A Lucy Review: Love For All Seasons Charity Anthology – Various Authors

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Rating:  3.5 stars out of 5

This anthology has stories that share the theme of the seasons.  In some, the season is front and center, such as Winter’s Chill and Sweeter Than Honey, while in others it is not integral to the story.  As in every anthology there were stories I liked more than others.  I got introduced to authors new to me, several of which I will be looking forward to seeing again.   All the stories here are fairly short, as typical in an anthology. 

Brioche for Two  – V.L. Locey  (3.5 stars)  Brian is a businessman who orders two brioche delivered from the bakery where Isamu works.  Isamu is a broke film student and can’t figure out why an obviously well-to-do man such as Brian would want to have anything to do with him.   Of course, he helps Isamu with his film project on finding passion.   It really is the story of their meeting and maybe beginning.

Sweeter Than Honey – C.M. Valencourt (4 stars)  Grayson is a vegan baker who sells at the market where Wyatt sells honey from his hives.  Some nasty attitude prevails and it is up to Wyatt to show Grayson not everyone is cruel.  New to me author and this story was adorable.  I admit, the vegan aspect drew me in – I am a vegetarian always trying to make that leap to vegan.  The uninformed and sanctimonious way Grayson attacked Wyatt is, unfortunately, all too common in the vegan community .  Wyatt is patient and a good person and I enjoyed reading about the bees.

Special Nights – DJ Jamison (3.5 stars) Sam suffers from severe insomnia and sometimes trying to sleep just isn’t worth it so he heads off to spend time in the very early morning at the diner where Hunter works.  Hunter has a lot going on in his personal life right now but he takes the time to talk to Sam.  This is set across the year and how they slowly become something to each other.  I liked the flirting between the two and the fact that nothing was rushed.  They shared snippets about themselves and didn’t fall into bed, which made it seem real.  It was cute, maybe needed to be a bit longer.

Winter’s Chill – Cathy Brockman (2 stars)  Jeff is working on his grandfather’s house so that his mother can sell it.  Lane is his next door neighbor and during a storm not only does the power go out but Jeff is trapped under a fallen branch.  Luckily, Lane hears it and rescues Jeff, then offers to let him stay by Lane’s, where there is a generator, heat and food.   It is the week they spend snowed in that they get to know each other.  This one had potential but I didn’t think it lived up to it.  Part of it may be a personal thing, as it is written in present tense and that isn’t preferred for me.  The other part is that they have conversations that seem forced and stilted.  The writing style wasn’t working for me and this one wasn’t a favorite.

Beach Boys – Annabelle Jacobs (3.5 stars)  Russ is on vacation with his best friend, Sarah, and another friend, Karen.  It was technically a girl’s weekend until the third girl broke her ankle and Russ is invited to fit in.  It’s a sweet bungalow right on the water and he’s extremely happy to be there.  Even more so when spying the hot surfers on the beach.  What more could he ask for?   Told in first person by Russ, I liked the whole meet your guy on vacation and this one was sweet instead of all sexy.  I liked that too because this is the very beginning of something for these guys.  There are some funny parts, such as Bailey the dog and her love for tug of war, that made me smile.

Who Do You Love, My Valentine – EJ Smyth (2.5 stars) Nox is a god who has been crushing on a human, Matt, for more than two years.  It happens that at Valentine’s season Cupid needs some help and of course Nox draws the short straw and has to fix Matt up with someone else.  How can that be!  Especially when Nox misses the shot and now Matt is falling in love with a woman, Joanie.  Now what?  Right in the beginning, Nox is invisible and he is licking Matt’s neck and fondling his groin, while Matt is unable to know what is going on.  He even admits it, “It was a creepy thing to do, but he was close, so very close.”  Ummm, nope, not a reason and that made me very uncomfortable.  Joanie was accidentally shot by the arrow is now extremely attracted to Matt and Nox just sort of pushes that to the side, which was annoying.  I did appreciate that when Matt is hit with the arrow, it hurts! That was unique.   This one was up and down for me, but feather sex pushed it down a little.

Favorite Flowers – Chris McHart (4 stars)  Gabe owns a flower shop, working with his best friend, Tara.  Tara is on him to get out there and start dating again, that “Not every guy is a cheating bastard.”  But he doesn’t want to and he’s sticking to his guns.  Then a customer comes in, totally overwhelmed, and wants to buy flowers.   He starts coming in every week to get a bouquet but never gives any indication of being interested or even being available so Gabe is sure it’s nothing. He doesn’t even given Gabe his name until much later, Jason.  This was by far my favorite of the anthology because the dance they are doing in the flower shop was shy and sweet.  Jason is going through a divorce after sharing with his wife, who was his best friend, that he’s pan, so he wants that out in the open right away.  I applauded him for that.  Jason’s way of asking Gabe out was romantic and lovely, and his reasoning for keeping Gabe a little at arm’s length was perfect.  “Just you, me, lube.  That’s it.” 

