3.5 Stars, G.B. Gordon, Genre Romance, Reviewed by Janet, Riptide Publishing

Review: When to Hold Them by G.B. Gordon

Title: When to Hold Them (A Bluewater Bay Novel)

Author: G.B. Gordon

Publisher: Riptide Publishing

Pages/Word Count: 213 Pages

At a Glance: There is a complicated bit of character building that is skillfully done by the author, though I did have some issues with the time jumping around, and days passing with the POV changes.

Reviewed By: Janet

Blurb: Doran Callaghan doesn’t know when to fold ’em. His gambling has landed him in debt and in jail, and now it’s got him stuck in the sticks in a reintegration program. He wants to turn his life around, but old habits come knocking, and some creditors are harder to shake than others.

Xavier Wagner cares more about the National Park he works in than the people around it, until a stranger awakens desires he didn’t know he had. Doran’s natural submissiveness turns Xavier’s ideas of how to treat a lover upside down. But Doran doesn’t seem to know about boundaries—or even to have any—and Xavier’s not sure that Doran will say no if he needs to. Which means someone’s going to get hurt.

While Xavier struggles with his principles, Doran’s past comes calling. Trusting each other is suddenly a matter of life or death, but Doran has to decide whether counting on Xavier—or himself—is a gamble he’s willing to take.


Review: When to Hold Them is another great story in the Bluewater Bay universe. Gordon is not a writer that I am very familiar with, and I can only hope there are more books coming from this author soon. This book grabbed my interest very quickly, and kept surprising me along the way. I loved that the focus was not pretty, and clearly showed the physical surroundings and glorious nature of this fictitious town.

The concept of a youthful (former) gambler, who is struggling so hard to get ahead, is unique. We really have to work to see his value, as he doesn’t see his own worth very well. Actually, we see both Doran and Xavier through the other’s eyes so much clearer than how they perceive themselves, and that is a complicated bit of character building that is skillfully done by the author. I didn’t mind the alternating POV, as it was clear who was speaking at all times. The problem for me was time jumping around, and days passing with the POV changes. I had to concentrate more on the individual paragraphs of the story to ensure that the flow was not interrupted.

The mystery based plot kept me enthralled as it unfolded with lots of conflicts and twists and turns. Events were explained very well, and the relationship between the MCs progresses in such a way that the reader is rooting for them long before they’re a couple, because we can see that they would work and could be happy before they can see it themselves. I enjoy being given that assurance by an author, as I feel it draws us into the story and keeps us invested in the outcome.

I think that one of the hardest things to do as a writer is to keep the continuity of tone in a multi-authored universe, while having set points of interest, or previously described characters appear in the current story, and stay believable. This is a strong draw for me personally, and was successfully accomplished while presenting a unique book in the universe for our enjoyment. Kudos to the author for a welcome addition to this particular universe. I look forward to trying more of G.B. Gordon’s work in the future.





You can buy When to Hold Them here:

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

G.B. Gordon, Giveaways, Riptide Publishing

Guest Post and Giveaway: The Other Side of Winter by G.B. Gordon


Hi everyone,

I’m thrilled to be here and especially thrilled about the reason I’m here: Bengt and Alex are back with The Other Side of Winter. Some of you wanted to know a bit more about what happens between the two books, so I’m taking the opportunity to give you some glimpses into that year the guys spent apart from each other in a series of intermezzos over the course of this booktour.

SPOILER ALERT! A warning for those of you who’ve NOT yet read Santuario: since these scenes are set after the first book, there will, of course, be spoilers.

Thank you for having me,



Read on at your own discretion — Raid, pt.1:




Alex jolted upright in the semi-darkness, to screams and gunshots. Two things registered clearly in the emergency part of his sleep-fuzzed brain: uniforms storming the bunkhouse through the door, and shots awaiting the men who bolted outside through the windows. The blanket from the upper bunk fell like a curtain, obscuring half his field of vision as Jorge jumped to the ground in front of Alex and ran two steps towards the window before crumpling to the ground.

Alex’s muscles twitched in in automatic response, wanting to help, but there was nothing he could do. Trapped. He was trapped like a fucking animal. And he was a sitting duck in his bunk.

