Blue Mountain by Cardeno C. [Audiobook Review + Giveaway]

Blue Mountain Audio Banner copy
Blue Mountain

by Cardeno C

Audio Book Tour

Blue Mountain: Pack Collection, Book 1

AUDIBLE | GOODREADS

WLK synopsis

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

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

©2014 Cardeno C. (P)2014 Cardeno C.

REVIEW

God really gifted Cardeno C with an extraordinary imagination that allows all of us loyal and devoted fans to enjoy the magnificent stories we all have come to love, and Blue Mountain is not the exception. Now, add (once again) the also talented Sean Crisden in the mix bringing to life these characters with his incomparable voice, and BOOM!, –another kick ass combo for another KICK ASS STORY-

When it comes to PNR there are only a few handful of authors who I really trust to make my reading experience a unique one, and Cardeno C is one of them. Since I was already acquainted with the ‘Mates’ Series, I had no doubts whatsoever about giving a chance to this new ‘Pack’ series’ first installment: ‘Blue Mountain’.

Although quite a bit short for my own taste, Blue Mountain gives us the story of Mitch Grant and Simon Moorhead. We learn based on events described that Mitch arrived with his brother Frederick to Blue Mountain 4 years earlier and took over the entire pack that was lead by a very evil character named Kristoff. We also learn that though Freddy and Mitch are twins and alphas, the one leading the pack is Freddy, who found his mate in Donia a female Omega; we know that Mitch wasn’t interested in being any type of leader, but, his twin loyalty makes him stick by his brother and support him with pack duties.

On Halloween night, after learning that a ‘male’ Omega (seems to be those are not that common but mostly are women) has been captured by pack members, he senses that finally, after waiting for so long, he found his mate.

From here, we see a series of events unravel for Mitch, as he nurtures and brings Simon back to health, taking him into his home and patiently caring for him. Simon, wounded, with a very tragic past, of course distrusts Mitch, but soon (and after Mitch’s affections) Simon realizes there is more to his caring and that love can manifest in the most unexpected ways. After that, the love story we expect just turns up a notch, but I won’t get into too many details and spoil your fun.

What I will tell you is that without a doubt, once again the team of Cardeno c + Sean Crisden delivered a magnificent story + audio experience that will definitely bring a huge smile to your face.

Book Trailer

WLK Author Bio
Cardeno C - Logo
Cardeno C. – CC to friends – is a hopeless romantic who wants to add a lot of happiness and a few “awwws” into a reader’s day. Writing is a nice break from real life as a corporate type and volunteer work with gay rights organizations. Cardeno’s stories range from sweet to intense, contemporary to paranormal, long to short, but they always include strong relationships and walks into the happily-ever-after sunset.

Cardeno’s Home, Family, and Mates series have received awards from Love Romances and More Golden Roses, Rainbow Awards, the Goodreads M/M Romance Group, and various reviewers. But even more special to CC are heartfelt reactions from readers, like, “You bring joy and love and make it part of the every day.”

Website | Facebook! | Twitter

Cafe Risqué ~ Shared Blog

Pintrest | Google+ | Youtube

 

WLK Giveaway

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

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Mc Farland’s Farm by Cardeno C [Audiobook Review + Giveaway]

McFarlands Farm Audio - banner McFarland’s Farm

by Cardeno C

Audio Book Tour

McFarland's Farm

McFarland’s Farm: Hope, Book 1

AUDIBLE | GOODREADS

WLK synopsis

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

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

WLK excerpt

REVIEW

The BRILLIANT MIND of Cardeno C has gifted us with yet another beautiful and heartfelt love story.

And see, here’s the real deal:

There are many different love stories

Some are short.

Some are fun.

Some make you cry.

Some make you smile.

Some make you bang your head against the wall.

And some are undeniably so, so, so! good you end up with a book hangover the size of the empire state building.

McFarland’s Farm did that to me.

You know what the cherry on top was? Paul Morey’s SUPERB audio narration! (Again!) (But of course, he is THAT talented, and if you have heard any of his previous narrations you also know this firsthand.)

I had already had the privilege of reading this story, but the audio version just blew my socks off. Paul Morey is a blessed beyond words narrator. His character interpretation once again just proved to me that he was BORN to do this. And see, this is the beauty of an audio book: the narrator’s versatility and smooth interpretation making each character come to life in such a unique and creative way that all you really feel enthralled with the story.

And the combination of Cardeno C’s magnificent writing style and Paul Morey’s delightful narration skills turned this into a very epic love story. I would actually call this the PERFECT dose of romance and heartbreaking revelations that one as a bookworm deserves. It was absolutely BEAUTIFUL!

You may be asking yourself what is so sweet and mushy and perfect about it. I WON’T SPOIL IT FOR YOU, but I will tell you this: Jared McFarland is one lucky guy.

On another personal note: I really wouldn’t live in AZ.

Have you ever been there? I don’t even like to go to Palm Springs cause it’s too hot, now image Palm Springs + 30 degrees. THAT’s the 411 of the state of Arizona. Jared McFarland seems to love it and has made a wonderful living in his farm, and that’s exactly where he falls for bad boy rebel Lucas Reika.

Nope. No Arizona for me. Apparently Lucas is not too fond of the heat and farmland either, but he copes, and against all odds he ends up liking the little town of Hope, AZ so much that he changes his L.A city life for the peace and quietness of Jared’s farm, as a mandatory request from his dad. He doesn’t want to be there, but he has no choice.

Many things happen and it’s not really easy for Lucas to get to that point where he actually WANTS to stay and give Hope a try. Neither it was for Jared, who really finds himself in the greatest predicament of his life when Lucas (unexpectedly and really last minute) arrives on that afternoon bus from Los Angeles sent as a punishment by his father.

