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review 2017-08-19 17:01
So maybe I should have just read the book...
Legal Tender - Andrew Grey

I'm really torn on this one because in all honesty I wanted to really love this story. The blurb sounded so good that I couldn't really imagine not loving the story...and although I didn't love this quite as much as I'd anticipated there was a lot about the story that worked for me and I truly enjoyed.

 

While the story worked for me overall my biggest distraction came from the audio side of things and this is where I'm really torn...you see, I like John Solo. I sort of have a soft spot for him because it was his narration of Marie Sexton's 'Trailer Trash' that made me decide to start listening to and reviewing audio books. However, with this one the narration just didn't work for me and in all honesty I have to say I think this was a little bit me as well, but we'll come back to this later.

 

'Legal Tender' is the fourth book in Andrew Grey's 'Art Series' and while the blurb for the story intrigued me and sounded really good. In the end it turned out to be just 'ok'. Timothy has returned to his Grampy's home after finding out that his grandfather had left everything to him and not his drug addicted mother. Timothy left home at an early age after his mother betrayed him in the worst way possible. He's cut her out of his life and I say good for him on that one. She didn't deserve to be anyone's mother let alone someone as sweet as Timothy.

 

Coming back to Grampy's house has also reunited Timothy with his childhood friend, Dieter (one of the MCs from the first book in this series). Timothy also discovers that his Grampy's stories from his childhood were clues to a heritage that he'd been unaware of. Discovering a cache of old coins brings Timothy to Dieter's door in need of help from Dieter's partner, Gerald and introducing him to Joiner, whom Gerald task with finding out how they can enable Timothy to keep a rare coin that the American Government claims belongs to them as it was never monetized or so they claim.

 

As Joiner works to find a way for Timothy to keep his grandfather's coin the two men get to know each other and their initial attraction to each other becomes more, but the real question is will what they have be enough to keep them together when Timothy finally opens up about why he refuses to have anything to do with his mother. 

 

I loved all the different aspects of this story and how things played out slowly revealing the connections. 

 

Ok now for the audio portion of this review. As I said before I have a bit of a soft spot for John Solo so this pains me a little to say but for me the biggest problem was the audio. Overall the voices just weren't clicking for me. Gerald's voice was stilted and just seemed to have an arrogant tone to it and while I like confident...arrogant just doesn't do it for me and I found myself not liking Gerald a whole lot and then there was Timothy.  I wanted Timothy's voice to reflect my image of a man in his twenties who was sweet and while confident at times held a hint of insecurity especially when confronted with his past. I wanted to hear all the emotion in his voice when he spoke about his grampy, his mother, the things that happened to him as a child. What I felt like I was getting was a pre-pubescent boy. I liked Timothy and his voice just wasn't what I was envisioning it to be. So truthfully this wasn't a right or wrong thing it was just a case of it didn't work for me. However, on the upside Joiner's voice was ok for me, but still the over all narration just didn't work for me. 

 

It's usually at this point that I really know whether or not an audio book truly worked for me because if it worked for me the audio book gets an overall rating but in this case while the book would have gotten 4 stars from me. In all honesty the audio sits somewhere around 2.5 - 3 stars. So I'm calling it a day at 3.5 stars and having faith that my next John Solo audio book will be a better experience.

 

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

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text 2017-08-19 16:33
Yes, yes and so much yes.
The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue - Mackenzi Lee

I'll write a real review for this soon, but since I just finished it this morning I'll have to do a little more pondering before I write. Otherwise it'll just be an entire review filled with something along the lines of...

 

OMG PERCY AND MONTY ARE SO CUTE AND FELICITY IS A BADASS AND PIRATES GUYS! PIRATES. BUT ALSO ROMANCE AND AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

 

So, yeah. I'll sit for a bit and figure out what I want to write. I LOVED this book though. It was so brilliantly written, overall. The plot was great, the characters were stellar, the attention to detail in the settings was amazing. Ugh. I love Mackenzie Lee. I do. I don't care who knows it.

