MyFictionNook

Sandra @ My Fiction Nook

I like romance and boys loving boys in my books. 

You can also find me on my main blog

 

 




1416 Devotees
124 Devoted To
3277 BOOKS


Currently reading

Secrets and Charms
Lou Harper
Progress: 100 %
The Luckiest (Lucky Moon Book 2)
M.J. O'Shea, M.J. O'Shea
Progress: 100 %
My Favorite Uncle
Marshall Thornton
Progress: 100 %
The River Leith
Leta Blake
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Author Of The Month - Angel Martinez - Grand Finale

Join us once more as we celebrate this fabulous author, with a look at the AURA series, our Q&A, and one more chance to win!

 

 

ARC Review: Momo: My Everything by Posy Roberts

Momo: My Everything - Posy Roberts

Many, many moons ago, I read the first chapter of this book in a different incarnation, and I also have the previously published version of the whole book.

I struggled with a review for a while, and I'm still not sure that what you're about to read is going to accurately convey my thoughts.

There were many things I liked about this book, especially Nate. His carefree, easy-going persona really appealed to me, but I could also see that he had much inner strength, and a forgiving nature, which was truly needed in light of the stupid shit that sometimes came out of William's mouth.

Which brings me to William - he's the sole POV in this book - who made me cringe on more than one occasion while reading. His self-loathing was evident, even if he didn't think of himself that way, but the fact that he hides his sexuality behind drab colors and a strict and no-nonsense personality at work was telling. While he was more open about his sexuality outside of work, we're also told that he's normally attracted to jock types, and that flamboyant, twinky men don't usually do it for him, and thus the anomaly of his attraction to Nate was somewhat of a shock to him. I didn't enjoy being in his head, for most of the book, and he came across as judgmental and also somewhat ignorant. Like, it's okay to be gay when it's not obvious, and Nate's obvious gayness is a strike against him. Internalized homophobia is not a good look on you, honey.

Nate has an alter ego of sorts - on weekends, he works as a Geisha in a Japanese Tea House, as Momo. In fact, all the Geishas are male underneath the make-up and wigs, and most of the customers have no idea. He's out and proud, a bit flamboyant and unapologetic about it. I liked him from the start - his wicked humor, his easy smile, and his openness.

William and others from his company are enjoying a traditional Japanese tea ceremony, when William notices the somewhat prominent Adam's apple of the Geisha serving him and realizes that it's a man. He's intrigued, and when the young man gives him a business card with his phone number, William decides (after much soul-searching) to give him a call and ask for a date.

Nate/Momo sees something in William, though I couldn't understand what exactly that is. Perhaps he saw the lonely man who convinced himself he isn't lonely at all. Since we don't really get to know Nate other than through William's eyes, I couldn't discern what really drew him to William.

What bothered me the most is that William sought approval from three important people in his life - his brother, his mother, and his loctitian who's been doing his locs for a long time. I thought it someone strange that a grown man was so insecure in himself and his feelings for another man (albeit someone that didn't meet his usual attraction profile) that he had to seek the approval of others to ensure he was making a good decision. It just felt odd to me. What if they hadn't liked Nate? Would William have let him go?

Another thing that bothered me was William chastising himself for desiring Momo just as he desired Nate - as if they were two different people - and thinking that it was wrong. That he was wrong for wanting both. He also tested Nate at almost every turn, and I really didn't like William for doing that. He seemed to expect Nate to fail, and when he doesn't, William seemed surprised. I wanted to reach into the book and shake Nate to just drop William's judgmental ass. I think in these situations, it would have helped to have Nate's POV to make me understand what he saw in William and why he kept jumping through all those hoops for the guy.

William did eventually get his act together and redeem himself, though it was a long and draining road to read through to his happy ending.

There are a few sensual scenes, and I liked one of them best. The rest do further the plot, so there's no gratuitous hanky-panky here.

Overall, it's a good story, but not the best I've read by this author. That title remains with the North Star series.


** I received a free copy from the author. A positive review was not promised in return. **

Author Of The Month - Angel Martinez - Week Three

Come join us again today as we look at the Offbeat Crimes series, and a personal story Angel has shared. There's also another chance to win! See you there!!

