A MelanieM Review: Flashbulb (Flight HA1710 #3) by Clare London

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Flashbulb coverBlythe Harris was taking his first flight to the USA and hopefully a whole new client base for his bespoke upholstery business. An adventure for him, he was both nervous and excited to attract the attention of a handsome steward. Things might have gone further – if Flight HA1710 hadn’t failed.

Marc Stafford is a self-confessed player, and he used his charm to seduce his cute passenger. But in the aftermath of the crash, he’s struggling to recover his confidence. The TV declares him a hero for saving passengers, but at night his nightmares trigger painful flashbulb memories of the crash.

In an Irish hospital, Bly realises that although his broken leg will recover, his career may not. And in Chicago, Marc can’t face returning to work. Neither of them can shake off the memory of their brief, sexy encounter. Both of them need to be with someone who understands exactly what they’ve been through. And on a middle ground they can make all their own.

Flashbulb is the third story in the series Flight HA 1710, a collection that  revolves around an airline disaster.  Each story reflects the aftermath of the airline crash through the survivors and the way in which this horrific event changed them forever. Flashbulb is a wonderful story (outside of that awkward title).  Clare London’s characters are vastly different in life experience and outlook when we first encounter them on the plane.  Marc Stafford, a flight  attendant, is about to get in trouble yet again with his   flight supervisor.  An unrepentant flirt, he is a party boy who finds his temporary companions on the flights he works. That and his attitude have made him a target for the strict supervisor on board.  At the beginning, Marc comes across as superficial, slutty, but good at his job.

His target on this flight?  Blythe Harris off on his first journey to the US for an opportunity to expand his upholstery business. Its Blythe’s first everything.  First flight, first time to the US, and first time getting hit on by the very sexy Marc.  There’s a spark that flies between them during the early moments of the flight and then the airplane crashes.  In the aftermath, Marc and Blythe finds themselves very different men from the ones that boarded that aircraft.  Marc, named a hero for his actions in saving those that he could, is haunted by the victims he lost and the fear of getting on another plane.  Blythe?  He awakes to find himself broken.  A broken leg, and injured hands that may just cost him his business, flooded with uncertainty and fear.  Its in the aftermath that both characters come fully to life in their vulnerability and pain.

Clare London does a superb job in making these men believable and courageous.  First the flight brings them together, then it flings them apart to recover in distant locations but they discover that only together may they fully heal and find a future.  These are believable characters dealing in realistic ways with one of the most horrific things that can happen to a person.  London  brings us into their lives, makes us feel their anger, pain, and uncertainty every step of their path towards healing and a deep relationship.  By the end, I was cheering them on as they struggled with miscommunication and self sacrifice that almost costs them each other and a future.  And all the way through it, London delivers the drama, the developing relationship and its hurdles with a deft touch and moving narrative.

I love this series and Flashbulb by Clare London is one of my favorites.  Its one emotional ride, an endearing romance that any reader and lover of M/M contemporary romance stories is sure to enjoy.  Pick it up and settle in for Marc and Blythe’s journey towards healing and love.

Cover art by Meredith Russell.  Great cover. It works perfectly for the character and the series.

Sales Links:  All Romance (ARe)  |  Amazon  |  Buy It Here

Book Details:

ebook
Published June 26th 2015 by Jocular Press
edition languageEnglish
urlhttp://www.clarelondon.com/books/novellas/flashbulb
seriesFlight HA1710 #3

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Flight HA1710 series

6 authors, 6 primary works

When Flight HA1710 crashes killing seven people the after effects are too many to think on. But how does the crash change people’s lives? From the pilot to the guy who missed the plane we chart the stories of those whose lives were impacted by the crash.

