A MelanieM Review: Flash Me (Heathens Ink #7) by K.M. Neuhold

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Rating: 4.25 stars out of 5

 

Liam
I was kicked out at sixteen for being transgender, but it turned out to be one of the best things to ever happen to me. At twenty-one, I have a fantastic new family made up of my brother and a handful of wonderful friends, I own my own photography business, and I’m happier than I imagined possible. There’s just one thing missing… Okay, maybe two…

Wyatt
When I took the position volunteering as a therapist at Rainbow House, I knew I’d found my place in the world, helping teens who were rejected by their families. What I didn’t expect was the friendship I formed with Liam or how it would grow over the years into a crush I just can’t shake. I’m happy to see him finally opening himself up to dating with someone he trusts like Owen. But when he comes to me and asks if I can help his boyfriend, I feel like there’s more to the request than just a few therapy sessions. The more I get to know about Owen, the more I like him, too.

Owen
I’m not sure why I believe so much in fate when she’s dealt me nothing but crappy hands— A stint in prison and enough childhood horrors to fuel all my adult nightmares. But I still hold on to the idea that everything happens for a reason. What I can’t figure out is why fate would plop me naked into Liam’s bed under the pretext of helping him with a photo series for a gallery showing. Or why my stomach goes funny every time he smiles at me. Liam is too sweet to be exposed to my demons but I don’t know how to protect him…Maybe that’s why fate gave us Wyatt.

This is the seventh book in the Heathens Ink series. Each book in the series CAN be read as a stand alone, but characters do re-occur so it’s more fun to read them all!

I am a big fan of K.M. Neuhold Heathens Ink series so I was delighted to see another story in that series  released.  In Flash Me the author centers the novel around Liam, Owen, and Wyatt, people we’ve met before.  It’s Liam, especially, that the light shines so brightly on.  A young trans boy seeking a brother he never knew and shelter at first, here Liam is all grown up.  Liam is soon to be 21, he’s had top surgery, has a successful photography business and is pondering all his next steps. That includes romance.

K.M. Neuhold’s insight into Liam’s life at this stage, the decisions he is trying to make regarding future surgery, his insecurities about dating and his sex life not only bring Liam vividly to life but make him so vulnerable and real that you just want to love him and keep cheering him on.  He also knows who and what he wants.  Both of them.  It’s just a matter of how he’s going to make them see they all fit together.

Yes, Liam wants a polyamory relationship.  It’s one he knows that’s for him and he also knows that Owen and Wyatt are the perfect fit for him and each other.  If they can see it and work through the barriers keeping them all apart.

Flash Me is told from each  man’s perspective so you see how each of them perceives the other two and his place in retrospect.  And how that begins to change.

Both Owen and Wyatt have major issues in their past they must deal with before any relationship will work.  For Owen, its his abusive father and jail.  For Wyatt, it’s also family issues and a father, which I won’t discuss further here.  It will take all three coming together and therapy to deal with these major trauma and issues before they can come fully together as a triad.

I found the writing strong, the characters remarkable, and the romance sexy and heartwarming. Flash Me (Heathens Ink #7) by K.M. Neuhold is  another grand installment in a series I  just think is getting better and better.  I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Cover art is wonderful, that is those characters to a T.

Sales Links:

AMAZON US: https://amzn.to/2PrlaFj

AMAZON UK: https://amzn.to/2LPnm7g

AMAZON CA: https://amzn.to/2PY2HkL

 

Book Details:

ebook, 303 pages
Published September 3rd 2018
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesHeathens Ink #7

A Jeri Review: Triple Play (Homeruns #3) by Sloan Johnson

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Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

Triple PlayDrew Jackson seemed to have it all. He has a family who loves and supports him, a tight circle of friends, and is a rising star with the Milwaukee Mavericks. Then, it all begins to unravel. Cam, the only man he’s ever loved, falls head over heels for Drew’s teammate. He makes a critical mistake in the playoffs that he’s not sure he’ll be able to recover from. And then, his world really crashes around him…

Eric Sapp may no longer play for the Mavericks, but he’s still one of the guys. No one could have imagined how much his life would change when he agreed to help his former teammates mourn the end of their run for the pennant. After stopping a brutal attack, Eric is forced to face the feelings that’ve been growing for his roommate, Drew. That’d be much easier if Drew wasn’t hell-bent on pushing everyone away as he recovers.

