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Currently Browsing: m/m romance
Nov
29

Quickie Review: Friends with Benefits by Jennifer Labelle

Quickie Review: Friends with Benefits by Jennifer Labelle Friends With Benefits Author: Jennifer Labelle  Release Date: Oct. 3, 2012 Publisher: Decadent Pub. Decadent’s Edge Series Genre: M/M, GLBT, novella Format(s): e-book Book Source: Publisher About the book: Collin Harrison is loving life as a bachelor, but can’t convince his meddling mother to back off. She’s constantly in his business and keeps trying to set him up on blind dates, when all he wants is friendship and a good time. To make matters worse he’s been confused ever since his new neighbor entered his life. An instant rapport between the two men sparks a desire neither are sure about pursuing. Until one night after a hockey game his mother pushes him too far and he decides it’s time to enact, landing him in the arms of another man for the first time. Devin Hardy is no stranger to fulfilling his most intimate desires. He’s got open minded friends, a great libido, and fond feelings for a neighbor he’s not sure is interested. Until one night they both take the leap, turning their friendship status into one with scorching hot benefits. What I’m talking about: Friends With Benefits is one of Decadent’s Edge series stories, and as far as I can tell, unrelated to another story. The Edge series are short stories (less than novella length), which focus on a small segment of a budding romance. The vignettes always center on a sexual encounter, but typically leave the reader with the feeling something more is going to occur after the end of the story.   Friends with Benefits is one such story, told from the point-of-view of Collin, an almost 30 year old man who secretly lusts for his male neighbor. Collin has never been with a man but cannot stop thinking about Devin, so much that it’s impacted his social life. After finally getting up the courage to say something, Collin lets known his feelings. Thankfully, Devin is willing and more than experienced and prepared for them both.  This vignette is sexy and erotic, without any hint of a romance. Friends with Benefits is all about making a sexual fantasy come true, and ending up with a friend with benefits. The dialogue isn’t flowery or romantic, which fits the situation. The guys are just that – guys, and they are excited to experience shared carnal pleasure. It’s sex and move on, with the opening for more fun down the road.  If you are looking for a romance, the story...
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Aug
27

Review: The CEO and the Cowboy by Starla Kaye

Review: The CEO and the Cowboy by Starla Kaye The CEO and the Cowboy Author: Starla Kaye  Release Date: July 9, 2012 Publisher: Decadent Publishing ISBN: #978-1613333327 Genre: m/m Romance – light BDSM Format(s): e-book Book Source: Publisher About the book: The whole thing about relationships and feelings confuses the heck out of Calhoun. He’s a simple cowboy and he’d been planning to marry a long-time friend for a while. When he finally realizes it doesn’t feel right, he lets her go. He probably shouldn’t have gone to her wedding to another man, but she wanted him there. But that’s when he really gets confused. His eye is drawn to a seriously hot businessman…and that sure does unnerve him…and yet…. Emotionally burned by the last man he thought he’d loved, Daniel isn’t anxious to replace him. But there is something about the proud, bedroom-eyed cowboy who shows up at his friend’s wedding. The CEO isn’t even sure if the cowboy’s gay, although the heat firing between them makes him wonder… What he does know is that he plans to find out. What B is talking about: Calhoun Cordell is a successful rancher who works hard, lives honestly, and doesn’t back down from a challenge. So when an uneasy introduction at his former girlfriend’s wedding turns everything he thinks he knows about himself upside down, he’s determined to figure out why.  Daniel Patterson doesn’t understand why he can’t take his eyes off the seemingly straight cowboy talking to his best friend’s new bride, especially so soon after being hurt in his previous relationship. Still, he can’t resist trying to get to know the handsome stranger better when the opportunity presents itself.  The CEO and the Cowboy is a quick, steamy look at a new romantic beginning, and hopefully a “happily ever after,” for its main characters. The brief backstory and lack of details in Cal and Daniel’s tale were somewhat limiting, but the direct nature of their first night together was exactly what I’d anticipated. Although The CEO and the Cowboy doesn’t lack for highly erotic depictions of the sexual relationship between the two main characters, the characters’ personalities were missing a certain vibrancy, making it more difficult for me to get wrapped up in their story. Calhoun, in particular, seems to be inconsistent in both his confidence and voice, and both characters’ speech borders on being too simple in places, which conflicted with the image of the successful, grown men presented at the beginning of the story.  The...
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Aug
21

