Audiobook Review: Deviations: Submission by Chris Owen & Jodi Payne

Tobias is a skilled Dom, able to bring even the most hesitant submissive around. Noah is a man in need of just that. He wants to sub badly but has yet to find someone he believes can take him where he needs to go.

Through a series of encounters in the world of bondage and discipline, Noah reveals why he has trouble trusting, why he needs such a firm, steady hand. Tobias may allow himself to dominate, but he has trouble letting himself love. Still, Tobias can't resist Noah's charms, and the two of them set about making a scene for themselves, one that works for them and their unique set of problems. They learn to love, but can they stay together while they explore each other's secrets in a world where all is laid bare and emotions run high?

From authors Chris Owen, writer of the popular Bareback, and Jodi Payne, writer of String of Pearls, comes a romance on the deviant side, where love is all tied up with the need to submit, the need to dominate, and the need to share a life of exploration and care. These two skilled authors create a world that's hard to resist and a book that's even harder to pause.

Narrated by: Maxx Power
Listening Length: 8 hours and 56 minutes

Reviewer - Annery 

From the age of eight and until very recently I always had dogs among my pets. A ragtag collection of mutts of different sizes very dear to me. Besides teaching them to stay, not bark like lunatics for no reason, and let me know when they “had to go” I never felt compelled to teach them any tricks of the roll-over-give-me-your-paw variety. Couldn’t see the point of it … I loved and enjoyed them without the extras but I do like to walk the talk so if formal BDSM gets your jollies going I want to understand on some level and so I read BDSM books. The ones with Doms and Masters and Subs wanting to be claimed. The ones with clubs, dungeons, St. Andrew’s Crosses, scenes, safe words, people being called Master/Sir and others being called ‘boy’ or ‘pet’ being trained to ‘walk to heel’, kneel, keep their eyes low, and do things like ‘present’ etc. I get the Subs and love them. The Doms are another story. I waver between hating them for being sadistic a#%holes (no matter that the Subs enjoy the pain/humiliation/service) and wondering why someone would want the responsibility of being someone else’s everything. Other D/s books, the informal “here’s a belt, let’s use this to tie you up” variety have my number on speed dial. This was research. That’s my story.

I did the audio for “Submission”, the first in the Deviations Series, narrated by Maxx Power and while he didn’t bowl me over I didn’t hate it. As a narrator he’s very good with precise and clear diction and well marked differentiation between character voices … perhaps a little clinical in tone? I don’t know. It works well for this type of BDSM story. My hiccup came with the voice he does for Noah when Noah is in his submissive role. To my ears he sounds almost a bit childish but a fake childish. Kind of like a faux innocent voice but then maybe I’m just being fastidious. I’d say give it a go. You’ll be entertained because the story itself is good. I’d recommend it.

“Submission” is the first in a five book series which chronicles a BDSM relationship from its inception. It falls within what I’ve coined the FSOG progeny and I in no way mean that as a slur and I can confidently say that this book surpases FSOG by leaps and bounds. The writing is good and neither MC is a shy innocent virgin or under 30 Master of The Universe. Still some of the conventions have been kept.

Noah is cop by day submissive nights and weekends. After some pretty bad experiences has been coming to a certain BDSM club where everyone knows your name, think Cheers but with dungeons and adult playrooms, in the hopes of finding a Dom or Master to take him on and satisfy some deep-seated needs. What these needs are remains a bit vague apart from the general “let another shoulder all responsibility while controlling me for my own good” variety. I suppose more will be explored/revealed in future books and I’m a pretty patient reader.

Dr. Tobias Vincent is a veterinarian, of the farm animal variety, by day and Dom extraordinaire during his off hours. It’s almost like a super-hero with his civilian persona and of course he has money which allows for all the toys. And I mean ALL THE TOYS. Lets just say there’s a former horse stable full of modified stalls.

Tobias and Noah are set up by Bradford, the manager of The Club, who also apparently functions as a matchmaker for BDSM couples, and they hit the ground running.

I liked it very much. I liked that though the authors don’t do a primer per se for BDSM newbies you could be a total babe in the woods and understand what the the dynamics are. Primarily this is because Noah himself though a submissive seems to be confused as to what that is or why he needs it. Thankfully Master Tobias is here to pick up the slack and clarify:

     “You know,” Tobias said easily, “I firmly believe that regular discipline lessens the need for punishment.” Another snap and the two lines were neatly connected. “But then, punishment is often a rewarding experience. What do you think?”

