A Jeri Review : Crossroads (Skins #3.5) by Garrett Leigh

Standard

Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Angelo Giordano and Dylan Hart are more in love than ever, but their reality is far from ideal. With Dylan working in London, and Angelo recovering from chronic illness in Cornwall, they rarely spend more than few nights under the same sky.

Dylan is struggling. Being apart from Angelo is killing him, and he’s at the end of his rope. Angelo can’t live in London anymore, but can Dylan give up his whole life and move to a place that often feels like the end of the world?

As the end of a tough year approaches, they reach a crossroads. Dylan returns to Cornwall for Christmas and Angelo can’t imagine watching him leave again. Can the love that surrounds them on Whisper Farm show them the way home?

 

A cute sweet follow up story that brought all of our couples together again. And Christmas. And a surprise.

This novella picks up a week after the end of the last book. This time, everyone is on the farm for various reasons. But Dylan and Angelo need to make a decision about their lives. Living apart and seeing each other only every other weekend is not working out.
This was a very sweet book. Dylan and Angelo resolved their situation, there were some seriously sexy scenes, fun, laughter…a little bit of everything.
There isn’t much to say except if you have read the Skins series, you should really read this. It closes the series out (I assume) with a big red bow.
Cover by Garrett Leigh.  I love the black and white with just the touch of the red Santa hat.  Great job.
Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UKExclusive to Amazon and Available to borrow in Kindle Unlimited.
Book Details:
Kindle Edition, 1st edition, 109 pages
Published November 20th 2018 by Fox Love Press
ASINB07H9JMRHK
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesSkins #3.5

An Ashez Release Day Review: Strays and Lovers by John Inman

Standard
Rating : 4 stars out of 5

Forty-six-year-old Eddie Hightower has a problem. He’s all alone. The only thing that saves him from facing that stark reality is the fact that he isn’t really alone at all. He has a house full of pets and a refuge full of stray unwanted animals he spends every waking hour trying to place in homes. While he loves what he does with all the joy in his heart, that same poor aging heart is still missing something. And Eddie knows exactly what it is. Romance.

But wait. Cue the music. Suddenly, beyond all hope, it happens. In the small desert town of Spangle, California, where Eddie lives, comes a sad young stranger with piercing gray eyes. They are the palest, most stunningly beautiful eyes Eddie has ever seen. Poor Eddie Hightower is swallowed up in their silver depths and disappears without a gurgle. The stranger’s name is Gray Grissom. Gray, like his eyes. Without hesitation Eddie opens his doors—and his heart—to the lost young man. After all, that’s what Eddie does. He finds homes for strays. But this is one stray Eddie intends to keep for himself.

I love books involving animals, and, I mean, these are some well written animals!  I can’t believe how much the animals play an integral part in the storyline, and how adorable and well described they were.  From their actions to their playing aspects and how they looked – it was unreal.

I didn’t mind Gray or Eddie – Eddie acted his age (mostly, aside from the occasional awkward giggle) and Gray (also an awkward giggler) and his past were a truly interesting integration as well into the story.

I need myself a Louie – you know what, I’ll take every single one of the pets in the book I was seriously in love with them before the story was over.

Slow burn, sweet, funny, cute definitely a must if you love a good animal included story.  I thought the “romance” portions of the book fell a little flat but overall it was a fun read.

Cover Artist: Adrian Nicholas – 100% fitting, and adorable
Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press | Amazon
Book Details:
ebook, 152 pages
Expected publication: November 30th 2018
ISBN 139781640808720
Edition Language English

A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Stuck With You by Jay Northcote

Standard

Rating: 4 stars out of 5

From the first chapters, the animosity between Kyle and Patrick intrigued me.  Patrick is Kyle’s mentor at their job, and the slightly older man is the responsible type—very serious and focused.  Kyle, on the other hand, is good at his job but dresses a bit more outlandishly, flirts, and seems to take life a lot more lightly than Patrick.  When the two get stuck in the snow on their way back from a business trip in the Lake District, their differences are much more apparent.

Patrick gets out his winter coat, hat, gloves, and boots, while Kyle has to make it to the nearest village in a lightweight dress jacket, no hat or gloves, and his dress boots.  After Patrick saves his butt—literally—as he falls a few times on the trip to the nearest village, the setup of their basic differences is sealed.

And yet, the two strangely connect, and when Patrick threatens to spank Kyle, and Kyle’s brows rise in anticipation, the storyline takes a positive turn.  Though they have sex that night in the small rental shed (former pigsty) they located, the relationship and ultimate romance takes a while to build.  And though the story takes place over the course of several days, the author takes the time to allow them to get to know one another and to develop feelings that go beyond attraction. There’s not much else to do but talk…and spank…and…celebrate Christmas together with the elderly landlady and her dog.

