When Forever Ended by Cara Dee

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.

when-forever-endedWhen Forever Ended: by Cara Dee
Series: Camassia Cove #2
Release Date: November 30, 2016
Pages: • Format: eARC
Published By: Self-Published
Purchase Links:
Amazon

At ten years old, Kelly and I were two rambunctious boys who carved our initials into a tree in the forest. We promised to be best friends forever and bumped our fists to seal the deal. I never should’ve kissed him that summer before college. It was a day that buried me in shame, a day I spent the next twenty-four years regretting, a day I never told anyone about.

At forty-three, depression was suffocating me. Not even my wife and two children could lift the heavy fog. I was riddled with guilt and self-hatred, and I was starting to realize that I would slowly fade away until nothing remained. Then one day, Kelly was back in town.

10% of the proceeds will be donated to Hope For Depression.

(All novels taking place in Camassia Cove are standalone.)
four-stars

I literally need to tip my hat off to Cara Dee. I really am a fan of her writing style. I don’t want to use the word plain, but maybe it’s more homey and realistic. I am always able to connect with her characters. I don’t necessarily have to be in their shoes, but she makes it to easy to relate to their struggles. I do like the way Cara tackled depression. I think we all know someone living with depression, and this book was such an eye opener for me. Its so easy for me to tell someone to get over things, but I’m not in their shoes and I don’t feel like they do. This book was completely different then book one. I loved book, and I really enjoyed this one as well. I do feel slighted in the sense that I would have liked to see more with Will & Kelly. It was nice for the two different p.o.v’s but because the focus on the story was for them more then anything I would have like them to have more screen time together. This wasn’t some quick fix for Will, he had to want it, and adjust to life differently then what he is used to.

Cara has written some of my favorite comfort read books, and this series is definitely gaining group to add to the list. I really like the simplistic way of life that her characters have. For me, I feel like they are relatable is so many ways. I adored Kelly. Oh my gosh, did I? I looked how he treated Will, and was so forthcoming with his past history with depression. It must have been really hard to walk away from someone that you love because of your fears. Kelly doesn’t have it easy. He’s adjusting to life with his sexuality and accepting it.

Will is 43, married with two kids, and severely depressed. The one thing that I would have liked was some prologue and a glimpse in the life of Will before Kelly came back into his life. I don’t think it was real clear on his reason for depression. I believe so many things that can have caused his depression, but its certain things that the characters speak on a past event that I felt like maybe it should have been included in the story. It was emotional to say the least, I felt all Will’s vulnerabilities, and his heartbreak.

Word to the wise for all those HEA people, there is cheating in this book. Don’t lose sleep over it, cheating happens in real life here folks. This series is realistic fiction so real life situations happen here. I really would be so much happier if this book had 100 more pages. I never wanted it to end. I wanted to see the progress of everyone by the end of the story. Was Will’s depression cured? Hell no, it is manageable by the end of the story. That’s all I can ask for. This definitely made me want to go back and re-read book 1 and this again. I love this writing, and can’t wait for the next in the series!

About Cara Dee

here aren’t many things better than picking up my Kindle and getting completely sucked into a whole new world—where words morph into images and characters’ moods suddenly reflect my own. Aside from good plot and writing, for me, it boils down to relatable characters.

As a writer, I’m not finished until the men and women in my books come to life, until I can see them as real people, until I can connect with them. Which means I write what I want to read: everyday heroes and heroines who have the same struggles we all do. They evolve, have flaws, make mistakes and amends, learn, and find the endings they fight for.

Those are the characters who take the readers on a journey away from work, laundry, grocery shopping, and to-do lists.

When I’m not writing, researching, or brainstorming, I’m either planning my next trip (never-ending bucket list!), reading, watching hockey, or spending time with family and friends

Friendly Fire by Cari Z.

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.

cariFriendly Fire: by Cari Z.
Release Date: October 17, 2016
Pages: 252 • Format: eARC
Published By: Riptide
Purchase Links:
Riptide

Elliot McKenzie is the king of reinvention. Five years after losing his job and his lover and almost going to prison, his self-help program, Charmed Life, is more successful than he’d ever dreamed. He thinks he’s put his sordid past firmly behind him, until he starts receiving cryptic threats . . . and realizes it might not be as over as he’d hoped.

