The Long and Winding Road by TJ Klune

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 Long and Winding Road: by T.J. Klune
Series: Bear, Otter and the Kid #4
Release Date: August 11th, 2017
Pages: 346 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazon

Family is not always defined by blood. It’s defined by those who make us whole—those who make us who we are.

And here, at the end, Bear and Otter will be tested like they’ve never been before.

There’s a knock at the door from a little girl who has nowhere else to go.

There’s a phone ringing, bringing news they do not expect.

There’s a brother returning home after learning how to stand on his own.

As these moments converge, all of their lives will change forever.

Beginning in Bear, Otter, and the Kid, and continuing in Who We Are and The Art of Breathing, TJ Klune has told a saga of family and brotherhood, of love and sacrifice. In this final chapter, the events of the past pave the long and winding road toward a future no one could have imagined.

five-stars

 

 

Its been 2 days since finishing this book, and I’m trying to figure out how to conjure Otter out of this alternate universe. With no luck, or help it isn’t happening. I’m a huge fan of Klune, and everyone knows I like his more serious books without the comedy. I enjoy the comedy don’t get me wrong, but the realistic fiction calls to my soul more. When I first laid eyes on this series, I stayed away! Yikes the cover was HIDEOUS for book one. I don’t even recall what I first thought about it. My very first read was Into This River I Drowned and it destroyed me. It broke me into a billions pieces, and I had to reconsider on what covers mean to me. At this point, 2 books in the series were out and three was a few months out. I decided to give it a chance, and its the best thing I’ve ever had to do. Falling in love with this family felt so right. Falling in love with Otter felt so normal Crying, and laughing felt like home. I just re-read the first 3 books leading up to me reading this. Its a series that I know I can’t re-read often for fear of losing that spark that I felt the very first time. I won’t go on and long with poetry about how amazing Klune is. After all he gave me Otter, Gus & Ox. His characters are real, flawed, amazing, and seep so deep down inside you, that you can’t help but to love them.

Reading this book was hard because as much as I loved it, seeing me get close to the 100% was way harder. It was emotional, it was funny, and it made me feel melancholy for a while. Unlike most, I’m happy with the end of this series. I love where they are at. I feel like Bear & Kid have finally found peace and I’m happy with everything they’ve had to go through to get where they are. No part of this journey has been easy. If I could have had any of the support in my life that these two have had, then I’d be happy and content.

The Long and Winding Road is broken up into 3 different parts. Each part literally tears me down. I might love the future part, but the past part definitely affected me more. Seeing the Kid’s situation was so devastating, but it was brilliantly done. It was honest, and truthful. No easy fix, no rainbows or sprinkles. Really gritty, and something that needed to be approached. Love that the overall message is about family. Whether it comes from blood relatives, or people you’ve woven together it only matters that you love one another and look out for the people who’ve always mattered.

Its bittersweet saying goodbye, but I thank T.J. for welcoming these people in my life for the betterment of it. I can peacefully say goodbye to Bear, Otter, Kid, Dominic, Mrs. Paquinn, Creed, Anna and the Rents! I can say goodbye to the future Thompson’s and Millers. I can say goodbye to the earthquakes, laughter, and that little patch of beach. It might not be really goodbye for me, but I’m happy with the ending. So thank you T.J. I totally loved this book and Otter ever more!

signature-fonts

About TJ Klune

When TJ Klune was eight, he picked up a pen and paper and began to write his first story (which turned out to be his own sweeping epic version of the video game Super Metroid—he didn’t think the game ended very well and wanted to offer his own take on it. He never heard back from the video game company, much to his chagrin). Now, two decades later, the cast of characters in his head have only gotten louder, wondering why he has to go to work as a claims examiner for an insurance company during the day when he could just stay home and write.

He lives with a neurotic cat in the middle of the Sonoran Desert. It’s hot there, but he doesn’t mind. He dreams about one day standing at Stonehenge, just so he can say he did.

The Layover by Roe Horvat

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 Layover: by Roe Horvat
Release Date: July 19th, 2017
Pages: 104 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazon

Eight years ago, Ondro Smrek fled Slovakia and the bigotry that drove his first lover to take his own life. The demons proved impossible to outrun, though, and now, desperate for somewhere to belong, Ondro is returning to start over. During a layover in Basel, Switzerland, he meets Jamie, an American living in Scotland who is as brilliant as he is beautiful.

Jaded Ondro never would have guessed he could fall in love during a brief layover—until now. When he is put in a position to offer Jamie comfort without hope of recompense, Ondro doesn’t hesitate. Soon, he catches a glimpse of the home he longs for. But with their separation looming, confessing his feelings would only lead to pain and humiliation. Life has taught Ondro not to hope, but then, he never believed in love at first sight either….

