To read, reading, read.

My To read list has grown like wild fire this week. The list is varied covering several genres.  Here is a brief list of the ones I could not resist buying:

Brothers in Arms by TA WebbBrother’s in Arms (The Broken Road Cafe #2) By T.A. Webb

I love Tom Webb’s writing style and enjoyed the first book in this series very much.  Check out his Goodreads page for more for this wonderful author:

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Blurb:

Betrayed on every front, Dan O’Leary cashed in all his chips and moved from the big city life of Atlanta to small town Blue Ridge, Georgia. While licking his wounds, he never meant to start a new relationship, especially with closeted Chief of Police Nick Oliver.

But now all Dan’s hot buttons are being pushed. One of his employees is being terrorized by seemingly upstanding townspeople. Then worst of all, he’d promised himself he’d never be anyone’s dirty little secret, and when Nick’s fear of being outed causes him to hurt Dan, Dan knows there’re problems in paradise.

With trouble on all sides—a homophobic football coach, an ex lover, and his former best friend—it takes a shot in the dark before he realizes the real danger. It’s time for Dan to figure out who he can trust and close ranks with his brothers in arms.

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Broken Pieces by Riley HeartBroken Pieces by Riley Hart

I am not sure who recommended this one to me but it sounds intriguing.

Blurb:

Can three broken pieces make a whole?

Josiah Evans is the orphan who lost both his parents. He’s sweet, shy, and all heart. He wants nothing more than to be loved.

Mateo Sanchez is the son of a gang leader. He’s seen it all, and never hesitates to do what needs to be done, no matter what it is.

Tristan Croft is the wealthy attorney who clawed his way up from the bottom to rule his own world. He’ll never depend on anyone but himself again.

Three men who couldn’t be more different…and yet, as their lives intersect they find an uncommon balance that calms the storms inside each of them, and ignites fires hotter than they ever thought imaginable.

Told uniquely in three parts and spanning over ten years, BROKEN PIECES is a journey of healing for three fragmented souls, finding love in the unlikeliest of places—with each other.

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Queers by A.J. RoseQueers by A.J. Rose

This book has come highly recommended.  It is definitely near the top of my TBR list.

Blurb:

Within her walls are stories. Love. Laughter. Tears. Lives lived to the fullest, and sometimes cut short before they really get started. She’s seen it all, from homelessness to super-stardom, boys dressed as girls, girls dressed as lamps, and boy, does she have secrets she could tell. Her one truth is that everyone who darkens her doors is accepted with open arms and a song.

Her name is Queers, and for one of L.A.’s few dueling piano bars, she has a lot of heart. On her stage, the beautiful voice of Duff McKinley rings so true he captures the shattered heart of his boss, Brad Mosely, who checked out of life three years ago. But even lifelong dreams have untold consequences.

Duff came to L.A. to chase his musical aspirations, but his best friend Garrett Slater accompanied him to chase a wish of his own: finding The One, his white knight. He believes Landon Kennedy fits the bill. Suave, handsome, and powerful in the music industry, Landon can show Garrett a life he’s only seen in movies. But even as Landon helps Duff realize his dreams, he brings Garrett into a nightmare he may never leave, one from which Garrett’s roommate, Jackson Moriarty, is determined to rescue him. If Garrett repays Jackson by seeing his own charms, so much the better.

Yes, within her walls, Queers has long history. Unrequited love, sinister intentions, fame, fortune, and a group of friends and lovers who would do anything for each other no matter the cost.

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How to Train Your Dom in Five Easy Steps by Josephine Myles

Josephine Myles is one of my favorite authors!  She has a delightful sense of humor and always comes through when I need a pick me up.  I love books with a bit of kink and I can’t wait to see what she does with the BDSM theme. A friend of mine at It’s About The Book reviewed the ARC here: (not spoilerish at all) It's About The Book Badge

Blurb:

Sometimes the little head really does know best.

Jeff White’s needs are simple. All he wants is a submissive to help him explore the dominant side that his ex-girlfriend couldn’t handle. Problem is, inexperience in both dating and domming has resulted in a string of rejections.