Review: Stars & Stripes by Abigail Roux

Review: Stars & Stripes by Abigail Roux Stars & Stripes Author: Abigail Roux  Release Date: Aug. 13, 2012 Publisher: Riptide Cut & Run #6 ISBN: #978-1937551582 Genre: Romantic Suspense, GLBT – m/m Format(s): Paperback (292 pgs), e-book Book Source: Purchased with my own funds About the book:       Special Agents Ty Grady and Zane Garrett have managed the impossible: a few months of peace and quiet. After nearly a year of personal and professional turmoil, they’re living together conflict-free, their work is going smoothly, and they’re both happy, healthy, and home every night before dark. But anyone who knows them knows that can’t possibly last.        When an emergency call from home upsets the balance of their carefully arranged world, Ty and Zane must juggle family drama with a perplexing crime to save a helpless victim before time runs out.        From the mountains of West Virginia to a remote Texas horse ranch harboring more than just livestock and childhood memories, Ty and Zane must face their fears—and their families—to overcome an unlikely enemy and bring peace back into their newly shared world. What B is talking about:       For several months of relative calm and stability, Ty and Zane have finally been able to enjoy being together. Aside from the constant need to hide their relationship from their coworkers and families, things are going better than ever. But, as living magnets for chaos, it’s a sure bet that such bliss couldn’t last for long.       Stars & Stripes covers a lot of ground, both figuratively as well as geographically. From the mountains of West Virginia to the Hill Country of Texas, Ms. Roux puts her heroes to the test, and proves once again that she is adept at multitasking; writing not only an endearing romance, but a compelling whodunit, as well. Subtle where it counts, and funny in the most unexpected places, this story expands on the solid foundation that’s been built by the previous novels in the series, while giving the two main characters a chance to evolve along with the relationship they’ve been working for.       I was very happy to see Ty’s family again, even though I have serious issues with Ty’s father, as was certainly intended. Every family is different, and things turned out well, but I couldn’t help feeling a strong connection to Zane and his desire for retribution during one particular scene. However, meeting Zane’s family was...
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Aug
14

Review: Cut & Run Series #1-5 by Abigail Roux

Review: Cut & Run Series #1-5 by Abigail Roux Cut & Run A Series by Abigail Roux and Madeline Urban The Cut & Run series is one of the best I’ve ever had the privilege to read, regardless of genre. The main characters are smartly written, the suspense is never overplayed, and each subsequent challenge faced has left me determined, if not desperate, to stay with them through to the end. It is a rare thing for a story’s characters to feel so alive on the page as well as in my mind, but this series neatly succeeds at both. With a delicate intimacy between the two men that is kept to being a facet of their relationship, rather than its sole focus, the series avoids any gratuitous lessening of the novels themselves. Ty and Zane have a permanent place in my heart, and I’m looking forward to reading Stars & Stripes with an anticipation I have felt for very few stories in a long time. Cut & Run Book 1 Release Date: September 29, 2008       Assigned to work together due to a combination of their unique skills as well as an inability to play well with others, Special Agents Zane Garrett and Ty Grady would almost rather shoot each other than the serial killer who continues to elude them. But when they become targets themselves, they must find a way to get ahead of a hunter who plays to the rules they know, even as the undeniable heat between them threatens everything they’re fighting for.       This is the first novel in the excellent Cut & Run series. Ms. Roux and Ms. Urban have not only written an engaging, suspenseful story that cost me more than one night’s sleep, but Ty and Zane are utterly engrossing characters who won me over from the very beginning. They are smart, conflicted heroes who are so achingly perfect together that I couldn’t put their story down. A fascinating mystery as well as an enthralling romance, this story delivers solidly in both genres, and left me wanting more. Cut & Run is an exceptional beginning to a wonderful series, and I’m happy to be on board for as long as the series lasts. 5 stars: Personal favorite – a must read (A+) Sticks & Stones Book 2 Release Date: January 25, 2010       They’ve survived a serial killer, secret missions, and undercover assignments among the dregs of Miami, but taking a vacation might just prove...
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May
28

