The Monet Murders by Josh Lanyon

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 Monet Murders: by Josh Lanyon
Series: The Art of Murder #2
Release Date: May 25th, 2017
Pages: 311 • Format: eARC
Published By: JustJoshin Publishing Inc
Purchase Links:
Amazon

All those late night conversations when Sam had maybe a drink too many or Jason was half falling asleep. All those playful, provocative comments about what they’d do when they finally met up again.

Well, here they were.

The last thing Jason West, an ambitious young FBI Special Agent with the Art Crimes Team, wants–or needs–is his uncertain and unacknowledged romantic relationship with irascible legendary Behavioral Analysis Unit Chief Sam Kennedy.

And it’s starting to feel like Sam is not thrilled with the idea either.

But personal feelings must be put aside when Sam requests Jason’s help to catch a deranged killer targeting wealthy, upscale art collectors. A killer whose calling card is a series of grotesque paintings depicting the murders.

 

three-half-stars

It took me a while to come to grips with writing this review, because I spent the majority of the book pissed off. I was 38 Hot about this being the Jason West show. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy him alot but he was 75% by himself with all of his feelings and emotions. Stoic Sam Kennedy was nowhere to be found. I mean, what the hell? Josh completely took these two in a different lane compared to where they were at the end of book one. How much angst can a person deal with? I wasn’t to happy about the crime either. It was so long winded and all the compartments surrounding it didn’t make it better.

Of course with my rage flowing, I don’t get to stay mad at Sam, he says and does some cold-blooded things in this book. Never fear lads, Lanyon might be an a-hole, but her heroes redeem themselves in the best ways. That’s a compliment Josh if you read this lol.

They haven’t seen each other in 8 months, but that hasn’t stopped them from communicating and potentially falling more in something over the course of the distance and late night phone calls. Jason on the surface is way more into Sam, and is starting to realize what he wants from this. He wants a relationship; someone he can be happy with and someone to discuss and have fun with. Doesn’t seem like a bad thing, but Sam throws a complete wrench into the plan. Not only is the wrench in the plan, but they have to deal with this smack dab in the middle of a case that throws them together. Like I said earlier, it’s pretty much the Jason West story from start to end. Yeah, I was getting perturbed my the lack of Kennedy around, but when he was he sure was impact in those scenes.

I really hope this isn’t trilogy and much longer for the series. I feel like the author can take these characters really far. I would like to see their personal setting a lit bit more, and don’t want it to end. As much as the crime didn’t really pull me in, I still liked the story overall. Lanyon always creates these amazing characters and world for us to salivate over and this wasn’t a disappointment at all.

 

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About Josh Lanyon

Bestselling author of over sixty titles of classic Male/Male fiction featuring twisty mystery, kickass adventure and unapologetic man-on-man romance, JOSH LANYON has been called “arguably the single most influential voice in m/m romance today.” Granted, that was yesterday.

Today Josh’s work has been translated into nine languages. The FBI thriller Fair Game was the first male/male title to be published by Harlequin Mondari, the largest romance publisher in Italy. The Adrien English series was awarded the 2nd Annual All Time Favorite Male Male Couple by the Goodreads M/M Group. Josh is an Eppie Award winner, a four-time Lambda Literary Award finalist for Gay Mystery, and the first ever recipient of the Goodreads Favorite M/M Author Lifetime Achievement award.

Josh is married and lives in Southern California.

A Guest Review:Arrows Through Archer by Nash Summers

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.

Arrows Through Archer: by Nash Summers
Release Date: June 14th, 2017
Pages: 224 • Format: eARC
Published By:Self-Published
Purchase Links: Amazon

After the loss of his parents, Archer Hart is consumed by grief. Each day, he struggles his way through classes, parties, and trying to put on a good front for the sake of his best friend. But at night, he falls asleep to the sound of gunshots ringing in his ears.

Mallory is a man fighting a war of emotions all his own. When his son invites his best friend back home to Banff over a college break, he’s happy for the company.

Some time during the late-night talks, subtle smiles, and long, long silences, the two men begin to find solace in one another.

But love isn’t always easy, especially when it strikes you straight through the heart.

 

five-stars

 

I read a lot of books. Sometimes I can go months before a book really jumps out and catches my attention. This is that book. I was looking forward to this because I’m already a big fan of this author’s other works. I’m excited to say that this was everything I was hoping it would be.