What I loved most about this story was how each character acted and reacted. Straightforward. To the point. No BS. I think short stories like this (though not my first choice in reading) saves us a lot of possible hiccups on our way to find the ultimate HEA.

As I said, I’m not spoiling it. I can tell you though without a doubt that both the audio and e-book have been more than a welcome treat 🙂

 

 

 

WLK Author Bio
Cardeno C - Logo
Cardeno C. – CC to friends – is a hopeless romantic who wants to add a lot of happiness and a few “awwws” into a reader’s day. Writing is a nice break from real life as a corporate type and volunteer work with gay rights organizations. Cardeno’s stories range from sweet to intense, contemporary to paranormal, long to short, but they always include strong relationships and walks into the happily-ever-after sunset.

Cardeno’s Home, Family, and Mates series have received awards from Love Romances and More Golden Roses, Rainbow Awards, the Goodreads M/M Romance Group, and various reviewers. But even more special to CC are heartfelt reactions from readers, like, “You bring joy and love and make it part of the every day.”

Website | Facebook! | Twitter

Cafe Risqué ~ Shared Blog

Pintrest | Google+ | Youtube

 

WLK Giveaway

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

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presented by:

WLK Book Promotions

Felix by Elizabeth Reyes [Review]

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Please excuse me if I get too emotional while typing this review, but I just can’t help it. I have a huge sense of loss that usually doesn’t happen when one finishes a book, but in this case did happen. I just finished reading an epic KNOCKOUT!

Before I go any further, I have a soundtrack / playlist that stuck with me throughout this entire journey:

 

  • Butterlyz by Alicia Keys

  • Love @ First Sight by Mary J Blige

  • California Gurlz by Katy perry

  • Let’s Get Married (Remix) by jagged Edge

  • Love Who Loves You Back by Tokio Hotel

  • Break My Heart by Common

  • I Can’t Describe by Jennifer Hudson

  • And of course, Lastima Que Seas Ajena by Vicente Fernandez.

 

You totally don’t have to agree with me, but this story had scenes that fit perfectly with every single one of these songs.

We had to literally wait a year to finally learn the absolutely heartbreaking story of Felix. He’s been a key player in the whole scheme of 5th Street stories, and his HEA could not be less than breathtaking. What I didn’t expect was to meet such a kick ass character like Ella. There is this whole instant attraction that you will learn, Felix has to fight, but in the end , when one knows what true love is, it becomes extremely hard to let go.

This whole story has all the elements to make it a winner, and in the best Elizabeth Reyes fashion, you can’t help but to LOVE, each moment shared by Felix and Ella. You may remember that whole ordeal between Gio, Bianca and Felix, so it will come as a surprise the way things have changed in his life and all the challenges he’s had to battle in order to settle down and realize he was really spiraling out of control. The man Felix is now, shows a drastic change of heart and mentality, he recognizes his mistakes and when meeting Ella, he acknowledges that he had to hit rock bottom then fight to resurface and win his most desired prize: Mighty Miss Ella.

Ella on the other hand, is what you can call THE true fighter. In her short life she has survived unbelievable challenges. She obviously feels attraction towards Felix (come on! Who wouldn’t?) but she is a very down to earth girl who knows her boundaries.

The initial encounter between Felix and Ella will unravel a series of events the reader will immediately feel related to: real life issues. This is possibly the greatest accomplishment I can point out about ALL of Elizabeth’s books: the realistic and human side of each story. In this particular case, the elements she has added and the vast knowledge she has of our Hispanic culture makes it absolutely believable and fun to read. The attraction turned in time to love , portrayed by both Felix and Ella will only convince you that this is the way how 5th Street Series needed to end. It has it ALL: angst, laugh, love, sweetness, seriousness, and real life issues. Although I have to say that Abel is my favorite, Felix won a special place in my heart. I was able to connect with him at a very human level and understand some of the reasons why he behaved the way he did and how much redemption he was seeking. Once Ella meets him, her journey also becomes a lot more clear and her world finally makes sense after all the chaos she had to go thru. The combination of both these strong willed characters, created this MASTERPIECE.

Eli, thank you.

Thank you until the end of time, for giving us this gift. I usually drive by East Los Angeles on the weekends coming back from my friend’s house in Hollywood, and I always, ALWAYS, think about the 5th Street gang. I love to drive by there and imagine how cool it would be to see them all gathered at the gym, hanging out and training for a very important fight. I surely will remember them now even more since I know their journey has ended. <3

**ARC provided by author in exchange for an honest review

The Half of Us by Cardeno C. [Review]

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The Half of Us by Cardeno C.

Male-Male

 

A true bookworm will always be in the pursuit of a great book. That one book you either hold with you bare hands (and smell to make sure it’s 100% recycled material) or simply download to your e reader and stare at the cover in true colors over and over again until you go color blind.

One of my life’s greatest philosophies is to give a book the benefit of the doubt (Unless the cover is a bad compilation of photoshopped images) but still, it may hold interesting stories that you somehow could miss if you don’t give it a try.

So I, the bookworm, decided one day to go searching for that one genre that would hold my attention above all others. I hate angst reads. I hate stupid heroes. I hate macho dominant heroes I hate cheaters. I hate ridiculous characters that somehow turn smart and save the day.
Searching for that one genre I could dive into completely blind and have a blast while swimming, I found gay romance a.k.a in the book world as M/M.

In my eternal search for love and happy ever afters, I found Cardeno C.

And while I was checking out Cardeno C’s work, I came across the Family Series.

This particular review of ‘The Half of Us’ reminds me of a sweet boy I met once, who knew since the age of twelve that he was gay. He grew up to be a teacher at a very important university and while attending a seminar in Mexico City, he met the love of his life, a doctor. They both live together and although gay marriage is not legal where they live, they have achieved the ultimate goal of every couple: they became a FAMILY.

