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review 2016-06-21 00:00
Willow Bend
Willow Bend - Ally Blue I've always enjoyed this author's writing, which in turn made this re-read enjoyable - still. The romantic and physical chemistry between Cory and Paul is genuine and smooth. The background build up and the entire contemporary world was tasteful and erotically pleasing.
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review 2016-05-31 21:38
ARC Review: Butt Villains On Vacation - anthology
Butt Villains On Vacation - Kage Alan,Ally Blue,TC Blue,Kiernan Kelly

What do you get if you mix a proven team of 4 authors, snark, sarcasm, and a good dose of humorous antics? Why, you get another butt-thology, of course.

In this latest anthology from Kage Alan, TC Blue, Kiernan Kelly, and Ally Blue, we get Butt Villains On Vacation!

I'll review all 4 stories separately.

First up, Master Malevolence in The Tail Of The Fluffy Monkey, by Kage Alan:

This story could only have been written by Kage. I mean, seriously, it has what we shall call Kageisms all over the whole thing. I was howling with laughter only a few pages in, because the clever snark just does it for me. I have a weird sense of humor sometimes, and that's what Mr. Alan usually delivers. Snark. Sarcasm. Witty one-liners. Acronyms that make me giggle, such as Plot Outline Of Peonage, aka POOP. I'm also secretly a 12 year old boy... sometimes.

We enter this story at an awards ceremony for villains....

"In the category of Villainous Acts Green, or VAG, our first nominee is [] for her victory in unknowingly getting the members of a certain church in Harlem hooked on the taste of semen in their coffee."



Bwahahahahahahaha!!!

"Mr. Malevolence [the guy from the title] piped an invisible [] gas into Congress that had every male politician believing they'd grown female genitalia just prior to a vote on limiting healthcare..."



*dies laughing*

Another nominee perpetuated a hoax that all gay people were going to relocate to Texas which had Texas secede from the Union in protest, and.... well, you read this for yourself.

I was laughing so hard, I cried. I couldn't breathe, gasping for air. The way all these current affairs are woven into the speech just left me in stitches.

And on it goes, with snark, and more snark, a wee bit of possibly romantic feelings between two villains, one of them The Fluffy Monkey, lots of references to Gweilos, surely a nod to Mr. Alan's HH and Little Brother, and a conspiracy plot, plus sexing up villain-style - it's a fast ride, it's hilarious, and it earned itself five shiny stars for being so fabulous.

Bonus points for honoring the memory of someone from our FB community who is no longer with us.


The Flaming Skull B&B, by Ally Blue:

What do you get when you mix an on-the-run alien villain running a B&B with an Earthling bartender? Why, you get this funny and quite sweet story, of course.

Kynn-ang-Peen, the aforementioned alien, is supposed to be a villain, but only wants to make people happy. Not exactly in the villain job description, amirite, so he's been running off his home planet and landing on Earth, where he now runs a very unsuccessful B&B. This might possibly be because Kynn-ang-Peen has no "earthly" idea what earthlings look for in a nice, quiet B&B, and his idea of one doesn't mesh with his customers. Or non-customers, because nobody is staying.

His vassal, aptly named Thfft, is mostly interested in hunting and eating crabs, so when the latest potential customer leaves (and then goes up in a heap of smoke, because angry and disappointed villain right there), our lovable alien hies himself to the local bar, Cajun Alley. Where he meets Riley Jackson, bartender, and this is where the plot takes off and goes from villainous and fun to mostly sweet and fun.

It's really rather cute, with misunderstandings between alien notions and Earth reality, and while Riley may be just a little too perfect in his actions and understanding and reaction to coming face to face with an alien, I did like this quite a lot, and thought the ending was just perfect.

4 stars!


Attack Of The Undead Enema, by T.C. Blue:

This was more on the sweet side as well, telling the story of Jake Green, villain-in-hiding, and Griffin, waiter at the resort where Jake is staying/hiding. It has a real villain (The Undead Enema), a bit of angst, and a great romance between the two main characters. I really liked how Griffin stood up for Jake, and basically showing him that their love was worth fighting for, and that the Undead Enema mustn't be allowed to win. I really liked Jake, who was supposed to be a villain, but not, and who loved strongly, and just wanted to do the right thing. He carries a lot of guilt from something that he thought he caused a couple of years back, and I felt sorry for him. I rooted for him and Griffin throughout.

Lovely ending too.

4 stars!


