Daily Archives: May 1, 2015

Releasing the Shifter by Summer Devon

Samhain Publishing Presents :

https://www.samhainpublishing.com/book/5419/releasing-the-shifter

Coming May 5th

releasing shifterBlurb

To save his love he must face his monster and—worse—be nice to people.

Montag is a monster. He doesn’t know what sort of creature he would turn into if he ever let himself shift, but he knows it’s something predatory and lethal. He fights back the urge to shift every day of his life, and has never dared get close to anyone—not that they want him to. He can literally smell their fear.

Kevin’s not scared of monsters. He works for the SSU, the agency in charge of tracking shifters—particularly the dangerous ones. When he and his young niece are kidnapped by her scum-bucket dad, he’s grateful to be rescued by Montag, whose curmudgeonly defenses can’t hide the kind man beneath.

As they work together to protect Kevin’s niece, attraction sizzles between them. But their relationship may not survive if Montag learns who writes Kevin’s paycheck—or if Montag dares to confront the inner monster he hates and fears.

Warning: Contains a grouchy virgin shifter (and we mean virginal in all possible ways), a hero with a back pocket full of secrets, and a couple of jerks.

Review

In a unique world where Shifters must be tagged and identified by the government, but biogotry still runs rampant, Montag is a shifter in hiding.  He’s a mechanic in a small town and he’s sort of keeping the peace by acting as an “enforcer” for the local criminal element when he meets/rescues Kevin.

Kevin is literally being held by his psychotic brother-in-law and his sister when Montag crashes in and saves the day.

There are a lot of secrets being held.  Montag doesn’t want anyone to know what he is (and he’s not all that sure himself).  Kevin doesn’t want Montag to know he knows about Shifters nor does he want him to know who he works for.

Everyone wants to keep Kevin’s niece safe from her psychotic father.  Nobody wants the local law to know about Montag, and Kevin wants to keep his family under the radar as well.

There is an instant “mate” attraction between Montag and Kevin, and though Kevin would readily act on it, Montag fears the results.

Between keeping the humans safe from the perceived and real monsters, dodging the law,  and going to the hospital, the relationship between Montag and Kevin builds.

Finally, with the help of Colt (who we met earlier in book 2), the two manage to cut through to the truth and find their own path towards a permanent relationship.

**

So – there are shifter novels that you can read through in a hour or two, their pattern so familiar that it’s almost just a change of names to keep the story “new” and there are shifter books where the previous “lore” is unique, different and detailed in such a way that anything short of a careful reading will leave the reader scratching her head.

This is the second.  Summer Devon has given us a unique shifter lore in well-written prose with fantastic characters who draw you into the story and keep you turning pages.  She has included some of the more common lore and blended it with a sort-of dystopian future to keep things fresh, yet grounded.

The romance and the story are both much darker than some of the more traditional shifter stories out there and the prose is more dense and definitely more complex.  The focus is definitely more on the story and less on the sex, though there are some smexy times (With a virgin!).

I really enjoyed Summer’s character development and world building and though I was sometimes forced to re-read things to be clear about the whos and the whats, I really enjoyed this take on Shifters and will look to reading the previous two books and any future stories.

Writing/Editing  4

Romance  4

Sex/Heat   3

Storyline  4

World Building/Characterizations  4

3.8 of 5 hearts

4

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Keeping Sweets Audiobook by Cate Ashwood narrated by Jeff Gelder

Dreamspinner Presents  http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6327

keeping sweetsBlurb

Days away from high school graduation, with hardly a penny to his name, Evan Lowry needs to earn money for college. When he comes across an ad for modeling, he thinks his luck has changed – until he learns he’s interviewing for an adult film and will be expected to have sex. On camera. With other men.

For gay porn star Brandon Court, the shine has worn off of regular shoots. He and his producer Les decide to try something new: a reality-show porno set at a beach house. When he meets wide-eyed and naïve Evan for the first time, Brandon isn’t sure if he wants the kid to get lost or get naked. Naked wins.

On set, Brandon takes Evan under his wing, and over the next month, they are thrown together in every intimate way conceivable – except emotionally. Both Brandon and Evan are terrified of trying for anything deeper, and insecurities and doubts wear on their hopes, but the chemistry between them won’t let them slow things down.

Review

This is a lovely story about a jaded porn star who falls in love with a newbie/virgin.  There was a lot of great sex and some pretty nice “feels” in this story.  Brandon and Evan fall for one another pretty much right away and the only “hurdle” happens near the end when Brandon abandons Evan after the shoot – causing Evan to despair.

However – Brandon realizes his mistake and we get a solid HEA after all.

You definitely have to suspend your disbelief – this is not porn like anything I’d have seen or expected – definitely a rosy vision of the industry.  But… it’s nice and the love story is very sweet.

I loved all the Oregon references 🙂

Audio

Jeff Gelder does a nice job with this.  He’s not my favorite narrator and he doesn’ “move me” like some narrators do, but he tells the story in such a way that the story takes center stage, not the narrator.

Overall 4 of 5 hearts

4

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