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Like Coffee and Doughnuts (Dino Martini Mysteries, #1)
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Like Coffee and Doughnuts (Dino Martini Mysteries #1)

3.76  ·  Rating Details ·  1,357 Ratings  ·  166 Reviews
Dino Martini might accept his friend Seth as a lover--if they can stay alive.

Dino Martini is an old-school P.I. in a modern age. Sure, he may do most of his work on a computer, but he carries a gun, drives a convertible, and lives on the beach. Best friend and mechanic Seth Donnelly will back him in a fight, and there's not a lot more Dino could ask from life.

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Kindle Edition, 246 pages
Published May 23rd 2009 by Lyrical Press, Inc. (first published May 18th 2009)
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Sep 06, 2014 julio rated it liked it
Recommends it for: My mother.
Recommended to julio by: MostlyDelores
Agreeable comfort food for the Florida Noir romantic.

Well-crafted—if a little mild-mannered, this one is worth a few hours in a cozy chair with your beverage of choice.

I found Martini "AYO DINOOOOO" to be a charming narrator, and the slight fetishism for daily routine helped establish his Rat-Pack era dork cred. Seth, as foil, was an excellent choice—kinetic, tactile, flirty, and way ahead of Dino in the smell-the-coffee-you're-totes-gay-for-cock metric.

The mystery is a pale shadow of a thing, b
May 19, 2013 Vio rated it really liked it
Recommended to Vio by: Td
3.60 stars
I liked it, Dino as the private investigator is a real charmer, smooth as silk and an old fashioned nice guy. His sidekick and best friend Seth, is a messy pig, promiscuous, funny and in your face. Complete opposites and great friends despite the big differences.

Repossessing cars is Dino's line of work its relatively easy and good money. Seth usually tags along to provide mechanical backup, its going to be a troublesome night. The *mysterious package* brings trouble down on their head
4.5 stars.

What a refreshing read. Unique in its own way, especially in the sea of M/M Romance CopCrime novels. Wonderful characters with an exciting, and interesting plot, that never had page after page of personal reflection of studying of some obscure dental records of an ex-con to discover who-dun-it. This was definitely a breed of its own.

Incredibly sex, loveable characters, who surprised and entertained me with every slip of the page. Seth was one of the most hilarious and sexy characters I
Jul 19, 2014 Richard rated it it was amazing
I'm reading this very cute wonderful book when suddenly a passage appears:

"See, the thing is I don't to flings. I don't mess around, I don't have affairs, I don't usually go out on a date with a person unless they're someone I think I could get serious about. I just don't operate that way, because I am not very casual about my love life. Or my sex life. THOSE AREN'T SEPARATE THINGS FOR ME."

I 'bout fell on my ass when I read that because it's about me and so, so, so, many, many, many other gay me
Kaje Harper
Jun 10, 2013 Kaje Harper rated it it was amazing
This book hit the sweet spot for me - funny in a warm way, with a decent plot and a wonderful couple of main characters. At first glance, Dino, the 41-year-old PI with old-fashioned tastes and low-key attitude, should be a poor match for Seth, a frenetic bisexual playboy mechanic almost a decade younger. They agree on almost nothing at a superficial level, from music to dating to coffee, to the importance of not stowing doughnuts under the couch. But they've been friends a long time, helped by ...more
Jun 05, 2009 JenMcJ rated it liked it
This one started off with a bang and I laughed in several spots. For some reason it felt like a first effort. Whether that is true or not, I don't know. But I had that impression and thought that the Author was really working hard to make it a great first impression.

There is a great early bar scene that I thought set up the friendship between Dino and Seth fairly well. About two chapters in, maybe less, it started to veer away into an overwhelming old fashioned PI narrated story, black and whit
Aug 25, 2011 T.J. rated it it was amazing
I absolutely adore this book and its sequel Like Pizza and Beer." I can't even tell you how many times I've re-read the both of them. If I've had a bad day, these are the books I turn too. Dino and Seth are wonderfully drawn characters and while the mysteries may not be the most carefully plotted (i.e. exciting) I don't care. I'll read anything about these two and can't wait for the third book. Elle Parker, you rock.
Amy Lane
Jan 24, 2011 Amy Lane rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this so much! Dino was SUCH an old fashioned guy, and Seth was such a twitchy, physical person. I loved that they didn't seem to fit at first, but that their relationship was so well established that they would stand up for each other in a clutch on any given day. The dialog was HIGHLY entertaining, the boys were both likable and engaging, and VERY VERY different, and Dino's group of little old ladies was a quirky, eccentric touch. The action adventure part was edgy and fun, and this ...more
Oct 14, 2015 Laura rated it really liked it

Like Coffee and Doughnuts introduces readers to Dino Martini, a P.I. with old school ways at work and play – candlelit dinners, briefcases, “Yes, Ma’am”s, and That’s Amore on the radio. I liked him instantly. Then we meet Seth Donnelly. :) I smile just thinking about him. Seth feels like Dino’s opposite in many ways. He’s a horny, flirty, red-headed 33 year old with a Cheshire cat grin and a mischievous glint in his eye. A ball of energy that never seems to stop! Dino and Seth have an addictive
3.5 stars
I think this one is a nice read -- first, both the characters are likeable. And second, in this story, either Dino or Seth are not agonizing over the fact that they are both males, or are they gay, and so on. They are best friends who happen to like each other a lot, attracted to one another, and take a step further in their relationship. It's enjoyable to read. PLUS, the adventure of getting the money and drugs from the salvage yards is really fun. Like watching an episode of a TV show
Mar 15, 2016 Tara♥ rated it really liked it

Okay I'm hooked. At times throughout this I wasn't all that convinced I liked it, it's a bit cheesy and has the feel of an old fashioned detective novel. Dino is an over the top PI circa the 1950's. I swear to god he actually called Seth 'red' at one stage. No joke. But as I read I got more and more comfortable with his voice and I got really into his and Seth's story and the investigation. It ended up being a really enjoyable, fun and easy read.

It also helped that as the story progressed we go
Nikyta *Miss Forgetful*
I loved this book.

Dino and Seth are not hard to love and the easy banter between the two cracked me up. Dino is a private investigator in his 40s while Seth is a mechanic in his 30s. They've been best friends for years now and don't actually have much in common. Dino is kind of uptight, likes to be in control, doesn't like one-night stands and is pretty old-fashioned with both his business and personal life. Seth is wild. He's a party boy who'll sleep with anything on two legs and has endless e
3.5 stars.

I wasn't really expecting much from this book when I bought it. I picked it because it seemed the most promising out of the four August books of the month for the M/M Romance group, but I probably would not have read it without that incentive. I'm so glad I did, because this book is so much fun. The plot is pretty forgettable, but the characters definitely aren't. Seth and Dino are an awesome pairing. They are believable as best friends and really hot as lovers. Their dialog is clever
Erotic Horizon
Jun 04, 2009 Erotic Horizon rated it really liked it
Dino Martini – The P.I. who travels around in a convertible, love things to go a certain way and has some class to him that surprises even his best friend at times. Dino is also the man with no illusion about how a relationship should work and nothing and no one can make him change is stance – that is until his best got hurt.

Seth Donnelly – Hell on wheels and loving every minute of it. He can be had quite easily and by most anyone and he’s the first one to tell you all this. He’s one t
Aug 13, 2009 Jenre rated it it was amazing
Shelves: m-m, contemporary, romance
Like Coffee and Doughnuts takes a friends to lovers story and through some interesting characterisation gives it a bit of an unusual spin. It's main strength lies not only in the reluctance of the heroes to solve the mystery in the suspense plot but also that the personality of Dino is different to any m/m character I've read so far.

Dino is a PI and part of his job involves repossessing cars. In order to do that he brings along his buddy Seth who acts as his back up. After a night of picking up
Feb 09, 2011 Lauraadriana rated it really liked it
This book was near perfect for so so funny. I was laughing out loud through the whole thing.

Dino is a private eye in his forties who lives in Madeira Beach, FL. Dino is a self proclamined old fashioned guy, he dresses well, drives a hot car, drinks amaretto and listens to Dean Martin, he's super hot in an old Hollywood kind of way, oh and he's straight. His best friend is a local mechanic named Seth who is a total horn dog and pretty much does it with anybody. Seth is adorable and sooooo
2.5 Stars

I didn’t care for this one. It was slow moving, the mystery was kinda boring, and the characters were one-dimensional. The premise had promise but in the end, this book didn’t deliver.

Dino (a private investigator) and Seth (a mechanic) are old pals who kindle a romance. I love friends-to-lovers stories but this one missed the mark. I didn’t feel the chemistry between the two MCs. There was a familiarity bred from years of friendship that they often took for granted. Other than Dino's r
Emma Sea
Jun 02, 2012 Emma Sea rated it liked it
A book I wanted to like more than I did like.

For starters, I immediately pictured Seth as actor Ian Tracey (most recently from Supernatural, but I was seeing him as the barman Spider from Canadian TV show Tropical Heat circa 1993). Weirdly specific, right? And not how Seth is actually described.

The book is well-written. I loved that sex for the boys didn't have to mean penetrative sex. It had a plot that made sense. Martini is charming. Maybe that was the problem; too much damn charm. I don't t
Kelly H. (Maybedog)
Good story, right amount of suspense, excitement and romance but the character's morals are lacking, imho. I know that some of it (view spoiler) is to set up another part of the story, but it still bugged me. I will definitely read the next book in the series.
Oct 17, 2012 Candice rated it liked it
3.5 stars

I enjoyed this story and it had a little bit of everything, action/adventure and romance. Even though I had a little bit of hard time seeing the attraction these two had, it was nice that we first got to see their friendship and then the slow build up of their relationship. It wasn't an insta love, jump into bed type story. I found it to be solid read.
Jul 07, 2012 ttg rated it really liked it
Shelves: m-m, favorites, reviews
Overall, a very enjoyable m/m mystery romance. I should say "mystery" because it's not really a mystery-who-done-it, but more like a…mystery-suspense? Adventure? PI story?

