Yay, the weekend. I'm so glad it was a 4 day week. Not really looking forward to 5 days next week. So I've kind of been busy doing some other stuff and haven't read that much, but I seem to be mixing my holidays here although stores are all about that with Valentines chocolates on the shelf next to Christmas ones on New Year's Eve. Ugh.
Christmas Bells by Andi Deacon (37 pages)
The Bell family is the perfect American family, the kind you see in Folgers coffee commercials. Jon is pleasantly surprised when his younger brother Eric brings home a friend, however Erik warns him off, saying Kim's family has shunned him and he's "fragile". But Kim seems to be coming on to Jon and he's trying to stay clear making for some awkwardness. His sister and mother try to push them together and finally on Christmas Eve Kim makes a move. To be honest, these "perfect" families annoy me and his confusion over what the hell is mother and sister were hinting at wasn't a mars/venus thing, because I didn't have a clue what the hell they were yammering about either. I liked Jon and I liked Kim but maybe the introvert in me was stressed by proxy by the kind of Christmas they had. Holy overload. I would have been curled up in a ball in the corner rocking. For people who love that quintessential American ideal of a Norman Rockwell family Christmas this will be perfect.
Taste Test: Shot Through the Heart by Lenore Black, DC Juris, JL Merrow (65 pages)
On to Valentine's Day. I didn't realize these were Valentine's stories when I started, but that's okay, they were all very sweet and romantic.
Better than Cupcakes by Lenore Black - Mitch is working his boring security job with colleague Augie. Augie's a bit of a weird duck, no one wants to work with him but Mitch doesn't mind. On V-day after Augie says something flattering Mitch starts to think about him 'that way' and invites him over for a drink after work. After sharing some of their more disastrous V-days along with some tequila shots they end up in bed. This is just a very nice story of two guys, neither of whom is rich and perfect realizing maybe there's a future.
Cupid Knows by DJ Juris - This is the story of how the guys in The Best Kind of Prize met. Jack always remembered a guy he'd hugged spontaneously when their team won 3 years ago. On V-day he sees him in the bank and reintroduces himself. Before he knows it they've gone out for lunch and to a horror movie marathon and then back to Alan's place for dinner. Alan is perfect, they like the same thing and seem perfectly matched, however when it's time to get nekkid Allan admits he was badly burned in a fire and expects to be rejected for his scars. There is apparently another book that falls in between this one and the Christmas story which has not yet been published which will hopefully explain how they go from first night together to living together established couple.
Dead Shot by JL Merrow - Okay, this one isn't V-Day. Peter takes his 10 year old nephew to the park to give his mother a break as he's a handful. He makes him an impromptu bow and arrow and the kid shoots a guy in the butt. Ooops. However Edward is very gracious and even ends up going for a drink with them. Peter's nephew has no qualms about asking if Edward likes to kiss boys and informing him that Peter is single. They make a date for that night, however they both have some confessions to make before the night is over. The kid was quite amusing and I just thank the stars everyday I don't have an ADHD kid. Exhausting. It's a cute story.
Reindeer Games by Jet Mykles (79 pages)
Lon fancies himself in love with reindeer shifter Rom. He's perfect in his eyes but he doesn't want casual sex like most elves are into, he wants a relationship and is determined to make Rom notice him. Despite expressions of interest from other reindeer Wod, he rejects his advances and Wod promises to help him win over Rom, his best friend. However when the moment actually comes, Lon's suddenly not so sure that Rom is the right one after all and in it turns out Rom is trying to set him up with Wod. This was a very cute read. Lon is totally nervous and freaked out by his crush on Rom but he was determined he was in love and Wod was willing to put aside his own attraction to Lon to help him get the man he wanted. My only complaint was I found the names difficult to keep track of because they were all Consonant-O-Consonant. If someone had a name of more than 3 letters without an o in the middle it would have helped, but that's a small complaint. It's a very light hearted and different look at how things work at the North Pole and explains the whole deliver presents in one night thing. :-)