Unicorn Favorites: Love in an Open Road Stories: Week Three

The M/M Romance Group on Goodreads hosts a Don't Read in the Closet event each year where they invite members to submit a photo with a story prompt.  Interested authors then volunteer to write the requested stories, which are published for free for everyone to read.  It's a fun/exciting/stressful process, and a great opportunity to read stories from favorite authors.  And chances are, you'll also discover some new authors, who hopefully have a backlist of goodies to check out :)

This year's event was named Love is an Open Road and they started releasing the completed stories on June first. Here at BMBR, we've been following along on comment threads, anticipating the stories from our favorite prompts, and now greedily reading the stories as they become available.

We've already shared some of our favorite stories from the first and second week of the event. And some of our favorites from the third week, June 15-21, are below:

Lorix: Pull Down the Sun by Danni Keane

Oh wow. This story was amazing. I adored it. I want more. MORE> MORE> MORE.

I read this book with a combination of joy, nostalgia, and an unbearable urge to cry. Jacob. Eight year old Tom might not have been able to see through the façade, but this grown-up reader could, and as much as I wanted to read the next word and the next, part of me dreaded it. Feared the sadness that would come. The revelations. 

I couldn't stop reading though.

I wanted to know all the things. I loved how the story was told. I would love to know more about the future these two have. We see the start of the healing, but I want to know more. I want to see their first Christmas. I want Jacob to have that experience. I want the love after the healing. We get glimpses, but I'm greedy and want more.

Also, the setting. The nostalgia. My BFF at school, her family had a static caravan by the coast and many weekends through the summer I would get invited there. Being from a larger, less well off family, I felt some of the awe that Jacob did. I completely understood him.

And anyone who spent any time at the seaside in Britain through the eighties or nineties, or even the noughties, knows those shops, with the beach balls and windmills and ice-creams and buckets and spades... A veritable treasure trove of brightly coloured plastic for children. Just seeing the description summons up a bright summers day. The kind without humidity, but with a blazing sun and cool coastal breeze. Sand and sunburn and salt water. I can smell it, and hear it, and almost feel the sand under my feet. The seaside in summer.

Thank you Danni. This story is amazing. And, if you wanted to write more about Jacob and Tom, I for one want to read it!! This story has made a good day great.

Ann: Shelter From the Storm by Mia West

I’m a sucker for historical stories and make it about a lonely farmer or cowboy and I’m aces!

Shelter From the Storm by Mia West totally did it for me. I loved how the story was told. It’s in the form of a letter written to a newcomer to Stormy Ridge (Daniel’s farm) and tells the story of Daniel and his mail order bride. It gives the letters recipient the whole story and a chance to accept or deny the gift that is being offered with eyes wide open to their history.

My favorite thing was Daniel’s voice. He’s the epitome of the gentleman farmer with good manners, humility and grace. He is also prideful, which he is the first to admit, but it’s in the most charming of ways. His words were spare but held a wealth of meaning. He’s becoming smitten with his Isabel and the life they are creating on the farm. She’s everything he could have asked for and more. Something about Isabel isn’t quite as advertised, but Daniel is willing to turn a blind eye to most things and is voluntarily clueless to what others are seeing. Isabel is the perfect balance of light to Daniel’s more stoic nature and I enjoyed reading about their little moments together as they settled into the routine of farm life.

As their ‘trial period’ is coming to end, Daniel can’t deny he’s got to do a little investigating and imagine his surprise when he spies on Isabel and discovers that she is, in fact, a he. He expects to be put off by the knowledge but he’s a pragmatic man and can’t deny that Isabel/Isaiah makes him happy (and apparently horny). His only concern is Isaiah’s motives. Isaiah puts Daniel’s concerns to rest quickly after a rough Sunday afternoon away from the farm. Isaiah is the victim of a few bigoted townsfolk and Daniel’s reaction was fierce and perfect. Their interaction as they open themselves to one another with complete honesty for the first time was so damn sweet and I absolutely loved it.

The obvious love between these two men and the world they created at Stormy Ridge was such a tease in that I just plain wanted more. I loved everything that happened here but would read the hell out of a full length story about these characters and their world.

Breann: Bare-Knuckle Love by K.A. Merikan

Jason needs to make a buck. The best way he can do that is by fighting. Only thing is, part of the deal is to lose. But when he sees his old crush, Hyde, in the audience, he forgets all about the deal.

