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Promises: The Next Generation (Bounty Hunters #5) A.E. Via

💫Reviewed by The KimiChan Experience💫

TITLE: Promises: The Next Generation

SERIES: Promises #5, Bounty Hunters

AUTHOR: A.E. Via

PUBLISHER: Via Star Wings Publishing

RELEASE DATE: August 27, 2018

BLURB: Duke Webb has run the most successful bail recovery agency in Atlanta for over twenty years. That’s because he has a team of trained, competent hunters backing him up to keep his name feared on the streets. But Duke knows that nothing can go on forever. His hunters are in committed relationships and ready to settle down, and so is he. That’s what leads him to start his new training program.

“That’s the new vision for Dukes. Veterans operating and tracking behind the scenes with a new powerhouse apprehension team on the streets.”

Brian and Quick are the first to offer up two new recruits.

Kellam Knight has studied martial arts under his sensei, Quick, since he was eight years old. A tossed-out reject from high-society, Kell has a problem fighting on the right side of the law. If he sees an injustice, he has to correct it. He doesn’t have to run and cower from his enemies anymore, he’s a fighter who can protect himself and others. When Quick offers Kell the opportunity to join Duke’s training program, he’s all in. Except he’s not prepared for the straight, over-confident, extremely disciplined, sexy man Brian has recruited to be his partner.

Tyrell Jenkins’ world was flipped upside down when his father never returned home from his last deployment. He’d been Ty’s teacher, mentor, his guide to living a righteous life as a good man. His father didn’t raise him to be like every other young, stereotypical male in Atlanta. Instead, he’s been taught to be respectful, to speak the language of real men. When Brian King – his father’s most trusted comrade – finally comes to him with the truth, he doesn’t come alone. He comes with trained men hidden in the shadows… and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to join a brotherhood unlike any other.

This installment is a part of a series and contains previously mentioned characters, but CAN standalone. Each book centers around a new couple.
This book ends in a HEA. NO cliffhanger.

REVIEW: Oh my goodness. This book—as usual—was absolutely amazing. The characters, storylines and dialogue was top notch. But then again, this is nothing new as this author consistently churns out high quality work.

The author did something a little different this time in that an African American MC was featured. And he was DIVINE. But I’ll come back to him in a bit. Let me get into the other MC first—Kellam Knight.

Kellam—Kell—is this interesting mixture of innocence and compassion. He’s a deadly warrior who’s kind and gentle. He’s vulnerable yet strong. He’s definitely a survivor. He’s extremely beautiful which he goes to great lengths to cover. The many ways in which she was able to make him this complex character with so much depth to him was absolutely brilliant.

Now back to Tyrell Jenkins—Ty. Ty’s outward appearance belies his personality. Many would look at this young black man in expensive clothes and dismiss him as a criminal even though he doesn’t present himself as such. Ty is a man with honor and principles. He constantly draws on and applies the teachings of his late father to live by. Ty is a righteous man. A loving and honorable man. He lives his life by a moral code of conduct and principles that’s been taught to him by his father. A man who works hard to ensure that his mother is well taken care of. He is a man who is comfortable within his own skin. When he first realized that he was falling for another man, he didn’t flinch or question it too much. He just went with it, realizing that love transcends gender and race. Her portrayal of this black man gave me so much LIFE. So much needed life, at that. What Miss Lady did was take all of those ridiculous stereotypes that’s usually attributed to black men, balled it up and threw it straight in the trash where it belonged. And it was GLORIOUS.

Ty and Kell’s love story was a beautifully written thing. It wasn’t based on lust. Theirs was a subtle build to perfection. Ty courted Kell. Like old school courted him. That’s what makes their relationship so pleasurable to read. These men fell in love with each other based on their hearts and minds instead of their flesh. That came later.

What I also enjoyed with this book was how spiritual both men were. They weren’t religious but they were spiritual in that they believed in a higher power.

I could go on and on about how beautifully written this book and these characters are. If I could give this book a ten star rating, I would do it.

