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2017 Rainbow Awards Best Gay Book

And the Rainbow Award goes to...

Winners:

1) Arrows Through Archer Nash Summers
Gay - Contemporary Romance
Paperback: 308 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (June 13, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1547280700
ISBN-13: 978-1547280704
Amazon: Arrows Through Archer Nash Summers

1) Strong story, well developed characters, my only qualm was with the last 1/3 of the book not being as strong as the first 2/3.
2) This story is rich, vivid, emotionally charged, and left me thinking about it long after I finished.
3) Heartfelt and never less than engaging, peopled with realistically drawn characters, this novel makes for some very satisfying reading.
4) A superb storyteller, Nash Summers gives us characters who enthrall, and a soft-spoken story that speaks to the reader's heart. This is a must read romance, full of emotion, well-developed arcs, and a happy, satisfying ending.
5) I loved everything about this story. The writing was excellent and tight. It has everything one could want in a story, the feels, the hope, the romance, even the age gap was done with care. I love reading about a broken man being put back together with love and care, but two? Even better! I loved how their story was built slowly and carefully. This.Was.Good!

2-tie) Every Breath You Take Robert Winter
Gay - Romantic Suspence
Series: Pride and Joy (Book 2)
Paperback: 240 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (May 5, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1635334950
ISBN-13: 978-1635334951
Amazon: Every Breath You Take Robert Winter

1) Thrilling from the first page. The story develops at a swift pace, from the first blush of attraction, and more than a hint of danger, through the deepening of emotion as the stakes rise. I loved all the characters. The secondaries were more than stand-ins. They all had something interesting going on and a reason to be on the page. The heroes take center stage, though. Realistic and sympathetic, in all their moods. I really wanted a happy ever after for these guys--and for both of them to live to see the end of the book.
2) A beautifully written story with so much to recommend it. The setting of Washington, DC is realistic, and the plot has some wonderful surprises and interesting secondary threads. While the romantic leads follow familiar arcs they are well-drawn and always believably in character. The psychological portrait of the stalker is deep, complex and truly frightening. The writing is intelligent, clear, and elegantly paced -- so well-suited to the story.
3) This was a very solid, satisfying mystery. Excellent character development with a believable attraction between the MCs, and genuine suspense as the peril built and Zachary is threatened by Thomas' past. Well done.
4) Totally absorbing, from the first page to the last. The beginning sets the tone - this isn't going to be a sweet love story. Rather, it's a tale of obsession and denial. There is sweetness here, though, in both heroes as they examine what they truly want. How they are with each other, especially in their private moments.


2-tie) Fool of Main Beach (Love in Laguna #5) Tara Lain
Gay - Contemporary Romance
Series: Love in Laguna
Paperback: 274 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (August 21, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1635339650
ISBN-13: 978-1635339659
Amazon: Fool of Main Beach (Love in Laguna #5) Tara Lain

1) I especially liked that though it is part of a series, this book stands very well on its own. Info from the other books is referenced, but effectively, without overly summarizing or depending upon that info to follow the plot of this story. The characters were very likable; what's more, I didn't like them all at first, but by the end, I had gotten to know the real people behind the actions, and that is quite rewarding as a reader. I appreciate that though character conflicts were resolved to satisfy the story, they were not all fully tied with a bow, which gives the story a certain realism. The epilogue ending did feel a little too good to be true in some ways, but it almost didn't matter because I wanted that extra cherry on top for these characters, and I ended up wondering happily about how their lives would further play out. Watching Tom inadvertently put idiots in their places just by being his unassuming, sweet self was lovely. Merle's narrative tone had me laughing outright at places; I don't know many authors who can use phrases like "the cockles of his balls" without distracting me from the mood! But the turns of phrase were very entertaining. Overall, I very much enjoyed this book!
2) Love the characters, setting, and plot. Deeply invested in the series and it's characters.
3) So much in The Fool of Main Beach was a surprise. Tom Henry was unique and interesting. Merle Justice was a character it was easy to empathize with even though he wad a movie star. All around, this book was well done.
4) I like this book. A Romance if ever there was one! And delightfully moving, too. I give it full marks: a 10 all around.

