Monique ~ Sinfully Sexy Book Reviews

Reader and Reviewer of M/M Romance

Beyond Duty - S.J.D. Peterson 5 HUGE STARS ~ EXCELLENT, AMAZING and just SO DAMN GOOD!!! …I can’t even begin to explain just how much I loved this book… Two growly Alpha Males who also happen to be Marines, this book made me SooOoo HAPPY!


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SJD Peterson has done it yet again and WOWED me with two characters that so completely took over my heart and mind for the duration… these two strong alpha males are men you will not forget in a hurry. Her writing and characterisation always seems to draw me in and I connect with them, I suppose some authors just touch us more than others, but for me she brings her characters to life and creates unforgettable men, people I want to know… and in my mind they become real, as far as I am concerned that is a gift and SJD Peterson has it in spades!

At the heart of Beyond Duty, the story of Mac and Gunny, is friendship, but most of all love, its very being… is love, soul deep, unconditional, undisputable, passionate, heart-warming… A love that cannot and will not be diminished by any stupid laws and bigotry, a love that has lasted for over 22 years… I felt it, touched it, and basked in it. I want to be part of their lives, I want phone calls and emails on how they are doing, I just don’t want to be parted from them, because the love they have for each other truly touched me and left me starry eyed… YES, I fell utterly and totally head over heels for Mac and Gunny.

Every aspect of their lives and relationship had for so long not only been dictated by the Military, but also the ridiculous and unfair DADT Law, (quite frankly I have no idea how it ever came to be, it sounds like some rule in a kids playground game!) now with the reprieve of the law and their retirement imminent their very existence and everything they have known for the last 22 years is thrown into uncertainty.

Throughout Gunny’s career as a Gunnery Sergeant he was a man in control, fierce and in charge, yet with Mac all he wanted was to let go of it all and give that control and power over to the only man he ever trusted implicitly. Mac made him fly, forget and find that place inside him where only peace existed, and Ohhh how he yearned to please his lover… give that part of him that no one else had ever seen, he belonged to Mac, loved him, and was scared shitless that with their retirement looming Mac would no longer need Gunny and that prospect was more than he could bare, he trusted Mac with his life but the doubt churning up his insides was clouding his judgement and he was afraid to tell Mac exactly how he felt.

Retirement for Mac was the promise of endless days and nights together, to spend the rest of his life with his best friend, lover and boy, just the thought of it made him heady… his excitement for their future together involved marriage, and their retirement ceremony in the company of family and friends was just the beginning of wanting to make a commitment to the man that had had his heart from their first day at boot camp. All he needed to do now was let Gunny in on his plans.

These two men complement each other in every way, whilst they are both cocky, big hard ass Marines, full of banter that had me laughing out loud, they are also sensitive, caring and considerate and I like that SJD showed this vulnerable side of two men that could put anyone in their place with just a glance. Mac is a larger than life character, a possessive growly marine, a joker, full of life, enthusiasm and optimistic about the future, but he is also a realist, he is aware of the bigotry of others but hiding his love for his big brute of a man, is no longer an option… public displays of affection is what he wants, well that and a lifetime of morning cuddles and blowjobs! Gunny is more reserved, a worrier, both of them have been in the closet for 22 years and coming out to family and friends fills him with trepidation, especially when the realisation of their true feelings for the past 22 years has only just hit him head on, but Mac as always, is there to ground him and take away his self-inflicted torment.

For the most part though Mac and Gunny act like a couple of overgrown school boys and I loved this side to their relationship, Mac and his pouting and Gunny with his grumpiness only endeared them to me more… they are human with all the faults and frailties that come with it, and they have the kind of love that some of us can only dream of but it wasn’t an easy road for them, coming out to their parents, their own emotional struggles, dealing with Mac’s arse of a brother and Gunny’s indifferent parents all combined to make their relationship stronger and if possible their love only became more intense and believe me together they were combustible and just left me in a puddle of lust, tingling from head to toe, two alpha males and lots of hard and heavy sex, hell… I was growling!

These two had me laughing, crying, but mostly damn happy and… they got their HEA, Mac’s declaration of love for Gunny had me blubbering along with the speech at the retirement ceremony, and the end… not only was I crying ugly tears at the beautiful ending but I also felt bereft, I didn’t want to leave them, I wanted MORE!!! SJD Peterson has left us with an opening and I am hoping it is the possibility of Mac and Gunny exploring the BDSM side to their relationship that has only so far been skirted on, I will beg if I have to!

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Freeman - Clare London The opening prologue to this book had me jumping up and down with excitement!!!

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The night was dark, the pavements shadowed by the diffused gleam of the streetlights. Occasionally I'd hear a car passing, raising spray in the gutters, and the trajectory of it's headlights would flicker across my window blinds.

This is a compelling read and I was sucked in, mouth agape ready for the promise of more… it set the scene for the book perfectly, a story shrouded in mystery, the dark atmosphere almost oppressive with a narrator both unemotional and detached from the proceedings despite the fact that he was placed right in the middle of it. He is dark and mysterious, knowing, an observer lurking in the shadows of a seedy night club, the boy next to him a stranger, yet somehow he feels protective towards him… he knows this world and it’s nefarious characters, yet he sits, watching like a predator patiently stalking its prey, no emotion, guarded, yet totally aware!

There is no colour in this world, rather you get the feeling of a blanket of sadness and melancholy vividly enhanced through the writing of Clare London. It has the feel of a dark noir detective thriller, I could practically feel the fog swirling around my ankles! The mystery is enhanced by a constant underlying thread woven into this tale, we catch an occasional glimpse of it before it disappears back into the shadows, the dark plot and lack of information draw you in with each page turned relentlessly teasing, wanting to know more… hanging on the narrators every word to try and piece it all together, with a constant stream of questions in your head almost pleading for answers.

Our enigmatic narrator is Freeman a man of few words, dispassionate with a dangerous edge to him. He has returned to London after five years of self-imposed exile, wanting to escape the world and friends he no longer recognised. His return and stoically guarded demeanour have unsettled the equilibrium and his old friend and business partner George, his ex-wife Stella and ex-lover Miki are more than a little nervous about his intentions. He seems to be dismissive of them, but I felt that he got some satisfaction from unsettling those around him, I didn’t feel resentment or even revenge from Freeman… it was more a feeling of acceptance and hurt but we don’t find out the true reason of his return until the end of the book and despite Freeman being the narrator we never really fully understand him or see what’s going on inside his head, it’s as though he is hiding it from himself as well as us!

"No mystery, right. A businessman who lives in a fucking expensive flat, on his own, with some weird neighbours. With no sign of what that business actually is. A man who drinks too much coffee and works out of an alley behind the high street. A man who's young and pretty fit, but who watches strange films and listens to old music."

I grinned. "That's me" I replied.

Kit is George’s new plaything, his toy… to do with as he pleases, he is smart but very naïve, thinking George is his chance to make something of himself, he is a misguided young man, fragile, lost and certainly doesn't belong in a world filled with the seedy underbelly of the criminal element of London but he too has his secrets.

Suddenly it was all about Kit, all about him. All I could think of, all I could want and need. It was as if I were sinking, drowning, but with no attempt to save myself. My common sense stepped outside my body, gently shaking it's head, watching with disapproval as my heart beat faster and my blood turned from sustenance to desire.

Kit and Freeman are drawn to each other and it certainly wasn't because of Freemans scintillating conversation! I got the impression Kit felt safe with Freeman, a haven to escape, if only for a little while from a lifestyle he knew in his heart was all wrong… he feels guilt for letting himself be used and tries to justify it not only to Freeman but also himself. Freeman is not very forthcoming, he is a loner, a man who prefers his own company yet Kit has somehow wormed his way into his home and heart and it’s Kit that becomes the focus of his attention. Kit is relentlessly inquisitive, questioning, wanting to know something, anything about the man who hides behind the façade that is Freeman. But it’s not something Freeman dwells on, he has firmly buried and turned his back on a life his conscience wouldn't let him be a part of and his heart didn't want to be reminded of. I was hurting for both these characters, Kit for his naïve innocence, wanting something better and believing George is the man that can take him there… as a mother I wanted to cry, my heart was breaking for him and with Freeman it was his lack of emotion that was so compelling and gut wrenching… with him, it’s what we don’t see that hurts the most.

I felt something catch in my chest and a breath that was more like a gasp escaped through my lips. I felt as if something inside me started to unravel. The bindings slipped swiftly away, freeing me. sharp, silvered threads whipping away on the breeze, allowing me to breath again, to feel again.

