An Alisa Review: Hearts of Blood (Chevalier #2) by Kay Doherty

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

Omega wolf shifter, Vance, and the rest of his small pack have finally found an Alpha willing to take them on and were still trying to regain their footing when the McBane Pack attacked them. When a vampire appears in front of him, Vance realizes he’s looking into the ice-blue eyes of his mate, and the fact that his mate is something other than wolf scares him.

Sakima knew the wolf shifter was his destined companion the moment he scented him at Elysium, but claiming the gorgeous young Omega wolf is a dangerous proposition. Vance and his unconventional pack have attracted the attention of the vampire coven. As the owner of Elysium, Sakima has been asked to use the club to gather information on the powerful interspecies pack and its Alpha.

Unfortunately for Vance and Sakima, the vampire coven and the continued attacks by the McBane Pack are only a portion of their problems. Amidst concerns over Alpha Tanner’s abilities growing with Sakima’s addition to the pack, a spurned ex targets Vance in an attempt to remove him from Sakima’s life, and Elysium becomes a hot bed for interspecies mingling where anyone could be an enemy.

This pack continues to face opposition especially as Tanner’s abilities seem to grow.  Vance finding his mate with a vampire only opens them up to more attacks.

It’s interesting that these paranormals don’t know much about the Chevaliers except that they were bad so everyone assumes that Tanner’s pack will be the same.  This pack is a good group of guys who just want to live in peace but aren’t getting the chance to even try.

In this book we are seeing Vance and Sakima navigate the beginning of their relationship but also Luca and Tanner continue to navigate theirs and leading the pack.  The now have Sakima and Luca’s friend that know about the Chevaliers but we still don’t seem to get much information, hopefully that will change as this series continues.  I hope to see more of these guys find their mates but I want to understand why they have so much resistance, I know that power scares people but the fact that everyone assumes the worst hurts.

I really like the cover art by Natasha Snow and it’s similar in style to the first book.

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

Book Details:

ebook, 42, 000 words

Published: July 29, 2019 by Nine Star Press

ISBN: 978-1-951057-23-7

Edition Language: English

Series: Chevalier #2

An Alisa Review: Appeal to You (Beyond the Cove #3) by Jaclyn Quinn

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

Will the demons of the past ruin any hope for the future?

If there’s anyone who knows how to have a good time—be it with a man or a woman—it’s Ryder Pearce. Master of the nail-it-and-bail-it theory, he lives his life for one person and one person only: himself. When a man enters Ryder’s life who challenges him on every flirtation, every sexual innuendo he can come up with, Ryder’s thrown off his game in a big way. Because there’s one thing the man has made perfectly clear—they’ve played this game before, and Ryder doesn’t remember the outcome.

Avery Hamilton has seen all of Ryder’s moves and has witnessed his sex appeal. He knows all too well about his cocky sense of humor and his penchant for one-night stands. There was a time in his life when he’d taken the bait, but this time around, he wants more. He’s seen Ryder’s act; what he hasn’t seen is Ryder—the real Ryder he hides from the world.

When both men come together to help a young boy, Ryder’s forced to face things from his past he’s blocked out. Things he never wanted anyone to know. Now, Ryder has one fear… Will revealing that side of himself be real enough for Avery? Or will it be the reason Avery walks away?

***Warning: This book contains off-page references to sexual/physical abuse of a minor.

I thought this was a wonderful story.  Ryder and Avery have been trading barbs for the last year but only Avery remembers when they met before that.  Ryder puts a good face on but never lets anyone see the hurt and pain that is underneath the surface.  Avery has been struggling to be without his best friend and his barbs with Ryder help distract him from that but when Chris goes missing he sees a much different side of Ryder.

Ryder is so sure that he isn’t worth anything even though he has worked himself far from how he grew up and now has a wonderful group of friends he is sure that doesn’t make up for his past.  Avery doesn’t feel like a disappointment until he visits his family, he has come to learn that his found family is so much better for him.

