Quickie Review: Body Art by Jordan C Price

Body ArtBody Art by Jordan Castillo Price

Genre: Thriller M/M Novella

Format: Kindle

Score: 8/10

Plot: Does everyone have a certain “type” they end up with…whether they want to or not? If Ray Carlucci’s ex is anything to go by, Ray likes his men gorgeous, rebellious, and chock-full of issues. But now that Ray is single again, he has a shot at a fresh start—a very fresh start, since his tattoo shop was gutted by repo men and he can fit all his belongings in the trunk of a taxi.

Ray’s shiny new chauffeur’s license lands him a job as a driver for an elderly couple on Red Wing Island. It’s a cold fall, and since the Michigan island is the summer home to snowbirds who fly south for the winter, it’s practically deserted—save for Ray’s new household and a sculptor named Anton Kopec, who works day and night twisting brambles and twine into the distorted shapes of macabre creatures. Compelling, bizarre, and somewhat disturbing…not just the sculptures, but the artist, too. Ray has a feeling Anton is just his “type.”

Despite their scorching chemistry, when a dead body is unearthed by some workers and a freak ice storm traps them all on the island, Ray can’t say for certain that his new flame isn’t capable of murder.

Review: The same holds true here as it does for all of Jordan C Price’s books: there just aren’t nearly enough words. There never are. But what it lacks in quantity, JCP more than makes up for in stellar writing and fascinating characterization. This novella starts off fast, throwing us straight into Ray’s sad and dismal world and then propels us forward at warp speed onto the isolated island where all the tense drama unfolds. Into 90 pages (there really are that many?! It reads as so much shorter! MORE WORDS), she jam packs a handful of flushed out and intriguing secondary characters, a disturbing and chilling setting, and enough tension and thrills that you’ll find yourself breathless and cursing when the end comes way too quickly. This is truly thrilling drama – there’s the dying master of the house, the unwelcoming household staff, the creepy neighbor/possible love interest, and many a dizzying plot twist to keep you guessing. The writing is incredibly nuanced for such a short read. The characters are fascinating and far deeper than you normally find in novellas. All in all, a quick, lovely read from the queen of the macabre that will leave you wanting more…so much more.

What you’ll love: extremely creepy in a way that only JCP can do with tension that ratchets higher and higher in a short amount of time; tattooed MC and tortured artist love interest with a whole lot of chemistry and some extremely hot and rather unexpected love scenes (there’s a particular car scene that will have you fanning yourself!); a fully realized cast of secondary characters; a mystery that needs solving!

What you might not like: too short, TOO SHORT; we don’t get a whole lot of Ray’s backstory or current motivations; the relationship between Ray and Anton seems to spring out of nowhere without a lot of explanation for it; a mystery that needs solving!

Quickie Review: Scientific Method (Book 1) by Kris Ripper

scientific methodScientific Method (Book 1) by Kris Ripper

Genre: Kinky  M/M

Format: Kindle

Score: 10/10

Word of Caution: these books are really for 18+. Lots of kink, lots of smut, lots of…Kris Ripper.

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New Adult Fiction Review: Sweet by Tammara Webber

Sweet by Tammara WebberSweet by Tammara Webber

Published by: Amazon Digital Services

Format: Kindle ARC

Genre: New Adult Fiction

Reviewed by: Judith

Score: 9/10

Every time I crack open a new Tammara Webber novel, my internal monologue runs a little something like this: “HOLY $(&#$@$*#&$^! How can someone write this well? I mean, it shouldn’t be possible. Seriously, now, no one can write this well. Can they? Maaaaaaaaaan. She is killing this one with all these amazing words and feelings and…I really should go to sleep but…just one more chapter? Yeah, you convinced me. One more…okay, two. Two more. Aww, man, it’s 3 am?! And my book is done???”

Even if you end this review here, please remember: Tammara Webber’s Sweet? There’s no question. Get it, devour it, and thank me later.

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Quickie Review: Canine by Jordan C Price

canine-400Canine by Jordan C Price

Genre: Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy novella

Format: Kindle ARC

Score: 10/10

Plot: What’s the difference between a faithful companion and a feral animal? Wild Bill suspects the line separating the two is shaky at best. Supposedly, Michael has been tamed, and he swears he gave up hunting. But when he comes home covered in blood and reeking of adrenaline, Bill fears Michael has crossed paths with another bloodsucker, and the urge to exterminate the vamp was too powerful to resist.

Michael doesn’t need to hunt vampires to stir up trouble. His run-in with threatening neighbors has left him baffled, demoralized, and teetering on the brink of yet another episode of depression. It tears Bill up inside to see Michael suffer—unfortunately, the sorrow also trips his most primal vamp triggers. Before he knows it, his own inner beast rears up, ravenous, insatiable, and ready to tear into the next thing that crosses his path…making him wonder if it was wishful thinking to hope that either of them had been successfully domesticated.

Review: Phenomenal writing. Fantastic storytelling. Over way too quick. BUY IT OMG YOU NEED IT.