Mostly hidden by the hanging blanket, he crammed all fingers and toes into the webbing of the bunk above and pulled himself up, flat against the straps that held the upper mattress. Not a moment too soon, as one of the securitas started walking along the line of bunks firing a bullet into each. Face pressed against the rough jute, Alex waited for the impact. But the height of the bunk worked in his favour. He felt the impact as the bullet hit the mattress, but the angle was wide enough to almost miss him completely. A small tug at his waist told him how narrow his escape had been.

Being blind to the threat all around him kept pumping the adrenalin through his body, until he was ready to jump out of his skin, but until the shots and the hammering of jackboots on the floor stopped, staying glued to the bunk was his only chance. And a damned slim one at that. He kept expecting someone to pull the blanket off that shielded him from view. Or to take another shot into the mattress above.

Then the shooting inside ceased, though occasional shots outside continued. As the bunkhouse fell quiet, Alex become more aware of the outside sounds, groans, scuffling, someone cursing blue murder without seeming to take a breath.

Glass shattered by the door and somewhere around the window, even though the window had no pane, just wooden shutters.

Alex’s arms screamed at him to let go. He took a deep breath against the pain. Smoke caught in his throat, making him hack and gasp for air. His arms gave out, and he dropped down into his blankets, racked by coughs.


TheOtherSideOfWinter_400x600About The Other Side of Winter: Not all wounds are visible.

Skanian investigator Bengt fell in love with fellow policeman Alex Rukow in a week. But that was a year ago, and they’ve been apart ever since. Then Alex escapes the corrupt and destitute island nation of Santuario and comes to live with Bengt. Happy ever after…?

Alex’s lifelong dream of leaving Santuario has come true at last. But he finds himself adrift in a society he doesn’t understand. Worse, past nightmares come back to haunt him, and after so many years of suspicion and self-reliance, it’s harder than he imagined to trust someone else.

Bengt just wants Alex to share his comfortable life. But the more he tries to give, the more Alex pulls away. Their physical connection couldn’t be better, but Bengt can’t seem to get through to his difficult, taciturn lover outside the bedroom. Meanwhile, he has his own demons to confront—not to mention a serial killer on the loose.

Bengt and Alex must dig deep for the courage to face their pasts, but it may be too late to save their relationship or their lives.

Buy Links: Riptide Publishing | All Romance eBooks


Author BioAbout the Author: G.B.Gordon worked as a packer, landscaper, waiter, and coach before going back to school to major in linguistics and, at 35, switch to less backbreaking monetary pursuits like translating, editing, and writing.

Having lived in various parts of the world, Gordon is now happily ensconced in suburban Ontario with the best of all husbands. Santuario is G.B. Gordon’s first published work, but many more stories are just waiting to hit the keyboard.

Connect with Gordon:


The Giveaway: Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a draw for a $15 Riptide gift card. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on March 27. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Don’t forget to add your email so we can contact you if you win!

A Sneak Peek At The Coming Week

A Want Ad and a Sneak Peek at the Coming Week

Sneak PeekCheers, everyone, and welcome back to a look at what we have coming up in the week ahead! It’s full of win, if I do say so myself. :)

**A Note of Thanks: many thanks to all of you who have expressed interest in reviewing for The Novel Approach. I’m truly humbled by your enthusiasm. And as I’ve now got a full complement of applicants, all positions are currently filled. :)**

And now, here’s what’s on tap just for you!


Monday – We’re kicking off the week with G.B Gordon and The Other Side of Winter blog tour

And joining G.B., Patricia Logan will be here with us today on the Silver Ties blog tour

TuesdayCharlie Cochet drops by today with a Cover Reveal and an exclusive excerpt for her upcoming release Healing Hunter’s Heart

Jordan Castillo Price vamps out with us today, to tell you about the new box set and audio releases of the Channeling Morpheus series

Wednesday – We’ve got a busy day today, starting with Bey Deckard and the Cover Reveal, with exclusive excerpt, of the next book in his Baal’s Heart series, Fated: Love and Redemption

We’re also hosting author RJ Jones on the Out of the Blue blog tour

And with another edition of DSPP’s Genre Talk, Carole Cummings is hosting Rick R. Reed today to talk about writing Horror/Thrillers

ThursdayHeidi Cullinan stops in today on the Carry the Ocean blog tour to chat about the special meaning behind one of the books settings

Friday – To close out the week, we’ll be bringing you an interview with RJ Scott on her Max and the Prince blog tour

And Cherie Noel will be dropping by on the Glitter and Shamrocks tour


And that does it for this week. Until next time, happy reading!