Bombs and Guacamole by BA Tortuga

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

BombsandGuacamoleLGBombs and Guacamole by BA Tortuga
Series: Border Crossing Series
Release Date: May 6, 2016
Pages: 214 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazonARe

ER doctor Dusty Lowry grew up in a conservative rural Texas family that has never quite forgiven him for staying in New Mexico after his stint in the Army. Paramedic Nate Miller, Dusty’s best friend since their early Army days, has a hippie momma, a tiny apartment, and is in lust with his buddy. When their other Army friend, Kyle, gets married, they start thinking about settling down. In fact, they both know what they want: each other. Too bad they’ve never shared that goofy little fact.

A trip to visit Dusty’s family in Texas changes everything, and Dusty and Nate aren’t sure where to go from there. Good thing they’re smart guys, and between a series of bombings that target first responders, their friend Kyle’s wife getting pregnant, and more than one bowl of guacamole, they begin to figure out how to have a relationship.

But as the bombings get closer to home, Nate and Dusty must navigate love and commitment before they lose their chance.

DNF @22%

I’m sorry but I’m taking a much needed break from this author. I think I’ve done well with my reading by this author thus far. I’ve loved two books by her tremendously and that blind faith is what keeps be requesting her books. I can’t in good conscience read anymore. I think I’ll just remember Say Something and The Articles of Release as my favorites and those will have to suffice.

I won’t ever disparage her by being mad by her characters. I’m just tired of the same formula. It’s cowboys, southern states, that damn dialogue with choppy sentences and disjointed meaning. Levis, boots, food, friends to lovers and good Lord coke cola. I’m a Pepsi girl so sorry. For me I feel like I’m reading the same exact story with different covers, titles, and character names. It’s always a friends to lovers trope, and the most menial miscommunication ever. I don’t understand if these guys are suppose to be friends and have this great history of being in the army together why they couldn’t confide in each other. It makes no sense especially when they know so much of other stuff. Yeah I know I can’t make anyone come out the closet, but I feel like Dusty & Nate friendship and loyalty to each other was the exception. I couldn’t put up with more of the twang or writing so I had to bow out. I can’t recommend this book at all.

About BA Tortuga

Texan to the bone and an unrepentant Daddy’s Girl, BA Tortuga spends her days with her basset hounds and her beloved wife, texting her sisters, and eating Mexican food. When she’s not doing that, she’s writing. She spends her days off watching rodeo, knitting and surfing Pinterest in the name of research. BA’s personal saviors include her wife, Julia Talbot, her best friend, Sean Michael, and coffee. Lots of coffee. Really good coffee.

Having written everything from fist-fighting rednecks to hard-core cowboys to werewolves, BA does her damnedest to tell the stories of her heart, which was raised in Northeast Texas, but has heard the call of the high desert and lives in the Sandias. With books ranging from hard-hitting GLBT romance, to fiery menages, to the most traditional of love stories, BA refuses to be pigeon-holed by anyone but the voices in her head.

Old Town New by BA Tortuga

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

OldTownNewLGOld Town New by BA Tortuga
Release Date: April 20, 2016
Pages: • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazonARe

3rd Edition

Danny Avers is a teacher in small town Colorado. Back in the day, before high-speed Internet, social media, smartphones, or streaming anything, Danny’s just trying to live down his wild teenage years and carry on the only way he knows how: one day at a time. The last person he expects to see back in town is Harlan Quinn, his old best friend and former consummate bad boy. And when he finds out Quinn is the new sheriff and his new neighbor, it’s even more of a shock.

Quinn knows there’s more to his old hometown than meets the eye. There’s more to Danny than old memories and quiet living too. But as in the past, stirring things up is Quinn’s specialty, and he sets out to do that, in more ways than one, pushing Danny to admit there’s more to life and that their old town just might manage to be new again. That’s if old town thinking doesn’t get them both killed.

First Edition published by Torquere Press, 2006.
Second Edition published by Torquere Press, 2007.

two-half-stars

Okay I find myself needing to read B.A. Tortuga books after reading and loving The Terms of Release. To date it is my favorite book by her. This book left so much to be desired.

