3 Stars

/3 Stars

Review: L’Histoire de François: Vampire by Edward Kendrick

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Title: L'histoire de François: Vampire (Immortal Angst, #)
Author: Edward Kendrick
Cover Artist: Wilde City Press
Publisher: Wilde City Press
Reviewer: Monika
Genre: Paranormal
Type: Romance
Pairing: Gay
Length: Novella
Heat Rating3 Stars
Book Rating3 Stars (3 / 5)

This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review


Blurb:

Since his turning in 1022 young spy, François, has hated all humans. And yet, in 1347, he falls in love with one, only to be betrayed by Giles who tells his liege lord that François is a vampire. The lord blackmails François into spying for him. Years later, François gains his revenge on Giles through his son.

In 1876 New Orleans, François joins forces with Vasile, a master of the city, to take on human vampire hunters. Then Vasile’s human lover dies and Vasile turns to François for comfort. Will love ensue, or is François destined to always be alone?


Review:

This little novella combines two things I love and that’s vampires and historical reads. I was hoping for a bit more than what I got but I still enjoyed the story. There is a lot packed into this short story, maybe a little too much but the big thing missing for me was the angst. Where was all the angst? I never really felt any.

L’Histoire de Francois revolves mostly around Francois but does introduce other characters. The premise is a good one, it’s the first book in the Immortal Angst Series about a young man that’s turned and used as a spy. He meets and falls in love with a human that betrays him and his life is never the same. Francois is a tough character to like but I’m drawn to the bad and tormented men, he fits that role perfectly.

I’m looking forward to reading the next in the series and hoping there will be a bit more angst.

December 4th, 2015|Categories: Review|0 Comments

Review: Entwined by Liberty Lace

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Title: Entwined
Author: Liberty Lace
Cover Artist: Wilde City Press
Publisher: Wilde City Press
Reviewer: Monika
Genre: Contemporary
Type: Romance
Pairing: Gay
Length: Novelette
Heat Rating4 Stars
Book Rating3 Stars (3 / 5)

This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review


Blurb:

There’s something that twins Tobias and Thomas Whitmore never intended to tell their family—the fact that they’re gay and in love with each other, and have been for as long as they can remember. But these two brothers are about to discover that secrets run in their family. For on a weekend in Montauk to celebrate their grandmother’s 80th birthday, one spilled secret leads to another, and before long, the tragedies of the past, the uncertainties of the present, and the uncharted path of the future will collide… and change this family forever.


Review:

This is a very short, sweet and romantic read. The chemistry between the main characters is off the charts and their relationship – while not conventional – will make your heart beat just that little bit faster, at least it did mine. Secrets abound in this story and watching them unravel brought a tear to my eye.

I feel in love with Tobias and Thomas and their family, especially their feisty grandmother, that woman is a jewel. If only all families can work out their issues like the Whitmore family.

The writing is excellent and the story is engaging but one thing that stops this short story from getting more stars is its length. Reading this is like reading a sample or snippet of a much larger story. I want to know more of what came before and what happens after this story ended.

I stepped out of my comfort zone again to read this short and in all honestly I would have rather it wasn’t a twincest story but that’s a personal issue. For those that enjoy to read this sub-genre, Entwined is a story you should pick up.

September 10th, 2015|Categories: Review|0 Comments

Review: Lord Loxley’s Lover: M/M Regency Romance by Katherine Marlowe

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Title: Lord Loxley's Lover: M/M Regency Romance
Author: Katherine Marlowe
Cover Artist: Rachel Schoenbouer of Dreamslate Pub
Publisher: Honeywine Publishing
Reviewer: Monika
Genre: Historical
Type: Romance
Pairing: Gay
Length: Novella
Heat Rating3 Stars
Book Rating3 Stars (3 / 5)

This book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review


Blurb:

Lord Loxley is bewildered when his noble-born friend and former lover, Miles Rochester arrives on his doorstep and applies for a position as his valet. His friend has suffered a complete loss of status and finances, and has become bitter at the world, but Lord Loxley is determined to find a way to soothe his friend’s pain and restore their friendship and love.


Review:

Lord Loxely’s Lover is a fast, easy, angst free read. The main characters are likable and there is some chemistry but, there were some issues that stopped me from loving this one.

