Aug 1, 2015

REVIEW: Him By Sarina Bowen, Elle Kennedy

MM Contemporary Romance/ Sports

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Sarina Bowen on GR / Website / Twitter
Elle Kennedy on GR / Website / Twitter

Synopsis On Goodreads:

They don’t play for the same team. Or do they?

Jamie Canning has never been able to figure out how he lost his closest friend. Four years ago, his tattooed, wise-cracking, rule-breaking roommate cut him off without an explanation. So what if things got a little weird on the last night of hockey camp the summer they were eighteen? It was just a little drunken foolishness. Nobody died.

Ryan Wesley’s biggest regret is coaxing his very straight friend into a bet that pushed the boundaries of their relationship. Now, with their college teams set to face off at the national championship, he’ll finally get a chance to apologize. But all it takes is one look at his longtime crush, and the ache is stronger than ever.

Jamie has waited a long time for answers, but walks away with only more questions—can one night of sex ruin a friendship? If not, how about six more weeks of it? When Wesley turns up to coach alongside Jamie for one more hot summer at camp, Jamie has a few things to discover about his old friend...and a big one to learn about himself.

Warning: contains sexual situations, skinnydipping, shenanigans in an SUV and proof that coming out to your family on social media is a dicey proposition.

Purple: 4/5 stars
Glass: 5/5 stars

*** REVIEW***

After my previous disappointing adult contemporary romances I was dead serious about taking some "rehab time" from this genre. Seriously, I did, but then S. Bowen and and E. Kennedy go and publish my incurable weakness- a friends-to-lovers/ GFY mm romance between two smoking hot hockey players. *Q* Tell me, how could an addict like me resist? The temptation was just too high.

I tried to stay strong, I promise, but the book and all these raving reviews kept appearing on my GR feed every once awhile and driving me crazy with curiosity. Next thing you know- rehab attempt: FAILED in 2 days.  I must emphasize also that before this book I had read the 3d installment in The Others by Anne Bishop (urban fantasy/pnr series around 400 pages long), what must count for something, right? Right? Right. *awkwardly nodding to myself*

Either way- I have NO REGRETS, because this book was like a compilation of my almost all wet friends-to-lovers/GFY fantasies in one place, LOL. The minute I met the goofy and adorable trouble-maker Ryan Wesly "Wes"- I was a goner. A popular jock and out of the closet hockey player irrevocably in love with his team-mate and straight best friend Jamie Canning. We meet them in their early twenties, before an important hockey game. The boys are estranged and haven't been in contact for 4 years. What had happened? Is there any chance for their friendship or even something more? Buy the book and find out! And just for your information there are tattoos, a pierced tongue, uber-sexy kiss in rain, skinny-dipping involved and more. ;)

Fun, very emotional and way too hot plot with even more amazing characters. Un-put-downable. I read it in one sitting. I admit, there were a few a bit cheesy situations towards the end I could have gone without and plot-wise it's not the most original book I've ever read, but nonetheless- it made the crazy mm fangirl inside me extremely happy. 

Highly recommended to every mm romance fan- the hype is real, people! 


Purple, The Friends-to-Lovers/GFY romance Addict

Jul 31, 2015

REVIEW: Vision in Silver (The Others, #3) By Anne Bishop

Urban Fantasy/ Paranormal

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Synopsis On Goodreads:

The Others freed the cassandra sangue to protect the blood prophets from exploitation, not realizing their actions would have dire consequences. Now the fragile seers are in greater danger than ever before—both from their own weaknesses and from those who seek to control their divinations for wicked purposes. In desperate need of answers, Simon Wolfgard, a shape-shifter leader among the Others, has no choice but to enlist blood prophet Meg Corbyn’s help, regardless of the risks she faces by aiding him.

Meg is still deep in the throes of her addiction to the euphoria she feels when she cuts and speaks prophecy. She knows each slice of her blade tempts death. But Others and humans alike need answers, and her visions may be Simon’s only hope of ending the conflict.