Would you guys be mad if I left it at that? Seriously, Jordan C Price is of that genre of writers I like to call, the Masters. Master storytellers like her can give us a 28 page novella, pack in a tight plot, beautiful wording, a bit of mystery, and a romantic interlude that packs a punch(!). Combined it leaves us satisfied yet craving more; each piece independently is just as good. How is it possible?! I’ve never come across a writer so capable of writing Urban Fantasy. She has a macabre way of thinking that will root around in your brain and linger. Fans of her Channeling Morpheus series will find this novella delicious and fulfilling. People who’ve never read Channeling Morpheus could enjoy it just as much though a lot of context would obviously be lost. This one is so worth a read…if only to get a glimpse of the Southern Gothic world you are loathe to leave after reading Channeling Morpheus for Scary Mary and A Bitter Taste of Sweet Oblivion.

What you’ll love: wondrous writing; dark, twisted vampire laden setting; romantic and steamy romance between a vampire and his human lover; Wild Bill acting as Michael’s Knight in Shining Armor; a chance to revisit the CM universe again.

What you may hate: only 28 pages (when all you want is more); filthy, smutty vampires leaving a bloody trail all over the USA; not much else?

Paranormal Review: A Bitter Taste of Sweet Oblivion by Jordan C Price

sweeto-600A Bitter Taste of Sweet Oblivion (Channeling Morpheus Books 6-10) by Jordan C Price

Published by: JCP Books

Format: Kindle ARC

Genre: Paranormal of the Southern Gothic Vampire variety

Reviewed by: Judith

Score: 8/10

If you’re looking for a Twilight reboot, this ain’t it.

Warning to all: there be slutty vamps here!

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Quickie Review: View from Forever by Charles Sheehan-Miles

view from foreverA View from Forever by Charles Sheehan-Miles

Genre: Contemporary Young Adult M/F Novella

Format: Kindle ARC

Score: 9/10

Plot: Dylan Paris is a working class kid from Atlanta. A former high school dropout who is trying to clean up his act, Dylan is stunned to be selected for a six-week foreign exchange program to Israel.

Alex Thompson is the daughter of a wealthy US Ambassador. Several weeks overseas with an exchange program is just what she needs to get out from under her over-controlling parents.

They only have five weeks before they go back to their homes.

They have completely different lives.

The last thing either of them want or need is to fall in love.

Review: Just to be clear, I am a die-hard Charles Sheehan-Miles fan. This guy can write. No, really. He can write articulated, moving, heart-felt characters in these totally plausible situations that’ll have you spending the first half of every book falling in love with the characters and the second half having your heart ripped out by them. It’s a delicious combination and Charles definitely knows how to work it. In fact, he is the undisputed master of what I like to call nuanced coming of age NA. He writes a heady blend of nostalgia, teenage angst, and mature characterization. A View from Forever is a perfect example of this. This is a prequel novella to his highly lauded, Just Remember to Breathe, but it can most definitely be read as a standalone. In it we get to see how two characters meet, fall in love, and are separated by circumstances outside of their very limited control. It’s a sweet backstory that is only hinted at in Just Remember to Breathe but it puts their later relationship in a more dramatic context and gives us deeper insight into Dylan and Alex’s motivations. The book reads a bit young – more mature YA than NA – which is fitting with the age of the main characters. Watching these two tip-toe around new feelings and setting it against the exotic backdrop of Israel certainly makes for some heady reading. The romance is top-notch, the build up to it long and tension filled. But it’s also 100% PG which is frankly, a breath of fresh air in a time of glamorized sex among teens. All in all, a lovely edition to The Thompson Sisters’ canon.

What you’ll enjoy: the writing is phenomenal – Charles knows how to plot and build suspense until you’re just begging for something, anything!, to happen to force the characters’ hands; there is a sort of dreamy nostalgia to this story that will make you long for those care-free days when you had nothing more stressful going in life than falling in love; steamy international setting; totally clean with only a hint of kissing to whet your smutty appetite.

What you might not enjoy: honestly, there’s not much to dislike! Possibly the short length and what feels like a bit of a forced side-story about a missing friend of Dylan’s. All in all, the good far outweighs the bad with this one.

Book reveal: Canine (A Channeling Morpheus short) by Jordan Castillo Price

I haven’t been quiet about it but then why should I be? WHO COULD BE?! My love for all things Jordan C. Price is an overflowing bucket that can’t be stanched. She can write gritty urban fantasy about a world like ours where short-term memories can be implanted by memory smiths (the entire Mnevermind series got a 10/10 from ILYAF) and another where psychic cops dominate the police force, tracking criminals from beyond the grave (the Psycop series). She recently rereleased Books 1-5 of her Channeling Morpheus series as a box set entitled, Channeling Morpheus for Scary Mary, and the other half of the series, A Bitter Taste of Sweet Oblivion Books 6-10 will be out on 4/21/2015.

