BOOK BLAST – Blackbird Fly Home (Doyle Global Securities #1) by Kendel Duncan (excerpt)

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Title: Blackbird Fly Home

(Doyle Global Securities #1)

Author: Kendel Duncan

Genre: M/M Romance

Release Date: September 19 2017

Cover Design: Dare Press Editing

Photographer: Dan Skinner

Blurb

Sometimes life will surprise you

Sometimes it will disappoint you

Sometimes it will kick you in the balls

Sometimes it will make you so happy you feel like you can fly

And sometimes, just sometimes, it will do all of those things.

The kick in the balls, both literally and figuratively, happened to Noah Pierce a long time ago. Ten years to be exact, when, to cap off a brutal and horrendous four-year relationship with the man who claimed to love him, that man buried a butcher knife in his side. It was the final wound in a seemingly endless cycle of bruises, cuts, breaks, sprains and other things that sent him to the hospital. He thought he was going to die. But when he opened his eyes in that ER room and saw a stranger with kind yet determined eyes looking back at him and with his boyfriend nowhere in sight, Noah knew that life was going to change for him. And it did.

For ten years he was stronger, he was better, he was……hollow.

He didn’t realize that last part until he saw one man. One pair of haunting blue eyes beside the very man who had ruined Noah all those years ago. One pair of frightened eyes. One pair of hollow, hopeless eyes that Noah couldn’t have walked away from if he tried…..because someone else hadn’t walked away from him all those years ago.

Noah didn’t realize it at the time, but by saving Jesse Miller from the clutches of his ex, he was going to learn to fly….

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Buy Links – Available on KU

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Excerpt

Excerpt: “Fuck,” Noah whispered as he tucked back farther into the shadows and rubbed his hand over his face, as if he could scrub those memories away with a swipe of his hand. Like that was ever going to happen.

He should walk away. He should just fucking walk away. Walk out of this club and leave Jacob Knight behind, like he’d done ten years ago.

But he couldn’t.

Because Morgan hadn’t.

And because he knew this kid, with those blue eyes that were so striking you could see them even in the dim lights of the club, would haunt him for the rest of his life.

He pulled out his phone and dialed.

“Hey there. How are you doing? I heard the Op you did was a little intense,” Morgan said when he answered the call.

Fucking Caleb.

Noah squeezed his eyes shut and took a deep breath. Yeah that Op had been intense. He hadn’t been expecting that. It was supposed to be easy: pose as an escort, get fucked by the mark – Cole Gillette and place the listening device. Easy in, get laid, easy out. No problem, right? But then he’d felt Cole’s turmoil, his pain, his….the way he was so haunted by the man that he’d stared at on his TV screen while he’d fucked Noah, the man whose name Cole had called when he came in the condom in Noah’s ass: Kelly. Yeah, it’d been intense.

He chose to ignore Morgan’s comments, even though he knew the man would want to revisit them later. Time was of the essence here.

“I need your help,” he said, getting straight to the point.

He heard Morgan suck in a breath, “Anything Noah, tell me what you need.”

“I’m at Brubakers right now.”

“Brubakers, the club? Yeah, I know it. Are you drunk? Did something happen?”

“He’s here, Morgan.”

Dead silence answered him for at least half a minute. Noah had no doubt that Morgan would know exactly who Noah was talking about without saying the man’s name.

After a mumbled curse, “Has he seen you?”

“No.”

“Get out, Noah. Leave by the back door if you have to but get the fuck out.”

“I can’t.”

“What? Why not?”

“He’s got someone with him, Morgan and he looks, fuck, he looks just like me,” he said, the last word coming out like a choked sob.

“You mean like a twin?”

“No, I mean like a shell, like a robot, like a dead man walking. He can’t be more than twenty-five, Morg. I can’t leave him here with him. I have to help him.”

There was a quietly growled curse from Morgan and then, “Okay, I’m on my way. But do not do anything until I get there is that understood?”