There are a few things that aren’t explained well enough for my liking and unfortunately if I say what they are here I’d have to hide them as a spoiler and I so rarely do that. I can say things happened way too easily and the ending is all tied up much too fast. I’m left feeling like things are missing and not things that a sequel can clear up but things that are important to know in order for me to get attached to the story and its characters. There are some light-hearted moments that made me chuckle near the end of the story involving one very sweet little girl, I wish there had been more moments like those throughout the book.

While the plot could use some work I did see a lot of promise and in no way am I saying pass this story by I just needed a bit more. I definitely wouldn’t hesitate to pick another read from this author.

September 9th, 2015|Categories: Review|0 Comments

Review: Between the Lines by J. Scott Coatsworth

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Title: Between the Lines
Author: J. Scott Coatsworth
Cover Artist: Aaron Anderson
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Reviewer: Sean
Genre: Contemporary
Type: Non-Romance
Pairing: Gay
Length: Novella
Heat Rating2 Stars
Book Rating3 Stars (3 / 5)

This book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review


Blurb:

What if you could hear the words behind the words?

Brad Weston’s life seems perfect. He’s GQ handsome, the chief of staff for a Republican California state senator, and enjoys the power and the promise of a bright future. And he’s in a comfortable relationship with his boyfriend of six years, Alex.

Sam Fuller is Brad’s young blond blue-eyed intern, fresh out of college, running from a bad breakup, and questioning his choices and his new life in politics. To make things worse, Sam also has a thing for the boss, but Brad is already taken.

While looking for a gift for his boyfriend, Brad wanders into a curiosity shop and becomes fascinated by an old wooden medallion. Brad’s not a superstitious man, but when he takes out the medallion in his office, he sees the world in a whole new light.


Review:

This was a really quick read. Less than an hour I’d presumed. The story itself wasn’t too bad. The writing style fit to my liking so I was able to enjoy the novella. For this type of story, it needed to be longer. It needed time to develop a feeling between two characters.

The part I loved about this novella was the medallion he’d found in a small shop. It gave Brad a gift that made a big life changing for Brad. So, that was the cool part about the story. The relationship developmental wasn’t there at all. That disappointed me a bit. I enjoyed the part where he did something insane at his work, so that was cool.

Overall, there weren’t enough plots to make the story completed so it felt unfinished. It wasn’t a waste of my time to read it because I still find a way to be able to enjoy the book. I’d say it was harder to me to be able to write a better review for this novella because there wasn’t much to say. I think this book needed to be expanded so badly.

August 26th, 2015|Categories: Review|0 Comments

Review: Earth Three by Richard Ross

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Title: Earth Three
Author: Richard Ross
Cover Artist: N/A
Publisher: Self-Published
Reviewer: Sean
Genre: Fantasy & Sci-Fi
Type: Non-Romance
Pairing: Heterosexual
Length: Novel
Heat Rating1 Stars
Book Rating3 Stars (3 / 5)

This book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review


Blurb:

David has lived all the twenty-two years of his life inside spaceship Columbus, which is the only world he knows. His destination is Earth Three, an Earth-like planet with harsh weather and life-threatening conditions, inhabited by humans for thousands of years. The only evidence that there are people still living on Earth Three is a hostile message received a few years before Columbus took off from Earth.

As Columbus approaches its destination, after a sixty-five years journey through the universe, David and his group are daunted by the hostile message and the dangers that they may face on Earth Three, both from the planet itself and from its inhabitants.

When they finally land on their new home, all their fears come true.


Review:

Earth Three was Richard Ross’s first novel. It had a great idea, enough to keep me going until the end of the novel. The writing style was what I didn’t enjoy. It was read as if it was a college essay. It took me a while to ignore the writing style and concentrate on the story itself. It had so many promising from the author, though. I could see his talent of putting ideas to share with the readers. It just had too much of telling than showing, so it was a bit difficult for me to imagine the world the author tried to build inside my head. It was also told in a present tenses, which I wasn’t a big fan of. For this type of story, I honestly think it’d sit well with past tenses, but that was just my preference.

The dialogue style the author chose for the people who lived on Earth Three didn’t fit the story well. It clearly stated the people of the district who were taller than normal were dumb people. Full of violence type of people and yet the way they talked, acted as if they did have some intelligent in them. So, it was a bit frustrating for me to be able to feel the fears David felt when he was surrounded by the “giants”.

