Category Archives: Christmas

The Captain’s Cornish Christmas (Captivating Captains #2) Catherine Curzon, Elizabeth Harkstead

💫Reviewed by The KimiChan Experience💫

TITLE: The Captain’s Cornish Christmas

SERIES: Captivating Captains

AUTHOR: Catherine Curzon, Eleanor Harkstead

PUBLISHER: Pride Publishing

RELEASE DATE: December 11, 2018

BLURB: For a lonely Cornish lifeboatman and an author who’s more used to crime scenes than love scenes, this Christmas is going to be very merry indeed!

When Jago Treherne agrees to man the Polneath lifeboats one snowy Christmas, he knows he can forget turkey and all the trimmings.

Yet when he boards a seemingly empty yacht and stumbles upon sexy Sam Coryton enjoying an energetic afternoon below decks, Jago soon realizes that he might be unwrapping a very different sort of Christmas gift this year!

Publisher’s Note: This book is related to the Captivating Captains series.

REVIEW: This is a charming and well written novella in the Captivating Captains series. I absolutely adored these characters. Although the book has two MCs, the authors decided to do something a little different by having the story pretty much told from Jago’s perspective. Even though this was the case, the story still flows quite well.

Jago is on duty and has no huge plans for holidays other than spending time at home snuggled with his cat. Now, for those who are not aware, I am a total cat lady so of course, Peregrine the cat stole the show for me for a bit.

Jago happens upon a docked yacht that he thinks is in trouble but find, to his chagrin, that it belonged to famous author and childhood friend, Sam Coryton in a somewhat compromising, embarrassing and hilarious position. Figuratively and literally.

Sam has grown jaded of the London high society life and is looking to get back to his roots, peace and quiet. It becomes clear rather quickly, these two men belong together.

This novella is sexy, funny, and charming. Each story in this series is better and better and although different, still has a cohesive feel to them. These two authors did an amazing job of telling Jago and Sam’s story. What I particularly love about these novellas is that they’re so well written, the characters and dialogues so well fleshed out that they read like full length books.

I thoroughly enjoyed this novella and definitely recommend it and this series.

RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

BUY LINKS:

Amazon

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Worst Holiday Ever Romance Anthology

There’s a new holiday romance anthology out: Worst Holiday Ever.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! OK—scratch that. It’s time for another obligatory family gathering. And nothing spices up the egg nog like bringing your partner home. Surely your belligerent brother-in law, your gimlet-eyed granny and your drunken uncle will keep it classy. With forced proximity and alcoholic beverages, what could possibly go wrong?

  • Decked Out by Eva Moore
  • A Perfect Fit by Adrienne Bell
  • Crazy Old Money by Kilby Blades
  • Stealing Christmas by Kari Lemor
  • Touched by Fate by Preslaysa Williams
  • Ringing in the Reefer by Marie Booth
  • The Thanksgiving Parade From Hell by R.L. Merrill
  • Thankful in Perdition by Erin St. Charles
  • Feliz Chanukah! by Meg Bellamy

This anthology is for readers who love any or all of the following: m/m, #ownvoices, plus-sized heroes, interracial/multicultural families, paranormal romance, contemporary romance, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Chanukah!

Warning: It is best to leave this one to the mature audiences. Note: Many of the stories in this anthology are not queer.

Amazon |   QueeRomance Ink


Giveaway

R.L. Merrill is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card OR a $25 Dreamspinner Press gift card with this tour. Enter via Rafflecopter:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Direct Link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/b60e8d4744/?


Excerpt

From “The Thanksgiving Parade,” by R.L. Merrill
“You hardly ate anything.” Dalton rubbed Orrie’s back. He’d suggested the donuts because he knew Orrie would be too stressed out to eat.

“I don’t know why she insists on serving quiche at these things. Who the hell eats quiche, anyway?” Orrie picked at the spot on his finger.

Dalton shook his head. “Only old people. And hipsters.”

Orrie laughed humorlessly and leaned back in the seat. “You don’t have to do the boxes this weekend. I can do it tomorrow before I leave.”

“Forget it,” Dalton said as he started the car. “I get you to myself tomorrow until I take you to the airport, and I’m not losing a single minute of time with you.” He leaned over and kissed Orrie sweetly. “It’s been a long six weeks, baby.”

“Too long. I missed you.” Orrie closed his eyes and Dalton took that as a good sign. He hoped that meant Orrie would be able to relax at their next stop. Because he sure the hell wouldn’t.

