Tag Archives: Dystopian

5 Stars for Darkness Eternal (Refuge Inc. #5) by Leslie Lee Sanders #MM #Romance @LeslieLSanders

CoverTitle: Darkness Eternal (Refuge Inc. #5)
Author Name & Publisher: Leslie Lee Sanders (LLS Books)
Publication Date & Length: March 1, 2016 – 165 pgs

Synopsis

As above, so below, except when referring to the underground Refuge Inc. compound.

A century after an asteroid impact and merely fifteen years after a second collision that turned the world into a noxious wasteland, Cadet Connor Nichols and other Refuge facility residents are making the most of their spherical underground utopia they call home.

But when a breach threatens to poison the occupants with toxic air, Connor is forced to make life-altering decisions in an attempt to save lives and his only home. With help from best friend and training partner, Vince Moore, he’s reminded that good leadership requires responsibility.

His struggle intensifies as everything he knows about the facility, the leaders, and himself becomes twisted, distorted, and turned into the unimaginable when his efforts exposes shocking secrets that threaten their future.

*A standalone in the Refuge Inc. series

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Review

 FiveStars

I have to say I didn’t even realize this story was in a series until I sat down to write my review. It was a very good stand alone story that didn’t feel like anything was left out without having read the other books in the series.
This is a world that is after Earth as we know it has been destroyed. I absolutely loved the world that the author created. It was believable and intriguing.
The relationship between the two main characters was touching. They had a romance that was exploitative in their youth, but stopped however, their friendship was able to continue to thrive until Connor can’t hold it in anymore. While I normally don’t care for the tease of two characters never actually getting down to the dirty.. this actually worked and I liked that they were so tentative with each other and taking each step deeper into their relationship.
The drama that we get from the story come from the facility itself and the leadership within. While I wouldn’t have minded more information about how things came to be the way they were, it wasn’t hard to go with the story as it was written. I thought it was extremely creative the way the ‘bad guys’ were handled.
In the end I want to go back and start with the first book since this story was so well written.
Renee

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THREE 4 Star Reviews for The Best of Both Worlds by Victoria Zagar #FF #Dystopian @LT3Press @landale

CoverTitle: The Best of Both Worlds
Author Name & Publisher: Victoria Zagar (Less Than Three Press)
Publication Date: July 13, 2016

Synopsis

Andrea Missanaugh lives on dystopian Earth’s exploration ship the HAND-5500. Lost in deep space and subjected to the monotony of survival under a regime that still holds the distant ship in its iron grip, Andrea has lost all hope of living a happy life and waits for her silent mental rebellion to be discovered and the inevitable death that will follow.

Then she’s whisked away from the HAND-5500 by two curious aliens from a planet called Evalaque: the President’s daughter, Ledieven, and her gentle partner in crime, doctor and scientist Jacq. Ledieven wants more than friendship, however, with Jacq and Andrea – something that is forbidden on Evalaque, where a fertility crisis has taken hold. Ledieven is one of the last fertile women on Evalaque and her mother will go to great lengths to press her into a socially acceptable marriage.

But Andrea’s done with settling for less.

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Review

FourStarsThis book left me with conflicted feelings when I finished. On one hand, we start out with a pretty typical dystopian story. The society in this sci-fi future is oppressive. There is no privacy, and some things point towards thought control, or at least monitoring. It began as a very Orwellian world, reminiscent in some ways of the book 1984. We have our heroine, Amanda, who subtly rebels against authority while trying to stay within the guidelines and not draw undue attention, but inevitably gains the focus she’s tried to escape. Into the story come two aliens, who whisk Amanda away to a life of freedom and love, with the both of them. Unfortunately the world they’ve come from has its own dystopian issues.  Their society is dying, and some have become fanatical about trying to save it at any cost. This fanaticism separates the lovers, and forces Amanda to return to her old ship, back in the hands of people she knows will torture and punish and probably execute her. She returns into the midst of a rebellion. Just as we think she’s won, everything gets turned on its head. This is where I finally get to the other hand. I keep trying to find a polite way to say mind (insert expletive), and I still haven’t come up with a way that conveys the idea in strong enough terms. And not only is it one for the readers, but poor Amanda is left questioning everything she’s thought, and felt. There are a lot of existential things to contemplate within Amanda’s dilemma, but unfortunately, she doesn’t have much time to figure things out. With things happening at such an accelerated pace, the ending comes quick and surprisingly enough, happy but with potential problems on the horizon. I’m still reeling from the big reveal, so I’m not sure I liked the book. It was, however, a quick read that engaged me from start to finish. There were things that could have been expanded and plumbed a bit more, or drawn out so it didn’t feel quite so rushed, but at the same time, the pacing is part of what makes the reader reel every bit as much as Amanda does.

