4.5 Stars, Genre Romance, Historical Romance, Kate McMurray, Paranormal, Reviewed by Lisa, Self-Published

Review: Across the East River Bridge by Kate McMurray

Amazon

Amazon

Title: Across the East River Bridge (2nd Edition)

Author: Kate McMurray

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 239 Pages

At a Glance: Across the East River Bridge, in its second go-round, is every bit as good now as it was in its original release.

Reviewed By: Lisa

Blurb: When historian Christopher Finnegan walks into a new museum in Brooklyn, he’s chagrined to learn its curator is his old academic rival, Troy Rafferty. Worse, Troy is convinced the museum is haunted and wants Finn’s help learning more about the ghosts. Finn and Troy have never gotten along and Finn wants to run screaming, but then Troy offers him an intriguing proposal: Troy will help Finn with a research project for his overbearing boss if Finn will help Troy solve a mystery involving two men who died in the building under mysterious circumstances in 1878.

Finn and Troy piece together the two men’s lives–and the quiet romance that grew between them–through diaries, newspaper clippings, and police reports. They’re both soon convinced the men were murdered. They’re also convinced the ghosts are real even Finn witnesses paranormal phenomena he can’t deny–and that they’re capable of affecting thoughts, feelings, and actions. When Finn and Troy start falling for each other despite years of animosity, Finn worries he’s being manipulated by the ghosts to stay with Troy and solve the case. Troy is convinced the love between them is real, but he’ll need to figure out how to get rid of the ghosts in order to prove it.

Dividers

Review: I first read Kate McMurray’s Across the East River Bridge back in September of 2012. A few years and more than a few hundred books later, when I chose to review it in its second edition release, I’ll confess that while I had the plot basics down, I clearly had forgotten some of the finer details that made it such a fantastic read—both the first time and now, the second. This book is many things rolled into one: an enemies-to-lovers story, a contemporary romance, a historical romance, a tragic romance, and then, to top it all off, there’s a paranormal mystery dating back to the 1870s that this author managed to finesse into a touching and sometimes intense read.

McMurray leads us into the story in modern day Brooklyn, where we learn that Christopher “Finn” Finnegan and Troy Rafferty have a history of their own—rivals from their college days, Finn has spent more than a decade loathing golden boy Troy for sabotaging his academic career by discrediting his dissertation research, which then resulted in Finn’s funding being pulled. Amongst the animosity that Finn still feels toward Troy all these years later is an undercurrent of sexual tension that’s been there between them from the start. And, added to it, there’s an intense frustration that Finn is still attracted to someone he hates so thoroughly—or tries to hate so thoroughly, at least. The setup for them working together, then, is a great foundation for the conflicted feelings Finn has throughout the book—how can he hate Troy and still want him so intensely? And how can Finn look inward in any sort of honest and rational way and continue to blame Troy for his failings? I have to say I felt a lot of frustration myself toward Finn throughout this book. His stubbornness and scapegoating of Troy makes it hard to excuse some of Finn’s actions and reactions, but a lot of that for me is because Kate McMurray makes Troy such a likeable and charming character. Where Troy may be intended to be Finn’s foil, it actually worked the other way around, and I liked the turning of the tables.

Where the author infuses this book with a terrible poignancy is in the historical research Finn and Troy delve into to uncover the mystery of Brill House, the museum of which Troy is now curator. There is a ghostly presence or two in Brill House that seems to lead directly to one-time owner Theodore Brill, and a border who eventually became Teddy’s lover, George Washington Cutler. Their story, of course, carries with it all the ingrained difficulties of the time in which these two men lived and loved. As Troy and Finn continue their investigation into Teddy and Wash’s deaths—an apparent murder/suicide—they uncover more questions than answers about the way in which the couple died. And, in the process, begin to agitate the spirits of the deceased as the ghosts become desperate for the truth of their deaths to be revealed. I 100% loved this aspect of the novel, not only from an emotional standpoint but from a writing standpoint as well. As Finn and Troy get closer to the truth, the more the tension and suspense escalate, and once the storyline reaches its climax, it plays out in true page-turner fashion.

Troy and Finn’s interactions throughout the story are part antagonistic, part full-on sexual, and their relationship builds from that as well as the eventual realization on Finn’s part that he’s going to have to give up the ghost, so to speak, and stop trying to make Troy the enemy. As feelings change and begin to look a lot like two men falling in love, the underlying question they can’t answer for sure is, how much is this metaphysical mystery manipulating them and their emotions. Finn’s not only skeptical about nearly every aspect of Troy’s theories on what happened to Teddy and Wash, but he’s so busy hanging on to the past that he can’t see what a great future Troy’s offering him, and I liked how these relationships contrasted—we see what a gift it is for Troy and Finn to be able to live together openly, a luxury that Teddy and Wash didn’t have. And, it may well have cost them their lives.

Across the East River Bridge, in its second go-round, is every bit as good now as it was in its original release. Whether you’ve read it before, or are considering reading it for the first time, I can say it’s a solid story that comes highly recommended.

TNA_Signature_Lisa

 

 

 

 

You can buy Across the East River Bridge here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
4 Stars, Amber Allure, Genre Romance, J.D. Walker, Reviewed by Lana, Short Story

Review: Romancing the Bouncer by J.D. Walker

Amazon

Amazon

Title: Romancing the Bouncer

Author: J.D. Walker

Publisher: Amber Allure

Pages/Word Count: 13k Words

At a Glance: I really enjoyed Romancing the Bouncer but would have liked it to be just a bit longer.

Reviewed By: Lana

Blurb: Bennett “Ben” Pachowski has been a bouncer at Throwbacks for years. He likes his job, though he gets tired of being thought of as more brawn than brain simply because of his size. He also prefers to be romanced before sleeping with a man.

Ben’s favorite band, Rebel’s Ultimatum, occasionally plays at the club, which gives him an eyeful of the sexy bass player, Monty Mabuse. They’ve been eyeing each other for months, though Ben is content to flirt and nothing more, since “commitment” seems a foreign concept to the selfish, arrogant and flirtatious bass player.

But Monty wants Ben to become the next notch on his bedpost, and a devious trick to get what he wants blows up in his face.

Will Ben be able to forgive Monty for his deception? Perhaps, but if Monty wants to have a relationship with Ben, he needs to make some changes, and it remains to be seen whether he can become the kind of man Ben will respect, let alone love.

Sometimes, a little romance goes a long way…

Dividers

Review: Romancing the Bouncer is a short and sweet romance that’s long on the sweet and very short on content, or rather, length. But, as they say, size doesn’t always matter; it’s how you use it. Well, the author used a small amount of space to create two characters that I really liked and felt for but wanted to see more of.

The story centers on Ben, a tough but sweet bouncer who’s looking for his forever man. Because of the way he looks and what he does for a living, people make assumptions about him, and they are always wrong. He’s a thinker and likes to read to the elderly at an assisted living home. And then, you have your typical sexy musician, Monty, who’s looking for his next hookup and sets his sites on Ben. Both are attracted to each other, and Monty gets the upper hand through some subterfuge. Ben’s not so thrilled and basically dumps Monty without even dating him. It was cute how Ben wanted something more meaningful, and Monty just wanted to get in his pants. After some time apart, and then a reconnection, Ben and Monty developed an actual relationship and it was very believable. Both characters for me felt like real people and not a caricature. Both evolved and grew, and I really enjoyed their progress.

And, I really enjoyed Romancing the Bouncer but would have liked it to be just a bit longer, something to get my teeth into. It’s sweet, sexy and just right for a very small snack.

TNA_Signature_Lana

 

 

 

 

You can buy Romancing the Bouncer here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
5 Stars, Joseph Lance Tonlet, Kink/Taboo, Louis Stevens, Self-Published

Review: Quillon’s Covert by Joseph Lance Tonlet and Louis Stevens

TNA Page Turner Resized

Amazon Paperback

Amazon Paperback

Title: Quillon’s Covert

Authors: Joseph Lance Tonlet and Louis Stevens

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 186 Pages

At a Glance: I thank you for writing such an amazing profound love story. Because when you get right down to it, that is exactly what this is.

Reviewed By: Lynn

Blurb: Martin is a guy’s guy, one who enjoys the simple things in life: baseball games with his son, family days, barbecues, and date nights with his lovely wife.

Once a year for two weeks, Martin takes his son, Marty, to Quillon’s Covert, a rustic family cabin secluded in the beautiful California mountains. Since before those long days of learning to play ball, Marty has loved his dad, but as Marty matures, Martin starts to see something else settle in his son’s uncertain gaze. What’s there lingers a little more than it should, and it seems far more appraising than it once was.

As Marty shows every sign of taking the lead, Martin is faced with the tough choices most parents never see: lose his son by being a father, or try to balance what’s best for their relationship by being something… more.

But with another trip to Quillon’s Covert on the horizon, has the point of no return already begun?

Dividers

Review: Okay, where do I even begin? As I sat on this for a few days now, wrapping my head around what words to use describe this book, I’ve come to the conclusion that only one word says what I want to say: beautiful. It was beautifully written, presented beautifully, and definitely got my attention from page one. These two authors told an alluring tale that literally blew me away.

Getting this out of the way here, please heed the warning tags: This story contains incest, cheating, and light BDSM. Read the blurb, read the tags, you have been warned.

I’m going to reiterate again how beautifully written this story was. Spanning over twenty years, we watch Martin and son, Martin Jr. (he likes to be called Marty) begin a taboo, albeit consensual, loving affair. We get to know these two men as they take their annual getaway to a secluded family cabin called Quillon’s Covert. From the beginning we really get a sense of their mutual respect, closeness, and the overall great father/son relationship they have with one another. I think this was an important aspect to see, given the subject matter.

Having both POVs throughout the story was critical because we were privy to all the emotions the characters were experiencing. The reader needs to know beyond any shadow of doubt that their journey is one they chose individually, and then together. But even still, what I loved most were the conversations between the two. I loved the banter back and forth, the jokes, and the numerous nicknames Martin had for his son. It was a nice balance, considering some of the heavy life changing decisions being made between them. I loved the build up to them becoming lovers. I thought it was a great decision by the authors for Martin and Marty to have these deep conversations and internal reflections of what was to be. In the end, it was what they both wanted, and it was just beautiful.

Now, I mentioned cheating as one of the warnings. A lot of readers don’t like cheating, won’t read a book if they know it’s part of the story. For me, it was a non-issue. Yes, for all intents and purposes, Martin is a happily married straight man. And yes, Marty eventually finds happiness of his own with a partner he marries and has children with. But I saw the relationship between father and son as being about them and no one else. They are in their own little bubble when they are together, reconnecting in all ways and on many different levels for the brief amount of time they have that it’s almost like the world beyond them doesn’t exist. When they leave Quillon’s Covert, they go back to their own lives and loves until the following year. It just didn’t seem like cheating to me. I know some will argue the fact, so be it, I see it how I see it.

Overall, I loved this story. Going along with Martin and Marty, watching the progression of their relationship through the years was absolutely mesmerizing. Although the storyline is intense, taboo and unconventional, there is tenderness, love, respect, and laughter throughout.