Archer is a college student who is really struggling. He’s had some major losses in his life and has some internal issues that he struggles with. He goes to classes and parties and tries to pretend everything is alright but inside he’s drowning in grief. His best friend Danny though, is aware of everything and keeps a constant eye on him.

Over a holiday, Danny takes Archer home with him and there he meets Danny’s father Mallory. Despite their age gap, the two men find they have a lot in common. They’re both quiet and reserved and they’re both stuck on losses in their lives they can’t seem to move past.

A series of incidents bring the two men together for an extended amount of time and they begin to find solace and healing in each other. There are a lot of extenuating factors though and things aren’t easy.

I don’t want to say much else about the plot (& I know I have been super vague about everything so far) because I really think this is a book you should go into not knowing much about. You need to experience how the story unfolds. I think the author set the format up in a unique manner. The way she handles the point of views and the time periods was brilliant and had a powerful impact on the reader. (I believe my reading update accused her of being an “evil genius”)

The writing style really drew me in. It had a lyrical quality to it and it set the atmosphere so well. I could feel Archer’s grief and sadness from the very first page. And later, when he’s in the mountains with Mallory, you feel like you’re right there with them as they stare into the fire or gaze into the night sky.

I think this is the most believable age gap story I’ve read. These two feel so right for each other from the very beginning. The growth of their relationship was quiet and slow and I think even more beautiful as a result. It all felt realistic and was something I could really see happening.

The story is interesting in the fact that there are very few other characters in the book. The ones that are there are only seen in short glimpses but they have important roles. Most of the story though is just Archer and Mallory. At one point Mallory asks what’s happening and Archer thinks “We’re falling in love”, and really that’s what this is about. This is a story about two men falling in love and working through their own issues so they can love themselves and be the best they can be for the other one.

I really can’t fan girl enough about this book. I would love to see everyone read this. Realistically though, you should note the triggers in regards to grief, depression etc. This is not a light read and may not work for some. I personally didn’t think it was too bad but I’m a big fan of angst and realism in my books. For the rest of you though, run get this right now. The author’s going to tear your heart out, but she’s also going to put it back together and it’s going to be beautiful when you get there.

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About Nash Summers

Nash Summers rarely has any idea what she’s doing. But when she likes to pretend, she pretends by writing stories at the pace of drying paint. As if that wasn’t exhilarating enough, Nash also enjoys absolute silence, general politeness, and waiting her turn in line.
Needless to say, she’s a bona fide hell raiser.

Guest Post & Giveaway with Nash Summers

 

Title: Arrows Through Archer

Author: Nash Summers

Publisher: Self-published

Release Date: June 14, 2017

Length: 70,000 words

Genre: M/M, romance, contemporary

Tags: loss, grief, hurt/comfort, age difference, depression

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33394243-arrows-through-archer

 

Blurb

After the loss of his parents, Archer Hart is consumed by grief. Each day, he struggles his way through classes, parties, and trying to put on a good front for the sake of his best friend. But at night, he falls asleep to the sound of gunshots ringing in his ears.

Mallory is a man fighting a war of emotions all his own. When his son invites his best friend back home to Banff over a college break, he’s happy for the company.

Some time during the late-night talks, subtle smiles, and long, long silences, the two men begin to find solace in one another.

But love isn’t always easy, especially when it strikes you straight through the heart.

Excerpt:

What does she like?”

Mallory’s sigh was heavier than the collapse of a nation. “White wine. Reading biographies. Jazz music. Pasta primavera. Laughing. Swimming in the summer, skiing in the winter. My shirt.”

All good things to like.”

They are.”

So?”

He stopped speaking. It wasn’t one of those comfortable silences full of hope and contemplation. The silence felt toxic.

So,” Mallory said eventually. “So, I don’t know. You like puzzles and whiskey. And you listen to classic rock with me, although I’m painfully aware you don’t like it. And you love those chocolate cupcakes I brought home from the bakery last week, but you hate the bran muffins I make. And you like running and guns and silence, and Sarah doesn’t like any of those things.”

It was obvious now to see and hear how much he’d drunk.

Mallory—”

She doesn’t like puzzles.” Finally, Mallory turned to me, his eyes alight. “I want to be with a woman who likes puzzles.”

