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!

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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: 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.

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NA Review: Nothing Like Paris by Amy Jo Cousins

Nothing Like Paris by Amy Jo Cousins

Published by: Samhain Publishing

Format: Kindle

Genre: NA M/M Romance

Reviewed by: Judith

Score: 8/10

AJ Cousins, my new go-to golden girl of LGBTQ NA, is back and back with a vengeance. For those not in the know, this is book 2 in her highly praised Bend or Break series, the first of which was Off Campus (I adored it & you can read my review to find out why) featured a bisexual jock down on his luck and his hot traumatized gay roommate. The antagonist of that book – aka the evil resident life worker who makes their lives hell – is actually the hero of Nothing Like Paris. Well, I use hero loosely cause all through book one, Jack was a douche and shocker of shockers, he’s STILL a douche at the beginning of this one! But more about that in a bit…

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NA Review: The Year We Fell Down (The Ivy Years Book #1) by Sarina Bowen

The Year We Fell Down by Sarina Bowen

Series: The Ivy Years

Publisher: Rennie Road Books

Format: Kindle edition

Genre: Contemporary NA

Reviewed by: Judith

Score: 8/10

This book is home to the three S’s of New Adult lit: solid writing, sucky situations, and sexy broken hockey players…

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YA Review: The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black


Coldest Girl in Cold TownThe Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black

Publisher: Little, Brown and Company, 2013

Format: Library Hardback

Reviewed by: Judith

Genre: YA Vampire

Final Score: 8/10

Judith’s thought process when picking out a book: “oooh, great cover! Sold! Wait…now, what? It’s about what?” A lot of times that awesome cover grabs me and sucks me in and then I’m stuck with a dud. Luckily that didn’t happen here! Look at that cover! It’s freaking-fan-tastic! And score! I was only just mildly confused and pleasantly surprised by this unique brand of vampires…

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Francine Pascal’s Sweet Valley Saga: The Wakefield Legacy

Francine Pascal’s Sweet Valley Saga: The Wakefield Legacy, by Kate William

Publisher: Bantam Books, 1992

Format: Paper! (BTW – I swear I did not steal this from a library! I’m not sure where I actually purchased it but I’ve never been to the Maricopa County Library.) In honor of Father’s Day (which thank you Judith for making me do this, it’s the only reason I remembered this weekend is Father’s Day) I’m going old school and reviewing the Sweet Valley Saga book about the twins’ father’s ancestors. Who knew so much could happen in only 150 years!

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Hooked by Liz Fichera

Hooked by Liz Fichera

Publisher: Harlequin Teen

Format: Paperback, Library Binding

Reviewed by: Judith

Score: 8/10

Native American girl golfer + hot tortured rich boy + crazy, burned best friend = high school golfing soap opera at its finest!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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New Adult review: Broken At Love by Lyla Payne

Broken At Love by Lyla Payne

Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (March 4, 2013)

Format: Kindle edition

Reviewed by: Judith

Score: 8/10

Plot: Quinn Rowland’s professional tennis career and relationship with the hottest female tennis player both went down the drain last year after he suffered an injury. He’s been a mess ever since. His half-brother, Sebastian, has the perfect remedy: a love game timed along with the four Grand Slam tennis tournaments. For two weeks during each one (the French Open, US Open, Australian Open, and Wimbeldon), Quinn must seduce a pre-appointed girl, sleep with her, and make her love him. Sounds easy and it is up until his brother picks Emilie Swanson to be the next girl. Would be artist Emilie doesn’t fall into bed with Quinn like all the other girls and her up front attitude intrigues him. But as the game goes on and Quinn tries harder and harder to seduce Emilie, the tables begin to turn and Quinn must come to terms with the fact that he might be the one being seduced after all.

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New Adult Review: Off Limits by Sawyer Bennett

Off Limits by Sawyer Bennett

Publisher: Big Dog Books (April 14, 2013)

Format: Kindle edition

Reviewed by: Judith

Score: 8/10

You probably expected something witty or riveting here but this is all I got: Right now (5/20), this book is free! FREE on Amazon! Run, don’t stop, to your nearest internet browser and GET IT!

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