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INTERVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Garrett Leigh

Thanks for joining us today, Garrett. We are excited to have you here as you celebrate the release of Rare on audio book.

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Can you share with us a little bit about the process of having a book made into an audio book?

Garrett: To be honest, I didn’t have much to do with the production, bar auditioning the narrators, which was horrible. Let me explain, you see, hearing your sex scenes read out by anyone is a skin crawling experience, but it’s far, far worse when it’s the wrong voice doing it. It took a very long time to find the right dude for this series, especially as the books are told in dual POV, so I had to find a voice that suited Ash AND Pete. It was hard, really hard, but I’m glad I persevered and Andrew Grey at Dreamspinner was so patient with me. I think it helps that he’s an author himself, so he understood why I was being such a pain in the arse 😛

I was reading a review of Rare and the reviewer made a comment that the book was a rollercoaster of emotion “Fear. Hope. Frustration. Love. Grief. Loss. Anger. Joy.”  Were you concerned this emotion would be difficult to capture in the audio version of the book? With this in mind, how did you select your narrator?

Garrett: For me, the tone of the narrator was very important. I auditioned about fifteen guys, and only the last one…a dude Andrew Grey thought of at the last moment (when I’d pulled most of my hair out) had the right depth. You see, I wanted a deep voice, but not so deep that it made the characters sound too old. I had to constantly remind myself that Ash and Pete are both relatively young.

We’ve just started a new year. Do you have anything special that you’ll be focusing on this year? What can your readers expect next?

Garrett: This year, I’m hoping to add to my Heated Beat series, and perhaps write another military novel. I also want to explore the MMF genre too. And perhaps a little dabble in YA. This year seems to be full of ideas for me, I just need to write the fuckers down.

Do you listen to audio books yourself? If so, can you recommend a favourite?

Garrett: I haven’t actually ever listened to an audio book, not even my own. I’m pretty sure I’d cue one up and immediately fall asleep. I know some folk listen to them in the car, but I’m a terrible driver as it is. Can you imagine trying to reverse park during a smexin’ scene? *shudders*

Thanks so much for joining us, Garrett. I’m actually a fan of audio books so I’ll definitely be checking this one out. I’ll just make sure I don’t do any reverse parking! 🙂

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Blurb

Paramedic Pete Adams lived through the year from hell watching his lover, Ash, fall apart, and the precarious balance between work and home is becoming more strained. His heart is always home, with Ash, but the dark side to his job is weighing him down. 

Tattoo artist Ash Fagin is recovering from a nervous breakdown triggered by revelations about his traumatic childhood. His battle with mental illness is far from over, but with Pete by his side, he’s feeling good again, so good he doesn’t notice something missing until it walks right into his living room.

Ash believes he’s had enough coincidence in his life, but when a voice from the past comes looking for him, it takes the devastating injuries of the one he loves most to convince him to let a ghost become the family he never knew he wanted.

Excerpt

PETE HAD been busy while I’d been gone. I stood in front of the shiny new door to his apartment and wondered for a moment if I’d come home to the right place. Then I remembered the coarse message he’d sent me a few days ago, telling me in no uncertain terms what a bitch the new door had been to fit. A separate message—perhaps an afterthought—told me he’d left a key on top of the frame.

I reached for it and turned it over in my hand. It was silver and shiny. The old one was battered brass, bruised and familiar. It felt heavy in my pocket as I slid the new key into the lock. I considered the fate of the old key now that the door it belonged to was no longer there. Pete said I pondered the strangest things.

The new door swung open with a whisper. It felt odd after two years with a door that crunched like a gearbox. The new door was like a ghost, all shimmery and silent. I wasn’t sure I liked it.

A wry grin crept over my face. Really? Four days without Pete and you’re worried about a door? I took a tentative step forward. The door closed with a quiet click, and this time, I paid it no heed.

I glanced around the apartment. It was quiet and still. No TV, stereo, or signs of life. That was no surprise. I was a few hours early. Despite hating every moment of the flight between Chicago and Philadelphia, I’d caught an earlier plane home. Pete wasn’t expecting me, but I could feel in my bones that he was home. The invisible cord between us pulled me along, and a minute later, I found him passed out in our bed. He was asleep on his stomach, something he only did when he was alone or too tired to notice. It used to make me uneasy—sometimes it still did—but not today. Today his bare back was exactly what I needed to see. I sat down by his head and brushed my fingers over his stubbly jaw. He didn’t stir, even when I leaned down and breathed in the clean smell of his skin.

