Category Archives: Reviews: LGBTQ+

Emotionally charged romance

ScarredScarred by Mia Kerick

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

An emotionally charged and incredibly powerful book about survival and finding a new normal, Scarred deals with serious issues with sensitivity and empathy.

Both Matt and Vedie are complex characters with fully fleshed out personalities who somehow manage to find the key to unlocking the other.

The plot moves along at a well-paced speed, giving time for the reader to absorb each of the many layers being explored in the narrative.

It’s not an easy read and I’m not sure I can honestly say I “enjoyed” it in the same way as I would a more traditional romance, but it is a beautiful love story all the same.

#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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The Other Book is an emotionally erotic tour de force

The Other BookThe Other Book by Roe Horvat

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

When Roe said – shortly after releasing the sweet sweet love story that was Vanilla Clouds – that he was working on ‘the other book’ and it was so different he was considering whether to release it under a pen name, I was one of those who said I’d read it whatever name he published under.

Well, he chose to put it out here with his name firmly attached and I’ve read it just as I said I would.

But let me say this clearly – this book may be erotica, it may be so hot you’re going to want a cold shower after reading it, it may be a book you blush just thinking about, however it absolutely 100% is a Roe Horvat narrative.

It is filled with beautiful language, it paints vividly bright pictures of the world being portrayed and the characters living in it, it gives you a romance you’re rooting for from the off and – irrespective of the heat and sexual content – it is absolutely about emotionally satisfying connections and love between two men who are each other’s perfect fit.

Make no mistake, this book is exquisite erotica, so well done as to draw out the tingling feelings but also to make you go “awww” at the trust displayed by all those involved.

Read – and heed – the warning and the author’s note, this book won’t be for everyone but for me, it’s Roe’s best release outside of Love Song For The Sad Man In The White Coat, which remains my all-time favourite book of his.

#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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Clever narrative winds up this excellent romantic suspense series

Rough Trade (Woodbury Boys #3)Rough Trade by Sidney Bell

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I honestly didn’t think this book would be able to comprehensively pull together all the suspense elements of the first two into a believable and cohesive ending.

But it really does, and not only that, it also brings a unique love story which never once follows the traditional path and yet still manages to be truly romantic and full of emotional growth.

It also manages to make me have feelings for two of the bad guys – or bad women in this instance – who were both as trapped in a situation out of their control as Ghost and Duncan were.

I wasn’t expecting things to go down like they did but there was some clever narrative play which ultimately drew out the most effective and truthful ending for all parties involved.

The romance itself is a quiet, unobtrusive one, it’s not hot and sexy, it’s built up of small things, of trust, of movie marathons and a desire to want someone else’s happiness to come first.

There couldn’t, imho, have been any other way for things to go given Ghost’s lifetime of experience with sex as a weapon and as an abuse, even four years later in the epilogue I think it was still fitting that the reader’s gaze remained external and not in the bed with them.

Truly a wonderful example in this genre and a fitting conclusion to the series as a whole.

#ARC kindly received from the author via NetGalley in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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Series Review: Woodbury Boys by Sidney Bell

Loose Cannon (The Woodbury Boys, #1)Loose Cannon by Sidney Bell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Apart from the bizarre Russian element, which I figure is a lead in to more of Ghost’s story in book three, this was an excellent read.

Three vastly different young men with their own unique challenges meet and form a friendship which sees them through their time in the juvenile detention system.

This focuses on Church and the unfailing love he has for Miller, who is eight years older and struggling with owning what he really feels for the younger man.

This is an impressive read, my first from Sidney Bell, and I’m definitely looking forward to the rest of the series and reading her debut MM romance, Bad Judgement.

~

Hard Line (The Woodbury Boys, #2)Hard Line by Sidney Bell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Well that didn’t go where I’d expected it to but it was still an utterly thrilling ride.

A complex plot brings misfit Tobias into the orbit of PI Sullivan and the narrative took off with a bang.

I must commend the author here for the clever way this book incorporated the mystery and suspense elements from book one but in such a radically different direction, I don’t think anyone would have guessed it.

