The Hideaway by Rosalind Abel
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Best one yet easily for me. I’d been waiting for Connor and Micah’s story since this series started and I first read the hints on the author’s website that there might be more between this pair than just brothers (not blood brothers so stop panicking!)
It was certainly worth the effort wait, although I’d have loved to read it earlier in the series, it really did work best as the final one in this first block of five stories from Brandon Witt’s alter ego.
There were times when I wanted to give Connor a shake and tell him to get over himself and I really truly wanted to punch Gilbert at one point because of his reaction, but overall I think the situation was very well handled.
Micah’s little hideaway was a perfect location for a lot of the most emotional scenes in the book and, as ever, Rosalind’s light touch gave the narrative credibility.
The angsty was also believable and the epilogue was fantastic so this one gets a thumbs up there as well. Now I want to know why Seth hates Charlie so much and if Adrian and the red headed bookstore owner get their own Ore.
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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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Stolen Ink by Holly Evans
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I so, so badly wanted to give this book a higher rating but it was just too frustrating. When it started I was absolutely delighted and felt like I was stepping into a new world with its own rules where magic simply existed as a natural thing.
The idea of tattoo magic was brilliant, I could see them coming to life on the skins of the people visiting the tattoo parlour but then the story narrative went off sideways on a ranger that just never really felt earnt or properly explained.
Two many concepts were thrown into the story without any real level of depth or any sense of how they fit into the world.
The supposed romance element was almost non-existent, there was more chemistry between Dan and Ethan than with Dan and Isaiah imho and Caiden’s weird reaction to Dan’s friendship with his tattoo partner Kiern came totally out of left field.
Oh yeah on the romance front. Everything apart from kissing, as is sadly often the case in fantasy novels, happens off page. I’m not expecting erotica or porn without plot, I do, however, expect an author to give me something on page which demonstrates two characters are supposed to be in love.
As for the ending, well let’s just say that was a huge let down given everything that built up to it and as for being abrupt, if it had been any more instant cut off I’d have thrown my Kindle out the window.
There were also a few minor typos but as this an ARC they may get ironed out before publication. Because this is book one in a series, I’m hoping for a bit of better plotting and more exploration in the narrative as the series goes along.
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