Review of On Point by Annabeth Albert

On Point (Out of Uniform #3)On Point by Annabeth Albert

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Had you asked me a while back, if I liked military men in romances I would have said: not really. I rarely seek them out, and yet, here I am reading and loving the third book in Annabeth Alberts Out of Uniform series and eagerly awaiting the fourth one.

On Point is a best-friends-to-lovers story. A theme I greatly enjoy when it’s done right and boy, does Ms Albert do it right! So much buildup and tension between the two, so much awkwardness and angst everywhere else but the bedroom. Because Ben and Maddox are dynamite in the bedroom, even if they find it hard to find the balance outside of it.

The start of the book is Ben and Maddox on a mission, which goes wrong, interspersed with flashbacks from the last couple of months, where their decade long friendship has taken a turn for the weird. Even though I am not normally the biggest fan of the “I almost died, so I need to take a chance on this”-trope, it worked really well here. The intensity of the experience and the aftermath of it made sense and was engaging.

This is very much a relationship driven story, with angst, hurt and comfort, which will leave you turning the pages and sighing happily at the epilogue – I even got a bit teary, I was so happy for them!

All of these books can be read as standalones, but they are all great, so don’t cheat yourself out of some great books. Happily awaiting the next in the series.

*Copy provided in exchange for an honest review*

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Review of True Colors by Anyta Sunday

True Colors (True Love, #2)True Colors by Anyta Sunday

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

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

3-3.5 stars
This is a love story, no doubt about that, there is a romance in there, but it is mainly a story about friendship and forgiveness.

Marco and Oskar have been best friends through all of their childhood, weathering happiness and sorrow, including Marco’s mother dying in a horrific car accident which leaves Marco scarred for life, until 16 year old Oskar betrays his best friend out of fear, right when Marco needed him most to stand up for him.
The boys have been out of touch for four years when our story begins and Oskar returns from Mannheim to Berlin to continue his university degree there. Marco, now twenty, is not ready to let go of his hurt and anger towards Marco or to be truthful to him or his family about who he really is.

This is a slowburn romance and a slowburn getting back to being friends kind of story. The secondary characters, Marco’s Opa and Papa, as well as Oskar’s sister Zoe and Marco’s friend Elena are lovely and it was a very enjoyable read all in all.

I never did really connect to Oskar though, I felt Marco’s pain and humiliation and Marco must be a better person than me, because I couldn’t completely let Oskar’s betrayal go, at least I needed more time.

All in all though, this is a very sweet and quite angsty slow burn romance, which I encourage you to give a try, it is not my favourite by this author though, but I can warmly recommend Anyta Sunda’s work nonetheless.

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Review of Shelton in Love by Dianne Hartsock

Shelton in Love (Shelton #1)Shelton in Love by Dianne Hartsock

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

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

This is a compilation of 5 previously released shorter stories about the same couple, Shelton and Nevil, now collected into one long novel. This might be why the story has a very abrupt feel to it, with large time jumps.

The first part – the original “Shelton in Love” – was actually quite good, as a short. But instead of the expansion of what happened after the ‘I Love You’, I would have much preferred a longer build up of back story. There was so much missing to flesh out these characters and their behaviours. These lacks I could have easily overlooked in a short – but in a full length novel it meant, that I never really believed or cared about the couple and their love story.

There were some really annoying and superfluous side plots that made absolutely no sense and brought nothing to the story and, as weird as I find it to say this: there was waaaaaaay too much sex. I found myself skimming page after page of sex, just to get to some actual story line.

I needed more back story. I wanted to know about Shelton’s past, about how his scars formed him and his sex life. Why Nevil changed from man slut to loving dedicated partner and when. How long the two had lived together, how long they had secretly been in love with each other each thinking the other one didn’t feel the same. The life after the ‘I love you’ isn’t nearly as interesting – at least not to me.

Not for me. Might have worked if it had stayed a series of shorts, but as a full length novel it needed more back story and at least half of the sex scenes edited out.

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Review of Glass Tidings by Amy Jo Cousins

Glass TidingsGlass Tidings by Amy Jo Cousins

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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

4 solid stars for this lovely christmas story about two lonely men finding trust, love and happiness. Eddie is a drifter. He has been alone for more than a decade, after leaving the group home he grew up in, at 16. He never settles permanently, and even if he tries, things go wrong. So when he is the witness to an accident and needs to stay in a tiny town in the middle of nowhere he is not happy.

Here he becomes the house guest of Grayson, who is all about permanence. Grayson owns a shop, which has been in his family for 3 generations. He lives in a big old house in the tiny town where he grew up, drinking tea of his mother’s china, reading his father’s old books and still licking his wounds after his ex-lover left him behind years ago.

There is instant attraction between the two, but Eddie is used to sex being a method of payment and Gray is cautious of taking advantage. Slowly the two move into each others lives, working, eating, reading and living with one another. It is lovely and heartwarming.

But both men have been burned before, both are used to loneliness and isolation. Eddie is not used to staying in place and Gray is so rooted that he is destined to always being the one left behind, these differences makes it hard to trust what is plainly there for the reader to see.