What he needs is an experienced sub willing to show him the ins and outs of controlling a scene. Unfortunately, the only one willing to take him on is male, and Jeff is straight. One hundred percent, never-gonna-happen straight.

Easygoing painslut Eddie Powell doesn’t care that Jeff is younger, working class, and shorter. Eddie likes a bit of rough, and Jeff fits the bill perfectly. The trick will be convincing him to follow Eddie’s five-step training programme—which would be easy if Eddie wasn’t starting to have feelings for the rough-around-the-edges landscaper.

Once Jeff lays his hands on Eddie, things definitely get out of hand. But it’ll take more than hot, sweaty, kinky sex to persuade him to come out of the closet—especially to himself.

Warning: Contains a happy sub, a confused Dom, a high ratio of sex to plot, misuse of root ginger, and a suitcase of kink. Written in Jo’s usual exceedingly “English” English.

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OK. What I am currently reading:

Beneath The Stain Amy Lane  I am on part four of the Serial novel by Amy Lane called Beneath The Stain.  Oh my goodness, this is pure Amy Lane.  Angst, pain, love, loss,healing, beautiful phrasing, and characters that have captured my heart.  I cannot wait to start part four.  (As I have sporadic reading time lately – I am saving this for when I can read obsessively without too much interruption. 🙂

 

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Inappropriate Roads A Max Vos Anthology  Inappropriate Roads: A Max Vos Anthology

I enjoy Max Vos writing style.  He writes it like he sees it and makes no apologies.  His writing is fun and humorous and the sex down and dirty.  This is an anthology with a couple of previously released works as well as some new ones.  I just started this one tonight. 🙂

 

Blurb:

It’s time for a journey along some inappropriate roads….
Along the way, you’ll meet a host of interesting men: the shy teacher, more than a few bears, the geeky numismatist, and the hunky glass artist, to name but a few.
They all have a story to tell, and it won’t be long before you spot the common theme – hot encounters with even hotter men. And these guys don’t pull any punches, so expect to find yourself getting hot under the collar.
So if you’re ready, we’ll be off. Fasten your seatbelts, please.
And then hold on for an exhilarating ride….

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Now on to what I have Read:

Stitch Gothika #1  Stitch (Gothika #1) by Kim Fielding, Jamie Fessenden, Eli Easton and Sue Brown.

“Stitch is an anthology of 4 novellas by m/m romance authors, each with a Frankenstein/Creature theme. It is the first in a series of gothic m/m romance anthologies called gothika”.

I love anthologies and I was not sure if I would enjoy this one.  Creatures?  I was pleasantly surprised.  Everything from steam punk to sci-fi, golems and one that I am not sure how to categorize – but borders Sci-fi.  All in all I enjoyed the entire anthology.

4.5 stars overall.

Brandilyn at Prism Book Alliance did a wonderful review of the anthology that is right in line with my thoughts.  You can find it here:

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Muscling Through JL Merrow  Muscling Through by J.L. Merrow

  Blurb:

The bigger they come, the harder they fall… in love.

Cambridge art professor Larry Morton takes one, alcohol-glazed look at the huge, tattooed man looming in a dark alley, and assumes he’s done for. Moments later he finds himself disarmed—literally and figuratively. And, the next morning, he can’t rest until he offers an apology to the man who turned out to be more gentle than giant.

Larry’s intrigued to find there’s more to Al Fletcher than meets the eye; he possesses a natural artistic talent that shines through untutored technique. Unfortunately, no one else seems to see the sensitive soul beneath Al’s imposing, scarred, undeniably sexy exterior. Least of all Larry’s class-conscious family, who would like nothing better than to split up this mismatched pair.

Is it physical? Oh, yes, it’s deliciously physical, and so much more—which makes Larry’s next task so daunting. Not just convincing his colleagues, friends and family that their relationship is more than skin deep. It’s convincing Al. 

Contains comic misunderstandings, misuse of art materials, and unexpected poignancy.

