Audiobook Review: The Rancher's Son (Montana #2) by R.J. Scott

A man without memories, and the cop who never gave up hope.

When he wakes up in hospital, the victim of a brutal beating, John Doe, has no memories of who he is or who hurt him. The cops can find nothing to identify him and he can't remember anything to help... except the name Ethan and one recurring place from his dreams. Three words, and they're not much, but it's a start. Crooked Tree Ranch.

Cop, Ethan Allens has never stopped searching for his brother and his brother's best friend who vanished. When a report lands on Ethan's desk that may give new leads he jumps at the chance to follow them up. The man he finds isn't his brother, but it's someone who could maybe help him discover what happened ten years ago.

What neither man can know is that facing the very real demons of the past could very well destroy any kind of future they may think they have together.

Word Count: 66,200

Narrated by: Sean Crisden
Listening Length: 6 hours and 25 minutes



Reviewer - Shee Reader

This is the second book in the Montana Series, but works fine as a stand alone (with one tiny exception), but more on that later.

This book was a super absorbing delight from the outset. Ethan’s pain was tangible and the awful reality of amnesia was rather chilling. The dynamic in the story is unusual. The two men who haven't seen each other for many years were in the first flush of new love when one of them disappeared. Ethan doesn’t want to colour Adam’s recovery of his memories and identity by admitting what they were to each other. It’s challenging to read, (or listen to!) but enjoyable nonetheless.

There is conflict between Ethan and his father, and their rediscovery of each other is heartwarming.

Sean Crisden’s narration is superb. Warm and emotive, he displays the characters masterfully.
The only thing I didn’t really like was the huge number of questions about Ethan’s brother that were not answered. It sets up nicely for book three, but I am rather impatient and want my closure now!

All in all, this was a lovely book with darker corners in it. The end was perhaps more HFN than HEA but I did enjoy it.

Recommended.


I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review.

Review: Guitars and Cages (Guitars, #1) by Layla Dorine

Asher Logan is a bartender and a pretty wicked guitar player, when he isn’t wrecking his hands fighting in a cage. With a past he keeps hoping to outrun, Asher’s been on a downward spiral for longer than he can remember. When his sister-in-law leaves Rory, his eight-year-old nephew, in his care, Asher is forced into two things he’s never been good at: sobriety and responsibility. As he struggles to care for Rory, his own life begins to unravel.

When Asher’s brother, Alex, turns up, presenting as a girl and announcing her new name is Alexia, it further complicates matters, as does the arrival of his new neighbor, Conner. Both, in their own way, compel Asher to look at his own closely-guarded views on sexuality.

When the siblings’ older brother, Cole, reacts violently to Alexia, Asher is placed squarely in the middle of a family conflict which compels him to confront who he pretends to be versus who he really is.

Asher must choose who to trust and who to finally walk away from.

Trigger warning: Abuse and self-harm


This is not a romance………

This is a compelling story about what happens when Asher’s life unravels to the point he can’t imagine how to put everything to rights, and makes some epically bad decisions; starting with agreeing to look after his nephew, Rory, until his sister-in-law sets up a new life in Canada, a year after the death of her husband.

Asher is damaged. Very damaged. He has been hiding his sexuality for as long as he discovered he was bisexual, and has done any number of things to keep people off the scent, including hitting on his sister-in-law when he was a teen, to take the focus off his relationship with the boy he was in love with.

In his mid-twenties at the beginning of this story, we learn a lot about how Asher deals with life, and his connections with his brothers. How they all seem to be separated by pain, and an inability to function in the world.

There is a lot of angst in this story. A lot of complicated relationships and misunderstandings. Family can be the greatest asset or the biggest roadblock in a happy life.

Asher is trying to hide who he is so his brothers aren’t more disappointed with him, but it seems that it is getting harder and harder to ignore the other side of himself. The side that finds it easy to sell himself to men, as long as there is no emotion involved. The side that is a submissive to Catfish, the only man who seems to treasure him, even though it is a lie. The side that eventually sees no problem with his brother Alex becoming his sister Alexia because she is brave and followed her heart. But he can’t seem to get passed the expectations of his older brother Cole. Cole is a homophobic/transphobic alcoholic bully who thinks he is the leader of the pack and has the right to throw his weight around and abuse his siblings.

