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review 2018-04-25 07:10
Audio Blitz - Leaning Into Touch

 

Title:  Leaning Into Touch

Series: Leaning Into Stories, #4

Author: Lane Hayes

Narrator: Nick J. Russo

Publisher:  Lane Hayes

Original Publication Date: October 5, 2017

Heat Level: 4 - Lots of Sex

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 80k words

Genre: Romance, Bisexual, Humor, Second Chance, Friends to Lovers, San Francisco, Office

 

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Synopsis:

 

Josh Sheehan is unlucky in love and now… newly unemployed. He’s not sure what to do next, but he’s sure he should give up on romance. Especially after last time. His friends warned him that falling for the hunky Irishman was a bad idea. Josh can’t help feeling torn even though he knows it’s best to move on. But when an unexpected dose of family drama blindsides him, Josh finds himself leaning on the one man he’s supposed to forget.

 

Finn Gallagher is driven by success. He makes no secret that building a name for his tech company is his number one goal. Finn left home a decade ago with a ton of regret, a heavy heart, and a vow to never repeat the same mistake twice. However, there is something undeniably appealing about the self-deprecating man with the silly sense of humor that makes it difficult for Finn to remember why falling for Josh is a bad idea. It soon becomes clear they’re both in deeper than they intended. There is no way to remain untouched. And there is so much to gain, if they’re brave enough to lean in.

 

Listen to an audio excerpt & purchase at Audible

 

 

 

 

Leaning Into Touch (Leaning Into, #4)Leaning Into Touch by Lane Hayes
My rating: 3 of 5 stars


This book is technically the 4th book in the series, though it is labeled as book #3 in the Leaning Into Stories series. This book can be read as a standalone novel. To avoid spoilers and have a greater understanding of the series, I recommend reading these books in order.

Josh is unsure what he wants to do with his future, now that his current job is complete. He is trying to work this out as he runs into an ex that he has never really gotten over. Can he trust his feelings to try again with Finn, even though he is a mess about the rest of his life?

Finn never wanted to say goodbye in the past to Josh. Running into him repeatedly lately feels like fate taking a hand. Can he convince the skittish man to give him another chance?

This story just stole my heart. These characters so obviously belong together. I loved the very real heartache they expressed. I also felt the heat with the sexy times. Really good read and addition to the series. The narrator did an amazing job on the different voices, where you can tell each character apart. Was a great experience, as the different accents, and inflections were very heartfelt. 


***This 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 were winners in the 2016 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

 

 

 

Meet the Narrator:

 

Nick is an award winning narrator with a fan following for his work in fiction, specifically in the romance genre. His performances in two of Amy Lane’s books, Beneath the Stain and Christmas Kitsch, made him the recipient of Sinfully M/M Book Review’s Narrator of the Year – 2015. When he’s not in the booth, Nick enjoys spending time with his wife, Jessica, and kids, (aka their beagle Frank and cat Stella), drumming in his cover band, exploring rural back roads with his wife on his motorcycle, or being enthralled in a tabletop role playing game with his friends.  

 

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text 2018-04-24 07:10
New Release Blitz - In Azgarth's Shadow

 

Title:  In Azgarth's Shadow

Author: Cassie Sweet

Publisher:  NineStar Press

Release Date: April 23, 2018

Heat Level: 1 - No Sex

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 94100

Genre: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, LGBT, steampunk, fantasy, friends to lovers, fae

 

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Synopsis:

 

When popular artist Nicholas Alexandre is shot and killed in a patron’s bedroom and his body dumped in Whitechapel, it is up to the talents of Drs. Mikhail Stanslovich and Dante Savoy to bring him back to life. Since the death of his beloved sister a few months before, Nicholas has lamented his pact with the fae master, Azgarth—for the world of the fae is one of broken promises and terrifying illusions.

 

Fae agent, Roman Cetanni has spent his tenure as one of Azgarth’s representatives trying to shield his charges from the fae master’s wrath. But what once seemed a division of worlds has now morphed until the lines between the human and fae world are blurred.

