A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Hexmaker (Hexworld #2 ) by Jordan L. Hawk

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

hexmakerMalachi is a fox shifter who finds himself in a world of trouble when the robbery he’s committing turns into a murder.  He’s not the murderer, just the thief who happens to get caught when he stops to check on the bleeding man he finds in the library. Unfortunately, he found the real thief in the act—a red-headed thief who gets away, leaving red-headed Malachi to take the heat for the crime. 

Just down the street, leaving his parent’s mansion on “Millionaire Row,” is Owen Yates, the forensic hexmaker we met in Hexbreaker.  Owen spots the police vehicle outside the nearby mansion and goes to investigate. By the end of the story, readers will realize this is the best thing that ever happened to him, as he not only finds the pieces of the valuable object the thief was after—an object with ancient Greek hex symbols on it, he also finds the man who is his familiar—Malachi. 

As Malachi and Owen start out slowly, while all around them, outside forces are trying to decide Mal’s fate and the real murderer is now trying to murder Mal, the story gets interesting and complex. Owen is in his last week with the MWP, Metropolitan Witch Police, because he’s getting married Thanksgiving weekend, a marriage he neither desires, nor appreciates. He’s marrying to appease his wealthy family who want to shore up their place in society with funds from the wealthy heiress he’s betrothed to.

However, as the week progresses, leaving the MWP and getting married sound more like a death sentence as he and Mal, now bonded as a witch and familiar, dread facing the future and the loss of the chance of a happy outcome they both desire and deserve.

I really enjoy this story. This author has such a vivid imagination and appreciation of the history of the 19th to 20th turn of the century period. Weaving historical facts and fantasy into a complex story, while bringing alive another “fated-partners” love story, one with a few D/s elements this time, is pure creative genius. As the saying goes, the joy is in the journey, and in this case, Owen’s and Mal’s journey to love and to finding their true places in life brings nothing but joy to readers. I highly recommend this to all lovers of MM romance.

Cover art by the author is perfect for the story and characters.  Its eye catching and draws you in.

Sales Links

Amazon | Amazon UK | Kobo | ARe | Smashwords | iBooks | Nook

Book Details:

ebook, 270 pages
Published October 14th 2016 by Smashwords Edition
ISBN139781941230213
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesHexworld #2

A Melanie Release Day Review: Timing (Timing #1) by Mary Calmes

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

timingStefan Joss just can’t win. Not only does he have to go to Texas in the middle of summer to be the man of honor in his best friend Charlotte’s wedding, but he’s expected to negotiate a million-dollar business deal at the same time. Worst of all, he’s thrown for a loop when he arrives to see the one man Charlotte promised wouldn’t be there: her brother, Rand Holloway.

Stefan and Rand have been mortal enemies since the day they met, so Stefan is shocked when a temporary cease-fire sees the usual hostility replaced by instant chemistry. Though leery of the unexpected feelings, Stefan is swayed by a sincere revelation from Rand, and he decides to give Rand a chance.

But their budding romance is threatened when Stefan’s business deal goes wrong: the owner of the last ranch he needs to secure for the company is murdered. Stefan’s in for the surprise of his life as he finds himself in danger as well.

First Edition published by Dreamspinner Press, 2010.

Timing by Mary Calmes is that wonderful Mary Calmes story that you hope for every time you dive into one of her romances.  Its a love story that, no matter how many times you have read it, whether in 2010 or 2016, still makes you fall deeply in love with its characters and their relationship and the road they take to their happily ever after.

Stefan Joss, the perfect Mary Calmes character we know we will see,  is going to help his best friend Charlotte get married, even though he will have to face her brother Rand, a person he’s been actively hostile towards since they met in college.  Rand (the handsome, virile cowboy with secrets of his own) has been waiting for Stefan Joss to arrive.  Rand has his own agenda.  Plus there’s more story threads than usual.  A murder mystery, clues thrown around this tale and a villain to reveal before all can find their wonderfully satisfying HEA or is it HFN?

What I’ve always enjoyed is the relationships in a Calmes story.  Here its between Charlotte and Stefan, a true tight-knit unit as well as Stefan and Rand, and then others as secondary characters are swirled into the mixture.  The author is able to convey the sense of closeness between Charlotte and Stefan, their dependency upon each other and love.  You care as much about her and her happiness as you do about the main couple.  Calmes’ ability to pull the reader into each scene along with our emotions, and connect us with her characters and their lives is ever present here.