I don’t understand.”

You look so damn happy sitting at the kitchen table, puzzle pieces scattered around.”

I closed my eyes. “You should go to bed.”

I know,” he said quietly.

I stood. “Are you coming in?”

He ignored my question as he stared down at his now-empty glass. “Puzzles make you happy, don’t they?”

Sharpshooter by nature, my instincts told me to go in for the kill. “It’s not the puzzles that make me happy, Mallory.”

Immediately, his eyes locked with mine. “Don’t do this to me, Archer.”

Okay.”

Alone, I left the workshop, while Mallory remained behind.

Purchase Link

Amazon

 

Meet the Author:

 

Nash Summers rarely has any idea what she’s doing. But when she likes to pretend, she pretends by writing stories at the pace of drying paint. As if that wasn’t exhilarating enough, Nash also enjoys absolute silence, general politeness, and waiting her turn in line. Needless to say, she’s a bona fide hell raiser.

 

 

Website: www.nashsummers.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nash.summers.author/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/nashvsummers

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8157232.Nash_Summers

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nash.summers/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/nashsummers/

Sign up for Nash’s Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/boD5TP

 

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Blue by B.G. Thomas

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.

Blue: by B.G. Thomas
May 15th, 2017:
Pages: 240 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner
Purchase Links:
Dreamspinner

Blue McCoy has lived on the streets for a long time, surviving by his wits and doing what he must, and he’s not above using his youthful appearance and air of innocence to his advantage. It’s not an easy life, but he’s happy. He has everything he really needs: the clothes on his back, a house to squat in, a sweet dog. Everything except that special someone to love him.

Six months ago, John Williams’s wife left him because she was bored. “Even your *name* is boring” were her last words to him before she walked out. Now he’s by himself in a big house, trying to figure out what direction his life should take. He’s never been so alone.

A chance encounter sets John on a new path, a path that becomes clearer when loneliness sends him to a local animal shelter to get a dog—and he finds an angel instead. An angel named Blue. A crisis brings them together, but it is something else that keeps them there. Could it be love? A love that can forever end two men’s deep loneliness and bring them the support and sense of belonging they’ve searched for all their lives?

three-stars

This book should be read with caution. I didn’t know what I expected when I started it, but it definitely wasn’t this. I liked the idea & trope of the story a lot, but I felt like I should be reading this with a tiara on my head and tripping on acid. That’s the easiest thing I can come up with. I believe I’ve read one other book by this author, but can’t recall it at all. I didn’t like the breaks in pov. It was to constant and I found myself going back to see who said what. That was annoying. It had alot of internal dialogue. It is a job to be in Blue’s mind. I didn’t like how we don’t have an absolute knowledge on why Blue is homeless. I know there could have been tons of reasons on why he is, but it wasn’t even alluded to. It was more of Blue happily telling a tale of all the wonderful things going on in his life. I get John, and I liked him but his story wasn’t completed at all. He had a lot of personal triumphs to go through that were discussed in this book, but we don’t see an outcome either. Maybe it wasn’t the author’s intentions of seeing it play out at the end, but I think it would have given the story a little bit more substance.

I did enjoy Blue’s outlook on life. After everything he has been through and continuously going through nothing seems to bring him down. He’s young and squatting at an abandoned house with other guys. John is newly single, and kinda numb to everything. He’s recently separated from his wife of 20 something years.  He’s finally able to think about the think that has stopped him from all of his life. Told through dual pov’s we see what each other means to one another, what they go through on a daily basis and the warped speed of them insta-loving all of the pages. Yes they moved incredibly fast, and I definitely suspended copious amounts of beliefs based on the author’s prose of writing. It was disgustingly sweet. I mean, I almost turned into the Grinch. We all know how I like over the top cheesy, but at times this was a bit much. I felt like we should have had an extended epilogue. Certain things were brought up but no closure what so ever. I hate filler information. I know it played on shaping the characters on who they are, but it was completely selfish of the author to do that to us.

This wasn’t the worst book, and I was gracious with the 3 stars because man you need some protective gear on with all the things going on in this book. I think people who like sweet romances featuring age-gaps, cheesy goodness, out for you tropes then this is right up your alley.

 

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Boy’s Don’t Cry by J.K. Hogan

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.

