Love Sci-Fi with a Kink? Check Out the Review Tour for Served with a Twist by Jet Lupin

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REVIEW TOUR

Book Title: Served with a Twist

Author: Jet Lupin

Publisher: Self-Published

Release Date: December 28, 2019

Genre/s: Sci-Fi D/s M/M Romance

Trope/s: Clash of Backgrounds, Opposites attract, Man in Peril, Meet My Dysfunctional Family, Size Difference

Themes: Kink, light BDSM, light D/s themes, collaring

Heat Rating: 4 flames 

Length:  74 000 words

It is a standalone story.

Add on Goodreads

 

 

Buy Links – Available on Kindle Unlimited

Universal Amazon Link 

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

 

The pretty ones were always trouble…

Blurb

Cut Jones knows Samson from his work, but not really. He knows he’s got money, that he likes his whiskey sours extra sweet, but that’s where his knowledge ends. Samson’s come into the bar every few days for a year but has hardly said more than five words at a time, but Cut didn’t mind. Samson was out of his league. So imagine his surprise when Samson asks for his help with a very personal issue.

The pressures of owning his own company and the expectations of his father had Samson Ba walking a razor’s edge. It was only a matter of time before he tried to find a release, but when he does it’s in the worst way. And he’s found by the last person he wanted to see him this way. But things aren’t all bad. Cut offers to help him relieve his stress, and Samson’s sure he’s just being nice, but some opportunities are too good to pass up. 

 

 

About the Author 

Stories longing to have words put to them were in Jet’s heart from an early age. Jet enjoys exploring the connections and similarities between people whether they be shifters, vampires, or aliens, rendering the unknowable very knowable indeed.

Jet’s days are spent toiling away at a keyboard, slumped over a pen and paper hunting for those words, or playing around on twitter with a partner, and two rambunctious cats for company in the temperamental North Eastern US.

 

Social Media Links

Blog/Website  |  Facebook Page  |  Facebook Reader Group  |  Twitter

  Instagram  |  Newsletter Sign-up  |  Pinterest 

 

 

Hosted by Gay Book Promotions

 

 

Follow the tour and check out the other blog posts and reviews here

Join us for the Release Blitz with Excerpt for His Fake Prison Daddy by Thursday Euclid and Clancy Nacht

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RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: His Fake Prison Daddy

Author: Thursday Euclid and Clancy Nacht

Publisher: Eine Kleine Press

Cover Artist: Clancy Nacht

Release Date: January 15, 2020

Genre/s: Contemporary M/M Romance

Trope/s: Forced Intimacy/prison

Themes:  Opposites attract

Heat Rating: 4 flames   

Length:  62 000 words/ 249 pages

It is a standalone story.

Add on Goodreads

 

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK 

 

Beauty and the Beast, but with more daddy issues and violence.

Blurb

When eighteen-year-old hacker Elias Stuyvesant ends up in a maximum security state prison, he’s woefully unprepared despite his time in juvie. On day one, he’s thrown in with a man known as the Santa Fe Slayer, Ambrose Hughes.

Hughes is quiet, disfigured, and weirdly urbane. Elias was so young when Hughes committed his crimes that he has only the faintest idea what Hughes is in for. However, Hughes makes clear that Elias is his ideal victim type…and there’s no one to protect Elias from the much larger man with his prison-jacked body and that hard gleam in his dark eyes.

Whoever paired them has it in for Elias; that much is obvious.

Elias is terrified of Hughes, but he soon realizes the other prisoners are worse. If Elias is going to survive, he’ll have to choose the lesser of the evils: To preserve himself, he’ll need Hughes for his Daddy. And given Hughes’s skewed morality, they’ll have to fake it till they make it.

 

 

Excerpt 

Then the guard exhaled and stopped outside a heavily reinforced door set in a wall of solid concrete. It looked nothing like the cell blocks they’d passed earlier, with their steel bars or Plexiglas, open to the guards’ gazes and Elias’s curiosity.

“This is…” Elias searched the guard’s face for clues, unable to finish articulating his question.

“Yeah, this is it. You’re in with—” The guard licked his lips with what looked like legit nervousness. “Ambrose Hughes.”

Elias blinked at him, not grasping the gravity invested in that name. Who the hell was that?

The guard looked at Elias with visible pity. “The Santa Fe Slayer.”

Shit.

No.

Shit shit shit.

The Santa Fe Slayer was fucking crazy. Not that Elias knew precisely what Hughes had done beyond killing people, but if he’d been active in most other states, he’d be on Death Row. But motherfucking New Mexico abolished the death penalty, so Hughes was just waiting to die in prison, no hope of parole.

Which meant, Elias quickly grasped, that he really had nothing motivating him to behave. What was one more murder to him?

He was already serving like twelve consecutive life sentences. Was he one of those who ate people?

Elias didn’t have time to collect his wits or steel his bladder before the guard knocked politely at the door and then unlocked it, pushing it open to reveal a windowless room thick with shadow. It was somehow even smaller than Elias had expected, with nothing to look at but a sink, a toilet, a little shelf built into the wall currently stocked with what looked like battered novels, and a bunk against the far wall, its bottom bed stripped bare, waiting for the bedding Elias carried. It took him a moment to realize the big shadow up by the ceiling was his cellmate.