When Timing first came out, we thought that was it for Stefan and Rand.  Now we know that there’s two more books to follow.  A sequel already published and a third on the way.  Be still my happy heart.  There can never be enough Timings for me.  Once you read it I think you’ll agree.

Cover art by Reese Dante is lovely, I love the updated cover.

Sales Links

        

 

 

Book Details:

ebook, 2nd Edition, 204 pages
Expected publication: October 19th 2016 by Dreamspinner Press (first published March 1st 2010)
Original TitleTiming
ISBN 1634777123 (ISBN13: 9781634777124)
Edition LanguageEnglish

SeriesTiming #1
CharactersStefan Joss, Rand Holloway settingLubbock, Texas (United States)

An Alisa Release Day Review: A-Viking by Kiernan Kelly

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Rating:  3 stars out of 5

 

a-viking-by-kiernan-kellyWhat’s a Viking to do when he ends up on a Florida beach, surrounded by a world he doesn’t understand, with a hyperactive stockbroker as his only guide? Go back to Chase’s hotel, naturally. Chase thinks Bjorn is eccentric at best, a lunatic at worst, or just maybe the real thing: a Viking from the days of yore. It isn’t easy for Bjorn to admit, but he needs Chase’s help to navigate the confusing modern age. While Chase is trying to clean Bjorn up and help him fit in, Bjorn’s sworn enemy also makes the trek through time. Jorund is eager to plunder this new land and finish the job of killing Bjorn’s family line, all in one blow. Bjorn and Chase will have to set aside their vast differences and work together if either of them wants to survive.

This was a nice quick read.  Bjorn and Chase are both greatly confused when they meet on the beach.  Both try to find explanations in their own minds of how or why the other is acting so strange.

 

Both of these characters are wonderful.  Both would be considered work-a-holics in their own times, but soon realize that life is worth more than that.  I loved how both of these characters interacted with each other and how scared Chase was that Bjorn would disappear just like Jorund did.  Seeing these characters together in the future was a wonderful ending.

 

Cover art by Paul Richmond is nice and catches your eye.

 

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | ARe

 

Book Details:

ebook, 56 pages

Published: 2nd Edition, October 19, 2016 by Dreamspinner Press

ISBN-13: 9781634777940

Edition Language: English

A Barb the Zany Old Lady Release Day Review: Bluewater Blues (Bluewater Bay #15) by G.B. Gordon

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

bluewaterblues_600x900Jack Daley left his music career behind—along with his domineering father—and is struggling to make a new life for himself and his autistic sister in Bluewater Bay. When a summer storm sweeps a handsome stranger into his general store, Jack is more than ready for a fling. No strings attached, because Jack can’t share the secrets he and his sister are hiding from. Unfortunately, his feelings refuse to stay casual.

Mark Keao is married to his job as a costume designer on Wolf’s Landing. He’s autistic, so he’s used to people not knowing how to interact with him, but that doesn’t mean he wants to be a hermit. Especially when he meets Jack Daley, who dances with brooms, shares his love of the blues, and gets him like no one else. But relationships have proven complicated in the past.

Just when Mark is ready to try anyway, Jack pulls back. But Mark isn’t giving up, and neither is Jack’s sister. And then there’s the music both men love, bringing them together time and again. It will take trust, though, to bring them together for good.

This first half of this book was difficult to read, and I imagine it was difficult to write, as well. How do you create a romance and eventually a sexual relationship with someone who cannot bear to be touched?  GB Gordan pulls it off by painstakingly laying the groundwork throughout the beginning, and rewarding us with a beautiful relationship between two wonderful men and an even more beautiful relationship between a man and his autistic sister. 

Jack Daley left everything behind the night his sister was attacked, and he thought the attacker, a friend of his father’s, was killed.  Taking his autistic sister across country, always hiding and living in fear, has taken its toll in more ways than one. Margaret has never had the education, therapy, or medical treatment she should have had for her disorder, and Jack has given up all hope of ever having a relationship because he can’t leave her on her own, even for a night. Scrimping and saving the money their grandmother gave him before her death, they finally land in Bluewater Bay, Washington, where they open a small grocery store and live a quiet but lonely life.

Until one night when a new customer comes in, and Jack loses himself in the man’s tall, lanky form and beautiful eyes—eyes that rarely ever hold his gaze. What he doesn’t realize when the man darts off is that Mark Keao has a form of autism himself, the higher functioning symptoms formerly known as Asperger’s Syndrome.  He does well in his job as a costume designer at the Wolf studios because he enjoys the feel of the fabrics beneath his hands, and with his earplugs in, the often loud and chaotic sounds don’t send him off the deep end.

