Time to Comfort: Designs of Desire by Tempeste O’Riley Narrated by Max Lehnen

Good Reads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18139107-designs-of-desire?from_search=tru

Blurb

Artist James Bryant has forearm crutches in every color from rainbow for fun to sleek black for business. He even has a pair with more paint splatters than metal. After his family’s rejection and abuse from a man he thought loved him, James only just gets through the day by painting. He lives in constant fear that he’s not worthy of anything, let alone love.

As CEO of his company, Carrington Enterprises, Seth Burns is a take-charge kind of guy, and he is instantly smitten by the artist helping with his newest project. When he witnesses James suffer a panic attack, a protective instinct he never knew he had kicks in. He truly believes nothing is unobtainable—including James—if he’s willing to put in the time and effort.

James is shy and confused by Seth’s interest in him as a person. With Seth’s support, can he work through his fears to finally find the true love he deserves, or will someone finally land the crushing blow he won’t survive?

Review
It seems like this is one of those stories you either enjoy or don’t. It’s an insta love kind of story. James was born with a genetic condition which affects his joints. James’s past relationships have been a disaster, with his last partner abusing him. It has taken him a long time to consider another relationship. Then along comes Seth. Not a person to take no for an answer. He is determined to show James BDSM is not abuse.
Whilst I liked the story James does seem to suffer or attract bad luck more than the average person. His fortunes turn when he meets Seth. The right man makes it all better! maybe it’s more the case that Seth builds James’s self belief and confidence back up so that he can show the world what a fantastic artist he is. This is the first book in a series, each one focuses on a different pair of characters, and can be read alone.
I’ve read this story and when you have a good narrator it can bring different aspects to the story and make it almost feel like the first time. Unfortunately not in this case. I couldn’t quite match the voices to either Seth or James, there isn’t any distinction between characters. Although not unpleasant to listen to. The story just felt like I was being read to by someone who wasn’t that interested. It was the story itself that kept me tuned in otherwise I might’ve zoned out. The narrator changes for the rest of the series series, not necessarily for the better.

3 of stars out of 5 for the story
2 of stars out of 5 for the narrator
overall 2.5 of 5 stars

Purchased for Review

 

 

 

 

Release Day Review: Bad Habit by K.A. Mitchell

release day review

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/bad-habit-by-ka-mitchell-9957-b

Blurb

Life is always looking for ways to screw you over. Scott McDermott survived the foster care system and knows better than to let anyone close, but Liam Walsh is his one vulnerability.

Twice Scott let down his guard, and twice Liam vanished from Scott’s life.

So when Scott comes face-to-face with Liam for the first time in six years, he punches Liam in the nose. Only after Scott’s friend—and Baltimore County police officer—Jamie reads him the riot act does Scott discover that in the intervening years Liam has been to war and lost his leg.

Liam hasn’t had the easiest life either. He took care of his drug-addicted mom when she was unable to take care of herself. He’s fallen in love with Scott twice, but when Liam saw Scott going down the same path as his mother, he left. The lesson that he can’t save everyone has been a painful one for Liam to learn. Maybe what he and Scott had can’t ever be fixed.

Scott and Liam have never fallen out of love—which becomes obvious when they start working together—but what will make this time any different from all the others? Will the third time really be a charm?

Review

This is a grittier second chance at love story than I’m used to reading, and at first rather higher on hurt than comfort, but I enjoyed it very much. Love certainly isn’t for the faint of heart in this story, but I loved how these characters ultimately found their way back to each other. It’s not just about finding love though, but also very much about following your own path in life and finding friends and a community.

Scott and Liam have both had a difficult childhood, part of it spent (or misspent) in the foster care system. Outwardly, Scott is the tough guy and asocial misfit, whereas Liam seems all charm and affability, so at first glance these two seem a very unlikely pair. Liam and Scott both have fears and insecurities to overcome, but as we get to know them better, Scott seemed to me to be the more vulnerable of the two. I can certainly understand his initial angry reaction upon seeing Liam again after all those years.

