The Good Fight (Time Served #3) by Julianna Keyes

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.

The Good Fight (Time Served #3) by Julianna Keyeson 2016-07-01
Pages: 216
AmazonB&N

I was born a fighter. You had to be, to survive in Camden. Lucky for me, I loved it. The thrill, the pain, the glory. Until one night things went too far and I almost lost my ticket out.

So I swore off fighting. Never again. No matter how much I wanted it.

I went to college. Got a degree. A job on Wall Street. Yet I still wasn't smart enough to stay away. So now I'm back. And it's just as bad as I remember.

Enter Dr. Susan Jones, superstar neurosurgeon. She's brilliant, she's sexy and she's a pain in my ass. I can't get enough and she's too busy for a relationship. She wants to hook up, get off, go home. She doesn't have time for a thug from Camden. But she keeps coming back.

This place brings out the worst in people. Every day it threatens the project I'm working on, the plans I'm making. Every day it drags me down just a little more, until the hands I vowed to keep clean start itching to get dirty.

If I don't start fighting for what I want, I'll wind up with nothing.

I didn't come back to Camden for nothing.

I came back to start something. And when people hurt the things I care about, the gloves come off.
three-stars

I was looking for that tension and angst from Undecided and I didn’t find it here. Still this author is a good writer because both characters were compelling protagonists. Oscar Hall uses boxing to cope with the tragedy that took his loved ones from him when he trip to the emergency road brought Dr. Susan Jones into this life. Susan Jones was a brilliant surgeon who needed someone to see past the mask she hid behind. This book was a process of emotional maturity for both characters.

I was really excited to read this book because I loved Undecided by this same author. Unfortunately, this one lacked the emotional depth and character building that I had expected. I loved Oscar “Oz” Hall because he was sweet, thoughtful and hardworking.

Dr. Susan Jones was a disconcerting character.
I had a hard time really understanding and being interested in her journey. She was emotionally detached from almost everything except her work ambitions. At first, I thought that perhaps Susan had Asperger’s Syndrome and thus she lacked the ability to connect with others. However, the author never really took the heroine’s narrative that way. Instead, the heroine was portrayed as someone who coped by shutting down emotionally.
Susan was almost inhuman and robotic even with her daughter and I couldn’t help feeling that Oz could do better. There was so many times he described her actions as “mechanical” that I couldn’t even enjoy their sex scenes.

The chemistry and attraction didn’t work for me so I had wished that either Oz would find someone else or that Susan’s ice princess veneer would melt. Susan thawed, but not early enough to engage me. But I did like that she forced Oz to work harder at everything. Susan kept him unbalanced and that was the key for Oz to find Oscar again. Had the author introduced Susan’s past might have made her more relate-able earlier. I also wanted to know more Jade and Rian. I hope they get their own HEAs soon.

*Special Thanks to the author for the e-arc given in exchange for an honest review.

Dual Review: Getting Him Back (Ethan & Wyatt #1) by K.A. Mitchell

 

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.

Getting Him BackGetting Him Back by K.A. Mitchell
Series: Ethan & Wyatt
Release Date: February 15, 2016
Pages: 133 • Format: eARC
Published By: Carina Press
Purchase Links:
Carina Press • AmazonB&N

An unexpected fresh start leads to an unlikely-but-absolutely-perfect pairing in this male/male new-adult novel from bestselling gay romance author K.A. Mitchell

Ethan may have followed his high school sweetheart to college only to get dumped his first day there, but he’s not going to let that stop him from exploring all his new life has to offer. Sex-only hookups, his photography, new friends and a campus-wide game of zombies vs humans all help keep his mind off his broken heart and move him toward building a new, better life without his ex.

And then there’s Wyatt. Mysterious, grouchy—hot. And possibly not gay. But Ethan’s not going to let that stand in the way of figuring out what makes Wyatt tick. New college goal? Get Wyatt into bed and into Ethan’s life.

Step one: arrange a “tutoring” date. Step two: “accidentally” bump into Wyatt as often as possible. Step three: explore the sexy body under that ever-present hoodie. And when their friendship deepens into something neither of them expect, convince Wyatt he’s not just a pity fling or a one-time hookup, but that Ethan is in it for the long haul.