Security expert Lennox West has been lost since a deadly skirmish in Afghanistan led to his forced retirement from the Army. His PTSD makes helping his ex raise their daughter a challenge. When his ex’s sister asks him to set her boss up with a security system, Lennox isn’t expecting anyone like Elliot McKenzie—a man who captures his attention and makes him feel relaxed for the first time since leaving the service.

But Elliott is dangerously stubborn. Even as the threats against him escalate, he refuses to involve the police, and Lennox fears that stubbornness could kill him. A battle of wills ensues that brings them closer to each other than either man expected. But if the threats turn real, they might not live long enough to get their future together.

three-half-stars

The only thing that saved me from DNF the book was my need to see the end through. I liked the first half of the story, the two bad people were obvious, or at least one of them was. I enjoyed the writing a lot. It pushed me through the end. At the end of the story, I don’t know if I like the relationship. They didn’t really bond for me. I guess I wanted more passion from the couple and that’s what I found that was seriously lacking! I liked Lennox a lot and kinda loved his name. (It went on my future’s children name list)! I like Elliot for the most part, but I hated his job. It bothered me more then the story. I felt like we were leading up to this amazing story line and it wasn’t apart of the story. I didn’t like his career from the get go, but it became the focal point of why these two guys were together and I don’t get a glimpse of what Elliot does to make it special. Another thing was the getting to see him and Vanessa together. That bothered me. I wanted that scene for myself since Elliot cared so much about letting things happen to him just so Vanessa career wouldn’t get hurt.

I can’t speak for other readers but I look for things I can relate to in novels. I like the realistic idea that Elliot screwed up in life so he is atoning for his mistakes by not being a burden to his sister. Yeah, he had some really crazy things happen to him, but he was so worried about messing up Vanessa’s life that we get word of mouth instead of the actual scene. I’m greedy, I guess I wanted to be able to relate to him in some sort of fashion. I wasn’t to thrilled about the outcome.

Lennox was the type of person that you need to warm up to. He kinda comes of stand offish, but I like to call that “gentlemanly stoic”. He seems like to be in a difficult head space in life. I don’t really know the time frame from him being out the military to present day now. He seemed to be atoning for mistakes he things he’s made, but that’s one thing we don’t get to see about Lennox. I feel like his story wasn’t finished. He didn’t get enough personal screen time to me, and I wanted him to come to terms with his own grievances. It’s a part in the book where he is telling Elliot about his reassurances and atoning for prior mistakes. I don’t know if that was a light bulb moment for Lennox, but it didn’t seem he got the closure to me.

All in all, this was an okay read. I enjoyed the writing way more then the execution of the story. I don’t think it gelled well after the 50% mark. I really would have liked one trope to have been the main focus. Instead, I feel like the mystery/suspense as in competition with the romance side of the story. I will definitely check out more from this author though.

About Cari Z.

Cari Z. is a Colorado girl who loves snow and sunshine. She has a wonderful relationship with her husband, a complex relationship with the characters in her head and a sadomasochistic relationship with her exercise routine. She feels like Halloween should happen every month, which is why you get this picture of her, and hopes that you enjoy reading what she’s put out there as much as she enjoyed writing it in the first place.

Chase This Light by Francis Gideon

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.

francis-gideonChase This Light: by Francis Gideon
Series: World of Love
Release Date: October 12, 2016
Pages: 112 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazonARe

When Jason Flores moves to the Yukon for a new job, he’s not sure what to expect. His son Micah seems enchanted by the wildlife, but his recent fear of the dark means that the eighteen-hour nights in the winter will be a difficult adjustment. When Jason takes Micah to the local museum’s interactive lecture series on the gold rush, it turns out to be one of the best decisions he’s ever made.

Pete Odjick, a tattooed First Nations and Inuit man, dresses up for the weekly lectures as Skookum Jim, one of the first prospectors to find gold. He takes an immediate interest in Micah and an even bigger interest in Jason.

