Between Two Promises by Shelter Somerset

Title: Between Two Promises

Sequel to: Between Two Worlds

Author: Shelter Somerset

Genre: Contemporary

Length: Novel (230pgs)

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (3rd October 2011)

Heat Level: Low

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥3 ½Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: Daniel Schrock and Aiden Cermak have forged a life in the rural Montana foothills, but a shadow still lingers, made stronger when a letter arrives from Daniel’s brother Mark inviting him to his Christmas wedding. Daniel fears returning home might force what he wants to avoid: telling his family about Aiden and facing the dreaded Amish shunning.

Despite the uncertainties, Daniel and Aiden head to Illinois, where frustration will not only endanger Daniel’s relationship with his family and the church community, but his bond with his boyfriend, who leaves Daniel with a choice: him or the Amish. Before Daniel can stop Aiden, he’s gone… and threats from the past resurface, crystallizing Daniel’s fears about a murderer still at large.

As he desperately searches for Aiden and the identity of the suspected killer, Daniel will have to decide if love is important enough to risk losing everything he knows. Will Daniel choose to keep his commitment to the Amish church or will he stand by the promise he made to Aiden that first night they made love?

Review: Aiden is sure he is right to convince Daniel to return to Henry for his brother’s wedding.   But it’s not long before he is regretting his decision and doubting his relationship with Daniel.  Daniel knows it’s a mistake to return to Henry and let’s Aiden know it. Can these two men sort out their problems before it’s too late?

I found that there was a lot of despair and angst and misunderstanding in this book and at one point I actually thought ‘why are these two men even bothering?’ because they just didn’t seem to get each other. I found that I learnt a lot about the Amish and their way of life is intriguing but their church very strict. I found it really hard to believe that these two men got together in the first place as in this Daniel came across as repressed and uptight always wanting his own way, while Aiden just seemed easy going but downtrodden always seeming to give into what Daniel wants.

Daniel is struggling with himself about his church, his family, his fears… well the only thing he doesn’t seem to worry about is his relationship with Aiden and that’s because for most of the book it’s as though he doesn’t give a damn about Aiden.   unless Aiden does something he doesn’t like. I found it really hard to like Daniel, I mean, yes, I could understand his troubles, but not once does he actually think about how it might be affecting Aiden.   Whereas with Aiden, most of what he does is for Daniel and he thinks a lot about how what he does or says affect Daniel. I really do feel sorry for Aiden as all he wants is some sort of acknowledgement or support off Daniel but he gets neither until he is in danger.

I thought this was well written and the struggles that they faced were portrayed very well; I thought that Aiden was a fantastic character and his love for Daniel came across loud and clear.   Daniel, on the other hand, was too confused by his struggles for me to get a true handle on his character…he was very confusing and contradictory. The world building was good and I liked the descriptions of the surrounding community and their support of each other.

I would recommend this to those who like a strong storyline, a few twists and turns, soul-searching and a slight mystery.

Mummy Dearest by Josh Lanyon

Title: Mummy Dearest

Series: The XOXO Files 01

Author: Josh Lanyon

Genre: Contemporary/Paranormal

Length: Novella (85pgs)

Publisher: Samhain Publishing (4th October 2011)

Heat Level: Low

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥♥4 ½Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: The truth is out there. Way, way, way out there!

Drew Lawson is racing against the clock. He’s got a twenty-four-hour window to authenticate the mummy of Princess Merneith. If he’s not at his boyfriend’s garden party when that window closes, it’ll be the final nail in their relationship coffin.

The last thing he needs traipsing on the final shred of his patience is brash, handsome reality show host Fraser Fortune, who’s scheduled to film a documentary about the mummy’s Halloween curse.

The opportunity to film a bona-fide professor examining the mummy is exactly the aura of authenticity Fraser needs. Except the grumpy PhD is a pompous ass on leave from his ivory tower. Yet something about Drew has Fraser using a word he doesn’t normally have to draw upon: please.

With no time to waste — and a spark of attraction he can’t deny — Drew reluctantly agrees to let Fraser follow his every move as he unwraps the mummy’s secrets. Soon they’re both making moves behind the scenes that even the dead can’t ignore!

Product Warnings: Who so shall ever open this tomb, er, book shall suffer the curse of the Pharaohs. Okay, maybe not. But set aside a chunk of time for marauding mummies, too many cosmopolitans, illicit sex in hotel rooms, and other non-academic shenanigans.

Review: Drew is expecting to examine an Egyptian Mummy at a small museum in Walsh, Wyoming.   What he doesn’t expect is Fraser and his film crew to mess with his schedule.  Fraser is at the museum making a film about the mummy’s curse of Princess Merneith.   He doesn’t expect the stuck up Professor but decides to use him in the filming.