Mr. Tonlet and Mr. Stevens, I thank you for writing such an amazing profound love story. Because when you get right down to it, that is exactly what this is.

TNA_Signature_Lynn

 

 

 

 

You can buy Quillon’s Covert here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Smashwords

Smashwords

Standard
3.5 Stars, Andi Van, Dreamspinner Press, Holiday Romance, Reviewed by Jules

Review: A Certain Kind of Holiday by Andi Van

Amazon

Amazon

Title: A Certain Kind of Holiday (Sleigh Ride: Advent Calendar 2015)

Author: Andi Van

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Pages/Word Count: 28 Pages

At a Glance: This one was cute, guys!

Reviewed By: Jules

Blurb: When Elliot Knapp took a business trip over the holidays last year, he didn’t expect to run into the professor his first serious boyfriend cheated on him with. The man was handsome, certainly, but Elliot has better things to do than deal with drama from a decade ago.

Luckily for him, Howard Wise wasn’t going to let him get away without an explanation. A year after meeting again, the couple is making their first holiday trip to celebrate Christmas. Everything is fantastic, but Howard is obviously keeping secrets, and Elliot can’t help but wonder what his silver fox has up his sleeve.

Christmas Dividers

Review: Elliot and Howard, who haven’t been in contact in ten years, run into each other unexpectedly on a train ride from Seattle. Their reunion is, of course, soured by the fact that Elliot’s last memory of Howard is him kissing Elliot’s college boyfriend. Howard manages to talk Elliot into letting him explain, however, which turns out to be a very good thing, as things are not always what they seem. I really liked Howard – sexy professor, twinkly eyes, playful demeanor – and I loved that he remembered Elliot right away. Obviously their connection all those years ago wasn’t just one-sided.

A Certain Kind of Holiday is short and sweet. Via three consecutive Christmas vignettes, Andi Van takes us on Howard and Elliot’s journey, allowing us to get to know them and showing us how good they are together.  Again, Howard’s character was the main part of the appeal for me, but I definitely liked Elliot as well. It’s hard to cover much ground in just twenty-eight pages, but Van did a good job of engaging me. This one was cute, guys!

TNA_Signature_Jules

 

 

 

 

You can buy A Certain Kind of Holiday here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

 

Standard
Giveaways, Sean Michael

Guest Post and Giveaway: The Three to Get Ready Blog Tour with Sean Michael

Banner

We’re so please to have author Sean Michael with us on this Christmas Eve day on the tour for his latest release, Three to Get Ready. Enjoy Sean’s guest post, and then be sure to click on the Rafflecopter widget below to enter for the chance to win an e-copy of the book.

Good luck!

Dividers

Christmas Carols

I love Christmas Carols. They’re a part of the brightness that makes Christmas a happy time for me. The lights, the brightly wrapped gifts, and the carols.

I have many favorites. I do love the religious classics like We Three Kings, and O Come All Ye Faithful. In Exelsis Deo and Hark the Herald Angels Sing. (An aside – my father’s name is Harold and when I was younger, I used to think the song was Hark the Harold Angels Sing and that my father had angels who sang stashed somewhere).

I also love the more secular songs. Songs like Winter Wonderland, Jingle Bells and White Christmas. Gospel songs like Go Tell It One the Mountain and Children Go Where I Send Thee.

I prefer the classic songs sung ‘properly’ with the classic tunes I grew up listening to. I enjoy new songs, too, and they have the added benefit of my not having expectations to how they are supposed to sound!

My all time favorite carol, though is the Huron Carol which was written in the 1600s in Canada by a missionary. The version I like best is sung by Tom Jackson. You can hear it on youtube:

‘Twas in the moon of winter-time
When all the birds had fled,
That mighty Gitchi Manitou
Sent angel choirs instead;
Before their light the stars grew dim,
And wandering hunters heard the hymn:
“Jesus your King is born, Jesus is born,
In excelsis gloria.”

Within a lodge of broken bark
The tender Babe was found,
A ragged robe of rabbit skin
Enwrapp’d His beauty round;
But as the hunter braves drew nigh,
The angel song rang loud and high…
“Jesus your King is born, Jesus is born,
In excelsis gloria.”

The earliest moon of wintertime
Is not so round and fair
As was the ring of glory
On the helpless infant there.
The chiefs from far before him knelt
With gifts of fox and beaver pelt.
Jesus your King is born, Jesus is born,
In excelsis gloria.

O children of the forest free,
O sons of Manitou,
The Holy Child of earth and heaven
Is born today for you.
Come kneel before the radiant Boy
Who brings you beauty, peace and joy.
“Jesus your King is born, Jesus is born,
In excelsis gloria.”

Sean

Smut fixes everything

Dividers

Three to Get ReadyBlurb: Single father Jack Jones is in dire need of a new nanny. His five year old son Nathan is legally blind, he has twin baby girls arriving in less than two months and the girl currently working for him is leaving at Thanksgiving to go home and continue her higher education. If Mannies Incorporated doesn’t come up with a viable candidate soon, he’s not sure what he’s going to do.

Dan Miller is on the hunt for a new job. He’s had some great placements with Mannies Incorporated, many as Manny to multiple birth families to get them over the hump. He even has experience with special needs children, so the job he’s interviewing for looks like it’s right up his alley.

When Dan arrives at Jack’s house, he discovers that this Jack Jones is his Jack Jones, the man he was in love with during college, and who broke up with Dan because Dan wanted children. Will Dan and Jack be able to put the past behind them and work together, or will their past keep them from having a future together?

Buy Links: Amazon || All Romance eBooks

Dividers

Sean MichaelAbout the Author: Often referred to as “Space Cowboy” and “Gangsta of Love” while still striving for the moniker of “Maurice,” Sean Michael spends his days surfing, smutting, organizing his immense gourd collection and fantasizing about one day retiring on a small secluded island peopled entirely by horseshoe crabs. While collecting vast amounts of vintage gay pulp novels and mood rings, Sean whiles away the hours between dropping the f-bomb and pursuing the kama sutra by channeling the long lost spirit of John Wayne and singing along with the soundtrack to “Chicago.”

A long-time writer of complicated haiku, currently Sean is attempting to learn the advanced arts of plate spinning and soap carving sex toys.

Barring any of that? He’ll stick with writing his stories, thanks, and rubbing pretty bodies together to see if they spark.

Where to find the authorFacebook || Facebook Author Page || Twitter: seanmichael09 || Website || Blog || Goodreads

Dividers

THE GIVEAWAY

Rafflecopter Giveaway

Dividers

Tour Dates & Stops:

18-Dec: Inked Rainbow Reads, Gay Book Reviews, Mikky’s World of Books, Kirsty Loves Books, Dawn’s Reading Nook

21-Dec: Sassygirl Books

22-Dec: Open Skye Book Reviews, Divine Magazine, Book Lovers 4Ever, Foxylutely Book Reviews

23-Dec: Velvet Panic

24-Dec: Unquietly Me, The Novel Approach

25-Dec: Havan Fellows

28-Dec: Up All Night, Read All Day, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words

29-Dec: MM Good Book Reviews, Prism Book Alliance

30-Dec: Bayou Book Junkie

31-Dec: Book Reviews, Rants, and Raves, The Hat Party

1-Jan: Happily Ever Chapter

4-Jan: QUEERcentric Books, Full Moon Dreaming

5-Jan: Making It Happen

6-Jan: Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings

7-Jan: Multitasking Mommas, 3 Chicks After Dark

8-Jan: Molly Lolly, A.M. Leibowitz

11-Jan: Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews

12-Jan: Jessie G. Books

13-Jan: Bonkers About Books

14-Jan: Love Bytes, Alpha Book Club

Dividers

The Fine Print:

*Entrants must be 18 years or older to qualify
*Some residency restrictions may apply
*All comments must be relevant to the author’s prompt to be eligible (when applicable)
*The Novel Approach will not be held liable for prize delivery unless otherwise specified
*Void where prohibited by law

Standard
3 Stars, Genre Romance, Holiday Romance, J.D. Walker, JMS Books LLC, Reviewed By Carrie

Review: Grateful for You by J.D. Walker

Amazon

Amazon

Title: Grateful for You

Author: J.D. Walker

Publisher: JMS Books LLC

Pages/Word Count: 33 Pages

At a Glance: If you enjoy those feel good kinda short stories, then this one is for you.

Reviewed By: Carrie

Blurb: Jared Gillespie left the family farm five years ago because Walt Schneider cheated on him. With a woman. What he didn’t realize was that Walt, the man he still loves, was trying to tell him something, and it takes a trip home to figure it out.

After Jared’s mother convinces him to return for Thanksgiving, Jared discovers Walt is a daddy now, of all things. His daughter’s name is Casey — Jared’s middle name. When Jared and Walt confront each other, the resulting confrontation causes Jared to realize he may have pushed Walt to cheat because of his overbearing ways. But would Walt be interested in trying again, after all this time?

Because a man doesn’t name his daughter after his ex-lover if he’s over him, no matter what he pretends to the contrary. Maybe Thanksgiving is a time to be grateful: for second chances, and for love found, not lost.

Dividers

Review: Jared knows it’s time to go home. He’s been away for five years, ever since his childhood love, Walt, cheated on him.  Jared didn’t stick around after it happened, he just left, and he’s never been back. He doesn’t know why Walt did it, or what message he was trying to send, Jared just knew it hurt. But, now it is time to go home and put those ghosts to rest so he can move on and heal—finally.

This is a short story of forgiveness and an example of what love can overcome if we let it.  Being so short, we don’t get a lot of backstory here, but we do get a good sense of who these men are individually, and we get enough to know that the love they feel is real.  It takes forgiveness on both sides to heal, and both men to be willing to put themselves out there again for this HEA happen.

If you enjoy those feel good kinda short stories, then this one is for you.

TNA_Signature_Carrie

 

 

 

 

You can buy Grateful for You here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
4 Stars, Amber Allure, DJ Manly, Genre Romance, Mystery/Suspense/Action Thriller, Reviewed by Maryann

Review: On Bryson by DJ Manly

Amazon

Amazon

Title: On Bryson

Author: DJ Manly

Publisher: Amber Allure

Pages/Word Count: 39k Words

At a Glance: On Bryson makes for a fast paced, action packed, murders and secrets crime story.

Reviewed By: Maryann

Blurb: A few years ago, Soren became involved with the wrong man, and all he wanted to do was get away from a life connected to the mob. But now, here he is yet again, right back in that world, running a nightclub called The Sand Dune for the Gambini crime family. Never does he expect to meet the love of his life there, let alone that the man who comes into his nightclub is a cop on a rampage trying to discover who shot his cousin.

But now that Sergeant Bryson Accurso’s at The Sand Dune investigating, Soren’s been given orders to “be on him” at all times. And after one look at the sexy lawman, Soren immediately realizes his orders will be far too easy for him to follow…and he intends to follow those instructions to the letter.

Dividers

Review: Sgt. Bryson Accurso is like a dog with a bone. He just can’t leave Sidney Gambini, drug lord, alone. His cousin Rickie was shot at his place of business, owned by Gambini’s godson, and Bryson is sure Sidney Gambini’s behind a lot of the events going on. Even though the shooter has been caught, Bryson finds it all suspicious and takes time off to strike out on his own to solve the crime. Bryson is very dedicated to his Italian/Irish family. With the loss of his mother, he has close ties with his father, Aunt and Uncle, and I loved the caring and rhetoric between Bryson and his father, who thinks everything is unnatural.

