Snowblind by Eli Easton ~ Part of the Dreamspun Desires Line from Dreamspinner Press

Title: Snowblind

Dreamspun Desires #29

Genre: Contemporary, Suspense, Mystery

Author: Eli Easton

Publication Date: March 1, 2017

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Blurb: 

Snow, steam, and secrets.

When Jude Devereaux—on the run from a domineering lover—seeks shelter at a secluded Alaskan cabin, unable to make it to town before the blizzard hits, suspicious SOB Hutch is naturally wary, but Jude isn’t just gorgeous, he’s funny and smart and flirtatious. Good things happen over the three days they’re snowed in, and by the time the storm clears, Hutch finds himself a little too attached.

But is Jude who he claims? The last thing Hutch wants is to re-enter the world of espionage and violence he came to Alaska to escape, but the threat to Jude is unthinkable. Hutch refuses to let anything bad happen… even if it means delving into secrets Hutch thought were hidden for good.

Thoughts:  Eli Easton is one of my go to authors.  I love her holiday stories, YA, Unwrapping Hank series, Howl at the Moon series (not your typical shifter series <3), Sex in Seattle series and Men of Lancaster County books.  Her entry in the  Dreamspun line from Dreamspinner Press was something a bit different. It had mystery, suspense, romance and twists to the story. Not what I was expecting, but enjoyable nonetheless.  

You can purchase this book here:  Dreamspinner Press

The Dreamspun Desires line is an ebook subscription line, although you can buy individual titles.  From the website:   Dreamspun Desires are contemporary category romance novels, complete with your favorite heartwarming heroes, captivating plots, and exotic settings. These titles are all about happily ever afters that leave you with a satisfied smile for days.

Click the book cover to find out more:

 

 

The Gentleman’s guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee Audiobook review.

My enabler friend pointed me in the direction of a book titled The Gentleman’s guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee. Specifically the audiobook.   As I was reading reviews on Goodreads, I noticed a review from a blog that had the cover reveal and a video interview from the author. The Blog is The Midnight Garden. I was already planning on buying the audiobook, but after watching the video, it was a sure thing. Take a look. It is a fun video and listen to the sample on Audible, the narrator sounds wonderful.

Title:  The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue
Author: Mackenzi Lee
Narrator: Christian Coulson
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Publication date: June 27th 2017
Review:   I was intrigued by the description: an 18th century historical YA that has LGBTQIA characters, and that did not seem to be targeted at a particular group. I watched the author’s video on The Midnight Gardens blog and on YouTube. Pirates. Kickass girls in skirts. A book showing that history was not just white CIS gendered people. I was so there.
Monty is a troubled young man. Born to privilege, but unhappy (with cause). He has been brought up to be a gentleman, but is more a rebellious rake. His best friend is Percy, a young man raised by his aunt and uncle who faces challenges due to his mixed heritage and darker skin. Percy is sweet and adorable and plays violin (that makes him more adorable and the reasons why he loves his violin are heart-tugging).
The two have spent their childhood together and are about to set off on a Grand Tour (road trip) to the continent for one year before they must become responsible adults. They have grand plans filled with plenty of partying. The problem is they are chaperoned, with a very structured schedule, and they have Monty’s little sister Felicity to tag along until she is left at Finishing school.
Thus begins the adventure. From England to France and some detours after that. The book is humorous, yet has a serious tone as well. Monty and his relationship with his father, what both Monty and Percy face once their Grand Tour is concluded, life and perceptions in the 18th century, are not easy subjects. Then there is Felicity. She is a wonderful, strong, intelligent female character and a foil to Monty’s character in many ways.
I laughed many times because the contrast between her and her brother Monty is almost a stereotypical role reversal at times and they have fun, witty sibling banter (the author enjoys giving tropes a twist). There were definitely times I wanted to thunk Monty, but as I continued to listen to the story, and Monty grew, I adored him, too.
I must say that the last third of the book was my favorite. The events that happen and the people our trio meet kick the adventure into high gear and Monty and Felicity are quite the team.
The book is fast paced and the narration is wonderful. I finished the book feeling that there are still questions to be answered, but not a cliffhanger at all (there is a second book in the works). The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue is a young adult novel that can definitely be enjoyed by adults too.

To purchase your copy click the links below:

Amazon

Audible

 

The Gentleman’s guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee Audiobook review.

