Tag Archives: Aerin’s Reviews

Summer Heat by Jay Northcote

Jay Northcote - Summer Heat CoverTitle: Summer Heat

Author: Jay Northcote

Genre: Contemporary, British

Length: Novel (205 pages)

Publisher: Jaybird Press (June 9th 2017)

Heat Level: Steamy

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥ 4 hearts

Blurb: A summer fling is an ideal cure for a broken heart. But when it’s with your best friend, things get complicated.

When Adam is dumped by his boyfriend, a week away at a beach resort seems like a great opportunity to get over his ex. Sun, sea, and no-strings sex will be just the boost he needs to move on with his life.

Adam’s best friend, Finn, agrees to accompany him at short notice. Finn’s had a crush on Adam for years, but is determined to put his feelings aside and be the perfect wingman in Adam’s time of crisis.

A spontaneous threesome with another guy forces Adam and Finn to confront their attraction to each other. Having a holiday fling together wasn’t part of the plan, and as their trip heats up, they soon realise that one night of fun won’t be enough for either of them.

The passion might be scorching, but their hearts and friendship are on the line. If their romance is going to survive the flight home, they have to be honest about what they want.

ISBN: B071ZY69VT

Product Link: https://www.amazon.com/Summer-Heat-Jay-Northcote-ebook/dp/B071ZY69VT   

Reviewer: Aerin

Review: Summer Heat is a beautiful story, with almost no angst at all, perfect for when you’re in a mood for a light read. There’s flirting and steamy sex between two best friends who realize the road from friendship to romantic love isn’t as complicated as it may seem; this fun, light romance, presented in a vacation setting full of relaxation and good vibes, will definitely lighten your spirits.

Adam and Finn have been best mates for years, and even though they’ve both felt attraction towards the other person, they never had an opportunity to act on it. But after Adam gets dumped by his cheating boyfriend and both Finn and Adam decide a rebound vacation is just what the doctor prescribed, things heat up between the two men. A threesome gives them the push they need to act on the attraction and feelings they both have, and the rest is history.

There’s no drama, no conflict, just lots of steamy, dirty sex and gallons of cum left for the cleaning lady to deal with. It’s a dirty job, but someone’s gotta do it, right?

I liked this book a lot, but I can’t say I loved it. Both Adam and Finn were too similar as narrators and at times it was confusing as to who was doing the “talking”. I didn’t think either of them stood out in any particular way; actually, this is probably the first time that I found a secondary character to be more interesting and to stand out more than the main characters.

I’m intrigued by Niall (the pink-haired cupid who was also the 3rd person in the ‘Adam and Finn threesome’) and I’m really hoping he’ll get his own story. Serving as best man at Adam and Finn’s future wedding would be the perfect setting to cement Adam and Finn’s lasting relationship while telling Niall’s story. Doesn’t hurt to hope, right?

Summer Heat by Jay Northcote Blog Tour, Excerpt & Review!

Jay Northcote - Summer Heat RT Banner

Hi guys, we have Jay Northcote popping in today with the tour for his new release Summer Heat, we have a brilliant excerpt and Aerin’s review  so check out the post and enjoy! ❤ ~Pixie~

Jay Northcote - Summer Heat Cover

Summer Heat

by

Jay Northcote

A summer fling is an ideal cure for a broken heart. But when it’s with your best friend, things get complicated.

When Adam is dumped by his boyfriend, a week away at a beach resort seems like a great opportunity to get over his ex. Sun, sea, and no-strings sex will be just the boost he needs to move on with his life.

Adam’s best friend, Finn, agrees to accompany him at short notice. Finn’s had a crush on Adam for years, but is determined to put his feelings aside and be the perfect wingman in Adam’s time of crisis.

A spontaneous threesome with another guy forces Adam and Finn to confront their attraction to each other. Having a holiday fling together wasn’t part of the plan, and as their trip heats up, they soon realise that one night of fun won’t be enough for either of them.

The passion might be scorching, but their hearts and friendship are on the line. If their romance is going to survive the flight home, they have to be honest about what they want.

Continue reading Summer Heat by Jay Northcote Blog Tour, Excerpt & Review!

Single Malt by Layla Reyne Special Offer, Teaser, Review & Giveaway!

Layla Reyne - Agents Irish & Whiskey Banner

Hiya guys, we have Layla Reyne popping in today with Single Malt, the first book in her Agents Irish & Whiskey series, we have a great teaser, a fantastic giveaway and Aerin’s review, so check out the post and click that giveaway link! ❤ ~Pixie~

Layla Reyne - Single Malt Square Sale

Single Malt

(Agents Irish & Whiskey 01)
by

Layla Reyne

Eight months after the car crash that changed everything, FBI agent Aidan Talley is back at work. New department, new case and a new partner. Smart, athletic and handsome, Jameson Walker is twelve years his junior. Even if Aidan was ready to move on—and he’s not—Jamie is off-limits.