Soren’s character is sort of sad in a way. He came from a strict family environment, and was kicked out by his father at a young age. Soren was swept off his feet by Marco Gambini, which became yet another downfall for Soren. Soren is hot on Bryson’s heels, at Sidney Gambini’s orders. But Soren is hiding a secret from both Gambini and Bryson.

Bryson and Soren are just the best characters, they seemed destined to be a couple, though there are some snags along the way that kept them apart. I really liked Bryson’s character. DJ Manly gave him a really fun sense of humor.

On Bryson makes for a fast paced, action packed, murders and secrets crime story, with a touch of humor. For being a short story, it had a good plot and enough going on to hold my interest.

TNA_Signature_Maryann

 

 

 

 

You can buy On Bryson here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
4 Stars, Holiday Romance, JMS Books LLC, John Amory, Reviewed by Lisa

Review: It’s a Wonderful Afterlife by John Amory

Amazon

Amazon

Title: It’s a Wonderful Afterlife

Author: John Amory

Publisher: JMS Books LLC

Pages/Word Count: 25 Pages

At a Glance: It’s a Wonderful Afterlife is a short, sweet and to the point story with a magical twist that, brief though it is, packs an emotional punch.

Reviewed By: Lisa

Blurb: Workaholic Logan rests only one day of the year: Christmas Day, and then only because when he tried to open his coffee shop on that day once and no one showed up. Ever since his parents died on Christmas Eve over ten years ago, Logan keeps busy to keep his feelings at bay and keep people at a distance, even going so far as to ignore his younger brother’s invitation to spend the holiday together.

But a car accident and a Christmas Eve encounter with a mysterious stranger named Michael, which may or may not be a dream, will change the way Logan sees his past, his present, and his future.

Dividers

Review: Logan doesn’t have a wonderful life. In fact, he doesn’t have much of a life at all. He works, he goes home, he sleeps, he wakes up, and repeats the cycle on a continual loop. He’d do it 365 days a year were it not for the fact that the one year he tried opening his café on Christmas Day, he had no customers.

Logan is alone by choice, estranged from his younger brother—avoiding him, more to the point, working his life away and existing in a state of perpetual grief. Christmas is not a great time of the year for Logan, to say the least, and when we meet him, he’s driving home from work, yet again, on a dismal Christmas Eve.

John Amory does a splendid job of painting a visual of Logan, the man who brushes up against the same people every day but never bothers to make personal connections. He’s the archetypical loaner—the man you know will one day look back on his life and see the trail of regrets he’s left behind, a man who’s in dire need of a chance to turn his life around before it’s too late. Logan is in the process of rejecting yet another invitation from his brother Dave to come spend the holiday with him and his girlfriend, Tia, when a sudden turn of events sets the course for this touching little story filled with the magic of Christmas.

In the film It’s a Wonderful Life, George Bailey makes a wish. He wishes he’d never been born, and when that wish is fulfilled, he gets to experience the fallout firsthand, and subsequently is able to understand how beautiful the world with him in it truly is. In this short story, Amory puts his own twist on the second chance trope by showing Logan a significant moment from his childhood through his adult eyes, a past event filled with all the pain and sadness that’s brought him to this point in his life. And eventually, with the help of something a little supernatural, Logan is gifted with the opportunity to see it is indeed a wonderful life—even if life isn’t always wonderful.

It’s a Wonderful Afterlife offers a poignant look at one man’s salvation. It’s a short, sweet and to the point story with a magical twist that, brief though it is, packs an emotional punch.

TNA_Signature_Lisa

 

 

 

 

You can buy It’s a Wonderful Afterlife here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
3 Stars, Daisy Harris, Genre Romance, New Adult, Reviewed by Sadonna, Samhain Publishing

Review: Twofer by Daisy Harris

Amazon

Amazon

Title: Twofer

Author: Daisy Harris

Publisher: Samhain Publishing

Pages/Word Count: 176 Pages

At a Glance: Not my favorite book by this author, but an interesting take on two guys who want to play the same role.

Reviewed By: Sadonna

Blurb: Bottoms up!

If a college freshman can’t get laid in sun-drenched Miami, he’s doing something wrong. Frankie Perez is determined to help his roommate get some man action in any way possible.

When Frankie’s arsenal of dating apps, fashion advice, and playing-hard-to-get lessons doesn’t work, he realizes Jeremy needs remedial help. Except tutoring Jeremy in the art of sex gets steamier than Frankie expected—and it scares the hell out of him.

Jeremy’s not sure why he’s wasting his time hooking up when he’s only got eyes for the slinky, sexy roommate he comes home to at night. But the hotter their chemistry simmers, the quicker Frankie dances away.

In near desperation, Frankie suggests the two of them team up to find a third to top them both, forgetting that two bottoms aren’t immune from lusting after each other. In a world where every man is an option, choosing one to love can be the sexiest risk of all.

Warning: Contains questionable morals, copious immature hijinks, an X-rated photo shoot, and disastrous threesomes. Sex toys were misused (but not harmed) in the making of this book.

Dividers

Review: Twofer is the thirteenth book I’ve read by Daisy Harris. I just loved her Men of Holsum College series and her Ivory Tower series as well. Both of those series also featured college guys who are figuring things out for themselves and making their way in the world, so I thought I would enjoy this one too.

This story, however, was a bit different than the others. Frankie and Jeremy are about as different as two people can be—background, personality, you name it. The one thing it seems they do have in common is that they are both bottoms. Jeremy, however, is a pretty sheltered guy and has zero experience with any guys. Frankie is VERY out and has a very active sex life, but he’s not into relationships at all. He does feel bad that Jeremy seems to not be any closer to finding a boyfriend, though, so he decides to help.

This is a case of the road to hell being paved with good intentions. The advice that Frankie gives Jeremy and his “help” seems to cause even more problems than Jeremy had to start with. Things get a little steamy and then a lot awkward between them thanks to Frankie’s ill-advised “help.” Frankie also becomes aware that maybe he’s not that interested in finding somebody else for Jeremy.

There are a few things in this books that some people won’t like, including additional partners for Frankie and Jeremy that they sometimes like to include. For those who want only the primary couple in their books and no extracurricular playmates, then this book is not for you. Personally, I had no issue with the way they conducted themselves because there was total honesty and agreement in their pursuit of fulfillment in their relationship. I also thought that part of the story was handled well.

The only niggling issue that I had with the story was Jeremy’s character. I felt like we don’t get to know him as well as Frankie, and I would have liked to have seen more of his story. With Frankie we get his family and his jobs and his social life, and with Jeremy we pretty much get school and his time with Frankie and his attempts to find a toppy boyfriend.

Overall, while not the strongest work from this author, Twofer is still an enjoyable read, particularly for the adorable Frankie.

 

 

 

 

You can buy Twofer here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
4 Stars, B.G. Thomas, Dreamspinner Press, Holiday Romance, Reviewed by Kim

Review: The Beary Best Holiday Party Ever by B.G. Thomas

Amazon

Amazon

Title: The Beary Best Holiday Party Ever (Sleigh Ride: Advent Calendar 2015)

Author: B.G. Thomas

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Pages/Word Count: 76 Pages

At a Glance: I think The Beary Best Holiday Party Ever is a cute and sexy holiday read.

Reviewed By: Kim

Blurb: Before he discovered the Heartland Bear Clan, Ron Corbin figured no one could ever love a “fatass” like him. But the big group of big men accepts him, and likes him just the way he is. Having finally found a place he belongs, he works hard to get elected president of the club—and wins. He’s the happiest he’s ever been.

But Paddy Brennan, a sexy bear cub who blew into town and became Mr. Popular overnight, is elected vice-president. Ron doesn’t think Paddy has earned the honor, and now he’ll have to work shoulder to shoulder (and belly to belly) with the guy for a year.

Ron will do what’s best for the club even if that means setting his personal feeling—that Paddy is a jerk—aside. But then as the two men get to know each other, Ron reluctantly finds he not only likes the guy, but is growing more and more attracted to him.

Deep down, Ron still worries he isn’t good enough, but maybe Paddy can show him there’s a beary happy ending waiting for them after all.

Christmas Dividers

Review: I don’t care what a person looks like, it’s what inside that shows who you are, and it takes Ron a while to see that he is one sexy man. Oh la la! I really liked Ron. Even with all of his insecurities about his weight, he comes off as someone I’d like to know in real life. I liked how, when he joined Heartland Bear Clan, he grew to be more comfortable with himself. And it was just too bad that Ron let a comment made by Paddy bring back all those insecurities his parents instilled in him as he was growing up. I really dislike people who fat shame! And I more than empathize with Ron about being picked on for being overweight.

As for Paddy, he’s a really nice guy, so when you hear the comment that he made when he first met Ron…well, it’s just hard to believe that he would say something that vindictive. Despite everything, though, Ron is willing to put his negative feelings and conflicting attraction towards Paddy aside as they work together to make the very best holiday party ever for the Heartland Bear Clan.

There is one thing I really enjoy about B.G. Thomas’s writing, and what makes him an auto-buy author for me, and it’s that I know I’m always going to finish his stories with an “aaaaaah” feeling.

I think The Beary Best Holiday Party Ever is a cute and sexy holiday read.

TNA_Signature_Kim

 

 

 

 

You can buy The Beary Best Holiday Party Ever here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
4.5 Stars, Felice Stevens, Giveaways, Holiday Romance, Reviewed by Karen, Self-Published

Review and Giveaway: The Greatest Gift Blog Tour with Felice Stevens

GreatestGiftBanner

Amazon

Amazon

Title: The Greatest Gift (The Memories Series: Book 3)

Author:  Felice Stevens

Publisher: Self-Published

Page/Word Count: 86 Pages

At a Glance: You’ll smile through the tears as you watch this family grow into everything you hoped they would become.

Reviewed By:  Karen

Blurb: After five years, Alex Stern and Rafe Hazelton have what seems to be the perfect marriage. Alex is entering his last years of residency and Rafe’s veterinary business is busier than ever. For Rafe, all that is missing is a child, but Alex, afraid of ending up to be a man like his father, isn’t as sure. He doesn’t want to make any mistakes.

When a new patient enters the hospital, Alex is drawn to the young, desperately ill single mother, who shares her fears for the future of her young son. Rafe worries about the toll on Alex becoming emotionally invested in a patient, yet he too can’t walk away once he meets the little boy, and together they vow to help in any way possible.

Families are not always born of blood— love is a gift no one can plan for. And sometimes from the darkest of tragedies, the brightest light will shine.

Christmas Dividers

Review: If you are going into this book hoping for, or thinking, you are going to get a sweet, fluffy romantic holiday story, this isn’t that book. There are many things in The Greatest Gift that are tough to read, and sad, and will completely break your heart.

But in this story, you will also find things throughout that are endearing, selfless, and sexy, as well as countless examples of absolute unconditional love. You’ll find yourself on this journey with Rafe and Alex, and all those around them, and will smile through the tears as you watch this family grow into everything you hoped they would become.