My enabler friend pointed me in the direction of a book titled The Gentleman’s guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee. Specifically the audiobook.   As I was reading reviews on Goodreads, I noticed a review from a blog that had the cover reveal and a video interview from the author. The Blog is The Midnight Garden. I was already planning on buying the audiobook, but after watching the video, it was a sure thing. Take a look. It is a fun video and listen to the sample on Audible, the narrator sounds wonderful.

Title:  The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue
Author: Mackenzi Lee
Narrator: Christian Coulson
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Publication date: June 27th 2017
Review:   I was intrigued by the description: an 18th century historical YA that has LGBTQIA characters, and that did not seem to be targeted at a particular group. I watched the author’s video on The Midnight Gardens blog and on YouTube. Pirates. Kickass girls in skirts. A book showing that history was not just white CIS gendered people. I was so there.
Monty is a troubled young man. Born to privilege, but unhappy (with cause). He has been brought up to be a gentleman, but is more a rebellious rake. His best friend is Percy, a young man raised by his aunt and uncle who faces challenges due to his mixed heritage and darker skin. Percy is sweet and adorable and plays violin (that makes him more adorable and the reasons why he loves his violin are heart-tugging).
The two have spent their childhood together and are about to set off on a Grand Tour (road trip) to the continent for one year before they must become responsible adults. They have grand plans filled with plenty of partying. The problem is they are chaperoned, with a very structured schedule, and they have Monty’s little sister Felicity to tag along until she is left at Finishing school.
Thus begins the adventure. From England to France and some detours after that. The book is humorous, yet has a serious tone as well. Monty and his relationship with his father, what both Monty and Percy face once their Grand Tour is concluded, life and perceptions in the 18th century, are not easy subjects. Then there is Felicity. She is a wonderful, strong, intelligent female character and a foil to Monty’s character in many ways.
I laughed many times because the contrast between her and her brother Monty is almost a stereotypical role reversal at times and they have fun, witty sibling banter (the author enjoys giving tropes a twist). There were definitely times I wanted to thunk Monty, but as I continued to listen to the story, and Monty grew, I adored him, too.
I must say that the last third of the book was my favorite. The events that happen and the people our trio meet kick the adventure into high gear and Monty and Felicity are quite the team.
The book is fast paced and the narration is wonderful. I finished the book feeling that there are still questions to be answered, but not a cliffhanger at all (there is a second book in the works). The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue is a young adult novel that can definitely be enjoyed by adults too.

To purchase your copy click the links below:

Amazon

Audible

 

Hard Wired (Cyberlove #3) by Megan Erickson and Santino Hassell

 

Hello,

I read this novel in March 2017.  This is one of my favorite series and where I discovered authors, Santino Hassell and Megan Erickson.  

Title: Hard Wired

Series: Cyberlove #3

Authors:  Megan Erickson and Santino Hassell

Publication date: February 13, 2017

Blurb:  My FallenCon agenda is simple: sit on a couple of panels and let people meet the real me. Jesse Garvy—mod of a famous Twitch channel and, if I ever come out of my shell, future vlogger. I definitely didn’t plan to sleep with a moody tattooed fan-artist, but he’s gorgeous and can’t keep his hands off me. There’s a first time for everything, and my first time with a guy turns out to be the hottest experience of my life.

But the next day, I find out my moody fan-artist is Ian Larsen AKA Cherry—someone I’ve known online for years. And he’d known exactly who I was while shoving me up against that wall. Before I figure out whether to be pissed or flattered, the con ends.

Now we’re back online, and he’s acting like nothing happened. But despite the distance between us, and the way he clings to the safety of his online persona, we made a real connection that night. I don’t plan to let him forget.

Thoughts:  I have enjoyed each book in the Cyberlove series. They are all different due the the characters, but intersect and overlap. We meet the main characters in Strong Signal, mods for Kai’s Twitch stream, and again see them in Fast Connection, where this story overlaps.
Jesse and Ian/Cherry/Cerise have a complex story with a lot of introspection and trust issues especially on Ian’s part. I liked both characters and my heart broke for both of them as they worked through what has happened to them in the past as well as insecurities and cyber drama. This was not an easy HEA, but I enjoyed the ending and the set up for the next couple.