 

A Stella Review: When Will I Be Loved (Crescent Bay Chronicles #2) by Julie Lynn Hayes

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Fairy tales can come true…

when will I be loved coverMiller Fenwick wants the kind of happy ending his best friend got, with the hunky werewolf of his dreams. Trouble is, there doesn’t seem to be a Prince Charming on the horizon, and casual encounters don’t cut it anymore. Now that Alexx and Raoul are engaged, Miller is becoming resigned to being the bridesmaid, never the bride. But a chance encounter with a sexy stranger at Charisma has his hopes soaring, and his heart is wide open to possibilities.

Holt Wynne is the head of Helios, the largest vampire organization in the country. He’s a very influential and wealthy man, with a deep-seated hatred of werewolves. His running into Miller at Charisma isn’t entirely accidental. He’d meant to wait, but his emotions got the better of him, and he couldn’t stay away. And now see what he’s done…

Wait until Miller finds out he’s sort of just gotten married to the sexy vampire who hates the people who are Miller’s best friends. Sparks are gonna fly—and not just in the bedroom. One thing for sure—life in Crescent Bay is never dull!

When Will I Be Loved is the second book in the Crescent Bay Chronicles series by Julie Lynn Hayes. I liked the first one so much, so as soon as I saw this one was out , I got my hands and eyes on it. Here we meet Miller, Alexx’s best friend (When Will I See You Again), tired of meaningless nightstands and of being alone. He’s looking for someone serious in his life but the perfect guy he’s spent one night with, has vanished the morning after. Miller works as a receptionist at the Crescent Bay Chronicles, the newspaper just bought by Holt Wynne, the head of Helios, the largest vampire clan in the country.
Holt saw his mate, or eternal love as vampires say, at the Lupercalia Ball, and soon started changing his life, moving to Crescent Bay and buying the newspaper Miller works at.

“I saw you and I knew,” Holt whispered in a husky voice.
“Knew what?”
“That you were mine,” Holt said simply.[…]
“What does that even mean?” He gave Holt a confused look.
His legs felt as if they were ready to give out on him, and he didn’t put up an argument when Holt gently seated him back on the sofa.
“It means, my love, that you and I… That we…” […]“I know you’re probably familiar with the concept of soul mates. With us, it is that, but more so. And it’s a rare occurrence. To find another person who is as much you as you are, even if he or she appears to be very different. It’s about two hearts becoming one, two souls finding one another and reuniting. We call it eternal love. And you are mine. I knew it the moment I saw you at the Ball. And I knew I had to come back for you.”

Their first meeting was hot and explosive, maybe the “I love you” after seeing each other only two times was a little too much but I love stories about destined mate so it was okay. Miller was good to Holt, too strict and not used to having some fun. I liked how Holt showed his weakness and he wasn’t ashamed of his feelings. He seriously suffered in the past and I was happy for him for finally have found his mate. He fell apart on Miller more than once, very human for a vampire.

I appreciated seeing more of Alexx and Raul, they had a huge role to play in this book, but don’t worry, it can be read as a standalone. The book is sickening sweet (and I loved every single sugary moment) but there are a few childish behaviors that forced me to give it not more than four stars.

I can admit I preferred the first one, it was more engaging to me and less predictable in some parts, even if it’s hard to compare the two stories, they are totally different. Nonetheless When Will I Be Loved was perfect for the Miller story, he deserved this kind of lover and HEA. Now I’m really curious to know if there will be a third book in this series.

Cover art by Trace Edward Zaber. The cover shows a specific scenes in the story. I like it a lot, especially in the use of colors.

Sales Links:  Amber Quill Press  |  All Romance (ARe)  |  Amazon  |  Buy It Here

Book Details:

ebook, 363 pages
Published June 7th 2015 by Amber Quill Press
ISBN 9781681750378
Edition Language English

Crescent Bay Chronicles series
When Will I See You Again #1
When Will I Be Loved #2

SALE LINKS

ARE https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-whenwillibeloved-1838226-340.html
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A BJ Review: Cop Out (Toronto Tales #1) by K.C. Burn

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

Cop Out CoverWhen Detective Kurt O’Donnell’s partner is killed in the line of duty, he discovers that his rather quiet partner was keeping lots of secrets, including that he was married… to another man. Kurt struggles to come to terms with the realization that his partner didn’t trust him enough to tell him the truth, but he decides to do the right thing. When the his partner’s widower, Davy, has no one to turn to except a pregnant sister who has problems of her own, Kurt steps in to help the mourning man get back on his feet. Before long, Davy becomes a friend, one he’s beginning to find himself increasingly attracted to.