“Yes, Sir.”

“If he sees you, do not confront him. Just run. Am I clear?”

“Yes, Sir.”

“Do not engage in any way, do you hear me?”

“Yes, Morgan, I’ve got it,” Noah said with an eyeroll. Like he’d ever disobey any order or request from Morgan. He and Morgan both knew that. The idea of it almost made him snort out a laugh.

“I’ll call you when I’m in my car. I should be there in about fifteen.”

“Okay, and Morgan?”

“Yeah?”

“Hurry.”

The call ended and Noah continued to watch the young man for a few minutes.

When someone tapped him on the shoulder, he gasped and jumped in his seat.

“Relax, I’m a friend of Morgan’s. I’m Jake Brubaker, this is my place. He just called me. When he asks for my help, I don’t question, I just say yes. What do you need?” he said as he gave Noah’s shoulder a reassuring squeeze.

Noah opened his mouth to say nothing but then he noticed that some of the servers were walking around with Brubakers ball caps on.

“Do you have any more of those hats?”

“Absolutely,” he said as he turned towards the bar, “Hey Amy, can you hand me a hat, please?”

The young woman ducked down behind the bar and then stuck her arm out to Jake, who grabbed the hat and handed it over to Noah.

“Anything else?”

“I don’t know yet. I might need a place to hide out for a bit.”

“My office is yours. It’s got an electronic lock on it,” he said then he told Noah the code to open it. He looked back at Noah with a raised eyebrow as he waited.

“Can you up the alcohol content on the drinks you send to that table?” Noah said as he lifted his chin towards Jacob’s table.

Jake looked over his shoulder, “Done.”

“He’s a lawyer. This could get….messy.”

Jake snorted a laugh, “Please, I was a prosecutor for ten years. I used to eat assholes like him for breakfast. Don’t worry about me or my place.”

Noah nodded to him as he pulled the hat down low over his head, “Thanks.”

“If you need anything else, just holler. I’m always around.”

Noah nodded to him again and then watched as Jake leaned over the bar to say something to the bartender and then she added more booze to the tray of drinks on the bar in front of her. One of the servers picked it up and brought it over to Jacob’s table. As they were handed out, he saw the young man next to Jacob lean in and whisper something into his ear. He watched as Jacob started to stand with him but then the other men at the table laughed and said something to Jacob that made him frown and Noah knew that they were giving him shit about not letting his boyfriend go to the bathroom by himself. He knew it because Jacob had done the same thing to him.

After listening to the other men teasing him, Jacob turned to his young man and placed his hand on his cheek. He leaned forward and pressed his lips to the young man’s ear and Noah knew that he was giving him explicit instructions to not make eye contact with anyone, not speak to anyone, to go in and piss, wash his hands and return to the table without haste. Hell, even though it had been a decade, he could almost hear Jacob’s deep voice in his own ear whispering those same commands to him and a sick feeling shivered through his body like a snake.

Fuck.

This was his chance, this was going to be his only chance. It was now or fucking never.

He didn’t turn his head, just let his eyes track the young man as he made his way through the crowd and to the darkened hall that led to the restrooms. Then Noah’s eyes swung back to find that Jacob was doing the same thing, his eyes glued to that dark hall like a hawk.

Fucking hell. He couldn’t slip down there now or Jacob would see him for sure. How the fuck was he going to do this? He was beginning to worry that he’d have to come up with another plan.

Until….

Luther stepped in front of Jacob and blocked his view.

“I brought backup. Go,” Morgan said as he stepped up to Noah’s table and turned to watch his husband engaging Jacob and the other men at the table in conversation.

Noah knew that Luther would keep those men occupied for a while because even though Luther Santiago was no longer in his old line of work as a mob boss, he was still a highly respected, and feared, man who could command the attention of any room that he stepped into. And he currently held the rapt attention of those six men in that booth.

Noah slid out of his corner and ducked around the wall into the dark hallway and down into the men’s restroom.