     Noah hunched his shoulders and then flexed them. He puffed out air with a rough sound and cleared his throat. “Punishment is about learning from mistakes, discipline is about learning not to make them,” he said quickly. It was obviously a phrase he’d studied carefully at some point. He took two quick breaths, held them a moment, and when he exhaled he relaxed somewhat.
     “I’ll accept the first, not the second.” Tobias laid a fourth stroke on Noah’s back and stepped close, pressing one finger into him and slowly thrusting back and forth. Noah groaned. “Oh, God.” His head dropped forward. 
     “Mistakes are allowed, made up for, and forgiven. Discipline lets you know yourself, lets you gain strength.”

I liked how the relationship between Tobias and Noah develops with each scene they have and also outside interactions. I was mightily relieved to see Tobias start to need/crave Noah. To have doubts and need reassurance. In the beginning it seemed like Tobias was the messiah complete with the walking on water bit and I was so not up for that. Big relief.

I liked that though both have issues due to previous fraught relationships they seem willing and ready to try something new and see where it goes. There was none of this “my heart is closed” BS. I liked their ages and that they behaved like people who are not sixteen. I liked the side characters, Mrs. Miller, Bradford, and Brett. Phan … I may need to warm up to but I’m sure he’ll figure prominently in the next books. I liked that no avowals of true love are blurted out due to magic dick. The seeds are sowed for a future HEA but it ends in a satisfying HFN. This is really a perfect set-up chapter for the series and I’ll definitely be reading the next installments.

A review copy was provided.

Guest Review: Up in the Air 1: Johannesburg by George Loveland

Looking for love is the last thing air steward, James Foster, is thinking about when he swaps flights to save his hung-over best friend’s job. He doesn’t know that fate has other ideas and he would fall for the tall, bearded passenger, Darren Busby, sat in 14D. Up in the air, James finds that the connection he has with Darren is too strong to ignore.

After missing the opportunity to ask for Darren’s number, James' jaw hits the floor when Darren walks into the same hotel he is staying at. Butterflies and nerves take over, but soon give way to excitement as they get to know each other on the ground.

When James' ex, Richard, shows up and begs for forgiveness, James has to decide if going back to the man who broke his heart would be worth it, or if he should finally move on and take a chance on Darren.

Reviewer - Shee Reader

This was a very sweet, relatively quick read (more of a novella length) but was no less enjoyable for that!

The peek through the curtain (as it were) to the on board antics of the cabin crew was really fun, and the meeting up in Johannesburg as James waits for his return flight and Darren gets down to the job he’s there for is really cute. I liked that the two men were from near each other at home so my little romantic heart could embrace the HEA possibilities!

James’ best friend was a side character, but I’m sure we’ll get to him in Up In the Air 2! I loved James’ nan and her need to feed the boys up was reminiscent of my dear old nan.

James’ ex was a bit of a horror and I loved how Darren rose to the challenge when the hideous man made a play to get James back.

All in all, I’d have loved this to be a full length book, but it has left me wanting more in the series!


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

Review: Stalking Buffalo Bill (Shifter U #1) by j. leigh bailey

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.

New to me author j. leigh bailey has done it! This is the book I was waiting for and thank goodness I didn’t have to wait long. I am a fan of the Dreamspun Desires line and was anxious to see how the formula would translate into the Dreamspun Beyond line and this book was perfect with blending the two together. We get shifters and we get fluff. Really, what more could you ask for?

Told from the POV of our resident coyote shifter Donnie Granger, we meet Donnie as he is stalking, or checking out the hot customer at Buddy’s Café, where he is a barista. Donnie has been crushing on the customer he knows as William and decides to take a leap and actually talk to the guy and try to seduce him with scones.

But after the seduction attempt, a couple of rough looking dudes come into the café looking for William and Donnie decides to shift and do a bit of sleuthing to find out why. The sleuthing leads him to the campus of Shifter U, where William is a professor, and it all ends up with him naked in human form with William in a janitor’s closet.

Trust me when I say this book is fun. It’s fun. It’s sweet. It’s sexy. It’s swoony. Oh my heart is it ever swoony.

