A Guest Review: Circle 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.

Circle: by Garrett Leigh
Series: Roads #3
Release Date: September 5th, 2017
Pages: • Format: eARC
Published By: Fox Love Press
Purchase Links:
Amazon

I love him…but he’s forgotten why.

A lot can happen in six years, and Ash and Pete have seen their world flipped upside down more times than most. Being parents to Pete’s young nephew wasn’t in their plan, but life happens to them and they roll with the punches. Or at least they did, until new heartache rocks their hard-won happily-ever-after.

Ash loves Pete as much as ever—more, in fact—but Pete battles alone with a burden that weighs heavily on his heart. Ash is no stranger to dark clouds, but the secret Pete keeps from him is a storm that could break them.

Despite the fierce love that once buoyed them, they’re both drowning until a new friend throws them a lifeline. His wisdom offers insight—for better or worse, real love is rarely a smooth journey. For Ash and Pete to come full circle once more, they’ll have to hit the road and chase it.

five-stars

 

When I first heard there would be another book in this series I was a bit hesitant. I wasn’t sure what the author would do with these characters. Pete and Ash were not only one of the first m/m books I had read, but they are in my top 5 favorite couples ever. I expected a lot out of this book and I am super happy to say the author delivered. This book was a hit out of the ballpark for me.

The story begins a few years down the road from the end of the last book. Pete is still working at the hospital and Ash is still doing tattoos and art work. A lot of things have changed though and some of it has placed a great deal of stress between them. Pete is struggling with something serious and Ash is struggling with how to be there for him when he won’t open up as to what the problem is.

So, when this book begins we find our guys in a tough place. I don’t particularly like when author’s revisit character’s heas but in this case it ended up working. The reason for that I think was that no matter what they were struggling with, you could feel the love between them jump off every page. There was no point where I was concerned for their overall ending. Even when times were tough, I knew these guys would be ok in the end.

And the ending…..gah. It was beautiful. I cried happy tears through the entire epilogue. I absolutely loved every page of this book and I’m so happy the author chose to do this third book. I didn’t realize until I started this how much I missed these two. You can read this without re-reading the previous books as the author puts in all the information you need. This book is not a standalone though and should not be read if you have not read all of the previous books in this series. For fans of the series though, this is a must read. You’re going to love it.

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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

Guest Review: Chasing Destiny by Megan Erickson

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.

Chasing Destiny: by Megan Erickson
Series: Silver Tip Pack #2
Release Date: July 21st, 2017
Pages: 224 • Format: eARC
Published By: Self-Published
Purchase Links:
Amazon

Some live on memories…

Almost dying during a pack uprising has a way of shaking things up. I’m no longer Mr. Laid Back now that there’s an itch under my skin I can’t scratch.

On a volunteer mission that goes beyond the walls of our compound, we enter the territory of a pack long thought dead, and find ourselves on the business end of their spears.

What I’m not prepared for is what I find within their walls—The one shifter I never thought I’d see alive, the one I’d mourned twice, the one I’d always loved. He is alive, and if I have anything to do with it, he’ll stay that way. But he’s got secrets, and exposing them could lead us to an enemy worse than the bloodthirsty undead shifters wanting to kill us all…

four-stars

 

I really liked this second book in the Silver Tip Pack series. This one had a different feel to it than book one but was just as good.

This story focuses on Bay who is Dare’s brother. He’s the wise cracking and good natured one in their family but he’s struggling at the beginning of this story. Bay is grieving his second loss of Nash and he’s feeling restless. His were wants him to leave and look for something but he’s not sure what it is. As a result he offers to visit another pack to see if they can set up a trade pact. What Bay finds there turns his world upside down.

This story was more fast-paced and full of action than Daring Fate was. This one kept me on the edge of my seat from almost the beginning of the story. Bay and his pack mates are fighting other pack members as well as the zombie weres. (Can I just take a minute to tell you how much I love the fact that there are zombie werewolves in this series? Zombie! Werewolves!) All kinds of things happen and there are some shocking surprises.

The love story was also good. I love a good second chance story. I also love a good hurt/comfort story. Combine them together and I’m in reader bliss. Bay and Nash are just wonderful together and Bay is full of swoon worthy moments. Some of the stuff he says… *dreamy sigh*. These two are not fated mates as the couple in book one were, but they know they’re meant to be mates and their romance development was lovely.