For the shadows of war are deepening across the Atlantik, and the prejudice of a fanatic faction is threatening to bring the battle right to Meg and Simon’s doorstep…

RATING: 4/5 stars


What to do when you are in need of a fun, action-packed, suspenseful and sex-free fantasy read with awesome characters after some disappointing adult contemporary romances? Read The Other series by Anne Bishop of course!

"We will fight for what is ours. In the end, your young will have enough to eat because there will be fewer humans wanting a share. And our young will grow strong on all the meat harvested from the fight."

DANGER ALERT! Meg Corbyn and a couple of other "Wolf lovers" are the only things keeping the human race from the sharp claws of The Others right now. Whatever you do, DO NOT, I repeat- do not provoke or mess with The Others if you want to live to see the light of the following day. 

What I loved about this book:

~ The playful side of the otherwise serious and grumpy wolf leader-Simon. He even blushed for G's sake. O.O
~ Simon & Meg getting closer and closer.
~ The mystery behind the cassandra sangue race a.k.a the blood prophets.
~ The once fragile and insecure Meg becoming stronger and confident and adopting more and more behavior of the wolf clan, like growling and "arrooing", LOL.
~ The bad guys getting what they deserved.

This book is around 400 pages long. It consists of multiple povs from different characters and the story-telling is very detailed, which honestly did become a bit exhausting for me from time to time, but the world-building and the characters were so good and compelling that it was mostly a positive thing. After the last page I felt as if I had watched a 24 episodes long season of some urban fantasy/pnr TV show in 2 days, but it was totally worth it. 

"He wasn't human. Would never be human. And Meg didn't expect him to be. But feeling her hand in his, Simon thought maybe he could learn to be human enough."

Arrrooo, bring on the next one! 

Purple, The Wolf Lover

Jul 25, 2015

Pre-Release ARC REVIEW: Stepbrother, Mine (Part 1#) By Opal Carew

Expected publication: July 28th 2015 by St. Martin's Griffin

Erotica Romance/ Contemporary

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Synopsis On Goodreads:

From New York Times bestselling author Opal Carew comes an erotic new serial about the lengths to which one woman will go to live the life of her dreams.

Dana's always had a clear vision of what she wanted out of life. But when her father dies during her final year of college, Dana's whole world threatens to topple down. In desperate need of money, she comes up with an idea. It's scandalous. It's HOT. And it's got everybody talking. . .Is Dana really going to auction off her own virginity? And at what cost? 

RATING: 2.5 / 5 stars

*** REVIEW ***

I requested this arc for one reason only- to see what's the hype around stepbrother ft. stepsister romances in the reader's world and because, just like the female MC, I'm thinking about auctioning off my virginity. Duhhh. (Yeah, right!) Anyway, the 1st part was only 49 pages long and I know that many readers enjoy books by this author, so I thought to myself: what the heck, let's do this!

Why 2.5 stars ???

~ Naive female character who, despite being in her early 20ies, sometimes acted as a clueless child. I almost fell from my bed when she asked him: "Did I hurt it?" o.O

~ Rushed Plot

All in all- I can definitely see the appeal of this type of romances, but maybe this wasn't the right type of a read for me. In comparison to the rest of the books I read, this is a 2.5 stars book for me. That's why I don't see myself reading the 2nd and the 3d part of the novel, but I've been recommended other books by this author by her fans, so I'm gonna try some of those.


Jul 22, 2015

ARC REVIEW: On the Clock (Market Garden, #8) By L.A. Witt, Aleksandr Voinov

MM Erotic Romance/ Contemporary

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Synopsis On Goodreads:

When Blake Raleigh’s favorite rentboys retire from Market Garden, they’re sure their friend Jason will be a perfect replacement. Though Tristan and Jared are a tough act to follow, Blake returns to London to test out their recommendation.

Jason is right on the money. Negotiations turn him on. Getting paid turns him on. The higher the stakes, the hotter things get. Each trip to London is more expensive than the last, and the webcam sessions don’t run cheap, but Jason is well worth the sticker shock.

The more time they spend together, the more Blake wants, and not just sex and transactions. But Jason’s been burned before by men who thought they were in love with him, and he’s not making that mistake again. When the lines between personal and professional start to blur, it’s going to take more than money, jewelry, and sports cars to keep Jason from clocking out and walking away.