 

four-half-stars

 

Stop. Whatever you are doing stop and go grab this book.

New Author Alert!!!! Roe Horvat is a bloody good writer.

We all know I’m a fickle reader. I’m loyal to my authors to a fault, even when they are write less then my expectations. Sadly, I’ve had a few of those happen in the last year and its only 2 authors at the #1 stop. Stop distracting me. Last year I read a book by a new author on the recommendation by Josh Lanyon, and loved it. If you haven’t picked up Dal Maclean’s Bitter Legacy then you’ve been sleeping under a damn rock or just stupid. Either option is fine with me. What I’m trying to state is this author came out of nowhere with a big recommendation by a really big named author in the genre for support, and her work was brilliant. When I requested this book I had no idea what I was getting. I had no idea what to expect, and honestly I was dreading reading it. I had all these thoughts in my head about how bad it would be. Well color me surprised when it was the EXACT opposites of those thoughts. It was beautiful, endearing, inspiring, and lovely. It was about pain, fear, real life and love. It was eloquent and I wish it would have been a full length novel. I mean you can’t give me this scrumptious morsel, and cut me off. I need more woman. Roe Horvat came so left field for me, that I was gobsmacked at how much I would like this book. I literally just finished and haven’t reviewed a book  in 2 weeks, and this got me back on the horse so pleasantly.

The first thing that I realized that I love was the setting. I don’t read too many books in this part of the world. I enjoyed the authenticity feeling  I get while reading this. I can close my eyes and picture parts of the book. I really liked the cultural difference that each guy has. Its easy to fall for someone in a similar situation, but from a different walk of life is hard. Its hard to compromise, to explain, to enjoy, and to try to mend worlds. Trust me, I’m married to an Irish man who morals & values are just as important as my African American Baptist roots. Its hard, its invigorating, and scary. 

I don’t know which character I’ve enjoyed more Ondro or Jamie. Both were really good, and I’m going to beg the author for another update with these two. 128 days later wasn’t enough. I’d like to see them 529 days later or more & more. Ondro, poor sweet Ondro. He’s kind, cynical, fearful and brave. He’s from Slovakia, a place that isn’t kind to him based on his sexuality. Not on the place but his family. Leaving at 22 was the one way that he thought he would gain some semblance of happiness. Years later he realizes that running has done nothing but let me win. Running has not helped in his love life, and some part of him wants to come to terms with his past there. Jamie is the sweetest ever. He’s fiery once meeting him, and I thought his stands & values were so endearing. Ending up together longer then their expected layover wasn’t in their plans but they made due with it. I don’t want to go to much into the plot, but I got this feeling while reading this book. It wasn’t about the physical aspect of the book, but all the emotions, tears, fears and hope. My favorite trope ever, realistic fiction is the best. The circumstances that they both go through can be someone you know, love, spouse, brother, father, or friend. Right now I feel like I’m rambling because I can’t put in words what made this book magical. It just felt raw, it felt real. It felt like people still have morals, dreams, and people don’t know the difference between lonesome or lonely. 

I’m going to end my review now, and say just buy the book. I’m looking forward to more writing from this author. If you want to try a new author, with a brilliant love story then try this. Try this for love, try this for Ondro & Jamie. Highly recommended!

signature-fonts

About Roe Horvat

Queer fiction author Roe Horvat was born in the post-communist wasteland of former Czechoslovakia. Equipped with a dark sense of sarcasm, Roe traveled Europe and finally settled in Sweden. They love Jane Austen, Douglas Adams, and daiquiri, with equal passion. When not hiding in the studio doing graphics, Roe can be found trolling cafés in Gothenburg, writing, and people-watching.

Mascara & Bandages by Brandon Witt

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.

Mascara & Bandages: by Brandon Witt
Series: Mary’s Boys #3
Release Date: July 12th, 2017
Pages: 121 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazon

Ariel Merman is a new drag queen who’s already finding a family at Hamburger Mary’s. After a performance as Ariel, Zachary Cooper walks home in his makeup and is assaulted by homophobes. Zachary’s worry that the attack has thrown a wrench in his good fortune is eased when he looks into the eyes of his doctor.

Dr. Teegan Chau is a little lost after divorcing his wife and coming out of the closet, but he can’t deny the pull he feels toward the young man he patches up. Luckily, Zachary takes the initiative and asks Teegan out. But attraction is the easy part of their blossoming relationship—as they deal with an ex-wife and child, being a drag queen in a heteronormative culture, Zachary’s lingering trauma from his attack, and Teegan acclimating to life as part of an out-and-proud gay couple.

