Wednesday, January 31, 2018

ARC Review: Finders Keepers by N.R. Walker

Needing a change of scene, Griffin Burke moves from Brisbane to Coolum Beach to start a new job. The beautiful white sand, aqua-coloured ocean, blue skies, and summer breezes are everything he longs for. What he finds is a mud-covered dog, lost and hungry, with a nametag and a phone number.

Dane Hughes is stuck in Surfers Paradise at a week-long work conference when he gets a phone call from his distraught mother. His dog, his fur baby, Wicket, has run away. Unable to leave and feeling helpless and miserable, he gets a text from a guy. “I think I found your dog…”

Griffin and Dane start talking, and Griffin agrees to look after Wicket until Dane can collect him. With a few days left before his new job starts, Griffin takes Wicket on some coastal adventures and sends Dane photos of their fun, and so the start of something new and kind of wonderful begins.

Griffin might have moved to Coolum in search of a new life, but what he finds is so much more. What he gets to keep just might take some four-legged help.

Dani's rating:

This is a story about a boy and his (lost) dog, and about the dog (now drenched, dirty, and hungry) and another boy who rescues him. And finally it's about both boys and THEIR dog.

Some books are so fluffy, it's like eating cotton candy: all sugar, no substance. And some books are so gritty, you need a shot of vodka to dull the pain.

But THIS book is refreshingly simple, like a fresh, organic, juicy strawberry is simple: perfectly sweet, delicious, satisfying.

Finders Keepers is a true-to-life, feel-good story about two men who have a real Meet Cute—first via text/phone and later face-to-face—and click on every level: they never run out of things to talk about; they have palpable sexual attraction; they like being outdoors, especially walking on the beach, LOVE kissing (each other), and get along like a house on fire.

I j'adore all three MCs (yes, I'm including Wicket the sassy dog, because he makes this story and is absolutely a character in his own right).

Griffin likes his job as a front desk hotel manager. He gets a big kick out of his 70-something-year-old landlady, Bernice (who is a fabulous secondary character!), and doesn't think twice about saving a scared, muddy dog and taking care of him until his daddy can come get him.

Dane is so grateful to Griffin and feels a tug toward the kind man who rescued his dog. Dane isn't a complicated guy. He works in retail, gets on with his parents, and is all around mellow and ready to settle down.

Release Blitz: Louise Lyons - The Short Stories Collection

Length: 45,000 words approx.

A collection of three short stories.

In Darkest Peru

When shy and geeky Rhys White is ditched by his boyfriend of five years, and made redundant from his job in the space of one week, he decides to make some changes. Tired of being boring and hiding being his computer, he throws caution to the winds and buys a plane ticket to Peru.

The adventure in Peru starts out well, but then disaster strikes when the bus he is travelling on is held up by thieves. Rhys loses everything, including his passport, wallet, and phone.

Stranded in Cuzco, not too far from the famous Inca city of Machu Picchu, Rhys tries to find someone to help him. Just when he begins to lose hope, sexy Brazilian, Rafael, comes to his rescue, and his desperation situation takes a turn for the better.

One Snowy Night

After yet another failed date, Keith Brambles' luck turns from bad to worse, as he tries to drive home in heavy snow and crashes his car. With no phone signal, no warm clothes, and the weather worsening, he fears freezing to death overnight.

But help is at hand in the form of a knight in a white van. Mike Talbot stops to help Keith, and takes him home to warm up—in more ways than one, when the pair's mutual attraction kicks in.

Mike is everything Keith has ever dreamed of when he thinks of his ideal man. But can Mike really be Keith's dream come true, or is their night together just another bit of fun?

Lost and Found

When author Philip Johnson loses his much-loved dog, Prince, he buries himself in the fantasy world of his latest novel. But as his heartbreak gradually lessens and he focuses more on the happy times he had with Prince, he realises the hole left in his life needs to be filled with a new puppy.

After responding to an advertisement for a young dog, Philip is surprised to find the owner is none other than Edward Manby, the very good-looking vet who took care of Prince in his last hours. Philip is delighted to discover his attraction to Edward is returned and despite the twenty-year age gap between them, their love for their pets brings them together and leads to romance.

About the author:

Release Blitz: Dead Fall by Meredith Russell

Length: 66,000 words approx.

Cover Design: Meredith Russell

Dead Things Series

Dead Things (Book #1) - (CURRENTLY FREE)


Since the events in Chicago, Devin and Noah dare to believe that a future is possible, and there is hope. For them and humanity.

Noah struggles to find his place at Devin’s side. Stricken with survivor’s guilt and a driving need to make a difference, Noah leaves his lover to investigate the only lead he has to stop the undead. Himself.