Hero Land, by Kiernan Kelly:

Sadly my least favorite of the four stories in this anthology, mostly because I felt that it wasn't long enough to do itself justice.

The Assassin Bandit (or Ass Bandit, as his travel agent Loki calls him) has been booked for a holiday in Hero Land instead of the Rogue Empire Resort where he expected to stay. Whoopsie. Loki done messed up, but Loki ain't sorry. Faced with impertinence from his not-sorry travel agent, this Super Villain decides to wreak chaos and mayhem in Hero Land instead, because, you know, one's got a reputation to keep.

Except he's foiled in his plans by the Golden Adonis, a hero from Hero Land, whose primarily claim to fame are his adonis-like looks and physique. Shocked that his usually overwhelming smile does not work its magic on Mr. Ass Bandit, our hero feels spurred into action.

It's a Code 69. All of Hero Land must be warned that a villain is in their midst, OMG. Except Adonis, The Golden, feels a stirring in his loins, one that may possibly be reciprocated by our Ass(assin) Bandit, and off they go to possibly fornicate.

I liked the writing in this story for its witty and clever references. Unfortunately, I didn't quite buy the romance and the changes in attitude on the Adonis' part in the timeframe we're given here. It was just too short.

3 stars!


** I received a free copy of this book from one of its authors, because he knew I was salivating for more butt-thology. Thank you, Kage! A positive review was not promised in return. **

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review 2016-05-10 11:39
Paranormal Investigations - Liebe
Paranormal Investigations 5: Liebe - Bianca Srubar,Ally Blue

Story:
Sam und Bo haben es endlich geschafft – sie werden von ihren Freunden akzeptiert und leben offen ihre Liebe füreinander auf. Einzig Bos Exfrau Janine legt den beiden Männern regelmäßig Steine in den Weg, ganz besonders wenn es um die Bos Kinder Dean und Adrian geht. Die Ereignisse spitzen sich dramatisch zu, als in Janines Haus seltsame Dinge geschehen und Adrian erste Anzeichen einer psychokinetischen Begabung zeigt. Während Janine nichts davon wissen will, wächst Bos Sorge um seine Söhne, denn in seinem unkontrollierten Zorn ist Adrian theoretisch in der Lage, Portale zu öffnen und den schrecklichen Kreaturen den Weg zu ebnen, denen sich das Team von BCPI immer wieder stellen musste. Sam, der Adrians Begabung teilt, beginnt diesen zu unterrichten, doch Janine setzt alles daran, die Kinder endgültig von Sam und Bo zu trennen …

 

Eigene Meinung:
Der Roman „Liebe“ markiert das Ende der 5-bändigen „Paranormal Investigations“-Reihe von Ally Blue, wenn man von den beiden Spin-Offs absieht, die sich um Dean und Adrian drehen. Die Romane erschienen komplett im Cursed-Verlag und beenden den Zyklus um Sam und Bo.

 

Inhaltlich schließt „Liebe“ grob an die Ereignisse der vorherigen Bände an, liefert jedoch keinerlei Erklärungen oder Antworten auf offene Fragen. Stattdessen entwickelt Ally Blue eine eigenständige Geschichte, verknüpft sie jedoch einmal mehr mit der altbekannten Portal-Thematik, die ebenso verworren und diffus bleibt, wie in den letzten Romanen. Es ist sehr schade, dass auch der Finalband der „Paranormal Investigations“- Reihe keine offenen Punkte zum Abschluss bringt und stattdessen einen lauwarmen Aufguss der üblichen Handlungselemente nebst Höhepunkten bietet. Einziger Pluspunkt: Sam und Bo reden endlich offen miteinander (wer Band 4 gelesen hat, weiß, wie enervierend es ist, wenn die Figuren ihr Wissen für sich behalten) und es kommt erstaunlich wenig Sex vor. Während die letzten beiden Bände vor Erotik nur so strotzten, fallen Sam und Bo in „Liebe“ nur wenige Male übereinander her. Das kommt der Handlung zugute, denn Ally Blue konzentriert sich mehr auf Adrian und dessen Probleme, ebenso die Sorgerechtsstreitigkeiten zwischen Janine und Bo. Dennoch kommt die Geschichte nicht wirklich in Fahrt – die Handlung tröpfelt vor sich hin, Spannung fehlt zumeist und das Ende wirkt dermaßen überstürzt (und kitschig), dass man das Buch leider nur frustriert beiseitelegen kann. Wer hofft, dass die Autorin endlich an Band 2 anknüpft und mehr zu den Portalen verrät, wird automatisch enttäuscht – Ally Blue scheint sich keine Gedanken über das Thema gemacht zu haben.