The challenges seem daunting at the start of a romance. Can Zachary and Teegan make it through the rough patches and take a chance on the love that’s been missing from both their lives?

three-half-stars

Left wanting more. That is my initial thought after reading this. I didn’t feel like it was finished at all. Felt like it left off in the middle of the story except it ended. I enjoyed this a little bit more then book 2 in the series. It starts off with a brutal attack. Both guys kinda deal with heavy life choices in this book. I do enjoy reading Witt’s writing because I always get the most vulnerable and realistic feelings while reading his work. I love that he puts so much emotion into his writing and character development. My only downfall is that this book ended about 50 pages to short.

Zachary is alone. He’s young, both parents are gone, and his own redemption is being Ariel Merman. While being Ariel Merman, Zachary’s insecurities and self-esteem is completely gone. He doesn’t have to think of his life, he doesn’t have to think of his future, he just has to let Ariel take over and enjoy it for the time being. He’s attacked and its left all his doubts, fears and insecurities come swimming to the surface. The only plus is meeting Dr. Teegan Chau. He’s a gay man, but not out and proud. Instead he’s swimming through murky waters since coming out to the people that matter a few years ago. The plus side is a boulder is lifted off his shoulders. He can live his truths and care for the people most important in his life.

I did like the two of them together. It was nice to see the relationship grown on page. I liked the nervous energy that each guy had. It is super new for the both of them, and I liked the realness of it. I could see these two being something in the future. I think with each other’s personality they work well together.

Its really no surprise that I liked this story. I do enjoy Witt’s writing alot. I love the series and can’t wait for more. I think if you love reading about real problems, guys persevering, and falling in love then picking up the Mary Boys books shouldn’t be an issue. Its a recommend for this series.

signature-fonts

About Brandon Witt

Brandon Witt is many things. Above all, he is living the dream. After years of writing and reaching for the stars, he is a published author through Dreamspinner Press. Thus far, his novels include The Shattered Door, Then the Stars Fall, and three installments of the Men of Myth series. Also, he has short stories published in various anthologies.

For the first eighteen years of life, Brandon lived in a small Ozark town, El Dorado Springs, Missouri before moving with his family to Colorado. There he got degrees in Youth Ministry and Special Education and worked as a counselor and special education teacher for fifteen years.

The tension of his religious upbringing and being a gay man finds its way onto nearly every page in his novels, as does experiences that over a decade of loving children who have faced much abuse and many struggles. Reflecting what he has discovered to be true in life, Brandon’s writing does not shy away from challenges and conflict but also revels in the joy that can only happen when truly embracing and loving all that life has to offer.

Infected: Epitaph by Andrea Speed

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.

o-infected-epitathInfected: Epitaph by Andrea Speed
Series: Infected, Book Seven
Release Date: November 18, 2014
Pages: 330 • Format: eARC
Published By: DSP Publications
Purchase Links:
DSPAmazon Kobo

In a world where a werecat virus has changed society, Roan McKichan, a born infected and ex-cop, works as a private detective solving crimes involving other infecteds.

Tiger strain infections start showing up all over Seattle, much to Roan’s dismay, and worse yet, they may have a personal connection. Meanwhile, Roan gets hired to look into the puzzling death of Dee’s former lover. Then the FBI wants him to investigate a new apocalypse cult of infecteds pushing for a violent revolution against normals. All around Roan, events are spiraling out of control.

Just when his singular abilities are needed most, Roan develops new symptoms that might signify dire consequences if he doesn’t stop shifting at will. Roan finds himself at a crossroads and must make a difficult decision about his future.

four-stars

 

You guys, I’ve made it to the end! I’m not celebrating because its over. I’m celebrating because I DID NOT CRY. Not once. I expected heart wrenching tears while reading this. I expected to be in pain by the end of this series. I was okay. It might have been because I waited 9 months between book 7 and this to read it. I couldn’t take the pain that I was feeling while reading this.I don’t know if I’m okay with everything overall. No scratch that, I’m okay with it. I just would have liked to see the ending spread out over 50 more pages. Its just me wanting more Roan.

I really liked the mysteries in both parts of the book. I think everything came full circle with Roan. It has been an emotional journey with these characters. It bothered me when I started reading it that it was no physical sex on page. After book 2 trust me, you won’t even need it. I’ve had a range of emotions and I can say Roan is one of my most favorite characters ever. He is flawed, loyal, funny, smart, and heart breakingly sacrificial. That last one might not my a pro for more, but for me it is. He’s real in every sense of the word. At best he’s amazing with the skill set and life he is given, at worst he is an idiot. That’s the easiest way for me to put it. I hated those moments of the pain for everyone around him. Everyone around him suffers and is in pain because of his pain. It takes him a long time to realize that people love and care for him. I mean only Roan can find a bunch of misfits and they move the earth for him.