ARC Review: Lickety Split by Damon Suede

Lickety Split - Damon Suede

This was at once an utterly fascinating character study of an old cowboy and a young man who lost his heart to that same cowboy long ago, and an utterly frustrating read at times, what with the slow dance around the truth these two men insist upon, but also utterly satisfying in the end, when they both get that what they want, but don't know how to ask for.

I don't have a lot of exposure to Damon Suede's writing. I read Bad Idea many moons ago, so this one didn't pop my Damon Suede cherry, but still - haven't read much by this author at all.

Still, Bad Idea was impressive, and when this here book came along, I snapped it up. Enemies to Lovers trope set in deep down Texas between a young man who ran away from the homophobia long time ago, and his object of desire/tormenter - hells, yeah, sign me up!

This book has to be read slowly, and savored. There's so much between the lines that it's easy to miss a point or five the author is trying to make if you're rushing through it.

On the surface, Patch (the younger man) and Tucker (the older one) are complete opposites.

Patch is going places, he has plans to take his DJing to the next level by opening a club, he's young and full of come, and hook-ups are all he needs. He doesn't want to go back to Texas and has no desire to revisit his past.

Tucker, on the other hand, is nothing more than a washed-up cowboy-cum-caretaker who looks after the farm Patch's parents own, and who lives in a rundown trailer on property. He thinks his time has passed, and that he has nothing to offer anyone, so he's alone and a bit lonely sometimes too. Except for his dog, he's really go no one to talk to day in and day out.

Yep, on the surface, they're as different as night and day. And there's some bad history there too, with Tucker having tormented Patch during his stint playing high school football, when Patch was just a skinny thing and Tucker his coach.

When Patch's parents die in an accident, all he wants to do is get in town to take care of business and get himself back to NYC, pronto. Except, time slows down in Texas, and so do Patch's plans to sell the farm quickly and leave.

This book is truly a character study. It's fascinating to watch the interactions between Patch and Tucker, and both of them changing before your eyes. Yes, there's sexy times too, and even in those, the fundamental differences between the two men are highlighted. Hot, sweaty nights give way to leisurely hours at the pond, with a bit of edging for pleasure added for good measure. Patch learns to slow down, and Tucker learns that sometimes it's okay to say "I love you" instead of expecting the other person to simply know.

They both learn to communicate, in words and deeds, as the story progresses. Mistakes and misunderstandings notwithstanding, both men, young and old, grow in this book. As Patch cleans out the house where he used to live, he takes stock of his life and also learns that you can take the boy outta Texas, but you can't take Texas outta the boy. And that maybe not all is as it seemed back then.

Slowly, carefully, Damon Suede peels back the layers of his characters, showing his readers time and again that he has mastered his craft, creating and exploring two exquisite and completely oppositional characters with depth and heart and determination. There are moments that are utterly breathtaking, and they sneak up on you so unexpectedly that you can't help but sit there with your gaping maw, wondering what just happened.

Read this, savor this. It's masterfully done.


** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher. A positive review was not promised in return. **

ARC Review: Step By Step by K.C. Wells

Step by Step - K.C. Wells

Imagine sitting by yourself in a library, wracking your brain to figure out to come up with money for rent, for tuition, and that pesky food you need, all while being just 20 years old and working three jobs, because your parents have blown your college fund on their acrimonious divorce, when suddenly, the older, good-looking and seemingly wealthy man sitting at a table across from you makes you an offer that sounds too good to be true - come live at his house (it's big enough), save money on rent, keep going to college to become a lawyer like you want, and I'll even teach you how to cook.

You'd be running out the door as fast as your feet can carry you, amirite? Because nobody is that generous without wanting a little something in return. Right?

Well, in the case of Step By Step, you'd be wrong.

Jamie is 20, broke as fuck, and doesn't know how to come up with the next month's rent. He's approached by Guy, 38, who was once in a similar situation and who was saved from the poorhouse by someone making the same offer he's now making to Jamie. He's genuine, nice, and wanting to pay it forward.

Oh, and he's gay. With an ex-wife, grown kids, and still mourning the loss of his lover/benefactor a few years ago.

