Monthly Archives: December 2014

3 stars for Dance with Destiny by Sloan Johnson #MMRomance #MM @authorsloanj

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Title: Dance with Destiny
Author Name: Sloan Johnson
Publication Date & Length: Dec 18, 2014 — 221 pgs

Synopsis

Tony DeLuca has to get to New York, nor’easter be damned. His older sister is getting married and it won’t matter to her if the entire east coast is shut down if it means she’s short a groomsman. She’s the only reason he’s willing to make the trip home to face a father who’s never forgiven him for wasting a perfectly good degree to become a firefighter. And that’s only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to everything about Tony that his father will never accept.

Dominic Tricoli’s living his dream. He’s spent the past few years working to mesh his business degree and love of the outdoors into a thriving company, providing team building retreats for some of the country’s largest corporations. Unfortunately, there’s a price to pay for happiness, and having someone to come home to at night is the sacrifice Dominic made.

When Dominic overhears Tony’s plight, he’s drawn to help the man get to New York City. Little does Dominic know that one kind gesture will awaken a side of him he’s ignored for far too long. Against his better judgment, he gives in to his desires and Tony’s advances. Just for the night.

When destiny steps in, giving him another chance with the charismatic man who saved his hide, Tony’s willing to do whatever it takes to earn Dominic’s forgiveness and understanding. There may not be forever, but Tony’s determined to enjoy every single minute he’s given with Dominic.

You can’t fight fate. Whatever’s meant to happen, eventually will.

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Review

ThreeStar
I really wanted to like this. I loved the idea of attraction leading to more with a series of coincidences. That part of the story actually did end up being fun, and if it had stuck to that, it would have been a great casual holiday read. It also made me smile to see my home city get more than a casual mention.

Unfortunately, I didn’t end up liking the book as much as I wish I did. I personally did not enjoy the repeated reminders that these are manly men who don’t appreciate anything that seems too feminine. I was also not impressed at all with the end. I felt that entire portion of the plot could have been left off. It wasn’t executed well and was, in my opinion, unrealistic and gratuitous.

The writing is very good, in terms of style, and it’s clear this is the sort of book many people would enjoy for the way it follows a typical romance formula. I’m probably not the best audience for this book. I’m sure there are other readers who will love it, though, especially if they are already fans of Ms. Johnson’s work.

~Amy

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Teaser

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Excerpt

So much for never seeing one another again. Had I known that I was going to see Dominic this weekend, I might have tried harder to make things right with him Thursday night. If I’d realized the Cara he mentioned was marrying his college roommate was my sister, who I’ve always called Caroline, I wouldn’t have touched him no matter how much I wanted to. Actually, that’s probably not true, because he’s damn fine and I’m not stupid enough to pass up an opportunity when it presents itself. But I definitely wouldn’t have walked away until I knew that neither of us had any regrets.

I trip over my feet as I follow the rest of the groomsmen into the front of the cathedral, my attention focused on the man sitting next to Mr. and Mrs. Rossi, looking like he’s just been scolded.

Dominic was gorgeous the night we met, but now, he’s downright breathtaking. I take my place in line and, because God has a twisted sense of humor, I’m going to be stuck knowing that Dominic is directly behind me for the next hour and there’s not a damn thing I can do about it.

As we wait for what seems like forever for all of Caroline’s bridesmaids to make the mile-long trek to the front of the cathedral, I try to catch Kennedy’s attention. Thursday night, I told her everything. After telling her about the sexy-as-fuck scene in the truck, I went on to tell her how much it annoyed me that Dominic and I parted on bad terms. She agreed with Dominic that there was no need to feel anything since we’d never see one another again. When Kennedy finally makes eye contact with me, I nod ever so slightly to my left and watch as her eyes threaten to bug out of her head. “Oh, my God. Is that him?” she mouths. I nod subtly. “Are you going to talk to him?” she asks. I shrug, and catch the attention of my older brother, who is standing directly behind me.

“Anthony, quit talking to your girlfriend,” he hisses. “Caroline needs you to make her the priority for the next hour, then you can run off and find a quiet corner to do whatever it is the two of you do.” I close my eyes tightly before glancing at Dominic, finally realizing that he probably thinks the same thing I’ve led most of my family to believe all these years. The urge to elbow Peter in the gut to show him exactly what I think of his comment is strong, but I’ve already made enough of a scene. If he noticed, I’m sure other people have as well. And sure enough, Dominic is now glaring at me. He looks across the aisle and his entire body stiffens when he notices Kennedy sitting with my family. I need this wedding to hurry the fuck up so I can get a drink.

