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review 2018-07-19 01:18
Maybe not so much with the candy canes and pine cones this time but...
Ravensong - T.J. Klune

THERE IS SO MUCH EPIC AND AWESOME...SO FREAKIN' MUCH!!!

 

If you asked me which book I liked more 'Wolfsong' or 'Ravensong' my very honest answer would be neither...I was equally blown away by them. I pondered this question long and hard and at the end of it all I knew beyond a certainty that sometimes there can be more than one.

 

'Ravensong' is Gordo's story and by proxy it's also Marks story because their lives are to entangled to ever separate. But whether you think of it as Gordo's story or Mark's or Gordo and Mark's which truly in many ways it's all 3 of these. What it isn't is a light fluffy romance. It's dark and gritty, it's about broken trust and betrayal, it's about rebuilding things that have shattered into a million pieces. 

 

We met both Mark and Gordo in 'Wolfsong' and while I liked Gordo I couldn't help but also think that he was a bit of a dick at times and you know what, he was but the difference is I now know why and I honestly can't blame him for how he's behaved...he's got his reasons trust me, he's got plenty of reasons.

 

The other thing that I learned from this book is that the Bennett pack is unlike any pack that's ever been and their spirit is indomitable. Wolves or humans they are all a force to be reckoned with.

 

I really, really wanted to make this one last as much as I wanted to devour it...so I decided I was only going to read it for an hour at night when I went to bed...yep, that's right just one hour...and just one more hour...and just...you see where things went here right? 

 

While Gordo and Mark were the major focus for this story, make no mistake there is more so much more happening...there's a war coming one that started brewing in 'Wolfsong' forces are aligning, sides are being chosen, events are transpiring some we may see coming but others I have no doubt that will blindside us all.

 

As many of TJ Klune's books as I've read and there have been a few...I've read all of Bear, Otter and the Kid, How To Be A Normal Person, Immemorial Years, Into This River I Drown, etc. etc. ok, I've pretty much read them all or listened to the audio or done both and I've loved every word of every story but this series is the only one that takes me out of myself, with both of these stories as soon as I tune into the story I tune out of everything that's around me and while I can't say this has never happened for me with a story those times are far and few between that an author writes a story that has captivated me so strongly.

 

I can honestly say I've only got one...well actually 2 issues here...the first one being...where's the audio book? I need this like water and of course even more important and I'm sure there are those who agree with me...where the hell is the next book? Shouldn't we have had that one last week? Seriously TJ...why you be torturing us like this?

 

Ok, seriously this book this series it's AMAZING!!! And you all need to read it if you haven't already...I'm not a big fan of shifter books but I am such an over the moon fan of 'Green Creek' and yes, I could go on and on about how much I enjoyed this book and how much I'm looking forward to whatever comes next...but honestly I think you've figured that out by now...EPIC AND AWESOME!!! It's all here.

 

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

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review 2018-07-18 23:46
Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree....how lovely are thy branches..
Color of You - C.S. Poe,Greg Boudreaux

See this is what happens when you see the authors name and the narrators name and you go gimme' I want that...you end up reading a Christmas story.

 

There was a lot about this story that I enjoyed. First off we've got a high school music teacher who wears bow ties...sorry, my high school music teacher wore bow ties and I have to admit he was really nice...not exactly a hottie...although he did have two sons...oops, sorry I squirreled back to the story. Bowen also has a rare condition known as Chromesthesia, a form of synesthesia in which sounds are translated to colors by the mind and for Bowen it also contributed to his ability to have perfect pitch.

 

Bowen Merlin has accepted a position teaching music in Lancaster, New Hampshire. So he's packed up his life in New York leaving behind his best friend and roommate, Rachel and heads for the beautiful New England countryside. Where he quickly learns that he's not only teaching music but with only a two or three weeks to go before the holidays he's also got a Christmas concert to organize and life quickly becomes busy but not to busy to keep him from noticing the Felix Hansen, owner of Snowy Ridge Apple Orchard. Neither of these men are what they appear to be but what Bowen quickly realizes is that what they are is a match made in heaven. While most people wouldn't realize it Bowen likes to be the one in charge, while Felix...well, he's more than happy to relinquish control...or at least he would if he could just trust someone enough. Felix has scars and they're not all on the outside but Bowen's determined to show Felix that what they could have together is worth taking a risk.

 

I really liked Bowen. His upbeat and quietly determined personality was just what Felix needed. Felix's past hasn't been good. He's been hurt by the person he loves. The person he should have been able to trust above all else but they failed him.