RATING: 2.5/5 stars

*** REVIEW ***

Rent-boys were never the characters I prefer reading about. In fact this is the only book series I read and enjoyed with them as the MCs. The main reasons I even gave these books a shot were:
~ A. Voinov being one of my fav mm authors
~ the series started out as short, fast-paced, fun and way-too-hot stories with book 5, 7 and now 8 being full length novels (around 220 pages.)

I had my doubts when I saw that book 5 and 7 will be full-length novels, because sex takes a major part of the plot and that can easily become boring and repetitive for me if not done right. Those type of stories were usually a hit or miss in my reading history, but luckily I ended up enjoying both of those books. The short stories with Tristan, Jared & Blake a.k.a Rolex are my favorite among this series, so since in this installment we finally get Rolex' story I was positive that I'm gonna love it, BUT I was wrong.

~ 3 main reason why I'm disappointed with this installment:

Reason No. 1 : Who are you Blake and what have you done with Rolex??? I don't know about you guys, but after reading those short stories I obviously had a totally another picture of Rolex than this version of him we got in this book. I imagined him as this cool, sensual, provocative, confident and a bit bossy dirty-talker who knows what he wants and how to get it and not this confused, quite insecure and regular guy he turned out to be. The whole time I was like: Seriously, this is the famous Rolex? O.O

Btw. to be honest, I wasn't overly impressed with Jason too. He was fun and all, but since the whole book is written from Rolex' pov, I feel like we kind of didn't get to meet Jason that good, at least not outside the bedroom. 

Reason No. 2 : Where is the chemistry??? I don't know, maybe it's because I couldn't quite warm up to the MCs til' the very ending of the book, but I wasn't feeling any chemistry or sparks between them since the moment they met, and that's why most of the sex scenes (and there were too much of a lot of them) or even more emotional moments felt pretty impersonal and the ending with some sappy statements pretty unconvincing.

Reason No. 3 : So, that's it??? This refers to the plot of the story which was, aside some parts, quite plain in my opinion. 

The writing was good as always and there were some parts I've enjoyed, like f.e. the scenes when Tristan and Jared showed up and later on Zach and Raul, but basically that's it. Maybe this was the wrong book at the wrong time, maybe my expectations were too big since this is the story of my fav Market Garden sugar-daddy Rolex or maybe I had my fill of mm romances with rent-boys and it's time to move on, but I just wasn't feeling this story or the characters it revolves around.

I expected this installment to end up being my favorite of the series, but sadly, it ended up just the opposite. Either way, I've seen and read a lot of positive reviews from the majority of fans, so I guess this is one one of those not-my-cup-of-tea reads.


Jul 21, 2015

Mini REVIEWs: Cold War & Holding the Edge (Cold War, #1 & #2) Keira Andrews


MM Contemporary Romance/ Sports 

Buy The Books:
Book 1 (100 pages) ~ AMAZON / B & N / KOBO
Book 2 (95 pages) ~ AMAZON / B & N / KOBO

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Book #1: 3.5/ 5 stars
Book #2: 3/ 5 stars

*** REVIEWs ***

Book #1:

“I'm not your friend.” Dev was simply stating a fact.
Mikhail--Misha--smiled softly. “No. You are my ...little rebellion.”

2 famous, top-leading skaters: a Russian & an Indian American. Two sworn rivals competing in one of the most important competitions of their careers. With eyes only on the prize. Until one heated argument in the locker room changes everything.

Fast-paced, fun, emotional and smoking hot enemies-to-lovers mm romance.

3.5 stars and only because some situations were rushed and that drama near the end which could have done a bit better in my opinion. Other than that I loved the palpable chemistry between the Mcs and their opposite personalities- Misha, the cold, calculated and always in control Russian who became a totally another person when behind closed bedroom, shower or locker room doors with the sweet and outgoing Dev.

Book #2:

My first thoughts before diving in Holding the Edge (Cold War, #2) were that the cover guys are totally not what I had in mind, especially not Dev, so I just stuck to my dirty imagination. When I started reading it I was positive that I'm gonna enjoy it more than Cold War (Cold War, #1), because- hey, Dev & Misha finally came clean about their feelings for each other and started a real, even though still closeted relationship and they even got a pet .

