Tag Archives: second chances

Book Blitz: Snowed In – Ross and Ashton by J.V. Speyer

Snowed In – Ross and Ashton | J.V. Speyer

Publication date: January 5th 2019

Genres: Adult, Contemporary, LGBTQ+, Romance

Massachusetts State Trooper Ross Huber is giving one last sweep of the roads before heading in for the night.

The nor’easter hitting the Boston area is worse than expected by an order of magnitude, and the governor has just issued a travel ban.

He finds a wrecked car half buried in a snowbank and rescues its human and canine occupants from carbon monoxide poisoning, but is forced to take shelter with them in a vacant or abandoned house when the roads are blocked.

When he gets the victims indoors, he thinks the human looks uncomfortably familiar…

Ash Machado has been through a lot in his career as a war correspondent. Sidelined by an injury, he’s returned to Boston to take up a job as a news anchor. After he loses control of his car on an icy road, he wakes up in an unfamiliar home, looking into the face of the guy who broke his heart in college.

Neither Ross nor Ash are the same guys they were in college, but they’re trapped in the abandoned house with no place to go.

Can they get past old hurts long enough to get through the storm, or will the same misunderstandings that drove them apart years ago make this confinement unbearable?

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EXCERPT:

Ash moistened his lips and scratched between his dog’s ears. “More or less, yeah. He definitely likes to be on the receiving end of any affection.” He swallowed hard. He could still taste Ross on his tongue, bad morning breath and all.

He lurched to his feet. “I’m going to see what I can do about excavating some space for Porthos to do his business. He’s going to have to sooner or later, and I don’t want to wreck the joint.” Ash had to get up and do something. He had to get away from Ross or his brain might explode.

“Good point.” Ross grimaced and stood up too. “Can you shovel, with your arm like that? Do you want me to do it?”

Ash forced a little smile. Ross’ words cemented his worst fears. Ross hadn’t kissed him out of affection or even nostalgia. He’d kissed Ash out of pity. It turned Ash’s stomach. “No, thanks. I’ll be sore, but I really want to move around a bit.”

He ran for the back door as fast as he could.

Was this really what life was going to be from now on? Pity kisses from guys who occasionally wanted to throw him a bone, and who didn’t have any better options? A sedate anchor job covering sedate local news from the safety of a swanky downtown newsroom, instead of being out in the field like he’d been born to do?

He struggled into his coat and pushed the intrusive thoughts out of his head. The doctors had warned him about this after his injury, both in Turkey and in Germany. Intrusive thoughts were normal.

Bouts of depression were normal. He’d survived a major explosion, and he’d had to make some major lifestyle changes as a result. It was okay to be upset, and it was okay to be frustrated. Ash should be patient with himself, they said. And they also acknowledged it would be a challenge for him to find that patience. He knew exactly what to expect.

He attacked the snow with vigor. He’d made it out alive when plenty of others had not. He was not going to squander his second chance on self-pity and pining for a guy who’d dumped him almost a decade ago.

He was here, breathing free air. He might be in pain, and he might not have full use of all of his limbs, but he could use most of his parts and that was enough. He was a lucky man. He just needed to remind himself sometimes.

He hacked into the snow, using his anger and his grief to power through the pain. Okay, sure, this sucked, and he’d need more surgery on his shoulder eventually. He’d get it. In the meantime, chances were that he’d find himself in a position to need to shovel. He needed to get used to it.

He needed to toughen up, and get used to doing things for himself. Two hours later, he’d carved out enough space to function as a doggy outhouse. It would be foul soon enough, but it had become almost like a little snow cave.

Ash had worked up a good sweat, and he’d accomplished something to take care of Porthos. He hadn’t had to depend on Ross, or anyone else. He’d done it himself. He could be proud of it.

Author Bio:

Want to get cocktail recipes, book updates, and craft beer notes from J. V.? Sign up here (http://eepurl.com/dtlwBH)!

J. V. Speyer has lived in upstate New York and rural Catalonia before making the greater Boston, Massachusetts area her permanent home.

She has worked in archaeology, security, accountancy, finance, and non-profit management. She currently lives just south of Boston in a house old enough to remember when her town was a tavern community with a farming problem.

J. V. finds most of her inspiration from music. Her tastes run the gamut from traditional to industrial and back again. When not writing she can usually be found enjoying a baseball game or avoiding direct sunlight.