The Last Chance  – RJ Scott (2.5 stars)  Luke is a senior in college, set to graduate.   He can’t forget the kiss (and frot) he had with the captain of the hockey team four years before.  Of course, said Captain, Justin, hasn’t spoken to him since that day.  Luke “wanted to, but he avoided me, and I got the message.”  Now it is senior year and for some reason Jason’s jock friends are apologizing for things Luke might be holding against Justin because of them.  That part was cute.  What wasn’t so cute for me was that after four years of ignoring him, Justin has now decided to make a move.   His friends are trying to help and that was cute, but after four years of nothing, I wanted way more groveling than we got.  At first, Luke acted like I expected a self-respecting person to act when they’ve been treated poorly and get, “Please believe me, I had my reasons” as the excuse.  “I should have spoken to you.  I’ve waited so long.”  You are on the same college campus!  So I thought the end was totally out of left field, particularly when you factor in that in reality, they only spent part of one evening together.   I am a big RJ Scott fan but this one didn’t work for me.

Cover art by RJ Scott is soft, sweet and fitting to the mood and style of the stories.

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Book Details:

ebook
Published April 19th 2018 by Love Lane Books Limited (first published April 16th 2018)
Original TitleLove for all Seasons
ISBN139781785641244
Edition LanguageEnglish
URLhttp://www.lovelanebooks.co.uk

Release Blitz for Love For All Seasons Anthology by Various Authors ( including RJ Scott, VL Locey, Annabelle Jacobs, DJ Jamison, Chris McHart)

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True love always deserves a happy ending, whatever the season. A charity anthology with all proceeds split between The Matthew Shepard Foundation and The Albert Kennedy Trust.


With characters who find love in a New York park, or on a college campus, in the middle of a snow storm or in the heat of summer, ‘Love for all Seasons’ delivers romance for everyone.

Including stories from five established authors and supporting the work of three authors, new to the world of writing MM romance.


Brioche For Two – V.L Locey

 

Seasons of Bryant – SpringFour Seasons. Two Men. One Love.

For struggling film student Isamu Taylor, life’s refrain is about to change from boring documentary about a passionless delivery boy to a blazing and wildly erotic love story.

After spending weeks admiring handsome but older Manhattan executive Brian Gilles while delivering brioche to him in Bryant Park, the man of his lusty dreams has just expressed a desire to get to know Isamu better. A night on the town is just the beginning of a whirlwind romance that will span not only four seasons but countless years.

Amid the beauty and charm of Bryant Park, New York City, two men are about to discover that love knows no age or economic boundaries. This is the first of four short stories in what will be the ‘Tales of Bryant’ collection starring these two amazing men, their one sublime love, and the Park where it all started.

 

Sweeter than Honey – C.M. Valencourt 


Wyatt is a beekeeper, excited for the beginning of his town’s annual farmers market, where he expects to sell his wares and get some hot guys’ phone numbers. But these plans start to unravel when sets up shop next to a sexy vegan baker named Grayson.

Grayson believes that keeping bees is akin to owning a slaughterhouse, and he’ll do anything to run Wyatt out of business. Can Wyatt win him over with his sweet honey and even sweeter smile?

 

Special Nights – DJ Jamison 


Sam’s insomnia drives him out of his apartment in the wee hours of the night. He ends up at a diner, where he meets an intriguing waiter named Hunter. As the seasons go by, Sam and Hunter court over BLTs and OJ, slowly falling in love.

 

Winters Chill – Cathy Brockman


The ice storm of a century hits Missouri.

Winter savvy Lane Jennings is the only one prepared, thanks to a decade in North Dakota. Too shy to approach his drool-worthy neighbor, he’s left fantasizing about him at night. That is until the storm, when a branch breaks free, trapping him beneath. Now it’s up to Lane to save him from his icy peril and care for him throughout the storm.

It was a near death experience for stunned Jeffrey Nichols. Never had he seen anything as beautifully terrifying as the weather and his neighbor. One threatened his life and the other his secret. He wasn’t sure which was more dangerous, but when Lane gives him a warm shelter through the storm, he quickly realizes he will find out.

Can an ice storm thaw two frozen hearts?

 

Beach Boys – Annabelle Jacobs


Sea, sand, and hopefully sun, are all Russ expects to find on his week away in Cornwall.

