A Stella Recent Release Review: Be My Best Man by Con Riley

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

Con Riley is one of my favourite authors, since she wrote After Ben, one of the first MM books I read and one of the few books I won’t ever forget. The joy when I saw she had a new release coming out soon was enormous. Let me tell you the author delivered another deep, strong, full of feelings and well written story. Go buy Be My Best Man now and you won’t be disappointed.
Apart from the plot, which in this particular time it’s fitting and sadly very real, what actually conquered me it’s how packed with emotions and love the story is. Especially when not even two characters are blood related, just another proven fact that often blood means nothing.
Starting from the love between Vanya and Kaspar, the first Russian, the second Estonian. The need of protection Kaspar feels for Vanya is so strong he is working as much as he can to support his best friend who can’t work. The same love Jason and Andrew share, both in their forties, they grew up as foster brothers with an beautiful woman as mother.
 And then there’s the love every character has for the person it fell for. The author showed me all these feelings, between the MCs and the second characters, which I adored as much as the MCs. And this is another element that brought the story to be a success to me. The whole cast is amazingly well done. I was able to learn quite a lot about all of the characters and I have to say, maybe it’s the first time I make a request like this, but I wouldn’t mind at all to have a couple of MF books on the het couples. That’s the prove how much I liked Be My Best Man by Con Riley. Highly recommended.

Cover Design: Garrett Leigh @ Black Jazz Design.  Love the cover design and the model is striking.

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book Details:
ebook, 316 pages
Published September 7th 2017 by Figment Ink
Original TitleBe My Best Man
Edition Language English

Review Tour & Giveaway – Con Riley’s Be My Best Man

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Length: 260 pages
 
Cover Design: Garrett Leigh @ Black Jazz Design
 
Blurb


Will Jason’s third time as a best man lead to first-time love for Vanya?


After fleeing violence in Moscow, student teacher Vanya Petrov winds up lonely in a run-down London hostel. At least visiting the Bond Street store where his roommate works lets him practice his English, but as Vanya’s vocabulary expands, so does his isolation, especially when he sees happy couples planning their perfect weddings.


According to Jason Balfour, weddings are a waste of time and money. After all, he’s been best man for his brother twice already. Saying that a third marriage will end in divorce too leads to an angry ultimatum: to save his relationship with his brother, Jason must meet his fiancée, at last, and make a good first impression.


Jason’s need to dress to impress brings him and Vanya together. Language is no barrier to falling in love with the young and fragile Russian, and neither is their age difference. But Vanya’s bruised soul carries secrets that could rip them apart. As the wedding draws near, Vanya must confess, and soon, or risk losing Jason—his own best man in Britain.

 

Read Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words 5 star review here.


 

September 9 – The Geekery Book Review
September 11 – Urban Smoothie Read
Author Bio
 

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. Love, loss, and redemption shape her romance stories, and her characters are flawed in ways that makes 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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A Stella Release Day Review: Must Like Spinach by Con Riley

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RATING 5 out of 5 stars

8fc5c-mustlikespinach-f2b252812529Jon’s future in New York should be bright. He’s on the corporate fast track as an executive problem solver, yet he can’t help feeling hollow. Yearning for a life spent outdoors makes no sense if he wants to flourish in this city, nor does losing his cool with clients when they make bad decisions. Only leaving the East Coast behind for three months can save his business reputation.

His exile in Seattle has unexpected upsides. Jon’s rented home has a garden where his true passions blossom. It’s overgrown yet idyllic—perfect if he didn’t have to share it with another tenant. Tyler might be as cute as hell, and their landlady adores him, but Jon can’t let himself fall for someone who seems lazy.

Three months could be enough time to see Tyler clearly, but choosing which to nurture long-term—love or a business career—might take Jon longer than one summer.

Con Riley is one of my favorite authors. She never disappoints me and always comes up with amazing stories, I’m thinking of the Salvage Stories and Seattle Stories series, stories and characters unforgettable. Must Like Spinach soon intrigued me as soon I saw it, starting from the title. I began reading it with high hopes but I was a little disconcerted when I saw Con used the present tense. I was almost despairing, I don’t like this verbal form at all and I quite often ended with hating the whole book since I found it hard to follow the plot. So I was reading the first page on my kindle, trying to cheer me up and focus on the words and on my love for the author’s previous works. And forget about the hateful present, until I realized the writing was perfect despite it. Easy to read and really well done. Kudos to the author.