 

Even as Roman tries to help Nicholas recover from his injuries, a new threat looms. Lately more beings from the fae have invaded the human realm, and Oiredon, another fae master, wishes an alliance with Roman and his charges to aid in overthrowing Azgarth. In these uncertain times, one thing is for certain: war has come to the fae and the lives of the humans they’ve touched hang in the balance.

 

Excerpt:

 

In Azgarth’s Shadow

Cassie Sweet © 2018

All Rights Reserved

 

Chapter One

 

Light caressed Lady Clarissa’s bare breasts, creating interesting shadows as supplied by the long dark hair that cascaded over her shoulders in tousled curls. The strands revealed as much as they hid. She lay on the bed, gaze fixed out the window, staring at the moonlight. A pensive expression filled her lovely face. She didn’t do pensive well. Pouting and preening were more in line with her nature. Oh, there were the intrigues, instigations, and incidents, but they were solely to amuse.

 

“How much longer, Nicholas?”

 

“Not too much, my dear.”

 

Nicholas Alexandre put the finishing touches on the canvas and stepped back from his work. He’d painted her as Tatiana from A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Most people assumed Shakespeare wrote the play as a fanciful comedy. What they didn’t know, or understand, was the fact the Bard wrote it from his experiences of the fae realm.

 

Lady Clarissa was as much Tatiana as any woman Nicholas had ever known. Petty and jealous, she lived in a world where her needs and desires were met at the cost of those around her. He indulged her because her behavior, though outrageous, amused him. He enjoyed the way her schemes horrified society. These days, it was the only thing that lifted his grief.

 

He studied the details of the painting, not quite satisfied with the illumination. Not to worry, he’d add flourishes later. For now, he was exhausted and wanted only to pack up his paints and—

 

The door burst open and banged against the wall.

 

“You wretched whore!”

 

Lady Clarissa screamed and grabbed at a sheet to shield her naked torso from her enraged husband. “My heart, it’s not what you think.”

 

Sir Rodderick Danworth laughed and held the dueling pistol pointed at Nicholas’s stomach. “You expect me to believe that? In my own bedroom?”

 

Nicholas wiped paint from his brush, unperturbed that the angry husband threatened his life. “As you see, I came here to work. I’m nothing more than a humble painter.”

 

The laugh this time came out bitter, pained. “There is nothing humble about you. Do your promises mean nothing?”

 

A prick of conscience and a slight brush of regret. “My word is still good, but my purse is not subject to the whims of honor. I still need to eat and live. I have a grieving mother to support.”

 

The fact his mother hadn’t left her bed since his sister’s death, notwithstanding.

Rodderick kept his gaze focused on Nicholas, much as a hunter might a wild animal. Something stirred in the depths of his eyes, not entirely of the man himself. “You are nothing more than a deceiver. A liar.”

 

Nicholas inclined his head in a subtle acknowledgment of the accusation and let his suspicions fall to the ground unvoiced. “And so I am what the world has made me.”

Realization and pain morphed into fury, filling Rodderick’s eyes. He fought an inner demon that shone in the dark depths. The gun went off.

 

Nicholas watched in horror as the shot struck him true. Crimson bloomed across the front of his white shirt, spreading like paint through a jar of mineral spirits. Odd how no pain registered.

 

The paintbrush dropped from fingers that no longer worked. Sound became a distant, hollow thing. A scream came from behind him, but even that had the quality of a train entering a tunnel, the whistle fading into the dark earth.

 

If he’d had the ability, Nicholas would have laughed. A mortal wound would not kill one such as him; it only released him into the hands of the fae master, Azgarth. And therein lay his real fear. Servitude on this plane was one of commerce, a way to provide for his family in the manner they’d become accustom. Being one of the chosen in the fae realm for eternity was not the thing of beauty Azgarth promised. The thing he’d seen welling in Rodderick’s eyes.

 

The only one to derive any pleasure from such an association was Azgarth himself. However, it might give him a chance to see Juliana again. To see if she’d been taken into the fae realm on her death and protected.

 

Rodderick stood over him, his face white, lips pale. Tears streamed down his face. The darkness had faded from his eyes. “Look what you made me do.”