He still wasn’t sure what he was going to say when he pushed the door open and saw the young man at the urinal but he knew he had to choose the right words or the young man would be lost. Forever.

He silently closed the door behind him and took a deep breath, “I used to be you,” he said quietly.

The man’s head whipped around and the terror in his eyes broke Noah’s heart. “What?” he whispered.

“I used to be you and he nearly killed me.”

The man’s eyes went wide and Noah could see not only the fear in them but also a thousand questions. But he knew the man wouldn’t ask him a single one of them, though, because that was how Jacob had trained him. Noah knew this because Jacob had trained him the same way.

“I, I’m not supposed to talk to anyone,” he mumbled as he quickly zipped up and moved over to the sink.

“What’s your name?” Noah said as he stepped closer to the man who was mumbling to himself as he washed his hands. As Noah got closer he realized that the man was counting how many times he rubbed the soap over his hands, like Jacob had burned it into his brain that if he didn’t wash long enough he wasn’t clean. Fucking bastard.

“J-J-J-Jesse,” the kid mumbled as he resumed his counting.

Noah stepped up to Jesse’s back and reached over to close his hands over Jesse’s, causing Jesse to hiss in a breath, “Broken ribs, three broken wrists, five concussions, two broken arms, two broken ankles, and a punctured lung from when he stabbed me with a butcher knife.”

“He, he doesn’t really hit me,” he whispered.

That surprised Noah for a brief second but then he realized…. “No, but he does other things that make you feel hopeless, helpless, humiliated.”

“I, I, I m-m-make him angry. I’m bad.”

“No, Jesse. I never did anything wrong and neither did you. You don’t have to live like this. I can help you. Let me help you, please.”

Jesse’s tear-filled eyes looked at Noah in the mirror, “How?”

“Come with me, right now. I’ll take you someplace safe where he’ll never find you, I promise.”

Tears spilled over onto Jesse’s cheeks as he looked down and ran his fingers over his forearm, “Yes he will, he’ll always find me.”

As Noah’s eyes darted down to Jesse’s arm, realization hit him like a freight train, “Fucking hell, Jesse, did he put a tracking device in your arm?”

Jesse silently nodded his head.

 

 

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About the Author

Kendel Duncan is the pen name for author Dara Nelson. Both her Healing Hearts series (Dara Nelson) and The Black Ops Heroes series (Kendel Duncan) garner such praise as: “Ah-mazing!”, “It’s a keeper!” and “One of the best books I’ve read”

A long-time reader of the romance genre, Dara (Kendel) writes tear-jerking, sigh-inducing romance and heart-pounding, exciting erotic fiction and lives with her husband on a small farm near Tacoma, WA. You can reach her on Facebook at either of her author pages listed below

Some of her favorite authors include Riley Hart, Ella Frank, Devon McCormack, Aimee Nicole Walker, Sloane Kennedy, Dan Skinner and too many more to name.

Social Media Links

Facebook Author pages Kendel Duncan and Dara Nelson Books

Amazon Author pages – Dara Nelson and Kendel Duncan

Blog Site – Love Unchained Book Reviews

 

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October 26

Bookaholic & Kindle REVIEW

Valerie Ullmer | Romance Author REVIEW

Megan’s Media Melange REVIEW

Tangents and Tissues

Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews

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October 27

Zipper Rippers

My Fiction Nook

We Three Queens

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Stories That Make You Smile

October 28

Bayou Book Junkie REVIEW

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A MelanieM Review: Bull (Brawlers #3) by J.M. Dabney

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

Welcome to Brawlers Bar…

They said men only get better with age, distinguished and all that BS, but Archer “Bulletproof” Woods hadn’t gotten better. At fifty-six he was still as much an asshole as he’d been in his twenties and thirties, hell, maybe he was worse. Being a bouncer at a bar called Brawlers suited him just fine and he even tolerated the rest of the crew who’d taken up residence in his house when they’d had nowhere else to go. He was big, growly and homely that kept the parade of men passing through Brawlers at arm’s length for the past decade. One night changed all that.

