Title: The Wrench Wars Collection
Author: L.A. Witt and Marie Sexton
Length: 4 Novellas (284pgs)
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (28th September 2016)
Heat Level: Moderate
Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥ 3 ½ Hearts (Combined rating for all 4 books)
Blurb: Welcome to Reggie’s garage, where the reality television show Wrench Wars is filmed. The show is full of drama, but things really get interesting when the cameras go dark.
Come see what these mechanics get up to behind the scenes. Secret love leads to blackmail. A worker with an unusual fetish finds a car enthusiast who shares his… interests. The garage’s owner enjoys the added business that comes with the show—and the company of the show’s hot producer—but not studio politics. And one man makes the mistake of falling for his best friend’s little brother.
Hot men and hard steel. Sweat, grease, and lust. Fetishes, backstabbing, and greed. Maybe even love. Things are heating up in the garage, and the war is on.
Last Mechanic Standing by L.A. Witt: ♥♥♥♥♥ 5 Hearts
When I realized how short this book was I let out a mighty groan of dislike. I usually have difficulty with short books and novellas because they tend to leave me wanting more, but this is L.A. Witt and I thought maybe I should have some faith. For as short as this was, I have absolutely no complaints! It was just the right length because it truly packed a punch and didn’t give me any chances to get bored.
Mark has started working at his father’s garage after college, and even though he hates being under his homophobic father’s thumb and live his life closeted, all the student loans hanging over his head don’t give him much choice. For the past two years Mark and his best friend Chandler have been enjoying a sexual relationship with no expectations for more. Mark just needs to pay off his student loans before he’s able to leave and live his life the way he always wanted to.
Chandler works for Mark’s father as a mechanic, and as much as he loves his job, he hates his employer and Mark’s father; those two always come to blows over every little thing. When the TV show Wrench Wars shows an interest in the shop Chandler works at, Chandler knows they’re only interested in the ratings his volatile relationship with his employer will bring, and Chandler isn’t interested in signing. But when his relationship with Mark is threatened to be exposed, Chandler doesn’t think about himself anymore, and does whatever he has to in order to protect the man he loves.
Can I just say that those two were stupidly hot together? I’m not sure what it was about them, maybe the fact that they knew each other since they were kids (friends to lovers is my favorite kind of setup), or the intensity and chemistry maybe did the trick, but I loved them together.
I am so excited about this series, and the setting for the next book is perfectly done! I can’t wait for Kasey’s book (you naughty, dirty, kinky fucker!)
Normal Enough by Marie Sexton: ♥♥♥ 3 Hearts
Kasey is a mechanic who specializes in old cars, and we’re told from the beginning that Kasey has a muscle car fetish. When Brandon brings his muscle car in for a timing belt adjustment, he quickly figures out Kasey’s fetish and doesn’t hesitate to bring it up.
Here’s the thing: the whole beginning of their story seemed creepy and farfetched. How exactly did Brandon figure out that Kasey got a hard-on for his car? A regular person would assume his boner would be for Brandon himself, but I’m no expert in undercover kink so my opinion doesn’t count.
I liked Kasey and his personal issues and realizations, but this book wasn’t long enough to understand Kasey and Brandon as a couple, and that’s mostly because of how little I got to know about Brandon. For a second edition, this was seriously uneventful, unimproved, and underwhelming. I expected more the second time around, maybe an epilogue or a few more chapters where Kasey and Brandon’s relationship was showcased. The way this book ended can’t even be called a HFN.
Normal Enough had the potential to be outstanding, but unfortunately there was nothing special about it.
Wrenches, Regrets & Reality Checks by L.A. Witt ♥♥♥ 3 Hearts
Although it is part of a series, Wrenches, Regrets, & Reality Checks can be read as a standalone, much like the prior two books. Despite how much I loved the first book (and how much hope I had for this one as well), this was everything I know short stories to be: weak premise, underdeveloped characters, unconvincing romance between the main characters and worst of all… a barely there HFN.
Reggie and Wes’s story and interest in each other comes out of nowhere and ends pretty much in the same direction. The chemistry between them was unconvincing and underwhelming and although the sex was pretty hot, it didn’t blow me away because there were NO feelings involved.
I guess I needed more of everything; more character development, more interactions between Wes and Reggie, an epilogue or anything to show me these two have a future together and things worked out. To say I’m disappointed by that ending is putting it mildly.
I’m not sure if this book puts an end to this series, but if there’s more in the future, they need to be more similar to the first book, because that I adored!
Making Waves by Marie Sexton ♥♥♥♥ 3.5 hearts
Dean and Ward have been through a lot together, have been best friends for years, and despite Dean being self-absorbed and selfish, he’s been there for Ward through a very hard time in his life when he bounced from foster home to foster home. Dean is the brother Ward never had, the one constant in his life. Despite knowing of some relationships Ward has had with men before, Dean refuses to accept or understand that Ward might be gay; he’s not an asshole about it, but he prefers to ignore it as long as possible. Until Dean’s little brother Ash comes around.
Ash is 7 years younger than Ward and has had a crush on him since he was a teenager; now that he has Ward in his sight again, he does everything he can to show his interest in Ward. Ash is flirtatious, all grown up and not afraid to go after what he wants. Ward’s efforts to resist him crumbled under Ash’s sensuality and the chemistry between them.
This book would’ve been relatively drama-free if it wasn’t for Dean. Christ that man was such a whiny, annoying, self-absorbed asshole! That selfish prick ruined the whole entire book! I got sick of his tantrums and ultimatums, and the fact that he refused to see his brother is no longer a child and can in fact make his own decisions. Because of this asshole, we got robbed of some sexy times that had real potential.
The ending is a HFN, and that’s ok. We also got to see the couples from the previous books, and while Chandler and Mark are still my favorite couple, Ash and Ward are a close second.