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review 2017-09-12 03:09
There's no place like home...there's no place like...
Trapped in Oz (Tales from Kansas Book 3) - Andrew Grey

'Trapped In Oz' is the third book in Andrew Grey's 'Kansas' series and at the heart of the story is 'home'. Martin Long has a good job and a good home. At least he did until his dad got offered a promotion that's a huge career opportunity for him...to bad it means moving. Suddenly Martin needs to find a new place to live. 

 

Gary Hunter has a house that was left to him by his grandmother and he has a roommate who's less than ideal and needless to say Gary's more than a little relived when said roommate has to move back home. 

 

When Martin calls in response to Gary's ad both men feel like maybe prayers do get answered. It's not love at first sight for these two but they like each other. Martin needs a home someplace where he's comfortable. He's not looking for a palace just someplace nice to call home and when he sees Gary's house he sees potential and offers to help Gary fix things up turning the house the Gary loves into a home where both men can find love and be safe. 

 

Gary knows what it's like to be rejected his family essentially disowned him when he came out as gay and it turned out that the man he thought he was in a relationship with, only  thought of Gary as a booty call. While Martin's never had a boyfriend he lives in fear of his parents learning he's gay. 

 

As Martin begins to move his things into Gary's house and both men begin working together to fix things up, with more than a little help from Martin's awesome mom, feelings begin to grow, get explored and tested.

 

Along with Martin, Gary, their friends and family we get a chance to see a bit of Lyle and Roger the MCs from 'Dumped in Oz' as they befriend Martin and Gary helping Martin come to terms with his sexuality and sharing stories with Gary about his grandmother. 

 

Once again Rusty Topsfield is the narrator for this audio book and his performance was solid, consistent, expressive and added life to the story creating an enjoyable listening experience for what is probably my favorite story in this series.

 

'Trapped in Oz' is a fairly short but sweet story about finding love, coming to terms with your sexuality, coming out and learning that home really is where the heart is.

 

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An audio book of 'Trapped In Oz' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest return.

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review 2017-08-03 16:05
The End of Oz - Danielle Paige

"Hi, Amy," I said. "Are you going to kill me now?"

I really liked this book. It ended on a good note and tied everything together nicely. Although the ending still left me wondering, I think this should be the last book because there's no reason to continue the series after what happened. I loved how Amy evolved since the first book. She became this strong, confident, powerful and caring person. Her and Nox's relationship was one of the things I loved about this series. It was full of love, compassion and trust.

In this book, Dorothy was stripped of her evil and we actually got to know her character from the alternate point-of-views which was great. I felt like I could actually understand how Dorothy felt when she did all of those horrible things to Oz. It's great to show both sides of the story, I applaud Danielle Paige for that.

At the ending, I was tearing up so much because of the feelings and emotions that were being displayed. I'm very glad that I decided to read this series. There were little typos throughout the book, like missing a period after a sentence or a misspelling of a word, but overall it was awesome.

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review 2017-06-28 23:12
Follow the yellow brick road...follow the yellow brick road...follow, follow, follow...
Stuck in Oz - Andrew Grey, Rusty Topsfield

"Stuck In Oz" is the second book in Andrew Grey's 'Tales From Kansas' and while we get a very tiny glimpse of Roger and Lyle, the couple from 'Dumped In Oz' book 1 in this series, 'Stuck In Oz' can easily be read as a standalone. 

 

Jeremy runs from San Diego to Wamego, Kansas with his little brother Petey when their mother dies and he's determined to keep Petey with him. Petey is an adorable, sweet little 3 year old who loves his brother Jeremy. Jeremy is in his early 20s and he adores his brother Petey and would do anything to keep him safe and happy. So he decides that his safest course of action is to go to their Uncle Milt. 

 

Milt wasn't close to his sister but he loves his nephews and takes them in with open arms and welcoming heart. While he wasn't always the most observant person at the party he came through for his nephews with flying colors.  I loved Milt and am really hoping that at some point he will get a story and his own happily ever after. 

 

When Jeremy arrives in town he stops at the local diner and this is where he meets Nate for the first time. Nate's lived his whole life in Wamego and while he seems confident and outgoing he's got his own demons to deal with. As Jeremy and Nate get to know each other Nate's insecurities come to the surface and it's Jeremy's sweet quiet nature and his faith in Nate's ability to overcome his insecurities that helps Nate to take stock of himself and find the determination to be the man that he wants to be.

 

I really enjoyed this one. While Nate and Jeremy were attracted to each other from the start it wasn't love at first sight and we got to see them get to know each other and take their relationship from acquaintances to friends to lovers. The ending was definitely a happy for now with a solid HEA to come.