I don’t have anything negative to say about this series other than the writer is not releasing them fast enough for me. This one hasn’t even been released and I’m already itching to get my hands on the third one. Looks like we know who the next book will be about but I’m not going to tell you. It’s going to be a big surprise.

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About Megan Erickson

Megan Erickson is a former journalist who switched to fiction when she decided she liked writing her own endings better. She likes to pretend she has control now, but usually her characters are the ones who hold the reins. Her romance novels have a touch of humor, a dash of nerdy, and always a happily ever after.

She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, two kids, and two cats named after John Hughes characters. She’s still waiting for the party she was promised when she grew to five feet… maybe because she never got there.

Audiobook Review: Stuck-Up Suit by Vi Keeland & Penelope Ward

Narrator: Joe Arden, Maxine Mitchell
(Website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads)Source: Tantor Audio

I received this audiobook 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: Stuck-Up Suit by Vi Keeland & Penelope Ward
Release Date: March 21st, 2017 (first published February 18th, 2015)
Format: Audiobook (8 hrs and 54 mins)
Genre: Gay Romance, Contemporary Romance, New Adult, Cult romance
Published By: Everafter Romance
Purchase Links: Tantor Audio Amazon US Barnes & Noble iBooks  Kobo

I enjoyed this story but it was a slow burner as the author set a foundation of this relationship between an abrasive guy and take no nonsense gal. The narrators Joe Arden and Maxine Mitchell definitely gave life to the chemistry between the main characters. Their voices blended well together and added to sexiness of the story.

Graham J. Morgan who accidentally left his cellphone on a train and the woman Soraya who returned it to him. When she brought it to him she decided he was a stuck up jerk and she let him know. Of course he was intrigued and began pursuing her.  I liked their journey as the other really took time to develop their back story. It was well written and interesting. It’s a book with flawed characters that were annoying and likable at the same time.
I did find Graham to be a jerk to all others except for a few people. There is no reason to have 42 secretaries in a under 4 years. Losing your mom is not an acceptable excuse to make treat others. But the way he treats his grandma and the women he loves was definitely loyal, Patrice the and endearing. So the jury is out on how I feel about him. I liked Soraya and her nonconformist ways. She was a good counterbalance to Graham’s life drama.

This story seemed like it would just be about sex but it author gave it more complexity by adding family drama coupled with broken friendships. While it explained some of Graham’s behavior, it didn’t excuse his piss poor treatment of people. Still, the story was an unexpected delight and the writing was entertaining. It flowed and kept my attention from beginning to the end. The only thing I missed was grandma’s introduction to the young. That would have been a powerful moment in their story. Maybe a 2nd epilogue will give us that part of the story.

I recommend this story for those who enjoy a sexy edgier romance with mature characters. I will definitely be checking out other stories by this duo.

About Penelope Ward

Penelope Ward is first and foremost a proud autism mom. She is also the New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal Bestselling author of Stepbrother Dearest, Sins of Sevin, Cocky Bastard (co-written with Vi Keeland), Jake Undone, My Skylar, Jake Understood and Gemini. She is currently working on her 8th novel.

About Vi Keeland

Vi Keeland is a #1 New York Times Bestselling author. With more than a million books sold, her titles have appeared in over fifty Bestseller lists and are currently translated in twelve languages. She resides in New York with her husband and their three children where she is living out her own happily ever after with the boy she met at age six.

Finding Family by Connie Bailey

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.

FindingFamilyLGFinding Family by Connie Bailey
Series: Dreamspun Desires
Release Date: June 1, 2016
Pages: 234 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazonARe

When you find your family, you’ll do anything to keep it.

When Charles Macquarrie inherits a fortune and an international clothing company, he also inherits three young cousins he desperately needs help raising. By a stroke of luck, he discovers and hires Jonathan Lamb, who spent his life in a children’s home due to chronic illness, to be his nanny.

If Jon thought a budding romance with his wealthy boss complicated his life, he has no idea of the hardships awaiting him when he’s charged with embezzlement and kidnapping. But even when threatened by accounting discrepancies and mob connections, Jon and Charles won’t let go of the family they’ve built together without a fight.

three-half-stars

 

Another fun book in the series. I know I keep saying that but it’s true.