But let me try to tell you more about the story without giving it all away.

Bad guys are after William and William won’t tell Donnie why and Donnie wants to protect the man he is falling hard and fast for. Donnie and William are totally into one another but after horizontal good stuff happens, William pushes Donnie away and it hurts him. Donnie keeps thinking that William is treating him like a child because of their age difference (only 10 years) and how William is so protective of him so Donnie goes to naked lengths to prove he isn’t a child. And the proof gives us ridiculously sexy times with so much emotion I was melting at my desk as I read this.

Now the mystery of why the baddies want William and who William really is give the story a level of intrigue along with all the shifters that live in Cody. I loves the idea of the shifters living in shifter friendly town with a shifter friendly university but living in harmony all together. Ford, is Donnie’s best friend and a bird of prey but we don’t know exactly what kind of bird until later in the book and it’s fascinating! Oh and when we get to the conversation about what William’s shift is I fell into a fit of giggles because it’s written so well, with so much teasing that can only be done when you have feelings for someone. But really, what were William’s parents thinking? *giggles*

I have so many highlights from this story but I just realized sharing them would be spoiling those moments for you so I won’t share them. But the moments are full of laughter and romance with each topping the other with their awesomeness.

I honestly loved the hell out of Donnie. His energy totally matches his shift as a coyote and I found his ramblings to be endearing. He’s a guy who can’t sit still for very long and tends to do things before he thinks but it’s what makes him such a loveable character. His crush on William is adorable and I love how he puts himself out there to protect this manly man of his, even when he wasn’t his but really, when wasn’t William ever NOT his, you know? I know and trust me, these two are amazing with sizzling chemistry that heats up the page and makes you want to keep them locked in a room together for a very, very long time.

William is such a strong and alpha character whose energy again totally matches his shift. As an American Bison he would seem to be docile and gentle but don’t touch what is his or you will feel the strength and power he has to keep those he loves from harm. His backstory is heartbreaking and yet it’s what makes him amazing for Donnie even if Donnie doesn’t get it at first because well, William doesn’t tell him. *sigh* Seriously though, the dude is all sort of Alpha either dressed in all black strapped down with weapons or in comfortable oatmeal sweater at the café drinking his back coffee. And yet the dude now belongs on my Swoony McSwoonster shelf because he may think he doesn’t do well with words but when he uses them… I turn into goo and goo is always good. Ack! I want to snuggle the fuck out of William but would not risk the wrath of his coyote or the coyote’s friends, boss or family. Nope. Shifters in numbers are powerful. Just so you know.

I am rambling, I know and I can’t stop. That’s how good this book was. I cherished the romance between William and Donnie and love the way the author gave their story to us. The series of Shifter U promises to be one hell of a fun ride with amazing characters that sneak their way into your heart.

Oh, one more thing. That end? William’s gift? Let’s just say Book –1, Sara’s hopeless romantic heart – 0. That end was so romantic and just so perfect between these two. It was everything I could have hoped for and even more.

Now, the only think I could hope for now is for Ford to get a book because his shift is stunning and I would love to see who could handle him.

A review copy was provided.

Don't miss the Stalking Buffalo Bill blog tour + giveaway HERE! Ends Sept 7th!

Giveaway + Blog Tour: Glamour Thieves (Blue Unicorn #1) by by Don Allmon

Don Allmon is here today promoting The Glamour Thieves and talking influences. He and Riptide Publishing are offering up a $20 Riptide Gift Card to a lucky commenter. Good luck!

The weird thing is this: The people I admire style-wise don’t even write in my genre(s). In fact, some of it ain’t even writing at all.

So when I think about people who've influence my writing style, I’m not going to list the usual suspects: Stephen Brust, Fritz Leiber, Robert E. Howard, Scott Lynch, blah blah blah. They all influenced my subject matter, but not style.

So here I’m going to list the weird ones. The ones you’d never guess. (Or maybe you would.)

These influences are all pretty dark. I’m really not that grim. Honest. My grim streak is only about a mile wide, which isn't wide at all if you got some perspective.

Cormac McCarthy. I’m not talking about The Road (though I liked it). I’m talking about All the Pretty Horses and Blood Meridian and No Country for Old Men. And I’m also not talking about how McCarthy ruined my ability (or my inclination) to use proper punctuation or construct proper sentences. What I’m talking about—what I learned from McCarthy—was that you could write brutal violent fiction beautifully. And somehow that made it even more awful to witness, which is, of course, the whole point in doing it in the first place.

Elmore Leonard. But not Elmore Leonard. I'm talking about the audiobook of Mr. Paradise read by Robert Forster. Now I love Elmore Leonard anyway, but this is about Forster’s reading of Elmore Leonard. Forster reads as if he’s jaded as fuck. Nothing on the page phases him. Not violence, not sex, not corruption, nothing. He’s gonna deadpan it all in this almost-Brooklyn lilt through the whole damn book. It was so goddamn cocky. So goddamn authentic. So when I wrote The Glamour Thieves, it was always Forster’s voice reading it back to me. What I learned from Forster's reading was rhythm.

(Here's an aside: Austin doesn't sound like Robert Forster. He sounds like Kevin Spacey when he's doing his gentle southern drawl for no good reason at all except that Kevin Spacey's voice is the sound of an elf's glamour.)

Gengoroh Tagame. Now before y’all go “Who?” and start Googling this guy at work, STOP. Tagame is a Japanese writer/artist of bara, a subgenre of gay erotic manga (as opposed to yaoi). A lot of his stuff is some really disturbing sexual abuse and BDSM. Mix in some Japanese baggage about gender and sexuality (even more baggage than we have in America, and that’s saying something) and you get a story that ain't for most people. That said, I love this stuff. It’s dirty and transgressive and every once in a while dirty and transgressive is exactly what I need. And here's the huge plus: Tagame’s men (and the men of bara in general) often challenge the gay physical stereotype. They’re often muscular, sure, but just as often heavy-set and hairy. They’re often young, sure, but just as often old and grizzled. They're an acquired taste to love. Just like my orcs.

So yeah, all a bit grim. But I promise in book three, The Burning Magus, despite it all, JT and Austin get their HEA. Like I said, my grimdark only runs a mile wide, not one inch more.


Howdy y'all. I'm Don Allmon and I got a debut book name of The Glamour Thieves. It’s the first of a three book series called The Blue Unicorn. It's a grim kind of fantasy, a cybernetic near-dystopia, a rough-edged romance with few promises except for the ones that matter. Ain't nothin' worth earnin' that wasn't hard won. Join in on the comments and win yourself some loot.

About The Glamour Thieves

JT is an orc on the way up. He’s got his own boutique robotics shop, high-end clientele, and deep-pocketed investors. He’s even mentoring an orc teen who reminds him a bit too much of himself back in the day.

Then Austin shows up, and the elf’s got the same hard body and silver tongue as he did two years ago when they used to be friends and might have been more. He’s also got a stolen car to bribe JT to saying yes to one last scheme: stealing the virtual intelligence called Blue Unicorn.

Soon JT’s up to his tusks in trouble, and it ain’t just zombies and Chinese triads threatening to tear his new life apart. Austin wants a second chance with JT—this time as more than just a friend—and even the Blue Unicorn is trying to play matchmaker.

Available now from Riptide Publishing.

About Don Allmon

In his night job, Don Allmon writes science fiction, fantasy, and romance. In his day job, he’s an IT drone. He holds a master of arts in English literature from the University of Kansas and wrote his thesis on the influence of royal hunting culture on medieval werewolf stories. He’s a fan of role-playing games, both video and tabletop. He has lived all over from New York to San Francisco, but currently lives on the prairies of Kansas with many animals.

Connect with Don:
     Twitter: @dallmon

To celebrate the release of The Glamour Thieves, one lucky winner will receive a $20 Riptide gift card! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on September 2, 2017. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info! 

Review: Finding Mr. Wrong by Charlie Cochet

He’s nobody’s definition of Mr. Right—but that might make him perfect.

Matthew Hart is heir to the family fortune and owner of Hart & Home. When a near-death experience has him fretting over the future, he decides he needs a husband, and not just any husband—an appropriate man to protect the Hart legacy. The last thing Matthew expects is to cross paths with Jax Foster, his first love and the boy who crushed his heart when he disappeared.

Jax is unlikely to make Matthew’s list of suitable candidates. Bad boy, vagabond, deep in debt, with a father who can’t keep out of trouble, Jax has nothing to offer—except his heart and a second chance at the romance they never got to explore.