As their flirtation grows into something more serious, Jason’s job at a big name oil company and Pete’s volunteer work with an environmental group become a point of contention. Can they come to an understanding and give Micah a family again? Or will the drastic differences between them tear them apart? As the winter nights grow longer, Pete and Jason worry their love won’t be enough to chase the darkness away.

four-stars

I thought this was a cute novella. Really well written, very detailed, and super cool facts. I liked both mc’s. I liked the setting as well. I did feel like Alaska was the glue that held the story together. I liked how both mc’s passions and jobs ended up intertwining. I think the author did a great job with researching for each guy’s cause and the historic facts that are featured in the museum. I thought the Micah was wonderful as well. He was such a sweet little boy, and he really felled hard for Pete.

Pete and Jason were great together. I think they each brought out certain needs and wants from one another. Like most books, a little bit of miscommunication causes them to suddenly split. Don’t worry it wasn’t petty nonsense. The split between the two definitely showed how each guy came to the realization that they needed each other more then they thought. I think Gideon was able to show how being different in causes as well as anything else in life can be a burden on a relationship. The goal is to compromise and talk things through. This is where Gideon excelled at in this story. Add on the bonus of Jason being a newly single father and moving to another country, I think he did great in choosing Pete and being able to think of Pete’s feelings and causes as well.

All in all, I’d say it was a pretty good story. It was very good for the length that it was. I am really liking these World of Love stories. Their short and very contemporary. I recommend this book big time. I am looking forward to more from Francis Gideon.

About Francis Gideon

Francis Gideon is a writer of m/m romance, but he also dabbles in mystery, fantasy, historical, and paranormal fiction. He likes to stay up late, drink too much coffee, and read too many comic books. He credits music, especially the artists Patti Smith, Frank Iero, Gerard Way, Florence + the Machine, and The Pixies as his main sources of inspiration, but the list grows every day. Since age twelve, he’s been trying to figure out what genre is best suited for a strange, quiet kid like him and so far, he’s happy to be where he’s ended up.

When not writing fiction, Francis teaches college English classes while he studies for his PhD. He has published several nonfiction and critical articles on everything from the Canadian poet and artist P.K. Page, transgender identity in the YouTube community, using fanfiction as a teaching tool, and character deaths in the TV show Hannibal. Those are all under different his “real” name, though. He writes his novels using his middle name, Francis, so that his students don’t Google him and ask too many questions.

Both Francis and his partner live in Canada, where they often disagree about TV shows and make really bad puns. To talk more about books, bad horror movies, LGBT poetry, or anything else, please drop him a line!

What Remains by Garrett Leigh

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.

WhatRemains_600x900What Remains by Garrett Leigh
Release Date: July 4, 2016
Pages: 283 • Format: eARC
Published By: Riptide Publishing
Purchase Link:
Riptide

Web designer Jodi Peters is a solitary creature. Lunch twice a week with his ex-girlfriend-turned-BFF and the occasional messy venture to a dodgy gay bar is all the company he needs, right?

Then one night he stumbles across newly divorced firefighter Rupert O’Neil. Rupert is lost and lonely, but just about the sweetest bloke Jodi has ever known. Add in the heady current between them, and Jodi can’t help falling hard in love. He offers Rupert a home within the walls of his cosy Tottenham flat—a sanctuary to nurture their own brand of family—and for four blissful years, life is never sweeter.

Until a cruel twist of fate snatches it all away. A moment of distraction leaves Jodi fighting for a life he can’t remember and shatters Rupert’s heart. Jodi doesn’t know him—or want to. With little left of the man he adores, Rupert must cling to what remains of his shaky faith and pray that Jodi can learn to love him again.

three-half-stars

I was so expecting my reaction and emotions to be like this when I first read the blurb.

I had high hopes, I’m not going to lie. It wasn’t a bad story, but it seemed pedestrian. That might seem harsh, but I know others, and myself included puts Garrett Leigh’s work on a higher pedestal. She’s an amazing writer and story teller. The range of feelings and emotions that I feel when reading her stories always leave me stumped, happy, and wrung out. But I love it.

