Thursday, December 22, 2016

Book Review: Save the Date by Reegan Ellis

Noah loves his job as a firefighter, so he decides to participate in an annual charity auction in which people bid for a date. Although he's firmly in the closet, Noah figures that one evening can't hurt...even if it has to be with a woman.

Cary receives a surprise of a lifetime when his close friend wins a charity auction and gives him the date with a hot fireman. At first he's worried because macho guys like that don't typically feel comfortable around more flamboyant men like him. However, Cary is completely surprised by how sweet, gracious and kind Noah turns out to be. Will good conversation, awesome chemistry and an incredible man convince Noah to come out of the closet?

I thought this was a pretty cute story! All of the characters, with the exception of one, are very likable and I liked the progression of the Noah and Cary's relationship. Some might call his insta-love, and it is, but sometimes you're in the mood for that type of read. The storyline did follow some pretty common tropes, so I predicted quite a few things that eventually happened down the road. However, I liked the characters so much that I overlooked that. There are editing issues early on in the book. In one chapter, Noah is called Liam for absolutely no reason, and I noticed typos that should have been caught by an editor.

I do wish that readers could have learned a little more about Noah's background and his family. We only heard about them in passing, and a full chapter about them may have fleshed out his character a little more.

3.5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author and voluntarily provided my honest review.

Buy Link
Amazon

~ M

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Loving Both You and Him by RamenKitsune

Loving Both You and Him by RamenKitsune

Makoto and Haru have a great life. They're happy in their careers and even happier in their marriage. However, they feel now is the time to grow their family and make it complete.

This is an absolutely adorable, fluffy story that melted my heart! RamenKitsune has written this story in a very realistic, but incredibly sweet way. It's still a work in progress, so I look forward to seeing what happens next for the Nanase-Tachibana family!

~ M

artwork credit: andys

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

I ❤️ Yaoi: Hana to Junketsu by Katsura Komachi

Hello yaoi lovers! This week's feature is Hana to Junketsu by Katsura Komachi!

In a world where vampires and humans co-exist, the line between "hunting prey" and "making love" has long since been blurred. But whatever you decide to call it, it's still very sweet... 

I was very pleasantly surprised by this manga! The depth of emotion Katsura Komachi was able to convey through artwork and words was wonderful and I really enjoyed the main characters. They were both complex and didn't fall into the typical tropes that we've come to know in yaoi manga. Highly recommended! It's a new favorite for 2016 and I look forward to reading more from this mangaka!!

Also be sure to check out the extra one-shot that is separate from the main storyline. It is just as beautiful and poignant.

~ M

Monday, December 19, 2016

Drive It Like You Stole It by venomedveins

Drive It Like You Stole It by venomedveins

Spartacus has a knack for taking in lost causes. It's how he's formed his group, his family really. Rebels and misfits that somehow find themselves stuck together by love and loyalty. It's a ragtag team, but they're bound by more than just affection. It's blood and salt and the strength that seems to burn along all over their spines.

I was pleasantly surprised by this one shot! It definitely has a The Fast & the Furious vibe to it, but also manages to stay true to the overarching Spartacus storyline with the rebels. The smart ass banter between Agron and Nasir will leave you laughing, and, as always, Duro's presence is a treat. Check it out!

~ M

Friday, December 16, 2016

Blog Tour: A New Life for Christmas by Liam Livings

A New Life For Christmas - Liam Livings

Author: Liam Livings

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

Cover Design: Meredith Russell 

Blurb

A house exchange between two single men leads to a romantic new life for both of them.

Oliver and Kyle live thousands of miles apart, but each needs a break from his current life and love. Enter the Cloud B&B website, a wonderful new way to exchange homes for the holiday. They both muster their courage, and decide to visit another continent for Christmas.

In the UK, Oliver has been pining after his neighbour for far too long, living his comfortable but quiet life in a town in the New Forest. When his crush moves on in the worst possible way, Oliver is seduced by the chance to stay in fun-loving, sunny Miami.

In Miami, Kyle is a club owning workaholic, who suddenly discovers the man he lives with has been unfaithful. Yet again. As consolation, Kyle is tempted to see first hand the picture book charm of the New Forest in winter.

