My Reads – January ’17

Please bear in mind that I’m not a reviewer.
This is just a list of what I read and what I thought about it.
My personal opinions will undoubtedly differ from yours,
and they’re no reflection on the authors or their work, simply my own thoughts.
Links go to Amazon but books are available from multiple sources.
I try to buy direct from the publisher where I can.
Five Stars are given to those books that I wanted to start reading again the moment they ended.
Always happy to receive recommendations in the comments.

Mi Alma – Dale Cameron Lowry …one of the free reads I picked up at the Big Gay Fiction Giveaway. Short and sweet and sexy. Didn’t knock me out but there are some nice lines, warm backstory, likable characters and all well written. If you fancy a quickie, you won’t go wrong with this. 3.5

Half Broke: a Veterans Affairs Story – A.E. Wasp ….One of the free reads I picked up at the Big Gay Fiction Giveaway.
Upfront I’ll say that this is written in first-person-present, which I have a hard time reading, so my experience is probably influenced a little by that as I couldn’t immerse myself in the story. I liked this, though it didn’t wow me. It’s a quickie so there’s not much time to fall in love with the characters, especially as they had rich, interesting backstories and personalities that could easily have filled a full-length novel. The story itself is good. 3.5*

My Reads – The rest of 2016

Please bear in mind that I’m not a reviewer.
This is just a list of what I read and what I thought about it.
My personal opinions will undoubtedly differ from yours,
and they’re no reflection on the authors or their work, simply my own thoughts.
Links go to Amazon but books are available from multiple sources.
I try to buy direct from the publisher where I can.
Five Stars are given to those books that I wanted to start reading again the moment they ended.
Always happy to receive recommendations in the comments.

Yeah, I suck.
And on two counts, too.

Read More…

My Reads – February ’16

Okay, usually I have a thing here about not being a reviewer,
and buying from the publisher, yadda yadda
but…well, this month I only read one book so it doesn’t seem worth it.
In my defence, I did write a book during February
so I didn’t have much time/brain space to do much reading,
but the one book I did read was awesome.

Writing Faster FTWL. A. Witt…I’d like to say that I’m normally a notoriously slow writer…and yet I finished a novel in a month.
I’m not saying that reading this book magically gave me the ability to do that, but it sure as hell didn’t hurt any!
The thing I really liked about this book, apart from how fun it was to read, was that it didn’t dictate anything. It’s not a ‘how to’ template, it’s more designed to help you find your own optimal way of writing quickly. After reading this, I got to a point in my story where I was totally stuck and really felt like giving up, but using some of the advice from this book I implemented a few things that I would never have thought of, like writing out of sequence, not naming characters as I went, stuff like that, and it absolutely got me through.
The book isn’t long (but then Lori doesn’t repeat herself) but it has some rock-solid advice and techniques that are bound to help if you want to up your productivity…or at least, they certainly helped me. Five Super Speedy Stars…FTW : )

My Reads – January ’16

Please bear in mind that I’m not a reviewer.
This is just a list of what I read and what I thought about it.
My personal opinions will undoubtedly differ from yours,
and they’re no reflection on the authors or their work, simply my own thoughts.
Links go to Amazon but books are available from multiple sources.
I try to buy direct from the publisher where I can.
Five Stars are given to those books that I wanted to start reading again the moment they ended.
Always happy to receive recommendations in the comments.

January

SanguineP. T. Wyant …Picked this up after sampling a bit on Rainbow Snippets. I liked the dynamic in the snippet and when I realised it was gay vampire space pirates, how could I say no!! Except they’re not really pirates…and only one is a vampire…but still! Good story, good world building…did I mention the space vampires? I’m hoping there’s going to be more.

The Way You AreL.J. Mile …This was a rec from a friend, and free at the time so there was no down side. And then it turned out to be a jolly good read too! Nice to read, relatable characters with good dialogue, bittersweet story with a fluffy ending…what’s not to love? Very enjoyable, even if all the descriptions of overeating made me feel queasy!

Damien’s DisciplineK.C. Wells and Parker Williams …I didn’t mean to read this. I just clicked on the Excerpt page without thinking about it, then had to buy it! It’s the fifth story in the series but it was easy to read without needing the other parts. Some bits were seriously harrowing but it was handled sensitively, and it was rather blummin good! I especially liked the way the characters were written, so I’ll undoubtedly go back to this series for more.

