Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Random Review: Finding You by Lily Harlem #Review #Giveaway





Author: Lily Harlem
Book: Finding You
Series: Redwood Shifters #2
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Publication date: July 25, 2017
Length: 55 pages


Reviewed by Morningstar

Synopsis

When shifters Aleco and Pedro find their world torn in two, they have to stick together, fight together and be as one in a way they never have before.

For Aleco the pieces of his happiness jigsaw have finally fallen into place. With his son Neo now content with a new mate, it’s time for him to celebrate with the two people he loves and desires most in the world.

But little does Aleco know that waiting for him and Pedro is the worst news of all. The third in their relationship is missing, vanished without a trace. There one minute, gone the next.

In their frantic dash to find her, a desperate passion is fuelled, and their emotions collide with fiery consequences. Taking solace in each other is all they can do.

But will they find her? And why has she left them? The only thing left is to keep hunting for the answers and following her trail.



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Review


I’m not really sure what it was about the story as a whole that just didn’t grab me. It was well written, and nothing was wrong with it, but for a shorter story, it didn’t hold my attention. It might be that I hadn’t read book one in the series before reading this one but again...not sure.

I loved the banter between Aleco and Pedro. It gave us a glimpse of who they are together. Since I hadn’t read the first one, I had no preconceived ideas about their relationship, but I still felt like there was a part missing, a deeper love that wasn’t shown to me as I read.

The disappearance of their third, Julie, was a surprise to them and although most of that emotion came through, the author didn’t flesh out the why’s of her disappearance as well as they could. It is a short story, so that’s something that I don’t put much faith in since writing a full-length plot in such a short story is one of the hardest things I’ve found to be done. 

It overall was a good short sexy read with cute banter and some danger, but for me, it just didn’t hit the right spots as a paranormal lover.





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Audiobook Release Blitz: The Necromancer's Dilemma by SJ Himes Narrated by Joel Leslie #Excerpt #Giveaway




Title: The Necromancer’s Dilemma
Author: SJ Himes
Narrated By: Joel Leslie
Length: 7 hours 47 minutes
Series: The Beacon Hill Sorcerer #2
Release Date: July 21st 2017
Genre: MM Paranormal Romance, Fantasy

Synopsis

Even love can die without trust.

Angel’s brother, Isaac, has returned home, and the pair begin to make slow and awkward attempts back to each other. Learning how to be a brother to a grown man instead of a parental figure has Angel adjusting his behaviors and habits, and Isaac still remains a mystery. Was it merely entering adulthood that turned Isaac away from an overprotective Angel, or does Isaac carry a secret that will keep them from finally being a real family?
Daniel Macavoy, Angel’s new apprentice, is torn between his bond with Angel and the grasping machinations of his father. Dealing with a traumatized apprentice with dangerous holes in his magical education, saving Daniel may be harder than Angel first thought—especially since the biggest problem is not revenge, but guilt.
The one shining beacon in his life is Simeon, Elder vampire of Boston’s only Bloodclan. Four hundred years old and sexy as sin, Simeon is warrior and sage, patient and cunning. The strength Angel draws from Simeon’s devotion and the newborn mate-bond between them is steadfast and true…and the fount of death magic that animates the undead lord places Angel in the midst of a power struggle for control over himself, his lover, and his family.
Through it all, Angel is beleaguered by the unwanted attention of a troll-hybrid, the adventures of a dragon in the city, and a serial killer has decided to hunt the back alleys and midnight streets of Boston.




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Excerpt

The entire back of the boy’s hand was split open by the intense heat, the skin white and thick, the flesh beneath cooked by the magic spike that turned the kettle and its contents into a kitchen supernova. The heat curled in his fingers, and the flesh was weeping fluids. Blisters distorted the edges of the worst of it, the flesh red and warped all the way up the back of his hand to his wrist. The curling of the hand was so severe he couldn’t see how badly Daniel’s palm was injured.
“Isaac, never mind, I need you here.” A burn this bad was not life threatening— not yet— Daniel was going into shock, but he wasn’t hovering on the edge of death, so Angel was unable to heal him. This injury was caused by intense and powerful heat— and so was under the purview of any practitioner with fire affinity. “You need to heal this.”
“I’m not a healer!” Isaac gasped out, but he came anyway. Angel grabbed his brother and yanked him down so they were both kneeling by Daniel’s hand. Angel held Daniel’s arm aloft, and put his other on Isaac’s shoulder.
“Isaac, all you need to do is settle into your inner sight, look at Daniel’s hand, and call to the heat in the injuries. The actual temperature has nothing to do with healing— this is a mental exercise that relies on how your brain interprets and processes the injury in his hand. It was caused by heat, and you can reverse the damage,” Angel instructed. He squeezed his hand on Isaac’s shoulder when a wave of uncertainty crossed his features. “No room for doubt. I taught you how to heal fire and heat based injuries before you even got your driver’s license, so don’t lie to yourself and think you can’t do this.”
“How… his hand… how can I fix that?” Isaac whispered, looking sick.