I love Alex and Rafe and love that we got to spend more time with them. The Greatest Gift really is a great gift from Felice Stevens this holiday season.

TNA_Signature_Karen

 

 

 

 

You can buy The Greatest Gift here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Christmas Dividers

GreatGift

THE GIVEAWAY

Enter for the chance to win an e-copy of One Step Further & The Greatest Gift

Rafflecopter Giveaway

Christmas Dividers

Author BioAbout the Author: Felice Stevens has always been a romantic at heart. While life is tough, she believes there is a happy ending for everyone. She started reading traditional historical romances as a teenager, then life and law school got in the way. It wasn’t until she picked up a copy of Bertrice Small and became swept away to Queen Elizabeth’s court that her interest in romance novels was renewed.

But somewhere along the way, her reading shifted to stories of men falling in love. Once she picked up her first gay romance, she became so enamored of the character-driven stories and the overwhelming emotion there was no turning back.

Felice lives in New York City with her husband and two children. Her day begins with a lot of caffeine and ends with a glass or two of red wine. Although she practices law, she daydreams of a time when she can sit by a beach and write beautiful stories of men falling in love. Although there is bound to be some angst along the way, a Happily Ever After is always guaranteed.

Social Media LinksTwitter || Pinterest || Goodreads || Instagram || Facebook Author Page || Newsletter

Christmas Dividers

The Fine Print:

*Entrants must be 18 years or older to qualify
*Some residency restrictions may apply
*All comments must be relevant to the author’s prompt to be eligible (when applicable)
*The Novel Approach will not be held liable for prize delivery unless otherwise specified
*Void where prohibited by law

Standard
5 Stars, Dreamspinner Press, Holiday Romance, Joe Cosentino, Reviewed By JJ

Review: A Home for the Holidays by Joe Cosentino

Amazon

Amazon

Title: A Home for the Holidays

Author: Joe Cosentino

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Pages/Word Count: 60 Pages

At a Glance: I recommend A Home for the Holidays to anyone who loves travel adventures, Christmas themes, and m/m romance.

Reviewed By: JJ

Blurb: Bobby McGrath’s Christmas trip to the beautiful Italian island of Capri to meet his eccentric extended family offers stunning views—none more stunning than his third cousin, Paolo Mascobello, a real stocking stuffer. As the two young men embark on a relationship, Bobby, a driven law student, learns to relax and bask under the old Italian moon, and Paolo realizes there’s more to life than a frolic on the beach. For the two to find everlasting amore, Paulo must overcome his fear of commitment and learn to follow his dreams, and Bobby must get his wish for happily ever after.

Christmas Dividers

Review: This was such a sweet romance. The book begins when Bobby goes to visit his family in Italy for Christmas. He ends up spending a lot of time with his cousin, Paolo, who happens to be gay. While he picks his cousin’s mind about Italy, Bobby realizes that he is falling for him. Though the idea weirds him out at first, it doesn’t bother him too much since they are so far removed. They come together for a brief time, but the road ahead of them is not as clear as Bobby had hoped. When Bobby’s vacation comes to an end, he’s faced with the painful prospect of saying goodbye.

Home for the Holidays is an emotional and sweet holiday book. I loved how the author takes us to Italy, and I felt like I was actually there in Capri. The vivid descriptions ignited my wanderlust, making me want to travel to Italy. As for the characters, they are both very likeable. Paolo is a muscular, attractive young Italian man. He’s confident sexually, but when it comes to relationships, he doesn’t imagine he can have that. He’s grown up in a place where it’s okay to express his sexuality behind closed doors, but he doesn’t expect to have more. However, Bobby knows what he wants and isn’t afraid to reach for the stars when it comes to love.

Since the first book I read from Joe Cosentino ended in a tragedy, I was surprised and overjoyed with the ending of this book. I recommend A Home for the Holidays to anyone who loves travel adventures, Christmas themes, and m/m romance.

TNA_Signature_JJ

 

 

 

 

You can buy A Home for the Holidays here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
4 Stars, Holiday Romance, Jay Northcote, Reviewed by Jules, Self-Published

Review: What Happens at Christmas by Jay Northcote

Amazon US

Amazon US

Title: What Happens at Christmas

Author: Jay Northcote

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 113 Pages

At a Glance: Jay Northcote has another holiday winner here.

Reviewed By: Jules

Blurb: When two friends pose as boyfriends, could what happens at Christmas turn into something more?

Justin is recently and unhappily single. Christmas is coming, and he doesn’t want to face his ex alone at their office party. So Sean—Justin’s best mate and long-time secret crush—volunteers to go with him and pretend to be his new flame.

Sean has always lusted after Justin from afar, but there’s never been a good opportunity to ask him for more than friendship. Posing as Justin’s boyfriend isn’t a chore, and if Justin wants to rebound onto him, Sean’s more than willing. At the party pretence and reality blur, and a kiss on the dance floor leads to a night of passion.

In the aftermath, they both assume it was a one-time thing until fate intervenes. Stuck together in London over the holidays, they give in to temptation again. But what happens at Christmas stays at Christmas… right?

Christmas Dividers

Review: So many delightful little bits in this story! It was easy to fall in love with Justin and Sean. As soon as I read the blurb for What Happens at Christmas I immediately snapped it up. Anyone who knows me, or follows my reviews at all, knows that friends-to-lovers stories are totally my thing. I love the level of comfort the characters have with each other, the level of trust, and that there is so much shared history. Maybe it’s because my husband and I have been together since we were nineteen – friends since we were fifteen – maybe I’m just a product of the formula…but, I know it works.

Justin and Sean were both extremely likeable, and the story was funny, charming, and sweet. It’s not a new idea – pretending to be dating, to piss off an ex at the office party – but it was well-done here. I also really liked that they were both in love with each other rather than it being a GFY situation, for example. To me that made it much more enjoyable; what they each thought was unrequited love was really just bad timing and poor communication.

Jay Northcote has such a light, easygoing style, and the guys are very sexy and fun together. That’s not to say that the book is without substance. Sean has a strained relationship with his father, and they are somewhat estranged. He is pretty troubled over that situation, and what he is going to do with himself now that he’s come back to England. Justin and Sean both have reservations about pursuing a relationship. They are extremely afraid of ruining their friendship, and unwilling to risk it, so they spend some time unhappily plodding along. In some books this can become a big stumbling block for me. You know those books? The “Just talk already!!!!” books? I didn’t feel that here, though. In this book it was more, “Awwww…these poor guys.” Their trepidation is more endearing than annoying.

Northcote has another holiday winner here. The guys had GREAT chemistry. The office party scene was tons of fun to read – it was VERY satisfying to watch the sleazy ex squirm – I imagine it also had to be fun to write! Super low angst, this one is perfect for when you need that feel-good read. I thoroughly enjoyed this easy-breezy Christmas novella.

TNA_Signature_Jules

 

 

 

 

You can buy What Happens at Christmas here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Amazon UK

Amazon CA

Amazon CA

Amazon AU

Amazon AU

Amazon DE

Amazon DE

Standard
Abigail Roux, Giveaways

Exclusive Excerpt and Giveaway: The Part & Parcel Blog Tour with Abigail Roux

PartParcel_TourBanner

We’re so pleased to welcome Abigail Roux and the Part & Parcel blog tour to The Novel Approach today. Enjoy this exclusive excerpt and then be sure to check out details on the giveaway below.

Good luck!

Dividers

Part&Parcel_600x900Blurb: Nick O’Flaherty and Kelly Abbott had their happy ending in sight when a friend’s call for help almost ended with them losing it to the blade of a knife. Now, in the aftermath of near-disaster, both men are trying to heal and move on.

Moving on together, though, is harder than either of them realized it would be. Kelly struggles with simply being a lover instead of the Doc, while Nick is mired in his recovery. The distance between them inches along in stilted silence.

Desperately seeking solace, Nick finally gathers the courage to sort through the possessions his dear friend and fellow Sidewinder teammate Elias Sanchez left him when he died. Instead of comforting memories, Nick and Kelly find a stack of letters and strict instructions from Eli that prompt them to send out a call for assistance. With Eli’s letters in hand, Sidewinder sets out on one last mission together, seeking peace and absolution from beyond the grave—and from each other.

Purchase Link: Riptide Publishing

Dividers

Excerpt: “You okay?” Kelly asked as he eased down beside Nick. His hand was warm through Nick’s thin T-shirt.

“Yeah,” Nick whispered. He slid his hand up Kelly’s arm, staring into his storm-tossed eyes.

“You sure? Your heart’s racing.” Kelly moved his fingers up like he was going to check Nick’s pulse again.

Nick licked his lips, nodding jerkily. “That’s because I’m nervous,” he practically gasped.

Kelly stared, unblinking, unflinching. His thumb rested against Nick’s chin again, and his eyes followed its progress as he slid it up the line of Nick’s jaw to his cheekbone.

It seemed like forever to Nick, like it took Kelly hours to move. It seemed like he held his breath for so long that his lungs burned, that his body screamed for him to do something, anything, to relieve the pressure building.

It wasn’t until Kelly finally met his eyes again, when his fingers finally tightened against the back of Nick’s neck, when he finally leaned closer, that Nick sucked in a breath. A moment later Kelly’s lips were on his, warm and gentle and familiar.

Nick didn’t dare move, didn’t dare make a sound beyond the involuntary whimper that escaped his parted lips once Kelly pulled back. He was left with his eyes closed and his breath stolen, grasping Kelly harder so he wouldn’t move away.

Kelly brushed his nose against Nick’s, and then his lips met Nick’s again and he shifted like he might climb into Nick’s lap. Nick tightened his grip on Kelly’s forearm, and Kelly moaned quietly against his lips.

“I miss you,” Nick whispered between gentle kisses.

Kelly pressed his forehead to Nick’s, leaning his body against Nick’s shoulder. “Asshole,” he grunted.

Nick ducked his head, but Kelly put a hand on his shoulder and shoved off of him, raising up and slinging one leg over Nick’s lap. Nick gripped Kelly’s hips to remind him to be careful as Kelly straddled him, both hands resting on Nick’s shoulders, his head cocked. Nick swallowed hard, flushing with a heady mixture of nerves and adrenaline and desire as Kelly pushed his blanket off his shoulders with a smirk.

“How’s your heart rate?” Kelly asked wryly.

Nick was embarrassingly out of breath, but he managed a smile. “Racing.”

Kelly rewarded him with a crooked grin. “Mine too.”

Nick sat up straighter, wincing, still staring into Kelly’s shadowed eyes as his fingers wandered under Kelly’s shirt to graze over his ribs. Kelly leaned closer to brush his nose against Nick’s.

“What have you done?” Kelly asked, dropping his voice to a seductive whisper.

Nick sucked in a deep breath, holding it as he tried to find a good answer that wouldn’t get him yelled at. When he finally let it gust out, Kelly rolled his eyes and sat back, pursing his lips and nodding as if he’d known Nick had been up to no good.

“I told you to sit,” Kelly huffed. “I told you not to move. I told you to rest.”

“I know, but—”

“Nick!”

