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review 2019-11-28 17:08
Starting from Zero (Starting From #1) by Lane Hayes 3.5 Stars!!
Starting from Zero (Starting From #1) - Lane Hayes

ustin Cuevas is going through a rough patch. A broken relationship, a scandal, and the demise of his band have shaken the aspiring rock star’s confidence. Working two jobs and sleeping on his friend’s sofa isn’t ideal, but Justin isn’t ready to give up yet. With a little luck, he’s hoping to re-launch his music career in LA with his new band, Zero. The key is to stay focused, and not get distracted by his past…or the sexy songwriter he can’t get out of his head.

Gray Robertson has written dozens of hits and worked with some of the biggest names in the industry. But he’s never met anyone like Justin. The younger man is fiery, passionate, and smart. A powerful voice for a new generation. Other than an unforgettable one-night stand and a passion for music, the two men have nothing in common. Or do they? Justin knows the out-of-the-blue challenge to write a quintessential love song is a huge opportunity. And it’s the ultimate test for someone who’s doesn’t believe in happily ever after. When sparks fly, Justin and Gray realize they have a shot something special if they start from zero together. Maybe even love.

 

Review 

 

The start to a good series set in LA music culture. The romance is really sexy and the age difference is well handled. I like the bisexual rep in this book particularly.

Good chemistry here and good secondary characters that should make for great heroes.

The drama with the older hero's ex is really will done but the drama with the younger hero's ex and the music business is way less engaging.

I am looking forward to the next book with Charlie as the lead.

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text 2019-11-18 08:10
Audio Blitz - Starting From Scratch
 
Title: Starting From Scratch
Series: Starting From, #2
Author: Lane Hayes
Narrator: Michael Pauley
Publisher: Lane Hayes
Original Release Date: October 17, 2019
Heat Level: 4 - Lots of Sex
Pairing: Male/Male
Length: 8 hrs and 22 mins
Genre: Romance, Bisexual, Enemies to lovers, Rock and roll, Hurt-comfort, Opposites attract

Add to Goodreads

 

Synopsis:

 

Charlie Rourke is an ultra fabulous human whirlwind on a mission to launch the next biggest band in the world. However, he might have taken on more than he could handle when he signed on to manage Zero. Promoting a rock band and finding gigs shouldn’t be hard. They’re a talented group with a ton of star power. If Charlie can find the right record label, he’s sure he can help them get to the next level. The only problem is the skater boy slash bassist with a quirky sense of humor. He’s annoying and silly, and he’s exactly Charlie’s type. Except he’s straight.

Ky Baldwin isn’t afraid to switch things up. He loves a challenge as much as anyone, but Charlie doesn’t make things easy. Zero’s manager is a force of nature with a razor sharp tongue, a quick wit, and a no-nonsense attitude. Ky can’t stop thinking about him. Winning over Charlie becomes Ky’s pet project. But when the ice between them thaws, neither is prepared for the intensity of going from enemies to lovers. They’ll have to decide if they’re willing to start from scratch and take a chance on the unexpected.

 

Listen to a Sample:

 

 

Purchase at Amazon

 

 

 

Meet the Author:

 

Lane Hayes is grateful to finally be doing what she loves best. Writing full-time! It’s no secret Lane loves a good romance novel. An avid reader from an early age, she has always been drawn to well-told love story with beautifully written characters. These days she prefers the leading roles to both be men. Lane discovered the M/M genre a few years ago and was instantly hooked. Her debut novel was a 2013 Rainbow Award finalist and subsequent books have received Honorable Mentions, and won First Prize in the 2016 and 2017 Rainbow Awards. She loves red wine, chocolate and travel (in no particular order). Lane lives in Southern California with her amazing husband in a newly empty nest.

 

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram

 

 

Meet the Narrator:

 

Michael has well over 50 audio book titles currently available for purchase on Audible.com. He is versed in multiple styles and genres including fiction (novels and short stories) ranging from romance to science fiction to crime dramas to thrillers; business strategy books; health and wellness books; and even an occasional children's book.

Fans of Michael's narration are welcome to follow him on social media including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

If you are interested in working with Michael to produce your next audio book, you can contact him directly at acx@michaelpauley.info

 

 

Giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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review 2019-11-16 02:32
Before I start this review...let's just take a minute...
Starting from Scratch - Lane Hayes,Michael Pauley

to admire the view (and by view I mean cover)...ok, now let's move on...

 

"Starting From Scratch" is the next installment in the series 'Starting From' by Lane Hayes and for me the second book was a bit more enjoyable than the first one. I'm not saying that the first one was bad, just that for me this one was a little bit better.

 

We met both Charlie Rourke and Ky Baldwin in "Starting From Zero". Charlie became the manager for the band, Zero. While Ky is the bass player for Zero. Charlie's sure that Ky hates him, but Ky knows that the problem is Charlie hates him...are you seeing the issue here? Two men making assumptions about each other...it's enemies to lovers...it's a match made in heaven or it will be once Ky wins Charlie over.