I liked it for the first 23% maybe, loved the second chance love trope. Quinn coming back home to be sheriff and rekindling his relationship with Danny had good potential. I’ve got several issues with the story though. I have hard time connecting with either guy. There isn’t enough information on each of them to try to get a good read on them. They barely question about the last 17 years spent apart. It’s little information that’s told, but not enough for me to accept them just starting up. Another issue was the freaking dialogue. It was super choppy and disjointed. I couldn’t follow along with the conversation between people in this book. I felt like it was an editing problem, but no that wasn’t it. It was one word responses, and diving into entire conversations without the finishing of the last one. It was frustrating to say the least. The sex was something I skimmed over. It was alot, and it took the place of the potential plot that could have been there.

I didn’t get the plot at the beginning. It was little snippets before it was revealed. I felt like it should have been a prologue then so we could get the entire background on why Quinn accepted the job and decided to move back. Sadly this book didn’t work for me. I really wanted it to because I loved The Terms of Release and Say Something. This book just didn’t work, the repetitive words, the underdevelopment of the characters and plot, and the continuous sex was to much. I’m sorry but I just can’t recommend this book.

About BA Tortuga

Texan to the bone and an unrepentant Daddy’s Girl, BA Tortuga spends her days with her basset hounds and her beloved wife, texting her sisters, and eating Mexican food. When she’s not doing that, she’s writing. She spends her days off watching rodeo, knitting and surfing Pinterest in the name of research. BA’s personal saviors include her wife, Julia Talbot, her best friend, Sean Michael, and coffee. Lots of coffee. Really good coffee.

Having written everything from fist-fighting rednecks to hard-core cowboys to werewolves, BA does her damnedest to tell the stories of her heart, which was raised in Northeast Texas, but has heard the call of the high desert and lives in the Sandias. With books ranging from hard-hitting GLBT romance, to fiery menages, to the most traditional of love stories, BA refuses to be pigeon-holed by anyone but the voices in her head.

Trial by Fire by B.A. Tortuga

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

TrialByFireLGTrial by Fire by B.A. Tortuga 
Series: Dreamspun Desires
Release Date: March 15, 2016
Pages: 228 Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazon ARe

One Aussie. One Texan. One baby. One hell of a fight.

When his sister and her husband are killed in an accident, Aussie cattle station owner Lachlan McCoughney rushes to Texas to rescue their infant daughter, Chloe. He expects to find his niece living in squalor with the Sheffields, a rodeo family.

Instead, Lachlan finds Holden Sheffield, a salt-of-the-earth cowboy running a huge business operation. They want to explore their mutual attraction despite the many problems thrown their way, and together, they must find a way to give Chloe a new family and find a love that spans thousands of acres and two continents.

four-stars

I reckon I should tell y’all how sweet this story is and it was. So sit back and lend this ginger your ear for spell.

I am not going to go into great detail with my review on this book. I am a firm believer that telling you what happens in the book, things that made me surprised should be left to each individual reader so I am gonna hit a few points and let sleeping babies lie in the arms of adorable, rugged and sexy cowboys. You ready? You best get your aww faces on…

When Holden’s twin brother Landon and sister in law Addie die in a plane crash, Holden becomes the one to care for his niece Chloe being left guardianship over the little baby.  But as much as Holden loves his niece,  he is a bit in over his head with running his cattle business,  taking care of a baby, dealing with his aging parents and then a fast talking Aussie comes into the picture with a punch or um,  yeah.

Lachlan, said Aussie, has been searching for his sister Adelaide who ran away from the oppression that comes with the family business only to be met with bad news. She died in a plane crash with her husband, leaving behind one baby girl. When Lachlan arrives in Texas determined to meet his niece and take her back with him, he realizes this family he judged on reputation alone, might not be the worst place for Chloe.

No one knew how he felt but this man right here.