Jason and Abe’s story doesn’t fall far from the tree. Jason’s first attempt at happiness actually happened with a woman in his youth while he was still trying to figure out his own sexuality; Abe on the other hand always knew he was gay, but he needed to move from his ultra conservative home state of Utah in order to feel freedom and find love. Yes, right, LOVE, not a one night stand. Jason though is very addicted to one night stands.

In what would be considered a literal heartbeat Jason and Abe meet, agree to spend the night together and somehow, Abe plants the curiosity seed in Jason, who leaves that night wondering the ‘what if’s’. He soon becomes aware he is completely spellbound by the sweet guy he met who although is way younger than him, captivates his heart in a way nobody else has been able to.

This is a love story through and through, and yes, it is VERY believable and very down to earth. What I love most about Cardeno C’s books is just the fact that the ultimate goal is just that: LOVE. The greatest part about these character is that both of them are very family oriented people. Jason has kids and Abe is not shy when it comes to interacting with them and that makes the heartfelt storyline easy to follow and very realistic.

I could go on all day talking about how fabulous this story is, but one thing is just plain visible: LOVE IS LOVE. FAMILY IS FAMILY and there are ties and bonds that are impossible to break.

Book Suburbia gives this a 4 Bookie rating

sophie4star

***ARC copy provided by author in exchange for an honest review

In Your Eyes by Cardeno C. [Review]

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Blurb

Raised to become Alpha of the Yafenack pack, Samuel Goodwin dedicates his life to studying shifter laws, strengthening his body, and learning from his father. Taking control comes easily to Samuel, but relating to people, including those he’s supposed to lead, is a constant challenge.

When Samuel meets Korban Keller, the son of a neighboring pack’s Alpha, he reacts with emotion instead of intellect for the first time in his life. Resenting the other shifter for putting him off-balance, Samuel first tries to intimidate Korban and then tries to avoid him. What he can’t do is forget Korban’s warm eyes, easy smile, and happy personality.

When a battle between their fathers results in tragedy, Samuel and Korban are thrown together. With his world crashing down around him, Samuel must save his pack and show them he can lead. But first, Korban needs to save Samuel by inspiring him to feel. Two very different men with a tumultuous history must overcome challenges from all sides and see past the rules they’ve been taught to realize they are destined to fit together.

Book Trailer

This is a  Book Suburbia

Top Pick

 

 Review

Before I go any further, I must give Cardeno C an absolutely HUGE SHOUTOUT all the way from my beautiful and sunny Los Angeles, to wherever in the world you may be, and THANK YOU from the bottom of my tiny and insignificant reader heart for putting a big smile on my face and melting my heart in the only fashion you know: WITH A KICK ASS STORY.

However with that being said, you want to know the ONE THING I DID HATE ABOUT THIS BOOK!???:

IT WAS TOO FREAKING’ SHORT!

I literally DEVOURED this book in one sitting, and of course, had horrible withdrawals afterwards…..*sigh*so I must hold you accountable for my long sleepless night the day I finished this, cause I could not get Samuel and Korban out of my head!

But besides that little fact, everything about this story is nothing but absolute bliss. It’s one of those love stories, where you want to punch the main character in the face and yell at him so he can REACT! Hellooooo! You have the LOVE OF YOUR LIFE IN FRONT OF YOU! Wake up and smell the coffee!; and at the same time you want to crawl into bed with and snuggle with him because he is everything  you want in an alpha and more. I fell sooooooo! in love with Samuel and Korban. This couple was a joy to read about. Seriously. The fact that this love ignited when they were both just cubs (or kids) just enhances the story.

Though in all fairness, nothing happens so easily; and love, for it to be everlasting and epic, really needs to go through several trials.

And that’s exactly what we witness in ‘In Your Eyes’

In the third installment of the wonderful ‘Mates’ series we meet Samuel, heir to the Yafenack pack and Korban, heir to the Miancarem pack. Both have been raised to take over each other’s  packs once they come of age and both meet as boys, Korban being outgoing and spontaneous, Samuel being quiet, reserved and extremely dedicated to study and follow old traditional pack laws. Throughout their childhood and teenage years they see little of each other, but you can tell that sparks fly all over the place when they get together whenever the opportunity arises. It’s plain and simple firework effect, but it’s not until a fatal event that both of them are pushed to decide their fate in the most unthinkable way.

So I must repeat this in case it wasn’t clear enough:

 

I loved Samuel, and I loved Korban.  BOTH!  ——> This is the kind of characters I LOVE to read about in a book!

I love Samuel cause in a certain way, he reminds me of myself. Always thinking on ‘what will happen if’, always scared to try, strict and meticulous, always following the rules, always thinking about code before conduct.  But at the same time I loved Korban, because he represents all that I could ever wish in a man. Somebody with that carefree spirit, somebody willing to risk everything for love; that one person I know that no matter the trial, will always be the first one in the line to bungee jump in case I get cold feet.

This book was a very refreshing, inspiring and motivating M/M Paranormal Romance that will indeed leave a valuable lesson:  true love is hard to find, hard to keep and hard to replace; but when we find it, it is in ourselves to fight for it tooth and nail in order to achieve that irreplaceable feeling that only an everlasting love can bring. Samuel and Korban go through a series of events that help them mature, grow and learn how to love. Of course, Samuel is a bit clueless, and Korban might seem to be quite reckless (though you learn he has powerful reasons for it) or maybe both needed to go through all those trials to finally recognize that wake up call for what it was:  the calling of true and unmistakable love.

Cardeno C has an extraordinary gift with words and you can notice this in the way the story flows so absolutely smoothly, becoming an enjoyable and easy read. In no part did I get bored. In no part did I get confused. After just a few paragraphs, I knew all the key characters would win my heart. After a few chapters, I could not put it down. THAT is what every author seeks to achieve, and in reality, that is what makes a book as good as this one and Cardeno C has once again knocked it out of the ballpark.