 

Rusty Topsfield was again the narrator for this second installment of the 'Tales From Oz' series and while his narration in the first book was ok for me...I definitely enjoyed his narration of this one a bit more.

 

The stories in the 'Tales From Kansas' series are short with little angst and a definite feel good undertone and I'm looking forward to seeing what the next one has in store for me and I have to admit I'm really, really hoping for Uncle Milt's story before this series ends...just putting that out there in the universe.

 

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An audio book of 'Stuck In Oz' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2017-06-08 06:39
Dorothy and the Wizard In Oz (Oz #4) by Frank L. Baum
Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz - L. Frank Baum

Had to delete the blog review because it kept showing a larger picture of the book. Being the perfectionist I am sometimes, I just deleted it because it was getting on my nerves and I couldn't figure out what was going on. lol

 

I did enjoy the book, as I always do with the Oz books. Glad to be gradually working my way through these books. It was good to see many of the old characters from the first few books and of course some new ones.

 

Hopefully I will be able to get a couple more finished before the end of the year and can finally say I have a total of two bind ups/6 stories finished. :)

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review 2017-06-04 23:00
We're off to see the wizard...the wonderful wizard of Oz?
Dumped in Oz - Andrew Grey

'Dumped In Oz' is the first book in Andrew Grey's series 'Tales From Kansas' and I liked the story well enough, but nothing about it really put me over the moon. 

 

When Lyle Powers is given the opportunity to transfer to his employers warehouse in central Kansas...he's not thrilled about it, but as his friends point out to him it may just be the change he needs to get himself out of the rut he's let his life slide into and it's only for a year. After giving it some consideration Lyle realizes that while he's not thrilled to be leaving his home, this just might be his opportunity he needs to give both his personal and professional life a re-boot. 

 

When Lyle arrives in small town, somewhere Kansas in spite of his reservations he's surprised to find how much he likes what he sees and while he's resigned to his fate, he's also determined that he's going to make the most of his year in 'Oz'.  He's determined to do his best at work and to get out there and meet people, maybe even make a few friends rather than hiding at home with his television. 

 

It's on one of his trips out to meet people that Lyle meets Roger Kypers. Roger's a local, he's lived in this town all his life, he's also an alcoholic who's fighting hard to stay sober for the sake of his teenage daughter and the restaurant that he's poured his heart and soul into getting off the ground all this from the closet he's hiding in the one that possibly connects Oz to Narnia. 

 

At the heart of this story is a sweet tale of friendship and love. While Lyle and Roger share a mutual attraction I was also left with a very strong feeling of friendship between these two as Lyle tried to be Roger's friend and help him navigate his fears over coming out and living life as a gay man. It's not so much living life as a gay man that Roger fears, but what he might lose if he does. Roger knows that his ex-wife...(let's just think 'wicked witch of the west' here), is determined to keep their daughter from him, if he doesn't 'act normally' (insert stay in his closet here). 

 

It's not only the love and support of his awesome daughter and his newfound friend and lover Lyle but a band of strong and supportive munchkins (think community here)

that Roger soon begins to realize that maybe...just maybe, his life can be more than just his restaurant and the occasional visit with his daughter...maybe, he can have a family...a real family that he loves and that loves him back.

 

As Roger finally begins to feel like life is on track where is daughter is concerned, he also realizes that there's still one unanswered question that keeps his happiness hanging in the balance...'can he be enough to keep Lyle traveling down the yellow brick road with him?'

 

I really liked the premise of this story and I like Roger and Lyle. Lyle was a genuinely nice guy and while he didn't always agree with Roger and felt that Roger was being a bit to timid about things he wasn't a bully in his actions and efforts to get Roger to see that standing up for himself wasn't the wrong thing to do it was the necessary thing, not just for himself but for his daughter's sake as well.

 

Roger's insecurities to me were very largely connected to his concerns over losing his daughter, whom he so clearly loved and adored. Roger's love for his daughter and the author's ability to make me as a reader feel the strength of if was one of my favorite things about Roger.  

 

I also really liked the ending for this story. I was very much left feeling like these two men were standing together on their yellow brick road and heading in the same direction towards a much deserved happily ever after.

 

The narrator for this audio book was Rusty Topsfield and while it's not my first audio book by this narrator I have to admit to being a little uncertain about how I feel. In terms of my basic 'things I look for in an audio book' he ticks the items on the list but somehow the voices he gives me don't quite match up to what's in my head. So just like when I listened to the audio book of Santino Hassell's 'Sutphin Boulevard' it wasn't a matter of bad or good...more a case of I just didn't connect with this narrators voices.

 

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An audiobook of 'Dropped in Oz' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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