The bond between Scott and Liam is incredible intense, but laced with the pain of past mistakes. Their connection is really strong, tinged with inevitability even, and comes across the pages very clearly and powerfully even when a HEA seems impossible. They are obviously meant to be together, but can’t seem to figure out how to make their relationship work, how to let their guard down (again) or how to take a chance on love and trust in the possibility of a future together.

There’s an amazing moment in the book where the author captures the essence of their relationship in the lyrics of a song. That scene really got to me. Beautifully written and very emotional.

Scott is very caring and considerate toward Liam, trying to help him regain his independence, no strings attached. He’s such a sweetheart, though one with a temper and a very short fuse.

This book can be read as a standalone, though I would recommend you read the other books in the series first. Quite a few of the main characters from the previous books come along to lend our current heroes a hand or weigh in with an opinion, so it’s more fun if you’ve read the other books as well. Though perhaps it is merely a case of meeting new friends instead of reconnecting with old ones. Either way Scott and Liam are in awesome company!

This is a great addition to a wonderful series!

Number of stars out of 5: 4


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

 

 

Time to get Paranormal: Chasing Destiny (Silver Tip Pack book 2) By Megan Erickson

 

Good Reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33795022-chasing-destiny?from_search=true

Blurb
Bay has had his fair share of hardships, as brother to the Alpha of the Silver Tip Pack. He almost died when a usurper took the opportunity the alpha was away on a rescue mission to try and take over. Upon his brother’s return he discovers the one person he cannot forget, his best friend Nash, was still alive all these years after he disappeared when they were boys. The news is as unsettling as the fact Nash has been lost again, with no hope of returning, sacrificing his life to buy Dare and his team time to get back to safety when the Noweres attacked.

Now Bay is restless, choosing to go outside the safety of their compound for Reese’s long though dead tribe. New intel says there are possible survivors there and Dare. As alpha, must see if they can be allied with, for the sake of his mate. Bay expects to find some lost wolves barely hanging on and not the small, yet strong, community who is more that capable to defend itself. And he was not expecting to find Nash again, after mourning him twice and giving up any shred of hope, the one person he has always loved. But the years Nash was away have damaged his body and soul, and unlocking the secrets of his past might lead to an enemy much worse than the Undead Noweres and their single minded need to kill.

Review
This was a book I was anxiously anticipating after book one, and Nash and Bay’s story was as thrilling and emotional as it was hot. I loved the expansion of the world Megan created with the addition of Reese’s tribe and their leader Pace. I also adored how intricately she wrote Nash’s back story, it’s raw and sad but also adds a whole new dimension and a ruthless enemy for our group of heroes. We also get a look as how they live in this dystopian future after all the humans died in the virus and the Noweres appeared.
Bay and Nash share an unbreakable bond, one that time and pain could not erode, and the Friends-to-Lovers theme is strong in this book. The added bonus of the shifter dynamics, the pack bond between them makes their love almost visceral. Nash has been found and is slowly getting his strength back, but the past scars he carries are deep and he keeps pushing Bay away. Bay, the fun loving optimist that he is, doesn’t let him get too far despite his attempts of running away. They are fun to read about with an air of longing in every touch and moment between them, and they are smoldering hot together.
When Nash’s fate in those lost years is revealed Dare has to reevaluate the world he lives in and what he thought to be facts. Nash is not the only one holding secrets, Pace has some of his own and in order to survive they have to work together and trust each other, not an easy feat when testosterone and egos are at play. I loved them so much, especially when the horrors of Nash’s live are discovered. You just feel so much for him, for all of them really- thrust in a cruel violent future fighting against bloodthirsty monsters and evil beyond human comprehension.
This book is almost like a detective story, were you gather tidbits of information and try to put the puzzle pieces together. I am eagerly anticipating the next book in the series, an MMF according to Megan’s FB group post and more of this world.