Hughes stretched languidly and started to slide off the top bunk with the predatory air of a panther. “Garcia, sweet man, who have you brought to visit me?”

“New cellmate.” The guard—Garcia?—stepped back through the door and quickly removed Elias’s cuffs before shoving him forward toward the Santa Fe Slayer’s approach.

Elias looked desperately back at the guard as the thick steel door clicked shut. It beeped as it locked. A small, barred hole at eye level revealed that Garcia had already turned away.

“Hughes,” the man said, his voice pleasantly deep and drawling but edged with something unpredictable. Excitable. “Welcome to Hell.”

Elias clutched the bedding to his chest as if it might ward off attack, or maybe just because he needed to hold something.

This was why Edward Snowden ran. The government clearly sent Elias here to be murderated. Well, if he was lucky, he’d be murdered before this dude started to eat him.

Though he wasn’t even conscious of moving backwards, his heels hit the closed door behind him, leaving him nowhere to run.

In some ways, it reminded Elias of his first day in juvie, when he’d been so terrified, but at least then he was of comparable size and flexible enough sexuality to avoid becoming a target.

Taking a deep breath, Elias tried to collect himself, put on a brave face, and lifted his chin proudly. “Do you prefer being called Hughes? I mean, if it was me, I’d want to be called Slayer. Or Hannibal or something. Not that you probably need a badass nickname, I guess.”

Rambling. Fuck.

Awkward since the man just kept watching him, Elias gathered his bedding in his left arm and offered his hand to shake. “I’m Elias or Stuyvesant, or, you know… whatever.”

Hughes stared at him, dark eyes glinting dangerously in the low light. Something was wrong with his face, though it was hard to tell with how dim it was, but the texture was wrong, too reflective, scarred. He cocked his head to the side and said, “Maybe I’ll call you Bitch. Do you answer to that?”

He didn’t take Elias’s hand. He just stood there, looming, radiating amused malice.

“Um, well, I guess I could, but… um…” Great. So they were already going there. He was being fed to this Freddy Krueger motherfucker and there wasn’t a lot he could do about it. “I mean, this is prison. Won’t there already be a lot of people responding to that name? Wouldn’t want to step on any toes or cause confusion.”

What am I saying?

On the bright side, if he pissed this guy off, he might die quick.

In the silence, Elias was aware of Hughes’s shoulders shaking as his breathing turned choppy. Then, with mingled relief and horror, he realized Hughes was laughing at him.

With him?

At him.

“Stuyvesant then. No one else will carry that moniker surely.”

 

About the Authors 

Thursday Euclid

Thursday Euclid (he/him) is the m/m romance pen name of Rainbow Award winning author Will Craig, a thirtysomething disabled, fat, white, queer trans man from Houston, TX. For those who care, he is an Aquarius, and if you’ve met him, you probably can’t imagine him being anything else.

Proud da to two incredible queer, nonbinary kids aged 16 and 18 and honorary da to a 17-year-old black trans girl, Thursday spends a lot of time cooking vegetarian food in his Instant Pot while listening to Radiohead and dishing out advice and hugs to the younglings. Many of those scorching sex scenes were written or edited while obnoxiously loud teenagers danced to BTS in the living room.

When he’s not playing World of Warcraft with his handsome trans boyfriend, he’s probably watching horror movies or talking to his best friend and frequent collaborator Clancy Nacht. 

Author Links

Blog/Website

Facebook

Twitter

 

 Clancy Nacht

 Clancy Nacht is a bisexual genderqueer person who lives in Austin. Clancy has published several bestselling romances. Many of her books have been honored with Rainbow Awards; Le Jazz Hot won for Best Bisexual/Transgender Romance & Erotic Romance. In 2013, Black Gold: Double Black was a runner-up for a Rainbow Award. In 2015, Gemini won an Honorable Mention for Gay Erotic Romance and in 2016, Strange Times won an Honorable Mention for Science Fiction. Wyatt’s Recipes for Wooing Rock Stars was a finalist in the highly competitive William Neale Award for Best Gay Contemporary Romance. The Phisher King won second place in the Rainbow Award for Romantic Suspense, 16th for Gay Book of the Year.

 

Author Links

Blog/Website

Facebook

Twitter

 

Hosted by Gay Book Promotions

 

 

Follow the tour and check out the other blog posts and reviews here

Love Hockey Romance? Check Out the Reveal Blitz for Shots on Goal (Stick Side #3) by Amy Aislin (excerpt and giveaway)

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Release Blitz: SHOTS ON GOAL by Amy Aislin

Series: Stick Side #3

Publisher: self-published

Release Date January 7, 2020

Length (Print & Ebook): 84,600 words | 330 pages

Genre: contemporary/new adult romance

Tropes: opposites attract, made family

Cover artist: Natasha Snow

Order now:

B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/shots-on-goal-amy-aislin/1134804933

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/ca/en/ebook/shots-on-goal-2

Amazon: https://geni.us/ShotsOnGoal

iTunes: https://books.apple.com/ca/book/shots-on-goal/id1487229069

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/47968323-shots-on-goal

Book blurb:

Recently traded to the newly formed Vermont Trailblazers, professional hockey player Roman Kinsey needs to focus on helping the team win games and filling the stands, not on the blond, bespectacled part-timer who works at the library he volunteers at. He knows all too well that outing himself equals heartache and ridicule…or worse.