The music changes and everyone stands and turns to see Caroline and our father walking down the aisle. I take the opportunity to admire the way Dominic’s suit jacket hangs off his shoulders. The subtle pinstripes act as beacons, drawing my eye down to his narrow hips, and suddenly I’m standing in the cathedral with a semi, thinking about the tight ass beneath those perfectly tailored pants. Go straight to Hell. Do not pass Go, do not collect two-hundred dollars.

AuthorBio

Sloan Johnson is a big city girl trapped in a country girl’s life. While she longs for the hustle and bustle of New York City or Las Vegas, she hasn’t yet figured out how to sit on the deck with her morning coffee, watching the deer and wild turkeys in the fields while surrounded by concrete and glass.

When she was three, her parents received their first call from the principal asking them to pick her up from school. Apparently, if you aren’t enrolled, you can’t attend classes, even in Kindergarten. The next week, she was in preschool and started plotting her first story soon after.

Later in life, her parents needed to do something to help their socially awkward, uncoordinated child come out of her shell and figured there was no better place than a bar on Wednesday nights. It’s a good thing they did because this is where she found her love of reading and writing. Who needs socialization when you can sit alone in your bedroom with a good book?

Now, Sloan is a tattooed mom with a mohawk and two kids. She’s been kicked out of the PTA in two school districts and is no longer asked to help with fundraisers because she’s been known to lose herself with a good book and forget she has somewhere to be.

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3 Stars for A Year in the Life by Cat Grant – #MMRomance @CatGrant2009

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Title: A Year in the Life (Courtlands – The Next Generation #1)
Author Name: Cat Grant
Publication Date & Length: December 15, 2014 –  286 pgs

Synopsis

Courtland fans, get ready – the next generation’s here!

A campus flu outbreak, complicated by a freak October blizzard, brings Cornell seniors Seth Thompson and Bilal al-Mansoori together. Three days spent waiting out the storm at Seth’s snowbound apartment leads to an unexpected mutual attraction—and a hot night under the covers, which quickly deepens into a true emotional bond…

Plus, a world of problems for Bilal, an Iranian Muslim. Despite his homeland’s harsh laws and even harsher punishment for homosexuality, Bilal can no longer deny who he really is: A gay man falling in love for the first time.

Seth’s gentle manner and passionate lovemaking bring Bilal more joy than he ever thought possible. Yet, despite the lovers’ growing happiness, Bilal’s haunted by guilt and shame left over from his strict upbringing, and the sad realization that he’ll never see his family in Iran again.

Speaking of families, it’s time for Bilal to meet Seth’s…

Eric, Nick and Ally. Ten years later, this committed triad is still as deeply in love as ever, but even commitment comes with challenges…

Is there room in this non-traditional family for Bilal? His future with Seth may depend on it.

Includes the novella In From the Cold.

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Review

ThreeStar

Seth and Bilal meet through a fateful series of events. Their love is nearly instantaneous, and without angst. Bilal, initially conflicted about being gay, adapts pretty easily, though he remains closeted (see book two?). What Bilal didn’t count on from his pretty artist boyfriend is a whole heap of parents, an adorable little sister, and great friends.
As a romance, this book is a bit thin. However, as a book about family, this book is warm and giving and poignant. It takes place during the fall and winter, culminating at New Year’s, which makes it a perfect Christmas read, and a good start to a promising series.
C.E. Case

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AuthorBio

If you’re looking for epic sci-fi, fantasy, or historicals, that’s not me. Contemporary all the way, baby!

However, if you’re looking for down to earth, complicated characters dealing with real-world problems (and the occasional comfort read!), I might just fit the bill. 🙂

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Nights Like These by Chris Scully COVER REVEAL – #MM #Mystery

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Title: Nights Like These
Author Name: Chris Scully
Publication Date:

Synopsis

Starting over sucks. At forty, Miles Koprowski thought he had life all figured out. He had a nice car, a hot young lover, and a cushy job… and then he didn’t. Call it fate, or karma, or a downturn in the market, but this opinionated cynic is now forced to play rent-a-cop in a dying office building in the burbs just to make ends meet. Throw in an unhinged ex, a coworker who hates him, and a hot new boss, and suddenly everything is uncertain.