This book was so close to being on my best ever list based on the first half, but after that I was slightly disappointed but I’ll tell you why… at the 20% mark there is a scene in the club owned by George, now bearing in mind I love my dark m/m novels and for me this scene set the tone of the book… the promise of seedy nightclubs, drugs, sordid sex and violence, these men were dangerous and George was embarking on a deal that would see him as formidable opponent in London’s underground dealings… I wanted more dark, more danger… I wanted these men to be as bad and cut throat as promised, but that was as bad as it got it never quite delivered the characters I wanted. Now for those of you that do not enjoy the raw and gritty novels I lean towards then you will love this book… it skirts the fringes of danger with nothing more than a few scuffles and arguments and perhaps without that scene I probably wouldn’t have been quite so gutted that I didn’t get my desired slice of depravity.

Having said that this is still an excellent read, there is always that threat of danger with an underlying mystery excellently executed. The romance between these two men was intense and passionate full of sexual tension and some very hot sex scenes! Watching Freeman let Kit into his heart was beautiful to watch, Kit was an open book and wore his heart on his sleeve but Freeman had opened his heart and mind to sex being more than just the some of those three letters... and although they were total opposites in every sense of the word, it worked, this crazy relationship was right and they were perfect together.

Throughout we only have Freeman’s thoughts and perspective, but Ms London does not rush him, no… we are slowly and painfully drip fed information with layer upon layer slowly pulled away never getting the whole picture until the end, and I love that Clare London challenges us as readers to draw our own conclusions and fill in the gaps that Freeman has been so reluctant to share. Ms London brings us stories filled with atmosphere, the intensity of which is palpable at times and Freeman is a shining example.

This book is Highly recommended... I LOVED IT!!!

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An Unlocked Heart - K.C. Wells I couldn't possibly give this book any less than 5 stars… the bloody thing had me up all night!

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This book is compelling reading, I was totally engrossed and had me hooked from the start, the characterisation is excellent… Leo is perfect, not only as the big bad dom who certainly conjures all kinds of naughty thoughts in my head… but also as a man that is fallible and vulnerable.  Alex… I just wanted to wrap in in my arms and hug him, every nuance and idiosyncrasy was clear to me and I wanted to hold his hand and reassure him, let him know that everything would be okay. It’s not just limited to the two MC’s, the secondary characters were also fully fleshed out and with it being the first in a series from the Collars and Cuffs world it excites me that I will also be seeing more from them. The pacing is perfect, the relationship is a journey and there were no quick fixes here it was a slow build which delivered the perfect ending, it wasn’t an easy road and the main protagonists made mistakes along the way and I was certainly shaking my fist at Leo a couple of times… but I LOVED IT!

K.C. Wells has delivered a BDSM novel that is believable… it felt real, and based in UK our two MC’s had lives I could relate to, it may be BDSM, but it’s not hard core, it’s a beautiful romance which is voyage of discovery for young Alex and a re awakening for Leo but the foundations of their relationship are built on getting to know one another outside of that world, where we see their hopes and dreams, fears and anxieties, watch their feelings develop and grow without the distractions of the lifestyle. Yes, it does become a fundamental part of the relationship but that is not what it is based on. What I liked about this book was that, for me it was a fresh approach,  It was like looking at the BDSM world through new eyes, where Alex’s knowledge is limited to BDSM novels and the internet and he has no idea what it is that excites him, in fact the feelings it evokes scares the living daylights out of him so he buries it in his mind fearful of his own reactions.  Leo’s watches Alex from afar, what he see’s is a boy so painfully shy he is unable to make eye contact, so nervous he becomes clumsy and so timid he finds it hard to speak, but it is Alex’s vulnerability that draws him in, he see’s something in the boy he wants to protect and nurture but his initial reaction is not all about seeing the submissive in him, instead he see’s Alex as someone he would like to date, get to know and for Leo this is a revelation in itself.

Leo Hart is a confident man with an air of authority that is commanding, he owns a BDSM club with his business partner Thomas, although since the death of Gabe, two years previous, who had been his sub for six years, his interest has been perfunctory at best, grieving, lost in the stifling oppressiveness of it, not even noticing men, never mind being interested in them. But at a business meeting with Thomas at a local restaurant he finds that the shy waiter who was unable to look him in the eye has sparked something within him he’d thought lost, never to be re kindled.

Alex Daniels is a student recently returned home from uni, working at Severino’s trying to earn enough money to move out of the house which to him has never been a home, where he is starved of the love and affection from the two people that should envelope him in it,  plus he has a brother who in my mind is a little shit and takes sibling rivalry to the point of bullying. Alex is socially awkward and lacks self confidence, he is a loner, who hates confrontation….  his only two friends and confidants Emily and Dave are the only one's aware that he is gay and a virgin, so dating someone is not an experience he relishes, particularly when that man comes in the form of Mr Hart a customer whose mere presence throws him into a state of panic, makes him nervous, tongue tied and self conscious.

For all Leo’s confidence, it had been eight years since he had asked anyone on a date and the experience was nerve wracking, I liked that we saw this side to him, that it wasn't just Alex that was vulnerable.  Alex… bless him, is like a deer in headlights unable to utter words never mind make a decision, his mind and body so at odds with each other, however Leo recognises this and taking control is second nature for him and Alex’s relief the decision was made for him, immediately put him at ease.

“Want to let me decide where we go?” Leo asked

Alex nodded fervently. God, yes.“Okay then, I’ll book us a table for your day off next week, that all right?”

More fervent nods. Alex might just as well have worn a sign saying “Make decisions for me and I’ll agree to anything you say”

Leo in the beginning nurtures Alex, helps him explore his sexuality without rushing or forcing the issue, it was tender, sweet, yet still passionate and Alex felt protected and above all, he felt cherished. Watching Leo tentatively take care of Alex, willing to wait for him to learn to love him, living in hope, was both heart warming and heart breaking, as the alternative for him… life without Alex, well, the thought was unbearable. For all his commanding presence and self assured nature, with Alex he was a man unsure, lost to the overwhelming emotion he felt for this boy that had stolen his heart.

Leo gives Alex a confidence he has never had, helping him discover his true nature and understand what it was about him he had labelled “different” not wanting to even open the box he had it firmly locked in, not realising what it was and hadn’t dared to even take a peek. Being Leo’s submissive opened the floodgates to give him the freedom to lose his inhibitions, to be the person that had been hiding in that box and the frightened timid boy has at last found himself in the arms of his master.

Alex opened his eyes and looked directly at Leo-and Leo caught his breath. Alex had never looked so beautiful and so at peace as he did in that one perfect moment, made even more perfect when his face broke into a smile. “Oh Sir.” His words were uttered almost as a prayer. “Thank you, Sir”

Leo gazed down at his boy. Falling in love? Who was he kidding? He’d already fallen. Hook, line and sinker.

We get the perspective from both characters and of course we can see what’s going on, both men are hopelessly in love with each other but scared to voice what is in their hearts… thankfully they have some great friends who can also see it and take it upon themselves on more than one occasion to knock their heads together! The bond of friendship in this book between Leo and Thomas is undeniable… K.C. Wells captured it perfectly, for Thomas, Leo’s well being always comes before the club, he is a true friend and I loved him… He is also the epitome of a Master Dom.  Together, Alex and Leo were combustible, Alex may have been a virgin but he was a fast learner and their scenes together were damn HOT! …and there is a lot of squirmy, panty melting sex in this too, which I certainly wasn’t complain about.


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Leo and Thomas


Watching Alex grow from the painfully shy boy lacking in confidence into a man comfortable in his own skin, sure of his sexuality, so full of joy at being his masters boy… and seeing Leo, lose the shackles of grief and find not only love again but the man that had been lost to it was just beautiful. K.C. Wells has opened up a new world and given me two characters I fell in love with, her writing cannot be described as anything other than excellent, I saw the whole story perfectly unfold in my minds eye and I can’t wait to get back there for a visit.

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The Current Between Us - Kindle Alexander 4.5 STARS ~ This book is an excellent love story, where even the most hardened heart and disillusioned soul can find the romantic streak hidden deep within and see it blossom into something neither thought possible. I fell in love with the author, her writing and the characters… just go read it!!!

Gage & Trent


Want to know who the author was dreaming of whilst writing… Ryan McPartlin and William Levy… PERFECT CHARACTERISATION!