Both of them find not just a new setting but a new romance. Oliver makes a big effort to shed his inhibitions and meets a musician, Mark, who plays in the Florida bars, and who may be just as cautious and polite as Oliver in making the first move.

And while Kyle’s trying to come to terms with England’s very different culture—and food!—he’s charmed by Oliver’s best friend Edward, who’s bold and sexy, but secretive.

Will Oliver take the leap of faith and encourage a lover who can and will give the commitment he deserves? And will Kyle find a man who can be loyal and also offer Kyle the family life he needs?

But perhaps more importantly—when Christmas is over, can a new life survive?


Thursday, December 15, 2016

Book Review: Love Unwrapped by Hayden Hunt

When Eli's jerk of a boyfriend breaks up with him out of the blue, he's not sad; he's pissed. They were supposed to move in together, but now those plans are ruined. Eli planned on going to the local animal shelter and adopting a dog for his ex, but after all the chaos, he decides to keep his appointment and at least look at the dogs. While there he meets Gene, one of the workers at the shelter, with whom he has instant chemistry. Is it too soon for Eli to have feelings for another man after just breaking up with his long-term boyfriend?

While this was a pretty sweet story, I think Gene's insecurities and plot cliches kept the book from being great. It really made it difficult for me to root for this couple when they fell into the typical relationship traps that could be easily solved with simple communication. The book isn't extremely angsty, but it definitely has its moments. That's why I felt the addition of Gene's insecurities seemed unnecessary and frustrating.

All in all, this is a nice, Christmas-themed book, but I would recommend checking out some of the author's earlier books, like Pumpkin Spice and Everything Nice or Very Late Blooming, instead.

I received a copy of this book from the author and voluntarily provided my honest review.

Buy Links
Amazon

~ M

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Room For One More by glitterbb

Room For One More by glitterbb

Oliver and Connor are celebrating the holidays with family when Oliver gives him one of the best gifts he could ever receive.

This is one of those feel-good reads that everyone loves during the holidays. It will definitely warm your heart and bring a HUGE smile to your face!

~ M

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

I ❤️ Yaoi: Neko Haru Inu Mako by Hac (Free! Doujinshi)

Good morning yaoi lovers! This week's feature is not exactly yaoi, but is very cute! It's the Free! doujinshi Neko Haru Inu Mako by Hac.

While walking home after school, Makoto stumbles upon a box containing two adorable creatures who need a good home. After revealing his find to Haru, Haru decides he will take care of them and ensure they won't be separated. The two best friends soon see that the two little friends aren't much different than they were when they were children.

This is a delightful and adorable quick read! I felt my heart melting every time I looked at little Haru and little Mako. They were so cute! If you're a fan of Makoto and Haru, you will absolutely love this dj! Check it out!



Read Neko Haru Ino Mako here.

~ M



Monday, December 12, 2016

How Agron Fell in Love with Soccer by SubtextEquals

                                   How Agron Fell in Love with Soccer by SubtextEquals

When two rival schools are merged into one due to lack of funding, Agron is both enchanted and annoyed by a new student who has caught the attention of team captain, Spartacus. Will he be able to gain the new kid's attention without sticking his foot in his mouth first?

This is a really cute modern au! I have a soft spot for stories that feature Nagron in a school setting, so this one was definitely right up my alley. All of the Sparty crew was implemented well into the storyline, and there is plenty of tension between our beloved MCs. SubtextEquals wrote everything very true-to-life, which I appreciated! Give this story a shot! I know you'll enjoy it!

~ M

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Book Review: Picture Perfect by Hayden Hunt

After leaving a loveless marriage, Rich decides to come out of the closet and live life for himself instead of society. His first step is taking photography courses at the local college to make his hobby a real career.  He is less than enthused about his loud and obnoxious classmate.

Patrick's life is a mess of drama. His parents are divorcing and his mother treats him like a sounding board for bad mouthing his father. He's had it up to here, but can't seem completely ignore her calls because she's his mom. When he meets his handsome, mature classmate, Patrick thinks there may be a little light at the end of the tunnel.