Amy P
FourStars

The opening scenes give the impression of life reflecting all the proper-gander we might have elicited from what we have been told represented the evils some major political states conjoined  them all together to form the scenario of this book.
Our main character immediately makes us aware of her bravery and obvious intelligence while getting our complete sympathy by expressing her own desire for a perfect family.
The horrors and desolation she is facing are graphically told as well as the reader being made aware that the was between political dictatorships and out of control technology now represent what is normal for existence for life on earth.
Enter her salvation? On the onset she feels even the kindness and generosity offered by her rescuers and the reasons given for her being chosen appear to have restrictions. We are made aware that this race too has a caste system enforced even if it is one of kindness and concern for its citizens. Breeding is encouraged so it is left for the higher castes while if is the lower castes where homosexuality is perfectly acceptable.
The rest of this interesting novel shows the development  love and passion between the two women and one man and how what is important in a relationship is honestly, trust and respect.
I did enjoy this novel which was quite distinctive in its own way. My only lingering doubt was that if previously, only higher casts were encouraged to be heterosexual what happened to any gay offspring they may have given birth too?
Chris
FourStars
This piece is like a crazy cross between Star Trek and Battlestar Galactica (the newer one). There are twists up the wazoo in this plot and at times it’s as if I was saying to myself, there can’t be another one just as something new would happen.

I did struggle to read this at the beginning. I almost put it down and didn’t pick it back up, but I decided to give it one more try and I’m glad I did. The beginning of this piece was choppy and didn’t really make any sense to me and I felt no connection to Andrea. That changed about 20% of the way into the book.

I’d share more, but that would probably push this review toward spoilers. The book was good and kept me interested as soon as I got 20% into it. The writing was decent, although there probably could have been one more round of edits in there.

Overall a good read that I’ll probably be thinking about for a while.

AJ

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5 Star Review for Blood Lines by A.L. Bates #MM #Dystopian

BloodLines_600x956Title: Blood Lines
Author Name & Publisher: A.L. Bates (Wayward Ink Publishing)
Publication Date & Length: June 21, 2016 – 110 pgs

Synopsis

Mark Thomas owns his own “New York”-themed bar on an off-world colony.

Nate Fox is an ex-con gone straight.

He’s also Mark’s best friend and brother-in-law.

Mark has feelings for Nate. Nate has feelings for Mark.

But neither man is prepared to compromise their friendship or Mark’s relationship with Danny.

Blood Lines is a story about fidelity, trust, and respect. It’s a story about honesty and learning from mistakes.

And it’s a story about second chances.

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Review
FiveStars

This book is so full of mystery, adventure, action, unrequited love, fear, destruction, heartache, and death that you do not want to miss a sentence in fear of missing something important that is about to occur.

It is really a sad tell. Mark is married to Danny. Danny is a crook and has cheated on his husband so many times that it is sad. Danny has a brother, Nate and Nate is secretly in love with Mark who also happens to be his best friend.

Because of Danny and not being able to stay within the law, Danny brings down a series of events that will forever change Danny, Mark, and Nates lives. Nothing will ever be the same and time is running out for not only these three men but for everyone. If the virus is not contained, existence as they know it will be forever changed.

This was an amazing read. It is exciting from he first chapter all the way to the end. I would definitely recommend it to others. I look forward to reading more by A.L. Bates. Especially seeing as this is the first book I have by this author.