I enjoyed this story as it’s a light-hearted read. Drew is having some doubts about his relationship and although Fraser annoys him he finds himself attracted to him.  Fraser is also attracted to Drew but he doesn’t have high hopes. We then see these two men drawn into the mystery of the mummy’s curse, while Drew tries to sort out his relationship. There are movie references and witty banter that has you giggling.   The interaction between the two MCs is good and the mystery surrounding the mummy’s curse was ok. It is written well and moves smoothly along.

This is a great Halloween romp which I will recommend to everyone who wants a light-hearted romp that will leave you with a smile on your face.

 

Another Way by Anna Martin

Title: Another Way

Author: Anna Martin

Genre: BDSM, D/s, Kink

Length: Novel (230pgs)

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (30th September 2011)

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥♥♥5Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: On the surface, Jesse Ross is an average guy in an average relationship with his college sweetheart, Adele. But what his girlfriend doesn’t know is that he’s having an affair—with a man—and exploring his sexuality in ways she never could imagine. His compartmentalized life suits Jesse just fine, and he has no intention of coming out of the closet either as a bisexual or as a submissive.

However, Jesse takes a tumble when his Master, Will, admits to wanting more, wanting Jesse as his partner, not just his submissive. Suddenly Jesse’s conveniently pieced-together life isn’t quite so comfortable. In the end, Jesse has to lay it all on the line—for his girlfriend, for his lover, and for himself.

Warning: Some readers may be offended by some of the sexual practices involved. E.G. Whips, Floggers, Rope play Fisting and Voyeurism.

Review: You know, I really do have to start reading the blurbs before I read a book.   Just so I don’t keep getting hit upside the head with revelations that are in the blurbs. Now that doesn’t mean it made it any easier because I was still sat there thinking “well is this a M/M or a M/M/F” because at first it wasn’t very clear but I sussed that out and then I was happy.

Jesse has it all… he has the loving girlfriend, a good job and his Master on the side to tend to his submissive needs.   Life is good, but then his Master shocks him by wanting more. Will fell for Jesse some time ago and now he needs more than just his submission.   But the spanner in the works is that Jesse already has a girlfriend that he has been with for five years and lives with.

I really didn’t know what to make of Jesse at first, I mean he was cheating on his girlfriend with a man (though he’s not gay or bi-sexual) who is a Master and before that he had a Mistress so I don’t think he had ever been faithful to her.   He justified it to himself by thinking that his girlfriend wouldn’t understand his submissive needs and yeah, I got that, but it didn’t mean he had to have sex with them as well. The story progress’s very well and Jesse realizes that he feels more for Will than he first thought and we see the progression of their relationship slowly. We then see him trying to work out what to do as he doesn’t want to hurt his girlfriend but he wants more from Will, so he is stuck in a dilemma until he reaches breaking point.

This has got to be THE best BDSM, D/s book that I have ever read.  And do you want to know why… it’s because this story takes us through the journey of Master and sub as they explore both their limits as time goes on.   It takes us through the progression of the relationship as it changes to partners and lovers and the realities they both face as they work through their problems that crop up due to those changes.   It is wonderfully done. There is a lot of BDSM, D/s and it is tastefully done, the relationship between them develops brilliantly and their feelings for each other are strong. I think the storyline was brilliant and the plot really good and there is a good balance between the MCs and their relationship and the way that the relationship was balanced between being partners and Master and sub was great.

I’d recommend this to those who love BDSM, D/s, hot men, hot sex and a truly wonderful relationship of a Master and his sub as they become more.

New Linen by Jaime Samms

Title: New Linen

Author: Jaime Samms

Genre: Contemporary, D/s

Length: Short Story (28pgs)

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (24th June 2011)

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥♥3 ½Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: Until now, Drew and Garrett have been playing at dominance, but things have to change. Drew is already losing himself to the implacable will of his new Master and they have yet to make anything official. That’s what this weekend is supposed to be about – Garrett making Drew his – unless the memories from Garrett’s past are too strong to let him meet Drew’s ultimatum of the real thing or nothing at all.

Review: Erm… well… can’t add anything ‘cause the blurb says it all but what I can say is this… wow, a real hot little number that starts off as it means to end with a hot display of dominance at the beach and it doesn’t let up.

You can feel Drew’s insecurity and doubt about Garret being his master and you can also sense when he accepts Garret’s full dominance.   You feel his discomfort at the exhibitionism that Garrett forced on him.  Unfortunately, as this is from Danny’s POV, you don’t get a feel for Garrett at all.   So you can’t work out his reasoning for what he is doing.

The sex is hot and sensual; the D/s is well done and not over the top.  The characters seem well suited.  Mind you, there isn’t much of a storyline other than Garrett accepting Drew as his sub and Drew accepting Garrett as his Master but it’s well written.