Number of stars out of 5
4.5 stars

 

Purchased for review

 

Recent Release: Any Given Lifetime by Leta Blake

 

Good Reads Link:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/41733251-any-given-lifetime?from_search=true

 

Blurb

Neil isn’t a ghost, but he feels like one. Reincarnated with all his memories from his prior life, he spent twenty years trapped in a child’s body, wanting nothing more than to grow up and reclaim the love of his life.
As an adult, Neil finds there’s more than lost time separating them. Joshua has built a beautiful life since Neil’s death, and how exactly is Neil supposed to introduce himself? As Joshua’s long-dead lover in a new body? Heartbroken and hopeless, Neil takes refuge in his work, developing microscopic robots called nanites that can produce medical miracles.
When Joshua meets a young scientist working on a medical project, his soul senses something his rational mind can’t believe. Has Neil truly come back to him after twenty years? And if the impossible is real, can they be together at long last?

 

Review by Karen

One of the most original love stories I’ve ever read! A great twist on the popular May/December trope and an incredibly unique second chance at love story. It nearly broke my heart, but luckily the author stitched it back together!

 

Leta Blake has an incredible gift with words and shows true excellence in weaving together Neil and Joshua’s almost epic tale. The emotions in this story soar to great heights, but there is also a lot of sadness and loss to overcome. And it’s all written in such a beautiful and moving way, as if she’s writing on our hearts instead of on the pages of the book.

I don’t think anyone could read this story and not feel touched by it.  

I love the way she uses dreams and their symbolism to help the characters deal with everything that happens, and also gives them a way to connect with each other when that doesn’t seem possible in real life.

Neil is a strange and complex character, in both his lifetimes. He doesn’t make friends easily, so I was glad to see him form a friendship with Derek. Neil’s so intense and focused, so dedicated to his research, and to Joshua’s happiness. Absolutely amazing guy. I was so impatient for him to grow up so he could finally reconnect with Joshua. But the author knew better than to rush that, and she builds up the tension and emotion very skillfully.

Joshua has built a life for himself, though he never really stopped loving Neil or grieving for him.

I loved how the author gave him a way to be (mostly) happy during the years it takes Neil to grow up, again. A bittersweet interlude, that afterwards connects with Neil in the most wonderful way. Can’t say more about that, but absolutely loved it.

Alice, Neil’s “second” mother, is amazing. She loves her little boy with all her heart, knowing and accepting who he truly is, however far-fetched it must have seemed. She struck me as really special and precious, and I was glad to be given a glimpse of her HEA as well. I simply adored that we got scenes from her perspective too.

This is a truly extraordinary love story.

Number of stars out of 5: 5

 

 


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Review by Neta

I was ready for some heart ache reading when I started this book, but like any other Leta Novel I read to date I was grossly unprepared for the emotional weight of it.
Neil and Joshua’s story is a heart wrenching tale of humanity and love, and I was overcome with emotions about life in general while reading.
First, you start out with Joshua in pain after losing Neil, missing out so many things they never did together because of fear. And the way he slowly built his life, picked himself up and met Lee a few years after that was awe-inspiring. I loved how Leta wrote his emotions, his love for both men, how their lives were interwoven and connected through Neil and because of his death, or should I say his life. This book really got me thinking ABOUT life and what the near future might hold for me and my loved ones, because it dealt with all that in Joshua’s life. Also, through the advancement of the nanite technology in the years 2019-2032 (the future of our present-day the book takes place in) Leta also talks about how technology evolved in our lives. Some of it is amazing and saves lives, other parts of it are too rushed and end up doing more bad then good, or changing how we live irrevocably. It is a very relevant topic in our time today, I think, and I liked that this book, despite it being a Romance, managed to enfold so many real emotions and feeling/fears readers face now or might face in the future.

The non-linear timelines are interesting, and really emphasized the convoluted nature of their lives, of Neil’s very existence. They show glimpses into the past and expose the nature of the characters, not just details from their past.

Second, the reincarnation theme has been written about, and the concept of finding yourself stuck in a too-young body is often referred in a humoristic way in books and film. Not here, Leta brought the truest- most painful depiction of a reincarnated reality in Neil. Having been born with the full knowledge and most of his memories he is in a constant state of loss and longing for the Joshua. And his mother, god bless her soul, is such a wonderful character, a true image of motherhood and limitless love. Neither one asked to be in this situation, her expecting her dead boyfriend’s baby, and Neil to simply die and not be stuck in a child’s body, desperate to grow and meet Joshua again. It was such a twisted way to live, and you can’t help but want them to be together while liking Lee and Joshua as a couple too. And they are also surrounded by mazing friends, Derek and Chris who are accepting and supporting through thick and thin.