I loved watching Ryder and Avery navigate their attraction to each other and then their subsequent relationship.  Ryder’s determination to help Chris brings out his past and we can see him struggle to deal with those memories.  Thankfully Avery is willing to be patient and loving which is just what he needs.  I loved how Avery just wanted to show him that he was worthy and then them becoming fathers was so wonderful.

The cover art by Cate Ashwood is great, I love the visual of the characters and it showcases their differences.

Sales Link: Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 274 pages

Published: July 31, 2019

Edition Language: English

Series: Beyond the Cove #3

An Alisa Review: Rules to Follow (Davey’s Rules #1) by Susan Hawke

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

Davey’s Rule #86: A good Daddy will never lie to his boy… even by omission.

Travis Miller has a pretty solid life in the small California beach town he calls home. He’s working his way up in the district attorney’s office, he owns a home with an ocean view, and he has close ties with his family. Life is good. If only he could find a sweet boy to call his own, life would be… perfect.

Adam Nichols’ life has never been easy. Growing up in foster care taught him to be strong, so finding himself in a violent relationship was a shock. Now that he’s finally free of it, he faces new problems. He’s jobless, homeless, and terrified of starting from scratch.

With a little help from an old friend, Adam discovers a whole new world. He goes from rock bottom to renting a room from a hot assistant DA and working at Daddy’s Lap, a kink club that opens his vanilla eyes to things he’d never imagined. His new roommate is a balm to Adam’s damaged soul. The tender way Travis cares for him is almost like the Daddy kink community he’s seen at the club. But Travis isn’t a Daddy… right? If he were, surely he’d have said so.

What happens when a lie by omission threatens to bring their budding relationship tumbling down around them? Will Travis ever be able to earn Adam’s trust again?

This book took me a bit to get into, I’m not sure why but it did but once Travis and Adam got into their groove I was fully invested.  I’m still not sure why Travis ever went on a date with Davey but it helps connect him with Adam.  Adam hasn’t had the worst luck lately and the support Travis, Davey and the whole crew at Daddy’s Lap give him the push and help he needs.

Travis is a natural Daddy just as much as Adam is a natural submissive but they need to be open to each other about their needs.  Adam is a little extra skittish after his last relationship but everything about Travis feels comfortable and safe.

I really liked both of these characters and getting a dose of Davey, who is a hoot was great too.  Travis is such a caretaker, we can see that he’s doing it for Adam before he even realizes it.  Adam is intrigued by the Daddy/Boy relationships he sees at work and begins to long for that connection, he has had to work so hard just to stay afloat and keep up since he was a kid the idea of letting go is so welcome to him.  This story was adorably sweet with Travis and Adam and I look forward to other books in the series and to see what other Daddy/Boy dynamics the author shows with the MCs.

The cover art by Cate Ashwood is great and I love the visuals of Adam.

Sales Links: Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 284 pages

Published: July 14, 2019

Edition Language: English

Series: Davey’s Rules #1

An Alisa Release Day Review: Crossing Nuwa: Escape by Sean Ian O’Meidhir and Connal Braginsky

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

For sheltered Robbie, one week of freedom leads to sexual awakening and adventure… but when his world intersects with Theo’s, they’ll need all their wits and Theo’s magic to fight for their future.

Rare male weresnake Robbie has had his whole life decided for him down to his meals. But when the time comes for him to perform an unspeakable duty to his clan, he runs.

San Francisco Pride is in full swing when technomage Theo spots a scared-looking young man with brilliant emerald eyes. He’s only looking for a hookup, but before he knows why, he’s taking Robbie home and introducing him to champagne and enchiladas. He doesn’t have any intention of falling in love.

Robbie doesn’t want to return to his clan, at least not without trying to fit a lifetime of experiences into a week, but every day he stays puts Theo in more danger.

This was a very good story.  It started out with Robbie running but we don’t quite know what he is running from until later.  I liked how Theo took Robbie under his wing even when he kept telling himself he wouldn’t get attached they both build a lot of trust in each other quickly.

