debbiereadsbook

sharing my reviews for Archaeolibrarian and Divine Magazine

an enjoyable listen, for the most part.

Changing Lines (Harrisburg Railers Hockey Book 1) - V.L. Locey, R.J. Scott
Independent reviewer for Archaeolibrarian, I was gifted the audio version of this book. I came across this pair of authors when asked to read the Owatonna U Hockey series. THIS series is before that series, and so I know some of what happens here ahead of time. Tennant is the youngest brother of three, and they are all hockey players. Tennant wants to do his own thing, so bucks against what his brothers want him to do and joins the Harrisburg Railers. Jared is one of the coaches to the team and Ten’s big brother’s best friend. Jared also pushes all of Ten’s buttons and is 9 years his senior. Jared can’t touch Ten, can he? For the most part, I did enjoy this book. Like I said, I knew there was a happy ever after and I knew what would happen to Jared’s son, Ryker (book one, Owatonna U Hockey, who is 17 here) so it was more a matter of HOW they got there, rather than if. I liked that Jared made Ten wait, and that boy did struggle in the beginning with that, but once he saw WHY Jared wanted to make him wait, he saw, he really did, the beauty of that. Both Jared and Ten have a say, in the first person. Each voice is distinctive enough to know who is speaking if left mid chapter, but I have something to say about the narration in a little bit. I would have liked more conflict, I think! Ten is in the closet and NO one knows, not even his parents. Coming out to Jared changes things for Jared, cos he thought Ten straight. The conflict I think I wanted was with the team, and the aftermath of his coming out and what that meant to ten and Jared. There is SOME fall out, with the team’s bosses and what they do after, but when Ten was musing over things I was expecting MORE, you know?? Sean Crisden narrates. I have listened to his work a couple of times before, and I think I prefer his work when only a single character has a voice. Here’s why. Doing two voices alternately has to be difficult. Ten is far younger than Jared and has a higher voice that I had no trouble with. Switching then to Jared’s voice, which is low and deep? HIS voice is the one I struggled with. Crisden dips his voice when Jared is thinking, and is emotional, and I struggled, with my dodgy hearing to keep up. I missed some of Jared’s musings because of that. There was also some long drawn out, detailed descriptions of hockey matches and I kinda tuned out at those points. Had I been reading, I would have skipped ahead, but you can’t do that when listening. Sorry, but great details about sports is really not my thing, even if stories about the sports players is. 4 solid stars for the book 3.5 for the narration Rounded up to 4 stars overall **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

great read.

Held Hostage - Morticia Knight
Title: Held Hostage (Sin City Uniforms #4) Author: Morticia Knight Publisher: Totally Bound Genre: Action, Contemporary Length: 199 pages Other: Spanking, Anal, Masturbation, M/M Rating: 4 stars Review by: Paperwhite REVIEW A very welcome addition to this series! This is book 4 in the Sin City Uniforms series, and you don’t NEED to have read the other books, but I would recommend you at least read book 2, Copping an Attitude. There are some things that happen in THAT book that have a direct impact on Brett in THIS book. They are all rather good though! Cole’s reaction to Brett is deep and powerful and vice versa and I loved that Brett fought a great deal against his feelings for Cole. They shared one night, just a “be there for each other” type thing, after a particularly difficult day for them both but very VERY quickly, it turns into more. They have crazy hot chemistry, right from the beginning. Cole brings some things into Brett’s bed that he never tried or thought to try before, and I did enjoy Brett learning as much as Cole did showing him. There is a scene in this book, that I did not enjoy. I didn’t want to read it, but I understand that is really is part of Cole’s life BEFORE Brett. I just didn’t like, is all! Both guys have a say, in the third person. Previous characters pop up, but not all of them. And I was glad that Brett could be friends with his ex, even after what he did in book 2. There is some overlap towards the end of this book and book 5, Negotiating Love and having read that book already, I knew what was going on, but it was great to read said bits from Cole’s point of view. I am enjoying this series, of 4 and 5 star ratings from me, but to be honest, this was probably my least favourite of the bunch. Still, I read it in one sitting, and I DID enjoy it for the most part. 4 solid stars **a similar worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

so bloody good!

