Special thanks to Leontine from Leontine's Book Realm for the super header.

Friday, November 27, 2009

My vacation in paradise (with a spy thrown in for good measure)

Seems I'm obsessing about the coming winter and as some kind of subconscious resistance to the cold I read a bunch of books set in tropical places and tossed in a spy. We'll start with that.

I Spy Something Wicked by Josh Lanyon (50 pages)

This is a little slice of life piece with Mark and Stephen of I Spy Something Bloody. Mark has been retired from the spy life for 4 months, is going to college, happy, things are going well when he gets contacted by the old organization and they need him to do one more run to Afghanistan (where he'll likely die) to save his old boss/lover's political career. He's got 48 hours to decide if he breaks his promise to Stephen about never going back or if he gives into a totally misplaced (in my opinion) sense of loyalty. I have to admit that Mark makes me crazy. I work for a government, trust me, you owe no one anything and no one gives a damn about you, you are always dispensible. His sense of "owing" them something makes me berserk and I just want to shake him and tell him to get a grip. I don't care if you slept with your boss, they'll toss you under a bus if it's convenient, that's how it works in government. So I guess I'm not very sympathetic to Mark's plight and dilemma, for me it's a no brainer. But of course the writing is outstanding and it's nice to see Mark and Stephen happy and living a "normal" life down the road.

Tropical Hedonism by Dakota Rebel (74 pages)

Starting my trip to a tropical isle (or two). This starts with Wesley, a Dr. on a tropical island being called to help a young man found washed up on the beach. He's not hurt badly and Wesley takes him back to his home to fix him up. There is instant attraction (like Sean is jumping Wesley within 20 min. of waking up from being unconscious) and then there is all this mystery about explaining stuff to him and finding him a sponsor so you know this is no ordinary tropical island. I won't go into it but I liked the idea. What didn't I like. Insta-love. Arrggh Within 36 hours Sean and Wesley declare their undying love. Next? Big misunderstandings. No wait, just assumptions made after overhearing one sentence of a conversation which makes older Wes sure that younger Sean will dump him now (despite declarations of undying love made not 15 min. previously). There were just things that happened or we're told happened that I'm like "Huh? When was there time for that?" So I have to say it had great potential and then it was all rushed into too few pages. If there had been a period of attraction between the two over a period of weeks (or even days rather than minutes), a gradual development of love, more explanation as to how things worked on the island, etc. it would have been much better. Insta-love and me are not fans and while I get insta-lust, it really went downhill for me after the mutual declaration of twu wuv.

Netting Neptune, Taming Triton and Poseidon's Pleasure by KC Kendricks (82, 97 & 117 pages)

My next trip to a tropical island, St. Lucia where I would kill to go in real life. These are three books that all centre around one resort in St. Lucia and a combination of men who are all interconnected in some way. I'm not sure I should have read them one after the other. It brought out flaws to me that I likely wouldn't have noticed if I'd read them each several weeks apart as they were published. Too late now I suppose. If you like a formula that is pleasant enough, these are the books for you. What I mean: (Using N, T and P for easy reference)

Older guys: N - Theron 39, Cody 40; T - Steve 30, Austin 42; P - Brett 49, Mark 38

How they all connect: Theron is Austin's brother, Austin is Brett's lawyer and Mark is Brett's old lover.

Damaged guys: N - Theron spent 9 months in jail for a crime he didn't commit but his lover did - life now in the toilet; T - Austin's lover cheated on him after 12 years because he was helping Theron; P - Brett's Dad used to beat him just for fun and hated him, Mark was nearly a hate crime statistic and gave BJs for money to survive in his youth

Plot: Couple meets, couple falls in lust has some fun, one guy leaves island early either because freaking out about relationship or for some other quasi-legitimate reason, lover left behind more or less chases after to declare themselves. Brett didn't run in the last one but not for lack of trying.