To be with Davy, Kurt must face the prospect of coming out, but his job and his relationship with his Catholic family are on the line. Can he risk destroying his life for the uncertain possibility of a relationship with a newly widowed man? As Kurt begins to reevaluate his sexuality, something happens that confuses him even further and sends him into a downward spiral.

I found this to be a well-written and very realistic feeling story. I always enjoy this author’s stories. Just wanted to make that clear up front! Because I really enjoyed everything about this story except that I hated one of the main characters. Davy.

Davy’s deceased lover, Ben was a totally closeted and controlling asshat from what little we get to know about him. Since he died at the start and Davy himself didn’t share too much about him, we only get small small bits and nothing of what made him what he was. Taking that into account, while I didn’t like Davy much even at the beginning, I was trying to understand him and make the effort to like him. That ended, abruptly and finally. And Davy did ZERO to win me back over to his camp before the close of the story. So back to that in a minute.

On the other hand, I adored Kurt. He was just so very sweet to Davy, helping him from the start when he was alone and needy and totally checked out. Even though Kurt himself is just recovering from his own injuries. He’s so patient and kind and generous. After they are friends for a while, Kurt starts to have stronger feelings but is confused as he’s never had them before. When he faces them is able to accept them when he sees Davy kiss another guy, he reacts and then tries to talk to Davy about feelings he doesn’t really fully understand BUT rather than talk it out, Davy’s reaction just flat out made me see red. I absolutely wanted to kick the man in the nuts, throw him under a bus, etc. Only one other book has given me have such a strong hate reaction towards a character. Davy’s actions were wrong on so many levels. But I can’t really list them without describing the scene, which would be a spoiler. That said, if you want to read my full rant in all its furious glory with spoilers, see my review on Goodreads.) But here I will just say that Davy never redeem himself to my mind. Not even freaking close.

Davy’s relationship with Ben turned him pretty much into a hermit due to Ben’s attempts to conceal that the was gay. Davy could have left Ben, he wasn’t a prisoner, yet he didn’t. He stayed with him and he obviously loved him. He was totally broken up with grief when Ben died. It seems as if it was a very unhealthy relationship, but I don’t feel it excuses Davy’s actions. I just don’t.

Davy assumed that Kurt was just another Ben. Assumed things about Kurt. Didn’t bother to let Kurt talk or to talk to Kurt. Didn’t even have the courtesy to treat him like a friend, let alone someone he had feelings for. I hate when characters make assumptions instead of talking, but then to ignore him and hurt him for so long when one simple communication might have meant so much.

Months later when something else happens, Davy finally deigns to come when he’s called and gives lame excuses for his prior behavior. It’s not okay for Davy to have taken his suppressed or repressed feelings about Ben out on Kurt, who had been nothing but a good friend. Yeah, I hate Davy.

Kurt so deserved someone better. No idea what he saw in Davy anyway as he came across to me as kind of a snarky smartass once Kurt helped him get over his depression

I considered briefly that maybe if Davy had been a POV character that I might have gotten a better insight into his motivations and had a different feeling towards him, but based on his lame explanations & assumptions, I tend to think not.

I still give it 4 stars, because I so totally loved Kurt and his family and his story, and I do enjoy this author’s writing style.

I found the cover by artist Reese Dante appealing and representative of the story.