The size of the spaceship didn’t make any sense to me either. I would be fine with the size and all, if there were more of David’s people, but it only mentioned like 5 to 8 of them the entire time. I wondered where did the kids come from. So many important details were taken out of the novel. Basically, the all important details I was looking for, being the clear definition of what the ship looked like inside and outside as well as the environment around the ship, had been taken out of the novel. That frustrated me deeply. I loved sci-fi and they usually were filled with an awesome description of what the world looked like. People’s own language, for example.

So, I accepted for those details missing out and managed to enjoy the novel as is. I loved the fact that they were in space far too long and finally found a new planet to live. The terror David and his people had to go through were well written, except the fact that it was telling rather than showing, which I was okay with it. The battle was fun to read as well.

All in all, I eventually enjoyed the novel. If it was edited really well and had been re-release, I definitely would give it another shot.

August 10th, 2015|Categories: Review|0 Comments

Review: The Secrets of a Twin by Liberty Lace

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Title: The Secrets of a Twin (Forbidden Glades, )
Author: Liberty Lace
Cover Artist: N/A
Publisher: Self-Published
Reviewer: Monika
Genre: Contemporary
Type: Romance
Pairing: Gay
Length: Novelette
Heat Rating3 Stars
Book Rating3 Stars (3 / 5)

This book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review


Blurb:

Tristan Rose has never seen eye-to-eye with his twin brother Thaddeus. Growing up together, the pair thrived on being the bane of each other’s existence. Estranged for the past ten years, Tristan and Thad both knew that only a tragedy would reunite them. And so, when news comes of their parents’ deaths in a light plane crash in Bermuda, destiny forces the twins back into each other’s lives.

However, what was supposed to be a brief reunion to bury their parents, becomes a trial that will test their tolerance and willingness to compromise when the twins discover their parents’ last wish is for Tristan and Thad to make peace with each other and live together for the duration of one year in the guesthouse of Forbidden Glades, the family’s plantation mansion deep in the heart of Louisiana.

And while Tristan is initially willing to live in the same house as his twin… discovering Thad’s secrets and long-hidden desires is something that will unravel everything Tristan has ever known, not only about Thad… but about himself.

As the long, hot year begins to unfold, the breeze of the bayous will blow back the Spanish moss like curtains to reveal a love so dangerous, so scandalous, so taboo, it could only belong in Forbidden Glades.


Review:

Like the blurb says this is a story about a set of identical twins Tristan and Thaddeus Rose that didn’t like each other very much growing up. They were at each other’s throats daily, the two couldn’t be in the same room together without bickering. After their parents die in a plane crash they find themselves back in their childhood home honoring their parent’s last wishes that they live together for one year or the estate will go to the family housekeeper Mrs. Ivy. Well things really heat up from there.

I thought the writing of this very short story was well done. Tristan and Thad are a couple of really sexy young men with the perfect amount of sweet and a tiny bit of vulnerability. A perfect couple in every way just the type I love reading about. What was hard for me was getting past the two of them being identical twins. I knew this was a twincest story going in, which is something I don’t read, as a matter of fact I try not to read any stories which involve incest but I wanted to move out of my comfort zone and give it a go. I am glad I did, it’s a good story and for those that love twincest stories I’m sure you’ll love it.

The reason for giving it a 3 star rating and not something higher doesn’t have anything to do with the story content at all. It got the highest rating I can give a short story that I liked but thought there needed to make it not feel like I’m just reading a sample of a larger story. This is the first in a series so I’m sure if the story continues in the same vein as this one there will eventually be a complete story.

July 29th, 2015|Categories: Review|0 Comments

Review: All the Arts of Hurting by Amelia Faulkner

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Title: All the Arts of Hurting
Author: Amelia Faulkner
Cover Artist: Satyr Designs
Publisher: LoveLight Press
Reviewer: Monika
Genre: Historical
Type: Romance
Pairing: Gay
Length: Novella
Heat Rating3 Stars
Book Rating3 Stars (3 / 5)

This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review  


Blurb:

As far as Lord Duncan Aldham is concerned, war is a thing which affects other people. He’s quite content to sit in the ancestral pile, ride his horses, and defend himself against his mother’s attempts to marry him off. So when Duncan meets the Manor’s new stable hand he’s thoroughly unprepared for the desire which the man ignites within him.