Captive Hearts - A E Ryecart
I was gifted my copy of this book. Dashiell saves Billy from an attack and then is offered a job as his driver. Dashiell wants to say no, but one look at Billy and Dashiell knows he can't. When the full picture becomes clear to Dashiell, and he grows closer to Billy, they begin to think that maybe, just maybe they can get away. But there is more at stake than just Dashiell and Billy, and the noose grows ever tighter around Billy. Can they really be free? So! This is the first book I've listened to by AE Ryecart (although I do have signed copies of The Barista Boys books!) and this was one hell of a ride! I *try* to seperate the narration from the story and write two bits of a review, but when a book is first person, multi point of view, I find it so much harder! So, not gonna! Dan Calley narrates this book and this is the first of his work I've managed to finish (totally another story, quite literally!) and I bloody loved the way he tells Dashiell and Billy's story! Calley get over every single feeling that Ryecart writes, and in such a way, I HAD to stay up late to finish it! Dashiell has an immediate attraction to Billy, but knows he can't have him, not while Billy is so tied to the situation, but they can't keep away from each other. Calley gets over the whole range of emotions that Dashiell, and indeed Billy, go through when dealing with the situation, and how they can be together, while figuring it all out! I loved that Dashiell's need to look after Billy, to feed him, soothe him, all those sorts of things, come out of nowhere for Dashiell. They really do hit him upside the head! Billy? Oh, I felt, deeply, for Billy, I realy did. He knows he can never be free, not while he has responsibilites to take of, but he can hope, right?? You do feel it, deep in your soul, when Billy stops hoping, and it made me cry! The way it all goes down comes out of left field, I thought I had more book left, it totally took me by surprise! Oh, I KNEW it was coming, but still. There is another character here who is not all he sems, and his book is next, I so wanna listen to that too! Be warned though, this book is dark, with reference to abuse that is described in some detail, but not every detail, if that makes sense. And the situation Billy is mixed up in has hints to underground activities. Some readers may have triggers. BUT for me?? 5 star read 5 star narration **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

that epilogue broke me!

Spider (Rough Ink #2) - M.V. Ellis
Independent reviewer for Archaeolibrarian, I was gifted my copy of this book. Meeting Emi 13 months ago had a profound effect on Spider. Not least because he saved her from her ex. Crossing paths again showed Spider how much he wanted to be with Emi. But Emi has her demons, and her secrets. Can she close the door on her past, and let Spider in? This is book 2 in the Rough Ink series, but it’s not necessary to read Zed, book one, before this one. Zed and Vivi pop up, but not very much. I enjoyed THAT book, though and it gave me a feel for Ms Ellis’ work. THIS book?? I LOVED this book! Spider thinks something is wrong with him, because there are no problems in his life, no skeletons in his closet. Until one day, his world comes crashing down around him and he turns to the newly reacquainted with Emi for support. But Emi is dealing with her world crashing down, and needs Spider for support too. Spider keeps messing up though and I loved the advice Zed gives him, basically throwing his own words back at him. Emi is determined NOT to fall into her previous mistakes, and when Spider messes up, he MESSES up. He does, quite beautifully redeem himself a time a two though! It’s dark though, be warned and readers with triggers for domestic violence will need to be careful. It’s quite violent in places, with Emi’s ex doing his thing and we do get some of that in detail. It’s not overly explicit, but the heat level for Emi and Chris (which is Spider’s real name, and I loved that she kept the two names separate!) is hot off the page! I read this book on one sitting, and I bloody loved it! The bit that wrenched the most emotion from me, though, was NOT Spider and Emi, but that really was heart breaking. No, the bit that had me SOBBING was the epilogue! A certain person has his say, in just that one chapter, and Lord does he have a lot to say! So well played there, Ms Ellis, very well played! 5 gut wrenching, emotional, extremely well written stars **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

awesome read!