Miles doesn’t plan on liking the night shift or becoming embroiled in a mystery that reawakens old passions and puts him in danger. And he certainly doesn’t plan on falling for the overbearing head of security, Colton Decker, former soldier and doting dad. But nights like these can change a man, make him start to believe there’s more to life than a high paying job and a warm body in his bed. With a thief on the loose and his new job in jeopardy, Miles will have to decide what’s truly important. He might discover things he never knew he wanted… as long as he makes it through the night.

Teaser

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Excerpt

“Why don’t you watch where you’re going, dumb—” I managed to sputter before my mouth stopped working entirely and dropped open. The ability to speak, to think, deserted me at the first sight of the hunky stranger standing in front of me, his face contorted with apology as he tried to mop up my sodden jacket with a handful of napkins. He was a few inches taller than me—closer to six feet—and on the stocky side. His broad shoulders filled out a nicely tailored suit, and he projected an air of confidence that I’d never be able to pull off in a million years. He was clean-shaven too, with a dark buzz cut that made me long to run a hand over his head simply to feel the texture. And gorgeous. Did I happen to mention that?

In short, he was the kind of guy you’d want to be stranded with on a deserted island; the kind you could count on to save you. If you were so inclined. Me? I didn’t need saving.

A pair of friendly, light-colored eyes now stared back at me, bemused. Odd that his lips were moving, but no sound was coming out.

“What?” I asked, blinking back to attention. I couldn’t remember the last time anyone had literally made me speechless. Me, Miles Koprowski, who never met a silence he didn’t want to fill.

Hell, I couldn’t recall the last time I’d been on the receiving end of a full-body pat-down either. At least not so quickly. His hands were still drifting over my chest, wiping up the last drips of coffee, and the simple touch was doing alarming things to my heart rate.

“Are you okay?” he demanded. “Did you get burned?” Before I could react, he seized my wrist and held my hand up for inspection. Strong, lightly calloused fingers, I added to my mental list. Working hands. Dumbly, I looked down. The skin on the back of my right hand was red and stung like a son of a bitch, but it wasn’t blistering. I did flinch slightly when he skimmed his thumb over the sensitive area, but not from pain, more from the touch itself. My entire body lit up, as though I’d stuck a finger in an electrical socket. “It doesn’t look too bad. I think you’ll live. Put some aloe on it when you get home.”

“Doctor?” I croaked, because really, that would be too perfect.

“Nope. Just seen a lot of injuries.” His lips twitched with barely contained amusement. “Sorry to disappoint you.” Sense of humor, check.

AuthorBio

CHRIS SCULLY lives in Toronto, Canada where she grew up spinning romantic stories in her head. When the tedium of a corporate day job grew too much, she took a chance and found her creative escape in writing. Always searching for something different, she has discovered a home in M/M romance and strives to give her characters the happy endings they deserve.

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Hot Reads For The Trevor Project – SIX Novels for $10!!

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Title: Hot Reads For The Trevor Project
Author Name: Rain Carrington, Bey Deckard, Varian Kaylov, Mathew Ortiz, Joseph Lance Towlet and Brad Vance
Publication Date & Length: Available for limited time!!! 6 Novels!!

Synopsis

Get ready to lower your thermostat because your winter is about to get hot! For a limited time only, get SIX great reads by some of the hottest authors in M/M! A guilt-free guilty pleasure at an incredibly low price with all proceeds going to The Trevor Project!

ABOUT THE TREVOR PROJECT:

Founded in 1998 by the creators of the Academy Award®-winning short film TREVOR, The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) young people ages 13-24.

THE BOOKS:

– ROAD RUNNER (ENCHANTMENT #1)

By Rain Carrington

In the Land of Enchantment, New Mexico, lives a man who has secrets. Levi Kape watches people at a bar nightly, writing things in his notebook and trying to blend in with the locals. His secrets keep him from getting close to anyone until Bobby Dawes comes off the road after a long haul in his 18-wheeler. After getting to know Bobby, he realizes he’d never been close to anyone. That was about to change.

Levi can’t settle down and not because he doesn’t want to, but because it could endanger his life. Bobby is a gentle, loving and strong man who doesn’t do commitment. He’s also a man that Levi wants more than anything, including his own safety.

Danger causes Levi to leave but he can’t forget the truck driver that drove into his life, changing everything. When Levi leaves, Bobby goes back onto the road, trying to forget the “Golden God” he’d fallen for, but with some help from friends with connections to dark people and places, Bobby finds his man and swears never to let him go again.