Nick practically growled as he rested his head on the back of the couch and flopped his hands to the cushions. It was like being in the Marines and having to report to his corpsman all over again. “It’s been over four weeks, Kels.”

“You know if you overwork yourself it’ll set back your recovery.”

“I was looking for Seymour,” Nick said, his voice a bit more caustic than he’d meant for it to be.

Kelly sat back, eyes gone wide. “You have him?”

Nick’s attention strayed to the coffee table, and Kelly glanced over his shoulder, where he could no doubt see Seymour on the table, along with the envelope full of letters Nick had found in the top of the cardboard box full of Eli’s things. The box itself was now sitting beneath the glass top.

Kelly leaned back, his lithe body twisting and straining against Nick as he plucked up the sock monkey. “I can’t believe you found him. Where was he?”

Nick found it hard to swallow, and he licked his lips to stall as his eyes strayed to the envelope again. “It’s the stuff Eli’s mom gave me,” he said, voice gone hoarse as he thought about the letter he’d read. “I . . . I just had this sudden need to go through it, I don’t know.”

Kelly sat back on Nick’s thighs, cocking his head and frowning at the ragged sock monkey in his hands. Seymour was about twenty inches tall, with a scraggly tail, gangly arms and legs, and big ears that had more often than not been used as handles. He had at one time sported white, green, and orange stripes, with a little blue-and-green beanie and blue puffs for buttons, but the colors were faded and dirty and the button puffs were long gone.

Kelly had always been vaguely disturbed by the look on Seymour’s face, especially after they’d had to sew up his left eye, but Eli had loved him and carried him with him wherever they went, including into battle. He’d stick him in his back pocket or his pack, depending on where they were. When the monkey had taken a piece of shrapnel to the eye—and saved Eli’s ass in the process—Eli had ordered a purple heart ribbon to sew onto his beanie so everyone would know Seymour was a combat veteran.

They’d taken pictures of him at landmarks around the world, sometimes risking life and limb and jail time to position him. It had always been their understanding that Seymour was to continue traveling even after Eli’s death, until he had seen the world.

“Seymour,” Nick grumbled affectionately.

“Huh?”

“EZ was always so proud of the pun. Seymour needs to see more.”

Kelly blinked at him, then looked back at the sock monkey. “Oh my God.”

Nick chuckled, then bit his lip when Kelly glared at him. “Did that just hit you?”

“Yes. Shut up.”

Dividers

Abi RouxAbout Abigail Roux: Abigail Roux was born and raised in North Carolina. A past volleyball star who specializes in sarcasm and painful historical accuracy, she currently spends her time coaching high school volleyball and investigating the mysteries of single motherhood. Any spare time is spent living and dying with every Atlanta Braves and Carolina Panthers game of the year.

Abigail has a daughter, Little Roux, who is the light of her life, a boxer, four rescued cats who play an ongoing live-action variation of Call of Duty throughout the house, a certifiable extended family down the road, and a cast of thousands in her head.

Connect with AbiWebsite || Twitter || Facebook || Tumblr || Goodreads

Dividers

THE GIVEAWAY

To celebrate the release of Part & Parcel, we are selecting TWO giveaway winners! One will receive the last four Cut & Run books in audio, and the other will receive the full Sidewinder series in audio. Your first comment at each stop on this tour enters you in the drawing. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on December 26, 2015. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. Entries. Follow the tour for more opportunities to enter the giveaway, and don’t forget to leave your email or method of contact so Riptide can reach you if you win!

Standard
5 Stars, Audio Book, Dreamspinner Press, Genre Romance, Narration Rating - 1 Star, Reviewed by Amy, Tara Lain

Review: Canning the Center by Tara Lain – Narrated by John-Paul Barrel

Amazon

Amazon

Title: Canning the Center

Author: Tara Lain

Narrator: John-Paul Barrel

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Run Time: 9 hours and 17 minutes

At a glance: Tara Lain’s work shines through an otherwise flat and disappointing narration.

Reviewed By: Amy

Blurb: Six foot seven inch, 300 pound Jamal Jones loves football, so when he finds out the ultra-conservative owner of his new pro football team fired their current center because he’s gay, bisexual Jamal decides to stay in the closet and hang with the females. Then, at a small drag show, he comes face-to-face with his sexual fantasy in the form of Trixie LaRue, a drag queen so exquisitely convincing she scrambles Jamal’s hormones—and his resolve to nurse his straight side.

Trevor Landry, aka Trixie LaRue, hides more than his genitals. A mathematician so brilliant he can’t be measured, Trevor disguises his astronomical IQ and his quirk for women’s clothes behind his act as a gay activist undergrad at Southern California University.

To Trevor, Jamal is the answer to a dream—a man who can love and accept both his personas. When he discovers Jamal’s future is threatened if he’s seen with a guy, Trevor becomes Trixie to let Jamal pass as straight. But Trevor risks his position every time he puts on a dress. Is there a closet big enough to hold a football pro and a drag queen?

Dividers

Review: I just simply adore Tara Lain. In Canning the Center, she writes about a budding football player in the professional environment who is very aware of his sexuality and what it will mean for his future in professional sports. This is a super sweet and wonderfully told love story with a little bit of controversy and a lot of awesome.

Jamal is every man and woman’s dream man. Gorgeous, tall, dark, and handsome. I adored this character and all his sweet, gentle, and old fashioned ways—everything about him. He is coming to the realization that although he states he is bisexual, he is actually gay. Introduce him to Trixie LaRue, a wonderful drag queen who is confident even though Trevor—the man behind the makeup—isn’t, and this is a recipe for success. Trevor is a genius and all around awesome guy. It was fun to see these two fall in love.

There isn’t one bad thing I can say about this story, and that’s saying a lot considering that the narration was awful.

If you’ve read my reviews in the past, you’ll know I am not a fan of John-Paul Barrel. I don’t understand how this man is still narrating books. I’m sorry, I know that sounds harsh, but he’s monotone and speaks almost phonetically, like he’s reading out every syllable. Add in his trying to do Trixie LaRue, and she sings too? Ugh. I need to pay better attention to who’s narrating a story before I pick it for review.

For Tara Lain’s book to shine through this awful performance shows what a wonderful and fun story she wrote.

TNA_Signature_Amy

 

 

 

 

You can buy Canning the Center here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

Audible.com

Audible.com

Standard
5 Stars, Annabelle Jacobs, Dreamspinner Press, Freebie, Holiday Romance, Reviewed by Lisa, Short Story

Release Day Review: A Serious Thing by Annabelle Jacobs

Small Gems

Amazon

Amazon

Title: A Serious Thing (Will & Patrick: Book 1.5)

Author: Annabelle Jacobs

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Pages/Word Count: 36 Pages

At a Glance: Annabelle Jacobs gives readers a sweet and FREE holiday treat.

Reviewed By: Lisa

Blurb: Patrick has a plan, and he’ll go to great lengths to see it through.
After three weeks apart due to work and school commitments, he and Will are finally getting to spend some time together. Patrick is staying with Will over the Christmas holidays, and he intends to tell him how he feels on Christmas Day. It’s going to be perfect.
But of course, Patrick’s plans don’t always go smoothly….

Dividers

Review: For those of us who fell in love with Patrick and Will in Annabelle Jacobs’ A Curious Thing, this sweet little Christmas vignette, A Serious Thing, is the perfect follow up to the story that left us with their happy-for-now-ish ending.

Patrick is so near to completing school, and he and Will have had to make do with weekends together, but life in general and Will’s obligations have kept them apart for three weeks now, and Christmas is just around the corner. Patrick has plans to make this holiday a special one for both Will and himself, but there’s a trick to the timing of it that Will not understanding may make things tricky for Patrick to pull off. The chemistry between these two guys is still white hot, and Jacobs doesn’t bother to keep readers in suspense, waiting for the sparks to fly between them. That’s the beauty of the short story, though—the instant gratification—especially when we already know the characters, and let me tell you, Patrick and Will burn up these pages in such a delicious way.

Ben, the best brother ever to Patrick—not to mention, the best friend ever to Will—also shows up again to be supportive and generally awesome too. Bottom line here is that this short story is wonderful, beginning to end, but I wouldn’t recommend reading it as a standalone. Get to know these guys in A Curious Thing first, and while you’re at it, you can grab this freebie as a sweet bonus holiday treat.

TNA_Signature_Lisa

 

 

 

 

You can download A Serious Thing for FREE here:

Dreamspinner Press

Dreamspinner Press

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
Giveaways, Phetra H. Novak

Character Interview and Giveaway: The Finding Home Blog Tour with Phetra H. Novak

BT_Banner

Please join us in welcoming author Phetra K. Novak today on the Finding Home blog tour. Phetra conducted an interview with her characters from the book, Kai Kelly and Luca Von Bergendahl, so enjoy, and then be sure to click on the Rafflecopter widget below to enter for the chance to win one of the following prizes:

First Place: E-copies of Haven’s Revenge and Finding Home
Runner-Up Prize: E-copy of Finding Home

Good luck!

Dividers

Me: “Hello guys. How are you today?” I smile as I watch them, these two star struck lovers. Kai is looking over at Luca who’s sitting next to him on my couch who is currently completely unaware of the way his boyfriend is watching him like he can’t stop. We are in my suite at the Hilton, the view overlooking downtown Austin, Texas. I’m there solely to interview these two lovers, whose paths I crossed by pure accident when covering a LGBT rally at A & M.

Kai: “We’re good thank you!” He tear his eyes away, reluctantly, to look at me and at the same time he reaches out to take Luca’s hand, their fingers entwine.

Luca: “Yes, everything is fantastic. Thank you!” He’s this adorable thing, everything you expect a young Swedish man to look like. He’s tall, far from skinny but slim built and these piercing blue eyes.

Me: “So, I asked you guys here to talk about you, your lives here in Texas, what you do, your plans and your love. How do you feel about that Kai?”

Kai: He smiles, looks at Luca again something he does often. “Talking about Luca is my favorite thing so ask away I’ll answer anything as long as it isn’t too private of course.” He winks at me but I can see too that there’s truth to his words.

Me: “Of course, I’ll keep it as clean as I can.” I smile and give them a humorous wink to show that I am teasing. “How about you start off with telling me how you met?” They look at each other, chuckling a little. It’s fascinating to watch these two because they move in symbiosis always in tuned with each other never facing away but always turned towards each other. While Kai is the more relaxed and obviously more confident of the two, he is not arrogant nor is Luca shy just more careful in his sense of manner.

Kai: “I stalked Luca for weeks before approaching him and when I did he threw coffee at me.” Kai grinned as Luca gasped punching him in the arm, his face going red with embarrassment.

Luca: “I so did, not, throw coffee on you. You butthead.” He smiles, cheeks still has this pinkness to them. It can only mean there is truth to his boyfriend’s teasing accusation. “It accidentally fell out of my hand when you almost startled me to death.” Luca teases Kai back. I can’t help but to chuckle at their lovely banter back and forth it is obvious that it is said with a teasing sense and with nothing but love. Turning towards me Luca says. “We were going to the same university, I was a pre med student at that time and Kai was there for a semester doing his thesis. We did bump into each other at a local café and just hit it off.” He smiles, blindly reaching for Kai’s hand again, who gladly took it.