Jamie’s lusted after Aidan for three years, and the chance to work with San Francisco’s top agent directly is too good to pass up. Aidan is prickly—to put it mildly—but a growing cyber threat soon proves Jamie’s skills invaluable.  

Jamie’s talents paint a target on his back, and Aidan is determined to protect him. But with hack after hack threatening a high-security bio-containment facility, time is running out to thwart a deadly terrorist attack. They’ll have to filter out distractions, on the case and in their partnership, to identify the real enemy, solve the case and save thousands of lives, including their own.

25% Discount Code for Carina Press: PRIDELUV

Continue reading Single Malt by Layla Reyne Special Offer, Teaser, Review & Giveaway!

On Point by Annabeth Albert

Annabeth Albert - On Point CoverTitle: On Point

Series: Out of Uniform #3

Author: Annabeth Albert

Genre: Military, Contemporary

Length: Novel (296pgs)

Publisher: Carina Press (June 5th 2017)

Heat Level: Moderate

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥ 4.5 hearts

Blurb: Never fall for your best friend…

Pushing thirty, with his reenlistment looming, decorated navy sniper Maddox Horvat is taking a long look at what he really wants in life. And what he wants is Ben Tovey. It isn’t smart, falling for his best friend and fellow SEAL, but ten years with Ben has forged a bond so intimate Maddox can’t ignore it. He needs Ben by his side forever—heart and soul.

Ben admits he likes what he’s seen—his friend’s full lower lip and the perfect muscles of his ass have proved distracting more than once. But Ben’s still reeling from a relationship gone to hell, and he’s not about to screw up his friendship with Maddox, too.

Until their next mission throws Ben and Maddox closer together than ever before, with only each other to depend on.

Now, in the lonely, desperate hours awaiting rescue, the real challenge—confronting themselves, their future and their desires—begins. Man to man, friend to friend, lover to lover.

ISBN: 9781488022630

Product Link: Carina Press | Amazon | Kobo

Reviewer: Aerin

Review: On Point is the story of the infamous duo Maddox and Ben. We’ve heard about Maddox and Ben in Apollo’s book and we know all about Maddox’s quiet pining for his best friend and all about Ben’s whorish ways. On Point lets us learn the WHY of Ben’s behavior, which I greatly appreciated, even though I wanted to whack the bastard across the head a few times.

Ben and Maddox are SEALS who have served together and have been best friends since the beginning of their careers. Their friendship and a constant significant other in their lives prevented the two from acknowledging the attraction and chemistry between them, but that all changes after Ben moves in with Maddox following his divorce. The two are so different from each other, I still can’t wrap my head around them as a couple (but I’m slowly getting there).

Ben’s career as a SEAL is the thing he’s most passionate about in life, and he lives for the adrenaline he gets when on missions. Ben’s father and his stepmother both support Ben unconditionally and I loved them as secondary characters; Ben has many mommy issues however, and we learn that his mother leaving has Ben questioning anyone’s commitment. Ben is a player and a manwhore who spends his free time in clubs chasing new men he can fuck.

Maddox is a soft-hearted man who’s career as a SEAL doesn’t match his dreams and hopes in life. His family cut ties with Maddox the day they found him kissing his boyfriend when Maddox was just 17 years old. In a desperate attempt to make his father proud, he joined the Navy, but he soon learned that his family’s love is conditional. Maddox doesn’t hate his job, and he definitely loves being at Ben’s side, but Maddox is not happy and yearns for a change. Maddox dreams about opening a bakery, dreams about Ben as more than a friend, he just dreams ….until the last mission they go on goes wrong, and Maddox realizes that life is too short and decides to make his dreams a reality.

Being trapped together when their mission goes wrong, both Maddox and Ben are hurt, but Maddox is by far worse. Cracked ribs and a dislocated shoulder doesn’t stop Ben from carrying his best friend to safety, and the following weeks of recovery make Ben realize he doesn’t even want to imagine a life where Maddox is not by his side. What follows is an awkward courtship dance that was painful to watch in how out of character it was for Ben (but sweet and entertaining just the same).

On point is a great friends-to-lovers story that’s going to delight the readers who love that trope. This book is angsty and gritty for the most part, but Maddox and Ben get their HEA, so hang in there. I can’t wait for the next book in this wonderful series!

