A Lucy Review: The Captain’s Flirty Fireworks by Eleanor Harkstead and Catherine Curzon

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Rating: 3 stars out of 5

When a hunky fireman and a gorgeous gold medalist meet on Guy Fawkes Night, sparks are sure to fly!

For fireman Rob Monteagle, this Guy Fawkes Night seems like it’s going to be anything but fun. After all, who wants to spend the noisiest night of the year saving careless cats from trees or rattling a fundraising bucket at Longley Magna’s annual bonfire, the pride of the village’s bad-tempered old retainer?

For Ollie Tresham, the night isn’t looking any better. He might have won gold in the Olympic showjumping ring yet he’s still expected to meet the public at his dad’s charity fireworks extravaganza. But when a rogue rocket heads straight for the showjumper, it takes a quick-thinking fireman like Rob to save the day.

As the flames of the bonfire smolder, Rob and Ollie’s night is just getting started. And it’s sure to go with a bang!

It’s hard to go into much detail about this story, as it is very short (32 pages of content) and the blurb says a lot.  It is a little misleading because it makes both men sounds as if they were dreading their respective plans for the evening and that doesn’t come across.  They do meet in the pub when Ollie needs someone to help rescue Mrs Cooper’s (a neighbor) cat from a tree.  Rob is new in the village and wants to make friends, get to know people.  He is also captivated by Ollie and his jodhpurs.  “…wondering how to strike up a conversation – wondering who would want him to.” He’s seen Ollie on his horse before and fell in lust.

Ollie is a medal-winning rider.  And wears jodhpurs.  I mention it twice because they are very nearly a character unto themselves in the story, being mentioned 24 times!

There’s a little bit of a misunderstanding, falling into bed with some of the cutest conversations every while doing so and a beginning of a possible couplehood.  It was a very quick, engaging read.

The cover, showing Ollie on his horse, seemed a little too serious for the tone of the story.

Sales:  Amazon | Pride Publishing

Book Details;

ebook, 43 pages
Expected publication: November 5th 2019 by Pride Publishing
ISBN 139781913186395
Edition Language English
URLhttps://www.firstforromance.com/book/the-captains-flighty-fireworks

A MelanieM Review : Life According To Liam by V.L. Locey

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

There’s always that chance that your heart’s desire is one click away.

Someone needs to pinch web designer/humor blogger/Pittsburgh Ravens mega fan Mike Kneller. Hard. For years, Mike has been living his life for his younger sister Kelly and his four-year-old nephew Liam. He’d opened up his home to Kelly when she found herself pregnant at sixteen and facing having a baby alone. Sure, his days are filled with skinned knees, snotty noses, and the occasional mishap with stuffed superheroes, but he’s perfectly happy because he loves Liam as much as he loves his baby sister. Giving up a social life and going to bed alone is a small price to pay. Little does he know that someone on the Ravens is about to show Ravens goalie Bryn Mettler one of his vlog posts. Of course he’s not going to believe it when his phone rings and the world-famous netminder—and his goalie crush—is on the other end. I mean, life doesn’t work that way for ordinary, hardworking uncles like Mike. Does it?

Bryn Mettler is a superstar athlete and a major part of the Pittsburgh sports society. He seems to have it all. He’s well-dressed, handsome, wealthy, an elite goaltender, a famed philanthropist, and the holder of numerous medals and trophies. To date, there are two things that have avoided him: lifting that big shiny silver cup over his head and finding a man to settle down with. Now that he’s over thirty, Bryn is finding the gay club scene is wearing thin. His teammates’ wives have decided it’s their duty to the team—and to Bryn—to find him Mr. Right. He’s relatively sure the man who’ll capture his heart surely won’t be found on a humor blog. Funny how life likes to take the things that you’re most certain about and flip them—and you—on its ear. When Bryn meets Mike, he is instantly drawn to the warm, funny, sexy man who shares his hectic days with thousands of Pittsburgh natives. Now he just has to convince Mike he is who he says he is so he can get to know him better. Thankfully, Bryn isn’t a quitter. But does he have what it takes to leap into life with Mike, Kelly, and Liam?

You know you’re in for a treat when you start to laugh pretty much right from the start of a story.  And that happens with Life According To Liam by V.L. Locey.  From the moment you are introduced to Mike and his  nephew Liam,  and yes, Liam’s mom Kelly (Mike’s sister), their warm, loving family dynamics pull you so thoroughly into this story that I almost forgot I was expecting a romance.  The interactions between Mike and Liam are realistic, downright hilarious, and will feel familiar to anyone who knows four year olds.  VL Locey has this locked down!