Ezi and Sara have found a book they both agree on and decided to do a dual review because two is always better than one, right? See what the ladies thought of K.A. Mitchell’s New Adult Romance. 

four-half-stars

Ezi: It was independence time for Ethan Zachary Monroe and he was as stoked as kid in the candy store. Ethan was moving out of his parents’ home and into his dorm room at Coburn College. Now he can be with the love of his life, Blake, and away from the prying eyes of their families.

Except the Blake broke up Ethan upon his arrival. But Ethan resolved to get his man back and he just needs a little inside information to figure out his obstacles. Who better than to feed him information than Blake’s roommate, Wyatt Reese?

Sara: Meeting Ethan as he is beyond excited and anxious to finally get to college and back to his boyfriend Blake was bittersweet. As the blurb states, Ethan gets dumped his first day on campus and it was painful. Blake St. Pierre… ugh. Whatever dude I’m ashamed you are a fellow ginger, but you do have one hell of an interesting roommate named Wyatt Reese so I will forget you exist now. Kay? Thanks.

As Ethan begins to navigate college life and that of a newly but not happy single boy, he makes a few friends who only want the best for him. Makayla and her “I know people” connections cracked me up and her getting Ethan out of his dorm and to a party where way too much purple stuff is consumed sets the story in action.

So, Ethan goes to the party, gets drunk and does something stupid. BUT the something stupid puts him literally in the path of Wyatt who, scrambles the hell out of Ethan’s brain and emotions, but he has a plan to use Wyatt to get Blake back.

“Sorry. I don’t think I’ve got what you’re looking for.”

 

—well, let’s just say I didn’t agree about him not having what I was looking for. But it didn’t matter because I was in love with Blake.

 

Uh… You sure about that Ethan???

Ezi: Wyatt on the other hand decides that he wasn’t going to be used in Operation “Getting him Back”. Not when Wyatt finds Ethan attractive and wants him for himself.

Sara: Ethan asks Wyatt to tutor him in Calculus but Wyatt knows what he really wants and it’s not higher level math help.  But Ethan sees something in Wyatt that he can’t shake and can’t shake the dirty thoughts about the emo-ish dude who loves a good hoodie until he forces the issue on more levels than one.

Gah.  I loved Wyatt so much and while he shares the name of my youngest son, it wasn’t odd to read him because he’s adorable and prickly and just so… Wyatt.

The attraction between the boys is immediate and believable. You never know when you’ll meet that person that hits every one of your “I want” buttons even when you didn’t know you wanted them. That is what this is between Ethan and Wyatt and it was a pure joy to read.

I liked that Ethan grew from this love sick boy following his boyfriend to college to a young man who fiercely protected those he loved. He was amazing with Wyatt in every way and Wyatt in turn allows Ethan to be the man he needs to be.

Ezi: This novel was delightful. Ethan and Wyatt were charming characters and I found the story the author wove delightful.  It wasn’t overly dramatic and angst-filled. It was a sweet and simple college romance. At first, Ethan felt like a fluffy character. But he was just had a generous in spirit. Ethan had ample self-esteem and his capacity for acceptance was high. Wyatt, on the other hand, lacked self-worth and was afraid. Wyatt has been terrorized since he was a kid because he had different color eyes as a result of Waardenburg syndrome.

According to WikipediaWaardenburg syndrome is a rare genetic disorder most often characterized by varying degrees of deafness, minor defects includes Heterochromia (eyes of different colors) and patches of white pigmentation of skin etc.

So Wyatt learned to actively keep everyone at bay. But Ethan was just as persistent at breaking down barriers. I loved Ethan’s inner fortitude and at the same time longed to hug Wyatt.  While there were hugely emotional scenes, the author managed to make me feel a little sad for the characters and then the next minute, I was smile really wide.  

Sara: I have so many highlights from this book that I can’t decide what to use. This was a great New Adult novel with enough swoon worthy and melt your heart moments along with the great sex scenes. Oh boy, the sex… yeah, Mitchell knows how to connect your head, heart and libido and make you in the scene with these boys. You feel the intimacy and know, what they are doing is NOT just sex.