This was my first J.L. Merrow.  My friend J. recommended it because I love stories with a sense of humor and a British voice with that humor is just a bonus.  This book is a classic opposites attract but with depth.  Larry is a posh professor, while Al is the stereotypical working class guy who also happens to be an artist.  Al doesn’t understand why someone like Larry would be attracted to him except for what they have physically – which is hot, but they have the art in common too, not that Al realizes that.

Their first meeting had me laughing out loud.  Al is so naive, he misunderstands Larry’s reaction to him and the results are hilarious.  Al is such a gentle soul and I could not help but find him endearing.  Larry’s family is not so enamored with Al and I was ready for them to mind their own business.  Luckily after a series of misunderstanding, Larry comes to his senses and then has the task of convincing Al they are, indeed, right for one another.  This was sweet, romantic and fun.

4.5 stars

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Whew!  If you have made it to this point, Thank You!  I hope you have found something in these list that looks interesting.

Happy Reading,

Melyna

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To read, reading, read.

Life has been full lately leaving little time to do one of my favorite things, read. My Goodreads TBR list keeps growing and I keep adding books to my “Currently reading” list and have not gotten a chance to review any of the ones I have finished.

I am currently reading Beneath The Stain part Two by Amy Lane. It is a serialized book that is being released in seven parts. I adore Amy Lane.  She is an awesome writer and is known by her tagline Amy Lane:  Angst and Pain.  One thing I have always been able to count on after the angst and pain is a happy ending.  I am hoping these guys get theirs too.  So far I am loving this series.

Beneath The Stain Amy LaneTitle: Beneath the Stain (Beneath the Stain – Serial #1-7)
Author: Amy Lane
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: m/m, rockstar, angst,contemporary, Awesome Amy Lane
Published: In a series with first release August 29. Expected full release October 17, 2014
Where to buy: DreamspinnerPress
Blurb:
In a town as small as Tyson, CA, everybody knew the four brothers with the four different fathers– and their penchant for making good music when they weren’t getting into trouble. For Mackey Sanders, playing in Outbreak Monkey with his brothers and their friends—especially Grant Adams–made Tyson bearable. But Grant has plans for getting Mackey and the Sanders boys out of Tyson, even if that means staying behind.

Between the heartbreak of leaving Grant and the terrifying, glamorous life of rock stardom, Mackey is adrift and sinking fast. When he’s hit rock bottom, Trav Ford shows up, courtesy of their record company and a producer who wants to see what Mackey can do if he doesn’t flame out first. But cleaning up his act means coming clean about Grant, and that’s not easy to do or say. Mackey might make it with Trav’s help–but Trav’s not sure he’s going to survive falling in love with Mackey.

Mackey James Sanders comes with a whole lot of messy, painful baggage, and law-and-order Trav doesn’t do messy or painful. And just when Trav thinks they may have mastered every demon in Mackey’s past, the biggest, baddest demon of all comes knocking.

A novella that I just finished is by another author I go to for happy stories, Cardeno C.  Her new series is Hope and the first book is McFarland’s Farm.
Title: McFarlands Farm (Hope#1)McFarland's Farm Cardeno C.
Author: Cardeno C.
Publisher:The Romance Authors
Published:September 10th 2014
Pages: 56 pages
Where to buy: amazonBuyButton
Genre: Contemporary, m/m

My rating: 4 stars
Blurb:
Wealthy, attractive Lucas Reika treats life like a party, moving from bar to bar and man to man. Thumbing his nose at his restaurateur father’s demand that he earn his keep, Lucas instead seduces a valued employee in the kitchen of their flagship restaurant, earning himself an ultimatum: lose access to his father’s money or stay in the middle of nowhere with a man he has secretly lusted over from afar.