When Neil, now aged 20 again, and Joshua meet for the first time in this lifetime, it is an explosive, erotic expression of love and longing. They ARE meant to be together, and the strength of their love is incredible. Especially as Joshua keeps talking about Neil’s faults when he remembers him, Neil is not an ideal, a sweetened memory made better by time. He is as much alive in Joshua’s heart as he is in the future Neil’s soul.

This book is about life, in all its forms, and love, of the purest kind. It deals with humanity, is about setting up your goals in life, about the journey as much as the ending. About taking chances, knowing what you need and want, and I found myself grateful for friends and family, thinking about the years to come while reading. Only Leta can take you through such a journey while you read about two men in love longing to be together. I kinda wanted to re-read it straight away, but my heart needs some room to expand before I can do that again. An amazing book by an author I admire, go read it if you like May/December, Second Chance and are just plain looking for a book unlike any other. You won’t be disappointed.

 

5 magnificent stars.


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Time to get Paranormal: Noel (Council Assassins Book 2) by Catherine Lievens

eXtasy Books Inc
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40123295-noel?from_search=true

Blurb
Noel has spent the past seventeen years focusing first on his studies, then on his job as a lawyer, but the man he had a one-night stand with never left his mind—or his heart. He doesn’t know what it was about Roark, but he’s never been able to forget him, and he’s stopped trying. Instead, he works with the council to help shifters who can’t afford a lawyer. When he receives threats that have to do with the murder case he accepted, he calls Kameron Rhett from the council, who then calls the council’s best-hidden secret—the assassins.

Roark has been a council assassin since he was freed from the lab he spent years in. It’s the only place he fits in, with the other assassins, the people who share a trait with him—all of them have been genetically modified. Roark hates his ability to manipulate minds, and when he realizes the man he’s supposed to protect is the mate he thought long lost, he tries to get out of it.

But Noel is stubborn and headstrong, and he won’t take no for an answer. Between him and Roark’s bear, Roark doesn’t have a choice, and the more time he spends with Noel, the more he falls for him. Will he be able to save his mate from the man after him? And if he does, will he manage to allow himself the happiness he’s been longing for?

Review
I discovered Catherine Lievens’ Whitedell Pride and Gillham Pack series’ about a year ago and binge read the first 40 books or so!! I love the multitude of shifter and paranormal characters she writes about. Noel is a human lawyer who is getting death threats due to his representation of shifter wrongly accused of murdering a human female. In comes Roark to protect him. Roark sees himself as a monster due to what was done to him by human scientists, in reality he is another tortured soul. The chemistry between Roark and Noel is off the charts. This is their second chance at love. I have to say I didn’t see twist ending. I think this could be read as a stand alone but do yourself a favor and read them all!!
4 stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Audiobook: Cowboy in the Crosshairs by BA Tortuga narrated by Dorian Bane

audiobookreview

 

Dreamspinner Presents

 

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/cowboy-in-the-crosshairs-by-ba-tortuga-10011-b

 

Blurb: Once upon a time, a prince lived in a magical kingdom called Turquoise, New Mexico.
Well, really, TJ is a small-town police chief. Every Friday he holds court in the diner with the local holy roller, the art colonists, and the horsey people. But the Benes, who own the rodeo company, keep to themselves. TJ knows, because he was once hot and heavy with the oldest Bene son.
When Wacey Bene gets trampled by a remuda and comes home to heal, he’s none too happy to run into TJ, or his two little boys and their momma. The story might end there—if it wasn’t for some pesky bastard trying to kill Wacey.
The law steps in, and the townsfolk are cross about somebody messing with one of their own.
But once the bad guy is put away, can TJ and Wacey make their place in this wild and eccentric town a permanent one?