Buy Links

http://www.amazon.com/Rare-Roads-Book-Garrett-Leigh-ebook/dp/B00HWVKGJ0/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1420201738&sr=1-2&keywords=garrett+leigh

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Giveaway

Rafflecopter Prize: An audiobook of ‘Rare’

Click the Rafflecopter image or click here to enter the giveaway.

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About the author

Rainbow Award winner Garrett Leigh is a British writer and book designer, currently working for Dreamspinner Press, Loose Id, Riptide Publishing, and Black Jazz Press. Her protagonists will always always be tortured, crippled, broken, and deeply flawed. Throw in a tale of enduring true love, some stubbly facial hair, and a bunch of tattoos, and you’ve got yourself a Garrett special.

When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible. That, and dreaming up new ways to torture her characters. Garrett believes in happy endings; she just likes to make her boys work for it.

Garrett also works as a freelance cover artist for various publishing houses and independent authors under the pseudonym G.D. Leigh. For cover art info, please visit blackjazzpress.com

Where to Find the Author:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/garrettleighbooks

Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Garrett-Leigh/484336074987986

Instagram: http://instagram.com/garrett_leigh/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Garrett_Leigh

GLRC

Tour Stops

27-Jan

The Novel Approach

Velvet Panic

Amanda C. Stone

29-Jan

Rainbow Gold Reviews

Prism Book Alliance

3-Feb

Because Two Men Are Better Than One

Smoocher’s Voice

My Fiction Nook

Molly Lolly

5-Feb

Hearts on Fire

Wicked Wolves and Dreaming Dragons

10-Feb

Cate Ashwood

MM Good Book Reviews

12-Feb

Fallen Angel Reviews

Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words

17-Feb

Love Bytes

BFD Book Blog

19-Feb

Bayou Book Junkie

Inked Rainbow Reads

Sinfully Sexy

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Audiobook: Blue Mountain by Cardeno C

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Blue Mountain: Pack Collection, Book 1

by Cardeno C

Narrated by Sean Crisden

Length: 3 hours and 38 mins

AUDIBLE | GOODREADS

 

WLK synopsis

Exiled by his pack as a teen, Omega wolf Simon Moorehead learns to bury his gentle nature in the interest of survival. When a hulking, rough-faced Alpha catches Simon on pack territory, he tries to escape what he’s sure will be imminent death. But instead of killing him, the Alpha takes Simon home.

A man of action, Mitch Grant uproots his life to support his brother in leading the Blue Mountain pack. Mitch lives on the periphery, quietly protecting everyone, but always alone. A mate is a dream come true for Mitch, and he won’t let little things like Simon’s rejections, attacks, and insults get in their way. With patience, seduction, and genuine care, Mitch will ride out the storm while Simon slays his own ghosts and Mitch’s loneliness.

©2014 Cardeno C. (P)2014 Cardeno C.

 

WLK Author BioCardeno C - LogoCardeno C. – CC to friends – is a hopeless romantic who wants to add a lot of happiness and a few “awwws” into a reader’s day. Writing is a nice break from real life as a corporate type and volunteer work with gay rights organizations. Cardeno’s stories range from sweet to intense, contemporary to paranormal, long to short, but they always include strong relationships and walks into the happily-ever-after sunset.Cardeno’s Home, Family, and Mates series have received awards from Love Romances and More Golden Roses, Rainbow Awards, the Goodreads M/M Romance Group, and various reviewers. But even more special to CC are heartfelt reactions from readers, like, “You bring joy and love and make it part of the every day.”

Website | Facebook! | Twitter

Cafe Risqué ~ Shared Blog

Pintrest | Google+ | Youtube

 

WLK Giveaway

Enter to win an Audio Copy (from Audible) of Blue Mountain!

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What did I think?

I had the pleasure of being introduced to the first story in the Pack collection via audio book. Blue Mountain is the first book in the series and is a short and sweet introduction to the Blue Mountain pack.

The story: this a sweet shifter story. It’s not particularly action-packed, more a slow exploration of characters and emotions. It introduces the Blue Mountain pack and it’s Alpha, Frederick and his family, including his brother Mitch who is also an Alpha. But the story mainly focuses on Mitch and his finding his mate, Simon. I enjoyed the contrast in characters – huge, strong, and protective Alpha, Mitch, and Simon, an Omega who is strong in his own way. The characters displayed characteristics that contrasted with their set roles in the pack and it was interesting seeing Simon learn to trust and the relationship develop. There were moments of humour which I also enjoyed.