Another thing that I liked is that we finally got Misha's pov and the building friendship between their dance partners who couldn't stand each other not so long. The skater boys have done the easy part, but now comes the hard part when they have to face their families, friends and society. Will the pressure be too much for them? Buy the book and find out!

All in all, it was a sweet, emotional and quite satisfying conclusion to the short Cold War series. 3 stars because there was some cheesy content, especially in the 2nd half of the book which kind of lessened my first impression.



Jul 20, 2015

SPOTLIGHT TOUR & GIVEAWAY: Desecrated Beauty (Twisted Fairy Tales, #1) By Kyleigh Castronaro

Desecrated Beauty
(Twisted Fairy Tales, Book 1)
by Kyleigh Castronaro

Genre: Paranormal Romance
Date of Publication: July 6th
Number of pages: approx. 180
Word Count: 58,883
Cover Artist: Kyleigh Castronaro

Book Description: 

Once upon a time, that’s how most of these stories start. But this isn’t one of those stories… Sure, it has the heroine and the hero but they’re not as you would expect them. Both of them have a bloodlust, one different from the other. 

Quill was born and raised as a cold killer who takes enjoyment from the kill. Nero is the son of a Viking and a 1500-year-old vampire whose never been denied his pleasures before. 

Until he meets Quill. He forces her to exchange her life for Rose’s, his indentured servant and Quill’s little sister. Drawn by her fearlessness and strength he has to have her but such a woman cannot be possessed. Both must learn to give up their carefully afforded control to let the other in. Only then may they have their happily forever after.

Sink your teeth into this dystopic re-telling of Beauty and the Beast and satiate your booklust. 


“I thought I might choke and die on your blood, but because I’ve already ingested some I would come back to life… like you.” She looked up at, her eyes wide with the panic that had gripped her before looking down at her feet again and taking a deep breath. She hated feeling vulnerable in front of him like this. But most importantly she hated not having all the answers like he seemingly did. 

“The process is a little more complicated than that, but you would be temporarily held in a state between beings until I decided to claim you.”

“And would you have?” She looked up, her voice quiet as she spoke. There was an underlying fear in her question. A part of her was repulsed by the idea and yet the rest of her longed to know he would have her. She needed to know he would keep her even if she weren't the feisty human woman he claimed he was so intrigued by. When had she decided that his opinion of her was that important? When had she decided at all to allow a man to determine her fate? 

Nero looked back at her unflinchingly as he moved closer to her, reaching out and tracing her lips gently before bringing his hand up along her jaw toward her ear. His fingers toyed with the hair tucked behind her ear before he shook his head at her.

“I would have to, I’m afraid to admit.”

She stared back at him in surprise, unsure of what she was supposed to say. She was far too distracted by his lingering fingers and how they gently caressed her skin, moving along it and forcing it to blossom into gooseflesh. 

Bringing herself back to the moment she swallowed hard, forcing some kind of sound from her lungs, “why?”

“Because you have enraptured me in the most illogical way. Never before has a human woman been able to hold my attention for so long. Something about you calls to me like a familiar lullaby I once knew.” He paused, seeming to gather his thoughts. “My life will last forever but trifling with a mortal can feel like an eternity in hell. Humans by nature are far too slow, uncultured, undomesticated and someone my age doesn’t have the time to break something like that. But then I met you… You, curious you, who fights back, who questions me, who doesn’t want me in the way all women who have ever looked at me have. I don’t understand it, but I want to and worst of all I want you in a way I have never wanted anyone. I don’t need others, but I need you. I feel myself longing for it and whether it would be against your will or not I would change you because I cannot live without you.”

“One day you will have to.” She whispered quietly, staring at him with a bewilderment he had grown so accustomed to.

“Not today.” He whispered back, his voice much lower than hers as he leaned in and caught her lips with his. It was a bruising kiss that she felt all the way down into her toes. It ached in a way that touched her heart and soul. She felt it flow through all her veins and consume her like a fire.

