Fell a bit flat for me unfortunately

Manic Pixie Dream Boy (The Underdogs, #1)Manic Pixie Dream Boy by K.A. Merikan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5*

So this had one of the most brilliantly mixed opening chapters of any book I’ve read as it throws the reader into the humorous and sexy initial meeting of the two MCs.

It also manages to bring the Merikans’ own unique blend of crazy to the fake boyfriend and rock star romance tropes with a bit quite insta love connection between the somewhat over confident Dusk and the truly individual drifter he nicknames Lolly.

But, I don’t know exactly what it was but I didn’t fall totally in love with this couple or with this book like I usually do with this author duo. I think perhaps the angst was a bit ‘teen’ dramady and the characters all felt young – although I don’t remember it ever been said how old either Dusk or Lolly were.

There was still a lot to like though, this is the first in a new series about the band members as I understand it and I looking forward to finding out more.

I did like the resolution of the conflict though, there was an understanding and an acceptance that mistakes had been made and more honest conversation was needed but I did believe both Dusk and Abe (Lolly’s real name) did love each other completely.

And, as is always the case with books from these two, the cover is gorgeous and the sex is scorching.

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

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Cute romance between two radically different guys

As I Am (Rags and Riches Book 8)As I Am by E.M. Leya

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

There was a hint of insta love to this one but not enough for it to feel unrealistic. I think EM did well to make Carson falling for Ky because he was so different feel like an organic development.

I liked both characters as well, they were nicely fleshed out and read well as an opposites attract romance. The low level angsty also fit in with the narrative and, while the misunderstanding was obvious, it worked within the feelings of the two men and where the story had gone.

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Best in the series for me

A Kind of Honesty (A Kind of Stories #3)A Kind of Honesty by Lane Hayes

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Best in the series for me, I absolutely fell head over heels for both Carter and Tim.

I love Lane Hayes’ style of writing, she has a realness to it which makes you believe these could be guys next door she’s writing about no matter the rock band or the family inheritance.

The pacing throughout this romance was perfect, the sex didn’t get in the way or feel thrown in for the hell of it. Reading these two men falling in love slowly through a shared friendship and slow building of trust was beautiful.

The plot narrative with Tim’s shady ex was also handled well and didn’t feel like it was angsty drama just for the sake of it.
I can’t wait for Issac’s book to come out now!

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Mixed starter in this music centric romance

A Kind of Truth (A Kind of Stories, #1)A Kind of Truth by Lane Hayes

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5*

I’m conflicted with this one, parts of it I really loved, other bits irritated the heck out of me but, on balance, more of it was positive than negative.

Pros: The two MCs are wonderful constructs. Rand is fearless in both his desire for his band to be the best and in his convictions that he wants to do things right. He’s egotistical and a whirlwind of nature but, at the heart of him, it’s for the right reasons and when he falls for Will, he falls hard, with all the confusion of a young man in his 20s.

Will was an utter delight, a contrast of shy musical genius geek and sexy hot cross-dresser who really found his confidence in the cloak of a wig and some make-up.

Cons: Leah, sorry but she didn’t work for me at all as the protagonist, she felt contrived and irritating as Hell, simply there to provide the dramatic roadblock/angsty moment that the big HEA could hang off. It would have worked far more had it been spurned guitarist Terry who had been the villain of the piece.

Will’s parents – again just a little under developed and all on the surface, not enough was given to his relationship with them other than through the eyes of Rand. A little bit more conversation with Will about them would have helped.

Overall though, a great start to a new series with some really beautifully expressed relationship aspirations.

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