  5 Bookie Rating

sophie5star

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[Review] Bound by Lorelei James

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There are 3 things you have GUARANTEED when reading a Lorelei James book:

a) HOT, SCORCHING, DELIGHTFUL, AND MAGESTICALLY WRITTEN SEX SCENES THAT WILL MOST LIKELY BURN THE PAGES OR MELT YOUR E-READER.

b) A KICK ASS PLOT WORTH A MULTI MILLIONAIRE HOLLYWOOD DEAL

and

c) A MAIN COUPLE CAPABLE OF FIGHTING TOOTH AND NAIL FOR WHAT THEY WANT, AND LIVE DRAMA TO THE HIGHEST LEVEL UNTIL THE ULTIMATE GOAL IS REACHED:

AN EPIC LOVE STORY

If you don’t believe me, I encourage you to pick up any of the 20 + COWBOY HOTTIE stories she’s written and see for yourself that all her alpha’s are nothing but LUST BROUGHT TO LIFE THRU HER MAGIC PEN. From all those stubborn McKays to the more ‘organic’ ones from Muddy Gap, WY, all her books are nothing less than memorable masterpieces. I k ow this for a fact cause I’ve read them ALL.

Of course this book, although way far from her well known western romances, brings to all her loyal fans the touch that nobody else but herself can deliver in such a clever way. ‘Bound’, is set to be one of those books that you read a few times before deciding that you must read it AGAIN for the last time (in the same calendar year) and then buy in every format possible just so you can have an option of reading it again if you ever feel like it.

I must applaud Mrs James’s superb skills and courage of diving nose deep into a new genre, that although follows the basic principles of contemporary romance, digs with a very strong knowledge a much more complex topic like the ancient Japanese arts of Shibari and Kinbaku, in a way so easy to understand and follow you can almost feel the ropes on your skin. All of what you thought you knew about bondage is about to be thrown out the window with the first demonstration you’ll receive from Master Black.

Once again Mrs. James leaves me speechless. Not only she sketched a remarkable and very believable struggling love story, she made each character as unique as possible. She most definetely has allowed me to find my dream ninja, which I could only picture in so many of the manga comics I’ve read my whole life, but with a more naughtier strike <3

Aria by Shira Anthony [Review]

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Title:   Aria (Blue Notes # 3)

Author:  Shira Anthony

Genre:  Gay Contemporary Romance

Publication Date:  December 24, 2012

Publisher:  Dreamspinner Press 

ISBN: 978-1-62380-176-2

Book Suburbia gives  a 4 1/2 Bookie rating to Aria

sophie4star

 

While reading this book, I went back in time 12 years for just a moment. I remembered the pain and heartbreaking feeling of losing the man I thought would someday be my husband, the guy who I dreamed would be the father of my kids. The only man I’ve loved sincerely and deeply to this day. I lost him (not to death though) but knew it would be the last time we had any kind of conversations about US on a very sad May night back in 2003. It was over. 5 years loving, and idolizing a man, and he left me with my dreams and my hope. I lost a lot of things that night, not only my dignity, but my will and confidence to ever love like that again.

I will admit it was ugly specially because I was so young and so in love, full of innocence. That kind of pure and shameless love that you only feel once in a lifetime. All I wanted was to live a happy ever after with somebody I mistakenly thought was right for me. A few years later he got married, and the day I saw him heading to the church to meet his bride I finally let him go.

It has been the most painful tribulation I have been thru in my entire life, but nowadays I am proud to say that I am over it. But it wasn’t easy, and it didn’t take just a few days. It was a healing process that lasted more than 8 years.

My apologies for the too personal intro, but reading Aria touched something so deep in me that I just had to share that piece of my life so you could understand a little bit of how much reading this story affected me. I understood with all my heart, mind and soul how difficult it must’ve been for Sam to let go of Nick. Whether it’s because of death or a bad breakup, letting somebody you loved so much go is one of the most difficult trials any human being can go through; and the way how Mrs. Anthony built Sam’s character is beyond any other troubled character I have ever read about. Seriously. Only somebody who has witnessed such type of pain will understand it.

Sam meets Aiden one day at a bar and Aiden feels instant attraction to the lawyer, they share a small encounter which leads them to starting something special. Over the course of 2 weeks they live a very passionate love story that ended quite too soon, but I guess at the exact moment it needed to end. Aiden is still young and searching for that one little opportunity that will help him jump start his career and neither of them were looking for love, but they found it the night they met. And Sam, convinced it was finally time to leave the pain of losing his partner behind, found in Aiden the piece of his puzzle that he really didn’t know was missing; and that inevitably would have to still remain missing for another 5 years.

Aiden understands the clear message from Sam (due to his constant hiding) that he most likely doesn’t want anything with him, so he decides to leave to Europe in search of his big breakthrough. Aiden lives a quite hectic life from city to city, performance after performance, until after falling in love with a very powerful  man and settling with him in London, his heart is shattered to pieces when he finds his lover cheating on him with another man. His world breaks, and he must fly far away from London and everything that reminds him of Lord Cameron.

That’s how he finds himself visiting his old friends Jules and Jason in Paris.

He didn’t know his destiny was still halfway written, until the day he saw Sam again after so many years, at Jason and Jules’s house. Both of them battle the attraction they still feel for one another, but you can only deny love so many times in life; and Sam and Aiden start the relationship they left on stand by five years earlier. The road is bumpy, but they do everything they can to make it work for once and all.

This book has it all. And to be quite honest I dare to say it highly exceeded my reader expectation. From a reader’s perspective, there is absolutely nothing this book lacks of. You will meet a wounded Sam, who learns how to fight his memories and his undying love, and an also heartbroken Aiden who trusted somebody who just fooled around with him. Both have humble upbringings. Both had to work hard to get where they are right now.

To tell you how marvelously written this book is would just be an understatement.

