Truce by Meredith Shayne

TruceTruce by Meredith Shayne

My rating: 4 of 5 stars




The Blurb…

Dave Robinson is a straightforward, no nonsense Aussie guy, who fronts a straightforward, no nonsense Aussie rock band, Spitfire. Dave has no time for the more showy members of the music scene, believing that music shouldn’t need glitz and glamour to make it good. He’s not shy about letting the media know his opinion of pretty musical peacocks, bringing himself to the attention of Zeke Starr, frontman of Australian glam rockers Lost Angels, a man who never met a pot of glitter he didn’t like.

The slanging match between Dave and Zeke has been going on for two years before Spitfire and Lost Angels are scheduled to play the summer festival circuit together, and Spitfire’s manager tries his best to rein Dave in. The singers’ first meeting proves that even the threat of death can’t make Dave keep his mouth shut, and Zeke never backs down from a challenge. With only two weeks to get past two years of public tit-for-tat, a truce between the two rockers might be more than anyone can hope for.

So What Did I Think?

This was a great free short story!

I had already read another book by this author, Metal Heart, which was 5 star brilliant, so was pleased to find this story about rock stars Dave and Zeke.

Dave and Zeke are the front men for different rock bands and have spent a couple of years publicly disliking one another. When they both perform at a concert series and actually meet each other, things start to change.

For Aussie readers, the Big Day Out concert is recognizable, but regardless, the characters are gorgeous and the only downside is that the story is not long enough. I would love to read more about these two!

The photo that inspired the story….

4 Stars

To find out more about Meredith Shayne and her books visit her website.

The book can be downloaded free from All Romance eBooks. Enjoy! 🙂

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Metal Heart by Meredith Shayne

Metal Heart

Metal Heart by Meredith Shayne

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I absolutely loved this story!


The Blurb…..

Scott King swore off rock stardom after his band, King Phoenix, crashed and burned. Now in his forties, Scott lives a quiet life as a music producer and session guitarist. But in a box hidden in his wardrobe lie the relics of the past he left behind—a past filled with drugs, booze, and broken hearts. For sixteen years, Scott has had no contact with his former band mates, so when he’s asked to play at a benefit gig for King Phoenix’s old sound man, his world turns upside down. A King Phoenix reunion means a run-in with Scott’s ex, Ash Walker—and sixteen years ago, believing Ash wanted to leave the band, Scott OD’d and almost died. 

Since then, Scott has ruthlessly suppressed his feelings. As a result, he’s completely unprepared for the impact of seeing Ash again, or for dealing with his emotions about the band’s demise. He definitely didn’t expect Ash to want to start up where they left off. Now Scott has to decide between his safe existence and the twenty-year-old love song that could cost him his sobriety—and his heart.

So what did I think?

It was emotionally involving from the very beginning, with both main characters so easy to love. It was fascinating to get to know Scott and Ash in their early twenties, before fame and to then see them in their forties. The impact of their parting was obvious, how they had moved forward and changed but not forgotten one another.

The sense of anticipation in the first half of the book was enormous, I was nervous and tense knowing something big was going to happen, something that would part Ash and Scott and keep them from each other for 16 years. The second half of the book was spent hoping and praying that they would have their happy ending.

“Why wouldn’t you coming back now scare me? Right from the minute I met you, I’ve never been able to control how I felt about you. For sixteen years, my whole life has been about control.”

“After sixteen years you walk into a room and make me want to throw away everything I’ve worked for, every bit of willpower I have, just to kiss you again. What will happen if I give in to that, the one thing I want most? Will I give in to everything else too? I can’t risk it. I can’t risk going through that again. If I lose control, this time it’ll kill me, I swear it. It’ll kill me.”

As a Sydneysider, it was interesting to read a book set in all the places I have been, referring to local TV, food, and places.

I will definitely be checking out more from this author.

5 Stars

For more information on Meredith Shayne and her books, check out her website.

Metal Heart at Amazon

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Bullheaded by Catt Ford

BullheadedBullheaded by Catt Ford

My rating: 4 of 5 stars




The Blurb….

Aging bull rider Cody Grainger needs bullfighter Johnny Arrow for more than just protection in the ring. Their bond of trust goes beyond the professional and into love, but while their relationship holds up to the need for discretion imposed by their sport and repeatedly having to watch each other put themselves in the way of dangerous animals, other barriers still tear them apart.

