Whiskey Business 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.

Whiskey Business: by Avon Gale
Series: States of Love
Release Date:
Pages: 104 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAReAmazon

Ryder Waites will do anything to keep the tiny town of Gallows Grove, Kentucky, from vanishing off the map—even sell his family’s whiskey recipe to Bluegrass Bourbon in Lexington. Hopeful that the larger company can provide necessary improvements to the distillery, Ryder’s ultimate goal is to get Gallows Grove on the Bourbon Trail… and bring in much-needed tourism revenue. But to keep producing Hanged Man Bourbon in Gallows Grove, he’ll have to convince company liaison, unbearably stuffy and seriously hot Adam Keller, that he’s worth the investment.

Adam comes from an old-money family, but he’s determined to make his own way in the world. When he’s sent to Gallows Grove, he questions the life choices that led him to a rented room in a funeral home, in a town full of macabre-themed businesses. And he doesn’t know what to make of Ryder, the descendant of bootleggers who’s on a mission to save his strange town from extinction. When Adam and Ryder put aside their initial mistrust, the results are as smooth as good whiskey. But after Adam’s assignment ends, he’ll have to decide if small-town life and a future with Ryder is to his tastes.

four-stars

Whiskey Business has plenty of laugh out loud scenes. Avon Gale scored another one. Ryder & Adam were perfect together! Bourbon, Kentucky-isms, Basketball and Bad Puns what more can you want?

I really enjoyed the town of Gallows Grove! I think the town made for a more interesting character seeing as it brought most of the excitement. Ryder Waites is born and bred Kentucky, it’s in his blood, essence, and in his family’s bourbon. Trying to do right by the family and town, Ryder agrees to sale his brand to a company that’s in state and can equally help his little town. In comes Adam Keller. Adam is from old money, and doesn’t need to work, but when you hate horses why work for them? He doesn’t. He goes to school to start his own future. He finds his niche in the world and everything is smooth sailing until he rides into Gallows Grove.

Things are a little tense after this. I found myself chuckling at each guy’s expense. Both had some hilarious internal monologue-ing going on. Adam is a bit uptight when we meet him, and it immediately raises Ryder hackles. From there it’s lust on both guys ends, and funny moments. Who knew Mr.Uptight had such a dirty mouth on him? Good Lord, Adam surprised me. He was super filthy but that’s how I like my guys. Of course when feelings get involved signals get crossed then things go to hell in a hand basket for these two. It eventually works itself out and their union is a blessed one at the end of the day. *wink*

To me this is one of the better novels in the States of Love Series. I really had a fun timing reading it, and Avon stories seem to flow so easily for me. I can always count on her to bring the steam, feels, and humor in each and every one of them. To this day Power Play is my favorite book by her. Not to say, the others aren’t good, but this one stuck with me big time. I’d highly recommend this novella to anyone who wants to laugh, and have some steamy moments while doing it!

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.

Empty Net (Scoring Chances #4) 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.

Title: Empty Net by Avon Gale
Series:  Scoring Chances #4
Release Date: September 2, 2016
Pages: 200 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner
Purchase Links:
Dreamspinner

Spartanburg Spitfires’ goalie and captain Isaac Drake ended last season with an unexpected trip to the playoffs. He’s found a home and family with his coach and mentor, Misha Samarin, and he’s looking forward to making a serious run for the Kelly Cup. But things take an interesting turn when Isaac’s archnemesis, Laurent St. Savoy, is traded to the Spitfires. After Laurent’s despicable behavior in the playoffs last year, Isaac wants nothing to do with him – no matter how gorgeous he is. But that changes when Isaac discovers the reason for Laurent’s attitude.

Laurent St. Savoy grew up the only son of a legendary NHL goalie in a household rife with abuse, constantly treated like a disappointment on and off the ice. When a desperate attempt to escape his father’s tyranny sends him to the Spitfires, the last thing Laurent wants is to make friends. But there’s something about Isaac Drake that he can’t resist, and Laurent has an opportunity to explore his sexuality for the first time, but he’s cracking under end-of-the season pressures. When facing the playoffs and a rivalry turned personal vendetta, Isaac’s not sure he’s enough to hold Laurent—or their relationship—together.

