Tag: Josh Lanyon

What I Read Last Week

Posted June 2, 2014 by Tracy in Features | 5 Comments

Hi All,

This past week was a sad one as my father-in-law died suddenly on the 29th.  He was 76 and was a good man who loved his family dearly.  He was always there with his one-liners and had a great dry, sarcastic humor.  He was a LA County Sheriff for many years and was a veteran as well.  He will be greatly missed.

Needless to say I’m not up for long book descriptions so I’m only going to be listing what I read and their ratings.

Legend (Wolf Lake book 1) by Jennifer Kohout 
3 out of 5

To Wed a Wicked Highlander (Bad Boys of the Highlands #3) by Victoria Roberts
3.5 out of 5

The Kraken King, Part VII: The Kraken King and the Empress’s Eyes (Iron Seas #4.7) by Meljean Brook
5 out of 5

Fall From India Place (On Dublin Street #4) by Samantha Young
4 out of 5

Knight of My Dreams by Lynsay Sands
3.5 out of 5

The Kraken King, Part VIII: The Kraken King and the Greatest Adventure (Iron Seas #4.8) by Meljean Brook
5 out of 5 
 
Everything I Know by Josh Lanyon
3.5 out of 5

The Virgin’s Guide to Misbehaving (Bluebonnet #4) by Jessica Clare
4 out of 5

Two for One (The Club #1) by Ann B. Harrison
3 out of 5

Happy Reading! 

What I Read Last Week

Posted August 20, 2012 by Tracy in Features | 6 Comments

Well let’s see – the girls started school on Thursday and they are both thrilled.  The youngest got a male teacher and so far she really likes him (for the whole 2 days she was in class).  My oldest loves her schedule and her teachers – hopefully it will stay that way. 🙂

I’m home today with a thick head, sore throat, ear ache and temperature.  Boohoo. lol  Oh well, whatcha gonna do, right?

Ok, on to what I read last week.  Sorry, I think these descriptions will be abbreviated because of my head so if something doesn’t make sense just laugh and carry on. 🙂

First up for the week was Highland Bride by Hannah Howell.  This is a book that Holly sent to me and I’m so damned glad she did.  We talked about it over coffee the morning we were leaving RWA and I’d almost forgotten about it when it showed up.  Such a great medieval romance!  You can read more about the book and my review here. 4.5 out of 5

Next was Savage: Daughters of the Jaguar book 1 by Willow Rose.  This was the story of a boy from Denmark who ends up in Florida to study for a year.  His next door neighbors are odd but he ends up falling in love.  Too bad they’re not like other people.  You can read my full review here. 3 out of 5

Next up was A Perfect Stranger by Jaden Skye.  This one I read for Book Binge (the review will post this afternoon) and it was one that didn’t work for me in so many different ways.  The story is about 1 woman in particular but the series is about Tom’s River (I think it’s supposed to be in Wisconsin?) and it’s a huge soap opera.  We get to know the citizens of Tom’s River and frankly I wouldn’t want to know any of them except the character Hunter and he was a drifter that wasn’t from there.  The story was mostly about a woman whose husband disappears without a trace and then the character stories fan out from the people in relation to the woman.  A very character driven story.  If you like soap operas then this might work better from you than it did for me. 1 out of 5

Of Eternal Life by Micah Persell was another one I read for Book Binge.  This story is about a woman who just graduated from med school and is recruited to supposedly help refurbish an old military hospital to help the locals.  Instead they have no patients and are just in the lab constantly.  She comes across a naked guy in the supply closet that she feels strangely comfortable with and he ends up kidnapping her and they head across country running from the bad guys.  This was an interesting story as it was mostly a contemporary read but definitely had a bit of the paranormal involved when it came to finding the Garden of Eden and eating from  a tree.  Pretty entertaining in the end. 3.25 out of 5  You can read my full review here.