I guess feeling melancholy is normal after reading this. I don’t know quite how to review this. So many thoughts and feelings are swirling in my head. I can say, Dylan has definitely grown on me. I was one of those fans who didn’t want him in the picture. Not because he wasn’t a good person, but because Paris left such a huge impact on my heart. For the short time he was here, he was amazing in the very short time that I’ve read about him. Its not me not wanting Roan to be happy, but the departure of such a character stings for quite a while. Dylan doesn’t compare. Its not something I want to do, but Dylan paves the way for himself. He creates his own lane, he requires his own respect and is flayed open just as much as the rest of us when it comes to Roan.

Its so nice to see a lot of people show up in the final book. I’m happy with Roan’s peace. I can say that without reservations. I’d like to point out that I wanted to see Kevin. Yes, his minor role was missed to me. Hopefully I’ll see him in spin offs or such. I don’t know about Holden. We all know his issues. I’m trying to figure out if I can read a series featuring Holden without Roan. I feel like with all his cynicism, I’d be able to.  This series should be read in order, and favored. One of the best urban fantasy series ever!

 

signature-fonts

About Andrea Speed

Andrea Speed was born looking for trouble in some hot month without an R in it. While succeeding in finding Trouble, she has also been found by its twin brother, Clean Up, and is now on the run, wanted for the murder of a mop and a really cute, innocent bucket that was only one day away from retirement. (I was framed, I tell you – framed!)
In her spare time, she arms lemurs in preparation for the upcoming war against the Mole Men. Viva la revolution!

A Destiny of Dragons by T.J. Klune

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.

A Destiny of Dragons: by T.J. Klune
Series: Tales from Verania #2
Release Date: June 30th, 2017
Pages: 400 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazon

Once upon a time, the wizard’s apprentice Sam of Wilds got his happily ever after in the arms of his cornerstone, Knight Commander Ryan Foxheart. A year has passed, and while Sam’s been captured five or six more times since then, things are pretty great. His parents are happy, Gary and Tiggy still eat sass for breakfast, Randall is somehow alive despite being older than the gods, the King rules with a gentle hand, Kevin the dragon is as gross as ever, Morgan sighs a lot, Ryan continues to be dashing and immaculate, and Sam is close to convincing Prince Justin they will be best friends forever.

Life is good.

Until it’s not.

Because Vadoma, the leader of the Gypsy clan and Sam’s grandmother, has come to the City of Lockes with a dire prophecy written in the stars: a man of shadows is rising and will consume the world unless Sam faces his destiny and gathers the five dragons of Verania at his side.

And she brings along her second-in-command, a man named Ruv.

Ruv, who Vadoma says is Sam’s true cornerstone.

(The first book in the DESTINY FUCK YEAH! Trilogy (because sometimes, having a destiny is the stupidest thing ever).

 

four-half-stars

 

Highly anticipated sequel to one of the funniest books ever! I swear I will see a page count for Klune at times and groan really loudly. He’s that best friend in my head who is extremely long winded and never knows how to get to the moral of the story quickly. Ha ha! Its Klune, I know with him that I’m going to be put through the ringer before any amount of happiness is warranted. This book was no exception. A lot more emotional then the first. A lot of details about the future of the series is brought up, and yeah that stupid word destiny is here. Sam totally should have been at Hogwarts. He would have killed it. Pay me no mind, its my wishful thinking. Here’s what I had to say!

Its almost a year later and Sam & Ryan are happy. Everyone is well, and the people of Verania are seemingly safe. Its all we can hope for with this crew of misfits. Sam realizes not everything is what it seems. He’s heartbroken by his mentor. Someone he worships, loves and trust. He’s devastated but Sam won’t allow anyone to tell him Ryan isn’t his cornerstone or use that stupid word Destiny against him. Of course, Gary, Tiggy, Ryan and Kevin won’t allow Sam to wallow. They decide that Sam is going to be just fine and surround him with love. I don’t know if I trust Vadoma or Ruv. I’m keeping my eyes open on those two. I like the gathering of the 5 dragons and determining if Sam is going to stay on the righteous path. Very Lord of the Rings and that’s a plus. With Kevin being, Kevin I didn’t know what to kind of dragon to expect.

ZERO!!! Oh my goodness. I loved him and wanted to cry at the same damn time. I must do emo people justice because he was such a breathe of fresh depressing air. I really enjoyed him as a character and those moments when it was just Sam and him were some of my absolute favorite. For all the joy, happiness, and laughter at times it does feel out of place. He created this wonderful character in Zero and I cannot wait for the next book to see more of him.