Tosha

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5 Star and 3 Star Reviews for Club Revenge (Dysfunction at its Finest #1) by J.M. Dabney #FF #Dystopian @JMDabney_author

CoverTitle: Club Revenge (Dysfunction at its Finest #1)
Author Name: J.M. Dabney
Publication Date & Length: May 12, 2016 – 195 pgs

Synopsis

A family forged in battle.

Amora Medina-Jackyl knew one thing well—vengeance. She’d inflicted pain without mercy to those who deserved the punishment. She’d lived by one motto her entire existence– family was to be protected above all else. An ancient cult murdered her parents and siblings when she was little more than a child. The Order of Angelus hadn’t understood the Hell they’d brought down on themselves that one brutal night.

Amora was many things in her four centuries. A daughter and a sister, a mother, yet she was best known as a killer. When she finally meets her end, Amora will have hundreds, maybe thousands of lives to answer for. Her only wish is to find one moment of peace. She denies her need as much as she fights to protect it. When the one woman who can bring her serenity comes into her life: can Amora destroy century old walls to let her in?

Lies and conspiracies tear at the fabric of sanity—of what’s right. Can truths come to light that change the reality of a family who’s known only the taste of revenge and loss?

Author’s Note: This is a previously published title. It was released as a two-part novel, it has been expanded and re-edited. This is a standalone novel.

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Review

FiveStars

This book blew me away. Fascinating story line incredible characters. This author has successfully made the unbelievable believable.
The author writes with such passion makes her characters feisty, yet lovable, scary yet tender.
As the impelling tale of revenge slowly reaches its explosive climax the reader continues to be unsure of the repercussions.
Along wit all the maelstrom and chaos runs a very heartwarming and ardent love story.
Ms Dabney introduces plenty of hot sex and passionate encounters but all are appropriate to the story line and not just introduced for the readers titillation.
A really enjoyable and captivating novel that I can thoroughly recommend.
I was also enthralled by the prologue, I will certainly be seeking out the next book in what looks like a blistering sequel.
Chris

ThreeStar

I liked the concept of this book, but the execution was a bit lacking. There seemed to be quite a few places where the transitions were choppy or jarring. It hurt the continuity of the story. The sex scenes were good but again, sometimes it felt like things were left out. I would say it seemed like it needed more editing and more revision. It just seemed a bit unfinished. That said, the story itself was interesting, and a good set up for the continuing story. In some ways, some of the characters were one-dimensional, although in others I do see a struggle to show more depth. It would be interesting to see how the series progresses, but I also feel the author’s style needs to mature more.

Amy P.

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4.5 Star Review for Sicario: A Novel (World’s End #3) by Kai Tyler #MM #Dystopian @kaitylerauthor

SicarioCover_600pwTitle: Sicario: A Novel (World’s End #3)
Author Name: Kai Tyler
Publication Date & Length: June 20, 2016

Synopsis

Sold by his parents and bred in a lab, Lexan Cesare is trained for one purpose—to execute his boss’s orders. In the mafia life, loyalty is everything. Emotions have no place and he never questions the rights or wrongs of the decisions that send him to terminate lives again and again. Until one assignment draws emotions he's never felt before and makes him question his true allegiance.

When a stranger walks into Enzo Mattia ranch in search of a job, his life is changed irrevocably. He is ripped apart from his family and everything he knows and ends up sold into slavery. He swears to mete revenge on all who have wronged him.

First he has to escape from his new owner, Lexan, a man who captivates him and makes him want to act on impulses he's suppressed for a long time. Impulses that can lead to death.

With corrupt lawmakers and deadly cartels, the world is in flux. Loyalties shift at the speed of a bullet and betrayal abounds. In the new world falling in love is just a death wish.

This is a full length male/male romantic thriller set on a dystopian earth.

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Review

FourandHalfStars

I have to say after reading the short story and novel that preceeded this novel, I was super excited to dive into this one. However, that being said, I think I would almost recommend skipping the short story that started this series. The fact that there were overlapping scenes and they didn’t seem to quite match up from the first to the third story (or maybe it’s simply how I remember them) made it harder to get into certain parts of the story.