William Fossett is handsome, muscular, and utterly forbidden. A kind and gentle soul, William is a pacifist in a country which is about to force every man to test the strength of their convictions.

Confused by his yearning for Fossett, Duncan will soon be forced to work out whether he dare act upon this illicit attraction to another man – and to a Commoner, no less. But Fossett has bigger problems: the Military Service Act has been passed into law, and even absolutists are at risk of conscription…


Review:

I liked this little historical, I just wish there had been a bit more to the romance between Duncan and William. Also without William’s POV it was impossible to know what it was about Duncan that attracted him and made him fall in love with Duncan. The chemistry between the two is somewhat lacking and I’m absolutely sure that comes from not knowing what is going on in Williams head. I am bit surprised that it didn’t completely put me off, maybe it’s because I think Duncan is such a great character and he wormed his way into my heart. He’s sweet and a tad naïve and when he first sees William and things start stirring in him it becomes clear to Duncan why he’s never been attracted to women.

This story is well written. It’s easy to visualize the era and events of its time period and for those readers that history isn’t their strong suit it gives a bit of a history lesson. I would have loved for All the Arts of Hurting to have been longer with more time spent developing the romance between Duncan and William but as it stands it’s still a worthwhile read.

This is my first time reading anything by Amelia Faulkner and I look forward to reading more from her.

July 14th, 2015|Categories: Review|0 Comments

Review: Love Me Tomorrow by Ethan Day

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Title: Love Me Tomorrow
Author: Ethan Day
Cover Artist: Wilde City Press
Publisher: Wilde City Press
Reviewer: Monika
Genre: Contemporary
Type: Romance
Pairing: Genderqueer
Length: Novel
Heat Rating3 Stars
Book Rating3 Stars (3 / 5)

This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review


Blurb:

Event planner Levi Goode is positioned to inherit the newly vacated throne, becoming the in-demand party planner for Wilde City’s elite. Years of hard work and perseverance are finally paying off as Levi lands his next big fish, working with socialite Julia Freeman-Kingsley. Distracted by work and dealing with his head strong mother, an ex-Vegas-showgirl suffering from debilitating health issues, Levi has his hands full. Time for love or even the occasional one-night stand, is one aspect of life Levi hasn’t been able to master.

Sparks of interest fly during a chance meeting with a paramedic called to the aid of his mother, and thanks to Ruby’s meddling, Levi finds himself on a movie-date with the handsome Paramedic Jake. Personal and professional worlds collide when Levi realizes his new love interest is actually Jake Freeman, estranged brother to his brand new client. Discovering the man of his dreams already has a boyfriend, leaves Levi stunned realizing any hopes he had for something more with Jake were never going to be anything more than wishful thinking.

Struggling to downshift his expectations and remain friends with Jake while continuing to work closely with Julia quickly consumes all of his time and attention. Wondering if there will ever be a special someone to love him, is where Levi’s love story begins.


Review:

I look forward to reading stories by Ethan Day, he’s one of my auto buys. Like his other books I couldn’t wait to sit down, get comfortable and immerse myself in something that I knew would make me smile. I was surprised and disappointed when that didn’t happen right away.

I did like the story. I loved all the characters, the dialogue is snarky and fun and the chemistry between the MCs is perfect. There isn’t any insta-love or insta-lust but there is an immediate attraction between Levi and Jake. Their romance is a slow and delightful burn and there is just the right amount of angst before the MCs get their HEA.

So what went wrong that made me give it a 3 star rating? Well, the first few chapters of the book are slow. There is way too much written about the town. Descriptions that seemed to go on and on, so much so that it almost made my eyes glaze over and my mind to wonder. It took too long to get the meat of the story which is Levi and Jake’s struggle to be together. Once the story finally got to that point though I couldn’t put the book down. The middle of the story is perfect and is what I’ve come to expect from Ethan Day. The guys are happy, I’m happy and Levi and Jake’s story gave me the warm and fuzzies. Unfortunately it ends like it began, it dragged and sadly I found myself skimming most of the epilogue.

I still recommend this story. Ethan Day writes great characters and the guys in this one make it worth the read.