I have listened to the audiobooks for all the books in this series.  The narrators are wonderful and  add to the experience.  Highly recommend.

Buy here: Amazon

Strong Signal is the first in the Cyberlove series and you can find my thoughts, as well as those of other reviewers that inspired me to read this book by clicking the audiobook cover below.  

strong-signal-megan-erickson-and-santino-hassell

Blurb:  I was counting down the months until the end of my deployment. My days were spent working on military vehicles, and I spent my nights playing video games that would distract me until I could leave Staff Sergeant Garrett Reid behind. That was when I met him: Kai Bannon, a fellow gamer with a famous stream channel. I never expected to become fixated on someone who’d initially been a rival. And I’d never expected someone who oozed charm to notice me – a guy known for his brutal honesty and scowl. I hadn’t planned for our online friendship to turn into something that kept me up at night – hours of chatting evolving into filthy webcam sessions. But it did. And now I can’t stop thinking about him. In my mind, our real life meeting is perfect. We kiss, we fall into bed, and it’s love at first sight. Except, like most things in my life, it doesn’t go as planned.

Buy here: Amazon

Fast Connection, Cyberlove  #2

To read my review click book cover  

Blurb: After a decade of serving in the Army, everyone still expects me to be Dominic ‘Nicky’ Costigan–the skirt-chasing player. They don’t know I’ve been spending my days trying to figure out my post-military life. Including how to pick up guys.

When I meet Luke on a hookup app, he makes it clear it’s for one-night only. That’s fine with me, because I’m down to see what this silver fox can do. But after I arrive at his doorstep, it doesn’t take long to realize we have serious chemistry, and we end up meeting again.

He’s got more walls around his heart than a military base, but I think he’s as addicted to me as I am to him. He can’t resist me for long. I mean, who can? Except Luke’s rules exist for a reason, and when I test his limits, things get complicated. Maybe too complicated.

*FAST CONNECTION is a standalone, full-length romance novel with no cliffhanger*

Buy here: Amazon

Be sure you read this bonus scene after Fast Connection

The Visit  

Free read here: Bonus Scene

Let’s try this again. News, reviews and plans for the future.

Good morning!

It has been a while since I posted a book review.  Life has been very busy and I decided I would rather read, more than review.  I have read and listened to some great books this year.  The total was eighty-eight at last count.

I will start with posting Sunday evening, and Tuesday and Thursday mornings.

I read and listen to a variety of romance, general fiction, mystery, Sci Fi, urban fantasy, Shifter, contemporary and historical romance.  They range from Young Adult to erotic romance.  It varies with my mood.  I prefer books with a happy ending and I will warn you if it is not.  I tend to read mostly about M/M couples, but you will also find characters from the LGBTQIA spectrum as well as M/F relationships.

I hope you find something you enjoy as I post these reviews.  My reviews tend to be short, and about how a book makes me feel.   If I am really excited about the book, or just feeling particularly loquacious, it may be a bit longer.    If someone’s review leads me to read a book, I will link to that review or the blog and reviewer.  This is how I have discovered so many wonderful books and found people who have similar tastes in books that I do.  This helps when trying to decide whether or not I want to buy a book.

My favorite example is how I found Tom Webb.  I had been on Amazon looking at reviews and discovered Tom’s reviews. I loved how he reviewed the books. He shared his thoughts and feelings about the book with no spoilers.  I realized we had similar tastes in books and I looked up his review site and we eventually became Facebook friends and later met at a conference a few years ago.   Tom is also a wonderful author.  You can find out more here and here.

This is why I will link to other reviews and review sites.  You can discover a new blog, new reviewers, new books and possibly make friends along the way.

Happy World Book Day

I haven’t posted anything in a while.  Life has been busy with little time for reading.  Reading is something that allows me to travel without leaving the house, go on adventures I would most likely never attempt in real life and walk in someone else’s shoes for a while, sharing their lives, emotions, successes and failures.   I can fly with dragons and explore new galaxies.  They are a source of knowledge, entertainment, comfort and so much more.  I cannot imagine a life without books.

Wishing you a happy World Book Day filled with your favorite books!

 

 

February 2017 – Books & Reviews – Part 5

Hello,

Welcome to the final entry of my February 2017 Books and Reviews.

