Tag: Ava March

Review: O Come All Ye Kinky edited by Sarah Frantz

Posted December 12, 2012 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Christmas is a time of love and joy, and the New Year is a time of renewal. But they are also times of stress and strife, family drama, pressure and heartache—a potent mix of high expectations and conflicted emotions. Add in power exchange relationships, kinky gift swaps, and unconventional love in a sometimes unforgiving world, and you have a formula for a sizzling anthology of stories that tug at your heart. 

Tree Topper by Jane Davitt 

Stan and Martin have been seeing each other for 6 months and love each other but it’s just not working for Martin. He wants to dominate Stan and Stan is a born submissive but every time he tries something new with Stan it seems that Stan shies away. In the meantime Stan is getting more and more mouthy and disrespectful to Martin and of course Martin feels that everything is his fault as he just doesn’t have any Dom experience.

When it comes down to finally breaking down and communicating about what’s up Martin and Stand discover that it’s a little bit of problem on both sides of the fence. They work out a plan that will work for both of them and they’re both thrilled. Especially when Christmas presents bring lots of fun toys to play with.

This is a cute story of two men working their way through their D/s issues. I loved how they finally just sat down and worked it out and left nothing to chance. The play after Christmas was fun and I loved seeing Martin use his imagination with a little wrapping paper and tape.

Rating: 3 out of 5 

Twas The Night by Ava March

Percival and Michael have been having sex for a few months and they’ve both been having a great time. They have to be discreet as sodomy is against the law but they manage quite well. Michael, however much he likes Percy, and he does, has no idea what Percy likes when it comes to sex. Yes, Michael can tell that he likes to be dominated but he wants specifics. On this Christmas day he gives himself a present from Percy and that’s to have Percy tell him exactly what he wants. For Percy this is damned difficult. He’s only acknowledged his desire for men for a year and his guilt and shame at wanting to submit eats at him. He manages to let Michael break through his walls and the end result is fantastic.

I’m not normally a fan of m/m historicals but as this takes place mostly in a house I couldn’t help but like it. Michael is a kind, caring lover and I loved that about him. Yes, he is in command when he and Percy are together but he’s not cruel in any way. Watching Percy come out of his shell a bit and knowing that he will continue to grow in the relationship just made me smile. This was a great story I liked a lot.

Rating: 4 out of 5 

Fireworks by Katie Porter

In this story we meet Emma and Rachel who have been in a D/s long-distance relationship for 2 years. But it’s all over after New Years Eve as Rachel is moving to Tokyo for a year. Emma is crushed but wants this night to say goodbye.

Rachel is emotionally cut off. She’s been disappointed in people her whole life and though she’s the one who has always left when someone is disappointed in her she feels that everyone leaves her. She would love to have Emma go with her to Tokyo but she KNOWS that Emma will just end up hating her and abandon her in the end. Or will she? Rache’s fear of rejection might have her making all the wrong decisions in the end.

The f/f story brought a couple of feelings to the surface while I was reading. My heart ached for Emma because I knew she loved Rachel and wanted to be with her and a bit for Rachel as well as I could tell that she had had a hard time in life emotionally. That being said the sex was not my cup of tea. Rachel definitely dominated Emma and Emma loved it, got off on it, flew to unknown places in her own psyche because of it. I personally just didn’t care for the hair pulling, face slapping and Rachel’s attitude in general as it just read as more cruel than sexual. The name calling wasn’t something I enjoyed either. I wouldn’t like it in m/m or m/f either so I think that’s pretty standard with me. Those are my own preferences though so someone who likes that might enjoy this story more than I did. I’m happy to say that the big emotional scene was left to the end so I ended the story on a high note.

Rating: 2 out of 5

Candy Caning by LA Witt 

Nate and Stephen are doing their Christmas shopping but neither is really have a great time at it. Nate and Stephen, especially Stephen, like Christmas less and less each year. This because every year they spend Christmas Eve with Nate’s family and Nate’s mom’s is highly critical of both of them, especially Stephen. He can do no right, say no right and he’s certainly not good enough for Nate. Of course if Stephen wasn’t there then she’s be digging into Nate. Basically she’s just a critical woman.

Neither one of them is looking forward to that banner day but when they come across a very large, very thick candy cane while doing their Christmas shopping all thoughts of his mother flee his head because he has thoughts of candy caning floating in his head. Though Stephen mentioned it might be something to think about nothing is set in stone, or peppermint.

This was a great little short story. There really wasn’t a lot to it except that you could sense the depth of emotion from both Stephen and Nate and I love that about Witt’s writing. The sex scene – with yes, the cane, is very hot and kinky and oh so good.