What he’d thought was happily ever after turned into a nearly five year nightmare. Gregory Charles appeared to have it all, a successful business, sophistication, and a perfect marriage. His friend and best employee, Landon, begged him to come out to a friend’s bar to celebrate Landon’s anniversary. What could it hurt? A night without contemplating the hell that would come down on him the moment he served his husband with divorce papers would do him good. That is until he met the brooding older man staring into a whiskey straight ignoring everyone around him.

Watching for trouble was his job and Gregory screamed mistake as soon as the long, lean and handsome man sat down beside him. But he also knew when someone was in over their head and Gregory needed someone to watch his back. That someone was Bull, only time would tell if he’d have to fight Gregory as much as the man after him.

Bull‘s story is the one I’ve been waiting for.  I’ve love the huge, hulking father figure ever since I became aware of the Brawlers and their extended family.  It’s Bull and his house whose been the home and focal point of so many of these stories.  And it’s been Bull who’s been such a steadying influence on those around him when everything felt like it was being destroyed for them.  Yet Bull was ever lonely, alpha among alphas, and you wanted to get the know the person called Bull.  In Bull (Brawlers #3) by J.M. Dabney I finally got that story.

The solitary man isn’t the one I was prepared to find.  He’s hardly anywhere close to the men he houses, although he  clearly understands them and the violence that drives them.  Instead Dabney gives us a man full of pain and loneliness, hating it, yet perhaps thinking that his time for something more has passed him by because of his age.  The sadness is overwhelming.  Then Gregory appears at Brawlers, helping to  celebrate Landon’s anniversary and a connection is made that changes everything.

Gregory is a complicated character (they all are here).  Explaining more about Gregory actually gives away too much of the the plot for my comfort, however, let’s just say trying to serve divorce papers to a husband isn’t always the easiest thing when the husband refuses to accept them.  This is a hurt/comfort story and deals with issues of domestic violence and control.

Bull’s situation (he’s divorced with a grown child he hasn’t seen in awhile) plus his age all determines the manner in which he views his actions towards Gregory and any possibility of a relationship.  Gregory’s own demons also need to be dealt with by Gregory himself and others.  Broken, bruised men are the heart of most of Dabney’s stories.  For most, life has made them hard and violent, but for some, it’s left it’s marks in other ways.

The relationship dynamics here make any romance unsure and slow as it should be.  I loved the struggle and the carefulness taken to ensure more pain wasn’t inflicted.   I like that there is an awareness of the age issue, it’s addressed, and they move forward. Was it a little rushed towards the end?  Perhaps, but the whole is darn near perfect.

I think Bull is one of my favorite Brawler books of the series.  Of course, I do love the whole series and the one that follows it.  I have them all listed below.  Check them all out and check them off as I review them.  I highly recommend them all.

Cover design by Winterheart Designs is perfect for Bull, how I love these covers.

Sales Links:  Amazon

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 1 edition, 199 pages
Published May 16th 2017 by Hostile Whispers Press, LLC (first published 2017)
ASINB06Y2GHQPH
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesBrawlers #3

  • Executioners – third series

Alex Beecroft Returns to Trowchester with Blue Steel Chain (Trowchester Blues #3) A Stunning Novel! – giveaway

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Blue Steel Chain (Trowchester Blues #3)
by Alex Beecroft

Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Cover Artist: Lou Harper

Sales Link: Riptide Publishing

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About Blue Steel Chain:

At sixteen, Aidan Swift was swept off his feet by a rich older man who promised to take care of him for the rest of his life. But eight years later, his sugar daddy has turned from a prince into a beast. Trapped and terrified, Aidan snatches an hour’s respite at the Trowchester Museum.