Cody Evans, psych major and grad school hopeful, notices everything and thinks too much. But he doesn’t know what to think when he sees Roman reading to kids. The rugged hockey player just doesn’t look like the type. But it stirs something in him, something he’s never felt before.

When the library is threatened with closure, Cody enlists Roman’s help. As they get to know each other better…much, much better…they realize that they have more in common than books. But Roman’s keeping a big part of himself from his team, and giving in to his feelings for Cody might be more than he’s willing to risk.

Reviews:

“With lots of hockey, delicious food, and the sweetest couple ever, Amy Aislin scores a hat trick with Shots on Goal.” — Kelly Jensen, award-winning author of Block and Strike

Shots on Goal is a great wintertime read. Like a warm blanket and a mug of hot chocolate! Huddle up by the fire and enjoy this cozy story!” — Allison Temple, author of The Seacroft Stories series

“I love hockey romance, and this book delivered all the romance I needed alongside awesome hockey.” — RJ Scott, USA Today bestselling author

“I’m already a big fan of Amy Aslin’s Stick Side series, so I was thrilled to get an early read of Shots on Goal. Cody and Roman’s story didn’t disappoint. Shots on Goal is the perfect blend of the beloved sports and small-town romance tropes. Roman’s gruff, strained interactions with his ice hockey team play well against Cody’s heartwarming relationship with his fellow library lovers. As these two men inadvertently team up to help save the historic library, Roman realizes there just may be someone worth opening up to, and at the same time, Cody learns that sometimes falling in love brings with it tough choices. Shots on Goal is a strong addition to Aislin’s delicious world-building surrounding the sexy, competitive world of hockey. We get to visit old friends from previous books, but it is not necessary to have read them to enjoy Shots on Goal.” — Lucy Lennox, Bestselling author

Excerpt:

“You read?”

“Why do you say that like I’m an unintelligent jock who’s never seen a book in his life?” Roman asked. He didn’t sound insulted, merely curious.

“No, that’s not what I meant.” Or was it? “I guess I figured you wouldn’t have enough time to read.”

“I’m a hockey player, not a doctor. I do get downtime.”

“Enough downtime to come watch my friend’s game sometime?”

Roman finished off his coffee and set his mug on the table. “I suppose. Don’t know why you want me to so bad, though.”

You look like you need friends was not the way Cody should answer. He tried for nonchalant and shrugged. “Why wouldn’t you? The Mountaineers are awesome, Glen Hill isn’t too far from Burlington, and it’s a great way to spend an evening.”

“The University of Vermont has a hockey team. I could just go watch them.”

Cody scowled at the mention of the Glen Hill Mountaineers’ rivals. “Traitor.”

It made Roman laugh and little creases formed at the corner of his eyes, which, for some reason, made Cody grin back at him.

Author Information:

Amy’s lived with her head in the clouds since she first picked up a book as a child, and being fluent in two languages means she’s read a lot of books! She first picked up a pen on a rainy day in fourth grade when her class had to stay inside for recess. Tales of treasure hunts with her classmates eventually morphed into love stories between men, and she’s been writing ever since. She writes evenings and weekends—or whenever she isn’t at her full-time day job saving the planet at Canada’s largest environmental non-profit.

An unapologetic introvert, Amy reads too much and socializes too little, with no regrets. She loves connecting with readers. Join her Facebook Group to stay up-to-date on upcoming releases and for access to early teasers, find her on Instagram and Twitter, or sign up for her infrequent newsletter here.

Website: https://amyaislin.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amyaislin/

Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/amyaislin

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/amy-aislin

Twitter: https://twitter.com/amy_aislin

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/amy.aislin  

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/AmyAislinAuthor  

Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/ddvWFv

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/amyaislinauthor/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16693566.Amy_Aislin  

Amazon: http://amazon.com/author/amyaislin    

QueeRomance Ink: https://www.queeromanceink.com/mbm-book-author/amy-aislin/  

Release blitz giveaway:

Winner’s choice of ONE signed paperback from Amy’s backlist!

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**The Nature of the Game (Stick Side #2) is on $0.99 sale from January 7-13, 2020!**

A Stella Review: What We May Be by Vivien Dean

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RATING 3,75 out of 5 stars

Fashion is Jared Harvey’s life. Once a top model, now an aspiring designer, he never expects to be attracted to a man who wouldn’t know his Versace from his Valentino. But Rick Paulson makes him rethink everything he’s ever assumed he wanted in a man.