Now I'm not saying these things made the books bad. They are all likable characters, I wanted them to get their HEA, I believed the attraction and even more (not necessarily insta-love but a connection), the setting sounds freaking divine but there were some things that I noticed repetitive. Some of the sex scenes from one book to the next sounded very similar. I know with genetics there could be relatives who stroke off the same way (it's freaky how my daughter sleeps in the same position as her father, that's not learned) but for 6 guys to all use the same technique seems a bit unrealistic. And as I said, the same format, meet, freak, run, reunite read one after another was a bit ho hum. Not tons of angst, no serial killers or freaky exes. These are actually what I guess you'd call good beach reads. Pleasant stories to read but then you move on (while imagining yourself in the setting). So I'd definitely say worth a read, especially because they are older characters who've had life and relationships but I would say read one every couple of weeks to escape the rigors of winter rather than in one fell swoop like I did. I have a feeling I would have enjoyed them much more that way.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Vroom, the sound of my eyeballs reading quickly

A couple of these I missed the other day and some I've read since then. Whee, I'm on a roll.

The Strongest Shape by Tessa Cardenas (232 pages)

Fashion photographer Caleb moves to LA with his actor boyfriend who promptly dumps him. He meets Jason who introduces him to Scott and Chris who are together but for some weird reason hide it. Anyway, eventually the invite Caleb to join their relationship which he does. There is skepticism on the part of some of their friends as to whether it will work and dealing with parents understanding and accepting the relationship, dealing with jealousy (external not internally) and two guys who are total guys who don't like to talk about feelings and one who drags it out of them. The writing style is kind of first person present tense or something like that. It's weird and took me a while to get used to, not totally off-putting but definitely different. On the whole I enjoyed the story although it strayed perilously close to PwP after they got together but there was enough other stuff going on to save it. I liked the characters, you wanted it to work for them but I think the realities were pretty well done. So I enjoyed it despite the narrative style.

Masquerade by Clare London (74 pages)

Okay, I'm really not into fantasy especially when it's medieval type. This is 4 shorts (or one medium and 3 shorty shorts) each set in a different fantasy time from medieval to industrial revolution and each one has a paranormal twist to it. From kind of an empath, to a wizard, to a vampire to ... silkworm thing? I have no clue. LOL None of them have a typical HEA. The writing is well done and the imagination is certainly there to come up with these worlds and ideas but it's really not my thing. So I didn't dislike the book(s), it just didn't catch my interest all that much.

Horsfall 3: As the Crow Flies by Jade Buchanan (76 pages)

Book 3 in the series of Simon and his shire horse shifter twin lovers Bay and Marshall. Simon's on a business trip in the mountains where he meets some weird crows who turn out to be shifters as well. Then he finds out Bay has disappeared along with their old nemesis Tim Y. He races back to the ranch to help Marshall find Bay with the help of the crows. He also finally admits to his friend that he's with both guys. It was okay, more plot about the bad guy and the crows explaining things and less about the relationship which really has me curious as this does not appear to be twincest but they share together sometimes, but he also seems to indicate that they don't always sleep together so I'm more curious about they make a relationship like that work without more jealousy which was never really touched on. So it was okay and I like all the characters but I'd like to see more about how they are making the relationship function on a day-to-day basis.

Diamond in the Shade by DJ Manley (109 pages)

I've had this sitting in my file forever and for some reason didn't read it. No real reason it just didn't appeal. I finally settled down and read it. This is my first book by this author. Diamond is a Hungarian orphan who was raised by some kind of religious order with one goal, kill vampires, no emotion, no feeling. He is sent to NYC when the slayer there dies and he runs into Sebastien Shade, a vampire who also hunts bad vamps and had a relationship with a slayer years ago. Diamond is stuck in the old black and white world of vamps = bad, end of story. He's forced to rethink things when Shade captures him and forces him to work with them against a greater evil and he falls in love with Shade as well. It was a good story about Diamond being forced to finally face his feelings and break away from good/bad world and see some shades of gray. I liked Shade's coworkers although I thought Diamond went from no emotions to falling in love pretty fast and my one niggle was the ending was just kind of wrapped up in a cople of paragraphs that I would have liked to know more about. It was like "That's it? The bad guy is dead and it's over? Why?" So some more explanation would have worked or me. But I liked it on the whole.