Local archaeologist James Huntley is in a failing long distance relationship with a rock star, and Aidan—nervous, bruised, and clearly in need of a champion—brings out all his white knight tendencies. When everything falls apart for Aidan, James saves him from certain death . . . and discovers a skeleton of another boy who wasn’t so lucky.

As Aidan recovers, James falls desperately in love. But though Aidan acts like an adoring boyfriend, he doesn’t seem to feel any sexual attraction at all. Meanwhile there are two angry exes on the horizon, one coming after them with the press and the other with a butcher’s knife. To be together, Aidan and James must conquer death, sex, and everyone’s preconceptions about the right way to love—even their own.

Blue Steel Chain by Alex Beecroft is available from Riptide Publishing on July 27.

About Author Alex Beecroft

Alex Beecroft is an English author best known for historical fiction, notably Age of Sail, featuring gay characters and romantic storylines. Her novels and shorter works include paranormal, fantasy, and contemporary fiction.

Beecroft won Linden Bay Romance’s (now Samhain Publishing) Starlight Writing Competition in 2007 with her first novel, Captain’s Surrender, making it her first published book. On the subject of writing gay romance, Beecroft has appeared in the Charleston City Paper, LA Weekly, the New Haven Advocate, the Baltimore City Paper, and The Other Paper. She is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association of the UK and an occasional reviewer for the blog  HYPERLINK “http://speakitsname.com/” \n _blankSpeak Its Name, which highlights historical gay fiction.

Alex was born in Northern Ireland during the Troubles and grew up in the wild countryside of the English Peak District. She lives with her husband and two children in a little village near Cambridge and tries to avoid being mistaken for a tourist.

Alex is only intermittently present in the real world. She has led a Saxon shield wall into battle, toiled as a Georgian kitchen maid, and recently taken up an 800-year-old form of English folk dance, but she still hasn’t learned to operate a mobile phone.

She is represented by Louise Fury of the L. Perkins Literary Agency.

Connect with Alex:

Website:  “http://alexbeecroft.com/
Blog:  http://alexbeecroft.com/blog
Facebook:http://www.facebook.com/AlexBeecroftAuthor
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/Alex_Beecroft
Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/Alex_Beecroftt

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Giveaway:

Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a drawing for a signed paperback from Alex Beecroft’s backlist. (Any title which has a paperback edition, excluding Blue Steel Chain.) Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on July 25. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Don’t forget to add your email so we can contact you if you win!  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

Trowchester Blues ( A Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words ★★★★★ Series)

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Trowchester: it’s the fourth smallest city in Britain, and visitors sometimes think it hasn’t left the Middle Ages yet. There’s a Bronze Age barrow, a wide network of ley lines, the best tea shop in the county, and more morris dancers than you can shake a stick at. Trowchester attracts those who have been hurt and those who are looking for sanctuary from the modern world. But scratch the surface and there’s murder and mayhem aplenty. People come here to find love, but they’re forced to learn bravery first.

The release order of the Trowchester series is Trowchester Blues, Blue Eyed Stranger, and Blue Steel Chain, but you can start with withichever book catches your eye; they each stand alone.  We highly recommend them all.

– See more at Riptide Publishing’s Trowchester Blues  series page.

 

Review: Unearthing Cole by AM Arthur

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Rating: 4.25 stars

Unearthing Cole coverFleeing an abusive relationship, Cole Alston returns home after the death of his estranged mother to settle her estate and sell off the house and all her possessions. Cole has been dreading such a day as both his parents were hoarders and the property more resembles a junk yard then home, the same as it was when he lived there growing up.  As full of painful memories as it is, Cole feels he has no choice.  He needs the money to relocate to Canada as his ex continues to stalk him but the task before him seems overwhelming and he doesn’t know where to begin.