So I’d recommend this to those who love D/s, hot sex and a HEA for a sub and his Master.

 

 

Ben in the Shadows by Ellen Ginsberg

Title: Ben in the Shadows

Series: Dreamcatcher 02

Author: Ellen Ginsberg

Genre: Shifter/Paranormal, Fantasy

Length: Novel (160pgs)

Publisher: Siren-Bookstrand Publishing (24th September 2011)

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥♥4Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: Ben, a werewolf, has spent a decade being experimented on by a mad scientist. Retreating into a fantasy world to cope with his pain, he eagerly awaits a hero to save him. Jasper, a lifelong screw up, proves heroic in rescuing him, but is convinced of his own ill-worth and terrified he won’t be able to live up to the romantic fantasies Ben has of him.

Once mated, the two broken men gain access to each other’s dreams, where neither man can hide from the shadows of his troubled past, and the skeletons in both their closets threaten to overcome the love they both need so badly. Jasper and Ben are bound together for eternity, but will they find in each other their destruction…or their salvation?

Review: Ben is trapped in the basement of a scientist and dreams of a hero to come and save him.   He has it all worked out in his head about how everything would progress… after all he’d seen enough films to know. Jasper stumbles across Ben when he visits Dr. Pierson ex-PHD and Bio-revolutionary about a Miracle drug of epic proportions and discovers the Dr’s test subject is a werewolf and rescues him.

Another fantastic story where we are given more world-building for the other plane, Morgana.   We get a closer look at Ben and Jasper this time round. With Ben, you wonder how he isn’t a quivering wreck curled up in a corner rocking back and forth after being held for ten years having experiments done on him.   And you really have to admire his determination to have a hero even if that hero is flawed because that was the only thing that kept him going for so long; your heart breaks for him. Jasper is an emotional mess and you really feel for him.  What with how he pushed his feelings away after what happened to his parents, it’s not surprising; he tries his best not to give into any of his feelings.   and it makes you want to weep at how much shame and disgust that he holds for himself after he went off the rails and how it affects him now with his mate.

A truly wonderful story where you can empathize with the characters and know that it isn’t all a bunch of roses for them but that they actually have to work at it and let go of their own fears and worries.   Some fantastic hot sex scenes and angst, and some danger that is pretty freaky.

This has a strong storyline with a good plot that leaves us open for the next book which I guess with be Alex and Jacob’s story.  Hopefully, we will find out what happened to their parents for the last 10 years (pretty pleaseJ).

So I recommend this for those who love shifters, hot sex, angst, danger, hot men, a brilliant storyline and a promise of more to come.

 

 

Golden Dancer by Tara Lain

Title:  Golden Dancer

Author:  Tara Lain

Genre:  Contemporary, M/M/M Ménage, Romantic Suspense

Length:  Novel

Publisher:  Loose Id, LLC (September 27, 2011)

Heat Level:  Explicit

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥5Hearts

Blurb:  Mac MacAllister is obsessed; the online news reporter needs enough evidence to write a story accusing billionaire art collector Daniel Terrebone of stealing The Golden Dancer, a priceless work of art, from son-of-a-Nazi Horst Von Berg. The story promises the recognition Mac craves, but then Mac meets a real golden dancer, ballet star Trelain Medveyev, and his attraction to the man rocks his formerly straight world.

When the mysterious Terrebone “collects” this beautiful dancer, too, Mac rushes to the rescue like a knight in shining cargo pants and plunges into a three-way passion that tears him between love and guilt. Can Mac keep investigating when his story could send one man to prison and another to the morgue? Will this reporter get his story or get his men?

Publisher’s Note: This book contains explicit sexual situations, graphic language, and material that some readers may find objectionable: male/male sexual practices, ménage (m/m/m).

From the Author

Writing romantic suspense is a skill I’ve always admired — from afar. I used to beta read manuscripts for a dear friend who was a very successful romantic suspense writer. All those twists and turns and double crosses. I loved reading it but never dreamed I’d write it myself. Then Loose Id put out a call for manuscripts for their Men of Mystery series. What fun. Give us your secret agents and super heroes, your undercover cops and assassins, they said.  I don’t usually write those guys. Not yet anyway. But I had just started a story I was inspired to write with a ballet dancer hero. Not exactly Navy SEAL material. But I had woven a story around my ballet dancer that involved an investigative reporter and a billionaire technologist who may or may not also be an art thief. Hmm.