The audiobook: the audio version is just over 3 hours long, so perfect for a quick ‘read’ (sometimes I find the ten to twelve hour novels are too long). The narrator, Sean Crisdon, did a wonderful job of performing. His narration was spot on in terms of capturing the voices of the various characters and bringing the characters to life. He had to manage the deep and strong tones of the Alphas, the sweeter voice of the Omega, and the voices of women and children. I found this was done well and found his deep voice particularly appealing. My favourite scene was the argument between Mitch and Frederick where Mitch stood up for Simon and told Frederick to back off – well done.

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McFarlands Farm by Cardeno C in AUDIOBOOK

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McFarland's Farm

McFarland’s Farm: Hope, Book 1

Written by: Cardeno C.

Narrated by: Paul Morey

Length: 2 hrs and 34 mins

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date:11-11-14

Publisher: The Romance Authors, LLC

AUDIBLE | GOODREADS

 

WLK synopsis

Wealthy, attractive Lucas Reika treats life like a party, moving from bar to bar and man to man. Thumbing his nose at his restaurateur father’s demand that he earn his keep, Lucas instead seduces a valued employee in the kitchen of their flagship restaurant, earning himself an ultimatum: lose access to his father’s money or stay in the middle of nowhere with a man he has secretly lusted over from afar.

Quiet, hard-working Jared McFarland loves his farm on the outskirts of Hope, Arizona, but he aches to have someone to come home to at the end of the day. Jared agrees to take in his longtime crush as a favor. But when Lucas invades his heart in addition to his space, Jared has to decide how much of himself he’s willing to risk and figure out if he can offer Lucas enough to keep him after his father’s punishment is over.

WLK excerpt

 

 

 

So what did I think?

I really enjoyed this audio book. It was the perfect length to really enjoy via audio. I do find some books become way to long when narrated but perhaps this is just a personal thing.

I enjoyed the character development that occurred, particularly given the story’s length. I didn’t like the spoiled and bratty Lucas at the beginning but by the end, was cheering the change in him (and forgiving that it happened quite quickly :).  I have a soft-spot for good guys like Jared so definitely wanted him to have a happy ending and for Lucas to be worthy of him and this was achieved.

The narration was excellent. The characters were well-voiced and the pacing was good. Paul Morey was very easy to listen to. This is the perfect length story, just over 2 and a half hours, to listen to in one bite, so I recommend it for when you need to go on  a short trip. Enjoy!

WLK Author BioCardeno C - LogoCardeno C. – CC to friends – is a hopeless romantic who wants to add a lot of happiness and a few “awwws” into a reader’s day. Writing is a nice break from real life as a corporate type and volunteer work with gay rights organizations. Cardeno’s stories range from sweet to intense, contemporary to paranormal, long to short, but they always include strong relationships and walks into the happily-ever-after sunset.Cardeno’s Home, Family, and Mates series have received awards from Love Romances and More Golden Roses, Rainbow Awards, the Goodreads M/M Romance Group, and various reviewers. But even more special to CC are heartfelt reactions from readers, like, “You bring joy and love and make it part of the every day.”

Website | Facebook! | Twitter

Cafe Risqué ~ Shared Blog

Pintrest | Google+ | Youtube

 

WLK Giveaway

Enter to win an Audio Copy (from Audible) of McFarland’s Farm!

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presented by:

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Blog Tour with Giveaway: The Pack or the Panther on audiobook!

 

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The Pack or the Panther

☊☊ audiobook ☊☊

 Tara Lain

Cover Artist: Aaron Anderson

Narrator: Max Lehnen

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

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The Blurb…

Cole Harker, son of an alpha werewolf, is bigger and more powerful than most wolves, tongue-tied in groups, and gay. For twenty-four years, he’s lived to please his family and pack—even letting them promise him in marriage to female werewolf Analiese to secure a pack alliance and help save them from a powerful gangster who wants their land. Then Cole meets Analiese’s half-brother, panther shifter Paris Marketo, and for the first time, Cole wants something for himself.

When Analiese runs off to marry a human, Cole finally has a chance with Paris, but the solitary cat rejects him, the pack, and everything it represents. Then Cole discovers the gangster wants Paris too and won’t rest until he has him. What started as a land dispute turns into World War Wolf! But the bigger fight is the battle between cats and dogs.

Excerpt:

Cole took hold of a branch a few feet from Paris. “Do you think the alliance will stand?” He shrugged. “Hard to say. I know everyone hopes so, so I hope so too.” Cole pulled his eyebrows together. “But you don’t really care.”