Please be advised: This book does contain some non-graphic references to past childhood physical/emotional abuse as well as issues relating to ED (bulimia and restricted eating, disordered thoughts about eating)

three-half-stars

I’m annoyed. I guess I should get that out first. I’ve had nothing but hits with this series, and book 3 is my all time favorite. I’m annoyed for many reasons concerning this book. It took me 7 days to read this book. A big surprise for me, I was not able to put up with the antics of the first half. I went from rage, anger, annoyance, guilty and a slew of other emotions. It took a lot for me to not DNF this book. I knew it was a part of me in the first two days, but I did a normal thing by trying to read something else. I succeeded in that, and read a few other books. That lead me to believe that it wasn’t just me.

I did not connect to the book until the last half, and I enjoyed it. I’m so conflicted on the rating to actually give the book. I want to be as fair as possible, but it’s half because I didn’t care for the first half which is important. I needed to be drawn in by both guys, and for me this entire book seemed liked redemption for Laurent. In the mist of him gaining his confidence and learning about his sexuality, I feel like Issac was forgotten completely. I could be wrong here, and maybe his job the entire book was to be support for Laurent. He did a great job on that front, but where was Isaac in all of this? Do a few sexual experiences, and helping Laurent equals “Issac time”? I’m trying really hard to understand, but I’m not getting it at all.

I feel like Issac experiences were left out or on the back burner. No, I didn’t expect him to have some made up stuff happen for the book, I kinda just needed him to have a little independence in his book. I wanted to see a different side of him, and while he was a great support system, and eventual boyfriend I feel lost on his behalf. Again, these are all my perceptions and I’m definitely in the minority according to the ratings. Even after reading the ending, I felt nothing. No connection really, and I didn’t feel quite satisfied. I still look forward to more in the series. I might re-read this someday and my feelings could possibly change. Who knows?

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.

Blog Tour – Power Play by Avon Gale

 

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Oh My Shelves welcomes author Avon Gale to the blog in celebration of her latest release in the Scoring Chances Series, Power Play – out today from Dreamspinner Press – and share a special recipe from Misha. 

(The basics of this recipe are found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BuP6Ca5islU.)

The first time I made dinner for Max, I made him pirozhki. It is a recipe I have been making for a long time, but because I have lived in the States for almost twenty years and am a vegetarian, it is not the traditional recipe I remember my mother making. I have altered it a bit over the years that I have lived here.

First, you make the pirozhki dough, and set it aside to rise.

While it is rising, you make the filling. Traditionally this can include meat, but I make mine with mushrooms. Instead of potatoes, I make mine with wild rice. I cook the rice, sauté the mushrooms and the onions with salt and pepper, and then add the sautéed vegetables to the rice.

When the dough is risen, you flatten it on a floured surface. Do not forget this part or it will be very sticky. Max one time tried to make this for me for my birthday. It ended up with him covered in flour, a sticky mess of dough and Thai takeout. And other things, but that is not part of the recipe.

Roll the dough into balls, and then flatten them once more. In the center, place a tsp. of the rice/mushroom/onion filling and pinch around the sides to the top to close it. Grease your baking pan and put the pirozhki upside-down in the pan, then cover them with an egg wash. Bake them at 350F for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown, then cool for five minutes before you eat them.

~Excerpt~ 

“I’d never watched this, you know.”

“The YouTube video?” Misha had seen that too. It was filed with angry commenters yelling that he should be deported back to Russia.

“The hit.”

Misha blinked. “You’ve seen the commercial, though. Yes?”RC

“Yeah, I wish I could say I haven’t seen that. But I meant, I didn’t watch this until a few months ago. They played that game on the NHL channel, so I watched it.”

It never occurred to Misha that Max wouldn’t have seen it, but then he remembered that Max was the hero, not the villain of the story. Misha watched the hit play out on the screen. What must that feel like, to watch the moment it all ended? When Max hit the ice, did he know that game was his last? Did Misha know it was his? How had he felt? He couldn’t remember.