Cask Strength by Layla Reyne

Layla Reyne - Cask Strength CoverTitle: Cask Strength

Series: Agents Irish and Whiskey #2

Author: Layla Reyne

Genre: Contemporary, Crime

Length: Novel (205 pages)

Publisher: Carina Press (May 1st 2017)

Heat Level: Steamy

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥ 5 Hearts

Blurb: Professionally, the FBI team of Aidan “Irish” Talley and Jameson “Whiskey” Walker is as good as it gets, closing cases faster than any team at the Bureau. Personally, it’s a different story. Aidan’s feelings for Jamie scare the hell out of him: he won’t risk losing another love no matter how heart-tripping the intimacy between them. And loss is a grim reality with the terrorist Renaud still on their trail, leaving a pile of bodies in his wake.

Going undercover on a new case gets them out of town and off the killer’s radar. They’re assigned to investigate an identity theft ring involving a college basketball team in Jamie’s home state, where Jamie’s past makes him perfect for the role of coach. But returning to the court brings more than old memories.

As secrets and shocking betrayals abound, none may be more dangerous than the one Jamie’s been keeping: a secret about the death of Aidan’s husband that could blow his partner’s world apart and destroy forever the fragile bonds of trust and love building between them.

ISBN: 9781488024399

Product Link: http://www.carinapress.com/shop/books/9781488024399_cask-strength.html

Reviewer: Aerin

Review: Cask Strength is pretty much exactly what I expected considering how the first book ended. I honestly don’t understand why some people expected Aidan and Jamie’s journey to be lean waters when we’ve been told from the blurb and from the final chapter of Single Malt that stormy waters and a rocky road is ahead of them both. And just in case you’re wondering, the big secret that Jamie is keeping from Aidan is still threatening to ruin their relationship. The third and final book in this trilogy will be the most angsty and emotional of them all, but I have complete faith in these two.

Aidan finds it hard to come to terms with his new feelings for Jamie and he’s scared to death of losing the only other person he’s ever loved. Aidan is trying hard to keep things casual with Jamie by going out with other guys; we all know he’s only lying to himself, but I’m ok with temporary self-delusion as long as Aidan finally gets on the love train. With the risk of spoiling this part of the story, I have to assure you that Aidan doesn’t have sex with any of the guys he goes out with! He leads Jamie to believe that he does, and that’s because he’s trying really hard to keep their relationship casual. Aidan lost the love of his life, give this scared, confused guy a break; he’ll come through and make it worth every exasperated moment.

Trying to draw attention away from themselves after terrorist Renaud starts killing all persons of interest in Gabe and Tom’s murder; Aidan and Jamie go undercover on a new case. This brings Jamie up close and personal with the career he loved more than anything and his ex-lover, the one responsible for Jamie giving up on the game he loved so much. You know how sometimes a blast from the past makes you question your decisions and wonder if you made the wrong one? Jamie’s ex might be a beautiful man who wants Jamie back, but even though Aidan leads Jamie to believe things between them will never be serious, Jamie’s heart knows exactly who it wants. For Jamie, Aidan is home.

This book is action packed, much like the first one has been, and the action served as a distraction from the emotional angst. While I loved the first book more than this one, Cask Strength didn’t disappoint. The sexual tension and chemistry between Aidan and Jamie is still there, just as strong as always, especially after Aidan stops being a commitment phobe.

I wish there wasn’t such a long wait until Barrel Proof comes out, because based on how Cask Strength ended, it will either be emotional as fuck or emotional as fuck. Have your pick.

Single Malt by Layla Reyne

Layla Reyne - Single Malt Cover sTitle: Single Malt

Series: Agents Irish and Whiskey #1

Author: Layla Reyne

Genre: Contemporary, Crime

Length: Novel (207pgs)

Publisher: Carina Press (February 27th 2017)

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥ 5 hearts

Blurb: The heart’s a resilient beast

Eight months after the car crash that changed everything, FBI agent Aidan Talley is back at work. New department, new case and a new partner. Smart, athletic and handsome, Jameson Walker is twelve years his junior. Even if Aidan was ready to move on—and he’s not—Jamie is off-limits.

Jamie’s lusted after Aidan for three years, and the chance to work with San Francisco’s top agent directly is too good to pass up. Aidan is prickly—to put it mildly—but a growing cyber threat soon proves Jamie’s skills invaluable.

Jamie’s talents paint a target on his back, and Aidan is determined to protect him. But with hack after hack threatening a high-security biocontainment facility, time is running out to thwart a deadly terrorist attack. They’ll have to filter out distractions, on the case and in their partnership, to identify the real enemy, solve the case and save thousands of lives, including their own.

ISBN: 9781488024382

Product Link: http://www.carinapress.com/shop/books/9781488024382_single-malt.html

Reviewer: Aerin

Review: I devoured this book and I couldn’t get enough. I like crime shows on TV so this book was right up my alley. I loved everything about it, the plot, the characters, the suspense, the romance… Jesus fuck the romance was exquisite!

