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review 2020-01-20 20:23
Once again, I’m back in the world of A.E. Via’s alpha males...
Promises: Part 1 - A.E. Via,Aiden Snow

but this time it’s not the God and Day’s world that we’re visiting. This time we get to see more of the Bounty Hunters. We first met Judge back in “Nothing Special #4: Don’t Judge” and we’ll see him a bit here as well but he’s not the focus of this story, he’s had his day in court so to speak.


However, those who read that book may also remember Duke, the owner of the bail bond company that Judge works for and Judge’s occasional no strings attached lover. Having said all that, you now basically know the connection between ‘Nothing Special’ and this series or at least this book. So, you don’t have to read the previous series but there’s some good stuff there so you might want to consider it.


For those who enjoyed Ms Via’s series ‘Nothing Special’ on audio if you enjoyed the narrator as much as I did than you’re in for the added treat of once again being able to enjoy the narrations of Aiden Snow. I was more than a little happy to know that Aiden Snow was the narrator for this first book of the series and I admit my fingers are crossed that he’ll be continuing with the rest of this series as well.


Just to be clear Duke is one of the MCs in this first book of the series ‘Promises, The Bounty Hunters’ and his love interest is none other than Vaughan Webb, classic gentleman with an old soul who’s just returned after 7 years from studying abroad with a newly printed law degree in hand as part of his plan to prove himself worthy of the man he loves…that’s right he’s set his sights on none other than Duke Morgan…his daddy’s best friend and if you didn’t see that coming than all I can say is you should have read the blurb.


While Duke and Vaughn’s story is essentially contained within this book, I’m sure we haven’t seen the last of them either. I wasn’t sure how this was going to work for me because of not just the age difference but the fact that Duke is best friends and business partners with Vaughn’s father. Surprisingly I ended up being ok with it and I think that due for the most part to the dynamics between the two men. This really wasn’t a case of ‘daddy complex’ if anything Vaughn was the aggressor in this pairing.


Vaughn's been in love with Duke for years, it was part of his motivation to travel and study abroad for his law degree. He wanted to put some time and distance between himself and Duke so that when he was done what he needed to do it would help Duke to see him not as a ‘boy’ but as a man who’s been out in the world making his way and experiencing life…Vaughn’s a man with a plan and the determination to make it happen. Vaughn’s 27 when he returns to his hometown ready to claim the man he wants. So while Duke’s a fair bit older than him that still doesn’t make Vaughn any less of a mature adult. I loved that this story never felt like there was an imbalance of power between these two MCs and believe the opportunity for this to happen was there on more than one occasion.


As I mentioned earlier, we first met Duke back in ‘Don’t Judge’ book #4 of the ‘Nothing Special’ series. What we see in this story is that Duke was far more hurt by what happened between him and Judge but even he conceded that he wasn’t the right person for Judge, but more importantly he also comes to realize that Judge wasn’t the right person for him and that his happiness is waiting in someone else’s arms.


Despite the fact that events seem to be conspiring against these two men Vaughn’s determination to have the man of his dreams will not be easily dashed and he is determined to succeed whatever the cost and the cost is, to say the least surprising but Vaughn’s up to the challenge.


Vaughn and Duke’s story may have had some over the top moments but at the end of it all, it was a sweet and enjoyable romance that I really enjoyed.


However, there was more than just Vaughn and Duke to this story. This is also the beginning of another story. One that’s about Vaughn’s father, Roman ‘Quick’ Webb and a certain adorable doctor that I really liked and to be honest I’ve got my fingers crossed that Quick has to do some serious grovelling on this one. When it comes to being a dad and a best friend Quick’s got it nailed. He was awesome to bad when it comes to just being a decent human being, he has moments filled with ‘fail’. I admit it I vacillated back and forth with him because one minute he had me gushing and sighing with how much I liked him and the next minute I was thinking someone needed to punch him in the junk…that’s right in the junk!!! He was that much of a jerk. So needless to say  I need this story because in my heart of hearts I don’t believe he’s as mean of a person as he was but I’m really curious to know what would make someone so nice act like such a jerk…what can I say inquiring minds want to know.




