Jan Steckel - Like Flesh Covers Bone
Like Flesh Covers Bone
"This was an excellent collection of poetry. Each theme was explored through several kinds of styles and feelings. Emotions ranged from heartfelt to somber to angry, among others—and all of the poems thoughtful and invoked great imagery. The poems were witty and insightful. The collection was thoughtful and critical of the current dilemmas we face."
"Poetry is sometimes hard to judge—you either get it or you don’t. Some of these were very dark, but I can honestly say I liked them."
"Overall, I thought her poetry strong and dynamic. Her words build on current events and deep social issues. It wasn’t a fluffy read but felt very relevant to things happening now and made me think that this author is a warrior with words."
"Steckel is brilliant. Not all the poems have the same power, but those that do really dazzle."
E. Davies – Tremble
Tremble (Significant Brothers Book 6)
"I absolutely loved this book! It was engaging from the start and I connected with each MC. The story flowed and was flawless. It was effortless to read and I enjoy not having to work at understanding the book. The descriptions of the setting were done beautifully and I could picture in my mind perfectly. The story was angsty and the characters somewhat broken but they still hadn’t lost the hope of having their HEA."
Jude Lucens - Behind These Doors (Radical Proposals #1)
Behind These Doors: Radical Proposals Book 1
"An unusual love story set in the Edwardian era. Lucien Saxby, a journalist is attracted to Aubry Fanshawe, an aristocrat who in turn is involved in a polyamorous affair with a married couple, Rupert and Henrietta Hernedale. A complicated situation, never mind that Lucien also has dalliances with Ben, a married man with four children. Somehow, they all make this work, and there is deep love and affection here. The backdrop of women's suffrage adds historical and political interest as Lucien is forced by his editor to cover the escalating unrest when women march in London's streets and men in power are forced to listen to their grievances. The story is beautifully written, superb narrative and intelligent dialogue go a long way to draw the reader into a time when same sex love could lead to scandal and in some cases imprisonment. When family felt it had the right to interfere in once's personal affairs and young men of substance were presumed to be marriage fodder, or what on earth was wrong with him? I liked Behind these Doors very much and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys historical romance and perhaps is looking for something different in the genre. One little niggle - the over abundant use of colons spoiled for me what in every other way was flawless story-telling."
"I really enjoyed this historical story set in turn-of-the-century London, about love growing between a gay journalist and a bisexual, poly aristocrat. From the characters to the emotionally complex relationships to the grounding in historical context, class differences, and the women's movement, the parts of this story melded seamlessly into a great read. The main characters each have their flaws, their reactive points and self-doubts. I appreciated that falling in love didn't have to mean devaluing older relationships. With strong female characters as well, this was a book I will come back to and I'm delighted to see it is the first in a series."
Books in the top 25% rate range
M. Rose Flores - The End
"I thoroughly enjoyed this well-written, fast-paced Zombie horror YA book and would recommend it to readers who enjoy YA post-apocalyptic books."
"This book is a fine example of a fresh take on zombie stories. Her writing style keeps readers engaged and the story is well worth the read. "
E. Davies - Miracle
Miracle (Men of Hidden Creek Season 3 Book 1)
"A cute Christmas story. The plot took a bit to develop but that’s ok. I could tell that it was a continuation of a series that I hadn’t read but I was still able to follow along."
"I'm always thrilled to read a romance with a character comfortable with his bisexuality."
E.J. Russell - Demon on the Down-Low (Supernatural Selection #3)
Demon on the Down-Low (Supernatural Selection Book 3)
"It was a thrill to read this book because it was very well written and exciting. A true page-turner. It was a plus to see characters from the previous book revisited within this new story and it was a bit sad to see everything come to an end. I need to read more of this author’s work."
"I fell instantly in love with Hamish, an Australian Kangaroo shifter who's gruff personality was on point throughout the entire novel. Hamish had depth, he was real to me. And then there was Zeke, who was conflicted, frenetic and utterly adorable. Zeke, being the good demon he is, just wants to please everyone. There were moments in this story where I laughed out loud. There were also a few spots where the description of hell sent shivers down my spine. Well done EJ Russell, it's not easy to disturb me! This was cute, fun, sexy and Russell had you rooting for the demon the entire time. This whole series is just joy. Highly Recommend."