Must Like Spinach is the story of Jon,  who is living in New York and working at one of the most prestigious consultant firms in the city. He’s actually not cut out for this kind of job and when the chance at working on another project in Seattle is offered to him, he’s happy to take it. Three months in another city will help him understand what he really wants for his future. What he isn’t expecting is to fall in love with the owner of the smallest and messiest garage apartment he’s never seen. And this owner is not an hot man but a lovely old lady, who in Jon’s opinion, needs to be saved from the (cute but still a leech) guy named Tyler. And Jon can’t ignore and walk away, he has to know Peggy is taken good care of. While falling in love with Peggy and her flourishing garden, in need of the same care, Jon will learn who is Tyler and what he is really doing for the lovely woman. And he will fall in love again, this time with this tireless cute guy who is slowly showing Jon a different world and future.

What caught my heart were the characters and not just the main ones. I have to say all of them were lovable and well depicted, I want all of them in my life because they can make it better like they did with Jon’s. They have a reality well balanced with a lightness and sense of community and family even where there’s no blood relations, so uncommon in the last books I read. It conquered me till the end. One more thing I like was the pacing, the story was a truly joy to read, easy, light and slow paced with no rushing through scenes after scenes while giving each chapter the right consideration.

If you like enemies to lovers, no angst and slow burn stories, I’m sure Must Like Spinach would be a winner. It’s one of my favorite of the 2016.

The cover art by Natasha Snow is good, I like it, the font, the model, the colors were all right.

Sales Link

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BOOK DETAILS

Kindle Edition, 245 pages
Published October 19th 2016 by Figment Ink
ASIN B01MCW7C0D
Edition Language English

Release Blitz Tour – Con Riley’s Must Like Spinach (giveaway)

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Con Riley – Must Like Spinach

Author: Con Riley
 
Release Date: October 21 2016
 
Length: 84,200 words
 

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK  

 

Blurb

 

Jon’s future in New York should be bright. He’s on the corporate fast track as an executive problem solver, yet he can’t help feeling hollow. Yearning for a life spent outdoors makes no sense if he wants to flourish in this city, nor does losing his cool with clients when they make bad decisions. Only leaving the East Coast behind for three months can save his business reputation.

His exile in Seattle has unexpected upsides. Jon’s rented home has a garden where his true passions blossom. It’s overgrown yet idyllic—perfect if he didn’t have to share it with another tenant. Tyler might be as cute as hell, and their landlady adores him, but Jon can’t let himself fall for someone who seems lazy.

Three months could be enough time to see Tyler clearly, but choosing which to nurture long-term—love or a business career—might take Jon longer than one summer.


Check out Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Word’s 5 Star Review here!

 


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. Love, loss, and redemption shape her romance stories, and her characters are flawed in ways that makes 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 herÛsheÌs probably thinking up new plots.

 

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A Sammy Review: True Brit by Con Riley

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

“It’s all about motivation,” he explained. “And repetition.” He grabbed Pasha’s hand again and looked carefully where their fingers knit together. “Like stripping down a rifle before putting it back together. You do it over and over until it stops feeling clumsy.” He turned their joined hands over, studying them from another angle. “And then you do it some more.”

SMTrueBrit-f-2Winning BritPop! is more than just a chance at stardom for both Ed Britten and Pasha Trueman. They’ve each come from chaotic places, worlds that are so close but seem so far away, and winning this show holds something more for each of them, something that only they understand.

At first, the two are unable to stand each other, both so caught up in the branding of who the other is. Ed – stoic (aka lacks any personality), great very, great body, but that’s about it. Pasha – the joker, likes to mess with people, gets by on his showmanship and not his talent. But after overhearing a conversation that changes everything, the two band together to grasp onto the only chance they have to win BritPop! – they create #TrueBrit, a love story sure to garner the public’s attention and keep them in the running.

At some point, faking romance becomes more than that, and each of them have to deal with pieces of their past and how they fit into the puzzle known as their future. Can #TrueBrit be #TrueLove, or is it all just a show?

For the first time, he wished he could stop the clock on the contest. He’d hoped winning would prove his worth and change his life for the better, but he’d turn back time right now if he could. Turn it back and revisit the auditions to make Ed look at him like this from the very first day.

He’d do it in a heartbeat, so they were right back at the start of the show rather than so close to the end.

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t initially love American Idol when it first aired. Since then, I’ve grown bored with it. The truth is that parts of the show really are fixed, and some of the most talented people never even get to see the judges. When I read the premise for this book, I was intrigued but also reluctant. It sounded interesting, but at the same time I was worried I’d grow bored like I did before.

Well, I didn’t get bored. I really enjoyed this, for many reasons. First of all, the writing is easy and flows well. The story wasn’t hard to follow. Secondly, it made a tired concept fun again. Will I watch this season of American Idol? No, but I did enjoy this little visit with a talent show such as that, and all the gimmicks that go with it. Also, the cast of characters were quite great. I adored Anya and Ed’s family, each of them added a little something special to the story.