What they ultimately discover when Mark keeps attempting to get to know Jack is that Mark can touch Jack, though it’s not possible for Jack to touch him.  When they persevere, though, Jack has what he believes to be the hottest sex of his life and realizes he may be in deep trouble because he doesn’t see how he’s going to walk away from this man.

As the story evolves, a little more of the truth of Jack’s life leaks out until a crisis with Margaret finally enmeshes both of their lives for the better, and Mark helps Jack get back in touch with the one thing he missed most from his carefree youth. 

As I said at the beginning, this is a beautiful love story, and the love Jack has for his autistic sister shines through nearly as much as the love he has for the man who has finally broken down his barriers. Kudos to GB Gordon for tackling such a tough job and bringing us such a sweet romance. 

Cover art by L.C. Chase is heartwarming and wonderful.

Sales Links

Riptide Publishing

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Book Details:

ebook, 198 pages
Published October 17th 2016 by Riptide Publishing
ISBN139781626494572
Edition LanguageEnglish
Series Bluewater Bay

In the Spotlight: Riptide’s Bluewater Blues (a Bluewater Bay story) by G.B. Gordon (giveaway)

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Bluewater Blues (Bluewater Bay #15) by G.B. Gordon
R
iptide Publishing
Cover art by L.C. Chase
Release Date: October 17,  2016

Read an Excerpt/Buy It Here

About Bluewater Blues

Jack Daley left his music career behind—along with his domineering father—and is struggling to make a new life for himself and his autistic sister in Bluewater Bay. When a summer storm sweeps a handsome stranger into his general store, Jack is more than ready for a fling. No strings attached, because Jack can’t share the secrets he and his sister are hiding from. Unfortunately, his feelings refuse to stay casual.

Mark Keao is married to his job as a costume designer on Wolf’s Landing. He’s autistic, so he’s used to people not knowing how to interact with him, but that doesn’t mean he wants to be a hermit. Especially when he meets Jack Daley, who dances with brooms, shares his love of the blues, and gets him like no one else. But relationships have proven complicated in the past.

Just when Mark is ready to try anyway, Jack pulls back. But Mark isn’t giving up, and neither is Jack’s sister. And then there’s the music both men love, bringing them together time and again. It will take trust, though, to bring them together for good.

Bluewater Blues is available from Riptide Publishing: http://riptidepublishing.com/titles/bluewater-blues

About GB Gordon

G.B.Gordon worked as a packer, landscaper, waiter, and coach before going back to school to major in linguistics and, at 35, switch to less backbreaking monetary pursuits like translating, editing, and writing.

Having lived in various parts of the world, Gordon is now happily ensconced in suburban Ontario with the best of all husbands.Santuario is G.B. Gordon’s first published work, but many more stories are just waiting to hit the keyboard.

Connect with Gordon:

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Giveaway

To celebrate the release of Bluewater Blues, one lucky winner will receive $20 in Riptide Publishing credit! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on October 22, 2016. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!

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Bluewater Bay

Welcome to Bluewater Bay! This quiet little logging town on Washington state’s Olympic Peninsula has been stagnating for decades, on the verge of ghost town status. Until a television crew moves in to film Wolf’s Landing, a soon-to-be cult hit based on the wildly successful shifter novels penned by local author Hunter Easton.

Wolf’s Landing’s success spawns everything from merchandise to movie talks, and Bluewater Bay explodes into a mecca for fans and tourists alike. The locals still aren’t quite sure what to make of all this—the town is rejuvenated, but at what cost? And the Hollywood-based production crew is out of their element in this small, mossy seaside locale. Needless to say, sparks fly.

This collaborative story world is brought to you by eleven award-winning, best-selling LGBTQ romance authors: L.A. Witt, L.B. Gregg, Z.A. Maxfield, Aleksandr Voinov, Heidi Belleau, Rachel Haimowitz, Anne Tenino, Amy Lane, SE Jakes, G.B. Gordon, and Jaime Samms. Each contemporary novel stands alone, but all are built around the town and the people of Bluewater Bay and the Wolf’s Landing media empire. 