I sometimes do this thing where I don’t read the entire blurb for books. It’s weird, I acknowledge that but it’s what I do and with this I am happy I did and I’ll explain why a bit later.

Jonathan Lamb, talk about a fitting name, is a lovely young man who grew up in a children’s home and raised by nuns. When Job comes of age, he takes on a job at the home instead of leaving as it’s the one place he feels he belongs. When a job offer arrives to be a nanny to three young charges of a wealthy man, Jon interviews, gets the job  and the move to the Big Apple happens.

Charles, I sincerely liked. From the beginning you feel for him as he runs the family company and tries to honor his late father’s memory. You feel for him as he skirts around the details of his sexuality with his personal assistant and attempts to keep a foot in the closet. The moment when Charles realizes that he, Jon and the kids are all orphans tugged at my hopeless romantic heart strings and while it was predictable at times, his path to Jon was a joy to watch. Even Charles’ drunk moments were insightful though one time I wish Jon would have tossed something at him…for reasons.

I loved Jon and need to channel his abilities with kids when I am dealing with my own. I loved that this story was a bit different with Charles being the cousin to the kids and not the lonely widower. It leant a new twist on his need for Jon and his true detachment from the kids. But of course, you don’t bring someone like Jon – caring, adorable, trustworthy, and able, a culinary artist in the kitchen – and not have your life changed.

The kids were well written. Holland was a forward and bright young man who I am so glad never fought against Jon being there. Madeline has a strong head on her shoulders yet was still the young girl whose life would end at missing a party and then there is Juliana who I just want to cuddle the heck out of and kiss her cheeks. The kids were all an essential part of the story and never took from Jon and Charles’ relationship, but added more because as the title says, this is a story about finding family.

Now back to me not reading blurbs, I am so glad I didn’t because when Charles whisks Jon and the kids out of town to a remote cabin and police show up at the door with accusations of kidnapping I was gasping under the covers trying not to wake my husband. I went back and read the blurb and sure enough it’s there but it was such a surprise for me and I love that.

The story had moments that were predictable and some that weren’t which made this a fun read. A few niggles with the head hopping, though it could have been my review copy,  the lack of a real romance and not exactly feeling the chemistry between the two men and not really getting into Jon’s birthmark and why the blurb mentions it makes it a chronic illness but other than those small things, this was another fun read from the Dreamspun Desire series.

 

About Connie Bailey

I was born on an Air Force base and I’ve been in flight ever since. My father took the family with him wherever he was stationed; Spain, Morocco, Turkey, and Alaska were among his postings. While studying commercial arts, I married a musician who turned out to be a pilot in disguise. Having no burning ambition of my own at the time, I devoted myself to his dream. His job as aircraft designer and competition pilot has taken us all over the world. I have now set foot on almost every continent (a personal life ambition), but I don’t hold out much hope for Antarctica anymore.

I have always loved to read. Since I was four, reading has been my favorite diversion and books my best friends. A few years ago, with my husband’s support, I set out to become a writer. I wrote every day and posted what I wrote at various Internet groups and later on livejournal. I cannot recommend this school of writing highly enough. The candid feedback I received was invaluable to my development. I kept working at it, and one day I received the most exciting e-mail ever. A publisher wanted to talk to me.

That’s pretty much it so far. There are a few fun facts like: my only child is a rescued Greyhound named Lizard, I live at a small grass airfield with a hang gliding school, I have what’s commonly referred to as a “photographic memory”, I collect words as a hobby, and my only nickname is “The Judge”.

Pleased to meet you.

Lucky in Loveland (Welcome to Loveland #1) by K-Lee Klein

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.

Lucky-in-Loveland-e1455027955742Lucky in Loveland by K-Lee Klein
Series: Welcome to Loveland
Release Date: February 13, 2016
Pages: 120 • Format: eARC
Published By: K-lee Klein Books
Purchase Link: AmazonARe

Loveland, Colorado is a special place all year around, a community of creativity and art, with scenic views and majestic mountains. But the town really shines once a year, on Valentine’s Day.

Lucky Roberts has lived in Loveland his whole life. He has good friends, strong family support, and is all about keeping his community fun and alive. The only thing Lucky has been “unlucky” with is love. But rather than avoiding February fourteenth in his hometown, he throws himself into helping others deliver their messages of love.

