Review: Dirty Rowdy Thing (Wild Seasons) by Christina Lauren

All the likable characters in the Wild Seasons series are back for more fun escapades while also experiencing whatever life tosses their way. When three friends went to Las Vegas, they never expected to hook up with guys who knew each other and then marry them before the weekend was over. One of the couples quickly got divorced, but now both of them is facing a traumatic event, and what better way to forget their difficulties than to once again have uninhibited sex. But when more than sexual satisfaction becomes apparent during their encounters, are they ready to admit their feelings are involved? The writing team known as Christina Lauren can do no wrong when it comes to creating superb erotic romances filled with sensuality plus realism. DIRTY ROWDY THING is emotionally rewarding with passionately heartfelt scenarios.

The morning has not gone well for Harlow Vega, and it turns even worse when she see Finn Roberts is in San Diego. They had drunkenly got married in Las Vegas, but separated before leaving the exciting city. Though the man is an expert when it comes to sex, she cannot see his personality ever winning any prizes. While Harlow would just as soon not have to be around the sexy Canadian again, having mutual friends means they will be spending time together. And when they are around each other, it seems to lead to arguments or spectacular sex. With both having issues in their lives at the moment, the time spent fulfilling several fantasies lets them stop thinking about their troubles for a few hours.

Since Finn and Harlow were married for a few hours, very little personal information was exchanged, thus keeping them from knowing the actual personality of either. So the new conversations they have when not drunk reveals a huge number of unknown facts. Finn and Harlow soon begin to realize they are longing to see one another when apart, and it is not just the sex they are missing.

There is something about the ruggedly attractive Finn that makes me love this man who keeps his thoughts private, yet demonstrates a way above average knowledge when it comes to sex. Any time he and Harlow get together, their sexual exploits are lustily adventurous. Yet there is also a heaping amount of genuine emotions fueling their every action. The intimacy between Finn and Harlow is some of the most intense I have ever read, as their every touch and kiss comes across with profound feelings behind each display. Christina Lauren has the ability to make every single scene dramatically true-to-life and often deeply affecting.

The way in which the six friends get along is depicted with lots of honesty and candid directness. Though what they say is often humorous, there is still a sense of sincerity behind many of their comments. I laughed when a remark was extremely amusing, yet was deeply moved if things turned serious. The importance of family is shown in numerous ways throughout the book, and this added genuineness to the story. Several scenes are especially touching when it concerns real life dilemmas. There is one more book of the Wild Seasons series to come out, where Oliver and Lola will hopefully find their own future happiness. DIRTY ROWDY THING is another unequaled novel by the talented Christina Lauren.

Star Rating: 5 Stars
Sensuality Rating: Sultry
Genre: Contemporary
ISBN: 9781476777962
Page Count: 328
Price: 16.00
Author’s Website: www.christinalaurenbooks.com/
Buy It Link: tinyurl.com/ohht7sw

Read More

Review: Outing the Quarterback by Tara Lain

Will Ashford has more than one thing in his life to hide. Not only is he an amazing painter, Will is also gay. But to the world, and his father, he is seen as the starting quarterback for his college, majoring in business and dating the head cheerleader. Will feels he has no choice as he still lives home and must follow his father’s rules. Will, though, is taking art classes in secret and is trying for the Milton Scholarship for art. If successful, Will can break away from his father and follow his own path.

Noah Zajack is also trying for the Milton Scholarship. He is the complete opposite of Will. As an orphan, Noah grew up fending for himself. He has slept on park benches and eaten out of trash cans, leaving him scarred both physically and emotionally, but also stronger and more determined. Now he struggles with two jobs and paying his bills to ensure he can go to art school. Noah may have an advantage over Will. The master class teacher, who makes a recommendation, wants more from Noah than just art. Will is unhappy with that on so many levels.

At first glance, this appears to be a story where Will is outed before he is ready. It is so much more. Tara Lain throws in a few surprises for us. So do not think you know how this one will work out. Outing the Quarterback is more than a love a story. It the story of finding the courage to be who you are. It is a story about growing up and taking chances. Above all, though, it is the story of love. It is the love that allows the other aspects of the story to happen. Another fantastic job for Tara Lain, Out the Quarterback will quickly become another fan favorite. Will and Noah will go to become permanent residents in our hearts.