Rick’s generous, built like a brick house, and best of all, hungry to let Jared take control. Together, they ignite passions in each other neither wants to extinguish. So what if Rick doesn’t care about Jared’s Cavalli? Life’s more than a runway, especially with a man like Rick around …

If you love the “opposites attract” trope, you can’t miss this title. Jared and Rick can’t be more different, the first rich, ex top model now a fashion designer, the second one a nurse. They meet at a fundraiser for an AIDS charity and it’s clear they are made for each other. It’s not just lust at first sight, there’s so much more and, althought What We May Be is very short, the author did a great job and showed me how serious the main characters were about building a life together. The story is packed with feelings, quick to read, sweet and well written. I will definetely look out for more releases by Vivien Dean.

The cover art by Written Ink Designs is lovely and fitting, I like it.

SALE LINKS  JMS Books LLC  | Amazon

BOOK DETAILS

Kindle Edition, 76 pages

Published September 21st 2019 by JMS Books LLC (first published February 8th 2009)

ASIN B07XW8LNS6

Edition Language English

In The Spotlight Tour and Giveaway:Counter Culture by JL Merrow.

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Counter Culture by J.L. Merrow

Riptide Publishing
Published November 4th 2019

Cover Art: LC Chase

Sales Links:   Riptide Publishing | Amazon | Barnes&Noble | Kobo

 

Hi, I’m JL Merrow, and I’m delighted to be here today to celebrate the release of my new rom-com, Counter Culture, which features a clash of cultures between a socially conscious steampunk and a stressed-out department store retail worker.

About Counter Culture

Customer service has never been this personal.

Robin Christopher, beleaguered retail worker, isn’t having an easy November. His boss is raising stress levels planning a Black Friday to end all Black Fridays, his family doesn’t understand him, and his best friend thinks his new crush is a hallucination brought on by watching too many episodes of Doctor Who.

Archie Levine dresses in Victorian style and divides his time between caring for his young son and creating weird and wacky steampunk gadgets from bits of old junk—when he’s not looking after his mum and trying to keep on good terms with his ex. The last thing he’s got time for is a relationship, but the flustered young man he met while disembowelling a fridge is proving very tempting.

When his mum’s social conscience is roused by a local store with a cavalier attitude to the homeless, former rough sleeper Archie shares her anger. Little does he know that Robin works for that same store. When Archie finds out he’s sleeping with the enemy, things could cut up very rough indeed.

Available now from Riptide Publishing!

 

 

About JL Merrow

JL Merrow is that rare beast, an English person who refuses to drink tea.  She read Natural Sciences at Cambridge, where she learned many things, chief amongst which was that she never wanted to see the inside of a lab ever again. 

She writes (mostly) contemporary gay romance and mysteries, and is frequently accused of humour.  Two of her novels have won Rainbow Awards for Romantic Comedy (Slam!, 2013 and Spun!, 2017) and several of her books have been EPIC Awards finalists, including Muscling Through, Relief Valve (the Plumber’s Mate Mysteries) and To Love a Traitor.

JL Merrow is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, International Thriller Writers, Crime Writers Association, Verulam Writers and the UK GLBTQ Fiction Meet organising team.

Find JL Merrow online at: https://jlmerrow.com/, on Twitter as @jlmerrow, and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/jl.merrow

 

 

Giveaway

To celebrate this release, one lucky person will win a $10 gift card to Riptide. Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on November 9, 2019. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following along, and don’t forget to leave your contact info! 

Don’t Miss Out on the New Release Blitz for Starting from Scratch (Starting From #2) by Lane Hayes (excerpt and giveaway)

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Title: Starting From Scratch

Series: Starting From, #2

Author: Lane Hayes

Publisher: Lane Hayes

Release Date: October 17, 2019

Heat Level: 4 – Lots of Sex

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 80k

Genre: Romance, Bisexual, Enemies to lovers, Rock and roll, Hurt-comfort, Opposites attract

Add to Goodreads

Synopsis

Charlie Rourke is an ultra fabulous human whirlwind on a mission to launch the next biggest band in the world. However, he might have taken on more than he could handle when he signed on to manage Zero. Promoting a rock band and finding gigs shouldn’t be hard. They’re a talented group with a ton of star power. If Charlie can find the right record label, he’s sure he can help them get to the next level. The only problem is the skater boy slash bassist with a quirky sense of humor. He’s annoying and silly, and he’s exactly Charlie’s type. Except he’s straight.

Ky Baldwin isn’t afraid to switch things up. He loves a challenge as much as anyone, but Charlie doesn’t make things easy. Zero’s manager is a force of nature with a razor sharp tongue, a quick wit, and a no-nonsense attitude. Ky can’t stop thinking about him. Winning over Charlie becomes Ky’s pet project. But when the ice between them thaws, neither is prepared for the intensity of going from enemies to lovers. They’ll have to decide if they’re willing to start from scratch and take a chance on the unexpected.

Excerpt

“I know that was random, but it’s not a bad idea if you think about it. Want something to drink?” Charlie asked as he moved toward the kitchen.