3-tie) Caught Inside (Boys on the Brink #1) Jamie Deacon
Gay - Young Adult
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Beaten Track Publishing (September 29, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1786450356
ISBN-13: 978-1786450357
Amazon: Caught Inside (Boys on the Brink #1) Jamie Deacon

1) It’s hard for me to believe that this is a debut novel. The writing is lush and expressive. The setting conveys both place and mood so vividly and deftly. The characters are believable, fully realised, and, with one exception, very sympathetic. What impressed me most, though, was the author’s ability to capture the conflicts, fast-changing emotions, and interpersonal dynamics of a group of teenagers. A wholly believable coming-of-age story. I couldn’t put it down.
2) Loved the writing and the strong sense of place and time it creates. The characters are vividly drawn.
3) A well written, entertaining and absorbing story that was difficult to put down. an excellent addition to the genre of YA gay romance. I would recommend it to teenagers and adults of any age.
4) First book for me by this author but it will not be the last.

 
3-tie) Depth of Return M. Raiya
Gay - Paranormal Romance
Series: Another Healing (Book 2)
Paperback: 216 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (September 5, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1634775384
ISBN-13: 978-1634775380
Amazon: Depth of Return M. Raiya

1) I got hooked on the first page and now need the first book in the series, although I followed this one okay without having read it. The descriptive style made it very easy to visualise the setting. The characters are engaging, and the plot is exciting and intriguing—a real page turner. I loved the world building, and in particularly the magic system.
2) I found this book to be a joy to read with its engaging plot, interesting MCs and cast of supporting characters. Easy to follow, despite having not read book 1, which I will be doing very soon, and full of suspense, atmosphere and plot, plot, plot.
3) This was a great read and an excellent follow up of book one in the Another Healing series. I really liked the main characters from the beginning and could not help but cheer them on as they searched for their HEA.

3-tie) The Chains of Their Sins (Taking Shield #4) Anna Butler
Gay - Sci-Fi / Futuristic
Series: Taking Shield
Paperback: 344 pages
Publisher: Glass Hat Press; One edition (February 22, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1543166601
ISBN-13: 978-1543166606
Amazon: The Chains of Their Sins (Taking Shield #4) Anna Butler

1) The world Anna Butler has created for her characters to interact in is complex and vivid. I was completely immersed in the customs, politics and different locations - superb world building. The plot is intricate, a real page turner with several surprises along the way. I am certainly looking forward to the next instalment.
2) I’m already a huge fan of this series. The world building is very detailed, the settings easy to visualise and the characters....I really felt for Bennet and Flynn in this story, and could feel their frustration and pain.  The plot is complex, and very engaging.

Runner Ups:



4-tie) Borrowing Blue (Made Marian #1) by Lucy Lennox
4-tie) P.S. I Spook You by S.E. Hamron
4-tie) Skythane by J. Scott Coatsworth
4-tie) The Bravest Thing by Laura Lascarso