Aiden and Sam are not just your average gay couple. They come from very different yet similar places, where most of the people are hardcore conservatives. Sam was able to come out to his family, but Aiden’s family didn’t take the news so well so he was basically on his own when he met Sam so many years ago. They do have a lot in common and that’s what I think captivated me more about this story, cause character-wise, they are both hardworking – over the top – exceptional professionals. It comes as a very refreshing treat when you read about two characters so accomplished and determined. By the time they reunite again, Sam has achieved so much, just as Aiden has. There is no ulterior motives, no false pretenses. Sam though, struggles to let go of the ghost of his ex lover and Aiden feels that burden. The fight they both take in hands is just the start of something I call a ONCE IN A LIFETIME LOVE. Beautiful is not even enough to describe it.

This story is simply BRILLIANT. I could spend all day praising it, but the only truth is: GIVE YOURSELF A TREAT AND READ IT. I can assure you Aiden and Sam will steal your heart just the same way they stole mine.

The Melody Thief by Shira Anthony [Review]

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Title:   The Melody Thief  (Blue Notes # 2)

Author:  Shira Anthony

Genre:  Gay Contemporary Romance

Publication Date:  August 24, 2012

Publisher:  Dreamspinner Press 

ISBN: 978-1-61372-695-2

This is a Book Suburbia

Top Pick

5 Bookie

sophie5star

and a

LGBT

romance novel recommended for a mature audience

If I could only explain with words all the emotion and joy I felt reading this book, I wouldn’t have enough space in this post to do so. So, I’ll stick to what can be described in words and will tell you this: The Melody Thief is possibly one of the greatest books I have read this year. Mrs.. Anthony knocked this completely out of the ball park. The story, the love they share, family values, friends, passion, Milan, New York. This book has all the necessary elements to make this love story, AN EPIC LOVE STORY. And of course the added bonus of a proud gay couple with the overwhelming blessing of a child is just the cherry on top.

I’m still emotionally wrecked about this beautiful yet painful love story between two men who have meet in the most awkward circumstance, and built a love from ashes, where each one was literally reborn.

If you’ve read Blue Notes, you probably remember Antonio Biachi, Rosie’s lawyer in Milan at a brief scene with Jason. Well, this is Antonio’s and Carey’s story. Before I describe you Antonio, let me describe you Carey in 5 words:

ONE – HELL – OF – A – DISASTER.

Carey is a gifted Cellist. He’s also a sex addict. A man whore who turned to promiscuity as an escape from his fucked up reality. Here’s the thing though: Carey doesn’t care about his life being this upside down. All he cares for is to release his inner pleasure beast night after night anywhere he can, with whoever he can, however he can. It doesn’t really matter that he’s a world known artist and that he has fame and fortune. Because of his strict upbringing, Carey grew resented of his mother’s demands. At the end he understands she only did it so he could succeed, but the lack of motherly love every child craves and needs is what turned him into what he is nowadays. His greatest escape? Anonymous sex in public bathrooms. After getting in trouble for unleashing his innermost cravings in a very careless way, his manager creates an alter ego for him. From there on, Carey is known in the downworld as Connor Taylor.

Ok so that’s Carey in a nutshell.

Antonio ‘Tonino’ Bianchi is a powerful lawyer, who just happened to be walking by the day he met (and saved) Carey from being mugged. From there, Carey noticed that Antonio was all he ever dreamed for in a man and he realizes he’s scared shitless to give him the opportunity to care for him. Little things like chicken soup, a bath, a massage and nurturing he never received from anyone do the trick. And Tonino is just all about loving and caring, since he has a little bundle of joy of his own to practice with.  Massi is the son he procreated with his best friend, Francesca, who shares custody of Massi with him, although she has a girlfriend of her own. Gifted with infinite patience, Tonino also carries a burden that shatters his soul, but that he’s willing to finally let go when he meets Carey.

Both of these guys stole my heart completely. Both had internal battles. Both were scared, but dared to love. Carey in particular was more adamant, and many of his insecurities were so deep rooted he didn’t even think he deserved a love and a family like the one Tonino was offering him. The overall story of forgiveness and second chances, makes this story a recipe for laughter, joy and pure reading pleasure everybody could love.

I cried a lot reading this book. Carey’s transformation is just one of the many reasons. Tonino’s soft, love and patience was another. Massi’s pure heart was the key to mine.

Mrs. Anthony: thank you, again and again and again until the end of time, cause without you knowing it, this book brought my love for reading back to life when I had thought it was dead.

Blue Notes by Shira Anthony [Review]

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Title: Blue Notes (Blue Notes # 1)

Author:  Shira Anthony

Genre:  Gay Contemporary Romance

Publication Date:  December 30, 2011

Publisher:  Dreamspinner Press 

ISBN: 978-1-61372-273-2

Book Suburbia gives 4 Bookies to Blue Notes

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It’s really hard to put in words what one feels deep inside one’s soul after reading a story as beautiful like this. It’s not meant to be mushy, it’s not meant to be life changing. It’s simply an alternative love story that was written with love and most definitely published with even more love. First of many, hopefully not the last.

The first time I read a gay oriented novel (better known in the book world as M/M or F/F) it wasn’t a conventional situation. It actually wasn’t a full M/M romance but a ménage â trois type story. The experience of reading a heart melting love story like the one the two main characters had only spiked my curiosity. A few years later, I am a hopeless romantic fan of M/M romance.

When I first heard about Shira Anthony’s ‘Blue Notes’ series, my mind traveled to all those places like New York, Paris, Milan, London and Vienna known to be cities with deep cultural value to classical music lovers. I do confess I don’t particularly like or feel attracted to it myself, but the greatest love stories usually have such remarkable scenarios. Jason and Jules’s story couldn’t have less.

