November 30th, 2017

andrew potter

2017 Rainbow Awards Submission: Amy Rae Durreson Recovery (Reawakening #3)


1) I'm not generally a big fan of fantasy but i really enjoyed this book from beginning to end. A wonderful job of world building. Multi dimensional and engaging. Very descriptive  

Amy Rae Durreson Recovery (Reawakening #3)
Gay - Fantasy
Series: Reawakening (Book 3)
Paperback: 370 pages
Publisher: DSP Publications (May 9, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1635333555
ISBN-13: 978-1635333558
Amazon: Amy Rae Durreson Recovery (Reawakening #3)

Reawakening: Book Three

Resistance, exile, plague. Raif has survived them all, but now he finds himself in search of a new purpose. Traveling north to wake the dragon Arden, he hopes he has finally found a leader worthy of his loyalty, but Arden turns out to be more of a frivolous annoyance than an almighty spirit lord. Now bound to Arden’s side despite his frustration, Raif follows the dragon to the rich and influential lagoon city of Aliann, chasing rumors of the Shadow that once cursed his homeland.

With the election of a new duke at stake, Raif struggles to make sense of the challenges he meets in Aliann: a conspiracy of nixies and pirates, selkie refugees in desperate need of a champion, a monster that devours souls, a flirtatious pirate prince, and a machine that could change the world. For nothing in the city of masks is what it seems, from the new friends Raif makes to the dragon he follows—or even himself.

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andrew potter

2017 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: Having Her Back Ann Gallagher


1) Very well developed story and characters. The authors writing style lead to the characters and plot feeling like a cohesive whole rather than just a story being told.
2) A sweet, well written, and thoroughly realistic coming-of-age romance. I loved every word.
3) The Spanish location and the background of US military based abroad were well woven into the story in a way that was accurate and beautiful to read. The relationships between all the characters were realistic and well written. I was pleased the young characters in the book had no issue with gay identities or a transperson, which is very realistic among youth of today. An excellent book, which after reading on kindle I bought in print too. I enjoy YA fiction and as a YA romance, this was as good as any that I've read. I'd highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys reading YA romance.
Having Her Back Ann Gallagher
Transgender - Young Adult
Paperback: 250 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (May 21, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1546834907
ISBN-13: 978-1546834908
Amazon: Having Her Back Ann Gallagher

Trevor Larson is a Navy brat. He’s used to moving every few years, and thanks to social media, he can stay in touch with the friends he leaves behind. But shortly after he leaves Okinawa, his best friend, Brad Gray, cuts off contact and disappears. Four years and two bases later, Brad resurfaces—and announces his family is coming to Trevor’s base in Spain. But a lot’s changed in four years, and Trevor is stunned to find out Brad is now Shannon. Their reunion isn’t quite what either of them had hoped for, but they quickly find their footing, both relieved to have each other back. Except nothing is ever all sunshine and roses. The military is a small world, and there’s no keeping Shannon’s transition a secret. Parents warn their kids away from her. She can’t attend school on-base for fear of harassment or worse. And although her parents try to hide it, being ostracized by their only social circle while they’re thousands of miles from home is taking a toll on them, too. More and more, Shannon leans on Trevor. But she’s also drawn to him, and he’s drawn right back to her, feeling things he’s never felt for anyone before. Trevor’s scared, though. Not of dating a trans girl. Not of damaging his chaplain father’s career or reputation. After finally getting his friend back, does he dare take things further and risk losing Shannon a second time?

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andrew potter

2017 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: Blank Spaces (Toronto Connections #1) Cass Lennox


1) I love the way Cass Lennox uses depth focus to control the reader’s feelings. Super-deep focus to get all the good feelings in, and zooming out to introduce elements which are painful or painfully awkward, which prevents kicking the reader out of the fictive dream. This craft mastery, together with engaging characters and a fun art mystery plot is leavened with enough humor to keep you turning the pages until the satisfying ending. The unconventional topic and a fresh take on favorite tropes keeps this book out of the “standard MM romance” realm, making it original, interesting, and a true pleasure to read.
2) One of the best books that I've read over the past 12 months and I hope it wins many awards. This had every element of a good romance novel. Two characters who could be perfect together, they go together so well the reader wants it to happen, but at the same time, there is a big and excellent reason why they shouldn't be together. It would seem there is one thing that makes them very incompatible and the reader might think this is too big an obstacle to overcome. 
However, as the story goes on it becomes obvious that the one big obstacle that makes them so different to each other is also something that makes them perfect together. The sex scene between the two of them moved me greatly. And the epilogue was wonderful. Alongside the main love story was a cozy mystery story. The fact is, many LGBT couples are in some form of "open" non-monogamous relationship very similar to the one described in this book. We don't find it strange to read it in fiction because we know many people who live like it in reality.  I'd love to read more light easy-read romantic fiction that reflects our lives in a more realistic and positive way like this.

