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review 2017-03-31 10:31
Review: "Carry the Ocean" (The Roosevelt, #1) by Heidi Cullinan
Carry the Ocean - Heidi Cullinan

"I am normal. I belong. I have a friend who can kick ass from a wheelchair. I live independently and get good grades. I’m an excellent lover.

Like I said. I’m awesome. I’m Emmet David Washington. Train Man. The best autistic Blues Brother on the block."

I love this book more and more with every reread.

 

********************************************

First read: April 15th, 2015

1st reread: May 19th, 2016

2nd reread: March 31st, 2017

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review 2017-01-15 18:39
Review: "Violated" by Jamie Fessenden
Violated - Jamie Fessenden

"I like you, Russ. A lot. You’re a great guy, and you deserve to be with somebody who can hold you and make love to you—"

Russ held up a hand to quiet him. "Sorry. I think I got some dog hair clogging up my ear or something. That whole last sentence was just ‘blah, blah, blah.’ I didn’t hear anything after ‘I like you, Russ. A lot.’"

Derek stared at him for a long moment. Then a shy smile slowly crept across his face. "That’s okay. I didn’t really say anything after that."

 

Trigger warning: on-page sexual abuse & male rape!

 

Judging from the serious topic and the blurb, I was prepared to be left with my heart crushed when I finished this book. And I'm not gonna lie, this was NOT an easy read. Far from it.

 

But even though Derek's sufferings made me angry, raging, feeling frustrated and outraged most of the time, I've never once felt actually depressed or hopeless.

 

And that's because of two things:

 

1. RUSS

 

Sweet, patient, supporting and comforting Russ. Russ, who was just desperately looking for love and a serious relationship, for "a nice guy who likes dogs and cuddling". Russ, who couldn't have stepped into Derek's life at a more convenient time. Russ, who took my heart by storm and instantly became one of my all-time favorite characters ever.

 

 

2. Jamie Fessenden's writing

 

The writing was very strong, and it handled the difficult subject of male rape and its fallout very well, with a lot of respect and dignity. There was just the right balance between the "hurt" and the "comfort" parts of the story. It was a satisfying and great read overall. Well done, Mr. Fessenden. Very well done, indeed.

 

 

So if you're mentally prepared for a tough and challenging read with a sensitive subject, you should give this book a chance. The author handled the heavy topic of male rape realistically and respectfully, but there were also enough sweet, tender and romantic moments between Derek and Russ to make your heart still go all "Awwww!".

 

This is an outstanding book. An important book. A book that will be staying with me for a long time. It gets a million stars from me.

 

 

Highly, highly recommended!

 

Thanks to Julie for the BR!

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2016-10-25 19:04
Review: "Afterimage" (In the Company of Shadows, #2) by Sonny & Ais
Afterimage - Ais,Santino Hassell

"So why aren't the two of you gay together anymore?"

~Emilio~

 

*** SPOILER ALERT! ***

*** THIS IS NOT A DRILL! ***

*** SPOILER ALERT! ***

 

Ok, NOW we're fucking talking!

 

While I stand by my (very correct) opinion on "Evenfall" (too long, too repetitive, too many unnecessary details/events/chapters), you'll just have to trust me on this:

 

"Afterimage" surpasses its predecessor in every way!

 

 

Part of my struggle with this series is that just when I had decided that maybe it might not be for me, it had to go and give me one of the most emotional reads in months that left me completely satisfied. But on the other hand? I'M AN EMOTIONAL MESS RIGHT NOW.

 

 

The writing was noticeably tighter and faster-paced than in the first book, and it managed to convince me that this series really is as good as everyone claims it is.

 

 

The reason why “Afterimage” was so incredible is that it gave me all the angst, emotions and ugly tears while also remaining to give me a totally fascinating view into not just one (deeply damaged) character's head, but two.

 

 

I was so frustrated at times with Boyd and Sin's actions and behavior that I screamed. I SCREAMED.

 

That idiotic thing with Ann, Sin? And your reasons for it? That was some rude ‘tude, dude. Especially when I'm pretty sure that you very well KNOW the definition of cheating since you talked about it in "Evenfall", you stupid fucking idiot. (But also, farewell for now until the next book, you mega-dreamboat. #TeamSin)

 

 

That idiotic thing with Kassian, Boyd? It was definitely HAWT, I'll give you that. But also, what a hell of a way to deeply hurt Sin, you asshat.

 

 

The secondary characters remain a pleasure to behold. Ryan, Kassian (I don’t know about you, but I DEFINITELY ship these two), Carhart and also all of the Level 10 trainees.

 

 

And let's not forget about Emilio. I lolled so hard whenever he opened his shameless and unfiltered mouth. His addition to this series is a gift, a treasure, and I had to put down my Kindle at the end of the book and smile out the window for a minute, he just made me that happy.

 

 

Guys, what a great and emotional series this is turning out to be. “Afterimage” was exactly the addictive and mind-blowing book that I've been waiting for. It not only rectified all my complaints from "Evenfall", but paid off with compelling plot lines, captivating suspense and fascinating characterizations.

 

 

I just can’t quit you, ICoS!

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