Restless SpiritsJordan L. Hawk
Dangerous SpiritsJordan L. Hawk …What can I say? Jordan L. Hawk is a little teensy bit addictive : ) I saw several people reccing Restless Spirits last month, and the book was free at the time, so although it wouldn’t have been my usual choice, I thought I’d give it a go. YOWSER! I loved it! The story is great, the characters are fantastic, the way the relationship develops is just wonderful! I was in heaven. Also, reading it on a stormy night…tiny bit scary too : ) As soon as I was done, I picked up Dangerous Spirits and it was as good, if not better. I cannot wait for more in this series. Five Ghostly Stars all round!

(Whybourne and Griffin Series)
Widdershins – Jordan L. Hawk
Threshold – Jordan L. Hawk I lasted about a day after finishing Dangerous Spirits before I got withdrawal, so I started in on this series. And I hate to say it…I think I like this series even more! Please don’t tell Henry and Vincent : / I’m so in love with Whybourne it’s not even funny. And I think the series story arc generally is going to be epic. I can’t think of one negative thing, other than I have to eat and sleep and can’t just read these forever. She has the wonderful ability to get you right there in the moment with the characters…it’s just brilliant. Five Stars…with crocodile faces : )

(SPECTR series)
Hunter of Demons – Jordan L. Hawk
Master of Ghouls – Jordan L. Hawk
Reaper of Souls – Jordan L. Hawk
Eater of Lives – Jordan L. Hawk Again, the first in this series was free (it’s a dirty trick if you ask me…a dirty, bloody brilliant trick) so I thought, why the hell not! I’m not so completely enamored by this series, but it maybe because the three of them – yes, there are only two people, but…it’s complicated, just go with it – haven’t really come to a resolution regarding their relationship yet. I have two more stories to go so hopefully it will happen before the end. Still, very enjoyable, wonderful storytelling, and execution. Needless to say, Jordan is going to be a one-click buy from now on : )

The Best Corpse for the JobCharlie Cochrane …I needed some cheering up, and who better to do that : ) I really enjoyed this, a great mystery set around a small English country village school. I especially love the way that Charlie writes the burgeoning relationship between the characters, so full of emotion and passion for each other but without resorting to sexy times. It makes them feel very real and, as a reader, that makes me more invested in them somehow. Aaand I didn’t guess whodunnit either which always makes me happy. I made some very grumpy noises when I realised the sequel isn’t out ’til March, but then also…there’s a sequel coming out in March!!

Ethan, Who Loved CarterRyan Loveless …I can’t remember why I picked this one, though like most of my picks it was probably a rec. It floored me. Absolutely floored me. And it feels weird because it shouldn’t have. It’s such a sweet story about two guys with their own issues finding friendship and love. But there’s just something about it that was totally, devastatingly emotional. I don’t think I could love it more. I bought another of Ryan’s books but I haven’t been able to start it. I don’t know if I’m emotionally recovered from this one yet. Can’t recommend it highly enough. Five Stars…and all their music

My Reads – December ’15

Please bear in mind that I’m not a reviewer.
This is just a list of what I read and what I thought about it.
My personal opinions will undoubtedly differ from yours,
and they’re no reflection on the authors or their work, simply my own thoughts.
Links go to Amazon but books are available from multiple sources.
I try to buy direct from the publisher where I can.
Five Stars are given to those books that I wanted to start reading again the moment they ended.
Always happy to receive recommendations in the comments.

December

A Heart for RobbieJ.P. Barnaby …Bought this on a rec from a friend and absolutely loved it. I wasn’t sure how the plot was going to play out when I started it but I was utterly engrossed from the start. Very enjoyable, and could well end up reading it again at some point.

Jordan and Rhys (Frankie’s Series)Sue Brown …I don’t know why I picked this one to read. Permanent injury, hurt/comfort, D/s…it’s a mystery ; ) I really liked this, particularly the characters seemed to really engage me, even the ones that are peripheral to this story. I suspect it comes from them being fully fleshed out characters in their own stories. Which I shall definitely be going on to read in the future.

The Beary Best Holiday Party EverB. G. Thomas …I picked this one almost purely for the punny title…and a rec from a friend…but mostly the title. A really fun, festive bear story with feel-good ending.

Behind Locked DoorsNicholas Kinsley …DNF…Totally my bad. I didn’t really read the blurb properly. I’m up for a bit of infidelity in stories but it was the main thread of this story and after really struggling, I had to quit. No reflection on the writing (which was excellent) or the story (which was engaging), it just squicked me too badly for me to finish. Definitely going to try this author again though.

New Lease of LifeLillian Francis …This was my Christmas present to myself. And being that it was released on Christmas Day, it was the first one I opened! In fact, it kinda irked me that I had to leave off reading to join my family for partake of the festive fun, I couldn’t put it down! I really liked this. The story is gentle and the characters engaging. I loved the gradual build of the whole thing. My only complaint would be that it stopped too soon! I was so ready for there to be more!