This womxyn comes up with the most fabulous creations every single time she put her fingers on that keyboard.

As always, went into the kitchen and put her foot in the damn pot. And this time, she did it for the culture.

RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

BUY LINKS:

Amazon

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The Ship Engineer (Workplace Encounters Book 4) by Serena Yates

Dreamspinner Presents http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6375

ShipEngineer[The]Blurb
Nathan Kappas, newly promoted to second engineer on the cruise ship Sapphire, has eyes only for the vessel he’s about to board. He literally runs into Harper Quade, a singer and dancer hired to entertain passengers. Harper has always wanted to travel, and working onboard the Sapphire keeps him away from his abusive ex-boyfriend. As they sail to Hawaii, Tahiti, and other exotic destinations, Nathan and Harper soon share a cabin and a deepening connection, which surprises Nathan, who generally prefers the predictability of machines to people. But an employee who feels jilted when Harper gets promoted harasses him, and Harper’s dangerous past refuses to let him escape. Harper might not be as safe on the Sapphire as he assumed, but Nathan will do anything to protect him.

Review

Nathan is a socially awkward, virgin! who starts a new job on a cruise ship where he meets the very outgoing Harper. Harper is a performer who gets a job on a cruise ship, escaping an abusive ex.

There is very little angst between Nathan and Harper as their relationship develops and grows. It becomes clear to Nathan that Harper means more than a ship-board romance when he is kidnapped by his ex.

Like the previous books in this series we get a unique look at a profession – in this case working on a cruise ship – and a quick, but sweet love story between two men.

I thoughtthe story was cute, the sex nice, the romance sweet, the editing good but I found the dialog to be a little stiff and awkward.

(Don’t judge this book by the cover – the book is MUCH better!)

3.5 of 5 hearts

3.5

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Thirty Things by Cate Ashwood

Dreamspinner presents

http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6217

ThirtyThingsBlurb

All their lives, Finn and Nate have been inseparable, sharing everything, and when a childhood accident left Finn broken, Nate stood by his side as all his other friends left. After all their years together, there’s one secret Finn still hasn’t revealed: he has been in love with Nate since they were eight years old. Hiding his feelings for twenty-one years—terrified of what might happen if Nate ever found out—has been difficult, but losing his best friend would be worse than living with a bad case of unrequited love. Unfortunately for Finn, Nate doesn’t make it easy.

Nate believes there are some things that just have to be done before your thirtieth birthday. As a gift to Finn, he plans an adventure to check off a list of thirty things to experience before hitting that milestone. Starting in Crawfordsville, Indiana, they tour the country, trying new things and meeting interesting new people. Nate’s having the time of his life, but he can tell Finn is holding something back. As the days count down, navigating the back roads suddenly seems easier than figuring out where their relationship is heading.

One thing’s for certain. There will be no turning back.

Review

This is a stupendously cute story of friends turned lovers. Finn has been crushing on Nate his whole life and it takes a trip across country for Finn to realize that Nate feels the same way.

I loved the individual tasks (30 of them) Nate set up – I want to go on that trip too! (For the record Portland is an awesome town!) It was a fun, light read full of sweet moments, some sexual tension then release and lots and lots of feels.

Though there were times I thought some of the relationship stuff was a bit unrealistic: why Finn was still a virgin, why he kept assuming Nate was just experimenting, why he thought this could ever be anything other than a real relationship… they were minor.

The writing and editing are excellent and the story left me smiling!

4.5 of 5 hearts

4.5

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Fever Pitch (Love Lessons #2) Audiobook by Heidi Cullinan narrated by Iggy Toma

Samhain Publishing Presents: http://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/Fever-Pitch-Audiobook/B00UTU656E/ref=a_search_c4_1_2_srTtl?qid=1427734190&sr=1-2

Fever Pitch audiobookBlurb

Book Two of the Love Lessons Series

Sometimes you have to play love by ear.