An audio book of “Promises Part 1” was graciously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2019-12-30 22:12
Well,....uh....yay for sharks?
Primal Waters - Steve Alten

Yay for the Megs. Boo for most of the people in this book. I was super annoyed with every single person in this massive book. But...damn if Jonas didn't have the baddest moment at the end. Like, total badass for a 65 year old. Ugh. It gives me mixed feelings.


The writing itself was shotty. Not terrible but just poor. The informative sections were so factual they felt out of place. He knows his science, no doubt. But it just takes you out of the moment when you're going along with the plot then you're being given an overview of an island chain and its history.


Anyway, I read this because it's a paperback and I take it to work with me. It's been really slow so I sit on my throne of milk crates and read when I have no prep work or orders. It makes time go by better. I can't decide if I want to move on the 4th book or just end this misery.

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review 2019-12-30 05:52
I've danced around this one for a while now...
Vespertine - Indra Vaughn,Leta Blake,Michael Ferraiuolo

which totally explains why I'm so ridiculously late to the party, but when the opportunity presented itself to review the audio book and I discovered that Michael Ferraiuolo is the narrator and guess who just happens to be on my top 10 list of narrators...well, really who was I to do anything but say yes please.


Ok, so let's start with the elephant in the room...well, actually there's two of them in the room for me and can I just say this room's getting really, really cozy right about now...ok, the first elephant 'catholic priest gone astray' sorry just totally not my thing. Don't get me wrong I'm not a devout Catholic who has some illusion about priest being perfect because it's more like I'm a non-practicing Anglican who knows that...'that dog don't hunt no more'. I think for me it's a case of this is one of those things that happens in real life that, I'd rather not have show up in my fiction and yet here it is and here I am as for elephant #2 let's call a spade a spade because if it's an elephant it's just a teeny tiny little dumbo sized elephant call 'rock star-itis'...that's right I'm not much of a fan of rock star stories, I tend to be really fussy about them...a bit more so than some other sub-genres. It just tends to work out that I either really, really love them or they go horribly wrong for me, so while I do read them they're not usually my subject of choice for reviewing. 


But considering that this is a combination of one of my absolute favorite narrators, Michael Ferraiuolo combined with 2 authors who have written one or more books that I'm wildly crazy about I was feeling pretty good about the chances of liking this audio book and while I was pretty damned optimistic about my chances of enjoying this story I have to admit at the end of it even I was surprised by how much I really loved it... truthfully I wanted to simply go back to the beginning and start all over again once I was done. 


'Vespertine' drew me in, in ways that only a truly wonderful story can. I loved the characters and not just Jasper and Nicholas...although I did become a devoted fan of them both, but there were a wealth of other characters who added so much color and depth to the story from Jasper and Nicholas's parents to members of Vespertine and the community that Jasper and Nicholas grew up in. Not only did the authors make the events of this book feel grounded in reality but they kept the characters there as well. Nicholas's parents were loving and supportive but at the same time I felt their worries and concern for what was happening in his life and much of the time I was right there with them. Then there was the relationship between Jasper and his mother...far more fragile than that if Nicholas and his parents but every bit as possible and realistic.


Jasper and Nicholas grew up together as best friends until they weren't...until that day that friendship became love and then unexpectedly for Nicholas...Jasper left. He followed his calling to the priesthood and Nicholas turned to his own church...that of sex, drugs and rock & roll until years later, after a stint in rehab Nicholas goes home to try and truly put himself back together and find the man who loved the music before the drugs.


While we get a lot of background about these two men as the story progresses it's woven into the events of the present and in many instances gives clarity to not just what's happened in the past but what it's effect is on events in the present.


