Categories
adult - 18+ New Adult

Recent Release: My Prince (2nd edition) by Anna Martin

Good Reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48671727-my-prince

Blurb

After growing up in a rough part of Manchester, George Maguire found his way to Edinburgh and a career as a design engineer. He wasn’t that interested in finding a relationship—his habit of hot and steamy one-night-stands suited him just fine. Falling into a very expensive hotel room bed with Alex really was just another night.

Until George learns that the guy he’d slept with wasn’t just ‘Alex’—he’s Alexander van Amsberg, Prince of the Netherlands.

George puts the incident behind him until he runs into Alex again, and this time Alex makes sure to get George’s phone number. Despite all the reasons why their relationship shouldn’t work, something clicks, and Alex thinks that he might have finally found the right guy.

But Alex’s aristocratic ex stirs up trouble in the tabloid press, and suddenly George’s working class family is put under the spotlight. Alex has to admit that their relationship isn’t a fairy tale, and despite his royal title, he might have lost his chance for a happily ever after.

*This is a second edition, re-release of the October 2015 novel ‘My Prince’ by Anna Martin.

Review

(Original review)

George, a rugby player and sports equipment designer, meets a man out one night and they have a hot night at a hotel. George’s hook-up, Alex, is obviously “posh” so George figures he’ll never see him again. He’s shocked when he sees him on the TV and finds out he’s one of the princes of the Netherlands!

Alex is the fifth in line for the throne (read as never really in line). He’s an architecture student living in Scotland and has no plans to ever go home for any length of time. He has a hot time with George, but doubts to ever see him again. When they meet, months later at a charity event, he thinks it must be kismet. They exchange numbers and from there start a “thing” that becomes a relationship.

There stands a lot between them and happiness including George’s own place in the closet, Alex’s family and expectations, the press and George’s family of 7 siblings. But… after a lot of time and patience they manage to make their own fairy tale happy ending!

**

Anna Martin is an amazing writer! I have admired her work from the first book I read of hers, Tattoos & Teacups and really enjoyed her books Summer Son and Solitude.

This is not only my favorite of her books, but will go on my list as the best book I’ve read this year! I loved it!

George is so very real, but so is Alex. Their relationship is fraught with difficulty and impracticalities but they persevere and survive in a way that seems very authentic and plausible but yet terribly romantic and special.

I loved how open Alex was and how shy George was. I loved the way Alex brought Doug in to “educate” George and how well George responded to the prodding. The need for George to know more about gay history was thought provoking without being preachy.

The sex/chemistry between these guys was incendiary but what got to me the most was their emotional connection.

I was a bit daunted by the length of this book, especially when they hooked up fairly early on. I was anticipating loads of angst and separation or fighting to fill the pages, but what I got was a very organic telling of the blossoming and deepening of their relationship. I really felt that these guys had what it took to make things work by the end of the story because we’d seen their relationship grow.

Anna’s writing is lovely and smooth, her characters are really well developed and three-dimensional. I cannot gush enough about this story. It was really and truly a fairy-tale for modern times and it was wonderful, I can’t recommend it enough!

(All of this and more – with my re-reading I still loved this beyond measure! It was this book that really made me an Anna Martin fan and it’s only been recently that she wasn’t an auto buy for me. This is cute, sweet, sexy, thoughtful and really still quite appropriate even though it’s a few years old now. Highly recommended!)

6 of 5 stars


Copy Purchased for Review

Categories
Uncategorized

Recent Release: Hope (Forbes Mates #4.5) by Grace R. Duncan

Good Reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/47897953-hope?ac=1&from_search=true

Blurb

Miguel Garcia and Luis Rodriguez have been best friends all their lives. For the last year, they’ve been hiding the fact that they’re also destined mates. When Luis’s family finds out, they kick him out. Miguel’s family would keep them… except their alpha has been known to be downright violent against gay wolves.

With the help of Miguel’s mother, they set out to find a pack that will accept them. They run into more that a few obstacles before they end up in Denver, at the national wolf headquarters, meeting the alpha prime. They’re stunned to find, not only offers to join more than one pack, but that their struggle can shine light on a bigger problem–and make things better for LGBT wolves across the country.

Review

This is a super short and sweet addition to the awesome Forbes Mates series. I am not penalizing it for being too short but… I sure wish it’d been longer. The relationship between our MCs is already developed when we meet them it is merely finding it’s home throughout the book.

 

It’s lovely to see some familiar faces and it’s great to see these two sweethearts find their forever home.

 

Recommended to fans of the series and it’s probably ok for newbies too!

4.5 stars



Copy Purchased for Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Recent Release: Want Me (Extracurricular Activities #1-7)

Good Reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/45470330-want-me?from_search=true

Blurb
Two roommates. One calculus exam. A whole lot of extracurricular activity.