This is quite a heartwarming tale, with a focus on togetherness and family of choice during the holidays.  It’s also interesting, with great characters, beautiful scenery, and an easily believable story.  Jay Northcote always delivers a smile to my face and a warmth to my heart. This one is no exception.

The cover by Garrett Leigh features a photo of a blond young man lying in bed, arms above his head.  The perfect depiction of Kyle, and the attractive photo makes a nice cover.

Sales Links:

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2R8QXwe

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2AewoqS

Book Details:

Kindle Edition
Published November 21st 2018 by Jaybird Press
ASIN B07KSHKXMY
Edition Language English

An Alisa Review: Santa is a Vampire by Damian Serbu

Standard

Rating:  3 stars out of 5

Simon the Elf wants to tell you the true story behind Jolly Ole St. Nick. Yeah, he’s a vampire. But that alleged gift giver and lover of children hides more than that fact from you. And what about Mrs. Claus and Rudolph? Venture into a world of enslaved elves, enchanted animals, and death wrought by Santa himself. With his sharp wit, Simon will lead you into the darkest realms of Christmas. Warning: Simon cusses a lot. But you would, too, if Santa held you captive.

Interesting concept for a story.  I liked the way this was written and how we see things from Simon’s point of view and we get to see some of his interesting thoughts.  I never would have thought of going this far off the rails for Santa, Mrs. Claus and Rudolph but I think they connect together.

So, everything is told from Simon’s point of view which does give a once sided view to all the stories but I enjoyed how he told it.  The history of Santa is well told and thought out that I didn’t feel that there was much missing after hearing everyone’s stories and how Santa pretty much tricked Simon into writing a new story for him.  What I didn’t enjoy were the excessive jokes and references to pee and farts, it just seemed childish.  This story doesn’t have any romance or anything of the sort however Simon is gay which would be the connection to LGBT.

Cover art by Natasha Snow is nice and low key but works well for this story.

Sales Links: Nine Star Press | Amazon | B&N

Book Details:

ebook, 76,800 words

Published: November 26, 2018 by Nine Star Press

ISBN: 978-1-949909-42-5

Edition Language: English

Series: Simon the Elf

Review Tour and Giveaway for Crossroads (Skins #4) by Garrett Leigh

Standard

 

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UKExclusive to Amazon and Available to borrow in Kindle Unlimited.
 
Cover Design: Garrett Leigh @ Black Jazz Design
 
Skins Series
 
Book #1 – Dream – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 – Whisper – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #3 – Believe – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

Angelo Giordano and Dylan Hart are more in love than ever, but their reality is far from ideal. With Dylan working in London, and Angelo recovering from chronic illness in Cornwall, they rarely spend more than few nights under the same sky.


Dylan is struggling. Being apart from Angelo is killing him, and he’s at the end of his rope. Angelo can’t live in London anymore, but can Dylan give up his whole life and move to a place that often feels like the end of the world?


As the end of a tough year approaches, they reach a crossroads. Dylan returns to Cornwall for Christmas and Angelo can’t imagine watching him leave again. Can the love that surrounds them on Whisper Farm show them the way home?



November 20Urban Smoothie Read, Cdawgz Reads, Kimmers Erotic Book Banter, The Geekery Book Review, Dilyana’s World, Xtreme Delusions, Reading In Sarah’s Corner, November 22 – Cupcakes & Bookshelves, Mikku-chan, Book Corner Reviews, Love Unchained Book Reviews, Amy’s MM Romance Reviews, November 24 Open Mind For A Different View, November 26Mirrigold, My Fiction Nook, Wicked Faerie’s Tales & Reviews, Lelyana’s Reviews, November 28Bonkers About Books, Book Lovers 4Ever, Making It Happen, Wicked Reads, MM Good Book Reviews, Mainely Stories, November 30Jessie G Books, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Lillian Francis

 

Read Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words’ Review Here.

 

Garrett Leigh is an award-winning British writer and book designer, currently working for Dreamspinner Press, Loose Id, Riptide Publishing, and Fox Love Press.

Garrett’s debut novel, Slide, won Best Bisexual Debut at the 2014 Rainbow Book Awards, and her polyamorous novel, Misfits was a finalist in the 2016 LAMBDA awards.

When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible, all the while shouting at her menagerie of children and animals and attempting to tame her unruly and wonderful FOX.