Neither of them were counting on Bryce Shaw. He and Drew enjoyed the one night they spent together, but knew it was unlikely they’d be anything more since they lived in different parts of the country. After Bryce is relocated to help a failing LGBT homeless outreach, he wants to explore something more with the Mavericks’ short stop.

As much as Eric wishes he could be the one to help his friend, he knows Bryce holds the key to Drew’s recovery. Will pushing the two back together be the biggest mistake of his life or will they all learn there is strength in numbers?

Baseball players are right up there on my list of guys to read about. And Sloan Johnson knows how to write baseball players. She began with Wild Pitch, continued with Curveball and now the third in the series Triple Play.

The Maverick’s baseball season just ended and Drew is licking his wounds, convinced that he ruined their playoff chances. The guys convince him to go out for a beer anyway, but on his way to the bar he is the victim of a hate crime. He is rescued- barely in time- by a former team mate and sometimes roommate Eric. Keeping the attack on the down low and the fact that his attacker isn’t caught, turns Drew into a bit of a recluse.

Bryce is a friend of Drew’s team mate and a man he had barely gotten to know before he was attacked. Bryce wheedles his way into Drew’s life and Drew is caught with being attracted to both men, Eric and Bryce. Each are willing to walk away for the other, but that might not be necessary.

I have read quite a few MMM stories, and while most of them were pretty good, this one was REALLY good. Usually it is the man that can’t decide between his two lovers that introduces the idea, but this time it is one of the lovers who introduces it. And while all three seem a little surprised by the suggestion, all are willing to give it a try.

I felt like the author really treated not only the 3-way relationship with respect and love, but also the three men individually with respect and love. Of course there are some misunderstandings along the way, but because they all went into it with their eyes open and communication as key, it really blossoms into something beautiful.

All three men are equals in the relationship, but Bryce really comes out as the alpha. And a hot alpha he is! Drew and Eric, while not “alpha” are certainly not quiet and submissive in the relationship. Which just makes it all the more sizzling.

I’ve heard that there will be a fourth in this series and I really hope so. Not only because I enjoyed the first book and then this one (I somehow missed the second in the series), but also because I would like to see these three navigate through spring training.
I liked the cover art and it would have drawn me in to at least read the blurb because of the baseball on the front (did I mention I love baseball?), but it would have been nice to see the other two men represented as well.

Sales LinksAmazon • Nook • Kobo • iBooks

Book Details:

eBook, 222 pages
Published October 13th 2015

A Barb, A Zany Old Lady Review: What He Left Behind by L.A. Witt

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5:

Can you ever have a second first time?

What He Left Behind coverOver lunch one day with his best friend, Michael, Josh finds out that the reason Michael is still not dating, five years after he broke up with his abusive ex, is because he’s scared to death to even touch someone, never mind possibly have sex again. Josh is shocked by the confession. Though he knew Steve had been both physically and emotionally abusive to Michael, he just didn’t realize that so many of the things he takes for granted with his husband, Ian, are denied to Michael by fear of intimacy.

Josh and Michael have been friends ever since their early teens, and it was Michael with whom Josh first had sex when he came out in his senior year of high school. In fact, they were lovers off and on all through college while remaining best friends. And it was Michael who helped get Josh and Ian back together when they broke up early in their relationship. The trio has been friends ever since, and it killed Josh and Ian to see how very abusive Steve was to Michael, but they were there to love and support him when he was finally able to break away.

Over the past few years, Josh and Michael have seen each other at lunchtime, and the trio gets together every Sunday night to talk and drink wine in Josh and Ian’s hot tub. And it’s because of this close friendship that Ian suggests that Josh help Michael get over his fear of intimacy by having sex with him. After all, they’ve done it before and were each other’s firsts, so why not help him get back to where he can be intimate with a man again. Shocked by Ian’s idea, Josh nonetheless follows through and, though it takes time to break down many of Michael’s barriers, it eventually works. Then one Sunday night in the hot tub, Michael tells Josh that he’s ready to do it with someone else, and the two decide to approach Ian.

Ian’s involvement with Michael then leads to all three having sex and eventually Josh and Ian realize that they need to take time for themselves or they will lose what they have together. But when Michael starts to date again, a whole new world of hurt opens up for Josh, and he doesn’t know whether his marriage to Ian will survive the turmoil created by his obviously engaged heart.