'Vespertine' is second chances, starting over, seeking forgiveness, coming home, rediscovering love and very probably a few other things that I've missed. It's a story that leaves you breathless, makes you laugh and cry. it's not about losing faith so much as finding it where you least expect it and yes there's a priest in it but there isn't any preaching.


At just over 14 hours I can't say that this is a quick read or listen if you choose the audio version as I did but what I can say is I loved it and it's definitely going at the top of my very, very short list of 'books involving men-of-faith'.


Once again with the help of her writing partner Indra Vaughn and the incredible narrations of Michael Ferraiuolo, Ms. Blake has taken things that really don't appeal to me, mixed them all together and made something that I loved...it's definitely magic of the best kind.



An audio book of 'Vespertine' was graciously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2019-12-30 01:51
You know that friend the one who's just always there when you need them...
Fall Through Spring - Amy Lane

I'm sure we've all met or maybe we are that person..the friend...the quiet, steadfast friend who's there when they're needed. No, they're probably not the person who draws a crowd at parties or comes up with the crazy wild ideas for fun. They may not even get noticed much at events but when everyone else has gone home they're the one who's still there helping you clean up even though they were the one who arrived early to help you set things up for the party to begin with, they're the friend who drives you home after you've had one to many when the gang's out on the town, they make sure you get into your home safely. They're not the star of the party or even your knight in shining armor but they're just like you and I...they're someone who's looking for love...this is Clay Carpenter.


Clay's been here since the beginning and I think most of us saw him as Skipper's best friend and we never really gave him a lot of consideration beyond that. He was nice and dependable and really in the history of romance have there ever been two words more solidly connected to the 'kiss of death' when it comes to love than 'nice & dependable' I think not...that is unless your name's 'Dane Hayes'. Dane's done hot, attractive, sexy, exciting, yadda, yadda, yadda...he knows what those words mean or at least he knows what those words mean for him. For Dane they mean 'sh*t's getting real, so it's been nice and I'm outta' here. Dane's bipolar so sometimes his world goes sideways really fast and the only thing he's ever been able to depend on is his family...his parents and his brother Mason. He's accepted this. But Dane's like Clay...they can say what they want but the truth is their hearts want someone to love, someone to call their own.


I loved Skipper and Ritchie and Mason and Terry were truly adorable but I felt a connection to Clay and Dane that I just didn't with the others. Clay may be the silent, dependable, steadfast friend but that's not all that he is and Dane sees that... Dane truly sees him. He sees all that's good and honorable about Clay but he also sees his faults and insecurities right along with what makes Clay one incredibly sexy and attractive man in his eyes...he sees Clay the real Clay and Clay does the same for Dane. Their relationship is grounded in a love and appreciation of the whole person flaws and all and as the story unfolds we are shown this on more than one occasion.


Most of Clay and Dane's story runs parallel to that of Mason and Terry so there's definite overlap but we've given different perspectives of a lot of events and while some things may have seemed familiar I never found that anything felt repetitive or boring. However, I would have probably liked it more if there'd been a bit of post-getting back-together Mason and Terry shared with us...but truly it wasn't their story so that's me being greedy...again.


I loved how Clay and Dane fit together...it was neither seamless, nor effortless but it was real and worked at, so hard by both of these men. It as a happy ending that was very much deserved. I don't know if there's more in store for us from the lives of these men but if there is I'll certainly be happy to find out what comes next.



An ARC of 'Fall Through Spring' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2019-12-29 23:03
Start to finish this was one hella' good series...
A Chip and A Chair - Cordelia Kingsbridge

For fans of mystery with a side of romance this one definitely meets the criteria and the audio book was for me the perfect medium through which to enjoy this series. Wyatt Baker was the narrator for this series providing an entertaining and suspense filled audio experience.


I thoroughly enjoyed following this series on audio and have no doubt in my mind that I will be listening to it again and possibly again and who knows maybe even one more time for good measure

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