Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Coming Soon! Served Hot

Title: Served Hot

Author: Annabeth Albert

Publisher/GR Link: Kensington, GR

Genre: MM Contemporary

Vice: coming out, grieving 

Rating: 5 out of 5

Lock this book up : 3 out of 5 stars, hot sex that supports the story

Length: Novella

Satisfaction: HEA

Cover Impressions: Very cute

SynopsisRobby is a self-employed barista with a busy coffee cart, a warm smile, and a major crush on one of his customers. David is a handsome finance director who works nearby, eats lunch by himself, and expects nothing but "the usual"—small vanilla latte—from the cute guy in the cart. But when David shows up for his first Portland Pride festival, Robby works up the nerve to take their slow-brewing relationship to the next level. David, however, is newly out and single, still grieving the loss of his longtime lover, and unsure if he’s ready to date again. Yet with every fresh latte, sweet exchange—and near hook-up—David and Robby go from simmering to steaming to piping hot. The question is: Will someone get burned?

Impressions: This book was just what I was looking for: sexy, sweet and so cute!  I fell in love with Robby, and I wanted him to get his Daniel more and more with each page.  David was totally understandable in his pain and his struggles.  I admired each step he took towards hope and a better life, including Robby.   This is a great read, and I didn't want to stop it!  I'd love to see these guys pop up in the next books in the series, and I can't wait to see what is coming next!

This books is coming on 3/3/15!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Blog Tour: Godsend

Title: Godsend
Author: Sloan Johnson
Genre: Adult, Gay Romance
Release Date: February 4, 2015
You can’t choose who you fall in love with. Despite knowing from a young age that he was gay, Scott Murphy couldn’t imagine life without Shelly. He threw away the labels and had eleven amazing years with her, but now, he feels even more lost trying to figure out how to move on after Shelly’s death. After nearly a year of watching Scott fade away, Shelly’s father forces him to start living again.

As much as Chris loathes the idea of attending a bereavement group week after week, it’s one of the only places he can go in this town, other than the bar, to not feel so alone. When there’s nothing to distract him or dull his senses, he spends too much time obsessing over how he should have been able to help his sister. When Scott shows up at his group session, Chris decides that maybe some good can come out of his sister’s death. 

There’s no denying that Chris is the first man to catch Scott’s attention in a long time, but how can he move on when just thinking of Shelly sends him to his dark place? 

The road to recovery won’t be an easy one, but Chris is determined to help Scott see that life is still worth living. But before Scott can allow himself to admit what he feels for Chris, he knows he has to reveal the full truth about Shelly’s death.

I promised Ma that I wouldn’t drink my dinner every night, but some days, it’s impossible to keep that promise. I tell myself that it’s different on days like today because I’m not drinking to forget how much I miss Jill, I’m drinking to forget how miserable some people choose to make one another. Today, I just about lost it and told one couple that there’s no point in them even trying to get along. Unfortunately, my partner frowns upon me telling couples that sometimes two people just aren’t meant to be together, as was this case with this pair.
It takes a minute for my eyes to adjust to the dark atmosphere of Brewster’s after walking around for thirty minutes trying to tell myself I didn’t need a drink. I find an empty seat at the end of the bar and signal the bartender for my usual. Okay, so maybe Ma had a point since he simply nods and has a tall whiskey sour sitting in front of me in less than a minute.
I look around, the same way I do every night, wondering if this town will ever start to feel like home. It’s a nice enough place, but there’s a definite divide between those who are from here and those who move here at some point in their lives.
I sit a bit straighter when I see Scott, the quiet, broody guy from group, sitting at one of the high top tables in the center of the room. He looks absolutely miserable. When I catch a glimpse of his date for the evening, Adrian the annoying twink who thinks he’s God’s gift to all gay men in town, the annoyance radiating off Scott is understandable.
I nurse the first drink, rather than down it as quickly as possible. I’ve wanted to talk to Scott the past few weeks, but he’s ducked out as soon as the official meeting ends, even though Jim hangs around for a while. I’ve considered following him when he leaves, to see if I can talk to him, but then I tell myself that he must have his reasons for not wanting to deal with people and I have to respect that.
I feel like a creep, watching Adrian and Scott eating dinner, but I can’t help it. A few times, I’ve thought Scott was checking me out the same way I have been him and this is the first confirmation I have that I might be right. Scott excuses himself from the table and Adrian reaches out for him as he walks away. I laugh when Scott practically jumps back to keep from being part of an awkward and unwelcome embrace.
Once he’s in the restroom, I order another drink before putting a five-dollar bill in the jukebox. I don’t give a shit about the music, but it’s the closest I can get to Scott without following him into the bathroom, which is a level of creepy that I can’t imagine stooping to.
Sloan Johnson is a big city girl trapped in a country girl’s life. While she longs for the hustle and bustle of New York City or Las Vegas, she hasn’t yet figured out how to sit on the deck with her morning coffee, watching the deer and wild turkeys in the fields while surrounded by concrete and glass.