My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys by Lynn Lorenz (100 pages)

This is a book about role playing and while I'm not into boys in skirts and had concerns when I bought it, it didn't turn out to be what I feared. That makes no freaking sense. Anyway, Simon's hotel owner boss is having a costume party where guests have to come in drag or as a man depending on their invite. Simon gets stuck in drag and is trying to find a costume when a guy helps him buy an Indian princess outfit. Seems it wasn't a salesman but another party guest who's attracted to Simon and is going as a cowboy. Cowboys and Indians, get it? Oh and Simon is Korean. So they meet at the party and hit it off right away and within minutes get a room. And then do the whole role play thing about him being and Indian Prince in disguise captured by the cowboy and forced to submit. It's very well done with lots of playful banter between the two guys. The first half of the book is them meeting then the last half them in the hotel room. The gist of the story? Two guys develop a love of guyliner. :-) It was a cute story, I liked Simon a lot, I thought his interactions with his sister were very funny. A nice little read but I like this author's work as a general rule so I wasn't too worried.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Wow, I've been reading up a storm

I should go shopping more often, seems to inspire me to read more. That and having no one around to distract me.

Shall we begin?

When Work is Pleasure by Alix Bekins (132 pages)

I have never read this author before but I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. Well, not surprised because that assumes I thought it would be crap, so just pleased I guess. Garrett writes for a gay magazine in SF and the boss decides porn is the next big story. Garrett suggests and gets picked to interview some porn stars who will be at the Folsom Street Fair. He ends up meeting his "idol" if you will and they hit it off as friends (and a bit more). Garrett's a bit freaked out, the guy lives in LA, he sleeps with men for a living but he really likes him and he's not sure if they are dating or what. He has to deal with the reality of dating a porn star and when Justin (Alec) plans to move to SF for work what that will mean. On the whole I just liked the writing style. I snorted many times because there is lots of sexual banter and teasing which honestly reminded me so much of some of my friends and I went we get on a roll on-line. The way it came across made me smile and while it's a HFN, it would be fun to read how things go for them down the road, dealing with the porn business and living in the same city. I would definitely check out the author again.

Starting Over by Annmarie McKenna (85 pages)

Garrett (huh, another Garrett, weird) is a cop who sees a motorcycle rider hit by a car. For some reason he's attracted to the guy and after talking with is doctor lover Dane they agree to bring Aaron home with them to recover from his injuries and see if he could be the third they are looking for. Meanwhile Aaron is recovering from the drowning death of his lover 2 years ago and not looking for a relationship. Garrett and Dane go into overdrive trying to get him to agree to join them and he holds out for 3 weeks then finally gives in and agrees to try. On the whole, besides a big debate that's been had as to whether he could get a hard-on just mere hours after surgery for a broken leg and hopped up on morphine, I enjoyed the story and like the characters. How Aaron was dealing with a phobia he developed after his lover's death was interesting and while the two guys were pretty pushy they didn't tip over into annoyance for me. On the whole a good m/m/m story.

Reckless Passion by Amanda Young (95 pages)

This is the story of Uncle Beau from Reckless Abandon. It was implied in that book that he had a thing with his assistant Adam and this is their story. They have a thing but it's work only, more like fuck buddies although you find out Beau hasn't been with anyone in the last year. He then finds out that Adam has a son and that kind of interferes with their fun. I appreciated Adam's efforts to put his son first and not drag a plethora of men through his life and his concern that if he moved in with Beau and it was just a fling the effect that could have on a 4 year old, moving houses and not understanding why. So I thought that was really well done although I thought a little talking could have cleared up some of the confusion since despite sleeping with the guy exclusively for a year he never actually said anything like "hey, you're my boyfriend" LOL. I think I liked this one more than the Cody story, I felt more connected to the characters.