So Jamie, once he's gotten over the shock and disbelief, moves in with Guy. Has use of a car. Drops one, then another of his three jobs. And learns to cook. And makes Guy laugh and smile more than Guy can remember.

And falls in love. When Jamie turns 21, he musters his courage and asks Guy for a kiss. At this point, Guy is already head over heels, but still thinks that Jamie is straight. Surprise!!

There's very little drama here between Guy and Jamie, and I loved that. The age gap is mentioned, but doesn't cause any friction between the two men, as Guy realizes that Jamie is an adult and makes his own decision, and if falling in love with Guy is what he wants, then Guy is only to happy to return the sentiments.

The drama in this book is primarily caused by people outside of their relationship, primarily Guy's spoiled brat of a son, and his petty ex-wife. Guy's daughter is cut from a different cloth, and since they're close in age, she and Jamie become fast friends quickly.

Time and again Jamie surprises Guy with his maturity level, and there were moments when I wanted to smack Guy just a little bit, because he shouldn't have been so surprised, dammit. Though I forgave him when he introduced Jamie to some of his friends and thus provides a leg up for the young man, consistent in supporting his aspirations, just like he promised he would.

Also, sexy times. HOLY SMOKING SHEETS, BATMAN!! Jamie goes after what he wants, he doesn't care about labels and only sees the person - cue "let's get it on". This author can really, really write the sexy times and bring across ALL the feelz. *fans self*

The ending - gah. Beautiful. Might have sniffled just a little.

This book was lovely and I enjoyed every moment I spent reading it, HEA and all. Definitely recommended!


** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher. A positive review was not promised in return. **

Release Day ARC Review: Two Cowboys And A Baby by B.A. Tortuga

Two Cowboys and a Baby (Dreamspun Desires Book 30) - BA Tortuga

On the surface, there's a cute story here. You got cowboys, small town antics, and even an abandoned baby on your doorstep that holds the twisted answer to a long-kept secret. So, I was ready for cute and sweet and lots of cowboys. And I got that, to some extent.

What didn't work for me as well were some parts of the relationship bromance between Hoss (the supposed baby-daddy) and Bradley, two men who've been friends forever and a day, but who had a falling out when Hoss came out to Bradley way back when in high school. I totally believed that Hoss was in love with Bradley, and that Bradley was in love with Hoss - no issues there - and when Bradley confessed to Hoss that maybe back then he was an idiot, and he's regretted that ever since, their bromance became much more and their romantic relationship really took off.

The parts that were harder to swallow had to do with the revelations about the little innocent baby Hoss finds on his doorstep one morning, and how she looks a little too much like Hoss, and how the DNA test shows that .... well, I'll let y'all read this yourself. The drama that unfolds between Bradley and Hoss was, while understandable, a little out of left field. Up until that point, I thought that the back and forth banter between them showcased their relationship, and they truly felt like they'd been friends for a very long time. So it was a bit of a shock for me to see Bradley react the way he did when that twist came about, and while the lack of real communication between them was indicative of their relationship, I would have thought that Bradley wouldn't be such a dumbass and trusted Hoss a bit more than what he did. Yeah, yeah, surely the "surprise" was a shock to them all, but when your man tells you "no, I didn't", then maybe you ought to stop and listen instead of being all Judgy McJudgerson, eh?

I also thought that the twist was a bit over the top, but then I've come to expect that sort of over the top kind of thing from this series, so I wasn't put off by it. I adored Hoss being all awkward with the baby, without a clue what to do, so that part rang true for me. Even if his mama came to help out a bit.

The author really captured the small town Texas feel, and made me feel like I was right there at the rodeo with Hoss and Bradley - well done, that.

Also, if your sheriff's name is Pooter - 'nuff said. I giggled a lot whenever he was on page. Stereotypical small town characters all around, and that part was a lot of fun.

This was an enjoyable read, even if I didn't like some parts. The book works well within the Dreamspun Desires series, and should be read the way it was intended - as a bit of fluff, a bit over the top, and a "love will save the day" kind of romance.


** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher. A positive review was not promised in return. **

ARC Review: Insight (The Community #1) by Santino Hassell

Insight (The Community Book 1) - Santino Hassell

Well, folks - I'm no longer a Santino Hassell virgin. This is the book for which I traded in my v-card, and now I sit here, wondering what on earth is wrong with me for holding out for so long.

