Review of Watching and Wanting by Jay Northcote

Watching and WantingWatching and Wanting by Jay Northcote

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This review is subtitled: Watching and wanking … or: How Jay Northcote came to rescue me.

One week into the new year and I was already 3 books behind on my yearly reading challenge! I was in a book slump of epic proportions, having started – and discarded – no fewer than 6 books, when I received a free ARC of this book for my (one handed) reading pleasure.
Since the release date was still weeks away, I decided to hold off reading this a little longer, but nothing – and I do mean NOTHING – could hold my interest! Readers will understand the severity of a book slump like this! It is a horrid feeling. Also, it makes you fear starting out long awaited books out of fear that your slumpy mood will taint the experience…

But in the end I gave in and decided to start Shawn and Jude’s story. I have loved all of the house mate series so far and, in spite of my slump, felt fairly sure that Jay Northcote would not let me down. And, boy was I right! Jay Northcote to the rescue! I finished this book at 3 am in the morning, having read it in one sitting and for that alone (and also for pulling me out of the horrible ‘book slump of despair’) it deserves 5 stars!

The blurb of this book really says it all, but to recap: Shawn is in a bit of a downward spiral. Nothing appeals. He has recently graduated college but doesn’t know what to do with his degree, so he is working in a chemist stocking shelves. His girlfriend dumped him and he manages to take out his ire at the world on his friends and housemates. Not in a good place. Until he one day accidently walks in on his housemate, Jude, doing a live cam session in his room. Suddenly Shawn cannot stop thinking about Jude or stop watching Jude’s twice weekly cam sessions in his room, whilst jerking off.

Jude does cam boy work to earn money for his studies, and because he likes it. He earns good money getting his rocks off on camera, he is an exhiobisionist and enjoys the attention. His hunky housemate walking in on him is great wank fodder, and he enjoys the fantasy of straight boy Shawn joining him for a ‘gay for pay’ session, even if he knows it would never happen.

Shawn however, may not be as straight as he seems. In fact, he is pretty sure he is bi. And joining Jude in front on the camera, in the guise of making some fast money, seems like the perfect way to explore his bi-curiosity.

The cam sessions are steaming hot – in fact I do believe this must be the filthiest book Jay has ever written. Phew! Talk about a one-handed read. And the boys together are super sweet. Shawn’s sexual identity crisis feels real, so does his denial and lashing out. Even if he acts like a bit of a twat sometimes, it was – at least to me – perfectly relatable behaviour in the situation.

I can warmly recommend this fun and filthy piece of feel good romance. It works well as a stand alone, but the three first books in the series are great too, so do not cheat yourselves out of those.

Watching and Wanting will be out on January 20th, but the pre-order button is live and active now on Amazon.

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Review of The Straight Boyfriend by Renae Kaye

The Straight Boyfriend (Loving You, #3)The Straight Boyfriend by Renae Kaye

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5-4 stars

There has been a lot of hullabaloo about this book. I am not going to add to it as such. I enjoyed this fluffy little tale and as a living, breathing, practising bi-sexual, I can honestly say that I did not feel offended at all at Aron’s reluctance to label himself as anything other than straight.

That being said, I have a hard time believing that people turn gay for you and only you – but that is a story for another day. And really, who am I to judge anyone else for how they choose to label / not label themselves.

Neither did I feel that it was indicated in any way that bi-sexual people are horndogs that will cheat on any given partner with one of the opposite sex. Aron’s doubts about his fidelity really has nothing to do with Vinnie’s gender and everything to do with the fact that he has never been able to remain faithful to a partner so far in his life.

Anyway…. after saying all that. This was a cute little story. Nothing beats ‘Loving Jay’ and Jay and Liam are still firmly placed as my number one couple in this series, but I enjoyed this story and the characters in it. Aron and Vinnie are sweet together and Vinnie’s family is fantastic. Recommended.

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Review of A Second Harvest by Eli Easton

A Second Harvest (Men of Lancaster County, #1)A Second Harvest by Eli Easton

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oh, Eli Easton, what you do to me!

I was going to read a few chapters before bed. At 4.30 in the morning, having read the first two parts of the book, I had to force myself to go to bed. I loved this sweet and slow moving coming out story.

David is 41, a widower with two grown children, who runs a farm in a small Mennonite community. He is lonely and deeply depressed, just going through the motions and basically waiting to die, but at 41, he feels that he still has quite a lot of waiting to do, even if he drops dead early, as his father did.

Christie is a graphic designer and party boy living in Manhattan. At 30 he is starting to wonder, if there is more to life than drinking, clubbing and hooking up, when he gets a nasty wake up call in the shape of his best friend and room mate’s overdosing on drugs.
He recently inherited a small farm house from his late aunt and decides to go live in the house, to get away from his life and get the house ready for sale.

The courtship is slow and lovely. I guess in a way this book proves the old saying that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, as Christie woos David through exotic meal after exotic meal. But he is not only feeding David’s body, he is feeding his soul and his travelling spirit.

David’s community and children as well as his own inner turmoil is the main conflict of the story. It is a very quiet little tale. There is not a lot of action per se, but the story still kept me completely engrossed all the way through.

Sometimes a book find you, just a the right time and therefore resonates. I could not have said if I would have granted this book 5 stars at another point in time, but right now, it made me smile and cry and had me up all night, so 5 stars it is for David and Christie, for life should not be over at 40, especially not for someone whose life has never really begun.