Aaron Seavers is a pathetic mess, and he knows it. He lives in terror of incurring his father’s wrath and disappointing his mother, and he can’t stop dithering about where to go to college—with fall term only weeks away. Ditched by a friend at a miserable summer farewell party, all he can do is get drunk in the laundry room and regret he was ever born. Until a geeky-cute classmate lifts his spirits, leaving him confident of two things: his sexual orientation, and where he’s headed to school.
Giles Mulder can’t wait to get the hell out of Oak Grove, Minnesota, and off to college, where he plans to play his violin and figure out what he wants to be when he grows up. But when Aaron appears on campus, memories of hometown hazing threaten what he’d hoped would be his haven. As the semester wears on, their attraction crescendos from double-cautious to a rich, swelling chord. But if more than one set of controlling parents have their way, the music of their love could come to a shattering end.

Warning: Contains showmances, bad parenting, Walter Lucas, and a cappella

Review

(Book review from previous site)

Finally!

That’s what I said when I found out Love Lesson’s was to finally have it’s sequel!

I knew it had been planned for a long time and was super excited to finally read it! Let me tell you that I was NOT disappointed!

This is another long book of the new adult variety, in keeping with the Love Lesson’s theme. Fever Pitch takes place at another university in the mid-west, small and liberal arts oriented – but no gay swans, mores the pity.

Aaron and Giles actually attended high school together their senior year. It is in their last days there that Aaron begins to give in to his cravings for male romance and Giles is happy to help him explore this side of his personality. Unfortunately, both boys are really quite scarred from past experiences and the relationship is over before it really begins, leaving Aaron tentatively in lust/love and Giles really pissed off.

Aaron follow Giles to St Timothy’s University, mostly in stalker fashion, and over the course of many months they eventually forge a friendship through their mutual love for music.

During this bonding process we get to see our friends Walter and Kelly again – woot! Walter ends up helping Aaron deal with his new feelings and helps him to “get his man”.

Once the boys get together the drama doesn’t stop. There are other crazy parents involved and other sad gay boys to be saved. We see parents who can help save lives and those who set out to ruin them. There is lots and lots of music being played, composed and sung. And finally there is a wedding. Sigh. Walter and Kelly get married in what has to be my all time favorite gay wedding to date.

I just loved these two books so much! This second book is even stronger than the first. The side issues are more serious and the tragedies more tragic. If I’m being honest… the sex is hotter too, but don’t tell that to Walter or Kelly.

I loved how the book furthers the lives of people we met in book one, but if you didn’t read the first book, no worries, this stands on its own quite nicely.

Again Heidi has given us a love story interwoven with some serious, coming of age issues and the result is a rich tale, full of well developed characters and satisfying story lines.

Audio
Iggy Toma does another amazing job with this sequel to Love Lessons. Again he gives us so much emotion and does such a nice job with the voicing that you can’t help but be captivated. I really appreciated his ability to just become fully engaged in the story and let the raw feelings ooze through his voice so that the listener feels like she is right there with Giles and Aaron, feeling their joy and pain.

5 of 5 hearts

5

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Love Lessons Audiobook by Heidi Cullinan Narrated by Iggy Toma

Samhain Publishing Presents: http://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/Love-Lessons-Audiobook/B00TYQO89K/ref=a_search_c4_1_7_srTtl?qid=1427733944&sr=1-7

love lessons audioBlurb

Love doesn’t come with a syllabus.

Kelly Davidson has waited what seems like forever to graduate high school and get out of his small-minded, small town. But when he arrives at Hope University, he quickly realizes finding his Prince Charming isn’t so easy. Everyone here is already out. In fact, Kelly could be the only virgin on campus.

Worst of all, he’s landed the charming, handsome, gay campus Casanova as a roommate, whose bed might as well be equipped with a revolving door.

Walter Lucas doesn’t believe in storybook love. Everyone is better off having as much fun as possible with as many people as possible…except his shy, sad little sack of a roommate is seriously screwing up his world view.

As Walter sets out to lure Kelly out of his shell, staying just friends is harder than he anticipated. He discovers love is a crash course in determination. To make the grade, he’ll have to finally show up for class…and overcome his own private fear that love was never meant to last.