Insight is the first book in a new series called The Community. I'm not going to explain to you what The Community in question is or what its purpose is - I'm just going to let you read this book (I encourage you to read this book. I demand you read this book, OMG) and let Nate take you inside what can only be described as an intriguing, intense, slightly creepy and twisted mindfuck.

I'm sure we've all at one point or another idly wished for a super-human power, like being able to read people's minds or feel their emotions or manipulate them into doing our bidding without them realizing their being manipulated or predict what the future holds or... well, you get my drift. Now imagine, really imagine, being able to do just one of those things.

Nate Black, for example, is an empath. He can feel people's emotions, as well as emotions attached to an every day object, such as a necklace. Imagine for a minute what that might do to a person, to always feel every emotion someone else has, just because you're touching them. Imagine greeting someone with a handshake, or someone just bumping into you while you're walking down the street or in a crowded train, and you feel. every. thing. Just as if they were your own feelings. Imagine wondering if what the other person feels are their true feelings or the ones you pushed on them with your empath ability.

Ask Nate how that feels, when you're an empath but cannot control this supposed "gift", and you feel it all, all the time. Ask Nate how it feels when your mama just up one day and leaves you, and you're stuck with your aunt, who doesn't even like you much. Ask Nate what it's like to be bullied in high school because he's gay, and the one boy he liked turned on him, because possibly, your uncontrolled powers pushed your own feelings unto this boy, and you just can't be sure whether the feelings were yours or his. And also, your brother was an asshole. You too might be cynical and lonely and depressed, avoiding people whenever you can.

When Nate's twin brother Theo turns up dead in New York from an apparent suicide, and the story doesn't gel with a vision Nate has in a dream, Nate decides that maybe it's time to hitch a ride to NYC himself and ask some questions about what really happened to his more powerful brother.

Fortuitously, Nate manages to hitch a ride with Trent, a normal human, who's also one of the few from whom Nate gets positive feelings. Warmth. Kindness. Someone who makes him feel that he's not just a fuck-up, someone who floods him with good emotions upon first touch.

The author takes his readers on a wild ride from Texas to New Orleans to NYC, and that's not even half the book. Once Trent and Nate arrive in NYC, the creepiness factor only increases. I'll refer you to the intense and twisted mindfuck comment above.

There's a romance here, yes, but it does not take center stage, and instead provides the basis for the plot. It's like the wrapper around the whole thing, really, like a rubber band that holds Nate together so he can focus on finding out the truth. Like a beacon in the darkness, Trent is all that is good and true, and possibly the only person Nate trusts.

Be prepared for unexpected twists and turns, and more than one "holy shit, what just happened?". I won't tell you anymore than that.

It's a wild ride, but I couldn't put this book down for any length of time until I had finished. If this is the kind of book this author produces, I may need my sanity checked for holding out this long.

Run, don't walk, to get yourself a copy. It's available now.

Highly recommended.

Also, where's the next installment, Mr. Hassell? I needs it. I needs it bad!!


** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher via Netgalley. A positive review was not promised in return. **

Author Of The Month - Angel Martinez - Week Two

Join us again today as we continue our celebrations with a look at the Brimstone series, and five little-known facts about Angel. And there's a chance to win too! 

Book Review: Between These Sheets by Devon McCormack

Between These Sheets - Devon McCormack

I was mightily impressed with the writing in this book. It's like with every book this author releases, the writing gets better.

I also was mightily impressed that such difficult topics as PTSD and psychological trauma were handled with realism, insight, and depth.

Jay is the new guy at a factory, having recently moved to town. He never stays long in one place, preferring to run when the going gets tough, always trying to escape the memories of the past that are still haunting him.

Reese is the supervisor at the factory, and annoyed with Jay's being prone to temper tantrums. He sees that the tough guy persona Jay shows to the world isn't what's beneath the shell, and when Jay gets himself into trouble on the factory floor, Reese lays down the law, but gives him another chance.

See, Jay reminds Reese of someone he used to know, someone he couldn't save, someone who saw too much and never got help to learn to live after traumatic experiences in war zones.