Review: Book originally reviewed here:
https://openskyebookreviews.com/release-day-cowboy-in-the-crosshairs-by-ba-tortuga/

I was really excited to listen and review the audiobook – Dorian Bane rocks the narration IMO! (Note: I’m a UK transplant so I don’t really know if Texans/New Mexicans really sound like that).
Mr. Bane conveyed the humour and the emotions of the characters very well.
He had very distinct voices for almost all of the characters, except for Wacey and Tank; they sometimes sounded a little like each other (to me). However this wasn’t much of an issue because I still knew which character was which, depending on the situation.
This is one of those stories that the audiobook is a really great (or better) way to experience the story. I loved it!

4.5 stars out of 5
Reviewer Name: Dee


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

 

Recent Review: Never Let Me Go by Elaine White

Good Reads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40966513-never-let-me-go?from_search=true

Fashion photo of young model man on white background. Boy posing. Studio photo. Black and white

Blurb
We were everything to each other, once. Now we’re basically strangers. The most I get from Bradley, as we pass in the hall, is a glare or a shove against the lockers.
The problem is that I don’t mind.
I’d do anything, be anything and give anything, to be with him. Even if he is arrogant, crass, and the sexiest man in school. He’s also dominant. Over me. Only me. And I love it.
I was waiting for graduation. Until we’d left school and the constant rules, the judgments and gossip. I was waiting until I had the guts to ask Bradley to be my Dom for real. Forever.
I just never expected him to make the first move.

Warning: be prepared for no explicit content, teen drama, snark galore, and a whole lot of tension between strong Dom/sub personalities. These boys know who they are and they aren’t about to hide it.

Review by Aerielle
I had a really hard time getting into this book. Bradley (one of the MCs) was pretty unlikable and I had an issue with the way he treated Rory throughout the story. Bradley seems to have a lot of self loathing issues regarding his sexuality which ends up with him treating Rory abysmally. Rory on the other hand comes off as a complete doormat. He pretty much takes whatever Bradley dishes out. This is supposed to be about two young men’s journey into a D/s relationship but this book goes about it in the wrong way. The only part of this book I like was the epilogue. It was a sweet ending to a “meh” book.

Number 2.5 stars

 

Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Review by Rebecca
This book has a great D/s dynamic without going into the S&M kink. The few time jumps in the book was initially confusing, but it got better. Bradley was a very complex but adorable character. You feel bad for him, but yet in other ways you don’t. Rory was adorable and reminded me of how I was a little in high school. Both are strong willed. The couple had ups and downs and I definitely rooted for them. Very well written book. I enjoyed reading it.

Number of stars out of 5
5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Coming Soon: Hiding in Plain Sight Series: Camp H.O.W.L.: Book 3 Author: Bru Baker

September 18

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/hiding-in-plain-sight-by-bru-baker-9869-b

Blurb

Happily ever after is right under their noses.
Harris has been keeping a big secret for years—his unrequited mate bond with his best friend, Jackson. He’s convinced himself that having Jackson in his life is enough. That, and his work at Camp H.O.W.L., keeps him going.
Things get complicated when Jackson applies for a high-ranking Tribunal job in New York City—far from Camp H.O.W.L. The position requires he relinquish all Pack bonds… and that’s when his wolf decides to choose a mate. Suddenly Jackson sees his best friend in a sizzling new light.
Their chemistry is through the roof, but they’re setting themselves up for broken hearts—and broken bonds—if Jackson can’t figure out a way to balance his career and the love that’s just been waiting for him to take notice.

Review

This was super disappointing for me. I LOVED the idea of the love from afar and the finally finding out we’re mates as a concept. However, the end result was a really tepid anticlimactic love scene(s) and a lot of important couple events happened off page.

Though fans of the series will still want to read this, and you don’t have to start from the beginning to enjoy this, I think if you start with this you’ll be disappointed and won’t appreciate the others in this series which are more wonderful.