Me: I laugh. “It sounds like you had a good start.” Looking at Kai I ask. “What was it about Luca that made you start stalking him as you so aptly put it?”

Kai: “First time I saw him he was leaving a class as I was walking by. I stood out in a crowd of twenty and he simply took my breath away.” He watching Luca the entire time he speaks like he is remembering the day. “His eyes were down, watching the ground as he walked, so shy my dearest Luca. But I could see there was more to him than that shyness. I instantly wanted to get to know him but didn’t know for a few weeks how to approach him without scaring him off.”

Me: “Why was that you think?” Kai turns his eyes to look at me for the first time since he started to speak.

Kai: “I don’t know, it was just a hunch at that time that Luca needed to be approached a little more carefully because I can be pretty abrupt and straightforward.” Luca snorts next to him.

Me: “You agreeing with that Luca is Kai to abrupt sometimes?” I ask carefully but I am really curious to what this means and if there might be something that is keeping these two lovers on edge with each other.

Luca: “A little. Kai is what you see is what you get kind of guy. He doesn’t hide who he is for anything or anyone. It’s take it or leave it with him in most things. But he is the reason why I am here today and we are together because that is who he is and he has helped me become more like that.”

Me: “OH that is quite lovely. So you were troubled when you and Kai met then?” I know instantly that I have hit upon something, because the tension between the two is obvious. So I don’t push it instead I lean back relax and let them have their time. Kai’s entire focus is on Luca who I assume there for is the one who has a story to tell.

Luca: “When Kai and I met I wasn’t out…” Luca hesitates, lift up his glass of water and takes a sip and seems very nervous, “I wasn’t out to anyone, not even myself.” He looks at Kai before he continues who just smiles and gives his silent support. “So even though we had a good start a very intense start me not being out caused some issues that was hard for both of us to overcome.” I can see Luca is getting really uncomfortable, eyes turned down and fiddling with his fingers.

Kai: “It’s okay darlin’. I love you, hmm.” Kai is so gentle but not condescendingly so, it’s like he knows exactly what to say and how to touch him to calm him right down. He pulls Luca in close so they are sitting tight together his arm around his shoulder. “Maybe we can move on to the next question.”

Me: “Yes, of course. Just a couple more questions. Luca what attracted you to Kai and what was it about him that made you be so brave and come out to your nearest and dearest?” I smile encouragingly.Luca: “Oh boy. I mean look at him.” I look at Kai instantly. “He’s a wet city slickers dream, he’s a cowboy. Tight jeans, cowboy boots, cowboy hat and let’s not forget the sexy twang.” Luca smiled the entire time eyes gleaming with love as he spoke about his lover. “But that was just the first ten minutes, after that it was his heart.” He turns to me now. “He has this amazing heart, he doesn’t hold himself back but jumps in with both feet to give you everything and all of him. He sacrificed so much to help me. To be with me.” He looked to the side at Kai. “Everything I have is because of him and well hard work.” We all started to laugh at the same time.

Kai: “Flirt.” He accused, but looking at him I can see that he loves the attention and being that special to Kai.

Me: “OK guys last question, what’s for you guys next?” I look between them their smiles contagious.

Kai: Well, I am done with my thesis and are working on my dad’s ranch. Luca has just started his first semester of vet school so the future is working hard and do what we both love. Right darlin´?”

Luca: Yes.”

Me: “And what is what you both love?” I push wanting one of those sugar sweet answers.

Luca: “Each other and the ranch. Each other and the ranch.” They both grins wide and sitting there grinning close together and in love they are the ultimate image of true love.

Me: “Thank you so very much guys for meeting me here today and for sharing your story with me!”

Kai: “Thank you for having us.”

Luca: “It was a real pleasure meeting you.”

Dividers

1 Finding Home FINAL COVERBlurb: Luca is a first year med student at the University of Gothenburg. He is following in his father’s footsteps, something he’d been programmed to do all his life. He lives a sheltered and still life, with no real friends. Luca would love to change that but doesn’t know how, since he always feels so odd around other people, like he doesn’t quite fit in. There’s so much inside him that wants out, like wanting to become a veterinarian more than a doctor. And the fact that he likes boys and not girls. But he doesn’t tell anyone about that—not even himself.

In comes Kai, an American cowboy in Gothenburg. He’s doing his thesis overseas to broaden his horizons before he does what he has always wanted to do, which is to go back home and run the family ranch. He just happens to see Luca one day leaving class and can’t stop watching the shy guy as he waded his way through the crowd with quick, silent steps, and his head down to avoid eye contact with anyone. For weeks Kai watches him from a distance, trying to figure out how to approach him.

Had he known that spilled coffee and slippery, awkward book bags would have gotten him close to the guy, he might have physically bumped into him a long time ago.

Finding Home is a book with star-crossed lovers meeting and the evil of the wicked witch in the west threatening to crush young love’s every dream!

Buy Links: Amazon US || Amazon UK || All Romance eBooks

Dividers

Author BioAbout the Author: Phetra often refers to herself as the odd man out, the dorky book nerd who rather spend her time with a good book or making up fantastic stories with even more fantastic characters, than live in the real world dealing with real people.

The real world is strange in a very non humorous way and people in it complicate it to the point of wearing you out. In the world of the written word no matter if it is in someone else’s words or that of her own things might get busy, complicated, and sometime even plain painful but somewhere along the line there is always a hero on the horizon. He might not be prime or proper, a church going pretty boy since the author prefer rebellious men and women who don’t follow the protocols of society.

One of her favorite saying are that only dead fish follow the stream and well she ain’t no dead fish.

Phetra live together with her family, two children, a domestic partner and their two cats in Gothenburg, Sweden and when reading her books you will notice that she always finds a way of bringing her on culture into her books.

The joy of writing and reading comes from her childhood and is something she has always loved, something she is passionate to share with others. Phetra loves hearing from her readers even with ideas of what they want to come next.

If you are looking for her the best place to start looking for her is at home in the quietest corner of the house where you’ll find her either curled up with her Kindle or her laptop typing away.

:: Facebook Page :: Twitter :: Google+ :: Goodreads ::

Dividers

THE GIVEAWAY

Rafflecopter Giveaway

Dividers

Tour Dates and Stops:

December 15: MM Good Book Reviews

December 16: Elisa – My reviews and Ramblings

December 17: Cia’s Stories

December 18: The Novel Approach

December 21: Drops of Ink

December 22: Wicked Faeries Tales & Reviews

December 23: RJ Scott

December 24: BFD Book Blog

December 25: Alpha Book Club

December 28: The Purple Rose Tea House

December 29: Love Bytes Reviews

December 30: Diverse Reader

December 31: Prism Book Alliance

January 1: Sid Love Writes

January 4: Loving Without Limits

January 5: Divine Magazine

January 6: Multitasking Mommas Book Reviews

January 7: Kathy Mac Reviews

January 8: Bayou Book Junkie

Dividers

The Fine Print:

*Entrants must be 18 years or older to qualify
*Some residency restrictions may apply
*All comments must be relevant to the author’s prompt to be eligible (when applicable)
*The Novel Approach will not be held liable for prize delivery unless otherwise specified
*Void where prohibited by law

Standard
3.5 Stars, Dreamspinner Press, Genre Romance, M.J. O'Shea, Mystery/Suspense/Action Thriller, Reviewed By Carrie

Review: X Marks the Spot by M.J. O’Shea

Amazon

Amazon

Title: X Marks the Spot

Author: M.J. O’Shea

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Pages/Word Count: 200 Pages

At a Glance: Send reality packing and just enjoy the ride.

Reviewed By: Carrie

Blurb: Jack Hunter is always on a quest for lost art, ancient manuscripts, and anything else that’ll romance the millions of viewers who watch his show each week. He hasn’t always hit pay dirt in his searches though, and a string of empty global treasure hunts has left his show on the brink of cancellation. Jack needs a white whale, a holy grail, nothing less than a miracle to revive his career.

Aloysius “Alo” Green likes his ivory towers. He’s content to study from the comfort of a university library and publish papers nobody other than academics will ever read. But coded letters pointing to hidden Nazi treasure fall into his hands, and while colleagues warn him to keep them to himself, Alo can’t stop obsessing. He makes a huge mistake and publishes a paper on his find, ignoring the danger doing so will bring.

Jack is sure he’s struck gold when his assistant brings Alo’s paper to him. Alo wants nothing to do with Jack or his televised treasure hunt. But after Alo is threatened, it appears Jack is his best bet to silence those who seek to use him to find the vast wealth first.

By trusting Jack, Alo might’ve saved himself… or made his worst decision yet.

Dividers

Review: Alo is an academic—if he has his way he will stay in college forever, living at home and publishing papers on medieval history that no one but other academics will ever read. Working on his PhD, he longs for a job in some university’s ivory tower as far from everyday life as he can possibly get. Then his grandfather moves into an assisted living facility, and leaves Alo a stack of letters which hold a mystery no one has ever been able to solve. Alo’s life is tossed upside down when he publishes a paper on the letters, and all of a sudden, his life is in danger and apparently, there is stolen Nazi treasures to find. Alo may be a nerd, but he is a clever nerd and puzzles are a specialty of his.

Jack Hunter is an adventure seeking TV personality on a once popular show on the History Channel. If he doesn’t come up with a hook for a new show soon, its lights out for his onscreen persona. A quest for Nazi treasures is just what his career needs, and if it comes with the quirky Alo, more the better. Convincing Alo to search for the treasures is a whole different matter, but when Alo is confronted with bullets from the people who want to steal his letters, he decides finding the artifacts may be the only way to keep his family safe.

And this is where you send reality packing and just enjoy the ride, much as you do in an Indiana Jones film. Creative license is used in its entirety in X Marks the Spot, as the quest for the treasures takes you to country after country filled with iconic landmarks and old world charm. The treasure hunt is by far the most enjoyable part of this book, as I felt Alo could have been a bit more mature and embrace the opportunities and excitement around him. Instead, Alo went to all these wonderful places and experienced the thrill of the quest, all the while wishing he wasn’t there.

I didn’t really connect Alo and Jack Hunter together – the chemistry just wasn’t there for me. Take out the romance and you have a nice little adventure book. I generally love M.J. O’Shea’s work, but this book just fell a little flat for me. I actually wouldn’t mind seeing a follow up of these characters, with Jack forcing Alo more out of his shell, and Alo uncovering more mysteries out there that need to be solved.

TNA_Signature_Carrie

 

 

 

 

You can buy X Marks the Spot here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
4.5 Stars, BA Tortuga, Genre Romance, Pride Publishing, Reviewed by Maryann

Review: Blind Ride by BA Tortuga

Amazon

Amazon

Title: Blind Ride (Roughstock: Vol. One)

Author: BA Tortuga

Publisher: Pride Publishing

Pages/Word Count: 234 Pages

At a Glance: Blind Ride is a story about the love and caring of family, good friends, and the love between two special men.