Paris looked up sharply. “Yes, I care. I care about my parents. They’ve been good to me and I owe them a lot. I’m a freak by wolf standards, and my father has never abjured me. I honestly believe he kept me separate for my well-being more than his own. He acknowledges me as his son even though I remind him of his greatest sorrow.”

“Your panther mother.” He nodded. “And Trixie isn’t a brave female. My existence is difficult for her, but she’s been nothing but good to me. She had to stand against the combined disapproval of a lot of other females for me. They didn’t know what I was, but they knew I was Merced’s first wife’s son. They weren’t kind. She was. I value her and want the best.”

Cole nodded. If there was one thing he understood, it was loyalty.

“And then there’s you.”

Cole glanced up. Look at that mischievous face. He’d switched from deeply serious to court jester in one second flat. “What about me?” He grinned.

The cat danced around his tree, unfastening buttons on his shirt with intricate skill. “You want the alliance and I want you. Isn’t that an Aristotelian principle? If A equals B and B equals C, then Paris wants Cole to have his alliance so Paris can have Cole’s big yummy cock in his ass. An ass, I might add, that’s been throbbing like a voodoo drum since I first looked in your silver eyes, wolfman.” He whipped off the shirt, leaving his upper body bare.

Wow. Even knowing what was coming, that sight was hard to believe. The cat’s skin glowed in the moonlight like so much alabaster formed into a work of art. If you liked bulky, you wouldn’t like Paris. But if the look of a black leopard stealing along a branch stilled your heart, this sight would do it for you down to the ground. Not really slim. More like lean, with muscles just where they should be, but as if they were made of silk rather than stone. Fluid.

Paris reached and grabbed a branch, then pulled himself up one-armed until he leaned over the wood on his belly. Flip. He circled and came up to sitting, his upper body glowing and long legs dangling. He spread his arms out for a second as if balancing on a tightrope. Then he reached in and started to unfasten his belt. Slowly, he slipped it from his trousers, then swung it over his head until it caught on an upper branch.

He pulled himself to standing and used one hand to slowly lower his fly. White showed in the gap. Oh my. Not white underwear.  White skin. Cole shuddered. He wasn’t used to this kind of sexy. Hell, who was? This cat was one of a kind.

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About the author

Tara Lain writes the Beautiful Boys of Romance in LGBT erotic romance novels that star her unique, charismatic heroes. Her first novel was published in January of 2011 and she’s now somewhere around book 21. Her best-selling novels have garnered awards for Best Series, Best Contemporary Romance, Best Ménage, Best LGBT Romance, Best Gay Characters, and Tara has been named Best Writer of the Year in the LRC Awards. In her other job, Tara owns an advertising and public relations firm. She often does workshops on both author promotion and writing craft.  She lives with her soul-mate husband and her soul-mate dog in Laguna Beach, California, a pretty seaside town where she sets a lot of her books.  Passionate about diversity, justice, and new experiences, Tara says on her tombstone it will say “Yes”!

Author Links:

Website:              http://www.taralain.com

Blog:                      http://www.taralain.com/blog

Goodreads:        http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4541791.Tara_Lain

Twitter:               http://twitter.com/taralain

FB Page:                http://www.facebook.com/taralain

Newsletter:          Newsletter

Tour Dates: July 15th, 2014

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Tour Stops: Parker Williams, Havan Fellows, Because Two Men Are Better Than One, My Fiction Nook, Wake Up Your Wild Side, Prism Book Alliance, Amanda C. Stone, Romance the Night, Redz World, Emotion in Motion, Cate Ashwood, Rainbow Gold Reviews, Hearts on Fire, Velvet Panic, Kimber Vale, MM Good Book Reviews, Iyana Jenna, Night Owl Reviews, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Kimi-Chan, Buffy’s Ramblings,  Michael Mandrake

 

 

Giveaway

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Enter the giveaway by clicking the image or the link here.

Rafflecopter Prize: One audio copy, 2 e-copies

Buy Links

E-copies: Available  Dreamspinner Press  AMAZON  ARe And other resellers

Audiobook

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☊☊☊ Audio Book GIVEAWAY: Brokenhearted by Cate Ashwood ☊☊☊

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Brokenhearted (Audiobook)

By  Cate Ashwood

Narrator: John Orr

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Cover Artist: Aaron Anderson

The blurb…

Oliver Parrish has been alone in the world since he was born. So when Sheriff Owen “Mack” Macklin shows up on his doorstep to deliver the news that Oliver’s sister has died, he’s beyond surprised. Still, Oliver returns with Mack to Hope Cove, Maine, hoping to get to know the sister he never knew he had. As he tries to snap these new elements into his solitary life, he’s not sure how they might fit.