Boy’s Don’t Cry: by J.K. Hogan
Release Date: May 25th, 2017
Pages: 230 • Format: eARC
Published By: J.K. Hogan
Purchase Links:
J.K. HoganAmazon

Mackenzie Pratt is having the worst luck of his life. His apartment building is being torn down, and since he’s jobless and just weeks away from graduating college, he can’t find anywhere else he can afford to live that isn’t a critter-infested dump. As he’s lamenting the very real possibility of job hunting while couch-surfing, he gets an offer from the coworker of his best friend.

An in-demand mobile app developer and heir to his parents’ fortune, Laurent Beaudry is literally an eccentric billionaire. Even though Mackenzie realizes he’s basically living the plot of a cheesy romance novel, he takes the proffered room in Laurent’s Baltimore mansion. He finds his new housemate to be grumpy, brooding, and, at times, incredibly kind and endearing.

Raised by his brother after their father’s death, Mackenzie spent his formative years plowing headlong through school, focusing on little else beyond earning his teaching certification. He’s never taken the time to explore love and relationships, much less sexuality, so when he finds himself being courted by another man, he has no idea what to do. And when he realizes he might actually return those feelings, his life takes a whole new direction.

four-stars

I had mixed feelings for this throughout my reading journey. I mean it gave me the FSOG vibes at times. Sure that made me want to gag really hard. Other times, it was a fast paced insta-love story. I mean Mackenzie is a little over the place the entire story. Laurie is kinda boring.

Let me explain, we don’t get to see much of Laurie’s eccentricities. He’s suppose to be this broody billionaire, but besides the billionaire. He does not do much. I wanted to see his quirks or a little of his past. Yeah he’s closed off at times, and a down right asshole but other then that I don’t take much from him.

Mackenzie had so much going on with him, I don’t think he knew anything at all. He’s about to graduate college, his future career, his eviction, his family situation. Why not just throw his sexuality on top of it? From what I’ve read his sexuality never came into play. I didn’t really see the attraction between the two, but I did like what I saw by the end of the story.

It had its quirky parts, and even by the end I enjoyed it. Some parts moved fast, and I wish it was some expansion on certain topics, but overall I enjoyed it. I am looking forward to a potential River & Taylor book. That much UST needs to be written down. I like Hogan’s writing and look forward to more from her.

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About J.K. Hogan

J.K. Hogan has been telling stories for as long as she can remember, beginning with writing cast lists and storylines for her toys growing up. When she finally decided to put pen to paper, magic happened. She is greatly inspired by all kinds of music and often creates a “soundtrack” for her stories as she writes them. J.K. is hoping to one day have a little something for everyone, so she’s branched out from m/f paranormal romance and added m/m contemporary romance. Who knows what’s next?

J.K. resides in North Carolina, where she was born and raised. A true southern girl at heart, she lives in the country with her husband and young son, a cat, and two champion agility dogs. If she isn’t on the agility field, J.K. can often be found chasing waterfalls in the mountains with her husband, or down in front at a blues concert. In addition to writing, she enjoys training and competing in dog sports, spending time with her large southern family, camping, boating and, of course, reading! For more information, please visit the contact page.

At Attention by Annabeth Albert

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.

At Attention: by Annabeth Albert
Series: Out of Uniform, #2
Release Date: April 10th, 2017
Pages: 209 • Format: eARC
Published By: Carina Press
Purchase Links: Carina Press BooksAmazonKobo

Lieutenant Apollo Floros can ace tactical training missions, but being a single dad to his twin daughters is more than he can handle. He needs live-in help, and he’s lucky a friend’s younger brother needs a place to stay. He’s surprised to see Dylan all grown up with a college degree…and a college athlete’s body. Apollo’s widowed heart may still be broken, but Dylan has his blood heating up.

It’s been eight years since the teenage Dylan followed Apollo around like a lovesick puppy, and it’s time he showed Lieutenant Hard-to-Please that he’s all man now—an adult who’s fully capable of choosing responsibility over lust. He can handle Apollo’s muscular sex appeal, but Apollo the caring father? Dylan can’t afford to fall for that guy. He’s determined to hold out for someone who’s able to love him back, not someone who only sees him as a kid brother.