Art theft? What if that theft had bigger implications? What if there was an outside villain who was a seriously nasty guy and what if he had a henchman that would make Ian Fleming proud? What if one hero is pitted against the other in a web of lies and mistrust and what if they both want the same thing? Hey, whaddya know? I had the makings of a romantic suspense. I pitched. I WON! They accepted my proposal. And then I had to WRITE it.  Yikes! LOL.
The resulting book, Golden Dancer is a M/M/M ménage. Here are a few things I learned:
·
Even with no suspense elements, a ménage is challenging. You need to get far into the heads and hearts of all three men and show their motivations, loves, concerns. When you layer on top of that the need to create a suspenseful plot, you have a lot on your hands.
·
The beginning of the book, always a big hurdle in any book for any writer, is a huge challenge in romantic suspense. Especially erotic romantic suspense. You need to introduce the elements of the mystery or conflict right away, but the reader also wants to know who the romantic heroes are going to be. It’s a lot to get on stage at once. Especially when you have three heroes!
·
If you want to create a great hero, write a really good villain. As my husband always says, “Nazis make the best villains.” I took his advice.
·
Find the right balance between the sex and romance and the mystery and suspense. The reader will get antsy if the romance is ignored in favor of the suspense or vice versa.
·
Keep up the pace. Romantic suspense is not leisurely!
I had enormous fun writing Golden Dancer. I notice that all my books are getting a little more suspenseful as a result. I hope you enjoy it — the suspense, and, above all, the romance!  :  ) Ta

Reviewer:  Portia

Review:  I’m not going to lie.  I haven’t found too many M/M/M that do it for me…until now.  There always seems to be an inequality that sets my teeth on edge.  Daniel, Trelain, and Mac find a way to make it work.  It is no secret that I am Tara Lain’s biggest fan.  I love the way she lets us fall in love with the characters as they fall in love with each other.  There is plenty of ménage, but you also get to see the MCs interact individually outside the bedroom.

When I started reading about Trelain, I thought we were going to meet the twin of Roan from, The Scientist and the Supermodel.  But, other than being beautiful men at the top of their artistic fields, Lain has created two characters with unique voices.

Regardless of the fact that this book was called The Golden Dancer, this is really Mac’s story.  Trelain and Daniel are his companions and lovers on his journey.  A journey that ends his finding acceptance and love that he never expected.

My favorite character among the trio is Daniel.  He is a switch on every level and you never knew what was going to come out of his mouth.  He is the fuel that powers this romance.

Finally, I know this is listed as a contemporary ménage romance, but there is a pretty decent suspense subplot woven into the steamy bedroom scenes.

Tara can’t write fast enough to satisfy me.  I highly recommend this book, and encourage you to go back and read her earlier releases, The Scientist and the Supermodel and Genetic Attraction.

Tuareg by Sarah Black

Title: Tuareg

Author: Sarah Black

Genre: Multicultural/Mystery

Length: Novella (150pgs)

Publisher: Loose Id (28th June 2011)

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥♥4Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: When photographer Leon Davis takes a job tracking down the nearly-extinct Zanzibar leopard, he isn’t expecting to fall in love with the mysterious and sexy Tuareg tribal leader, Ibrahim Ag Akhamok. Ibrahim has his own secrets, and he knows more than he lets on about the leopard. And what about Piers, the murdered photographer that Leon replaced? Until Leon discovers what Piers was doing in Zanzibar, and who killed him, he can’t face his own demons — and he can’t earn the love of the powerful and dangerous Tuareg.

Review:

This book has a lot more going for it than what the blurb explains.

Leon is a photographer for the Wilderness Coalition for Africa who takes over a shoot when the previous photographer (Piers) is found dead.   He is also asked to find out more about the mystery of that death and the leopard in the final photos sent by Piers. Ibrahim is the ‘sheik’, the Tuareg leader, and will do anything to protect his family.  He is suspicious of Leon, at first, thinking that he might be the same as Piers but Leon somehow manages to get under his skin.

Leon seems like quite a submissive kind of fellow, going with the flow and trying to smooth things along but get him riled up and God help you.   He also has great sorrow and guilt in his past which he is still living with and you can see how being on Zanzibar and mixing with its people seem to cleanse him. Ibrahim is a take charge, fierce and protective type of man who expects total loyalty and you can see why when you discover his secrets. These two will make you fall in love with Zanzibar and its people. I really liked all the secondary characters (except Peter) and found that they did play a very solid thread through-out the story and I found the mystery surrounding Piers death intriguing.

I will recommend this to anyone who likes mysteries, hot men, hot sex and exotic locations.

What Matters Most by Bailey Bradford

Title: What Matters Most

Series: Love in Xxchange 04

Author: Bailey Bradford

Genre: Contemporary/Cowboys/Western

Length: Novel (186pgs)

Publisher: Total E-Bound (22nd August 2011)

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥4Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: Sometimes it takes losing everything to find out what matters most.