Sales Links:   Dreamspinner Press |  All Romance (ARe)  |  Amazon  |  Buy It Here

Book Details:

ebook, First Edition, 173 pages
Also available in audiobook and paperback
Published November 2011 by Dreamspinner Press
edition languageEnglish
seriesToronto Tales #1

Its Hot and Beyond Sexy! Its Legally Bound by J.R. Gray (excerpt tour)

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Bound Series Banner

 

Legally Bound Spotlight

 

 

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The last thing Daniel, a hard-working public defender, expected to see the morning after a one night stand was his hook up staring back at him from the wrong side of the law. Assigned to work his case, Daniel vows to keep things professional with Rafael but has a hard time controlling his craving for dominance, the control and the connection they shared. Rafael, a paid dominant in the Chicago underworld, has been dealing with a cop problem for far too long. Used to sex with no emotion, he’s entranced with Daniel’s submission, his innocence, and…could there be something more?

Can Daniel clear Rafael’s name, keeping him out of jail and in his life, with the odds, a cop, and the mounting evidence against them?

amazon link


Legally Bound Teaser


Excerpt

Daniel scanned them, looking for anything interesting to lift the dreary Monday, and his eyes went wide when they landed on the face of the man whose bed he had been in last night. “Oh shit,” he said too loudly, drawing the attention of the bailiff. He waved her off, muttering, “Nothing.”

“What?” Jesse hissed.

“I fucked one of our cases last night,” Daniel admitted, knowing he would get it out of him one way or another. There was no point fighting his partner’s excellent extraction skills.

“Which one?” Jesse asked, looking over his shoulder, way too amused.

He tried to nod subtly to one of the prisoners.

“You have to give me more than that.” Jesse stood up and blatantly turned around to study the men sitting in the rows behind them.

Stiffening in his seat, Daniel tried to keep his back to the man he had seen every naked inch of, as well as had his tongue buried inside of, till the early hours of the morning.

“Dark hair, six feet plus, green eyes.” He tried to speak out of the corner of his mouth so no one could read his lips.

“The one with the sleeve tattoo and the huge arms?” Jesse asked.

“Yeah,” he answered in a low, sheepish voice.

“I knew it was that one. You so have a type.” Jesse flipped back around to take his seat once more. He instantly went for the files, lifting up folders and setting the large stack right in front of him.

“What are you doing?” Daniel kept looking over his shoulder to see if the guy showed any signs of recognition.

“What’s his name?” He didn’t look up from the stack of files as he spoke. “Rafael,” he whispered as his face flushed just saying his name. “What are you doing?”

“Figuring out what your lay did,” Jesse said, positively glowing by now.

“I really hate you,” he responded, pulling at his tie and trying to loosen it.

“You’ll thank me later.” Jesse hummed, plucking out the file and flipping it open. “Oh, hot damn, you picked a good one.”

Daniel snatched the file out of his partner’s hands, his eyes going wide. Life just got a little more interesting.

All through the arraignment hearing, he found it hard to keep his mind off the previous night spent at Rafael’s apartment. They’d had an instant connection. He groaned to himself as it became increasingly hard to focus.

“Do you think he did it?”

“Who knows, but how many innocent men do we represent?”

Daniel’s stomach knotted. He didn’t want the allegations to be true. “Good point.”


 

Breach of Contract Spotlight

 

 

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With the legal trouble behind them, Daniel Caplin and Rafael Argon are ready to settle into a low key d/s relationship, but life is unrelenting, when blackmail shatters their illusion of happily ever after. Pictures from one of the Rafael’s public scenes instill fear into his new Submissive, Daniel, acting as a wedge driving the new couple apart.

The building peril in George’s community weighs heavy on his shoulders as he struggles to find the culprit while hiding his feelings for his new house guest. Jesse is torn between ending his marriage, picking up a rebound he should have left fifteen years in the past, and the dangling carrot of a possible relationship with a man. He is forced to fight for what he wants most, a leap he may be too chicken to take.

In the sequel to Legally Bound George battles to take down an unknown enemy, while watching helpless, as those he cares for most are broken beyond repair. Can Rafael and Daniel rebuild their trust after it’s broken with lies?