Set in the beautiful City of Lights, Mrs. Anthony gives us the story of a struggling young man, who’s only wish is to be a successful jazz musician, and a workaholic lawyer who one day comes to terms with himself about his life after discovering his own fiancé in bed with another man. Jason flies away from the hectic and stressful life he runs in Philadelphia and lands at his sister’s apartment in Paris. Jules on the other hand, is fighting to make his dream come true and someday become the jazz musician he always wanted to be. He belongs to a trio of talented musicians that like him, only want to succeed.

The way I see this story is quite simple:

FAN-FREAKIN’-TASTIC

You could easily believe this is a typical story of the clichéd straight man who tries it once with another man and afterwards decides he likes it an suddenly he’s gay.

In reality, this is a story way more elaborate and complex than that presenting very realistic situations and emotions. The drama that we witness thru the pen of Mrs. Anthony will only make you realize, how wonderful it is to finally discover that hidden part every human being has: a musical self, an animal lover, a doctor, a mentor. Name it as you wish, Jason’s realization that Jules was indeed that missing piece to his puzzle only gave him freedom.

And Jules, troubled boy that he was, found in Jason his muse, the key to his musical heart that wants to succeed, surface from all odds and personal tragedy and finally be able to do what he most wanted to do: be a musician and share with the world. The trials that Jules had to go thru in life have only made him the man he is now, and the only thing missing in his life is a man like Jason to share it with.

This is how a romance novel should be written. In all, what you will learn by reading this book is how emotional and creative this story is. How one man who has it all, a career, money, luxury, a super hot fiancé and apparently a happy life, discovers how the simple things in life; like a struggling Jazz musician from a humble upbringing, can knock him off his feet and make him realize how beautiful it is to accept his own nature, to fight together and make a life full of love, trust and music. Blue Notes will make you wish you were there in Paris, sitting at a small café listening to Jazz music, maybe  a melody composed by Jules called L’amour Toujours’.

Review: Jack Cannon’s American Destiny by Greg Sandora

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Book Title:  Jack Canon’s American Destiny

 Publication Date:  March 4, 2013

 Publisher:  Itoh Press

 Word and Page Count:  314 pages, 99994 words

 Genre:  Thriller / Suspense Adventure, Romantic Political Thriller

 Erotic Content:  PG-13

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Blurb

 It’s the steamy summer of 2016 in Washington, D.C. just days before the Democratic National Convention. A long and painful recession has left ordinary Americans suffering, spawning the hottest Presidential Contest in history. Jack Canon, a man born into privilege, a witness to great social injustice is going to be President of the United States–no matter what! Desperate and corrupt, the leader of the free world orders a hit to slow him down. The plan backfires–the wrong people are dead–a manhunt points to the unthinkable–The President of the United States.

Rewind one year, Jack’s focus on redistribution of wealth and energy has made him powerful enemies. Once his friends, Rogue Billionaires, Oil Sheiks, the Mob, all want him gone. The current President wants him alive–thinking he can win against an unabridged liberal. A Universal Raw Nerve of wealth vs. poverty is exposed becoming a thrill ride as deep machinations of espionage, geo-politics and deception, even murder play out. Kind and charismatic, Jack’s just naughty enough to have you falling for him like one of his loving circle of loyal friends. Of course he’s flawed, a dedicated family man, faithful to one woman, but in love with two. Is it his fault his best friend is impossibly jaw dropping beautiful? Think the crime and passion of the Godfather meets the romance and innocence of Camelot. A story that could spark a movement, a book that can seed a revolution. A heart thumping climax so shocking you’ll pull the covers and draw the shades! One things for sure, through all the drama and suspense, you’ll be pulling for Jack!

Review

(by super cool dude guest reviewer Oscar S.)

Jack Canon is a very gritty figure, the kind of politician whose dirty work everyone secretly wants from the man in office but publicly must criticize. Of course, it helps everyone loves to praise his public stances. His race, first for office, then to defend the nation is gripping and fast paced. American Destiny promises a blend of political maneuvering, hard action, global plotting and really evil threats, and it delivers in grand style. Details, such as the featuring, early on, of the sexy Bugatti Veyron and of a very John Clark – like- spook operative (Tip) in hand for all the dark and shady aspects of rival-and-enemy disposal be it in the political field or the strategic one can only add to the overall fun. The book is a fast ride that addresses some serious issues in its plot, in a manner we all dream they would be dealt with, keeping us on our toes for the duration, of course, a dose of simple yet very well handled plot twists and a smattering of globalized bad guys can’t do anything but help. However, American Destiny is all about Jack, we all relate to him, we all would like to be him and of course we all cheer when he wins and nearly tear our hair off our heads when we thing he might fail,  we mourn his loses with him, and, most surprisingly, we all end up hoping he gets that dratted president! and cheer most contentedly when he does. All in all, a must read!

 

This is a FOUR Bookie read!

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Book Trailer

Author Bio

I’m originally from the Portland, Maine area and lived and worked there for years before moving to Southwest Florida. I am currently working on the sequel to Jack Canon’s American Destiny – which will be titled Camelot A Tender Romantic Thriller. The sequel will be available in about three months.

My Dad and Mom were artists, my father painted and my mother wrote poetry and loved to garden. Most Saturdays we loaded up the 1970 Chevy Impala to trek to a one man show somewhere or other. I took a different track graduating with a business degree; owning and operating an Award Winning Franchise Fitness Center. Currently a professional manager I am living in Florida with my beautiful author image 01wife and children, and following my passion.

Some of my other projects include a children’s book called Sammy the Sea Turtle – about an infant sea turtle taken from his nest the night he was to find his way to the sea. Sammy lives with the family until their son – the boy who took him, graduates from high school. On that day Sammy, backpack in tow – begins the long journey home.

My second project in the works involves angels – a man during a visit to Bar Harbor Maine encounters an angel; quite accidentally, he is told – she was not supposed to make him aware of her existence. Only three others have ever seen the real thing. Naturally he falls hopelessly in love with the beautiful creature.