For one thing, Cody is ten years older than Johnny. But instead of contemplating retirement, he focuses on winning the championship, desperate to stay on top. Johnny is only beginning to find the professional recognition he craves. When frustration leads Johnny to walk away, Cody’s season slumps. While they’re apart, they both slowly realize they are meant to be together. But machismo abounds in the sport of bull riding, and their pride might be an obstacle too big for love to overcome.

What did I think?

This was a difficult book for me to rate as some parts I loved and other parts not so much.

The good….I quite liked the story itself. There was a level of realism in the journey that Cody and Johnny found themselves on. It was easy to understand the conflict they faced as they both found themselves at different stages in their lives and looked to find a common ground. The insight into the world of bull riders and bullfighters was interesting.

The not so good….there was perhaps too much explanation of the rides themselves. I wanted more of the story, not so much description of the bull riding event itself. I didn’t like the sexual encounters that both Johnny and Cody (Cody more so) had when they were apart. I am not sure how much it added to the story, and I found Cody’s actions particularly unappealing. Which brings me to my biggest issue – Cody.

I didn’t like the character of Cody. I found him selfish and egotistical. “Cody never thought of himself as manipulative. The word wasn’t even in his vocabulary. He just liked getting his way. And his way was good for him and for Johnny.” He believed this for most of the book. Yes, I wanted Johnny and Cody to have their happy ending, but found it difficult to believe the changes in Cody or to fully understand why he changed his ways.

I find it difficult to really love a book if I don’t love one of the lead characters, or at least like them by the end of the story. For this reason, and the slightly too many and too long descriptions of bull rides, I am only rating this book 3.5 stars but rounded up to 4! 🙂

4 Stars

To find out more about Catt Ford and her other books visit her Goodreads profile.

Bullheaded on Amazon

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Grand Slam by J.T. Cheyanne

Grand SlamGrand Slam by J.T. Cheyanne

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this story where “Somehow, the geek had gotten the jock.” I have a soft spot for books about athletes and celebrities so this hit all the right buttons.

This story was a bit unique in that Spencer was an openly gay baseball player and was largely accepted by his coach and team.  The story wasn’t the typical story of a jock trying to hide his sexuality. Rather it focused on sexual harassment and deceit within the sport, abuse and family.

The inclusion of the children (Brock’s niece and nephew) and Brock’s own desire to have a family was wonderful. However I am not sure the ‘voice’ of the children was captured correctly. There was a lack of consistency in the language used by the youngest who slipped between bad grammar and use of some adult phrases. The 4 year old also made reference to “He doesn’t make you upset like that bad Nolan did.” , referring to a relationship Brock had had a couple of years before. If I read correctly she would have only been 2 years old and not remember it even if she understood that relationship.

Regardless of this small issue, the story got big ticks for dramatic events, misunderstandings and depth of feeling. Loved it when Spencer realised Brock was more important than baseball. “He didn’t want to think about baseball. His first love since grade school jeopardized a budding new love. One that threatened to be as powerful, if not more so, than the first.”

4 Stars

Find out more about J.T. Cheyanne at their website.

Grand Slam at Amazon

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Organic Chemistry by Andrew Grey

Organic Chemistry

The Blurb….

Brendon Marcus lives for his work. A boy genius who fast-tracked his way to college professor by his early twenties, he doesn’t know any other way to be. People confound him. So when Josh Horton, the assistant football coach, pursues him, Brendon isn’t sure what to make of him.

Josh has his own problems. His successful parents aren’t particularly happy with his career path, and some of the players don’t like having a gay assistant coach. He begins to have doubts, but Brendon makes the world look a little brighter.

But when Brendon’s department head starts to make trouble, Josh and Brendon discover that standing up for each other is the first step to standing up for themselves

So how was it?

Reading this book was a nice way of spending an hour or two!

It did take me a while to get into the book and I think I would have preferred to read a more typical story of a jock and a science geek i.e. someone geeky without the Asperger’s (Asperger’s being my diagnosis and I am definitely not a professional!).

I wasn’t totally on board with Brendon’s character at first. I realise he was supposed to be socially inept but I found him very childlike and don’t think the book explained enough about what attracted Josh to him in the first place (apart from his cute looks). I also found Brendon’s explanations of his own behaviour or responses to be a bit ‘lecture’ like. However this changed towards the mid-point, as the character developed.

On the plus side, Josh was a really nice character and I appreciated the way he took things very slowly with Josh. He was a caring and supportive partner.

Very nice happy ending.

3 Stars

Find out more about Andrew Grey and his books at his website.

Organic Chemistry at Amazon