One of the things that fell short for me was the way the music was described. Obviously when reading a book, you can’t hear what is being sung (which, bummer). I would’ve loved if the author could’ve described it in such a way that I would’ve felt it much more than I did. Also, I wanted to know what happened to Anya at the end, but after the final performance she just kind of poofed.

This was my first Con Riley book, and I definitely enjoyed it and would read more. All around, a nice, lazy weekend reading book.

The cover art by Natasha Snow is great as per usual. I love the overlay of the flag on the body, and the simplicity of the whole thing. The only nit-picky thing I can say is that I’m not a fan of how the text overlays and gets whiter were True and Brit overlap, but that’s just me and personal stylistic thing. In general, it’s a very nice cover.

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

Book Details:

ebook, 200 pages
Published February 18th 2015 by Figment Ink Ltd
edition languageEnglish

Its Cover Reveal Time for Con Riley’s True Brit (contest)

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What Will The Cover Be?

Book Name: True Brit by Con Riley

TBBanner300x250

Con Riley Bio:

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. Love, loss, and redemption shape her romance stories, and her characters are flawed in ways that makes 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.

Where to find the author:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/con.riley.1
Facebook Page
Twitter: https://twitter.com/con_riley

Publisher: Figment Ink Ltd
True Brit by Author Con Riley
Cover Artist: Natasha Snow

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Sales Links: All Romance (ARe)  Amazon   Smashwords

About True Brit:

Winning the United Kingdom’s favorite singing contest is a challenge for half-Afghani Pasha Trueman. He doesn’t have the best voice, but success would be life-changing. His strategy is simple—he’ll make the British public love him.

Ex-soldier Ed Britten has a different agenda. Winning means he’ll keep a promise made after a deadly Afghan ambush. His voice is his weapon, but he leaves his heart unguarded.

Ed and Pasha’s discovery that the contest isn’t a fair fight calls for creative tactics. Staging a fake love story could bring victory, only there’s more at stake than the prestigious first prize. If winning means surrendering each other, they could both end up losing.

Categories: Bisexual, Contemporary, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance, Romance

TBRC

Excerpt:

Ed and Pahsa discover that winning the Brit Pop! contest will take more than singing their hearts out. In this excerpt, Ed discusses a new plan of attack with Pasha:

Ed put down his mug and stepped much closer. The toes of his boots touched the tips of Pasha’s scruffy knock-off Converse trainers. “Is that really what you think we need to do all of the time from now on? Be affectionate whenever there might be a camera or people around? Verbally, I mean. And act like we’re….”

“In love?”

Did Pasha usually sound so breathless? Ed tilted his head to one side and tracked the quick flick of Pasha’s tongue wetting his lower lip.

“That’s…” Pasha hesitated, “that’s exactly what I think we should do. And I don’t think verbal affection on its own will cut it either. We should… we should probably touch. A lot. But naturally, you know? As if we have a hard time keeping our hands off each other.”

“Like this?” Ed reached for the half-full mug Pasha clutched to his chest and made sure both his hands covered Pasha’s for an extended moment as he slowly took it from him.

“Yeah.”

“And like this?” Ed pushed the strands of hair covering Pasha’s eyes to one side. “Hi.”

This time Pasha slowly smiled instead of answering.

“And what about if we hold hands?” Ed awkwardly threaded his fingers through Pasha’s. “Is that too much, do you think?”

Pasha shook his head. “No.” He cleared his throat. “No, that’s exactly what I meant by natural.” He tugged his fingers away and wiped his palms on his trousers as if they were sweaty. “You’re taking to this much faster than I thought you would.”

There wasn’t much Ed wouldn’t do to get to the finals.

Pages or Words: 62,000 words

TBBadgeTour Dates: February 8, 2015

Tour Stops: 

Parker Williams, SA McAuley, Love Bytes, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Bayou Book Junkie, Inked Rainbow Reads, Christy Loves 2 Read, BFD Book Blog, Amanda C. Stone, The Hat Party, Molly Lolly, Charley Descoteaux, Rainbow Gold Reviews, Fallen Angel Reviews, Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, The Hat Party, Because Two Men Are Better Than One, Wicked Wolves and Dreaming Dragons, Multitasking Mommas, My Fiction Nook, MM Good Book Reviews, Smoocher’s Voice, Velvet Panic, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, The Hat Party, Nephylim, Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings, Andrew Q. Gordon, Cate Ashwood, Dawn’s Reading Nook

Contest: Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: Choice of book from Con’s backlist, plus a copy of True Brit. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

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