This book was a recommendation and I will be forever thankful for being introduced to this very talented author… so I would like to share the love and wholeheartedly recommend this book… you get great character development, it is laugh out loud funny in parts, there are two smart and cute children that are not just a token gesture, secondary characters that bring life to the story, some very hot, intense and steamy man loving, hilarious text messaging, scenes that will move you to tears and a twist at the end that I never saw coming, throwing a little angst and action in too… Plus an epilogue that will melt your heart and rounded it all up in a complete and wonderful package… yes, I LOVED THIS BOOK!

One man totally grounded and committed to looking after his niece and nephew and the other, a man whore, driven by success and never turns away from something he wants. Two very different characters, yet there is no denying their attraction. The Current Between Us… Perfect title for this book as there is an underlying sizzling sexual chemistry between these two, that practically set my Kindle on Fire!

It had been four years since the tragic death of Trent Cooper’s sister, in that time he had played the perfect father to his sisters children, Em and Hunter. They were the centre of his universe, he couldn't possibly love them more, and caring and providing for the two little people that had become his life had never been a chore, for him it was a joy and a privilege and also a responsibility never taken lightly. Oh… He had once been that guy, where meaningless and anonymous sex and nights clubbing were the norm but as a single parent, those days were long gone, along with his sex and social life now non existent and as a father he also needs to be disciplined, has to be, he wants to make a success of his electrical contracting business without it encroaching on the valuable time he has with the kids. The first thing that hits you about Trent is just how caring and compassionate he is, he has a big heart and loves the children dearly, and although he has Aunty Crazy and Rhonny the live in Nanny who are his support network and friends, he is incredibly lonely and misses his sister who was also his best friend.

Gage Synclair is an investigative photojournalist, he has spent years in the poorest of countries bringing the world stories that have hit the headlines for their tough, no holds barred, dangerous revelations. He is now working on his last story, the pinnacle of his career, one which he has ploughed thousands of his own money into making and the expose will hit several countries hard including the U.S, bringing a man who had committed atrocious and nefarious acts to justice. The timing has to be perfect to coincide with the opening of his new gallery and hopefully launch a new career as a desk broadcaster for one of the large networks.

Trent luckily picks up a new job, one that will hopefully help him build his business and it just so happens to be Gage’s Gallery. Now Trent is familiar with Gage… as the man is his freakin hero, he is totally in awe of him and has a copy of every report he has ever made, but not only that, meeting Gage was making his body react in ways definitely not suitable for a construction site and certainly not in front of the man himself! And Gage is no better… he is driving himself crazy with his attraction and fantasies of Trent… and the whole thing was baffling him, how could he be? Trent is a married man with children, or so he thinks!

Gage wrapped himself around Trent, sliding his hands up under his suit jacket, pulling Trent fully against his body. The kiss was hot, but tender, and went on for several long minutes. Both were rigidly hard, brushing their cocks against one another. It was the most erotic kiss of his life and Gage had had some kisses. Never had one turned him on like this stolen kiss in a darkened neighborhood of a Chicago suburb. He wanted this man. God, he wanted him badly, but he wanted Trent long term. The thought of wanting this man for many years to come stunned him and made him feel like a happily drowning man.

I love the journey Kindle Alexander takes us on with these two boys, we see them grow emotionally before our eyes and our initial impressions are dispelled as they both open their hearts for the first time. Our first glimpse of Gage is that of a selfish man, ambitious, driven, a hard ass no nonsense type of guy, wanting the best and demanding it, with a string of nameless one night stands in his wake and certainly doesn’t give you the warm and fuzzies. But Gage is an all or nothing kinda guy… when he wants something he goes for it, and he has never wanted anything more than he wants Trent! Trent that had stolen his heart... his sentiment and courting was a little on the saccharine side of sweet, but for a man that had previously been an egotistical arse, all these feelings were new and holding himself back was not an option… he was like a lovesick teenager and this was his first love and he just couldn’t get enough. It wasn’t just Trent either, Em and Hunter also pulled something from deep within and watching this transformation of Gage, made my heart melt. There is no past trauma in Gage’s life that had hardened his heart to love… he had just never been receptive to it and it was cute seeing him realise just how much he wanted to be part of Trent’s life and family.

Trent had been so immersed in caring for Em and Hunter he had lost a part of himself along the way, he had previously been fun loving and flirty, now he was a man lacking in confidence in the dating department, despite the best efforts of Rhonny and Aunty Crazy. He has reservations about the whole dating scenario, it is obvious that Gage has money, and lot’s of it and they were poles apart in the social standings and getting involved with Gage would only bring heartache… only his heart isn’t listening and he hadn’t realised what he had been missing… Gage gave him confidence, made him feel good about himself, and Trent is so unassuming, he has no idea that men find him attractive, he is totally oblivious, however Gage is only too aware of Trent's charisma and it made me smile just how effusive he is… overwhelmed with how full his heart is, he loves Trent and that in itself is a revelation, for the first time he is considerate of someone else’s feelings and he will do whatever it takes to keep him and his family in his life.

These two men are combustible together and Kindle Alexander certainly didn’t skimp on the sex scenes… OH NO!!! The passion between them was intense, erotic and heart poundingly… HOT, leaving me in a puddle of lust! They both connected on a level neither thought possible… their desire consumed them, but it was so much more than sexual attraction, everything fit and the chemistry was palpable!

Just when you think everything is going to end all hearts and flowers, there is a bombshell that is dropped, which threatens to throw not only the romance but Trent's whole life apart, I have to admit I never saw it coming and the connection is there as plain as day throughout the book. I was pissed off at Gage’s actions and my heart was breaking for Trent, but it was a thrilling addition to the story and certainly had my blood boiling! But what transpires, more than makes up for it and the epilogue was just Aww Bless!

Highly recommended read... what are you waiting for, get a wriggle on and discover for yourself what a great book it is!

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Every Move He Makes

Every Move He Makes - Barbara Elsborg 4.5 SUPER SEXY, ACTION FILLED STARS!!! Compelling reading from Barbara Elsborg that had me engrossed in the action right from the start… throw in some humour and sex that was off the charts on the hotness and emotional scale… and this was an excellent novel… my first from Ms Elsborg but most definitely not my last!!

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Before my love of everything m-m romance, my reading passion was crime thrillers… and I devoured the best sellers list for my fix. Very rarely since reading m-m have I found an author that can combine the two genres. The same cannot be said for Every Move He Makes, Barbara Elsborg has combined the two perfectly. We know who the villain of the piece is, more or less from the start, so there is no mystery there, but there was plenty of action and our two MC’c are right in the middle of it.  From the start, there is not an awful lot to love about these two characters… Logan is cold hearted but that is his way of dealing with things and Zak, well… he is just a mess and not very likeable at all… but it didn’t take long before we got to the real characters beneath all the bravado and I fell hook line and sinker for both of them, there was great chemistry between these two and not just in the sex department, there was banter and humour that had me totally laughing out loud and I seemed to be highlighting all the way through this book… I just LOVED IT!!


“Why would someone want to kill you?” Logan asked.He shrugged. “I piss most people off sooner or later. Usually sooner.”“To the point they’d shoot you down in a London street?”“I can be very annoying.”


Josh McKenna was dead to the world and his family, in his place was Logan… with a new face and identity to go with his new name. Always a loner due to his self imposed isolation now he really was alone with only his focus, single minded determination  and control which had so far sustained him and kept him alive. Any loss of control for Logan would be deemed as a failure, and with a highly competitive streak that was never an option, neither was any emotional involvement.

 

Having been beaten to within an inch of his life after working undercover for MI6 he is now asked to return to his original mission to infiltrate the gang that had been responsible for his near miss with death. His in, was Zak Kochenkov, the son of a Russian businessman, however, everything is not as it seems and after taking the position as Zak’s bodyguard Logan fears that there really is someone out to kill the the jumped up, arrogant, ungrateful shite the world would be better off without!

 


“I told you I’m not an addict.” He crammed a slice of tomato into his mouth and chewed furiously. “Though I do need a lot of sex.”

 

Zak Kochenkov, once the darling of the Russian pop scene, now lived a life of lies, drugs, drink and abusing his body into any kind of oblivion which kept reality at bay.  On the run, they only have each other and Logan needed to know more about Zak in order to help, him but what he learned was of a lonely boy wanting nothing more than the love of a Mother that had no time for him and a Father who did love him unconditionally but was a busy business man with little time for his son. So Zak had just become an angry young man who played up for attention but really deep down he just wanted to be loved.

 


He’d been kind to him in the bathroom, not shouted, and apart from his father, Zak couldn’t think of the last time anyone had been kind to him, because he didn’t let them get that close.