Love and Loyalty by Tere Michaels (207 pages)

This is sort of a follow up to Faith and Fidelity, the story of James (Jim) who we met in the first book. Following a rough case where the murderer go off, Jim has had a close relationship with the father of the victim. Finally he's agreed to let Hollywood and tell the story of his daughter's death and meets Griffin who swears it will be respectful. Jim is jaded and weary but attracted to Griffin. They end up almost living together after one weekend and things are going great on the personal front until Griffin finds out that he likely doesn't own the rights to the story and the studio wants to sensationalize it. He tries to fix it while freaking out at a stressful time. This is a great story about two guys who don't really think they'll find true love but do and near the end I was bracing myself for the inevitable BM where Jim would accuse Griffin of being in on the whole thing and double crossing him so there could be a separation and make-up and it didn't happen. I was almost stunned. Jim believed Griffin when he told the truth and trusted him to try and fix it as best he could. Wow! Niiiiice. While it would have added another 30 pages of drama I am so thankful the author didn't do it because it would have made me like the book a lot less if she'd stooped to that. A great read.

High Country by Michael Barnette (145 pages)

Another new to me author that I bought on a whim. Bradford is a SF author who rents a cabin on a ranch in Colorado (I think, somewhere with mountains) for a month to write and to escape his abusive ex. The ranch is run by Linn and they connect immediately. But freakishly it seems that Bradford's ex has followed him there. Linn tells Bradford that the ex is a "creature" (seems he's a rogue vampire) and ends up confessing that he's a puca. He vows to protect Bradford who may have some supernatural blood of his own. This was told in a bit of a different manner with LOTS of internal dialogue done in italics for both guys. Not just what he thought but kind of talking to themselves. It was different. The story itself was okay and I liked both guys and wanted them to get their HEA but I'm not sure I loved the "internal thoughts" device. It might grow on you I suppose.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Other Books Update

I've been on a shopping spree so should have some goodies to add here, am not expecting company, my house is relatively clean, it's free sailing reading for me. Oh wait, Christmas is coming. Arrgghh. Always something.

Fionn 'o the Fae by Kiernan Kelly (90 pages)

Despite Kris' disdain for this cover :-P, I did read it. It is a compilation of three of those Torquere Chaster things combined into one book which is not without it's issues. I'll get to that. Fionn is a Fae who gets caught screwing the Queen's favourite lackey. His punishment is that he can no longer have an orgasm unless it is part of someones "wish". He can be called to the human world by a phrase in a book to grant one wish. So for several centuries he has blue balls and the first two parts of the book are him having interludes with various men when he FINALLY gets relief. He finds a way to facilitate this so he gets more and more action pissing off the Queen even more. The last part of the book is his relationship with the one human he actually cares about and him trying to protect him from the Queen and find a way to break the curse. I enjoy this author's writing style and it was kind of light and witty and Fionn was a likable character with a cute Irish accent. However just sticking the three stories in one book was kind of jarring. You could tell that it wasn't written as one book even though it's presented that way. The break between the stories was kind of harsh, but on the whole, despite the cover :-D it was an okay read but I think a little more editing when putting it together would have made it better.

Fathom's Five: The Cross of Sins by Geoffrey Knight

Wow, what a ride. Think Indiana Jones, James Bond and make it more of a wild time and gay. Anyway these 5 guys work for Professor Fathom finding lost objects of value and doing it for altruistic reasons. The loner fortune hunter Jake, the football player/student Will, the Brazilian Dr. Eden, the Italian model and art expert Luca and the Texas cowboy Shane. They go on a quest for the "Cross of Sins" while being pursued by a weird off-shoot of the Catholics who want to destroy it. It's non-stop action from London to Ankara to Vienna to Venice and all points in between. It's very much like James Bond in you just suspend belief and go with the flow and enjoy the ride. They get beat up, poisoned, shot, shot at, face boiling lava and come out of it unscathed and horny to boot. Anyway if you are looking for pure escapism without much of a touch of realism it's the way to go. In fact sometimes it was almost overwhelming how much they endured it was hard to read. But it was a rollicking good time. You don't go to see an Indiana Jones or James Bond movie for the high art. This is similar. I ordered the second one. It's not really a romance per se although there is sex (not buckets of it but it's pretty hot).