Ahhhh, Casa de Bishop. The eternal bachelor pad. The house where Bishop men went to lick their wounds and drink. A lot. And today being Thanksgiving and the holy day of the pigskin, Dalton had prepared his defense. He just had to get past this next two hours, and then he and Orrie would move on to…his mom’s. Okay, make that the next four hours.

He pulled the car out of the pretentious neighborhood where Orrie’s grandmother lived and drove down the hill to the more blue-collar area of Castro Valley. It was a funny town in that way. You had these newer, expensive developments up in the hills and canyons, but a lot of old neighborhoods from the forties and fifties that remained affordable for the low- to middle-income folks in the East Bay.

Peter Bishop, Dalton’s father, lived in such a home, one he’d inherited from his parents. The boys had grown up there, and currently, Dalton’s brothers Terrence and Stanley lived there with him. Both had broken up with their significant others in the past year and now, with their divorced father, they lived the life of swingin’ singles. Dalton just hoped the house was in better shape than it had been the last time he was here.

“Hey, doll,” Orrie said, reaching for his leg. “I know how much you worry about them. You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to. If you want to go…”

And that was just one of the many reasons Dalton loved this man more than anything. He looked over and Orrie was smiling at him in that way that made Dalton feel like any second he was going to be a weeping mess on the floor, but in a good way. Not in the way he’d grown up experiencing.

“I want to see them. I do. We’re supposed to be thankful on Thanksgiving, right?”

Orrie nodded, frowning. “You are the most thankful person I’ve ever known. You see the positive in everything. Sometimes to your own detriment.”

Dalton barked out a laugh and his eyes burned. He was tired of fretting over a situation that was never going to change.

Orrie got out of the car and walked around to Dalton’s door, which he promptly opened, pulling Dalton in for an embrace that felt more supportive than seductive, and yet it had both effects. Dalton may have been the one to pursue Orrie, but Orrie had seduced Dalton with his compassion as much as his passion, with his love as much as his loving.

“If you promise not to take any shit from your brothers, I’ll promise not to cause any bodily injury.”

Dalton snorted and dropped his forehead onto Orrie’s shoulder. “You know they’re going to give me shit, and I know you’re going to give it right back. Just don’t hit anyone this time. You don’t have that luxury, you know? You can’t afford any injuries.” He thought about Orrie picking at his finger and hoped it wouldn’t get worse as the day wore on.

Orrie sighed and kissed Dalton’s head. “I’m insured,” he said against Dalton’s hair. “If I happen to have an injury, they’ll find some other poor schmuck to play guitar for me. Shouldn’t be too hard. Any adolescent boy could play—”

“Stop it right there. You’re as full of shit as a Thanksgiving turkey.” Dalton put a finger against Orrie’s lips.

“I’m serious, baby. Please.”

Orrie laughed. “We have an audience. Should we give them a show?”

Orrie just loved to be demonstrative in front of Dalton’s brothers. They couldn’t contain their disgust, not so much because Dalton was gay, but because the thought of their oldest sibling being sexually active with anyone made them want to hurl. Since Dalton had been more of a father to Terrence and Stanley than dear old Dad, they tended to treat him that way.

“I’d say we should give them a show, but honestly, that’s not playing fair. If I want them to behave, I can’t exactly go sinking to their level.”

“So I shouldn’t fondle you right here?” Orrie slid his hand down Dalton’s chest.

Dalton winced and sucked in a breath.

“Did I hurt you? I’m sorry.”

Dalton pressed his lips together firmly and pulled back from Orrie. “I’m fine. Really.” Was that my voice coming out sounding like a little girl’s?

Before Orrie could interrogate him, which would really ruin the surprise Dalton had worked so hard to make happen, Peter Bishop slammed open the front door.

“Hurry up, you two, before Terry burns the damn turkey!”

Dalton stared wide-eyed at Orrie. “Did he just say turkey?”

Orrie nodded, his brow furrowed once more. “Are your brother’s actually cooking?”

“Come on, you two. I gotta get in the backyard.”

The screen door slammed shut and Dalton jumped at the sound.

“Have your phone ready to call the fire department,” he said to Orrie as he sprinted up the walk. Dear God, don’t let those idiots burn the place down.