Devin has fought to stay sane in a world of horror for too long and his one shining light is Noah. When Noah heads off on some misguided venture to search for answers, Devin knows he can’t bear to be the one left behind again.

They are two men who have nothing, and everything, to lose.



Chapter One

“Finger off the trigger,” Devin Reid instructed.
Noah rested his index finger on the side of the trigger guard, and stared down the makeshift gun range. He lowered his head, frustrated by his failure to hit all the targets set out for him.
“You just need to relax a little.”
Noah glanced at Devin. “You said to grip it tightly.”
With a nod, Devin said, “I know. But not so hard your hand shakes.” He pushed away from the front of the car, and came to stand beside Noah. “Grip. Ease off slightly.” He squeezed his hand around Noah’s, then relaxed it as he gave his instructions.
Devin’s hand was warm and clammy but Noah didn’t care. A small smile curled the corner of his mouth at Devin’s touch.
Devin’s breath was shaky as he lowered his head.
Things had been strange between the two of them over the last seven weeks. Both of them were figuring out where they fit in the world, and in each other’s lives. They had spent more time together, though Devin remained somewhat distant, not that Noah blamed him. Devin had lost the man he’d loved at the start of the monster-filled nightmare they found themselves in. He understood that Devin struggled with the lack of closure he still felt, despite knowing there was no coming back for Connor. The man Devin had known was dead. But it was about more than Connor. It was about Devin not thinking himself strong enough to go through that kind of loss all over again. To leave himself open to such grief and despair if he got close to Noah only to lose him as well. 
Noah closed his eyes as he felt the warmth of Devin’s breath on his neck. His heart ached as he longed to have Devin close. He remembered the warmth of Devin’s touch, the lines of his body, and the feel of Devin’s skin on his during the night they’d spent together in Chicago.
Chicago. He wondered what had become of the people they’d left behind. Were they safe? Was Chicago still able to offer them protection?

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

ARC Review: Bromantically Yours by K.C. Wells

Bromantically Yours
A friends-to-lovers novella that came from Out of the Shadows, because Nate and Dylan needed a story…. 

Nate and Dylan have been pals for a long time. So what if their friends think they’ve got a little bromance going? Doesn’t mean there’s anything more to it than that, right? And even if there is, Nate and Dylan are totally oblivious…. 

Until the night they share a drunken kiss—and everything changes.

Todd's rating:

This novella was "fine", but nothing unexpected really happened.

I didn't read "Out of the Shadows", so I may have been missing some of the initial setup and background into how Nate and Dylan normally interacted; however, right from the beginning, these two 'straight' guys were totally onboard with being a couple.

I felt that the lack of any *real* type of confusion or conflict not only made the story predictable, but also a bit less exciting than it might have otherwise been.

I did like both Nate and Dylan. They'd been best friends for twenty years, so they knew one another pretty well, which I suppose is where the lack of drama came from.

But the feeling that they would be together, most likely forever, well, it didn't allow for very many "what if's" in regards to where their relationship would inevitably lead.

Power Play by Cara Dee

Power Play
I was my own worst enemy. For as much as I depended on order and a structured life to easier manage my bipolar disorder, fire was irresistible and indisputably my favorite toy to play with. On the ice, it turned me into a hotheaded hockey player. In the bedroom, my attitude was my last defense, a front I wanted to see tumbling down. But lately, all I got was burned.

Love sucked. Correction: it sucked when you were in love with your parents’ closest friend and he didn’t feel the same. I admitted my feelings for Madigan Monroe over a year ago, and I was still waiting for a response. Now my balance was gone. My anxiety was all over the place, my fits of rage had just earned me a suspension from the team, I questioned myself at every turn, and being home for two weeks was gonna make it impossible to avoid Madigan.

I used to be his Abel, his sweetheart, his trouble. It’d been the two of us against the world since I was a kid. I’d even discovered we had kink in common! On paper, I was seemingly perfect for him. Maybe that was why his nonverbal rejection hurt so much. Or maybe it was because, recently, he seemed hell-bent on us “being friends” again.

Whatever. I was a loser, and I couldn’t resist him for crap.


Jewel's rating:

In a perfect world, I'd be your Daddy.

If Cara Dee writes it, I will read it. Full Stop. I admit I was feeling cautious here, being as how that the dynamic is DD/lb, and I was very unfamiliar with it. I had to do a little bit of research so that I would have an idea of what to expect. Honestly, though, I needn't have worried -- Power Play was damn near perfect. I loved it!

They bonded over Nutella and formed a friendship so strong, neither Abel nor Madigan ever thought it would break.

Four a.m. was for broken hearts and fools.