Part 5 is dedicated to one series.  It is also not my usual MM genre.  My friend and enabler extraordinaire, Janice , recommended this series to me.  It was on audible and sounded like a fun diversion.  I listened to the first book in 2016, but I am adding it anyway.  It is, after all, where it all began.

The Utterly Uninteresting and Unadventurous Tales of Fred, The Vampire Accountant
Author: Drew Hayes
Narrated by Kirby Heyborne

Blurb:
Some people are born boring. Some live boring. Some even die boring. Fred managed to do all three, and when he woke up as a vampire, he did so as a boring one. Timid, socially awkward, and plagued by self-esteem issues, Fred has never been the adventurous sort.

One fateful night – different from the night he died, which was more inconvenient than fateful – Fred reconnects with an old friend at his high school reunion. This rekindled relationship sets off a chain of events thrusting him right into the chaos that is the parahuman world, a world with chipper zombies, truck driver wereponies, maniacal necromancers, ancient dragons, and now one undead accountant trying his best to “survive.” Because even after it’s over, life can still be a downright bloody mess.

Review: 5.0/5.0
Throughly entertaining! This was recommended my friend, Janice – enabler extraordinaire. It is out of my usual genre, but with a title like that, it was a must listen. Fred is a delightful character, boring in death as he was in life or so he thinks.
After attending his high school reunion and reuniting with a girl he had been friends with, his life can no longer be considered boring. I loved the cast of characters that become part of Fred’s “gang” and the adventures that befall them.
Looking forward to listening to the next two books in the series.

Buy here:
Amazon

Undeath and Taxes
(Fred the Vampire Accountant #2)
Author: Drew Hayes
Narrated by Kirby Heyborne
Blurb:
The sequel to the Amazon bestseller THE UTTERLY UNINTERESTING AND UNADVENTUROUS TALES OF FRED, THE VAMPIRE ACCOUNTANT.

After discovering just how filled with magic, intrigue, and adventure the parahuman world of being an Undead American can be, Fredrick Frankford Fletcher did exactly what was expected–he became a certified parahuman accountant. Myths and legends, as it turns out, are not so great at taking appropriate deductions and keeping their receipts, and Fred is more than happy to return to a life others view as woefully dull, expanding his accounting business to cater to various monsters and their respective financial needs.

Said monsters are, unfortunately, still spectacular at pulling Fred into trouble, though. And despite merely wanting to stick with simple paperwork, Fred once again finds he is going to have to deal with enchanted weaponry, government agents, possessed houses, and one enigmatic dragon’s interest. In the parahuman world, any business can turn deadly, even one as mundane as accounting.

Review:  5.0/.0
I adore this series. Told as a series of memoirs, Fred recounts his adventures (not that he was looking for any) of his not so mundane, undead life. The narration is wonderful, the cast of characters continue to grow as we get to know more about Fred and his friends who have become his family.

Buy here:
Amazon

Bloody Acquisitions
(Fred the Vampire Accountant #3)
Author:  Drew Hayes
Narrator:  Kirby Heyborne
Blurb:
The third book in Drew’s outrageously adventurous and satirical series, including THE UTTERLY UNINTERESTING AND UNADVENTUROUS TALES OF FRED, THE VAMPIRE ACCOUNTANT (Book 1) and UNDEATH & TAXES (Book 2).

With a thriving parahuman accounting practice, a steady relationship, and a circle of trusted friends, Fred’s undead life has become more enjoyable than his normal one ever was. Unfortunately, it also seems that he’s no longer the only vampire to appreciate the up-and-coming city of Winslow, Colorado. A new clan of vampires is moving in, and they aren’t well known for tolerating outsiders in their territory.

Now, Fred must cope with the growing presence—and threat—of other vampires even as he struggles to keep up with his business’s demands and make time for his friends. Between hidden parahuman towns, crazed vampire hunters, quarreling mages, and the world’s least subtle spy, it will take all of Fred’s wiles just to keep his head above water. And as the new clan sinks their fangs deeper and deeper into his city, the undead accountant is faced with a choice between two equally unappealing options: flee his home, or stand against an entire clan of fellow vampires.