Screen Shots 4: Submission by Willa Okati

Well, I started reading these and despite my frustration with 2 and 3 I felt compelled to continue. I found this one was better. Newbie Skylar is pushing Thom hard and he's resisting. Seems Thom is all into zen and eating right and hasn't been with anyone in 6 years and is a total Dom. The others try to warn Skylar off but he's insistent. Finally Thom gives and Skylar is in for a wild ride and enjoys every minute of it after some resistance. So it was an okay story for me. There was less of this vague philosophical stuff and more just accepting the D/s thing for Skyler.

Screen Shots 5: Sexology by Willa Okati

So now the guys are all paired/trioed up and still happily fucking each other stupid on camera. Seems business is so good they are all getting a raise. Suddenly there is a big storm and they all end up in the basement in case it's a tornado, including Jake the grad student who's been studying them. So what else would 10 guys do in the basement in a storm? You guessed it. For some reason Thom is all worried about freaking Jake out (even though he's been watching everyone screw around up close and personal for months) and wants to go slow and seems everyone's been eager to get a taste of him. Anyway, this is less of a romance and more of just one big fat orgy X 10. I give the author credit though for keeping all those body parts straight. I have to admit I am one of those people who visualizes a scene and I'll notice if you have them in some improbably position (barring yoga) and in this she seemed to manage to keep them all in reasonably logical positions. But really, while they were all hot to have Jake and now he's going to work in front of the camera, at the end of the night he was going home alone. There was no romantic pairing for him.

Sweet Treats by Stormy Glenn

Brandon the bakery owner wipes out at the Jazz Festival and Dr. Nick comes and helps him up and latches onto him right there. They go home but Nick gets called to work. They finally hook up and have some fun and Nick gets called in again. There is some conflict at work that Brandon kind of facilitated but he manages to get it all cleared up since conveniently his uncle is the hospital administrator. I enjoyed this because Brandon is not hard bodied and gorgeous. He admits he is a bit on the plump side and has a big ass and Nick thinks he's amazing and loves that he's not twig thin. I thought the convenience of Brandon's uncle being the administrator was a bit overdone, might have been more interesting to have Nick actually face off with the other Dr. over harassment charges rather than have it all wrapped up in a nice bow and who the hell is Dino? There is this big thing that he's coming and Nick asks who he is and gets the "you'll see" and then while he talks there is no mention of who he is. You ASSUME he's the uncles lover but it's never said. It could have been his son for all you know. Anyway, that kind of annoyed me but maybe that's to be found in another story? It is a pretty sweet sugary story but on the whole it was fun and I liked both characters and it's quick light read that at the end that leaves you feeling like you just want a chocolate eclair ... baaaad. Or maybe that's just me.

Yaoi Update

I've been reading a fair bit of yaoi and have a bunch of yaoi novels I have to get to so here is the yaoi update and I'll do a regular m/m update later. I haven't been on here in forever.

Shy Intentions by Shoko Takaku

This is a very sweet story about Miyuki, a middle school art teacher who meets Kaoru at the hospital while visiting with his sick mother. They hit it off and even though Miyuki is very shy and not very confident, Kaoru encourages him and brings him out of his shell and doesn't push. *gasp* Yaoi and he didn't coerce, beg or force him into bed. I'm shocked. It's kind of told as a flashback as a young man just starting a relationship at his school asks Miyuki how he got together with carpenter/teacher Kaoru and he shares his story. I quite enjoyed this one.

Our Kingdom by Naduki Koujima

Akira lived in the country with his grandmother and upon her death finds out he's actually a candidate to become heir to a rich family. But it seems he's in competition with his cousin Rei for the job. Only thing is Rei could care less and Only wants to be with Akira who doesn't want the job of heir either really and is all confused. If you don't mind the first cousin relationship thing it is kind of a cute story. They are both 15 so there isn't any smexin' *gasp* Yaoi without underage smexin'. WTF is going on? There is some conflict with Rei's nephew (or uncle or some weird relationship) as he shows up and is jealous of Rei and tries to take it out on Akira. This is Vol. 1 so there are more tales out there about their time together with their grandmother "competing" for the title of heir.