His life is shaken up further as he falls in love with the irresistible town of Hope Cove, and with Mack, its equally irresistible sheriff. But when he receives devastating news about his sister’s cause of death, Oliver doesn’t know whether to stay and fight for love and a good life, or cut his losses and run.

Listen to an Excerpt: https://soundcloud.com/dreamspinnerpress/audiobook-sample-of-brokenhearted-by-cate-ashwood

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Click here or the image to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway!

Rafflecopter Prize: An audiobook copy of ‘Brokenhearted’!

About the Author

Author Bio: Cate Ashwood wrote her very first story in a hot-pink binder when she was in the second grade and found her passion for writing. Her first successful foray into romance writing came five years later when she wrote her best friend, who was experiencing a case of unrequited love, her own happily ever after.

Cate’s life has taken a number of different and adventurous roads. She now lives a stone’s throw from the ocean, just outside of Vancouver, British Columbia with her husband and two cats. Her life is filled with family and friends, travel, and, of course, books.

Author Links: Cate loves to hear from readers. You can find her at:

Website: http://www.cateashwood.com

Blog: http://cateashwood.blogspot.ca/

E-mail: cateashwood@gmail.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/cate.ashwood

Twitter: @Cateashwood

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Tour Dates: June 11, 2014

Tour Stops: My Fiction Nook, Smoocher’s Voice, Rainbow Gold Reviews, Velvet Panic, Parker Williams, Havan Fellows, MM Good Books, Fallen Angel Reviews, Up All Night, Read All Day, Tara Lain, Wake Up Your Wild Side, Prism Book Alliance, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, LeAnn’s Book Reviews, The Hat Party, Love Bytes, SA McAuley, Kimi-Chan, Lee Brazil, Iyana Jenna, Freddie Feeley Jr., Because Two Men Are Better Than One, Hearts on Fire, Elisa Rolle, It’s Raining Men, Dawn’s Reading Nook

 

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Click here or the image to buy from Amazon/Audible 

 

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☊☊☊☊☊ Audiobook: After Ben by Con Riley ☊☊☊☊☊

After Ben

Written by: Con Riley
Narrated by: JP Handler
Length: 10 hrs and 47 mins 

The Blurb…

A year after the sudden death of his longtime partner, Ben, Theo Anderson is still grieving. The last thing he’s looking for is a new lover. But as Theo soon discovers, sometimes life has other plans.

While Theo experiences a powerful physical attraction to fellow gym member Peter, it’s his new online friend, Morgan, who provides the intellectual challenge to make him come alive. Morgan is witty, brave, and irreverent, and Theo is ready to take the plunge… until he discovers Morgan might be half his age.

Theo’s late partner was significantly older—enough to strain Theo’s relationship with his family—and the potential of another relationship being cut short leaves him gunshy. Theo needs to lay Ben’s memory to rest, reconcile with his family, and rekindle neglected friendships if he’s to start afresh with a new lover. But Theo isn’t the only one with a past.

His biggest challenge, in living after Ben, might not be his to face.

So what did I think?

I read this book back in 2012 and loved it – 5 stars and straight onto my Favourites shelf! So when I found out the audio version was available there was no doubt that it was time for a re-read (well, really it was a first-time listen).

Because I had read and loved this story so much I was looking forward to listening to the audio version. I was nervous though, worried that the narration would not do justice to the story. I needn’t have worried, JP Handler, did a great job of bringing Theo’s story to life.

This is a wonderful story of someone’s grieving and reawakening process as Theo mourns the loss of the love of his life but then finds he can finally open his heart to love again. It is a story about love and friends and families. It also has a strong message about abuse and people in need, with a number of characters being involved with a shelter.

The book starts about 12 months after Ben’s death. It is jam packed full of flashbacks – flashbacks of Theo’s time with Ben and flashbacks of Theo’s past 12 months.

Theo has closed himself off from most people, apart from his assistant Maggie, but it is the arrival of some new people in his life that sets him on the road to recovery – his interns, his new friend Peter and his online forum friend Morgan.

I’m not going to say much about the story itself, accept to say that it is engaging and emotional and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I was also very impressed with the narration, particularly the gorgeous Italian accents of Ben and his brother Marco, which were so sexy.

This audio book comes highly recommended. It is not a fast story, at times, at least in the audio version, it can be a little slow, but it is heartbreaking and heartwarming and so worth the journey. This still stays a 5 star read for me.