Star Rating: 4.5 stars

Sensuality Rating: Sizzling

Genre: Contemporary

ISBN: 978-1-63216-205-29

Page Count: 216 pages

Price: $6.99

Author’s Website: http://taralain.com/

Buy It Link: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=5374

Read More

Review: Driving into the Sun by Dev Bentham

Dusty has made one too many bad choices. Now he is jobless, broke and soon to be homeless. Feeling he has no choice, Dusty sells what he has left and decides to return to his than welcoming home and take up residence in the basement. He calls a ride ad and finds himself entranced by the man’s voice. Finally, he thinks something has gone right.

Joe turns out to be a dressed down shabby Native American who has very little to say. It turns out Joe has made a few of his own bad choices and needs to face them. Dusty is not sure what to think of Joe. Traveling with him forces Dusty to look at misconceptions he has carried all his life and to reassess. Unfortunately Dusty is not quite done with making bad choices. And the two have much to overcome before they can heal.

Dev Bentham knows how to write a memorable love story. At first Joe and Dusty seemed at opposite ends of the spectrum. Joe had made his mistakes and was still trying to atone. Dusty still had a few more to make. When Dusty’s bad luck seemed to rub off on Joe, the two made the most of the situation and began to talk. Healing came for both of them as a result. An excellent story from beginning to end, pick up Driving into the Sun by Dev Bentham. Drive across the country with Joe and Dusty as they learn about life, love and stereotypes. You will not be disappointed.

Star Rating: 5 stars

Sensuality Rating: Sizzling

Genre: Contemporary

ISBN: 978-1-62300-812-3

Page Count: 168 pages

Price: $5.99

Author’s Website: http://www.devbentham.com/

Buy It Link: http://www.loose-id.com/driving-into-the-sun.html

Read More

My GRL 2014 Experience: From A Newbie

This was my first year attending the GRL (GayRomLit) Retreat and as a lover of all things books the experience was almost indescribable. The reader portion of the event officially started on Thursday and there are Writers’ Workshops on Wednesday. I arrived on Wednesday in order to meet my roommates and settle in before the start of the official retreat.

Arriving early is definitely one of the best decisions I made. From the very beginning the atmosphere is filled with both a welcoming vibe and a lot of excitement. Many attendees had been to previous GRL’s and so for them this was a time to reconnect with friends that you haven’t seen since the last retreat. As a newbie, I was meeting new people and yet I never felt like I didn’t belong or that I was an outsider. From that very first day it was like an instant connection with people and new friendships formed. Wednesday I shared lunch with TM Smith and Morticia Knight. Both authors are brilliant and a heck of a lot of fun. This lunch wouldn’t be our last time together and every single time the conversation flowed without hesitation.

Sitting in the hotel lobby on Wednesday night I got a chance to talk to Olivia Black about her upcoming book Drunk in Love, which is part of her Silver Bullet Series from Siren Publishing. If you have never had the pleasure of reading the Silver Bullet Series, then you have to fix that. The books are paranormal romances with some very interesting characters. Drunk in Love is the thirteenth book in the series and will features characters based on three real life individuals.

Then there were my roommates, I could probably do an entire post just on them. From the initial meeting Wednesday night, I could never have imagined how perfectly we would fit together. They are some of the best people I have ever had the pleasure of sharing a room with. Some of the best moments of the retreat were with them. From preparing for the night time parties, to a very late dinner with two of the very talented and wonderful dancers from Thursday night and ending with pictures in the photo booth and hugs, these three virtually made the experience what it was.

Thursday was the official start of the retreat for the readers. My GRL experience kicked off with a breakfast with author Lynn Lorenz. A small group of readers won breakfast with Lynn and as we got to sit there and discuss books it was already clear that this was going to be a special few days.

After breakfast one of my breakfast partners and I hit the swag room which was a blast. Having the chance to pick up goodies from so many amazing authors was a lot of fun. There were key chains, books, pens, bookmarks, trading cards and so many other interesting items that it is hard to name them all.

The supporting authors’ signing was across from the swag room and the room was filled with such amazing authors that it is impossible to list them all. As part of a very special gift from GRL, readers were given a book filled with stories and excerpts from the supporting authors. As I walked around to get the book signed it was so much fun to meet authors such as Kim Fielding, Zathyn Priest, Wade Kelly, Freddy MacKay and TM Smith. Chatting with the different authors about their past books and what was coming next made the signing feel so much more personal than just having an author smile and sign before you walk away.

After the signing there were author lounges which were a less formal way to chat with the authors. I will admit I missed most of the author lounges. I did get a chance to meet Carol Lynne during the only author lounge I stepped into. Standing there getting a chance to talk to an author I have almost idolized since her first books was pretty magical.

The afternoon portion of Thursday, Friday and Saturday gave the options of seeing Author Q & A’s, Storyteller Spotlights or Author Readings. I chose to attend author readings on all three days. There is something very inspiring about watching and listening to an author read their work. All of their blood, sweat and tears have gone into these books and getting a chance to listen to them read their stories was amazing. Some of my favorite readings came from Rick R Reed, Geoffrey Knight, B.G. Thomas and Brandon Witt. The authors made us laugh and cry with them and it is an experience that is hard to forget.

My Thursday continued with lunch with TM Smith. Sitting at the bar with TM meant that we got to chat with people who came to visit or join us; this included two cover models and other authors. The conversations ranged from book topics to how many red bulls would it take to stop your heart. Random conversations were a really unique aspect of the GRL experience. While we are all there because of our love of books and in particular the gay romance genre, conversations touched on everything.

20141016_192108After lunch there was some free time before the opening reception. The opening reception was hosted by MLR Press and gave us all the location of next year’s GRL. The retreat in 2015 will be in San Diego. The opening reception was a nice way to start the evening and continue to meet new people. The reception was followed by The Juke Joint.

The Juke Joint was hosted by Extasy Books and Wilde City Press. If ever there was a party to open an event, this was it. With three amazingly talented Go-Go Dancers for our entertainment, this was a dance party that was filled with hot men, dancing, cocktails and friends. Johnny V and Big Joey D, two of the talented dancers are some of the nicest men you will ever have the pleasure of meeting and watching them dance is downright sinful. The hosting publishers even offered a few giveaways which our very sexy dancers presented. More dancing and photos with the sexy dancers followed the giveaway. The Juke Joint was followed by the after hours party and I had the privilege and pleasure of sitting down with Johnny and Joey with a few others for a late dinner. This dinner was hands down as much fun as the dancing since both men are smart, funny and extremely engaging. The night was long but well worth the lack of sleep.

20141016_215206-1

With a long and packed Thursday behind us, it was time for Friday’s fun. The mornings started with a nice spread from Riptide Publishing that included coffee, muffins and pastries to kick-start the day. Anyone who didn’t get a chance to hit the swag room still had some time on Friday morning to pick up some author goodies.

Again the morning offered the Q & A’s, Readings and Spotlights. I again got to spend some time with both Olivia Black and TM Smith during the morning. This was followed by another quick lunch before the author lounge events.

After the author lounge was the much anticipated fun and craft fair events. There was a scrapbooking event with the Rainbow Romance Writers, the Nothing Better Than… Blue Notes, and last but certainly not least the Cockwalk. While both the scrapbooking and musical offerings sounded like a lot of fun, I chose the Cockwalk as my afternoon entertainment. The art was amazing, the stories hysterical and the overall atmosphere was electric. I have never seen so many cocks in one room before. There was art, jewelry, bookends, wine, bottle openers and so many other phallic items that it is impossible to really list them all.

Once the Cockwalk was over, there was some downtime in order to relax and get ready for that night’s party which was the Casino night hosted by Dreamspinner. Everyone was resplendent in their casino wear. There were table games, some giveaways and a lot of mingling and chatting. With an after hours event to keep the party going, the night didn’t end until early in the morning.

After another late night, I listened to more author readings. I got a chance to once more catch up with Olivia Black and then I spent some time with TM Smith prior to the featured author signing. Spending time with TM meant meeting Andrew Grey and getting a hug from this amazing author.

Saturday’s lunch with TM included Wade Kelly. Lunch was a fun planning session in preparation for the big featured author signing. With so many authors and three hours for the signing, we all wanted to make sure we got our books signed.

Walking into the signing the readers were handed the featured authors anthology. This book was a great way to get a book signed if you couldn’t carry all of your favorite authors with you. The highlights of the signing for me was getting to meet TJ Klune, Cat Grant, Brandon Witt, Ethan Day, and so many others. Having these authors sign my books was so much fun. Watching other authors and readers get their books signed was a blast.

Meeting back up with TM Smith, we left the signing and headed towards the lobby area. After some chatting and relaxing, we enjoyed the Sausage-Fest hosted by Samhain Publishing. The sampling of food was fun and delicious.

Saturday night’s party was the Totally Time Travel Costume Party hosted by Totally Bound. The costumes were fun and ranged from Star Trek to Harry Potter. There was an Adam (minus his Eve or Steve), some gypsies and an entire assortment of other costumes. The dancing was lively and everyone was having fun.

Sunday dawned bright and early as many prepared to leave. The final event of GRL was the farewell brunch. Along with brunch there was a photo booth to capture a few last minute memories. Saying goodbye was hard but it leaves you counting down to the next GRL.

PhotoGrid_1414160770945

Read More

Review: Jamie by Catherine Lievens

Jamie just broke up with his boyfriend and needs some alone time. He goes camping in the forest by himself and is awakened by some noises. His investigation leads him to some large cats playing in a clearing. He has stumbled upon a long kept secret – the existence of shifters. Now he is faced with a decision. Is Ward worth the upheaval of his entire life?

Ward can’t believe he has finally found his mate. He has searched a long time and now realizes he has a lot of work to do if he wants to convince Jamie that he is worth all the trouble. He is willing to face exes as well as showing Jamie that he is trustworthy. Then Jamie disappears and Ward will risk everything to get him back.

Catherine Lievens has created a new series, Whitedell Pride, with Jamie as the first book. This promises to be an intriguing, captivating series. Jamie introduces the world and we find ourselves meeting a variety of characters, both paranormal and human. The ongoing plot is intriguing but familiar. Catherine Lievens adds a few of her own twists to keep our interest. The chemistry between Jamie and Ward was electrifying and made for some great scenes. A great start to a new series, we can all look forward to more stories set in this world.

Rating: 4 stars
Heat: Sizzling

Read More

Review: Forever My Werewolf by Bronwyn Heeley

Tim has been loving Colin for some time now. But he never knew his lover was also a werewolf. When he sees him shift, the very scared Tim takes off and finds himself captured by a group of Hunters. Colin knows that he must rescue his love and then beg his acceptance.

Tim had no clue that Colin was a werewolf until he saw him shift. Scared he ran, right into the hands of some Hunters. Colin knew he should have been more circumspect in how he showed Tim his gift. Now he knew he had to fix that and rescue Tim and bring him back. Then Colin has a lot of work to do to convince Tim to stay. How will it all work out? You will need to pick up Forever With My Werewolf by Bronwyn Heeley to find out. This is book number 2 in Moonlit Wolves.

Rating: 4 stars
Heat: Sizzling

Read More

Review: The Demon’s Blood by RJ Scott

Simeon Blue, a mountain lion shifter, is brother to the leader of the Feline Guild. He is to accompany Phin over the Red Mountains and into the Second Kingdom in order to ask for help from the felines in brokering a peace. Simeon is not sure he is the one to help Phin but reluctantly agrees.

Asherkan Iblis lives in the Second Kingdom as a soldier and slave to the elves. He does have royal blood but knows revealing that could result too many problems to count. When Phin arrives looking for peace, he asks Asher to make a decision that could result in his death.

When Asher and Simeon meet, these two diverse individuals find themselves with one thing in common – desire. When Simeon is injured, Asher realizes that the desire has grown to love. Now he has one more issue on his plate. Besides his cousin’s instant hate, the death of a king and black magic, Asher has to deal with the wonder of love.