Enter Jack Canon. Jack moved to Loveland for a fresh start, in both his personal and professional lives. After a tough year, he’s finally hoping to just blend in, maybe carve a little niche for himself that his parents would have been proud of. What he didn’t expect was a pseudo-lumberjack with a killer body and shy smile to turn his world upside down – and he sure didn’t expect to like it so much.

When Lucky meets Jack, he feels like a thirteen year-old with his first crush. He’s clumsy, stammering, and the first greeting out of his mouth is a less than articulate, “Wow!” Words like adorable and manbun suddenly become part of his vocabulary as he discovers a deep, hidden need to romance the hell out of Jack.

And what better way to do that than during the most romantic season in the City of Love?

three-half-stars

So this was all kinds of adorable and being the first read from the author for me, I am intrigued.

Lucky in Loveland is a sweet tale of two men trying to not screw things up in a town that is made for love. Literally, like made for love.

Told from the Dual POV’s of Lucky our resident larger than life in all ways hockey coach and Jack, our pseudo hippie Kindergarten teacher we get to see each side as the boys navigate their way around each other and the town’s notorious affair with Valentine’s Day.

I really loved Lucky. He was a tough to get a hold on early in the story but once you get that he is kinda like a big kid that you want to cuddle and make laugh, you get why Jack would fall for him.

Jack… He is a Kindergarten teacher with a man bun… need I say more? I mean, that alone scores points in my book but Jack has moved to Loveland for a new start and his reasons made me want to hug him to. Actually I just wanted these two to hug and hug a lot and them hug some more, possibly naked. What can I say? When you have a romance surrounded by snow you need to pull off all layers, not just the emotional one, to get to the raw… where was I again?

This was a slow burn romance but it couldn’t have been told any other way. Both Lucky and Jack have their reasons for wanting to take things slow and I adored how they did it. Lucky with his surprise dates and all they are and Jack with, well Jack with the way he sees Lucky, it was just lovely to read these two and watch their awkward flirting, love of breakfast for dinner and intimate moments.

I hope there will be more from these two in the series as I am not quite done with them yet.

 

About K-Lee Klein

K-Lee Klein has lived in one part of Western Canada or another for her entire life. She’s a doting mother of three now-grown kids, and has had characters and plots running around her head for as long as she can remember.

She lives with an patient husband who totally does not get her thing for gay men, two spoiled but wonderful sons (who don’t get it either), and two also spoiled, but beautiful cats. Her days are also filled with many texts and phone calls with her daughter who has already left the nest, and an abundance of fabulous gay men, large and small, bouncing off the walls of her skull, competing for their turns to tell their stories.

After finally throwing caution to the wind, K-lee’s first story was accepted and published in December of 2011, and since then she’s been lucky enough to be picked up by several publishers. She’s thrilled to be substituting her previous jobs as a hockey manager/coach, school band volunteer and overall chauffeur with her passion for writing beautiful, emotional men.

Among her favorite sub-genres are rockstars, cowboys, shifters, and opposites-attract relationships. But to be honest, she’s open to almost anything if it involves messing around in the heads of her characters. She’s also big on series–because she has a hard time letting her characters go–and is usually working on a handful of stories in various stages of completion all at the same time.

The Last Thing He Needs (The Last Thing He Needs #1) by J.H. Knight

The Last Thing He Needs (The Last Thing He Needs #1) by J.H. KnightSeries: The Last Thing He Needs #1
on July 27th 2014
Pages: 220 pages
AmazonNarrator: Michael Stellman
Tommy O’Shea is raising his seven younger brothers and sisters without any help from his drug abusing father and stepmother. Since he was fifteen years old, he's managed to keep the children fed and out of foster care. It takes up every ounce of his energy and the last thing he needs is romance complicating his life further.

Rookie cop Bobby McAlister doesn't belong in Tommy’s harsh world, but Tommy can’t push him out. As their unlikely friendship turns into a tentative relationship, they weather the daily storm of Tommy’s life with a lot of laughs and more than a few arguments.

Tommy isn't used to trusting outsiders, and he's never asked for help in his life. But when a tragedy strikes the O'Shea family and threatens everything he's fought for, he'll have to learn to do both to recover from the brutal hit.
five-stars

I loved this one! It was everything I had been wanting in a book for a long time.