 

As if there isn't enough going on Felix and Bowen suddenly find themselves embroiled in events that could not only tear them apart but ruin them both professionally as well. I honestly would have gotten more into this part of the story if it had been introduced a bit sooner and the resolution hadn't occurred quite so readily and easily. 

 

Overall, I enjoyed this story and events moved at a steady pace from start to finish but I did feel a little let down by the resolution at the end, it just all seemed a little to quick and easy, but in spite of this I was left having a very enjoyable 6+ hour listening event thanks to the as always wonderful audio narrations of Greg Boudreaux. So maybe this wasn't totally a 4 star read...I don't know but it was definitely a 4 star listen. 

 

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An audio book of 'Color of You' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2018-07-18 22:37
Nothing says "secure in my masculinity" like a pair of manties...
Lace-Covered Compromise - Silvia Violet,Nick J. Russo

I'm serious here. I have no issue with a guy wanting to wear a skirt, a ruffly blouse or silky, lacy panties after all women have been stealing men's fashions literally for decades. Pants originally made for men, high heels...you guessed it men and can I just add here when it comes to the  heels I would gladly let them keep them...anyways, my point is there are manties in this story and me likey the young man who wears them. He's confident and self assured and as it turns out his adversary, one Adam Kingston, discovers that he likes them as well.

 

'Lace-Covered Compromise' is a relatively short, sexy enemies to lovers story about two men doing battle for control of a company and discovering that whether it's business or pleasure everything works better when people are willing to compromise.  Things were hot between Adam and Nate...I mean seriously hot and truthfully I enjoyed the romance part of this story and the conflict between Adam and Nate added some definite tension for these two men and while I appreciated the how comes and whys of said tension at times it just felt like too much.

 

I liked Adam in all of his screwed up glory and his friend Valerie who fate had assigned the arduous task of keeping Adam from running too far off of the rails. I enjoyed Adam's moments of self actualization when he was able to see that who he was wasn't who he wanted to be and that maybe...just maybe Nate wasn't the enemy.

 

Nate was a really good match for Adam and while he wasn't a steamroller he very solidly held his own and it never felt like he was trying to railroad Adam but often times his patience showed in how he may have walked away from Adam when things got to explosive (and not in a good way) but once cooler heads could prevail, he came back and was willing to try again. In hindsight I came to realize that while there was a lot of very hot and steamy sex going one, there was also a lot of relationship development happening outside of the bedroom too.

 

I have to admit this one got rounded up because of the narrator...who was none other than Nick J. Russo an absolute favorite of mine. Once again this narrator is one who I just need to see his name on the audio book and I'm know that my only concern is going to be how much I'll like the actual story because the narration without a doubt will be awesome and once again my faith was not misplaced.

 

'Lace-Covered Compromise' is another one of those books that for me was a hot and steamy romance perfect for enjoying on a hot steamy summer's afternoon...sitting on your patio or balcony or backyard with a nice cool tropical drink in hand...hey, maybe I should have a do-over on this one.

 

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An audio book of 'Lace-Covered Compromise' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2018-07-18 16:32
Ok, so other than the grass, this one was pretty darned cute...
Hearts and Flour - Tara Lain,Ry Forest,Stephen Kurpis

So if you saw my updates on GR than you saw my comment about how 'delicious' was't a word that I'd use to describe the smell of a freshly mowed lawn...sorry but while I do like the smell of a freshly mowed lawn it just doesn't make me hungry. But neither am a raw food fanatic like Micah Truveen (yeah, he's one of the MCs in this story)

 

Micah Truveen is a raw food vegan and he's all about the healthy foods. So when he discovers his customers are flocking to the new cupcake shop up the street...you can well imagine that he blows a gasket and then he goes home to find his sleazeball of a boyfriend, Dharamaram doing the nasty in bed with someone else...well he blows another gasket and really who can blame him? Certainly not I. I was so on board with him kicking his backside to the curb and then heading over to his friends anti-Valentine's party (read orgy) where he meets this incredibly sexy, southern belle...Quentin Darby.

 

Quentin likes his pretty things sexy dresses, stiletto heels and can I just say here...I'm jealous because damn, I can't walk in those things but seems Quentin's a runway queen on them. 

 

Quentin moved to California with his southern grandmother to take care of her. I loved Quentin's grandma...she's awesome, I'd move to Cali to take care of her too. Unfortunately Quentin's got secrets from that he's keeping from her. He's afraid of loosing her love if he tells her that he's gay much less that he's a cross dresser. But Quentin's also not told Micah what he does for a living either...maybe Quentin has a cupcake shop...oopsie, this is going to be an awkward moment.