The main characters felt complex and real, with depth and true emotions, the conflict made sense and the ending is lovely and hopeful. Warmly recommended.

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Review of Leo Loves Aries by Anyta Sunday

Leo Loves Aries (Signs of Love, #1)Leo Loves Aries by Anyta Sunday

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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

4-4.5 stars

This was adorable and so much fun.
Theo is in college and sharing a house with his blind sister, Leone. They have both been burned in love before and as our story begins, they are invited to the wedding of their exes – who are marrying each other!
They vow to move on with their lives, together. Get dates for the wedding and get over their exes. However, in the here and now they also need to pass exams and get a new roommate. Theo sees a great opportunity to catch two birds with one stone, when his Economics tutor is looking for a new place to live and so Jamie moves in with the siblings.

There is a definite GFY vibe to this story, even if Theo is probably more fluid than straight, at least he has no existential crisis over being sexually attracted to a man, but most of all it’s a really sweet friends to lovers romance. Filled with fun and banter, with great secondary characters and a pretty clueless MC who is in a loving relationship without realising it.

Warmly recommended for days when you need something to cheer you up.

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Review of The Wizard’s Desire by Anna Wineheart

The Wizard's DesireThe Wizard’s Desire by Anna Wineheart

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I received a free copy of this book from the author, for my reading pleasure.  This has in no way affected my review of this book.

Kei hates anything to do with magic, since a wizard ruined his childhood by erasing his parent’s memory of him as their son, and his upstairs witch neighbour flooding his apartment does nothing to endear him to the magical folk. Neither does accidentally falling into an enchanted snow globe and being trapped there with a recluse of a wizard and a goat who despises him.

This story had a fun and interesting premise, but to me the pacing was too slow for the first half of the book and I had a trouble keeping interested. I never really warmed to either of the MC’s, which for me makes it harder to love a story. I found Kei rather annoying and Orion was just so insecure that he came across as pathetic. I understand that his act’s were kind of noble, but they just seemed cowardly to me.

After the halfway point though, the story and pacing picked up and I found it easier to keep interested. There was some lovely steamy scenes and the MC’s redeemed themselves slightly, even if I never actually got around to liking them and rooting for them. I really liked Billy though. I did not, however, like the epilogue. That was not enough for me, I am not as forgiving a soul as Kei, it would seem.

All in all, an interesting premise and a sweet story, which was just lacking a little for me, others have loved it, so please do not let my review stand alone if you are considering buying it. I enjoyed the writing well enough, that I would still try another book from this author.

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Review of Wolfsong by T.J. Klune

WolfsongWolfsong by T.J. Klune

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I am exhausted! This book was so intense I forgot to breathe! Someone told me, this was Kirt Graves first audiobook narration – well hat’s off to that man, because he was flawless and did this amazing story justice in every way.

I am not big on shifter stories – there, I said it! I have a select few I enjoy, but they rarely generate strong emotional responses, as they are in general kind of hard to fully relate to. But this? I cried, I choked up, I forgot to breathe, I ached.

TJ gives nods to both Twilight and Harry Potter – and I enjoy both of these series immensely – but this story is not those stories. It is completely it’s own and it is beautiful.

Cannot recommend enough. All the feelings. All the stars. Take it. Go get it. Read it. Or even better: Listen to it.

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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

 

 

Review of Knight of Flames by Amelia Faulkner

Knight of Flames (Inheritance, #2)Knight of Flames by Amelia Faulkner

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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

This is the second in the Inheritance series by Amelia Faulkner and I would not recommend it to be read as a standalone, as you would miss too much of the back story and Laurence’s background, as well as how our unlikely couple met.

In this second instalment we focus mainly on Quentin’s story. We start off a short while after book 1 finished. Both are recovered from Jack’s attack, both are sober and have been for weeks on end and Laurence is frustrated and horny as Quentin’s issues will not allow any intimacies beyond kissing.

Out jogging Quentin meets a mysterious stranger, who attempt to mug him with no success. The stranger later seeks Quentin out again, laying out the fact, that he is another psychic and a self proclaimed Robin Hood, who steals from the rich to feed and care for gifted children.

Quentin’s brother shows up in San Diego and Quentin has to figure out how to stop running from his past or else to live without Laurence.

This story was great. Gripping from the get go and I loved that it was mainly centered around Quentin and his powers and personal growth. Don’t get me wrong, there is loads of action and suspense too, but mainly this is a story of Quentin coming into his powers. Magnificently so. There are still layers and layers of vulnerability and secrets to be discovered about him and his past, but the parts that are revealed in Knight of Flames, shows a man that moves in leaps and bounds from the person we first met at the beginning of Jack of Thorns.

Once again Ms. Faulkner leaves us with enough of a HFN ending to satisfy, but also with an alluring tidbit of what’s to come, which will leave you chomping at the bit for the next book in the series!

4-4.5 stars. A warmly recommended series so far. Cannot wait to continue.

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