Nate:
Living with four other guys, it’s bound to happen.
Every guy’s been caught taking care of business at least once, right?
It shouldn’t be a big deal.

But I don’t know Eric as well as my other roommates, and things are a little awkward now.
He’s a loner. A mystery. Quietly confident. Smart.
Sexy as hell.

I’ve been happily subsisting on the typical frat guy diet of booze and sorority girls.
But the way Eric looked at me that night?
There was something there.
Something that’s got me curious.
Something that’s stirring up feelings I thought I’d left behind for good.

Something that’s making me think I’m not as straight as I thought I was.

I can’t get him off of my mind.
I don’t think I want to.

So when he offers to help me study for a midterm, I take him up on it.

It’s innocent.
Probably. Maybe.

There’s no way I could’ve known what it’d start…

Review
The combination of heat and angst is absolutely deliciously done. The pull between Eric and Nate is of epic proportions and it seems as if every time they give into it, the flames roar even higher. This is without a doubt one of the steamiest, hottest stories I’ve ever read.

Eric and Nate fight the impossible fight, trying to resist their mutual attraction and the softer feelings growing alongside it. Matters between them are complicated even further because Nate’s not out and doesn’t seem to want to be, putting Eric in a difficult, vulnerable position. This continuous battle, and the underlying potential for more, are at the heart of what makes this story so enthralling. When they fall and chose to be together, all the emotions and heat are amplified to new heights. It’s so incredibly satisfying to finally see them reach that happy place together though. What a wonderful story!

 

Number of stars out of 5: 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Categories
adult - 18+

Coming Soon! Fox Hunt (Shifter U #4) by J. Leigh Bailey

July 2!

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/fox-hunt-by-j-leigh-bailey-10590-b

Blurb

Outfoxing their enemies will be a bear of a task.

Aspiring journalist and fox shifter David ends up with a target on his back after hacking the Moreau Initiative, the shifter world’s greatest enemy. But he won’t let that stop him from the campus tour road trip that’ll help him become the next Anderson Cooper… even if his family insists he travel with a grumpy grizzly bear bodyguard.

Buddy Brady is older, sexy, and too damn distracting for David, and as the sexual tension builds, so does the suspicion around the repeated attacks–first in Chicago, then in New York. Someone is tracking them, and all clues point to a traitor in the shifter ranks. Worst of all, they could be after David’s family….

Review

This was awesome! So much fun! I love the subtle body image discussion as well as the “living up to expectations” story line in addition to the fun with shifters and running around the country.

It was good to see some of our previous friends from Shifter U – though I really wanted to see more of the Thunderbird in action!

The romance flowed really smoothly and felt authentic and the action was just the right mix of funny and exciting.

Highly recommended!

4.5 of 5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 
Review
I enjoy the Shifter U series but this story didn’t quite live up to the others for me. I found David to be a whiny character at first who seemed to mature as the story went on. This was possibly due to the positive calming influence of Buddy (Theo). Unfortunately the story didn’t quite meld the romance and switch from enemies to lovers story from the mystery of who was after David together. It felt on times to be two stories. The mystery was a little obvious and Buddy was not a very effective body guard. His affection for David shines through. Overall Fox Hunt is a fun read.

3 of stars out of 5



Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Coming Soon: String Boys by Amy Lane

May 28

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/string-boys-by-amy-lane-10521-

Blurb

Seth Arnold learned at an early age that two things in life could make his soul soar—his violin and Kelly Cruz. In Seth’s uncertain childhood, the kindness of the Cruz family, especially Kelly and his brother, Matty, gave Seth the stability to make his violin sing with the purest sound and opened a world of possibility beyond his home in Sacramento.

Kelly Cruz has loved Seth forever, but he knows Seth’s talents shouldn’t be hidden, not when the world is waiting. Encouraging Seth to follow his music might break Kelly’s heart, but he is determined to see the violin set Seth’s soul free. When their world is devastated by a violent sexual assault and Matty’s prejudices turn him from a brother to an enemy, Seth and Kelly’s future becomes uncertain.

Seth can’t come home and Kelly can’t leave, but they are held together by a love that they clutch with both hands.

Seth and Kelly are young and the world is wide—the only thing they know for certain is they’ll follow their heartstrings to each other’s arms whenever time and fate allow. And pray that one day they can follow that string to forever… before it slices their hearts in two.