At the time of writing this review, the audio book is only $1.99 from Audible so go check it out!

The Seattle Stories

  • After Ben (book #1)
  • Saving Sean (book #2)
  • Aiden’s Luck (book #3)

To find out more about Con Riley and her books visit her website.

Buy After Ben from Amazon

Buy After Ben from Audible

Dreamspinner Press

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☊☊☊☊☊ End of the Beginning & Raise Your Glass by John Goode ☊☊☊☊☊

Audio book review of Tales from Foster High (books #1-3)

Author: John Goode

Narrator: Michael Spellman

☊☊☊☊☊

The Tales from Foster High series:

  • Maybe With A Chance Of Certainty (book #1) – click here for review
  • End Of The Beginning (book #2) – in this review
  • Raise Your Glass (book #3) – in this review
  • End Of The Innocence (book #4)

Note: See the review of the first book where I focus a little more on the narration. I cannot speak more highly of Michael Stellman. He did a wonderful job of narrating Tales from Foster High and I believe his voice is perfectly suited to the telling of a YA story.

❅❅❅❅❅❅❅

End of the Beginning (Tales from Foster High, #2)End of the Beginning by John Goode

The Blurb…

Not too long ago, Brad Greymark outed himself to his high school and the rest of the town of Foster, Texas, with a fairly obvious public display of affection. Now what? Brad had thought being Foster’s favorite son wasn’t that important, but when it comes time to choose between high school fame and Kyle, the boy he might just be falling for? It’s not an easy decision, knowing his heart may break either way.

So what did I think?

This is the second book in the series and part of the Tales From Foster High audio book so I listened to rather than read this book. As with the first book, I LOVED this is it’s audio form. The narrator’s voice was just brilliant, catching the teenage voice of Brad.

Here we have Brad’s point of view as he agonises over the events of the past couple of days. Coming out in front of the whole school was a spur of the moment decision and Brad wonders if he made the right choice. It was sad to watch him go from the top of the school social ladder to pretty much the bottom but his strength lay in how he handled himself.

It’s such an interesting look at the real person behind the facade. Brad may have had the looks, the status, his sporting prowess, a big home and a nice car but this didn’t make him happy in his heart. I loved the character development in this story.

Raise Your Glass (Tales from Foster High, #3)Raise Your Glass by John Goode

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Blurb…

Tales of Foster High – Sequel to The End of the Beginning Kyle Stilleno used to be the invisible student. Brad Graymark used to be the baseball star. Then they fell in love and Brad outed them both with a spectacular public display of affection, and now everything is different. After spending a few days lying low, Kyle and Brad are going back to school. It’s time to face the music and see how Foster High deals with their growing romance. But the school’s reaction-and the staff’s hostility-are not what they expected. Everyone they know seems to be allied against them. Isn’t there anyone they can count on to defend their happiness?

So what did I think?

When times get tough, you really find out what people are made of and in this book Brad and Kyle totally shine, particularly Kyle who is no longer a wall flower and very much the centre of attention.

The experiences the boys go through as they return to school are heartbreaking. As to be expected, the reaction from the other students is not positive and Brad and Kyle are tormented for their sexuality. But it is the reaction of the adults – the teachers and authority figures – that is the most shameful. This is tough look at what life can be like for young people who don’t conform to what other people deem as being acceptable – bullying and lack of support. But there is a positive ending as support comes from some unexpected places.

I liked the message from the author at the end of the book, an anti-bullying message, to remind people they are never alone and remind us, the reader, that although this story is a work of fiction, bullying is an all too common occurrence that can have tragic consequences.

❅❅❅❅❅❅❅

To find out more about John Goode check out the Tales from Foster High Facebook page.

Buy Maybe With A Chance Of Certainty from Amazon.

Buy the audio book, Tales from Foster High (books 1-3) from Audible.

Tales From Foster High

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☊☊☊☊☊ Audio book review: Who We Are by T.J. Klune ☊☊☊☊☊

A highly recommended audio book! And at the time of writing this review on special from Audible for only $3.49 so get shopping!

  • Bear, Otter, and the Kid  – book #1
  • Who We Are – book #2 – the audio book is reviewed in this post
  • The Art of Breathing – book #3 – release date unknown

❅❅❅❅❅❅❅

Who We Are

Who We Are

Author: T.J. Klune

Narrator: Charlie David

Length: 12 hours 42 minutes

❅❅❅❅❅❅❅

The blurb…

Sequel to Bear, Otter, and the Kid

Bear, Otter, and the Kid survived last summer with their hearts and souls intact. They’ve moved into the Green Monstrosity, and Bear is finally able to admit his love for the man who saved him from himself.