 

 

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Review: Next You Instellar, LLC by Angus H. Day

Z4yr9-oN9pItDbQaMpr5Xf0eIUrjzxdIAN7bmn1ZvJYAuthor: Angus H Day

Book title: Next You Interstellar, LLC  (Next You Universe Series)

Publication Dates: Apr 24 201

Publisher: GMTA Publishing (Imprint: Mythos Press

Genre: Science Fiction

Erotic Content: Some books have minor sexual content: PG-13 for the sexual content otherwise PG-13

 

 

 

 

Blurb

If you had the option to come back after death, what would you want to be? Still want to be human or would you like to try something different? How much is it worth to you? Live in the extra-solar human civilization and experience your next incarnation in Next You Interstellar, LLC.

 

Excerpt

Next You Interstellar LLC Excerpt

Chapter 8: Storming the Castle

I really had missed out on some crazy leaps in technology. The device we were actually using as a drop cache was a gutted cloaking torpedo. By gutted I mean it had no explosive warhead, but it had enough space for us to kit up for a year of back country mission. I couldn’t believe it when we got all of our supplies and munitions into the beast and the hatch actually closed. It’s a good thing the

M972 12mm magnetic sniper rifle disassembled, or we would not be taking it, because I was not parachuting with a long gun again. At least we test fired the rail guns before packing them. I really would not like to show up and find that our shit didn’t work. “Thinking of parachuting, how are we to get to the surface undetected? Don’t tell me we’re going to HALO from a spaceship. Get the fuck outta here!”

Laughing, Angelique explained, “It’s not so much a HALO. There is nothing to open low or high, as an ablation glide followed by a powered landing. AUHAAG. We’ll enter the atmosphere with roughly three centimeters of carbon epoxy ablation resin on our suits. While that crap is burning off, we will be visible as meteors. Then we free fall to 5,000 meters and begin using the gravitic pulsers in the suit legs to slow down. After the ablation resin is gone, the suit nanites will power up the active camouflage and we will be virtually invisible.””Have you done this before?” “Yes. It’s how we inserted on Rios on my first merc mission. Rebecca visited me while you were taking care of business.” “Ummh, that’s awfully strange, because I thought she was a part of my mind.” “Don’t be silly, she’s an AI for conditioning the minds of the transferred to their new bodies. She is sentient.” Well isn’t that just dandy. Can’t say I’ve been true to you now, dammit. “Yeah, so what did she have to chat about?” “Oh, just girl stuff.” If I had nuts on the outside, they would have just made the pilgrimage to the inside. “Like that Daddy gave you shape-shifting abilities,

and a really cool beam weapon that pops out of your right forearm and can vaporize a small asteroid. Then we exchanged recipes and compared notes about fucking you senseless.” How quiet is it in space? I mean really, how much more quiet could it get after such a calm, attacking revelation? When she saw I was contemplating a suitless EVA fifteen minutes later, she laughed to relieve the tension. “That was fun, but here is the deal. I consider Rebecca to be the healthiest alternative to cheating, and I’m not jealous. I am a little aroused, but that will have to wait until later. Are you going to be all right?” “I guess so. What was that about a beam weapon?” “Let’s leave that for the planet if we need it. I think we should get the hang of the shape-shifting first.” “What do you mean by we? Are we going to the party as a two part horse?” “If so, I choose front.” I was lost in imagining my bringing up Angelique’s rear when I felt her shaking me. “What?” “You drifted off there ‘Walter Mitty’. Want to stay with the party?” “Okay. What do you want to try?” “I’ll give you an image and you try to imitate it.” “Ready, I guess.” She touched my head and I saw a being about three meters tall with whole body hair. I heard a gasp. “What now?” I was looking down at Angelique from higher, like I was standing on a ladder. “That is so cool! We’re gonna rock this mission. Check out your fur.”

 

 

Review

If you liked Legacy of Daddy, you are going to positively LOVE Interstellar LLC. You’ll reunite with your beloved characters including the unforgettable Calabrini, Angelique and Dr. Abrams – yup, THAT Dr. Abrams – PAS is fun and mischievous, and you’ll also like Oscar and Myrtle. Add a mix of some pretty solid SCI FI (and some really bad one to make it funny) and you’re in for a treat.

Of course the nanites run rampant, the aliens are truly alien, the plot is actually not predictable and the Next You reconstructions are a solid hook you’ll surely get caught with. Also expect a bit more in the form of violent resolution than in The Legacy of Daddy. The action is very well paced to a frantic – yet not rushed thought that may not make sense at first – battle galore.  All in all a very appetizing read. YA is not going to be the same after the Next You series.

 

BioUnysrQCsHopCTiaowXvcgHDQr8kzXXd-AEEoWZfoi-c

Angus day lives in Fort Collins Colorado with his wife and son. His daughter has embarked on her career as a graphics designer.

He’s been an Infantryman, Swine Farmer, smattering of other trades and jobs and now a manufacturing pharmaceutical chemist.

What aspect of his life that is devoted to fitness favors swimming in open water which means he spends most of the year working out in a pool then hit the lakes when it warms up a bit. His wife, Cheryl, safety kayaks for him when they manage to make it work.