For me, amnesia is suck a finicky topic to talk about. I mean, I don’t want it to be like in the movies when they miraculously get their memories back, and because I lived first hand with someone who suffered an brain injury, I definitely get it. I love the initial meeting between Jodi & Rupert. I like the past and present dialogue that we are given. Leigh is able to show them from the beginning stance of their friendship. She showed us how these two guys needed each other. It was almost like the beginning was Jodi showing Rupert his sexuality.He was able to teach him with the respect of not knowing if Rupert was going to be invested in him. I like the push and pull that they both have with each other. Rupert was able to grown within himself. Jodi was charismatic, and self assured in himself. Falling in love with Rupert was unexpected, but welcomed.

Fast forward to the accident, and it’s total role reversal. Jodi is the one getting paid attention to. It’s not bad thing, let me say that. Rupert has grown so much into himself, and with that confidence of the love he has for Jodi it’s undeniable not to see the love that they have. Rupert had to put his partner before everything. It was a long process, that takes courage and love to do. That’s not my issue with the story itself. With all the right formula that was put into the story, I finished thinking what was wrong? It was lacking emotion. Not once did I feel a tear, anger, or the usual stuff I equate with Leigh’s writing. I hate to add onto it, but it was monotone. One noted, and not something I was responding. While both guys were good characters, and they have the connection together, I just never connected with them.

It wasn’t the Garrett Leigh I love, but it was okay.

 

About Garrett Leigh

Garrett Leigh is a British writer and book designer, currently working for Dreamspinner Press, Loose Id, Riptide Publishing, and Black Jazz Press. Her protagonists will always always be tortured, crippled, broken, and deeply flawed. Throw in a tale of enduring true love, some stubbly facial hair, and a bunch of tattoos, and you’ve got yourself a Garrett special.

When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible. That, and dreaming up new ways to torture her characters. Garrett believes in happy endings; she just likes to make her boys work for it.

Garrett also works as a freelance cover artist for various publishing houses and independent authors. For cover art info, please visit blackjazzdesign.com

Home by Cara Dee (Camassia Cove #1)

Series:
(Website, Blog, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads)

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.


412RSXFkabL._SX317_BO1,204,203,200_Home by
Cara Dee
Series: 
Camassia Cove, Book One
Release Date: June 1, 2016
Pages: 168 • Format: eARC
Published By:  Cara Dee
Purchase Link:
Amazon 

For as long as I can remember, I’ve only had one goal: survival. It’s what I know. There is no future beyond making it through another night and getting my hands on as much money as possible, by any means necessary. Pride and dignity are things I can’t afford.

It’s been the worst year yet—and not because I live on the streets. That’s nothing compared to being separated from my little girl. But I do what I can, and I send any money I make for her care. I can only hope she remembers me. I’m past desperate, needing her to know how much I love her and that I’ve done everything in my power to make it back to her.

The day I stepped off the bus in Seattle, I saw him. Adrian appeared at a time I most needed a helping hand, and his habit of rescuing strays became my salvation. He gave me hope. He taught me to dream about something I’d never dared to wish for.

A home.
(All novels taking place in Camassia Cove are standalone.)

four-half-stars

You know I was really skeptical about a new Cara Dee novel so soon after Noah. It wasn’t something I really enjoyed and I was disappointed in the author. Well, she literally came back and this is one of my favorite books of 2016. It was amazing from start to finish. I wanted it to be super longer, and she writes her characters and stories to be so comforting to me. I always love classify her as realistic fiction, but her character are relatable. I think she did a fantastic job with the characters, the story, setting and the tone of the story. Of course I had tears 5% into the story. I knew once I started that I wasn’t going to be able to stop, and it was definitely going to leave the lump in your throat in certain areas.

I haven’t loved a character so much from this author since Cam & Austin from Aftermath, but Dominic & Teach were so beautifully raw, and honest that I connected immediately.She was able to turn Dominic into someone who can look forward to trusting someone. He had no family who he can trust, he had no one to show him things. I get emotional when reading books like these but they turn out to be some of my favorites. I root for the underdog and for guys like Dominic who on all fronts life looks like it won’t turn out much, but somehow they overcome and beat the odds. I have a special place in my heart for people like Billy. People who help instead of ignore. Billy wasn’t able to do much for the homeless youths in Philly, but he was able to offer them a little place to sleep and something small to eat. He was bluntly honest, and crass but he was the only father Dominic was able to have. Dominic’s only goal throughout most of the book is to take care of his daughter. The daughter he hasn’t seen in a year, and who he sends money to by degrading his body. It takes a strong person to step into this world without being addicted to things to cope with the pain and escape into another world so you won’t have to deal with it. He’s resilient and pushes his self extremely hard to do whatever he needs to do in order to make it to Thea. In turn he hadn’t realized he just found his home after 24 years of living.