Review: 5.0/5.0

I adore this series. (Yes, I have said this before) It is so much fun. I listened to all three books and the narration is very good. I love the way the story is told in segments as memoirs and how the author has other characters take the role of storyteller as needed. Fred is one my favorite vampire characters. Not a stereotype at all. I enjoyed the way the story develops the relationships between Fred and his friends. It is choosing who we are,who we want to be, and not who people think we should be. Our choices in life, ones moral compass and how family is more than blood or type of para-human. This book is humorous, at times predictable, but not always as I imagined things would go. For those who wonder, it is not MM which is my usual genre, but has LGBT characters. There is no on page sex and mild cursing. There is mage drug use (her own creations) and a lot of standing up for others regardless of your gender or para human form.
I enjoyed this book and the ending very much and I am excited that there is a fourth book in the plans. Go Fred!

Buy here:
Amazon

 

Happy Listening!

Melyna,

February 2017 – Books & Reviews – Part 4

Hello, 

Welcome to part 4 of the February 2017 Books and Reviews.  I read and listened to 14 books in February.  

I tried a different format for January’s Books and Reviews.  I am trying something new for February.  There are five parts to this months set of books.

First is a wonderful contemporary book.  

Trust the Focus (In Focus #1)

Author: Megan Erickson

With his college graduation gown expertly pitched into the trash, Justin Akron is ready for the road trip he planned with his best friend Landry— and ready for one last summer of escape from his mother’s controlling grip. Climbing into the Winnebago his father left him, they set out across America in search of the sites his father had captured through the lens of his Nikon.

As an aspiring photographer, Justin can think of no better way to honor his father’s memory than to scatter his ashes at the sites he held sacred. And there’s no one Justin would rather share the experience with more than Landry.

But Justin knows he can’t escape forever. Eventually he’ll have to return home and join his mother’s Senate campaign. Nor can he escape the truth of who he is, and the fact that he’s in love with his out-and-proud travel companion.

Admitting what he wants could hurt his mother’s conservative political career. But with every click of his shutter and every sprinkle of ash, Justin can’t resist Landry’s pull. And when the truth comes into focus, neither is prepared for the secrets the other is hiding. 

Review: 4.5/5.0
Wonderful friends to lovers, road trip book. There were times I cringed at the things Justin would say even though I understood where he was coming from. Justin and Landry are great characters,neither is perfect and their years of friendship shines when things get tough. I loved the road trip, the moments shared about Justin’s dad and the way Justin honored his dad through his photography. Lovely story.

Buy here:
Amazon

Amazon series Link:  In Focus

Next up is another story from one of the MM Romance Groups events, Love is an Open Road.  This title is available at Amazon, which is where I bought it.

The Forest Savage
Authors: Claire Davis and Al Stewart

Blurb:

Can a broken heart ever be healed?
Cal believes he has caused a terrible wrong, created a wound that can never be put right. But with time and help, he confronts his worst fears. On the day he is released from prison, he meets Troy. Together, they go on a painful journey of self awakening that could end in tragedy, or hope and ultimately love. 
This book contains explicit MM sex including non-con/ dub-con and was written as part of the GoodReads MM Love is an Open Road event.

Review: 5.0/5.0
Dark and intense. This is a well written story that was heartbreaking at times, left me feeling so angry at some of the characters and for some of the characters, but felt hopeful. These men have been through so much and the relationship between Callum and Troy was hard to witness, but I couldn’t stop reading, hoping for their HEA.

Buy here:
Amazon

Last today is a historical romance.

Wanted, A Gentleman
Author:  K.J. Charles

By the good offices of Riptide Publishing
KJ Charles’s new Entertainment

WANTED, A GENTLEMAN
Or, Virtue Over-Rated

the grand romance of

Mr. Martin St. Vincent . . . a Merchant with a Mission, also a Problem
Mr. Theodore Swann . . . a humble Scribbler and Advertiser for Love

Act the First:

the offices of the Matrimonial Advertiser, London
where Lonely Hearts may seek one another for the cost of a shilling

Act the Second:

a Pursuit to Gretna Green (or thereabouts)

featuring

a speedy Carriage
sundry rustic Inns
a private Bed-chamber

***

In the course of which are presented

Romance, Revenge, and Redemption
Deceptions, Discoveries, and Desires

the particulars of which are too numerous to impart

Review:  4.5/5.0
Another wonderful historical romance from KJ Charles. An enjoyable adventure with a bit of mystery, plenty of witty conversation, passion, a bit of a heart tug now and then and an unexpected twist (well for me it was ;-).

Buy here:

Amazon

happy Reading,

Melyna