When she was three, her parents received their first call from the principal asking them to pick her up from school. Apparently, if you aren’t enrolled, you can’t attend classes, even in Kindergarten. The next week, she was in preschool and started plotting her first story soon after.

Later in life, her parents needed to do something to help their socially awkward, uncoordinated child come out of her shell and figured there was no better place than a bar on Wednesday nights. It’s a good thing they did because this is where she found her love of reading and writing. Who needs socialization when you can sit alone in your bedroom with a good book?

Now, Sloan is a tattooed mom with a mohawk and two kids. She’s been kicked out of the PTA in two school districts and is no longer asked to help with fundraisers because she’s been known to lose herself with a good book and forget she has somewhere to be.


Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Two Mini-Reviews: Resilient Heart and Letters from Cupid

Title: Resilient Heart

Author: Annabeth Albert

Publisher/GR LinkGR

Genre: MM, Military

Vice: Military, PTSD, Dogs, Healing

Rating: 5 out of 5

Satisfaction: HEA 

SynopsisOriginally released as part of the Unconditional Surrender bundle, now available as a stand-alone novella complete with BRAND-NEW 10,000 word short story/epilogue. When a wounded soldier is forced to accept help from his former best friend, both men discover the true strength of their entwined hearts.

Army IT specialist Xander keeps his emotions wired as tight as his NETCOM gear, but when he’s seriously injured by an IED, his whole life unravels. Running out of options, Xander must accept help from his ex-friend-with-benefits, Mackey. However, Xander’s had feelings for Mackey for years, and close quarters only complicates his emotions. Further, Xander doesn’t know which is worse: combating his inner demons or dealing with Mackey’s guilty kindnesses. 

Mackey’s always kept his emotions close to his chest, but now he’s got a secret that could destroy his one chance with the man he cares far too much for. Both men will have to heal their wounded hearts to ensure a future together. 

Entwined Future: In this new short story, Mackey has news that could change everything for him and Xander, but a visit from Xander's family jeopardizes Mackey's plans--and forces Xander to confront some harsh truths.

Impressions:  This short novel backed a whole heck of a lot of punch.  I loved these two men, and I appreciated the sensitivity with which their struggle was captured.  I loved the packing of the story, which allowed us to share in the challenges and joys that these two men face.  I am quickly finding this author to be an auto-buy for me, and this book sealed the deal!  This is such  deep, complex book and the character development is handled so well.  I'd love to see these two men in the future!

Title: Letters from Cupid

Author: Ari McKay

Publisher/GR Link: Torquere, GR

Genre: MM Contemporary

Vice: Nerds, Strong/Silent types

Rating: 5 out of 5

Satisfaction:  HEA

Synopsis:Breaking up with his boyfriend has left English Professor Derek Chandler feeling lonely and down. He begins to think that he just doesn't have the passion to sustain a long-term relationship -- at least until a letter from a mysterious "Cupid" tells him not to lose hope. Intrigued, Derek replies to his anonymous admirer, and they begin a correspondence where Derek discovers he isn't the only one with doubts about his desirability.

Dr. Macon Pinney has admired his colleague from afar for quite a while, but he only intended his initial note to Derek to offer encouragement. Macon doesn't believe that outgoing, sociable Derek could ever be interested in the type of quiet, withdrawn man he knows himself to be. And yet when Derek writes back, admitting his worries about never finding a true partner, Macon can't help but reply, sharing his own feelings from the safety of anonymity.

But will Macon find the courage to step out of the shadows and admit to Derek his identity, or will both men spend the most romantic day of the year alone?

Impressions: I was looking for something cute and sweet, and this story was IT!  I loved Macon and his struggle to believe that Derek could really like *him.*  I really got him as a character, and this story kept a smile on my face the whole time I read it.  It was, in a word, perfect!  When you need a cute Valentine pick-me-up, grab this one!  I know I'll be revisiting it again!