 



Looking deep inside the psyche of these two characters, really they are no different, both lost and lonely souls damaged by childhoods that should have been filled with love and affection yet they had both been starved… each of them having found different ways of dealing with it. Zak the playboy lifestyle as a pop star, fuelled by sex, drugs and alcohol and Logan had turned his internally and used it as a control to focus his discipline. Both men wanting to be noticed but for different reasons. Now, they both feel a connection between them, something neither of them had experience with. For Zak sex had been a means to an end a good hard fuck and ride the high on release… no talking, no kissing, no touching, no intimacy whatsoever. For Logan letting go of any emotion he knew would be his undoing… he was a control freak and losing control… No, that would never happen!

 


Logan knocked his hand off. “And I’m too broken to fix so don’t try. Don’t tell me you love me or any of that crap because I’m not lovable.”

 

Now both men had opened their hearts and shared a part of themselves that had never seen the light of day, leaving them feeling naked and vulnerable to emotions they were struggling to come to terms with, the coldness in both of them had been filled with warmth and the passion and sensuality between them was intense, and the chemistry and sexual desire… well, that left me in a puddle of lust, these two were hot!!!


  Every move 4

 


Logan pulled him close and pressed his forehead against Zak’s, their breaths mingling. “Make me come undone,” he whispered. “Undo me. Unravel me.”

 

Barabra Elsborg certainly gave us two characters that had unknowingly embarked on a voyage of discovery… pushing away their selfishness to consider another and giving them both the will to live rather than exist… all the time embroiled in the action of being on the run from the bad guys trying to kill them, mix that in with the humour and you have an excellent read I would highly recommend to anyone enjoying this genre in m-m romance. My only grumble, would be Logan’s battle with his conscience over his feelings for Zak, he just seemed to go backwards and forwards like a yo-yo and as a reader it was probably just one too many times… and for Zak, the poor boy didn’t know whether he was coming or going. But other than that, I loved this book.

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Fitting In

Fitting In - Silvia Violet Two hot cops and a nerd… should be a winner for me?!?

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Firstly I have to say, that cover is just awful and I am glad the images in my head were not of the cover models!

Mason is a Star Trek geek and a bit of a nerd, after being disowned by his family for being gay, something they thought of as a phase and an inconvenience, he was forced to work in a bar, his priority in life was to go back to college, get his degree in chemistry and move onto grad school.

Mason had never been good with relationships and hitting the club scene or anonymous sex had no appeal to him whatsoever. He was shy and a bit of a loner, not particularly forthcoming, so when two gorgeous cops come into the bar asking questions about a recent speight of robberies in the area,  his mind was more interested in the hot cops and working overtime with every sexual fantasy with them in the starring role flashing through his mind, than concentrating on answering their questions.

Jack and Gray, lived and worked together and being cops were cautious about revealing their relationship not because they were embarrassed but because of the problems it would cause them in their working lives. Both men are attracted to Mason and they want him, but Mason has reservations, he had previously been  burned in a threesome which had ended badly but he just cannot get the lustful intentions out of his head.

Jack and Gray take matters into their own hands as Mason is never going to make the first move, and these three men together were smouldering, and Mason was overwhelmed by his emotions, the sensual pleasure and sexual tension was all encompassing, he could barely breath with the intensity of it all and Jack and Gray just consumed him. He shared something with them he had never before experienced a sense of freedom and belonging, he felt cherished but his longing for more seemed futile. Mason could see in their eyes the obvious love they had for each other something he had never had from anyone and Mason had fallen hook line and sinker, he was head over heels in love and scared senseless, he feels like the interloper and they couldn't possibly feel the same way, after all they were a couple!?!

This book kept me turning the pages and the sex between these three was definitely cold shower material! The plot was thin on the ground and predictable, no great shakes there. The characters I found a bit one dimensional, maybe because we only had Masons POV so we never get an insight into the minds of Gray and Jack, only Masons observations and for me it was hard to distinguish between the two of them which effected the dynamics of the threesome. Gray was the Dom but sometimes needed to be a sub, Jack a switch but seemed more Dom material to me and Mason, well, he is definitely a sub! We also go down the lack of communication route, tortured soul, lost loves, heartbreak and desolation with the sweet times occasionally bordering on sickly for my tastes.

Over all this was an easy read with some fabulous sex scenes but not too much else to grab my attention I liked it but didn’t love it. The BDSM is not hard core just a bit of tying up and spanking so if you need an easy titillating read then this is perfect.

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Wild Horses - Kate Pavelle *4.75 STARS* I was totally smitten with this book, the characters… and the author! What an excellent first Novel… Kate Pavelle you kept me up all night but it was totally worth it. Fabulous read!

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Fascinating reading, compelling and the characters just intrigued me, I found myself slowing down on my reading because I just wanted to soak it all up, absorb each and every page… at times it is beautiful, poignant, plus a lot contradictions and emotional turmoil,  but it’s not just about the relationship between Kai and Attila, it was also Vermillion/Cayenne and Kai and to watch these two together it was magical, real warm the heart stuff, to be honest, I know nothing about horses, so I couldn't tell you if it was depicted accurately but I was enthralled by them and.. I – could – not – put – this – book – down! My household duties were neglected and I pulled an allnighter, it was one of those books where you are so engrossed you wonder where the last few hours disappeared. At 350 pages this is not a quick read and the author really does take you on a journey with Kai and Attila, nothing seems to come easy for these two and there are always nagging questions at the back of my mind from hints dropped and taken nowhere, but every thread left dangling is picked up and woven back into the story. Each man is a mystery and when you think you understand them… Mmmm,  something else is thrown into the mix to dispel original thoughts… towards the end the pace of the book completely changed, with a real WTF! Oh. My. God… I never saw that coming! Moment… and I do love a book that turns my heart inside out!

Kai Alewright is homeless, the streets have been his home since his apartment and all possessions were destroyed in a fire. Hunger and desperation, turn him to pick pocketing, his first haul $60 and an Iphone… it was like winning the lottery! Only the man from whom he stole, wanted his phone back and reading his text messages, Kai is assaulted by an attack of conscience, he is already humiliated that he has had to sink so low to survive… so he sets off on his rusty bike to return the phone to it’s rightful owner.

“You are above such petty acts of thievery”

That text message changes Kai’s life!

It is not Attila that he first makes contact with at Blue Heron Acres but the beguiling fiery red stallion. With no fear and oblivious to the danger of the beast, he sets about playing and making friends. Vermillion a horse that had so far bitten, kicked and run away from every human that had tried to gain his trust. Yet this stranger had achieved far more in the matter of minutes, than Attila, a trained and expert horseman had in months. And he is curious to see where it might lead and maybe for these two wild animals this could be their chance at survival.  The fact that he was powerfully sexually drawn to the man was irrelevant… that was something he could control?!

He saw something in Kai that he had yet to find in his years of teaching, raw natural talent, effortless, and Attila wanted to share his knowledge, impart his experience and Kai was like a sponge soaking it all up, desperate to learn how to not only care for Cayenne (he changed the horses name) but to ride him, to emulate what he had seen and for Kai this was also a new experience, something new… he was passionate about the horse and his owner.

These two men are attracted to each other, the sexual chemistry is sizzling, yet both are dismissing it, Kai because he see’s Attila as unobtainable, feels unworthy of the affections of a man such as Attila, humbled by the kindness shown to him…  Attila had already given him so much and Kai was desperate to stay.  Attila with his stolen studies of Kai, the man fascinates him, he enjoys the quiet harmony he feels with Kai, something he is not accustomed to with humans and yet despite their attraction, they know following up on their desires would surely push the other away!?!

Both these men are flawed and damaged by a past that haunts them. Kai was thrown out and abandoned for being gay, he has no feeling of belonging, initially I thought him innocent and childlike almost desperate, yet at times his personality showed strength and his wild nature came to the fore. He is open and pure of heart so willing to please yet he is not submissive. Circumstances and bad decisions had led Kai to being homeless, and finding someone who actually cared what happened to him, gave of their own time to help him was incomprehensible for Kai who had only known rejection since the death of his father… emotionally he found it overwhelming.

Attila is an extremely complex character, in the blurb it tells us that Attila has undiagnosed Asperger’s so when I had finished the book I looked it up… Lack social skills, dislike changes in routine, lack empathy and a formal style of speech. Spot on! Attila is  an eccentric recluse, socially awkward, in fact he hates being in the company of humans and his emotionless manner does not endear him to humans! He is logical and analytical any deviation from the norm agitates him. Yet he checks himself and remains calm and in control, and despite all his aloofness he is kind and compassionate and fair, never taking advantage.

The more we get to know the characters the more I came to understand the contradictions in their personalities which I initially found confusing. Both men have a dark and secret past they want to leave behind, for fear the very nature of it would destroy the relationship they now found themselves immersed in. Kate Pavelle does an excellent job with the characterisation their voices so very distinct, and portrays them perfectly. Attila is almost British in his formal language, it made me laugh, especially next to the very casual Kai… they are total opposites yet so very perfect for eachother. There are also some great secondary characters, and a few I would like to do some serious bodily harm to!  Attila’s family who were initially a little hostile to the street punk, warmed, and they too opened their hearts. The plot is a steady pace, then in the last third it ramps up a gear and the fallout was not at all what I was expecting. Together these two were hot, passionate, sexy as hell and definitely cold shower worthy!!! I do not know very much about Kate Pavelle but I do know she writes a great story,  I can’t wait for her to bring us more in this series!

This book is highly recommended, I absolutely loved it!

A copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press in exchange for a fair and honest review...

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Don't Trust the Cut - Kade Boehme Excellent 4.5 Stars

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Kade Boehme a few months ago, impressed me with his short story On the Dock. Don’t trust the cut is completely different and proves his versatility as a writer but what is breathtaking about his writing for me is his characterisation… these characters are very real, their lives for a short time touched mine and their journey pulled on my heart strings and evoked all kinds of emotions, he has great empathy with his characters and so much emotion from someone so young it is remarkable! Kade’s writing style is also that of a young man, so emotionally he connects with them… Kade Boehme is a rough diamond, not quite polished, poignantly beautiful at times, yet grounded in the reality of youth with all the raw pain, hurt, laughter and love that goes with it… I am looking forward to watching this man grow and what an exciting journey it will be.

Tucker Grey is a country boy, and when we meet him he is swathed in emptiness yet contemplative, the feeling is that of loss, slight hope for his future and deep regret over his attitude and behaviour. At this point we have no idea of his past only that he is one of three guests of honor at a party to celebrate his return from “Canada”? along with his friend Nate’s birthday and a soldier returning home from Iraq. When we meet Jesse Bauer he is an angry man, bitter at being injured and retired after ten years in the Marines, a job he loved, but also a job that gave him somewhere to hide from himself and life's expectations. He has a girlfriend Miranda but he hides his sexuality behind his relationship, one she is aware of but really she was his camouflage in the real world.

When these two catch each others eye, “eye sex” per Alison his best friend… I love her! The attraction is instant they both feel it, making Jesse uncomfortable with Miranda and Tucker embarrassed to be feeling that way over a man that was obviously straight!?! Only they kiss and that more or less seals the deal and bells were ringing! Only it is twelve months and many nights of fantasies for both, unable to forget that chaste kiss, that they meet again and those fires are still stoked! …yep, a couple of horny teenagers spring to mind!

Ok.. so we have all been there in our younger years, or even our not so younger years, that school girl/boy crush the infatuation or even love, yes, that plain old insta love … we have all fallen victim to it at some point in our lives. The intensity of it all, nervousness, the feeling of being self conscious as though the whole world can tell, admonishing ourselves for seemingly stupid remarks, the butterflies and heavy heart… but mostly it is just a constant whirl of emotions… daydreaming, tummy flutters at every thought, anticipating and playing out future meetings in our minds and all of that emotion is played in this book. That chemistry between two people, is the foundation to this story, eyes meet across a crowded room and they just know… but don’t start drawing hearts round this just yet! What I like about this book, is that  Kade Boehme makes it feels real, believable.. the helplessness, as if your control and common sense have taken a hike and you have none, you are consumed with every waking thought and night-time fantasy revolving around that one person. Just to be in close proximity, to have a glance, anything for the chance or opportunity to just be in the same space can make you buzz with the excitement of their nearness.

Tucker and Jesse love each other, that is as plain day, but still no hearts and flowers because this is a bumpy ride! These men are both very flawed and damaged and in Tuckers case a broken man trying desperately to put the pieces back together. Complication he does not need yet we see both men through misconceptions, stubbornness insecurities and the decisions they make cause no end of trouble and more often than not left me feeling WTF! and I was angry with them and hurting for both of them, frustrated because they spent the first half of the book hiding behind lies and omissions and they pretty much worked me up into a frenzy I was so cross!

Tucker is painfully shy and socially awkward, and he has no friends apart from Alison, whom he lives with. Alison is his rock, she grounds him and certainly takes no shit and definitely won’t allow him to wallow in self pity. In her presence he is alive and we see the man he can be when not in the depth of the depression that can engulf him. He works in a local restaurant so when Jesse turns up for lunch all those feeling from that night of the kiss return, in fact they never left, and when Jesse wants to reach out as a friend that attraction is what drives him forward knowing Jesse is in a relationship but just wanting to be near him and spend time with the man that makes him feel, if only as friends.

Jesse’s attraction hit him head on and asking for Tuckers number makes him feel like a love sick teenager. But he is in a relationship with Miranda he has never hidden his attraction towards men from her, but it is a very different case for the rest of his friends and family so like Tucker, he just wants to spend time in the company of the man that he wants to wrap up in his arms and take away the fear and haunted expression he see’s in his eyes.  But Jesse is also drowning in his own insecurities being pushed and pulled by his mother, Miranda and her parents… six years and still they were not living together and no sign of marriage, it was expected of him but his sorry excuse “being too young” was just that, an excuse!

Jesse hated the complications of it all, as a Marine he followed orders his life had structure and purpose and it was also a way of hiding what he really desired… he is closeted and a coward! Is it that he doesn’t want to disappoint? Is he living the life expected of him? Scared of accepting his sexuality? Anything for an easy life? Does he really know what he wants? …his life is built on lies and omissions, being dishonest with himself, Miranda and Tucker!

Whilst Tucker was happy to suppress his attraction with Jesse and go along with the pretence of friendship, because lets face it they both knew they had the hots for each other… and so did Miranda, so her wanting to be best buds with Tucker also was sending up all kinds of alarm signals and it was quite frankly making me uncomfortable.

Tucker is insecure. painfully shy and he is attracted to Jesse, knows he is closeted and the feelings between them are mutual… frustrating! Being friendly with Miranda, was that a security blanket for Tucker? …being friends with her, is it a way of justifying to himself that he can just be friends with this couple? Then there is Miranda… Ohhhh she knows what's going on, she likes Tucker, I mean who doesn’t he is adorable and has that look of helplessness that everyone seems to want to protect and take care of… but be friends with the man that you know your boyfriend has the hots for… no, that’s just wrong! …as nice as Tucker is. For Jesse… Is he trying to convince himself he can just be friends? or is he wanting any opportunity to be in the presences of the only person that actually makes him feel alive… and not the puppet playing his part to the audience!

And in the middle of all this we have the little bull dog, Alison, fiercely protective of her friend and she is certainly not shy in coming forward and has a habit of saying it like it is, regardless of the consequences… I loved her and she certainly made me laugh out loud in the middle of all this madness!

We finally see hope, each man coming to terms with their relationship and being sensible and taking it slowly… Jesse mans up and and has a break with Miranda to try and “find himself” Tucker, so open and giving is happy to go with the flow but his heart is big and he is wearing it on his sleeve and allowing that hope to take root but there are still secrets that need to be shared!?!

The last part of the book was heartbreaking and had me in tears, the love between these two men is palpable it jumps off the page at you it’s so strong and intense, and that’s what I liked so much about this book, yes we have the insta love thing, but their journey to get to their HEA was fraught with challenges and intense emotion, heartbreak and some hard lessons in life. Yet through it all the one constant was always their love!

This book was provided by the author in exchange for a fair and honest review

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The Flesh Cartel #8: Loyalties (The Flesh Cartel Season 3: Transformation) - Heidi Belleau, Rachel Haimowitz I haven’t got a clue what the fuck is going on anymore… I am a mess, blubbering with the hopelessness of it all.


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Gone are the sickening tortures that quite frankly had my stomach in my throat and my blood boiling in anger. We have had the sick and twisted mind games from the master manipulator… but through it all I held on to the belief that that spark of hope would stay true, but after this episode I am left with a slight glow of embers that are slowly fading.

Dougie is psychologically a broken man, he has turned into the mindless pet that Nikolai demands of him. Wanting and needing to please his master… he loves him!!! HE LOVES a man that has systematically abused and tortured and fractured his mind, manipulating him in the worse way possible, with his will no longer his own but his masters. Nikolai consumes his every thought, he spends his waking hours analysing and trying to anticipate his master and what he requires of him. He is conflicted, no longer knowing or understanding what is right or wrong. Dougie is all about the logic, but there is no logic here right is wrong, wrong is right… but hey, just suck it up Dougie… you are here to PLEASE!!!

In the last book with THAT ending! We saw Mat at his lowest point, no amount of torture or mind games could be used to bend his will because he wanted it, he wanted all the pain and hurt he felt he deserved. The tenuous thread that had kept him alive and fighting had been completely severed when that monster abused Dougie and without him he had nothing and Nikolai knows this… and so begins the next stage and he will use whatever means necessary to get what he wants… and in steps Roger, who is only too willing to help! WHY? Ohhh…lets just torture them with kindness now, yes, play the empathy card with Mat and the jealousy card with Dougie… and it was this that finally broke me!

Right now, I feel like Mat. No hope. How can this get better? How can they come out of this the other side sane? …Has Nikolai won? With Dougie he has what he wants, the adoration of a pliant pet, happy to be his whipping boy or fuck toy… anything to please Nikolai for just a little love and kindness.

This episode… that’s it!!! I see no way back now, the bastard has won! He is not adverse to playing any dirty trick in the book and quite frankly his are so bad they probably never made it to that book. This has so far been one helluva journey with these boys… and I love them both, but right now I feel as broken as them. Where is my sliver of hope? …gone I say, shattered and currently running down my face at an alarming rate… They made me cry, damn it! Really cry snot nose tears and that is so not attractive, this episode has fucked with my head, my heart and my emotions.

I feel like giving up, throwing my hands up and saying “you win, I give up” I’m not putting my heart through this anymore! But no… how can I? someone has to believe it will be alright in the end, keep the lines running, fight another day… these boys need me, someone has to have hope, right?!?

YES, I say… try your best ladies, I’m not giving up… BRING IT ON!!!

On a coherent note… These two authors are driving me crazy but they are amazingly talented, my emotions for this series is testament to that fact. The Flesh Cartel is a series that will consume you, their writing is such that they draw you in and like a cat they dig their claws in and they ain’t letting go ‘till they are good and ready, then I am sure they will come in with their band aid and make it all better.

If you haven’t read this series and you like the darker side of m/m fiction… I urge you to start at Episode 1 and enjoy the ride… it is excellent, not to be missed and certainly never forgotten!

This book was provided by Riptide publishing for a fair and honest review

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Finding Master Right - L.A. Witt

If this book is the result of Ms. Witt visiting a Leather convention, well, I think she should go every year!

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This is a friends to lovers story, pretty much full of angst, with the major issue being communication, so if it's not something you enjoy then this book is a not for you as it does become a tad frustrating, but I got the reasons why and I love me some angst so it worked for me in the most part.

Chase and Derek …Oh. My. God… I just wanted to knock their heads together!!! As readers we get both characters points of view and we can clearly see that these two really like each other, as in REALLY like each other, the only problem being, that neither are prepared to open up and tell the other just how they feel for fear of ruining their friendship. I can understand this from Derek as he’s a sub… but Chase, he is a Dom, although with all his introspective musings and insecurities I wasn't feeling it initially, in fact it was Derek that seemed the stronger of the two and Chase just seemed to be shrouded in melancholy and a little on the grumpy side… and both men were guilty of internally analysing the hell out of things and getting it all wrong!

Chase had recently split up with Ian who had been his sub and worn his collar for three years, only Chase had been played for a fool and all of that had put a huge dent in his confidence. Derek has the hots for Chase big time and he is the constant focus of his fantasies, desperate to be topped by him, so when the opportunity came up to attend the Leather convention with the man of his dreams he was all kinds of excited… that was until it all went wrong, with a night of vanilla sex neither had anticipated and now leaves them both confused… Chase because he thinks Derek doesn't want to be topped by him as a sub and Derek because he is scared of being a rebound fling.

I loved Derek, he is a pain slut and a masochist and plays the bratty, feisty sub perfectly, his inner sarcasm was hilarious, but deep down all he wants is to love and be loved in return, he wants the comfort of knowing he belongs and most of all he wants to feel proud to wear the collar of his master… There was a scene in this book where Chase and another Dom were playing with a sub… and DAMN…  IT WAS HOT!!! Talk about seeing it played out in my own head, Ms Witt's writing put me right there watching it unfold through the eyes of Derek, wishing it was him looking into the eyes of his Dom. At that point my heart went out to Derek as he had a moment of clarity seeing Chase with another sub and realising in his heart, that, was what he wanted… to be all and everything to Chase… and it was that point that we actually got to see the very dominating and the sadistic side of Chase that had so far been missing. The other BDSM scene was Derek with two other Dom's and again, I think I needed a fire hose… Lori Witt certainly gets the tummy flutters going! That particular scene although hot was also beautiful in it’s own way as it felt as though there were only Chase and Derek in the room even though he was not involved in the scene his presence alone enabled Derek to trust and be at ease with the play. Usually I don't like my two MC’s playing with others in a BDSM scene, but seeing as these two didn't actually get together until the end of the book, and what transpired was necessary for them both to have an epiphany of what it was that they really wanted… it didn't feel uncomfortable, and when they did get together… Holy Hotness… I was in a puddle of lust!!!

L.A. Witt gives her characters life and personality with their voices expressing their moods perfectly and the result was a deep understanding of the characters make up and emotions… fabulous! The Leather convention was a perfect setting and I really enjoyed watching the events through the eyes of our two MC’s,  all I would like now, is a short with a BDSM scene between Chase and Derek as that was one thing I felt I missed out on… a little playtime with our boys.

A copy of this book was provided by Riptide Publishing through NetGalley for a fair and honest review

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Starry Knight - T.A. Webb 5+++++ STARS for what has been a Beautiful, Powerful, Intense, heartbreaking, heartwarming, hot as hell EXCELLENT series!!!

When I read a book from Tom Webb, I always feel there is an underlying element of the man himself that comes through, a warmth and flow that connects it all together and brings his words to life and Starry Knight is no different, it is another excellent book from the master of emotions that left me grabbing for the tissues at the end.


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I have been super excited to read this last book in the City Knight Trilogy and I have been beside myself with the excitement and anticipation, but at the same time sad, as this is the last one and I don’t really want to let these two characters that have found a place in my heart go.

Way back on February 14th of this year, by chance during my search for new releases, I stumbled on City Knight by T.A. Webb. Not an author I was familiar with but the blurb piqued my interest, so, as you do, I one clicked and commenced reading. A few pages in and I just knew I was going to love the book... but not only that, I had also found an author that I loved, who could completely suck me into the story and take me on a journey with his words alone, an author with immense talent and one that evoked a kaleidoscope of emotions through his writing.

I fell in love with Tom Webb that day and I just wanted to shout from the highest mountain, just how wonderful his writing is and tell everyone how fabulous the start to the City Knight series is. I am still waxing lyrical about Toms talent to any and all that will listen, and over the last few months as I have grown to know him, hand on heart I can tell you he is also a genuinely nice guy with a big heart.

In the previous two books in the series they were pretty action packed and intense, and had you constantly on the edge of your seat wondering where Mr Webb would take us next, but Starry Knight is completely different and we see a tentative relationship that had been based on very shaky foundations, with both men hesitant and a little afraid of what the future held for them, collect the shattered pieces, and together with the love they have for each other, they begin to heal the fragmented parts of their lives and no longer feel so lost and alone.

After the event from the last book we find Ben in a vigil by the side of Marcus’s hospital bed… willing him to stay alive and praying he will wake up. Having been shot and almost dying gave Marcus a whole new perspective on life… he did some soul searching, realising how his self imposed isolation since Jeremy’s death had hurt the friends who had been like brothers to him, family… the men that had his back no matter the issue, shunning all those who loved him the most, as they were a constant reminder of what he no longer had. Now with Ben in his life he had a reason to live, a purpose and we see Marcus open his heart, not only to Ben but also his friends for the the pain he had caused them through his grief, and he wanted to grab hold of it all and never let go again. The importance of friendship is prevalent in this last book and we again see the crossover of characters from the Pulp Friction series… and what a cast of characters they are, the banter and snarky humour had me laughing out loud… with our young Benjamin also coming out of his shell and joining in.

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The love between Marcus and Ben is totally selfless, they are secure enough in their feelings for each other not to be insecure or intimidated by their pasts… and it was quite beautiful to finally see these two at ease and despite the high octane start to the relationship they are finally completely comfortable with each other and what the future holds for them as a couple… and the ending… Oh. My. God… it was the perfect ending to what has been a truly wonderful series and I am hoping Tom will bring us more from these two adorable characters…. “With you it will never be the end” I am hoping that’s true……  Pleeeaaassee!!!!

We have the lovely Tom Webb with us over on our blog tomorrow... with an Interview and a Giveaway, WooHoo!!! my fangirl is dancing round the room!!!

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The Flesh Cartel #7: Homecoming (The Flesh Cartel Season 3: Transformation) - Heidi Belleau, Rachel Haimowitz Holy Fuck!!! THAT ending is just… So. Not. Fair.

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What I always find so startling about this series is the impact it has on me as a reader… and just how these two very talented authors manage to evoke such powerful emotions. Even just picking up the 7th episode in this totally compelling series… the heart starts pounding and I can feel the anxiety creeping in and the pain of these two boys all at once becomes renewed.

Nikolai has manipulated and coerced Mat and Dougie perfectly in his strategic game plan, both now alone with no hope and Nikolai the victor to come in and pick up the pieces of their shattered souls and hearts. This book mainly concentrates on Dougie and Nikolai, we see a little of Mat, now a broken man who now see’s himself as no better than Nikolai, a monster, tortured by his part in that room with the “sick fuck pedo client.

Dougie is so deeply enchanted by the perfectly woven spell, that is all Nikolai, that he is actually confusing his emotions, so scarred of being alone he now see’s Nikolai as his saviour… the man that will take away all his pain, fear, hurt and feelings of abandonment and in return he requires obedience and devotion by making Dougie feel loved and cherished, similar to a well behaved pet/slave… and for this Dougie is grateful!!! Even his voice of reason, although it hasn’t abandoned him, he chooses to ignore it, whilst his inner monologue is on full survival mode, urging him to please his master… there was a lot of kindle shaking and excessive use of profanities going on, I can tell you!

This episode of The Flesh Cartel is all about positive nurturing… (in other words, just another mind fuck) So fear is not an inherent part of the boys training, instead they are treated with kindness and in Dougie this manifests as a need and want to please without the fear of consequences, a time to unravel from all that torture and consciously analyse where he has been, and what is now offered to him freely without the confusion of the hope that had for so long kept him defiant, but above all sane. Don’t for one minute think Nikolai has gone soft, Oh no, he still wants a disciplined slave/pet, but at this stage he is willing to overlook mild transgressions in favour of Dougie’s honesty and willingness to please … how very generous of him! More like lulled into a false sense of security! Dougie is resigned to his new life, a broken boy with all fight gone, pliant in the hands of the man that had raped, and tortured, and abused him both mentally and physically.

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We learn a little of Nikolais past… almost made me feel sorry for him, I was also nearly there with all the kindness and affection he showed Dougie… does he love him? I thought so at one point and then he goes and spoils it all again… that bloody man is a conundrum and confuses the hell out of me, and totally pissed me off with the throw away comment he gave as an explanation for Dougie’s future, and made me cry because Dougie was so lost at that point… it just broke my heart and there is also Roger, a man we have hardly touched on but I am also feeling sympathy for him too! Nikolai is so on my hit list… where is Silvio when I need him?!?
These two authors are definitely up there in the echelons of the great writers in this genre, and without a doubt two of my favourite authors, especially when they ensure the adrenaline junkie in me get’s it’s fix. Rachel and Heidi never fail me, but continue to astound me with this gripping and very addictive series… and so the love affair continues.


This book was provided by Riptide publishing for a fair and honest review

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Inferno - Scarlet Blackwell Review coming soon...
One Breath One Bullet - S.A. McAuley 4.5 ~ STARS ~ This is a powerful story, a raw and gritty tale that will have you captivated from beginning to end, it’s a novella at only 88 pages, but let me tell you, every single one of those pages counts. It’s an intelligent read, very cleverly composed by Sam McAuley, her writing is just excellent and had me totally absorbed in this war torn world 545 years into our future. I always judge a book on my reaction at the end, and if its one of those where I clutch my Kindle to my chest with a silly grin, jumping up and down… you know it’s going to be good, and I assure you I wouldn’t make a fool of myself for any other reason!!!


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For me, One Breath, One Bullet feels like the foundation for a wonderful series, full of intrigue, with two very delicious, hot and droolworthy Alpha males, Merq and Armise who definitely had me in a puddle of lust!! plus a very skilfully crafted plot that weaves a tangled  web of mystery throughout, slipping in clues and drip feeding information which spans 200 years, mainly concentrating on Merq’s life between the age of 18 and 35, and his association with Armise… but not only that it flips backwards and forwards in flashbacks… picking up more snippets to digest. And right about now, I can hear you saying… What?!? Confusing!?! Information overload!?!  Ah ha… that’s where Ms. McAuley tricks us with her subterfuge, because really it is only as complicated as you wish to make it... and I say that in all honesty, and I will tell you why, because the information is like puzzle pieces, not making a whole lot of sense on their own, until you carefully slot them together and have the whole picture in front of you to peruse, and when you finally see it, it’s a real Oh. My. God… moment! I must admit, until that defining moment when it all became so clear, I was cursing Sam whilst I was reading, thinking, Why… is there no glossary or a timeline to refer to? How am I supposed to remember all this? Who are all these people? What is going on? But ha! she is not daft, at the end we are supplied with a complete glossary,  timeline and character info, why not at the beginning? well, silly… if you had it at the beginning you would have the whole story laid out for you with spoilers galore!



The book is told completely from Merq’s point of view and it starts off at furious pace, with the action in the middle of a battlefield and Merq injured, the only man to come out alive. He is a soldier, his life is routine, structured, every action and thought has purpose and meaning, his mind constantly on alert, systematically analysing everything for deviations from the norm… for Merq, failure is never an option. He is a man alone in the world, no friends or family and zero on the distraction front, well apart from Armise who also happens to be on the opposite side, their common goal, they both want the info chip which is apparently the only copy of all the paper records in existence and each country want to get their hands on it. Merq and Armise also happen to be expert snipers and now with peace reigning these two will be in competition with each other for the first Olympic Games in 200 years and the opening ceremony, will involve a real bullet, first from a real gun!

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Even though, a truce has now been called, these two men are still hardened soldiers and weapons in their own right, both totally committed to the cause… only they are enemies and there is a fierce hate and mistrust between them, a volatile relationship, full of anger and pent up sexual tension, and oh boy is it intense, something neither of them seemed able to control. There is however a silent treaty between them when they get together, a secret which if found out would have them branded as traitors… Yet both are willing to risk it, there is no love yet between Merq and Armise, just raw, hot, hard and angry sex… forbidden yet seductive! Did I mention it was HOT!!!  Ha… and Merq has piercings… ahhhh swoon!



As we read this through Merqs eyes we learn more about him, but Armise is still a mystery, I just want to climb in his head and have a nosy at his thought process, especially at the end of this novella. Both men are stoically guarded, but in Merq, despite all the big bad ass, I am a soldier attitude, I had a sense of hope but also despair… glimpses of emotion that I am not sure even he recognises yet.



The world building is a little complex and I can’t say that I understand all of the warring factions just yet, but we have another 4 books to get through! ...So I can't wait!!! I love these two damaged souls… and Sam McAuley has characterised them perfectly, Merqs voice engaged me throughout his journey in a disposable society where the wealthy have and the poor have not and two enemies become lovers.



Series Reading Order



1 ~ One Breath, One Bullet ( The Borders War #1)

2 ~ Dominant Predator (The Borders War #2) No Date Yet



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Delsyn's Blues  - Lou Sylvre This second book in the Vasquez and James series and is another excellent example of just how amazing Lou Sylvre is... LOVED IT!!!


Delsyn's blues

Lou Sylvre, once again delivers a compelling, exciting and suspense filled slice of Luki and Sonny’s world, in Loving Luki I fell in love with her beautiful prose that endeared me to these two flawed and broken characters who are still at the fledgling stage of their relationship. The prologue to Delsyn’s Blues is heart breaking, and the consequences of this are the back bone to the story and our boys are once again embroiled in the middle of all the action, this time Luki needs to call on his AFT experience with more than a few favours called in to deal with murder, arms and drug running which see’s our boys faced with yet more challenges, and they need to draw on all their strength to to survive yet another event that could see that tentative relationship come crashing down on them.



After the trauma and heartache in Loving Luki, Sonny and Luki had at least had a little reprieve to get to know one another, that is until the tragic event happened, which left Sonny a shell, and numb to everything around him. He had lost his will to fight and both his body and soul were wracked with grief, he feels culpable, in his mind it was all his fault and it was that guilt that drives Luki away. However, Luki is a stubborn SOB, he is hurt that Sonny has pushed him away but the love he has for his man is too strong and luckily Sonny realises he needs Luki and finally lets the man he loves, back into his life… to take away the pain and at least give him some peace from the nightmares.



Sonny being arrested for murder and finding drugs and guns under their house has them looking more closely at the man that has made Sonny’s life a misery but he is not alone in his crimes and little do they realise that there is someone much closer to home that is the real enemy. The clues to the investigation are nagging at the back of Luki’s mind but his concern for Sonny is clouding his judgement, whilst Sonny buries his head in the sand, internalising his feelings with his exterior calm but distant, the enormous impact of what has happened, he seems to dismiss, not quite ignoring but putting his trust in Luki to make the right decisions, to just make it all go away, blocking out external influences, being quite happy in his own little Sonny world.



These two men are not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, they seem to make one bad decision after the other, with  Sonny giving me a real WTF! where did that come from? moment. You see Sonny cannot lie so if Luki asks a question he tells the truth… NO! in this case a white lie will do! and just when I thought it was all going so well Luki’s green eyed monster came into the picture, I was all but throwing my kindle out of the window and to say I was pissed off at him would be an understatement. But I like that these two characters are not perfect, they make mistakes in life the same as we do, but they are strong, and they need that strength to to survive but they also need to trust and understand that being vulnerable, and needing someone is not a weakness.




It was a little late in life, Luki thought, for him to finally start getting it. What it meant to love someone. Love a man so much you wanted to make a life with him. So much you were willing to help him through the darkest times, accept his needs along with his strength, see both as parts of what, all together, made him beautiful. And to let him do that, for you.



In Delsyn’s Blues we have a better understanding of Luki and Sonny with more of their complex lives and characters revealed, they themselves do some soul searching, and delve deep into the depths to the parts of them that had long since been buried, to the men they had been before the void in their hearts had been filled with love... something they had yearned for but never dared to feel. This gives us as readers an insight into the fabric of the men so damaged by their past, rendering them incapable of trust never mind allowing another into their hearts. Luki even now to the outside world, he was cold as ice, a man in control, but for Sonny that guard, that persona disappeared and he saw the true Luki. The man that loved Sonny more than life itself, and with Sonny being such an open book, incapable of lies or deceit the love and affection and deep seated trust was mirrored.



I love this series and the excellent and at times beautiful writing from Lou Sylvre, through her words the emotion, heartbreak, fear, love, uncertainty, hope, all of it, I feel and experience… she puts me right there with them and I am now hooked and totally invested in the future of these two characters that I have come to adore.



 Series Reading Order



1 ~ Loving Luki (Vasquez and James #1)

2 ~ Delsyn’s Blues (Vasquez and James #2)

3 ~ Finding Jackie (Vasquez and James #3)


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Cold - Brandon Shire

4.5 stars... Brandon Shire has completely WOWED me with his excellent prose and masterful storytelling!


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Cold by Brandon Shire is not only the first book of a new series, but it is also the first book I have had the pleasure to read from this author. This book is an excellent example of great storytelling, and I was totally enthralled from the start… there is no flowery prose, nor is this a raw and gritty tale. It is not a roller coaster ride and you will not find any angst or gratuitous sex thrown in for the sake of it, and for the most part we don’t even get to see the romance. So, by now you are probably wondering why I would even read this book. Simple… the WOW factor for me was the writing, just amazing and at times beautiful, especially watching the relationship grow between these two, their character development had me captivated and swept along on this journey with two men I just fell in love with. 

In Cold, Brandon Shire paces the book perfectly and drip feeds the information allowing us to absorb and digest, running the ramifications through our minds before the next piece is slipped into place helping us build a detailed and vivid picture of… Lem the gentle giant with a secretive past… and Anderson the fallen media darling and nightclub owner, neither of which had the perfect upbringing and both of them have been damaged by the cruelties life has dealt them. Not all the secrets are revealed in this first book and I still have many questions unanswered, the impatient side of me wants it all NOW but alas we will have to wait!

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PRISON IS A HEARTLESS PLACE ~ Even more so if you are a renowned gay man, and  five feet, seven inches of scrawny! Anderson has spent eight years in prison for a crime that although he was culpable, he was not the instigator, he was betrayed by his lover and lost everything, but most of all he lost his freedom. Now prison is a ticking clock, counting down the months to his release… He has one objective, stay out of trouble and get out of prison!  Anderson is an open book and his thoughts fly freely enabling us as readers to understand him more and we learn some of his secrets and the events that led up to  his conviction.

Lem, is not quite so forthcoming, he has spent eighteen years incarcerated and has created a necessary persona to survive, to others his size was immediately intimidating and follow that up with his steely gaze and stoical manner and Lem was to be avoided at all costs. At this point in the series, Lem is still an enigma, his mind like the man is stoically guarded, internalizing and even hiding from himself. We see the dangerous side to Lem and have yet to find out why, but in my opinion, this belies his true disposition, he is an intelligent, gentle and caring man who wanted nothing more than to be left alone in his self inflicted isolation, maintaining his sanity with his passion for nature, working with plants and happy to while away his spare time reading magazines with his thoughts drifting to his one love and passion… the forest, but to him it is an empty dream as Lem has nothing and no one and that’s the way he likes it… until Anderson. Now Lem is confused by his own behaviour, for the first time since the death of his brother he wants someone to see past all the bravado and see the real him.

He stared at the bonsai on the table, lost in his thoughts. He missed that kind of space, the thousands of acres he had to roam because he was charged to watch over it. There were weeks when he wouldn’t see a single soul. It was just him and the forest. There was one spot he particularly liked when he was out west. He’d camp out by Stillwater River and watch the wildlife come in for a drink while he held himself steady in a tree a hundred feet above their head, in awe of their beauty and grace.

Anderson fears Lem the murderer yet lusts for Lem the man who uttered the words “I would never hurt you” and battling with his conscience is only exasperating his longing for Lem and ramping up the fear factor. But when he looks into Lem’s eyes, he knows he is safe with his gentle giant and after eight years of living in fear and anxiety – in that moment he feels free and the connection, although silent was palpable and he felt safe to just let go.

He took another step back and looked at Lem fully, studying him; something which he had been terrified to do since he saw Lem the first time. He had a rugged, angled face, weathered by pain and something he guessed was an internal misery. He saw emotion and a deep hurt etched around Lem’s eyes.

What I loved about the emotional and physical connection between these two men was the hope I felt, it was profound and my heart was full reading it, and to be honest, personally I can’t say I felt it was hot sex, I almost felt like a voyeur, it was intimate and beautiful, the passion was intense, they were just grabbing a moment in time and it had to be perfect and Brandon Shire truly made me feel that emotion with his words, with an ending that made me both smile and cry.. yep, that would be me again with the ugly tears!!

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"I think I love you" Anderson whispered as he heard his footsteps fade away

I can only guess as to why Brandon chose the title for this series, my own impression would be the Cold that had for so long rendered Lem numb to anything but existing and Anderson was the warmth that was slowly melting the ice within the man and fanning the flames of desire that had long ago been forgotten… that would be the romantic in me, but I am sure Mr Shire will enlighten me at some point! I also wish that Anderson could have a nickname or something shortened… as Anderson seems so formal, unfortunately our two MC’s barely had time to get to know one another let alone for them to develop endearments,  something that I am hoping will change with the coming books in the series. I know I mentioned before that Brandon Shire blew me away with his writing and believe me he did, I am all kinds of wowed by his literary skills, however my only gripe would be some repetition which in this case became noticeable, a couple of times I had to look back thinking I was reading the same page again, plus the use of the word short referring to his stature and time to serve, I think Anderson was obsessing about the two and understandably because his main focus was to get out and repeating it was becoming a mantra and his size he was more than aware of because he lived in fear.

This is an excellent book and I am suitably impressed with this start to the Cold series, we are also introduced to a few well developed secondary characters that I would like to see more of, I was pulling a high five for Anderson’s Mum at one point and his sister although she seems innocent and naive, I can see the fierce protector in her, and Officer Jefferson… he has already won a place in my heart!

Also, check out this song from ZZ Ward it's from the soundtrack to the book, Loved it so much I and bought the whole album! Very atmospheric and I will listen whilst I read.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TiPL2S07uMs

This book was provided by the Author in exchange for a fair and honest review

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