Review: Accidentally Beautiful by Deanna Wadsworth

Review: Accidentally Beautiful by Deanna Wadsworth Accidentally Beautiful Author: Deanna Wadsworth  Release Date: March 5, 2012 Publisher: Decadent Publishing 1 Night Stand Series ISBN: #978-1613332399 Genre: Erotic Romance/GLBT Format(s): e-book Book Source: Publisher About the book: Martin Baird is perfectly content in his safe, predictable job as head concierge for Castillo Resorts, but when a handsome stranger whisks him away for a night of tropical escapades—first visiting an isolated gay bar then to a secluded beach where erotic delights await—Martin’s world is thrown upside down. He’s never met a man like Garret Fisher, but it seems he has been waiting for a night like this all his life. Could something truly beautiful come out of this accidental meeting? Or was it really not an accident at all? What B is talking about: One of the things that makes the 1 Night Stand Series so good is that, with different authors contributing different stories, there’s truly something for everyone. Some of the stories combine the romance between the key characters with a bigger plot, the new relationships providing an advantage in the ongoing struggle. In Accidentally Beautiful, however, the attraction between Martin and Garret is the crux of the story. Both men are searching for something, and Madam Eve, as usual, knows exactly what they need, even more so than they do themselves. The Castillo Resort has been the backdrop for some of my favorite 1 Night Stand tales, so I anticipated another good read as soon as I recognized the familiar setting. I was not disappointed. Accidentally Beautiful has an added twist in that one of the men doesn’t even know he’s been set up on a date. It’s a device that’s been used before in the series, but I still think it played out especially sweetly here.  Garret and Martin are an excellent match for one another, Garret’s dominant tendencies attracting Martin’s submissive streak perfectly. Although Martin’s journey in Accidentally Beautiful is more of an epiphany, both men learn more about themselves than they expected to, and surprisingly discover something precious they’ll fight to keep.  Even within a series devoted to erotic explorations, these two are downright hot together. Wadsworth crafts some wonderfully explicit scenes, each rich in detail, yet still manages to keep the language naughtily romantic. Garret may be in charge, but the care he takes with Martin is endearing. Martin is a sweetheart, and the emotions he goes through as he realizes what he truly needs makes him one of my...
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Apr
11

Review: Want

Review: Want Want Author: Ann Mayburn  Release Date: Jan. 16, 2012 Publisher: Decadent Publishing 1 Night Stand Series ISBN: #978-1613331966 Genre: Contemporary, Erotic Romance, M/M Format(s): e-book Book Source: Publisher About the book:      Construction foreman Cody McPherson always considered himself as straight as they come. That is until he finds himself falling for the handsome stonemason, Sam Denham, who constantly occupies his thoughts. He wants Sam, badly, and can’t get the man out of his mind. Worse yet, he isn’t even sure if Sam is gay. When he finds out that Sam has signed up with a dating service searching for a guy who looks exactly like him Cody is even more eager, and confused than before.      Sam can’t believe that he’s developed a huge crush on his obviously straight co-worker. Even worse, the job that allowed him to see Cody on an almost daily basis has ended and he desperately misses his buddy in a way that goes far beyond just friendship. In an effort to soothe his aching heart and body, he tries to get a blind date with someone like Cody so he can pretend for just one night that he holds Cody in his arms.      When Cody himself shows up as Sam’s blind date, he is at once elated and afraid of having his heart broken by just another straight guy looking to sample the gay life. He wants to be so much more than Cody’s 1Night Stand and if he’s given the chance, Sam will do anything to prove that love doesn’t discriminate based on gender. What B is talking about:      Want is a sweet, delightfully erotic short story that is a perfect addition to the 1 Night Stand series. I absolutely adored reading about Sam and Cody. Both are grown, successful, down-to-earth men who are strong enough to pursue what they want, yet have lived enough to doubt that they will find it. While both have had experiences with the opposite sex (to vastly different degrees), they want each other and no one else.      Sexually, Sam and Cody are hot. Despite a somewhat awkward walk to the elevator in the beginning, Mayburn doesn’t waste much time with a drawn out learning curve for these men. Instead, she gives their mutual desire, curiosity, and enthusiasm free reign. They are well matched and willing, the attraction they feel for one another having already built to roar during...
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Mar
22