Quiet, hard-working Jared McFarland loves his farm on the outskirts of Hope, Arizona, but he aches to have someone to come home to at the end of the day. Jared agrees to take in his longtime crush as a favor. But when Lucas invades his heart in addition to his space, Jared has to decide how much of himself he’s willing to risk and figure out if he can offer Lucas enough to keep him after his father’s punishment is over.
Review:
I enjoyed this one very much. Jared McFarland is an endearing character. He is a down to earth, hardworking, kind soul that has devoted his life to his farm and loves the little community of Hope, Arizona. When he is presented with an offer he really can’t refuse he ends up with an unwelcome guest in the form of spoiled,but handsome Lucas Reika. They have a history through people they know and an unspoken attraction to one another. It moves fairly quickly but I enjoyed watching Lucas and Jared interact and although I was not certain about the transformation that Lucas went through would last, they were fun together and I was invested in their happy ending.

I have been on a roll with good books.  One I was eagerly awaiting release of was:
Title: Duck, Duck, Ghost (Hellsinger #2)
Author: Rhys Ford
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Published: September 8th 2014
Word/page count: 240 pages
Genre: m/m, contemporary, paranormal
My rating: 5 stars
Where to buy:

DreamspinnerPress
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Blurb:
Paranormal investigator Wolf Kincaid knows what his foot tastes like.

Mostly because he stuck it firmly in his mouth when his lover, Tristan Pryce, accidentally drugged him with a batch of psychotropic baklava. Needing to patch things up between them, Wolf drags Tristan to San Luis Obispo, hoping Tristan’s medium ability can help evict a troublesome spirit haunting an old farmhouse.

With Wolf’s sister handling Hoxne Grange’s spectral visitors, Tristan finds himself in the unique position of being able to leave home for the first time in forever, but Wolf’s roughshod treatment is the least of his worries. Tristan’s ad-hoc portal for passing spirits seems to be getting fewer and fewer guests, and despite his concern he’s broken his home, Tristan agrees to help Wolf’s cousin, Sey, kick her poltergeist to the proverbial curb.

San Luis Obispo brings its own bushel of troubles. Tristan’s ghost whispering skill is challenged not only by a terrorizing haunting but also by Wolf’s skeptical older cousin, Cin. Bookended by a pair of aggressive Kincaids, Tristan soon finds himself in a spectral battle that threatens not only his sanity but also his relationship with Wolf, the first man he’s ever loved.

Review:
Rhys Ford can do scary! She has written some pretty gruesome bad guys in her other series and the ghost in this book is creepy! I loved it. She also rounds it out with humor, eccentric characters, steamy romance and sweet emotions. Duck, Duck Ghost picks up with Tristan and Wolf after Fish & Ghost (Hellsinger #1) Things have not gone as planned for those two and in an attempt to reconcile they wind up visiting one of Wolf’s relatives to help with a possible haunting. The writing is fast paced and the characters and descriptions are rich and vivid. I enjoyed this one just as much or more than the first book. It does end with a slight cliff hanger. The story arc for this book is wrapped up but the cliff hanger sets up the next book and it was tantalizing and not anything that felt like I was left hanging. I can’t wait to see where Ms Ford takes our guys next!

 

I have three more that I have read but those will have to wait for now.

 

Happy Reading

Melyna

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The Bible Boys by Dan Skinner

The Bible Boys by Dan SkinnerTitle: The Bible Boys
Author: Dan Skinner
Publisher: Cerberus Inc
Genre: M/M, Contemporary
Published: July 17th 2014
Word / page count: 125
Rating: 4.5

Review:

The Bible Boys touched a nerve as I was reading it. I recognize this type of church, been subjected to those narrow views and witnessed the hypocrisy first hand.  I felt angry and sad for the main character, Matthew.  Matthew has never known anything but the church and its restrictive teachings.  His parents have drunk the cool-aid and force Matthew to toe the line or feel the effects of Proverbs 13:24.
To make matters worse, Matthew is not handsome, no, he is pretty and being pretty in this particular environment just makes matters that much worse.  Matthew knows he is different in other ways too and he must keep these feelings hidden at all costs.  When Caleb and his family join Matthews church, he can’t help but sneak glances at the new boy but seeing as how Caleb seems to fit in with The Bible Boys (the churches boys youth group) he keeps his distance as he does with the rest of the congregation.  It is just safer that way.
The Bible Boys is more than a cautionary tale about radical fundamentalist beliefs and their effect on those who they see as different.  It is also a coming of age tale, about discovering ones sexuality, and finding love and hope for a better life when you least expect it.
I enjoyed this book as I have enjoyed all of Dan Skinner’s books.  He elicits a variety of emotions from me with each story he writes.  The ending of the story alluded to a better life for Matthew and felt hopeful, but I still had questions and wanted more.  I will admit that this is probably due to my inquisitive nature, although I suspect it is more to do with the talented author that was able to pull me deeply into his story and make me care for his characters.