This was a different read for me. I've enjoyed many of Hayden Hunt's books, but I couldn't become fully invested because the characters were unlikable to me.
  • Rich is extremely judgemental and rude in the beginning of the story. I completely understand how people can being annoying and get under your skin, but he jumped to conclusions right off the bat. Fortunately, he redeems himself and ends up being the character I liked the most.
  • Patrick seemed very easily influenced and unable to come to his own conclusions. He allowed his mother to manipulate him, even though he logically knew what she was doing. On one hand, I can empathize because I know what's like to have my parents divorce, but Patrick seemed to cling to his most toxic parent (and person in his life), and allowed her to steer his path, encouraging him to make horrible decisions based on insecurities.
  • Patrick's mother was pretty much the devil incarnate. She was selfish, manipulative, miserable and didn't care about anything except her self-imposed bad life.
This isn't my favorite Hayden Hunt book, but I still look forward to reading more from this author!

2.5 stars
I received a copy of this book from the author and voluntarily provided my honest review.

Buy Link
Amazon

~ M

Monday, December 5, 2016

Blog Tour & GIVEAWAY: Christmas Books by R.J. Scott

"'It's the most wonderful time of the year" and I LOVE it! There's something special about Christmas stories and as you can see, I also love writing them :)"

In no particular order here they are:

The Christmas Throwaway

The Christmas Throwaway, was my first Christmas themed book. Written as a short story for someone who was poorly in J2 fan fiction, I extended it from two thousand short words to over forty and so Ben and Zach were created.

The book, a story of a young man thrown out of his house at Christmas for being gay, did really surprisingly well. It was All Romance's best selling book of 2010 and also spent a lot of time in the top 300 of all romance novels on Amazon. It's now available in Audio and has been translated into Spanish, Italian,  French and now German. I love this little book that could so much.


The Road To Frosty Hollow

I love the concept of a road trip, particularly when you fall in love on that journey. Add in two men who have known each other a very long time and this is a story written with Meredith Russell that ticks all the boxes for a Christmas Romance.

Jesse's Christmas

This was my second Christmas themed book and spent some time with an old publisher before I was lucky enough to get it back.  As soon as I got it back I doubled it in size!
The story of someone who doesn't really like Christmas landing in a town that won an award for best Christmas Town made me smile the entire time I was writing it.

I couldn't fail to love Gabriel who showed Jesse what Christmas could be about and how it is possible to love again.




Snow & Secrets

One of my favourite storylines in a romance book at Christmas is the idea of a snowy cabin, enforced isolation, and two men falling in love.  

Snow, secrets, some danger, one hot tub, Christmas decorations, and family.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

I Want Forever by kjavdekar

I Want Forever by kjavdekar

After all they've experienced together, Connor decides that now is the time to make things permanent with Oliver.

This is such a sweet, heartwarming story! I love how the author not only portrayed the deep love Connor and Oliver feel towards one another, but also the nervousness that comes along with proposing. Poor Connor was a wreck! lol Definitely give this story a try!

~ M

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

I ❤️ Yaoi: Under the Sheets by Deliciest (Free! Doujinshi)

Good morning fellow yaoi lovers! This week's selection is Under the Sheets by Deliciest!

Before they start new lives after high school, Makoto and Haru spend a relaxing night in.

Once again, Deliciest's doujinshis are lovely! She really captures the essence of Makoto and Haru, and the story is filled with adorable and humorous moments. I know all MakoHaru fans will enjoy this!







4.5 stars

Read Under the Sheets here.

~ M

artwork credit: Deliciest

Monday, November 28, 2016

Book Review: New Leaf by Hayden Hunt

Grant and Jackson were the best of friends while growing up. After graduation, Grant decides to confess his romantic feelings, and even though Jackson is drunk, he tells Grant that he feels the same. The following morning, Grant's happiness is ruined when he finds out that Jackson has left during the night and no one, not even his parents, know where he is.

Jackson regrets leaving town the way he did after graduation. He hurt his parents and most of all, his best friend. Now back in town to take care of family issues, Jackson is determined to make amends and win back the heart of the man he's loved all along.