Next up was The Way to a Duke’s Heart by Caroline Linden.  This is the last book in The Truth About the Duke series and we actually get to know the heir apparent, Charlie, quite well.  He’s investigating more to try to find the person who was blackmailing his father and the clues lead to a man who is currently searching for investors in his canal project.  Charlie thinks that some woman, including our heroine, Tessa, might be in on the scheme and he tries to ingratiate himself into their lives and follows them to the boondocks.  What he finds is that his heart is on the line – oh and he finds out stuff about the blackmailer too. 🙂  Good story – I’ll review this one next week. 4 out of 5

Hard Tail by JL Merrow is the story of Tim who is basically laid off and then his wife leaves him.  Right after that he finds out his brother was in an accident and Tim ends up taking over his brother’s bike shop til he’s back on his feet.  Tim ends up having feelings for the bike repairman, Matt, but Matt’s in a relationship with someone.  This is a really great story of two men trying to find their way to each other and it was wonderful.  It was fun, emotional and humorous and had a serious issue involved as well.  I’ve only read 3 books by Merrow so far but I definitely need to read more.  Her books are always fabulous and I haven’t read one I didn’t like so far. 4.5 out of 5

Mummy Dearest by Josh Lanyon is the first book in the XOXO Files series.  We meet Drew who is in Wyoming to view a mummy in order to get published.  He runs into trouble with both his live-in boyfriend (as the boyfriend didn’t want him to leave…for his own selfish reasons) and with a film crew who is at the museum to film.  Drew and the film crew end up working together and then Drew and the host of the show, Fraser, have a little alone time together.  When they are watched, chased and run over by a mummy they think that maybe there’s more going on in the museum than they originally thought.  This was a cute story  that had me laughing out loud at times.  I felt horrible for the way that Drew was treated by his boyfriend and wanted nothing more than for Drew to get together with Fraser…and I got my wish.  I’m looking forward to reading more in this series. 4 out of 5

Last for the week was The Ugly Duchess by Eloisa James.  This is the story of childhood friends – in fact they grew up in the same house and they end up marrying.  They marry, however, because of the boy’s criminal father and though James does love Daisy and vice versa she’s not happy when she finds out the facts behind the marriage.  This was a good book but there was a lot of it that didn’t work for me.  I’ll post my review either later this week or next.  3.25 out of 5

My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
Now or Never by Michele Bardsley
Of Eternal Life by Micah Persell

Happy Reading!