Surfing with his two best mates is all Blake has planned for his short break. With the long drive to get to Penzance, there’s no time for anything else.

With help from Bailey the dog, Russ and Blake discover they might have more in common than they first thought.

 

Who Do You Love, My Valentine – EJ Smyth

 

Immortal Nox is subcontracted to love god Eros during the Valentine rush. After he gets distracted by his long-time human crush Matt, his arrows go astray. The second missile finds a pretty young woman who instantly falls in love with Matt. Which would be great, except that Matt is gay. Nox must prevent the unsuitable match before the Gods find out. Yet doing his job may very well break his heart…


Read this steamy, romantic short story by EJ Smyth to get you into the mood for the perfect Valentine’s night.

 

Favorite Flowers – Chris McHart 


Gabe runs a flower shop. He always makes bouquets for everyone, but nobody has ever brought him flowers. His love-life is non-existent. Until Jason walks in and sparks fly.

Jason in the middle of a nasty divorce and the last thing he needs is getting into another relationship. But he can’t resist the shop-owner.

But even if Jason comes back for flower every week, one of them has to make the first step. And even if one does, can favorite flowers lead to anything?

 

The Last Chance – RJ Scott


It’s the last year of college and Luke can’t forget the captain of the hockey team, or the kiss they shared as freshman.

Justin has to decide if hockey outweighs his attraction to Luke, because this might be the last chance he’ll have of making things right.

Authors

 
V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, 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 flock of assorted domestic fowl, and two Jersey 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 hand. She can also be found online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and GoodReads.

 
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About new author, C.M. Valencourt

C.M. Valencourt is a new m/m and queer romance author. Their first book From the Ashes, an ex-friends-to-lovers road trip novel featuring slam poetry, pink hair dye, and a chase scene through a theme park, will be released in the first half of 2018. They like figure skating, ghost hunting shows, and Carly Rae Jepsen. You can get updates about From the Ashes and more of their forthcoming work by following @cmvalencourt on Twitter.

 

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DJ Jamison is the author of more than a dozen m/m romances, including the Ashe Sentinel series and the Hearts and Health series. She writes a variety of queer characters, from gay to bisexual to asexual, with a focus on telling love stories that are more about common ground than lust at first sight. 

 
DJ grew up in the Midwest in a working-class family, and those influences can be found in her writing through characters coping with real-life problems: money troubles, workplace drama, family conflicts and, of course, falling in love. 
 
DJ spent more than a decade in the newspaper industry before chasing her first dream to write fiction. She spent a lifetime reading before that, and continues to avidly devour her fellow authors’ books each night. She lives in Kansas with her husband, two sons, two fish and, regrettably, one snake. 
 

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About new author, Cathy Brockman

Cathy loves her grandkids, cats, cooking and working to make her patio an outdoor haven.

When she’s not writing stories with sexy cowboys, strong women, and the small towns they live in she’s probably working on expanding her doll collection, crafting, reading, or listening to audio books.

For updates on stories, snippets, contests, games, polls and more fun join my reader group – Cat’s Romance A-Holics

If you like recipes, stories about food or flops, writing, teasers and more you can find that on my Website/Blog Cathy Writes Romance.

Thanks for reading and watch for more Lane and Jeffrey.

You can find me on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Amazon and Google plus

 
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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
 
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About new author, EJ Smyth

Hi there! My name is EJ Smyth, I live in Frankfurt, Germany and I’m passionate about romance with other elements mixed in. Paranormal romance, romantic thrillers, gay romance, if it’s got two difficult characters finding each other, I’m on board!

I’m currently working on a series of short stories Keith is Awesome about a young man exploring his sexuality. Not something I’ve ever written before but the research alone was quite a bit of fun. I love to talk to my readers, online and offline, so please feel free to drop me a line!

www.ejsmythauthor.com

 

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About Chris McHart

 

I’m a writer of M/M romance and M/M erotic romance from Germany.


I’ve always had stories in my head, but a while ago I allowed them to get out and on paper. Looks like it has been a good decision, although the more stories I write, the more I have in my head. Maybe I’ll have all of them out someday, and there’ll be nothing more to write, but for the next years, I don’t see that coming.
When I’m not writing, I spend time with my family (I have the best husband EVER) and try to keep all my animals happy. I also enjoy gardening and cooking, although I’m still looking for someone to clean up afterwards. And, of course, I love reading, whenever I have a quiet moment.Writing and reading is my break from everyday stress and I hope you join me!Website | ChrisMcHart@gmail.com | Google +
 
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RJ Scott’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.

RJ Scott is the bestselling author of over one hundred romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.

Goodreads Page | RJ’s Blog | RJ on Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest