Most of these are shorty shorts so hence it seems like I've read a phenomenal amount in 24 hours. LOL Also I read Mind F*cked earlier in the week and kept forgetting to include it. I'm not TOTALLY obsessive.
Rip Cord by Jeanne St. James (42 pages)
This is the geek goes back to high school reunion and gets together with jock he always admired theme. The difference? PwP. Ugh. Gil, still a geek, goes back to is 10 year reunion. Seems that Rip Cord (yes, that's his name - sigh) shows up. He is the bad boy of the NFL (football) but famous and of course Gil crushed on him in high school. Suddenly Rip comes on to him and they leave the dinner before it starts to go and find their old lockers where Rip fucks him against the locker then they go to the gym locker room where Rip informs him he never bottoms and they fuck in the showers and then it's 11:00 and everyone left and Gil is just thrilled Rip wants to see him again. The end. Rip was a jerk, Gil was hardly even able to stand in his presence without swooning, it was nothing but sex 10 years after having never seen each other and Gil was thrilled with that like a dog thrown a bone (pun intended). Sigh. Overall unless you are looking for pure sex, pass. I skimmed most of the shower room to see if there would be anything else. Nope.
The Perfect Pumpkin Pie by Aaron Michaels (37 pages)
I bought this for one reason. I loooove pumpkin pie. Leo lives with Denny, his weird anal retentive germophobe know-it-all best friend. He's watching Denny and his girlfriend make pumpkin pie when a fight breaks out because Denny insists that nutmeg is poison. He ends up getting Leo to make a grocery run for more supplies (as a make-up pie). Of course it's 2 days before Thanksgiving and no pumpkin to be found. Fortunately the gorgeous asst. mgr. finds Leo a dented can in the back, still good. Nope, Denny freaks so he goes back and this time Judson has new cans for him and Leo asks him out although he can't figure out why a hot guy would want to be with him. He goes to meet him for coffee and sees Judson with another hot guy and figures he should just leave so stands him up. A few days later Denny needs bananas so Leo is forced to go the same store, sees Judson and they figure out what happened and make another date. Okay, there was the whole running gag of nutmeg being poison (which it apparently is if you eat a pound or so) which was cute but I did find Leo's horrible insistence that Judson couldn't really want to date him a bit annoying. So it's a cute funny story with a bit of angst but not excessive. This line made me laugh, as someone who bakes it was pretty funny I thought:
"...two cans of something called evaporated milk. You'd think if the milk was evaporated and in its gaseous state, the cans wouldn't be so heavy."
Moving Along by Addison Albright (10 pages)
This was the follow-up to the Halloween short Moving On. I didn't love that one because the idea of the ghost of Brandt's ex giving direction while he has sex with a new guy was kind of icky to me. But now it's been a couple of months and Brandt and Mark are having their first Christmas. Brandt is still trying to figure out if he loves Mark and working through having a new guy and they are both angsting over their gifts to each other (don't we all?). Anyway, it's just a cute little story where they decide where the relationship is going. I bought it because I read the first one. Yes, I'm a sheep. I like Addision Albright so it was a good read but you need to read the first one to get the whole picture, well, a better picture.
Mind F*cked by Mia Watts (121 pages)
Sage is half-fae in the family security business. His curse (for being half-human) is he can see people's thoughts and he's so gorgeous they all want to sleep with him so he usually works nights to avoid it. He is forced to go the bank and meets Joe, the manager who for some weird reason he can't read. But whenever he's near Joe he's forced to say the truth no matter how ridiculous. Joe just thinks he's a vain asshole but due to security issues they are forced to stay at the bank 24/7. Sage is desperate to get Joe to like him but keeps screwing up and Joe likes Sage but figures he's a gorgeous user. There is the whole sub plot of protecting the valuable items and someone hacking the security system. On the whole I really liked this. The mystery thing was a bit far fetched but I liked how Sage who claimed to hate knowing what everyone thought was absolutely flummoxed when he couldn't read someone and it made him crazy, along with some weird compulsion to say whatever was in his mind, no matter how much he didn't want to. This should not be confused with Mind F*ck which is apparently VERY different.
Joys of the Season, An On Fire Christmas by Drew Zachary (14 pages)
This is a little taste of Sam and Robert. Sam brings all the kids to the fire hall for the Christmas party, stressing Robert (I don't blame him) and then Robert is worried his gift for Sam won't come on time. That's about it. To be honest it was meh for me. It wasn't one of the better follow-ups that I've read.
A Hike on Mount Shady by Chris Owen (11 pages)
This is a follow-up to Shady Ridge and the Neon Sky. Hank and Charlie have been together a year, built their house and are now on a hike in the "mountains" looking for fir branches to decorate when they come across a possible grow-op site. It was kind of pointless to me, Charlie makes Hank phone the man whose land they are on to get permission and they get a lecture about respecting each other and then they fuck over a rock. The end. Eh. I loved the original but this didn't really do it for me either. Maybe I should learn my lesson and stop buying these things.
The Elegant Corpse by A.M. Riley (158 pages)
Roger is a total anal retentive OCD homicide cop who comes home to find a mummy lying on his couch. Seems it's a young man who disappeared 25 years ago. The victims younger brother Sean starts to insinuate himself in the investigation and Roger's life which makes him nuts. Roger is part of the leather set and is a dom and there seems to be a connection to the lifestyle which he keeps hidden. He's also dealing with the death of his partner (life not work) from cancer 5 years ago and has major control issues and Sean starts showing interest in subbing. Roger made me crazy. For god's sake, the man made a fake wall on his desk so his partner's muffin crumbs wouldn't touch his desk. I liked his partner though, good female character. Sean seemed younger than his years to me at 32 but I liked how he twisted Roger (45 maybe?) up. And the mystery was great, for once I didn't see the bad guy 100 pages in advance. I think my jaw may have dropped when I realized who it was. Looking back I suppose I should have seen it. My only complaint with the mystery was that the bad guy was killed and I REALLY wanted to know what made his mind tick. Watching too much Criminal Minds I guess. But just saying "Oh he was crazy" isn't enough. I want the profile, the reason, the logic. LOL Call me a crime geek. I did like that they showed how Sean and Roger dealt with the aftermath of the whole investigation as well. Too often it just ends HEA and that's the end, but this went beyond which was nice. So a great mystery if you can get past wanting to tell Roger to lighten up constantly and don't mind not knowing "why".