She’s learning to crochet so she can make blankets to fortify herself against the cold.

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Kelly saves the best for last and gives us a wonderful mature romance

chasing foreverChasing Forever by Kelly Jensen

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Thank you for this book Kelly Jensen, just thank you.

I am 48 like Brian, I am disabled with mobility issues that came out of the blue at a relatively young age and changed my world like Malcolm.

I may not be a gay man but I could empathise with so much that these two complex and wonderfully alive characters had experienced and the doubts and fears they lived with.

Getting a redemption storyline right is not an easy task, and while Brian was never a true villain, our gaze as readers had been on him from the point of view of his ex Simon and Simon’s best friend Frank.

We had an opinion on his character, on his behaviour, on how he was an ass, on how he treated Simon appallingly. But we were wrong in many ways.

Brian was a lost soul, clinging onto something that wasn’t, and never would be, the right relationship for him or Simon, but lacking the whole awareness to realise it and so putting them both through Hell.
He’d been fighting his whole life so hard that he didn’t know how to stop and put his shield and sword away.

It wasn’t until his nephew Josh shows up with a painful reminder of the past, that Brian starts to become the beautifully flawed man he truly is. And it is then through the eyes of Malcolm that the layers start to peel away.

And here can I gush about Malcolm for a bit. He’s not perfect either, he’s physically fragile and feeling his mortality after the hit and run that almost destroyed his legs and nearly took his life.

But he is strong in heart, aware of his weaknesses and determined to not let his age, his awkwardness or his shyness get inside his head and prevent him from acknowledging that he wants Brian even with his asshole reputation.

I’m not sure which one I loved the most. They were stubborn, they were vulnerable, they were sexy and sweet together, frustrating and fascinating and ultimately the perfect fit to slot into place and create their own future together.

The secondary plot was a surprise, I didn’t expect it to go the way it did but the narrative actually couldn’t have been more right in the end. It’s not the physical places that make a community but the people and the friendships and while the final outcome was a different one, I loved it.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed each book in this series, so much so that I bought them all even though I’d had the ARCs. This is hands down one of the best series I’ve read not only this year but in the contemporary romance genre as a whole.

If you want interesting and intelligent mature characters all well past their youthful bloom who find and fall in love with their perfect partner, then you’d not go far wrong with picking this series up.

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

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It’s a hat-trick of happy for me with Kelly Jensen’s romances

41710260.jpgRenewing Forever by Kelly Jensen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“…sex with someone you wanted this much could only ever remake the world.”

Kelly Jensen scores a hat trick with Renewing Forever, this makes three out of three for books I’ve read and fallen in love with.

This one is a gorgeous second chance romance, a later in life love restored, just like the old lodge house, and proof that it’s never too late to take a step on the road to forgiveness and understanding.

Both Frank and Tom are complex characters and there is no single issue of fault. Both made mistakes when they were just teenagers and both have spent 30 years living with the consequences and the regret.

There’s a feeling of not quite melancholy, but almost an element of time stood still and is now slowly coming to life again.

We find out more about Frank than his outward appearance of Simon’s jovial journalist best friend. We meet Tom, who I alternatively wanted to put away somewhere safe and conversely push out to experience the full scope of the world outside his doorstep.

There’s angst in this, but it’s the realistic drama of finding yourself back with The One who you never stopped loving but who had cut you to the bone and not knowing quite where to start the moving on process.

It’s a wonderful slow burn between two mature characters approaching their half century of life and I adored it. Now, who is going to be giving Brian his Forever in book three?!

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

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Two great Young Adult romances from Brigham Vaughn

Bully & Exit (The Midwest Series, #1)Bully & Exit by Brigham Vaughn

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

This is a really solid young adult second-chance college romance with characters who have flaws but who I was rooting for throughout.

I do love me a good second chance romance and this one delivered it up with a little bit of angst but no overly dramatic plot points or dramady.

Both Caleb and Nathan read as their ages, mature but still young enough to not be perfectly assured with their lives and their feelings.

It’s not all hearts and flowers and it felt like an honestly expressed exploration of how you can learn to move on from great pain and find the spark again.

Push & Pull (The Midwest Series, #2)Push & Pull by Brigham Vaughn

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I enjoyed book one in this series but I loved this one. Brent and Lowell made a brilliant pair and this is an excellent frenemies to friends to lovers romance.