Apollo is shocked by the intensity of his attraction to Dylan. Maybe some no-strings summer fun will bring this former SEAL back to life. But the combination of scorching desire and warm affection is more than he’d expected, and the emotion between them scares him senseless. No fling lasts forever, and Apollo will need to decide what’s more important—his past or his future—if he wants to keep Dylan in his life.

two-half-stars

 

You know, I’ll admit I waffle if I should give this book 3 stars for the author, or the actual story. I had to go with my gut on this. This was a disappointing read. I struggled throughout the entire story. My biggest thing is that we’ve read this scenario before. There was nothing new or exciting for the same thing again and again. I love Annabeth’s work tremendously but it took everything in me to power through and read it. I seen all the high rating, and love for it. I had to wonder was we reading the same book. The general formula of a widower and a crush getting together was just it. There was nothing significantly interesting to me. Not one point. If I read ten pages then I forgot what the first 5 were. I even put it down for a while to read something else, and it still didn’t draw me in or give me a glimpse of hope that it gets better.

I liked Apollo from book 1. I guess in his book he lost all the sparkle and excitement that I wanted to read about. Yes he was a caring father, and a tad overprotective but that’s human nature. He’s grieving and still in the mindset about Neal. I don’t know how he feels about Dylan honestly. Even at the end, I sort of was not buying his feelings. I guess they feel forced to me. On Apollo’s side it just felt physical. I didn’t see the attraction outside of that, and I’m bothered by this mostly.

I know Dylan has always liked Apollo so I can believe his attraction. He does some classic stupid things, but they are classic and one reason this trope is so popular. Trying to only stay physical without getting their emotions involved is dumb. One because Dylan’s emotions were already there and they just came back full fledged. This was really a contemporary novel nothing really major happens outside of the story.

I tried and tried to read and get involved with the story but it just seemed liked missed connections to me. I will read book 3 because I know Annabeth’s stories work well for me. I just didn’t like this one at all.

 

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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.

Loose Cannon by Sidney Bell

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.

Loose Cannon: by Sidney Bell
Series: The Woodbury Boys #1
Release Date: April 3rd, 2017
Pages: 327 • Format: eARC
Published By: Carina Press
Purchase Links:
Amazon

Don’t miss this brand-new male/male romance series from Sidney Bell, author of Bad Judgment

Released after five years in the system for assault, streetwise Edgar-Allen Church is ready to leave the past behind and finally look to his future. In need of a place to crash, he’s leaning on Miller Quinn. A patient, solidly masculine pillar of strength and support, Miller has always been there for him—except in the one way Church has wanted the most.

With his staunchly conservative upbringing, Miller has been playing it straight his whole life. Now with Church so close again, it’s getting harder to keep his denial intact. As they fumble their way back to friendship after so many years apart, Miller struggles to find the courage to accept who he really is. What he has with Church could be more than desire—it could be love. But it could also mean trouble.

Church’s criminal connections are closing in on the both of them, and more than their hearts are at risk. This time, their very lives are on the line.

five-stars

This book surely deserved that slow clap. So I originally read this book in Janurary as an ARC, and was blown away by it. It was the first book of the year to get 5 stars and land on my Best Books of 2017 list! I was completely enthralled with the story and it stuck with me. Well what did I do? I completely forgot to write my review. Knowing that I was going to have to skim or re-read it had me worried. I was worried if I didn’t like it the second time around just as much. If I could find little things to nit pick that would cause me to lower my rating or change my opinion overall. I am shocked that the second time around, I’m just as in love with it as the first one. Didn’t cry, but it was the same raw emotions and feelings the first time around. Bell has some true talent, I’m 2 for 2 on her books and she continues to be a force to reckon with so far.

This angsty, age-gap, out for you romance with a great plot and superb characters was Ah-Maz-Ing like Penny stated above. I was blown away by the story, the journey, friendship, love and obligation that Miller & Church had towards each other. Edgar Allen Church is such a complex character with an wonderful heart. He is fresh out of Woodbury Rehabilitation Center for Youth Offenders. When his living arrangements fall through, it leaves him no choice but to call the one person who he hasn’t spoken to in 5 years. Miller. Miller who is everything to Church. Not knowing the feeling is reciprocated. Church comes from an abusive childhood where fists are used instead of words, where no physical acts of love is shown, and he only has himself. Miller breaks my heart, he’s living day to day but not really living. He has this storm raging inside of him, and instead of letting himself be he hides himself and its literally eating him apart.