 

I need much more Monty and Percy very very soon.

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review 2017-08-19 03:17
Sometimes it's the little things that make all the difference...
Three Player Game (Bluewater Bay Book 20) - Jaime Samms

'Three Player Game' is a menage story that starts with an established couple who have always wanted a third person in their relationship and they've also known for a while who they wanted that third person to be...the problem here is that maybe he doesn't want to be that person or maybe he's just afraid to allow himself to be 'that person'.

 

Vince and Pete have been a couple for a while now and having a third person in their relationship has pretty much always been a part of their plan. Vince wants that third person to be Lee, a man he has a work history with and while Pete's not as sure as Vince initially that he wants it to be Lee, he's leaning towards 'yes' on the issue and definitely willing to give the man strong consideration.  Lee's the holdout. He's given his trust before it left him hurt both physically and emotionally to the point where he's spent the ensuing years closing himself off from the world believing that he'll only be safe if he's on his own. Vince and Lee have some walls to break down if they plan on making their duo a trio permanently.

 

There's definitely some history here both between Vince and Pete as I said they come into the story as an established couple and between Vince and Lee on a working level only. As well both Vince and Lee have a connection to their boss, Blair Carruthers, whose story is told in Bluewater Bay #12 How the Cookie Crumbles. Which I admit I haven't read yet, however, I didn't have a problem parsing out the connections pre-Bluewater Bay as the author provides the background as the story goes along.

 

I didn't even really have a problem with the fact that this story has a menage grouping...my concern was with the fact that it was an established couple adding to their dynamic. This is probably one of my least favorite scenarios. So I have to admit I waffled on this one for a long time before I finally decided I was going to bite the bullet and read the book. Initially I was a little hesitant but things ultimately clicked into place for me and I ended up really enjoying this one.

 

There were a number of factors that helped to make it work...the first one being the author, I really like Jaime Samms. She's the author of one of my favorite menage books 'The Foster Family' and it's based on the same premise of an established couple adding a third to their relationship. So having already experienced this dynamic with her, I had faith. The fact that in general I've really enjoyed the Bluewater Bay books that I've read so far also added to my faith that this would work. Ultimately though it came down to the story and luckily for me there were a lot of little things that I liked about this one.

 

I was good with the fact that the story started with Vince and Pete already established as a couple since it would have probably made for an overly long story that would have lost my interest if it had gotten bogged down with their beginnings as well

 

For Vince and Pete adding Lee to the dynamics wasn't an easy feat to say the least. Lee was more than a little resistant and there were times that Vince and Pete had their reservations as well, which made sense...since the consequences of adding another person to your relationship is far more life altering than buying a new set of dishes especially when that person 'seems' to be resistant to the idea.  I'd be doing a lot more soul searching and second guessing myself than they did if it was me...just sayin'. 

 

I really liked all three of these men...Vince, whose work and home personas were essentially polar opposites. At work he was the gopher, that Lee bossed around,  he was calm, efficient, organized and incredibly observant, taking orders without hesitation but at home he was the one giving the orders and while he was still all those other things they were expressed differently and utilized to provide the care that his partners needed.

 

Pete like Vince had polar opposite work and home personas only at work he was the one organizing and ordering people around, making sure things got done how and when they needed to be. But at home he was the one who wanted to give up control to let someone else be in charge and care for him but Pete was also a nurturer and caregiver. Pete was also high maintenance and while Vince loved him tremendously taking care of Pete's needs also drained him. A reality that was apparent to both Vince and Pete and one of the contributing factors to their desire to add a third person to the relationship.

 

While Lee was prickly and obstinate hiding his gentler more caring side and his need to give up control and trust someone else to provide him with what he needed and wanted. For Vince meeting Pete's needs was like dealing with a force of nature, Lee's needs meshed more with Vince's and allowed him to restore some of his own balance at the same time.

 

Sexually the dynamics were different between each of these men as a pair and somehow things came together to fill the missing spaces in Pete and Vince's relationship creating a place for each of them that was unique. 

 

Making their relationship work turned out to be a learning experience for all three of these men.  Vince had to learn to trust in himself when it came to Lee. That he would be able to make things work without Pete as their buffer. Pete had to learn to step back and allow Vince and Lee find their own way to each other and Lee...well, Lee had the most to learn. He had to learn to trust not just Vince and Pete but himself...that he could make choices that weren't always going to get him hurt and to trust that he was not only worth being loved and cared for but he deserved it.

 

There was a bit of a BDSM flavor to this one and I am admittedly not an expert on this lifestyle by any means based on other stories that I've read I'd say it was more like an appetizer than the entree which I have to admit works just fine for me.  

 

This one worked for me and while I can't define one major reason. I would have to say that it was more a case of a bunch of little things coming together to take me back to Bluewater Bay for yet another enjoyable reading experience.

 

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A copy of 'Three Player Game' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2017-08-18 22:01
Well that was interesting...yeah, let's go with interesting...
Dim Sum Asylum - Rhys Ford

I read 'Dim Sum Asylum' back in June when the e-book was first release...what can I say it's Rhys Ford so I'm all over that stuff. Plus...hello? Dragons. Needless to say I was not disappointed and I loved it 5 dragon stars worth. So when the audio book became available and it was narrated by Greg Tremblay...who was I to turn the opportunity down...my momma didn't raise no fools...ok, maybe one or two of them but trust me I'm not on that list.

 

So not to re-invent the wheel or anything but here's the link to my first review...

Dim Sum Asylum Book Review

 

Now that we've got that out of the way lets talk about the audio book. As I said it's narrated by Greg Tremblay so what makes this interesting is that this is the first time I've listened to an audio book from this narrator that hasn't quite worked for me and honestly that's not even how I want to phrase this because overall he did an awesome job and I loved his character voices...all except one and that was Roku. Don't get me wrong here, the voice that Greg Tremblay used for Roku wasn't a bad or annoying voice by any means. It just didn't quite work for me and by didn't quite work...I mean it changed my rating from 5 dragon stars to 4.5 dragon stars.

 

So really not a huge impact...I still loved this book and I still think Greg Tremblay is fantastic when it comes to narrating. I think this is more a case of subjective opinions and mine was a little bit different. Was Mr. Tremblay wrong...no, was I wrong...again no. We just viewed the character's voice differently. 

 

Once I settled in to the narrator's interpretation of Roku's voice I also settled in to enjoying this story all over again. I don't tend to do a lot of re-reads because honestly...I get bored but that doesn't mean I don't like to enjoy a story more than once so what I've discovered is that for me audio books are a wonderful solution to being able to enjoy a well liked story and it also allows me to enjoy other past times such as my quilting, cross-stitch, unpacking boxes...because this is a thing in my live right now and whether it's something I want to do or something I have to do, enjoying an audio book really makes it a much more enjoyable experience. for me, especially if it's a book by a favorite author being read by a favorite narrator.

 

If you enjoyed reading 'Dim Sum Asylum' than check out the audio book it's so worth going back to Chinatown to be able to spend time with Roku and Trent. 

 

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An audio book of 'Dim Sum Asylum' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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text 2017-08-18 16:39
Reading progress update: I've read 75%.
The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue - Mackenzi Lee

I hereby profess my undying love for Henry Montague, and his rakish ways! The banter and tension between him and Percy is giving me life this week, since it hasn't exactly been the best of weeks by any measure. The fact that today is Friday and that I can probably do nothing this evening but lay around and read is the only thing keeping me together.

 

That, and Felicity's boundless wit and venom:

 

“Just thinking about all that blood." I nearly shudder. "Doesn't it make you a bit squeamish?"

 

"Ladies haven't the luxury of being squeamish about blood," she replies, and Percy and I go fantastically red in unison. 

 

I do love this book though. Endlessly. I think it's destined for the favorites shelf.

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