Author Bio

Eva Moore: As a young woman, Eva Moore loved nothing more than to dive into the pages of a book. She even met her husband while reading a romance novel. When the second baby came along though, she found she had little time for diving into anything but laundry. Missing her stories desperately, she began to make up her own. The stories she played with while she washed dishes and changed diapers demanded space on the page, and she was hooked. Winning Cherry Adair’s Finish The Damn Book Contest has propelled her career into high gear. Eva now lives in Silicon Valley, after moving around the world and back, with her college sweetheart, her three gorgeous girls, and a Shih Tzu who thinks he is a cat. She can be found most nights hiding in her closet-office, scribbling away, and loves to hear from the outside world.

http://www.4evamoore.com.

Kilby Blades: Kilby Blades is a fresh new voice in smart contemporary romantic fiction. A business executive by day, by night she writes dynamic characters into (and out of) tantalizingly complex predicaments. Critics laud her “feminist romance”, noting empowered heroines and multi-dimensional heroes who are staunch advocates for their partners, stepping back from their own spotlights in order to let their women shine. From dry wit in her angstier books to blatant humor in her lighter ones, her characters are resplendent in their witty repartee. All her stories, regardless of genre, serve up delicious dilemmas and never-before-seen plots. When she’s not writing, Kilby goes to movie matinees alone, where she eats Chocolate Pocky and buttered popcorn and usually smuggles in not-a-little-bit of red wine. Kilby is a mother, a social-justice fighter, and above all else, a glutton for a good story.

https://www.facebook.com/kilbybladesauthor/

Erin St. Charles: Erin grew up watching Star Trek and reading Barbara Cartland novels (don’t hate), wishing she could create something that brings her love of science fiction together with her love of romance. Still a romantic nerd at heart, she writes sensual, diverse stories that blend fantasy, adventure, and love.

https://www.twitter.com/erinwritesbwwm

https://www.facebook.com/erinstcharles/

Kari Lemor: Kari Lemor grew up as one of those kids who read all night under the covers.  Once she had her first glimpse of a romance novel at age 12, it was all over. Romance was in her blood. It would be many years before the stories that ran rampant in her head finally drove her to put words to paper, though. She wrote self-indulgently for the first few years and only recently began penning stories to share with others. She still writes stories that are self-indulgent but hopes others might get some enjoyment from them too.   Now that her children are all grown and have moved out, she uses her spare time to create stories of love and happily ever after romances where heroes ride to the rescue of damsels who have already saved themselves. She lives with her husband in a small town in New England dreaming of warmer weather.  But only if it’s near the ocean.

https://www.facebook.com/Karilemorauthor/

Adrienne Bell: Adrienne Bell is the author of over a dozen action-packed romances including the bestselling contemporary Second Service series and the new Exiles of the Realm paranormal series. She loves nothing more than writing quirky heroines with a knack for finding trouble and the hardheaded heroes who help them fight their way out of it. Adrienne lives with her husband and sons on the far edge of the San Francisco Bay Area where she spends her downtime reading, binge-watching nerdy television, and scrolling through Disneyland fan websites.

https://www.facebook.com/AdrienneBellAuthor/

Meg Bellamy: Along with her husband, her family and her books, language is Meg’s passion. In fact, by day she’s a mild-mannered language teacher. Currently, she teaches ESL (English as a Second Language) to international students, but in her early teaching days, her main subject was French. Though her French is a bit rusty these days, she figures a trip to France would help fix that. She’s also studied Russian, Spanish and Italian. This love of language spills over into her writing craft and appreciation for books — and travel! Meg also has to travel to see other family members in New Jersey — a mere continent away from Meg’s home in Northern California. Being a published member of the community of writers with her contemporary romances and women’s fiction is the fulfillment of one of Meg’s most cherished dreams. Her first release, Homecoming, was released October 19 — a week before her birthday — from The Wild Rose Press.

https://www.amazon.com/Meg-Bellamy/e/B00655VO1S

Marie Booth: Marie’s a Northern California girl with a love of all things artsy fartsy – as her brother says. A theatre and fantasy geek, she writes sexy paranormal romance and has a hot contemporary series releasing this year. You can contact Marie here:

http://www.mariebooth.com

https://www.facebook.com/marieboothbooks

https://www.twitter.com/marieboothbooks

R.L. Merrill: Once upon a time… A teacher, tattoo collector, mom, and rock ‘n’ roll kinda gal opened up a doc and started purging her demons. Several self-published books and a debut from Dreamspinner Press later, with more tucked away in her evil lair, R.L. Merrill is still striving to find that perfect balance between real-life and happily ever after. You can find her lurking on social media where she loves connecting with readers, being a mom-taxi to two brilliant and busy kids, in the tattoo chair trying desperately to get that back piece finished, or headbanging at a rock show near her home in the San Francisco Bay Area! Stay Tuned for more Rock ‘n’ Romance.