Josh has a fondness for hot pink, penguins…and one wicked man he knows he shouldn’t trust. Nick is a confused, angry man, one who has been denied the opportunity to know his half-siblings, who was ignored and treated less than second best—until the fair-haired children fell out of favor with a resounding thud. Now Nick has something he isn’t sure he wants—a ranch left to him by a father who never cared for him, and a fascination with a certain hot-pink, penguin printed, scrub wearing nurse who makes his blood boil in a way no woman ever had.

But Josh left him hurting on the floor the last time he dared touch the man. Nick had never thought the attractive dark-haired man with the jewel-bright eyes would be anything other than a tool to spy on his half-siblings, but somehow, Josh has gotten under Nick’s skin, and Nick isn’t sure he ever wants it any other way.

But the choice isn’t just his, and it’s more than just their futures that are at risk… And Nick doesn’t know if he can get past Josh turning away from him once again, or if he can be strong enough to reach for what matters most…

Review: Josh is a nurse who will do anything to protect his family, even if it means keeping secrets from them.   When he figures out the truth about Nick he is really not pleased.  Nick wants to know more about his half-siblings but he can’t contact them directly so he comes up with a plan.   A plan to get close to Josh and find out about them, his main problem though is he’s not gay.

I had mixed feelings about this at first when I learned that Nick was straight but the more we get to know him and how he was brought up and his reaction to Josh the better I felt about it.  I felt really sorry for Josh and the way he was treated by his brothers, Justin and Nick.  But Nick redeemed himself nicely though I can’t say the same for Justin.  Josh had to go through a lot of angst before things worked out for him and Nick had a lot of soul-searching to do as well.

These two MCs had a lot of angst for different reasons.   Nick because he only inherited as his father, Ian Calhoun, wanted to hurt his other two children, his mother’s attitude towards him and the stipulations in the will, when all he wants is to know his brother and sister.   Josh because he feels used by Nick and he is also keeping secrets from Annabelle and Rory about who Nick is. We see quite a few misunderstandings on both sides before they eventually sort themselves out.

I would recommend this book to those who like strong characters, hot men, hot sex, angst and a well written story.

 

 

 

 

Invisible Curtain by Alex Morgan

Title: Invisible Curtain

Series: A Corey Shaw Mystery

Author: Alex Morgan

Genre: Mystery, Action, Paranormal

Length: Novel (260pgs)

Publisher: loveyoudivine Alterotica (28th September 2011)

Heat Level: Moderate

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥4 ½Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: Corey Shaw is torn between a vacation with his family, his burgeoning attraction to handsome dancer, Raul and solving the mystery behind a series of explosions that follow the ship from London across the Baltic Sea. Can he protect the ones he loves and identify the terrorist before an even greater tragedy occurs?

Paranormal sleuth Corey Shaw is enjoying vacation with his family in the Baltic Sea when terrorists bomb restaurants hosting World Cup parties in London and Copenhagen. On each occasion the explosion coincides with the cruise ship leaving port. Although the United States isn’t attacked directly, Corey and his colleagues are unavoidably drawn into the investigation with or without the blessing of international intelligence agencies. When a third bomb goes off in St. Petersburg, Russia, Corey is convinced the answer lies aboard his ship.

He must use all his psionic abilities to protect his family, and his friends, and keep the world safe from this worrying upsurge in international terrorism.

Review: Ah, I love mysteries and this one was no different, a pure joy to read.  Corey is on vacation cruise with his family for his mother’s birthday but as the ship pulls away from the docks he has a vision of an explosion and so begins a mystery that follows him across the sea.

This is a well written storyline with a good plot that doesn’t keep you hanging for too long. Corey is still suffering mentally from what happened to him in Murder at the Green Lantern and decides to just go with it on this vacation.   With the encouragement of his sisters he hooks up with dancer Raul while trying to help solve the mystery of who the terrorists are.

I really liked Corey in this story and I will hold my hands up and admit that I didn’t read Murder at the Green Lantern because I didn’t like Corey in Breathless but now I have to go and read it… gggrrr. I have to say that it was great to see Corey with his family and his romance with Raul was hot.   The mystery was good and although I did guess who the bomber was, I really liked the twist that emerged.

So I would recommend this for those who love mystery, danger, hot sex and the paranormal but don’t expect everything to smell of roses.

The Link that Binds by Dawn H. Hawkes

Title: The Link That Binds

Series: Solomon’s Pride 02

Author: Dawn H. Hawkes

Genre: Shifter/Paranormal

Length: Novel (182pgs)

Publisher: Silver Publishing (24th September 2011)

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥3 ½

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: Jace, a Shapeshifter, is held captive by vampires after a mission gone wrong. A turn of events puts him in close contact with Link, the very same human that facilitated his capture. With Link working for vampires, can Jace cope with the fact that Link just might be his mate?