Can they save each other not only from the men who want Levi dead but from years of never seeking or finding the love they found in one another? Will the ultimate betrayal cost them the trust they need to make it work between them? Can Bobby save him, or be lost in a dark world alone…

– CAGED: LOVE AND TREACHERY ON THE HIGH SEAS (BAAL’S HEART #1)

By Bey Deckard

Sheltered and lonely, Jon’s life changes drastically when a strange ship sails into the harbour of his small port town one day. Trapped between the possessive pirate captain and his murderous first mate, he must learn to adapt or he will lose himself completely. An epic tale of love, treachery and revelation, this first installment of the Baal’s Heart trilogy brings you into the lives of three men so bound together by jealousy and lies that they must sail to the very ends of the earth to find forgiveness.

Deckard’s first novel is a masterful portrayal of sorrow, hope, and passion, with a narrative that twists the reader through a world set in the Golden Age of Piracy. A thrilling look into the darker side of human nature, Caged effortlessly melds serious historical fantasy with five star erotica.

– DANGEROUSLY HAPPY

By Varian Krylov

Aidan has always played it safe. Instead of pursuing his dream of creating innovative music that makes his soul sing, he settled for a degree in software, a job in a cubicle, and a spot in a generic band with his buddies.

And he’s always been straight. But when he’s seduced by magnetic local literary luminary Dario, Aidan must decide whether to keep playing it safe, or succumb to a ravenous passion and a nourishing love unlike anything he’s experienced before. Will he find the courage to go after real happiness if it means admitting he’s in love with a man?

Their journey together isn’t easy. Sometimes it isn’t safe. Even if Aidan has the courage to admit he’s in love with Dario, can he endure the repercussions of the traumatic event in Dario’s past?

– LUXURIA: THE OSWALD WITCHES

By Mathew Ortiz

Duncan Blackthorne carried a heavy burden for one so young. One of the most powerful witches of the Earth Clans, his singular ability to control fire was both blessing and curse. The wallflower of his family, they had no idea of what turbulent waters churned under his calm surface. Never expecting to find love, he trudged through life, expecting nothing. Until the man in his dreams became more real and insistent, Duncan realized his dream lover was so much more than expected. Suddenly he had a real world dominant that rocked his body and a dreaming ghost lover who captured his heart. Now what the hell was witch to do?

– GRIF’S TOY (TEASE AND DENIAL #1)

By Joseph Lance Tonlet

Grif believes he’ll live his life as a virgin. After all, who would want him? How could anyone find him, a guy who came with less than man-sized equipment, worthy of their love?

What he hadn’t counted on were the two amazing men who would change his life. After entering college, he meets Tate, his fun-loving roommate. While years later, with Tate now just a memory, Wes, a handsome, rugged ex-marine who runs his own security firm enters his life.

Both men lead Grif through a twisted mesh of pleasure, pain, and denial, as they force him to see his value, despite his size and insecurities.

– SAM AND DEREK: THE WHOLE STORY

By Brad Vance

Sam Bradford is a down-on-his-luck former Special Forces soldier when he meets Derek Constantine, sexually confused billionaire. Together the two men will play a series of games that bring them ever closer together…and which in the end may be the death of them…

Sam’s Reluctant Submission

Sam’s down to his last five dollars when he meets Derek, who makes him an offer – come to my estate for a manhunt, evade me for two days, and you’ll make ten grand…but if I catch you, you surrender your ass to me! Sam’s got SERE training and he’s pretty sure his straight ass is safe, but anything can happen when the hunt is on…

Sam’s Reluctant Submission II: Urban Manhunt

In Part I, Sam lost his ass to Derek, but kept something more important – Derek submitted him, but didn’t break him, and that’s what Derek really wanted. Now Derek wants a rematch – fifty grand for an urban manhunt, if Sam evades Derek’s crew…if he doesn’t, it’s four on one and Sam’s ass is toast!

Sam’s Reluctant Submission III: Search and Rescue

In Part 2, Sam lost his ass to Derek again – and loved it! Which left him wondering if he was gay after all. Maybe a three way with Jake and Eddie will help him figure that out… And when Derek calls Sam to get his help with a search and rescue effort, what sexual sparks might be generated if they clash again in a “threematch”?