Big Brother Tommy O’Shea was struggling raising 7 brothers and sisters while his dad and stepmom were off on a drug binge. Tommy worked 2-3 jobs and had been holding the family together since he was 15, trying to keep them outside the purview of  Child Protective Services.

 When rookie detective Bobby McAlister came to check out a call relating to a neighborhood disturbance, Tommy resolved to keep Bobby at arms length to avoid getting the “cops” involved in their crazy lives. But Bobby wasn’t to be waylaid. He figured out about Tommy and his siblings, so Bobby would come and check up on them. Slowly, a friendship gave way to a romance. Trust was a whole other issue because Tommy had been burned  and couldn’t afford to lean on anyone else. Bobby decided to show Tommy and family that he could be a person they could depend on.

The story had family, loyalty, abuse, surviving, love and little kids. It was well written, entertaining and just so enjoyable. I loved both Tommy and Bobby separately and together. They were good men and were trying to do good in their lives. I loved Bobby’s mom, and Tommy’s siblings. I was so engaged in Tommy trying to keep everything together, that the romance wasn’t the most important thing anymore.  It’s so nice to see kind and honorable people people. Bobby and his  mom are so thoughtful and just what the kids needed.

I highly recommend this audiobook if you enjoy a complex story with a happy ending.

*Special Thanks to Dreamspinner Press for the audiobook given in exchange for an honest review.

Review: Christmas on Mimosa Lane (Seasons of the Heart #1) by Anna DeStefano

Review: Christmas on Mimosa Lane (Seasons of the Heart #1) by Anna DeStefanoSeries: Seasons of the Heart #1
on 2012-10-23
Pages: 299
Amazon
A childhood on the streets taught Mallory Phillips to never trust love again. Years later, she longs for a peaceful existence and a community to call home, only she can t quite settle into the picturesque, cozy world around her. When Polly Lombard sneaks into Mallory s house to look at her Christmas tree, Mallory connects with Polly and Polly s grieving father in wondrous ways, helping them heal. But when Mallory s past returns to haunt her, will she trust her new family to be there for her? Anna DeStefano s heartwarming and emotional tale of second chances is a testament to the healing power of love, and the incredible joy of Christmas miracles.
four-stars

Teacher Mallory Phillips woke to find a student Polly Lombard in her home. Polly had lost her mom, and at night would sneak over to the next door neighbor’s home. It became a nighttime routine. As Mallory called Pete Lombard to pick up his daughter, they began the healing process. The Lombards helped Mallory stop hiding behind her work and jump into life again.

I had avoided this book because many reviews said it was heartbreaking. I guess what I saw was hope. The other side of tragedy when people start picking up the pieces of their lives. The book was written really well. It wasn’t overly sappy and it wasn’t too fluffy. It have a great flow and great pace. Once I started, I didn’t stop listening to it until it finished. I loved little Polly. Somehow she saw the capacity for love in Mallory and she grabbed onto it hard. It was so sweet watching the shell that both Mallory and Pete formed around themselves develop crack after crack, until the shells shattered. Love and acceptance is the ultimate Christmas gift and that is what this book was about. The second chance at happiness made this book heartwarming, not heartbreaking. It was a great book to read on New Year’s Eve. I felt like I was transported to Mimosa Lane and was a part of the story. I look forward to reading some more books in this series.

Review: Home Work (Life Lessons #3) by Kaje Harper

Review: Home Work (Life Lessons #3) by Kaje HarperSeries: Life Lessons #3
on October 5th 2012
Pages: 356 pages
Amazon • (Website, Facebook, Goodreads)
Mac and Tony thought the hard part was over. They’re together openly as a couple, sharing a home and building a life with their two children. It’s what they dreamed of. But daughter Anna struggles with the changes, Ben is haunted by old secrets, Mac’s job in Homicide still demands too much of his time, and Tony is caught in the middle. It’s going to take everything these men can give to create a viable balance between home and work. Especially when the outside world seems determined to throw obstacles in their way.
four-half-stars

★★★★½
Another slight cliff hanger? Kaje Harper, you are killing me. You know how much I love Mac!!!

Mac and Tony are now raising their kids, Anna & Ben together as one family unit. They are trying to make the transition as bachelors to fathers with young children. They were definitely struggling to create a routine. Mac’s job as a homicide detective still required a lot of odd hours and Tony was overwhelmed trying to fill in the gap by himself.