5+ Banned in Boston Review: Beneath the Stain

Title: Beneath the Stain

Author: Amy Lane

Publisher/GR Link:Dreamspinner, GR

Genre: MM Contemporary

Vice: Rockstars, Loss, Recovery, Coming Out

Rating: 5 out of 5- Banned in Boston

Lock this book up: 4 out of 5 keys- Sex is hot but necessary to the plot

Length: 7 short novellas, or one juicy novel

Satisfaction: Bring your tissues, but you'll get an HEA

Cover Impressions: I love it.  Has Lane's style all over it

Best Line“I love you, McKay. I love you so much it would kill me not to try.”

SynopsisIn a town as small as Tyson, CA, everybody knew the four brothers with the four different fathers-- and their penchant for making good music when they weren't getting into trouble. For Mackey Sanders, playing in Outbreak Monkey with his brothers and their friends—especially Grant Adams--made Tyson bearable. But Grant has plans for getting Mackey and the Sanders boys out of Tyson, even if that means staying behind. 

Between the heartbreak of leaving Grant and the terrifying, glamorous life of rock stardom, Mackey is adrift and sinking fast. When he's hit rock bottom, Trav Ford shows up, courtesy of their record company and a producer who wants to see what Mackey can do if he doesn't flame out first. But cleaning up his act means coming clean about Grant, and that's not easy to do or say. Mackey might make it with Trav's help--but Trav's not sure he's going to survive falling in love with Mackey. 

Mackey James Sanders comes with a whole lot of messy, painful baggage, and law-and-order Trav doesn't do messy or painful. And just when Trav thinks they may have mastered every demon in Mackey's past, the biggest, baddest demon of all comes knocking.

Impressions:  Part of me feels like the author name says everything I could say in a review.  Amy Lane means the most delicious of angst, love, and enough hope to keep you holding on until the teary finish.  It means your heart getting rung out, and you coming back for more every single time.  It means a cast of characters that come alive, and that you feel like you know.

This book was no exception.  Mack and Trav are great for each other, and I loved every second of watching them find their love, their happiness, and their family.

If you love Amy Lane, and really, who doesn't?, get this one and get started.  You can buy this as one novel, or as seven short novellas.  When I bought it, I bought the seven shorts for the bonus material which, though I enjoyed it, you did not need it to fully experience the novel.  Luckily for you all, the novel is totally released now, so there is no need to wait each week for it to arrive in your bookshelf.

There is an amazing cast of characters, and I know this will be a read I return to time and time again.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

5 Star Review: The Truth as He Knows It

This book is released 2/10 from Samhain Press - Preorder it now!

Title: The Truth as He Knows It.

Author: A.M. Arthur

Publisher/GR LinkGR

Genre: MM Contemporary

Vice: OFY, loss, cops

Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

Lock this book up : 4 out of 5, the sex is very hot but totally suits the story

Length: Novel

Satisfaction: HEA, with a few tissues

Cover Impressions: Cute, and looks like the mental image I had of the men

Best Line: "I want us, and everything that comes with us, and maybe even a dog."

SynopsisOfficer Noel Carlson isn’t out to anyone in small-town Stratton, Pennsylvania, only to distant friends and family, so a relationship is out of the question. That doesn’t stop him from wanting one, though.

When a night-shift call brings him face to thonged butt with a hired stripper whose girl-party gig went terribly wrong, Noel takes pity on the guy and lets him go. But he can’t get the encounter out of his mind.

Shane has big-time debts to repay, especially to the brother who sacrificed nearly everything for him. His two jobs, in a deli and as a stripper, leave him no time for a social life. But a non-date of hot sex and takeout food with Noel? He can squeeze that in.

The bond they form is stronger than either expected or wanted. Especially since the step Shane’s about to take to put his brother—and his soul—back in the black isn’t quite legal. And he never calculated just how much his determination to make things right will cost him in the end.

Impressions: I love AM Arthur's work, and this book is a loose spin-off from the Cost of Repairs series, but can definitely be read on its own.  I love that series, so I was pleasantly surprised to see a few familiar "faces" pop up.

If you love AM Arthur's work, don't let this one slip by you.  I got the same feeling of being swept away in a great story with three dimensional characters that I always get from Arthur's work.  If you are new to this author, this is a great book to start with.

I really loved Shane, and I found his relationship with his brother to be complex, realistic, and touching.  In a move right out of the Gift of the Magi, both work to help each other, and in the process sacrifice their mental and physical health.  

Noel was a great hero for Shane, and I enjoyed watching him develop and grow throughout the story. Their love was real and believable, and I yearned for the two of them to get their well deserved HEA.  You will need a few tissues along the way, however!

I have to say, I am VERY eager for the next book in this series!

Highly recommended!