Sam’s Reluctant Submission IV: Avenging Devils

The epic conclusion to the saga of Sam and Derek! When Derek’s dark past rears its head to jeopardize the couple and their friends Jake and Eddie, Sam will have to call on his old Special Forces buddies to do battle with The Factory, a malevolent cartel bent on revenge. Will Sam and Derek rescue Eddie from his kidnappers? Will seeing Sam explore his top side with Eddie make Derek jealous…or make him want Sam to do that to him? Most frightening and dangerous of all, will Derek finally say the L word!

BONUS STORY – Eddie’s MMA Submission – the story of Sam’s friends Eddie and Jake

Eddie works across the street from Downtown Fight Academy. And he can’t stop thinking about Jake, the hot MMA fighter he ran into at the store. When Jake offers to train him, Eddie’s ready to throw down in the Octagon. But when Jake has him submitted, and pulls out a weapon you won’t see on TV, will Eddie tap out…or take the punishment?

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AuthorBio

– Rain Carrington

When she isn’t taking out gay bashers with her mean right hook she is at her desk writing steamy stories of man on man love. Rain also spends time with her beloved family and friends and in her spare time maybe sleeps for a few hours.

Rain is an ally in the gay rights crusade, she also loves animals and tries her best to stop animal abuse.

She is at her desk now getting some of her other stories ready for publication and will let them out as she they are ready so keep an eye out for Cabin Fever next!

– Bey Deckard

Born and raised in a small coastal town in northern Québec, Bey spent his early summers on his uncle’s boat and running wild on the beaches of the surrounding islands, lighting fires and building huts out of driftwood and fishermen’s nets. As an adult, he eventually made his way to university and earned a degree in Art History with a strong focus on Anthropology. Primarily a portrait painter and graphic artist, Bey sat down one day and decided to write about the two things that he felt most passionate about: sex and the sea.

Bey currently lives in the wilds of Montréal with his best buddy, a spotty pit bull named Murphy. Caged: Love and Treachery on the High Seas is his first novel.

– Varian Krylov

Since her girlhood in a sunny coastal town in California, Varian Krylov has nurtured a love of words and a curiosity about the deep, dark forces at work in human nature, especially sexuality, and how they often paradoxically twine with our tenderest impulses. Her stories tend to explore the sometimes fine line between what arouses, and what frightens, what we’re driven to, and what we’re ashamed of.

As witty and seductive as I am sarcastic and self-deprecating, I spend as much time as possible thinking and writing about sex. No, not dense, inscrutable post-feminist texts on media representations of gender and the body–that was grad school. I write stories–short stories, novels, and starting a few weeks ago, screenplays–most of which poke and prod and the dark little corners of human sexuality. In a sense, nothing’s taboo, anymore. There’s no act, no fetish that hasn’t been made utterly banal in the proliferation of porn. What intrigues and excites me is the exploration of the conflicting impulses, the twisted psychology and turbulent emotions of people who find themselves unable to resist desires that lie beyond their own moral boundaries.

– Mathew Ortiz

Mathew Ortiz was born in Nuremberg Germany in 197O, the son of a Army man and his Hungarian wife. Spending only two years in Germany, his family relocated to Fort Smith, Arkansas. Here is where he attended primary school and college, obtaining a degree in Nursing. He moved to Phoenix, Arizona meeting his partner Tim there. Matt and Tim relocated to Orlando, Florida in the early 2000s. Mathew had been published in a collective arts magazine in college. Coupled with his love of reading, he wrote his first novella in early 2012. He continues to write, honing his ‘voice’ and enjoying the responses, both postive and negative, to his work.

– Joseph Lance Tonlet

Joseph is a born and raised Southern Californian–with a twenty-year stint of living in the Midwest. He loves the laid-back lifestyle of San Diego and considers himself lucky to live where people dream of vacationing.

A lifelong reader of m/m fiction, he began his writing career one night sitting at his MacBook and has never looked back. He writes to bring the characters he dreams about to life.

– Brad Vance

Brad Vance writes gay romance, erotica and paranormal stories and novels, including the breakout hits “A Little Too Broken” and “Given the Circumstances.” Keep up with Brad at BradVanceErotica.wordpress.com, email him at BradVanceErotica@gmail.com, and friend him on Facebook at facebook.com/brad.vance.10

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5 Stars for Copping An Attitude by Morticia Knight – #MM #Thriller @MorticiaKnight @Totally_Bound

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Title: Copping an Attitude (Sin City Uniforms #2)
Author Name: Morticia Knight
Publication Date & Length: January 9, 2015 – 144pgs

Synopsis

Vegas is filled with human cast-offs, yet officer Parker McLean sees something special in hustler Slade Wolfgang. Unfortunately, so does Slade’s pimp who wants to sell him overseas in the sex trade.