I grabbed his wrist before he got anywhere. “Hang on. What are you doing?”

He cocked his head curiously but didn’t pull away. “I’m being practical. If you read any further about Virgos you probably found out we’re known for being sensible. And polite. So, I’m politely asking if you’d like a beverage while sensibly suggesting that I help out with your skating lessons.”

“Okay. First up…I don’t want a fuckin’ snack and second, it’s not a skating lesson. We’re skateboarding,” I said, glowering at him.

“I’ve heard it said both ways. Skating, skateboarding. I looked it up in Urban Dictionary too, so I’m pretty sure I’m right.”

“No. There’s something in your tone that makes it all wrong. Like you’re purposely trying to sabotage this.”

Charlie opened his mouth in a perfect O. “Gasp! I wouldn’t do that!”

“Cut the crap. You’re doing it now. You don’t want to learn, and you don’t want Oliver to either. It’s a control thing. But you can’t control what you don’t fuckin’ get. So take a seat and let me teach him without you freaking out or—why are you looking at me like that?”

“Like what?”

“I don’t know. You’re doing something weird with your eyes, though. You look spaced out.”

“Mmm. I’m trying not to swoon. You look so fierce and you’re holding my hand, Ky. You should feel my heart. It’s beating out of my chest. Seriously.” He fluttered his lashes a few times and bit his bottom lip.

I chuckled softly and stepped closer. “Are you flirting with me, Char?”

“No, it’s the other way around. You’re flirting with me. Big macho displays really get my motor running. Medium-sized ones do too. I love it when…”

Okay, so I lost myself. I tuned out the sound of his voice and concentrated on him. The mischievous glint in his eyes, the proud set of his shoulders, and the way his mouth curled at the corner. He was doing it again. Owning the moment. Taking it over. Charlie looked for weakness in any form, then slyly made adjustments before moving in for the kill. No doubt he thought I’d back down fast and run away. I wasn’t going anywhere.

I fixated on his bottom lip and inched closer. He kept talking…something about dick size or muscles…I wasn’t sure, but I liked the cadence of his voice. The teasing lilt and easy humor. I let go of his wrist, brushing his fingers before setting my hand on his hip. He went perfectly still.

Before he could ask me what the fuck I was doing, I kissed him.

It was more of a press of lips than a grand gesture. And though it might not rank as the kind of kiss that would change the world, I immediately knew it would change mine.

Everything in me went on high alert. I’d never been so in tune with a moment. The flutter of his eyelashes, the brush of his nose, and the soft sweetness of his lips against mine. Fuck, it was amazing. Like mind-blowing amazing. He tasted like cherries and smelled like sunshine mixed with something exotic.

I couldn’t be sure over the roar of my heart attempting to beat its way out of my chest, but I thought he hummed in approval, so I angled my head slightly to deepen the connection and pulled him closer. If he was anyone else, I probably would have stuck my tongue between his lips and let my hands roam all over his body. I wanted to, but I didn’t want to scare either of us. So I stayed where I was until the need for oxygen became an issue.

Then I jumped back two feet and stared at him with my eyes bugged out. “Holy fuck.”

Charlie set his fingers on his bottom lip and blinked like he was coming out of a daze. “You kissed me,” he said softly.

Purchase at Amazon

Meet the Author

Lane Hayes is grateful to finally be doing what she loves best. Writing full-time! It’s no secret Lane loves a good romance novel. An avid reader from an early age, she has always been drawn to well-told love story with beautifully written characters. These days she prefers the leading roles to both be men. Lane discovered the M/M genre a few years ago and was instantly hooked. Her debut novel was a 2013 Rainbow Award finalist and subsequent books have received Honorable Mentions, and won First Prize in the 2016 and 2017 Rainbow Awards. She loves red wine, chocolate and travel (in no particular order). Lane lives in Southern California with her amazing husband in a newly empty nest.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram

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A MelanieM Review : Coast To Coast (Arizona Raptors #1) by RJ Scott & V.L. Locey

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

When opposites attract, it’s not just the team that’s in for a shake-up.

When a stipulation in his father’s will throws Mark back into a family that disowned him, he has only two things on his mind; buying his way out of contractual obligations and running in the opposite direction as fast as he can. When neither option pans out, he finds he is now a one third owner of the struggling Arizona Raptors hockey team, and that is just about the worst thing he could have happened to him. Not only does he hate hockey, but the Raptors are a bottom-of-the-league team, rife with jealousies and anger in a locker room that only knows self-pity. How is he supposed to help turn things around when the only way to start fixing things is to form an alliance with the estranged siblings he’d run from fifteen years earlier?

Then there’s Rowen Carmichael, a stubborn, opinionated, irritating man with superiority issues and questionable taste in music. Butting heads with Rowen, who he’d never even wanted to hire in the first place, is one thing, but there is no way in hell that he will allow the growing attraction to the new coach become anything more. Until with everything on the line, he has to make decisions that will change his life forever.