Warning: This story contains lingering glances, milder than usual sexual content for this author, and a steamy dance-floor kiss. Story has no dairy or egg content, but may contain almonds

Review
(Book Reviewed on Previous Site)

Kelly is a small town guy with Disney –HEA – visions in his head. He just KNOWS life gets better in college and he won’t let anybody tell him otherwise.
Walter is the jaded, older student and now roommate who, at first, wants to break Kelly of his romantic ideal nonsense, then feels it’s his duty to protect those dreams and finally to make them come true.

This is a long book, so we cover a lot of ground and in a lot of detail.
We get a good, hard look at what makes Walter so cynical and a good look at what makes Kelly so idealistic.

We get to watch the relationship, in its early seedling stage nearly die before finally taking root to grow into a full-fledged, Disney-level-happiness, rock solid, Red-wood of a relationship.

This is a new adult novel. Not quite YA – too much drinking, drugs, and sex for that. But the story is more closely that of a YA than some of the other, far more raunchy, Heidi Cullinan “adult” books. It is very well written and very involved, like the rest of Heidi’s books, and hits all the right buttons for me.

I just love the characters. They are all very well developed, three-dimensional, interesting and unique. There are several secondary characters that add complexity to the story and help to give this book it’s authentic flavors.

Kelly is an amazing guy. Heidi has managed to give us a freshman boy, who loves Disney movies, is a die-hard romantic, a virgin and yet he is still very much a boy. I love him! I love that he idolizes Tangled and has dreams of how his first date, first sex and wedding should all be. I loved the juxtaposition of his money poor, love rich household with Walter’s money rich, love poor life. Walter, the playboy, the cynic, the last guy to imagine Happy Ever After is the PERFECT choice for Kelly.

Their story is told slowly, organically growing and unfolding tenderly in such a way that we can easily see how the switches can be flipped and how our jaded Walter can come around to being Kelly’s Prince by the end of the book.

I could really relate to Kelly’s vision of what love “should and should not” be, I think many of us remember that time in our lives – whether it was high school, college, or later in life – and how hard it was to mesh that vision in our head with what life hands us. What I admired was how Kelly held on to his vision of Disney-Princess-Happiness without shame or wavering even in the face of disillusionment and that, in the end, his enduring faith brought everyone around and actualized his feelings rather than crushing his spirit.

The length of the book is both its strength and weakness. It takes a little dedication – there are times the story drags and it takes a little perseverance. However, the pay out is definitely worth it. Because she doesn’t compromise on length, the story feels very natural and real, and because life is more than just romance, the added side stories Heidi guides us through help us to see how our MCs are growing and changing in a way that feels authentic.
By the end I think everyone will have at least some tears in their eyes if they are not out-right bawling. It is an amazingly tender, sweet and satisfying book on many levels.

You will fall in love with Kelly and Walter and – now that I have read the sequel – I can tell you that you will be excited to know we get to see even more of them real soon and it only makes this book that much more sweet.

Audio

Iggy Toma is a new narrator to me and he did a fantastic job with this series. He adds so much real emotion that the listener is truly immersed in the story right along with the characters. He did some subtle variations on the voices, enough to differentiate the speakers, but did not go over the top with them. I really, really enjoyed listening to this and will probably find myself listening to it again and again – all 10 hours!

The listening experience contributes so much to the enjoyment to bump this to a 5 of 5 hearts! I loved it!

5

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Behind the Curtain Audiobook by Amy Lane Narrated by Hugh Bradley

Dreamspinner Presents:  http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=5248

BehindTheCurtainAUDMEDBlurb

Dawson Barnes recognizes his world is very small and very charmed. Running his community college theater like a petty god, he and his best friend, Benji know they’ll succeed as stage techs after graduation. His father adores him, Benji would die for him, and Dawson never doubted the safety net of his family, even when life hit him below the belt.

But nothing prepared him for falling on Jared Emory’s head.