But that’s not the end of their story. How could it be?

The boys find that life doesn’t stop just because they got their happily ever after. There’s still the custody battle for the Kid. The return of Otter’s parents. A first trip to a gay bar. The Kid goes to therapy, and Mrs. Paquinn decides that Bigfoot is real. Anna and Creed do… well, whatever it is Anna and Creed do. There are newfound jealousies, the return of old enemies, bad poetry, and misanthropic seagulls. And through it all, Bear struggles to understand his mother’s abandonment of him and his brother, only to delve deeper into their shared past. What he finds there will alter their lives forever and help him realize what it’ll take to become who they’re supposed to be.

Family is not always defined by blood. It’s defined by those who make us whole—those who make us who we are.

So what did I think?

I read Bear, Otter, and the Kid in 2012 and absolutely loved the beautiful story of family and love. I’m not sure why it took so long for me to get to Who We Are but when I was looking for a new audio book to listen to, it seemed a great time to continue the story.

This is a story of Bear and Otter, wrapped in each other’s love, facing the next steps in their future.

“….I came back for you, and I promised myself that I was never going to let you go again.” He sighs. “All I want is to grow old with you and know that one day, it’ll just be you and me, that we’ll be able to look back and be proud of what we’ve done with our lives. I want to know that you belong to me and I belong to you. I love you with everything I have and I can promise you what I’ll never ever stop. I couldn’t, even if I wanted to. It won’t be perfect, Bear, nothing ever really is. There will be days when we are angry with each other, and days where it seems the world is a fucking messed up place, but it won’t matter. Because I’ll have you and the Kid and you’ll both have me…..”

The blurb provides a really good indication of the journey this book takes – it’s full of love and family, happiness and sadness, heartache and jealously, death and new life – hilarious one minute to warm and sweet the next to shedding tears – definitely an emotional journey!

As far as being a tearjerker, there was a section of this book that had tears streaming down my face as some of the book seemed so relevant to recent events in the author’s life. Those of you who know or follow T J Klune will know exactly what I am referring to…

Spoiler Alert!

I have no idea how to add a spoiler in WordPress (I need to do some research!) so be warned that what follows is a big spoiler. Stop reading here if you don’t want to find out about one of the events in the book. If you want to read the review with spoilers hidden, check out the review on Goodreads.

It was so heartbreaking to read the scenes of Bear sitting by Otter’s hospital bed, holding his hand while he is unconscious and not knowing what the future will hold. What if Otter didn’t wake up? What if he was different? What would it mean for their lives?

“I brought up my free hand to wipe at my face, and the ring on my finger glinted in the low light, a flash that was brilliant and heartbreaking. I dropped my left hand on top of his. “You’ll see,” I said. “You’ll see. You and me? We aren’t done yet. Not by a long shot. I promise you that. I don’t care what it takes. I don’t care how you come back to me. But you come back, you hear me? You come back and everything will be fine. I don’t care if you can’t walk right, or if you can’t think right, or if you can never remember my name. It won’t matter to me, just as long as you come back. You’ll see. You’ll see how great it can be.”

The audio book is narrated by Charlie David and I loved the way he voiced this book. It is obvious that the narration is by an actor. Charlie David really captures the emotion in the moment, not just reading the words from the pages. His pace is quite fast which I really, really like. It is not a slow, dragged out kind of reading, rather a vibrant and engaging telling of the story. I think he perfectly captures the characters and is wonderfully suited to the craziness of thoughts in Bear’s head! The sex scenes are fabulous with the voice capturing passion and love. He could be soft and loving, funny and sarcastic, quite, thoughtful…….If you haven’t checked out any audio books narrated by Charlie David, do give them a try!

And speaking of other books, there is good news! As we speak TJ Klune is working on the third book in the series. There is no release date as of yet but if the epilogue of this book is any indication, pretty soon we will be hearing more of the Kid!

5 Stars

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To find out more about T.J. Klune and his books visit his website.

Buy Who We Are from Amazon.

Buy Who We Are from Audible.

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If you would like to support T.J. Klune and Eric Arvin, please do so at the following site or by buying their books!

EricArvinSupportFund

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☊☊☊ The Adrien English series – books 2, 3 and 4 – on audio ☊☊☊

A brilliant series and audio book – highly recommended!