What I Read Last Week

Posted April 3, 2012 by Tracy in Features | 5 Comments

It’s April! Can you believe it? This year is going way too fast for my liking! lol
Thanks again for all the birthday wishes for my hubby. We had a couple of nice celebrations for him and rang in his new year rather well. 🙂
I won’t go in to the fridge and the water hook up because frankly it’s absolutely ridiculous. The end result – no…it’s not hooked up yet. They came but were unable to hook it up. Maybe by the time I’m 60 or so they’ll get it fixed. Of course by that time I’ll need a new fridge. lol
It was a good reading week…
I started off with All She Wrote by Josh Lanyon. The continuation of the Holmes and Moriarity series has Christopher heading off to Connecticut to help an old friend run a readers weekend at her house. The woman was once a mentor to Christopher so he’s happy to help. The woman actually thinks that there’s someone trying to kill her and wants Christopher to investigate. There’s much suspense and speculation about what’s really going on but it did drag a bit for my liking and I wanted to be on the edge of my seat. J.X. and Christopher also take their relationship to a new level and I’m curious to see what happens next to the couple as Christopher still seemed a bit ambivalent about the whole pairing. 4 out of 5
Next I read Just Down the Road by Jodi Thomas. This was a great installment in her Harmony Texas series. We got to meet new characters and see recurring ones and find out what’s happening there. You can read my review here. 4.5 out of 5
Rules of the Game by Sandy James was my next read. This was the story of a woman who feels that she needs a certain type of man to be her companion when he hits her high school reunion. She heads to a bar to pick him up and so our love story begins. Maybe this one spoke to me because I picked my hubby up in a bar as well lo those many years ago. lol You can read my review here. 4 out of 5
My Tracy’s TBR Challenge read for the week was Primal Bonds by Jennifer Ashley. I didn’t read the first book in this series but I liked what I read in this one. It had a wolf shifter heading to Texas to get away from a mate-claim that the son of her alpha was proposing. She then gets mate-claimed by a wildcat shifter and it’s all supposed to be on paper – not real. But the couple find their attraction is so much more. The story also revolves around a group of shifters that’s trying to take over the human part of the world but taking fellow shifters down at the same time. It was a good paranormal. 4 out of 5
Improper Relations by Juliana Ross is a novella that comes out later this month. It’s the story of a poor relation living with her deceased husband’s family and acting as companion. When she witnesses her cousin-by-marriage having sex with a maid she’s intrigued by the fact that the woman actually enjoyed it. Women enjoying sex? How odd! lol They start a sexual relationship that eventually turns into more. I’ll post my review later this month. 4 out of 5
Sleeping Angel by Greg Herren was the story of a youth who gets in a car accident and is in a coma for 2 weeks. When Eric wakes up he finds that he has amnesia and can’t remember a thing about who he is or who anyone is for that matter. He also has no idea why he had a guy in the back seat of his wrecked car that had been shot. Eric tries to put the pieces of his life back together little by little by asking questions. What he finds is that he really doesn’t care for the person that he’s hearing about, the things he did and said. He also starts making waves when he makes headway into finding out who shot his one time friend. I thought when I first started reading this that it was an m/m book. While the story does focus a bit on Eric’s one time friend who were gay and Eric’s bullying of said “friend” it’s more a book about a boy finding out who he really is. I didn’t care for Eric all that much when I found out about his gay bullying but he definitely grew on me. I also had some issues with his very good friend who was gay and wouldn’t stand up for his partner when Eric was verbally abusing him. In the end though I thought it was a really good book and I’m glad I read it. 4 out of 5
Next up was Confessions from an Arranged Marriage by Miranda Neville. This was more of a “Holy shit I’ve been caught with my head up a ladies skirt and dammit it wasn’t the lady I thought it was – guess I shouldn’t have had so much to drink” kind of marriage. lol In order to avoid scandal a couple gets married. This is the story of them trying to deal with it all – especially since they don’t like each other at all. I’ll post my review of this one this week.
Last for the week was The Werewolf’s Wife by Michele Hauf. A werewolf saves a witch from burning at the stake (no, not a long time ago – in modern times) and they end up getting drunk and then married. They part ways and 13 years later he looks her up so that he can get a divorce. Interesting. She is in a panic when he comes to the door because she’s just found out that her 12 year old son has been kidnapped. She engages the werewolf to help her and he’s none too pleased when he finds out that the kid MAY be his. It was a good story but the characters just didn’t speak to me that much. I’ll post my review on The Book Binge next week. 3 out of 5
My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
Happy Reading!

Guest Review: Men Under The Mistletoe by Ava March, Josh Lanyon, Harper Fox, and K.A. Mitchell

Posted February 5, 2012 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 0 Comments

Judith’s review of Men Under the Mistletoe by Josh Lanyon, Harper Fox, Ava March, & K.A. Mitchell

Baby it’s Cold Outside

A man receives the gift of pleasure at the hands of two expert lovers. Boyhood sweethearts get a second chance at romance. Two very proper gentlemen indulge their forbidden desires. And a Christmas tree farmer has an epiphany. It may be cold outside but these four holiday novellas will warm you up.