Review

From the moment I started this book I knew it’s going to be an Amy Lane classic. Full of feels and emotional highs and lows. I felt like I was privileged to be an onlooker on Seth and Kelly’s life. The turbulence that the Cruz family goes through broke my heart. The story pulledon my heart strings. Growing up along sideSeth, Kelly and Mattie being with them as they struggled through life and learned what loving that special person is all about.In this story we get the whole journey of friends to lovers, the hate and family rife as well as unconditional love. Seth has a unique talent for the violin and Kelly wants that to grow. There are a lot of times when school and other circumstances mean Seth and Kelly can’t be together but friends and family are there to get them through and hold on tight. I cried and cheered within moments of each other many times when reading this book and probably will again when I reread it. If you like angsty stories that also fill your heart with joy I can’t recommend this book high enough. If you are still unsure about this book I would suggest that if you are a fan of Amy Lane’s Bonfires and Crocus books then this one would suit you as well.

 

6 of stars out of 5



Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Review

This was – has for me to review. I love Amy so much but this did not inspire me.

I was prepared for angst central and there was a bit – but I honestly was never attached to the characters in such a way that I felt it.

Perhaps it was just my frame of mind when I was reading it, but I just didn’t see these guys in the same light as some of her other couples.

First, they spend a ton of time away from one another but still visit so it was kinda – meh – on that front.

The family is both hard to love and so full of pain that I didn’t really get roped in to their drama.

The romance ends on a very bland note and I didn’t get the sense of relief that I usually do with her angsty stories.

It was good and interesting but not my favorite.

3.5 of 5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook: Falling Down by Eli Easton Narrator: Michael Stellman

audiobookreview

Audible:

https://www.audible.com/search?keywords=falling+down+easton&ref=a_typ_t1_header_search

Blurb
Josh finds himself homeless at 18, but he has a plan. He’ll head north on the bus to New England and spend October there for his mother’s sake. She always talked about going to see the fall leaves someday. And when the leaves are done and the harsh winter comes, Josh plans to find a place to curl up and let go. It will be a relief to finally stop fighting.

Mark spent his life trying to live up to the tough swagger of his older brothers until he pushed himself so far against his nature that he cracked. Now a former Marine, he rents a little cabin in the White Mountains of New Hampshire where he can lick his wounds and figure out what to do with the rest of his life. One thing was clear: Mark was nobody’s hero.

Fate intervenes when Josh sets up camp under a covered bridge near Mark’s cabin. Mark recognizes the dead look in the young stranger’s eyes, and he feels compelled to do something about it. When Mark offers Josh a job, he never expects that he’ll be the one to fall.

The snow is coming soon. Can Mark convince Josh that the two of them can build a life together before the flurries begin?

Review
Oh boy the emotions this book pulled out of me. I had not read falling down before listening to it so it was completely new to me. The empty sorrow Josh is feeling is so well conveyed that I felt for him. It’s a bit disconcerting starting to cry whilst listening on train. I wanted to console Josh and encourage him not to give up. This to me Illustrates the power of Eli Easton’s writing. As soon as Mark saw Josh I was keen for them to meet and get together. They both have things they have to come to terms with and the story is about how they do this together without realising that they are actually helping each other. Just working and being with each other They start to see things differently. This comes hurtling to a head towards the end when circumstances make Mark understand how much Josh means to him.
I liked Michael Stellman’s narration he connected me to the emotions of both Mark and Josh. Making them feel real. The only problem I had was with the production. There are gaps between chapters I kept checking the to see why it had stopped but it hadn’t it was the long gap. This pulled me away from the story. But on the whole I enjoyed it, despite the heartbreak.

4 stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Categories
adult - 18+

Audiobook Bad Attitude by KA Mitchell, narrated by Chet Daniel

audiobookreview

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/bad-attitude-by-ka-mitchell-9505-b

Blurb

Saving lives never used to be this complicated.

Gavin Montgomery does what’s expected of him by his wealthy and powerful family—look good in a tuxedo and don’t make waves. When a friend takes a leap off a bridge, Gavin tries to save him, only to fall in with him. At least at the bottom of the river he won’t feel like such a disappointment to his family. But he’s pulled from the water by a man with an iron grip, a sexy mouth, and a chip on his shoulder the size of the national deficit.
Jamie Donnigan likes his life the way it is—though he could have done without losing his father and giving up smoking. But at least he’s managed to avoid his own ball and chain as he’s watched all his friends pair off. When Montgomery fame turns a simple rescue into a media circus, Jamie decides if he’s being punished for his good deed, he might as well treat himself to a hot and sweaty good time. It’s not like the elegant and charming Gavin is going to lure Jamie away from his bachelor lifestyle. Nobody’s that charming. Not even a Montgomery….