5) How to Save a Life (Howl at the Moon #4) by Eli Easton
6-tie) Elpída by C. Kennedy
6-tie) Enemy Within (The Executive Office #3) by Tal Bauer
6-tie) Leo Loves Aries by Anyta Sunday
7-tie) Aqua Follies by Liv Rancourt
7-tie) Arctic Restitution (Arctic Absolution #3) by Lynn Kelling
7-tie) Bonfires by Amy Lane
7-tie) One-Man Show: The Life and Art of Bernard Perlin by Michael Schreiber
8) Hush by Tal Bauer
9) It Could Happen by Mia Kerick
10-tie) Bare by Lynn Kelling
10-tie) Pieces of Me (Spectrum Nights #1) by Melanie Hansen
11-tie) Just Drive (Anchor Point #1) by L.A. Witt
11-tie) The Master Will Appear by L.A. Witt
12) Falling Down by Eli Easton
13) The Druid Next Door (Fae Out of Water #2) by E.J. Russell
14-tie) How We Love by Michael Ryan Webb
14-tie) Moment Of Fate (Moments In Time #5) by Karen Stivali
14-tie) Runner by Parker Williams
14-tie) Stoker & Bash: The Fangs of Scavo by Selina Kray
14-tie) Swift for the Sun by Karen Bovenmyer
15) Jumping Jude (Made Marian #3) by Lucy Lennox
16) The Phisher King by Clancy Nacht & Thursday Euclid
17) Hacked Up by Ethan Stone
18-tie) Heathens by Jonah Bergan
18-tie) Love is Heartless (Love Can't #2) by Kim Fielding
18-tie) Recovery (Reawakening #3) by Amy Rae Durreson
18-tie) Red Fish, Dead Fish (Fish Out of Water #2) by Amy Lane
18-tie) September by Robert Winter
18-tie) Vespers (The Hours of the Night #1) by Irene Preston & Liv Rancourt
19-tie) A Time to Keep by Morgan Cheshire
19-tie) As I Am (All Saints #3) by A.M. Arthur
19-tie) Exposed by Bey Deckard
19-tie) Five Minutes Longer (Enhanced #1) by Victoria Sue
19-tie) Hearts of Darkness by Andrea Speed
19-tie) Morning My Angel (Angel Enterprises #1) by Sue Brown
20) Come to the Oaks: The Story of Ben and Tobias by Bryan T. Clark
21-tie) Angels Fall by N.S. Beranek
21-tie) The Craving by Z. Allora
22-tie) Gazes Into You (Mr & Mr Detective #1) by Alex Jane
22-tie) Wolf of the Northern Star (The Wolfkin Saga #2) by S.J. Himes

Finalists:




23-tie) See My Words (Spectrum Nights #2) by Melanie Hansen
23-tie) Sight Unseen by Susan Mac Nicol and Nicholas Downs
24-tie) Cowboys Don’t Ride Unicorns by Tara Lain
24-tie) Cutie and the Beast (Fae Out of Water #1) by E.J. Russell
24-tie) Reunion (Diversion #6) by Eden Winters
24-tie) The Blacksmith Prince by Beryll & Osiris Brackhaus
24-tie) The difference between by Blake Moreno
25-tie) Daimonion (The Apocalypse #1) by J.P. Jackson
25-tie) Lost and Found (Twist of Fate #1) by Lucy Lennox & Sloane Kennedy
25-tie) Love’s Tethered Heart by C.L. Etta
25-tie) My Boyfriend's Back by Elliot Cooper
25-tie) The Glamour Thieves (Blue Unicorn #1) by Don Allmon
26-tie) Comes a Horseman (Echoes Rising #3) by Anne Barwell
26-tie) Diving Deep by P.D. Singer
26-tie) Home Before Sundown by Tinnean
26-tie) One Pulse Anthology: Read My Lips by C.C Dado
26-tie) Secured and Free (Entwined Dreams #2) by Z. Allora
26-tie) Survivor by T.M. Smith
26-tie) Tartarus by Eric Andrews-Katz
27-tie) A Shared Love (Spartan Love #3) by Kayla Jameth
27-tie) Andre in Flight by Laura Lascarso
27-tie) Back Piece (Skin Deep Inc.) by L.A. Witt
27-tie) Hawaiian Fragrance (The Hawaiians #3) by Meg Amor
27-tie) Summer Lessons (Winter Ball #2) by Amy Lane
27-tie) Windward (Mirror #2) by Kirby Crow
28) True Colors by Anyta Sunday
29) Saving Sebastian: A Catharsis Novel (Custos Securities #3) by Luna David
30-tie) A Chance for Us (New Vampire Justice #2) by Jake C. Wallace
30-tie) A Way with Words (Memories with The Breakfast Club) by Lane Hayes
30-tie) At the Corner of Rock Bottom & Nowhere by L.A. Witt
30-tie) Drama Queens and Devilish Schemes (Actors and Angels #3) by Kevin Klehr
30-tie) Oscar Down Under #1 by Jack Ladd


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