Aloof dance superstar Jared is a sweet, vulnerable man and Dawson’s life suits him like a fitted ballet slipper. They forge a long-distance romance from their love of the theater and the magic of Denny’s. At first it’s perfect: Dawson gets periodic visits and nookie from a gorgeous man who “gets” him—and Jared gets respite from the ultra-competitive world of dancing that almost consumed him.

That is until Jared shows up sick and desperate and Dawson finally sees the distance between them concealed painful things Jared kept inside. If he doesn’t grow up—and fast—his “superstar” might not survive his own weaknesses. That would be a shame, because the real, fragile Jared that Dawson sees behind the curtain is the person he can see spending his life with.

Review
(From previous site)

This is a sweet story of two people, seemingly in opposite phases of life, coming together and finding love. Dawson, sort of trapped in an unrequited love finds Jared, who has never really had love, and together they just click, right from the start. But there are still hurdles to be overcome and both Jared and Dawson have to decide where their life is going and how to take control of that life if they want to be together.

Amy Lane’s stories are character driven and Dawson and Jared are amazing characters, so (of course) this is another amazing Amy Lane book. I just loved it. Amy is so good at giving us these bony limbed-kersplang-awkward characters that you can’t help but absolutely adore and then pairing them with a masterful, solid, yet somehow broken-needing-to-be-fixed character. Just when you think Dawson is the one who needs to grow up, you realize that, no, he is the rock in this relationship and poor Jared is the one who needs to be rescued.

Amy also excels at “friends” and Dawson’s friends (and family) are so wonderful and though they may try to steal the story, they only add to its richness and texture, by giving it greater depth.

The dialog in this book is funny, sweet, touching and wonderful, just like Jared and Dawson’s love for each other. I really enjoyed these guys and I hope we get to see them in future books, I didn’t want this one to end!

Audio

The narrator, Hugh Bradley, is new to me, but I will definitely look for him in the future. He did an amazing job, really brining the characters to life with his voices and inflection. He seemed to really “get” Dawson and Jared and their story. Sometimes a narrator can mess up a story for you, if you have already read it and already have a feel for the characters in your head. But Hugh seemed to be reading the same story as me, and I really enjoyed listening to his version. I highly recommend this audible as a companion to the book or all on its own.

5 out of 5 hearts

5

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Johnnie (Siphon #1) by Cardeno C

The Romance Authors LLC Presents http://www.cardenoc.com/johnnie.php

Jonnie_cover1800x2700Blurb

A Premier lion shifter, Hugh Landry dedicates his life to leading the Berk pride with strength and confidence. Hundreds of people depend on Hugh for safety, success, and happiness. And at over a century old, with more power than can be contained in one body, Hugh relies on a Siphon lion shifter to carry his excess force.

When the Siphon endangers himself and therefore the pride, Hugh must pay attention to the man who has been his silent shadow for a decade. What he learns surprises him, but what he feels astounds him even more.

Two lions, each born to serve, rely on one another to survive. After years by each other’s side, they’ll finally realize the depth of their potential, the joy in their passion, and a connection their kind has never known.

Review

The book starts off with Hugh’s near death! Hugh, a lion shifter and Premier (head honcho) has so much energy in his body that he requires a Siphon (an extra being who can carry around the excess energy) to be near him at all times. When not near the Siphon or if the Siphon dies, the excess energy reverts back to the Premier and the overload is fatal. As a result, the Siphon’s life is guarded zealously. But he’s not necessarily treated well beyond that.

In this case the Siphon has been protected and yet ignored since birth, so much so that he doesn’t even have a name! His feelings of desperation and loneliness cause him to take measures into his own hands, and as a result he almost ends up killing both himself and his Premier.

Hugh finally takes notice of his Siphon’s depression and starts to fix things by first giving him a name (everyone has only ever called him the Siphon), Johnnie.

What happens next is the bonding of Hugh and Johnnie and the revelation that they can mean even more to each other as mates than simply Siphon and Premier.

