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review 2017-10-11 04:19
Review: All the Birds in the Sky
All the Birds in the Sky - Charlie Jane Anders

I can’t seem to muster up any strong opinions about this book.  I enjoyed it fairly well while I read it, although I did get restless at times, particularly toward the end.  I could find things to nitpick about, but there wasn’t anything that drove me particularly nuts while I read it. 

 

This is just a big mixture of tropes from both the science fiction and fantasy genres and, maybe to a lesser extent, from the romance genre.  In the beginning, we're introduced to two young children who have grown into adulthood after the first third of the book.  Patricia has skills and interests that fall more into the fantasy realm whereas Laurence has skills and interests that fall more into the science fiction realm.  We see the individual paths each character takes and the effect their respective, and often conflicting, approaches have on their own lives and on the world itself.

 

I liked the main characters, and I liked the story pretty much.  I just don’t think this is one that’s going to stick with me much.  The ending was a little nebulous.  It didn’t wrap everything up in a neat bow, but that isn’t really what I’m talking about.  The things that happened at the end were those types of events that seem to make sense while you’re reading about them but, when you switch your brain back on afterwards, you realize they don’t stand up to scrutiny very well.  I’m giving the book 3.5 stars on the sites that accept half-star ratings, and rounding down to 3 on Goodreads.

 

Next Book

Slade House by David Mitchell.  I read the author’s Cloud Atlas a couple years ago and liked it quite a bit, but I haven’t yet read any of his other work.  I don’t know much about it, but I do vaguely remember seeing some reviews quite some time ago that made me want to read it and I grabbed it when the Kindle edition went on sale recently.  From what I remember, I think this is supposed to be a little creepy?  I thought it might be an appropriate October read.

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review 2017-10-09 23:13
This one was delightful...
His Convenient Husband (Love and Sports) - Robin Covington

 

'His Convenient Husband' is about what could happen when a man who has everything loses the love of his life...his forever after meets a man who's still looking for his.

 

Raising his son and playing professional football in the NFL has probably been what's gotten Isaiah Blackwell through the past three years since his beloved husband Stephen was taken from them.  What Isaiah's not ready for is the attraction that he feels towards the sensual, gender fluid, outspoken and confident ballet dancer Victor Aleksandrov whose stance on Russia's treatment of gays has put his life in jeopardy if his request for asylum in the United States is denied and he is forced to return to his homeland.

 

Isaiah may not be out and proud but he's not hiding in any closets either. He really just wants to play football and raise the son that he and Stephen adopted. While someone like Victor may not be his type, he can't deny the pull of attraction that he feels and after spending a passionate night with Victor, Isaiah learns that Victor has been denied asylum he does what any decent man would do...he proposes...a marriage of convenience.

 

I really enjoyed this one it ticked more than a few boxes for me. I loved Victor, he was simply a wonderful character that worked beautifully in my mind. I can't say that I thought he was perfect but he was wonderful. To me he was neither brash nor loud. He was confident and outspoken, he believed in his cause, having gotten outside the borders of Russia he felt that he had a duty to speak out about the treatment of the LGBTQ community in Russia but he truly did this with style and finesse. Sadly at the end of it all though Victor was outspoken about what he believed in and Isaiah played for the NFL and was a man who like to keep a low profile on his private life and his priority was to give his son as normal of a life as possible out of the limelight.

 

While Isaiah's intentions were admirable what he failed to factor in was how amazing his son was. Evan was definitely a favorite in this story. He was an amazing human being and if the author ever decides to give us Evan's story...maybe a few years down the road in his life...sign me up and consider me there.

 

Along with Evan the other secondary character in this book whose story I would totally be on board for was Isaiah's best friend and agent Ian Carmichael...this man is begging to be struck by lightening. His idea of a long-term relationship means he paid for the hotel for a long weekend. He's British, he's snarky and calls a spade a spade but at the heart of it all he wants the best for the people he cares about. 

 

What starts as a marriage of convenience to keep Victor from being deported quickly becomes a quagmire of emotional landmines for both of these men as their attraction grows and real life intrudes bringing with it some much unwanted attention that leads to misunderstandings and leaves both men frustrated and hurt.

 

I really enjoyed this and the only little niggle that I had was the ending. It was good I just needed it to go a little further...I wanted a little more of this sexy as hell couple but as I said it's only a little niggle because we were definitely left with these men in a good place...this one was a HEA to be sure but still, I'm greedy I want more.

 

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An ARC of 'A Marriage of Convenience' was graciously provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2017-10-04 02:10
This was surprising little gem...
Out of the Shadows (Dreamspun Desires Book 40) - K.C. Wells,Finn Sterling

I have to admit I wasn't sure what to expect with this one  but it's K. C. Wells so I felt fairly certain that at the worst I was going to at least like this one. Well I did and I was even more pleasantly surprised to realize that I more than liked it. 

