**spoiler alert** I started reading this one with high expectations. First off, K.A.Mitchell is pretty much a comfort author for me. The books always**spoiler alert** I started reading this one with high expectations. First off, K.A.Mitchell is pretty much a comfort author for me. The books always hit the right spot and are something I genuinely enjoy.
I only kinda liked the characters. They had potential but there was so much anger to them and the fact that they just didn't want each other couldn't really be masked with flattering words. Sure, they spoke pretty, on occasion anyway, but mostly it was backed up by harsh insecurities and general assholeness.
My biggest dislike was definitely the sex. I think I was probably in the middle of it when I started wondering what happened to the plot. That one long scene of never ending fucking that I honestly didn't find particularly hot, drained the life out of me. Then there was a pause of barely a few pages and sex again. When they weren't doing it, they talked about it. It simply wasn't my cup of tea.
The high point was probably the writing. I liked the way it flowed and certain sentences really caught my attention, enough so that I did read them twice.
It's been a while since I've actually read a book so picking one that ended up disappointing me this much was particularly difficult. ...more
**spoiler alert** They do seem to be deteriorating the more of them I read. In the Tiger case I wasn't feeling the book at all so maybe I should give**spoiler alert** They do seem to be deteriorating the more of them I read. In the Tiger case I wasn't feeling the book at all so maybe I should give it a lower rating, still there was a part where Sam's tiger lets loose and maybe the next page of text that really made an impact for me and the whole story finished off with a different impression than it probably would have without it. The characters were okay I suppose but at this point so little is said about them I can't even give a sound comment about them. Maybe it will get better....more
It's a good follow up to the Alpha's Mate but unlike the first one it seemed much shorter and with less detail. Maybe it was just my impressi3.5 stars
It's a good follow up to the Alpha's Mate but unlike the first one it seemed much shorter and with less detail. Maybe it was just my impression but there you have it. I liked the conflict where Jayden ran and it's probably the reason for that extra half of a star but the resolution could have used some more work. I definitely wanted to know more about Andrew and their non-sexual interactions after they actually connect for the first time....more
The Alpha's Mate was a cute little number from a new author for me. It's a typical shifter/mate story without any surprises**spoiler alert** 3.5 stars
The Alpha's Mate was a cute little number from a new author for me. It's a typical shifter/mate story without any surprises and with little actual plot, but despite that it has a certain charm and that dose of something that makes these kind of books so addicting.
Gideon is a standard Alpha, super strong, capable and completely dedicated to his pack. That is also pretty much all one can say about his personality. Oh and possessive, I forgot that tidbit :) He definitely needed more fleshing out and even more of a description not including his cock. But then again the same this happened with Josh, he finished college, loves number and he's human. The end.
With all that said, they are a couple that fits and this was a good base for the rest of the series. I'm looking forward to more....more
Pocket-Sized Prince was exactly what I needed this late in the night. After an unsatisfying book, this one was both refreshing as well as intriguing.Pocket-Sized Prince was exactly what I needed this late in the night. After an unsatisfying book, this one was both refreshing as well as intriguing. The very concept of a different Alpha was somewhat unique and it gave the book a vibe that couldn't just be dismissed.
Iben was both ferocious and gentle, two opposites that the author managed to combine in a well matching unit. He was dangerous when needed and the perfect mate when he needed it. I could have done with a little less of sugary affection but overall I really enjoyed the book.
Zach was an okay character, he had potential but I did need a bit more of him to tickle my fancy lol He was also a conflicting character but I felt as if there wasn't enough information about him to bring him close enough to the reader.I would have liked to read more about them as a couple and about their interactions especially when it came to their mating, but despite that this was a very good read....more
This was the unfortunate book I choose to read after a year long pause. I guess there was a bit of nostalgia involved there since these were always eaThis was the unfortunate book I choose to read after a year long pause. I guess there was a bit of nostalgia involved there since these were always easy reads not requiring excessive attention and always aiming toward the same ending. I did expect good characterization and simply enjoyment due to such a long absence. I mean these were my drug back in the day even if they were on a down-slide when I'd stopped reading. Unluckily for me, not even sentimentality could help me really get into this book. Maybe I should end this by saying why...
(view spoiler)[ I actually forgot most of the characters mentioned through the course of this book. I did read I think all of the other books in this series and a good part of those from the two connected ones but still, after so much time I barely remember the pack/coven leaders. My point is, even at the very beginning there was so much info about the connected stories that it really overwhelmed the actual couple.
There was no connection between Roman and Steven I could sense, no tension some of the other books had and the very flow of the story seemed repetitive, even somewhat silly. Steven appeared more like a maneuverable doll than an actual person and Roman didn't have any personality to speak of. If there was any impression to be felt from him it came from his interactions with his brothers (another thing that probably sounded funnier to the author than the actual reader) which again was way underdeveloped.
But none of that really sealed the deal for me, no. The death blow came close to the ending when Steven conveniently states how he actually knew about the existence of shifters and in fact his ex was dealing drugs made out of mate blood. To me it felt like such a cop out and a bad attempt to cover up a plot hole. It basically tells us that Steven knew about the shifters, mates and pretty much the whole idea about the paranormal world. He lied to his mate supposedly out of fear and I can only assume faked the fainting, because why faint about something you already knew about? Of course there is room for excuses - he maybe only knew about a part of it/seeing it was way different than only knowing it/he was terrified for his life and everyone knows snitches don't have a long life span - but in the end all of it was just too watery to make the actual effort. Steven and Roman fall into that group of characters who I'll forget as soon as I close my eyes and go to sleep tonight and the next time I decide to take a chance with this series I again won't remember what the last book I'd read was about. (hide spoiler)]...more
**spoiler alert** So... I've read it, kind of even liked it, but the one thing it didn't do for me was make me comfortable. I guess I just don't like**spoiler alert** So... I've read it, kind of even liked it, but the one thing it didn't do for me was make me comfortable. I guess I just don't like gender changes in m/m romance. The characters were lovely and fine, the story although expectantly predictable, was still very good, and all those cute and adorable moments will make a lot of people very happy.
I loved Cinder, and even though it was his surname I kind of pretended it was the first name because I liked it so much, and then there was the prince who was just a good person and seemed like someone whose company is easily enjoyed. Their interactions were easily the best part of the story, only there were too few of them to make a lasting impression. But again, what got to me the most was the gender change (despite it not being permanent). I love reading about cross-dressing and mpreg, but unfortunately this was still a bit too much for me. ...more
There really wasn't much to this story for a long review. A fairy tale type of romance (Cinderella) with a lot more smut than the original *smirks* buThere really wasn't much to this story for a long review. A fairy tale type of romance (Cinderella) with a lot more smut than the original *smirks* but very few explanations or character development really. The guys had potential and I liked them, but not too many of the questions were actually answered and while the very idea of a prince coming along and sweeping you off your feet is like the ideal a lot of us were influenced into believing during childhood, it still lacked strength to keep the whole thing afloat.
It is a cute little story with a carnival and pretty descriptions, but other than a fleeting feeling of romance, I didn't get much else from it. ...more
This is a quirky and fun little story about two really different men who find a way to each other and not only discover the great qualities of the othThis is a quirky and fun little story about two really different men who find a way to each other and not only discover the great qualities of the other man, but also get to know themselves better as well as change some of their beliefs.
Micah is all about raw vegan food. Rough childhood taught him to pay attention to what he puts inside himself and while he pushes it to the extreme, he’s not so much in control of the men he ends up with. His current boyfriend, with a really long and complicated name, is pretty much a first class bastard and Micah finding him in bed with another man pushes our vegan in the worst way. To top his bad luck, his customers suddenly start eating cupcakes from a new bakery and ruining all his hard work.
Feeling defeated he’s easily persuaded and goes to a wild Valentine’s party where he meets the cross-dressing Quentin, who has his fair share of secrets, but lights Micah up like nobody’s business.
I think their mutual differences, was what made this story work for me, and cross-dressing of course. But while I didn’t really connect with Micah, Quentin was something else and both his strength as well as his emotional side made me sympathize. Micah’s ex was truly an ass and to be honest, not really a convincing bad guy, but it did break the romance a bit, making it more interesting as a whole. I would have liked to read more about them, and the conflict could have been worked through a bit more to add to the tension, but overall I was satisfied. ...more
I probably liked the last story the best, and there is something in simple length of a story. Both POVs certainly helped and their interactions finallI probably liked the last story the best, and there is something in simple length of a story. Both POVs certainly helped and their interactions finally looked like those I fell in love with during the first book. As for other stories, maybe the first one wasn't bad, but I didn't much care for the two in the middle. Mark seemed like such an asshole and it did make me wonder what Sandy actually saw in him. I mean he couldn't read Mark's mind, see all the reasons for his actions and just that sheer panic about everything, so what was it that he actually liked about Mark anyway? I did expect more from this, and it definitely wasn't at the same level as the first book, but it was kind of nice to revisit the couple....more
This was another good one by Dev Betham following the life of David who hasn’t had it easy. She combined romantic with mysteries but she left her characters just as imperfect and complicated as she wanted them to be without falling into the temptation of turning it too sweet.
David lost his restaurant when his business and personal partner succumbed to his gambling addiction yet again and is forced to go back to live with his father, this time cutting all ties with his now ex-boyfriend. Going backwards is never easy and David is open for opportunities no matter where they might take him, he just has little to lose and working on a movie set in a different country is both good money as well as a possible opportunity.
What he never expected was to meet a mysterious man there, someone from his dreams who turns out to be just as elusive in real life as he was in those early hours of the morning when his dreams were cut short.
I loved the romantic side of this story and the bit of mystery to it that made the whole story more interesting. Between the characters, David was my favorite while his perfect match put me off a bit due to his overall attitude. There are religious overtones but they are nicely done and not excessive by any means, I think what I had an issue with was the way life shaped John, and his hang ups rubbed me the wrong way a bit.
Nonetheless, the happy ending and the fairytale coincidences gave this story a light flare despite some heavy subjects and it’s hard not to let the story carry you and simply enjoy.
WOLF AT THE DOOR is a somewhat predictable shifter story, nicelThis review was originally written for The Romance Reviews and can also be found there.
WOLF AT THE DOOR is a somewhat predictable shifter story, nicely written but holding little surprises and quite unfinished when it comes to the world building.
Darin is a nurse who likes to run when stressed out. He knows it's dangerous but he prefers running surrounded by trees and on one such occasion he trips over a handsome man. While the encounter is short, it's certainly memorable and while Darin's life suddenly turns to plain old weird, he still doesn't have it in him to be afraid.
Raylan is a werewolf always on the lookout for the Huntsmen, people dedicated to the eradication of his species, but once he meets his mate, he has trouble leaving, something he did each time before. Now he has a reason to stay and fight, because he's not willing to give up the one man who was made for him.
This is one of those stories which isn't bad, it just lacks details to tie it all together. I needed more characterization, an opportunity to get to know the characters better in a setting outside of the main pairing. Even their interactions weren't as deep as I would have liked and when the conclusion eventually came, it was both expected as well as lacking in substance.
This wasn't my favorite by this author, but as something simple and relaxing, it's not a bad choice....more
While predictability is sometimes alright and typical characterThis review was originally written for The Romance Reviews and can also be found there.
While predictability is sometimes alright and typical characters can still be rather charming despite finding their way into too many books only under a different name, the book should still offer that bit that is different from all the others already out there.
In CALLED TO MATE, I got to meet two men who were brought up in different environments and influenced by different characters. Declan in an alpha and was raised to think like one, while Quinn is a submissive who has been abused all his life, secluded from the rest of the pack and constantly put down. Once rescued, Quinn ends up in Declan's new pack and becomes the alpha's mate.
This is that standard plotline a lot of the authors use and plenty of readers – me included – enjoy coming back to over and over again. But unlike some winners for me, this one didn't quite work because of the conflicting personalities of the characters. Both men changed too rapidly for my taste, their pasts fading and their sworn devotions quickly following as well. From the very start, I couldn't get used to Declan and his alpha personality. He had his good moments, but those were just outnumbered by the bad ones and all I was left with was Quinn. The submissive simply wasn't a strong character, something one would come to expect from someone with such a past, but in addition to weak development of the pack life, the final conflict was too vague to bring his character to the front.
At the end of it, this is a book I could have easily lived without. I didn't have any remarks when it comes to the writing but there is something to be said about the need of plot, and a book with a weak one will rarely keep my attention....more
There will be certain controversy when it comes to this book,This review was originally written for MM Good Book Reviews and can also be found there.
There will be certain controversy when it comes to this book, from the matter of personal taste to the amount of detail that just might not be everyone’s cup of tea. The author was new to me, the subject not as much as the execution itself.
The story starts with a dose of mystery where I got to meet Jack and some of his kinks as well as his professional life. He is heavy into play but his partner is an anonymous guy who seems more like a dangerous stalker, especially because I didn’t get to meet him until the very escalation of the… well let’s call it a scene spread over a longer period of time. I liked Jack, and at first I liked his choice of men as well.
Gray seemed dangerous but knowing, and just there for Jack, while Jan seemed like the perfect romantic counterpart and enough of a playful character to counteract the seriousness of the story. However, as things finally became clear and that mysterious aspect of the story was done with, Jan flipped ‘to the dark side’ and became someone totally different, while Grey turned out to be someone I couldn’t really respect.
Jack never changed for me. A man with issues and certain desires – I just liked him. But as Gray and Jan changed, my enjoyment of the story drastically dropped. I lost most of my interest when I felt the BDSM rules were broken (or just bent enough to lose meaning for me), and what should have been consensual ended up being forced.
This is a book for those with specific tastes, and it might have some serious triggers. It’s definitely not fluffy or mild when it comes to the lifestyle, but it might appeal to those who like the opposite. My issues weren’t related to BDSM part of the story (other than the thin/non-existent rules), but rather the characters and their behavior which just wasn’t likeable at all. The writing was confusing at times but overall okay and I would suggest you take a look at it if based on other reviews this seems as just your thing. ...more
Short road trip story with a lot of heart and a bit of a fairThis review was originally written for MM Good Book Reviews and can also be found there.
Short road trip story with a lot of heart and a bit of a fairy tale ending is probably perfect for those of you who like it slow paced and sweet.
This is a story about Dan who decides to go on a road trip twelve years after the fun summer with his Gang of Four. They’ve lost touch and maybe it’s melancholy or just that need to know, but Dan wants to revisit the past and discover a secret that’s been bugging him for years.
Not an expert on social media, Dan meets up with a man who he’d mistaken for one of the members of the club and despite the misunderstanding, they go on the road together. Dan’s friends are far from the kids they used to be, and while their lives are surprising, in the end Dan’s discoveries about himself are the most unexpected ones.
This was an okay story, with good characters, it just wasn’t interesting enough for me. The romance was pretty much predictable and while there was that dose of curiosity to the story – mainly what Dan would find when it came to his friends – it still moved slowly and without much challenge to keep me engaged. I’ve read much better books by this author.
What is it about me and porn that I have to grab each book thThis review was originally written for MM Good Book Reviews and can also be found there.
What is it about me and porn that I have to grab each book that just mentions it and add it to my read list? Maybe it’s the expectation of naked men making sacrifices for the money they eventually earn, or the conflicts that come of it when they find that perfect someone and need to explain what is it that they actually do.
In this case Spanish/John is a body double for a movie star who makes porn covers of the actual movies for the Asian and European market. He’s got a great body and enough likeness that he’s wanted and makes some good money. It doesn’t hurt that the man he’s portraying on screen is someone he admires.
Then came the party where the two actually meet, with instant attraction, just a tad slower sex and the eventual beginning of something more. What resulted is the everlasting question – to come clean or hope for the best?
The content of this story wasn’t all that explicit or for that matter deep, certainly not what I was expecting. There are some details about filming and a really fast paced development of the relationship, but the main conflict passes just as quickly and at the end there’s not much to this story. The characters weren’t explored enough to give them that necessary significance and although I saw the potential, the author went too quickly about this story to make it significantly enjoyable.
It was nice, but not enough to remember for more than a few days. ...more
This is JD Ruskin’s first book and she certainly opened withThis review was originally written for MM Good Book Reviews and can also be found there.
This is JD Ruskin’s first book and she certainly opened with a bang. Characters with issues, a compelling story line and excellent writing will most certainly push When One Door Opens to the top of many reading lists.
Logan is fresh out of prison, finally sober and holding a job. It’s only part time, but hey, everyone has to start somewhere. He’s still at that phase when every superior’s question makes his breath catch and every awkward situation makes him crave a beer, but he’s taking it day by day and doing better than he had in years. Then his boss asks him to deliver groceries and check on his nephew Caleb as another part time job, and all that hard acquired control starts slipping away with a simple sight of too tight sweats.
Caleb is a whole different story, innocent, somewhat naïve, gorgeous and agoraphobic. He hasn’t left his apartment for three years and doesn’t react well to change. But there is something about the ex-con giant who makes him laugh and tries his best to make Caleb happy.