This story is rough, and raw. It is infuriating and heartbreaking. Asher’s journey is full of pain and holding back tears while he cuts himself to feel something else. There is a lot of messed up stuff that Asher gets himself into because at the end of the day, he loves deeply and he just wants everyone to be okay, even at the expense of himself. He also just wants to avoid emotional connections and the resulting heartbreak.

I loved this story. I loved the character development. I loved the rough edges and sharp points. I am looking forward to taking the next step in Asher’s journey of discovery on what it is to be an adult, and I can’t wait to sink myself into the in this series.

I’d recommend this to people who enjoy stories about family and the darker side of life.


A review copy was provided by the author for an honest opinion

Giveaway + Blog Tour: Stalking Buffalo Bill (Shifter U #1) by j. leigh bailey


j. leigh bailey is making her clubhouse debut today to promote her new Dreamspun Beyond novel, Stalking Buffalo Bill! See our 5 heart review HERE!

Make sure to leave a comment below to be entered for a chance to win! See the deets below.
Good luck!

Exclusive Excerpt
“Yeah, these guys—who gave me chills, by the way—stopped by the cafĂ© and wanted to know if we’d seen you. They were evil. I mean, to the core. And they definitely weren’t from around here.”
He reached out and gripped my shoulder. “What did they look like?”
“Like a couple of thugs in an amateur production of Oklahoma.”
At his blank look, I gave him a more specific description of the weirdos. Then I told him what I’d seen. “So, Mafia Hit Man is out there right now, looking for you. And you stood there, a hulking target, just begging to be caught.”
Now that the adrenaline had started to fade, I needed to focus on anything other than the fact that I was naked. In front of the man of my dreams. Alone. It was an even split on whether I was feeling more awkward or horny. Given the situation, horny seemed inappropriate, so I searched the shelves for something to cover myself with. “So what are we going to do?”
“We? This doesn’t have anything to do with you.”
“Excuse me? I just raced through town to save your ass. Of course it concerns me.” I pulled out a supersized garbage bag. It might have worked, except the plastic was clear. I tossed it aside, then continued my search.
“I appreciate the warning,” he said, “but you need to stay out of this.”
I squatted to sort through some boxes in the corner.
“What are you looking for?” He sounded exasperated. Good.
“I need to cover my junk if we’re going to have this conversation.” I glanced over my shoulder to see him. “I can’t exactly be caught running around campus naked, can I? I did that once, and it didn’t turn out well. Too much tequila at a full-moon party. Never a good idea.”
Grumbling under his breath, William pulled off the oatmeal-colored sweater I’d fantasized about earlier. He had a white T-shirt on underneath. He threw the sweater at me. I caught it, clutching the soft wool to my chest. It was still warm from his body heat, and I had to forcibly restrain myself from breathing in his scent from the material.
“Well?” He stared at me.
“What?” Despite my intentions, I inhaled and let the aroma of green grass, sagebrush, and herbs flood me.
“Put it on. We can’t spend all day in the closet.”
I snickered. “I never did like closets. I came out of mine years ago.”
He shook his head, then cracked open the door to peek out. Clearly he wasn’t amused at my little joke. I shrugged into the sweater, and the hem fell to my knees. Damn, he was big. Was he a bear shifter, maybe? That could account for the size. Not that there was always a direct correlation between human size and shifter size. Take me, for example. I’m pretty average-sized for a man—a couple of inches under six feet—but I shift into a forty-five-pound coyote. Still, I couldn’t picture him as a ferret or anything small like that.
“I think we’re clear.” William pushed the door open, then took two steps out. The acrid scent of Mafia Hit Man crashed into me, followed by the sound of a door slamming.
“Shit, it’s him.” I grabbed William’s arm and tugged him back into the custodian’s closet. I’m not sure what I would have done if he hadn’t cooperated; no way could I move him if he didn’t want to be moved. I pulled the door shut behind us, then shut the light off in the little room, just in case it glowed through the gap under the door.
“Are you sure it’s him?”
I stared at him. “Believe me, there’s no mistaking the stench.”
His nose wrinkled. “Yeah, it’s distinctive, all right.” He leaned his head against the door, as though trying to hear through it.
I didn’t need to press against the door to know that Mafia Hit Man was making his way down the corridor, opening doors to check rooms. It was only a matter of time before he reached our end of the hall.
A door slammed. It couldn’t be more than a few rooms away. Mafia Hit Man was close.
If we left, we’d get caught. If we didn’t leave, we’d get caught. Those didn’t seem like very good options. I scanned the closet, looking for inspiration.
William crossed his arms over his massive chest, and inspiration struck. I was going to get a chance to climb him like a mountain after all.
“Take off your shirt.”