Blank Spaces Cass Lennox
Asexual - Contemporary Romance
Series: Toronto Connections (Book 1)
Paperback: 284 pages
Publisher: Riptide Publishing (July 9, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1626494843
ISBN-13: 978-1626494848
Amazon: Blank Spaces (Toronto Connections #1) Cass Lennox

Absence is as crucial as presence.

The decision to stop dating has made Vaughn Hargrave’s life infinitely simpler: he has friends, an excellent wardrobe, and a job in the industry he loves. That’s all he really needs, especially since sex isn’t his forte anyway and no one else seems interested in a purely romantic connection. But when a piece is stolen from his art gallery and insurance investigator Jonah Sondern shows up, Vaughn finds himself struggling with that decision.

Jonah wants his men like his coffee: hot, intense, and daily. But Vaughn seems to be the one gay guy in Toronto who doesn’t do hookups, which is all Jonah can offer. No way can Jonah give Vaughn what he really wants, not when Jonah barely understands what love is.

When another painting goes missing, tension ramps up both on and off the clock. Vaughn and Jonah find themselves grappling not just with stolen art, but with their own differences. Because a guy who wants nothing but romance and a guy who wants nothing but sex will never work—right? Not unless they find a way to fill in the spaces between them.

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andrew potter

2017 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: C. Kennedy Elpída


1) I enjoyed this story and would have no trouble recommending it to others to read.
2) This is a well written book, and part of the series involving Christy, a sexual abuse survivor and victim of sex trafficking. The characters are well developed, complex, and realistic. I would highly recommend this book for anyone who wants to understand what abuse does to a LGBT character and how survivors can still find hope and love.
3) This book kept me captivated chapter after chapter. The boys, Jake and Michael's behavior was par with their age (all over the place), although sometimes I thought their behavior was more childish than it needed to be (again, age). The story is quite heart wrenching, reading what Thimi and Christy went through and knowing there are so many young ones out there going through the same. C. Kennedy has done an extensive research to get this book written with accuracy and I don't envy him, I know it would've been too difficult for me to have done the same and in the end, come out emotionally intact.  I wish there was a fourth book for I didn't care much for how it ended; too open and I would've loved to see how/what punishment the evil families would've gotten. All in all, a very emotional story. Well done!
4) Hands down, this is one of the most powerful books I've ever read.

C. Kennedy Elpída
Gay - Young Adult
Series: Elpida (Book 3)
Paperback: 350 pages
Publisher: Harmony Ink Press (May 30, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1635333733
ISBN-13: 978-1635333732
Amazon: C. Kennedy Elpída

Elpida: Book Three

Michael and Christy attended prom, graduated high school, and Michael leads the USATF tryouts. With Oxford University on the horizon, his future looks bright, and he believes life has returned to normal after Christy’s rescue. He couldn’t be more wrong.

Christy has been free from a life of slavery for more than a year and has made remarkable progress due in no small part to the love he found with Michael. But the recent prosecution of a past abuser has shattered the life he so painstakingly built out of nothing but a mountain of horror. He now faces the daunting task of building a new life—yet again.

Twelve-year-old Thimi has been missing since Christy left Greece and, unbeknownst to everyone, has hidden out in a vacant mansion in Glyfada. Learning of Christy’s survival is the only thing that brings him out of hiding. People, open spaces, even the most common of sounds frighten him beyond reason. A mere ghost of a boy, Thimi arrives in the US with no knowledge of the outside world—the only constant in his life a purple marble.

Lost, shattered, and afraid, only hope gives them the strength and courage they need to begin anew.

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andrew potter

2017 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: Sue Brown Morning My Angel (Angel Enterprises #1)


1) Excellent characters, I could feel their pain and pleasure. The author brought me right into their lives, seamlessly incorporating the reader within the action. The plot twisted and turned and even though I guessed a few things correctly, the outcome was a shock.
2) This was a great book. It had EVERYTHING. Sizzling spy story, sparkling dialog between the main characters, a romance that just built and built and kept you hanging on each page. Oh yeah, and the sex was HOT. It’s near perfect and one of the best books I’ve read this year.


Sue Brown Morning My Angel (Angel Enterprises #1)
Gay - Romantic Suspence
Series: Angel Enterprises
Paperback: 308 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (October 26, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1539772489
ISBN-13: 978-1539772484
Amazon: Sue Brown Morning My Angel (Angel Enterprises #1)

Josh Cooper, top US security field agent, is sent on an inter-agency assignment to London, when a partner in his firm goes missing in suspicious circumstances. Used to working in sole charge of his well-honed team, he clashes heads with the handsome, but pompous Cal, his UK co-operator and superior. Josh’s gut tells him something is wrong. He’s being kept out of the loop and Cal’s agenda is running on a different path. He also has a personal issue to deal with. He’s involved in a cyber-relationship with “Charlie”, an unknown man who connected with Josh by accident. Their banter has led to deeper respect and a sexual interest, but now Josh is faced with a growing attraction to Cal. Between this conflict and the tension of the mission, Josh’s heart and head are overworked and confused. Things can’t get much worse. Then Josh discovers the enemies he’s seeking have a new target: him.