 

Charakterlich bekommt der Leser die üblichen Stereotypen präsentiert – Sam ist ein ziemliches Weichei, was vor allem daran liegt, dass er oftmals zugunsten Bos auf seine eigene Meinung zu verzichten scheint und sich mit Vorliebe hinter die Schusslinie zurückzieht; mit seinem Partner Bo wird man nur langsam warm, da er trotz aller Vorzüge recht arrogant und egoistisch daherkommt. Am schlimmsten ist jedoch Janine, die das weibliche Hassbild in einem Gay Romance Roman ist – gemein, überheblich, boshaft. Sie scheint kaum positive Eigenschaften zu haben, erst am Ende taut sie ein wenig auf, was jedoch aufgesetzt und nicht realistisch wirkt. Adrian ist im Gegenzug dazu eigentlich ganz sympathisch, wäre er nicht so perfekt! Er scheint binnen weniger Wochen das zu meistern, was Sam erst nach Monaten, wenn nicht Jahren hinbekommen hat, ist superintelligent und wirkt sehr erwachsen. Das geht dem Leser mit der Zeit doch auf den Nerv, da er gar nicht wie ein normales Kind wirkt (von seinen Ausbrüchen einmal angesehen).

 

Das größte Manko ist jedoch die deutsche Übersetzung – ich weiß nicht, ob am letzten Band eine andere Übersetzerin saß, doch die Geschichte liest sich noch hölzerner und stockender, als zuvor. Man hat viele Probleme mit Ally Blues Stil, einige Sätze wirken, als seien sie 1:1 vom englischen ins deutsche übernommen worden, ohne sich über Sprachrhythmus und sprachliche Eigenheiten Gedanken zu machen. Es liest sich einfach unrund, was man besonders bei langen Sätzen merkt – die holpern extrem und machen teilweise überhaupt keinen Sinn.

 

Fazit:
Leider kann auch der letzte Band von „Paranormal Investigations“ nicht überzeugen, was zum einen an der langweiligen, vorhersehbaren Geschichte, zum anderen an der wirklich holprigen, unprofessionellen Übersetzung liegt. Weder kann man sich in die Charaktere hineinversetzen, noch bekommt man endlich Antworten zur Portalfrage geliefert – ein schwaches Finale, das nur in einer Sache punkten kann: Ally Blue verzichtet auf übermäßige Sexszenen. Schade, um die interessante Idee und den ursprünglichen Paranormal-Ansatz (von dem man ab Band 3 nur noch wenig mitbekommt). Wie gut, dass es vorbei ist …

Source: www.like-a-dream.de
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review 2016-02-25 02:38
Love, Like Ghosts - Ally Blue

Ally Blue was my starter author to this genre and for that I'm thankful. This was a simple story but what made me crazy was I'm sorry to say I didn't like Greg and I lost patience with Adrian often. 

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review 2015-11-07 21:41
Love, Like Ghosts by Ally Blue - My Thoughts
Love, Like Ghosts - Ally Blue

So this book is officially #7 in the Bay City Paranormal Investigations series, but it really is the introduction to a new series, the Mojo Mystery Series which stars the oldest son of one of the MCs of the BCP series.  So, that being said... I picked this up because someone recced the latest in the Mojo series and since this one was on sale, I figured to give the series a try.  

 

I got tricked (okay, not tricked but...) into a NA book, I think.  I found both the main characters, Adrian (the afore-mentioned son) and Greg really quite  unlikable.  Both of them whine, they both jump to silly conclusions, they both have tantrums, they're both suspicious of everything the other does... they were just very tiresome.  I found myself thinking that if they were both open and honest with each other about the shit from their pasts that was making them both so 'skittish?', then more attention could be paid to actually growing their relationship and also, figuring out what the deal was with the ghost.  But isn't all this DRAMA part and parcel of the New Adult book experience?  UGH!

 

Another thing that bothered me was the introduction of a ton of negligible characters - classmates, neighbours etc... Do we really need to name them and give them a tiny backstory if we're only going to see them on one page handing something to one of the MCs?  I don't think so.  

 

So, that being said, will I read the other books in the series?  At some point, probably.  I've enjoyed other stories by this author and I do respect the opinion of the person who recced the latest in the series to me, but for now, I think I shall let Adrian and Greg be.  

 

 

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