Review: Slow Break

Review: Slow Break Slow Break Author: Sara Brookes  Release Date: Dec. 15, 2011 Publisher: Decadent Publishing Sypricon Masters Book #4 ISBN: #978-16133317367 Genre: GLBT, m/m romance, BDSM, Erotica, Sci-fi romance, Novella Format(s): e-book Book Source: Publisher About the book: Jack Cotton thought he’d made the right choice to walk away from Tawse, the only BDSM club on Sypricon. But a life-altering tragedy has shown him the error of his ways. Now, he’s ready to make amends and is more than prepared to kneel before the Dom he left so abruptly. Denton is bound by the rules of Tawse, and he knows Jack’s membership has been terminated. But Jack’s return is all too personal and his actions can’t simply be ignored. Forced to make a choice, Denton does the only thing his instincts as a Dom tell him. After all, some men, like rules, are meant to be broken. What B is talking about: Jack and Denton make a good pair, and while most of Slow Break is told from Denton’s point of view, it is Jack that is most in need of redemption. As a Dom, Denton has an obligation to his sub, as well as a need to see his own value reflected in Jack’s willingness to submit. Jack, on the other hand, has a lot to make up for, and is determined to show Denton he’s ready to face the truths he’d denied so stubbornly before.  Slow Break is one of those stories that that attempts to explore more than just the characters’ sexuality, which I’ve found is true of most of the BDSM fiction I’ve read. As opposed to some other types of erotic fiction, the BDSM lifestyle, as depicted, goes beyond the kink to the underlying needs, and the reasons for those needs, of all participants, both Masters and subs alike.  Brookes explores the themes of loss, guilt, acceptance, and hope in Slow Break, and does so fairly well in a comparatively brief narrative. It works, I think, because both of the main characters have done the bulk of their soul searching before the story itself ever begins. This leaves the revelations of what they’ve discovered about themselves to provide the emotional connection to the scene, and the means for a happy ending.  Sexually, this story covers a lot of ground in a short span of time. Ranging from a variety of interactions, both heterosexual and homosexual, to discipline and submission, Slow Break has a little bit of everything....
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Mar
19

Review: Unshakeable Faith

Review: Unshakeable Faith Unshakeable Faith Author: Lisa Worrall  Release Date: Nov. 28, 2011 Publisher: Dreamspinner Press ISBN: #978-1613722671 Genre: LGBT – M/M Romance Format(s): Paperback (250 pgs), e-book Book Source: NetGalley About the book: Of all the bars in all the towns in all the world, the stranger walks into Brody Tyler’s. With no memory and a name he chose from a newspaper, Nash is a gamble—one Brody is willing to take. It isn’t long before Brody and Nash fall in love, but then a tragic accident shatters their cozy world, resetting Nash’s memory once again. The “new” Nash Walker is a businessman with a bottom line, and he doesn’t care what or who gets stomped on. Waking up in a hospital bed after a hit-and-run with no idea where he’s been for the past six months is bad enough, but someone trying to kill him is even worse. Enter Brody Tyler, accidental bodyguard. Brody’s determined to help Nash remember and bring back the man he loves. Nash thinks Brody’s a drop-dead gorgeous pain in the ass. If only he could remember…. What B is talking about: Brody Tyler has a habit of picking up strays. If only he’d stick to a pet, rather than taking in men who are down-on-their-luck. But when a gorgeous amnesiac with the most beautiful green eyes he’s ever seen walks into his bar, frightened and unbearably lost, he knows two things: that he’s a total goner, and that he just got himself a new roommate. This is one of the funniest, most pleasantly frustrating, yet lovely m/m romances I’ve read yet. Brody and Nash are wonderful together, Brody’s openness and acceptance being the perfect haven where Nash can recreate himself and begin a new life. Brody is the perfect lover, and Worrall writes him so sweetly, that I couldn’t stand to see him hurt anymore than his friends could.  There aren’t any weak characters, save for Nash’s brother, Ben, in Unshakeable Faith, with even most of the minor characters providing good laughs and believable affection. The staff at Brody’s bar is especially entertaining, and his best friend, Wyatt, in particular, is an absolute treat. Hannah, Nash’s housekeeper, is similarly enjoyable, as are his mother and sister. As with any good story, some things must get worse before they can get better, and that’s doubly true of Unshakeable Faith. Nash makes some horrendous mistakes during the second part of his journey, and I wanted to knock some...
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Mar
5