First Impressions (Auckland Med. #1) - Jay Hogan
This is book one in the Auckland Med series, but I am reading this AFTER I read book two, Crossing the Touchline. This book has been re-edited and tidied up, and is a re-release. I did not read the original version, so I can’t comment on any differences there may be. But THIS version? Was brilliant! Michael runs into Josh at a very inopportune moment, with his trousers round his knees, and his junk on display. That Josh immediately pushes ALL of Michael’s buttons and THEN some, is irrelevant. Josh does not want a player and Michael does not want a relationship. So why can they not stay away from each other? Michael’s reason for not wanting a relationship and Josh’s for not wanting a player in his life are made clear to us very early on, but it takes a LOT of time for them to open up to each other, and it really is painful watching them get to that point! I mean, neither wants *this* thing between them, that much is clear, but they cannot keep apart, and the chemistry between them of off the charts but emotionally?? Neither is ready for anything. And then, the pesky emotions do their thing and both of them, separately of each other, decide that maybe, just maybe they can make this work. Then something happens that sends them both into the unknown abyss and Michael runs clear across the world. It took me all day to read this, because I alternatively wanted to punch both Michael AND Josh in the face, and to wrap them both up in cotton wool and love hard on them! I still don’t know which is the more dominant feeling, I really don’t! I had to keep putting the book down, to get over whichever was higher up at the time. And trust me when I say, I rarely verbally react when READING (listening is different) and I did swear at this book a time or three at this book, I really did! These guys have some serious chemistry, let me tell ya! I was *NOT* being sociable, and reading at the mother in law’s house and she kept asking me if I was too hot, cos my face was flushed and I had to tell her I was coming down with a cold! Along with the noises, and I think she thought I was nuts! I can’t go into much, for spoilers, but this book twists and turns all over the place, and just when you think it’s all sorted? Boom! It goes off again! I loved that Cam, from book 2, takes a huge part and we see a different side to him here. Even though I know this has been edited and stuff, I would have loved the first version, I know. Don’t know who is next, I really don’t care, so long as I can get my grubby little mitts on it! 5 full and shiny stars **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

Bloody LOVED this one!

Off Base (Out of Uniform #1) - Annabeth Albert
I lovefinding new to me authors, and narrators and Ms Albert and Mr Stevens are bothnew to me! Zach ishiding himself, from his fellow SEALs, his family but most of all his hidingfrom himself. Moving off base seems to be the best solution but then his worstnightmare needs a place to stay and Zach can’t say no to Pike, and Pike’s cats.So, he grits his teeth and bares it. Pike, however, is gritting his teeth foran entirely different reason. He has a massive crush on Zach but can’t let Zachknow. The two men call an uneasy truce to do up the house, but neither can stayaway from the other for long. That stayingaway lasts only so long and it really was a joy to behold to watch Zach andPike get closer, and begin their friends with benefits thing, but it was alsopainful. Both men knew they shouldn’t do this, and it messed with everyone’s head,mine included! Zach is verymuch in the closet, and Pike is not. That alone causes Zach to have kittensabout every.single.little.thing! Everything, near the beginning, caused Zach topanic, but watching the man fall, watching him come out of himself and thatcloset, watching him fall in love with Pike?? Twas a beautiful thing!I loved thatit was ZACH who made the decision to do something about their situation, andPike did not push Zach, even though he really wanted to.Much of thatbeauty though, is in the delivery, and Tyler Stevens narrates. This is thefirst of his work I have come across and I need more, lots more! I loved thenarration, as much as the story itself! Stevens wasable to wrench so much emotion, particularly for Zach, into his narration, itwas almost listening to your best friend pour their heart out to you.The voicesfor Zach and Pike are very different, getting the point across about the manydifferences between the two men. ALL the voices are distinctive enough for meto not have any trouble with multi person conversations. Stevens reading voiceis deep and clear and very VERY easy to listen to.Someinteresting characters in the book, Ryan and Josiah (apologies if that’s nothow you spell, I’ve not seen it written down!) do they have a book?? Would LOVEto read or listen to their story! And Apollo. That man is sad, it’s too soon,but maybe, just maybe. . . .and OH!! His book is next! I just looked!I have booktwo to listen to next, but that is by a different narrator so it will be interestingto see how Apollo’s voice carries from one narrator to the next. 5 stars forthe book5 stars forthe narration5 starsoverall**sameworded review will appear elsewhere**

 

an enjoyable 90 minute read!

