Release Day Review: Safe With You by Catherine Lievens

We received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect our opinion of the book or the content of our review.

safe-with-youSafe With You by Catherine Lievens
Release Date: August 12, 2016
Pages: 220 • Format: eARC
Published By: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase Links:
DreamspinnerAmazonARe

Leslie Reilly is a police officer in the small town of Santa Anna Springs. He has a job he loves, a supportive family, and good friends, but he’s lonely. He hasn’t had much luck with romance. And he’s not the only one. Since the death of his wife, Gavin Donovan has been alone—raising his young son Ben and trying to protect Ben from his homophobic grandfather, whose attempts to get custody of the boy are growing more and more desperate. When Leslie and Gavin meet, they know making a life together might not be easy, but they’re willing to do whatever it takes to be a family.

All Leslie wants is to protect Gavin and Ben, but it’s proving harder than he expected as Gavin’s father-in-law’s violence escalates. When Gavin is injured and Ben is kidnapped, Leslie must decide how far he’s willing to go to keep the ones he loves safe.

four-stars

I really enjoyed reading this one. What a cute story. It was nice, a little predictable but sweet nonetheless.

Officer Leslie Reilly’s life had grown monotonous. He works with this father, the Chief of Police, and he hangs out at home with his cat puddles. When a routine theft investigation led him to meeting Gavin Donovan, Leslie’s life bloomed.

I love stories involving little kids and extended family. They always add shading to protagonists because it allows the reader to see the main characters through the eyes of others. Both characters had complimentary temperaments. Leslie was a tad goofy, shy and naive.  Whereas Donovan was reserved, confident and a tad more cultured.  I liked how guileless Leslie was around Donovan. I found it endearing and amusing at the same time.

I liked Gavin and how his family was so protective of him and his five-year-old son Benjamin. I also enjoyed Leslie’s relationship with his dad. It was clear that the Chief of police had no qualms about his son’s sexuality. In fact, for a small town, it seemed that only Gavin’s ex-father in law Samuel was the only homophobe around.

I appreciate the author focusing more on growing relationship between Leslie and Donovan and not as much on the father in law’s obsession. It kept the story on the positive and hopeful. The author’s writing had a natural progression and flowed well to me. I just delight in reading this journey to love and would love to explore of this author’s work.

<i>*I received this book in exchange for an honest review.

About Catherine Lievens

Catherine lives in Italy, country of good food and hot men. She used to write fantasy as a child, but it was reading her first gay erotic romance novel that made her realize that that was what she really wanted to write.

After graduating from college in English language and translation, she divides her day between writing, reading, taking care of her son and reading some more.

Tyrant (King #2) by T.M. Frazier

Tyrant (King #2) by T.M. FrazierSeries: King #2
on August 13th 2015
Pages: 277
AmazonNarrator: Molly Glenmore, Rob Shapiro
I. Remember. Everything.

Only now I wish I didn't.

When the fog is sucked away from my mind like smoke through a vacuum, the truth that has been beyond my reach for months finally reveals itself.

But the relief I thought I would feel never comes, and I'm more afraid now than I was the morning I woke up handcuffed in King's bed.

Because with the truth comes dark secrets I was never meant to know.

I will put the lives of those I love most at risk if I let on that my memory has returned, or if I seek help from the heavily tattooed felon who owns me body and soul.

I don't know if I'm strong enough to resist the magnetic pull toward King that grows stronger every day.

He's already saved me in more ways than one. Now it's my turn to do whatever it takes to save him.

Even if that means marrying someone else...
two-stars

Honestly, I disliked this book for multiple reasons. Very little worked for me from the setup from book 1 to the revelation of who Doe was. I enjoy twists and turns as much as anyone but here the twists was just unbelievable.
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It was just a huge disappointment.

In this sequel, Doe has returned to her life as Ramie Price, even though she doesn’t remember herself that way. She tries to jog her memory by talking to those around her but nothing fits. In her old life, she had a son Samuel, a boyfriend Tanner and rich parents. In her new life, she had King and his tattoo pallor complete with his outlaws. Doe/Ramie begins piecing together the circumstances of her disappearance and how she ended up on the streets. This is where the chicken flew the coop for me.

First, I don’t even get the chemistry between Doe and King, but I will roll with it. Second, Doe-Ramie’s relationship with her baby daddy Tanner as well as her best friend could have only transpired the way it did, if Doe-Ramie was completely clueless and self-centered. How can one be so oblivious to her friends to miss all of that? Seriously? The explanation for the behaviors didn’t jive with me. Third, a senator’s house was so easily breached by all and sunder for continual nookie? What role did Tanner’s parent’s play in all of this? Did Doe-Ramie not have any other friends? The only part of this story that made sense was the part involving King’s comrade Bear. sad photo: sad deanwipingeyescrying.gif
That fit with what occurred in book 1. That was gruesome but it set up a compelling book.