Asher and Simeon were a very fascinating couple. They seemed to come from opposite ends of the spectrum and yet somehow together they found common ground. The action was exciting and non-stop and allowed a glimpse into the disservice the demons were forced to tolerate. Coalition forces are one step closer but is it enough? Pick up The Demon’s Blood to see for yourself. You’ll be glad you did. How can you go wrong with hot MM loving, a war against injustice and enough paranormals to satisfy every one. Rj Scott gives us all.

Rating 4.5 straps
Heat rating: Sizzling

Read More

Review: Foxe Fire by Haley Walsh

Skyler Foxe is now out and proud Even though that was not his intention, Skyler decides to embrace his now public lifestyle and sets up housekeeping with his boyfriend, head football coach, Keith Fletcher. But life is never easy for Skyler. A gay parent has been hanging out with Keith and someone from his past returns to haunt him. Add to that a firebug and a charred corpse outside his favorite gay night club and Skyler know he has no choice but to brush off his sleuthing skills and solve the crimes, much to the dismay of friends and relatives.

Setting up a life together is never easy. Skyler and Keith had some things to work out and while communications was lacking, misunderstandings reigned supreme. Relationship problems makes for a more realistic, interesting story. Skyler’s inability to let the mystery go lead him into situations that annoyed not only Keith but his other friends. He even added a new member to his club and managed to lead that new member astray.

Hijinks and misconceptions begin to prevail in fourth nook in the Skyler Foxe Mysteries. Haley Walsh keeps you guessing until the very end. The mystery is solved but Skyler and Keith. Still have some issues until a surprising source steps up. Excitement, danger and tension makes Foxe Fire by Haley Walks an excellent addition to the Skyler Foxe Mysteries.

Rating: 4.5 stars
Sensuality: Sizzling

Read More

review: Nobody’s Home by Dev Bentham

Twenty years ago. Nick and his mother left Lacland, Wisconsin and his abusive, mentally ill father. He now lives in New York City preparing for his next art show. He is hoping it will be just as successful as his first one. Then he gets a phone call telling him his father has died by his own hand and he needs to come and settle the estate. He flies to Lacland to find a crumbling, dirty house and one very fat bulldog named Lady.

Jonas is not really happy with his job as a research veterinarian but he does enjoy volunteering at his partner’s canine behavior studies lab. That is, he did, until he found out about his partner’s extracurricular activities. He decides taking the advertised job in Lacland for a vet to be just what he needs to heal.

Both in pain, the two meet and their contact is electric. But Nick is only planning on staying until he settles his father’s affairs and Jonas is still suffering from his ex’s actions. Avoidance seems to be the best bet but sometimes that is easier said than done in this small town when their paths constantly cross.

Nobody’s Home is a very powerful novel about the price of mental illness for Nick and the price of infidelity for Jonas. Both men had a lot to deal with and after some misunderstandings realize they do have something valuable together. They just have to decide what to do with it.

Dev Bentham is a talented writer who accurately portrays how devastating mental illness can be and the lasting effects it can have. At the same time, the same thing is done for infidelity. The later scenes between Jonas and his ex-lover are priceless and give Jonas some needed closure. Every second of this book is amazing as you enjoy watching these two men come together and heal. Pick it up and enjoy!

Rating: 4.5 stars
Sensuality Rating: Sizzling

 

Read More

Review: Jaguar Mate by SA Welsh

Trying to survive until he can claim his inheritance, Jay lives with memories of his mother’s death and with the continued abuse of his stepfather. He almost loses it when he is attacked by a  childhood bully, only to have that bully turn into a bear, a bear very much like the one that killed his mother. Saved by three black jaguars, the last thing Jay wanted to know was that the town was not quite what it appeared and his best friend Kyle is so much more. Kyle, it seems, is not only a shifter but also he claims to be Jay’s mate.

Bullying is never easy too address, especially when the victim hides what is going on. Jay felt like he only had himself to rely on and suddenly Kyle is back and Jay is not so sure what he wants to do. This book had been published before and it is just as good the second time around. Pick it up if you missed the first release and immerse yourself in some excitement, danger and romance.

Rating : 4 stars
Sensuality rating: Sizzling

Read More