http:/www.rlmerrillauthor.com

Preslaysa Williams: Preslaysa Williams is an award-winning author and actress. She writes contemporary romance and women’s fiction with an Afro-Filipina twist. Preslaysa has a Bachelor’s degree from Columbia University and is currently earning her MFA in Fiction from Seton Hill University. Connect with Preslaysa online at her website (www.preslaysa.com) or on any of these social media platforms:

https://www.facebook.com/preslaysa

https://www.twitter.com/preslaysawrites

https://www.instagram.com/preslaysa

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Perfect Alignment (Thorne and Dash # 3) by Sylvia Violet

✨✨Reviewed by Kiwi✨✨

TITLE: Perfect Alignment

SERIES: Thorne and Dash #3

AUTHOR: Silvia Violet

PUBLISHER: Silvia Violet Publishing

LENGTH: 242 pages

RELEASE DATE: November 15, 2016

BLURB: Thorne proposed to Riley. Riley accepted.

Thorne thought that was that. They’d take a nice trip, get married, and spend a week luxuriating in a five-star hotel with occasional excursions to fabulous restaurants.

Riley imagined a traditional wedding with all the trappings. With all their friends and family. At Christmas.

Thorne concedes reluctantly, and a flurry of wedding planning ensues. At the same time, Thorne is wrestling with a recalcitrant client, and Riley and his business partner, Susan, are consumed with renovations and planning for the opening of their bakery. Stress on top of stress makes both Riley and Thorne doubt their relationship, and a major misunderstanding nearly silences the wedding bells.

By the time they reach their happily ever after, they’re both going to deserve all the romance they’ve been dreaming of.

REVIEW: This is the third installment in the Thorne and Dash series. In this story, the two become engaged. The proposal and engagement was cut and dry: Thorne proposed and Riley accepted. It’s the actual wedding planning that becomes a major issue. Both men have different ideas on their dream wedding. Thorne wanted something simple with little fanfare with just their loved ones in attendance with a long relaxing honeymoon whereas Riley wanted a traditional wedding, complete with all the pomp and circumstance. Stress from work and lack of communication causes the two men to crack. Reading this story gave me unpleasant flashbacks of my own experiences planning a wedding. It were those memories that had me wanting to Gibbs smack Riley at he back of his head. I thought that Thorne’s idea of a simple ceremony with a very nice reception then off to a luxurious honeymoon was a great idea and much more practical considering the date. There was too much outside stress these men had to deal with in terms of work and to with the added stress of planning a wedding scheduled for Christmas was a logistical nightmare. Reading that stressed ME out.

I absolutely love this author’s work and reading this made me want to strangle both men but the ending was so very sweet. I love how this author portrays her characters. These men aren’t perfect but they’re perfect for each other and with love, patience and hard work, they always find their happiness.

I would definitely recommend this series.

Please note that this is a series and even though it may be read as a standalone, I definitely suggest you read them in sequential order so you can get a better grasp of the characters.

**This book is also available in audiobook format.***

RATING: 4.5 stars

BUY LINKS:
Amazon

 
Audiobook Format

 

 




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Blog Tour: Holiday Want Ads Anthology

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Author Names: Avery Duran, Shira Glassman, Emjay Haze, Kassandra Lea, Dale Cameron Lowry, G.O. Noce, Marie Piper, Rob Rosen, Angora Shade, Robin Watergrove. Edited by Deelylah Mullin

Book Name: Holiday Want Ads

Release Date: December 9, 2015

Blurb:

Whether reading Facebook ads, Craigslist, or the classified section of the local newspaper, there’s always something interesting available in the want ads… if you’re looking. In our Holiday Want Ads Anthology, Torquere Press offers ten beautiful stories of found love from ten talented authors.