This journey is a lonely one for Sam. Sure he has his people with him, but so many secrets he is keeping and I’m wondering what is his boiling point going to be. He is sure to explode and most likely do some damage to the folks around him, but it wouldn’t be a me against the world trope if it was. Klune’s way with words gets better and better as I read them. Yes its humor, and jokes. Its more then that in this book. It is putting the joys of all before the love of one person. They can never say Sam isn’t about his country. Even if said country is lead by a bunch of idiots and that heifer Tina DeSilva!

If I’ve said it once, then I’ll say it again Klune is a wizard at his craft. He is able to gather all these emotions within his readers and I don’t think it has anything to do with the genre. Its his pen game as simple as that. I’m a fan for life. I cannot wait for more writing this year, and equally dreading the last BOatK book 4! Its not about that right now! Highly recommend, and go read the book people!

signature-fonts

About TJ Klune

When TJ Klune was eight, he picked up a pen and paper and began to write his first story (which turned out to be his own sweeping epic version of the video game Super Metroid—he didn’t think the game ended very well and wanted to offer his own take on it. He never heard back from the video game company, much to his chagrin). Now, two decades later, the cast of characters in his head have only gotten louder, wondering why he has to go to work as a claims examiner for an insurance company during the day when he could just stay home and write.

He lives with a neurotic cat in the middle of the Sonoran Desert. It’s hot there, but he doesn’t mind. He dreams about one day standing at Stonehenge, just so he can say he did.

Guest Review: A Kind of Home by Lane Hayes

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.

A Kind of Home: by Lane Hayes
Series: A Kind of Stories #4
Release Date: June 23rd, 2017
Pages: 224 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazon

A Kind Of Story

Isaac Dalton is the guitarist for Spiral, arguably the biggest rock band in the world. The band’s meteoric rise to superstardom has its perks, but fame and fortune aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Nonstop touring and performing exhaust him, and when an overzealous fan makes it imperative that Isaac travel with a clingy bodyguard, he is ready for a break from the madness. More so when his newly single first crush shows up on his doorstep. The man is strictly off-limits. He’s a memory from a place Isaac would rather leave behind. And he’s straight.

Fun-loving former athlete slash construction worker Adam McBride desperately needs a new beginning. And New York City is the perfect place to start over and think about how to rebuild his life. A short stint as roommates with his brother’s best friend from high school seems like a mutually beneficial arrangement. However, when friendship gives way to fierce attraction, both men find themselves in uncharted and possibly dangerous territory. Isaac has to decide if he’s willing to take the ultimate risk for a kind of love and a kind of home he never dreamed possible.

four-stars

In previous books of this series we have gotten to know the guys from the rock band Spiral. By the time this book begins the band is huge. They’re one of the most famous bands in the world and the long hours, traveling and lack of privacy has begun to wear on guitarist Isaac. He loves the music but he’s growing weary of everything else. What he wants most is to be left alone. Unfortunately for Isaac he’s picked up an odd fan who seems like they might be obsessed with him. As a result he has also picked up a body guard he doesn’t want.

Imagine Isaac’s shock when he gets home from a tour to find that the old friend he said could use his apartment for a week or so is still there a few months later. Adam is the older brother of Isaac’s best friend from high school. Isaac always had a crush on the older boy and hasn’t seen him since his wedding a few years earlier. Despite his annoyance at finding Adam at his place he agrees to let him stay a bit longer. Adam is getting divorced and is looking to make some changes in his life.

As the two men begin to get reacquainted Isaac finds that all the things that attracted him to Adam in the past are still there but now there are even more things to like about him. Adam is in New York to make big changes in his life and apparently he’s not as straight as Isaac always thought he was. The two can’t deny their chemistry and soon friendship turns into something more.

I liked both of these MC’s individually and I really loved them together. They were a perfect compliment to each other. Their chemistry jumped off the pages and the book was filled with both sweet, romantic scenes and some super hot bedroom scenes. The grand gesture at the end was especially lovely.

Extra kudos to the author for not making the ex wife the stereotypical shrew and for not making Adam’s bisexuality an issue or problem within the marriage. I thought the entire divorce part of the plot line was well thought out and executed perfectly.

This book can be read as a standalone. Because of both band work and their friendships we see a lot of some of the previous characters (especially Rand) so if you’ve read the others you’ll probably appreciate that. So whether you’re an existing fan of the series or new to it, this is a book I would definitely recommend.

signature-fonts

About Lane Hayes

Lane Hayes is grateful to finally be doing what she loves best. Writing full-time! It’s no secret Lane loves a good romance novel. An avid reader from an early age, she has always been drawn to well-told love story with beautifully written characters. These days she prefers the leading roles to both be men. Lane discovered the M/M genre a few years ago and was instantly hooked. Her debut novel was a 2013 Rainbow Award finalist and subsequent books have received Honorable Mentions in the 2014 and 2015 Rainbow Awards. She loves red wine, chocolate and travel (in no particular order). Lane lives in Southern California with her amazing husband and the coolest yellow Lab ever in an almost empty nest.