Perfect Trouble - Barbara Elsborg
I was gifted my copy of this book, direct from the author and I thank Ms Elsborg for that. This is the first I have read of her work, and I hope it will not be the last. Jonah has a knack for getting into trouble, and he is paying for it for the next 7 years. Getting Jinx off pack lands shouldn’t have been too difficult but Jonah had history with said pack, and they would kill him for sure. Jinx knows Jonah is Trouble with a capital T but she also knows, deep down, he may be the only one to keep her alive. For the most part, I did enjoy this tale of a faery and a wolf, but for a minor niggle or two, I really did. Jonah’s mind, even at rest, is going a million miles an hour and I really did struggle at points to keep up with his internal ramblings! I mean, me and my sister can flip a conversation on a penny, and continue as if we had been talking all the time about that subject, but Jonah’s mind? Lord I really did struggle to keep up with him! Also, I usually like plot twists, but towards the end, they were coming fast and furious. Good plot twists, that I really did NOT see coming at me, but there were just too many in a short space of time. Some darker themes touched on, mostly how the younger females are treated within the pack, not in great detail, but enough to warrant a warning. It’s not overly explicit, I thought, but it does give enough heat off to make it interesting. A bit violent in places, but needed I think, since Jonah stole gold off the pack and they want it back! Are there more books with these people? Some interesting characters in the place where Jonah is working! Overall, a very enjoyable 90 minute read. 4 solid stars **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

wonderful start to a new series!

Alex (Twilights Falls #1) - A.M. Salinger
Independent reviewer for Archaeolibrarian, I was gifted my copy of this book. Alex’s business partner scammed him for the tune of half a million dollars. His friend, Izzy, has the perfect solution. Marry her client, live with said client for 6 months, and get his half million back. Finn’s great aunt is a manipulative woman, but she loves him, she really does. Getting Finn out the house to meet someone new was not going to work while the artist hides himself away following the death of his wife several years ago. Marrying him off seems the perfect idea. When Finn and Alex come face to face at the courthouse, neither is expecting a man, but they go ahead. They can live with each other for 6 months and be done. But what happens when feelings get involved? When things begin to be REAL? I thoroughly, thoroughly enjoyed this start of a new series by Salinger! I LOVED the Nights series and I can see this new series growing on me too. There is immediate attraction to Finn from Alex but while Finn acknowledges, to himself at least, that Alex is gorgeous, it takes time for the attraction to Alex to grow. Loved that it wasn’t immediate obvious to Finn, just what he might be feeling for Alex. It’s not overly explicit, at least to start, but once these guys admit they want each other, and that Finn doesn’t seem to have a problem with that, they are all in! It does get a bit emotional, especially for Finn, when talking about his wife, and then to his great aunt about . . .things . . .and you feel sad for him, that he was never fully honest with himself. That his wife and his aunt saw, though, knocks him. Glad the business partner gets his comeuppence! I LOVED the wider group of friends that Alex comes home to! They are funny and I wonder if the series will evolve around them? I know Carter is next, who pops up here. It didn’t take me long to read the 170 pages its billed as, just over 90 minutes, but it left me feeling that warm and fuzzie feeling I haven’t had from a book in a good long while. So, thank you, Ms Salinger, for setting me up for a busy day at work, feeling that warm and fuzziness all day! I look forward to catching up with these guys should they pop up again in the series. * I hope they do!* OH!!! There is a bit at the back of this book that gives the first chapter to One Night, which is the first in the Nights series. If you haven’t read those books, I STRONGLY recommend you do! I made a new shelf for them, and everything! And of course I read that little bit and then had to go back and read Cam and Gabe’s first book again. And NOW I wanna go back and read the whole damn series again! Be warned though, those books are HOT off the charts! Ah sod it! I wrote 4 stars, then changed it to 5 then back to 4, but here you go! 5 warm and fuzzy, too stinking cute stars! **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

Ropin' the Moon - Deborah Camp
I was gifted my copy of this book direct from the author, that I write a review was not required. This landed in my queue at JUST the right time! I had just finished a heavy long book, and the one after this was gonna be a hard read too so, finding this little gem in the middle of those two books was perfect! Dalton is in town to "sort out the crime problem" which eans sort out the town bully who thinks he can run roughshod over everyone and everything, even a brand new rail road track! He's done this sort of thing before, he knows how it will end. Lacy works in the hotel, and Dalton catches her eye on his first ride through town. Sparks fly, even across the road from each other, but Dalton has a job to do, and will be leaving town, so Lacy can't get close. Can she? Like I said, this landed right where I needed it to, and I really enjoyed it! It's a bit vague on an exact timeline, but after the Civil War in the States, so maybe very late 18oo/early 1900s but that's neither here or there, you can piece together a rough idea, from the information given, or at least I did. Dalton and Lacy both have a say, and their attraction to each other is powerful, right from the start. It is, however, fairly clean because of the time it's set and all the rules and regulations regarding young ladies and how they should behave. There is, though, plenty steam and passion! The bully is dealt with in a way that was fairly inevitable but with just enough surprises to make it a bit of a shocker too. It was fun watching these two fall for each other, and the way they resloved Dalton's inability to settle and Lacy;s desire to travel was just perfect. A absolute please to read, thank you, Ms Camp, for my copy. 4 solid stars **same worded review will appear elesewhere**