In Compatible Gardens, Angora Shade weaves a tale about strangers on a city bus. Emjay Haze reveals a little Elfin Magic in her workplace romance. Little White Lights, Marie Piper’s feature, highlights illumination as a gift. In Wrapped Up, Kassandra Lea brings readers a holiday storm full of anxiety for both the storm and a question’s response. Avery Duran brings us a winter ball, complete with a Prince Charming in Matzo Ball. Eitan’s Chord, Shira Glassman’s offering, brings readers a visit from three Chanukah fairies creating magic from their passion. Thank You, Craig highlights fireworks and the versatility of a fire escape. G.O. Noce tells about a Boyfriend for Rent, and both parties in the agreement get a lot more than they bargained for. Looking for a Soft Center, by Robin Watergrove, shows how articulating one’s wants is much harder than simply writing an ad. And Dale Cameron Lowry gives readers an ex-Mormon hiring a bartender who helps with a party and builds a friendship—possibly more—with his employer in Mi Alma.

Enjoy Holiday Want Ads!

Pages or Words: 59,000 words

Categories: (Please keep in mind that as an anthology, not all stories will necessarily contain all categories.)

BDSM, Bisexual, Contemporary, Erotica, Fantasy, Fiction, Gay Fiction, Humor, Lesbian Romance, M/M Romance, Ménage/Poly, New Adult, Romance, Trans*

Excerpt:

from Compatible Gardens by Angora Shade

Sweet mercy, I hate the bus. The university is a busy place, and no matter what hour of the day I find myself in need of transportation, the bus is packed. And it’s not just students. Teachers, local residents, and even businessmen from the surrounding area are regulars, not to mention the crazies who ride all day long and do nothing but stare. The bus smells the way intimate spaces usually do too—musty, stale air, mixed with a collage of too many personal scents—and the seats are stained, worn, and uncomfortable. I tell myself it’s time to invest in a bicycle as I watch the 60 West pull up to the curb. I grasp my sweater tightly around my chest, and force myself to believe Fate has opened a door for me today, and I have to walk through it.

The bus door closes behind me, and something squeaks loudly as the driver peels off the curb before I’ve sat down. My balance shifts, and I lurch toward a startled elderly man. He frowns at me despite my mumbled apology, and I stumble my way down the aisle over bags and shoes headed for the first available seat. I’m lucky there’s one up front where I’ve walked in. The seats here face inward like a bench rather than in pairs toward the back, and the extra space makes the ride more bearable. I pray today will be less crowded. I pray Fate will continue to behave.

Fate is why I’m here. This may be my last chance for finding a new apartment with a decent roommate, and the bus is the fastest way to my goal. The fall semester is coming to a close and the holidays are approaching, which has made my task much harder. Housing should be established by now, but I’m not happy. Remaining in loud dorms with inconsiderate, obnoxious jerks for a day longer than I have to would be torture. There’s no privacy, no calm, and hearing the sex noises my current roommate and her boyfriend make in our shared room makes me nuts, not to mention trying to share a bathroom with eight other girls. The food is terrible, nothing’s ever clean, and illness spreads like wildfire. It’s a joke. I’m a junior now anyway. I figure I’m past due to get out. I need space where I can breathe with a room of my own away from the garden of weeds.

Soon. Now. Pronto.

Buy the book:

http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=200&products_id=4559

Goodreads Link:

Publisher: Torquere Press

Cover Artist: Kris Norris
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Cold Feet Audiobook by Jay Northcote Narrated by Matthew Lloyd Davies

Dreamspinner Presents
http://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/Cold-Feet-Audiobook/B016J9TQXM/ref=a_search_c4_1_1_srTtl?qid=1446220523&sr=1-1

cold feet audioBlurb

Best friends snowed in together. When the heat rises, will they get cold feet?

Getting snowed in at a remote cottage in Wales with someone he’d fancied for ages isn’t exactly how Sam expected to spend Christmas. His feelings for Ryan are pointless. Ryan’s straight—or so he thought.

Until now, Ryan’s kept his feelings for Sam buried. Why ruin a friendship over what might only be gay experimentation? Playing it cool seems safer, until a cold snap makes sharing body heat vital. In their Welsh safe haven, anything seems possible.

As Ryan’s reserve melts away, Sam wants more than stolen kisses under the mistletoe. But a sudden thaw means making decisions. They could face the New Year together—unless one of them gets cold feet.

Review:

(From book previously on this site)

Sam and Ryan are best “mates” (I love the British!) from university planning on a holiday in the country when the snow comes. Instead of being a casual thing with four roommates – now it’s an intimate stay between the two.

