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Currently Browsing: LGBTQ
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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Jul
26

Review: Amethyst Moon by Ann Mayburn

Review: Amethyst Moon by Ann Mayburn Amethyst Moon Author: Ann Mayburn Release Date: Dec. 27, 2011 Publisher: Decadent Publishing Prides of the Moon #5 1 Night Stand Series ISBN: 978-1613331828 Genre: GLBT, Paranormal Erotic Romance, m/m/m, Novella Format(s): e-book Book Source: Publisher About the book:      Noah Braxton’s world has been turned inside out and upside down ever since the fateful moment six months ago when he was turned into a shifter by a dying college girl. She made him promise to look after her sister, Giselle, and in an effort to sooth the dying girl he promised her that he would, not realizing the sacrifices he would have to make to keep that promise. Bound by his oath, Noah struggles to fulfill his role of beta to Giselle, an Alpha female, but he can’t be everything she needs. He’s gay and in order to bond properly with his Alpha female they would have to have sex. Without that bond with an Alpha he is slowly going crazy but he can’t force himself to be attracted to a woman. His last hope at saving his mind and his soul lies with Madame Eve of the 1 Night Stand matchmaking service being able to find him a male Alpha that can bridge the gap between himself and Giselle.      Marcus and Vashan have come to Morgantown, WV in the hopes of finding an Alpha female to complete their Pride. Instead they find Noah, a man on the edge of insanity who is also a natural dominant. Despite this both men are instantly drawn to Noah and decide to help him. Marcus will have to use all his strength as an Alpha to dominate Noah and show him that submission to his Alpha doesn’t make him weak. What B is talking about:      Noah has a problem. As a newly-turned werepuma, a rarity in the shifter world, he has a lot to learn, but the human that he was and the beta he’s expected to be are warring within him. His Alpha, Giselle, has tried to help him, but there’s only so much she can do without a full bond with Noah, and he’s becoming increasingly unstable. With the help of the 1 Night Stand dating service, they finally have a chance at a bond through Markus and Vashan that would lead to Noah’s salvation as well.      As a fan of Ms. Mayburn’s Prides of the Moon series, I was very excited...
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Jul
23

Review: Too Hot To Handle by LC Dean

Review: Too Hot To Handle by LC Dean Too Hot To Handle Author: L.C. Dean  Release Date: April 21, 2012 Publisher: Decadent Publishing Genre: GLBT Contemporary Romance, Novella Format(s): e-book Book Source: Publisher About the book: Why the hell do I torture myself? Sitting in the sun and hiding a hard-on from his best friend is not Tucker’s idea of fun. He’d rather drink beer and fantasize than destroy what he and Jase have. A good f*** between friends, what the hell’s wrong with that? Heat and lust make a man do crazy shit, but Jase intends to prove he and Tuck can be lovers and friends. When desire flares under the Texas summer sun, will it burn too hot to handle. What B is talking about: Tucker’s best friend is gorgeous, blond, and completely perfect. If only Jason wasn’t straight as well as a total player. Still, Tuck can handle lusting after him from afar, as long as nothing happens to ruin the friendship they have. Jason’s got some secrets of his own, as it turns out, and he’s got plans for his personal geek that’ll change them both forever. I tend to be a sucker for “odd couple” pairings, and Tucker and Jason definitely fall into that category. Jase is all brawn, and Tuck is the self-conscious geek who has no idea how hot he really is. Too Hot to Handle is a very short story, so there are quite a few clichés, but they streamline the backstory and allow the tale to stay true to it’s primary purpose, which is the explicit sexual reinvention of a solid friendship between two men.  Tucker and Jason are easy to like, and I enjoyed sitting back and taking in their story as it unfolded, without the need pick through unnecessary details. For a story of this length, that’s a definite bonus. The two men are awfully good together, and possess distinct enough personalities to keep them interesting. There was a slightly uncomfortable scene to add conflict to a story that might otherwise be too easy, but Jason remedied the mistake as quickly and enthusiastically as possible. Too Hot to Handle is essentially a snapshot of one extremely sexy afternoon of wish fulfillment between two best friends. Although I read it in less than an hour, I enjoyed it quite a bit. There’s a fair amount of predictability and some phrasing that I stumbled over a little, but the sex between the two men is hot, and the...
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May
31

Review: Public Display of Affection by Emily Cale

Review: Public Display of Affection by Emily Cale Public Display of Affection Author: Emily Cale  Release Date: Jan. 18, 2012 Publisher: Decadent 1 Night Stand Series Genre: Contemporary Romance, Lesbian, Novella Format(s): e-book Book Source: Publisher About the book: After a heartbreaking end to her relationship with her girlfriend, Lucy Stark is looking to try something more adventurous. She turns to Madame Eve’s 1Night Stand service to help her find the perfect woman to push her boundaries and introduce her to the more daring side of a sexual encounter. Samantha Taylor’s helped more than one woman explore her sexuality, but Lucy’s the first to really get to her. Keeping her walls up and the women she dates from getting inside is a skill she’s managed to master. After one night of unbridled passion, she has to decide whether to give up her hard exterior or let the woman of her dreams slip away. What I’m talking about: Once again I find myself drawn to Decadent Publishing’s 1 Night Stand Series. In this go around, we meet Lucy, a woman feeling a bit down on her luck and waiting for the other shoe to drop. She was dumped by her girlfriend for another and lost her job. Deciding to try and do something about it, Lucy hires Madame Eve’s service to help her find a woman who will break her out of her vanilla world. And as always, Madame Eve delivers more than Lucy expected. I was immediately drawn into the story from the beginning. Ms. Cale is able to capture Lucy’s raw emotions on page so that I too was nervous and second guessing Lucy’s decision to utilize the services Madame Eve offered. Although Lucy tells herself that she wants to move beyond her vanilla nature, I think she really wants to break free of her ex, Kristen. After a short while, Sam shows up at Lucy’s hotel room and takes charge right away. She orders Lucy to put on a butterfly vibrator under her clothing and then takes her out for dessert at the hotel restaurant. What happens next is delicious! Using a remote control, Sam stimulates Lucy off and on while engaging in polite dinner conversation. I enjoyed equal parts of Sam’s excitement to control the situation and Lucy’s mixed emotions over wanting to orgasm and fear of doing so in public. The well comprised scene was extremely enjoyable for all! Although I felt the first part of the story was well written and exciting, the...
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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
26

