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review 2017-03-12 04:20
Start over
At Attention - Annabeth Albert

This is book #2, in the Out Of Uniform series.  This book can be read as a standalone novel.  For reader understanding and enjoyment, I recommend reading series in order.

 

Apollo has known Dylan for almost 20 years.  His big brother is Apollo's best friend.  He has always thought of him as a "kid."  Being attracted to him is a shock.  

 

Dylan has been in love with Apollo for as long as he can remember.  Now it is like breathing.  He knows Apollo needs his help, but he wants to be more.  What will it take to be seen as an equal?

 

This was a story that made me feel everything.  I laughed, cried, and wished for them to get together pretty much right away.  This author never disappoints.  I always love seeing the big alpha's fall.  Great addition to the series.  I cannot wait to read the next book.  I give this story a 4/5 Kitty's Paws UP!

 

 

***This copy was given in exchange for an honest review, by Netgalley and its publisher.

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review 2016-10-30 01:45
ARC Review: Say It Right by A.M. Arthur
Say It Right - A.M. Arthur

This is apparently book 2 in the series, but I had no issues reading this as a standalone.

If you've read the first book, you probably remember Marc who's a former homeless ex-junkie, selling himself to survive. Having pulled himself together with a lot of help, he now runs the LGBT shelter with Tate.

Eight years ago, Anthony led a mostly charmed life, in unrequited love with his best friend Marc, until Marc was gone, kicked out of his home at 16 for being gay. Lost without his best friend, his confidant, Anthony turned to alcohol and heroin.

Now Anthony is a junkie himself, and after a couple of failed attempts to get clean, he's on the verge of an overdose.

A late night visit from Anthony's sister spurs Marc to find Anthony and get him off the streets. But there are rules. Anthony must stay clean, or Marc will kick him out. And after 6 months, if Anthony stays off the drugs, they may go on a date.

This is a rather somber story, and both men keep secrets. Marc hates being touched, for reasons that aren't clear to those around him, and Anthony struggles without the drugs to kill his pain.

There wasn't a whole lot of physical affection between them for quite a while, which made it difficult to connect with the love story, and even though they eventually got together, there was what seemed to be manufactured drama toward the end, with Marc lashing out almost inexplicably toward Anthony, which nearly derails their budding romance.

While I can to some extent understand Marc's issues, I had a hard time forgiving him for the pain he puts Anthony through.

The main focus of the story is on drug addiction and recovery, and those parts were really well done. The author let us see deeply into Anthony's struggles with sobriety, and Marc's fears of relapse himself, and the lingering pain from the abuse he suffered. Also explored are the realities of life on the street, and the difficult choices so many young people have to make to survive.

As I said, this is a rather somber story, and while we get a happy ending, it's a hard fought for one.


** I received a free copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley. A positive review was not promised in return. **

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review 2016-10-02 04:23
New taste
Outside the Lines (The Boundaries Series) - A.R. Barley

This is the 3rd book in the Boundaries series.  This book can be read as a standalone novel.  For reader enjoyment and understanding of the characters in the series, I recommend reading this series in order.

 

Mitch meets a sexy drag queen at a club, and then chickens out on meet her later.  Then he sees her again next door..... as his daughters princess.  Can he convince his neighbor that he is the real deal?

 

Chi-Chi has had enough with the wrong men.  Too many times they want only one thing and Chi-Chi wants more.  With much to offer, he is ready to find the one.  

 

So sweet and fun.  There was so much in this story for everyone.  I definitely laughed, cried and rooted for these two to get together.  This series just has so much heat and heart.  I give this story a 4/5 Kitty's Paws UP!

 

 

***This ARC copy was given by Netgalley and its publishers in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2016-08-19 11:42
Keeping you
Boyfriend Material (Ethan & Wyatt) - K.A. Mitchell

This is the 2nd book in the Ethan & Wyatt series.  This book can be read as a standalone.  It goes better, when paired with the 1st book in the series.  I recommend reading the series in order, for better understanding.

 

Ethan & Wyatt's story continues almost right where we left off.  They are committed to one another at this point and make a great couple.  But can all really be that well for college students who have secrets?

 

Wyatt is insecure as a boyfriend.  Having years of nothing in the way of love, this is all new to him.  Ethan is there to keep his head on straight, well sort of. 

 

Was a fun and short story.  I like these characters and hope we get to see them again.  The journey to love is never smooth, but books like this make you feel it is possible.  I give this story a 4/5 Kitty's Paws UP!

 

 

***This ARC copy was given by Netgalley and its publishers in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2016-08-18 20:14
ARC Review: Boyfriend Material (Ethan & Wyatt #2) by K.A. Mitchell
Boyfriend Material (Ethan & Wyatt) - K.A. Mitchell

In this 2nd installment of Ethan And Wyatt, we're picking up right about where the first book left off.

Except, the entire book is told from Wyatt's POV, and thus his glass-half-empty, this-can't-last-anyway attitude permeates the book.

And thus the tone of the book is much more pessimistic than the first one. Wyatt spends most of the book not really seeing what Ethan is offering him, and certainly not giving Ethan enough credit or believing that what they have can last. Of course, Wyatt's experiences and the shitty life he's led so far do not lend themselves to being eternally hopeful and positive like Ethan, but I got the impression that Wyatt didn't even try.

Not when Ethan shows him every damn day they're together that he's all in, not when Ethan does that special thing and uses his own money to do that special thing for Wyatt, not when Ethan tries so very hard to make Wyatt happy - Wyatt just can't see what's in front of him and he expects it all to crash and burn.

If you go through life expecting the worst, you might just get what you expect. Unless you pull your head out of your, ahem, behind, and start listening to what your boyfriend tells you and maybe, just maybe trust that he means what he says.

This book was obviously darker than the first one, very much so, and that's primarily due to spending the whole time in Wyatt's head. His pessimism is exhausting, to be honest. I wanted to holler at him to just. For. Once. Believe!!

While we do get a promising HFN at the end, mostly due to Ethan's eternal hopefulness and willingness to do whatever it takes, I do hope that the third book, announced at the very end, will show us Wyatt in a better place, a more hopeful place, where he believes that whatever crappy hand he's been dealt isn't the final word on things. That his past doesn't have to define him, and that it's okay to have hope. To live fully, to strive for better, instead of expecting the worst all the time.

I'm not happy with Ethan's mom in this book, for how she acted, and I hope that she will take the time to actually talk to Wyatt, and not let her opinion of him be defined by what she heard from others, who don't have the inclination to portray him in a positive light. I would also think that she ought to trust her own son enough to make the right choices, when he hasn't given her any kind of reason not to.

Ethan makes mistakes, sure. He did in the first book, and he makes some here too, but his mistakes are because he's young and doesn't know the best way to approach subjects yet, and even when he makes a mistake, he's quick to admit it. Everything he does is with Wyatt in mind, and it hurt my heart when Wyatt would question his loyalty, even if it was only in his mind. He's also willing to lay his heart on the line, and tell Wyatt how he feels.

I liked Wyatt's uncle and his girlfriend - I hope they'll feature in the third book as well, because I think that Wyatt needs family who stands by him, so he can learn that some people can be trusted, and that his Waardenburg is just a part of him, and not the whole. Nor should he let it define him.

Looking forward to the next one. 2017?? Gah, that's a long way off.


** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher via Netgalley. A positive review was not promised in return. **

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