Sam is openly gay and has known he’s had feelings for Ryan forever. Sam knows those are pointless as Ryan is straight. (We’ve heard that before, right?!)
Ryan has had feelings for Sam pretty much since Sam came out and made Ryan look at sexuality in a different light. But Ryan doesn’t have the fearlessness Sam does, so he hesitates from jumping in the “gay” pool and watches for a while. Being snowbound forces those feelings to the surface and he and Sam begin to explore their feelings (and each other!).

**
This is a lovely short-story perfect for the holidays. The set-up for forcing Ryan to confront his feelings felt natural and their easy, slow start into moving things physical also fit the age and the setting. There is a bit of steam and smolder, but most of this is about their changing feelings and their emotions. Though we do get a very HEA ending, it also left us feeling that this was really the beginning of their relationship and we were just glimpsing its origins.

This isn’t as angsty as some of Jay’s other novels, certainly not as steamy, but it is every bit as sweet and sentimental – full of all the wonderful “feels” that she is great at delivering.

Of course, I’m always a sucker for the GFY theme, coupled with the British and the friends to lovers… it hit all my buttons in a big way!

Audio

Matthew Lloyd Davies is wonderful! He does all the voices so well, including the women! I love the varieties of accents he uses to give the speakers a local flavor. Very nice narration.

I highly recommend this holiday treat and give it 4.5 of 5 hearts!

4.5

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Holiday Hoax Audiobook by Skylar Cates Narrated by KC Kelly

Dreamspinner Presents
http://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/The-Holiday-Hoax-Audiobook/B015HQB6OA/ref=a_search_c4_1_2_srTtl?qid=1443754449&sr=1-2

holiday hoax audBlurb

I’m Evan Goodman, budding actor, future star, college freshman. Oh, and let’s not forget—recently dumped. If only my family wasn’t expecting to meet my new boyfriend over the holiday break. Enter JD Laurens—a sweet and quiet science major who mostly keeps to himself. When he gathers the courage to come out, poor JD gets abandoned by his only family right in front of me, and now he has nowhere to go for Christmas. But I have a proposition for him: pretend to be my boyfriend for the holidays so I can take him home. It’s a win-win. What could go wrong?

Review

Evan is “dating” this self-centered, cheating, popular guy from his major who drops him right before Christmas. He goes to the Donut Shop to fuel up for his trip home for the holidays and sees JD “out” himself to his very mean, hateful brother, who tells JD never to come home – ever. (And it turns out JD’s brother is his ONLY family- big jerk!)

Evan hatches a plan to save both JD and himself from a horrible holiday. JD can play Evan’s boyfriend, Tyler, (who the family was expecting to meet) and JD can have a place to go over Christmas.

Needless to say – the tricking doesn’t fool anyone, and mom is suspicious of Tyler/JD. But – as you can imagine – JD is a far better boyfriend to Evan than Tyler ever was and what started as a hoax ends up as a HEA.

**
Your heart will bleed for JD and the way he just shines in the face of Evan’s family is so touching. Neither Evan nor JD have much “experience” so the smexy times are pretty tame, but very sweet. This reads almost like a young adult title, but that doesn’t stop it from being a really sweet and fun book full of goofy holiday games and sappy moments.

I really enjoyed this and didn’t miss the smexy times.

Audio

KC Kelly did an absolutely fabulous job with this. He is excellent at the pacing and emotion and does a really nice job with JD voice.

5 of 5 hearts

5

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A Vampire Christmas (Vampire in Waikiki book 2) by AJ Llewellyn

Amberquill presents http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/1823-A-Vampire-Christmas.aspx

vamp christmasBlurb

Waikiki vampires Tem and Jimmy Thunder are happily undead and married, about to celebrate Christmas when their cat Moontime brings an unusual treasure to the door…a baby in a box. But this is no cute, cuddly kid. It’s a demon baby with red eyes and razor sharp teeth. Jimmy, hopelessly besotted with his hot and sexy husband, sees his new life of man-on-man fun being wrecked by this snarling, spitting, forked-tongued little incubus that has apparently won Tem’s heart.

With half of Waikiki’s wacky residents coming to Christmas dinner, what’s a devoted husband to do? Jimmy calls in all kinds of favors to figure out the identity of the kid, how he got to them, and how to ensure this will be a merry—not marred—Vampire Christmas.

Review

This is the short, funny, kinda bizarre and very steamy next installment in the Vampire in Waikiki series.

