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review 2018-07-22 14:35
kinda creeps up on ya!
Edge Jump - Elizabeth Noble
Independent reviewer for Divine Magazine, I was gifted my copy of this book direct from the author, that I write a review was not required. Brett retired from professional ice hokey and now runs the centre his parents set up, to teach. His sister, Celia and her partner, Rylan, has moved onto ice dancing. But a senseless crime takes Celia away from both Brett and Rylan, and brings them both together at their darkest time. Then Rylan is hit with a far worse tragedy. Can they get through this, together? You know, sometimes, you read a blurb, and your brain plots away, and that's what you expect from the book?? Then the book actually goes off in a way you did not see coming?? And you loved it for it?? This book, right here! I have NO idea what I thought would happen here, but I was very surprised with it! It really did kinda-creep-up-on-me!! Brett and Rylan have chemistry, right from the start. But Brett keeps himself back a bit, and it pulls at you, the way Rylan reacts to that. There is a lot of pulling on the heart strings here! I loved the way Brett gradually introduced Rylan to BDSM, and that Rylan took to it, like a duck to water. I didn't think it overly explicit though and I LIKED that here, but that might just be me! I did not get how Celia and her fiance's deaths would play out. Did NOT see that one coming at me, not at all! Rylan's recovery from what happened is long and painful, but you feel it **taps chest* right here. Every time his brain threw self doubt at him. Every time Brett pulled him out of it, and you cheer, when he finally is able to get back on the ice. And when Rylan listens to Brett when he says "I'm not going anywhere!" I've read a couple of other books by Ms Noble, and I do like how she can switch from paranormal, to contemporary, to more sexy books. High skill of an author, I think! It crept up on, this book, it really did! 4.5 stars **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

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review 2018-07-21 19:56
On the Ice (Stick Side #1) by Amy Aislin 3.5 Review!
On the Ice (Stick Side #1) - Amy Aislin

For college sophomore Mitch Greyson, determination and persistence are the name of the game if he wants to make it as a professional hockey player. A busy schedule of practices, games, classes, homework, two part-time jobs—and now, working with a tutor to help him pass the class he’s failing so that he can keep his scholarship—shouldn’t leave him with enough time to flirt with the NHL player in town. But that doesn’t stop him.

Placed on the injured reserve list until his broken arm heals, NHL defenseman Alex Dean is using the time off to be with his ailing grandfather and get a head start on the book he’s been commissioned to write. He doesn’t expect to get roped into a tutoring gig, especially not for cocky, smart-ass Mitch.

But Alex soon discovers that there’s more to Mitch than meets the eye...and he really likes what he sees. Only Alex doesn’t dare risk his NHL career by coming out, and a relationship between them would jeopardize Mitch’s chances with the organization too.

It looks impossible. Then again, the best things usually do...

 

Review

 

I loved the romance at the center of the book between Mitch and Alex. Mitch's first cocky bold approach and then Alex demanding he be real.

As Alex is demisexual, we get a slow burn romance which creates lots of space for emotionial connection. 

Alex is just a solidly great guy and so comfortable in his own skin. 

Mitch is really wonderful too and the dates and falling in love as they handle a long distance relationship is well done.

Outside the romance, there needs to be better work with the other issues. Mitch's hardworking exhaustion is done well as his Alex's family and they both have good friends. However, Mitch's mom is drawn as a villain too simply and his dad's cluelessness as well as the length of his brother's reaction to something that happen makes little sense. 

Good overall! I look forward to Cody or Yeager's story

 

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review 2018-07-18 23:51
Lost in Indigo (Colors of Love Book 1) by V. L. Locey 4 Star Review!
Lost in Indigo - V.L. Locey

Mathieu Beresford was so close to seeing his dream come true.

The thirty-eight-year-old captain of the Buffalo Surge had led his team to the final round of the playoffs with his aggressive defensive play and leadership. During the first game of the championship series, he was taken down, and his leg snapped upon impact with the boards. From his hospital bed, Mathieu watched his team go on to win it all.

Adrift in anger, resentment, and the new direction of his life, he returns to his mansion along the St. Lawrence River. Alone and sulking, Mathieu is not prepared for Indigo Neu to enter his life. The genderflux twenty-year-old botany major signs on to play nursemaid, confidant, and groundskeeper over the summer and slowly leads Mathieu out of his confusion––one tender smile and touch at a time.

The deeper Mathieu falls, the more he wonders if being lost might not be so bad after all.

 

Review

 

I am excited about the start of V.L Locey new series Colors of Love.

This first book in series gives us an age gap romance set on the stunning St. Lawerence River between a pro hockey player and a college student doing gardening for the summer. 

There are a great deal of common tropes here but I think what the book does really well as look at the costs of being closeted as Mat is. It also takes seriously the struggle of coming out in a religous culture (in this case French Canadian Catholic) and when you are from the generation of men just after the highest point of the AIDS epidemic. 

I was a young adult during these time period and newly out as bisexual and going to my first Prides and much of my activism intersected with what was happening in the community around AIDS so I think I have a special infinity for stories that blend the arc of recent LGBTQA history into the characters.

Mat and Indigo are instantly attracted. The love that builds between them is that young tender first love through they both are far from virgins. Indigo's identity as genderflux layers into the plot.

Indigo does think he can handle a relationship on the down low. But he cant's and Mat is confronting the end of his career and coming out.

Despite the high drama of some of the plot points the overall tone of book is sweet and reflective. 

We get a lovely HEA. 

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review 2018-07-18 01:29
Double Up (Lake Lovelace, #1) by Vanessa North 4.5 Review!
Double Up - Vanessa North

Knowing he’s loved can make any man fly.

Fifteen years ago, Ben Warren was a wakeboarding champion: king of big air, ballsy tricks, and boned grabs. Until a career-ending injury left him broken in ways he still has no hope of fixing. Now he takes his thrills where he can get them, and tries not to let life hurt too much.

Then Davis Fox arrives in Ben’s sporting goods store with a plan to get in touch with his estranged brother by competing in the annual wakeboarding double-up contest. The catch? He’s never ridden before. It’s crazy, but Ben’s a sucker for the guy’s sob story—and for his dimples, too—so he agrees to coach Davis.

Davis is everything Ben isn’t: successful, confident, and in love with life. And he wants Ben to love life—and him—too. But before Ben can embrace a future with Davis, he needs to remember how to hope.

 

 

Review

 

Vanessa North writes this tale of a former pro athlete and a younger hero with care.

She explores the sport of wake boarding. addiction, and friendship.

What I like best about this romance is that Ben and Davis have this dance of what real success means. Ben is stuck and Davis is willing to move forward.

We don't get enough time with Ben's talents and work nor a fully understanding of his mother but we do get the engrossing details of a romance with characters and connections that make me savor each moment.
 
 

 

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review 2018-07-15 19:44
Diving in by Bru Baker Review
Diving In - Bru Baker

Being the pool boy makes it easy for Max Jansen to ogle his long-time crush, water polo player Everett Caldwell. Never mind the fact that Max owns the company and is overqualified for the task of monitoring chlorine and cleaning skimmers. He’s just happy to watch his unattainable dream play—until one day Everett invites him over and suddenly Max is his platonic plus-one for everything from movie nights to racy industry parties. Then Max learns the one-time Olympian isn’t as straight as everyone assumes, and he isn’t sure how long he can hold out before his crush grows much deeper.

 

Review

 

This is a lovely short story between Max and Everett;

It is fun crush romance with the added bonus of water polo. 

Good stuff.

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