Coach’s Challenge by Avon Gale

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.

Coach’s Challenge: by Avon Gale
Series: Scoring Chances #5
Release Date: June 26th, 2017
Pages: 200 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazon

It’s been decades since blackmail forced Troy Callahan to retire from playing professional hockey, and he’s built a successful career behind the bench. When he’s offered the opportunity to coach the Asheville Ravens—the most hated team in the ECHL—he’s convinced that his no-nonsense attitude is just what the team needs to put their focus back on hockey. But Troy is disheartened when he finds out the Ravens have signed Shane North, a player known for his aggression—especially when Shane’s rough good looks have Troy thinking inappropriate thoughts about a player, even if he’s set to retire at the end of the season.

Shane’s career in the majors never quite took off. Wanting to quit on his own terms, Shane agrees to a one-year contract with the Ravens and finds himself playing for a coach who thinks he’s an aging goon, and with a team that doesn’t trust him, Troy, or each other. Despite his determination not to get involved, Shane unwillingly becomes part of the team… and is just as unwillingly drawn to the gruff, out-and-proud coach. As the Ravens struggle to build a new identity, Shane and Troy succumb to the passion that might cost them everything.

four-stars

I really enjoy this series, and for a time while reading this book I wasn’t certain on how I felt about it. Took me longer to get involved and invested into this installment. I had to warm up to Troy, and ended up liking the relationship between him and Shane. It didn’t help that the dirty talk was so much above board with these two. Good Lord, we needed a fan, and a spray bottle at times. Their quirky, dominating relationship worked well for me. It didn’t have the formula of the past 4 books, but I was okay with it. To be honest, I enjoyed most of the series but Power Play will always be my favorite. 

After reading 5 books, you’d think I would know something about Hockey. Nope, still clueless. Its okay though I just substituted it with other sports in my head. LOL. I really liked the idea of the guys being in their late 30’s, early 40’s. I like mature guys, and it doesn’t help that its their first relationship ever at this age. I really <3Troy. Not saying Shane was bad, I liked him alot. Dirty filthy Shane, but lordy he was freaking hot. Troy though comes off as this brash, careless, dictator. Well dictator was the last dude, but he’s very demanding and I guess him being so blunt takes people by surprise, but that caring side of him will win you over every time. Troy has his reasons and methods for being the way he is. Being a ex-pro hockey player and having dealt with the St.Savoy it only felt right for him being the head coach to take over the Ashville Ravens. They are the most hated team, and Troy is trying to do everything in his power to overcome that negative. When Shane is late his first day of practice, it doesn’t look to good for these two. We see right away their issues, but I seen the UST a mile away. Dude!! I had to fan myself. These two were so freaking explosive together! I will never look at another jigsaw puzzle with innocence again in life. I won’t spoil it for you guys! Avon did us justice!

Once I got involved in reading it, I really enjoyed it. I enjoyed seeing these two together, and liked that they were so different from the other couples in previous books. I do hope Xavier gets him a gentleman. He needs one, or maybe a bad boy for his sweet self. I wouldn’t mind reading a Ben & River book. Didn’t see much of those two but the short instances definitely were impact. Fans of this series will truly enjoy this book. I can’t wait to see what’s next!

 

signature-fonts

About Avon Gale

Avon Gale wrote her first story at the age of seven, about a “Space Hat” hanging on a rack and waiting for that special person to come along and purchase it — even if it was a bit weirder than the other, more normal hats. Like all of Avon’s characters, the space hat did get its happily ever after — though she’s pretty sure it was with a unicorn. She likes to think her vocabulary has improved since then, but the theme of quirky people waiting for their perfect match is still one of her favorites.

Avon grew up in the southern United States, and now lives with her very patient husband in a liberal midwestern college town. When she’s not writing, she’s either doing some kind of craft project that makes a huge mess, reading, watching horror movies, listening to music or yelling at her favorite hockey team to get it together, already. Avon is always up for a road trip, adores Kentucky bourbon, thinks nothing is as stress relieving as a good rock concert and will never say no to candy.

At one point, Avon was the mayor of both Jazzercise and Lollicup on Foursquare. This tells you basically all you need to know about her as a person.

Romancing the Ugly Duckling by Clare London

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.

Romancing the Ugly Duckling: by Clare London
Series: Romancing the Ugly Duckling #2
Release Date: June 15th, 2017
Pages: 260 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazon

Is this the makeover of a lifetime?

Ambitious fashionista Perry Goodwood lands the project of his dreams—track down a celebrity family’s missing brother in the Scottish Highlands and bring him back to London for a TV reality show. But first he must transform the rugged loner into a glamorous sophisticate.