Tem finds a cursed baby and wants to keep it and name it George… ok not George but Beezlebub. Div is worried about raising a baby and losing some of Tem’s attention. But it becomes clear that the baby needs their help so they enlist the help of some more of their strange acquaintances and… hilarity ensues.

Interspersed with the hilarity is all the way-hot-vampire-porn-star-sex and it’s both sweet and raucous.

If you enjoyed book one in the series you will want to keep going. This is better (in my opinion) than book one as it seems to have found more focus and since the characters are already developed we get to simply enjoy them.

3.5 of 5 hearts

3.5

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Christmas Kitsch by Amy Lane

Riptide Publishing Presents http://riptidepublishing.com/titles/christmas-kitsch

ChristmasKitsch_500x750Blurb

Sometimes the best thing you can get for Christmas is knowing what you really want.
Rusty Baker is a blond, rich, entitled football player in a high school full of them—just the type of oblivious jock all the bullied kids hate. And he might have stayed that way, except he develops a friendship with out-and-proud Oliver Campbell from the wrong side of the tracks. Rusty thinks the friendship is just pity—Oliver is very bright, and Rusty is very not—but then Oliver kisses him goodbye when Rusty leaves for college, and Rusty is forced to rethink everything he knows about himself.
But even Rusty’s newfound awareness can’t help him survive a semester at Berkeley. He returns home for Thanksgiving break clinging to the one thing he knows to be true: Oliver Campbell is the best thing that’s ever happened to him.
Rusty’s parents disagree, and Rusty finds himself homeless for the holidays. Oliver may not have much money, but he’s got something Rusty has never known: true family. With their help and Oliver’s love, Rusty comes to realize that he may have failed college, but he’ll pass real life with flying rainbow colors.

Review

Rusty is a good kid. He’s popular. Plays sports. Has girlfriends. Does what his parents tell him to. He’s not the “quickest” but he’s not stupid either.
Oliver is the “new brown kid”. He’s small. Snarky. Gay. And in need of a friend. Despite Rusty’s peer group’s objections, Rusty befriends Oliver and Oliver helps Rusty through his last year of high school.
When it comes time for Rusty to go to Berkley, where he just knows he’s going to fail, Oliver does all he can to assure him that he’ll be there for him and that he knows Rusty won’t get lost in the shuffle. And… he kisses Rusty.
Rusty is left at school, lost, scared, trapped with a crazy but warm-hearted-hyper-sexual-roommate, and the memory of Oliver’s kiss to make him question everything he is or wants to be.
When it becomes apparent that Rusty is in fact NOT ready for Berkley – though he tries damn hard – he is ready for Oliver and KNOWS that Oliver is more than just his best friend. When Rusty gets home for Thanksgiving Oliver is there to greet him and the two kiss again. This time they get caught by Rusty’s homophobic family who immediately throw Rusty out of the house.
Luckily Oliver’s dad is amazing and he helps Rusty to get his bearings again.
What follows is Rusty’s jump into the deep end of adulthood and his navigation of his first real relationship that also happens to be his first gay relationship. Oliver’s impatience and love both help and hinder him in this process, but the underlying support he and his dad offer Rusty give him the strength to grow into the man he needs to become.
**

This is another of my all-time favorite Amy Lane books. Another one I’m hoping will soon become an Audiobook. (Hint, hint!)
Rusty is so very lost but he’s also so sweet and lovable you want to reach through the pages and wrap him in blankets and kiss his cheeks.
Oliver is just smart and snarky enough to ease the saccharine sweetness of Rusty’s goodness and make them a real, fun, and sexy couple.
I loved the interactions with the secondary characters. The role model of Oliver’s dad. The hilarity of the cousins. The hero-worship of Rusty’s sister. And the eventual grace of Rusty’s parents.
I read this book when I need a warm hug on a rainy afternoon and it always makes me feel better.

I can’t recommend it enough.

6 of 5 hearts

amazing

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Three The Hard Way by Sydney Croft

Riptide Presents: http://riptidepublishing.com/titles/three-the-hard-way

three hardBlurb

This title is part of the ACRO universe.

Lovers Taggart Brody and Justice McKinney possess special abilities that make them valuable to agencies who employ—or enslave—people with extraordinary talents. When tragedy tears them apart, Justice finds purpose working for the good guys: ACRO, the super-secret Agency for Covert Rare Operatives. But he never forgets Taggart or the past they once shared.