There are hurdles: jealous shifters want to take the Siphon both for their own and to hurt Hugh. Neither Hugh nor Johnnie know how to handle their newfound relationship and neither does the pack. But in the end we get a wonderful Cardeno happy ending that will bring tears to your eyes.

**

I just absolutely adore Cardeno C books! This is another wonderful new shifter series and I can’t wait for more! I loved the “energy” sharing twist and the very dark, dark beginning. It was quite a contrast to the very happy and light tenor the rest of the story carries.

Johnnie is wonderfully sweet and Hugh adorably clueless. Their love is tender and sincere, the sex is hot and the story moves so quickly you wonder where the time went.

I loved this book and highly recommend it to Cardeno fans, shifter fans, and fans of sweet love stories.

6 of 5 hearts

amazing

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Not Just Friends by Jay Northcote

Dreamspinner Presents:  http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4732

NotJustFriendsBlurb

Leaving home to go to university is an exciting phase in anyone’s life. One that’s full of new places, new friends, and new experiences. But Lewis is not prepared for the sudden and intense crush he develops on his out-and-proud flatmate, Max—given that Lewis had always assumed he was straight. Max starts dating another guy, and Lewis’s jealousy at seeing them together forces him to confront his growing attraction.

When Max’s relationship goes awry, Lewis is the one to comfort him and one thing leads to another. But after a night together, Lewis is devastated that Max wants to go back to being just friends. Lewis tries his best to move on and their friendship survives, but the feelings he has for Max don’t go away. He faces other challenges as he deals with coming out to his parents and needs Max’s support more than ever. But Lewis isn’t the only one who’s conflicted. When Max finally admits he cares for Lewis too, Lewis must decide whether he dares risk his heart again on being more than just friends.

Review

(From Previous Site)

Lewis is 18 and just starting University where he meets Max, one of his dorm mates.  Max is out and proud and gets Lewis thinking that he may be something other than straight.

At first Lewis fights his attraction to Max, but it isn’t long before he begins to acknowledge that the feeling he’s experiencing watching Max hook-up with other guys is jealousy.  After a sad break-up one night, the two get drunk and mess around.  Lewis is ready to go all in after that; admit he’s gay, admit he likes Max, everything, but Max is on the rebound and isn’t ready to “break in” a new boyfriend, especially since Lewis is new to being gay and they live together.

Lewis is heartbroken, but admits it makes a bit of sense.  Moving on, Lewis begins to explore his newfound sexuality by telling his family, friends, joining the LGBT group at school and even dating.

As the semester goes on, Lewis discovers more about himself and Max does, too.  They have some hurdles to overcome, but in the end we see a very HFN (or HEA depending on how you look at it.)

**

This was another sweet, wonderful book by Jay Northcote.  It’s told in a way that seems very natural and realistic.  Lewis isn’t hung up about finding out he’s gay – he’s reluctant at first, only because he’d had a girlfriend in High School, but it doesn’t take much in the experimenting phase for him to admit his preference.  Lewis’ family is essentially pretty supportive as are his friends.

Max is a fairly easy going, very open gay man, who is really just following his heart.  He doesn’t have any terrible, dark secrets keeping him from loving, just normal life-is-never-perfect stuff that gives him some substance.

When all is said and done, the really nice thing about this story is that it ends up being more about the love story than a “gay” love story.

I really enjoyed this and recommend it.  I give it 4.5 of 5 hearts.

4.5

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Unlocked Heart Audiobook (Collars and Cuffs 1) by KC Wells Narrated by Nick J Russo

Dreamspinner Presents:

http://www.audible.com/pd/Erotica-Sexuality/An-Unlocked-Heart-Audiobook/B00SI4725Q/ref=a_search_c4_1_1_srTtl?qid=1424492515&sr=1-1

unlocked heartBlurb

Since the death of his submissive lover two years ago, Leo hasn’t been living–merely existing. He focuses on making Collars & Cuffs, a BDSM club in Manchester’s gay village, successful. That changes the night he and his business partner have their weekly meeting at Severinos. Leo can’t keep his eyes off the new server. The shy man seems determined to avoid Leo’s gaze, but that’s like a red rag to a bull. Leo loves a challenge.

