Tag Archives: sweet moments

A much more serious feel for this latest entry in the Colors of Love series from V.L.

Red Currant CoverSongs of a Red Currant Wine by V.L. Locey

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

This one focuses on an ex-ice hockey player who never quite made success stick, even when he reached the professional leagues, and who’s now 55 and a washout coaching at a school when the story opens.

As it goes on, it becomes ever more easy to sympathise with Carl. He’s got demons buried deep into his soul, along with his closeted fears about being gay.

He’s not in a good place, but he’s also got no reason to change either, when he’s rocked by the death of his first teenage love Mike.

Returning home sets him on a path that sees all the feels as he battles with his conniving inner voice, which constantly tells him having a drink isn’t so bad.

He finds it hard to think of himself as an alcoholic, but it’s pretty clear that’s exactly what path he’s living, and at times it’s both heartbreaking and frustrating to see him fall again.

But!

With consummate skill, the story begins to bring in little slivers of hope.

After Carl hits rock bottom, I very much appreciated that it was his ex-wife and her new boyfriend (who happens to be Carl’s school’s athletics director) who helps him take his first steps out of the mire.

And of course there is Tigh. Who is almost 30 years his junior and, while he behaves like someone just hitting his mid-20s, he’s also a bit of an old soul imho.

He’s seen his own share of traumatic events and he’s doing his best to move on, and he’s very sure about his attraction to Carl.

It’s not an overly angsty narrative but there are stumbles along the way. There’s also a wonderful bunch of secondary characters, including Carl’s dad, who is the most awesome senior and adds his unwavering love and support.

Steam is swoony rather than scorching but there are a couple of scenes which were full of emotion and feels when Carl finally gets to just be himself – sexually confident gay man.

All in all, another excellent addition to the series.

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

View all my reviews

Release Blitz: Best Laid Plans by Roan Parrish

Best Laid Plans | Roan Parrish

Garnet Run #2

2-Banner_BestLaidPlans

Publisher: Carina Adores

Release Date: February 23rd, 2021

Buy Links: 

Harlequin.com: https://www.harlequin.com/shop/books/9781335924803_best-laid-plans.html

IndieBound: https://www.indiebound.org/book/9781335924803

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Best-Laid-Plans-Garnet-Run/dp/1335924809

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/best-laid-plans-roan-parrish/1138272513

Apple Books: https://books.apple.com/us/book/best-laid-plans/id1529725794

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Roan_Parrish_Best_Laid_Plans?id=ogL6DwAAQBAJ

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/best-laid-plans-80

Add to Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/55161818-best-laid-plans

READ MY REVIEW

3-Cover_BestLaidPlans

Blurb

A man who’s been moving his whole life finally finds a reason to stay put.

Charlie Matheson has spent his life taking care of things. When his parents died two days before his eighteenth birthday, he took care of his younger brother, even though that meant putting his own dreams on hold. He took care of his father’s hardware store, building it into something known several towns over. He took care of the cat he found in the woods…so now he has a cat.

When a stranger with epic tattoos and a glare to match starts coming into Matheson’s Hardware, buying things seemingly at random and lugging them off in a car so beat-up Charlie feels bad for it, his instinct is to help. When the man comes in for the fifth time in a week, Charlie can’t resist intervening.

Rye Janssen has spent his life breaking things. Promises. His parents’ hearts. Leases. He isn’t used to people wanting to put things back together—not the crumbling house he just inherited, not his future and certainly not him. But the longer he stays in Garnet Run, the more he can see himself belonging there. And the more time he spends with Charlie, the more he can see himself falling asleep in Charlie’s arms…and waking up in them.

Is this what it feels like to have a home—and someone to share it with?

Better Than People

Garnet Run #1

3-Cover_BetterThanPeople

Add to Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/52739474-better-than-people

About The Series

Logo-CarinaAdores

Carina Adores is home to highly romantic contemporary love stories featuring beloved romance tropes, where LGBTQ+ characters find their happily-ever-afters.

A new Carina Adores title is available each month in trade paperback, ebook and audiobook formats.

  • The Hideaway Inn by Philip William Stover (available now!)
  • The Girl Next Door by Chelsea M. Cameron (available now!)
  • Just Like That by Cole McCade (available now!)
  • Hairpin Curves by Elia Winters (available now!)
  • The Love Study by Kris Ripper (available now!)
  • The Secret Ingredient by KD Fisher (available now!)
  • Just Like This by Cole McCade (available now!)
  • Teddy Spenser Isn’t Looking for Love by Kim Fielding (available now!)
  • Knit, Purl, A Baby and a Girl by Hettie Bell (coming March 30)
  • The Hate Project by Kris Ripper (coming April 27)
  • Hard Sell by Hudson Lin (coming May 25)

4-AuthorPhoto_RoanParrish

About The Author

Roan Parrish lives in Philadelphia, where she is gradually attempting to write love stories in every genre.

When not writing, she can usually be found cutting her friends’ hair, meandering through whatever city she’s in while listening to torch songs and melodic death metal, or cooking overly elaborate meals. She loves bonfires, winter beaches, minor chord harmonies, and self-tattooing.

One time she may or may not have baked a six-layer chocolate cake and then thrown it out the window in a fit of pique.

Social Media

Website: https://www.roanparrish.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/RoanParrish

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/roanparrish/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/parrishorperish/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14070842.Roan_Parrish

Sharable-IG_BestLaidPlans

A quieter romance for Charlie and it works beautifully

3-Cover_BestLaidPlansBest Laid Plans by Roan Parrish

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This second entry in Roan’s Garnet Run series gives us Charlie’s story and oh, how my heart hurt for him so many times.

Unlike his brother Jack, who we got to see fall in love with Simon in Better Than People, Charlie hasn’t really ever had a chance at relationships, other than a brief encounter shortly before their parents were killed just before his 18th birthday.

So, seeing how he struggles when he finds himself attracted to Rye and not knowing what to do about it was both heart-breaking and uplifting at the same time.

Thankfully Rye, for all his prickly nature, is actually a truly kind-hearted soul who is dealing with his own demons and his own stumbling steps into a relationship are just what Charlie needs.

There is a little tension here, many of the beats in the story come from Charlie’s growing self-awareness and awakening that he can put himself first and take things for his own pleasure.

There’s a bit of angst, as a whole it’s lowish steam, and it makes perfect sense within the narrative, although there are lots of heated kisses and cuddles which lead to emotionally charged conversations.

But there is also a seriously sexy spanking scene which went in a direction I wasn’t expecting and I loved it all the more for it. Overall, it’s a quiet romance, not a lust-packed one, although the attraction between the two men is still clear to see.

The relationship development feels organic and has few of the irritating misunderstandings or lack of communication issues which are often thrown in just to cause tension.

I liked both characters, but felt this one perhaps lacked a bit of the otherworldly or magical feel which made Better Than People a more engaging read.

That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy this, because I did and I read it all in one go, but I didn’t have that same sense of excitement at the first book, which felt far more significant given the difficulties Simon faced in his daily life.

However, it also stars two fabulous cats, which as a lover of that most magnificent of animals, really made me happy and the usual feel-good, if somewhat in your face, meddling of a small town local community who seek to embrace the newcomer Rye.

#ARC kindly received from the publishers Carina Press via NetGalley in return for an honest and unbiased review

View all my reviews