 

He was unsure if Rodderick meant Nicholas, Clarissa, or Azgarth. He moved his arm to try to cover the wound and staunch the flow, but could do nothing more than watch as the blood began to soak into the carpet beneath.

 

Lady Clarissa finally rose from the bed. She stood over Nicholas, looking down on him.

 

Her mouth was pinched with displeasure, no doubt for the stains that ruined the Aubusson. “I knew your jealousy would one day be your downfall.”

 

Rodderick still held the pistol. Disbelief pulled his mouth down at the corners. “I’ve killed him.”

 

Nicholas tried to inform Rodderick that he was very much mistaken—he still lived and heard every word they said. The one to kill him was much worse than Rodderick could ever imagine.

 

Lady Clarissa took Rodderick by the arm. “No. We will keep this between the two of us.

 

Call Charles and have him dump the body in Whitechapel. No one will bat an eye for one more murder in that part of town.”

 

Rodderick nodded mutely. He started out of the room, then turned back as Nicholas took one last shuddery breath.

 

Purchase:

NineStar Press | Amazon | Smashwords | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

 

 

 

Meet the Author:

 

Cassie Sweet lives in beautiful Pensacola, Florida and often enjoys watching the Blue Angels do practice flyovers from the window in her writing nook. Growing up with a great love for the Grimm’s Fairytales and the original Star Trek, her stories might involve paranormal elements, space travel, or a combo platter of both.

 

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text 2018-04-24 07:05
Release Blitz - Friend Zone

 

Friend Zone

by Nicole Blanchard

Publication Date: April 24, 2018

Genres: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance

 

 

Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks | Google Play

Purchase Print: Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon Canada | Barnes & Noble | EverAfter Romance | The Book Depository

 

Liam Walsh is just a roommate. Maybe if Charlie St. James repeats it enough, she’ll stop lusting after him. Not that it matters how she feels anyway, because Liam will always see her as one of the boys. Hell, he’s the one who gave her the nickname Charlie as a joke. Well, the joke’s on her. Now that she is confined to less than 1,000 square feet with him, she can’t stop thinking about how it would feel to get just a little bit closer.

 

Charlie St. James is off limits. She’s been Liam Walsh’s best friend since grade school. He thought it wouldn’t be a big deal to let her crash with him when she needed a place to stay, but he was dead wrong. Knowing only a thin wall separates them when they sleep, that she’s naked in the shower while he lays in bed fantasizing about her, is unbearable. When their cozy two bedroom goes from friend zone to war zone, they’ll either burn up the sheets or go down in flames.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nicole

About Nicole Blanchard:

 

 Nicole Blanchard is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of gritty romantic suspense and heartwarming new adult romance. She and her family reside in the south along with their two spunky Boston Terriers and one chatty cat.

 

Amazon | Website| Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Goodreads | Newsletter | Reader Group | Bookbub

 

 

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review 2018-04-22 21:49
A nostalgic re-read after 45 years
Plague Ship / Voodoo Planet (Ace Double, D-345) - Andre Norton

Rating: 3.5* of five

Why not more stars, as this is a sentimental favorite? Because I'm rereading it at closer-to-70-than-4o instead of closer-to-10-than-20. It's dated, of course, but it's still a thumping good read for its wonderful interconnectedness to the other parts of Norton's universe: the Forerunners, the Salariki (a catlike people from Planet Sargol), the gems so bewitchingly described...after all, gems are perfect high-value low-bulk trade goods...the horrible, misery-sowing religious professionals, the Patrol, the finny rockets.

As I'm rereading at a time in life where I've had more and vastly enriching experiences translating ideas from page to screen, or at least trying to, I kept looking for the modern technology to slot into the story. It was surprisingly easy to do. Also surprisingly easy was gaying it up. When the <I>Agatha Christie's Marple</i> adapters showed the way to tart up a fairly drab story, by today's TV standards, was to chuck a gay subplot into it, I was galvanized. Heck fire, most of it was already there already! Like with Dame Agatha's stuff, Grand Master Norton's practically has footnotes saying "re-interpret this passage, 21st century storyteller" and wowee toledo does the Solar Queen (heh) have the goods.