 

'Hearts and Flour' was from start to finish a light fluffy, cupcake of a read. While Micah and Quentin might have met under questionable circumstances and it was definitely lust at first sight. Take heart dear reader two things did not occur 1. neither of them was with anyone else at said orgy and 2. it was insta-lust not insta-love.

 

"Hearts and Flour" was also a chance for me to check out a couple of new narrators...Rys Forest and Stephen Kurpis and I have to say from a purely audio perspective I enjoyed this one. I'm not sure who read what parts but I'm ok with that as well since I can honestly say I liked it all...however, I will say whoever did the voice of Quentin was awesome. When Quentin was dressed as a woman the narrator gave him this wonderful husky, feminine tone that really gave depth to that character and simply enhanced the image of Quentin that I had in my head...it was spot on. 

 

I'm definitely going to keep an ear tuned for more by these two. At present there's only one other book to their credit that I was able to find on audible and it's also by Ms Lain...so, it looks like I've got at least one more Tara Lain book in my future.

 

If you're looking for something cute and fun to enjoy on audio...let's call it summer listening. You might want to give this one a chance. It's a nice way to pass a bit of time on a too hot to do anything summer afternoon.

 

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An audio book of "Hearts and Flour" was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

 

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review 2018-07-18 15:46
What happens when the person who should be on the right side of the law turns out...
Fire and Flint - Andrew Grey,Greg Tremblay

to be the one who's breaking it.

 

When Pierre Ravelle is assigned to keep an eye on Judge Crawford because he's been receiving threats in the mail he quickly discovers that he'd much rather keep an eye on the judges clerk, Jordan Erichsohn. 

 

Jordan just wants to stay under the radar. Nothing's more important to Jordan than finalizing his adoption of his young son, Jeremiah and while he doesn't want to sit by while his boss gets away with who knows what but he's pretty sure whatever's going on isn't legal. But he the one thing he knows for sure is that his boss has the power to keep this from happening. 

 

As Pierre and Jordan work together to unravel the facts and find crucial evidence to prove what Judge Crawford is doing Pierre's feelings for Jordan and the young Jeremiah grow and as well as finding evidence against the judge, Pierre becomes determined to make sure that Jordan and Jeremiah not only stay together but that they see him as a part of his family too...one day.

 

I really enjoyed this story. I loved both Pierre and Jordan. Pierre was solid and reliable both things that Jordan needed in his life. Pierre was a calming force for Jordan. He may have worried about Jordan's situation but he also thought things through and was calm, rational and planned a course of action that not only got the job done but helped to protect the two people who he'd come to care so much about. 

 

And then we have Jordan and he was this awesome, sweet guy that had this amazing heart and ultimately he stepped up and did what needed to be done despite the risk to himself and Jeremiah. I have to admit this really endeared this character to me. As a parent I understand that dilemma that can come from having to decide between doing what's right and what's going to keep your child safe...nothing's more important to me than the well being of my kids and I think most parents will tell you this, but sometimes in the long run what will keep our children safe and make the world a better place for others has a risk attached to it and choices aren't always as clear cut as we'd like them to be.

 

While the part of this story pertaining to the judge's illegal activities really wasn't very detailed or complex truthfully, I was ok with this. For the most part crimes of this nature are proven and tried based very largely on evidence and gathering this kind of evidence quite honestly can be a long, arduous and boring task...so truthfully I was glad to be spared the details on this.

 

'Fire and Flint' is a sweet, uncomplicated romance and I think for me it was just what I needed at the time. While Andrew Grey's stories don't tend to be long, complicated or convoluted stories and although stories like that can have their own merits, sometimes what's nice to read or in this case listen to is the type of story that's just sweet and simple and as a reader I can follow along without having to create a flow chart to keep track of who's who and what's what and just find myself lost in an enjoyable romance with a touch of mystery or intrigue to keep to add a little excitement. 

 

I have to admit the icing on the cake for me with this one was that it was narrated by someone who is without a doubt one of my favorite audio narrators...Greg Tremblay. I'm not sure if I've got any glowing descriptives left unused when it comes to this narrator. Honestly he's one of maybe 3 or 4 narrators whose audio books I'll buy or ask for to review without having to listen to the audio sample. I have zero doubt as to the quality of what I'll be hearing when I see that Greg Tremblay's the narrator and for me that pretty much says it all as to how much I like and respect him as a narrator.

 

'Fire and Flint' is for me a perfect example of what I would call a 'summer read' it's interesting, with very likable characters an solid but not overly complicated plot and a very sweet and happy ending...summer reads, they're a good thing.

 

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An audio book of 'Fire and Flint' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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