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☊☊☊☊☊ Hot Head by Damon Suede ☊☊☊☊☊

A highly recommended audio book!

  • Hot Head (book #1) – in this review
  • Hard Head (book #2) – release date is unknown

❅❅❅❅❅❅❅

Hot Head (Head, #1)Hot Head by Damon Suede

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Blurb…

Where there’s smoke there’s fire. . .

Since 9/11, Brooklyn firefighter Griff Muir has wrestled with impossible feelings for his best friend and partner at Ladder 181: Dante Anastagio. Unfortunately Dante is strictly a ladies’ man and the FDNY isn’t exactly gay-friendly. For 10 years, Griff has hidden his heart in a half-life of public heroics and private anguish.

Griff’s caution and Dante’s cockiness make them an unbeatable team. To protect his buddy, there’s nothing Griff wouldn’t do… until Dante is nearly bankrupt and proposes the worst possible solution: HotHead.com, a gay-porn website where uniformed hunks get down-n-dirty… Now Dante wants them to appear there— together.

Griff may have to guard his heart and live out his darkest fantasies on camera. Can he rescue the man he loves without wrecking their careers, their families, or their friendship?

So what did I think?

I read this book and loved it but then bought the audio version because I heard rave things about Charlie David’s narration and I wanted to check it out!

I still love the story – two tough and gorgeous firefighters and Griff’s secret love for his best friend Dante. It has it all – heroics, heartache, hot porn, passion, Griff in a kilt and sexy Dante!

And Charlie David’s narration definitely does complement the telling of the story beautifully. At first I was worried that the story would be somehow diminished if the narration did not live up the expectations set by my own reading, but I was not disappointed at all. I loved the sexiness of Charlie’s voice, his accents, tone and pace, all of which captured the character and spirit of the book perfectly.

If you are looking for a good book to read, particularly if you are after an audio book, then Hot Head is highly recommended!

❅❅❅❅❅❅❅

To find out more about Damon Suede and his books visit his website.

Buy Hot Head from Amazon.

Buy Hot Head from Dreamspinner Press.

or visit Audible where the audio book is on sale for only $3.49! Brilliant value!

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Nothing Serious by Jay Northcote

Nothing SeriousNothing Serious by Jay Northcote

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

The Blurb…

Mark O’Brien is finally being honest with himself. His relationship with Rachel is over and he’s moving out of the home they’ve shared for six years. They get along, but he can’t fix a relationship when the person he’s with is the wrong gender.

Jamie Robertson, one of the removal men, is huge and ridiculously gorgeous, and Mark is smitten at first sight. When a cardboard box splits, revealing items of a personal nature that Mark never wanted anybody to see, he’s mortified. But it sparks the start of a beautiful friendship with benefits.

As Jamie initiates Mark into the joys of gay sex, the two men get increasingly close and “nothing serious” turns into something rather important to both of them. But communication isn’t their strong point. Will either man ever find the courage to be honest about his feelings?

So what did I think?

I liked this story, mainly because both the main characters were both so nice! The story follows Mark, who finally comes out after many years of marriage, as he is initiated into the joys of gay sex by Jamie, whom he meets when Jamie is the removalist helping him move into his own flat.

The reasons for Mark ending up married “I think I just wanted to be what everyone expected me to be..” were relatively simple and his break up with his wife not overdone. It wasn’t necessarily a happy break up but neither was it too easy – realistic.

Jamie is younger than Mark and although not overly experienced, takes on the role of providing Mark with the touch he has been craving. Jamie is wonderful with a warm and caring nature and so endearing as he struggles with his dyslexia. His family are also a wonderful addition to the story.

I enjoyed the sweet story from the first realisation of shared interests which occurs over a broken packing box filled with Mark’s collection of DVDs and toys, through the sexual exploration, through the emotional miscommunication and to the last pages where Jamie is moving his own possessions, echoing the beginning of the book.

3.5 stars

❅❅❅❅❅❅❅

To find out more about Jay Northcote and her writing visit her website.

Buy Nothing Serious from Amazon.

Buy Nothing Serious from Dreamspinner Press.

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★★★★ Four Corners by Kate McMurray ★★★★

Four CornersFour Corners by Kate McMurray

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Blurb…

Since childhood, Jake, Adam, Kyle, and Brendan have been teammates, best friends, brothers. Then one day, when they were twenty-five, Adam disappeared without a word, devastating his friends-none more so than Jake, who had secretly loved Adam since they were teenagers.