 

totally surprised me, in a very good way!

Without Reservations - J.L. Langley
Independent reviewer for Divine Magazine, I was gifted my copy of this book. When Chay was 4 years old, he told his mother that his mate had “blonde hair and his eyes were blue” Mother wasn’t too impressed with the hair and eye colour, but she glanced over the reference to Chay’s mate being male. Years later, when Chay comes face to face with the injured wolf now on his table, Chay knows this wolf is his mate, his very MALE mate. When Keaton comes round, he knows Chay is his, but having had one in the closet relationship, he doesn’t want another. Chay, however, is very aware that there will never be another for him, and then Keaton’s past comes him, Chay and Keaton have to rely on each other to get through. I don’t read other reviews before I read a book anymore, I learnt the hard way not to do that anymore, and I read a few of the old reviews for this book. Old as in YEARS ago. I wonder, has the book had a major re-edit, tidy up?? Cos let me tell ya, I found NONE of the problems those reviewers did! I loved this book! I have no idea what I expected from this book, but my feeling is that it surprised me! And I have not a single clue as to WHAT surprised me, either! I sat down to read a few pages, as you do, before bed. Next thing, I’ve run out of book! Boom, 280 odd pages, 3 hours, and I’m semi-functioning the next day! Chay is of Native American descent, it does say which tribe, but I forget already. His mother is adamant that Chay’s mate be of some other tribe. That Chay keeps telling her his mate will be blonde and blue eyed, is beside the point. Keaton is very much NOT of Native American descent, and Chay’s mother does not like that. That Keaton is MALE isn’t really too much of an issue, though! Keaton walked away from his family when he announced he was gay, but he will always be gay and nothing will change that. Chay claiming to be hetero isn’t too much of a problem, because Chay really WANTS Keaton and once Keaton makes it clear he will NOT be in the closet, both men jump straight in to make this work. Keaton’s past though, doesn’t want it to work. That past threw me! I did not see that going down the way it did. All the tells were for one way, and then BOOM! Totally different direction! And I loved that! I loved how everyone else deferred to Keaton, but not Chay. Keaton’s power not obvious to him until it was pointed out. Both men have a say, it’s not overly emotional, but it gets the points it needs to make across. It’s not overly explicit, but it is all kinds of sexy. There are, according to some websites, 11 books in this series, and I would LOVE to read them all. Remi, Chay’s best friend, especially. His story is laid out here and it may well a better read than this one! First I’ve read of this author. I want to read more, not just this series, but in general. 5 totally unexpected but brilliant stars **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

a stunning concusion!