Now, I know I said to get your aww faces on, which is true but this was also a bittersweet story when you remember the catalyst that has brought Holden and Lachlan together with Chloe between them. There is loss here, for both men and both families and that loss, it’s presented in a lovely way that allows the reader to feel and also heal.

This is a story about family and a story about doing what’s best for the greater good and that good is baby Chloe. I loved how she was front and center for the story and how much love she draws to her. Holden is a great daddy, he will move the world for his niece and make sure he does everything in his power to do right by her late parents, even if that means pushing away her relatives from the Land of Oz.  And then you have Lachlan who has come to Texas, determined that Miss Chloe needs to be with her mother’s family, that they have lost so much of Addie already, they cannot miss out on being a part of her daughter’s life.

The men have a rough beginning with one another and yet they are able to put that all behind then and focus as much on the now but not letting go of the past that has brought them together. During a argumentative family moment,  a storm hits that leads to an acknowledged shared grief, where a small touch ignites more than either man know was there and sets the barn on fire… Mmm Hmm. But then, you know things happen and regardless of guilt or innocence, these two cowboys are put to a painful task that makes them lean on each other in more ways than one.

Trial by Fire, or as I like to call it, two cowboys and a baby, was a sweet, steady and yet wild ride that teaches you about second chances and the true meaning of family. Get your aww faces read to watch an Aussie and a Yank fall head over spurs for a tiny baby girl as they fall into each other’s arms.

“Do you think it’ll ever be less odd? Life, I mean.”

“I think we’ll find a new normal.”

 

 

About BA Tortuga

Texan to the bone and an unrepentant Daddy’s Girl, BA Tortuga spends her days with her basset hounds and her beloved wife, texting her sisters, and eating Mexican food. When she’s not doing that, she’s writing. She spends her days off watching rodeo, knitting and surfing Pinterest in the name of research. BA’s personal saviors include her wife, Julia Talbot, her best friend, Sean Michael, and coffee. Lots of coffee. Really good coffee.

Having written everything from fist-fighting rednecks to hard-core cowboys to werewolves, BA does her damnedest to tell the stories of her heart, which was raised in Northeast Texas, but has heard the call of the high desert and lives in the Sandias. With books ranging from hard-hitting GLBT romance, to fiery menages, to the most traditional of love stories, BA refuses to be pigeon-holed by anyone but the voices in her head.

Guest Post: B.A Tortuga

Oh My Shelves welcomes author BA Tortuga to the blog to talk about her new book Trial by Fire in the Dreamspun Desires Series, releasing tomorrow  – March 15, 2016 – and *sigh* cowboys and babies. 

******

Cowboys and Babies

 

Hey, y’all! I’m BA Tortuga, resident redneck and lover of all things Western.

So, my wife tells me that cowboys and babies may not seem like they go together, but I’m here to tell you, it’s a thing. The only thing a cowboy loves more than his babies is the Good Lord himself, at least in my experience. Trust me, I have 39 nieces and nephews.

39.

That is not a typo.

So when Holden showed up in my brain and informed me that he came complete with Chloe, his twin’s infant, I just went with it. You see, there are a few ways to tell how good a man is, and one of those is to see how he treats the ones that need him most. Holden is a good man.

Here, I’ll let y’all meet him:

Lachlan’s hat sailed out the door, Daddy right there with him.

To his credit, the dickhead didn’t sputter and threaten. He rose and grabbed his hat before limping to a big rental pickup in the yard, not even startling Pepper, who was still ground tied out there.

That didn’t bode well. Lachlan seemed like a damned determined man, and Holden knew full well this was far from over.

Still, it was over now, and sometimes that was the best a man could get.

It was like anything else in life, he guessed, you got the shit with the sunshine. Right now there was a wee bundle of sunshine upstairs waiting for him, and he intended to go see her.

“What the hell was that, Holden?” Ropers Norman and Ben came trotting up, with a metric fuckton of other cowboys following up slower.

“Says he was Addie’s brother. Don’t know about that. He was making threats and shit.”

“Miz Sheffield had a brother?” Ben scratched his head. “Never heard her say so.”