 

amazon link

 


 

Breach of Contract Teaser


 

Excerpt

The back elevator dinged as he approached, and the doors slid back to reveal Jesse’s face. He had circles under his eyes and worry lines in his forehead. Two fingers held a garment bag over one shoulder and a duffle over his other.

“Is it still okay if I stay?” He put a smile on his lips that George knew was fake.

“But of course. Let me help you.” George approached him and tried to take the bag, but Jesse didn’t move to hand it over.

“I’ve got it.”

“Don’t be absurd. I would have a slave do it, but he’s rather tied up at the moment.”

The statement earned a chuckle out of Jesse, and he gave up the bag. Even hurt Jesse had a light in his blue eyes and his heart on his sleeve, a trait that made him wholly unique compared to the masks most wore to impress George.

“I can stay on the sofa or something if the slaves use the guest rooms.”

George laughed and turned his back to stalk down the hall. When he didn’t hear Jesse following, he cast a glance over his shoulder.

“Slaves in bed … how naive you really are, handsome.”

Jesse started after him, brow creased. “Where do they sleep then?” He caught up and followed George to the other side of the penthouse.

He realized Jesse was serious, and he laughed throatily again. “I have cages for them.”

“I love you and Daniel, but your lifestyle is fucked.”


 

Damages Incurred Spotlight

 

 

 

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Their world is crumbling on the King’s shoulders.

Elliot is gone.

George has failed, and his demons are threatening to swallow him whole. Jesse’s life is slipping through his fingers. He feels like he’s losing George, whom he has just gotten back. The search for Elliot is taking its toll on the pair of them, and the strain shows the cracks in their trust.

Zac is doing everything he can, but he’s been plagued with flashbacks of a life he can’t remember. Even his iron constitution must break sometime, and the search for Elliot can’t wait. Each minute could be the difference between life and death.

Can they get it together to save themselves or Elliot?

amazon link


Damages Incurred Teaser


 

Excerpt

It was dark when he stepped out into the back entrance of the penthouse. His footsteps echoed through the halls as he walked. George should be in bed as he was generally an early riser, but Jesse half expected him to be consoling his pain with a slave.

He paused in front of the play room, swallowing hard. What if his actions had been the final straw in George moving on? What if…

It was too painful to finish the thought. He set his hand on the handle, telling himself he could face what he found inside. He turned it silently and pushed the heavy door forward. It was dark inside, only the lights of the city illuminating the toys spread over the massive wall. The door was soundproof, but now that it was open, all he heard was the light snore of a slave. He closed the door quickly and then pressed a hand into his aching chest. He stalked forward, seeing the flicker of a fire on the wall as he approached the living room.

He stepped around the corner to find George looking pensive staring into the fire, drink in hand. He paused, waiting for an invitation. One never came. George acted as though he didn’t see him. Jesse opened his mouth, but he didn’t know what to say. There wasn’t an apology that could even cover the pain he’d put George through.

He fell to his knees. “Forgive me,” he whispered.

George didn’t respond. Jesse fell forward pressing his forehead into the cool hardwood floor. Warm hands closed around his arms, dragging him to his feet, and he was enveloped in George’s arms. His eyes started to mist, and he couldn’t catch a full breath. It was all too much to bear. He’d left his heart when he left George, and there were no words for what it felt like to be back here. He buried his face in George’s neck and wrapped his arms around him. George kissed every spot he could reach on Jesse in their position.

It was so much more than dominant and submissive like this. Jesse’s heart ached. The pain radiated through his bones. He’d been holding off losing it for so long he hadn’t even realize how bad the pain had gotten, how numb he’d been.


 

Author Bio

When not staying up all night writing, J.R Gray can be found basking in the warm glow of the Miami sun, or at the gym where it’s half assumed Gray is a permanent resident. A dominant, pilot, and sword fighting enthusiast, Gray finds it hard to be in the passenger seat of any car. Gray frequently interrupts real life, including normal sleep patterns, to jot down nonsense. The bane of Gray’s existence are commas, and even though it’s been fully acknowledged they are necessary, they continue to baffle and bewilder.

