Riley Hart slays it yet again in this new series

Gone for You (Wild Side, #1)Gone for You by Riley Hart

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The way Riley Hart writes just perfectly speaks to me, I’ve not read anything of hers I’ve not enjoyed and this is no different.

She manages to take the everyday routine of life and falling in love, no matter what the age of the characters, and infuses it with a little bit of magic.

In this one we have a standard friends to lovers and sort of second chance romance but with Oliver and Matt she creates two stand out characters who feel utterly real.

I loved watching them bumping heads as Matt returned back to the boy he’s always loved but never felt good enough for and Oliver grew to realise he had to let Matt fix himself and say goodbye to his life long love to give it the chance to bloom fully.

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Return to form for the Marian boys

Delivering Dante (Made Marian, #6)Delivering Dante by Lucy Lennox

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Loved this one, it had all the things I’ve come to expect from Lucy Lennox and this series – two well definitely MCs, a lot of humour, low angst and lots of hot sex.

There’s a couple of funny side plots involving the crazy Marian senior members, the President’s politician father and a possible Vegas wedding, some sex toys and an order of homophobic preachers to keep things ticking along.

Another gorgeous cover to add to the rest of the almost rainbow. I’m hoping we get Simone’s story too and round out the Marian siblings, plus perhaps a step back in time to Pete and Ginger’s courtship. I love this family and I want more of their stories please.

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Not as angsty as the other two

Embrace the Fire (Through Hell and Back Book 3)Embrace the Fire by Felice Stevens

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a much sweeter story than the first two books and, while Brandon had suffered, it wasn’t anywhere close to Ash or Luke’s pain.

The romance between him and Tash was nicely drawn out and there wasn’t really much in the way of dramady to affect it. They communicated well and the sex was emotionally engaging.

Loved the extended epilogue and I’ve loved Esther and the other secondary characters who have been built into this world.

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Five brutal heart breaking stars

A Walk Through Fire (Through Hell and Back Book 1)A Walk Through Fire by Felice Stevens

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oh Felice Stevens you know how to wrench every but of emotion from someone. This book is brutal and heart breaking but it’s also uplifting and heart warming.

It’s about pain and loss, joy and hope, second chances at life and new beginnings. It’s about finding family and learning how to let yourself be loved.

Asher and Drew are a magnificent pairing, birth men bowing under the weight of their past, both men capable of bearing the weight of the other’s fears.

That I could get teary about what happens to one of the secondary characters is testimony to the world building skills of the author.

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I’m stumped by what I want to say about this book

Any Given Sunday (A Southern Scrimmage Companion Book 6)Any Given Sunday by Mercy Celeste

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
3.75* conflicted stars

So, this book is the scorching hot sexual adventure all of the Southern Scrimmage series of stories have been but I’m confused over just what I think of it.

The timescales in this one fluctuate between Bo and Dylan’s childhood, through the six years Dylan was in the Marines and Bo was playing ball and the time period after Bo thought Dylan was dead up until his rescue.

So it’s mostly both men with other people, which didn’t bother me as much as it may other readers, but it’s just a bit too much of everything other than Bo and Dylan for it to be truly enjoyable.

Book one gave Bo and Dylan an epic romance and then subsequent books seem to have shafted that with cheating or if not that, some very definitely dubious morals encounters.

I felt I understood Levi a bit more after reading the last book but this one’s just confused all that again as well. He goes back to giving off the mixed vibes of being a selfish git and a complete slapper instead of the far more nuanced and complex person his “autobiography” gave us.

Understandable as this is set at the same time as the events in the two earlier books so it’s unfortunate it’s been published later! On a reread I’d definitely add this one in before book one I think.

This whole book just threw things into a pot, stirred them, but then never cooked them up into a cohesive unit, certainly not one that tied in with events in all the other books.

Don’t get me wrong though, I thoroughly enjoyed this book, it’s smoking hot, has the same great world building as the rest and it gives more background to events happening in the first two books.

I just seriously hope we get Blindsided and the final book released soon as there’s plot lines and narrative threads still left hanging all over the place at the moment.

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Lots of feels with this new series

Back Piece (Skin Deep Inc., #1)Back Piece by L.A. Witt

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book gave me many feels, some of them very good, a couple not as good, but overall it weighed out on the side of being a great read.

I loved both Colin and Daniel, I liked how each of their special hang ups were dealt with and I absolutely loved that there was no magic dick cure just because they fell in love.

I also liked that Daniel’s family weren’t portrayed as one dimensional homophobic religious bigots but as complete and complex people and how Daniel could love them at the same time as hate them for their views.
Throughout their visit I could feel the weight of the pressure on my shoulders, something LA Witt is excellent at writing.

Something else she’s great at writing are sex scenes, and the steam level is high in this one with some stupendous virgin sex.

The angst levels were moderate. I’d guessed what Colin’s background was going to be before it was revealed and, while it was a big part of his mental illness, it was never treated lightly but was explained and explored in the context of his continual eating issues.

World building was great and, as this is book one in a new series, I’m looking forward to seeing what’s coming next.
Oh, and that cover, yeah that could have stars all on its own, so hot.

#ARC kindly provided by the publishers through NetGalley in return for an unbiased and honest review.

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