Hustler Slade Wolfgang has little choice over his fate. At the age of twenty, he’s had to survive any way he can since being thrown out of his home for being gay. As soon as he hit Vegas, Slade was lured into the hopeless world of prostitution where he’s become a virtual prisoner to his pimp, the ruthless Julio Estevez. His evil keeper has even threatened to sell Slade overseas as a sex slave.

It’s another typical night on the Strip when Parker comes across Slade. His heart breaks every time he sees someone so young being exploited. Something in Slade’s eyes tells Parker the young man might be in real trouble though—especially after the recent spate of sex worker killings from a rival prostitution ring.

The two men’s lives become intertwined when Slade is almost beaten to death. The danger grows, but so does the relationship between Parker and Slade. Parker helps Slade to heal from the horrific attack and their bond deepens. But the human traffickers are still out there – and they’re still looking for Slade.

Reader Advisory: This book contains scenes of violence and a brief scene of sexual abuse.

Publisher’s Note: This book is best read in sequence as part of a series but can be read as a standalone

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Review

FiveStars

This book had an excellent story that actually makes you believe that there are good people who you can truly trust.  It was full of crime, mystery and of course romance.
There was plenty of anticipation towards the end to find out the outcome, it kept me interested throughout, along with a few twists you won’t expect.

Slade/Lonnie was a troubled man.  You had to really feel sorry for him, he didn’t have family that would accept him, so turning to prostitution was his only choice.  He didn’t have a lot of friends. He was afraid to believe anyone would actually want to help him.  I definitely didn’t like his lousy, no good pimp. He was portrayed as a criminal and lived up to every word.

I thought Parker was a dedicated patrolman for Last Vegas, who had a caring partner. The author did a great job when telling Parkers story, I liked that he had to actually weigh how much he cared for Brett and how to let him down. It wasn’t just about him and Slade/Lonnie, but a story about his previous boyfriend and events that occur in real life. I liked that he went out of his way to help Slade/Lonnie without knowing him, but feeling an attraction to him. They both had to work through trust issues.

This was an enjoyable book. I would read more by this author.

Sherry

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AuthorBio

Erotic Romance author Morticia Knight enjoys a good saucy M/M or M/M/F tale, whether it is contemporary, paranormal, historical, Sci-fi or BDSM – she loves it all! One of her passions is bringing people’s fantasies to life on the page, because life is too short for even one boring moment. Her stories are volcanic in heat, deep in emotion, and sprinkled with doses of humor. When not indulging in her passion for books, she loves the outdoors, film and music. Once upon a time she was the singer in an indie rock band that toured the West Coast and charted on U.S. college radio. She is currently working on a seven-book series called Gin & Jazz set in 1920’s Hollywood, and Uniform Encounters 4.

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3 Stars for The Magic of Christmas by Pelaam – #MM #Holiday

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Title: The Magic of Christmas
Author Name: Pelaam
Publication Date & Length: December 6, 2014 – 55pgs

Synopsis

On a friends’ getaway in a winter wonderland, Jared and Casey discover real Christmas magic.

Jared joins his four best friends on an early Christmas holiday in a beautiful winter wonderland. He’s been in love with the talented and extroverted Casey for years, but lacked the courage to say anything.

Casey loves Jared, but despite his gregarious exterior, inside lurks someone shy and insecure and so he’s never spoken up.

Both men are about to experience real Christmas magic.

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Review

ThreeStar

This is a quirky short story with some surprising twists.

I wasn’t sure what to expect from the description. The story starts out seeming like just an ordinary vacation with friends. Casey and Jared have unspoken feelings for each other, and it seems mostly like that’s where the story is headed.

It would be helpful for the synopsis to indicate that this is a fantasy story. I was taken by surprise at the magical elements. Simply saying they’re going to experience Christmas magic really doesn’t tell readers much—that’s a common expression.