Never heard of Channeling Morpheus? Well, let me break it down for you: imagine the sexiest, smuttiest vampires ever. Give them to Jordan C. Price and watch her warp them into an extremely carnal vampire saga involving frolicking, killing, and van sex. Is there really anything left to say?

The best bit of all this? She’s releasing a Channeling Morpheus novella the same day. Take a peek at the cover, blurb, and excerpt after the jump…

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Quickie Review: Fairy Tales by Kris Ripper

Fairy TalesFairy Tales (New Halliday Book 1) by Kris Ripper

Genre: Contemporary M/M

Score: 8/10

Plot: Henry Hofstadter doesn’t date. When he needs to get laid, he drives out of town, does the deed, and goes home. Maybe ten years ago he’d’ve mocked a guy who preferred canine company to another man’s, but these days his mutt Coco is his best friend and the highlight of his week is hanging out with his nephew. He doesn’t believe in happy endings. And no fairy tale ever began Once upon a time, an arrogant jackass blew me in the storeroom of a lousy club.

Math McKinney’s got a lot on his mind. He used to be a charming guy with a little bit of substance; these days he feels more like the guy still standing when everything around him is a smoking ruin. His ex is out of the country for the next year, his daughter thinks she’s his son, and his co-chair on the Committee for the Preservation of Community apparently hates him for, let’s be clear, no apparent reason. (Because that BJ was magnificent. MAGNIFICENT.)

Neither of them is looking for a boyfriend. Hell, neither of them is even looking for a one night stand. Yet somehow they keep ending up together and dammed if it doesn’t seem like that’s a sign.

Except…fairy tales are for children. Aren’t they?

Quick Review: Not going to lie, I love an awkward first encounter and those bumbling initial forays into a relationship. I adore when a beginning is not picture perfect and there’s a whole lot of give and take between characters. Henry and Math are not typical m/m pretty people. They are both unequivocally flawed and so human you can’t help but relate. They are actually one of the most realistic representations of a couple I’ve come across in the genre. Their first night of intimacy is abysmal, their daily interactions are painful, and it’s all so real that you’ll find yourself cringing. A lot. There are a lot of ups and downs on their path – Math has a trans daughter and is coming to terms with that while also dealing with a move to a new very small town; Henry has a past fraught with homosexuality hating and his daily life is a struggle. This story is ultimately one of growth and acceptance and I recommend it highly.

You’ll definitely enjoy: the realistic nature of their meeting and subsequent interactions are not to be missed; the inclusion of a trans character and the situations and revelations that result from that are so top-notch and nuanced; the sex goes from super awkward to hellaciously hot by the very end; the secondary characters kill it; the quietness of the book will be the balm to your overly angst-fed soul.

You might hate: this is a book where essentially nothing happens and when it does it’s pretty quick to culminate in a big life-changing event; all the awkward moments and as mentioned above, there are MANY; the sex is not sexy until about 2/3 of the way in; there is a lot of dialogue and moments unrelated to Math and Henry’s relationship which became a tad excessive for me; such a quiet read.

Urban Fantasy Review: Mnevermind Series (Books 1 – 3) by Jordan C Price

Mnevermind Series

Mnevermind Series:

Book 1) The Persistence of Memory; Book 2) Forget Me Not; Book 3) Life is Awesome.

Author: Jordan C Price

Published by: JCP Books

Format: Kindle edition

Genre: Mindscrewy Urban Fantasy M/M Romance

Reviewed by: Judith

Score: 10/10

Let’s do a little role playing cause you all know Judith loves that:

You: man, I really need a new book to read. Something…gritty? Urban fantasy-esque but without all the trappings of the genre. Maybe some m/m. A bit sexy, a lot introspective…

The world: JORDAN C PRICE’s MNEVERMIND OH MY GOD READ IT.

You: Naw, man. I want something that–

The world: Shut up! You need to read this book. Read it, read it, read it.

Chorus of authors and trusted book sources: Read it, read it, read it readitreaditreadit REAAAAAD ITTTTT.

You: Ok…

You: Holy crap this is good…no, wait, it’s getting better…this is amazing…HOLD UP. This is phenomenal.

The world: Told ya. Fool.

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NA Review: Carry the Ocean by Heidi Cullinan + Giveaway!

Carry the OceanCarry the Ocean by Heidi Cullinan

Published by: Samhain Publishing

Format: Kindle ARC

Genre: NA M/M Romance

Reviewed by: Judith

Score: 10/10

Did you see the score I gave this one? Did you? DID YOU?! 10/10. 10 whopping stars. That’s not something I hand out willy nilly to all the books that grace this blog. No, this book is special. It’s ridiculously special. Don’t get me wrong: it’s the funny, sexy, intelligent, fast paced, and lovely book we expect from Heidi Cullinan. But above all – and what sets it apart from everything – is how wholly unique it is to the genre. Read the plot, give it a chance; give me 50 pages and if you hate it, forget it. But if you trust my reviews, then do yourself a favor and one-click this book. It is oh so worth it.

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