Blurb
Stalking Buffalo Bill—A Shifter U Tale
A smitten coyote isn’t the only one stalking Buffalo Bill.

A buffalo walks into a cafe. Sounds like the start of a bad joke, but for coyote shifter Donnie Granger, it’s the beginning of an obsession. Donnie is a little hyperactive and a lot distractible, except when it comes to William. He finally works up the nerve to approach William but is interrupted by a couple of violent humans.

While William—don’t call me Bill—is currently a professor, he once worked undercover against an international weapons-trafficking ring. Before he can settle into obscurity, he must find out who leaked his location and eliminate the thugs. He tries keeping his distance to protect Donnie, but the wily coyote won’t stay away.

It’ll take both Donnie’s skills as a stalker—er, hunter—and William’s super-spy expertise to neutralize the threat so they can discover if an excitable coyote and a placid-until-pissed buffalo have a future together.


 About the Shifter U Series
A fun, male/male take on shapeshifter romance, the Shifter U stories include characters who shapeshift into more than the average apex predator. Sure, there are wolves, tigers, and bear shifters, but there are also coyotes, owls, beavers, bison, and more.

All books in the series center around Cody College, located on the outskirts of Cody, Wyoming, where the occasionally furry have a safe place to further their education. Affectionately known as Shifter U, the school offers shapeshifting students a “special track” which gives them the chance to learn important subjects like mathematics, philosophy, and, most importantly, how to hide their secret identity from local humans.

Maintaining secret identities is tough. Dark secrets, old enemies, mythical heritage, and a mysterious illness challenge the stealth skills of even the sneakiest students and staff. While these shifters struggle to handle their type of “normal,” thorny complications of attraction pop up—always at the worst possible times.

Author Bio
j. leigh bailey is an office drone by day and the author of Young Adult and New Adult LGBT Romance by night. She can usually be found with her nose in a book or pressed up against her computer monitor. A book-a-day reading habit sometimes gets in the way of... well, everything...but some habits aren't worth breaking. She's been reading romance novels since she was ten years old. The last twenty years or so have not changed her voracious appetite for stories of romance, relationships and achieving that vitally important Happy Ever After. She's a firm believer that everyone, no matter their gender, age, sexual orientation or paranormal affiliation deserves a happy ending. For upcoming releases and appearances information, sign up for her newsletter at https://t.co/FfL9gFVJLQ.


Social Media Links

Buy Links
Kobo 





I’ll be giving away a signed copy of my gay YA action/adventure novel DO-GOODER (US only) or a digital copy of one of the contemporary New Adult m/m romance titles in my Letting Go series (open internationally) to a random commenter who tells me: What’s your favorite kind of paranormal romance? Is there a specific “supernatural” element you just love? Contest ends September 7th Midnight EST.

Audiobook Review: Personal Secrets (Personal #4) by K.C. Wells

Blake Davis and husband Will are delighted when Ed Fellows turns up at the hospital the night their daughter is born-even if he is covered in mud from playing rugby and drunk out of his skull. Teammate Colin is the Good Samaritan who drives him there, and when he takes Ed home, Colin finds himself on the receiving end of a blowjob. He has no problem with that whatsoever. He's been in lust with Ed since Ed joined the rugby team some 14 months ago. Only thing is, Colin's assumed up 'til now that Ed is straight. Except the man sucking him off certainly didn't seem straight....

Talk about the morning after the night before....Ed awakens to find a nearly-naked Colin asleep on his sofa. The problem is that for some reason, he can't get Colin out of his mind. Okay, so it wasn't the first blowjob Ed's ever gotten from a guy - or given, for that matter - but that was a long time ago, right? And why does Ed now want more?

With friends Rick, Angelo, Blake, and Will to advise him, Ed finds himself on a completely unfamiliar road, as he struggles to accept that maybe the line he is walking isn't as straight as he'd first imagined...