It’s less angsty than Caleb and Nathan’s relationship was and there’s quite a bit of humour in the narrative too.

Essentially what the reader is given is a road-trip romance in which two guys go through a total 180 in not only how they feel about the other, but also slowly fall in love.

I’m guessing book three in the series will be Micah and our author is going to have to go some with that redemption arc as he’s an absolute dick again in this book!

We get a glimpse of Caleb and Nathan still going strong and settling into their life in Chicago.

One thing I have been wondering about in both books is the timescale. They are set in 2013 when the guys have all just finished college so it’ll be interesting if Brigham is planning on bringing the series up to the present.

Overall this is a smashing series of new adult romance which feels believable.

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

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Review Tour: Any Given Lifetime by Leta Blake

Any Given Lifetime | Leta Blake

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

Length: 70,000 words approx.

Cover Design: Dar Albert @ Wicked Smart Designs

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Blurb

Neil isn’t a ghost, but he feels like one. Reincarnated with all his memories from his prior life, he spent twenty years trapped in a child’s body, wanting nothing more than to grow up and reclaim the love of his life.

As an adult, Neil finds there’s more than lost time separating them. Joshua has built a beautiful life since Neil’s death, and how exactly is Neil supposed to introduce himself? As Joshua’s long-dead lover in a new body? Heartbroken and hopeless, Neil takes refuge in his work, developing microscopic robots called nanites that can produce medical miracles.

When Joshua meets a young scientist working on a medical project, his soul senses something his rational mind can’t believe. Has Neil truly come back to him after twenty years? And if the impossible is real, can they be together at long last?

Any Given Lifetime is a stand-alone, slow burn, second chance gay romance by Leta Blake featuring reincarnation and true love. This story includes some angst, some steam, an age gap, and, of course, a happy ending.

Author Bio

 

Author of the bestselling book Smoky Mountain Dreams and the fan favorite Training Season, Leta Blake’s educational and professional background is in psychology and finance, respectively.

However, her passion has always been for writing. She enjoys crafting romance stories and exploring the psyches of made up people. At home in the Southern US Leta works hard at achieving balance between her day job, her writing, and her family.

 

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Release Blitz: Any Given Lifetime by Leta Blake

Any Given Lifetime | Leta Blake

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

Length: 70,000 words approx.

Cover Design: Dar Albert @ Wicked Smart Designs

Copy of any given lifetime high res.jpg

Blurb

Neil isn’t a ghost, but he feels like one. Reincarnated with all his memories from his prior life, he spent twenty years trapped in a child’s body, wanting nothing more than to grow up and reclaim the love of his life.

As an adult, Neil finds there’s more than lost time separating them. Joshua has built a beautiful life since Neil’s death, and how exactly is Neil supposed to introduce himself? As Joshua’s long-dead lover in a new body? Heartbroken and hopeless, Neil takes refuge in his work, developing microscopic robots called nanites that can produce medical miracles.

When Joshua meets a young scientist working on a medical project, his soul senses something his rational mind can’t believe. Has Neil truly come back to him after twenty years? And if the impossible is real, can they be together at long last?

Any Given Lifetime is a stand-alone, slow burn, second chance gay romance by Leta Blake featuring reincarnation and true love. This story includes some angst, some steam, an age gap, and, of course, a happy ending.

Author Bio

 

Author of the bestselling book Smoky Mountain Dreams and the fan favorite Training Season, Leta Blake’s educational and professional background is in psychology and finance, respectively.

However, her passion has always been for writing. She enjoys crafting romance stories and exploring the psyches of made up people. At home in the Southern US Leta works hard at achieving balance between her day job, her writing, and her family.

 

Patreon | Website | Facebook | Twitter

Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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I have so many emotions for this stunning romance

41733251Any Given Lifetime by Leta Blake

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I don’t know how to review this book. I mean, there’s so much I could say about it.

How it’s about love in its truest sense, how it straddles the line between contemporary romance and Sci-Fi/Alternative Reality with consummate ease.

How Neil is a complex, frustrating, brilliantly drawn character and I wholeheartedly bought into his reincarnation and his epic love for Joshua.

I could weep for the sorrow and pain suffered by both men, rejoice at the bonus love story the reader is given with Joshua and Lee and I could explain about how it jumps between past, present and future without ever losing the narrative.

But what I will say is that Leta Blake has crafted an original and compelling novel which I never wanted to end.

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

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