Take it from Abel, who is still nursing a broken heart and suffering the loss of his Mad. Madigan, who made Abel feel safe and normal. Madigan, whom Abel knew he wanted to marry, even when he was a kid. Madigan, who he's barely seen since sending that text over a year ago.

I think ive been in love with u since I was 12.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Book Review: Two Man Station by Lisa Henry

Two Man Station (Emergency Services, #1)
Gio Valeri is a big city police officer who’s been transferred to the small outback town of Richmond with his professional reputation in tatters. His transfer is a punishment, and Gio just wants to keep his head down and survive the next two years. No more mistakes. No more complications.

Except Gio isn’t counting on Jason Quinn.

Jason Quinn, officer in charge of Richmond Station, is a single dad struggling with balancing the demands of shift work with the challenges of raising his son. The last thing he needs is a new senior constable with a history of destroying other people’s careers. But like it or not, Jason has to work with Gio.

In a remote two man station hours away from the next town, Gio and Jason have to learn to trust and rely on each another. Close quarters and a growing attraction mean that the lines between professional and personal are blurring. And even in Richmond, being a copper can be dangerous enough without risking their hearts as well.

Jewel's rating:

Two Man Station is a story about new beginnings and second chances at love and life. Both MC's have loved and lost, though each in a different way. Both need to heal and learn how to move on. And neither have an easy time of it.

I loved the setting in a small town in the middle of nowhere, Australia. A place that looks pretty bleak on the surface, somewhere past the left edge of nowhere. Gio Valeri had no choice but to transfer, but he never expected to like it. This isn't the life he had planned for himself, at all. But Gio isn't a quitter, either, and being a cop is all he ever wanted, even if that means a 2 year transfer to Richmond.

Jason Quinn is Gio's new boss. A single parent and a widower, Jason struggles to do it all, and mostly he does ok, but it is not easy to juggle a job as a cop - even in a small town - and being a single parent. He's never felt quite ready to put himself out there again. At least not until he got to know Gio.

Blogtour: Sound of Silence by Mia Kerick and Raine O'Tierney

Title: Sound of Silence
Authors: Mia Kerick and Raine O’Tierney
Release Date: January 23rd 2018
Genre: MM Contemporary Romance


Renzy Callen exists on the periphery of life, and not just because of the horrific childhood event that robbed him of the ability to speak. Walling himself off from the rest of the world as a means of protection, he occupies his time with art, music, and an obsession with self-help groups—whether he needs them or not. His isolation protects him, and he’s immune to drama and emotional games… or so he believes. Everything changes when he meets Seven and Morning Moreaux-Maddox, the wealthy, jet-setting siblings who move from a life of sophistication in Europe to humdrum Redcliff Hills, Missouri.
Both Seven and his sister are impossibly beautiful and elegant, like the stars in magazines and high-fashion models on the runway. When Renzy is pulled into their push-and-pull of affection and rejection, he realizes there is more to both haunted Morning and cold, diamond-sharp Seven than meets the eye.
The three teens embark on a quest to learn the reason behind Renzy’s selective mutism, and something more than friendship blossoms between Renzy and Seven. It’s during this trip of a lifetime that the three realize the truth they seek might be found in the sound of silence.

Find Sound of Silence on Goodreads


It’s after midnight by the time we get home.
Back to the cottage, I mean.
Morning makes an exaggerated show of taking the couch, throwing herself down on it with her arms out.
“Look at how much I love you two,” she says grandly, snuggling down into the covers she took out of the linen closet earlier. “Taking this heinously uncomfortable couch so you two can stretch out on the bed and... snuggle.”
Snuggling sounds nice.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Audiobook ARC Review: Coach's Challenge by Avon Gale

Coach's Challenge (Scoring Chances, #5)From the blurb:

It’s been decades since blackmail forced Troy Callahan to retire from playing professional hockey, and he’s built a successful career behind the bench. When he’s offered the opportunity to coach the Asheville Ravens—the most hated team in the ECHL—he’s convinced that his no-nonsense attitude is just what the team needs to put their focus back on hockey. But Troy is disheartened when he finds out the Ravens have signed Shane North, a player known for his aggression—especially when Shane’s rough good looks have Troy thinking inappropriate thoughts about a player, even if he’s set to retire at the end of the season. 
Shane’s career in the majors never quite took off. Wanting to quit on his own terms, Shane agrees to a one-year contract with the Ravens and finds himself playing for a coach who thinks he’s an aging goon, and with a team that doesn’t trust him, Troy, or each other. Despite his determination not to get involved, Shane unwillingly becomes part of the team… and is just as unwillingly drawn to the gruff, out-and-proud coach. As the Ravens struggle to build a new identity, Shane and Troy succumb to the passion that might cost them everything.