“Landon said she had folks back in Oz, but they didn’t get along.” That was Deacon, who had been Addie’s staunchest friend from the get-go.

“Well, y’all keep an eye out. He wants our Chloe.” The cowboys would help protect the ladies of the house, for sure.

Everyone, down to a man, scowled, but it was Crazy who spoke. “Ain’t no one hurting my baby girl. You got my word, Holden.”

“I appreciate it, Crazy, I do.”

There was a chorus of agreement before the boys drifted back to work. Daddy stepped out on the porch, those tired eyes missing nothing. “That feller ain’t gonna give up.”

“No, sir. I reckon he won’t.”

“We’ll have to powwow on it tonight.” Daddy spat off the porch. “Might as well get back to work.”

“Yeah. Give me two shakes of a dead lamb’s tail. I need to see….”

Momma came out with wee Chloe in her arms, and Holden moved straight over to them.

“Well, now, who is the sweetest baby girl I’ve ever known?”

He got a grin, Miss Chloe kicking and squealing to get to him.

His momma just shook her head. “She knows who she’s got wrapped around her finger, don’t she?”

“Yes, ma’am. You okay, Momma?”

“Right as rain. Nice bit of ass kicking, by the by.”

“Thanks.” His cheeks heated, and he lifted Chloe into his arms before pressing his cheek to the top of her downy head. “No one threatens my girl.”

Grins.

See? A good cowboy. A good man.

Much love, y’all.

BA


TrialByFireLGTrial by Fire by B.A. Tortuga 
Series: Dreamspun Desires
Release Date: March 15, 2016
Pages: 228 
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazon ARe


 

 

About BA Tortuga

Texan to the bone and an unrepentant Daddy’s Girl, BA Tortuga spends her days with her basset hounds and her beloved wife, texting her sisters, and eating Mexican food. When she’s not doing that, she’s writing. She spends her days off watching rodeo, knitting and surfing Pinterest in the name of research. BA’s personal saviors include her wife, Julia Talbot, her best friend, Sean Michael, and coffee. Lots of coffee. Really good coffee.

Having written everything from fist-fighting rednecks to hard-core cowboys to werewolves, BA does her damnedest to tell the stories of her heart, which was raised in Northeast Texas, but has heard the call of the high desert and lives in the Sandias. With books ranging from hard-hitting GLBT romance, to fiery menages, to the most traditional of love stories, BA refuses to be pigeon-holed by anyone but the voices in her head.

Refired by B.A. Tortuga

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Refired by B.RefiredLGA. Tortuga
Release Date: January 18, 2015
Pages: 220 • Published by: Dreamspinner Press  • Format: eARC
Purchase Links: Dreamspinner Press •  Amazon •  ARe

When Kris Cerny walks back into Two Spirits, the art gallery he owns with Josh McPhee, all he wants is a clean break. Austin’s booming real estate market means the building he bought years ago is worth a fortune, and with the sale, he and Josh can finally go their separate ways. They won’t be reconciling, right? Josh may be sober now, but an addict is always going to be an addict, and Kris can’t take that chance again.

Josh isn’t willing to sell. Not yet. He’s discovered a new artist in Santa Fe he knows will put Two Spirits in the black, and if he can just make a success of the gallery, maybe he can earn Kris’s respect, if not recapture his love. He needs Kris to give him time for one more buying trip, one more gallery show. Josh wants nothing more than a final chance to make things right. Kris agrees to let Josh have this last ditch effort on one condition– he wants to go along for the ride. On the way Josh hopes they’ll find the next big thing in the art world as well as peace, forgiveness, and a love he thought was lost forever.

 

three-half-stars

 

How many times did you have a last time when you knew that’s what it was? 

 

I am a sucker for second chance romance and this book simply worked for me.

Josh and Kris, they were lovers once and are business partners still, but are they friends? Can they be friends or even more once again?

That is just one question that comes up in the first few times of this book.