I’m an absolute sucker for emotionally damaged characters and for brainiacs who are sexy as hell, and this book gave me the best of both worlds. Jameson “Whiskey” Walker is a hotter than hell brainiac smarty pants hacker extraordinaire. Ex basketball star who gave up his career in order to become an FBI agent, Whiskey is one of the bureau’s best hackers and Aiden Talley’s new partner. Whiskey is ten years Aiden’s junior and he’s been nurturing a crush on Aiden for the past three years, ever since he joined the bureau.

Aiden Talley is a damaged man who’s dead inside after losing both his husband and his partner in a car accident 8 months ago. Recently returning to his job, Aiden finds himself partnered with 30 year old Whiskey, who makes his head spin and makes him want things he shouldn’t. Caught between the strong need to feel alive again and his guilt at betraying his husband’s memory, Aiden is fighting his attraction towards Whiskey, but the need to feel alive is stronger than the guilt.

The chemistry these two have is the real deal; it seriously made the hair stand up on my body. I was sucked into this overwhelming attraction between them and was rooting for them the whole time. I loved that even though there are plenty of things happening and many bad guys to catch, the emotional connection between Aiden and Whiskey was still the main focus of the book, perfectly etched into the plot. And when they finally gave into the chemistry, I forgot all about the bad guys or the fact that there are criminals to catch and bombs to deactivate.

This book was the perfect start to an awesome series, even though Aiden and Whiskey will continue to work toward their happily ever after in the next two books. I’m a fan!

Cask Strength by Layla Reyne Blog Tour, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway!

Layla Reyne - Cask Strength BT Banner

As FBI agents Aidan “Irish” Talley and Jameson “Whiskey” Walker struggle to separate their professional and personal relationships, they’re sent undercover—as sports agent and basketball coach—on an identity-theft case in which all their secrets are ripe for exposure. “Agents Irish and Whiskey” is perfect for fans of the “Tough Love” series by HelenKay Dimon and the “Cut & Run” series by Abigail Roux and Madeleine Urban.

“The second book in the Agents Irish and Whiskey series is a romp of an M/M romantic suspense.
RT Book Reviews

CASK STRENGTH is now on sale! Download or add it to your TBR pile on Goodreads! Then keep reading to get a sneak peek at CASK STRENGTH and to enter the giveaway for four (4) $25 Amazon gift cards!

Layla Reyne - Cask Strength Cover

Cask Strength

(Agents Irish & Whiskey 02)
by

Layla Reyne

The heart’s a resilient beast…

Professionally, the FBI team of Aidan “Irish” Talley and Jameson “Whiskey” Walker is as good as it gets, closing cases faster than any team at the Bureau. Personally, it’s a different story. Aidan’s feelings for Jamie scare the hell out of him: he won’t risk losing another love no matter how heart-tripping the intimacy between them. And loss is a grim reality with the terrorist Renaud still on their trail, leaving a pile of bodies in his wake.

Going undercover on a new case gets them out of town and off the killer’s radar. They’re assigned to investigate an identity theft ring involving a college basketball team in Jamie’s home state, where Jamie’s past makes him perfect for the role of coach. But returning to the court brings more than old memories.

As secrets and shocking betrayals abound, none may be more dangerous than the one Jamie’s been keeping: a secret about the death of Aidan’s husband that could blow his partner’s world apart and destroy forever the fragile bonds of trust and love building between them.

Continue reading Cask Strength by Layla Reyne Blog Tour, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway!

Freckles by Amy Lane

Amy Lane - Freckles Cover mTitle: Freckles

Series: 2016 Holiday Charity Bundle

Author: Amy Lane

Genre: Contemporary, Holiday

Length: Novella (170 pages)

Publisher: Riptide Publishing (November 14th 2016)

Heat Level: Low

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥ 4 hearts

Blurb: Carter Embree has always hoped to be rescued from his productive, tragically boring, and (slightly) ethically compromised life. But when an urchin at a grocery store shoves a bundle of fluff into his hands, Carter goes from rescuee to rescuer—and he needs a little help.

Sandy Corrigan, the vet tech who helps ease Carter into the world of dog ownership, first assumes that Carter is a crazy-pants client who just needs to relax. But as Sandy gets a glimpse into the funny, kind, sexy man under Carter’s mild-mannered exterior, he sees that with a little care and feeding, Carter might be Super-Pet Owner—and decent boyfriend material to boot.

But Carter needs to see himself as a hero first. As he says good-bye to his pristine house and hello to carpet treatments and dog walkers, he finds that there really is more to himself than a researching drudge without a backbone. A Carter Embree can rate a Sandy Corrigan. He can be supportive, he can be a hero, he can be a man who stands up for his principles!

He can be the owner of a small dog.