Forged Redemption (Tribal Spirits #5) - Katherine McIntyre
I was gifted my copy of this book, direct from the author, that I write a review was not required. But when the previous four books in the series have ALL been 5 stars, it’s only right and proper that you round off the WHOLE series, with a 5th FIVE star review! I strongly and highly recommend; find it absolutely NECESSARY that you read the other books first, and in order. The ongoing story arc that runs through them all comes to a head here and you NEED to know what has happened before. What this group of people have suffered before at the hands of a madman. Drew is trying to redeem himself, even though the things he did weren’t under his own steam. Joining forces with the Red River and the Silver Springs packs to rid the world of his nemesis, Drew knows he faces the final battle. But at least he has his Ally-Cat at his side, and if he dies today, she knows he loves her. Ally suffered when Drew left to join the Landsliders, in more ways than one and now, no one will want her, damaged as she is. Drew though? He might, if they survive this last fight. When Drew turned up with Lucas, right near the beginning, you knew, you just KNEW he had a tale to tell and that it wasn’t going to be pleasant. And it certainly isn’t! Far darker than I was expecting, with so many twists and turns, I had to concentrate to keep up! Trust me when I say, this is a good thing: when a book makes ME slow down my reading, because I must keep up, it’s a very good thing. Ally’s tale is equally hard reading, just in a different way. We knew Drew turned Landslider, that much is clear from the previous books, but WHY he did, isn’t so clear. When you hear what his father did, and then Hendricks made Drew do, you wonder how the man is still standing, the weight of his guilt is massive. Ally doesn’t sugar coat his feelings, she doesn’t try to make him feel any better. She carries her own (misplaced) guilt and that’s enough for her. What Ally DOES do, though, is make Drew HOPE. She makes him hope there is an end to their nightmare. She makes him hope there will be a happy ending, for the others at least. And deep down, deep within that part of him that never really let Ally go two years ago, she makes him HOPE there will a place for him in her heart, even after all he did. It’s difficult reading, watching Ally and Drew come together again, especially when Drew comes across a particularly nasty reminder of something he did, and Ally suffered because of it. But it also BEAUTIFUL reading, when they finally, FINALLY give in to the true feelings, and just be together, the way they are supposed to be, as mates. The end, for Hendricks, when it comes is long and heavy on the fighting, but I really think it is needed here. You need to know how Drew and Ally are feeling as they close in on Hendricks, and I would have loved to have heard from him, as his end draws nigh, I really would. Some clue to his feelings is given, but I’m just greedy! All the previous pairings show up, Sierra and Dex (Forged Alliances) Finn and Navi (Forged Decisions) Raven and Jer (Forged Contracts) and Lana and Lucas (Forged Futures) and I am so pleased they did! Just why I didn’t pick up that Dex was Drew’s brother before this book, I have no idea! It’s always sad when a series comes to an end, but this one goes out with a huge bang! Thank you, Ms McIntyre, for bringing these people into my world. I shall miss them! 5 stars **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

loved this in both formats!

In Safe Hands - Michael Pauley, Victoria  Sue
Independent reviewer for Divine Magazine, I was gifted my copy of this book. Mav is. . . .broken, and thinks fixing things is downing a bottle of Jack. Crashing on his sister's sofa isn't doing him or her any favours. When Jamie calls him out to do something for her, Mav really has to dig deep to get out of his stupor. Meeting the new client, however, does wonders. Deacon needs some help. After a scandal last year left him penniless, he can't afford to pay for the protection he needs. someone is out to get him, and the bodies keep piling up. Mav needs to up his game, and when the threat comes to a 2 year old child, Deacon's niece, both Mav and Deacon know they would do anything to keep her safe, even if it means Mav breaks Deacon's heart. I am, personally, not in a good place. Not a BAD place, just not doing so well and my reading is suffering. I said I would read this before the poop hit the fan, and I was concerned I would not be able to give this book my full attention, or worse, not be able to finish it at all. BUT!!! I bloody LOVED this book! Mav is, by his own admission, one drink short of becoming an alcoholic. His sister takes him in, and he's drowning his sorrows every night. Losing his career, and his leg, after a helicopter was bombed while he was the pilot has soured Mav to life and he just wants to be left alone. His sister, Jamie, ain't having none of it! She ropes him into talking to a possible new client, while she attends another job for her private investigations business. Deacon, lead singer of a boy band who was spectacularly disgraced last, is the client. A reporter twisted some truths, and Deacon's life came crashing down around his ears. He lost custody of his niece. Now, no one believes him, that someone is following him. When things escalate to a break in at his flat, and said reporter turns up dead, the police start to take notice. All the while, as Deacon continues to fall, Mav holds him up, keeps him close. I loved that things crept up on Deacon and Mav, the feelings they begin to have for each other. It's not that thunderbolt and lightning thing: more a sweeping rain storm that starts off as drizzle then increases in it's intensity til neither Mav nor Deacon can deny it any longer. Loved that, after the initial shock of seeing Mav's face, Deacon is like: okay, scars make you, YOU. Mav is concerned about the other scars, the ones on his leg and residual and again, Deacon is not at all bothered. It makes Mav see that maybe, just maybe, they can make it work. I must admit, I had an inkling who might be doing what they were doing to Deacon, very early on. Something they said set off bells and it was great being able to watch it all unfold. I have no idea WHAT this person said, I really don't, but something they said went ding ding ding and when Mav puts the pieces together, oh my! That man's alpha-protect-whats0mine instinct went into massive overdrive! Loved that, when it all went down, Mav and Deacon both knew, with just a look, that they might not come out of this alive. LOVED that the baddie gets a voice! Mav and Deacon's story carries some difficult topics: drug abuse, alcohol abuse, PTSD, murder (in some detail from the baddie!) All difficult topics, but very well written, and the research shows. I was particularly impressed with the research into Mav's accident, his injuries and what he went through after losing his leg. That doesn't always come across in a way a lay person such as myself can fully comprehend, but Ms Sue nailed it here! This book may well have been the one to kick start my ability to write a coherent review, or at least I think it makes sense! 5 full and shiny stars! Michael Pauley narrates. Having READ this book previously, what I was particularly looking for was the baddie’s voice. When I read it, something they said made my brain go ding, ding, fire alarm in the head, ding and I KNEW that this person was the baddie. HERE, in audio, I wanted to see if I could pick up just WHAT they said to make all the alarms go. And I got . . . nothing. The voice gave nothing away! Pauley NAILED that, he really did! So, while I was glad I didn’t get what they said to set me off, I’m also a little miffed