 

Charlie's determined to make Zero a success without the help of his successful producer father. He needs to do this on his own merit...he knows his dad loves him and means well but for all of his bravado and confident exterior Charlie needs to show not just the world but himself that he can make be a success based on his own merits.

 

Ky long ago walked away from his father and learned to make his way in the world without any help from his father and he has no desire to see that change. Ky's a skater boy bassist with a quirky sense of humor and he's silly and annoying and while Charlie's trying not to admit it, in his heart he knows that Ky's perfect.

 

I loved Charlie and Ky together they worked for me. Their journey from enemies to lovers was filled with banter and snark with passion and heat. These two complimented each other perfectly. Charlie was heat and passion, Ky was cool and calm...except when he and Charlie came together...then everything became scorching hot!

 

Michael Pauley was once again the narrator for this story and I have to admit I can't really say that the narration worked better for me so much as I listened to this audiobook right after 'Starting From Zero' so I think I'd started to become a bit inured to the things that had previously bothered me. So this combined with the fact that overall I enjoyed this book a bit more than the first one resulted in a better overall rating from me.

 

*************************

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

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review 2019-11-15 04:19
So here's the deal...
Starting from Zero (Starting From #1) - Lane Hayes,Michael Pauley

I was offered the chance to review the audio book 'Starting From Scratch' and it sounded interesting so I said "ok" and then I decided that even though it's different MCs I wanted to hear the first book as well so...off I went to audible to get me a copy and now here I am to review said copy.

 

Just when Justin Cuevas thought his rock star was rising it crashed or more accurately it went up in a blaze of glory...his relationship ended with scandal, his band is little more than ashes but Justin's not ready to give up on his dreams. 

 

Justin's determined to get his career off of the ground one more time. He just needs to stay focused without getting distracted by the past or Gray Robertson, the sexy songwriter who's only suppose to be a one night stand but gets under Justin's skin without even trying and when he proposes that they collaborate and write a love song both men begin to realize that maybe they could collaborate on more than a love song...maybe together they could find a whole love story to tell.

 

Gray's got a successful career...he's written hit song after hit song, he's worked with some of the industry's biggest names. He doesn't have anything to prove but when his friend ask him to collaborate with an essentially unheard of performer who turns out to be the one night stand that Gary can't seem to forget Gary sees the opportunity to have more than one night and he's only too willing to take advantage of it.

 

"Starting From Zero" is the start of a new series by author Lane Hayes and it's got a big job to do. Not only is this Justin and Gray's story but we're also introduced to the rest of Justin's band as well as the people who matter in Gray's life all of whom offer the potential for some more awesome stories in this series and all of which was done without over shadowing what was happening between Justin and Gray.

 

While I've enjoyed several of this author's stories in the past and I really liked this story I have to admit that the narrator's voice just wasn't quite working for me.  Mainly there were a couple of sticking points for me the first one being that the voices weren't consistent in how they sounded so occasionally I found myself doing a bit of a double take as to who exactly was talking and the second issue for me was that occasionally it sounded like the narrator's voice was speeding up as if he was in a race to get to the end of the sentence. This was not my first time listening to an audio book narrated by Michael Pauley, so I'm hoping this was a one off in terms of my listening experience. 

 

'Starting From Zero' got off to a bit of a slow start for me but before I knew it I felt like I was fully engaged in the story and I have to admit that while I thought that the 18 year age gap was going to be a bit of an issue for me, that concern was dispelled fairly quickly and I found myself not only liking Justin and Gray but liking Justin and Gray together as a couple. They balanced each other very nicely and the banter and interaction between these two men was fun and at times simply hot, hot, hot!

 

"Starting From Zero" was a solid 4 star story, but sadly for me the audio didn't work out quite as well as I'd anticipated so it's getting 3.5 stars from me and we'll see what happens with "Starting From Scratch". 

 

*************************

 

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review 2019-10-19 07:10
New Release Blitz - Starting from Scratch


Title: Starting From Scratch
Series: Starting From, #2
Author: Lane Hayes
Publisher: Lane Hayes
Release Date: October 17, 2019
Heat Level: 4 - Lots of Sex
Pairing: Male/Male
Length: 80k
Genre: Romance, Bisexual, Enemies to lovers, Rock and roll, Hurt-comfort, Opposites attract

Add to Goodreads

 

 

 

Synopsis:

 

Charlie Rourke is an ultra fabulous human whirlwind on a mission to launch the next biggest band in the world. However, he might have taken on more than he could handle when he signed on to manage Zero. Promoting a rock band and finding gigs shouldn’t be hard. They’re a talented group with a ton of star power. If Charlie can find the right record label, he’s sure he can help them get to the next level. The only problem is the skater boy slash bassist with a quirky sense of humor. He’s annoying and silly, and he’s exactly Charlie’s type. Except he’s straight.

Ky Baldwin isn’t afraid to switch things up. He loves a challenge as much as anyone, but Charlie doesn’t make things easy. Zero’s manager is a force of nature with a razor sharp tongue, a quick wit, and a no-nonsense attitude. Ky can’t stop thinking about him. Winning over Charlie becomes Ky’s pet project. But when the ice between them thaws, neither is prepared for the intensity of going from enemies to lovers. They’ll have to decide if they’re willing to start from scratch and take a chance on the unexpected.