I hated seeing Robbie forced to do things because he was commanded to and it isn’t something he would fight.  I could feel his hurt and confusion at having to work through the abuse he suffered at the hands of his mother and aunt.  He was lucky that his cousin and other aunt are great people and were able to help him work through everything that he felt he could move forward and live his life.

I didn’t connect with Theo quite as much because he was a bit tight lipped about his life but he grew on me as he continued to support Robbie and even admitting that he does have feelings for him and invited him home.  His grandmother seems like a great person too and wish there would have been a bit more time to get to know her.  I looks forward to reading other books in this series as they come to see how it continues, I don’t know if it will be more Robbie and Theo or if there are other male Nüwa out there.

The cover art by Jay Aheer is nice and I like the multiple visuals that it give but feel that it is very dark and due to that a bit hard to see all the details.

Sales Links: DSP Publications | Amazon | B&N

Book Details:

ebook, 192 pages

Published: July 9, 2019 by DSP Publications

ISBN-13: 978-1-64405-258-7

Edition Language: English

Series: Crossing Nüwa #1

An Alisa Review : Kiss Me Again by Garrett Leigh

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

 

Tree surgeon Aidan Drummond is content with his own company. He works alone, and lives alone, and it doesn’t occur to him to want anything else until a life-changing accident lands him in hospital. Then a glimpse of the beautiful boy in the opposite bed changes everything.

 

Ludo Giordano is trapped on the ward with a bunch of old men. His mind plays tricks on him, keeping him awake. Then late one night, a new face brings a welcome distraction. Their unlikely friendship is addictive. And, like most things in Ludo’s life, temporary.

 

Back in the real world, Aidan’s monochrome existence is no longer enough. He craves the colour Ludo brought him, and when a chance meeting brings them back together, before long, they’re inseparable again.

 

But bliss comes with complications. Aidan is on the road to recovery, but Ludo has been unwell his entire life, and that’s not going to change. Aidan can kiss him as much as he likes, but if he can’t help Ludo when he needs him most, they don’t stand a chance.

 

“Kiss me again…please?”

 

Oh, this was a wonderful story.  Both Aiden and Ludo are “broken” in different ways but find acceptance and happiness with each other.

 

Aiden has lived his life just not caring about others but when he gets hurt on the job Ludo is his light while in the hospital.  Ludo has lived a life where most people feel that something is wrong with him and doesn’t feel accepted but Aiden spends the time and care to show Ludo he is fine just the way he is.  Maybe they were just doing their jobs but I did not like the nurses at the hospital and felt that they were judgmental of these two and didn’t seem to actually care about them.

 

I really like this author’s writing and how the characters were portrayed.  I understand how hard Ludo’s life can be as I live with someone who is bi-polar, though I don’t know much about the mania he experiences.  Aiden is grumpy and we can just see that he isn’t happy with life but does enjoy the work he does on the trees, I liked seeing the more cuddly side of him that came out with Ludo.  We can see that Ludo just doesn’t expect anyone to stick around or accept him for who he is and I fully blame that on how his parents seemed to have treated him when he was younger and how judgy other people can be.

 

Cover art by Garrett Leigh is great and I think it works perfect for this story.

 

Sales Links: Amazon

 

Book Details:

ebook, 227 pages

Published: June 7, 2019

Edition Language: English

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An Alisa Review: Azaran (Brotherhood of Ormarr #1) by Jacki James

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

Azaran~

I was born a dragon rider. A member of the Brotherhood of Ormarr, son of Cadmar, and the eldest of four sons. I was raised to defend the innocent and protect the secret of the dragons, but when I was eighteen, my parents were brutally murdered and the training and care of my brothers fell to me. My entire adult life has been spent helping my brothers grow into the strong, brave dragon riders they were born to be. Now that the youngest of my brothers is close to adulthood, the last thing I need is someone else to worry about—someone else to be responsible for. If only the handsome doctor fate had chosen for my mate wasn’t so perfect for me.