Content advisory: Get your personal fans out before you read this story! The sex is sizzling hot, the characters endearing, the relationships—all of them, from the pairs of Josh and Ian and Josh with Michael and Michael with Ian to all three together—are amazingly well-developed and realistic. As a reader, I could feel the deep bond of friendship and love that existed between Josh and Michael, as well as the oneness of the Josh-Ian marriage relationship. In fact, although I can’t tolerate cheating, I didn’t feel that there was any hint of that in this story. There was emotional support for each other every step of the way. Everything that happened made sense as the men slowly bonded, and all of the relationship dynamics developed.

This was the best example of ménage I’ve read in a long time. In fact, it may be the best ever because it made so much sense for the three to be together that it was like watching all the pieces of a puzzle click into place. I can’t recommend this one highly enough. If you like M/M/M, this is a must buy.
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Cover Art by Angela Waters depicts three men representing the MCs—One is wearing glasses and a suit (Ian), one is wearing jeans and is shirtless (Josh) and one is depicted off in the distance (Michael). This is a clear representation of the story with the one character being somewhat distant from the married couple at the start of the book.

Preorder it July 19th at Samhain Publishing,  read it on August 18!

All Sales Links Coming In September

Book Details:

ebook
Expected publication: September 2015 by Samhain Publishing
(first published August 18th 2015)
edition languageEnglish
urlhttp://www.gallagherwitt.com

A Stella Review: A Bond of Three by K.C. Wells

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Rating: 3,5 out of 5 stars

Bond of Three coverI was really curious about this book and so happy when I scored the ARC. But it disappointed me a little.
Let’s start from the beginning. The blurb tells you everything you need to know, but I honestly thought I was going to read a different story, in some ways I thought it would have been more troubling. Instead what I found was a really sweet book.

Set in the kingdom of Teruna where young boys and girls are forced to leave their family and join the Seruan, becoming the lower caste, Prince Tanish and Seruan Feyar are together for seven years. It’s love at first sight but it needs to be a secret. When the fear of an attack from an enemy kingdom brought the King to look for an alliance with the neighbor King of Vancor, the wedding between Tanish and the Prince of Vancor, Sorran, seems the only way to join two kingdoms and be ready to face a war.

The young Sorran is sweet and innocent and he needs someone to teach him the art of love. Guess who’s chosen as a teacher? Our Feyar. Both Tanish and Feyar can’t oppose to the king’s order but they are resolute in their dislike of the young one. But Sorran is hard to resist and as Fate would have it, love will become the bond that will tie the three of them forever.

I loved how the author presents the three MCs. They’re so young but so firm in their decisions and their love. Each one of them is the perfect one for the other ones. Especially I loved Sorran, cause he will be the one to show Feyar and Tanish the path to a new era full of equality and justice.

Now, why the disappointment? I honestly was waiting for something to happen. But everything went pretty smooth. I’m not saying the book is boring.  On the contrary, it is enjoyable, really sweet and things happened.  But I was waiting for something more, especially for a fantasy book where pretty much everything is allowed. Just a little more action or drama.

I want to add that the characters and every scene are described very well. KC is a master in her writing. I like her style, her fluency and easiness in every sentence. I was so glad she chose to use an alternate POV between the three men , it was perfect way to understand every shade of their feelings.

I can honestly say I preferred her contemporary books. But if you are looking for a light read with a lot of sweetness, some hot sex and some magical aspects, you can’t miss A Bond Of Three.

Cover Design Alexander Tsopanakis,Cover Photo R.J. Sebastian

The cover fits the three MCs perfectly and the models aren’t bad at all. If you have read anything by Miss Wells I think you’re already used to see some beauty on her covers. This one is no exception.

Sales Links:   Dreamspinner Press         All Romance (ARe)   Amazon to come       Buy It here

Book Details

ebook, 264 pages
Expected publication: January 19th 2015 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN139781632166838
edition languageEnglish

Review: To the Very Last Inch (The Professor’s Rule #5) by Heidi Belleau and Amelia C. Gormley

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

To The Very Last InchJamie Sheridan was furious  when he found out that Professor Carson had “words” with his boyfriend Satish Malhotra, in effect warning him off any relationship with him. That lead to an ugly confrontation between them and a final break or so Jamie thought. But Satish thinks that there was something other than head games behind his encounter with the Professor, that maybe he and Jamie had misinterpreted Evander’s actions.   Satish realizes that the Professor gives Jamie something that Satish can’t, at least right now.  So Satish sets out to do what would have been recently unthinkable, he is going to try to salvage Jamie and Evander’s relationship, even if it means he loses out once and for all.

