Thursday, August 13, 2020

ARC Review: Better Than People by Roan Parrish

Better Than PeopleFrom the blurb:

It’s not long before their pet-centric arrangement sparks a person-centric desire…
Simon Burke has always preferred animals to people. When the countdown to adopting his own dog is unexpectedly put on hold, Simon turns to the PetShare app to find the fluffy TLC he’s been missing. Meeting a grumpy children’s book illustrator who needs a dog walker isn’t easy for the man whose persistent anxiety has colored his whole life, but Jack Matheson’s menagerie is just what Simon needs.

Four dogs, three cats and counting. Jack’s pack of rescue pets is the only company he needs. But when a bad fall leaves him with a broken leg, Jack is forced to admit he needs help. That the help comes in the form of the most beautiful man he’s ever seen is a complicated, glorious surprise.

Being with Jack—talking, walking, making out—is a game changer for Simon. And Simon’s company certainly…eases the pain of recovery for Jack. But making a real relationship work once Jack’s cast comes off will mean compromise, understanding and lots of love.

Heather's rating:





I wasn't sure what to expect from Better Than People, but I was charmed by this story of two animal lovers, one with crippling social anxiety and the other with a broken leg, both struggling to find their way.

After seeing some mixed reviews from my friends, I was bracing myself to not love Better Than People, but Roan Parrish won me over again with this story. It takes place in the same "world" as The Remaking of Corbin Wale, so if you enjoyed that story, you will probably enjoy this one as well.

As someone who doesn't have social anxiety other than the normal nice to meet you jitters, it was humbling and very interesting for me to read about someone who gets so overwhelmed with anxiety around new people that they are physically unable to talk. I thought the author handled that aspect of the story beautifully.

I'm a total sucker for an MC who is experiencing physical intimacy for the first time. And, whew, I loved the sexy times in this story. Just lots of detailed, new-to-sex goodness that I crave. Thank you, Roan Parrish!

Blogtour: The Dazzling Truth by Helen Cullen



Please welcome Helen Cullen with

The Dazzling Truth


One Irish family. Three decades. One dazzling story.

In the courtyards of Trinity College, Dublin, in 1978, aspiring actress Maeve meets pottery student Murtagh Moone. As their relationship progresses, marriage and motherhood come in quick succession, but for Maeve, with the joy of children also comes the struggle to hold on to the truest parts of herself.

Decades later, on a small Irish island, the Moone family are poised for celebration but instead are struck by tragedy. Each family member must find solace in their own separate way, until one dazzling truth brings them back together. But as the Moone family confront the past, they also journey toward a future that none of them could have predicted. Except perhaps Maeve herself.

Get the book:


  




Inis Óg: 2005
Murtagh had woken that morning, once again, to an empty bed; the sheets were cool and unruffled on Maeve’s side. He had expected to find her sitting at the kitchen table, wrapped in her hound’s-tooth shawl, pale and thin in the darkness before dawn, a tangle of blue-black hair swept across her high forehead like a crow’s wet wing, her long, matted curls secured in a knot at the nape of her neck with one of her red pencils. He had anticipated how she would start when he appeared in the doorway. How he would ignore, as he always did, the few moments it would take for her dove-grey eyes to turn their focus outward. For the ghosts to leave her in his presence. The kettle would hiss and spit on the stove as he stood behind her wicker chair and rubbed warmth back into her arms, his voice jolly as he gently scolded her for lack of sleep and feigned nonchalance as to its cause.
But Maeve wasn’t sitting at the kitchen table.
Nor was she meditating on the stone step of the back door drinking milk straight from the glass bottle it was delivered in.
She wasn’t dozing on the living-room sofa, the television on but silent, an empty crystal tumbler tucked inside the pocket of her peacock-blue silk dressing gown, the one on which she had painstakingly embroidered a murmuration of starlings in the finest silver thread.
Instead, there was an empty space on the bannister where her coat should have been hanging.
Murtagh opened the front door and flinched at a swarm of spitting raindrops. The blistering wind mocked the threadbare cotton of his pyjamas. He bent his head into the onslaught and pushed forward, dragging the heavy scarlet door behind him. The brass knocker clanged against the wood; he flinched, hoping it had not woken the children. Shivering, he picked a route in his slippers around the muddy puddles spreading across the cobblestoned pathway. Leaning over the wrought-iron gate that separated their own familial island from the winding lane of the island proper, he scanned the dark horizon for a glimpse of Maeve in the faraway glow of a streetlamp.
In the distance, the sea and sky had melted into one anthracite mist, each indiscernible from the other. Sheep huddled together for comfort in Peadar Óg’s field, the waterlogged green that bordered the Moones’ land to the right; the plaintive baying of the animals sounded mournful. Murtagh nodded at them.
There was no sight of Maeve.
As he turned back towards the house he noticed Nollaig watching him from her bedroom window. The eldest daughter, she always seemed to witness the moments her parents had believed—hoped—were cloaked in invisibility, and then remained haunted by what she had seen. Ever since she was a toddler, Murtagh had monitored how her understanding grew, filling her up, and knew it would soon flood her eyes, always so questioning, permanently.
He waved at her as he blew back up the pathway. Later, he would feel the acute pain of finally recognising the prescience his daughter seemed to have absorbed from the womb.
‘How long is she gone?’