Toby~

AlI I ever wanted was to help people, that’s why I became a doctor, but I quickly learned that modern medicine was more about the all-mighty dollar and less about saving lives. It wasn’t long before I was doubting my life choices. A vacation to the ocean was supposed to leave me refreshed and ready to get back to work, but instead, I found myself pulled into a world I never knew existed. A world where dragons are real, men fight like medieval warriors, and my soulmate has his very own bat cave. Azaran thinks the last thing he needs is a mate to worry about. Good thing I don’t need anyone to take care of me. My sexy dragon rider, on the other hand, needs someone to take care of him, and I think I’m just the man to do it.

Azaran is the first book in The Brotherhood of Ormarr series. While each book focuses on a different couple, the overall story arc continues in the next installment. For maximum enjoyment, we suggest reading in order. Azaran is a m/m romance, and is recommended for adults 18 years and older.

This was a nice start to a new series but as they often do there was a bit of the book spent on world building.  There were some little questions I still had at the end but there is the hope that they will be answered in the other books.  I loved these dragons, they are adorable and I think it is fascinating how they can shift into different forms and how different each dragon seems to be.

I really liked Toby, he is so sweet and really just wants to help people.  I hate seeing that he was being stifled in his job and then when Azaram was ignoring him.  Now, unfortunately Azaran didn’t do much to improve my opinion of him throughout the story.  I could see that he is dedicated to his family and what they do as dragon riders but I hated his assumption that a mate would be more work for him and how he continued to hurt Toby with his actions and I had a lot of trouble accepting his sudden flip of feelings towards Toby that finally got them together.  It seems there connection is solid but it was just one of those times where one action just doesn’t out weight the others.

The cover art by Jay Aheer is great and I love the picture of Sindri in her warrior form.

Sales Link: Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 139 pages

Publication: May 20, 2019

Edition Language: English

Series: Brotherhood of Ormarr #1

An Alisa Review: The Hands We’re Given (Aces High, Jokers Wild #1) by O.E. Tearmann

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

Aidan Headly never wanted to be the man giving orders. That’s fine with the Democratic State Force base he’s been assigned to command: they don’t like to take orders. Nicknamed the Wildcards, they used to be the most effective base against the seven Corporations owning the former United States in a war that has lasted over half a century. Now the Wildcards are known for creative insubordination, chaos, and commanders begging to be reassigned.

Aidan is their last chance. If he can pull off his assignment as Commander and yank his ragtag crew of dreamers and fighters together, maybe they can get back to doing what they came to do: fighting for a country worth living in.

Life’s a bitch. She deals off the bottom of the deck. But you play the hands you’re given.

This was a great story.  I loved the world that the author created and I didn’t feel as if I was missing anything.  Aidan is thrown in the deep end when he is assigned to the Wildcards but it may be the perfect assignment for him and for them.

I loved how different all the team members were, we got to see how different life was depending on where they grew up.  The team is really one extended family which is what people really need in this dystopian world.  They were able to bring another couple people into their team but it gives them even more frustration in some ways but great things in others.

Oh man, I felt for Aidan, he has not been given a good hand in life but it looks like he is finally getting the acceptance he deserves.  I could feel how hard everything was for him and how much he wanted it to work out.  Kevin grew up differently than the other Wildcards but he works himself to the bone for them.  He still has to fight what was drilled into his head growing up but he doesn’t let it affect what he feels for Aidan.

I loved the cover art by Fiverr with the coding visuals and playing cards.

Sales Link: Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 350 pages

Published: September 14, 2018

Edition Language: English

Series: Aces High, Jokers Wild #1

An Alisa Review: Hidden Hearts (Bad Valentine #3) by Clare London

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

Accident-prone Ethan has a dating history that reads like a disaster movie script. Strong and silent Kel can’t seem to master the necessary small-talk on a proper date. When they both get signed up anonymously for a Valentines’s night event—”for those with an adventurous spirit but an open diary”—they never imagined they’d be matched. They never imagined the romantic sparks would fly. To be honest, they never imagined they’d survive the week.