Mac had difficulty setting boundaries with work time and home time and Tony seemed to be getting resentful of having all home life duties dumped on him. How can Mac let Tony and the kids see they are his #1 priorities when he is never there?

My enjoyment of this book was elevated by the supporting cast: Oliver, Bree, Jamie and Gina. They are the ones who kept this relationship from crumbling under the weight of the all expectations. They just wrapped the foursome with their love and it grounded the story. Obviously Mac loves Tony, but this is the most expressive and open Mac has ever been and Tony needed that. Tony is great for Mac and I loved Mac finally putting Tony’s needs first. The only thing that I am waiting for is the final act of complete honesty and trust, when Mac tells Tony some of the past pains that he still hides from Tony. The trip to the bondage club definitely touched on that issue a bit. I hope Mac will let Tony in and let Tony help him heal both physically. and emotionally.

Oliver is shaping up to be such an awesome partner. That’s what I love about Kaje Harper, the realism of her writing. It has truly been a process for Oliver to accept that his partner Mac is gay, and what that means for them at work. Bree, Jamie and Mama Gina are just awesome, the kids really needed that female touch and they are getting it in spades. Those kids are definitely getting the love they need to feel secure in this new family unit.

The murder investigation really took a dark turn, and I was so disappointed that IA let Terrence off the hook. I understand why, but I am hoping that Terrence will face more repercussions in the future because he continues to allow his bigotry affect his work. I am looking forward to the resolution of that murder case in book 4.

About Kaje Harper

I live in Minnesota, where the two seasons are Snow-removal and Road-repair, the mosquito is the state bird, and where sometimes in winter it can be breathtakingly beautiful. Of course, the deepfreeze chill contributes to the breath-taking, but Minnesota’s a kindly, quiet place and it’s home to me now. I’ve been writing for far longer than I care to admit (*whispers – forty years*), mostly for my own entertainment, and currently am focused on M/M romance (with added mystery, fantasy, history, SciFi…) I also have a few Young Adult stories released under the pen name Kira Harp.

My first professionally published book, Life Lessons, came out from MLR Press in May 2011. My husband finally convinced me that after all that time writing, I really should submit something, somewhere. I was thrilled when it was accepted. I have a weakness for closeted cops with honest hearts, and teachers who speak their minds, and I had fun writing the four novels and three freebie short stories in the series. I’ve been just delighted by the reception Mac and Tony have received.

My first free book became the first story that I actually released – I put it up a month before Life Lessons just for the fun of getting it out there. Lies and Consequences began as a reaction to the November 2010 election. It looked like the repeal of DADT might be derailed by the political shift and I put the insanity of that law into the book. Then as I was finishing the first draft in mid-December the repeal passed. Which was great, but prompted a rewrite to a lighter and more action/romance book. This was a solo effort and I learned a lot from writing and releasing it and from the reviews. Check Smashwords for that one and many of my other freebies.

I now have a decent backlist in ebooks and print, both free and professionally published. A complete list with links can be found on my Books page. This writing thing is addictive. So read, comment, tell me what you like and what you don’t, and help me make the upcoming books even better. I have an author page on Goodreads where I do a lot of book reviews, and this blog is reposted there.

You can find me to chat on my author page on Goodreads most easily – I hang out on Goodreads a lot because I moderate the Goodreads YA LGBT Books group there. I also post free short YA stories on that group, more than 50 of them so far.

You can also email me : kajeharper ~at~ yahoo ~dot~ com or find me on Facebook –

Review: The Rebuilding Year by Kaje Harper

Review: The Rebuilding Year by Kaje Harperon March 6th, 2012
Pages: 323 pages
Amazon • (Website, Facebook, Goodreads)
Losing nearly everything leaves room for the one thing they can’t live without.

A few excruciating minutes pinned in a burning building cost Ryan Ward his job as a firefighter, the easy camaraderie of his coworkers, his girlfriend, and damn near cost him his left leg. Giving up, though, isn’t an option. Compared to the alternative, choosing a new profession, going back to school, and renting a room from the college groundskeeper are simple.

Until he realizes he’s falling in love with his housemate, and things take a turn for the complicated.

John Barrett knows about loss. After moving twice to stay in touch with his kids, he could only watch as his ex-wife whisked them away to California. Offering Ryan a room seems better than rattling around the empty house, but as casual friendship moves to something more, and a firestorm of emotions ignites, the big old house feels like tight quarters.