Book One
Title: The Necromancer’s Dance
Author: S J Himes
Series: The Beacon Hill Sorcerer #1
Narrated by: Joel Leslie
Length: 8 Hours 8 minutes
Release Date: 21st March 2017
Genre: Paranormal, Fantasy, MM Romance

Synopsis
In a world where magic is real and evil walks amongst humanity, a young sorcerer is beset by enemies, both old and new.
Angelus Salvatore is the only necromancer in all of Boston, and his name is whispered warily by the undead and fellow sorcerers alike. He and his brother Isaac are the lone survivors of an attack by an army of the undead, in which Angel used a spell so powerful it forever marked his place in history. Now, years later, Angel struggles to balance his career as a teacher of the higher magical arts, his role as big brother, and a tenuous relationship with an Elder vampire from the local clan. When his brother's boyfriend is used as a pawn in a mysterious plot to draw Angel out, Angel is once again drawn back into the old hostilities that fueled the Blood Wars and led to his family's death.
Leaning on others for help is something Angel cannot do, and while he searches for clues as to who may be targeting him and his brother, Angel finds his heart steadily growing occupied with Simeon, Elder and vampire. Dealing with death magic and vampires on a daily basis may leave Angel jaded when it comes to life and staying that way, but the more time he spends fending off the ancient vampire's attention and affections, the more he realizes he wants to give in.
Can Angel find out who wants him dead, and keep his heart safe in the process? How can he fall for a vampire, when his whole family was torn apart by an army of the undead? Death stalks the streets of Boston's historic Beacon Hill...and there is no one more suited to battle against death than a necromancer.


Listen to an audio teaser from The Necromancer’s Dance at Soundcloud.





About the Author
I'm a self-employed writer who stresses out about the silliest things, like whether or not I got my dog the best kind of snack and the fact my kindle battery tends to die when I'm at the best part in a book. I write mainly gay romance, erotica, and urban fantasy, with ocasional forays into contemporary and paranormal. I love a book heavy on plot and character evolution, and throw in some magic, and that's perfection. My current series are: The Beacon Hill Sorcerer, Bred For Love (as Revella Hawthorne), and The Wolfkin Saga. My last two novels in the Beacon Hill Sorcerer won 3rd Place in the Gay Fantasy category for the 2016 Rainbow Awards.
I live in New Orleans, where the personalities are big and loud and so are the bugs! New Orleans is rich in cultural history, and the flavor and music of the City is impossible to hide. Before that, I lived all over the United States: Tampa, Western Massachusetts, Indianapolis, and on and on.... I'm a nomad, and I've yet to find a place that calls to me strongly enough to become home. My faithful travel companions are my dog Micah, the numerous voices in my head who insist they all get put on paper, and the wind at my back.




About the Narrator
Joel Leslie is a UK transplant, growing up with American parents in a British commonwealth.  A classically trained actor with an MFA in theatre from USC, he is often cast for his unique ability to deliver native, authentic combinations of American and British sounds.  His great range and ability to bring characters to life with honesty, wit and versatility delights producers and listeners alike.

He is proud to have a strong following with m/m listeners and an ongoing relationship with some of the finest writers in the genre.  He loves that every day he gets to share these beautiful, inspirational and empowering GLBT characters with the world.  When not in the booth he spends his time chasing after two loquacious wiener dogs.

Find a list of Joel’s books on Audible




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Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Release Day Review: Riptide by Helena Maeve #Review #Giveaway




Author: Helena Maeve
Book: Riptide
Publisher: Pride Publishing 
Publication date: July 25, 2017
Length: 52 pages

Reviewed by Michael

Synopsis

Sometimes all that matters is being in the right place, at the right time.

Rami knows the storm should have killed him. Very much alive, though slightly waterlogged, he can’t shake the feeling that he didn’t survive on his own merits. He had help.

When a person of interest in the legal matter he’s been hired to untangle reveals a strong resemblance to the man who may have saved his life, venturing into uncharted waters becomes the least of Rami’s problems.

A loner living in the shadow of a once-great house, Malcolm is a hard man to pin down. His seemingly impossible feats of heroism have certainly saved lives, but the people of Envern, Maine, are only too eager to allege he had something to do with his employer’s death. Leading a secretive existence under a cloud of suspicion should scupper Malcolm’s appeal, but Rami has secrets of his own and his relationship with danger has always been complicated.



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Review


Riptide is a number of things, all wrapped into one short story.  It’s equal parts mystery and legal drama, with a splash of romance mixed with super powers.

Rami has come to Envern, Maine to handle a legal matter.  It seems that the rich and powerful Mrs. Lynch wants to evict the enigmatic Malcolm from a secondary house on an island owned by her late husband.  She’s been unable to do so due to some complex legal reasons, and has hired Rami’s firm to not only untangle the mess, but also to rid herself of Malcolm once and for all. 

When writing romance, there are two things you need to develop:  your characters, and their relationship.  Given the fact that this is a short story, there’s an enormous amount of character development where Rami is concerned.  He has problems, and although you don’t know where they stem from, you get the sense that he’s been dealing with them for a very long time.

Minority representation is something that is sorely lacking in both the Romance genres as well as comics.  I was pleasantly surprised with Malcolm.  He’s enigmatic to the townsfolk of Envern, as well as the reader.  

The story itself is well written, with enough twists and turns to keep you interested, but Rami and Malcolm didn’t seem to have a lot of chemistry.  I can’t help but wonder if format hampered it in some way.  Perhaps if it were longer in length, not only would there be more character development, but you would see the relationship build.







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