The Noodle Shop Affair by C. J. Michalski

Two years ago Ukyou (spoiled son of Yakuza boss) was treated kindly by Kakeru in his Noodle Shop. Two years later after returning from exile (by his father) Ukyou finds Kakeru being attacked by a rival Yakuza gang. He saves him but Kakeru won't have anything to do with him as he's Yakuza. So he disguises himself (yeah right - messes up his hair) and moves in with Kakeru to help him in the noodle shop. There is a whole subplot of why the Yakuza want Kakeru and rival gangs and Ukyou's Father's expectations that Ukyou will become head of their Yakuza. It ends (Vol. 1) with Kakeru finally being free from the Yakuza and finding out who Ukyou really is. *gasp* Damn, 2 yaoi in a row with no smexin'. What the hell is going on? Why am I buying these things if not for vaguely drawn sex acts? Sigh. It's okay but it was kind of hard to believe and the author even says that at the back. LOL

Naughty but Nice by Naduki Koujima

Kakeru (must be like David in Japanese) sees his homeroom teacher drunk and in a fight one night and in an attempt to help him pushes him off a bridge. With friends like that who needs enemies? He drags him home and the teacher has amnesia and seems very different and not so "nice". He tells Kakeru that since he can't remember if he had a lover and it was Kakeru's fault he got pushed off a bridge and lost his memory that Kakeru has to move in with him and take care of "everything". *insert eye brow wiggle* And Kakeryu's parents agree? Huh? Someone call Children's Services. Anyway this is only Vol. 1 and they don't actually do much sexually *gasp* three friggin' books in a row? I'm about ready to give up. Sheesh. but it was pretty far fetched and didn't really do it for me.

Golden Prince and Argent King by Kouko Agawa

Yuki's family dies and he goes to live with his two half-brothers Masumi who is only slightly older than him and goes to the same school (uni I think) and Gai who is 27 and runs the family business. They all had the same father but different mothers. Masumi is very outgoing and friendly with Yuki and helps him fit in at school and home and Gai is your typical all work and no play kind a guy. Masumi confesses his love of Yuki who kind of freaks because he's realized he's in love with Gai who just happens to be his brother. This doesn't seem to bother most people here. 0_o Anyway, when he confesses Gai says he can't mostly because of the brother thing and Yuki moves out. Seems by some twisty family genetics maybe they can be together without being arrested for incest. I didn't mind the story except for the incest angle which is never completely ruled out and hey, they had sex ... once. Sigh. It was so-so.

So there is my yaoi update. Must get reading those novels.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Stuff I finished last week

I wasn't very good at keeping myself up to date on what I've read. Oh well, better late than never.

Nick of Time
by T.A. Chase (239 pages)

I started reading this on TA's blog and then he stopped to put it out in book format. Nick is tossed into a cell with a starving vampire by his ex who was using him to track down information on preters. When Nick wouldn't give him the info he was beaten and his back broken. He offers himself to Gryphon who rescues Nick as well. Seems there is someone out to eliminate preters and when Nick is attacked again Gryphon takes him to a sacred cave and asks the gods to save him. They do making him their avatar (rep on earth?) and giving him a spirit guide of a cobra who is sometimes a tattoo and sometimes live. They then go on a quest to find a magic book that has spells which could destroy preters along with Nick's best friend a werewolf and Gryphon's friend a vampire. They end up in Romania and England and eventually do find the book although their friends are captured. It ends open with another book assumed to be in the works. But seriously TA, a snake? Was that necessary? Why not a squirrel or a lemur, something cute and cuddly? I hate snakes.