The Adrien English series:

  • Fatal Shadows (book #1) – click here for review
  • A Dangerous Thing (book #2) – in this review
  • The Hell You Say (book #3) – in this review
  • Death of  a Pirate King (book #4) – in this review
  • The Dark Tide (book #5)

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A Dangerous Thing 

A Dangerous Thing by Josh Lanyon and Narrated by Chris Patton

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Blurb…

Adrien English Mystery Series #2 Suffering from writer’s block and frustrated with his tentative relationship with hot but closeted L.A.P.D. Homicide Detective Jake Riordan, gay bookseller and mystery writer Adrien English travels to northern California where he finds a body in his front drive. By the time the sheriffs arrive, the body has disappeared, and Adrien once again finds himself playing amateur sleuth. But when the game turns deadly, Adrien turns to Jake. Jake may be confused about some things, but keeping his lover alive is not one of them–no matter what the cost.

So what did I think?

“Aren’t you the guy who told me a cop’s gut instinct is one of his best tools?”
“You’re not a cop, baby. You’re a bookseller. You don’t have a gut instinct. You have knack for nearly getting yourself killed.”

I love the blend of quick wit and humour with the intrigue of the murder mystery. But as good as the mystery is, of course I’m really only reading to see to the evolution of the relationship between Adrien and Jake.

I adore Adrien! He’s the sort of guy I would love to have as a friend and as a friend, I want him to be happy. His admission (to himself) of love for Jake is painful because we know loving Jake won’t be easy. Oh, but the first kiss with Jake – just beautiful!

I have been continuing to ‘read’ this series by listening to the audio version……Chris Patton does a stellar job of narrating this series. I loved the way he voiced Adrien – his inflection, his tone, the quality of his voice – and the sexy, gruffness of Jake is perfect!

 

The Hell You Say


The Hell You Say
by Josh Lanyon and Narrated by Chris Patton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Blurb…

After bookstore clerk Angus flees following terrifying death threats, owner Adrien must contend with a mysterious Satanic cult, a hot and handsome university professor, and his on-again/off-again relationship with closeted LAPD Homicide Detective Jake Riordan.

So what did I think?

As usual, this series continues to impress!

Definitely a good book in the series, made so because of the character of Adrien English. There is lots and lots of humour and witty comments – Adrien is the king of the fast comeback!

It’s a thriller mystery although with a little less action than previous books and Adrien doesn’t seem to be getting himself into so much direct trouble. There is lots of sleuthing as he tries to help his bookshop assistant who is part of a cult and accused of a crime Adrien doesn’t think he committed.

At first I wondered why Adrien was so passionate about getting involved but I think his nature didn’t give him any choice! As a writer of mysteries he doesn’t have it in him just to sit back and not follow the clues.

Jake only makes a minimal appearance in this book. I would have like there to be more on-page Jake although he was an asshole!

All in all – a great book, a mystery not a romance. The ending was a little bit fast and sudden but luckily there was another book for me to launch straight into!

The narration captures the essence of Adrien. The other characters are voiced well too – Guy, with his slight British accent and Lisa.

Death of a Pirate King


Death of a Pirate King
by Josh Lanyon and Narrated by Chris Patton

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The blurb…

Gay bookseller and reluctant amateur sleuth Adrien English’s writing career is suddenly taking off. His first novel, Murder Will Out, has been optioned by notorious Hollywood actor Paul Kane.

But when murder makes an appearance at a dinner party, who should be called in but Adrien’s former lover, handsome closeted detective Jake Riordan, now a Lieutenant with LAPD — which may just drive Adrien’s new boyfriend, sexy UCLA professor Guy Snowden, to commit a murder of his own.

So what did I think?

Of course I was going to love this book because I love the series!

As with the other books it is a perfect blend of intriguing plot,lots of witty humour and wonderful characters.

The mystery was interesting as Adrien starts to mix with some Hollywood types and celebrities. The mystery takes up more page time than the relationship between Adrien and Jake but the relationship somehow still seems integral to the book.

The author wonderfully conveys so much about Jake and Adrien without necessarily using words. Every look nad action tells so much about their feelings. The relationship between Jake and Adrien just seems so honest and real, despite the secrets and all the thing unsaid. It seems so natural for them to be together despite the other people in their lives.

One more book to go! Please, please, please give me the perfect ending for Adrien and Jake!

Once again, as with earlier books in the series, I listened to this one via audio book and can’t speak highly enough of the narrator – brilliant!

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To find out more about Josh Lanyon and his books visit his website.

Buy the series from Amazon.