Link never wanted to work with vampires, but led astray by his curiosity and the promise of money, he is now stuck in a dangerous arrangement he can’t escape. Meeting Jace might be his ticket out. He sure as hell isn’t going to do what the vampires tell him to when they request he find a “cure” that will eliminate all shifters… and use Jace to do so.

Review: Jace is a leopard shifter; he has an M.D. and is currently being held hostage by an insane, off their rocker Vampire. Link is a bar owner who just happens to have his own chemistry lab in the back rooms so he can make special drugs for the insane, off their rocker Vampire.

Jace is a cool character who is snarky with a get stuffed attitude.   So what if he has a gun pointed at his head, he’s pissed and will let everyone know it.  Link has landed in it up to his eyeballs and must do what the Vamps want to keep others safe.   He has no intention of following through with some things though, after all what the Vamps don’t know won’t hurt him.

I thought these characters matched well and suited each other to a ‘T’.  I loved the fact that their mating wasn’t easy or all tied up with a pretty bow.  I liked that they both struggled with it and that Jace didn’t let Link off scot-free for what he did.  The sex between the two is passionate and intense and Jace might be the shifter but didn’t always come out on top. We also got to know more about Jace’s and Solomon’s background which fleshed the series out nicely.  So we will hopefully see more conflict in the future.

The storyline and plot were ok but there were a few things that niggled at me and left me unsatisfied, where was the concern for Casey and Zane? Were the Vamps just driving around when they happened upon the kids? And why did it take so long for Link to confess his secret to Jace?

All in all though this is a good read and I’d recommend this to those who love shifters, conflict, danger, a bit of angst, hot sex and a storyline which promises more to come.

 

 

 

Forbidden Mate by Toni Griffin

Title: Forbidden Mate

Series: Holland Brothers 04

Author: Toni Griffin

Genre: Shifter/Paranormal

Length: Novel (173pgs)

Publisher: Silver Publishing (1st October 2011)

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥♥4Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: On a trip for his Alpha, Jake is forced into close quarters with the one man he has kept at a distance for ten years. While so close to the man he secretly loves, can he keep his mind on business and off his forbidden mate?

Rick Holland has watched as his brothers settled into mated bliss, quietly dying inside knowing he will never have the same. Rick has lived for the last ten years with the knowledge his mate doesn’t want him.  When his brother and Alpha asks him to take a trip, will Rick have the courage to forget his hurt and move on with his life?

Jake Richmond has watched from the sidelines as his mate grew from a surprisingly sexy sixteen years old into a stunningly handsome man. He’s done everything within his power to keep that man safe–aware that his mate believes he’s not wanted but unable to reveal the truth. Can Jake finally let go of the man he loves or will everything come crashing down when the pair are thrust together in their search for much-needed answers?

Review: Jake has stayed as far away from his mate as shifterly (is that a real word? Lol) possible trying to protect him and keep him safe.  All the while longing that he could claim him. Rick has accepted that his mate won’t claim him even as he still longs for the other man.   Now they are thrown together to do a task for their Alpha.   Can they both survive the longing to be together?

A well written story that answered many of our questions… well mine anyway, but still left a few to be answered (maybe a new series involving the Alpha of all of Australia (hint hint)). Rick has waited for Jake to claim him since he was 16 years old and after ten years knows it’s just not going to happen.   Jake wants nothing more to claim his mate but knows that if he does his mate’s life will be in danger.

I think this storyline was strong.   One mate protecting the other mate, although I was disappointed that Jake took it all onto himself but really what can we expect he’s male lol. I liked that it seemed a bit angsty for the two men and it wasn’t easy for them to spend time together.   and I thought that Rick has a core of steel and a very forgiving heart to be able to forgive his mate so quickly. Jake, on the other hand, I thought he was a bit spineless at first because there were a lot of people that he could have turned to who would have helped him out.   I found that I began to admire him though and he kinda grew on me.

As for the twist from the last book, yeah the explanation was good but the reasoning for keeping it secret from the packs especially the Alphas is stupid and causes more harm than good.   But, I have to keep reminding myself that it’s fiction and to let it go… it’s just a story. That’s how good Toni Griffin’s writing is.

So what do I recommend… this is for those who love shifters, hot men, hotter sex, a good storyline, a bit of angst and a bit of danger.

 

 

Chasing Seth by J. R. Loveless

Title: Chasing Seth

Author: J.R. Loveless

Genre: Shifter/Paranormal, Interracial

Length: Novel (215pgs)

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (30th September 2011)

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥♥♥5Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: Veterinarian Seth Davies comes to Senaka, Wyoming, looking for peace and anonymity, trying to escape his past. He’s always been a target for trouble and pain, and Seth has had more than his share of both. Kasey Whitedove takes one look at Seth and assumes the worst. No white man could love animals the way the mostly Cheyenne population expects, and Kasey makes Seth’s first days in Senaka more than unpleasant.