Narrated by: Cornell Collins
Listening Length: 6 hours and 37 minutes


Reviewer - Shee Reader

This book is a charming addition to the Personal Series, it’s a real joy to see brash Ed find his happily ever after. Of course the road is not a smooth one, but the ending is all kinds of sweet and happy, and Colin is a great match for Ed.

There are many areas of conflict and development: is Ed really gay? Will his family accept him? Is Colin out of his league? Will the homophobia from some of the rugby players end things before they’ve really begun?

Each thread is dealt with well, the writing is classy and the characters are so real I felt I could reach out and touch them.

The dialogue is smartly done and the checking in with established couple Blake and Will is a real pleasure. I adored Colin fan-girling over Will’s books. Such fun!

I didn’t really like Blake’s evil ex popping up, but approved of how Ed dealt with it. Similarly the new PA was a scary character but the team rallied around and all ended well.

The narration is again by Cornell Collins and he does a wonderful job. Each character has a clear identity and the performance brings the book alive beautifully.

Highly recommended.


I was given a free copy in exchange for an honest review.


Review: Pins and Needles by A.J. Thomas

The truth is rarely seen on the surface, and getting to it might mean digging deep…

After a devastating accident and a long stay in the hospital, the last thing petroleum engineer Sean Wilkinson wants to deal with is the settlement the oil company tries to force on him. He’ll never be able to work in his field again, his education is all but useless, and his surgeons are pessimistic about whether he’ll ever walk again. He needs someone in his corner, but most lawyers take one look at his tattoo-covered foster father and turn their backs. It’s just Sean’s luck that the one attorney willing to give him a chance is also the hottest guy he’s ever seen.

As a trial lawyer, Nate Delany has a lot to prove—to his father, the world, and himself. Sean intrigues Nate, and he struggles to reconcile the gifted tattoo artist he can’t stop fantasizing about with the quiet, brilliant engineer. His investigation reveals facts left out of the accident report—including an illicit affair, greedy coworkers, and a vicious corporation that will do anything to protect its bottom line. When Sean’s life is threatened, winning Sean’s case, and his heart, becomes a lot more dangerous.


Sean's life is dramatically derailed when an accident occurs and nearly saws him in two. He's left having to reconfigure his life and future and battle the potential of never being able to walk again. When the man who essentially raised him reaches out for legal assistance against the oil company whose ship Sean was on (and who Sean had just started officially working for days before), he meets Nate, who is as stubborn and proud as he, sans the tattoos.

Nate is tired of living in the shadow of people taking credit for his work. Against his father's wishes, he leaves the firm behind and heads out on his own. His first case? Well, certainly not what he expected, and the attraction to Sean is immediate.

Through twists and turn, the men seek answers (all while trying to stay alive.)
“Come on, let’s go for a walk and—” He stopped and slapped himself in the forehead. “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to…. I’m just sorry.”
Sean chuckled. “They didn’t reprogram my brain to avoid normal figures of speech when they gave me the wheelchair. We can go for a walk.”
Something that I love about A.J. Thomas is that they manage to provide what feels like authentic representation. While not differently abled in the same way as Sean, I have my own physical battles. I felt for Sean as I went through the story and watched him give a middle finger to societies standards for who he can be. I chose the quote above because I think it provides a good example of that in a way that is accessible.

The story has steam, but it is certainly not steam-powered (see what I did there?) It is very much so plot-driven and I really found myself enjoying it. I had predicted at least one of the aspects of who was behind a lot of mayhem, but didn't have it figured out completely. I will say that while A.J. did a great job of making such a complex field and science more understandable, there were times I was still like "what the what?" - and that is part of what took my rating down some. Lucky for everyone, I am not an engineer. We'd all be screwed.

The epilogue felt a bit rushed, but I did like where it went and I don't know that it would've made sense for the story to be extended. It just ended up coming across as reading a 1,000 word paragraph in 20 seconds. Whoooosh.

In the end, this is a solid story by a solid author, and I definitely enjoyed the complex characters, enjoyable side characters, and subplots surrounding family for both Nate and Sean.




A review copy was provided.

Giveaway + Blog Tour: Suspicious Behavior (Bad Behavior, #2) by L.A. Witt & Cari Z.


L.A. Witt, Cari Z. & Riptide Publishing are here today to promote the second of the Bad Behavior series. Be sure to enter the giveaway by leaving a comment below! Good luck!