Garrett is also an award winning cover artist, taking the silver medal at the Benjamin Franklin Book Awards in 2016. She designs for various publishing houses and independent authors at blackjazzdesign.com, and co-owns the specialist stock site moonstockphotography.com with photographer Dan Burgess.

Website: http://www.garrettleigh.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/garrettleighauthor/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Garrett_Leigh

Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway
https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js

Hosted By Signal Boost Promotions

 

Release Blitz Tour and Giveaway for Old Acquaintance by Annabelle Jacobs

Standard

 

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Length: 50,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Natasha Snow
 
Blurb
 

There are two sides to every story, even those buried in the past.


When Sam spots the hot guy moving in next door, he’s all for going round to introduce himself. That soon changes when it turns out his new neighbour is in fact an old school acquaintance, Charles Whitmore. Sam didn’t like him back then, and fifteen years haven’t altered that.


Splitting up from his long-term boyfriend means a move across the city for Charlie. As luck would have it, his immediate neighbour is a guy he went to school with, Sam Gellar. While Sam is less than welcoming, his best mate is more than happy to invite Charlie into their social circle. Whatever problem Sam has with Charlie, Charlie resolves to get to the bottom of it, because, frosty beginnings aside, Charlie likes him.


With Christmas just around the corner, fate thrusts them together, and they get on so much better than they ever did at school. Despite his efforts not to, Sam develops feelings for Charlie, and they appear to be reciprocated. If Sam wants to take things further he needs to either confront Charlie about their past–a past Charlie seems to have forgotten entirely–or let it go and move on. Sam knows deep down that he can’t let it go, but it never seems the right time to bring it up. Until it is.

 

Annabelle Jacobs lives in the South West of England with three rowdy children, and two cats. An avid reader of fantasy herself for many years, Annabelle now spends her days writing her own stories. They’re usually either fantasy or paranormal fiction, because she loves building worlds filled with magical creatures, and creating stories full of action and adventure. Her characters may have a tough time of it—fighting enemies and adversity—but they always find love in the end.
Twitter – https://twitter.com/AJacobs_fiction
Website – www.annabellejacobs.com
Email – ajacobsfiction@gmail.com
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/ajacobsfiction

Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway
https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js

Hosted By Signal Boost Promotions

 

Review Tour for Stuck With You by Jay Northcote

Standard

 

Buy Links:Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2R8QXwe

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2AewoqS

 – Exclusive to Amazon and Available to Borrow in Kindle Unlimited

 
Length: 53,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Garrett Leigh @ Black Jazz Design
 
Blurb
 

Two clashing colleagues stuck together for Christmas—will opposites eventually attract?


Patrick has been single since he broke up with his cheating ex almost a year ago. With Christmas looming, he’s resigned to spending it alone with only memories of happier times for company. When a business trip with a co-worker leaves them stranded in the Lake District due to heavy snow, it seems Patrick will have company for Christmas after all. It’s a shame his companion is Kyle, who’s undeniably attractive, but annoying as hell.


Aware of Patrick’s reluctant admiration, Kyle basks in the attention even though Patrick isn’t the type of man he normally goes for. Averse to relationships after being hurt in the past, Kyle enjoys the occasional hook up, but has given up on seeking anything more meaningful.


Stuck together, their antagonism escalates along with a heavy dose of sexual tension until it finally ignites. What starts as a Christmas fling soon feels like something special; but will their tentative connection melt away as the snow thaws? If they’re going to take a chance on finding happiness together, they’ll have to put their differences aside and learn to trust one another.


Contains: enemies-to-lovers, snowball fights, bickering, spanking, a cute dog, a wise old lady, mistletoe, and a happy ending (of course).



November 23 – Gay Book Reviews, Diverse Reader, BFD Book Blog, Amy’s MM Romance Reviews, My Fiction Nook, Lelyana’s Reviews, November 26 – CupcakesAndBookshelves, The Day Before You Came, Mirrigold, Mainely Stories, Mikku-chan, November 28 – Megan’s Media Melange, The Geekery Book Review, Wicked Faerie’s Tales & Reviews, Two Chicks Obsessed, November 30 – Momma Says: To Read or Not To Read, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Xtreme Delusions, December 3 – Gay Fiction Addiction, December 5 – Book Corner Reviews, Boulevard des Passions, December 7 – Valerie Ullmer, Southern Babes Book Blog, Kimmers Erotic Book Banter, Lillian Francis, Book Lovers 4Ever, Open Skye Book Reviews, Jessie G, Bayou Book Junkie, Making It Happen

 

Read Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words review here.  We highly recommend it!

Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England. He comes from a family of writers, but always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed him by. He spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content.