After a confrontation with his former lover and pupil, Professor Evander Carson realizes the extent of his miscalculations and misunderstanding of the past events in his and Jamie’s relationship.  And even though  the break up is tearing him apart, Evander is determined to stay away from Jamie, for Jamie’s sake.  Nothing prepares him for the sight of Satish at his door or for what Satish offers to him….a possible relationship with Jamie as well as Satish.

But will Jamie be able to trust Evander again? And will a renewed relationship between Jamie and his Professor leave Satish out in the cold?

To the Very Last Inch is a wonderful culmination to a hot, sexy and ultimately very sweet love story. Through five books, Heidi Belleau and Amelia C. Gormley have built a relationship between  three very different men.

The first character is the wounded James Sheridan, whose drug habits drove him into poor life choices, including whoring himself out for drugs and money. Only through submission can Jamie successfully control his anxiety and need to relapse into his drug habit.  The man who taught him control through his submission is the complex Professor Evander Carson.  Older, dominant, and in love with Jamie, Evander misunderstood several key elements in their relationship that caused the first break up and threatens to destroy any future they might have.  He is also unsure that a relationship with a man his age is something Jamie would want.  And finally, the last man to enter into the picture, Satish Malhotra.  Satish met Jamie during one of Jamie and Evander’s sexual games where he was an unwitting participant.  That initial encounter almost ruined any chances of any type of relationship between Jamie and Satish as Satish viewed the D/s roles with distain and no little anger over what he thought of as physical abuse of Jamie.  Three fascinating and complex men, all brought to life and made utterly relatable through four stories leading up to this….the conclusion of The Professor’s Rule and the resolution to all the issues raised in the preceding stories.

One of the aspects of this series I so appreciate is the ability of these authors to let the reader into the mindset of someone who lives or needs to live a D/s lifestyle, people like Jamie and Evander.  One, Evander Carson, a dominant or Master. The other, Jamie Sheridan, a submissive. As the authors show us, without that element in his life, Jamie becomes a very different person.  Being a submissive fills a hole in Jamie that nothing else can and without it Jamie feels incomplete.  As I said before, the character of Satish  Malhotra becomes that channel through which the reader can begin to understand what a D/s relationship can entail and what exactly how such a lifestyle can impact and benefit those that live it.  The whole bdsm aspect of this story is folded seamlessly into the narrative.  It is informative and it is certainly hot!

Belleau and Gormley force these men to face the misunderstandings and challenges that a realistic relationship between all three of them will offer. The manner in which Jamie, Satish and Evander work through their issues feel as real and authentic as all the other elements here.  Miscommunications arise, no matter the age of the person involved.  And events can be viewed through very different lenses, depending upon perspective and past histories.  All that and more is crammed into 56 pages and its wonderful.

Did I wish that we had  been given a little more of a glimpse into their lives down the road? Of course, but the little we did see was revealing and totally satisfying.  Kudos to the authors for such a wonderful series finale and for the men that we came to love through it all.

Cover art by LC Chase is perfect for this story and the entire series.

Book Details:

ebook, 56 pages
Published March 3rd 2014 by Riptide Publishing (first published March 1st 2014)
original title To the Very Last Inch (The Professor’s Rule, #5)
ISBN13 9781626491281
edition language English

Book in The Professor’s Rule series.  It helps to read them in order to understand Jamie and all the relationships within.

Giving an Inch (The Professor’s Rule, #1) currently free where sold (Amazon, ARe)
An Inch at a Time (The Professor’s Rule, #2)
Inch by Inch (The Professor’s Rule, #3)
Every Inch of the Way (The Professor’s Rule, #4)
To the Very Last Inch (The Professor’s Rule, #5)

Review: Duplicity (Triple Threat #5) by Laura Harner

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Rating; 5 stars out of 5

Duplicity coverOn the surface, everything and everyone seems happy and settled in the home of Archer, Zachary and Jeremiah.  They have discarded Jeremiah’s contract and now have a loving threesome partnership. But only on the surface and when young, distraught Clarenda Harris enters their office to ask for their help, she triggers a set of events and emotions that none of them saw coming, not even Archer.

Clarenda Harris is the mother of twin baby boys and the father of her sons, wealthly Dwayne Cashman, is missing, presumed dead in a plane crash.  Dwayne Cashman, also a twin,and his brother were inseparable and now that brother is set to inherit all Dwayne’s money and estate, leaving nothing for Clarenda and her sons.  But Clarenda is certain something is fishy.  She thinks Dwayne is alive and wants Zachary, Archer and Jeremiah to prove it.  Usually, Zachary would turn to Wick Templeton for research and help but Wick has disappeared, leaving all Zachary’s phone calls unanswered.