Oh yeah! This is fluff done right and done so well within the Dreamspun line. This book is full of first loves and lost, second chance romance, great dialogue, an over the top story arc that had me glued to the page, a charming secondary cast, hot sex, romance out the wazoo and well, a hope for a second book with two men who lit up the page with their chemistry!


Matthew Hart is in a good place in life. He’s taken over the family business of Hart & Home from his father and not only brought the furniture company into the new age of technology but they are thriving financially. Matthew has nothing in life to bring his spirits down...that is until one day, lunch from his favorite place ends him in the hospital. This harrowing medical experience has shaken Matthew and made him realize, he doesn’t want to live his life alone anymore, alone and unloved.

When Matthew trusts his personal assistant Adam with the truth about his lunch and the oddity of his epi pen not being where it should have, he begins to worry. Also with this trust in Adam, Matthew lays his heart on the table lamenting his bachelor status and his new need to find someone to spend his life with ‘til death do they part. But Matthew doesn’t know where to look for a possible husband and when Adam questions him about what he likes in a man, we learn about Matthew’s first love, Jax Foster.

Matthew and Jax met when they were ten years old with Jax saved Matthew from his routine beatings from school bullies. It was this first meeting that solidified Matthew’s sexuality and Jax became a list of first for Matthew. Granted, the boys lives were vastly different with Matthew’s being one of influence and Jax’s being from the wrong side of the tracks but the boys fell in love as much as two young men could. But this love, this deep and first love was shattered when Jax disappears and leaves Matthew heartbroken and never able to fully get over Jax. You what they say about first loves, right?

I have to take a moment and say how much I adored Matthew’s assistant Adam from the beginning because once he hears Matthew’s story, he goes into full romance novel matchmaking and you know where the story is going to lead and it did not disappoint. Adam is not just Matthew’s personal assistant but he is his best friend and a friend of the family. Adam only wants the best for Matthew even if he has to push his best friend out of his comfort zone to get closure or win the heart of his first love and live happily ever after.

When Adam and Martin, Matthew’s father, decide Matthew needs to oversee an artist's commission for one of their very important clients, Matthew is unprepared when he finds a brilliant glass etcher who’s kept something from Matthew’s past along with Matthew’s heart. You see, Martin and Adam only want the best for Matthew and knowing he needs to see Jax again gives them ample opportunity to throw the men together, even if neither of them knew it was happening. Though Matthew is angry and refuses to listen to Jax when they meet face to face after 20 years, the fierce emotion he portrays gives all of us hope because you know, fighting is great foreplay.

Told in the dual POV of Matthew and Jax, we get the latter MC after the men meet again 20 years later. Jax has never forgotten about Matthew all these years but what can a man who is forever in debt, never been out of the country and has who has a gambling/con addicted father ever fit into the world of Matthew Hart who is on the cover of Forbes Magazine? Sure, this has the “I decided to never contact you because I am no good for you” bit but I am a reader who loves that because it always gives ample opportunity for the MC’s to hash out where they are wrong and what really can work for them as a couple.

So, as Matthew oversees the commission, he and Jax begin to build a new friendship while each man learns how truly talented their first love is. As they learn about one another over meals disguised as meetings or overseeing of the project, Jax sweetens the deal by taking the first step back into Matthew’s heart with a piece of lemon cake and a promise to hear Jax out. This promise leads them on a date and the hearing of honest confessions.

Goodness. But I loved these two. I loved that they are both grown adult men and yet it’s almost as if you can feel who they were as young men in love. It’s palpable in their past and it’s amazing to witness in the present. Jax’s reason for leaving Matthew was heartbreaking but his fierce determination to keep the boy he loved safe was so lovely even at that young age. Jax has never forgotten Matthew and after they hear truths and leave the past behind, it’s time for them to get down, I mean, get on with this new part of their lives and possibility of a relationship.

Was it too much to hope for that Jax could be his Mr. Right? Granted, Jax didn’t really seem to fit the title of Mr. Right, but maybe he’d been looking at it all wrong. Maybe what Matthew needed was a little Mr. Wrong.

I will tell you, this book is pure fluff and I want to dive back in right away. This line from Dreamspinner has had me in its grasp from the first book and I don’t think I will ever get enough. I used to adore the books I would borrow (without permission) from my sister and soak up the romance in the categoricals she kept beside her bed and now, I get that same feeling back as I read stories of two men doing everything to fall in love and have their happily ever after. Call me an easy reader but I am reader who truly enjoys the romance these books give me and this one, this one falls perfectly in line with my favorites.

Anyway. Matthew and Jax while falling easily back into the comfort of being around one another, fall hard and fast but jealousies from irritating people lead to a story arc that is a bit over the top but one I couldn’t stop reading. It gave a bit of action and surprise to a book that was very low angst and sweet and brought it back down again with the warm embrace that is the true romance of Matthew and Jax.

Finding Mr. Wrong was the perfect read for a Sunday spent snuggled up in bed with dogs and a cup of tea, my favorite way to read. The book had everything I needed to put a smile on my face, a shift in my hips during the sexy parts, butterflies in my stomach as Jax and Matthew fall in love and a sigh as they fight for their HEA.

Tag Team Review: The Highlander (The Order #2) by Kasia Bacon

I, Lochan of the famed Féyes clan, know all about fighting.

As a half-breed Elf, I have struggled against prejudice and feelings of inadequacy.

A recluse by nature, I have battled my aversion to touch and interaction with others.

To become an assassin of The Order, I have learnt to overcome the limitations of my mind and body.

But denying the power Ervyn Morryés holds over me might be the one fight I lose. The truth is—damn it all—the relentless Highlander brings me to my knees.

Note: This novelette is the second in the Order Series, and not a stand-alone installment. Reading THE MUTT is crucial for its full enjoyment.

4.75 Hearts Average!

Sara - 5 Hearts

I fell in love with Lochan of the famed Féyes clan as I met him through the eyes of Dark Elf Ervyn Morryés in The Mutt. But in this, in this instalment from his own voice and being in his head, I am lost in all that is Lochan.

I wasn’t sure where this story would take me, if it would be a retelling of The Mutt from Lochan’s POV or something new and thankfully we get something new.

The Highlander takes place four months after the end of The Mutt with Ervyn and Lochan together as much as they can as they prepare for their service in the elite unit of the Queen’s Army. Lochan is basically an introvert and most of this book – his book – is cerebral and I dug it hard. Lochan has never been one to openly socialize outside of training or let anyone near enough let alone touch him but Ervyn has broken down all his walls and shown him more than he could have hoped for.

I loved how sweet the beginning of this book was. We get Lochan as he is struggling with his insomnia and missing the only thing that allows him to sleep through the night, Ervyn. Ugh. I mean, talk about making me swoon first and fast in the story when I wasn’t quite expecting it. I was ready for the feelings that the first book gave me but Lochan is a man of few words with strong emotions and being in his head was amazing.

At times, he felt, smelt and tasted like my fate. At others—my biggest mistake. I remained indecisive about whether I loved or despised that he reached for me as though he had the right, and that I complied with fervour.

I loved Ervyn as Lochan sees him and I am a sucker for endearments so when Lochan finally gets the meaning of Mu’hrōnye, I turned into a big puddle of goo.

But for all the swooning and new editions of hurt/comfort we get in this book, we get a level of angst as Lochan prepares for his future away from Evryn. The last line of The Mutt blew me away and I kinda forgot that Lochan wasn’t hip to the change in career Evryn had made to be with him and seeing Lochan fret about his feelings was heartbreaking. Lochan wants a life with Evryn but decides to distance himself from his Dark Elf so he doesn’t hurt more than he is already but these two, they are fated and thank goodness this ended how it did.

The Highlander was amazing, these two are stunning and I cannot wait to get further into the series. Kasia Bacon has created a beautifully intriguing world of The Order that has sucked me for one hell of a ride and I am strapped in and ready to go.

SheReadsALot - 4.5 Hearts

Whatever pathetic, alarming anticipation had awoken in me, Ervyn Morryés was the only one to quench it.
And even if it couldn't go anywhere, it'd become apparent that, simply, no one else would do.

After reading The Highlander (The Order #2) by Kasia Bacon, I stared in the air for a minute or two. For a short story, there was insight and emotion all through out the short story and I felt it.

Oh did I feel it.

I'll try my best to get my thoughts out, they're all jumbled still.