One day, Jay decided to try and write a short story—just to see if he could—and found it rather addictive. He hasn’t stopped writing since.


Jay writes contemporary romance about men who fall in love with other men. He has been published by Dreamspinner Press, and also self-publishes under the imprint Jaybird Press. Many of his books are also available as audiobooks.


Website: https://jaynorthcote.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Jay_Northcote
Facebook profile: https://www.facebook.com/jaynorthcotewriter
Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/jaynorthcotefiction
Facebook author group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/jaysplayground
Newsletter: http://tinyurl.com/JN-readers

Hosted By Signal Boost Promotions

 

Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Christmas Lane (Lighthouse Bay #1) by Amy Aislin

Standard

Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Age gap and slow burn are two of my favorite tropes. Add to that, snow and Christmas holidays and I couldn’t be happier. This lovely, sweet tale of the romance between Zach Greenfeld and his former elementary teacher, Holland Stone, is perfect in every way.

Zach is back in Lighthouse Bay after graduating with a degree that will allow him to be an event planner—a role that fits his highly organized habitual list-making life. While waiting for an interview that will get him out on his own, he’s helping his sister in the family-owned café and crushing on Holland Stone, the gorgeous older handyman who was once his third grade teacher.  So what if Holland is fifteen years older? He’s hot and that’s enough to start.

Holland has started his own business making custom doll houses, and in between doing handyman work for townsfolk he’s working on his float for the annual Christmas parade competition.  He hopes to draw attention to his skills but is surprised when his work on the float draws Zach to him instead.  Zach has accepted the temporary position of town event planner so he gets to spend a lot of time with Holland in the warehouse where the floats are being built.  And slowly, Holland begins to view Zach as more than a happy-go-lucky kid. 

I loved the very slow buildup of their attraction and all the events, activities, and character interactions that happened along the way.  Their chemistry was strong and their emotions high. Their sex was off page and that didn’t matter to me at all. There was so much more to enjoy on page that using my imagination for what may have happened in the bedroom was just fine.

There’s really nothing about this story I didn’t like and I think it would make an excellent gift to a best friend and/or fellow MM romance lover.

The cover art by Jay Aheer at Simply Define Art is a park bench covered in snow. The bench plays a major role in the story, and that plus the snow are the perfect symbols to choose for the cover. Read the story to find out why.

Sales Links:

Amazon: http://geni.us/XmasLane

iBooks: http://geni.us/XmasLaneApple

B&N: http://bit.ly/XmasLaneBN

Kobo: http://bit.ly/XmasLaneKobo

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 1st edition
Expected publication: November 29th 2018
ASIN B07J5SZXMD
Edition Language English
Series Lighthouse Bay #1

A MelanieM Review: The Stars May Rise and Fall by Estella Mirai

Standard

Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

 

Teru came to Tokyo with dreams of making it big in the glam-metal visual kei scene, but three years later, all he has to show for it is a head of hot pink hair and some skill with an eyeliner pencil. He may look the part, but he doesn’t sound it, and constant bickering among his bandmates has him worried about his future. When he finds a mysterious business card in his bag, he’s willing to take any help he can get.Vi   V

Help comes in the form of Rei, a crippled, disfigured composer whose own career was ended by an accident before it had really begun. With Teru’s voice and looks, and Rei’s money and songwriting skills, both of their dreams seem about to come true – but a forbidden kiss and a late-night confession threaten to tear it all apart. Now Teru, who has spent most of his life denying his attraction to men, and Rei, who vowed long ago never to love again, must reconcile their feelings with their careers – and with their carefully constructed ideas of themselves.

The Phantom of the Opera story is one of my favorites, tragic, dramatic, horrifying in some ways, and romantic.  It’s been told and retold countless ways  from the original novel by Gaston Leroux to movies, plays, and yes, more novels with multiple twists and turns to the original theme and storyline.  I always wonder where the next author or  songwriter or whoever will take it next.  And what their spin will be.

Didn’t expect it to be Visual Kei and Japan.  But it turned out to be an unexpected draw for me and a perfect fit for a M/M retelling of Phantom of the Opera. Visual Kei is a form of Japanese rock, think American Glam rock of the 80’s.  It’s still popular today but it’s heyday was the 80’s and it’s stars (GACKT was/is one as was bands like Malice Mizer, Raphael, and Dir En Grey) were gods.  They wore makeup, elaborate costumes, and often appeared gender fluid.  It’s into this world that Estella Mirai takes us.

The author sets her story in Tokyo and a visual kei band, La Rose Verboten, already in turmoil.  The self involved lead singer Bara is looking for an excuse to quit, the small time’s band’s popularity is dropping and the remaining members, Yasu, Minori, and the drummer Teru are trying desperately to hold on when Teru gets handed a card that states.

