A MelanieM Review: Hockey Holidays Anthology – Various Authors

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Rating: 4.25 stars out of 5

This is a delightful Christmas anthology to indulge in if you love romances in every combination.  While the stories here are mostly het, there are three great M/M romances to lose yourself in for the holidays.  All of them focus on hockey, hockey teams and their  players in their search for HEA.    Another bonus?  All proceeds are donated to charity, 100 percent.

Even TJ Oshie of the Washington Capitals tweeted about the Anthology as the proceeds benefit the “USA Warriors Ice Hockey who operate sled and standing hockey programs for wounded combat veterans and service-disabled vets”.

**100% of the proceeds from sales of this anthology will be donated to charity.** I will say the others 

While the Anthology itself does not indicate which story is M/M or M/F, I have pulled them out for you below. While all the others were fun, I’m just going to review the 3 LGBT stories here written by RJ Scott,  V.L. Locey, and, a new author for me, Susan Scott Shelley.

This holiday season unwrap a brand-new collection of hockey romances that includes humor, drama, love, and – of course – hockey!

Each book is EXCLUSIVE to the anthology and NEVER BEFORE PUBLISHED by USA Today, New York Times, and all your favorite bestselling hockey romance authors.

Dallas Christmas by RJ Scott (M/M) Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Logan knows lusting after his captain’s brother can only lead to trouble. But when fate throws them together, it’s hard not to fall in love.

It’s what I’ve come to expect of RJ Scott, a lovely hockey romance. The angst here is in the closeted Logan, fearful for his career, loss of friends and standing with the fans, while very much in love with a man he thinks he can’t have.  It’s very well done, you feel like you know these men and their situation, and the resolution isn’t one of ease but love won out.  Loved it.

Holding On Tight by Susan Scott Shelley (M/M)  Rating 5 stars out of 5
For defenseman Vince Forsberg and his boyfriend Joseph Parelli, the pressure to make their first Christmas together perfect leads to a lot of chaos, holiday mishaps, and some unexpected results.

Susan Scott Shelley is a new author for me and I’m very happy that after each story, there is a section on each author and their novels so I can start a new TBR list for her.  This one my top favorite, a tale of a “perfect Christmas” gone off the rails in every way possible and yet it became the one to remember.  Here a couple, newly moved in together (one giving up a job, house, and state), tries too hard to give the other the perfect Christmas to make up for the stress and strains of the move and the things  going not as smoothly as expected. That they aren’t talking to each other about their fears isn’t helping.

Shelley makes us feel this couple bending under the pressures of the holiday, the high expectations they’ve placed upon themselves, and the love that acts as a support and bridge when everything keeps crashing down.  It’s shows everything that’s wrong and right about the holidays.  Just terrific.  I need  more from this author.

A Star-Crossed Christmas by V.L. Locey (M/M) Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5
Two years ago, Mitch shared an explosive kiss with his childhood friend Shaun. Will Christmas be the time for the two men to find a future together that works?

When I think of hockey romance, VL Locey name jumps to mind and this is the reason why.  Her ability to mix her love of sports and romance realistically along with great characters. I’m not talking about just the main ones, but the supporting cast like families as well.  Their past history as friends, the town, it all comes across as authentic, and you feel for these  men both as the young boys they were and the people trying to find a path to each other now.  Heartwarming and perfect for the holidays.

When You’re Ready by Toni Aleo (M/F)
He knew she was the one, she wasn’t so sure, which is why Grace and James’ love story is one for the ages.


Of the ones below they ran the gamut from 2.75 stars to 4 stars  out of 5.  Some connected to already established series I was unfamiliar with, others were standalone.  I thought they were cute, quick warm-hearted holiday stories and only made one notation.

A Second Shot by Shannon Stacey (M/F)
She was the one who got away, but when their paths cross once again, all he wants for Christmas is the chance to take another shot at love.

A Wolfe Brothers Christmas by Jami Davenport (M/F)
Spending their first Christmas together in years, the Wolfe brothers fumbling attempts to create good memories go awry.

Christmas Crosscheck by Jaymee Jacobs (M/F)
Bryan’s planning to propose to Georgiana on Christmas Eve, but will the chaos of their families’ first holiday together ruin their special moment?

Final Slapshot by Jean C. Joachim (M/F)
Harry “Deke” Edmonds hides his secret, hoping for a Christmas miracle. When confronted with the truth, will his heart-breaking decision cost him everything?