About the Author:

Kyleigh Castronaro is the author of the debut series Grace of Gods. She is a self-published author who tackles many of her projects entirely on her own. She designed the cover of her first novel, self-edited and prepared all formats of the book for publication. Originally from Milton, Ontario, she currently lives in Nottingham, England with her husband and their adorable miniature dachshund Hera.

When not writing Kyleigh enjoys spiritual development, crafting, travelling, spending time in nature, going to the movies, cooking and baking (and then eating), working on self-improvement and spending time with friends and family.

Connect With The Author:

*** GIVEAWAY ***

Presented By

Jul 16, 2015

Pre-Release ARC REVIEW: Beware of Me (Dark Obsession #4) by Cynthia Eden

Expected publication: July 28th 2015 by Hocus Pocus Publishing, Inc.

Romantic Suspense

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Synopsis On Goodreads:

Walk on the wild side with New York Times and USA Today best-selling author Cynthia Eden's dark new romantic suspense, BEWARE OF ME.

Criminal. Killer. Monster. Ethan Barclay has been called many things in life, and he usually doesn't care what people say about him. He's tough, hard, and brutal when he needs to be. But even the most dangerous of men can have a weakness. Ethan's weakness has--and always will be--Carly Shay.

Their pasts are tied together--twisted and melded by blood and death. Walking away from Carly was the hardest thing that Ethan ever did, but it was also his one good deed. He knew Carly deserved far better than him, and he wanted her to have a perfect life, a life that didn't involve paying for Ethan's sins.

Only now the secrets from their past have been revealed, and Carly's life is on the line. Ethan's enemies, Carly's enemies--the predators are closing in on them. But Ethan isn't going to let Carly be threatened. He will move heaven and hell to protect her. He won't lose Carly, not again, and for those foolish enough to try and take her from him...they are about to see just how deadly Ethan truly can be.

Author's Note: BEWARE OF ME is a complete, stand-alone story. All of the books in the Dark Obsession series are stand-alone titles.

Dark Obsession Series:

WATCH ME, #1 / WANT ME, #2 / NEED ME, #3 / BEWARE OF ME , #4

RATING: 3/5 stars

*** REVIEW ***

No, I did not picked this book up only because of the cover guy, really, I didn't. (Yeah, right.) The last book that ended on my favorite shelf was a romantic suspense novel, so the genre and the synopsis sounded like something I might enjoy. And I did for the most part.

"You are so wrong for me," she said. And she was the only right thing in his world.

Carly Shay has been hiding from her past for the past few years and pretty successfully until her ex-lover Ethan Barclay, the infamous mob boss and a man who broke her heart, pays her a visit. Carly and Ethan have been through a lot. The time they spent together is at the same time one of her most cherished memories and worse nightmares which still prevent her from moving on and having a normal life. Ethan wants her back at his side and this time forever, but he's not the only one. There are also enemies from her past who want her dead, suspicious friends who want to help and FBI agent who is one step behind from solving her darkest secret. And the question is- whom to trust, the devil you know or the one you don't?

"When you get scared," his voice was gruff, "when you think the world is going to pieces around you, I'll be there. I can help you. I will help you.

The story was dark, action-packed, suspenseful, emotional and steamy. My favorite character was definitely the sexy, provocative, sensual and bad-ass Ethan. The scars on his face only added to his appeal. In comparison to him, I wasn't the biggest fan of Carly in the beginning of the story, because she seemed quite naive and impulsive in some situations, bringing herself in danger, but she did get better later on, especially in the second half of the book.

My rating would have probably been bigger if the suspense had been done a bit better. The twists were okay and they did have the element of surprise, but what can I say- I've read better. My favorite was the last one. I definitely didn't expect *that*, even though I had my suspicious about that person. All in all- it was an enjoyable, fast-paced read. It can be read as a standalone, but still, somehow I can't lose the impression that I would have liked it more if I had read the previous installments of the series. 

"I thought you'd lost your soul a long time ago."
He smiled at her. "I did. I gave it to a seventeen-year-old girl...a beautiful girl who was willing to do anything  in order to save my sorry ass."

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