Too bad Hyde is the guy he was supposed to lose for. Now Hyde has him in his clutches... and he's not too happy.

Hyde is a crazy motherfucker. Sexy as hell. But crazy.

The story is brutal. It's bloody and, at times, made me cringe.

Hyde and Jason are totally messed up. But Jason loves it. Hyde knows just what to do to get under Jason's skin. He doesn't want to love it, but he so does. He loves that dirty, slutty talk. Mmmm.

Criminals, kink, virgins, fucked-up-ness. <= Full. Of. Win.

Optimist King's Wench: Reubaltach Cridhe by K. Mason

Bursting with Good Feels!

Give me a laird, a castle and some historical GFY manlove with kilts and I'm tickled pink!

Alex and Iain have deserted. Technically, Alex is Iain's prisoner, though neither has any interest in returning to fight a war they've become disillusioned with. Alex has an infection in his leg and is in and out of consciousness when we first meet them and Iain's horse, Bran.

Bran is adorbs BTW.

They find themselves given shelter by Sir Robert, Laird of Barquhar and Baronet of Lag. Robert and his staff are all very accommodating both in nursing Alex back to health and in other ways... NOT SPOILING!

There was a barn frot session, people.

And then some sponge bathing with a hand job.


What is it about kilts??

Anyhoo, the historical setting is well drawn out, the writing is engaging if a little heavy on the interior decorating at times, the well placed "aye" had me grinning and there's good tension building between the MCs.

Did I mention there were kilts?


Good Sunday is good.

Thanks to the author and her team for the kilts participating in the LOR event.

SheReadsALot: Aniki's Garden by Claire Cray and Matters of State by A. Phallus Si


Like whoa.

This prompt, right? Like this prompt was dope. Because tentacles. Tentacles that are stuffing a splayed and trussed boy's legs. I imagine those appendages deep inside every hole. Every hole.

I wondered what kind of story would be created from this yummy prompt.

This wasn't the story I expected. And it rocked.

So short. :( I would have read a novel on cousins Kazuo and Yuuta. I imagine the proper Yuuta being violated in all the ways by his cousin. *happy sigh*

I'm getting ahead of myself.

This isn't romance, it's gay fiction/ erotica. I've heard great things about this author. I see why, I liked her tone. The writing style and attention to 1960's Japan were great. Yakuza! A little cousin/cousin action! Tentacles!

Japanese born Yuuta was raised in America. His family tried to ignore their home but not Yuuta. He's a rising Japanese art historian and gets an invite to visit his cousin Kazuo. Yuuta's parents try to keep the cousins from contacting each other but it didn't work. Yuuta meets up with his criminal cousin at his huge house. While searching his garden, he hears the strangest sounds...

The prompt pic? Not who I thought it would be.

Still hot. The entire scene with the octopus was hot.

Man, do I wish it was longer. I think I could come to love the gangster Kazuo of this was a longer story...there's a sense of deviousness there that I like in criminals.

Gah, the ending! I'm smirking.

 “With a deep breath, he pulled in the scent of his boy, his beloved.

“So hard and desperate with your cock dripping.” He wrapped a hand around it and gave a couple firm tugs along the shaft. “This is mine, now. Mine.”

Nothing gets me excited quicker than a possessive hero who isn't too keen on unnecessary yapping. He sees what he wants, does whatever in his power to get said thing and when he gets that thing in his possession, God bless whoever even fathoms of getting in his way. In A. Phallus Si's "Matters of State" you can find this in Hayden, alien space captain and one owner of a lethal tongue. He kisses and fucks like a champ and younger, slightly bratty Damien is the lucky recipient of Hayden's attention. Filthy, hot public sexual activities, heart pacing thrusting and a space filled world created with enough characteristics to keep you entertains. 

Oh, don't think this story rests on its quality sex and lust filled scenes alone. this story has heart and more importantly, smarts!

“Are you my little hedonist?” he queried. “Just chasing the next sensation, you wanton,” he growled. “Available for any hand or cock to please you― slut.” He chuckled. “You can’t even think anymore.”

But the dirty talk is fab as well! ;P

*** All stories are available for download at  http://www.mmromancegroup.com/ ***

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