Meeting Adrian was destined in my mind. I loved EVERYTHING about him. I wish it was a dual pov. It would have made it 5x more better, but I was happy with the finished product. I would have loved for some more background information on him. He might be one of the most selfless characters that I’ve ever read before. Just seeing these two guys navigate this thing was beautiful. I enjoyed Dom being unsure of his feelings for Adrian, and I loved Adrian teaching Dom all these new things. It isn’t a pretty love story. Both guys have to wade through rough waters just to make it on the other side. Through tears, bouts of miscommunication, and a death it’s a really good story. I will definitely be looking for more of this series. I cannot wait, and I definitely see myself re-reading this again throughout the year. Congrats Cara, this is a winner!!!

About Cara Dee

here aren’t many things better than picking up my Kindle and getting completely sucked into a whole new world—where words morph into images and characters’ moods suddenly reflect my own. Aside from good plot and writing, for me, it boils down to relatable characters.

As a writer, I’m not finished until the men and women in my books come to life, until I can see them as real people, until I can connect with them. Which means I write what I want to read: everyday heroes and heroines who have the same struggles we all do. They evolve, have flaws, make mistakes and amends, learn, and find the endings they fight for.

Those are the characters who take the readers on a journey away from work, laundry, grocery shopping, and to-do lists.

When I’m not writing, researching, or brainstorming, I’m either planning my next trip (never-ending bucket list!), reading, watching hockey, or spending time with family and friends

Knit Tight (Portland Heat #4) 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.

Knit-TightKnit Tight by Annabeth Albert
Series: Portland Heat
Release Date: April 12, 2016
Pages: 112 • Format: eARC
Published By: Lyrical Shine
Purchase Links:
Amazon • iTunesB&N • Kobo • Google Play

One of Portland’s hottest young baristas, Brady is famous for his java-topping flair, turning a regular cup of joe into a work of art. Every Wednesday—aka “Knit Night”—hordes of women and their needles descend on the coffeehouse, and Brady’s feeling the heat. Into the fray walks a tall, dark, and distractingly handsome stranger from New York. His name is Evren, and he’s the sexy nephew of Brady’s sweetest customer, the owner of the yarn shop down the street. He’s also got a killer smile, confident air, and masculine charm that’s tying Brady’s stomach in knots. The smitten barista can’t wait to see him at the next week’s gathering. But when he tries to ask Evren out, his plans unravel faster than an unfinished edge. If Brady hopes to warm up more than Evren’s coffee, he’ll have to find a way to untangle their feelings, get out of the friend zone, and form a close-knit bond that’s bound to last a lifetime…

 

three-stars

I love this series a lot. It was my first books by Annabeth Albert. These little nuggets of magic were so realistic and honest. I loved the simplicity of the careers, the realness of the guys and the emotions that are packed into each story. When I seen that we were getting a 4, I was super psyched. I love the idea of an older sibling taking care of his younger siblings, and falling in love. It was a match made for me. It took me a long time to get connected to the main characters, and by the end of it I’m still not sold on either guy. I don’t really see the attraction between the two. This novella just seemed to be missing the magic that book 1-3 had. It wasn’t bad at all, but my 30% both guys were forgettable in my eyes.

Brady is taking care of his younger siblings with his 18 year old sister. I couldn’t imagine doing it, but they make it work. He sacrifices alot of things for his “kids”, but that’s what makes him unique. He’s a barista who actually likes being one works at a coffee shop. He meets Evren who comes to “Knit Night” with the local older ladies. From the first glance, the attraction is obvious to me. I liked Brady way more then Evren. I think Evren was to stand offish in my mind. Or it could be this novella was a lot heavier with real life things then previous novellas in the series. It touched on bisexuality, and both sides dealing with grief. It kinda took away from what I’ve acquainted the series with. I would like to see more of this series, because I truly enjoy them. I think Annabeth is a talented writer and look forward for more.