The scene switched to the replay. Misha watched dispassionately, retreated into the blinding pain of his migraine, and told himself that it was all right to suffer, that he should, that he deserved it.

Max paused the video. “Look. See what I have there?”

Misha blinked. He had not expected questions. “I—what?”

“The puck, Misha. The puck. Your hit wasn’t late.”

Oh. “Yes. I know.”

Max stared at him. On the television screen, their younger selves were suspended at the moment everything changed.

 

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PowerPlayLGPower Play by Avon Gale
Series: Scoring Chances, Book Three
Release Date: May 9, 2016
Pages: 200 • Cover Artist: Aaron Anderson
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazonARe B&N • iBooks

A freak accident during the Stanley Cup Playoffs put an end to Max Ashford’s hockey career. Despite everything, Max gets back into the game he loves—only this time, behind the bench as an assistant coach of the Spartanburg Spitfires, the worst team in the entire league. But nothing prepares him for the shock when he learns the new head coach is Misha Samarin, the man who caused Max’s accident.

After spending years guilt-ridden for his part in Max’s accident, Russian native Misha Samarin has no idea what to do when he’s confronted with Max’s presence. Max’s optimism plays havoc with Misha’s equilibrium—as does the fierce attraction that springs up between them.

Not only must they navigate Misha’s remorse and a past he’s spent a lifetime trying to forget, but also a sleazy GM who is determined to use their history as a marketing hook. But when an unwelcome visitor targets a player, Misha revisits his darkest days, and that might cost him and Max the beginning they’ve worked so hard to build.


Tour Dates & Stops:

9-May:

My Fiction Nook, Open Skye Book Reviews, Inked Rainbow Reads, Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings,

Oh My Shelves 

10-May:

Two Chicks Obsessed With Books and Eye Candy, Joyfully Jay, Jessie G. Books, Rednecks and Romance,

Anna Butler Fiction

11-May:

MM Good Book Reviews, Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, Posy Roberts, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents

12-May:

BadgeLove Bytes, The Novel Approach, Unquietly Me, Happily Ever Chapter

13-May:

BFD Book Blog, The Hat Party, MM Book Escape

16-May:

Havan Fellows, Divine Magazine, Outrageous Heroes, Prism Book Alliance, Boys on the Brink Reviews

17-May:

3 Chicks After Dark, Full Moon Dreaming, Butterfly-O-Meter

18-May:

Foxylutely Book Reviews, Three Books Over The Rainbow, V’s Reads

19-May:

Book Lovers 4Ever, Charley Descoteaux, Mikky’s World of Books, Carly’s Book Reviews

20-May:

Making It Happen, Kirsty Loves Books, Bayou Book Junkie

21-May:

A.M. Leibowitz, Alpha Book Club, Molly Lolly, Man2ManTastic

 

Final

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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.

Power Play 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.

PowerPlayLGPower Play by Avon Gale
Series: Scoring Chances, Book Three
Release Date: May 9, 2016
Pages: 200 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazonARe B&N • iBooks

A freak accident during the Stanley Cup Playoffs put an end to Max Ashford’s hockey career. Despite everything, Max gets back into the game he loves—only this time, behind the bench as an assistant coach of the Spartanburg Spitfires, the worst team in the entire league. But nothing prepares him for the shock when he learns the new head coach is Misha Samarin, the man who caused Max’s accident.

After spending years guilt-ridden for his part in Max’s accident, Russian native Misha Samarin has no idea what to do when he’s confronted with Max’s presence. Max’s optimism plays havoc with Misha’s equilibrium—as does the fierce attraction that springs up between them.