Alex Daniels works at Severinos to scrape together the money to move out on his own. He struggles with coming out, but he’s drawn to Leo, the gorgeous guy with the icy-blue eyes who’s been eating in his area nearly every night.

Leo won’t let Alex’s hesitance get in the way. He even keeps him away from the club so as not to scare him. And as for telling Alex that Leo is a dom? Not a good idea. One date becomes two, but date two leads to Leo’s bedroom…and Alex discovers things about himself he never realized and never wanted anyone to see.

Review

Leo has been neglecting his own desires since the loss of his last submissive. When his friends ask him to help with Alex’s training, he realizes he needs something more in his life than just running the club.

Alex is still a virgin (!) and closeted and very shy. It takes Leo to make him admit his own desires and have the strength to come out to his ultra-conservative family.  At first he balks at the domination but then finds it really suits him.

For people who are new to BDSM or like it on the “light” side this is a good book as it isn’t too… extreme. If BDSM is definitely NOT your thing, then skip this series.

The relationship is definitely highlighted along with the sex so there is a good balance. The angst is fair, sometimes a bit contrived in my opinion, but mostly appropriate.

Audio

Nick J Russo is one of my favorite narrators. He has this amazing deep and penetrating voice that tends to give me shivers.

Unfortunately his voice just didn’t work in this story. I didn’t like his “Leo”. I thought the voice his chose was too feminine and not nearly hard-ass enough to be the Dom that he was. I also thought a few of his other voices – the cop, Alex’s dad, and some others were a little too over the top and they were distracting.

Usually I just gush about him but I didn’t think this story was a good fit for him.

 

Writing/Editing 4

Romance 3

Sex/Heat 4

Storyline 3

World Building/Characterizations 4

Audio 2

 

Overall 3.3 out of 5 hearts

3

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The Healing Power of Eggnog Audiobook by Jamie Fessenden narrated by Robbie Ravena

Dreamspinner Presents http://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/The-Healing-Power-of-Eggnog-Audiobook/B00NG10L1S/ref=a_search_c4_1_1_srTtl?qid=1420149062&sr=1-1

eggnogBlurb

Will Sutherland hasn’t been home to see his parents in four years – not since they reacted badly when he came out. This Christmas, he’s finally worked up the courage to go home, where he’s surprised to find they’ve taken in a boarder. Ryan Bennett is just a couple years younger than Will, cute, sweet…and openly gay.

As Will deals with his jealousy of the man who’s been receiving the love and acceptance he was denied, Ryan finds himself falling for Will’s brooding good looks. But Ryan also suspects the Sutherlands may be using him as a pawn in their long-standing conflict with their son. Will this Christmas finally tear the family apart, or is there a chance they can put their hurt and anger behind them.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2013 Advent Calendar package

Review

This is a short holiday story about love and forgiveness. Will hasn’t been home since the Christmas when he came out to his family. There is a “mystery” as to why he’s stayed away, but you can guess why. When Will’s family extends an olive branch, he decides to try again but is mystified by the boarder they are sharing their house with.

Ryan is a young gay man who was kicked out of his home by his religious family and is now being supported by Will’s family.

At first Will is jealous and guarded with the virginal Ryan, but as the eggnog gets drunk and the inhibitions loosened the two find they might have a bit more in common than they think.

**

Since this is a short story, a lot happens in a time line that feels unrealistic to me, but is acceptable given the parameters of a holiday love story.

I didn’t really feel Will ever had a reason to “love” Ryan or vice versa, though I was certainly rooting for the relationship.

I thought the sex and the “I love yous” were rushed but sweet nonetheless.

Audiobook:

I thought Robbie did a nice job with the narration, this was his first narration I’d heard and I would definitely look for him in the future. He didn’t do a lot with the voices but he certainly seemed to understand and translate the story well.

Overall I give the book a 3 of 5 hearts and the Audiobook a 4 of 5 hearts for a total of 3.5 hearts.

3.5

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