Jeremy Collins owns the local antiques business in town.  For years he has been trying to get Cole’s parents to sell some of the things they have accumulated on their farm to no avail.  When Cole returns to town, Jeremy gets in touch with him, first to buy some of the things at the farm. Then Jeremy gets to know Cole and it is Cole’s vulnerability and pain that draws Jeremy to help him get rid of years of hoarding while helping him uncover his past.  Slowly as the men clear away years of clutter and trash, they start to build a relationship of affection and trust, amazing given Cole’s background.  But there is still so much in their path to happiness, including Cole’s anxiety, and his past in the form of his ex boyfriend.  Will Cole be able to clear away his pain and emotional baggage before he can move forward to a new life.

Unearthing Cole tackles some very serious topics within its plot and does it very well.  It is the first book by A. M. Arthur that I have read and I am really impressed by the way Arthur handles this difficult subject matter while maintaining our connection to a very wounded young man, Cole, and his potential love interest, Jeremy.  Cole Alston has had a traumatic upbringing as both his parents were hoarders during a time where very little was known of what is now diagnosed as a mental illness.  All Cole knew was that he had no parental support and his parents seemed to love their “things” more than himself.  Arthur correctly imagines what the life of a child raised under those circumstances must have been like in heartbreaking detail as well as the consequences of their development into adulthood.  Cole is insecure and low self esteem, wanting a home and someone to belong to above all else.  This outlook and lack of stability has dire consequences when Cole picks one person to hook up with in college.

If you have ever, however fleetingly, seen parts of that Hoarders program on cable, then you have seen the pain and anger of the families of the hoarder almost burst from the screen, years of abuse pouring forth from children, partners, relatives and friends who have failed to stop the hoarder from accumulating things without regard to what is happening around them.  Horrific on all accounts, including the puzzled, blank expressions of the hoarders themselves who can’t begin to fathom what they have done, including the filth they are living in.  And Arthur gets it all right, from the descriptions of Cole’s house to the pain and anger he carries within him.

Added to that almost unimaginable background, Arthur extrapolates what that upbringing would have done to a child and gives us a Cole who ends up in an abusive relationship that takes him years to escape.  Arthur makes it all seem so logical and realistic and perhaps that is the worst part of it all, the ease with which the abuser was able to take over Cole’s life.   And throughout the story, the reader is there, inside Cole’s tormented mind as he struggles to reclaim himself but to do so he must face his past, strewn out before him across the outbuildings, yards, and crammed full house of his youth.

Jeremy Collins has his own unique layers, he is bisexual, a widower, and now lives in a small town  not always accepting of alternate lifestyles.  He is familiar with loss and pain, and is uniquely positioned to help Cole uncover his past, helping the real Cole to emerge along the way.  I like him as well.  There aren’t many other characters introduced here, the main story revolves around these two men, their past histories, and the situation before them.  Again, I think that Arthur handles their delicate dance towards a relationship with care and authenticity with regard to all of the obstacles presented by Cole’s background.

And that brings me down to the issues I did have with the story.  I felt that the ending and denouement was rushed, especially considering the buildup and emotional impact of seeing his abuser once more.  That was frustrating and over far too quickly given their past, and the damage that had been inflicted.  I did like that this ended in a HFN as opposed to a HEA which would have felt out of place given the characters and background.  Had this story been lengthened just enough to flesh out the ending that the rest of the story deserved than the rating would have been much higher.  As it remains, I still recommend this author and Unearthing Cole, it’s memorable, and the characters haunting in their pain.  Don’t pass this one by.

Cover art by LC Chase is as haunting and memorable as the book.

Book Details:

ebook, 170 pages
Published March 20th 2013 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN13
9781623804343
edition language
English

Seizing It by Chris T. Kat

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Rating: 3 stars

Kit Hall, veterinary assistant, leads a life of strict routine that his epilepsy and physician requires of him. Kit has also isolated himself by choice from others with the exception of his sister and the veterinarian he works for.  A victim of domestic abuse from his ex, Kit finds himself unwilling to trust others to the extent that he has walled himself off from most personal interactions.  When Kit is attacked outside his home by a crazed admirer, his sister and a good looking stranger come to his aid. The attack puts him off balance. When he learns that Alan, his friend/boss, is moving and someone else is taking over the clinic, Kit becomes even more unsettled.  The next day at the clinic Kit is horrified to find out that his new boss is none other than his rescuer from the day before.