Love, Like Ghosts by Ally Blue (181 pages)

I have not read the other BCP books but this is kind of a stand-alone. Set in the near future, Adrian (with psychic abilities) is a natural introvert who spends his time studying physics and keeping to himself and controlling his power. He meets Scotty while helping set up the haunted house on campus and they hit it off but Adrian is afraid to a) tell the truth about his abilities b) get involved with anyone because it usually ends badly. They eventually start dating and Adrian also discovers there really is a ghost in the old house they are turning into a haunted house and he starts trying to figure out how the guy died. So there is sort of two story-lines, the relationship between Adrian and Scott and the mystery of the ghost in the tower. I quite enjoyed it as I usually do Ally's stories. Adrian and Scotty were very hot together and their conflict was pretty understandable.

Because of the Brave
by Laura Baumbach, ZA Maxfied and Josh Lanyon (165 pages)

I've had this forever and finally read it. In fact I think I might have won it. If I did, thanks. :-) It was three short stories involving soldiers.

*The first one was a soldier on medical leave who hooks up with a young man who's brother died in the Middle East. There is more to the soldier than meets the eye. He rescues the young man from an abuser and they hit it off, some bumps ensure.

*Then there is a soldier who finally goes home because his mother is dying of cancer. He hits it off with the hospice worker who is caring for his mother and he has to face losing her and he's a bit of an ass as he freaks at first and doesn't want to deal with it. I thought his Mom was a spunky character right to the end, I liked her character a lot.

*And finally in Afghanistan an Army Ranger has to take his team in to rescue a Navy Seal whose team was killed. Turns out the Navy Seal in question was his lover when they first joined the military and it ended on not so good terms. It was done in an interesting manner with a bit of what was happening currently, then a flashback, then current, etc. It was really well done and you got the sense of the Taliban coming after you and scrambling for your life.

On the whole a great read with different types of characters although the stoic, do your job, dedicated soldier was always there, only to get tipped on his head by love. And it was for a good cause with money donated to a good cause from the sales.

Hmmm. Fair bit of reading despite having company

I bought/read a bunch of shorts plus catching up some I read last week. I have time to read shorts with company but it's hard for me to focus on a longer book.

Trick or Treat by Rob Rosen (9 pages)

Peter is forced to go out trick or treating with his nephew dressed in a lame alligator costume. Later he convinces them to split up and they'll get more treats. He goes to a huge beautiful house and the door opens. Inside is a guy wearing a sheet. They start teasing and the sheet lifts and the alligator costume comes off. The guy never takes the sheet off all the way but 69 ensues. Later when Peter meets up with his family they tell him the house has been abandoned for years. Ooooooohhhh. Did he suck off a ghost? Was it ectoplasmic ejaculate? You'd think you'd notice that. Anyway, just a kinky little Halloween story and Peter is obviously a slut who will indulge in oral sex with someone who won't even uncover their face. Weirdo.

A Glimpse Inside by A.R. Moler (10 pages)

This is the third in the series of Tristan the homicide detective and architect Brian who met at a Halloween party. They meet for lunch and Tristan apologises for being so distant. They go back to Tristan's for him to change and he lives in a huge beautiful house that Brian loves. He finally pries some information out of Tristan whose family is stinkin' rich. They have a nooner and then it ends. It's kind of annoying me because I really like these two and want a whole story not 10 page intervals.

Animal Instinct by E.M. Lynley (14 pages)

This is a follow-up to Heat Seeking Missile. Cory and Nate are a couple and Cory suggests they join the Friends of the Zoo so they can go to the black tie event. They have some fun in zoo after dark. i found Nate very insecure in this one and always seemed to be trying to second guess what Cory meant and wasn't confident at all. That kind of bugged me but it was okay.

Devil's Grin by L.D. Durham (13 pages)

An angel (I never figure out his name) is hanging around with a demon Marbas and wants to go with him that night to see what he's up to. Finally the demon agrees if the angel gives him everything in his power he's able or something like that. The angel agrees because he's nosy. After their little interaction with a human where the angel actually ends up helping the demon achieve his goal of corrupting a soul he finds out what he has to give is his body. He's had sex before but never felt passion. They have a good time and snuggle after with the demon saying he never said the deal was only for one night. I quite liked how the angel was kind of young and naive and reminded me of that little dog in Bugs Bunny bouncing after the big dog who was the cool kid that he admired. It was a cute little angel/demon story.