I really like how the story is told in 3 different parts. We get to see what lead Church to his incarceration, what happened between him and Miller, and the fall out from those years spent apart. This was angsty in my opinion, but I’m glad that it had multiple components to keep me on my toes without worrying about their relationship. As much as I loved Church, my feelings were all over the place with Miller. He’s been in love with Church for so long but all his thoughts and feelings are constricted based on the guilt he feels about another man. Wrapped up in his own head, and hearing his father saying its a sin has Miller waffling on his sexuality. Bell did a good job on Church being the calm one when the sexuality conversation comes into play. It gets steamy and the love is already there. You can see what they mean to each other and I’m just blown away by the feels that was in this book.

The mystery aspect was well done. I cannot wait for Tobias to get a story. I don’t care if its with Ghost or not, I just need pure, sweet Tobias to get love. Ha, I know he isn’t pure, but I loved him. Ghost is so broken, but so wonderful at the same time I expect so many tears to come when his book comes out.

This was such a great start to the series. I mean, Bell did a good job with Bad Judgement, but Loose Cannon is in a class all by it self. Very well written, extremely flawed characters, such a realistic feeling to an emotional journey. I think fans in this genre would love this, and can definitely see this on the Best Books of 2017 list. A definite recommend from me.

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About Sidney Bell

Sidney Bell lives in the drizzly Pacific Northwest with her amazingly supportive husband. She received her MFA degree in Creative Writing in 2010, considered aiming for the Great American Novel, and then promptly started writing fanfiction instead. Eventually more realistic grown-ups convinced her to try writing something more fiscally responsible, which is how we ended up here.

When she’s not writing, she’s playing violent video games, yelling at the television during hockey games, or supporting her local library by turning books in late.

Single Malt by Leyla Rayne

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.

Single Malt: by Layla Reyne
Series: Agent Irish & Whiskey #1
Release Date: February 28, 2017
Pages: 194 • Format: eARC
Published By: Carina Press
Purchase Links:
AmazonKobo

The heart’s a resilient beast

Eight months after the car crash that changed everything, FBI agent Aidan Talley is back at work. New department, new case and a new partner. Smart, athletic and handsome, Jameson Walker is twelve years his junior. Even if Aidan was ready to move on—and he’s not—Jamie is off-limits.

Jamie’s lusted after Aidan for three years, and the chance to work with San Francisco’s top agent directly is too good to pass up. Aidan is prickly—to put it mildly—but a growing cyber threat soon proves Jamie’s skills invaluable.

Jamie’s talents paint a target on his back, and Aidan is determined to protect him. But with hack after hack threatening a high-security biocontainment facility, time is running out to thwart a deadly terrorist attack. They’ll have to filter out distractions, on the case and in their partnership, to identify the real enemy, solve the case and save thousands of lives, including their own.

three-stars

 

11 days to finish this book.

Yep, I just needed that to be known.

This had major potential for me. I love feds-spooks-spies stories. I like age-gap stories. Two guys with different backgrounds get together to a case that’s interesting enough. I’m still not sure on how much of it can be real for actual FED’s, I mean driving a new benz, stating in the rich digs, and the amount of facetious was a bit much. I did like book characters and some of the side characters.

I like when the case is involved with the story line as well. What I don’t like is the case taking up most of the atmosphere. The case overpowered the potential relationship between these two. I mean, I wasn’t sold on them from the beginning. It seemed forced. I don’t think Aidan should have been pushed so much into Jameson because he is still grieving, and its not fair to the other person if you aren’t going to give them your all. On Jameson’s part, I didn’t really think it was an attraction. They never seemed to meet before being partners so I guess throwing them together created some semblance of him being attracted to Aidan. Can I just say the nickname thing was cute for the first few times, it just got on my nerves by the end of the book. Hopefully book two will tone it down. It was a ton of information about each guy separately, the case, and little things here and there that distracted the shit out of me. I don’t even know who is who’s brother/sister/cousin at this point. It was too much. Add the writing really not working for me, but I was able to push through. I will say I liked it enough to give book 2 a try.

Once I got over the various actions involved in the plot it was pretty good. It of course was connected to Aidan’s husband and brothers’ death. A little far fetch but this author is able to keep me interested the rest of the story. It ends on a cliffhanger, but the possibilities of book 2 are greater for me by the end of the book. I think this was an okay book for the author’s first published book.