Quickie Review: Hot Buzz

Quickie Review: Hot Buzz *NOTE: THIS REVIEW HAS BEEN EDITED on Sept. 16, 2012. This story was originally reviewed under the title “Good Vibrations” and was published on April 24, 2012 as part of the Edge Series by Decadent Publishing. I have updated the links and book information, but the review remains the original review (title of book only change).Hot Buzz Author: KT Grant  Release Date: Sept. 15, 2012 Publisher: Self-Published Genre: Erotic Romance, Lesbian, Novella Format(s): e-book Book Source: Author About the book: Jerri can’t sleep at night. Every night she hears Krysta pleasure herself with her vibrator in her bedroom. Jerri wants to be the one to help Krysta find satisfaction and much more. Then one night Jerri’s jealousy gets the best of her and she confronts Krysta. She’ll prove to her that something like a vibrator can’t give her satisfaction, and only a flesh and blood woman like herself can. What I’m talking about: This is my second Edge story, and once again the short format delivers. For those not familiar, Decadent Publishing has a hot little series, The Edge, of unrelated (or in groups of related) short erotic stories. They are vignettes – views into a romance, but not the whole picture. The stories are not character or plot-driven, but rather snapshots of a few sexy moments. Hot Buzz is the story of lonely Jerri who has pined for her roommate Krysta for 5 years. Fearful of becoming another notch on Krysta’s bedpost, Jerri keeps her feelings hidden. That is until one night while out at a club and both women engage in some buzzed flirtation with other people. For some reason it is this night that the true colors show. They hungrily take one another in a night of passion and vibrators.  Hot Buzz gives us just enough insight into the longing Jerri has experienced over the years — enough to give the reader reason to care and cheer for the couple. Jerri and Krysta are hot in bed, but getting there was a little annoying. The jealous almost “cat-fighting” isn’t my cup of tea, but it brought the two together for an erotic coupling – and that was most certainly enjoyable. And in the end, the reader is left with the notion that everything will work out nicely for these two. I like my happy endings! All-in-all Hot Buzz is an enjoyable, erotic read. My Rating: Liked it, but I had some issues – recommend (B) Purchase Info: Hot...
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Apr
13

Review: Sleeping with the Frenemy

Review: Sleeping with the Frenemy Sleeping with the Frenemy Author: KT Grant  Release Date: May 2, 2011 Publisher: Ravenous Romance Genre: GLBT/lesbian, Suspense Romance Format(s): e-book Book Source: Author About the book: Deborah Murnay has a life most women would die for. She has a loving wife of four years who gives her anything she wants. But, Deborah hides a dark secret. Her wife Genevieve not only enjoys kinky, dangerous sex, but is insanely jealous and possessive. When a violent argument between the two leaves Deborah bruised and battered, she has no other choice but to run away. Through some intricate planning on Deborah’s part, she’s able to trick Genevieve into thinking she’s dead. Deborah becomes Sharon Wade and ends up hundreds of miles away in the small town of Woodberry Creek where she can start over again, even though she lives in fear that Genevieve will find her and kill her.  When grade school teacher Bridgette Woodberry notices her new neighbor, she quickly figures out Woodberry Creek’s new resident is hiding something. Deborah knows she can’t have a future with Bridgette, but finds herself attractive to the kindhearted redhead whose kisses and warm embrace makes her feel protected. As Deborah turns to Bridgette to help heal her scars, Genevieve is waiting for the right moment to take back her wife and make her pay for deceiving her. What I’m talking about: Sleeping with the Frenemy is a lesbian retelling of the 1991 film, Sleeping with the Enemy, starring Julia Roberts. For those unfamiliar with the story, it involves a wife’s escape from an abusive husband by faking her own death. In Ms. Grant’s version, we witness the extremely HOT yet harmful relationship between Deborah and Genevieve. The women have been married for 5 years, and at first it appears they have a wonderful relationship and ideal life. Yet as the story progresses, we witness the extent to which Gen abuses and controls Deborah. Similar to the movie, Deborah escapes the marriage by faking her death and moving to a small town far away. However, soon enough Gen finds out that Deborah has betrayed her and plots her revenge. The story reads well and moves at a good pace. Even though I saw the movie (many years ago), I still experienced a suspenseful thrill. Although there weren’t any major surprises, Ms. Grant changed enough of the details that kept the book fresh, and she makes it her own story. Even though I knew everything...
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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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