ISBN: 9781626495036

Product Link: http://riptidepublishing.com/titles/freckles

Reviewer: Aerin

Review: If you ever doubted the fact that Amy Lane can write pure fluff, then Freckles is your proof and you have to read it just to convince yourself. This book is full of fluffy feeling, doggy kisses, and heartfelt puppy love! It should be perfect, right? It wasn’t, but I still liked this book for the lack of drama and for Freckles.

Carter is an attorney in his early 30’s who loves his job but hates his place of employment and his ethically impaired boss. His boring and workaholic life is suddenly turned upside down when a flea-infested fluff ball is thrown in his arms. Carter has never imagined raising a puppy and he has basically no knowledge about it, but Freckles is exactly what he needed. A trip to the local vet clinic gives Carter some peace of mind and puts Sandy in Carter’s path.

Sandy is a 33 years old vet tech who’s going to college to become a veterinarian. Sandy is mostly happy and has a great family, but he yearns for someone to love and share his life with. Sandy’s first impressions of Carter is that he’s a bit of a nut, but Carter’s obvious worry and love for Freckles makes Sandy see him in a different light.

And here starts the cute story of raising a puppy when you have no clue what you’re doing. I love dogs and I’m a proud dog parent myself, but Freckles’s habit of pooping and peeing everywhere kinda cast a shadow on the slow developing feelings between Carter and Sandy. The whole story is so drama free, cute, and tame, that I expected Carter and Sandy to burn the sheets… this girl right here needs some excitement in her books. While there were plenty of moments full of feels and cuddles, the steamy scenes barely made an appearance. I guess I prefer Amy Lane’s angsty books, the ones that rip my heart out and put baseball-sized lumps in my throat. I like books that make me FEEL and the only thing his book made me feel is cuteness overload.

The ending is a tentative HEA which was definitely sweet and our guys deserved it. Freckles is a super-cute holiday read and I definitely recommend it to those who are not fans of Amy Lane’s special brand of angst.

Strays by Garrett Leigh

Garrett Leigh - Strays CoverTitle: Strays

Series: Urban Soul #2

Author: Garrett Leigh

Genre: Contemporary

Length: Novel (249 pages)

Publisher: Riptide Publishing (March 27th 2017)

Heat Level: Moderate

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥ 5 Hearts

Blurb: Work, sleep, work, repeat. Nero’s lonely life suits him just fine until his best friend, Cass, asks him to take on a new apprentice—a beautiful young man who’s never set foot in a professional kitchen. Despite his irritation and his lifelong ability to shut the world out, Nero is mesmerised by the vibrant stray, especially when he learns what drove him to seek sanctuary on Nero’s battered old couch.

Lenny Mitchell is living under a cloud of fear. Pursued by a stalker, he has nowhere left to run until Nero offers him a port in a storm—a job at the hottest restaurant in Shepherd’s Bush. Kitchen life proves heady and addictive, and it’s not long before he finds himself falling hard and fast for the man who has taken him in.

Fast-forward a month and a neither man can imagine life without the other, but one thing stands in their way: a lifetime of horrors Nero can’t bring himself to share with Lenny. Or can he? For the first time ever, happiness is there for the taking, and Nero must learn to embrace it before fate steps in and rips it away.

ISBN: 9781626494787

Product Link: http://riptidepublishing.com/titles/strays

Reviewer: Aerin

Review: For me Garrett Leigh is the author I go to when I need a dark, angsty read, because she never fails to deliver. It takes a lot of talent to write angst with taste’ and without melodrama, but Leigh knocks it out of the park every single time. Strays is a beautiful and dark love story with a constant edge of danger that is anticipated but not overwhelming.

The focus stays on Nero and Lenny, and the slow and steady chemistry that’s building between them, regardless of the element of danger. Nero is dark and broody and remains mysterious for the better part of the book. We know that he’s been to jail and that he’s missing a finger, but it takes a while for Nero to unveil that part of his past. Nero’s nights are plagued by nightmares, and he spends his days trying to keep people away; nothing screams ‘stay the fuck away from me’ more than Nero’s dark looks and constantly pissed off mood.

Lenny is a scared little rabbit when he comes to hide in Nero’s living room and restaurant; a deranged stalker has been tormenting Lenny for a long time now, and it doesn’t look like the cops will do anything to stop him. Staying with Nero does Lenny a world of good, because little by little Nero brings Lenny out of his shell. The chemistry between them is slow burn and delicious as hell, and the sex is much anticipated throughout the book. The sex, when it happens, is steamy and passionate and emotionally fulfilling.

What I loved the most about Lenny and Nero together was the reassurance I got that they’re a solid couple; nothing about their relationship read as fleeting to me, just a sweet affair that weathered the storm and was made stronger because of it. If you haven’t read Misfits yet don’t hesitate to do it, because not only is it an amazing book, but the guys make a lot of appearances in this book and play a very important supportive role.