Rating: 4 out of 5 

Submissive Angel by Joey W. Hill

Six months earlier Robert found Ange beat up in the alley behind Robert’s vintage toy shop. He gave Ange a room and a job…and his heart. Robert knew from minute one that Ange was the submissive for him but he never made his move. Now it’s Christmas and Robert can’t hold back any longer. He heads to the toy shop, as Ange has a room in back, and finds Ange dancing. Ange of course has been waiting months for Robert and is very excited to have his master finally do what he’s been waiting for.

While this was a very sweet story it just didn’t work for me all that well. Something about Ange rubbed me the wrong way. He was almost too sweet and while it was a nice story I just couldn’t get into it as much as the previous stories.

3 out of 5 

Open Return by Elyan Smith 

Zach is back from a 15 year absence. He had contacted his foster parents and “friends” just a couple of times after he took off without a goodbye or a backward glance all those years ago. When he heads into his small home town in Illinois his foster parents are having a Christmas party and his old lovers, Laura and Scott, are there as well. Zach has to deal with his feelings as he returns to his somewhat close minded town and people who will always see him as Hannah and not Zach. He also is anxious to get back to Laura and Scott, who are now married with kids, and what they had to offer in the bedroom.

While this was a decent story I was kind of lost to the point of it all. Besides reconnecting with old lovers and showing us a sex scene that was very bdsm extra lite, I was that connected with the characters. Laura and Scott weren’t delved into at all and Zach…well, Zach confused me. He just seemed so up in the air about what he wanted in life. He had a great job in Australia but would give it all up to be with Laura and Scott, who didn’t seem all that completely into him? IDK, I just didn’t understand his thinking. I think the story was too short to fully realize all the emotion that Zach was feeling and I wish the story would have been longer.

Rating: 3 out of 5

Ring Out the Old and In the New by Alexa Snow 

It’s Christmas by Evan isn’t feeling the holiday spirit, as much as his partner tries to get him to. Evan, some months earlier was mugged on the tube and his face scarred. After being stared at his whole life for his beauty now he fears he will be stared at because of his monstrous face. Russell is also trying to help Evan as he hasn’t left the house – he just doesn’t feel safe.

This was a cute story. It was Russell gently taking care of his sub, Evan, and making him feel safe that was the basis of the story. Russell uses his domination to help Evan feel safe and know that he is loved, no matter what he looks like. Nothing too kinky involved but yet very sweet.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 

His Very Last Chance by Kim Dare

Drew is freaking out. His Dom, Kingsley, overheard him saying something that was taken the wrong way and now he’s afraid that Kingsley is going to end their relationship. What Kingsley really wants is to let Drew know that he couldn’t be more wrong about him and that he loves Drew.

Another cute story with some bondage and wax play. Kingsley was trying to show Drew how he felt about him. I didn’t really feel all that much emotion in the story, except Drew’s fear that he’ll be pushed aside, but I really enjoyed the scene in the end.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5

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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.

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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!

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Review: Men Under the Mistletoe by Ava March, Harper Fox, Josh Lanyon & KA Mitchell

Posted December 9, 2011 by Tracy in Reviews | 5 Comments

My True Love Gave to Me by Ava March

Alexander Norton loathes the festive season. The revelry of the ton is a reminder of Christmas four years ago, when his first love, Thomas Bennett, broke his heart and fled to New York without a word. So when he encounters Thomas at a holiday ball, Alexander is determined not to let on how much he still hurts.

Thomas has returned for one reason only: Alexander. Having finally come to terms with his forbidden desires, he will do whatever he must to convince Alexander to give their love another chance. But instead of the happy, carefree man Thomas once knew, Alexander is now hard and cynical. Saddened to know he’s to blame for the man’s bitterness, Thomas resolves to reignite the passion he knows lies hidden behind the wall of disdain…

Historical m/m romance is always a bit difficult for me to read. I think because I want the men to be together so badly and they can never be out and proud. They can never walk down the streets holding hands or ever show their affection in public and it just breaks my heart. This story is about two men who meet at Oxford and fall for each other. But Thomas is having a hard time dealing with the fact that he wants to be with a man. On a snowy Christmas Eve both Thomas and Alexander, who Thomas calls Sasha, head to Sasha’s father’s hunting lodge. Unfortunately things don’t go the way Sasha would like, Thomas leaves and Sasha is heartbroken.

Now Thomas is back after four years of completely ignoring Sasha and he wants him back. He will do anything to get his true love to take him back and he’s not above begging. Sasha, however, has turned into a brusque, cynical man and he’s not sure he wants to open himself up to that kind of hurt again.

This was just a heartwrenching story. Sasha’s heartbreak from losing Thomas was so hard to read although I completely understood Thomas’s fears it was still hard for me to read about his actions. When Thomas finally comes to terms about who he really is and his feelings for Sasha it’s four years later. I could understand Sasha’s hesitance completely as I would have been leery as well. The story was well written and really good.