The characters and dialog are spot on as are the situations.  Bless that plumber!

Then we get Bryn Mettler in the bargain.  Wow.  Family and hockey.  Be still my heart.  Bryn is interesting because as a older hockey player, he is trying to maintain his position, his focus and his physical condition at a time when all that is becoming harder.  And the author lets us into his mindset because finding love at the same time?  With someone who also has more responsibilities, like a younger sister and a small child?   Doesn’t help focus.  Especially when you have to see what that sort of family arrangements truly mean.

The working out of the relationship between Michael and Bryn was lovely, as was seeing Bryn with Liam.  What I really wished for was that this story was much longer.  Yes, a wealth of riches! I wanted to see Bryn thoroughly swamped with living with a 4 yr old instead of getting a moderate education but the author made a good point of separating out Michael’s need for a life from Kelly’s need to be independent. Will I say more?  Oh know….read the book.  You will want more of this family too.

I love this story.  It’s a great heartwarming, feel good novel and I am thinking that the audio would be hysterical to listen to as well.  And yes, I’m definitely recommending it.

Cover art: Meredith Russell is so well done and heartwarming that it makes you want to read the story from the cover alone.  Well done.

Buy Links: 

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2nM2Hey

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2oy5DeD

Universal Link: https://books2read.com/LATL

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 138 pages
Published October 1st 2019
ASIN B07YMW2WBS
Edition Language English

A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Where Love Grows by Jay Northcote

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

As is typical of Jay Northcote’s work, this romance is between everyday people going about their everyday lives in the UK—something I always appreciate. In this story, the setting is Wales, and the characters have disabilities unseen to the naked eye. Yes, anxiety, depression, addiction, and recovery from Guillain-Barré Syndrome. A tough subject, but the author does an outstanding job showing all facets of both of their diseases and their work on recovery from past traumas.

Stephen is finally on the road to recovery from the Guillain-Barré Syndrome that has left him too weak to do more than work from home doing small bookkeeping jobs. That suits his reclusive nature, but he deeply hates the fact that his once beautiful garden and lawn is now a tangle of weeds, and he uses his blog to bitterly relate his distress over his loss of mobility. 

Luke is recovering from a breakdown after overuse of drugs and alcohol sent him into a decline. He’s fairly wealthy from the IT company he established, but that intense work is something he can’t currently face and he debates whether he even wants to return to the pressure. His assistant sees an opportunity to link Luke with his old college friend Stephen in the hopes that Luke can assist Stephen around his house while getting a heavy dose of country fresh air and Stephen will get someone who can perhaps help him with his garden.

As evidenced by the wording in the blurb, “a seed of hope is planted,” the author uses garden similes to move the story forward. Luke grows, changes, blossoms under Stephen’s pride in his work on the garden. Stephen, in turn, becomes more outgoing, flowering under Luke’s watchful eye and helpful hands. The bottom line is they grow closer, eventually have sex, then more sex, then friends with benefits, and then when Luke realizes he wants to stay, he puts his big foot in his mouth and causes enough turmoil to get booted back to London. 

Their internal conflicts, past experiences, family issues, and Luke’s history with addiction, as well as Stephen’s slow recovery from the disease that weakened all his muscles provides the meat of the story. It’s slow-burn, sweet, packed with the flavor of the UK, and ends on a HEA. I very definitely recommend it to lovers of MM romance.

The cover by Garrett Leigh is a black-and-white photo of a shirtless man standing in a dejected pose. It’s a bit dark to attract attention; however, it does nicely depict the emotional burdens the men in the story carry. 

Buy Links:
Exclusive to Amazon and Available to Borrow with Kindle Unlimited

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 259 pages
Published September 24th 2019 by Jaybird Press
ASINB07YCL8YD5
Edition Language English

Don’t Miss Out on the Release Blitz and Giveaway for After Ben (Seattle Stories #1) by Con Riley

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Universal Link  Exclusive to Amazon and Available to Borrow with Kindle Unlimited
 
Cover Design: Natasha Snow
 
Length: 95,000 words approx.
Blurb
 

Seattle Stories: Book One


No more kissing a ghost…


A year after the sudden death of his longtime partner, Ben, Theo Anderson is still grieving. The last thing he’s looking for is a new lover, but as Theo discovers, sometimes life has its own plans.


The strength of his attraction to fellow gym member Peter is surprising. So is how compelling he finds Morgan, a new friend he makes online. Morgan is witty and fierce on the internet forum they frequent, while Peter is physically present in a way that’s hard to ignore.


Both men bring Theo closer to acceptance: he needs to lay Ben’s memory to rest if he’s to start afresh with a new lover.