Shortly after Reese has a come-to-Jesus meeting with Jay, a loud noise sends Reese into a PTSD tailspin, and Jay instinctively knows how to protect the other man. And then educates himself on the topic.

Their physical attraction is fiery, and they burn up the sheets. The bedroom is also initially where they are fully equal, not boss and employee, but simply two men scratching an itch. Well, at least at first it's just an itch. And then it becomes much more. Which is of course what I expected.

However, their ultimate happy ending, as promised in the blurb, is not something that comes easy. The men have to fight for it, find compromises, realize that a strong connection such as theirs doesn't come along all that often, and that they're worth fighting for. They have to overcome their personal demons, and the author did a fantastic job describing their struggles, and making me root for them both. With each setback, with each insecurity raising its ugly head, I watched them push forward and fight to get what they want, while I was cheering them on. Neither one gave up, even when it sometimes seemed easier to let go than keep holding on.

I really liked how the author allowed each man to find his stride, how both Reese and Jay grow (and in Jay's case, grow up) in realistic increments as the book progresses, and how sometimes the goal is reached with two steps forward, and one step back. The fact that the book is written in the first person present tense also really helps the reader feel as if we are right in the middle of their developing relationship, and really conveys the emotional aspects of this love story.

This was the best book I've read by this author thus far, and I am definitely looking forward to more.


** I received a free copy of this book from its author. A positive review was not promised in return. **

ARC Review: Unconditionally by Nell Iris

Unconditionally - Nell Iris

Super sweet slice of life novella about two men in love, about to get married, and one man's mother's hang-ups about his sexuality and gender expression.

I absolutely loved Luca and Gus, and how strong and supportive their relationship was. Gus loved Luca for who he was, without trying to change him, offering him unconditional love and support, no matter what. Luca loved Gus for a variety of reasons, one being that Gus let him be who he is, without judgement, without fear, all the while telling him that he's beautiful and strong and kind.

Gus' parents embraced Luca because they realized how happy he made their son. I wish that Luca's mother would grow a heart and see how much love and happiness Gus brought to Luca's life, instead of trying to force her son to be the version of himself that she expected.

Unconditionally, indeed!

Told from both Gus and Luca's POVs, this book is adorable and delightful and just perfect for a pick-me-up after a long day. Enjoy a glass of wine while reading, have a tissue or two at the ready, and revel in this short glimpse into what makes Gus and Luca's relationship so utterly amazing.


** I received a free copy of this book from Signal Boost as part of the release blitz. A positive review was not promised in return. **

Author Of The Month - Angel Martinez - Week One

Join us today as we take a look at a few of Angel's books, her favorite biology things, and give you a chance to win in our giveaway!

ARC Review: Ringo And The Sunshine Police by Nick Wilgus

Ringo and the Sunshine Police - Nick Wilgus

I read a draft version of this book a few months ago, and couldn't wait to read the finished product as well. The changes made were mostly subtle but made a difference.


Thomas is a gay man in his early fifties living in Mississippi. Once the drummer in a band, known for a one-hit-wonder, he has for many years longed to foster and eventually adopt a child. With recent law changes, and marriage equality being the law of the land, Thomas has begun his journey to foster parent and adoption prospect.

Having gotten to known the author via his FB page and watching him take a similar journey as his character only enriched my reading experience, as did the fact that I'm a foster parent myself.

Thomas' first (and long-awaited) placement is a young special needs boy who lost his mother in a tragic fire, and whose father is not in the picture since birth. This boy was born without arms, apparently a genetic condition, and requires additional accommodations and modifications to Thomas' home, which Thomas is only too glad to provide.

The author paints an accurate and at times painful pictures of what fostering a child can be like. It's not an easy choice to open your home repeatedly to children not your own, many of whom have experienced some form of trauma and need love and consistent commitment, and special needs children are notoriously limited as far as placement options are concerned. Not many foster parents can accommodate a special needs child, and many of these children are living in group homes with overworked staff. Most foster homes, in my experience, don't want to take placements for the kids that need help the most.