Then an accident puts Kasey in the uncomfortable position of eating crow—and helplessly desiring Seth—despite the danger of Kasey’s life as a werewolf and Seth’s stressful secrets. Chasing Seth down and keeping him safe from his past has just become Kasey’s most important job.

Review: Another touching angst filled book by J.R. Loveless. Seth has only now started having a semblance of balance after a traumatic event over two years ago.  He has come to Senaka for the peace it brings him; little knowing that his life is about to change again. Kasey is the Sheriff of Senaka and he really can’t believe that the old vet sold his practice to a ‘white man’ I mean come on what would a ‘white man’ know about animals except how to hurt, hunt and kill them.

This is quite a controversial story as it has racism and a bigoted attitude by the Cheyenne but not about being gay (no everyone is fine with that). What we have in this story is a firm belief that only the Cheyenne or a Native American could be a werewolf and any person who was white that could change into a wolf is one of the Created and to be hated and feared as well as killed, as they would eventually give themselves over to the wolf and become a monster. Fantastic absolutely fantastic.   J.R. Loveless has given us a great story to chew on; one to make us think and to give us a story that isn’t all sweetness and light when it comes to werewolf abilities. A fantastically written storyline and plot that doesn’t give us an easy ride as you will hate and love these characters in equal measure. Although, there is just a little extra sneer from you for Kasey’s father for not telling his pack the truth years ago.

The characters aren’t immediately loveable.  They grow on you as you get to know them.  With Seth your heart aches when you learn that he has been sheltered from the wolf-shifter world and not even told the most important facts that would keep him safe, the abuse he suffered at the hands of the Created or the prejudice of non-white wolves.  I think that after everything that he has been through and now finding a mate who is disgusted with him, that his breaking down and crying every now and again is understandable. He has fear; anger and depression with little hope or joy to look forward to. With Kasey you have a bigot who thinks that the whites are a waste of space and you see his struggle when he finds out that his mate is white and according to him must be a Created One because he’s white.   When he accepts the truth you then see his struggle to get his mate to accept him and to be patient while his mate overcomes his fears.

I fully recommend this to everyone who loves shifter and interracial stories because the conflict is good.  For those who love hot sex, as it’s scorching and those who love angst and danger… danger with a twist that is.

 

Moving Forward by Lisa Marie Davis

Title:  Moving Forward

Sequel to:   Dreams Come True

Author:  Lisa Marie Davis

Genre:  Contemporary

Length:  Novella

Publisher:  Dreamspinner Press (September 21, 2011)

Heat Level:  Moderate

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥♥4Hearts

Blurb:  Three years after making their dreams come true, James and Payne are happily committed and living in New York. But just as they’re about to embark on a special weekend, their world turns upside down when Jamie’s mother calls to say that his sister and her husband have been killed in a horrific accident.

Helping Jamie’s mother with funeral plans and adjusting to the reality that they are now the legal guardians of Jamie’s three-month-old niece would be hard enough, but Payne and Jamie must also deal with Jamie’s alcoholic father, Russ. If Payne and Jamie want to move forward as a family, they’ll have to learn to deal with old pain, fresh grief, and new responsibilities.

Reviewer:  Astrid

Review:  Sequels can be tricky beasts. Can they be read as a standalone? Will the author have to dedicate a third of the book to rehashing the first book so a new reader has a clue what’s going on? And for those of us who did read the previous book…will we remember the finer points? This can be frustrating for a reader. With Moving Forward, Lisa Marie Davis made it as simple as ABC – genius! Whether you’ve read the previous story or not (I recommend you read it – ‘cause it’s wonderful), you are given a concise history that isn’t jarring and are immediately immersed into the present story.

Two beloved characters, Payne & Jamie, are back and its three years later. They are happily married and looking forward to a long weekend when tragedy strikes. Jamie and Payne are grief-stricken but their devotion to one another gives them the strength to face the nightmare, which includes a confrontation with Jamie’s father Russ aka – alcoholic, homophobe extraordinaire.

This novella packed an emotional punch, had a development I didn’t expect but welcomed (I’m not telling), and hopefully (pretty please) is the groundwork for a third i

Temple Boy by Heidi Cullinan

Title: Temple Boy

Series: Etsey Novels 02

Author: Heidi Cullinan

Genre: Fantasy/Adventure

Length: Novel (165pgs)

Publisher: Loose Id (20th September 2011)

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥♥♥5Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: There is something different about Aurel. Though he’s lived his whole life as a Temple Boy in remote Mantua, no one seems to know when he arrived, or even when he was born. Despite a strict edict against sexual contact in the monastery, somehow even the most devout of men seem unable to stop from throwing themselves at Aurel. But things really get hairy when God shows up speaking Catalian and demands Aurel help him find his true love.