Zachary is left to deal with his feelings of betrayal over Wick, Jeremiah is hiding his grief over the loss of a friend and Archer is trying to balance the needs of his men with his own feelings to master.  Duplicity is in the air and the tension is rising.  Everything is feeling unsettled.  Can Archer, Zachary and Jeremiah discover the truth behind Dwayne Cashman’s disappearance before the will is read and the estate settled?  Or will all the hidden feelings and complications cause a breakdown in communications and relations that will threaten their happiness and that of others close to them?

Duplicity is a perfect title for a story full of hidden agendas, false identities, and layers of deceit that cover the actions and events connected to Archer, Zachary and Jeremiah and their band of brothers.  It all starts with a case involving twins and more twins that causes reverberations through the closely bonded group of friends that includes Archer, Zachary, Wick, Marcus, Chance and their significant others, especially when  another set of twins turns up dead with connections to the missing Wick.   There are dangers and conflict doubled at every turn and Laura Harner does an excellent job of leading the reader through the maze of troubled relationships and past histories that have come back to upset all involved.

At the heart of the series is the loving menage of Archer, Zachary, and Jeremiah.  They are settling beautifully into a happy threesome and the sex scenes in this story are white hot and kinky.  There are elements of D/s and bdsm here but the manner in which Harner uses them to enhance and better understand her men and their needs makes not only for some very intense, loving sex but also makes their relationship understandable and accessible. This applies even to those readers who don’t normally read books with this content.

Harner also discloses aspects of the mens past, especially where it involves Wick Templeton, that starts to shed light on the origins of this band of brothers.  This provides us with a better understanding of the depth of Archer and Zachary’s feelings towards Wick.  It also gives Jeremiah a chance to step forward with his issues with Zachary’s dependance upon Wick and its intrusion into their relationship.  So many emotions in flux, including Jeremiah’s grief over the heinous torture and death of his friend, Nick.

Harner has created a story with all the right elements in play to create an atmosphere of suspense, mystery, angst that combined with the incendiary sexual and loving partnership of Archer, Zachary and Jeremiah makes Duplicity a must read for lovers of all genres.   Triple Threat is a dynamic, engrossing series, one of four interconnected series, that you should put on your lists of books needed for 2013 and every year after.

As with the others, if you are new to this series, go back and start with the first story, Triple Threat#1.  I have listed them all in the order they were written and should be read to understand the men, their relationships and the events as they occur.  Run, don’t walk, to grab them all up.

This is how it all starts:

“Nice to meet you, Clarenda. I’m Zack. If you’ll follow me, Archer and Jeremiah are waiting in the study.” As had become our custom, I greeted our newest prospective client at the door and used the opportunity to size up any potential threat. Although it was possible for a weapon to be hidden almost anywhere, it seemed unlikely that this harried-looking woman was armed with anything more dangerous than the sticky-looking Tickle Me Elmo that stuck out from the top of the oversized canvas bag slung over her shoulder. Standing not much more than five feet even, her long dirty-blonde hair pulled into a messy tail and dressed in khaki capris and a blue and white striped tee shirt, the woman could pass for a college student. Until you looked at her face. Dark circles under her eyes and hard lines etched into her cheeks added ten years to her looks.

Entering the study, I made the introductions and, after handshakes all around, led her to a wingback chair that faced the delicate looking couch Archer favored when we had a client. As usual, Archer got right to the point. “You understand how our business works, Miss Harris? You must have lost something of significant monetary value, and if we are successful, our fee is half of what we recover. Do you think what you’ve lost merits a fifty percent commission?”

“Is sixteen million dollars worth your time, Mr. Wilde? Because if I’m right, that’s what I estimate my former employer’s estate is set to pay to his twin brother in fourteen days.”

Triple Threat Series in order:

Triple Threat (Triple Threat #1)
Retribution (Triple Threat #2)
Defiance (Triple Threat, #3)
Crucify (Triple Threat, #4)
Duplicity (Triple Threat #5)

Cover art by Laura Harner is perfect for the story and the series.

Buy links:  All Romance EBook, Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 118 pages
Published September 27th 2013 by Hot Corner Press
ISBN13 9781937252601
edition language English
series Triple Threat