Greg Ventura has no use for high fashion. He lives on the isolated island of North Uist to escape the reminder that he’s nowhere near as handsome as his gorgeous brothers and avoid the painful childhood memories of being bullied.

Greg wants nothing to do with city life, and Perry’s never been outside London. When Perry is stranded on North Uist, this conflict seems insurmountable. But Greg is captivated by the vivacious Perry, and Perry by both the island and his host. However, Perry’s one heartfelt wish remains: that ugly duckling Greg fulfill his potential as a swan.

 

four-half-stars

 

Definitely one of my favorite books so far from this series!!! I didn’t want it to end. I fell in love with Perry & Greg!

I am being a tad bit petty by only giving it 4.5 stars. Initially I was going straight for the 5 stars, but I wanted an epilogue. Why??? Why couldn’t we see where Greg & Perry end up in 6 months or a year? Does Greg and his brothers end up mending the rift in their brotherhood? What becomes of Perry’s business proposal with Aileen? Does Bridie and Lisa get married? I have so many questions and no answers.

I really enjoyed Perry as a character. Being who he is and what he stands for did not disappoint me. He didn’t let anyone push him over, and his stood up for himself. We can see the moments between the two falling in love. We can see Greg thawing out to Perry. I really enjoyed their transition every step of the way. I don’t want to give much away with the plot, but I really would have liked an epilogue. Or better yet, please give me a novella of such! I swear Clare London, I would love you forever and ever.

The writing was really good. It had just the amount of steamy scenes, but heavy on the sugary sweet goodness that I’ve come to expect from this series. I couldn’t recommend a better book in the series to read and that’s saying something. I definitely can see myself reading this and it becoming a comfort read for me!

 

signature-fonts

About Clare London

Hi, I’m Clare London, a published author of gay romantic fiction, often erotic, usually contemporary, but sometimes in other worlds entirely. I publish with several publishers, in print and ebook, and I also offer free fiction on my website www.clarelondon.com. Clare took the pen name London from the city where she lives, loves, and writes. A lone, brave female in a frenetic, testosterone-fuelled family home, she juggles her writing with her other day job as an accountant. She’s written in many genres and across many settings, with award-winning novels and short stories published both online and in print. She says she likes variety in her writing while friends say she’s just fickle, but as long as both theories spawn good fiction, she’s happy. Most of her work features male/male romance and drama with a healthy serving of physical passion, as she enjoys both reading and writing about strong, sympathetic and sexy characters. Clare currently has several novels sulking at that tricky chapter 3 stage and plenty of other projects in mind . . . she just has to find out where she left them in that frenetic, testosterone-fuelled family home.

Dim Sum Asylum by Rhys Ford

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.

Dim Sum Asylum: by Rhys Ford
Release Date: June 9th, 2017
Pages: 240 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazon

Welcome to Dim Sum Asylum: a San Francisco where it’s a ho-hum kind of case when a cop has to chase down an enchanted two-foot-tall shrine god statue with an impressive Fu Manchu mustache that’s running around Chinatown, trolling sex magic and chaos in its wake.

Senior Inspector Roku MacCormick of the Chinatown Arcane Crimes Division faces a pile of challenges far beyond his human-faerie heritage, snarling dragons guarding C-Town’s multiple gates, and exploding noodle factories. After a case goes sideways, Roku is saddled with Trent Leonard, a new partner he can’t trust, to add to the crime syndicate family he doesn’t want and a spell-casting serial killer he desperately needs to find.

While Roku would rather stay home with Bob the Cat and whiskey himself to sleep, he puts on his badge and gun every day, determined to serve and protect the city he loves. When Chinatown’s dark mystical underworld makes his life hell and the case turns deadly, Trent guards Roku’s back and, if Trent can be believed, his heart… even if from what Roku can see, Trent is as dangerous as the monsters and criminals they’re sworn to bring down.

 

four-stars

 

In my entire history of reading its never taken me so long to read a Rhys Ford book. Its partially my fault, and partially the books fault. I was busy, and summer read has taken a backseat to much needed enjoyment time with the ball & chain. It took me 9 days to completely finish the book. Some days I didn’t get a chance to pick it up. While that seems bad, it was good for me because when I did get a chance to get back to it I had no problem with diving in. It was easy enough to follow far as plot wise goes. I gotta say this one was kinda insta-love something I didn’t expect at all. I mean it was 2 maybe 3 days into Roku & Trent to become Rent!! <—- Ha, Ha, Ha. See what I did there?

The world building was astounding. Such vivid descriptions, and thorough world embodiment.I do think some times it escapes Ford with how much she does focus on the world building. In turn I would have liked just a teeny tiny bit cut off to focus on the plot. I feel like this has the potential to be a series, but as of now its a novel. Don’t know how I feel about that.