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

ARC Review: A Brush of Blue by V. L. Locey

From The Blurb:
The most difficult of life’s choices might be the one we make when we open our hearts to another. 
Landon Reece is the ultimate Manhattan athlete. The elite goalie for the New York Metros is rich, handsome, generous, and purposely single. His life has been a whirlwind of fancy cars, beautiful people, museum galas, and championship rings. Landon now has one year left on his multi-million dollar contract, and the talk around town isn’t good. Despite carrying his team to the pinnacle of success, the aging goalie is hearing rumors that his contract might not be renewed next season. Hoping to curtail the rumors and show the Metros he still has what it takes, Landon and his agent set up a press tour to hopefully remind the fans—and Metros’ management—just how important Landon is to New York City. 
During one of a hundred appearances on the tour, Landon finds himself a guest on the newest and hottest late night talk show in the Big Apple. There he meets Montrell Pittman, leader of the show’s band, A Brush of Blue, and his senses come alive. He resolves to do his best to woo the upbeat, sexy musician who ignites his blood like no other person ever has. As the two men grow closer, Landon’s ice time shows how happy his new romance is making him. Then a tragedy rocks his world, and Landon finds himself wallowing in despair and in danger of losing the man who might be the only one who can clear his blues away.

Karen's rating:




I’ve read, savored and delighted in all of the books in this series and I admit it, I’d barely finished ‘A Brush of Blue’ and I’m already anticipating the next book.

If you had asked me a few days ago what my favorite book in this series was without hesitation I would have said ‘Slow Dances Under an Orange Moon’ and I do still unreservedly love that story, but here in ‘A Brush of Blue’ Ms Locey has created a story that has captured my attention on an entirely different level.

‘A Brush of Blue’ is a story about two people…one who’s star is starting to dim and one who’s star is just beginning to truly shine and the destruction that one event can wreck on both of those careers but how with strength, love, determination and faith those same two men can find their way through the storm together.

Landon Reece has tended goal for the New York Metros for nearly a decade and he’s done a damned fine job of it, but as most people know the lifespan of a pro-athletes career at the best of times is little more than a fleeting moment in time. In an effort to prolong his career Landon’s agent sets up a press tour intended to remind Metros fans just how much they need him tending goal.

Release Blitz: A Brush Of Blue (Colors of Love #5) by VL Locey






Cover Design: Designs By Sloan




The most difficult of life’s choices might be the one 
we make when we open our hearts to another.




Landon Reece is the ultimate Manhattan athlete. The elite goalie for the New York Metros is rich, handsome, generous, and purposely single. His life has been a whirlwind of fancy cars, beautiful people, museum galas, and championship rings. Landon now has one year left on his multi-million dollar contract, and the talk around town isn’t good. Despite carrying his team to the pinnacle of success, the aging goalie is hearing rumors that his contract might not be renewed next season. Hoping to curtail the rumors and show the Metros he still has what it takes, Landon and his agent set up a press tour to hopefully remind the fans—and Metros’ management—just how important Landon is to New York City.

During one of a hundred appearances on the tour, Landon finds himself a guest on the newest and hottest late night talk show in the Big Apple. There he meets Montrell Pittman, leader of the show’s band, A Brush of Blue, and his senses come alive. He resolves to do his best to woo the upbeat, sexy musician who ignites his blood like no other person ever has. As the two men grow closer, Landon’s ice time shows how happy his new romance is making him. Then a tragedy rocks his world, and Landon finds himself wallowing in despair and in danger of losing the man who might be the only one who can clear his blues away.


Colors Of Love Series

Book #1 - Lost In Indigo - Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 - Touch Of A Yellow Sun - Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #3 - The Good Green Earth - Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #4 - Slow Dances Under An Orange Moon - Amazon US | Amazon UK


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