Dale Miller is on his way to his new veterinary clinic when he chances upon a young man being attacked.  He intervenes, restraining the attacker until the police arrive. He is not the only one surprised when he meets the young man again at the clinic he is taking over.  It turns out his  assistant, Kit Hall, and the victim, are one and the same.  A fact that Kit is not happy about and makes very clear to him.  But he finds Kit  attractive and becomes determined to be the one to make Kit lower his defenses and take one more chance at love.

Several days later and this book still has me confused about my feelings towards it.  Mostly they are of the “not so good” type.  Add to that column, “flashes of talent”, “great idea”,”kind of creepy” and “downright annoying”, and I think you all will begin to get my drift.  The author had a great idea for a protagonist here but never brought the main character up to snuff.  I was really looking forward to a thoughtful exploration of a life lived with epilepsy, the proscribed limits and how a full life could still be achieved within them. That is not what I got in any way, starting with that title. Seizing It? Really?  Should I say it had me fit to be tied? *that was sarcastic, people – shakes head*

In addition to epilepsy, Chris T. Kat has burdened Kit Hall with being a victim of a shattering domestic abuse attack from his controlling and mentally ill ex, a temper that should see him in anger management classes and a family that treats him as though he is twelve (and sometimes rightfully so). I think we are supposed to find him one of those endearing prickly main characters, slight in stature, with a shock of red hair and green eyes.  I generally like those characters.  I didn’t like Kit Hall.  Mostly I wanted to send him off to intensive therapy sessions which he clearly needed, not to be seen again.  The author endowed Kit with a temper which as victimized as he is I could understand but apparently he has always had a temper that he directs at all close to him while acknowledging that he may be a brat.  This got very old as it would in real life and Kit comes across as a bit of an abuser and bully himself.

Further complicating the story is the other main character, Dale Miller.  He is older, finds Kit incredibly attractive, and wants to rescue Kit from himself.  In one section when Kit is freaking out over Dale restraining him (???) during an argument, I started to get that squicked out feeling.  I remember seeing adult handlers forcibly restraining out of control children (mentally and physically challenged) in the same manner until they calmed down.  To see it used here between “potential” lovers hit quite a few wrong notes. Especially when Dale then picks up Kit and put him in his lap.  Am I the only one thinking child abuser not lover here?  And then Kit falls in love with him immediately in a couple of days? Never has a case of “instant love” seemed so wrong.

What I did find realistic is that Kit is ashamed he is epileptic and doesn’t tell Dale about his condition until a Grand Mal seizure forces him to. I had a childhood friend who felt the same way.  He moved away in elementary school so I never knew how the adult Tim dealt with it.  The author does a good job talking about stress being a trigger as well as using medication and a regulated life style to control his epilepsy. I wish she had done as well with the issue of domestic abuse which loomed as a larger subject here.  Male victims of domestic abuse represent a huge sector of people who go unreported and unaccounted for.  Kit’s issues that stemmed from his years of living with a domestic abuser are never really dealt with in the same manner his epilepsy is.  A missed opportunity the book never recovers from in my opinion.

I won’t even get into his father issues and a family determined not to let a 28 year old grow up and make his own decisions.  Let’s leave that one alone.  It’s overshadowed anyway by all the problems I have already remarked on.  Seizing It is the only book I have read by Chris T. Kat so I don’t know if this story is typical of her work or not.  I hope not.  She does have some good ideas here but in the end raises far more questions about her protagonists and their relationship then is resolved in the book.

Cover:  The artist is Anne Cain who I love  but where are the dogs? Another missed opportunity as one main character is a vet, and the other is his assistant with a dog who is also a main character within the story. It remains a beautiful cover of two men in a fall setting.