Heather's rating:

I've LOVED the entire Scoring Chances series, and Coach's Challenge was no different! Hot, sarcastic, bossy, mature MEN (not boys!) who took their relationship from flirting to sexual to more, and a great audiobook narration to boot.

I've had a bad streak with Avon Gale's work recently, so I was actually nervous about starting Coach's Challenge. However, it didn't let me down at all, and I was thrilled that the audio reading was as good as I had remembered. I didn't want to stop listening, which is the best feeling, let me tell you.

Book Review: A Way with You by Lane Hayes

Reeve Nelson is determined to make it in Manhattan. He’s hardworking, dedicated and willing to put in the extra hours required to be successful at his new job at a prestigious real estate firm in the city. There’s no way he’s going back to small-town living and an ex-girlfriend who won’t let go. But his boss isn’t making it easy.

Leo Rodriguez enjoys his reputation as a ruthless businessman. He’s a lone wolf who’s scraped his way from the gutter to rebuild his life and launch a distinguished career on his terms. When an opportunity to expand in the market comes up, Leo wants the eager new agent with a sense of wonder on the project. But nothing goes quite as planned. Reeve expected to be intimidated and overwhelmed by Leo, however, the explosive mutual attraction and fierce desire between them is a big surprise. Neither man is looking for love and yet, something special just might happen if they can find their way…together.

Dani's rating:

I didn't love A Way with You quite as much as I loved A Way with Words, but I have to admit Leo was one sexy motherfucker. All that power and intensity. GRRRR!

One of the highlights was being privy to Tony and Remy's (MCs from A Way with Words) glorious HEA. *happy sigh*

Another huge PLUS: This book is steamier than the first. Like I said, SEXY. MOTHERFUCKER. Who knows how to pound Reeve into the mattress.

I would have given my right arm to get Leo's POV!

Saturday, January 27, 2018

ARC Review: Worth His Salt by Ofelia Gränd

Worth His SaltBlurb:

Eldred Henstare is a not so powerful witch who’s been left in charge of helping the city’s lingering spirits to move on. He usually handles it pretty well, but something’s wrong with the spirit leading him to the abandoned lighthouse.

Mo Vin likes his quiet life in the cottage next to the lighthouse, at least it’s quiet until one night when Eldred Henstare—young, beautiful and crazy—arrives. After that night things aren’t the same. A man is found dead on the beach outside Mo’s cottage, and he’s almost sure he’s the one who killed him, except it doesn’t make sense. Why would he kill anyone?
Eldred needs to get rid of the ghost haunting Mo. If he doesn’t Mo’s life is in danger, but to do it he needs both Mo and his brother Lachtin to help out.

Sandra's rating:

Quirky is the word I'd use to describe this book. Quirky, with a large dose of paranormal and magic, and such an adorably odd character in Eldred.

I didn't read the first book in this series, but I had no issues following the plot, so I would definitely classify this as perfectly doable as a standalone.

Eldred Henstare is a not so powerful witch responsible to help the lingering spirits in his city move into the light. His twin brother is his anchor, as we find out. Eldred is also a shameless flirt, something that he does without even really thinking about, and a bit of a smartass, but in a good way. The latest spirit is calling him to the old lighthouse where he meets Mo Vin.

Mo sees the younger man and has no idea what's happening. Befuddled but intrigued by Eldred, he kind of just follows along, pulls the wet and bedraggled man from the shore into his small cottage, and offers him the couch for the night.

ARC Review: Down by Contact by Santino Hassell

Content removed.

Friday, January 26, 2018

ARC Review: Bobby Green (Johnnies #5) by Amy Lane

Bobby Green (Johnnies, #5)
Vern Roberts couldn’t wait to turn eighteen and get the hell out of Dogpatch, California. But city living is expensive, and he’s damned desperate when Dex from Johnnies spots him bussing tables.

As “Bobby,” he's a natural at gay porn. Soon he’s surrounded by hot guys and sex for the taking, but it’s not just his girlfriend back in Dogpatch—or her blackmailing brother—that keeps him from taking it. It's the sweet guy who held the lights for his first solo scene, who showed him decency, kindness, and a smile.

Reg Williams likes to think he's too stupid to realize what a shitty hand life dealt him, but Bobby knows better. What Reg lacks in family, opportunity, education, and money, he makes up for in heart. One fumbling step at a time, they connect, not just in their hearts but in their bodies, where sex that’s not on camera, casual, or meaningless, becomes the most important thing in the world.