Fostering a child take a lot of love, patience, and a willingness (determination) to stay committed for as long as needed and/or possible. What these kids mostly need is stability, routines, and the experience that an adult in their lives is in their corner, protecting and nurturing them. I clearly remember my foster trainer drumming this in over and over - all children who are in foster care have experienced some form of trauma, and they need love and understanding and compassion from their foster parents.

As with all his books, Nick creates characters that are fully developed, characters the reader comes to love and in some cases hate. Thomas' lover Randy, still mostly in the closet, runs an art gallery downtown and support Thomas in his endeavors, to the point where he's willing to leave Narnia and exit the closet. I liked him a lot - he was a perfect counterpoint to Thomas, and while their relationship is not that of your usual romance novel (and this really isn't a romance anyway), the two men complemented each other well, and were supportive of each other throughout.

Another tidbit of foster care is that most child protective agencies and family judges will favor blood family over foster/adoptive families, in some cases to the detriment of the child. Many times, the foster home is likely a more stable environment, but blood relatives will trump fosters most of the time.

And so it happens in this book, when after some months of living and bonding with Thomas, Jeremy's father suddenly enters the picture and demands custody. The fact that he lives in a different state has no bearing on this, nor does the fact that for most of Jeremy's seven years of life, he was absent and paid not a single penny in child support - as the biological father, he gets "first dibs". And yes... that is one of the most painful parts of fostering - the simple fact that child could be sent from your loving home into a much worse situation because of a blood relation taking precedence.

You can surely imagine the heartache and pain Thomas experiences as he realizes that the child he planned to adopt will be taken from him, and there is not a damn thing he can do about it.

And I could completely understand how despondent Thomas was over the loss of this child, and how he felt like giving up. That he doesn't is fortuitous, and only due to Randy's prodding to visit Jeremy, which sets their happy ending in motion.

The author handled this difficult topic very well, and it is my hope that this book will open the eyes of many to the overwhelming need for foster homes in this country, and how messed up our system really is. Advocates are dearly needed, and there simply aren't enough homes open to these children, who've often seen abuse in its many forms. While Thomas' story ends on a very happy note, and while this is the desired and best outcome he and Jeremy both could have hoped for, it is also fact that even when children are reunited with their birth parents after foster care, many of them re-enter the system again at a later time.

Some people aren't fit to have children.

I should probably apologize for the preachy tone of this review, and I hope that Thomas will forgive me for using this review as a soapbox to help open your eyes to the plight of children in the foster system, and maybe even open your heart to consider the option of becoming a foster parent yourself.

It's not an easy job, no. But it's worth the heartaches and pain, because at the end of the day, you will have helped a child in need.

As I write this review, there are two children asleep in my home that we are fostering. Each day is a new adventure and a new opportunity to do right by those whom life has wronged through no fault of their own.

If you're so inclined, please check out The National Foster Parent Association to learn more about this invaluable service these caregivers provide.

This book is about a topic so near and dear to my heart, and so beautifully explores the wonder and pitfalls of fostering and adoption, I cannot help but give it all the stars.


** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher. A positive review was not promised in return. **

ARC Release Day Review: Snowblind by Eli Easton

Snowblind (Dreamspun Desires Book 29) - Eli Easton

So, I went into this book thinking this was going to be what the blurb indicated - a fluffy, feel-good story of two strangers in a snowstorm, one rescuing the other from freezing to death in the Alaskan wilderness, and they live happily ever after.

Right?

WRONG!!!

Well, this story had those elements, and with this being a book in the Dreamspun Desires series, they do live happily ever after in the end, but holy moly, there was a whole lot more to this book than just that.

Intrigue, deception, undercover stuff, espionage, threats, blackmail, mindfucks, danger, terrorists - you name, it's got it. Also mindfucks. Did I mention the mindfucks?

Hutch is an ex-soldier whose previous work in covert ops and experiences have him sleeping on an arsenal of weaponry. When he sleeps. Which isn't much. He lives in a secluded cabin away from the more civilized world, and he likes it that way. He also helps with rescuing stupid tourists from getting snowed-in and getting lost in the wilderness, but he keeps to himself. For reasons.

During a snowstorm, a sexy stranger shows up on his doorstep, imitating an icicle, and Hutch, not being an asshole, brings him in to warm up.