I didn’t enjoy the fantasy elements, mostly because there were sudden and jarred me out of the story. The transition should have been smother, such as more hints at what was coming. I ended up feeling like the author wanted two things: Actual magic and a hot sex scene. Both were accomplished, but in a somewhat disjointed way that left me a bit disappointed. The story also could have benefited from better editing; the version I had contained a lot of punctuation/grammar errors.

It was cute in its own way, and I’m sure there are many people who will enjoy a quick holiday read.

3 stars

Amy

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AuthorBio

Born in the UK, I now reside in New Zealand. I am an Art Historian (M A Art History) with a passion for reading and writing.
I love M/M romance, history-mystery,fantasy, paranormal and sci-fi.

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5 Stars for Tangled Mind by Posy Roberts – #Bisexual #MM Romance @PosyRoberts

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Title: Tangled Mind
Author Name: Posy Roberts
Publication Date: December 24, 2014

Synopsis

For years Beck Lund has taken care of his volatile boyfriend Brady, always putting Brady’s needs above his own and walking on eggshells to keep the peace. After Brady overdoses on heroin, his death devastates Beck. Thankfully his best friend, Timothy Kallis, finds him the help he needs. Beck slowly starts to recover and moves in with Timothy to get back on his feet, but he’s oblivious that Timothy is secretly nursing romantic affection for him.

Beck focuses on his own healing for the first time in his life. After months of challenging his codependent tendencies and learning how to stand up for himself, Beck finally starts to trust his gut and hopes to one day love again. Timothy is patient throughout, taking care of Beck in ways no one ever has. But if Beck can’t recognize Timothy’s affection for him, it might be too late for them to move beyond friendship.

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Review

FiveStars

Note: This story deals with themes of death, grief, drug use, and codependency. Anyone triggered by those things might want to skip this one. It hit a few nerves with me, even though the specific experiences aren’t my own.

This is really well-written, and I love that Ms. Roberts didn’t shy away from the raw emotions. At the same time, it didn’t have the feel of trying too hard to get the reader to feel a certain way.

The first part of the story was hard to get through–not because it was boring or poorly written but because it hit so hard. Even for people who have not experienced the exact situation (a spouse or partner with an addiction), it is likely to resonate with anyone who has been in the position of emotional caregiver. When Beck began to emerge from his situation, I wanted to cheer for him.

I loved that Timothy was genuinely bisexual, and Beck had no problem with that at all. I had to laugh at Beck’s commentary, especially how their other friends just didn’t get it and how Timothy was simply his own person, refusing to be put in a box. This is the most absolutely true thing about most of the bisexual people I know, and I adored it. It was subtle enough that most people probably wouldn’t notice or care (or get it, actually), but I sure did.

The relationship between Beck and Timothy unfolded slowly, which made it that much more satisfying when they finally found their way to each other. It was full of hope and promise. The sex was hot, yes, but it was also filled with all the things they both brought to the table.

This was an incredibly satisfying story, start to finish, and I look forward to reading more of Ms. Roberts’ work.

5 stars.

Amy

Teaser

1.3

Excerpt

Before I had a chance to shut the front door, the sound of Brady choking on his own vomit pierced my eardrums. I was in our bedroom within seconds to witness him take what ended up being his last breath. Immediately I rolled him to his side to help him clear his airway. He flopped onto his back.

Abdominal thrusts. I slapped his face and shouted his name.

9-1-1.

I followed the directions the dispatcher gave me on speakerphone, putting my effort into every motion as tears ran down my face.

“The paramedics are on their way. Do you hear the sirens yet?”

“Yes,” I said as I used my full weight to come down on Brady’s torso, trying to dislodge whatever particle had stopped all air from moving in and out of his lungs.

Nothing helped. He just stared up at me with glazed-over eyes and refused to breathe.

“Goddammit. Don’t you dare leave me like this!”

I blankly watched as the paramedics swarmed into the bedroom, shooing me away so they could assess Brady’s condition, and I saw the grim looks on their faces when they realized what had really happened. The frenzied activity ceased, and their demeanor changed the second they found the syringe, spoon, and lighter.

AuthorBio

Posy Roberts writes about romantic male love. Whether her characters are family men, drag queens, or lonely men searching for connections, they all find a home in her stories.

Posy is married to a man who makes sure she doesn’t forget to eat or sleep; her daughter, a budding author and dedicated Whovian, helps her come up with character names. When Posy’s not writing, she enjoys crafting, hiking, and singing spontaneously about the mundane, just to make normal seem more interesting.

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Filed under 5 Star, Amy, M/M, Review