But Reg is hampered by an inescapable family burden, and he and Bobby will never fly unless he can find a way to manage it. Can he break the painful link to his unrealized childhood and grow into the love Bobby wants to give?

Todd's rating:


THIS was the old school Amy Lane story that I'd been waiting a couple of years now to read. Not this book specifically, just something a bit grittier and edgier than some of her more recent fluffy, feel-good stories.

And guys (and lady-dudes), I wasn't disappointed.

Vern Roberts was 18 and being blackmailed by his girlfriend's brother, Keith, so he knew that he had to escape from his tiny hometown of Dogpatch, California.

He was also determined to get his mother out as well, so when his construction job fell through and he was offered a job in gay porn, well, he did what had to be done to make his goals happen. As "Bobby," the newest employee of John Carey Industries, aka "Johnnies."

There, Bobby meets Reg at his first solo shoot. At 29, Reg had done gay porn at Johnnies for a decade and wasn't the sharpest tool in the shed. What he was, though, was steady and reliable, taking care of his paranoid schizophrenic sister, Veronica, since he was 16 years old and their mother split.

And let me tell you, Veronica was ex-fucking-hausting, folks.

She only did two things: Watch Fox News every waking moment and plot how to not take her anti-psychotic meds. So when she wasn't ranting about made-up conspiracies and faggots, she was actively, and very physically, attacking her devoted brother.

ARC Review: Trapped by Ofelia Gränd

Charlie Wilkins had everything he wanted—a husband, a daughter, a house that was his home. He still has his husband, but William has forgotten who he is. He still has his daughter, but the roles have switched, and she is now the one taking care of them. 

There is only one thing Charlie wants, and that is to spend the rest of his days with William by his side. But William is living in a nursing home, and Charlie is living…somewhere. Ann says she will fix it; she’ll make sure they’ll get to live together again. Charlie hopes she will before William either escapes or figures out Charlie has left him in someone else’s care.

Todd's rating:

I'm normally a complete sucker, bawling my eyes out, for stories like this one, but "Trapped" never really gave me that usual gut punch right in the feels. Definitely not like TJ Klune's "John and Jackie" did, which was also about a devoted gay couple nearing the end of their long and happy journey together.

I did enjoy Charlie's utter devotion to his beloved William, as he waits patiently for his husband of many decades to recognize him, and William's unfaltering faithfulness to Charlie when he believes them both to still be much younger.

Audio Book Review: The Soldati Prince by Charlie Cochet

From The Blurb:
Listening Time: 3 hrs. 27 min. 
One moment Riley Murrough is living a normal life working in a coffee shop, and the next he’s running for his life from demons, learns he bears the mark of a shape-shifter king from a magical realm, and—worst of all—he’s destined to become the mated prince to the arrogant tiger shifter he would rather strangle. 
Khalon, the shifter king, is equally distraught at the idea of being bound to a human prince, and along with his Soldati warriors, he sets out to return Riley to his own world where he belongs. On their journey they might discover why the priestess brought them together—if they can escape the demons and make it to her alive. 
First Edition published as The Soldati Prince in Charmed & Dangerous by JCP Books LLC, 2015.

Karen's rating:

Riley works in a bakeshop and the most magical thing in his world is lemon cake...that is until the night he 's saved from zombie like creatures that spew black ooze by tiger-shifting Soldati of whom might just be the Soldati king and Riley's mate...oh hell no!!! Neither of them are overly pleased with that little tidbit.

Once Khalon and his warriors realize that Riley is his mate they have no choice but to take him back with least until they can find a way to make him safe from the demons and then they can wipe his memory and return him to his world where he belongs.

As Khalon and Riley travel to see the priestess and get their bond dissolved so that Riley can return home. They begin to spend time with each other, find out more about each other and inevitably neither of them can deny the pull of attraction that they are feeling for each other.

I loved listening to this one on audio and I have to admit as an audio story it worked really well for me. This was so much like having someone read me a story...hey, what can I say I came from a large family and bedtime stories were a very rare event so now here I am all grown up and once in a while it's nice to have someone tell me a story and this one...well this one was definitely an adult fairy tale and I loved it.

All that was missing to make this perfect was a...ok, I'm not going to say it...dragon!!! Come on you thought I wouldn't say it? But seriously tiger-shifters! They count for a lot...oh and foxlings...cute little foxlings so no dragons, but lots of other awesomeness.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Author Of The Month - N.R. Walker - Grand Finale

Welcome to our Grand Finale celebrations for the fabulous

In today's post, we will look at two series - Turning Point and Thomas Elkin - as well as conduct our author interview. There's also one more chance to win, all the way at the bottom.