And warm up, if you know what I mean, they do. There's kissing and UST and more kissing and sexy times, and then you get to 60% and you're like WTF just happened?

That's all I'll tell you, because you should read this book for yourself. There's darkness and light, and there's love and sex and fear and danger, and I really don't want to spoil the experience for you.

Eli Easton has written a masterful novel that kept me on the edge of my seat. I loved every minute I spend reading it.

** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher. A positive review was not promised in return. **

ARC Review: The Real Thing by B.G. Thomas

The Real Thing - B.G. Thomas

I read the 2nd edition of this book.

This was a little too short for my taste at only about 40 pages.

Bryan Mills has a thing for older men who are also cowboys. He likes to dress up as a cowboy too, thinking that looking the part might get him an in with the kind of man he desires.

So while he's out pretending to be a cowboy, he meets an actual, take-charge cowboy. Curtis Hansen is everything Bryan wants in a man, and they spend a hot night together.

Bryan is head over heels for Curtis, but also realizes that he may have given gave the wrong impression with how he dressed and presented himself.

The rest of the book basically deals with Bryan trying to figure out how to set the record straight and keep his cowboy despite his misrepresentations, and waiting for his cowboy to call him again.

Unfortunately, the book is too short to really delve deeply enough into the developing relationship. I felt as if Bryan was glamorizing and almost fetishizing Curtis, who deserved better than that. I also had a hard time believing there was an actual spark between the two men, because Bryan misrepresented himself for a while and deceived Curtis, and while Bryan does come clean, the whole thing left me with a bad taste in my mouth. I felt too much insta-love and awe from Bryan versus a strong emotional connection.

The writing is typical B.G. Thomas - a little breathless, but descriptive without being flowery, and as always evoking specific emotions. I do adore this rather unique writing style, and it's something I tend to look for in his books.

I liked this book well enough - it just didn't bowl me over, and that was due to lack of length and depth. This author's strength lies in writing the longer books, the ones that take their time to develop the relationship and the characters.


** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher. A positive review was not promised in return. **

Author Of The Month - Lane Hayes - Grand Finale

Join us again today for our Grand Finale celebrations, with a look at Leaning Into You, PLUS the exclusive cover reveal for the upcoming 2nd book in this series, Leaning Into The Fall, and excerpts from both books! We also have our Author Q&A, and one more chance to win one of Lane's books. 

 

Hope to see you there!! 

ARC Review: Class Distinctions by Rick R. Reed

Class Distinctions - Rick R. Reed

I read the 2nd edition of this book, out 2/25/17. 

 

 

 

A quick glimpse into the relationship and almost break-up of two college kids who are young, dumb, and in love.

Kyle and Jonathan, both freshmen at university, are madly in love. Except Kyle is ashamed of his humble background and believes that Jonathan and his rich parents will look down on Kyle's poor mother when they'll meet at the upcoming Parents' Weekend.

So, clearly, it's easier to just break Jonathan's heart, and his own. Right? Wrong!

In actuality, this book is simply too short. We don't get a full picture of their relationship, so it's difficult (not impossible) for the reader to put herself into the shoes of these young and dumb kids.

I would applaud Jonathan for not giving up on Kyle (after the initial shock wears off), and going after what he wants, demanding an explanation for that which is to him inexplicable. He does listen and learns something new about his boyfriend.

Kyle too learns that maybe he should have not assumed and instead be a grown-up and talk about his fears. Pulling the crap he pulled didn't win him any favors with me, even if I could to some extent understand his fears. Shame wasn't a good look on him, and while I felt sorry for him during his pain, he did bring this on himself.

The author does a really good job exploring the relationship each boy has with his mother, and that's where this book really worked. I also liked that we got a dual POV, as both Jonathan and Kyle deal with their equally broken hearts. There was a lot of emotion that really came across well in those lines.

I also liked that they both felt drawn to the special place where they shared their first kiss, and thus got a chance to find their way back to each other.

Still... not my favorite by this author. I think this story might have worked a little better if we had been given a bit of a lead-up to their almost break-up, and thus seen why they were so devastated, instead of simply being told they were.


** I received a free copy of this book from Signal Boost promotions as part of the re-release of this story. A positive review was not promised in return. **