Winter Knights by Harper Fox

Historian Gavin Lowden is in Northumberland on Christmas Eve for two reasons: to find evidence of a romantic bond between Arthur and Lancelot, and to finally tell his partner Piers that he loves him. Piers has promised to come clean with his conservative family and join Gavin for their first holiday as a couple, but at the last minute, he bails. Devastated, Gavin heads out onto the moors alone, just as snow begins to fall…

Gavin stumbles into an underground chamber, where strange happenings cause him to question what is real and what is fantasy. He’s found by two mysterious men who offer him a bed for the night—and awaken him to nuances of erotic pleasure he didn’t know existed. Pleasure he hopes to share with Piers.

When Piers learns that Gavin has gone missing, he is desperate to find him. He knows now breaking up was a terrible mistake, and he’s ready to take the next step in their relationship—if it’s not already too late.

Gavin is so excited that his boyfriend Piers will be telling his parents about the fact that he is gay and then will then spend the holiday with him. After 3 years of spending it separately he wants nothing more than to be with Piers. But Piers, who is a devout Catholic, doesn’t hold up his end of the bargain. In fact not only does he not tell his family but he then calls Gavin and lets him know that he will be marrying Gwen a woman he had been engaged to prior.

In a fog from his heartbreak, Gavin heads off to check out a location near his hotel that supposedly has a connection with King Arthur. What he finds is a deep chamber and gets stuck. He’s hurt, not thinking clearly and isn’t dressed warmly enough. Luckily two rescue workers come to help. Artie and Lance not only eventually help Gavin out of the hole, they take him home and help him see some insights into himself – some he just didn’t want to hear. They also initiate him in sexual acts he had never before discovered.

When the morning comes Gavin finds Piers in front of Artie and Lance’s house ready to talk to him. The pair finally communicate everything that has been a problem for the past 3 years and become closer for it. But how does Gavin deal with his guilt over his liaison with Artie and Lance? And would Piers understand if he tells him.

This was a very well written story that had me guessing exactly what was going to happen until the end. I had some issue with Gavin falling into bed with Lance and Artie so soon after his break with Piers but eventually saw exactly what was happening and why. There was a strange twist in this novella that was unexpected but I really liked how it all ended up.

Lone Star by Josh Lanyon

Growing up in rural Texas, Mitchell Evans’s ambition to be a dancer made him a target. Though he found success in New York City, Mitch is at a crossroads, and heads home for the first time in twelve years to figure things out. When what appears to be a reindeer jumps out in front of his car, he drives off the road and into the path of the one man he hoped to avoid.

The last person Texas Ranger Web Eisley expects to see four days before Christmas is his first love. He hasn’t seen Mitch since they quarreled over coming out to their friends and family years ago. Though he’s not in the closet now, Web has worked hard for the respect of his fellow officers, but he still regrets the loss of Mitch in his life. And his bed.

The attraction between them is as strong as ever, and it doesn’t take long for the men to pick up where they left off. But is love enough to keep Mitch in town in the New Year?

Mitch Evans is a famous ballet dancer who once was just a kid in small town rural Texas. When he lived in Texas he fell in love with Web Eisley but their thoughts about how their relationship should commence were not on the same wavelength. After a horrible argument with Web, Mitch went home and told his rancher father that he was gay. His father then punched him and kicked him out of the house. Mitch left and never looked back. Now his father has died and he’s gone back to his hometown to take care of legal details. While driving to his home he has an accident and who is there to help him pick up the pieces? Web Eisley.

Mitch is in a vulnerable place in his life with his work and his recent relationship but he knows that his feelings for Web are not just something he can ignore. Web finally came out to his family and friends and is more than happy to have Mitch back and is willing to take what he can from the man with the hope that their relationship can continue.

This was a very sweet story. I loved Mitch and Web both separately and apart. My complaint about this story was that it just wasn’t long enough! lol I wanted to read more about the two men and of course what happens after they finally get together (and no that’s not a spoiler because come on, you know there’s gonna be a HEA!)

The Christmas Proposition by K.A. Mitchell

It’s Christmas in Epiphany, Pennsylvania—the busiest time of year for Mel Halner. But running the family Christmas tree farm has worn down his love for the happiest season of all, and lately Mel’s been wondering what if he’d said yes to a ticket out of town with millionaire Bryce Campion three years ago.

Bryce isn’t used to people saying no to him, and he can’t forget Mel or their brief but sizzling affair. He might not have been offering forever, but Bryce can’t understand a guy as sexy and smart as Mel choosing to stay rooted on the family farm over enjoying the high life with him. He’s determined to make Mel see what he’s missed out on the first chance he gets.