 

SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS

Website: http://nextyouniverse.com

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AngusHDay

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/103732242836950178636/posts

Angus48 Blog: http://angus48.wordpress.com

Groups: Facebook Next You Universe: https://www.facebook.com/groups/166437960168946

 

 

BUY AND OTHER LINKS

Legacy of Daddy : http://www.amazon.com/Legacy-Daddy-Next-UniverseNovel/dp/0615793525/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1372171897&sr=1-3

Next You Interstellar LLC: http://www.amazon.com/Next-You-Interstellar-Universe-ebook/dp/B00CIGQYXG/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1372171897&sr=1-5

Having Nice Things: http://www.amazon.com/Having-Nice-Things-NextYou/dp/0615804918/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1372171897&sr=1-1

Utopian Estates: http://www.amazon.com/Utopian-Estates-Next-UniverseNovel/dp/0615781365/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1372171897&sr=1-4

Destined for Something: http://www.amazon.com/Destined-Something-Next-YouUniverse/dp/0615807607/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1372171897&sr=1-2

Review: Legacy of Daddy by Angus H. Day

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Author: Angus H Day

Book Title: Legacy of Daddy (Next You Universe Series)

Publication Date Mar 26 2013

Publisher: GMTA Publishing (Imprint: Mythos Press)

Genre: Science Fiction

Erotic Content: Some books have minor sexual content: PG-13 for the sexual content otherwise PG-13

 

 

 

 

 

 

BLURB

What happens when a Graduate student competes for a PhD in a dystopian society by experimenting with dangerous alien technology? Does humankind need technological help to leave Earth? These and other questions are awkwardly dealt with in The Legacy of Daddy.

 

 

Review

The Legacy of Daddy is strong for YA, with a crazy -yet mature appeal, that makes it really easy to let suspension of disbelief kick start us right into the book. The characters, if a bit underdeveloped, are remarkable because they are bizarre yet likeable, and the idea of the alien companion traverses several posibilities, going from a kind of Brandon Sanderson’s Legion approach to one rather like John Zakour’s Zachary Nixon Johnson and his HARV sidekick. The pace is fast but not hectic and the premise, thou simple, is very well presented. In short, the book is fun to read, easy on the mind and provides a kind of smart entertainment that leaves you wishing for more. The one big but? it is too short! I want more!.

Underdevelopment of characters is also not an issue if you consider the book a first person narrative, as it is intended, the focus is on the main character, and everyone else is there just for plot advancement (save, one should note, Robert) Still, if you let go of your expectations, and submerge fully into the ride, you are in for a fun afternoon (the book being so short and easy to read, one gives it an avergae 5 hours shelf life, that is, you’ll finish it in around that time)

Excerpt

Chapter 3: The proper way to talk to oneself.

 

When I was back in my quarters I responded to the…being.

 

“We need to have some ground rules. During my relationships, you will find something else to do and give me some privacy. If you continue to be a dickhead I will eventually resort to self-harm to rid myself of your presence. Do you understand?”

 

“Oh I understand what you want. I’ll see about accommodating you when it suits us. Don’t forget that I can go mental also and you might be impressed by the number of mental ailments to which my species were susceptible. We might even create some new ailment in your species with a little manipulation. In your slang the point is you’re not the boss of me.”

 

“What do you call yourself, since I’ve never asked?”

 

“I don’t have a name you would understand, and I don’t care to spend the effort teaching you. However I think we should be called Dr. Abrams. I like that name because it’s simple and will remind you that something has changed forever in your life.”

 

“Being called by my middle name is going to do all that?”

 

“I believe it will be enough to behavior-modify you right now.” I opened my eyes and realized I was on my back, on the floor. “What did you do?”

 

“I did a little neural programming to insure you do something I like, not to worry. Shall we get ready for sleep Dr. Abrams?”

 

“I think that is an excellent idea.”

 

When I awoke in the morning I barely remembered arguing with the entity and not what it was about. Hopefully I will be able to recognize when it’s attempting to control me. I cleaned up, dressed and ate breakfast without speaking to a soul. When I was about to enter the lab a tech greeted me, “Good morning Doctor Focsile, how did you sleep?” “Please call me Dr. Abrams; I don’t much care for my last name.” What the hell just came out of my mouth? The tech looked at me like she’d love to pour acid into my cereal and I empathized. I can hear it now, “That guy is a total asshole.” What did I tell Etresca to call me? God, that’s going to eat at me all day now, “Actually, please call me Robert, there is no need to be so formal. I slept fine and you?” Oh my God, I hope that was the save I thought it was. She loosened up and smiled at me again. “I slept fine, thank you for asking?” As she walked away I hoped that my relief of tension had gone unnoticed. I abandoned my gawking perch by the door and moved to my lab bench. I spent the remainder of the day programming nanites to regulate hormones for neural activity. I lost about three hours of work time that I couldn’t remember what I was doing. A new stasis jar with a new batch of reclamators was in front of me on the bench and I had no idea how they had gotten there. “Did you do that?” The asshole did not answer. Since I was so tunneled into my work these days I had set a pad alarm for the end of shift. When it went off I noticed that I had an email from security. It was from Etresca, which gave me a warm feeling inside. Tomorrow can we meet at the air reclamation hydroponics atrium? I will make us a picnic and can you bring desert. Say 1830? Reply: Absolutely. You like chocolate right? That will do. See you then. I remembered to store the nanites I’d been working on in a stasis jar and I closed down for the night. I scooped up my pad and headed for the canteen lounge with a spring in my step. Etresca met me there and we had a lovely evening which ended with a kiss. The next morning I arrived at the lab to find security, including Etresca had taped off the area. There was a shrinking puddle of blood on the floor of the doorway and several forensic types were wandering around the benches looking but not touching, smart guys. “Officers, what has happened here and may I be of assistance?” Etresca’s supervisor I assume answered, “One of your lab techs died here last night and we don’t know yet if it was an accident, suicide or murder. Can you help our forensic guys identify some things, Dr. Focsile?” “Yes, of course and please call me Dr. Abrams I don’t really like my last name.” That little bullshit that is emanating from my mouth is going to get me a reputation. I imagine there will be some restroom wall tags addressing it unless I’m overinflating my importance in people’s lives. I wandered over to the first tech and asked if he had any questions. The tech seemed puzzled by a tray of half eaten food that had been left on the bench. “Do your people normally eat in this lab? I thought this was a quarantine risk lab.”