 

 

Excerpt:

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“I know that was random, but it’s not a bad idea if you think about it. Want something to drink?” Charlie asked as he moved toward the kitchen.
 
I grabbed his wrist before he got anywhere. “Hang on. What are you doing?”
 
He cocked his head curiously but didn’t pull away. “I’m being practical. If you read any further about Virgos you probably found out we’re known for being sensible. And polite. So, I’m politely asking if you’d like a beverage while sensibly suggesting that I help out with your skating lessons.”
 
“Okay. First up…I don’t want a fuckin’ snack and second, it’s not a skating lesson. We’re skateboarding,” I said, glowering at him.
 
“I’ve heard it said both ways. Skating, skateboarding. I looked it up in Urban Dictionary too, so I’m pretty sure I’m right.”
 
“No. There’s something in your tone that makes it all wrong. Like you’re purposely trying to sabotage this.”
 
Charlie opened his mouth in a perfect O. “Gasp! I wouldn’t do that!”
 
“Cut the crap. You’re doing it now. You don’t want to learn, and you don’t want Oliver to either. It’s a control thing. But you can’t control what you don’t fuckin’ get. So take a seat and let me teach him without you freaking out or—why are you looking at me like that?”
 
“Like what?”
 
“I don’t know. You’re doing something weird with your eyes, though. You look spaced out.”
 
“Mmm. I’m trying not to swoon. You look so fierce and you’re holding my hand, Ky. You should feel my heart. It’s beating out of my chest. Seriously.” He fluttered his lashes a few times and bit his bottom lip.
 
I chuckled softly and stepped closer. “Are you flirting with me, Char?”
 
“No, it’s the other way around. You’re flirting with me. Big macho displays really get my motor running. Medium-sized ones do too. I love it when…”
 
Okay, so I lost myself. I tuned out the sound of his voice and concentrated on him. The mischievous glint in his eyes, the proud set of his shoulders, and the way his mouth curled at the corner. He was doing it again. Owning the moment. Taking it over. Charlie looked for weakness in any form, then slyly made adjustments before moving in for the kill. No doubt he thought I’d back down fast and run away. I wasn’t going anywhere.
 
I fixated on his bottom lip and inched closer. He kept talking…something about dick size or muscles…I wasn’t sure, but I liked the cadence of his voice. The teasing lilt and easy humor. I let go of his wrist, brushing his fingers before setting my hand on his hip. He went perfectly still.
 
Before he could ask me what the fuck I was doing, I kissed him.
 
It was more of a press of lips than a grand gesture. And though it might not rank as the kind of kiss that would change the world, I immediately knew it would change mine.
 
Everything in me went on high alert. I’d never been so in tune with a moment. The flutter of his eyelashes, the brush of his nose, and the soft sweetness of his lips against mine. Fuck, it was amazing. Like mind-blowing amazing. He tasted like cherries and smelled like sunshine mixed with something exotic.
 
I couldn’t be sure over the roar of my heart attempting to beat its way out of my chest, but I thought he hummed in approval, so I angled my head slightly to deepen the connection and pulled him closer. If he was anyone else, I probably would have stuck my tongue between his lips and let my hands roam all over his body. I wanted to, but I didn’t want to scare either of us. So I stayed where I was until the need for oxygen became an issue.
 
Then I jumped back two feet and stared at him with my eyes bugged out. “Holy fuck.”
 
Charlie set his fingers on his bottom lip and blinked like he was coming out of a daze. “You kissed me,” he said softly.

 

Purchase at Amazon

 

 

 

Starting from Scratch (Starting From, #2)Starting from Scratch by Lane Hayes
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is book #2, in the Starting From series. This book can be read as a standalone novel. To avoid spoilers, and to further understand the series, I recommend reading these in order.

Charlie is Zero's manager. He is trying to promote this new band, and he is sure they will be successful. He just has to control his feelings for Ky, so it does not interfere in his job.

Kyle AKA "Ky" is attracted to Charlie and he is not sure he should be. Every time they are in the room together, it is quite the sparkler! Even their bandmates have noticed.

Such a fun read. I love the banter. These characters are fun, & a very rich and emotional investment. I also loved seeing some of the previous favorites in this one. There was heat, a little mystery, and some serious story. Cannot wait for the next installment!


***This early copy was given in exchange for an honest review only.

View all my reviews

 

 

 

Meet the Author:

 

Lane Hayes is grateful to finally be doing what she loves best. Writing full-time! It’s no secret Lane loves a good romance novel. An avid reader from an early age, she has always been drawn to well-told love story with beautifully written characters. These days she prefers the leading roles to both be men. Lane discovered the M/M genre a few years ago and was instantly hooked. Her debut novel was a 2013 Rainbow Award finalist and subsequent books have received Honorable Mentions, and won First Prize in the 2016 and 2017 Rainbow Awards. She loves red wine, chocolate and travel (in no particular order). Lane lives in Southern California with her amazing husband in a newly empty nest.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram

 

Giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

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