Anthology includes:

My True Love Gave to Me by Ava March

Winter Knights by Harper Fox

Lone Star by Josh Lanyon

The Christmas Proposition by K.A. Mitchell

I don’t do anthologies, period! I don’t know why the format has never clicked with me but it just hasn’t. Now having said that, I turn right around and decide to read this one, mainly because I don’t read a lot of M/M romance and I am trying to read more of it, and because there are a couple of authors included in this line-up that I like because of stuff I have read in the past. These novellas are definitely holiday related, but they are all perfectly OK to be read any other time of the year. They are just plain good stories about good people and those that love them. As in all good stories they are built around a love relationship that is in crisis in one way or another. But all of us romance lovers know that going in, so it isn’t something that usually bothers us. The mark of a good story is how they resolve the crisis, as I see it.

My True Love Gave To Me by Ava March is a historical novella featuring two men of 19th century England when being openly gay put one’s reputation, one’s social position, and possibly one’s life in danger. Both men were young, had met in university, and while the older of the two was comfortable with his sexual preferences, the other man was not. He gave in to their attraction for one another with hidden groping and short quick encounters in hidden corners of the campus, but when it came down to spending some quality time with his lover, Thomas, the younger of the two, gave in to his fear and not only left his lover but also left the country. Four years later, Thomas returns to England from New York and is mature and accepting of his homosexuality and he knows that “Sasha” is his true love. But the man he encounters upon his return is cold, bitter, unforgiving. It is a very emotional story that will tug at the reader’s heart strings and is written so well that I had no difficulty feeling the stress and hurt between these two lovers.

Winter Knights by Harper Fox is set in Northern England and features two men who are at different stages of their personal journey toward accepting who they are. They had been in a relationship of sorts for three years when one of the men breaks off the relationship and declares that not only won’t he “come out” to his family but he is renewing his engagement to his ex-fiance. Now begins a bit of magical involvement with some well-know mythological characters who are also gay lovers and who bring healing and peace to the man whose lover has left him. This is a more difficult story to get one’s head around– not that it isn’t well-written, but it has the sense of fantasy and myth about it yet appears on the surface to be contemporary and real. The resolution of the crisis was surprising to me, and it is one of the really complicated stories of the four.

Lone Star by Josh Lanyon is set in modern-day Texas and features a man who left his hometown and his dad 12 years earlier after his dad refused to not only reject his choice of occupation but also his homosexuality, telling him to leave and never return. Add to this trauma the fact that the man he loved deeply and dearly not only refused to leave their hometown with him, but also refused to “come out” to his family. Now he has returned to settle his dad’s estate–an old, rundown ranch that has been left vacant for six months. It is Christmas time, the weather is terrible, and he has just lost the chance at a prime role as one of New York’s featured dancers. He has also happened upon his lover being serviced by one of the guest performer. You see, our guy is the principal male lead of the American Ballet Troup, a life and a occupation choice his dad never could accept. He wants to get his dad’s personal effects taken care of and the ranch put up for sale, but while he is considering this as he journey’s from the airport, he has a terrible accident which totals his car. As it so happens, the car that was driving behind him a ways back was a Texas Ranger and, of all things, the man who refused to come with him 12 years earlier. This is a story that starts out tense and stays that way for awhile yet almost from the first the reader perceives that the tension comes from feelings they both have buried and have now leaped to the surface when they are least expected. The resolution of their crisis was another surprise–one that I found inventive and one that had the smack of reality–real people dealing with life’s realities and working to preserve their love honestly.

The Christmas Proposition by K.A.Mitchell features two guys who are from vastly different “walks” of life. One is the unhappy and sort of unwilling proprietor of a Christmas tree ranch–an enterprise that barely broke even to the extent that he had to take a second job to pay the rest of the bills and keep a roof over his and his sister’s heads. After three silent years, Bryce returns–the owner of a major natural gas company and Mel’s lover in the past, and one who has just up and left–or at least that’s the way it felt. Now he has returned and they once again reunite, but the road to true love seldom is smooth, and while Bryce is certainly a part of the activities of the moment, there is every expectation that he will once again disappear. It’s a story of uneasy relationship, deep anxiety over the future, and a sense that life and love just kept passing him by. There is a ton of friendship and family connection here and even a wedding, but it is during that context Bryce did something that set Mel on his ear and he froze. Kudos for Mel’s sister who seems to be the family member with her head on straight (no pun intended) and even though she is in drug and alcohol recovery, she has a sense of what the mature response to the proposition should be.