About Suspicious Behavior


Detective Darren Corliss is hanging by a thread. In between recovering from a near-fatal wound and returning to work at a hostile precinct, he’s struggling to help care for his ailing brother. His partner and boyfriend, Detective Andreas Ruffner, wants to help, but doesn’t know how. And with his own family crises brewing, Andreas is spread almost as thin as Darren.

For cops, though, life takes a backseat to the job. When a stack of unsolved homicides drops into their laps, Andreas and Darren think they’re unrelated cold cases. But when a connection surfaces, they find themselves on the tail of a prolific serial killer who’s about to strike again.

Except they’ve got nothing. No leads. No suspects. Just a pile of circumstantial evidence and a whole lot of hunches. Time is running out to stop the next murder—and to pull themselves back from their breaking points.

Available now from Riptide Publishing. http://www.riptidepublishing.com/titles/suspicious-behavior


About the Bad Behavior Series


It’s “hell no” at first sight for newly partnered detectives Andreas Ruffner and Darren Corliss. Darren is too chipper, Andreas is too gruff, and that whole “IA wants me to prove you’re a dirty cop” thing really doesn’t get them off on the right foot.

It doesn’t matter if they like each other. They’re partners and that’s final. Though Andreas is easy on the eyes. And Darren is kind of cute. And . . . okay, maybe they can make this work.

They’d better, because as their cases get more horrifying—and more personal—they’ll have to trust each other with their lives, and with their hearts.



About Cari Z.

Cari Z was a bookworm as a child and remains one to this day. In an effort to combat her antisocial reading behavior, she did all sorts of crazy things, from competitive gymnastics to alligator wresting (who even knew that was legal!) to finally joining the Peace Corps, which promptly sent her and her husband to the wilds of West Africa, stuck them in a hut, and said, "See ya!" She also started writing, because some things she just thought she could do better. She's still climbing that ladder, but can't stop herself from writing, or from sharing what she creates.

Cari enjoys a wide range of literary genres, from the classics (get 'im, Ahab) to science fiction and fantasy of all types, to historical fiction and reference materials (no, seriously, there are so many great encyclopedias out there). She writes in a wide range of genres as well, but somehow 90% of what she produces ends up falling into the broad and exciting category of m/m erotica. There’s a sprinkling of f/m and f/f and even m/f/m in her repertoire, but her true love is man love. And there's a lot of love to go around.

Cari has published short stories, novellas, and novels with numerous print and e-presses, and she also offers up a tremendous amount of free content on Literotica.com, under the name Carizabeth.

Connect with Cari at http://cari-z.net/  or via her blog, http://carizerotica.blogspot.com/


About L.A. Witt

L.A. Witt is an abnormal M/M romance writer who has finally been released from the purgatorial corn maze of Omaha, Nebraska, and now spends her time on the southwestern coast of Spain. In between wondering how she didn’t lose her mind in Omaha, she explores the country with her husband, several clairvoyant hamsters, and an ever-growing herd of rabid plot bunnies. She also has substantially more time on her hands these days, as she has recruited a small army of mercenaries to search South America for her nemesis, romance author Lauren Gallagher, but don’t tell Lauren. And definitely don’t tell Lori A. Witt or Ann Gallagher. Neither of those twits can keep their mouths shut . . .

L. A.’s backlist is available on her website, and updates (as well as random thoughts and the odd snarky comment) can be found on her blog or on Twitter (@GallagherWitt).




To celebrate the release of Suspicious Behavior, one lucky winner will receive a $10 Riptide credit and their choice in an ebook from each of Cari and L.A.’s backlist! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on August 26, 2017. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!


ICYMI: our review of Suspicious Behavior is here.

Tag Team Review: No Pressure (Accidental Roots #2) by Elle Keaton

Joey James has given up on his ‘Prince Charming’. There is no such thing, he needs to be realistic about his chances of finding a lasting relationship. A chance encounter with a former school mate at the local grocery store changes everything-maybe.
Before Joey can decide what to do about it, he is swept into a terrifying scheme. Forced into helping a dangerous stranger in exchange for his family’s safety, Joey begins a perilous journey into the criminal underbelly of Skagit. He will do whatever is needed to protect his family.

Buck Swanfeldt had a secret crush on Joey James in high school. Buck’s social anxiety and two-year age difference made it impossible for him to approach Joey then. Life since high school has been challenging, and lonely. Eight years later, fate brings them together and Buck decides to act. He utterly fails. He would have left it at that, except fate seems to be intent on pushing Joey in his direction, and clearly, Joey needs someone at his back.