Told in the dual POV’s of Kris and Josh, we begin to see how this relationship worked and how it all fell apart. We know that Josh is an alcoholic now on his fifth year of sobriety but will that ever be enough for Kris? Will he ever be able to look at Josh in a new way and not wait for that moment when he falls off the wagon? Can Kris forget his past and move forward with a sober Josh?

 

He didn’t know what to say. I’m sorry? I suck? I love you? You suck?

 

Good lord. The quiet tension and UST in the first few chapters of this just burned me. I love a good slow burn romance and these two burn, then ignite and even though they have a history there is the newness and the yet contentment of knowing someone for so many years but the what if?

What. If.

It felt familiar and brand-new, all at once. As if he’d fallen back in time…

So, Kris and Josh are business partners who own an art gallery together but Kris wants to sell it and Josh can’t bear to have it sold. Josh is determined to make something of the gallery and find the next big artist and that artist is a road trip away… did someone say road trip? Ahh yeah. These two are taking a trip, together and the passion, the love and the emotions they try to hide bubble up to the surface when they are alone together. Le Sigh. Alone and just fooling themselves that they don’t care, that they don’t want or that they can’t have more… but once again, can they?

This trip was for him and Josh. The rest was just details.

Now you can say things move fast for Josh and Kris but you have to remember; they were once a couple and they are kinda on this journey together where they have no real responsibility and they can pretend. Pretend that the hurt never happened and everything is okay but to do that and move forward, they need to talk about the past.

Ugh. I felt for both men throughout this book. I hurt for Josh trying so hard to do what’s right to stay sober and trying to get back the love he lost with Kris and yet, I got Kris too. See, it’s really hard to trust someone after they have abused it. Either with addiction or what have you and when you love that person, are IN love with that person, it hurts to try. That trust, you want it to be there, you want to believe but OMFG what if they slip and become human and you are back where you started? Addiction is not black and white for either parties involved. There is this massive gray area where addicts can live where honestly taking it one day, one hour at a time to not give in to the demon that are running from and that person they love and love them, that person lives in the gray area of do I keep trying or do I give in and walk away.  You can look at an addict and the person they are in a relationship and cast stones but until you have walked in their shoes, until you have been in that exact position, on either side, it’s not your place to judge. Period. End of.

*hops off soapbox*

Now while this was an interesting story that I did like, there were a few things that bugged me and it was just me. We know they met in college and that Josh has been sober for five years but how long were they together? It never really said  though in the last 20% we get a few details of their age etc. when a secret is revealed. Um… these men almost creamed they pants numerous times and used words like yummy in reference to food and everyone said “Rock on” and such. It just stuck out as odd while reading it but I pushed passed and kept going because I could murder for their HEA. Um, was that the right words? They said that a lot too, “I could murder for a xyz…” Hmm.

Love complicated things way too much.

Refired was a enjoyable second chance romance between two men who really needed to talk before they got it on but emotions aren’t rational and neither is love. Josh and Kris were super sexy with the want of one another and you could feel the emotional pull the men fought but so desperately wanted to give into. I loved the inclusion of art in the book and the artists involved were a nice touch, especially with the prologue and epilogue.  I would love Cy and Lonan’s story! Just saying.

At the end of it all, this was a nice read from a new to me authors whose books I will definitely check out again.

About BA Tortuga

Texan to the bone and an unrepentant Daddy’s Girl, BA Tortuga spends her days with her basset hounds and her beloved wife, texting her sisters, and eating Mexican food. When she’s not doing that, she’s writing. She spends her days off watching rodeo, knitting and surfing Pinterest in the name of research. BA’s personal saviors include her wife, Julia Talbot, her best friend, Sean Michael, and coffee. Lots of coffee. Really good coffee.

Having written everything from fist-fighting rednecks to hard-core cowboys to werewolves, BA does her damnedest to tell the stories of her heart, which was raised in Northeast Texas, but has heard the call of the high desert and lives in the Sandias. With books ranging from hard-hitting GLBT romance, to fiery menages, to the most traditional of love stories, BA refuses to be pigeon-holed by anyone but the voices in her head.