September 25th, 2016

andrew potter

2016 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: Shadows and Light by Cari Z. (141-06-10-2016)

A fast-paced, exciting story set in a wildly imaginative and original world. Constant twists of plot and turns of characters that left me breathless. A well-constructed, vividly imagined masterpiece.

Shadows and Light by Cari Z.
Gay Fantasy
Paperback: 266 pages
Publisher: Pride Publishing (March 11, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1786518740
ISBN-13: 978-1786518743
Amazon: Shadows and Light
Amazon Kindle: Shadows and Light

A fight to the death against his former master turns into a chance for Rafael, an assassin denied the immortality he lived to achieve, to learn the shocking truth about the fate he was spared.

Rafael wanted nothing more than to serve his immortal master, Xian, a High One of Clare, who taught him from an early age how to be an assassin. But after failing the final test, Rafael was turned out into the Lower City, abandoned by the one person he thought he could count on.

Years of hatred and thoughts of revenge have fueled Rafael’s quest for vengeance, but when the time comes to strike at Xian, he hesitates and is taken prisoner. Rafael expects to die, either at Xian’s hand or at the hand of Myrtea, his sadistic mistress.

Instead Xian heals him, spares him a brutal interrogation and tells him the dark truth driving the ruthlessness of the High Ones—the source of their immortality is spent. Soon the city will devolve into chaos as High Ones battle one another and the rebelling denizens of the Lower City for power and resources. Xian wants to spare Rafael that pain, just as he spared him the pain of becoming a High One a decade earlier.

Their only chance for survival is to escape Clare before civil war breaks out. Even if they make it out of the city, though, there’s no guarantee that Xian will live through the agonizing process of becoming human again. The only ones they can rely on are each other…if Rafael can bring himself to once again trust his former master, the only man he’s ever loved.

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andrew potter

2016 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: From Third to Home by Chris Paynter (247-08-03-2016)

1) This is the third novel in a series. Not having read the first two, I was a bit lost at times, but that had nothing to do with the writing in this book. Overall, this was a very enjoyable read with vividly drawn characters.

2) While I'm not particularly interested in sports, I still found the story to be quite readable, and I can imagine that anyone who likes baseball would enjoy all the baseball talk, which comes across as very believable. The writing is solid, the best I've seen in a while. Word usage was good, and punctuation was correct. Those might seem like small things, the basics everyone should have down pat, but more and more writers these days fail in this arena, so I wanted to point it out. The writing flowed well, with little or no awkwardness. I felt comfortable as a reader, trusting the author. The dialogue was good. I almost felt there were too many main characters, but by the end, I knew everyone well enough and liked all the different storylines. There was a casual and believable insertion of details about in vitro fertilization. Any time we needed details on IVF or AA or baseball, the information was delivered in a good way. There were just a couple of places where there was some unnecessary repetition, sometimes almost line for line (in particular when Lisa was talking about her feelings toward her dad). I also found it odd that so many of the characters were surprised by sex. It seemed a little unrealistic. I've never found sex all that startling, even good sex. You don't have to be startled to enjoy sex. All in all, a well-written book that was a good read.

3) Usually series books aren't as good as the first, not true with this one. The author has a winner. She scores big in all categories, especially her characters. Her writing is getting better with each book.

4) A good read. Probably I would have liked it more if the book was more concerned with one single couple storyline at the time, because the amount of characters involved left me sometimes confused about the pairings and who was talking. But the story is fresh and interesting. The setting is quite peculiar and that makes up for some shortcomings in the story plot.

From Third to Home (Playing for First #3) by Chris Paynter
Lesbian Contemporary General Fiction
Series: Playing for First (Book 3)
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Companion Publications LLC (March 29, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1942204124
ISBN-13: 978-1942204121
Amazon: From Third to Home (Playing for First #3)
Amazon Kindle: From Third to Home (Playing for First #3)

First baseman Amy Perry and her Cincinnati Reds teammates have one goal for the new season: win the World Series. Sportswriter and best friend, Lisa Collins, is there to cover the action from spring training through the hot days of summer.

But baseball isn't the only thing on Amy's mind. Her wife, Stacy McCrady, is trying to have a baby. The thought of becoming a mother pushes Amy to think this might be her last year--if the Reds were to win it all.

