The Tutor by Sean Michael (33 pages)
This was a reread for a reading challenge but is one of my fave Sean Micheal's. Peter is a grad student who manages to smash into his new client Kai. Kai's a freshman who is not doing so well. Peter takes a chance and invites him back to his place to study and finds out Kai is gay and a virgin. After working he decides to make a move and needless to say they hit it off. After being together for a few months there is some angst as despite being older Peter's self-esteem is a little low, but it all works out. Its very steamy, typical Sean Michael but I just really liked Kai and Peter and how they interacted.
The Protector by NL Gassert (208 pages)
Mason co-owns a security firm in Guam and is asked by his friend in the FBI to take the son of a local crime boss (who never gets caught) and keep him out of sight on his boat for a few weeks. Soren is young, spoiled and uses drugs and alcohol on a regular basis. After a bit of time on the boat they are attacked at night and it seems that maybe it's not a simple case of putting away the father and maybe there's terrorists involved. There is lots of action in between terrorists, his gangster father, a typhoon, kidnapping and some hot smexin' as Soren discovers that he's more gay than straight. I really enjoyed the story and all the action and great descriptions of the settings, the boat, the storm. A great read that I would recommend.
His Convenient Husband by J.L. Langley (75 pages)
Micah grew up on the ranch as an adopted son. The patriarch (Grandpa) is dying and they have money trouble and older son Duncan is making noises that he thinks he'll inherit the ranch despite having been estranged for years. Micah (ranch manager now) finally goes to see oldest grandson Tucker and as for help. Seems he's been in love with Tucker for years and after a one-nighter on his birthday when he as 18 four years ago Tucker bolted and never came back. They find out that if one of the grandchildre are "married" (including illegal gay marriage) the Uncle can't inherit. So Micah and Tucker get married. They both still love each other but Tucker has this "He'd be better off with someone else" thing going on which makes me nuts. Who exactly do you think a gay guy is going to hook up with in a small town in Texas? Get a clue, he'll be a freaking monk. Anyway, some fighting, some angst and skeletons in the family closet removed. I enjoyed it but I'm afraid I'm getting a bit hard in my old age and the whole "forgive anything for love" spiel is getting to me. Dump his ass or at least make him pay. :-) Love doesn't mean just forgiving everything someone does. Or its okay to do anything in the name of love. Umm. No. So I had issues with Tucker. He was basically an asshole. I think maybe Micah could do better.
Hearts Afire September by Phillipa Grey-Gerou and Michael Barnette
These are both new authors to me. In the first story Roman's restaurant burns down. He meets a fire fighter but is clueless the guy is flirting. They end up renting the kitchen in the fire hall to keep their catering business alive and he and Jacob finally get together. It moves pretty fast and during a HUGE warehouse fire Roman has to decide if he can live with the uncertainty of being involved with a fire fighter. I like both Roman and Jacob and although it moved pretty fast they didn't quite declare themselves in love for evah and evah.
The second story is set in the future/space where Del is a fire fighter on a mining planet. They have to go into the mine to stop a huge fire and rescue some "suits" who were down there. Two managed to survive including Aaron. They nearly hook-up but Aaron freaks because he got fired from his last job (but it never says for what). They eventually hook-up and Aaron confesses he's an empath and guys tend to freak out when he connects to their brain during sex but Del loves it and they get funky. Seems there is something weird going on concerning the fire and the mine closing so there's a bit of a mystery. This was insta-love but given that they shared one mind during sex I was able to let it go since that's probably gotta have some freaky effect on you. On the whole I enjoyed both stories for what they were. Cute hot little fireman stories.
Braided by Sean Michael (220 pages)
This was recommended by some people after Jenre's twincest post so I got it. Ummm. I skimmed the sex scenes at the end. Sigh. Typical of the Sean Michael porn stories. Anyway, Bowie starts working at the club (this is set in some universe I'm unfamiliar with) and hears Peter (a stutterer) and Paul arguing. They basically have sex in front of him within 30 seconds of meeting and he goes home with them never to leave. He figures they need a strong hand as they are just wild and out of control so he proceeds to take them in hand. It's a typical case of good boy/bad boy and eventually Paul gets frustrated with not being able to anything right and runs away. He eventually comes back and things work out. My issues, I must be PMSing because I felt bad for Paul. He really got the short end of the stick and I'm not sure Bowie ever REALLY got why he ran away and changed the way he treated him. I had no clue about the backstory of the twins who didn't grow up together but found each other later (maybe that's in other books), you knew nothing about Bowie except he got off on the BDSM thing. So as I said, I started skimming the sex scenes at the end because there was nothing new and I wanted to get to more the story which still left me lacking except for sympathy for Paul.
Belling the Cat by Julia Talbot (85 pages)
I probably should have read the previous stories to have a better idea about what exactly was going on but it wasn't strictly necessary. Jonny the vampire owns some kind of club that hooks people up. One night he catches Luc a cat shifter trying to steal something and agrees to let him have it if he can have Luc for 6 weeks. He agrees. The bad guys are still after Luc and that factors into the story along with Jonny's growing attachment to Luc. I has some issues. One, Luc is a cat but I'm never sure if he's a housecat or a panther. Sometimes it seems his head is around their knees and sometimes he manages to put his paws on Jonny's shoulders indicating panther size. The Jonny seems to really get off on Luc in cat form (who is in cat form more than not) and ummm, it bordered a bit on squickly. Quasi oral sex from a cat? Okay, they have rough tongues but I prefer my shifters to be in human form when they start getting freaky. And the biting. Sigh. Jonny spent more time biting him (not just feeding) than fucking him. So it was "okay" but because of those few things I didn't love it.
Bastards and Pretty Boys by K.Z. Snow (74 pages)
Charlie bought a cottage on the lake and discovers Booker his next door neighbor. Although Charlie sort of has a boyfriend (who admitted cheating on him) he and Booker hook up. Seems Booker has some secrets, he was in prison for pot possession and some shrink got fixated on him and won't take a hint. Charlie offers to help Booker get evidence to get the guy to back off and they get to know each other better with Booker helping Charlie get over his water phobia. I really liked how the two guys interacted. It wasn't a case of one of them being more dominant and leading the relationship or Charlie riding in to rescue Booker. The power kind of moved back and forth to who was in control which I liked. And both characters were amusing and it made me smile how they had to "test" the video equipment before they used it. Overall a great little read that I quite enjoyed.