Lexi Ander - Caledonia Destiny
Caledonia Destiny (Blessed Bane Book 1)
"Caledonia Destiny hooked me from page one. I did have an inkling of how things would transpire, but the author twisted the end in such a unique way, I was still surprised at the resolution. The setting was very well balanced, enough description to ground the reader without going overboard. There were a few places where character remarks clouded the setting, but they were few and my mind readily dismissed them. The characters’ depth and growth was masterfully handled. The emotions and reactions felt real, when a book brings me to tears, the loss of Roi, I know I’ve connected to well developed characters. The style is probably my favorite part of the book. I’ve read others that use period spelling, but only in speech. The choice to do so, to research not only changes in spelling but in terminology, was what truly pulled me into Ewen and Roi’s world. The writing style immersed me in this world, compelled me to remain. In summary, this was an excellently composed story, one that draws a reader in so completely that they must blink to remember where they really are. "
"All the beautiful writing I expect from a Lexi Ander book with worldbuilding skills on par with my favorite fantasy romances. The blend of history, magic, action and romance is wonderfully compelling. Really enjoyable to read."
Meredith Katz - How Saeter Robbed the Underworld
How Saeter Robbed the Underworld
"How Saeter Robbed the Underworld was such a fun, sweet read. The Norse-esque setting was immersive, the characters were natural and interesting, the romance was yummy, and I found Katz's writing style to be highly polished. A true pleasure to read!"
" A story that is simultaneously familiar and thoroughly unique. Truly a well-spun yarn. Very difficult to put down, and left me with a huge grin. Very well done, author!"
Debbie McGowan - The Great Village Bun Fight
The Great Village Bun Fight
"This book was fun and a great joy to read. At times it had me laughing out loud. I loved the writing style, use of language and imagination."
L.A. Witt - The Torches We Carry
The Torches We Carry
"Witt’s story of two men who come together after breaking up for a couple of decades is unusual in the realm of m/m romance. Where another author might have opted for a big misunderstanding to have separated the two, Witt chose to have the breakup hinge on the men’s reluctance to commit to being together because it was the more difficult choice. Instead, they shied away from the hard work a genuine relationship requires, broke up, and formed easier, but less important, liaisons. What they realize finally is that love can’t be shunted aside and a puny substitute put in its place. Both characters are vividly drawn to show how easy it is to mislead ourselves into taking the easy path through life and then being dissatisfied when it doesn’t fulfill us. Working their way out of the trapped lives they created, realizing where they went wrong, and struggling to become whole, happy men is a journey real and immediate to many people. Witt makes it bearable with characters that readers will identify with and love. All in all, this book was a joy to read. It makes readers think about life and love long after the last page is turned."
S.M. James - Not Gonna Lie
Not Gonna Lie: LGBTQ Enemies to Lovers Romance (The lovehim Series)
Everyone has their secrets. Last year Digi walked out on Webcon, on his fans, and on Gram. Now he’s back determined to give what they had a real shot, but Gram is more prickly than ever, not willing to risk his heart again. Despite trying to stay out of the spotlight, the anonymous Public Service Announcements draw Digi back in. As the secrets of the internet’s top celebrities are leaked to the world, it’s only a matter of time before Digi and Gram are next. To get through it, they have to set their rivalry aside. Will Digi handle the pressure of the bright lights long enough to find who is tearing their world apart? Or will the threat of full exposure be too much for him to handle?
Freddy MacKay - Waiting on the Rain
Waiting on the Rain
"A beautiful story of friendship and family with character as wonderful and as diverse as the Thailand setting. Jira and Bon are such a cute couple, and Areeya and Fon (OMG, I loved Fon!) really bring that relationship to live by interwining it within their own."
Johnny Miles - Café y Chocolate
Café y Chocolate
"When it comes to the descriptions of the hurricane, the writing's pretty damn good. The calamity and the aftermath are shown well, apparently by the author's personal experience. The conflict between an easy life and a hard one that Sereno struggles with is relatable and understandable. Sometimes the harder choice is the more rewarding one. The story is very sensual, regards to both the sexuality and awakening the senses. The setting of Puerto Rico feels real, tangible and concrete. The bisexual aspect was handled rather nicely, but the unsafe sex threw me a bit. Beyond those few nitpicks, this one was surprisingly good. Certainly left me thinking about disaster areas and the very real problems people there face."
L.A. Witt - Rank & File
Rank & File (Anchor Point Book 4)
"I thought it was totally readable — fast and fun, just a solid read."
Casey Wolfe - A Mage's Power
A Mage's Power (The Inquisition Trilogy Book 1)
"This is an *engaging* book from the get-go, with strong pacing and a deep, intuitive understanding of storytelling as well the genre's hooks. Outstanding book."
Kyell Gold - Ty Game
Ty Game by Kyell Gold
"Wow, this was a great book. The characters are fun, light-hearted, sweet, and still realistic, though being something other than human. The dialogue, the progress of the plot, the atmosphere--it all feels normal, like it could happen to any old human. There are cute pictures too. Sure, there's some needless shit going on, like all the random hook-ups with chicks, the games one after the other, and the leading lady's job stuff. But despite the on-occasion slow pacing, overall the story flows organically, with ease. The ending surprised me a bit and wasn't entirely satisfactory but worked well, I suppose."
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