May 25th, 2015|Categories: Review|0 Comments

Review: Living in Sin by Anastasia Vitsky

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Title: Living in Sin
Author: Anastasia Vitsky
Cover Artist: Natasha Snow
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Reviewer: Jay
Genre: Contemporary
Type: Romance
Pairing: Lesbian
Length: Novelette
Heat Rating3 Stars
Book Rating3 Stars (3 / 5)

This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review


Blurb:

Sick of playing “roommate” for the sake of her girlfriend’s religious, tight-knit family, Audra issues an ultimatum: Tell your family, or I move out. After all, Audra’s family supports her and loves Ciara as a second daughter. Why would Ciara’s family be any different? Audra’s tired of hiding the reality of their lives. She puts Ciara first, so why can’t Ciara do the same?

Caught between her family and her girlfriend, Ciara resents being forced to choose. She tries to keep the peace by accepting her aunt’s endless blind dates and comforting her mother, who cares for Ciara’s dying grandmother. How can Ciara shatter her family by forcing the truth on them? How can she face life without Audra if she does not?

Agonized and at her wit’s end, Ciara receives an unexpected spirit visit that asks her hard questions. Does love require self-sacrifice? How much can she give up without losing herself?


Review:

Living in Sin gives us Audra and Ciara as girlfriends currently living together. Audra is out and proud with her family, wants Ciara to be the same, and has grown tired of hiding. Ciara comes from an extremely religious family that is currently dealing with the demise of Ciara’s grandmother due to Alzheimer’s. Ciara is torn when Audra issues an ultimatum to tell her family about her or she is done with the relationship. This kind of turns you off of Audra while at the same time you can completely understand her positon.

Ciara family is important to her and during one visit and a lucid moment on her Grandmothers part you get a glimmer of hope that Ciara’s family will be accepting. During that encounter Ciara receives a purple stone from her grandmother and that night she dreams of “the one that got away” from her grandmother. The dream sequence has Ciara agreeing to come out to her family. As the events unfold they somehow strengthen the bond between Ciara and Audra.

In the end the story was just that a story that I read that didn’t leave me with much of any emotion. I think if the ending were revised to provide some closure to their struggle and gave the reader something to hang onto this would have been a really good story. The writing was good and the characters defined. It fell short on plot especially near the ending for me. I guess I wanted acceptance for Ciara and would have settled for rejection, neither of which occurred.

April 8th, 2015|Categories: Review|0 Comments

Review: The Adventures of Monkey Girl and Tiger Kite by Kai Schalk

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Title: The Adventures of Monkey Girl and Tiger Kite
Author: Kai Schalk
Cover Artist: Aisha Akeju
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Reviewer: Monika
Genre: Young Adult
Type: Non-Romance
Pairing: Lesbian
Length: Novelette
Heat Rating1 Stars
Book Rating3 Stars (3 / 5)

This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review


Blurb:

High school would be a lot easier to deal with if Sunny Wong did not have to balance schoolwork with superhero shenanigans. But superhero she is, gifted the powers of Chinese folk hero Monkey, and when zombies start appearing it’s up to her and her sidekick, Delia, to figure out who’s responsible for raising the dead and why…


Review:

This is a cute little novelette about Super Heroes and Zombies. I really liked the premise it’s a good one; someone is raising the undead and Sunny with her friend Delia take on the challenge of finding out who is doing it. I also really liked Sunny’s character she kicks butt and she has a fun and snarky personality. Although Delia is Sunny’s best friend and her secret crush Delia has very little to do with the story.

There was a lot going on, perhaps too much, causing the story to feel rushed and not exactly what I was expecting. I wasn’t expecting a romance but I did think there would be more to Sunny and Delia’s relationship or non-relationship. When Sunny gets up the courage to tell Delia about her crush on her Delia all but ignores it. It left me with questions that never got answered. Did Delia deliberately ignore Sunny and if so why? Is that just Delia’s personality, kind of nonchalant and not too serious or did it Sunny’s feelings frighten her? With Delia not being in the story very much it was next to impossible to get into her head.

Perfect set-up if there are plans for a sequel and if there is then YAY! I did enjoy reading it but as a stand-a-lone too much is unanswered or missing to feel really complete.

March 31st, 2015|Categories: Review|0 Comments