Dark, sordid secrets hiding in Skagit are bubbling to the surface, danger lurks in unexpected places. Buck has never been anyone’s hero but something about Joey has him throwing caution to the wind. Together the two men take on a dangerous force greater than themselves. But sometimes our worst enemy is ourselves.

*warning may need a tissue!

This book is a work of fiction intended for mature audiences only.


Wow, I liked this even more than the first one! The characters, especially Joey and Buck, were engaging and I was able to relate to them on a deep, personal level. The storyline that was carried over from book 1 was wrapped up here in a satisfying and realistic way. Joey was a bit TSTL at times but it worked for me because it's in his nature to care for others, even to his own detriment.

Buck, now... Buck has earned a special place in my pocket and in my heart. Buck's a gentle giant. He's so innocent and awkward and he stumbles over his words when trying to talk to Joey and I just love him so. There's an instant attraction between him and Joey that has Buck so far out of his comfort zone he doesn't know whether to scratch his watch or wind his butt. It was a delight to watch him gather up his courage to pursue Joey, who, frankly, didn't need any encouragement. Buck is hotness personified (think Thor with the temperament of Gentle Ben). He's so adorable I just want to eat him up!

One of the things I loved the most about this book is the realism. Even with a fantastical storyline of mobsters, kidnapping, trafficking and whatnot, everything rang true to me. The relationship was anything but rushed and the fact that Buck realized he needed time on his own to get his head on straight and actually seeking out therapy before pursuing anything further with Joey was so refreshing to read.

Now, the blurb warns that tissues may be needed. I didn't agree with that at first. In truth I didn't agree with that for 98% of the book. But, damned if I didn't cry at the end. They were happy tears, but I did experience some serious facial leakage.

Elle Keaton is proving to be a masterful storyteller and I'm eager to see what she does next. This author is one to watch for, folks. The lady has some serious talent.





Okay. Well the truth is, this book was on my review list. I read and reviewed the first book and loved it - but I've got about a third of the way into it and am struggling with this one.  Sometimes, if I'm struggling I go and look at others' reviews, to see if I can work out what it is I'm missing - or sometimes to see if I'm the only one with the problem! 

In this case, one of the first reviews that came up was that of fellow unicorn and FABULOUS reviewer, Jenni Lea. God-dammit, I must be wrong, because, as you can see, she adored this book. Now, I'm still struggling to get into it, but it's been on my review list for a while so I wanted to get my outta date reviews up to date. Rather than just DNFing and giving the broken-heart review (I don't like to rate if I've not finished unless there is a strong reason why I've DNF'd) I asked Jenni Lea if she'd mind me posting her (fabulous) review, along with my DNF one. Of course she didn't because she's amazing like that!

 I'm not saying no to this book forever, but for now it's a case of it's not you, it's me. Read Jenni Lea's review and she'll tell you all about her lvoe for this book.


A copy of this book was given in exchange for an honest review.
For more information see Goodreads.

Review: Coasting (States of Love) by Yvonne Trent

What happens when you need something but don’t know what it is? Why not look in a place you never heard of?

Out and proud elementary school teacher Cal Hamilton thought he was happy in Philadelphia, but after a breakup, he steps back to reassess his life and discovers something is missing. He gets in his car and drives south with no idea what he hopes to find. The flip of a coin leads him to a small town in Mississippi—practically a different world from the city where he grew up.

Police officer Billy Labarre keeps his sexuality mostly to himself, but he knows just what he needs to fill the hole in his quiet small-town life: the right man. Unfortunately attitudes toward gay men still leave a lot to be desired in the rural South, and it’s hard to meet someone. It’s not likely his perfect match is just going to show up out of the blue….


New author Yvonne Trent's Coasting is a sweet contemporary novella that features a Philadelphian teacher Cal Hamilton and Mississippian police officer Billy Labarre. Since his summer is free, Cal goes on a road trip of sorts after recently breaking up with his boyfriend of five years. He travels down south and goes where his gut tells him... after a flip of a coin.

Ocean Springs, Mississippi is where he ultimately lands. The small town is booming with tourists and there is no room at any local hotels. Officer Billy offers a room at his empty house to crash at. Though Cal doesn't know he's met the officer of the law at the time, he accepts the stranger's kind offer.

