‘improve’ him. Needless to say, he’s a bit gun-shy about relationships. Theo, his new neighbour, has recently lost his parents, co-owns a restaurant (with his sister) and is the legal guardian of his younger brother. With all that’s going on, Theo is not in the market for a romance.

They decide to embark on a ‘fling’, but before they know it, they’ve wormed their way into each other’s lives and hearts.

What I really like about the story is that there was a realistic look at friendships, family, dealing with tragedy and finding what makes one happy. There was no real drama, no prolonged misunderstandings.

I honestly loved how the relationship between the 2 men just flowed and grew, with the addition of their families blending into the mix.

Highly recommend. This will definitely go on my re-read list!

5 of 5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review