After years of collegiate coaching, Rowen is given an offer that he simply can’t refuse, although perhaps he should. When he’s presented with the chance to take one of the worst teams in the league and mold them into a future cup contender, the challenge is just too alluring to pass up. He leaves his beloved Ontario behind and moves west to the arid city of Tucson where he is faced with a broken team, shoddy management, and players overflowing with resentment and bigotry.

Never in his twenty years of hockey has he ever seen such a raging dumpster fire of an organization. Yet there’s something about this team and this city that compels him to roll up his sleeves and start dismantling. He has his eye on a new associate coach that’s bound to makes waves, and several key players who should be sent packing. Now all he has to do is convince the new owners of the team that his choices are for the best. If only Mark Westman-Reid, one of three siblings who now own the Raptors, wasn’t so damned rock-headed, so damned snooty, and so damned appealing his job might be a bit easier.

The new series by RJ Scott and VL Locey picks up after the graduation of senior Ryker Madsen and his draft into the hated Arizona Raptors (Owatonna U series). You have to have read both the Harrisburg Railers series and the Owatonna U series to know exactly how loathsome this team is in just about every way. That’s the starting point and the road to redemption that Coast to Coast begins on.

It’s a huge thing to make the fans and readers like this team that we have frankly despised for so long and still do with some of the hateful players deeply embedded within the team.  And now Ryker is there, the last place we and him want him to be.  Yikes!

So how to dig the team out of the well of negative emotions the authors have dug for them? As the  blurb says, it starts with a shake-up.  In ownership and management and coaching.  All around.  The death of the team owner and his will reunites an estranged family with the son and brother that left years ago. Mark Westman-Reid’s presence is needed to help run the team, and that means staying in Arizona and leaving his business and life in NYC behind.  The last thing he wants to do.  And he clashes with the man his father hired. Rowen Carmichael,, there to turn the club around and given a certain carte blanche that irritates the sons that inherited the team and that, in his opinion, clearly don’t understand the game.

The strong personalities are set from the beginning. It’s a great opposites attract storyline that has it’s sexy, charismatic men snarling at it each from the beginning.  And that’s so hot. The men push, pull, dance around, until the heat just explodes. The relationship dynamics just work.

Other threads includes the fractured family with revelations of its own.  Some of the issues here were especially deep and involved some very serious elements,  I thought perhaps some of the family secrets were either dealt with too quickly or smoothed over, but perhaps it was the length of the book.  There was so much going on here, not just with Mark’s family but with the hugge elements on the team too.

That would be the defenseman,Aarni, who horrifically injured Ryker’s stepdad, the devil’s own thug on skates that has to be dealt with.   Rowen has a great group of young players we meet while still managing with the sour leftovers of a team at it’s lowest.  Here once more we get the writers best when telegraphing the inner workings of the locker room, skate practice, or the hesitate fumblings of a team trying to come together.

The last part of the story brings it all thundering together in a painful, thoughtful, and complicated ending that points the way to a more hopeful future for the Raptors and this couple. A definite surprise for all the longtime fans.And now I can’t wait for the next in the series.  I would definitely recommend reading the first two series for all that added knowledge of the characters you will be meeting and the situations talked about in the stories.  Plus look at all the great novels you will be reading.  Win win.

Cover art:Cover Design: Meredith Russell

 
Boook Details:

Kindle Edition, 199 pages
Published September 29th 2019 by Love Lane Books Ltd
ASINB07Y6N1B3B
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesArizona Raptors #1

 

A MelanieM Review: Just Like Heaven by T.L. Bradford

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Rating:   3.25 stars out of 5

Noah Sinclair
Noah Sinclair is best described as an egotistical, pompous, anal retentive, asshat. And those are his better qualities. Lately, Noah has lost touch with his playboy character “Jace” on the show Americana and can’t quite put his finger on why. The studio decides it is time to shake up his character by making him an offer he can’t refuse, literally. They will introduce a new love interest for his character “Jace.” Only this time, there’s a twist.

Josh Hill
Josh Hill is up a creek and sinking fast. He’s got no job, no money, no credit and is about to be kicked out of his apartment. Opportunity comes in the form of a job offer from the show Americana. Everything should be perfect; only there is one hitch. He will be the new love interest for Noah Sinclair’s character on the beloved show.

So, opposites are supposed to attract, right? Not so fast. No one said life was that easy. Both actors find themselves in untested waters. Will they be able to play a same-sex couple with no prior experience authentically? Well, they say practice makes perfect.

Carefree, fun-loving Josh and uptight, overbearing Noah, realize they need to make the best of their bad situation and are forced to find common ground. Over time, their roles in each other’s lives become blurred. Is their attraction fake, or is it real? To top it off, Noah has a dark skeleton in his closet that can prevent them from ever moving forward.

Can they get on the same page and save both of their careers and their relationship?

Or will they end up yesterday’s tabloid fodder?

Like Heaven by T.L. Bradford was an interesting read.  Just as there were elements to like and be entertained by there were also aspects of the story that were disjointed, character issues that took away from the plot, and continuity problems that you couldn’t overlook. Plus it just felt overly long.