First up, Point Of No Return (Turning Point #1)


Matthew Elliot is one of LA's best detectives. He's been labeled the golden boy of the Fab Four: a team of four detectives who've closed down drug-rings all over the city. He's smart, tough and exceptionally good at his job. He's also a closeted gay man. 

Enter Kira Takeo Franco, the new boxing coach at the gym. Matthew can't deny his immediate attraction to the man his fellow cops know as Frankie.
But in allowing himself to fall in love with a man known to his colleagues, Matthew risks outing them both. Matt and Kira work to keep their relationship and private lives hidden from Matt's very public life, fearing it would be detrimental to their careers.

But it's not the other cops who Matthew should be worried about finding out his deepest, darkest secret... it's the bad guys.


Kira and I sparred for a good five minutes or more. He gave me a few light taps to the face, and when I gave it back to him, he grinned at me. “Now, why couldn’t you do this the first time we sparred?”
“Because the only way for me to not get a hard-on around you was to let you hit me.”
He laughed—really fucking loudly—and he dropped his hands. So I jabbed at him with my right, not expecting him to be so close, and my fist connected with his mouth.
“Oh, fuck!” he said, pulling back quickly, holding his hand to his mouth.
“Shit, I’m sorry,” I said, but I also kind of laughed at the same time.
“Was that a diversionary tactic?” he asked.
I laughed again. “No, seriously. I mean, I meant what I said about the hard-on. But you shouldn’t drop your hands.”
“You shouldn’t mention hard-ons.”
I laughed again, and he chuckled. But he was still holding his hand to his lip, so I told him, “Let me have a look at it.” I pulled his hand away to inspect his lip. It was split, there was blood, but his teeth were still intact. I smiled at him. “You’ll survive.”
I grabbed his water bottle and threw it to him. And when I handed him his towel, he wiped his face, dabbing it to his lip.
“Am I still beautiful?” he asked with a smile. His tongue darted out to lick his swollen lip.
I looked at him, split lip and all, and nodded. “Yep.”
He grinned then, making his lip bleed again. “Shit,” he cursed, holding his towel back to his lip. “I don’t know,” he mumbled through the material. “I think this will cost you dinner.”
I snorted, and he groaned. “Now, if you don’t mind, I need to fill out an incident report,” he said, holding up his towel to show me. “Blood spilled.”
He walked out of the room, and I presumed our training session was over. Jeez, it was just a split lip.
I pulled the tape off my hands, collected my things, and walked out into the main room, where Kira was behind the counter writing in some book. Chris, the gym owner, smiled and shook his head at me. “What are you doing giving my staff a bloody lip?”
I shrugged. “He zigged. He should have zagged,” I said, making Chris laugh.
Mitch jumped off the cross-trainer. He tried to catch his breath. “You couldn’t have done that last week? When it cost me twenty bucks?”
I rolled my eyes at my partner. He was never gonna let me forget that. Ignoring Mitch, I walked over to the counter, where Kira was still writing. “Do you really have to fill out an incident report for a split lip?”
He grinned and handed me a slip of paper. “Something like that.”
I opened the folded note to find it wasn’t any kind of incident report. It was an address and phone number. And three words.
Dinner. Eight o’clock.
I folded the piece of paper and couldn’t help but smile. I hid it in my hand just as Mitch walked over. He was mumbling at me, something about it being my turn to buy at the bar. “Frankie,” my partner said, “you should come to the bar with us. Elliott here owes you a drink for the fat lip.”
Kira looked at me, then back to Mitch. His swollen lip curled into a smile. “Thanks. But it’ll have to be another time, guys. I’ve got a date tonight.”

Get the book:

Book 2, Breaking Point


A fight for what’s right becomes a fight for his life.

As guilt plagues him, Matthew Elliott’s world begins to spiral out of control. The harder he holds on, the more it slips through his fingers, and he’s helpless to stop it.

Entering into the underground cage-fighting scene, he starts out fighting for what’s right. The deeper he gets, the more guilt consumes him—the more pain he takes for his penance—and he’s soon fighting for more than justice.

He’s fighting for love.

He’s fighting for his life.

Get the book:

Book 3, Starting Point 


After going past the point of no return and finally reaching breaking point, the only thing Matthew Elliott can do now is start over.

Matthew Elliott is a recovering man. As an ex-cop and ex-fighter, his new job teaching kids at the local community gym about drug awareness and self-defense, is a little bit of both. His new focus on helping street kids is helping him heal, and with Kira by his side, he’s making strides.

Brother and sister, Rueben and Claudia, are homeless kids and they're very much alone. As they strike a chord with Matt, he does everything in his power to help them.

But when Ruby and Claude need more help than he bargained for, it stops being about work, and starts being about home.