Review: A Bid For Love

Review: A Bid For Love A Bid For Love Author: KT Grant  Release Date: Feb. 12, 2012 Publisher: Decadent 1 Night Stand Story Genre: Contemporary Romance, m/m, Novella Format(s): e-book Book Source: Publisher About the book: Anthony Conlin is a forty-one year old workaholic in love with his twenty-nine year old neighbor, Reece Whitmore, who looks like he belongs on the cover of GQ magazine. Anthony longs for Reece to the point of obsession, but doesn’t think he stands a chance because of their difference in age, his graying hair and a less than rock hard physique. When Anthony’s friend, Jagger Castillo urges Anthony to try the matching services of One Night Stand, Anthony still refuses because of his crush on Reece. But Jagger, along with the help of Madame Evangeline, the owner of the 1NS has something up their sleeves to make certain Anthony and Reece finally get together. A charity auction sets the stage and rolls into motion a night Anthony and Reece will never forget. What I’m talking about: Tony and Reese have been neighbors for a few years, both men are completely hung up on and attracted to the other. However, neither is willing to make the first move, that is until Reese decides he will take a chance. But his flirting doesn’t get far, and poor Tony is completely tongue-tied.  When a mutual acquaintance offers Reese a way into Tony’s bed (and hopefully his heart), Reese jumps at the chance for love. This was my first 1 Night Stand (1NS) novella and the second novella I’ve read by KT Grant. I am impressed with her ability to create intimate romances in such a short space. The characters are real enough, relatable on some level, and don’t require lots of background and superfluous details to enjoy the story. We know these two men long for each other, and Ms. Grant is able to quickly build the need and frustration. For those wondering, each 1NS story is independent, using a somewhat mysterious character, Madame Evangeline, as a match maker with a 100% track record in finding the perfect long-term mate. In this book it’s a suitable vehicle used to get the men together in a fairly short span.  I adored Tony and Reece. They both were a bit shy, but once together, passion explodes. And wow–there are some completely sexy scenes involving a hot tub! At times I thought that Tony was too hung up on the age difference and the...
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Dec
14

Review: Prides of the Moon Series

Review: Prides of the Moon Series Amber Moon Emerald Moon Turquoise Moon Author: Ann Mayburn  Publisher: Decadent Prides of the Moon Series, Books 1-3 Genre: Erotic Paranormal Romance GLBT Romance Format(s): e-books Book Source: Publisher About the books: Amber Moon Prides of the Moon #1 Release Date: July, 2011         Sabrina Wayne yearns for the perfect mates to fill the void in her heart. As a werepuma Beta, she is driven to find the strongest Alpha to submit too, or in her case, Alphas. Sabrina craves the delicious softness of a woman as well as the rugged strength of a man. She has almost given up finding the right couple when she takes a leap of faith and allows Madame Evangeline of the 1Night Stand matchmaking service to set her on what Madame Eve promises will be an evening she’ll never forget.        Alphas Nick and Madeline Turea have been searching for a woman like Sabrina for a very long time. After a disastrous relationship with a former Beta female, the couple has been extremely cautious to let anyone else get close to them or the Amber Moon pride. When Madame Evangeline contacts them about a possible match, both are eager to meet the beautiful woman who may complete their family.        A night of reckless desire and burning hot passion leads to an unknown danger that might destroy Sabrina’s one chance at a perfect love. She must learn to surrender to the power of her Alphas and gain their trust before it’s too late. Emerald Moon Prides of the Moon #2 Release Date: August, 2011        Ben Harkil had long ago given up on love, refusing to believe that he was worthy of it. When he is given the gift of a 1 Night Stand blind date he goes into it expecting nothing more than a night of savage pleasure. Instead he finds the missing piece of his heart.      Jude Carson has an impossible task in front of him. He has to convince the man that he hasn’t seen in fifteen years that he still loves him with all of his heart and wants him back. A task made even more difficult by the horrible circumstances that lead to their parting and tore their former pride apart.      Ben will have to learn that sometimes the hardest person to forgive is himself if he wants a second chance at the greatest joy...
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