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If you have not read Dan Skinner’s books or are familiar with his photography, please follow the highlighted links and click on the book covers below.  He has become one of my favorite authors and his work is diverse and always captivating.

Memorizing You by Dan Skinner price of dick    

Review                            Review                           Review

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Catching up!

Life has been full of unexpected events since July and new adventures (read – new job) 😉  I have been reading as time allows but I have fallen behind on reviews.  These will be brief, well brief for me.  I have even received permission to link to a review on Goodreads for the book Stuff By Josephine Myles, by a reviewer I follow,~~Dani ♥ semi-colons~~.  She writes wonderful reviews and also reviews for the blog My Fiction Nook.

The three m/m books listed here today cover urban fantasy, contemporary romance with a British flavor and historical mystery / romance.

Title: No Enemy But Time (Love’s Landscapes)No Enemy But Time by Angel Martinez
Series: Love’s Landscapes
Author: Angel Martinez
Publisher: M/M Romance Group @ Goodreads
Genre: M/M, Urban Fantasy
Published: July 20th 2014
Word / page count: 62
Rating: 4.0
url: http://www.mmromancegroup.com

*Free Read*

Part of the Don’t Read In The Closet 2014 event.
This novella is set in the authors Brandywine Investigations universe.

https://www.goodreads.com/series/133250-brandywine-investigations

Blurb:
Zagreus (Zack), the son of Hades, and his former guardian angel, Michael, live a quiet life of gardening, animal rescue, and playful sexual experimentation. They have a house near the beach, family close by and each other. This should be the happily ever after of every god’s dreams.

But lately, strange misgivings have plagued Zack, a sense of something dark and powerful approaching. Since he can’t pin down a source, he dismisses his instincts. Why borrow trouble? That is, until Michael begins to have strange mood swings and a dark stranger appears in the garden one night. Zack will need to battle time itself or lose both his hard-won peace and the love of his immortal life.

Review:
I always enjoy the “Don’t Read in the Closet” events that the Goodreads M/M Romance Group hosts every year. This year’s theme is Love’s Landscapes. I have found many new authors through these events and it is fun to get free short stories from some of my favorite authors too.

Which brings me to No Enemy But Time by Angel Martinez. I am a fan of Angel’s writing. She writes M/M sci-fi and fantasy. She can be light and humorous or deliciously dark. This story is a little mix of both. Zack and Michael have been together a while, a committed couple, very much in love. Michael is an angel that fell when he fell in love with Zack (Zagreus), son of Hades. It seems that many fallen angels succumb to a darker side over time. The love between Michael and Zack has been strong enough to keep him stable so far, but Zack notices changes in his lover and is worried but dismisses it. The first part of the book really gives the reader a feel for the depth of love these two have for one another. There is also a very erotic scene between them (something I had not read about before) that I thought was well written and portrayed the love and trust between them.

That said, this is not an easy story. When someone we love is going through something that we would rather believe is not happening, sometimes we hesitate to take action. In No Enemy But Time we can see this happening and matters become much worse before Zack realizes he must act to save Michael. There are heart-wrenching scenes and I felt the ending was not exactly happy, but hopeful. I read this story without reading Ms Martinez’s Canines, Crosshairs And Corpses, Book # 1 in the Brandywine Investigations universe. It is now on my tbr list and I am hoping we get more of Zack and Michael’s story too.

Title: Stuff (The Bristol Collection #2)Stuff cover Josephine Myles
Series: The Bristol Collection #2
Author: Josephine Myles
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: M/M, Contemporary romance
Published: May 27th 2014
Word / page count: 374 pages
Rating: 4.5

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Blurb:

When Mr. Glad Rags meets Mr. Riches, the result is flaming fun.