Mel Halner hasn’t ever been anywhere. He grew up in Epiphany, Pennsylvania and has worked at his parents Christmas Tree farm since he could remember. Two years ago he hooked up with Bryce Campion and thought that it might be something special. Back then Bryce asked, off handedly, if Mel was willing to leave town with him since he was the owner of a huge corporation. Both the misunderstanding of the sincerity of Bryce’s request as well as fear of the unknown had Mel staying put. Bryce left without a word and Mel hadn’t heard from him since.

Now Bryce is back in town and they’ve taken up where they left off but Mel still has issues and he’s not sure exactly where Bryce wants the relationship to go. On top of that Mel’s trying to plan a wedding at the last minute for his best friend. Will the stress never end?

This was a very hot story with lots of man lovin. I love Mitchell’s work and this was no different. As with all the stories in this anthology I wished for more with this story. More in depth thought from both Mel and Bryce would have been wonderful. Mel had such issues – some understandable, some ridiculous, imho, and knowing more about those would have been great. Bryce moved the relationship quickly and wasn’t very forthcoming about his thoughts and feelings but he thought he was relaying those in action and deed – which is great but sometime you just need to have it said out loud! Men! lol

Overall all the stories in this Christmas anthology were very good and not to be missed.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Ava March
Harper Fox
Josh Lanyon
KA Mitchell
Carina Press

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What I read last week

Posted November 10, 2009 by Tracy in Features | 22 Comments

Hey folks. I’ve got the flu. My hubby has the flu. Not sure if it’s swine or not since we’re too sick to go to the doctor. How sick? I didn’t even feel like reading. I know, crazy. My parents have been here taking care of us and the kids which is wonderful. Sorry I’m late with this but I just now have felt well enough to get up and type for a few seconds. Good thing I did my little blurbs as I went this week. Sorry there won’t be pictures or links. I’ll might try to put them in later this week when I’m feeling better.

Started off with Atlantis Unmasked by Alyssa Day. This is book 6 in the Warriors of Poseidon series. I read this one for The Book Binge so will let you know when the review posts.

Next up was Wolf Flight by Vivian Arend – book 2 in the Granite Lake Wolves series. I read the first book, Wolf Signs, a while back but apparently forgot to put it on any of my lists cuz I couldn’t find it anywhere. How weird is that? Anyway, book two (a novella) was just as good as book 1. This story covered Tad who is a half wolf/half human who hasn’t been “triggered” yet. He basically needs to have sex with a female wolf. But there’s this thing that happens that makes some of the “FirstMates” think that they’re actually mates and then they’re in love with their partner for the rest of their lives, possibly missing out on their true mates. Missy has volunteered to trigger Tad but he’s afraid of the possible consequences. Besides that issues there are many others and it just makes for a good read. 4 out of 5

Damn Gorgeous by Jaye Valentine was my next read. This is an m/m novella that really threw me for a loop – but in a pretty good way. Journalist Spencer ends up in a small town to do a story on the Borden house – as in Lizzie Borden. He doesn’t care for his lodgings so finds a bed and breakfast that suits him. Behind the counter is Virgil Slade who Spencer is immediately attrated to and is hot beyond belief. He’s also interested in Spencer – bonus! But Virgil is hiding a serious secret that he’s not sure Spencer can live with. This was a total surprise. One of those books that I read the blurb originally but kind of forgot what it was about by the time I read the book. The paranormal part of this story was completely unexpected but it was done in such a way that I totally dug it. 3.75 out of 5

Bound to Him by Ava March was next. This is actually a continuation of a story that was started in the book Bound by Deception. This was a historical story about 2 second sons who were in a relationship. The coming together was done in the first book and when this one opened they had been together for 6 months. But 1 man wanted more. Yes, they had to keep their relationship on the down low since sodomy was against the law but one of the men just hadn’t come to terms with his desire for men. It put a wrench in the relationship and one man wanted more. It was good story but I felt that besides the “omg what am I doing?” moment that was had there wasn’t a ton of character development. I would definitely recommend that BbD be read first. 3.5 out of 5

My Tracy’s TBR Challenge read for the week was Heat of the Knight by Jackie Ivie. The story of a widow who is starving and trying to survive with her step daughters and husband’s family after Battle of Culloden. She is approached by The Black Monteith, who is considered the biggest traitor and Sassenach lover in the highlands, and he wants to marry her. But is he really as evil as everyone thinks? This one started off with a bang for me and I gobbled up the first 1/3 of the book in no time. Then things started to slow down. I think it was a case of Langston Monteith doing a round about double talk to try and quell any questions that Lisle had about things that were not as they seemed. It was cute at first and then kind of got old. Then there was Langston talking about how he loved Lisle’s light and joy in life. Ok, she was happy some of the time but mostly just kind of a brat. It definitely wasn’t a bad story, just not one I loved. 3.5 out of 5

Blaze of Memory by Nalini Singh was my last read. I really liked it and will do a review sometime this week when I’m not at death’s door.

Hope you’re all well. Happy Reading.

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