BUT.. I did really enjoy this story and the way we got the before story, the history between the characters and what happened only to have it followed up with what happened to bring about the short story.

I really loved Lexan’s character. He had a hard life and was trying to do what he felt was right. Things didn’t work out perfectly. There were hardships that neither man saw coming and things that were hard to get over for both.

The story was wonderfully written and I thoroughly enjoyed it. However, I have to say that I didn’t particularly feel like it was Dystopian since the only real difference to the world was that everyone lived in the southern hemisphere, but life pretty much went on as normal except for a few very small changes.

I hope we get more from this series as it was very captivating and the characters were great to read about.

Renee

Excerpt

Dressed, I headed across to Enzo’s room. He opened the door for me and my mouth dropped open. He looked amazing in a white dress shirt and navy slacks. I’d never seen him in anything other than jeans, chambray or t-shirts. Instead of boots, he wore brown leather brogues.

He stared at me with an odd expression before saying, “You look good,” and turning away.

“Wow,” Gianna said, looking me over. “You scrub up well for a ranch hand.”

She wore a lovely emerald silk dress that was cut off across one shoulder and draped in an asymmetrical style beyond her knees. Strappy diamante sandals and her hair styled in a loose chignon completed the classy outfit.

“He sure does,” Enzo added, still giving me that look that made my heart thud faster.

“And there I was worried you wouldn’t have anything suitable to wear.” She beamed a smile at me, and then turned to her brother, holding up a maroon silk tie. “Come on, Enzo. The tie will go great with your suit. Tell him for me please, Alex.”

“No, I don’t need one. Alex isn’t wearing one and he looks great.” He turned away as if he hadn’t expected the words to come out as awestruck as they did.

My smile blossomed into a full grin. He really liked me in a suit then.

“I don’t need a tie. As you say I’m just the ranch hand.” I winked at Gianna. “But the tie will work well with your suit. Here let me help you.”

I walked over to Gianna and took the tie from her. “You look totally amazing,” I said and pressed a kiss to her cheek.

Then I strode over to where Enzo leaned against the table. “Trust me, you’ll look great.”

“Hmmm,” was all he said, but he let me come close enough to turn the collar of his shirt up.

I was conscious of Gianna behind us so I maintained a reasonable gap between us as I slid the silk around his neck. Each breath I took filled my lungs with his scent—man and spice—that transported me back to the night in the log cabin.

As I looped and knotted the tie, I couldn’t help brushing my fingers against his chin. His breath hitched. A smile played at the corner of my mouth. He’d shaved the skin smooth. I missed the bristles and wanted them rubbing against my skin.

“I can’t find my perfume in my purse,” Gianna called out from behind. "I’m going to pop back to my room and get it."

My body trembled, knowing I'd be alone with Enzo for a few minutes. I could feel the tension coming off his body too.

As soon as the door closed behind his sister, I couldn't keep away any longer. I leaned my body against his, making sure he felt the bulge of my erection on his thigh.

“I’ve missed you,” I whispered before brushing my lips on his.

He gripped my low pony tail, angled my head and devoured my mouth.

I groaned long and deep as I sank into him, loving his strength, loving the contact. My hands slid around his back as I gathered him into me so that we were as physically close as we could be with clothes on.

I don’t know what happens to me whenever this man touched me, but I felt as if this was where I should be.

A rattling noise at the door broke us apart when Enzo shoved me away.

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One 5 Star and One 4 Star Review for the Clan by Archer Kay Leah #Menage #SecondChances @LT3Press

CoverTitle: For the Clan
Author Name & Publisher: Archer Kay Leah (Less Than Three Press)
Publication Date & Length: May 25, 2016 – 228 pgs

Synopsis

Canada, 2165 AD. The Water Wars and a decimated economy have taken their toll. Anyone who doesn’t live in a military-patrolled metropolis lives in a clan. But being in a clan doesn’t mean safety.

And for a Ven like Roan Lee, it doesn’t matter where he lives. Safety is a luxury. So is freedom.