It’s nothing they can’t learn to navigate, though. But when dead bodies start turning up on campus—and one of the guys is a suspect—their first taste of real love could go up in smoke.
four-stars

This is one of the few double GFY books that I have read so far but I enjoyed this one almost as much as Faith & Fidelity, not quite though.

this book featured John Barrett, a divorcee, who had moved around a bit, in an effort to keep close to his ex-wife and kids. He finally settled in Wisconsin where he took work as the groundkeeper at a College.

He became friends with an older student, 1st med student Ryan Ward, after John found Ryan on the floor when Ryan’s leg had given out. See Ryan was formerly a firefighter, but an injury had almost cost him his leg, and left a bunch of scars physically and emotionally. He was rebuilding his life by going to Med School and hoping to reinvent himself.

Ryan and John built an easy friendship and eventually became roommates. Soon, their comfort level and routine led to an attraction, and during an emotional moment, they acted on that attraction and kissed.
The kiss freaked them out because they were both straight and even so, why mess up a great friendship with a complication like sex?

Ryan and John agreed to chalk up the kiss as a one-time response to an emotional period, and they would go back to just being best friends and roommates, but is it possible to ignore such an attraction? Is it physical or could it be more? Are they even strong enough to put with what it would mean to be 30-something year old bisexual/gay men? Ryan and John really had to dig deep to answer those questions for themselves.

I really enjoyed the fact that first there was a solid friendship and mutual respect. I also enjoyed the support they gave each other regarding school/work and personal life. I love how Kaje Harper writes her characters because they are flawed, yet they are characters you could empathize with. The scenarios are realistic, for example, I love how the characters admit to being clueless on what to do together. Being clueless and even uncomfortable with labels, gay or bisexual, lover or boyfriend, hold or don’t hold hands. It was uncharted territory and the author let us walk it with them. I did feel that John was a lot more accepting of this new reality when he was the older guy (37yr old). I thought he would be more afraid of reactions, but I guess he was so lonely and/or comfortable with himself that he didn’t care.

I also loved how Ryan took to John’s kids immediately, even serving as a voice of reason when John wasn’t thinking straight. It was a good blended family and the story worked for me.

About Kaje Harper

I live in Minnesota, where the two seasons are Snow-removal and Road-repair, the mosquito is the state bird, and where sometimes in winter it can be breathtakingly beautiful. Of course, the deepfreeze chill contributes to the breath-taking, but Minnesota’s a kindly, quiet place and it’s home to me now. I’ve been writing for far longer than I care to admit (*whispers – forty years*), mostly for my own entertainment, and currently am focused on M/M romance (with added mystery, fantasy, history, SciFi…) I also have a few Young Adult stories released under the pen name Kira Harp.

My first professionally published book, Life Lessons, came out from MLR Press in May 2011. My husband finally convinced me that after all that time writing, I really should submit something, somewhere. I was thrilled when it was accepted. I have a weakness for closeted cops with honest hearts, and teachers who speak their minds, and I had fun writing the four novels and three freebie short stories in the series. I’ve been just delighted by the reception Mac and Tony have received.

My first free book became the first story that I actually released – I put it up a month before Life Lessons just for the fun of getting it out there. Lies and Consequences began as a reaction to the November 2010 election. It looked like the repeal of DADT might be derailed by the political shift and I put the insanity of that law into the book. Then as I was finishing the first draft in mid-December the repeal passed. Which was great, but prompted a rewrite to a lighter and more action/romance book. This was a solo effort and I learned a lot from writing and releasing it and from the reviews. Check Smashwords for that one and many of my other freebies.

I now have a decent backlist in ebooks and print, both free and professionally published. A complete list with links can be found on my Books page. This writing thing is addictive. So read, comment, tell me what you like and what you don’t, and help me make the upcoming books even better. I have an author page on Goodreads where I do a lot of book reviews, and this blog is reposted there.

You can find me to chat on my author page on Goodreads most easily – I hang out on Goodreads a lot because I moderate the Goodreads YA LGBT Books group there. I also post free short YA stories on that group, more than 50 of them so far.

You can also email me : kajeharper ~at~ yahoo ~dot~ com or find me on Facebook –