I also think she did an incredible job in showing just why Tobias was so willing to submit and why he needed to be used in the way Sullivan wanted him.

This type of kink isn’t even remotely in my wheelhouse but I understood totally Tobias’ absolute desire for the pain and the complete trust he gave over when doing so.

Sullivan took a while to let his feelings slip through his rigid control, but once they did, his personality made so much sense.

And enigmatic Ghost is even more mysterious here than in book one and I honestly have no clue how this plotline is going to be wrapped up in his book but I can’t wait to find out.

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SEE  HERE FOR MY REVIEW OF THE FINAL BOOK IN THIS SERIES: https://mirrigold.com/2018/12/30/clever-narrative-winds-up-this-excellent-romantic-suspense-series/

 

Utterly delightful friends to lovers ends the Underdogs series perfectly

YouForeverAlways-KAM-f-900
You. Forever. Always.
by K.A. Merikan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Well that was radically different than book two in this series!

Dawn and Mage’s romance is beautifully slow burn and tender and takes its time to develop mostly because of Dawn’s overwhelming anxieties.

The authors treat this with the seriousness it deserves and there’s no magic cure because of love which was good to see, the relationship doesn’t run smooth, even with all the years they’ve been friends.

I do like a friends to lovers romance and that’s what we get here, with some minor hiccups along the way as they each can’t quite believe the other one feels the same way.

This is all ends up sweet and I liked the change of pace from the two earlier books but Asher and Sid remain my faves and Dusk and Lolly still irritate me 😉

#ARC kindly received from the authors in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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Gentle paced romance signs off the Cayuga Cougars

One-On-One (Cayuga Cougars #5)One-On-One by V.L. Locey

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Vicki signs off this wonderfully diverse ice hockey series with a gentle paced romance for assistant coach Lancaster and musician and mayoral aide Townsend.

It’s super sweet, focused as it is on a man who has only come out later in life, having lived the traditional closeted married and had kids experience so many go through.

I loved Lan’s ex-wife and his twin kids, there was no drama in their relationship, just acceptance and continuing support and it was great to read.

And his relationship with Town in perfectly judged, they take their time not only to fall in love, but also to become intimate and the emotions are all the better for it.

This book also follows the Cougars as they head towards a possible championship win and all the complex emotions that entails.

My favourite obnoxiously loving Pole is also on hand to keep things real and there’s tensions for Victor and Dan which will be explored in a forthcoming new series from Vicki that I cannot wait for.

So it’s farewell for now to the Cayuga gang and I’ll miss them.

#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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Best one yet – snarky and full of witty dialogue

Deke (Fake Boyfriend, #3)Deke by Eden Finley

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Best one yet imho. Eden takes things to another level with the third entry in the Fake Boyfriend series and gives us a wonderfully snarky relationship between a sports journalist and a closeted ice hockey player.

I loved pretty much everything about this narrative, from the smart and nerdy Lennon to the sweetly vulnerable Ollie.

Either way, this story had me wrapped round its little finger from the off, when Ollie bumps into Lennon when he’s escaping his overprotective and insanely supportive family by hiding in the Men’s Loo and outs himself by accident.

Lennon’s a wonderful character, he’s funny, a bit scared from teenage experiences and a bit determined to not let Ollie ruin his career because they’re falling for each other. The scenes with Ollie’s family, who know him as Clark because he looks like Superman’s alter ego, were among the best in the book.

There’s appearances from our other favourite pairings, Maddox and Damon and Noah and Matt just to reassure the reader their happy ever afters are still firmly on track and we get some new pairings which have now been confirmed by Eden as the subjects of books four and five (and I personally cannot wait for both!)

This book was just a delight to read, a bit of angst, lots of amazing chemistry and some joyously emotional and physically connected smexy times and very little in the way of miscommunication plot drivers.

Everything felt organic, the romance between the two was well paced and felt utterly believable and I loved it all. Put it this way, I started reading it at 11pm and went to bed at 3am when I’d finished it 🙂

#ARC kindly provided by the author in return for an honest and unbiased review

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