I’ve said it once, and will say it again. I’m not really a Fae girl, but for some reason most of Rhys pnr/uf has focused on the fae. I always feel like its too much involving the fae. I constantly get lost on the good vs. bad fae, but nevertheless this book was easy enough to follow through. It doesn’t help that Roku was a really good character. He is just dealt a bad hand with certain situations. Trent, grew to my liking. I liked how he wanted foundation and after everything he’s been through that he feels like he’s found some commonality in Roku. It could definitely work, seeing as they both of them have similar background and need someone in their life.

As usual I liked the writing. It always flows beautifully. I thought it was a well developed story and was really happy with the outcome. I enjoyed the short in the anthology story, and glad that Ford decided to develop this into a well thought novel. A recommend from me as usual!

 

signature-fonts

About Rhys Ford

Rhys Ford was born and raised in Hawai’i then wandered off to see the world. After chewing through a pile of books, a lot of odd food, and a stray boyfriend or two, Rhys eventually landed in San Diego, which is a very nice place but seriously needs more rain.

Rhys admits to sharing the house with cats of varying degrees of black fur and a ginger cairn terrorist. Rhys is also enslaved to the upkeep a 1979 Pontiac Firebird, a Toshiba laptop, and an overworked red coffee maker.

P.S. I Spook You by S.E. Harmon

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.

P.S. I Spook You: by S.E. Harmon
Release Date: June 12th, 2017
Pages: 256 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
Dreamspinner • Amazon

SSA Rain Christiansen used to be the agency’s golden boy. It just takes one moment of weakness, one slight, tiny, itty-bitty paranormal sighting, and all of a sudden he’s the agency’s embarrassment. His boss gives him one last chance to redeem himself—go down to Brickell Bay, play nice with the local police, and leave the ghost sightings behind. Rain is determined to do exactly that, even if it kills him.

Cold-case detective Daniel McKenna’s latest investigation is going nowhere fast. Five years earlier, high school student Amy Greene went missing after leaving her part-time job and was never seen again. Daniel is glad to finally have the FBI help that his department requested, even if it does come in the form of his ex.

It doesn’t help that Rain is pretty sure he’s falling in love with Danny all over again—if he ever stopped. Add to that the frustration of seeing ghosts at every turn while he works a case that’s stalled in its tracks, and Rain is starting to wonder if second chances and happy endings are just for fairy tales.

four-half-stars

 

 

Dude. I’m so blown away by this story! It was really good from beginning to end. Why not 5 stars? Because its not a series. Why the f*** not? I feel like Rain & Danny’s story isn’t done. Harmon, you have to give us more.

I was really hesitant reading this book, seeing all the high rating and reviews. I put it off to this weekend when I can have time to read sink my teeth into it. I get the high rating, reviews and best of list. I couldn’t tell you the last great book I’ve read this year. This book is definitely going on my Best of 2017 list!

Not only did it feature amazing ghost parts, and the humor was on point. I loved the energy between Rain & Danny. They had some smutty and lovely moments together. It was filthy and I enjoyed every single detail. I loved Rain’s quirky family, but I’m upset we didn’t get to meet the dad. Its why we need a book 2. I need to see what the S.U.C unit is up too. LOL.

Rain sees ghost. He doesn’t want to, but he can’t help it. Coming from a medical sabbatical the only thing he wants to do is jump right back into work as a B.A.U profiler for the F.B.I., instead his boss has him working on cold cases and a case of his choosing. He never had a chance seeing as he chooses a case that puts him back at home where his family is at and his lost love. Danny is everything I love in my broody men. The Alpha dude who is possessive, protective, passionate and a damn sweetheart behind closed doors. They mesh so well together. I loved the arguments, the laughter, the steamy smutty times, and I wanted more. Why did you have to end?

 

I have to figure out a way to get more of these guys into another story. The writing was really solid, the case was good, the criminals were creepy. I laughed alot and found myself re-reading scenes. That’s how amazed I was. I won’t talk about the dirty, filthy, steamy scenes, but yeah read with caution or a partner next to you.

I really liked Harmon’s work. She’s a strong story teller and writer. I look forward to more work by her, and this is highly recommended! Go get the book people!

 

signature-fonts

About S.E. Harmon

S.E. Harmon has had a lifelong love affair with writing. It’s been both wonderful and rocky (they’ve divorced several times), but they always manage to come back together. She’s a native Floridian with a Bachelor of Arts and a Masters in Fine Arts, and now splits her days between voraciously reading romance novels and squirreling away someplace to write them. Her current beta reader is a nosy American Eskimo who begrudgingly accepts payment in the form of dog biscuits.