The day he met Kira, Matt’s life changed direction, and it’s only now he realizes that everything he’s been through was a lead up to this. It was never about endings. His life, his purpose, was just beginning.

Get the book:

Elements Of Retrofit (Thomas Elkin #1)


A successful New York architect, Thomas Elkin almost has it all. Coming out as gay and ending his marriage before his fortieth birthday, he needed to start living his life. Now, four years later, with his relationship with his son back on track, and after a few short-lived romances, this esteemed traditional draftsman thought he knew everything about architecture, about life.

Cooper Jones, twenty-two years old, is about to take the architect world by storm. Talented, professional, driven, and completely infuriating, Cooper is the definition of Generation Y.

Starting an internship working with Thomas, Cooper is about to knock Tom’s world off its axis. Tom can teach Cooper about the industry, but Cooper is about to teach Tom a few things about life.

I was in the office on Monday early, like always, and had forgotten about the intake of interns, until Jennifer buzzed me on the intercom. I looked up from the job specifications. “Yes, Jennifer.”
“Sorry to interrupt, Mr. Elkin,” she said. “If I could trouble you at my desk for a moment.”
The only time Jennifer ever asked me to come to her desk was when she wanted me to have a visual of a client—or opposition—before I met them. “Sure,” I told her.
Jennifer’s desk ran along the left-hand side of my double doors, which ensured no one got to see me without checking in with her first. I opened the door and she handed me a file, which I took. “Interns,” she said quietly. “There are three to choose from. That’s them over there.” She looked pointedly toward the waiting room without moving her head.
I looked over to see two young men and one woman, all eager to impress and impeccably dressed. Usually the four executive senior partners got to choose from the top four candidates, so I knew any of the three remaining candidates were good. I read through the very brief credentials lists first, not even looking at names or gender. I just wanted talent.
Academically, they were all relatively evenly matched, but then a name stood out. I risked a glance at the suited man who I hadn’t even recognized as the kid who’d had dinner in my apartment just three nights ago.
He looked different. Gone was the backpacker look. Gone was the kid who drank beer and talked about drunken antics with my son.
In his place was a professional, serious man, dressed in a well-tailored suit.
Without another thought, without any thought, I looked at Jennifer, handed her the file, and said two words that would change my life.

“Cooper Jones.”

Get the book:

Book 2, Clarity Of Lines 


When some lines blur, others become crystal clear.

Absolutely smitten, Thomas Elkin and Cooper Jones have decided they're prepared to give a relationship a try.

What they're not prepared for is the reaction from their families, who try to force them apart. Both men are about to learn that there are lines that define us. Sometimes the lines blur, sometimes the lines become crystal clear.

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Book 3, Sense Of Place 

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

ARC Review: Trick Roller by Cordelia Kingsbridge

Trick Roller (Seven of Spades, #2)
It’s the height of summer in Las Vegas. Everyone believes the serial killer Seven of Spades is dead—except Levi Abrams and Dominic Russo—and it’s back to business as usual. For Levi, that means investigating a suspicious overdose at the Mirage that looks like the work of a high-class call girl, while Dominic pursues a tough internship with a local private investigator. The one bright spot for both of them is their blossoming relationship.

But things aren’t so simple. Soon Levi is sucked into a dangerous web of secrets and lies, even as his obsession with the Seven of Spades intensifies. Dominic knows that Levi isn’t crazy. He knows the Seven of Spades is still out there, and he’ll do anything to prove it. But Dominic has his own demons to battle, and he may be fighting a losing war.

One thing is certain: the Seven of Spades holds all the cards. It won’t be long before they show their hand.

Jewel's rating:

Trick Roller is book 2 in the Seven of Spades series and I'm loving where it's going! This book does not stand alone, though, folks, so start at the beginning​, with Kill Game​. Also, there are a few more books to come, so the story isn't even close to wrapping up, here. I do like where it leaves off, though. It is a delicious cliffhanger, but I think it was well done.

​T​rick Roller picks up 3 months after ​Kill Game​ left off. The "Seven of Spades" case is closed and Levi is pretty much the only one in the department that feels that ​Seven ​​of ​Spades is still ​very much alive.