Warmly recommended.

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Review of Out of My Mind by A.J. Truman

Out of My Mind (Browerton University, #3)Out of My Mind by A.J. Truman

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I received a free copy of this book, in exchange for an honest review.

I’ve read the first book of this series and really enjoyed it, so I had pretty high expectations going into this one. All the books in the series works as a stand alone, so you can jump in where ever you want without missing anything.

Mac and Gideon meet in freshman year of college, striking up a conversation, which Mac sees as flirting. One thing lead to another, which leads to a private kiss and Gideon storming off in a huff. The two meet again a couple of years later, when Gideon needs a roommate after his girlfriends bails on moving in with him.

The tension between the two is high, but they are both in a tight spot and decide to give it a chance. Living in close quarters eventually bring the tension to a boil and the two end up having a casual hook up thing going on, except that there are weird rules in place, for Gideon to be able to continue his ‘I am not gay’ denial.

The pair go back and forth on each other a lot in the book and a lot of outside drama takes place to further the waves too. And I think that was where the main problem lay for me. It was all just a bit too abrupt and choppy, with too little of the emotions behind the abruptness showing through.

There was a really good angsty story hidden in there somewhere. I loved Gideon’s inner ‘Jewish guilt’ voice, that told stories about how the gossipy whispers at the temple saw him. I wish that had been a recurring theme through out the story, except only a few bits in the middle. I also loved the start where Mac the sociology student predicts his ‘human experiments. But after that strong start Mac became almost anonymous until at the very end.

It was still an oks tory and I would still try the next one in the series by this author, but this one was a miss for me.

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Review of Foxe Tail by Haley Walsh

Foxe Tail (A Skyler Foxe Mystery, #1)Foxe Tail by Haley Walsh

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I received a free copy of this audiobook from AudioBookBoom in exchange for an honest review.

This was fun!Be aware though, that you need to be able to suspend your beliefs a bit and that this is the first of a series and many details are left hanging at the end of book 1.

Skyler Foxe is a young closeted high school teacher, who happens upon a dead body one night out dancing with friends at a club. The young man turns out to be the son of Skyler’s principal at school and he invests himself in the case, to the point where he actually starts to investigate it himself. This is the parts where you have to suspend your beliefs, or at least I had to, because I found it quite unrealistic that he would actually do this, to the extend he takes it too, including withholding evidence and knowledge from the police…

The murder investigation is not the only thing going on though, there are also strange going on’s at the High School, where everyone seem to be hiding something or other. Teachers as well as students. Add to that Skyler’s crush on his new co-worker, his jilted hook up smashing up his car and almost outing him at his work place and his students acting up in class…. Skyler is a busy man!

The narrator did a great job, the story was fun and so was the mystery. Skyler is quite a likeable, albeit a bit annoying, character and I would definitely consider getting the second one of the series. If nothing else, then to find out what happened to poor Julia with the great t-shirts.

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Review of Into You by Jay Northcote

Into YouInto You by Jay Northcote

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I received a free copy of this book from the author, in exchange for an honest review.

4-4.5 stars
This book was so adorable, I want to roll it over at pet it’s stomach!

Olly and Scott are BFFs all through their childhood, until a kiss at 14 confuses and ruins everything, leaving the boys angry and ignoring each other for years. At 18, in their final month of school, a minor accident and a small portion of magical help from a weird old neighbour, Mrs. Wychwood, leads them to being trapped in each others bodies and having to find a way to co-exist and work together to be themselves again.

The bodyswapping trope is fun and Jay Northcote does it right, with hilarious and cute results – and some very sweet and guilty masturbation scenes. But despite the magical undercurrent of the book, it is actually mainly a story about being true to yourself and finding out who you want to be.

Olly is out and proud and have been in love with Scott forever, still is, despite the mixed feelings and animosity between them after the kiss 4 years earlier. Scott on the other hand is a bit of a mess. Stuck in a life he really doesn’t want, with a girlfriend he doesn’t really like and A-level courses that doesn’t interest him, but too afraid to find his way out it.

Naturally, Scott is the one with the most character growth through the story, but Olly too does grow, if in more subtle ways. Now, I am generally not a HEA kind of girl when it comes to very young characters, as I have a hard time believing in that, but for these two, I would believe it.

Warmly recommended story, which I read in one sitting on a rainy day. Left me warm and cheerful with a happy grin on my face.

Into You will be released on September 9th 2016.

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Free this weekend!

Jay Northcote’s Helping Hand is free on Amazon this weekend, and even better, it’s whispersync’ed. So you can get the audio companion for just a few bucks!  Lovely little friends to lovers /college /out for you romance.

Warmly recommend this entire series.

Jez Fielding and James MacKenzie—Big Mac to his mates—are in their second year at uni. After partying too hard last year, they make a pact to rein themselves in. While their housemates are out drinking every weekend, Jez and Mac stay in to save cash and focus on their studies.

When Jez suggests watching some porn together, he isn’t expecting Mac to agree to it. One thing leads to another, and soon their arrangement becomes hands-on rather than hands-off. But falling for your ‘straight’ friend can only end badly, unless there’s a chance he might feel the same.

This book is a complete story and can be read as a standalone.

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Buy links:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk