Sean Quinn is having a tough go of it these days. Not only did his abusive drunkard of a father toss him out for being gay; leaving him homeless and desperate enough to consider selling his body for money, his best friend, Leroy, is stabbed and killed trying to protect Sean. In trying to escape the killer, Sean barrels into the car of Armand La Marche; local Alpha to the North American werewolf counsel. Recognizing Sean has his mate, Armand takes the boy in and vows to keep him save from the murderer.
As fun as this concept is, the characters in it don’t so much as talk or have conversations so much as dump exposition; so all the dialogue comes off as stilted or unnatural. If done well, large amounts of story laden dialogue can be interesting but here, it feels like a lecture. There are some questionable word choices (using ‘gut wrenching’ to describe what I’m assuming is a pleasurable kiss doesn’t sound quite right) and multiple typos made is difficult to get through the book. It’s a shame too because the set up is interesting but the characters and writing are so flat and bland, I gotta give this one a 2 out of 5.
Good girl Sophia Ball is three years out of a terrible relationship; choosing instead to focus on becoming a teacher. Now a music teacher at a local private school, her friend suggests she get back in the game. When she’s out for a jog before work one day, she bumps into Paxton Hughes; a pitcher for the local baseball team: The Kingston Crushers. The pair meet again at a party and hit it off very well. But Paxton has a reputation as a playboy. Can this smitten bad boy settle down and will Sophie take the chance?
So, I’m reading this book and it’s enjoyable enough. The characters are interesting and seem happy once they’re together but by this time I was only 40% or so through the book. The rest is mostly the pair just dealing with Pax being on the road so much before the inevitable misunderstanding comes into play; which is that Sohpia’s car breaks down and she misses a game. I gotta say, it pissed me off SO bad when everybody just piles on Sophia for her car breaking down. They all – INCLUDING PAXTON – treat her like she missed the game on purpose and she’s instantly on the outs. I know the story needed conflict but, yikes. They really vilify her.
Overall, this story is sappy but not bad. I get these types of stories are supposed to be sappy but this overdid it for me. A decently written 3.5 out of 5.
Jesse is a covert agent who promised his boyfriend of seven years, Dan, tat he would retire without taking another assignment. When he breaks that promise, Jesse expects Dan to be waiting home as usual when he returns despite arguing before he leaves. This time Dan means business and when Jesse returns, Dan has moved on and has a new boyfriend. Now alone, Jesse adopts Norman at the convincing of his friends Evan and Peter (from the first book). Even with Norman for comfort, will Jesse be able to cope seeing Dan with another man when they share the same group of friends?
This book puts the series back on track. The last book felt so dull but Jesse, Dan, and the little bundle, Norman brought it right back to cute guys and cute dogs. I would love to have more detail on Jesse’s job but the focus really was on somehow getting Jesse and Dan to face their relationship. I give this one a 3 out of 5 for getting back to the tone of the series and telling a sweet – yet standard – love story.
This book brings us back to Evan and Peter from the first book in this series. Now that Peter has settled into his new life, he is surprised Evan doesn’t bug him about getting a new pet. After Harry’s death, Peter still doesn’t feel ready. But Evan isn’t the type to wait until Peter is ready and brings Hazel into the picture, insuring Peter falls in love with the pup and can’t say now. Peter isn’t happy having these plans made behind his back so the hope is he will overcome his past pain and love this little one as much as he loved Harry.
While the book makes you think the book will be mostly about Hazel, the only interesting conflict in this book is Peter’s ex-wife, Toni, getting abused by her current boyfriend. The rest of it is mundane everyday stuff. While I have been known to enjoy a little slice-of-life story, this was all fluff and boring as all get out. Getting a new puppy and learning to live with it would have been a fitting epilogue to the first book. I just couldn’t get into it. I feel generous in giving this one a 2 out of 5 for taking a step forward in the character’s lives, written well, but ultimately boring.
Our main character is named Chaos and a member of a motorcycle gang rebelling against the oppressive regime currently in power. He lives in a world where Earth is now a prison planet, which is where Chaos is headed to serve 6 months for drinking, which is illegal. While he manages to survive by being a fighter and competing for extra rations, he meets a man named Beau, who is currently serving time for preventing another man from being beaten. The two pair up but Beau is getting out sooner than Chaos. Will Chaos be able to keep his rages under control with Beau gone and will Beau keep his promise to be waiting when Chaos gets out?