The "Seven of Spades" plot line isn't as overt as it was in the first book. ​Seven ​​of ​Spades is biding their time, but definitely still watching; waiting. But there is a thread of their presence throughout that I very much enjoyed. ​I found that the pacing was just a bit slower than Kill Game​, as well, and I loved savoring every moment.​

Audio Book Review: The Long and Winding Road by TJ Klune

From The Blurb:
Family is not always defined by blood. It’s defined by those who make us whole—those who make us who we are. 
And here, at the end, Bear and Otter will be tested like they’ve never been before. 
There’s a knock at the door from a little girl who has nowhere else to go. 
There’s a phone ringing, bringing news they do not expect. 
There’s a brother returning home after learning how to stand on his own. 
As these moments converge, all of their lives will change forever. 
Beginning in Bear, Otter, and the Kid, and continuing in Who We Are and The Art of Breathing, TJ Klune has told a saga of family and brotherhood, of love and sacrifice. In this final chapter, the events of the past pave the long and winding road toward a future no one could have imagined. 
Listening Time:  10 hrs., 23 min.

Karen's rating:

Sometimes...once really is not enough...

If you haven't read this series please...stop here go back and start reading or listening  because it's all on audio. So either is me I've done both read the the series and listened to the audio and truly either format is very good.

I know I've already done one big long rambly review extolling the virtues of this book...actually of the whole series and truthfully I'll probably borrow some bits and pieces from it to use in this review, but if I do I promise I'll try to keep it to a minimum.

There's a quote that starts something to the effect of 'start as you mean to go on' and when I think about this series I truly feel that's what TJ Klune has done with this series. He began by giving us a story, one that we could relate to, with characters that we'd care about...invest a bit of ourselves in and take into our hearts and love and we did...or at least I know I did and I'm pretty sure a lot of my friends who read these books did as well and now here at the end of the journey we are once again given those same characters and even though this is their good-bye they have stayed in my heart and for all the hours that they've spent sharing their time with me they will remain firmly tucked into a corner of my heart.

When this journey started Bear was just finishing high school and the Kid well he was just that 'a kid' just a little guy and throughout the course of these stories we watched them grow up...going from a young man and a kid to grown men who have fallen in love, gotten married and now have children of their own. They've shared their happiness and their heartache with us, their good times and their bad and in return we've given them our tears and taken them into our hearts.

ARC Review: Covet by Yolande Kleinn

From The Blurb:
Jack Mason—graphic designer and unrepentant player—has never been interested in monogamy. He certainly isn’t looking for romance when he meets Professor Colin Sloan. 
Newly single and not looking for anything serious, Colin is intrigued by Jack’s offer of a physical affair with no strings attached. Becoming friends wasn’t part of the plan, but as accidents go, this one’s pretty great. 
Peter Mason is Jack’s identical twin. In a long-term relationship himself, Peter tells no one that he’s falling for his brother’s newest favorite, even as the secret creates tension with his girlfriend. 
When Peter’s relationship falls apart, he seduces Colin, fully expecting Jack to forgive his transgression. But Jack is keeping secrets too—he hasn't told even Colin that he’s fallen in love. Suddenly the twins are feuding, and Colin is caught in the middle, blindsided by the revelation that he doesn’t want to choose between them. 
Now all three must find a way to share, or they’ll tear each other apart.

Karen's rating:

This is quickly becoming the most challenging review...EVAH!!!

Truthfully this is the third time I've tried to start this review and in my brain it's probably the twentieth. My goal here isn't to tell you what the stories about but to share with you why I was so gobsmacked by this one and truthfully to get you the reader to at least take a peek at it or maybe even decide to read the story.

'Covet' at first glance appears to be a menage book that involves twincest...nope, sorry wrong. Truthfully I don't even think I would call it a 'menage' story in the true sense of the word and as for the twincest...not here. By definition 'twincest' is an incestuous sexual relationship  between twins or siblings who look very similar and that doesn't happen here. Peter and Jack are twins but there is 'no' sexual attraction between Jack and Peter. What there a bit of a problem since both men are attracted to Colin.

Colin is a professor at the local university where Jack also works.  While Peter is a lawyer. Peter and Jack have a close relationship and while Jack's attraction to Colin is there from the start, initially Peter's only interest is curiosity about the man who seems to be garnering more interest than his brother has given to anyone in the past and from there they become friends for Peter and Coliin the sexual interest is more of a slow burn.

For Colin and Jack their progression to an intimate relationship while quicker still takes ore time since Colin has just gotten out of a 5 year relationship and he's not looking for anything new, but Jack's determined and he knows how to play the game. So with a little patience, determination and willingness to take things slower than he'd like Jack moves his relationship from friends to friends with benefits.

The relationship between Jack and Peter is definitely put to the test when Jack learns that Peter's interest in Colin has gone beyond the platonic. The relationship between these three men is...well...not to sound cliche but...yeah, it's complicated and then some. It's also handled incredibly well by the author.  This is my second book by Yolande Kleinn and while I enjoyed 'Running Hot' I'd be remiss if I didn't also say that 'Yolande Kleinn has impressed the hell out of me with the story that she's created this time around'.

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