Now giant stone beasts are running him down at mass, witches are dropping out of the sky, and a sad, headless man whispers of lost love to Aurel in his dreams. It isn’t until a band of vengeful amazons drag him into the desert hills, however, that Aurel realizes how much of not just his life but the lives of others are at stake—but he can’t do anything until he figures out which God, if any, is real.

Publisher’s Note: This book contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable: anal play/intercourse, dubious consent, ménage (m/f/m with m/m content), rape, same-sex practices (m/m, f/f), and strong violence. Readers with a history of rape or sexual abuse may find elements of this story disturbing.

Review: This book is part of a series and you HAVE to read the first book or you just won’t get this book at all.  The first book, The Seventh Veil, starts with world building and the beginning of the story and the main characters that appear through-out the series. Aurel’s life will never be the same again when he wakes up from a dream where the god died and it leads him on a journey of discovery and to his true love.

In this book, we have the return of Charles, Timothy, Madeline and Jonathon.   And in true Charles fashion he screws up pretty early in the book which leads us to Aurel who is our main character in this one.  Aurel is a Temple Boy, in a Cloister Temple, who will eventually find his love Chakide when he is captured by Zamoa warrior women. This is not an easy light read.   This story is more like an installment of an epic adventure.   I have to say, it is incredibly fantastic, the world building is brilliant, the characters come to life and the storyline is like nothing I have ever seen before.

This book I would say is for readers who like long heavy fantasy.   It switches back and forth between characters and could be confusing if treated like a light read. It does have scenes of rape but thankfully does not go into too much detail about it. If you read the first book, then you know that there will be more to follow as each veil is revealed and this is only the second veil, so still no happy ending for Charles and Timothy yet.

I will recommend this to those who love fantasy, true love, hardship, a fantastic storyline and an author who is going to continue to give us quality stories. But I cannot stress enough that you have to read the first story before this one.    

 

Bulletproof by Mary Calmes

Title: Bulletproof

Series: A Matter of Time

Author: Mary Calmes

Genre: Contemporary

Length: Novel (260pgs)

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (26th September 2011)

Heat Level: Moderate

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥♥♥4 1/2Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Sequel to A Matter of Time Vol I & II (AMOT)

Blurb: Jory Harcourt doesn’t have to go looking for trouble. Wherever he goes, it seems to find him—particularly when his partner, Sam Kage, is working undercover on a federal task force.

After the recession forces him to close his business, Jory goes to work as a matchmaker and event planner. From there, it’s only a matter of time before his big mouth and up-front attitude make him the rope in a tug-of-war between a trust fund baby and a drug-smuggling criminal. Then, as if that situation weren’t delicate enough, Jory’s undercover lover shows up working for the smuggler.

Between the men who want him and the men who just want him dead, Chicago is getting a little crowded for Jory, so on the advice of his brother, his boyfriend, and the FBI task force, he heads for Hawaii… where a serious accident threatens his quality of life. Can Sam and Jory keep the faith and prove that their relationship really is bulletproof?

Review: Ok when I first heard that Mary Calmes was writing a sequel to her Matter of Time series I thought she had gone off her rocker because really what else could happen to Jory and Sam and how on earth would she be able to top her Matter of Time series because it was brilliant. But, after reading Bulletproof, I have to say Mary Calmes is a genius.

Its three years later for Jory and Sam.   Sam has been away undercover for nearly 4 months and Jory is really missing him. In pure Jory style,  he stumbles across a man being threatened and rushes to the rescue not knowing the world of trouble he is about to land himself in.   I have got to say, I loved it, only Jory could land in sooo much trouble so easily.

Jory and Sam are the same men with the same personalities and haven’t changed a bit.  Jory is still insecure, ditzy and oblivious and Sam is still macho, tough and charismatic and they both love each other with a passion that is overwhelming. You can’t help but love these two characters and the lengths that they will go through for each other.   The plot and storyline are very good and it’s also well written and has managed to stay in the style of AMOT without changing any of the characters personalities as some authors are want to do after years of not writing about them.  This story keeps you on your toes wondering what more trouble can Jory get into and the fact that although he isn’t very happy with how Sam behaved he will humiliate himself before he gets him in trouble.

I have always said that Mary Calmes books are feel good stories and this one doesn’t let us down.   We have the action, adventure, danger, hot men, passionate explosive sex and a HEA that Ms Calmes is well-known for…so really why don’t you already have this book?

Honest Reviews for Readers and Writers

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