Tobias “Mas” Maslin doesn’t need much. A place of his own, weekends of clubbing, a rich boyfriend for love and support. Too bad his latest sugar daddy candidate turns out to be married with kids. Mas wants to be special, not someone’s dirty little secret.

When he loses his job and his flat on the same day, his worlds starts unraveling…until he stumbles across a vintage clothing shop. Now to convince the reclusive, eccentric owner he’s in dire need of a salesman.

Perry Cavendish-Fiennes set up Cabbages and Kinks solely to annoy his controlling father. Truth be told, he’d rather spend every spare moment on his true passion, art. When Mas comes flaming into his life talking nineteen to the dozen, he finds himself offering him a job and a place to live.

He should have listened to his instincts. The shop is already financially on the brink, and Mas’s flirting makes him feel things he’s never felt for a man. Yet Mas seems convinced they can make a go of it—in the shop, and together.

Warning: Contains an eccentric, bumbling Englishman, a gobby drama queen, fantastic retro clothing, scary fairies, exes springing out of the woodwork, and a well-aimed glass of bubbly. Written in brilliantly British English

Review:
Oh My! What can I say? Josephine Myles is one of my favorite authors and her very British style is so much fun to read. I love the way Perry and Mas work so well even though they are so very different. When I was going to Goodreads to get the blurb, I read a review by ~~Dani ♥ semi-colons~~. I always enjoy her reviews and this one said exactly how I felt about this book.

Check it out here: Goodreads reviews

Title: Think of EnglandThink of England cover
Author: K.J. Charles
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd
Genre: M/M, Historical Romance, Mystery
Published: July 1st 2014
Word / page count: 236 pages
Rating: 4.5

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Blurb:

Lie back and think of England…

England, 1904. Two years ago, Captain Archie Curtis lost his friends, fingers, and future to a terrible military accident. Alone, purposeless and angry, Curtis is determined to discover if he and his comrades were the victims of fate, or of sabotage.

Curtis’s search takes him to an isolated, ultra-modern country house, where he meets and instantly clashes with fellow guest Daniel da Silva. Effete, decadent, foreign, and all-too-obviously queer, the sophisticated poet is everything the straightforward British officer fears and distrusts.

As events unfold, Curtis realizes that Daniel has his own secret intentions. And there’s something else they share—a mounting sexual tension that leaves Curtis reeling.

As the house party’s elegant facade cracks to reveal treachery, blackmail and murder, Curtis finds himself needing clever, dark-eyed Daniel as he has never needed a man before…

Warning: Contains explicit male/male encounters, ghastly historical attitudes, and some extremely stiff upper lips.
Review:
I first discovered K.J. Charles through her collaboration with Jordan L Hawk. I have since become a great fan of her writing.
Captain Archie Curtis is a soldiers, soldier. He is wounded in an arms mishap that is looking more and more to have been sabotage rather than a manufacturing error. When he arrives at the manor of a wealthy couple, he meets Daniel da Silva. Daniel is nothing like Archie and Archie forms an instant dislike for the man. What Archie and Daniel do not realize is that they are more alike than they imagine and find they are at the manor for the same purpose. I thought Daniel was wonderful. Rapier wit, not shy or repentant for who he is and perfect for the repressed, stoic Archie.
The way the author introduces us to Archie and Daniel as well as the other guest staying at the manor, gives the story a murder mystery feel, which, in fact, it is. Murder, mystery, treachery, decadence and blackmail, as well as witty banter, courage and loyalty, some steamy sex and two strong female characters that I thought were wonderful. K.J. Charles’ style is crisp and vivid and the dialogue flows perfectly for the period. Once again, I have found a historical novel that swept me off my feet, and kept me engaged to the point where I would rather read than sleep. Although this could be a standalone book, I am hoping there is a sequel in the works – soon – please. Highly recommended.

All books listed were purchased by blogger/reviewer

Happy Reading,

Melyna

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