About Layla Reyne

2016 RWA® Golden Heart® Finalist, Layla Reyne, was raised in North Carolina but now calls San Francisco home. She enjoys weaving her bi-coastal experiences into her stories, along with adrenaline fueled suspense and heart pounding romance. When she’s not writing stories to excite her readers, she downloads too many books, watches too much television, and cooks too much food with her scientist husband, much to the delight of their smushed-face, leftover-loving dogs.

The Lawrence Browne Affair by Cat Sebastian

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 Lawrence Browne Affair: by Cat Sebastian
Release Date: February 7th, 2017
Pages: 352 • Format: eARC
Published By: Avon Impulse
Purchase Links:
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An earl hiding from his future . . .

Lawrence Browne, the Earl of Radnor, is mad. At least, that’s what he and most of the village believes. A brilliant scientist, he hides himself away in his family’s crumbling estate, unwilling to venture into the outside world. When an annoyingly handsome man arrives at Penkellis, claiming to be Lawrence’s new secretary, his carefully planned world is turned upside down.

A swindler haunted by his past . . .

Georgie Turner has made his life pretending to be anyone but himself. A swindler and con man, he can slip into an identity faster than he can change clothes. But when his long-dead conscience resurrects and a dangerous associate is out for blood, Georgie escapes to the wilds of Cornwall. Pretending to be a secretary should be easy, but he doesn’t expect that the only madness he finds is the one he has for the gorgeous earl.

Can they find forever in the wreckage of their lives?

Challenging each other at every turn, the two men soon give into the desire that threatens to overwhelm them. But with one man convinced he is at the very brink of madness and the other hiding his real identity, only true love can make this an affair to remember.

four-half-stars

Alright now, Cat this is 2 for 2 for me with your stories. I enjoyed the Soldier’s Scoundrel, but I really really liked this book. Georgie and Lawrence were hot like fire. The chemistry and adoration between these two were astounding. This book is in the same world as book one, but can be read as a standalone. Georgie is a con man but with a conscience. Lawrence is the mad Lord of the town who is scientific genius. They push each other buttons continuously, and I can feel the connection on page.

I really liked what the author did by having them be completely different towards each other, but have some of the same similarities of comfort with one another. Georgie needs to lay low for a while so he escapes to another town and poses as a secretary. Its not so far fetched since he knows how to do honest work, he just prefers conning. He is employed with Lord Radnor, and its frustrating, he’s infuriating, ungrateful, and downright mean at times. Well a little discomfort doesn’t hurt Georgie, in fact he is the ideal person to deal with the madman of the village. Georgie is falling and fighting his feelings on the same accord when it comes to Lawrence. He isn’t a bad guy per say, he is just prone to loud outbursts, and bouts of craziness according to Lawrence and the men in his family. The only way to be safe is to isolate himself from people, and his last living relatives. He stays coupe up in his family’s’ estate that he let go to hell. He things that if he stays away from people then they won’t have to deal with him. He lives on ham sandwiches, and apples from the only two servants that he allows to stay on at the house.

I am not usually one for slow burns, but this was much needed. The slow burn added on top of all the copious amounts of attraction that Lawrence and Georgie had for one another. Another kudos to the author for keeping the authenicty and dialogue up to reflect the period of time.

I found myself laughing at times, and tearing up at other. I thought the author did another great job with these characters. I think I enjoyed this one better then the first. The chemistry between the two was real. I liked the pacing, plot, and overall feeling that this story had. I do love regency romances, and Cat Sebastian can add herself to my auto-buy list as of now. I can’t wait for the third book in this series. I did love him in this book. Highly recommend this series!

About Cat Sebastian

Cat writes steamy, upbeat historical romances. They usually take place in the Regency, generally have at least one LGBTQ+ main character, and always have happy endings.

Before writing, Cat was a lawyer and a teacher. She enjoys crossword puzzles, geeking out over birds, gardening badly, and–of course–reading. In high school, her parents went away for a week, and instead of throwing raucous parties, Cat read Middlemarch. Even worse, Cat remembers little of a trip through Europe because she was busy reading Mansfield Park. Her proudest moment was when she realized her kids were shaping up to be hopeless bookworms too. Currently, her favorite genres are romance, mystery and fantasy.