And I may have re-read For Real by Alexis Hall…again…which I read in Nov ’15 if you want to see why I had to go back to it.

My Reads – November ’15

Please bear in mind that I’m not a reviewer.
This is just a list of what I read and what I thought about it. My personal opinions will undoubtedly differ from yours, and they’re no reflection on the authors or their work, simply my own thoughts.
Links go to Amazon but books are available from multiple sources.
I try to buy direct from the publisher where I can.
Five Stars are given to those books that I wanted to start reading again the moment they ended. Always happy to receive recommendations in the comments.

November

The Merchant and the Clergyman – Bonnie Dee and Summer Devon … Craving more ‘fancy gentlemen and their particular friend’ type action, I fell on this and fell in love with it. I think my favourite thing about this author pairing is that the sexy times are completely seamlessly embedded in the story; there’s never a sense of “and then they had sex.” Instead, it’s always part and parcel of the story, a scene like any other that advances the plot and the characters. I like that.

Mending Him – Bonnie Dee and Summer Devon … Oh my heart. Anyone else get that special kind of squee when your favourite authors write your favourite tropes? Permanent injury? Don’t mind if I do. I’d love more than anything to have a follow up to this story. I’m so in love with the characters, I can’t even. Five Slightly Limping Stars

Solid Education – Bianca Sommerland … I don’t know quite what happened with this one but I just couldn’t connect to it. It had all the right elements that should have had me falling in love with it but it didn’t happen for me. Maybe it caught me on the wrong day. I will check out more of this author’s work though.

Lovers Entwined – Lillian Francis … I love this. Love it. Love. It. LOOOOVE IT I wish I could be more coherent about it but I’m not sure I can. It’s wonderfully, and skillfully, written; the characters are totally engaging; the premise is 100% up my alley; I wept, I laughed…the whole thing is wonderful. It’s a long one – nearly 400 pages – but I ended up reading the whole thing in one sitting because my heart just couldn’t let it go. Five Stars Pieces Of My Own Beating Heart.

For Real – Alexis Hall … Read this after a very enthusiastic post about it from a trusted author and Holy Hell, was I not disappointed! I was a little nervous about the BDSM thing and the switching first person thing, but I forgot all about that once I started. It’s a thoroughly engaging, beautifully flowing story of two people that shouldn’t work but do. A love story in leather that I’m looking forward to re-reading. Five Palm-Blushed Stars

Lesson in Love – Charlie Cochrane
Lesson in Desire – Charlie Cochrane
Lesson in Discovery – Charlie Cochrane
… 1905. Jonty Stewart meets Orlando Coppersmith at the Cambridge college where they both teach, and I am totally and utterly a slave to them from that moment on.
Cute boys…check. Forbidden love…check. Interesting time period…check. Murder mysteries…check. Laughing so hard I was actually crying…check. Thinking that my heart might get ripped out of my chest…check.
I read the first three books in three days and I haven’t stopped thinking about them since. There are eleven books in the series (so far… *gives Charlie my best puppy-dog eyes*) so I’m rationing myself. The stories are good, the writing is excellent…Five Fifteen Dutiful Stars

Simon and the Christmas Spirit – Bonnie Dee and Summer Devon … A little historical quickie that was fun, but didn’t grab me like some of their other works. Worth a look if you’re after something hot and Festive.

A Taste of Honey – Anthology … I decided to try this anthology about bears as it had a couple of authors in it I knew, as well as some I wanted to try. There’s not a dud story in the bunch. They’re all very different in style and subject matter but I enjoyed them all. I was a little reluctant to fork out actually money for this but it was well worth it as I can see myself dipping back in to re-read some of these. Not sure about awarding stars but it gets a definite “Woof” from me.

My Reads – October ’15

Please bear in mind that I’m not a reviewer.
This is just a list of what I read and what I thought about it. My personal opinions will undoubtedly differ from yours, and they’re no reflection on the authors or their work, simply my own thoughts.
Five Stars are given to those books that I wanted to start reading again the moment they ended. Always happy to receive recommendations in the comments.

October

Cold Feet – Jay Northcote … A little Festive tale that I found to be sweet and gentle, with an ending that made my little heart swell. Really enjoyable read.

Passing Through – Jay Nothcote … This was brilliant. Loved the setting, the premise, the characters, the execution…this is just a brilliant story, masterfully told. It’s achingly sad in parts and joyful too in its own way. Enjoyed it so so much.