Ezi: I appreciate that the author didn’t give us a plot with manufactured conflicts and those stupid miscommunication plot twists. This story was so realistic that it could have been my freshman experience. The writing was straightforward that I was engrossed in what was happening there at Coburn College. I can’t wait for the next book.

Sara: Getting Him Back, wasn’t what I thought it would be going in and I am so damn thankful for that. I loved that there was depth and character and a real story that sometimes can get lost with the New Adult genre, but not here. I was sad when this story ended, I was so in love with Ethan and Wyatt but how can I complain about that Epilogue??? I made a silent squee, to not wake the sleeping husband next to me, when I turned the page and saw it. And then… and then there is more with these two? Another book??? Oh yeah! Please and thank you for that.

 

 &

Sara reading tag

About K.A. Mitchell

K.A. Mitchell discovered the magic of writing at an early age when she learned that a carefully crayoned note of apology sent to the kitchen in a toy truck would earn her a reprieve from banishment to her room. Her career as a spin-control artist was cut short when her family moved to a two-story house, and her trucks would not roll safely down the stairs. Around the same time, she decided that Chip and Ken made a much cuter couple than Ken and Barbie and was perplexed when invitations to play Barbie dropped off. She never stopped making stuff up, though, and was surprised to find out that people would pay her to do it. Although the men in her stories usually carry more emotional baggage than even LAX can lose in a year, she guarantees they always find their sexy way to a happy ending.

Status Update (Gaymers #1) by Annabeth Albert

Status Update (Gaymers #1) by Annabeth Alberton 2015-12-07
Pages: 195
(Website, Blog, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads)
Adrian Gottlieb is winning at life. He's a successful video game designer with everything a man could ask for, including a warm comfy ride to Denver and a date for his sister's wedding. But he finds himself in need of a total reboot when he's left stranded at a snowy campground in Utah. Holiday plans? Epic fail.That is until Noah Walters offers him shelter for the night and a reluctant cross-country ride. Nothing about the ultraconservative geoarchaeologist should attract Adrian, but once he discovers Noah's hidden love for video games, the two connect on a new level. Soon, a quiet but undeniable chemistry sparks.Something doesn't add up, though. As the miles accumulate and time runs out, Noah must face the most difficult choice of his life. Meanwhile, Adrian must decide whether he's ready to level up. Is their relationship status worth fighting for, or has this game ended before it's even begun?Book 1 of the #gaymers series64,000 words
four-half-stars

Honestly Tamika!!! You should have never had reservations about Annabeth Albert. Sure you didn’t like Treble Maker, it just wasn’t for you! This one though was definitely for me! I hope that book two continues on with them! Please, I want to see Noah & Adrian with babies and dogs living harmoniously together and eating healthy using multiple crock pots!

I really like the writing style! I loved at the beginning my silly self thought Ulysses was a person instead of a dog. LOL. Don’t worry, I went back to re-read it again. I liked that these two were the complete opposite in every way. I didn’t know if I was going to like Noah. The whole older guy, virgin closeted man gets done alot. Some of it’s good, some of it’s bit bad, and some of it has heavily religious tones that I internally cringe. With these guys I always want shake them, and say “God won’t judge you though”! Why can’t they just see that their parents are not GOD!!!! ARGH, that’s another rant that I don’t have time for. Noah surprised me, with all his misgivings about his sexuality and religion he took his time. I was happy with the pacing that A.A. decided to do when Noah had his “Come to Jesus moment”!

Adrian, Adrian, Adrian! I really liked him. He definitely had his own moments of truth that I appreciated. Adrian had to figure out what he wanted. This was a really good road trip, and both guys were so hot together. The last 25% was so freaking good. I didn’t want it to end at all. I think the author did a marvelous job with this story. I can’t wait for book 2.

About Annabeth Albert

Annabeth Albert grew up sneaking romance novels under the bed covers. Now, she devours all subgenres of romance out in the open—no flashlights required! When she’s not adding to her keeper shelf, she’s a multi-published Pacific Northwest romance writer.

Emotionally complex, sexy, and funny stories are her favorites both to read and to write. Annabeth loves finding happy endings for a variety of pairings and is a passionate gay rights supporter. In between searching out dark heroes to redeem, she works a rewarding day job and wrangles two children.