Reviewed By: Maryann

Blurb: Jason Scott has everything a bull rider wants—success, money and traveling partner Andy Baxter. When he loses his sight in an accident, he stands to lose it all. Jason Scott is at the top of the bull riding game, on his way to a winning season. Along with his traveling partner, Andy Baxter, he’s riding hard on the circuit, working around the country with all of the other bull riders and bullfighters, living the good life. The only thing he wishes he had is Bax, but he’s afraid to take the step that would make them more than friends, worried that it will ruin everything. When a terrible accident leaves Jason unable to see, his whole life goes south. Jason decides to chuck it all, determined to go home and hide at his momma’s ranch. Bax has other ideas. He wants to make sure his best friend doesn’t give up, and he hatches a plan that stuns Jason and makes their friends and family think he’s crazy. With the help of the other bull riders and a very persistent bull fighter named Coke, Bax convinces Jason to give life one more try. With Jason cautiously learning to hope, and his relationship with Bax going to the next level, life gets pretty complicated. Everyone gets in on the project, from Jason’s strong-willed mother to an entire ranch full of children, all of them working to help Jason do what he loves.

Dividers

Review: I am such a fan of BA Tortuga. She has added another series to my collection of cowboy stories, and has created more than just a story about bull riders and rodeos; it’s about the love and caring of family, good friends, and the love between two special men. Blind Ride also takes us behind the rodeo scene with the hard work and life threatening injuries that bull riders face.

Andy “Bax” Baxter and Jason “Mini” Scott are just two wonderful cowboys who love the rodeo. They have been friends for six years but have never taken the step to become more than friends. They spend their days traveling the rodeo circuit and even compete against each other, but they hold no grudges.

When Jason is hurt, there’s so much worry. Living in darkness, never riding again, losing out on a career that he loves, and maybe losing Bax, he even thinks of taking his life. But Bax is there for him and he doesn’t let Jason fail. When Bax goes back on the circuit he gets hurt and is done for the season, but he’s back with Jason and starts a plan to get him back on the circuit as well. It was really heartrending to watch Jason struggle with losing his sight—I can’t even begin to imagine how that would feel. He also has to deal with overbearing help, and to try to do things on his own.  Bax and Jason have a great support system besides Jason’s family.  We meet Coke Pharras, Dillon Walsh, Nate, AJ, Missy, and a sweet little boy named Benji.

The only issue readers may find in Blind Ride is in the narrative and dialogue, but BA Tortuga chose to leave things a little unpolished (see: the Author’s Note).  As for me, I didn’t see this as a problem. It just made the story more down to earth.

TNA_Signature_Maryann

 

 

 

 

You can buy Blind Ride here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
4 Stars, Clare London, Holiday Romance, Jocular Press, Reviewed by Lisa

Review: Nice and Snow by Clare London

Amazon

Amazon

Title: Nice and Snow (With a Kick: Book Six)

Author: Clare London

Publisher: Jocular Press

Pages/Word Count: 43 Pages

At a Glance: Nuri and Eddy are still just that lovable.

Reviewed By: Lisa

Blurb: Nuri’s expecting a quiet Christmas, driving his cab, doing some studying, enjoying good food and drink – and devoting some serious loving to boyfriend Eduardo. Occasionally he misses his homeland of Turkey, but he’s content to share the London celebrations with Eddy.

But what with Eddy’s distress over his new role at the local comedy club, interference in their love life from Nuri’s irrepressible brothers, a disturbing number of costumed Santas on the street, the dangerous slush on the roads, and then the portly, bearded man dressed in red, in need of an urgent cab ride…

It doesn’t look like things will be that quiet after all!

Dividers

Review: Nuri and Eduardo first met in With a Kick, a book that oozed an excess of charm and wit, and now Clare London has brought them back in the excessively adorable and heartwarming Christmas short Nice and Snow, reminding me why I’d warmed up to this couple so well in the first place. Some of it, no doubt, has to do with Nuri’s family—in this case, his brothers—but there’s also no arguing that a lot of it has to do with this author’s sense of humor and, of course, then it doesn’t hurt that Nuri and Eddy are still just that lovable.

Eddy feels the same way about all the pseudo-Santas larking about the city as most people feel about clowns. But this time of the year, they’re near impossible to avoid—seems Eddy couldn’t swing a reindeer by the tale without hitting one of those jolly faux elves. As for our dear Nuri, this holiday season has brought on a bout of nostalgia for his childhood in Turkey, and the memories the two men share with each other are what make this story just that little bit extra special. That, and the fact they pick up a rather unusual fare in Nuri’s cab. Their passenger is an interesting man, to say the very least. But then, what would the holidays be without a touch of magic to make the season bright?

And what would a holiday romance be without a completely heartwarming ending? London deftly delivers that too, for this charming couple who maybe, in theory, shouldn’t work because they’re both so different, but do because they’re both so warm and wonderful.

If you haven’t read With a Kick, I wouldn’t necessarily recommend reading Nice and Snow as a standalone, but I can most definitely recommend getting to know Nuri and Eddy, so now’s as good a time as any to catch up on their story while you’re cuddled under a blanket on a chilly winter weekend.

TNA_Signature_Lisa

 

 

 

 

You can buy Nice and Snow here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
3 Stars, Audio Book, BDSM/Kink/Erotica, Dreamspinner Press, Genre Romance, Narration Rating - 5 Stars, Reviewed By JJ, Tempeste O'Riley

Audio Review: Caged Sanctuary by Tempeste O’Riley – Narrated by Paul Morey

Amazon

Amazon

Title: Caged Sanctuary

Author: Tempeste O’Riley

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Narrator: Paul Morey

Run Time: 6 hours and 26 Minutes

At a Glance: Story: This book started out pleasant and enjoyable, but I lost interest after the first date, though I think Paul Morey did an excellent job with this reading.

Reviewed By: JJ

Blurb: Kaden Thorn, a dental surgeon who lives a quiet life, has no hope of finding the love he craves. A vicious gay bashing cost him the use of his legs and confined him to a wheelchair. He has given up hope of finding a Dom or even a nonkink partner to love him. When his best friend practically forces him to attend a dinner party, the last thing he expects is a strong Dom who can see beyond his wheels.

Deacon James is an architect and a demanding Dom, but he has spent the past couple of years without a sub or partner. When an employee invites him to a dinner party to meet his girlfriend, Deacon smells a setup but agrees anyway. He prides himself on being an excellent judge of character, and when he meets the younger dentist, he sees past the chair and finds a sweet submissive man who more than piques his interest.

Kade’s fears and demons continue to haunt him, challenging Deacon to use everything he’s learned as a Dom to earn Kade’s trust and submission. Deacon’s determined, though, willing to battle all of it to have Kade by his side and at his feet.

Dividers

Review: Caged Sanctuary begins at a dinner party, where Kaden, a wheelchair-bound dental surgeon, meets his future Dom, Deacon, who is an architect. The two men are attracted to each other right away, and end up setting up a date for a BDSM scene. After entering into a D/s relationship, things get more serious between them. Since Deacon is very sensitive to Kaden’s insecurity over his mobility issues and does his best to make him feel comfortable, Kaden eventually learns to trust more and gains more self-confidence. Their relationship eventually progresses into something more than a Dom/sub relationship.

This book started out pleasant and enjoyable, but I lost interest after the first date, and realized the story was not for me. I think one of the issues was that the relationship moved a little too quickly. I also thought it was a bit odd that Kaden asks Deacon if he is a Dom on the first day they meet. This struck me as unbelievable, considering they were introduced by friends who had nothing to do with the lifestyle, and neither man was wearing anything to indicate they were into BDSM. Then, after their first date, they were practically a done deal. I thought Kaden was sweet, but his lack of self-confidence made it difficult for me to imagine him as a full grown adult. In addition to not liking the characters and pacing, I was hoping there would be some kind of conflict in the book. However, after they meet, they fall in love, move in together, and soon have their happily-ever-after. Despite these issues, the sex scenes were hot, and I enjoyed the sweet moments when they were cuddling.

Narration: I think Paul Morey did an excellent job with this reading. Most of the time when I listen to an audiobook, the narration pulls me out of the book multiple times throughout. However, I was able to listen to Morey without thinking of the narration even once. Each voice was distinct and seemed to match the personality of the characters.

TNA_Signature_JJ

 

 

 

 

You can buy Caged Sanctuary here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

Audible.com

Audible.com

Standard
5 Stars, BDSM/Kink/Erotica, Genre Romance, L.A. Witt, Reviewed By Carrie, Samhain Publishing

Release Day Review: Not Safe for Work by L.A. Witt

Amazon

Amazon

Title: Not Safe for Work

Author: L.A. Witt

Publisher: Samhain Publishing

Pages/Word Count: 341 Pages

At a Glance: This is another great hit from L.A. Witt!

Reviewed By: Carrie

Blurb: They’re a match made in the dungeon…until their secret gets out.

Bored senseless in a meeting, architectural modeler Jon McNeill amuses himself with a kinky dating app on his phone. Then the app matches him with another user…who’s six feet away. Suddenly Jon finds himself on the same page as someone way above his pay grade: millionaire property developer Rick Pierce. His firm’s biggest—and hottest—client.

The app isn’t kidding either. They’re a perfect match. Jon’s a Dom, Rick’s a sub, and bondage is their thing. Both guys are well into their forties, know their way around the bedroom, and definitely appreciate a good suit. And the best part? They’re a match outside the bedroom too.

But office relationships aren’t easy to keep a secret. When the truth comes out, Jon is certain he’s about to get fired. Instead, his bosses throw him a curve ball—an ultimatum that puts both his job and his relationship in jeopardy.

Warning: Contains literal and figurative sex machines, blindfolds, a sub being punished during a business meeting, enough rope to tangle up a millionaire, and a Golden Girls marathon.

Dividers

Review: Jon McNeill is an architectural modeler. Rick Pierce is his firm’s biggest client and the reason the architectural firm is solvent. Jon has been told not to talk to clients, which ordinarily is something he has no problem with–until he hooks up with Rick on a kinky dating app. Jon is a Dom, and finding a sub as perfect as Rick is something that, at this stage in life, he thought he would never find.

L.A. Witt’s Not Safe for Work is so well written. It was refreshing to read how two men in their mid-forties navigate the real world and make their love and relationship work–I found this mature romance engaging, and the Dom/sub dynamic totally believable because these men had a very clear idea of what they wanted vs. what they needed from the relationship. I loved these characters and how they came alive off the page. I could practically smell the glue in Jon’s workroom. The secondary characters are interesting and keep the humor going when the emotions get heavy between the two men.

I highly recommend this book. The BDSM theme is there and a major part of the relationship between these men, but as they grow to love each other, it’s how they make it work day-to-day that is the real story. This is another great hit from L.A. Witt!

TNA_Signature_Carrie

 

 

 

 

You can buy Not Safe for Work here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

Standard
N.R. Walker

Book Blitz: Red Dirt Christmas by N.R. Walker

Red Dirt Christmas Banner

ReddirtheartChristmas1500Title: Red Dirt Christmas (Red Dirt Heart 3.5)
Author: N.R. Walker
Publisher: BlueHeart Press
Length: 54 Pages
Categories: Holiday Romance, Contemporary Romance
Buy Links: Amazon || All Romance eBooks || Smashwords

Blurb: Travis had been here for just over a year. We were technically engaged, not that we’d told anyone. He was happy just knowin’ I’d said yes, and I had some head-clearin’ stuff to work through. Knowing I was good enough for Trav was one thing, but knowing if I was good enough to be a husband and father was somethin’ else entirely.