This is a sweet story, but it was so hard for me to root for this couple when Jackson was so incredibly selfish. I absolutely understand being confused, scared and wanting to get out of small town life to explore the world, but the way he went about it was incredibly immature and downright cruel. Grant occasionally came off as a little whiny, but I really couldn't fault his distrust for Jackson. He was almost irrevocably hurt, so I was surprised he entertained the thought of starting any kind of relationship with Jackson. While he did quite a bit of groveling, I still felt like Jackson got off a little easy for his behavior. The "I was young and stupid" excuse can only be used for so long. I also found it really sad that Grant had no friends and wasn't close to his family. Much of his life centered around pain he suffered a decade prior, and he seemed like a one-note character when he could have been so much more than that. All in all, this is a frustrating, but engrossing read.


I received a copy of this book from the author and voluntarily provided my honest review.

Buy Links
Amazon

~ M

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Book Review: A Christmas Kiss by Annabelle Jacobs

When best friends, Riley and Alex, share a drunken kiss one night, Riley believes that this could the start of a successful relationship. He and Alex have been close for years, so it only seems natural to take the next step, right? The only problem is that Alex doesn't remember the kiss, so Riley vows to never reveal the secret out of fear of ruining the friendship.

I enjoy friends-to-lovers stories and saw the potential this one had to offer. However, I just find the non-communication/miscommunication trope so incredibly frustrating. Almost three quarters of this book is spent with both of the MCs internalizing what may or may not have happened between them when everything could have been solved with simple conversation. Riley feared ruining the friendship so much, but his awkwardness and creating distance between himself and Alex could have easily done that as well. Unfortunately, by the time Riley and Alex finally sat down and talked to one another, I just couldn't bring myself to root for them anymore and was left unsatisfied with the situation as a whole.

Buy Link
Amazon

~ M

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

I ❤️ Yaoi: Rift by Conro

Good morning yaoi lovers! This week's feature is Rift by Conro!

He’s always been by my side, and that was as natural as breathing to me. I’ve never imagined otherwise. Even from now on…

This is a beautiful manga! Yuni and Natsuki have been best friends since childhood and always want to be in each other's lives. When tragedy strikes, Natsuki decides to confess to his best friend. Afterwards, their confusion causes a rift and Natsuki moves away and disappears. Yuni must now try to move on, but he refuses to let go of the love he holds for Natsuki.

Not only is the story lovely and angsty, but the artwork is equally as beautiful and melancholic. I highly recommend this manga!

                                                                             4.5 stars



~ M

Friday, November 18, 2016

Book Review: To Love and to Cherish (Vows #3) by Addison Albright

After losing his fiance two weeks before their wedding when his long-lost husband returned from being marooned on a desert island, Nash is through with love. All he wants is companionship and regular sex because love only complicates things. Luckily for him, Nash's colleague, Dr. Myles Burlingham, feels the same way. They decide to enter into a very business like marriage since they get along well and are attracted to each other. However, a car accident and lost memories throw a wrench into their well-thought out plans.

This is an interesting premise. I liked that Nash and Myles initially entered their relationship and marriage in a very business-like manner, but we all know it can't be that simple, right? Myles is a paradigm of patience, intelligence, common sense and keeping cool. I didn't see him as a cold character, but someone who is very focused and only allows certain people to see his warmer, goofier side.  I really liked him.

Nash, on the other hand, annoyed me a bit. He is obviously very jaded after the break up of his relationship two weeks before he was to be married, but I wanted to scream when kept mentioning that he was old (he's only 34), he didn't want to start from scratch relationship-wise and that he'd never find love again. I tried to be sympathetic to his situation because I knew he was really hurt, but after a while he just came off as a petulant and whiny. He didn't get what he wanted, so there was no hope for him.

The side characters were all very likeable and added a nice amount of depth and complexity to the main characters' lives. All in all, this is an enjoyable read.

3.5 stars

I received a copy of this book in return for my honest review.

Buy Links

~ M

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

The Boys of Summer by connorwalshruinedmylife

The Boys of Summer by connorwalshruinedmylife

Connor and Oliver have been friends ever since Connor saw Oliver, the new kid, being bullied in high school. Their friendship evolved and deepened and now they're at a crossroads after graduation. Will they be able to hold on to their relationship with 3,000 miles separating them?