Roan is desperate to escape the governtary’s exploitation and torture. He is nothing to them but 54σK1, an artifact born from a genetic mishap. When the chance to escape arises, he makes a run for it—and encounters the lover from his past, twisting his future into a second chance he never expected.

As leaders of Clan Teach, Jace Ama and his wife, Cayra Diega, have enough difficulty keeping their people safe. When Roan is thrown to their feet as a prisoner, their marriage becomes an additional challenge. Jace still loves Roan, but where does that leave Cayra?

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Review

FiveStars
This is a book that I would be scribe to be about lost love, second chances, new beginnings, and new perspective.

Roan has a major chip on his shoulder about being Ven and the fact that he hates his magic does not help either. I think that if he and Jace would not have been split up at an early age when Roan was kidnapped by the government and made into a weapon then he would have embraced who was sooner and accepted that yes he may be somewhat different but it did not make him a monster not did it hinder him as a person.

Once he was reconnected with Jace the old Roan started to slowly come back but with reconnecting with Jace after his escape from the military both Jace and Roan was given a new beginning along with the very much added love of Cayra.

I believe that all three of these people was missing something in their lives and even if just two of them was together it was not complete. The three of them together made each other whole. They completed what holes was left in their relationship by coming together and loving each one equally.

But the three do not get their happily ever after without fighting for it. Even still they may lose one or all for standing up for their clan but if they do not stand and fight, they will never have their freedom and they will not all be together since the government is willing to do whatever it takes to get their machine (Roan) back. So it is a fight to live, to love, and have freedom.

This book was so much more interesting the. I thought it would be from the description and I thoroughly enjoyed it and I hope many more will also.

Tosha

FourStars

This was an interesting paranormal dystopian menage story. I really liked all three characters because they were all so different from each other and thought about and approached each situation in a bit of a different way.
While I would call this a menage story, it sort of wasn’t at the same time. We get to see the rekindling of the two men’s relationship while one is married and we get to see little bits and pieces of the blossom of a new female/male relationship. However, I felt like we didn’t really get to see that relationship grow the way I thought it should have for the way everyone came together so easily.
So while I thought the writing was quite good and the story was excellent, I really felt like the relationships, both new and old, were just too easy to come together in the end.
However, that being said, I do like drama and angst in my stories so this could totally be a personal thing.
Renee

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3 Stars for A Second Past Midnight by Rae Gee #MM #Dystopian @VeetuIndustries

asecondpastmidnight1400

Title: A Second Past Midnight
Author Name: Rae Gee
Publication Date & Length: April 22, 2015 – 87,900 Words

Synopsis

It had come like a thief in the night, an invisible force that had wiped out life as they had known it, sending them from 1981 back to 1881. The cause of The Pulse had remained a mystery and become the cause of speculation of fear. In a heartbeat, stock markets had crashed, power plants had shut down, and the land became poisoned by sewage, chemicals and, in some areas, radiation. If it had microchips in it, it was dead, finished beyond all repair. The anomaly which had wiped out their life had become known as The Pulse and the events following it had become known as The Crash.

Review

ThreeStar

I really enjoyed this story line. It really felt believable in all aspects even in today’s world. While I enjoyed watching the men and their developing relationship, I felt like maybe we were missing something about Flame.
I never could understand why Flame had such a horrible temper that he liked to take out on the one person who meant the most to him. It was consistent through out the book too which I really didn’t get. As James learns more and he grows, Flame stayed the same. While I understand that he was going through a lot at certain times, I still didn’t understand it.
I thought it interesting to see the differences as the boys traveled that once again felt quite realistic… Almost scarily so. Made me want to hide in fear of what our world would become if something like this ever did happen.
Did I believe people would become mindless zombies? Probably not. However, I can see that some would go crazy from it.
In the end, I felt like the book was a bit too drawn out with mundane events and situations that didn’t particularly add to the story to move it along. There was a lot of things covered in the men’s lives that slowed the plot and had me thinking of putting the book down more than a time or two (i.e. Christmas really didn’t seem important in the overall scheme of things). At other times, the important scenes just seems to feel like they were slow moving and took a long time to get through even though it was interesting and I wanted to know what happened it just felt like forever to get there.
Renee

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