Review: Story previously reviewed.
https://openskyebookreviews.com/release-day-review-bad-attitude-by-ka-mitchell/

Chet Daniels is new to me. He did a good job with overall narration – the entitled tone for Gavin and a more down to earth tone for Jamie, (although not a ‘Balmer’ accent as my Baltimore-born spouse will tell you). Mr. Daniels did have a curious way of transitioning between dialogue and non-dialogue parts. It wasn’t bad, just something I noticed.
I enjoyed the narration and I think it’s a good way to experience the story.

4 stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

 

 

Categories
adult - 18+ New Adult

Release Day Review:The Kinsey Scale (Campus Connections #1)by CJane Elliott

release day review

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/the-kinsey-scale-by-cjane-elliott-9963-b

Blurb

Life is good for Eric Brown. He’s a senior theater major, an RA for a freshman dorm, and has a great circle of friends. Single since sophomore year, Eric isn’t looking for love. But then Will Butler—fellow senior, co-RA, and the cutest guy Eric’s ever seen—walks into his dorm. Will has a girlfriend he sees off campus—a minor disappointment that becomes a major problem when a housing shortage causes Will and Eric to become roommates, and Eric is forced to witness Will’s hotness day in and day out. For protection, Eric asks Jerry, his ex-boyfriend, to pretend they’re still together. Jerry warns him it’s a stupid idea, but he reluctantly agrees.

Too bad it won’t save Eric from losing his heart.

Will Butler has never believed in himself. His dysfunctional family saw to that. Although Will has loved music since childhood, he’s never seriously considered pursuing it, and the person he’s dating doesn’t encourage him. Then he and Eric Brown become roommates, and everything changes. Eric believes in Will and his talent. He’s also gorgeous and playful and fast becoming Will’s best friend. And that’s not good, because Will is hiding some big things, not only from Eric, but from himself.

Review
I really liked this! I thought the characters were great and though I sometimes felt like they were missing the boat by just not TALKING I could kinda understand it given their respective ages.

I liked the smexy times (though I wish there were more) and really felt the HEA was worth the time invested. Highly enjoyable!

4 of 5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Review
This book took me a long time to read. Not because it was particularly difficult or taxing, but just that it didn’t engage me at all. At 65% through, I was still waiting for something to happen. For a book about a drama student there really was no… well, drama.
Everything is written from Eric’s point of view, but it felt like we never really get to know him as we bounced through the academic term. And Will similarly so.
Will had a potential home life back story that could be quite interesting, but nothing was made of it. His music, another strong potential story never flourished.
The best character of the bunch was Jerry, the pretend boyfriend as we got to see some animation from him, the rest just seemed insipid.
Sadly, this book did not live up to the blurb.

2.5 stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

 

Categories
Mid level angst

Recent Release: Rivals (Gaymer Guys #1) by Alison Hendricks

Good Reads Link
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42183978-rivals?ac=1&from_search=true

Blurb

Finn:
The Cyclones are more than just a team to me—they’re my family. As captain, I give my all to make sure they’re taken care of. Sure, it doesn’t leave a lot of time for me, but I’ve always been able to ignore my own needs. Until Ryker.

I know he’s all talk. But it’s such dirty, distracting talk that it costs me and my team qualifying points. I shouldn’t let him get to me, but I want him in the worst way, and a hookup at a gaming convention seems as good a place as any to get over him.

But when he earns a spot with the Cyclones, all my hangups over this guy are brought to the forefront, 24/7. I expected to give in to my attraction again, but I never thought he’d become an integral part of my team… and my life.

Ryker:
Beating the Cyclones isn’t just about bragging rights for me. It’s about proving to my dad—and myself—that I’m worth more than the internship he’s oh-so-generously offered me.

There’s only one problem: I’ve been low-key obsessed with their captain, Finn, for the better part of a year. He’s everything I want, and everything I want to be—driven, talented, passionate. He also hates my guts, which honestly only makes me want him more.

But it only takes one insanely hot encounter to tell me I won’t be getting him out of my system anytime soon. And when I finally have the opportunity to join the Cyclones and pursue my dream, the one thing I want most of all is him.

Rivals is the first book in a brand new series! While all these books feature gaming and geekery, you don’t have to be a self-professed gamer to enjoy them. If you like the idea of hot, adorkable nerds falling in love, you’re in the right place.

Review

Funnily enough… there was way too much sex in this IMHO. I had to bump this down a notch for that alone.  I wanted more relationship and less humping.  They thought about having sex.  Had sex.  Then thought about how they had sex.  It was too much.

I was very captivated by the enemies to lovers, but sometimes the ages of the MCs felt off – at times too young and others too mature. Inconsistent definitely.  But – maybe – some of that was them growing… hard to tell.

However, the gaming stuff sounded legit and fascinating and I’m stoked for a new series!  Sometimes I was overwhelmed by all the gaming jargon, but it was mostly done in a way that non gamers cold follow.

Recommended!

4 of 5 stars