I hope for more books in this series, but if this is the end, I’m perfectly content.

Starting From Scratch by Jay Northcote

Jay Northcote - Starting From Scratch CoverTitle: Starting from Scratch

Series: Housemates #5

Author: Jay Northcote

Genre: Contemporary, Transgender

Length: Novella (112 pages)

Publisher: Jaybird Press (April 10th 2017)

Heat Level: Moderate

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥ 3 Hearts

Blurb: Starting over isn’t easy, but Ben is ready to live his life as the man he was always meant to be.

Ben is transgender and back at university after hormone treatment and chest surgery. His new housemates have no idea about his history and Ben would prefer to keep it that way. He’s starting from scratch and his life is finally on track, except in the romance department. The idea of dating guys as a guy is exhilarating but terrifying, because if Ben wants a boyfriend he’ll have to disclose his secret.

Sid is drawn to Ben from the moment they meet. He normally gets what he wants—in the short term at least. Ben’s guarded at first, and Sid’s not used to guys rejecting his advances. He eventually charms his way through Ben’s defences and helps Ben on his journey of sexual awakening.

It doesn’t matter to Sid that Ben is trans. He’s attracted to the whole person, and isn’t worried about what is—or isn’t—in Ben’s pants. They’re good together, and both of them are falling hard and fast, but Ben’s insecurities keep getting in the way. If Sid can convince Ben he’s committed, will Ben finally be able to put his heart on the line?

Although this book is part of the Housemates series, it has new main characters, a satisfying happy ending, and can be read as a standalone.

ISBN: 9781545255728

Product Link: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B06Y3YVY82

Reviewer: Aerin

Review: How in the hell can I review a book when the topic is something I’ve got no clue about? All the informational reading in the world couldn’t give me the ability to understand exactly what Ben is feeling, how hard it is for him to integrate himself in the society as a man after living as a woman (girl?) for so many years, and how awful and deep rooted his transphobia and insecurities are. I’m trying not to be a judgy bitch and I took in this story for the well of information it really is. I never really gave a lot of thought to transgender people’s genitalia because (with the risk of sounding ignorant) it never interested me. Go me for not sexualizing people! I was scared of reading this book but it ended up being sweet and informative; I didn’t find it hot and sexual despite all the sex that took place.

Starting from Scratch is a story about a woman who became a man, a story about loving people not genders, a story about acceptance and understanding, about a vagina called Voldemort, and a bunch of friends who have each other’s backs. I like this series a lot, but I have to admit this book is very different from the rest.

Ben is obviously the focus of this whole book, so much so, that I felt Sid didn’t shine through quite as bright as I expected him to. Ben has been through a lot…. born a girl, Ben hasn’t really questioned who he was until his 3 year relationship with his boyfriend at the time. The sex was fine, Ben (we don’t know Ben’s former girl name, and that’s ok) certainly enjoyed it, but something was missing. Taking the time to really examine his thoughts and feelings, Ben realized he identifies more as a man rather than a woman, and was brave enough to take the steps needed to become a man, with the support and love of his family. Becoming a man however didn’t wipe away all Ben’s insecurities; Ben opted to not have gender reassignment surgery, and while the testosterone treatments helped his genitals change into a small penis, he’s not like other men and he knows that. He feels inadequate and his fears are deep that he will eventually get rejected by a prospective lover.

Again, I can’t even begin to imagine what Ben is going through, but…. how do you not question your gender until you’re 18 years old (shouldn’t that feeling of discord always be present)? I’m not going to rationalize it by comparing it with men who didn’t realize they were gay until later in life, or maybe I should? It is something similar to that? Does one live peacefully as a man or woman and years later they realize they were born the wrong gender? I always assumed transgender people always knew deep down who they are, regardless what sex parts they were born with, but maybe that’s not the case? I’m very confused!

Either way, it was very hard for me to connect with Ben and to understand his inner struggles. And with all the focus being on Ben, I don’t feel like I got to know Sid all that well either. What I did learn about Sid I liked, especially his thoughtfulness when it came to Ben. Sid was understanding and honest, and when he realized his knowledge about trans people is kind of limited to the basics (like mine had been, and I felt better knowing a fictional character was a clueless as I was), Sid did research. If that research involved some FTM porn, it was all in the name of learning. So yeah, I admit Sid being so specific about what to write in my google search, and me being such an easily influenced (and curious dammit!) person, I ended up watching that stupid video Sid watched! Don’t judge me!