 

'Out of the Shadows' turned out to be a sweet story about a Christian Hernandez, a man who is left severely scared on the right side of his body...specifically his face and arm and how he comes to see that while the scars he was left with are a part of him they don't have to define him and Josh the sweet man who enters his life due to renovations that are being made in the apartment complex where he lives who sees beyond how Christian looks to the man he is. One of my favorite things about this story is the banter between Josh and Christian. From their first conversation I found them to be totally charming and adorable.

 

While there's not really any angst in this one neither does Josh's entrance into Christian's life magically fix things. This is a slow burn as Josh and Christian go from strangers to a very tenuous relationship as acquaintances and with time and patience they become friends as Josh slowly and persistently strives to bring Christian out of his shell and help him accept to reclaim his life...a life that can exist outside of the walls of his apartment.

 

I think for me this was a case of right story right time. I loved the simplicity of this story that was quite honestly filled with a whole lot of people who seemed really nice and had the ability to see beyond the surface and appreciate the person inside. I also liked that this was not a story filled with insta-love, insta-fix...insta-anything nor was it a story of overly complicated and convoluted solutions. Sometimes the solutions in life are straightforward solutions that just need time and effort which is how things felt in this story.

 

'Out of the Shadows' was narrated by a new to me narrator named Finn Sterling and I have to admit that not all of the voices he created for these characters matched what my mind conjured but I was ok with this because while they didn't match my imaginings they were unique and expressive to each character. 

 

This book #40 in Dreamspinner's Dreamspun Desires series and can easily be read or listened to on audio as a standalone story.

 

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

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review 2017-10-03 23:03
Well this was a cute way to pass a bit of time...
Horny - Anne Tenino,Nick J. Russo

'Horny' was a cute story that took more than a little poetic license with Greek mythology. When Ryan Caulfield ends up with a group of supernatural law enforcers in his bar hunting for a less than law abiding Zeus the last thing Ryan expects to happen is that he'll be attracted to one of them and even more surprising they're attracted to him. As a paranormal investigator and an eroté, Leander's use to not having to work for his conquest but when it comes to Ryan things just are coming easy to Leander and not everything's as it seems to be.

 

With a title like 'Horny' the one thing that you could reasonably safely assume is that this is not a serious story and you're right. There were some funny and entertaining moments in this one unfortunately they were interspersed with moments of what felt a little bit like the story was maybe trying too hard. While the first half of this story waffled between 2 and 3 stars the second part made up for it and was a little more consistently on a 3 star level. I found myself far more interested and invested in what was happening and where my mind had wandered a bit at the beginning I found myself paying closer attention to what was happening and enjoying myself a bit more during the last half of the story.

 

While the story started out feeling very much like insta-love/lust at first things became far more interesting when it got dialed back a notch and Leander had to start working for what he wanted and both men are taking the time to get to know each other along with still having a wayward Zeus to bring to justice.

 

Nick J. Russo was the narrator for this light and amusing story and his voice added depth and character to the story and making for yet another entertaining listening experience.

 

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

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review 2017-10-03 21:57
What can I say..."I just wasn't wild about Wild."...
WILD - Adrienne Wilder

So me and my Buddy Read Besties...Christelle, Josy & Simone decided that we needed to read this one together because it's the perfect book for a buddy read and 'EVERYONE' is loving this one...well...everyone except me and Simone and Josy (I think)...but we liked it really we did.

 

I have to admit I'm feeling a bit lazy today and Simone really covered a lot of reasons that I happen to agree with so in the most efficient lazy reviewer style ever here's the link to Simone's review...

Simone's 'WILD' Review definitely worth reading and can I just say "cutest wolf pup evah!"  Also sorry Simone but in my part of the world that bet would be what we call a sucker bet.

I think about the only other thing that didn't work for me was part of the ending. There were things at the end that were just to quickly and easily wrapped up all nice, neat and tidy with a bow...sorry, I like a good HEA but this one just didn't work for me. 

 

And in fairness to all those who haven't read this book and to the lovely Christelle who ended up being the odd man out on this one because she loved this book and made some very valid points in her review for why this story worked so well for her here's the link to her wonderful review so that you can see both sides of this coin...

Christelle's WILD Review

 

And that's not to say that there weren't things I liked in this story because there were...

like my friend Simone I was enchanted with the setting the wild's of Alaska for all it's savagery it is also a bold and beautiful country and it takes an incredibly bold and strong person to be able to live there. In short the author chose a setting that is both scary and breathtakingly beautiful.

 

Daisy...Daisy  and August are the perfect example of what can happen when man and nature work together...

and then there's the she bitch or the permanently pissed off momma bear as I can to think of her...

 Unfortunately the addition of Alaska and all of it's natural beauty was not enough to take this book over the top for me but it certainly gave this story a beautiful setting to play out against and the addition of my Buddy Read Besties as always provided me with the best of company to take this adventure with. 

 

 

 

 

 

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