The manner and plot is the initial element that drew me to read this story. Loved the idea of a Netflix type serial deciding to take a popular character down a new  “path” in the series storyline to gain new followers and higher ratings.  Sounds legit.  The story is almost narrated by both main characters, Josh and Noah.  Noah being the already popular actor on set, but in fact in danger of losing his job because his on series love interest was reassigned to another storyline.  The other actor?  A hardluck newbie, Josh, down to his last dime, almost ready to return home if something doesn’t happen soon. Both men say they are straight, and now become destined to play gay roles as lovers.

Great.  But this is not a comedy.

Bradford has created Noah with a dark, tormented past that will slowly reveals itself until it crashes out  with a horror towards the end. It’s with Noah’s character and history that I raise many issues.   We are told repeatedly that he was raised on an estate and his real father is rich.  The truth, which is not supposed to contradict that statement,  would actually have no bearing on reality. Fundamentalist whackjob preachers living on estates? Compounds perhaps.  Anyway, just didn’t connect.  As did so many other things about Noah’s upbring, the abuse, the lack of reporting, including his college incidents.  I don’t want to go into particulars because that runs into spoilers but lets just say the things that happended to Noah, the lack of reporting all throughout his life, how if affected him.  And his lack of therapy.  There are huge holes here that are never resolved.

That speaks to changes in the character’s personality.  He is not the most likeable fish in the sea tbh.  While he will be honest about  why is his hurting Josh, being emotionally unavailable etc, , and the author clearly wants you to believe that they have laid down the foundation here  for this couple, instead there was a part of me that thought there was something missing. Possibly because Noah himself seemed so unstable and fluid for someone who is supposed to be so rigid.

Josh on the other hand was adorable.  I enjoyed his character (except for the bit where he was worrying that he was the “woman” in the relationship because it made him less of a man. Really? I found that  demeaning to women, btw.  But the author breezed through that convo in a matter of minutes so all done.

The parents of both Josh and Noah (stepfather) were wonderfully drawn and spending time with them as well as the rest of the cast and families was a joy.  Made the book fly when other parts just dragged.

Continuity is a problem here.  As I talked about years ago in a blog post, readers care about the pets authors give their characters.  A author either needs to commit to  them or leave them out.  Here Bradford does the worst possible.  The author introduces Lola the cat as Noah’s sole companion as a way to show how restricted Noah’s life is  and how routine. And then dumps the animal all together, forgetting the cat until it makes a brief appearance at approximately 86% where Josh makes some comment about Noah returning home to “feed Lola”. Than the cat disappears for good. Smh.  The poor cat could have been a porcelain dolly for all the emotional weight that animal carried or effort the author put into it.  Why not just leave it  out?

There’s also the eye patch (won’t say how or on who that appears). But sometime you are looking at both eyes, sometime just one.  Ugh.  Continuity people.  Wounds also work that way as well here for secondary characters.  The end of the story just gets out of control and my disbelief ran deep.  In about everything.  Especially Noah’s actions.

Well, I just think the promise here was huge in the original storyline.  The two men meeting as actors, learning about their sexuality, coming out and finding a way to happiness.  For me at least, all that stuff with the father, well it almost belonged in another story.  it was like there were two books here and two Noah’s.  I bet you can tell which novel I preferred reading..

 

Cover Artist: Photo by Neospot, design by T.L. Bradford: It’s a half naked guy.  Doesn’t really have anything to do with the storyline.  Meh.

Buy Links

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 484 pages
Expected publication: September 4th 2019
ASINB07V9F9B4J
Edition Language English

A MelanieM Review:A Rhythm You Feel (The Rock Gods: East Coast Label #1) by Ann Lister

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

 

Blade: As the lead singer of Hard Core, I’ve been taught several key life lessons. Unfortunately, I’ve also ignored many of them in the last twenty minutes alone, which is why I’m now being chased by a hoard of crazed fans.

But my worst misjudgment today? Going outside in public without security or a backup plan. Screaming fans come with the job and the fame is as much of a blessing as it is a curse, but I still couldn’t imagine doing any other line of work.

Music owns me and I am happy to be her bitch.

Nico: I knew who he was as soon as he burst through the front door of my store and I was absolutely starstruck and speechless. Yes, me with my own hardened attitude and jaded outlook on life had lost the ability to talk in the presence of Blade.

I’m an ex-con. I paid my debt to society, and I have my own brand of scars to show from the time I spent behind bars. My life’s regrets stain my soul as much as the ink of my tattoos color my skin. Solace for me came with ownership of a bookstore. It was a peaceful place to work until a certain rockstar blew in from the street like a Category 5 hurricane.

Hurricane Blade was about to make landfall and I wasn’t sure I’d survive the storm.

A Rhythm You Feel (The Rock Gods: East Coast Label #1) by Ann Lister is the first in a new series by this author featuring a series of bands that play together and if this novel is any indication, it’s going to be a winner.  Ann Lister has her rock n’ rock cred having run her own video production company and worked within the music industry and it shows in her writing and the world building in this story.  We see not just the “Rock Gods” but their many layers of support from the fleet of eighteen wheelers and busses that carry them from venue to venue to the men and women that provide the setup for the productions and everyday security.  We see them in the recording studios, racing to hotels, interviews, green rooms, and even the parties.  It’s truly the good, the bad, and the ugly here.  Raw, gritty , and the golden…. all energized and hauled out and then folded into a romance.