The mystery of what happened to her and why was so far-fetched that I couldn’t believe this series went this route. I felt like being with Doe made King seem weak and I don’t see what she brought to the table at all. I felt really disappointed with this book but will read book 3.

*Special Thanks to Tantor Audio for the audiobook given in exchange for an honest review

The Air He Breathes by Brittainy C. Cherry

The Air He Breathes by Brittainy C. Cherryon 2015-10-30
Pages: 306
Amazon
I was warned about Tristan Cole.

“Stay away from him,” people said.
“He’s cruel.”
“He’s cold.”
“He’s damaged.”

It’s easy to judge a man because of his past. To look at Tristan and see a monster.

But I couldn’t do that. I had to accept the wreckage that lived inside of him because it also lived inside of me.

We were both empty.
We were both looking for something else. Something more.
We both wanted to put together the shattered pieces of our yesterdays.

Then perhaps we could finally remember how to breathe.
four-stars

Elizabeth and Tristan met after losing the loves of their respective lives (spouses). Initially I felt terrible for them but my sympathy waned as it didn’t seem like they were willing to let their past go lest people would think they didn’t love their spouse enough.

It was like they both wore their heartbreak as a badge of honor, the way widows wear black to announce their sorrow. Almost justifying Elizabeth’s aloofness and downright meanness on Tristan’s part. He was this wounded dog snapping teeth at anyone who was in his vicinity. Hence, my disbelief with the characters actions pertaining to the death of their loved ones. Specifically Elizabeth and Tristan’s lack of awareness of the full extent of both families tragic death and all those involved, especially Tristan. No names, police report etc.
Too many coincidences to be believable.  photo tumblr_lc5gs2eTGP1qzh4h6.gif
Then the coin toss and ensuing “friendship”. There was something seriously overlooked, even for Elizabeth’s oblivious to everything personality. I docked this book a whole star for that very reason. Those are huge gaffes I couldn’t over look in the story telling that was otherwise realistic and reasonably paced.

However I enjoyed the way they slowly began letting the past go and moving forward towards happiness. I loved Emma and Zeus and the white feathers. The writing was good and funny at times. I definitely felt happy for them and satisfied with the conclusion of the story. Sweet ending to a tragic beginning. I will definitely read more from this author.

Bear, Otter, and the Kid (Bear, Otter, and the Kid, Book 1) by T.J. Klune

Bear, Otter, and the Kid (Bear, Otter, and the Kid, Book 1) by T.J. KluneSeries: and the Kid, Bear, Otter
on August 11th, 2011
Pages: 350 pages
AmazonNarrator: Sean Crisden
(Website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads)
Three years ago, Bear McKenna’s mother took off for parts unknown with her new boyfriend, leaving Bear to raise his six-year-old brother Tyson, aka the Kid. Somehow they’ve muddled through, but since he’s totally devoted to the Kid, Bear isn’t actually doing much living—with a few exceptions, he’s retreated from the world, and he’s mostly okay with that. Until Otter comes home.

Otter is Bear’s best friend’s older brother, and as they’ve done for their whole lives, Bear and Otter crash and collide in ways neither expect. This time, though, there’s nowhere to run from the depth of emotion between them. Bear still believes his place is as the Kid’s guardian, but he can’t help thinking there could be something more for him in the world... something or someone.
three-stars

This audiobook was 200 pages too long. I came in really excited because of the kid angle and I got a book of 5 matyrs.

17 year old Derek “Bear” as his baby brother Tyson couldn’t pronounce Derek came home one day to find a note for his mother. She was leaving with her latest loser boyfriend for parts unknown. Since the loser didn’t want her kids, she was leaving Tyson “Ty” in Bear’s care. She had the presence of mind to print ouf a power of attorney form from the internet, and signed it (though it was incorrectly executed). Then she so graciously left him $137.50…but drained Bear’s bank account because she and loser needed start up money.

Luckily Bear was turning 18 in a couple of weeks, and had been planning to go away to college. Now he was stuck with an 8 year old boy and he was petrified. Thus began Bear’s journey as “Brother-parent” as well as finding himself as a man. Luckily, he had some friends who stood by him and pitched in where they could. Bear’s best friend Creed, Creed’s older brother Otter, Anna–Bear’s girlfriend, Mrs. Paquin, Bear’s neighbor all became an adopted family that rallied around Bear and Ty. In the process Otter became more than a best friend’s older brother too.

I don’t know if there was much that I really enjoyed except Otter’s longsuffering and patience. He was awesome. I actually liked the kid too. I mean seriously, how many 8 year olds religious watch Anderson Cooper and are vegetarians based solely on his own research into animal cruelty. He was wise beyond his age.

What I didn’t like: Everyone was a matyr..well except for his deadbeat mother. Also, there was a lot of flashback, going from first person narrative to third person and a lot of monologue. This story could have been told in 150-200 pages. It was way too long. It wasn’t angsty at all. It was just meh for me. I wouldn’t be reading book 2.

About TJ Klune

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

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