This book was interesting, and I learned things I didn’t know before, which is always a plus. But I wasn’t blown away by the romance and considering the length of this book, many things were overlooked and it seemed rushed. But wait a minute…… Johnnie wears lacy underwear??? Yes please! And Ryan is his love interest… hunky Ryan! Fuck yeah! Bring it on!

Starting From Scratch by Jay Northcote, Blog Tour, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway!

Jay Northcote - Starting from Scratch RB Banner

Hi guys, we have Jay Northcote popping in today with the tour for his new transgender release Starting From Scratch, we have a great excerpt and Aerin’s review, so check out the post and enjoy! ❤ ~Pixie~

Jay Northcote - Starting From Scratch Cover

Starting From Scratch

(Housemates 05)
by

Jay Northcote

Starting over isn’t easy, but Ben is ready to live his life as the man he was always meant to be.

Ben is transgender and back at university after hormone treatment and chest surgery. His new housemates have no idea about his history and Ben would prefer to keep it that way. He’s starting from scratch and his life is finally on track, except in the romance department. The idea of dating guys as a guy is exhilarating but terrifying, because if Ben wants a boyfriend he’ll have to disclose his secret.

Sid is drawn to Ben from the moment they meet. He normally gets what he wants—in the short term at least. Ben’s guarded at first, and Sid’s not used to guys rejecting his advances. He eventually charms his way through Ben’s defences and helps Ben on his journey of sexual awakening.

It doesn’t matter to Sid that Ben is trans. He’s attracted to the whole person, and isn’t worried about what is—or isn’t—in Ben’s pants. They’re good together, and both of them are falling hard and fast, but Ben’s insecurities keep getting in the way. If Sid can convince Ben he’s committed, will Ben finally be able to put his heart on the line?

Although this book is part of the Housemates series, it has new main characters, a satisfying happy ending, and can be read as a standalone.

Continue reading Starting From Scratch by Jay Northcote, Blog Tour, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway!

Wake Up Call by J.L. Merrow Blog Tour, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway!

J.L. Merrow - Wake Up Call Tour Banner

Hi guys, we have J.L. Merrow popping in today with her new release Wake Up Call, we have a great excerpt, a brilliant giveaway and Aerin’s review, so check out the post and leave a comment to enter the giveaway! ❤ ~Pixie~

J.L. Merrow - Wake Up Call Cover

Wake Up Call

(Porthkennack 01)
by

J.L. Merrow

South London mechanic Devan Thompson has gone to Porthkennack to track down someone he’s been waiting all his life to know. But Dev’s distracted from his quest by Kyle, a broodingly handsome local of only a few months, who’s already got a reputation as an alcoholic because of his strange behaviour—including a habit of collapsing in the street.

Kyle Anthony fled to Porthkennack to escape from the ruins of his life. Still raging against his diagnosis of narcolepsy—a condition that’s cost him his job as a barrister, his lover, and all chance of normality—the last thing he wants is another relationship that’s doomed to fail. But Dev’s easy-going acceptance and adaptability, not to mention his good looks, have Kyle breaking all his self-imposed rules.

When disaster strikes Dev’s adored little sister, Kyle steps up to the plate, and Dev sees a side of his lover he wasn’t prepared for: competent, professional—and way out of Dev’s league. With one man determined that they don’t have a future, and the other fearing it, life after Porthkennack is starting to look bleak for both of them.

Continue reading Wake Up Call by J.L. Merrow Blog Tour, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway!

At Attention by Annabeth Albert Release Blast, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway!

Annabeth Albert - At Attention RB Banner

Hi peeps, we have Annabeth Albert stopping by today with her new release At Attention, we have a great excerpt, a brilliant giveaway and Aerin’s review, so check out the post and click that giveaway link! ❤ ~Pixie~

Annabeth Albert - At Attention Cover

At Attention

(Off Base 02)
by

Annabeth Albert

Lieutenant Apollo Floros can ace tactical training missions, but being a single dad to his twin daughters is more than he can handle. He needs live-in help, and he’s lucky a friend’s younger brother needs a place to stay. He’s surprised to see Dylan all grown up with a college degree…and a college athlete’s body. Apollo’s widowed heart may still be broken, but Dylan has his blood heating up.

It’s been eight years since the teenage Dylan followed Apollo around like a lovesick puppy, and it’s time he showed Lieutenant Hard-to-Please that he’s all man now—an adult who’s fully capable of choosing responsibility over lust. He can handle Apollo’s muscular sex appeal, but Apollo the caring father? Dylan can’t afford to fall for that guy. He’s determined to hold out for someone who’s able to love him back, not someone who only sees him as a kid brother.

Apollo is shocked by the intensity of his attraction to Dylan. Maybe some no-strings summer fun will bring this former SEAL back to life. But the combination of scorching desire and warm affection is more than he’d expected, and the emotion between them scares him senseless. No fling lasts forever, and Apollo will need to decide what’s more important—his past or his future—if he wants to keep Dylan in his life.