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.

Under a Sky of Ash 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.

UnderaSkyofAshLGUnder a Sky of Ash by Brandon Witt
Release Date: March 21, 2016
Pages: 270 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazonARe

More than an decade after leaving Colorado to attend college and escape his past, Isaiah Greene moves back and builds a life in Denver as a special education teacher. When he meets Ben Woods, the mentor of one of his students, the attraction is immediate. The revelations that they’ve both suffered traumatic childhoods form a bond between them.
Raised by an abusive grandmother, Ben is a recovering addict who has made a family with his construction worker boss, Hershel, and Hershel’s husband, Daniel—drag queen ManDonna. Adding Isaiah to his life gives Ben a glimpse of a future he’d never dreamed possible for himself.
Both Isaiah and Ben are survivors, but when guilt drives a wedge between them, the past threatens to end their relationship.
Ben and Isaiah embark on journeys of self-discovery. Though their path will be difficult at times, humor and love find a way to bring light to the darkness.

three-stars

Reading this story was a little eye-opening with the way that relationships come about. Isaiah and Ben must have been destined to be together. Two guys who went through equally traumatizing things at a young age come together for love and happiness. This is my second Brandon Witt book to date. I’m just learning his style and word play I guess. I really enjoyed two of the supporting couples a lot. Hershel and ManDonna were amazing characters, and I loved every minute they were on page. I can say now that I don’t know how I feel about Ben & Isaiah individually. Especially Isaiah, I know what he went through, and how he is now, I don’t think after 12% I really connected with him. I understand Ben and I get his actions on the decisions he made later on in life. I get at 25 why he’s a recovering addict and I get him fighting for his sobriety each and every day.

This story dealt with a lot of things, self discovery being one of the biggest thing. I don’t think Isaiah discovered his true self, maybe in time it would tell. I would have loved Isaiah to have some peace for himself. I’m not sure the guilt of his childhood would ever allow him to show his true self whoever that is. I will say I do like him with Ben, he might be the normalcy Ben yearns for. I did like seeing Ben in his big brother glory. He might be a little unpolished when it comes to being a parental figure, but just him attempting and trying was so worth it.

When the past comes out it’s like a stabbing motion in my chest. I didn’t know what it meant for Ben or Isaiah. So much happens over their shared past it’s hard to see the outcome for these two. I really liked how the author wrote those scenes. They definitely needed to figure out their things by themselves. I literally hated Ben’s grandmother. It was sickening seeing her treating Ben like that. I don’t really know how I feel about Isaiah’s parents. Maybe it was their way of handling the situation, but it’s a scary situation to be in. I just wanted Isaiah to yell, punch, and break stuff. I felt like he needed an outlet. This was a good read for me. Emotional at times, happy at others, and definitely a positive outcome by the end. I’m starting to enjoy Brandon Witt’s writing.

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.

Until September by Chris Scully

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.

USeptemberUntil September by Chris Scully
Release Date: February 8, 2016 
Pages: 298 • Published by: Riptide Publishing  • Format: eARC
Purchase Links:  Riptide Amazon

As a teenager, Archie Noblesse clawed his way out of the poverty, heartache, and abuse of the reservation and left his family behind. Desperate to shake the shadow of his past, he reinvents himself as Archer Noble, an outspoken blogger and controversial author who lives only for himself. But when his beloved sister dies, Archer is saddled with guardianship of his niece and nephew.

Elementary school teacher Ryan Eriksson is devastated when his best friend Marguerite is killed, leaving her two young children orphaned. Helping Archer with his new responsibilities eases his grief, but when Archer offers him custody of the children, Ryan’s left with an impossible choice: get the family he’s always wanted, or respect Margie’s wishes and convince Archer to give parenting—and his heritage—a chance.