This is an interesting start to a series with good world-building but you don’t get to spend much time in it. The story focuses on Chaos and Beau’s fast forming romance and hot sex. This book doesn’t flinch from bad language, smut, and violence but Beau is such a lovable little cutie, I found myself smiling more often than not. I give it a 3.5 out of 5 for taking a chance but ending up more on the crude side than visceral (which I think what the book was trying to go for?). Maybe a little more detail would have provided that extra bit of poetry to give it more impact.
Aislinn Cavett is the daughter of the leader of a human supremacy group that has begrudgingly accepted peace talks with Darius Bishop; the alpha of the North American werewolf pack. When Darius sees Aislinn serving food at this meeting, he recognizes her as his mate and she is intrigued by Darius despite her father being a complete bigot. When the talks break down and it looks like there’s gonna be a massacre, Darius ends up taking Aislinn as a hostage. They grow closer as she with him and they both have to decide if their love is worth risking all-out war between humans and werewolves.\
This is a well written forbidden love story. Darius and Aislinn make a good couple, they make rational decisions despite the whirlwind romance, and I give major props to Conall for writing Aislinn as a strong character. She doesn’t kick ass but when the chips are down, she’s no damsel. You also get your happy ending but there is still an overarching conflict in the world that’s been built. I give this a 4 out of 5 for being fun and unexpectedly practical in some ways.
Jasper is a Will-o-Wisp who ran afoul of a warlock named Hendrick and is now cursed to guard Hendrick’s treasure. He can’t leave unless he tricks someone into taking his place and if he doesn’t before Hendrick returns, Jasper will die. When a hunter comes by, Jasper sees his chance to escape but he’s a horny little sprite who has gone way too long without any relief but his own hand. Will Jasper choose to end his 100-year entrapment or give into the temptation and give up this chance at freedom?
This story is the first in a series of trysts Jasper has while he’s trapped guarding that box. It’s not badly written but it is purely a guilty pleasure read. You don’t have a slow build to get to know the characters, just some brief, naughty fluff to take up a few minutes of the day. I’d give it a friendly 2.9 since this is really an excuse for some steamy smexy times but it’s written well enough that I didn’t cringe while reading it.
Clement, a werewolf, is in dire need of a pumpkin for a pie he plans to bake for a Thanksgiving baking contest. And only the best pumpkins grow on Dall’s farm; a reclusive bear shifter affectionately nicknamed ‘The Beast.’ Intending to steal it, Clement sneaks on to the farm in wolf form and ends up not only ending up at the wrong end of Dall’s gun but senses the werebear is his mate.
This story is so short (18 pages) it’s hard to really rate it. The conflict – such as it was – could have been developed more so that the ending provided more satisfaction. It felt so fast, I didn’t get enough time to care if these two got together. I’d call it ‘drive by erotica’ with just enough smut to titillate if not completely entertain. Not bad but not really good either. I’d give it a 2 for having potential but being too short to really leave an impression.
Xander, a human, has wanted to belong to Malone, a vampire, for a long time. As they are friends and business partners. In a last desperate effort, Xander offers himself to Malone knowing if a human offers themselves to a vampire, the vampire has 24 hours to do whatever they want with the offering. Xander is determined to show Malone he can endure anything Malone can throw at him but Malone is equally determined to show Xander how bad it can get so he never does it again; believing if he is cruel to Xander now it will spare him future pain. Will Xander be able to take it? Will Malone even be able to bring himself to hurt a man he loves for his own good?
This story isn’t bad as far as BDSM paranormal M/M erotica goes. As it is so short (35 pages) if you’re looking for long sessions between the two main characters, you won’t get them. It’s more about whether or not they will reach an understanding. You do get some interesting insight into the mindset of a submissive and Kim Dare is a good writer, but I give this story a solid 3. But if BDSM isn’t your thing, don’t read this one. And this is obviously for grownups only.
Carter and Thilo are very different so when the straightlaced and shy Thilo asks to see Carter dance at the strip club where he works, Carter is understandably taken aback. Carter is worried his profession will cause a problem in their new relationship and that the prim accountant wouldn’t be able to handle watching such a spectacle. However, Thilo is determined to show Carter he can look beyond the job and still treat Carter the same. On New Year;s Eve, Carter arranges for Thilo to watch a show. Will the reserved Thilo be able to see Carter at work and stay in the relationship?
This was a short and sweet read with a relatable situation. Carter and Thilo are as fleshed out as characters can be in 23 pages. And it’s honestly not that graphic. Of course, the story takes you to the strip club and describes what happens in one but I’d rate this a PG if I was feeling very judgemental. Out of 5, I would give this a vague 3 because I enjoyed it despite it being really short and it was nice to read something sweet without it being overloaded with smut.