 

If Gray wasn’t writing…well, that’s not possible. The buildup of untold stories would haunt Gray into an early grave or possibly a mental institution where the tales would end up on the walls in crayon and finger paint.

 

https://twitter.com/theoriginalgray

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https://facebook.com/GrayBooks

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https://theoriginalgray.tumblr.com (NSFW)

https://www.pinterest.com/JRGrayBooks/

Cover Reveal Time for Lovers Entwined by Lillian Francis (cover reveal, exclusive excerpt and giveaway)

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Lillian Francis reveals the beautiful cover art of her upcoming book titled LOVERS ENTWINED.
It releases on August 03, 2015.
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BLURB
Ewan Matthews is one of Boston’s leading genealogy experts. When a would-be bridegroom comes looking for confirmation that there are no skeletons in his ancestral closet, Ewan considers turning the job down. Trey Capell is a jerk of the highest order and yet Ewan experiences an infuriating attraction that’s easy to justify. Trey’s exactly his type—a carbon copy of the man Ewan’s been looking for his entire life.
Harder to explain is the sense of recognition that leaves Ewan speechless the moment Trey steps into his office. Or the stomach-churning sensation at the thought of casting the job aside.
Trey gets more appealing by the day, leaving Ewan struggling with forbidden desire for his client. Desire not helped by strange voyeuristic dreams that have started to haunt his sleep. Dreams that appear to be an echo of the past.
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PRESENTING
Cover Art by Meredith Russell
Lovers Entwined jpeg
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EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT
They had reached the outer door and the old freestanding wooden coat rack that Ewan had picked up in a second-hand shop several months ago. It added an air of old-world charm and respectability to the premises, and fitted in perfectly with the rest of the old dark wood Ewan had surrounded himself with.Two coats hung side by side from the curling hooks. Ignoring his own black woollen coat, Ewan lifted the tan trench coat from the rack. He held it up and open, his hands waiting expectantly. There was the tiniest of pauses, the smallest frown, and then Trey turned and slipped his hands into the sleeves, allowing Ewan to slide the material up his arms, coming to rest at his shoulders.Most of the snow had melted away in the warmth of the office, leaving behind flecks of dirt on the quality material. Ewan picked off the worst of the muck and then brushed the flat of his hand over shoulders, settling the fabric so it moulded to muscles and tendons. He flattened the collar, letting his fingers drift under the hair that rested there to the very short hairs at the nape of Trey’s neck.

He had moved around to the front and was doing the same to the lapels when he finally caught himself.

What the hell am I doing?

What had possessed him to do such a thing?

Trey was watching him with an air of bemusement.

Stepping back abruptly, Ewan allowed his hands to fall to his sides.

“All part of the service.” He hoped he had covered his own surprise at the turn of events and that he hadn’t actually been caressing his client’s neck for an inappropriate amount of time. However long inappropriate could be considered to be!

“A very personal service,” Trey said, but there was no emergence of the leer that normally angered Ewan. He almost wished there had been.

Read more exclusive excerpts on –
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PRE-ORDER NOW
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Lillian Francis. Author of gay romance. Happy Endings guaranteed. Eventually.
An avid reader, Lillian Francis was always determined she wanted to write, but a “proper” job and raising a family distracted her for over a decade. Over the years and thanks to the charms of the internet, Lillian realized she’d been writing at least one of her characters in the wrong gender. Ever since, she’s been happily letting her “boys” run her writing life.
Lillian now divides her time between family, a job and the numerous men in her head all clamouring for their stories to be told.
Lillian lives in an imposing castle on a wind-swept desolate moor or in an elaborate ‘shack’ on the edge of a beach somewhere depending on her mood, with the heroes of her stories either chained up in the dungeon or wandering the shack serving drinks in nothing but skimpy barista aprons.
In reality, she would love to own a camper van and to live by the sea.
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RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY
Winner’s Prize: An eBook from Lillian Francis’ backlist!