I can't even effectively explain how much I enjoyed this story! This AU has a great balance of romance, fluff, humor and heartbreaking angst. Readers not only get to see Connor and Oliver experience growing pains in terms of their plans for the future and their relationship, but they also see the beautiful bond they share with each other and their friends. Be sure to give this lovely story a try! You won't be disappointed!

~ M

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

I ❤️ Yaoi: Out of the Blue by Deliciest (Free! Doujinshi)

Greetings yaoi lovers! This week's feature is Out of the Blue by Deliciest!

Makoto has been keeping his distance from Haru because he doesn't understand the hold Rin has over him. If his obsession with Rin continues, Makoto fears that he will have to end his friendship for good.

Not only is the artwork great, but I also enjoyed the storyline. It's nice to see a jealous Makoto who isn't afraid to stand firm with his decisions. I highly recommend you give this doujinshi a try!

4.5 stars

Read Out of the Blue here.

~ M

artwork credit: Deliciest

Friday, November 11, 2016

Blog Tour: Falling Down by Eli Easton

Falling Down - Eli Easton

Author: Eli Easton

Release: November 9, 2016

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK 

Blurb

Josh finds himself homeless at eighteen, but he has a plan. He’ll head north on the bus to New England and spend October there for his mother’s sake. She always talked about going to see the fall leaves someday. And when the leaves were done and the harsh winter came, Josh would find a place to curl up and let go. It would be a relief to finally stop fighting.

Mark spent his life trying to live up to the tough swagger of his older brothers until he pushed himself so far against his nature that he cracked. Now an ex-Marine, he rents a little cabin in the White Mountains of New Hampshire where he can lick his wounds and figure out what to do with the rest of his life. One thing was clear: Mark was nobody’s hero.

Fate intervenes when Josh sets up camp under a covered bridge near Mark’s cabin. Mark recognizes the dead look in the young stranger’s eyes, and he feels compelled to do something about it. When Mark offers Josh a job, he never expected that he’d be the one to fall.

The snow is coming soon. Can Mark convince Josh that the two of them can build a life together before the flurries fall?


Thursday, November 10, 2016

Book Review: Tattoo (Twisted Cherry #1) by Piper Kay

Evan has known he's gay for a while now, but he chooses to hide his sexuality out of fear that his friends will turn their backs on him. He lives a life that he doesn't enjoy, but at the same time is curious to know what it's like to actually be with a man. In an effort to quell those feelings, Evan gets tattoos and relishes in the feeling of the needle penetrating his flesh.

When Evan finds himself uncontrollably attracted to his tattoo artist, the feelings he only thought were fantasy may finally become reality.

The idea of hot, tattooed men is obviously very appealing. However, I had problems with this book. This is a pretty fast read, I felt like the writing style was stilted and almost jarring. The characters weren't as developed as they could have been, and some of the situations not only seemed unhygienic for a tattoo artist, but also unprofessional.

This isn't a favorite, but it isn't horrible. I just wish that readers didn't have to suspend belief so much in order to move the plot forward.

Buy Links
Amazon

~ M

Blog Tour: Stroke of Luck by Posy Roberts

Title: Stroke of Luck
Author: Posy Roberts
Genre: M/M Romance
Available Now on Kindle Unlimited Publisher:
Labyrinth Bound Press

After everything Marc owned burned to a crisp, he’s living off the kindness of others. A model condo is his temporary home, and his last dime went to essentials. He doesn’t need another distraction, but the fates conspire against him, setting up a chain of encounters that bring him face to face with Cas.

Cas’s love life has been in limbo for years, lovers moving on as soon as they discover how close he is to his best friend, Maisie. Then he meets Marc. The attraction between the two men can’t be denied, but Cas isn’t sure he can risk his friendship for a guy who will only end up leaving when he sees how close he and Maisie are.

When Marc and Cas discover they live in the same building, it’s kismet. But Marc has to invite chaos into his life if he and Cas stand a chance, and Cas faces a choice between friendship and love. Luck may be on their side... if they're willing to risk it all.