A Dangling Conversation by Dallas Coleman (11 pages)

This is a very unusual story as it's in monologue style with the one character telling of how he met his boyfriend. He has picked up the silent person in the story and is now telling him it will be a threesome. He goes on and on about how they met and then it starts to get weirder and weirder as it goes on and you wonder what the hell is happening and you're pretty sure that CSI is going to need to be called in before the night is over to scrape up the pieces. So I found it quite disturbing as it went on but I was kind of enamoured with the whole monologue concept. So a great freaky Halloween story that I'm not sure if I liked for it's technique or disliked it because it freaked me out.

Re-Ignition by A.R. Moler (29 pages)

Griff wakes up in someone's bed with a bitch of a hangover and can't remember who he's with or how he got there. He is retired from the FBI after an accident shattered his knee and he's depressed with being disabled and not having a purpose in life. Seems he met a pediatrician at physio and they went out for drinks, hence the hangover. Sean is perpetually perky and kind taking care of Griff's hangover and his sore knee. They start to kind of hang out and are getting involved when there is a hostage taking at the hospital involving Sean and Griff puts his FBI experience to good use during the situation. On the whole a sweet story of a guy who's image of himself is shattered by a physical limitations and is forced to re-examine his life from a personal and professional perspective. The only thing I found a bit OTT is that Sean just happens to have a sister who was a cop and is now in a wheelchair so he knows how Griff feels. Could have left that out and found another way for them to meet at physio. Still, I liked both characters and how Sean helped bring Griff out of his depression.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Post Update

I seem to be slowing down in the reading department again. After my Mom shows up on Thursday for a week it will be next to non-existent. *sob* Oh well, I'll binge after.

Ready to Serve by James Buchanan (182 pages)

This is an anthology of stories involving law enforcement officers in some capacity or another. There were 5 short stories and one longish story at the end. I really enjoyed them but I've yet to read a James Buchanan story I haven't liked. I think my favourite was Coyote Crossing. I was wondering how it was all going to work out and it caught me by surprise which is always nice. I liked the characters and how it all played out. Plus the illegals sneaking over the border thing is always a novelty for me, not being an issue where I live. I wasn't sure about the last one, Fairground, but the more I read it the more it grew on me and I was quite happy with how it went as it moved to the end. So if you like stories about cops of all types, it's a great anthology.

Faith & Fidelity by Tere Michaels (229 pages)

Everyone has raved about this, 5+ stars, etc. and it's been in my TBR file for awhile and I was kind of afraid to read it. It's not often that a book lives up to the hype even from people I trust. But ... yes, it did. I really enjoyed it and spent too much time reading it when I should have been scrubbing tubs. (Tonight, I swear, I'll do them tonight.) I liked that while it was straight guys turning gay (not really but you know) and they did angst over it a bit, there wasn't a lot of self flagellation. Yes, they acknowledged it was weird that suddenly after 35+ years they found a guy attractive, but they realized the relationship was more. I also liked that Matt had an experience with another guy so it wasn't just a GFY, but "maybe I'm bi" kind of thing. Okay, I know you're not supposed to have sex with anyone but the love interest but he'd dumped him, he was entitled. LOL But I could see why Evan would freak as well. On the whole I thought it was great although I would have loved to see his in-laws reaction when he told them, and then his SIL brings home the black guy. Yeah, that would be worth it. Now I must get James' story and see how his life turns out.

Elixir by Jordan Castillo Price (68 pages)

This too has been in my TBR forever and I didn't read it. Why? Because then I could pretend it wasn't over and I wasn't sure how it was going to end if I'd like it. LOL No one hates a series to end and go "Well, that sucked." But it didn't. Although I'm telling you I was getting squirmy a few times and thought "If she goes there I am going to be soooo pissed." but she didn't and I forced myself to read on. I liked how it switched back and forth in time and I think it had a good ending although really, it's still wide open. I hope someday down the road we get a little taste of Michael and Wild Bill say a couple of years later. What are they up to, how their lives changed after this dramatic last book. A reader can hope right? Sigh.