Lucky Holiday by Jennifer Lazaris (M/F)
Tyler Quinn made the biggest mistake of his life when he broke Ella’s heart, and he’ll need more than an ace up his sleeve to win her back in time for Christmas.

Dmitri’s Christmas Angel by Kat Mizera
Two women. Two surprise pregnancies. Dmitri Papadakis is screwed.

His Christmas Cinderella by Kate Willoughby (M/F) Rating: 2.75 stars out of 5
When Gideon Aguilar mistakes Bailey Peng for his Uber driver it leads to a night he can’t forget. But after she disappears the next morning will he be able to find his perfect fit?

I’m rating this one for a reason.  At first I thought it was adorable but then I thought about the idea of someone  impersonating an Uber driver and if the sexes were reversed.  If the driver is a female, oh that’s so cute.  If the driver is male, then we have issues.  Big ones.  Yep, think it needs to be dinged for that element alone.  Could have met cute another way.  Instead this is just creepy.

Red-Hot Trouble by Lily Harlem (M/F)
Sophie Delaney never intended to walk into ‘that’ locker room, at ‘that’ moment, but she did, and now she’ll never be the same again.

Christmas Interference by Lisa B. Kamps (M/F)
Shane Masters no longer believes in happy-ever-afters. Can the woman who knew him best thaw his heart with a little holiday magic before it’s too late?

The Devoted Father and the Introvert by Mary Smith (M/F)
Elexis Dunaway loves Twitter and work. Dag Limon loves his twin boys and playing professional hockey. Soon their worlds will collide with one simple tweet.

Her Best Worst Boyfriend by Melanie Ting (M/F)
This Christmas, Em Davis is bringing Mr. Wrong home to prove a point to her parents, but Ian Reid might turn out to be Mr. Right.

Icing isn’t Only for Cookies by Melody Heck Gatto (M/F)
Avery James wasn’t looking for love when tall, dark, and deliciously handsome hockey player Kyler Wilson walked into her bakery.

The Playboy by Stephanie Julian (M/F)
Kyle is back in the minors to rehab his career but that’s not all he’s hoping to fix. Convincing the girl he left behind to take another chance on this former playboy will be harder than resurrecting his career.

All I Want by Stephanie Kay (M/F)
When fate brings first loves Maggie and Alex back to the same city, will Maggie be brave enough to give the relationship she never forgot a second chance?

Cover art: Kim Killion.  Perfect cover for an anthology. He’s adorable and has the right props, and I mean that in every way   possible.

Sales Links:  Amazon

Book Details:

ebook
Published November 13th 2018
ISBN 139781386861461
Edition Language English

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

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Universal Buy Link

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


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

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


Brioche For Two – V.L Locey

 

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

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

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

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

 

Sweeter than Honey – C.M. Valencourt 


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

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

 

Special Nights – DJ Jamison 


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

 

Winters Chill – Cathy Brockman


The ice storm of a century hits Missouri.

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

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

Can an ice storm thaw two frozen hearts?

 

Beach Boys – Annabelle Jacobs


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

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

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

 

Who Do You Love, My Valentine – EJ Smyth

 

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


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

 

Favorite Flowers – Chris McHart 


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

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

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

 

The Last Chance – RJ Scott


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

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

Authors

 
V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, a flock of assorted domestic fowl, and two Jersey steers. 


When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand. She can also be found online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and GoodReads.

 
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About new author, C.M. Valencourt

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

 

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

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

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About new author, Cathy Brockman

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

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

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

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

Thanks for reading and watch for more Lane and Jeffrey.

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

 
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Annabelle Jacobs lives in the South West of England with three rowdy children, and two cats. An avid reader of fantasy herself for many years, Annabelle now spends her days writing her own stories. They’re usually either fantasy or paranormal fiction, because she loves building worlds filled with magical creatures, and creating stories full of action and adventure. Her characters may have a tough time of it—fighting enemies and adversity—but they always find love in the end. 


Twitter – https://twitter.com/AJacobs_fiction
Website – www.annabellejacobs.com
Email – ajacobsfiction@gmail.com
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/ajacobsfiction
 
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About new author, EJ Smyth

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

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

www.ejsmythauthor.com

 

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About Chris McHart

 

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


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

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

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

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