The cover of the edition I'm posting is the one I had as a youth. The Kindle Megapack is more convenient, of course, but I still sigh wistfully at the laughable cover art from an era when we hadn't even been to the Moon yet.

Had I been consulted, I'd've told Reed Hastings' people to skip rebooting <I>Lost in Space</i> (which was a dog in 1966 and is a prettier dog in 2018) and instead *make* an episodic entertainment of the Solar Queen chronicles. Someone should...all the elements are there. The youthful, handsome protagonist Dane leaving school, joining the crew he bonds with, growing as a man and as a trader with lurches forward and swattings backward.

I don't know if modern (under-45) readers would have the patience to mentally update the old tech (space ships with mag-tape computers?!) but I'd say this series is a decent place to test the tepidarium of Papaw's stories.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-04-21 20:01
Broken Heart by Tammy Faith (2016 Review)
Broken Heart - Tammy Faith

Broken Heart by Tammy Faith
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Phoebe Stephen's life drastically changes when she awakes from an attack - an attack she can't remember. Giving in to the fear, to the emotional insecurities, she strives to keep it hidden from all who care for her. But such brutal violence takes its toll and can't remain hidden for long, especially when love is at stake.

(WARNING: This review contains MAJOR spoilers.)

I received this book in exchange for an honest review. My thanks to Tammy Faith for giving me the opportunity!

Upon being given the opportunity to read this debut novel, I admittedly had to mull over whether it would ultimately capture my interest. Romance as a genre can be a very extreme hit or miss with me, but I almost always prefer it involving paranormal aspects or erotic content as a focus point. Despite these factors however, I finally decided to give it a go even though the blurb didn't particularly appeal; which had nothing to do with the implied delicate subject matter, I might add, it simply struck me as rather flat, as Contemporary New Adult often does. I was happy I finished it though, as I detest having to leave a book before it concludes.

The story of Phoebe and Crisanto could've been considered a relationship fantasied about by the young and naive - it was mind-numbingly perfect and a little ridiculous. Sure, they battled through some serious issues, broke up and got back together more than once, but their connection was formed in childhood and they essentially needed each other to properly function. Over and over I was reminded how they were meant to be, how their souls were joined; mostly tedious ramblings that repeatedly played on my nerves. Phoebe's life often revolved around Cris and his rise to fame (she moved twice, following him as he succeeded in his sports career), as it appeared "his dream" was the only one that mattered. I foresaw the happy ending, thus the numerous occasions they appeared to be in jeopardy failed to cause uncertainty or concern. A lot of romance material shares this very trait, but I've found it can still be done whilst successfully creating sense of edge-of-your-seat excitement. Unfortunately, this one fell quite short.

It wasn't all bad however, as I found myself impressed with some of the dialogue and narrative that related to life's habit of being unfair and difficult; it was truly quote-worthy at times and I appreciated the good writing (even though as a whole it was rife with spelling errors). The sexual abuse was also handled well, and added a touch of mystery amongst the awfulness of the situation - yet in the end the identity of the rapist made little sense. She was friends with Cris for most of his life and never, even once, met his father? I believe such a glaringly questionable plot-hole should've probably been addressed, but I assume Faith wanted to shock her readers, therefore who better than the parent of the beloved boyfriend?

I can't say I came to care for the characters, nor the story to a large degree. It was a quick read, with the timeline regularly racing ahead and skimming over a lot of time. I became confused at a point when one of the scenes from the past didn't quite add up in the scheme of things, but that could've been my own oversight or just another problem on the list.

In conclusion - Whilst I definitely believe this book held potential, it needs revision and editing. Also, the lovey-dovey definitely became a bit much, as it seemed to me to be rather unhealthy. Not my thing, I can say that for sure!

Notable Quote:

I'm glad we didn't give up when things got ugly, because maybe love isn't supposed to be easy. Maybe it's supposed to be tough, to make you prove to yourself that this person is worth fighting for, to hold on tight when everything seems to want to tear you apart.

© Red Lace 2016

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Source: redlace.reviews/2018/04/21/broken-heart-by-tammy-faith-2016-review
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