A catalogue of disasters dogs the footsteps of their blossoming romance, including a coffee date with food allergies as an added extra, an intimate dinner that strays too close for comfort to chopped chillies, and a sensual massage with hot wax candles that threatens to alert the local fire brigade.

But if they can hold tight to their sweet, surprising, yet single-minded attraction – they might just survive this Valentine’s Day with something very special to look forward to.

Oh gosh, I loved this story.  Ethan isn’t who Kel would have usually gone for but they connected immediately on their blind date.  Kel is everything Ethan has dreamed about but never thought he could have.

I liked how this was a bit opposites attract but they connected so beautifully.  I loved how Kel didn’t even blink at Ethan’s clumsiness and wouldn’t let it scare him away.  And the best part an epilogue, it always wraps a story up nicely to me.

The cover art by Jordan Castillo Price is cute and I love the visual of Ethan.

Sales Link: Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 68 pages

Publication: February 1, 2019

Edition Language: English

Series: Bad Valentine #3

An Alisa Release Day Review: Place Setting (States of Love) by Claudia Mayrant

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

Cameron Dunlop has lived in the Lowcountry town of Summer Corners, South Carolina, his whole life. He loves his home, but his little town in the Deep South doesn’t offer much in the way of dating options.

Chef Gray Callahan has enjoyed success in the kitchen, but his last relationship sunk like a bad soufflé. When plans for his sister’s wedding go awry, it provides the perfect excuse to pack up and go home, where he can help out as he decides how to start his life over.

Gray’s path crosses Cameron’s, and he realizes together they might have all the ingredients to save the day—with maybe enough left over for something sweet just for the two of them.

Such a sweet story.  Cam and Gray meet when Gray moves back to his hometown and they have an instant connection along with Cam helping Gray to find a place for and put on his sister’s wedding.

I really liked both of these characters.  Both of them are romantics at heart and are looking for love but haven’t found the right person yet, Cam can’t seem to find someone who will stick past one night and Gray has recently been burned by his previous partner.  The story didn’t get to in depth about their relationship but it was easy to see their connection and that they seem to have a great future together.

The cover art by Brooke Albrecht is absolutely perfect for this story.

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | B&N

Book Details:

ebook, 70 pages

Published: January 18, 2019 by Dreamspinner Press

ISBN-13: 978-1-64080-972-7

Edition Language: English

Series: A States of Love Story

An Alisa Review: Best Christmas Ever by Terry O’Reilly

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Bowing to his parents’ homophobic demands, Professor Henry Rodimacher always chose Christmas with his family over spending it with his partner. However, when Jeremy became terminally ill, Henry defied his family and stayed home for Jeremy’s final Christmas.

After Jeremy passes, Henry decides it’s time to mend fences, so despite a raging snowstorm, he starts the long drive home. Before he gets very far, though, he’s alarmed to see a hitchhiker out in the weather, Henry offers the man a ride, and is surprised the hitchhiker is Jimmy Wilks, a former student of his.

The heavy snow eventually forces Henry and Jimmy to leave the highway and take refuge in an abandoned log cabin. As the two hunker down to wait out the storm, they give into their mutual attraction and celebrate a wonderful Christmas together.

Can their newfound love survive once the snow thaws? Will history repeat itself with Henry going back home alone, or will the magic of their best Christmas ever live on into the New Year and beyond?

I really liked the bulk of this story.  It starts with Henry being very shy and uncertain of himself because of his past relationship and family.  Jeremy seems to know what he wants but isn’t quite ready to say it out loud.

I liked how they interacted once they were on the same page and really did have a great little Christmas together, though everything just worked out great from their feelings to the owner of the cabin being fine with everything, not very realistic.  Most of this is told from Henry’s point of view so I feel a little more connected to him and was very glad for him to realize his parents’ restrictions are too much for them to ask.  There was a big flash of doubt for Terry near the end which didn’t seem like him but it was quickly resolved.

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

Sales Links: JMS Books | Amazon | B&N

Book Details:

ebook, 68 pages

Published: December 15, 2018 by JMS Books

ISBN: 9781634868334

Edition Language: English