Continue reading At Attention by Annabeth Albert Release Blast, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway!

Strays by Garrett Leigh Blog Tour, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway!

Garrett Leigh - Strays Header Banner

Hi guys, we have Garrett Leigh stopping in for a quick visit with her new release Strays, we have a great excerpt, a brilliant giveaway and Aerin’s review, so check out the post and leave a comment to enter the giveaway! ❤ ~Pixie~

Garrett Leigh - Strays Cover

Strays

(Urban Soul 02)
by

Garrett Leigh

Work, sleep, work, repeat. Nero’s lonely life suits him just fine until his best friend, Cass, asks him to take on a new apprentice—a beautiful young man who’s never set foot in a professional kitchen. Despite his irritation and his lifelong ability to shut the world out, Nero is mesmerised by the vibrant stray, especially when he learns what drove him to seek sanctuary on Nero’s battered old couch.

Lenny Mitchell is living under a cloud of fear. Pursued by a stalker, he has nowhere left to run until Nero offers him a port in a storm—a job at the hottest restaurant in Shepherd’s Bush. Kitchen life proves heady and addictive, and it’s not long before he finds himself falling hard and fast for the man who has taken him in.

Fast-forward a month and neither man can imagine life without the other, but one thing stands in their way: a lifetime of horrors Nero can’t bring himself to share with Lenny. Or can he? For the first time ever, happiness is there for the taking, and Nero must learn to embrace it before fate steps in and rips it away.

Continue reading Strays by Garrett Leigh Blog Tour, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway!

Bonfires by Amy Lane

Amy Lane - Bonfires CoverTitle: Bonfires

Author: Amy Lane

Genre: Contemporary

Length: Novel (280 pages)

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (March 24 2017)

Heat Level: Moderate

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥ 5 Hearts

Blurb: Ten years ago Sheriff’s Deputy Aaron George lost his wife and moved to Colton, hoping growing up in a small town would be better for his children. He’s gotten to know his community, including Mr. Larkin, the bouncy, funny science teacher. But when Larx is dragged unwillingly into administration, he stops coaching the track team and starts running alone. Aaron—who thought life began and ended with his kids—is distracted by a glistening chest and a principal running on a dangerous road.

Larx has been living for his kids too—and for his students at Colton High. He’s not ready to be charmed by Aaron, but when they start running together, he comes to appreciate the deputy’s steadiness, humor, and complete understanding of Larx’s priorities. Children first, job second, his own interests a sad last.

It only takes one kiss for two men approaching fifty to start acting like teenagers in love, even amid all the responsibilities they shoulder. Then an act of violence puts their burgeoning relationship on hold. The adult responsibilities they’ve embraced are now instrumental in keeping their town from exploding. When things come to a head, they realize their newly forged family might be what keeps the world from spinning out of control.

ISBN: 9781635333411

Product Link: https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/bonfires-by-amy-lane-8304-b

Reviewer: Aerin

Review: Amy Lane is the only author who could play with my heart this way; no matter what she writes, be it vein-slashing angst or light, fluffy romance, Amy’s books never fail to engage my feelings to the max. Gah! Bonfires is so much more than a book! Bonfires is a story about life, with real life characters who deal with real life problems; I know this book is fiction, but it felt like the real deal.

The MCs are both mature characters with families of their own, both in their 40’s with grown kids who learn that happiness comes in all shapes and forms. There was something so real about Aaron and Larx, something so easy to relate to, I couldn’t help but fall in love with them both. Aaron is a deputy sheriff and Larx is a high school principal, they’re both bisexual and both have known love and loss in their lives, even if it was in different contexts. But what I loved the most about them was that they were both amazing fathers who’s love for their children was easy to see.

There’s a lot going on in this book… high school drama (because we deal with a school full of teenagers, DUH!) and Larx’s fight to make ALL kids feel safe and protected; a case of attempted murder that might or might not be a hate crime, a body floating in the lake, and a plot that ties it all together perfectly. Despite the fact that Aaron and Larx’s romance was not the only focus of the entire book, their relationship carried the undertones of maturity and solidity. I was perfectly content with the way their romance was handled; there might not have been fireworks and explosions, but the comforting, everlasting slow burn was fitting for them both.

The secondary characters were outstanding on their own, from the town bitch and resident evil, to the amazing kids like Larx’s daughter Christiana, Aaron’s son Kirby, and Larx’s new ‘adoptee’ Kellan. There’s a secondary romance we got to witness for a very short time, one that’s fragile and vulnerable. I am dying to read more about those two particular characters in the future!!!! I need to read their story like I need air to breathe!

This book was amazing, I can’t recommend it enough!