Now, five years later, Adam is back, and he has his mind set on Jake. But those years of anger, hurt, and confusion are a lot to overcome, and Jake doesn’t find it easy to forgive. He isn’t sure they’ll ever fit together the way they did. Jake, Kyle, and Brendan have moved on with their lives, but Adam’s high-profile career keeps him in the closet-the same place he’s been for years. Still, his apologies seem sincere, and the attraction is still there. Jake desperately wants to give him a chance. But first he has to find out why Adam left and if he’s really back for good.

So what did I think?

This is a really interesting look at the relationship between two men, Adam and Jake as they deal with the emotions of meeting again, five years after Adam left without a word.

I enjoyed the exploration of Adam’s acceptance of his own sexuality and the response Jake had to his friend’s perspective. “It was okay for me to be gay but not for him. I wondered how his own self-loathing affected what he thought about me. I’d worried for a long time that any judgments he held about himself applied to gay people generally or me specifically, that he couldn’t muster up the pride to just say out loud that he was gay, that he condemned me for coming out. I guessed I had my answer.”

I think my favourite part of the book was Jake’s realisation of the difference between he and Adam. ” I finally got what he’d being trying to tell me since Wednesday night. I was capital-G Gay: I was out to everyone, I lived in Boystown, I had rainbow tags on my luggage. He was lowercase-G gay: he was attracted to men, but that’s where it ended as far as he was concerned. I was more flabbergasted than angry then, surprised I hadn’t put that together sooner, and also feeling a little hurt.”

What I didn’t enjoy was the whole on again off again thing, it mainly coloured my opinion of Adam and therefore I found it hard to warm to him initially. The whole book actually had a strange unease about it. When Adam and Jake get together it doesn’t even feel like happiness and joy. But what it does have is a sense of realism – real life has conflict and emotion and it isn’t always plain sailing.

Bonus points for the fabulous ending and sweet epilogue!

4 Stars

To find out more about Kate McMurray and her books visit the website.

Buy Four Corners from Amazon.

Buy Four Corners from Dreamspinner Press.

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Midnight Clear by Mercy Celeste

This is a wonderful friends-to-lovers story (previously published as Need You Now).
Midnight ClearMidnight Clear by Mercy Celeste

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

The Blurb…

Jake has lusted after his college roommate for four long years. Undeniably straight, Logan was out of reach. But was he? After the loss of his first love, Jake discovers that maybe Logan wasn’t as straight as he seemed.

Jake Benefield knows he has to let go of the crush he’s had on Logan Riley for four long years. He leaves to pursue a graduate degree only to discover love and loss. Home again, the last thing he expects is for Logan to confess his feelings for him. Can their friendship survive a cold Christmas one night stand or is Logan looking for more than Jake is ready to give him?

Note from author: Midnight Clear is a re-release formerly titled Need You Now. Other than title there are no significant changes to the story.

So what did I think?

It has all the elements for a lovely emotional read – best friends who are driven apart by undenied feelings, tragedy and heartache and finally a true admission of feelings.

Jake had a crush on his best friend Logan and left town after catching him in bed with Jake’s girl friend (girl friend not girlfriend). Jake does find happiness but tragedy drives him home again where he and Logan finally confront their feelings.

They finally admit their feelings and the history of their crushes on each other, with the emotions of the confessions finally falling over into lustful passion. Logan believes that Jake is not ready for a relationship “I know. Jake. No strings. I swear. I’m not looking to pressure you and if this is all there is then I’m good. I swear. Still friends. Just one night to know.” and Logan has a sexual history which led to Jake’s belief that he would just be one of many…“I just wanted to be one of them. I wasn’t vain enough to think I’d be the last. Logan was a horndog. There would be more. I wasn’t naive.” The sex scene that follows is sizzling – all those years of built up longing and passion….

I loved the characters and thought the handling of Jake’s grief, while at the same time allowing his relationship with Logan to rekindle, was beautifully done. Logan is also wonderful as the bisexual slut reformed, opening his heart to his friend.

When this story ended I wanted more! 3.5 stars (plus at $0.99 it was a bargain!)

To find out more about Mercy Celeste and her books visit her website.

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Love Has No Boundaries – Fabulous & FREE m/m short stories – PART I

LHNB

What Is Love Has No Boundaries?

The Goodreads M/M Romance group have run a number of events where we are lucky enough to get to read a collection of free m/m short stories, novellas and novels written by the group’s authors. Previous collections include Don’t Read In The Closet, Hot Summer Days (2011) and Love is Always Write (2012). This year’s collection is Love Has No Boundaries.