Release Tour: Tempting Tristan(Harborside Nights #3) by Melissa Foster (excerpt and giveaway)

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Tempting Tristan (A Sexy Standalone M/M Romance)
Series: Harborside Nights
Author: Melissa Foster
Release Date: October 19, 2016
Tempting Tristan is a stand-alone M/M romance featuring two sexy, hot alphas.
Fresh off the heels of yet another bad relationship, Tristan Brewer is taking a break from men to try and figure out where he keeps going wrong. He knows his biggest fault–he leads with his heart, not his head–and that’s never going to change. But after several introspective weeks, he’s beginning to get a handle on things. That is, until badass heartthrob Alex Wells walks into his bar…
Alex has spent eight years in the Army, months in a hospital bed, and far too long hiding his sexual identity. He’s guilt-ridden, damaged, pissed off, and up for a Silver Star–for the incident that nearly cost him his life, and kept him from his grandmother’s funeral. But all he wants to do is forget his stint with the institution that allows but doesn’t necessarily accept, and live the life he’s always dreamed of.

The chemistry between Tristan and Alex ignites from the moment they meet, and the more time they spend together the hotter the flames become. But the closer Tristan gets, the more Alex’s walls go up, and when the two walk onto a military base, Tristan finds out Alex’s physical scars aren’t the ones that run the deepest.
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HARBORSIDE NIGHTS is a sexy, hot, and evocatively real series of stand-alone romances that follows a group of friends who have known one another for years as “summer” friends, and now come together after college to build their lives. They’re tough, edgy, and accepting–most of the time. This series is written in the same loving, raw, and emotional voice readers have come to love by New York Times & USA Today bestselling, award-winning author Melissa Foster with LGBT themes.

 

“Melissa Foster is synonymous with sexy, swoony, heartfelt romance!” New York Times Bestseller Lauren Blakely


“With her wonderful characters and resonating emotions, Melissa Foster is a must-read author!” New York Times Bestseller J. Kenner

We step forward at the same time, and he presses his rough hand to my cheek. “I don’t know what kind of pussies you went out with before, but I wanted to fucking claim you in there.”

He slides a hand around my waist, tugging our bodies together. I feel every hard inch of him, and he’s got me so hot I’m sure we’re going to combust.
“I’ve spent almost nine years hiding who I am, and I’m not willing to do it anymore,” he says through clenched teeth. “Not here, where I came to start over. Where I came to live on my terms without the goddamn military hanging over my head.”
“I have no interest in hiding,” I assure him.
“You’re sure? Because I really want to kiss you right now, and I don’t care who sees us.”
I respond by pulling his mouth to mine, my break from men long forgotten. We stumble backward, crashing into the railing, fighting for dominance as we did yesterday morning. The passion between us has a life of its own. My hands claw over his ass, up his back. I want to strip him down and take all of him. I want to discover why he’s so rough and learn what about those shadows that are lurking behind his gorgeous eyes. Instead I take, and give, and take more of the angry kisses. When we finally tear our mouths apart, my body’s still reeling, and we both curse under our breaths.
“Okay?” he pants out.
I nod, knowing if I open my mouth, I want to fuck you, is going to come out.

“Can I ask you something? You don’t have to answer.”


Tristan shrugs. “Have at it.”

“Why were you taking a break? I get that your ex was a prick, but is there more to it?”
He looks down the street, across the street, and then his hand cruises through his hair as it has so often that I’ve already come to expect it when he’s nervous.

“Ian was a prick, but the rest is going to make me sound like a pussy,” he admits.

“I’ve only known you a day, and I already know nothing can make you sound like a pussy.”

He meets my gaze, and his jaw tightens. He lifts his chin and I recognize the struggle between feeling proud and worrying about looking weak. I fight that battle on a daily basis.
“I give away my heart too easily, and I end up getting hurt.”
His eyes never leave mine, and that trust, that confidence, is the sexiest thing I’ve ever seen.
“I was right. Nothing can make you sound like a pussy.” I slide my hand to the hard ridge of his jaw and lean in closer. “I’ve never given my heart away. That makes you braver than me.”
Melissa Foster is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning author. She writes sexy and heartwarming contemporary romance, new adult romance (M/F, M/M, F/F), romantic suspense, thrillers, and historical fiction with emotionally compelling characters that stay with you long after you turn the last page. Melissa’s emotional journeys are lovingly erotic and always family oriented. Her books have been recommended by USA Today’s book blog, Hagerstown Magazine, The Patriot, and several other print venues. She is the founder of the World Literary Café. When she’s not writing, Melissa helps authors navigate the publishing industry through her author training programs on Fostering Success.
Melissa has painted and donated several murals to The Hospital for Sick Children in Washington, DC. Her interests include her family, reading, writing, painting, friends, helping others see the positive side of life, and visiting Cape Cod.
Melissa is available to chat with book clubs and welcomes comments and emails from her readers. Visit Melissa on Facebook or her personal website.

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