Heartbroken, Taggart runs from who he is . . . right into the arms of Ian Bridges. But Ian, battling his own demons, betrays Tag to the terrorist organization Itor. After months of torture, Tag manages to escape, but kills an ACRO agent in the process.

With nowhere left to turn, Tag disappears into the Alaskan wilderness, but it’s only a matter of time before his enemies track him down. He reaches out to Justice, and somehow Ian finds him too, hoping to right his wrongs. With ACRO and Itor both bearing down, the three men must figure out how to forgive, how to work together, and how to love each other—or the coming battle will destroy them all.

******************

Twenty percent of all proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to the It Gets Better Project.

The It Gets Better Project’s mission is to communicate to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth around the world that it gets better, and to create and inspire the changes needed to make it better for them. Visit their website for more information and to find out how you can get involved.

Review

Tag and Justice are boyhood friends with special powers. They become lovers but separate when their mothers are killed by the evil Itor and they don’t agree on how to get even.

While separated Tag meets and falls in love with Ian who ends up getting Tag kidnapped and tortured by Itor.

Finally Tag is free, Justice has found Tag and now Ian has found Tag and Justice. Both men want Tag but Tag isn’t sure he wants either man back.

A huge blizzard and an avalanche lock all three men together in a cabin in Alaska, forcing them to make decisions about the rest of their lives.

**

Threesomes can be hard to write/read. The romantic soul in me finds it hard to accept Tag and Justice opening their relationship to Ian, but Sydney Croft does a pretty good job of selling it.

There is a lot of detail covered in this relatively short story. Action. Explosions. Intrigue. Special powers. And a fair amount of sexy times too.

If you are a fan of threesomes you will find this very satisfying. If you love secret agent/ x-men type paranormal stories, this has a lot to offer. If you are a romantic purist, you may be disappointed.

Writing/Editing 4.5

Romance 3

Sex/Heat 4

Storyline 4.5

World Building/Characterizations 5

Overall 4.2 of 5 hearts

4

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The Last Thing He Needs by JH Knight

Dreamspinner presents:  http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=5262

last thingBlurb

Tommy O’Shea is raising his seven younger brothers and sisters without any help from his drug abusing father and stepmother. Since he was fifteen years old, he’s managed to keep the children fed and out of foster care. It takes up every ounce of his energy and the last thing he needs is romance complicating his life further.

Rookie cop Bobby McAlister doesn’t belong in Tommy’s harsh world, but Tommy can’t push him out. As their unlikely friendship turns into a tentative relationship, they weather the daily storm of Tommy’s life with a lot of laughs and more than a few arguments.

Tommy isn’t used to trusting outsiders, and he’s never asked for help in his life. But when a tragedy strikes the O’Shea family and threatens everything he’s fought for, he’ll have to learn to do both to recover from the brutal hit.

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Review

Tommy O’Shea has a rough, rough life. He’s in charge of his 6 younger siblings, didn’t finish high school, has drug-addled parents messing things up, and he’s very, very poor.

Bobby McAlister has been around for most of Tommy’s life. He’s an only child who lives at home with his recently widowed mother. He’s a gay cop who only wants to love and be loved.

It isn’t easy for Tommy to trust, everyone he knows has let him down, so when Bobby comes around, he is immediately treated with a heavy dose of skepticism.

Through time, perseverance and a lot of love, Bobby worms his way in and the result is this amazing love story written by JH Knight.

JH Knight a new author to me, but she now goes on my “must read” list.

I was blown away.

The story is so sweet, so tender, yet tough and gritty at the same time.

The problems Tommy and his family face are realistic and heart-breaking and I really loved that the “gay” part was really the least of their worries.

This was a story about trust, devotion, optimism and most of all, family. Despite all the odds and all the reasons why things really should not have worked out, family prevails, and in ways we could never predict.

I really loved the relationship between Bobby and his mother, June. I just think her involvement in the story added that the icing to this delicious cake of a book. She rounded out the family and brought everyone in that much tighter. She reminded us that you’re never too old to need a “Mommy”.

I felt the love scenes were erotic and touching and just numerous enough to add texture to the story without being the focus. The kids were amazing and I really hope we see more of their stories in the future.

I fell in love with this book and will definitely be reading it again.

I highly recommend it, giving it 6 out of 5 hearts!

amazing

 

JH Knight gave us a WONDERFUL present with this “Epilogue”:  https://www.goodreads.com/author_blog_posts/7586073-have-yourself-a-merry-little-free-short-read

 

SO WONDERFUL!