While covering the Reds, Lisa gets the surprise of a lifetime. Her father, whom she has never met, contacts Lisa. Can Lisa's partner, Frankie Dunkin, help Lisa set aside more than thirty-five years of anger?

Kat Benson is the cocky second baseman for Amy's former team, the Kansas City Bandits. The Bandits manager insists that Lisa and Amy attend a game to assess Kat's potential for the minor leagues. Kat, however, struggles to focus on baseball while confronted with her family's secrets.

From Third to Home continues Chris Paynter's Playing for First baseball series. Join Amy, Lisa, Kat, and the women who love them for an exciting season full of ups and downs, hopes and dreams.

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andrew potter

2016 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: The Wrong Kind of Woman by Voss Porter (287-08-16-2016)

I really enjoyed this book. The author did a brilliant job with the pacing of the story. I never once felt as if the storyline was dragging or that it was being rushed, everything flowed as it should have, giving me-and other readers-the chance to really get to know Bri and Dana. To fall in love with them. To be annoyed by them at times. To laugh with them, and to cry with them. The love story between these two women, set against a backdrop of danger and violence, childhood hurts and pains, was beautifully described and expressed by the author through the development of the characters, the wildly descriptive settings, and a plot that was thrilling in all manners of the word. To that end I had to give this book a score of 40/40. It was very much deserved.

The Wrong Kind of Woman by Voss Porter
Lesbian Romantic Comedy
Paperback: 344 pages
Publisher: Dark Hollows Press, LLC (February 18, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1530011582
ISBN-13: 978-1530011582
Amazon: The Wrong Kind of Woman
Amazon Kindle: The Wrong Kind of Woman

All of her life, Dana Anderson has done what was expected of her. She put herself through school, she worked hard for her career, and she held her brother together after the loss of both parents. As summer comes and her inhibitions lower, however, she finds herself face-to-face with danger, mystery, and an illogical chance at true love. Will rough and ready biker, Bri Gunner, be the woman of her dreams? Or will the heat of their passing flame burn out?

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andrew potter

2016 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: Capturing Forever by Erin Dutton (292-08-16-2016)

Another well written romance by the author. I really liked Casey but not so much Jaq.

Capturing Forever by Erin Dutton
Lesbian Contemporary Romance
Paperback: 240 pages
Publisher: Bold Strokes Books (August 16, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1626396310
ISBN-13: 978-1626396319
Amazon: Capturing Forever
Amazon Kindle: Capturing Forever

Jacqueline Knight is driven and ambitious, always focused on getting to the top. But when her father’s failing health demands her attention, she must consider putting her career on hold. Though she struggles with her new responsibilities, she won’t admit she can’t do it alone. And the last person she wants to accept help from is her ex, Casey.

Since their breakup eight years before, Casey Meadow s has concentrated on co-parenting their son and making a new life for herself. While she’s happy to offer her help, spending time with Jacqueline threatens to open the box in which she’s locked away their past relationship.

Will the lessons learned in eight years apart be enough to mend the mistakes of the past?

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andrew potter

2016 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: Indigo Road by R.J. Jones (001-02-15-2016)

The author did an excellent job writing a story that sticks with the reader. Her characters were distinct and vivid. The only draw backs, the pacing was slow in a few places and it ends too neatly.

Indigo Road by R.J. Jones
Gay Contemporary Romance
Paperback: 160 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (December 4, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1523643447
ISBN-13: 978-1523643448
Amazon: Indigo Road
Amazon Kindle: Indigo Road

Two best friends take a year off to find themselves… and end up finding each other. Joshua Simpson has just finished four years at Purdue University, but that’s not why he’s buzzing with excitement. Once they’ve said goodbye to their families, Josh and his best friend Alex are taking off to discover America in an old but reliable VW van, planning on not seeing snow for an entire year. Josh has always considered himself straight—except for that one time in college—so when he and Alex are living in such close proximity on the road, he’s unsure what these new feelings mean. Is it because they’re spending 24/7 together, or is it something deeper? And does it really matter since Josh has only ever seen Alex with women? While in Oregon, Josh meets Johnno, a sexy but confusing Aussie surfer. While having an impromptu surfing lesson, Johnno helps Josh realize who he is and what he wants—but Alex’s reaction leaves Josh confused. From a Montana ranch to the bright lights and dangerous streets of Los Angeles, to a dark and lonely deserted highway in Alabama, join Josh and Alex as they drive around the US, discovering not only who they are, but who they can be together.

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