To buy time, Ryan promises to stay for the summer, hoping that Archer will change his mind and fall for the kids. But Archer’s reluctant, and the growing attraction between him and Ryan complicates matters. Legal decisions must be made, and soon, before Ryan returns to school. But with hearts involved, more than just the children’s future is on the line.

four-stars

I’m not to familiar with Chris Sully, but if it’s like this from now on I’m going to get real familiar with her. This was good in a insta-love sort of none way. I called it insta-love because they loved each other before they liked one another. They just weren’t able to figure it out as soon as everyone else. The author did a really good job on the research surrounding the Aboriginal women in Canada. It’s not something I was familiar with, but the research and depth of those facts caused me to google things of course. It was a shock of the thousands of missing women. I thought it was a great tie in with what the story was about.

Archie is a hard character to like. He’s redeemable, and he did redeem himself. I get why he was the way he presented himself. He took all his vulnerabilities from his childhood and bottled them up. He needed to show he was strong, resilient, and indifferent. I would have like to see him sort out the problems from his childhood, not for anyone’s sake except for his. I can see he didn’t need the counseling about his feelings, or maybe being a parent to his sister’s kids was enough of coming to terms that he needed.

I feel like he never got a chance to grieve at all. For his mother, his childhood and it took a while for me to understand that his actions in the book were his way of grieving for his sister. The relationship between the kids & Archer was easier to deal with than him & Ryan. The kids are someone who will love you unconditionally as long as you are there for them. I loved that it was a learning process for him. He had to give up control, and learn patience. Ryan was definitely a blessing in disguise.

I really liked Ryan’s character. Being so young as he is, I felt he was a very good contemporary character. I liked that he wanted marriage and children at a young age. It happens to people, and I was very glad to see him sticking up for himself. I liked the way these two came together and worked as couple and future parents. I think they were sweet together. I would have love to see Ryan have his dream come true according to him it has. I love Archie for considering Ryan over everything in the end of it. Really good story.

About Chris Scully

CHRIS SCULLY lives in Toronto, Canada where she grew up spinning romantic stories in her head. When the tedium of a corporate day job grew too much, she took a chance and found her creative escape in writing. Always searching for something different, she has discovered a home in M/M romance and strives to give her characters the happy endings they deserve.

Chris would love to hear from readers at: cscully@bell.net.

Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone (Harry Potter #1) by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone (Harry Potter #1) by J.K. RowlingSeries:
on March 27, 2012
Pages: 324
Harry Potter thinks he is an ordinary boy. He lives with his Uncle Vernon, Aunt Petunia and cousin Dudley, who are mean to him and make him sleep in a cupboard under the stairs. (Dudley, however, has two bedrooms, one to sleep in and one for all his toys and games.) Then Harry starts receiving mysterious letters and his life is changed forever. He is whisked away by a beetle-eyed giant of a man and enrolled at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The reason: Harry Potter is a wizard!

5 Amazing, Brilliant, Stars
Harry Potter
Brings back memories of my childhood. I can remember being 12 years old and visiting my grandma’s house. In her living room she had the first three hardcover books sitting on the piano bench. At the time I had no clue about the series, or what was to come. At that time it was strictly the Scholastic Black History novels, The Babysitter’s Club and Goosebumps. Those were my reading books. I remember grabbing the first book and sitting on the couch, the next thing I know it’s dinner time and I’m halfway done. I was shocked that I had read that much. I absolutely love this series. If I had to describe it in one words it’ll be Friendships.

Harry Potter Wand
This series told me how to have friends, and keep them. It taught me what undying love looks like. It taught me loyalty, happiness, and courage. It brings tears to my eyes writing this review because I hadn’t read the series since 2005 when I was 17 and the last book was released. Sure I’ve seen the movies a billion times. I know almost all the dialogue, and history. It’s nothing like reading the magic from the beginning.

Hermione
Harry Potter is one of my favorite characters every. I love the cast of this series, even that dreadful toad Malfoy! I love Harry’s courage to be himself in a world where he knew nothing about. I love Ron’s undying loyalty. I love Hermione’s quick wit, and her smarts! I’ll continue reading the series as if I never have. J.K. Rowling’s writing is magical. I love the world building she came up with. It’s my favorite series ever

Ron Weasley