Cat lives with her husband, three kids, and dog in an improbably small house. After growing up in the northeast, she now lives in a part of the south where every body of water seems to contain alligators or sharks, and every restaurant serves biscuits and gravy. She likes the biscuits, but not so much the alligators.

September by Robert Winter

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.

September: by Robert Winter
Series: Pride and Joy #1
Release Date: December 9, 2016
Pages: 290 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner
Purchase Links:
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David James is smart, successful, handsome… and alone. After the death of his lover, Kyle, from cancer, he buried himself in his law practice and the gym. At forty-eight, he is haunted by his memories and walled off from the world. When David injures himself working out, he’s assigned to Brandon Smith for physical therapy. The vibrant young therapist is attracted to David and realizes he needs a hand to get back into dating. What begins as a practice coffee date escalates to friendship, passion, and maybe something more, as they navigate a new relationship in Washington, DC, and the gay mecca of Provincetown.

But David remains trapped behind the barrier of fear and guilt. Will he remain loyal to Kyle’s memory if he moves on? Can he and Brandon manage a twenty-two-year age gap? Brandon thinks he understands David’s concerns, and for him, the answer to those questions is yes. He wants to be with David, and he believes he can overcome David’s barriers. But Brandon fails to account for the world’s reaction to a handsome young man attached to an older, wealthy lover. David’s memories, Brandon’s pride, and an unexpected tragedy might cost them something very special.

four-half-stars

Robert Winter’s September is an intimate look at love, grief, death, and learning to love again.

I am so shocked with my feelings and outcome of this story. My first read by this author, and I am amazed at his level of writing, and the emotions that he was able to evoke out of me. I’m just happy, had some ugly cries while reading this, but most of all happiness. Robert Winter first novel is a huge success. He had a thought plot, interesting characters, and heartbreak and love folded into this tale.

Brandon & David gave me hearts eyes, and I devoured this book so quickly. I honestly didn’t want it to end. I can see up until a certain point I was on the road to giving it 5 stars, but certain acts won’t allow me to do it. No worries, folks I still finished and enjoyed this story. I will admit the title confounded me for a bit, but I got it. I loved and understood it.

David is 48 yr old successful lawyer who is barely getting by in life. He’s working and keeping fit, but that’s it. He’s been numb to his surrounds for the past 2 years since his lover passed away. It’s hard for Robert to open up and allow someone in. From the snippets throughout the story his childhood was horrid, those events shaped him into the man he is now. He’s caring, self sufficient, he’s loving, generous, and a fixer. I think this were amazing qualities in a guy, and I really liked his character. Was he perfect? Hell no, he made mistakes but he’s human and I was able to forgive him. I think meeting Brandon was one of the best things he could have done for himself. I truly loved his character. He is the epitome of how I think a guy should be flaws and all, and he’s incredible in my eyes.

Brandon, **Le Sigh**. I am enamored with Brandon’s character. Not often do we see a character who is mature at such a young age. HA! I can call him young since I’m pushing 3-0 this year. Brandon was able to crack open some walls that David has built around himself. I loved how he handled David, knowing that this man is still grieving. Instead of pushing him to be over his lover, he embraced Kyle. He wanted to know more about him, their life together, and how they were. Such maturity, and compassion from Brandon. It brought tears to my eyes on multiple occasions in the book.

Them getting together was perfect from the very beginning. I enjoyed the pacing of the story, and loved how detailed each scene was set up. Robert Winter had some amazing characters Matt,  Joe & Terry, and darling Colin. I am happy that these guys had an amazing support system. The plot was well written and detailed, the right amount of steam(they were super hot together), enough dialogue between the two, and the general story was very good.

I look forward to book 2 in this series. Look forward to more of this author’s writing, because it really works for me. Definitely recommend this book!

 

 

About Robert Winter

Robert Winter is a recovering lawyer who likes writing about hot men in love much more than drafting a legal brief. He left behind the (allegedly) glamorous world of an international law firm to sit in his home office and dream up ways to torment his characters until they realize they are perfect for each other.

Robert divides his time between Washington, DC, and Provincetown, MA. He splits his attention between Andy, his partner of fifteen years, and Ling the Adventure Cat, who likes to fly in airplanes and explore the backyard jungle as long as the temperature and humidity are just right.