All in all, each of these novellas are wonderful love stories and a great collection of tales that deal with the issues that all lovers probably face from time to time. These are real guys with big hearts who must deal with the pressures of a world that still feels very uneasy about their orientation, yet they forge onward in the search for authentic relationship as do all human beings. This anthology may be a holiday release, but it is well-worth reading any time of the year.

I give it a rating of 4 out of 5

You can read more from Judith at Dr J’s Book Place.

This book is available from Carina Press. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

What I Read Last Week

Posted December 12, 2011 by Tracy in Reviews | 8 Comments

Well it’s a rainy Monday here in So. Cal and I’m home with a sick child.  She’s just a lump on the couch the poor thing (my youngest). So far I’ve gotten some much needed reviews written – thank heavens!

This past Saturday I was lucky enough to be able to attend a So Cal Blogger/Author gathering.  We met at Renee’s house for a potluck and it was Renee, KB Alan, Nico Rosso, Zoe Archer, Vivienne Westlake and me.  It was a small group but we had a great time talking and of course having our book swap.  It was a good time.

So on to what I read – it will be brief as the queen bee on the couch over there is calling for attention. 🙂

I started off the week with Any Given Christmas by Candis Terry.  This was a cute contemporary about a professional football player coming to terms with the possibility that he’ll never play again after an injury.  You can read my review here. 3.5 out of 5

Next up was Bicycle Built for Two by Jeff Adams.  This was a cute m/m about two men who meet at a charity bike event.  They hit it off but they live in two different cities.  Besides the location of their romancing the book but just sweet.  There was really no angst and I liked that about the story. 3 out of 5

Next was a very short story called Hollow by AC Ruttan that is a bit of a take off on Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman. It was ok but just really short.  2 out of 5

Mate Test by Amber Kell was my Tracy’s TBR Challenge read for the week.  It was a novella about a man who thinks he’s being sent to a planet to make a mineral deal but he’s really been signed up for the Consort contest for the King.  He’s blind of a sorts but he’s bonded to a dragon so the dragon helps him see.  The romance was more of an instant attraction and besides feeling the attraction and doing the contests there just wasn’t a lot of “romance” per se.  3 out of 5

Next up was Men Under the Mistletoe by Josh Lanyon, Ava March, KA Mitchell & Harper Fox.  This was a 4 novella anthology about men, their loves and all had a Christmas theme.  You can read my review here.  4 out of 5

After that was Lady Northam’s Wicked Surrender by Vivienne Westlake.  This was the story of a woman who fell in love and then when the man went off to war she was never contacted again.  She was convinced the man never loved her by his best friend and she ended up marrying the friend.  Now years later the husband has died and the love has come back to try to win her love.  They find they still love each other as well as finding some deceptions in their pasts from people they trusted.  It was great little story at only 55 pages.  3.75 out of 5

Scandal of the Year by Laura Lee Guhrke is the second book in the Abandoned at the Altar series and it was a good one.  Two people who think they know what the other’s about but really they have no idea.  It was a good story and was well worth the read. 4 out of 5

Last for the week was Holiday Kisses by Jaci Burton, Shannon Stacey, HelenKay Dimon and Alison Kent,  another great anthology from Carina Press.  The stories are all sweet and again, all based around Christmas.  I posted this one on The Book Binge site so when it posts I’ll let you know. 4 out of 5

My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
Lawe’s Justice by Lora Leigh
A Beginner’s Guide to Rakes by Suzanne Enoch
To Wed a Wild Lord by Sabrina Jeffries
Love, Come to Me by Lisa Kleypas

Happy Reading!