Life at Sutton Station had never been better. Business was strong, Trudy and Bacon’s little baby, Gracie, was a few weeks old now and as cute as a button, Ma’s health was good, and my relationship with Laura and Sam was in a pretty good place. And Travis? Well, life with him was still all kinds of perfect.

But, to Travis’s dismay, Christmas at the Station was just another day. Another day of getting up before the sun, feeding animals, fixin’ what needed fixin’, and checking water troughs all while tryin’ to keep out of the blistering heat.

And this year weren’t much different. Only that it was Travis’s first Sutton Station Christmas. The fact we didn’t go all out with decorations and celebrations baffled him, and if I was bein’ truthful, it disappointed him too.

Which was why I had to make it a special kind of Christmas…

dividers

Excerpt: Chapter One

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

I was muckin’ out the stables with Billy when he stopped and leaned on his shovel. He was lookin’ out to the paddock and grinned his half-a-face smile. “Ah, boss. You might wanna take a look.”

I followed his line of sight and let out a long sufferin’ sigh. “Jesus.”

Billy laughed and I shook my head. We could see Trav smilin’ as he rode the dirt bike into the yard. Strapped onto the seat behind him was a six foot pine tree. He pulled the bike to a stop, and his grin got even wider.

I stared at him. “Trav, what’s that?”

“What does it look like?” he asked, his eyebrows knitting together. “It’s a tree.”

“I can see that.”

“Mr Travis,” Billy said, all concerned-like. “You can’t be cuttin’ them trees down. They special to the Aboriginal people’s culture. Mr Travis, you disrespectin’ our people.”

Travis’s face was priceless. He paled, his eyes went wide, and his mouth fell open. He looked at me for some kind of guidance, and I just shook my head and clicked my tongue. Travis turned back to Billy, close to panicking. “Oh. I didn’t know. Oh my God. I just thought it looked like a Christmas tree and there were plenty of them. Billy, I’m so sorry. I can take it back. I mean, I can’t replant it ‘cause you know.” He looked at the tree on the back of the bike and cringed. “Well, I hacked it off at the ground. God, I’m so sorry. Is there something I should do?”

Billy looked at the tree. “Well, there’s a spirit dance from the Dreamtime. The person who takes the tree needs to do it.”

Travis nodded seriously. “A spirit dance?”

Trav stared at Billy, and I stared at Billy. A spirit dance? I had to give it to Billy. He held it together for about five seconds of absolute silence before he lost it. He burst out laughing, which made me laugh too. “I’m just pullin’ your leg, Travis. There’s no spirit dance,” Billy said, holding his sides as he laughed. His smile was so contagious.

Apparently Travis was immune. He glared at us. “Oh, you sons of bitches. You had me going.” He put his hand to his heart. “Jesus Billy, you scared the crap outta me. I thought I’d broken some traditional Aboriginal code or something!”

Billy just laughed some more. “The look on your face was so funny.”

“I hate the both of you,” Trav said, but he was smiling.

“These trees are like a weed,” Billy said. “Introduced by the white fellas two hundred years ago. They grow fast, but they’re not native.”

“I didn’t think they were.” Travis ran his hand along the fronds of the tethered tree. “But it’s the closest thing to a Christmas tree out here.”

“Christmas tree?” Billy asked. “Not too old for that? Still think Santa Claus climbs down chimneys?”

Travis frowned. He looked at his feet and shifted his weight. His voice was quiet. “No. It was just a tradition in my family. My grandfather would cut down a tree and we’d decorate it as a family. We had special ornaments and there would be a huge dinner and it was kind of a big deal. I just thought maybe… You know what? Never mind.”

Billy knew Travis’s grandfather had died not long ago. “Oh Mr Travis, I didn’t mean anything. I was just jokin’ with ya. Here, let me help you get it off the bike.”

Travis sighed and his frowned deepened, and Billy quickly undid the straps and lifted the tree by himself. “Where do you want it, Mr Travis?”

Trav was lookin’ down at the dirt, and Billy stared at me with wide eyes. “Boss? I didn’t mean nothin’ by it,” he whispered.
I saw the corner of Travis’s lip curl up and I rolled my eyes. “Oh, for shit’s sake. He’s joking, Billy.”

Billy’s eyes shot to Travis, and Travis’s frown became a slow spreading grin. “I’m just pullin’ your leg,” he said with a laugh. “You’re not the only one who can spin one, Billy.”

“Your grandfather never cut down a Christmas tree?”

Travis shook his head, still grinning. “My grandfather would tell everyone we were going to pick a perfect tree, but he’d take me fishing instead and we’d just buy some random tree from a lot on the way home.”

Billy dropped the tree into the dirt and pushed Travis’s shoulder, which of course led to them trying to put each other in a headlock, which was only made more difficult because they were both laughin’ so hard. I looked at Texas, Trav’s horse. Even he didn’t look impressed. He just twitched his ears and swished his tail in a yep-they’re-idiots kind of way. “I know,” I told him. “You have no idea what I have to put up with.”

“Who are you talking to, Charlie?” Travis asked. They’d apparently stopped wrestling and were lookin’ at me.

“Your horse,” I answered seriously. “He thinks you’re both dickheads.”

Travis brushed himself down, though why, I’ll never know. Red dust got into everything here; there weren’t no escapin’ it. “I’ll never get used to the Australian display of affection of calling the people you’re supposed to like horrible names.”

I snorted out a laugh. “You’d think after a year you’d be used to it.”

Billy picked up his shovel and offered it to Trav. “Wanna shovel shit?”

“Um, gee, thanks, but no,” Trav replied, with an I-ain’t-stupid look on his face. “I have a Christmas tree to put up. Considering Christmas is three days away and no one seems to give a shit.”

I lifted up the horseshit covered shovel. “Texas does. Bags of it.”

He rolled his eyes at me and wiped the sweat from his brow with the back of his hand. “Tell me, how damn hot is it? You know, Christmas should be cold, not one hundred and thirty freakin’ degrees.” Without waitin’ for an answer, he reached behind his head and pulled his T-shirt off. It was one of my old shirts, kinda threadbare, but I didn’t mind him wearin’ it. It clung to his body when he got all sweaty… Nah, I didn’t mind him wearin’ it at all. I minded even less when he took it off. Wearing just his jeans, boots and hat, he wrapped the shirt around the tree and lifted it easily onto one shoulder. I watched as the muscles in his back and arms flexed, all shiny with sweat, the way the red dirt smeared on his skin, and a lucky drop of sweat as it ran from the back of his hair, right down his spine and disappeared where his jeans slung low on his arse.

Jesus.

Billy snapped his fingers in my face. “You in there, boss?”
Travis turned around and, realising I’d been busted totally checkin’ him out, he grinned. And seeing that Billy wasn’t lookin’ at him, Travis licked his lips all suggestive like, and ran his free hand over his abs as he turned to walk out.

I flung horseshit at him.

He didn’t even turn around. He just laughed. As he walked away, he asked, “I can put this in the living room, right?”

“Would it matter what I said?” I called out after him.

His reply was distant as he reached the house. “Nope.”

Billy laughed, and I grumbled as we went back to shovelling shit. When we’d heard the screen door shut, Billy looked up to make sure Travis was gone. “He got no idea what you plannin’, does he, boss?”

I smiled as I kept on shovelin’. “None.”

dividers

N.R. WalkerAbout the Author: N.R. Walker is an Australian author, who loves her genre of gay romance.
She loves writing and spends far too much time doing it, but wouldn’t have it any other way.

She is many things; a mother, a wife, a sister, a writer. She has pretty, pretty boys who live in her head, who don’t let her sleep at night unless she gives them life with words.

She likes it when they do dirty, dirty things…but likes it even more when they fall in love.

She used to think having people in her head talking to her was weird, until one day she happened across other writers who told her it was normal.

She’s been writing ever since…

N.R. Walker’s Internet Linksnrwalker2103@gmail.com || Facebook timeline || Facebook Page || Twitter: @NR_Walker

Standard
5 Stars, Audio Book, Jay Bell, Narration Rating - 5 Stars, New Adult, Reviewed by Kathie, Self-Published, Young Adult

Audio Review: Something Like Lightning by Jay Bell – Narrated by Kevin R. Free

Audio Gem

Amazon

Amazon

Title: Something Like Lightning: Volume 5

Author: Jay Bell

Narrator: Kevin R. Free

Publisher: Self-Published

Run Time: 14 hours and 18 minutes

At a Glance: Jay Bell and Kevin R. Free are both talented craftsmen.  What a great combination!

Reviewed By: Kathie

Blurb: Never stop running. No matter how often life trips you up or how many times your enemies knock you down, just get up and keep on moving until you find where you belong.

Kelly Phillips has been out and proud since he was a young teenager, and thanks to the gay youth group he frequents, he’s never been short on friends or lovers. But when you have almost everything, it’s hard not to focus on what’s just out of reach: a best friend who would be Mr. Right if he wasn’t already Mr. Straight. Or that handsome athlete at school who would be easier to wrangle if not for his angel wings. And then there’s the guy who might be a perfect fit, maybe even a soul mate…if only he wasn’t convinced he didn’t need anyone. Kelly has always been good at running. Now he must learn to chase, which will test not only his endurance but the durability of his heart as well.

Dividers

Review: Jay Bell is an auto-buy author for me.  It started with Something like Summer (the eBook published in 2011, the audiobook released in May, 2013), and from that point on, I have read every word of the Something Like series, and have listened to just about all of them. Listening to a Something Like audio is not a small commitment.  Something Like Lightning is 14 hours and 18 minutes, and it’s not a skip-ahead kind of listen. Jay Bell mixes so many characters into his story that if you do try and fast forward, you will miss a plot twist or, in Kelly Phillips’ case, a new opportunity in his love life or career.

The title of this book, Something Like Lightning, really describes the whole feel of the book. Not only is Kelly quick to make decisions, quick to get mad, quick to make judgements, and quick to fall in love, but the other characters are also quick to make decisions: for example, Nathaniel is quick to leave and really, pretty quick to come back to Kelly. What I liked and hated about Kelly was his confidence in himself. Before the accident he was very self-absorbed, but after the accident, he needed that confidence to keep moving forward. What surprised me is that towards the end of the story, I truly liked Kelly and wanted him to have a happy ending. And Nathaniel, who I thought was kind of a hero to go find a hole to bury himself in… what a shortsighted jerk! I know, very strong words from me, but just read or listen to the book. Jay Bell is such a great writer that you become invested in his characters. The next book in the series, Something Like Thunder, is Nathaniel’s story.  I suppose I am going to learn to like him. But really, Jay Bell… Do I have too?

What a talent Kevin R Free has. He doesn’t just tell us a story, he uses his voice to pull us into the world of Jay Bell.  Would I recommend that you purchase this audio and invest 14 hours of your time listening?  You bet I would! Jay Bell and Kevin R. Free are both talented craftsmen.  What a great combination!

TNA_Signature_Kathie

 

 

 

 

You can buy Something Like Lightning here:

Amazon US

Amazon US

Audible.com

Audible.com

Standard