Told in alternating pov, we start with Blade on the run…a fit thrown during practice and an ill advised flight for fresh air lead to a stampede of fans after him down the streets of New York City, His thoughts are bratty, funny, and actually realistically full of fear as he searches for refuge and coming up short with the screaming women hot on his heels.

From running fear filled star to Nico, that’s the next turn.  Talk about opposites attract trope.  This is it.  Nico is a rough around the edges, bookstore own.  He’s a man who has done time in prison, working to maintain his sobriety, and keep the legacy and his livelihood that is the bookstore his father left him running.  He has restricted his life after his father’s death down to the store and a tight schedule.  And now a rock star has crashed through his front door at closing.

There are many elements at play here in this story.  Most of them focus on Nico and not Blade.  Nico’s questioning of his sexuality (prison has a  lot to do with that), his realistic struggle to maintain sobriety when certain aspects of Blade’s lifestyle screams otherwise and I (honestly I don’t know why) kept expecting these issues to get a maybe less adult treatment or some GFY tag.  But Lister went for honesty here and I admire that.

Nico admitted his doubts and the manner in which he was introduced to sexual acts but also his attraction.  I believed it. And him.  As for the sobriety? Communication, some arguments, asking if he needed to call his sponsors (recognition of AA), all the right measures for someone who is an alcoholic and conscious of their sobriety.  It was a realistic part of the romance, not outside of it, astonishingly adult and wonderful.

If I thought the ending was a little rushed (and I did), well what went before was amazing.  The author was clearly setting up the universe for other stories to come with  some of the other bands and band members.  Hopefully we will also get to check up on Blade and Nico and see where they stand in their relationship as well.

Love opposites attract?  Rockers and their lovers?  Contemporary romance? How about all three?  Then pick up A Rhythm You Feel (The Rock Gods: East Coast Label #1) by Ann Lister and get in on the beginning of what looks like a wonderful new series.  I loved it and think you will too.

Cover art:  It’s perfect for Blade.  Hot, sexy, and rocking.  Love it.

Sales Links:  Amazon

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 347 pages
Published July 29th 2019 by Rock Gods, Inc.
ASINB07VV7YTN8
Edition LanguageEnglish
Series The Rock Gods: East Coast Label #1

A MelanieM Audio Review: Out in the Field (Out in College #4) by Lane Hayes and Michael Pauley (Narrator)

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Max Maldonado loves baseball. He knows playing first base at a private college probably won’t get him to the big leagues, but he doesn’t mind. He loves the game and his teammates. If he has to stay in the closet until he graduates, that’s okay. Baseball comes first. Relationships are complicated anyway. And after his recent messy breakup, Max prefers to keep things simple.

Phoenix Bell is a fabulous theater geek. He’s excited about his recent transfer to a new school with an elite liberal arts program. Life has been on hold for a while, but this opportunity feels like the fresh start he was hoping for when he moved to California. And the chance reunion with the hot closeted jock is an unexpected surprise. The two men have nothing in common and their timing couldn’t be worse. However, when their unconventional alliance blossoms into friendship and perhaps something more, it may be time to make some hard decisions. And perhaps risk it all…out in the field.

I haven’t read all of Lane Hayes Out in College series so found that listening to Out in the Field worked perfectly as a standalone story and such a sweet contemporary romance it was.  Made all the more enjoyable by the lively narration by Michael Pauley who embodied his characters perfectly, I easily connected to Max, his love of baseball and his issues of being closeted.  At home, ata college, and on the field.  Especially after he find out that his “brief meetup” is now on campus and hotter than ever.  And definitely out as can be.

Phoenix Bell is a delight of a character, his energy flies off the page as does his vulnerability.  You definitely fear for his heart.  What you end up  fearing for is Max’s as well.

The characters are all well drawn, the situations realistic and believable.  And the locker room conversations nicely resolved, those I really appreciated.  The development of the relationship was slow but the dynamics works so well, supported by great secondary characters you grow to love just as much as the MCs. Whether it’s Phoenix’s twin sister or Max’s familym bringing them in just adds such a richness to this story and their romance that it made me smile all throughout the story.

As I said before the narration by Michael Pauley just enhanced this already wonderful novel, his ability to key into each character’s personality and bring it to life making this audio’s listening time fly by.

I highly recommend Out in the Field (Out in College #4) by Lane Hayes and Michael Pauley (Narrator) for those of you who love to listen to your contemporary romances.  This is a real gem!

Cover Art is great and perfect for the story.

Sales Links:  Amazon | Audible

Audio Book Details:

Listening Length: 5 hours and 31 minutes.

Audible Audio, 6 pages
Published July 25th 2019 by Lane Hayes
ASINB07VKGJ587
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesOut in College #4