3 of 5 stars

Morgan - Signature-small
Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Coming Soon! Somebody to Die For Series: Requiem Inc.: Book 3 Author: Kris T. Bethke

 

 

Release Date: September 4, 2018

 

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/somebody-to-die-for-by-kris-t-bethke-9839-b

 

Blurb

Dying is easy. New love is terrifying.
Avery Wagner quit ghostwalking when he lost his beloved anchor to cancer. Now teaching others who have the ability, he’s beginning to live again—but he’s not looking for another lover, not now, maybe not ever.
But then he meets Jameson… younger, talented, dedicated, almost perfect, even though his mouth sometimes opens ahead of his brain. And Jameson wants Avery desperately, though he’ll settle for friendship if he can’t have more.
When an emergency demands they work together in the field, Avery discovers just how perfect Jameson is. But he had a perfect love once before, and he’s scared to even consider that he might have a chance at another. Can he trust Jameson with his newly healing heart?

Review

I love this series so much! This is hard for me to differentiate – because I can’t help but compare this to the previous two books, which I really loved…
On the one hand: I loved the world Bethke has given us – the ghosts, the afterlife, the alternate way of thinking… I was so PSYCHED that Avery gets a happy ending… I loved the idea of May/December – especially in this long lived world…

In the end – I didn’t like Avery. Ugh. He bothered me the entire time. I appreciated that he loved Luke and that was a big deal but man – Jameson is soooo awesome and I’m not sure Avery appreciated him like he should have.

That’s absolutely my humble opinion – obviously – but I kept wanting a grand gesture that proved Avery got what a treat Jameson was. The power balance in this couple felt off and I didn’t feel like it got it’s own footing by the end. Maybe if it’d been a bit longer…

Anyhow, I loved seeing the guys from books 1 and 2 – especially Derek – *sigh…

Fans of this series will want to read this and you don’t have to have read the others to enjoy this one but it won’t mean as much to you if you start with this one.

For the writing and the world building I’d give this a 5 for the romance a 3 – so 4 of 5 stars overall.

Morgan - Signature-small
Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Coming Soon: Threepeat by KC Wells & Parker Williams

August 21!

Dreamspinner Presents:

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/threepeat-by-kc-wells-and-parker-williams-9822-

Blurb
Can two Doms open their hearts again for a young man desperately in need of their help?

Two years ago, Aaron Greene and Sam Thompson were devastated when their submissive broke the contract that bound the three of them together. They still wonder what happened and whether they can find a way to move forward. When Aaron finds a sick young man by the curbside, his protective instincts kick in, and after consulting Sam, he takes Tim home.

After being thrown out of his home, Tim Waterman finds himself on the street, doing whatever he needs to survive. Until a bear of a Good Samaritan scoops him up and saves him. Then one bear becomes two, and a chance discovery gets him thinking about what might be, if he’s bold enough to make a move.

So what happens when Aaron and Sam wake up one morning to find Tim naked in their bed? Will they get a new chance at life, or will history Threepeat itself

Review
On finishing Threepeat I have mixed feelings, I didn’t want it to end and a feeling contentment, a satisfied sigh at the way it ended. I do love this series. I’m growing fond of all the characters just like I did with Collars and Cuffs. Sam and Aaron are heartbroken after their Sub leaves them. They just don’t understand why. Two years later they are coming around to the idea of trying again. This for me was an important part of the story, it sets up the premise for how their relationship works and how a sub fits into their dynamic. For Tim being found by Aaron is a blessing. He couldn’t survive much longer on the streets by himself. This is another emotional journey KC Wells and Parker Williams takes their readers on. The abuse Tim suffers at the hands of his family and insecurities arising from that along with the grief Sam and Aaron are feeling made it a compelling read for me. The emphasis of this story is relationships and family. Building a strong family from people who love you for who you are. Because of the abuse Tim suffered the kink is on the lighter side with some inventive aspects, the tickle session sounded more torturous than others I’ve read! Despite the emotional aspects the story is low angst with a lot of emphasis on communication. Maggie as always is a wonderful secondary and character and has a greater role in this story. On the whole it is a stand-alone book but like with other series you get more enjoyment knowing the background to a lot of the other characters.

5 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review