very interesting character, is Ivo!

Hellion (415 Ink #3) - Rhys Ford
Independent reviewer for Archaeolibrarian, I was gofted my copy of this book. This is book 3 in the 415 Ink series, but you don't NEED to have read books one, Rebel, and two, Savior, before you read this one. You SHOULD though, because it will give you a better picture of this family group and how they work. Plus, they were both 5 star reads. This one?? Not so much. And I cannot figure out why! Well I can, and I'll try to explain in a bit. Oh don't get me wrong, its still a fabulous book, very well written form both Ivo and Ruan's point of view. Its well told, its emotional, its sexy, its a good book! It just doesn't have that sledgehammer to the chest of such heartbreaking emotion that Gus and Mace's story carry. It DOES have deep emotions, especially when Ivo is talking to Ruan about *that* day and how it led him to do what he did and what happened after, but I kept waiting for Ivo to slip back, for *something* to happen to tip him over the edge. Maybe I'm becoming very mean in my old age, and wanting characters to fall apart so badly cannot be a good thing, but thats how I felt here, and I'm all about the book feelings. I loved how Ruan questioned Ivo about his clothes, his image, the way he is, NOT to make him change, but to understand Ivo better. Loved that Ivo gave Ruan the time to process everything. Loved that all the brothers pop up, there is a little bit of overlap to Mace's story. There is also a little bit that gives you Luke and his story. Now, when Ivo was at his tattoo thing, I saw this coming at me, what I did NOT see what how James and Luke knew each other and what happened then. I look forward to reading their story! And Bear? Oh I have a feeling Ms Ford might have saved the best for last. Being the eldest brother in the family looks like he is the last to fall, and I cannot wait for his story! So, I'm sorry Ivo wasn't quite the a**hole I thought he was going to be, given how much trouble he caused Ms Ford, but I did enjoy his and Ruan's tale, I just did not love it like I did Mace and Gus' 4 great, good stars **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

narrator changed for this one!

Forsaken (The Protectors, Book 4) - Sloane Kennedy
This is book 4 in the Protectors series, but you don’t need to have read/listened to the other three before this one. Also there is some crossover with the Barrettis series by the same author and I am reading that series and listening to this one, all out of the order the author recommends. Spoilers, is all. Mav stops an attack on Eli in the hospital stairwell and is immediately drawn to the much younger man. He tries to stay away, he really does, but he keeps coming back to check on Eli, but he doesn’t want to get too close, because everyone leaves Mav. Everyone. Eli has other ideas, but he doesn’t want Mav to know about his past. He did some terrible things. When those things come back to affect his younger brothers, Eli knows, he KNOWS all will come out, and Mav will walk away. I’ve been listening to this series, rather than reading it and I struggle to split the narration from the book, like I try to do when writing my reviews for audio books. Also, here? This is not the same narrator as the first three books and I wondered how that would come across, how the VOICES, more importantly, would come across. Had I listened to these back to back, I might have noticed some difference in the voices of previous characters, but I didn’t, either back to back them nor notice the difference in the voices, so I really cannot fault the voices of PREVIOUS characters. What I DID struggle with, at first anyway, was Mav’s voice. I don’t think he actually says a word in any of the other books, although he is mentioned. It’s LOW, so very low it dipped in places outside of my hearing range. Which is odd, cos usually it’s the HIGHER pitch voices I lose. But this is a problem I seem to have with Pauley. The dipping of the voices. And since this is written in the first person, there is no reading voice, as such. It’s either Eli, or Mav, with the other voices breaking it up. So struggled a bit, quite a bit at the beginning. It DOES get better, maybe I grew used to Mav, maybe I grew used to Pauley again, after a while. I don’t know, but it did get better. I cannot fault the story line though! SO much pain carried by both men, for so very different reasons, and Pauley does get that across well, the pain these men have. 5 stars for the book 4 stars for the narration (but it was very nearly 3!) 4.5 stars overall **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