Getting honest about the reasons for his yearlong isolation means confronting why he lost Ben… only just when he’s ready to commit, Theo finds he isn’t the only one haunted by the past.


Whether with Peter or with Morgan, choosing to love again—after Ben—might not be Theo’s toughest challenge.

CON RILEY lives on the wild and rugged Devonshire coast, with her head in the clouds and her feet in the Atlantic Ocean. Injury curtailed her enjoyment of outdoor pursuits, so writing fiction now fills her free time instead. Love, loss, and redemption shape her romance stories, and her characters are flawed in ways that make them live and breathe. When not people-watching or wrangling her own boy band of teen sons, she spends time staring at the sea from her kitchen window. If you see her, don’t disturb her—she’s probably thinking up new plots.

 
 

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Need a Feel Great Story? Check Out the Review Tour and Giveaway for Life According To Liam by V.L. Locey

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Buy Links: 
 
Length: 40,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Blurb
 

There’s always that chance that your heart’s desire is one click away.


Someone needs to pinch web designer/humor blogger/Pittsburgh Ravens mega fan Mike Kneller. Hard. For years, Mike has been living his life for his younger sister Kelly and his four-year-old nephew Liam. He’d opened up his home to Kelly when she found herself pregnant at sixteen and facing having a baby alone. Sure, his days are filled with skinned knees, snotty noses, and the occasional mishap with stuffed superheroes, but he’s perfectly happy because he loves Liam as much as he loves his baby sister. Giving up a social life and going to bed alone is a small price to pay. Little does he know that someone on the Ravens is about to show Ravens goalie Bryn Mettler one of his vlog posts. Of course he’s not going to believe it when his phone rings and the world-famous netminder—and his goalie crush—is on the other end. I mean, life doesn’t work that way for ordinary, hardworking uncles like Mike. Does it?


Bryn Mettler is a superstar athlete and a major part of the Pittsburgh sports society. He seems to have it all. He’s well-dressed, handsome, wealthy, an elite goaltender, a famed philanthropist, and the holder of numerous medals and trophies. To date, there are two things that have avoided him: lifting that big shiny silver cup over his head and finding a man to settle down with. Now that he’s over thirty, Bryn is finding the gay club scene is wearing thin. His teammates’ wives have decided it’s their duty to the team—and to Bryn—to find him Mr. Right. He’s relatively sure the man who’ll capture his heart surely won’t be found on a humor blog. Funny how life likes to take the things that you’re most certain about and flip them—and you—on its ear. When Bryn meets Mike, he is instantly drawn to the warm, funny, sexy man who shares his hectic days with thousands of Pittsburgh natives. Now he just has to convince Mike he is who he says he is so he can get to know him better. Thankfully, Bryn isn’t a quitter. But does he have what it takes to leap into life with Mike, Kelly, and Liam?

 

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

USA Today Bestselling Author V.L. Locey – Penning LGBT hockey romance that skates into sinful pleasures.


V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, Torchwood and Dr. Who, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, a pair of geese, far too many chickens, and two steers.


When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in one hand and a steamy romance novel in the other.

 

 

Check Out the Review Tour for Where Love Grows by Jay Northcote

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Buy Links:
Exclusive to Amazon and Available to Borrow with Kindle Unlimited
 
Cover Design: Garrett Leigh @ Black Jazz Design
 
Length: 70,000 words approx.
 
Blurb



When two broken men look to each other for help, an unexpected romance blooms.


Stephen’s home, deep in the heart of the Welsh valleys, suits his reclusive nature. However, as he recovers from illness, he’s struggling to manage alone. As nature reclaims the land he’s poured his heart into cultivating, he becomes increasingly unhappy. His only outlet is his blog, where he documents the decline of the garden that had been his pride and joy.


Luke is more used to a concrete jungle. He was a high-flyer, living and working in London, until addiction sent him into free fall. Now on the road to recovery, he still wants to make some changes, but he’s unsure where to find the purpose and fulfilment he craves.


A mutual acquaintance suggests Luke visits Stephen to help him out for a while, and a seed of hope is planted. From prickly beginnings, shoots of friendship emerge, blossoming into a deeper connection when they act on their mutual attraction.


This was only ever supposed to be a temporary arrangement, and soon Stephen will be able to manage on his own again. But both men need each other in ways they’re afraid to admit. If their love is going to last for more than one season, they’ll need to find the courage to be honest.

 

Check out Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words’ review here.  We love it and 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 self-publishes under the imprint Jaybird Press.


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
Jay’s books: http://author.to/JayNorthcote

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