Group members were asked to write a story prompt inspired by a photo of their choice. Authors of the group selected a photo and prompt that spoke to them and wrote a short story.

Stories covered in this review are:

  1. Playing for Keeps by Lexi Ander
  2. The Idiots’ Tango by B. Snow
  3. Lost Time by Parker Williams

Playing for KeepsPlaying for Keeps by Lexi Ander

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Blurb…

College running back, Trent Harte, has been living with his lovers, AJ Barnes and Brock Everett, for two years. Caught in a compromising position, rumors abound. It’s hard enough to be an openly gay football player, but gossip and snide comments only adds to his stress. Threats against his partners causes Trent wonder if he should step back from the relationship.

AJ and Brock knows there is something wrong when Trent begins to pull away. A call from Trent’s father only adds to the distress. AJ and Brock refuse to let him shoulder the responsibility alone and they call for help. Will Trent find the strength to withstand the pressure and hold on to those he loves? Or will AJ and Brock be too late to convince Trent that they are playing for keeps?

So what did I think?

The thing I like most about this story was the focus on the depth of love in the menage relationship, not the sex. The three men – Trent, Brock and AJ – obviously care so much about each other, willing to sacrifice their individual dreams, if necessary, to be together.

These are strong men but they are not afraid to express their emotions and take a stand – all for one and one for all!

The story is engaging, the emotions strong, the sex hot and the ending happy.

The only minor niggle I had was the repetitive reference to Trent as ‘their running back’ or ‘the running back’. I got it – he was a running back! Well, maybe I didn’t really get it because I don’t actually know what a running back is but I am sure you know what I mean! The same with AJ who kept being referred to a ‘the former marine’, ‘their Marine’. To me it just doesn’t seem natural to be referring to people by their occupation or former occupation.

Overall, I feel very spoilt, being provided with a long and quality short story for free. Thanks Lexi!

4 Stars

The Idiots' TangoThe Idiots’ Tango by B. Snow

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The story prompt…

Dear Author,
My two men can’t STAND each other. It’s not a general dislike and it’s not a case where they can avoid each other.  Unfortunately, they share a circle of friends and family.
They met when they were in high school and there seemed to be a bit of attraction despite their vast differences, but something happened and they are at each other’s throats. Verbal throw-downs, the occasional thrown punch has happened at more than a few shared get togethers.
Dear Author, how can two men who can’t stand each other come to realize that the other man is the one person they can’t and don’t want to live without?

So what did I think?

I loved this story! It was a wonderful journey, spanning many years, from Josh and Stu’s first meeting and kiss that triggers it all.

Josh and Stu don’t see a lot of each other during this time but when they do, sparks fly – usually as they are annoying each other or fighting. Things never end well!

We follow Josh through his career as a professional rugby player and experience all the joys and sorrows of his family life from funerals to weddings, all of which seem to be intertwined with Stu’s family as Josh and Stu’s sisters are best friends.

The final scenes are brilliant – Josh and Stu finally get it together and (view spoiler)[first Josh’s Dad and then Stu’s Mum, walk in on them – hilarious! (hide spoiler)]. There’s tension and stupidity, some sadness and finally happiness plus the story has some genuinely funny moments.

Best line? Josh meeting an older gay couple at a wedding… “Why, when I was young, I had to walk five miles in the snow to get to the nearest glory hole.”

Once again I feel blessed to get such a great story for free!

5 Stars

Lost TimeLost Time by Parker Williams

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Story Prompt:

I was hoping you could tell me the story of these two beautiful men?
They have known each other for many years. They were close friends for a long time, but life just got in the way and their competitive careers and busy lives meant they somehow fell out of touch. They never forgot about each other, and they have both been waiting for this moment for years.
I’d like to see an emotional reunion, maybe a hint of hurt/comfort in there somewhere if you can fit it in, but most of all just a whole lot of love (I’m a hopeless romantic!)

So what did I think?

This was sweet and cute and romantic and basically pretty wonderful. Two boys who loved each other (unknown to the other, of course) and drifted apart. Sure, I didn’t understand why two people who felt so strongly about each other could let that happen but didn’t worry too much about that.

What follows is lots of romance as Kurt looks to win Alex’s heart by letting him know how much he cares and explaining some of the events in their past. Notes, picnics, romantic dinners, dancing gorillas with banana messages and radio dedications…perfect.

4 Stars

I hadn’t heard of the dedication song so here it is….

View all my reviews