Not only must they navigate Misha’s remorse and a past he’s spent a lifetime trying to forget, but also a sleazy GM who is determined to use their history as a marketing hook. But when an unwelcome visitor targets a player, Misha revisits his darkest days, and that might cost him and Max the beginning they’ve worked so hard to build.

five-stars

So this might be my new favorite of the series. It might be a Hockey Series, but this one hockey is in the background to the wonderful relationship between Head Coach Misha and Assistant Coach Max. It seems hard to top each book as you go in the series, but for me the was the ultimate best. I did not want it to end at all. It was so good from beginning to end. I loved both characters equally well, and I might slightly adore Misha more because of his Russian heritage and background. Instead of playing both guys are retired and have a sort of history together. Max’s accident and career ending injury coincides with Misha winning the Stanley Cup. This one I understood clearly, hockey isn’t my thing so it was great seeing this from a different point of view. I love that we got both guys point of views and clearly we get to see the build up from sort of enemies to trying to be friends to admitting the love for one another. Which in hindsight wasn’t that hard for Max.

Let’s talk characters. I love the way each guy in this series is different from others. Max is awesome. In the beginning I couldn’t really get a good grasp on him, but once he started going he was amazing. I loved his openness about Bisexuality. He admitted certain things to himself and came to the conclusion of it’s what he likes. Misha is definitely my type of man, the silent and broody types. The guys with the thousand I stare. Misha was really quiet and he held most things close to his chest. After everything he went through in his teenage years and to come to America and being able to have some freedom kinda through him for a loop. He seemed so close off and stoic but I think first and foremost he needed a friend and that was definitely Max.

Misha still holds himself responsible for Max’s injury. I’m glad the conversations were had because I didn’t want it to linger over the entire book. The chemistry was off the charts hot. I loved them together. It was sweeet times and off the chart smoldering times between these two. I enjoyed the characters as well, Besley might be a skeevy perv but when it counts he comes through. I can’t wait to see a Drake book. I’m feeling him and his room-mate. Those two definitely have the potential. Great seeing Ethan!!!! All in all I really liked this book. It’s by far the best in the series and definitely re-read material. It’s going to be hard to outdo it in my opinion, but I have super faith in Avon!

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.

Conversation Hearts 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.

ConversationHeartsLGConversation Hearts by Avon Gale
Release Date: February 10, 2016
Pages: 31 • Published by: Dreamspinner Press • Format: eARC
Purchase Links: Dreamspinner • Amazon ARe

It’s Valentine’s Day, and grad student—and male escort—Levi Barron expects to spend his evening with a client who’s paying him for his services in bed… not an assassin who needs to borrow the view from his hotel room in the morning.

With nothing to do but endure the company of his unwanted guest, Levi and the assassin, Sinjin, spend some time bonding over HGTV, minibar beverages, Flannery O’Connor short stories, terrible Valentine’s candy, and the necessity of lying about their jobs.

Their evening takes an unexpected turn when they decide to indulge in their mutual attraction, and in the morning Levi doesn’t know if he’s spent the night with a hired killer or a hydraulic engineer with a very specific fantasy. Either way, the two have enough chemistry—in and out of bed—that Levi isn’t sure one night with Sinjin will be enough.

And a message left in candy suggests the feeling is mutual.

four-stars

Avon Gale with the expected. I love the bleeding heart cover, totally misconception with the story though. Oh my goodness I loved it. If I could describe it in two words, I’ll say “Dark Comedy”. I feel like this is a what not to do situation if someone knocks on your hotel door. I really like the dark satire of the story, and sure I’m a big enough person to admit I don’t who Flannery O’Connor is/was or even if she is real. Sue me. I didn’t even get the itch to google, and I still thought it was a solid story. Such a cute novella, with both intriguing characters.

I wonder if Levi second guesses his job after this Valentine’s Day weekend. Ha! I hope so or no. I really wanted more about these two characters. I loved the smart hitman who wasn’t broody or mean, or silent. Sinjin was epic fun. I loved the conversations between the two. You definitely see the connection, and if either guy was able to meet on “normal” situations we definitely could see easily being together. The bouts of crazy holiday sex, conversation over the hatred of Fresca soda, education and everything Wicked good was a really solid read for me. Avon’s style is really growing on me and I look forward to reading more from her.

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.