it hit THAT spot, good and proper!

Blue Fire - Z.A. Maxfield
This was a freebie in August 2019. Jared loses his home to a wildfire, and Adam rescues him. Adam doesn’t usually follow up his rescues, but Jared calls to his soul, deeply. When Jared isn’t recovering from his depression, Adam takes a chance and takes Jared to the place Adam calls home. Just when things start looking up, Jared runs. Years later, when Jared finds out Adam has been injured, Jared has moment of clarity, and realises he might have run away from the only person who made him truly whole. Will Adam see him, let alone listen to him? I really rather enjoyed this! It’s not very long, some 80 odd pages, only took me an hour to read, but it was a very enjoyable hour on a wet and miserable Wednesday morning! Jared is still grieving the loss of his husband to cancer, and now the house he built has been destroyed and Jared feels destroyed too. Adam, with his ice blue eyes, rescues Jared from the blaze and visits him in rehab. Adam feels a powerful need to look in on Jared, to look AFTER Jared, and taking him to the cabin in the hills seems just the thing. And it was, till one of them says something, that sends them both into a tailspin and Adam has to return to work. After Jared runs, three years pass, and Jared’s glass work centres around his search for that perfect blue, the one that touches his soul. But it isn’t until Adam is injured, that Jared knows he’ll never find that perfect blue in a glass bauble. I felt for both these guys. Adam, fighting his growing feelings for Jared, and Jared who is still recovering, and fighting all kinds of inner demons of his own. They both have a say, in the third person. It’s hot and steamy in places, and deeply emotional in others. It just hit THAT spot, you know? The warm and fuzzies one. First I’ve read of this author, I’d love to read more! 4 solid stars **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

I LOVED THESE!!!

Interludes Box Set - Aliyah Burke
Independent reviewer for Archaeolibrarian, I was gifted my copy of this box set of three books. Because I read these books back to back, as a set, I’m writing one review for the whole bundle, rather than three separate reviews. And let me tell ya, I loved these books! Well, I LOVED books one and three, two didn’t quite hit that spot, but still! These books landed right in my queue when I needed them the most. I read a lot, A LOT, a lot and a huge chunk of those books are male/male romance of some description or other. Now, I’m not picky, I like to think I’m an equal opportunities reader, I will read most pairings so long as the blurb grabs. But it’s been a while since I had such great male/female pairings that were so bloody sexy! There is instant and powerful attraction between Roxi and Sam in book one. Tuck and Ariel pussy foot around each other for the better part of two years before they act on their feelings in book two. Maya and Brent, in book three, had a one night stand some time (but I was never really clear on how long ago that was!) in Hawaii and when Brent finds himself face to face with Maya again, he wants to pick up where they left off. Each book is well written, with both male and female lead having a say. All the characters have very different voices, and tell their stories in the third person. Each book has a Marine or two as the lead, and there are a whole host of other Marines that pop up in each book. There is a huge supporting cast, spread over the three books, with some very interesting people who I want to have a story of their own. Some massive hints? Clues? Teasers, I think is probably the best word, to their stories and I need to know will there be more in this series?? I read tow of these books in one day, and had I not had to up at stoopid o’clock the next morning, I would probably have read all three! First I’ve read of this author, and now I want to read more. Her back list is massive though, and it may take some time to choose! Like I said, book two did not quite hit *that* spot, but I’m still giving the whole set. . . 5 full stars **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

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