Thus begins the start of a very tame and easy relationship. Within 48 hours, the two make permanent decisions and have off page sex. The relationship forms within the first 33% and nothing else happens but repeating that Cal will stay in Mississippi.

The story is nice. There is no angst, no major plot. The story coasts with a sugary ease and not much else. There are readers for this type of read. Not faulting them or this story. I felt it could have easily be finished within 20 pages. A lot of filler about eating, touring the Mississippi bayou and simple sugary sweetness.

The most developed character: Mississippi.

We get to learn the bayou, the food and the culture in the small town. The reader gets to go along as Billy plays tour guide to Cal around his hometown. You get to read his love for his state through and through. *shrugs*

Since the relationship fell into insta-love category, there wasn't much else to help any growth to either main character. The same feelings that they share after a few days continue when the story time jumps months later. Billy is out to those who are close to him but keeps PDA non existent due to where he lives. Cal doesn't mind.

The writing isn't bad. It's nice.

Just like the characters. Nice.

A city guy just ups and stays in a stranger's house without worrying about the possibilities? Nice, I guess for him. As a city girl, I just don't get it. Or the fact five years of a past relationship doesn't get explored for any semblance of depth for the character or snapshot of where Cal's head is at that he could just so easily jump into bed with another man. It's nice not to have to worry about those things.

Nice is there to keep everything even keeled. Nothing and no one rocks the boat or brings any interest to the story. There is a market for nice, non-explicit, no angst sugar. Readers who enjoy that...nice will wallow in Coasting.

Nice, nice, nice.



Niiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiice.





Giveaway + Blog Tour: The Druid Next Door (Fae Out of Water, #2) by E.J. Russell


E.J. Russell & Riptide Publishing are her to promote the second in the Fae Out of Water series! Be sure to enter the stupendous giveaway by leaving a comment! Good luck!


About The Druid Next Door


Professor Bryce MacLeod has devoted his entire life to environmentalism. But how effective can he be in saving the planet when he can’t even get his surly neighbor to separate his recycling?

Former Queen’s Enforcer Mal Kendrick doesn’t think his life could get any worse: he’s been exiled from Faerie with a cursed and useless right hand. When he’s not dodging random fae assassins in the Outer World, he’s going toe-to-toe with his tree-hugging neighbor. And when he discovers that the tree hugger is really a druid, he’s certain the gods have it in for him—after all, there’s always a catch with druids. Then he’s magically shackled to the man and expected to instruct him in Supernatural 101.

All right, now things couldn’t possibly get worse.

Until a mysterious stranger offers a drunken Mal the chance to gain back all he’s lost—for a price. After Mal accepts, he discovers the real catch: an ancient secret that will change his and Bryce’s life forever.

Ah, what the hells. Odds are they won’t survive the week anyway.

Available now from Riptide Publishing. http://www.riptidepublishing.com/titles/the-druid-next-door


About the Fae Out of Water Series


Once upon a time, there were three brothers, nobles of the Seelie Court of Faerie, who set out to seek their fortunes. The eldest—

Scratch that. Rrrrrewind.

Nowadays, when tales are told in 140 character bursts on tiny LED screens, rather than spun out by the glow of a midnight campfire, even Faerie’s elite have to get with the program.

The Kendrick brothers have traded longbow for briefcase, battle steed for Harley, and enchanted harp for electric guitar.  But while they’re finding their feet in the modern world, instead of finding their fortunes, they stumble straight into love.

#faeoutofwater



About E.J. Russell

E.J. Russell holds a BA and an MFA in theater, so naturally she’s spent the last three decades as a financial manager, database designer, and business-intelligence consultant. After her twin sons left for college and she no longer spent half her waking hours ferrying them to dance class, she returned to her childhood love of writing fiction. Now she wonders why she ever thought an empty nest meant leisure.

E.J. lives in rural Oregon with her curmudgeonly husband, the only man on the planet who cares less about sports than she does. She enjoys visits from her wonderful adult children, and indulges in good books, red wine, and the occasional hyperbole.

Connect with E.J.:
Website: ejrussell.com




To celebrate the release of all three books in the Fae Out of Water series, one lucky winner across all three tours will receive a GRAND PRIZE of a $50 Riptide credit! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on September 23, 2017. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the Druid Next Door tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!