When One Door Opens was a slow paced story, gradually developing the relationship between the two main characters, letting them fight their battles with staying sober and obeying the rules for Logan and making a simple trip to the store for Caleb without having a panic attack.
Their interactions were so fun I could have read about them for hours, but it was their flaws as well as the tension between the two studs that kept my attention and eventually kept me thinking about this book long after it was read.
The main conflict was subdued as well, there but not the harsh focus as one might expect and it suited the story well, letting the reader stay intent on what was important, without broken trust but with all the explicit details the characters’ situations involved.
This is the one I will recommend, for everyone who likes imperfect characters and needs a comfortable book to relax to. It was a first, but I sincerely hope it’s not the last we’ll see of JD Ruskin. ...more
Room at the Edge is the second book in the Room at the Top seThis review was originally written for MM Good Book Reviews and can also be found there.
Room at the Edge is the second book in the Room at the Top series about two submissives and a dominant working on their relationship and exploring their limits. When compared to the first book it’s missing the same tension and expectation when a lot of it was up in the air and their future was uncertain. Here the three have a more equal relationship and their needs have certainly matured.
Austin and Jay have come to depend on their Dom Liam, needing his attention as well as presence and while once their weekly meetings were more than enough, now they not only crave more, they need it.
Liam is really careful with their boundaries, doing his best to give both men what they need with simultaneously satisfying his own desires, but all three are afraid of their relationship falling apart, and while Austin and Jay are still and unbreakable unit, Liam is feeling as the third and is just as reluctant to rock the boat.
Evolving their relationship – both in the conventional sense as well as when it comes to their level of ‘play’ – was an absolute success for the authors of this wonderfully kinky story. It introduced some new aspects of BDSM as well brought other needs to the front and center, making their interactions as well as their dependence of each other nothing less of a beautiful, pain stung dance.
It flowed slowly, which in this case was a bit of a negative trait, requiring more focus as well as persistence, but still, I completely enjoyed this sequel and wouldn’t mind reading more about Austin, Jay and Liam. ...more
If a book has some type of a tricky subject it’s almost guaranteed I’ll read it as well as find something inspiring/interesting about it. A father and son falling for the same guy fits right in there with the unusual and I barely hesitated when it came to jumping into the story and seeing the world through the characters’ eyes.
Sayen is a medical student who’s been struggling to get by since the death of his mother who’d brought him to America in order to protect him from his own family and the customs still maintained in the Middle East. Help came in the form of a sugar daddy, an older man of a hidden identity who paid for Sayen’s necessities in exchange for sex as well as secrecy. But now a student of Sayen’s age is interested in him, and offering things Blake – the sugar daddy – never could. The money is still there, necessary and a big part of the relationship, but Cameron doesn’t care and Sayen tries not to.
It all comes to head when Cameron brings Sayen home to meet the family, and his straight father turns out not to be quite straight.
This book was essentially a realistic interpretation of life as well as relationships where s**t hits the fan when you least need it and no automatic happy ending is forthcoming. It had some wonderful details like religion which was a big part of Sayen’s life and a rebellious sister who I just had to love. Still it all sums to the fact that this wasn’t a book I wanted to read. The characters had their depths, the writing was excellent and the plot twisted enough to make this book stand out from just an ordinary contemporary. But when it comes down to it I wasn’t happy with any of the characters or with the resolutions. Their emotional investment was nothing but words into the wind and what author interpreted as stubbornness was pure idiotism to me. Not to say I disagreed with certain decision – or approved others – just that the paths the men have taken and the hold they had to what was the ‘right thing’ gave me a headache. So just like I’ve said at the beginning, this book was just like real life, and I read romantic fiction precisely because I don’t want to live in the real life for those few hours, but rather escape into someone’s perfect ending.
I rooted for Sayen and Blake for the most of the book because I do like May/December romances, but I doubt I would have been happy even if that pairing took the focus in this book. Both the father and the son were too insecure and self-centered to make for loveable characters and Sayen was just too lost most of the time. He followed the money even when he said those magic words and without any more substance to him I couldn’t find any will in me to romanticize him in any way. The readers should also be aware of incestuous abuse mentioned in the book, not explicit but with a somewhat romantic note to it that certainly wasn’t the high point of the book.
As my first venture into this praised author’s work I can say I didn’t receive what I’d expected and certainly have my reservations when it comes to his other work.