A Reason to Stay (Heroes Book 1) – RJ Scott … So it turns out RJ Scott’s series are a little itty bit addictive. I loved this. I did wanna slap one of the MCs pretty much every other chapter, but that was part of what made it so much fun. The story is seriously good and…well, everything about it is good.

Last Marine Standing (Heroes Book 2) – RJ Scott … I was eager to dive into this after the first instalment. It ended up being with some trepidation, as it had some triggering subject matter in there. However, it was handled in such a brilliant way that it didn’t distract me from the story at all. I loved this one possibly more than the first.

Guarding Morgan (Sanctuary Book 1) – RJ Scott
The Only Easy Day (Sanctuary Book 2) – RJ Scott
Face Value (Sanctuary Book 3) – RJ Scott
… I read these one after another so they feel very much like chapters to me. I love the story arc in this. Each book deals with a different couple involved in a really good intrigue. One thing I really like about these is the pacing. It makes the writing flow so well, it’s hard to find a reason to put the thing down, and that’s on top of the compelling story and the gorgeous sexytimes! Can’t wait to read the rest.

The Christmas Throwaway – RJ Scott … All the Festive Feels! I did really like this a lot. I would say normally the ethical issue of a cop considering banging a barely legal runaway would ping my conscience, but because of the way it’s written, she didn’t make it feel unseemly at all! Ultimately, it’s very sweet Christmas story about characters that I long to read more about.

Omega Heart – G.G. Géricault … Saw the blurb for this and I was like, “I’m in!” Wolf-shifter meets Bear-shifter when his heart is being cut out…and they’re mates!? Of course I was in! But even better than the crazy premise, the authors writing style was heavenly and I was so invested in the characters, and their struggle. I’m desperate for a follow up. Five Creature Stars.

My Alpha’s Ghost – G. G. Géricault … I read this off of the back of Omega Heart, despite it coming out first, and I think that affected my enjoyment of it in that I felt I was constantly comparing it to the other book. It felt a bit short, I didn’t feel as connected to the characters…but that’s me totally nitpicking…I did very much enjoy it. If there is more of this then I will definitely be reading.

Attracting Anthony – Amber Kell … This was a bit of a leap of faith for me and holy moly, I’m glad I took it. The world the author has created is just up my alley, and I cannot wait to read more!

The Dragon Groomer – Amber Kell … I saw this when I was browsing and was all “Dragons! \0/” I really did enjoy it. I loved the world building and the writing style. I was a little nervous about the love interest initially – he came across as a little bit stalkery – but actually given the slight D/s tone of the thing, I did warm to him. I really would like to read a follow up, given that slight pang in the feels when it ended.

Resonance – Lillian Francis … I nearly peed myself with excitement to get an advanced copy of this : ) I was pleasantly surprised to get so invested in the characters so quickly. I really like the combination of the sensual scenes and the ‘two worlds colliding’ thing, and I can’t wait to read more about them!

Ganymede Tilt – Becky Black … I don’t usually read sci-fi so I wasn’t sure how I was going to like this but what a read! Super, super story, really liked the characters, and the world building was so elegant, the fact they were in space felt completely natural. When I grow up I want to world-build like Becky Black.

Borrowing Trouble – Kade Boehme … Initially, I was a tad worried about this being a “gay for you” type thing, but actually it was nothing like that at all, and the whole thing was just wonderfully written and totally absorbing. Particularly, the way that Kade writes characters is so skilful, they feel very natural and real. I admit to having a little tear at the end.

Waiting for Snow – JC Wallace … Read this in the Christmas Delights anthology, put it down, and straight away stalked JC on Facebook so I could tell him how much I loved it. I really loved it. Did I mention I loved it? Five Angst-filled Stars.

Pink Lace and Stolen Hearts – JC Wallace … I really liked this. I love it when you read an author and there’s something about their dialogue or characters or the way they phrase a sentence that just resonates, and it’s right. This story isn’t long but it’s just exactly what I needed to read that day.

The Tutor – Bonnie Dee … Actually read this on Halloween night : ) It’s really, really enjoyable. Proper gothic fare with the kind of love story that just gets me in the feels every time. I never thought that I would ever be into historicals but, damnation, this was done well. So well, I can’t wait to read this again! And I’m totally hooked on this author now! Five Blood-chilling Stars, for sure

My Reads – ummm…

Thought it would be a good idea to write a post about all the books I read each month; partly so I can keep track to satisfy my perverse need for lists, and partly because I’m bad a posting reviews when I finish them as I’m usually in denial that they’re over, or scrabbling desperately for the next thing to read.

However…getting the list of reads together for October, I can now see a) why I have no money, and b) why I got nothing done last month.

So, yeah…it’s gonna be a couple of days before that happens.

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