I can help you.  Call me.

And with that a familiar story is launched, turned, and becomes one of pain, lost chances, a young man’s discovery of his sexuality, hurt/comfort, anguish, and finally redemption and great love.  In Mirai’s hands the reader falls deeply not only under the spell of Japan and these young men but get’s pulled into the world of visual kei, it’s music and lyrics, the music industry itself, and the personal costs associated with stardom.  That is quite the narrative load and the author manages to combine it all into one incredible romance.

I will admit that I stumbled a bit on the romance part at the beginning.  As with every Phantom retelling, there’s a romance triangle to deal with.  The mystery man behind the card is Rei, tortured, scarred and wounded, he wears a mask of silver.  More of his background I won’t reveal but it is peeled back ever so slowly, each layer a revelation to Teru and to us the readers.  The other?  A young girl, Kiyomi, who went to school with Teru and is now his biggest fan.    For Teru, each represents a different direction his life can take.  With Kiyomi he can stay safe, pretend to be “het”, go home, and take up his old name.  Or accept he’s gay, and his feelings for  Rei as incredibly scary as they are, embrace the path he’s on and understand  love in all its forms.  And he can become not just a  drummer but the singer he was always meant to be.  And a star.

This is not an easy romance as one hopefully would expect.  One person has been traumatized and has the personality that comes from living in constant pain and dealing with a haunted past.  One is confused about his sexuality, his future, his gifts musically, he’s in the throws of his first real love and it’s with a person almost guaranteed to make a a road strewn with walls and boulders.  Then there is a young girl who wants to make everything easy….

Those  who hate cheating will have issues here but honestly this reads so real and human you understand  the issues here and how messy the human heart can be.

But the best of the best?  The final third of this story.  The parts that break your heart and put them back together again.  And oh that ending!   As they say in the theatre, that’s worth the price of the ticket!

Estella Mirai has a marvelous story here, borrowed from Gaston Leroux, and given a Japanese rock twist.  Her characters are beautifully layered, her story well written, and destined to stay with you long after the last bars of the song have been sung.

“sakikaeru made”

Yes it did.

Find out what that means by buying this incredible book.  I highly recommend it.    And don’t forget to read all about the real people chapter at the end.

Cover art: MiblArt. I loved the cover.  Perfect for the characters, tone, and storyline.

Sales Links:  Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 1st edition, 309 pages
Expected publication: December 11th 2018
ISBN 139781684547715
Edition Language English

 

 

 

 

THE STARS MAY RISE AND FALL is  at the turn of the millennium. It comes with a healthy dose of angst and a dollop of nostalgia, as well as an age-difference romance, a physically disabled love interest, and memorable characters who will stay with you long after the pages are closed.

***

An Alisa Review: Peaches and the Shadow by K.L. Noone

Standard

Rating: 3 stars out of 5

 

At twenty-four, Ethan Aur has a lot to prove. He’s the youngest member of his family, the academic one, and the latest heir to the tradition of supernatural quests and spells and enchanted swords. The family’s always protected him and worried about him, and his older brother keeps calling to check in.

 

But this particular quest is Ethan’s quest, and this ghost is his problem. He’s going to solve it on his own. By any means necessary. Even if that ghost is a very handsome man, charming and confident and dominant and kind.

 

Jake O’Malley took one look at the newly arrived Knight and that magical Sword and those determined eyes, and now he’s aware he’s in trouble — as if he didn’t have enough problems, being the trapped and ghostly version of his 19th Century brothel-keeper bastard self. But the Knight who’s come to help is everything Jake could’ve ever wanted: brave and generous and sweet, vowing to find a way to solve Jake’s stuck-between-worlds predicament, no matter what it takes.

 

Even if that involves a mutually pleasurable ritual involving sexual magic.

 

This was a nice story but I felt as though I wasn’t getting the full story.  Ethan is trying one more quest before he takes the reigns at the new museum his family if opening.  There he finds Jake that has been trapped as a ghost by one of Ethan’s ancestors.

 

You could tell Ethan was frustrated with being the baby and having everyone looking after him and for the first time someone actually sees past that.  He inexplicably connects himself to Jake when he brings him back to life but it is probably the best “mistake” he has ever made.

 

The cover art by Written Ink Designs is a nice picture for the story.

 

Sales Links: JMS Books | Amazon | B&N

 

Book Details:

ebook, 27 pages

Published: October 20, 2018 by JMS Books

ISBN: 9781634867450

Edition Language: English

ReplyForward