Anyways, the meat of the story is really the character growth and interactions between the two main characters of Dino and Seth, and how their relationship develops from best friends to something deeper and more intimate. Along the way, one of Dino's PI cases shifts from routine to dangerous, and they both get pulled into some
Nov 17, 2014 Xing rated it liked it
Rating: 3.5 stars

Life Coffee and Doughnuts features a 41 year old PI, Dino Martini, and his sidekick/best friend/mechanic Seth. Dino's a classy guy who likes to charm old ladies. Seth likes to have sex with random women (and their boyfriends) in his garage. It's definitely a match made in heaven.

Told completely from Dino's point of view, Like Coffee and Doughnuts is a light-hearted read that's low on the angst. Don't expect a dazzling and thrilling mystery, or anything that pushes your emotional
5 stars

Really, really, really enjoyed this book and I think the reason I did is because it's fairly similar to the Cut & Run series (in my opinion). I love Dino and Seth with Seth being my favorite out of the couple. I liked how the relationship progressed steadily and it wasn't just a wham, bam, thank you ma'am type relationship. I like sex as much as the next person but reading it page after page after page without any character building gets old very fast. Definitely reading the next in t
Elisa Rolle
The quality of some new authors (new at least for me) it's always amazing, Elle Parker's first book has the feeling of some old classic spy story, like those B/W movies with Humphrey Bogart, but at the same time the sparkling atmosphere of a sunny beach in Florida, that I read is one of the "gayest" place in United States. Like Coffee and Doughnuts I believe refer to the two main characters, Dino Martini (yes, yes, not so hidden reference to Dean Martin), and Seth Donnelly: Dino is like an ...more
I'm going to let you guys in on a little secret [okay, for a friend or family member it's not that little at all, and it sure as hell isn't a secret]. There are a handful of men that I love and adore almost more than life itself. One of those men just so happen to be this beautiful specimen right here:

For those that do not know who he is [well, one, that's just sad and I suggest that you immediately embrace him into your life and love every minute of it], that is Dean Martin. I can recite facts
Although I kind of enjoyed this book, it was just so... cheesy. I literally cannot think of a better adjective to describe it. The title should have been my first clue, yeah? But just in case I hadn't noticed exactly how cheesy it was by the end of the book, Unchained Melody ends up being the soundtrack for the finale. But you know, I'll forgive the cheesiness because it's kind of tongue-in-cheek, at least I'm hoping. Nothing is worse than unintentional cheese.
An enjoyable story of 2 incredibly different friends becoming more. I loved the 2 MCs, Dino and Seth. Their banter had me laughing and watching them negotiate the twists and turns of trying to see each other in a completely new way, without destroying their friendship, was a treat!
Don Bradshaw
A great story kind of like The Golden Girls meet gay Magnum, P.I. A nice mystery, hot sex and a great friends to lovers romance. I enjoyed the easy banter and snarky teasing that Dino and Seth shared and was glad that it held up through the romance.
Jan 18, 2016 MostlyDelores rated it really liked it
4.5 stars, just as good on the second read.

“You have to be quiet," I said. "We don't want to wake up the ladies. I don't think I want 'em to see me all drunk like this."

"It's not really me we have to worry about, Dino."

"Shit, am I too loud?"

"Yes. Shut up.”
Bubbles  Hunty Honest & Direct Opinions
May 05, 2011 Bubbles Hunty Honest & Direct Opinions rated it it was ok
Recommended to Bubbles Hunty by: Shanna
didn't care for either of the MC's but their was a waitress with the best jokes ever and her scene bumped it up from one star to two... i could read a book about her just interacting with her customers she was so fun
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Elle Parker is a lover of romance in many forms. She writes erotic novels and short stories in several genres, most notably gay romance. She is a member of the Erotic Authors Association, Erotica Readers & Writers Association, and Romance Writers United.
More about Elle Parker...

Other Books in the Series

Dino Martini Mysteries (3 books)
  • Like Pizza and Beer (Dino Martini Mysteries, #2)
  • First Frost (Neighborly Affection, #3.5; Dino Martini, #2.5; Highlander Heat, #0.5)

Share This Book

“Seth rolled his eyes. “Because you’re such a ladies man.”
“I can be. I just have standards, is all. I’m very selective about who I choose to spend time with, whereas you’ll fuck anything that moves. And several things that don’t.”
“We need to get you to stop thinking of me as a friend, and start thinking of me as that incredibly hot mechanic you’re sleeping with.”
“You are a friend, why do we need to do that?”
“Because you’re stiff as a board and not in the way I want you to be.”
More quotes…