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andrew potter

2017 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: Reunion (Diversion #6) Eden Winters


1) Another very good entry in this series, less crime and more personal as we meet Lucky's family, and realize how far loving Bo has brought Lucky from the lonely, sarcastic, and disillusioned man he once was.

Reunion (Diversion #6) Eden Winters
Gay - Mystery / Thriller
File Size: 4607 KB
Print Length: 296 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publisher: Rocky Ridge Books (August 19, 2017)
Publication Date: August 19, 2017
Amazon: Reunion (Diversion #6) Eden Winters

Reunions can be murder.

A dial tone instead of a human voice announced Lucky’s ousting from the Lucklighter clan over twelve years ago. After living a life of crime. After testifying against his drug lord lover. After receiving a ten-year sentence. Ah, hell. Lucky would’ve disowned himself too.

Now life’s better. He’s done his time and earned a place in the Southeastern Narcotics Bureau’s Department of Diversion Prevention and Control. He has a house. He has Bo, his partner both on and off the job. And pets. But not his folks. The worst part? He’s not sure exactly why they disowned him. Too late now—they think he’s dead.

Now his father needs a gift only Lucky can give. And Lucky’s family has something that may destroy all he believes:

The truth.

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andrew potter

2017 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: Leaning Into the Fall (Leaning Into Stories #2) Lane Hayes


1) I really admire the way Lane Hayes develops her characters. They grow on the page, not only for the reader--as we get to know them--but as living, breathing beings. By the end of Leaning into the Fall, I felt I'd actually spent time with Nick and Wes. I was as invested in their relationship as they were. I loved their conversations, even when they were arguing. I could hear their voices. So when these two got it together, it felt real--as did their heartache and eventual joy.
2) The characters were amazing. Nick with his social disorder and Wes with his infinite patience. I also liked the pace and the winery setting. This was a really good book.

Leaning Into the Fall (Leaning Into Stories #2) Lane Hayes
Bisexual - Erotic Romance
Series: Leaning Into Stories
Paperback: 282 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (March 12, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 154466639X
ISBN-13: 978-1544666396
Amazon: Leaning Into the Fall (Leaning Into Stories #2) Lane Hayes

Nick Jorgensen is a quirky genius. He's made a fortune in the competitive high tech field with his quick mind and attention to detail. He believes in hard work and trusting his gut. And he believes in karma. It’s the only thing that makes sense. People are difficult, but numbers never lie. In the disastrous wake of a broken engagement to an investor’s daughter, Nick is more certain than ever he isn’t relationship material. Wes Conrad owns a thriving winery in Napa Valley. The relaxed atmosphere is a welcome departure from his former career as a high-rolling businessman. Wes’s laid-back nature is laced with a fierceness that appeals to Nick. In spite of his best intention to steer clear of complications, Nick can’t fight his growing attraction to the sexy older man who seems to understand him. Even the broken parts he doesn’t get himself. However, when Wes’s past collides with Nick’s present, both men will have to have to decide if they’re ready to lean into the ultimate fall.

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andrew potter

2017 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: Bonfires Amy Lane


1) Being a reader of a certain age myself, I loved this cozy story.  The two middle-aged protagonists were both people I felt I would like to get to know, and the secondary characters, especially most of the kids, were nicely sympathetic without being unbelievably saccharin.
2) A lovely, warm story of hope and resilience and family, with two imperfect older guys, believable teen kids, community in all its good and bad aspects, and a plot that pulled me through the story to a satisfying end.
3) She will forever and always be the best author ever in my book; her character development, story pacing and overall tone just does it for me time and time again.  I particularly enjoyed the theme of happiness with another man *after* there had been a "normal" relationship.  Fluditiy is a beautiful thing.

Bonfires Amy Lane
Gay - Contemporary Romance
Paperback: 280 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (March 24, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1635333407
ISBN-13: 978-1635333404
Amazon: Bonfires Amy Lane

Ten years ago Sheriff’s Deputy Aaron George lost his wife and moved to Colton, hoping growing up in a small town would be better for his children. He’s gotten to know his community, including Mr. Larkin, the bouncy, funny science teacher. But when Larx is dragged unwillingly into administration, he stops coaching the track team and starts running alone. Aaron—who thought life began and ended with his kids—is distracted by a glistening chest and a principal running on a dangerous road.

Larx has been living for his kids too—and for his students at Colton High. He’s not ready to be charmed by Aaron, but when they start running together, he comes to appreciate the deputy’s steadiness, humor, and complete understanding of Larx’s priorities. Children first, job second, his own interests a sad last.

It only takes one kiss for two men approaching fifty to start acting like teenagers in love, even amid all the responsibilities they shoulder. Then an act of violence puts their burgeoning relationship on hold. The adult responsibilities they’ve embraced are now instrumental in keeping their town from exploding. When things come to a head, they realize their newly forged family might be what keeps the world from spinning out of control.

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