It is best to read The Mutt first and continue this series in order to get the maximum effect. In The Mutt, the story from the POV of Highlander elf archer, Ervyn. He is fascinated with half breed (elf/human) Lochan. They're training to be assassins in Queen's army. He claims his loner Mutt, much to Lochan's chargin.

And in The Highlander, the story is four months later and Lochan's POV this time around. The two assassins in training are a couple? I put a question because Ervyn was steadfast in his feelings for Lochan from The Mutt and they never faltered. Lochan on the other hand, he's a loner and socially awkward, introverted and not used to...feelings.

Ervyn is so confident and Lochan is woefully not, that it takes time for him to realize that Ervyn isn't a one-off. That the need that aches inside for the other man means something. And he does this while training to join the elite assassin section of the Elf army. He has so much to prove since his kind is looked down on and Ervyn makes him want, makes him crave.

Why Ervyn?
Because the first time he forced a kiss on a me, I came alive? Because he laughed at the things I said? Touched me with such greed, as if he could never get enough? Looked at me rapt with wonder when I trembled in his arms, lost somewhere between ecstasy and sheer horror at the strength of the longing he inspired in me?
The story is jam packed with emotions. Being inside the snarky, quiet mind of Lochan is a great read. We get to learn more of Lochan's background and his harder upbringing. We get to learn more about the world the author crated (thank you for creating the glossary- it helped LOTS)

The quiet ones always get me every time. The lengths you can go when given a character like Lochan in the right hands can be magical.
"You're in love with him."
No. Yes. Am I? Mighty gods and fuck.
I nodded. That admission surprised, depressed and exhilarated me all at once.

I'm not going to complain much about the length. The writing continues to be tight, no typos, shows a lot without telling. Though it is a brief slice into what I hope will be a full story, the writing conveys important moments: the moment when you realize you're in love, when you have to change from 'just me' to a 'we'. That's my jam. There is some action as well at the elf camp and a little hiccup presented for the new lovers, but nothing too crazy.

The Highlander is also a little sexier this time around.

"I keep dreaming about your lips," he whispered.
"You'll be spending a long time on your knees tonight."
The smut lover in me continues to hope there will be a wonderful scene where the possessiveness and handsi-ness will get to fully run its course. Those two will melt bedsheets I tell ya! A little more erotic in detail *coughs*frottage score*coughs* than the last book.

I'm waffling on how to rate this, it's between 4 -5 Hearts. In a way it is stronger than The Mutt, but I think it is due to the reader getting to delve a little deeper in the arc of what I hope is something epic. The story seemed to be laying a foundation of something to come. I just wonder what it is. I was hoping a little for possible second chance romance in the future from where I thought the author was going. Also, that hiccup I mentioned? It was resolved very quickly. I don't know if groveling is necessary, but something about the way it was brushed aside and not mention again by the end is the only thing that sticks in my craw.

Overall, a great follow up. I'm a fan of this world and glad to see the consistency from The Mutt continued. And now that we're deeper into the Order world this author created, the book covers take a whole new light.

Recommended for fantasy lovers

Don't miss The Highlander giveaway HERE !

Giveaway + Blog Tour: Midlife Crisis by Audra North

Audra North and Riptide Publishing are here today to promote Midlife Crisis and there's a $25 Amazon Gift Card up for grabs. Good luck!

About Midlife Crisis

Cam McGhee grew up like any other small-town Texas farm boy: he played football, went to church every Sunday, and married his high school sweetheart. But thirty-five years after he said "I do," Cam finds himself nursing a beer in a gay bar, thinking about what might have been.

Dave Montoya is confident, self-assured, and cautiously single. But when he meets shy, uncertain, and clearly-still-not-out Cam in a coffee shop in Austin, his reservations about getting seriously involved again disappear. Cam is everything he’s looking for in a partner . . . almost, anyway.

No matter how much Dave wants him, and how good they are together, Cam can't bring himself to openly embrace the life he was meant to live. After all, when his secret finally gets out, he faces the very real possibility of losing everything that kept him going for the first fifty years of his life, just like he’s feared for so long. But with a little faith—and a lot of love—his dream of living fully, truly, as himself might finally be within reach.

Available now from Riptide Publishing.

About Audra North

Audra North is a contemporary romance author of more than twenty romances, including the Stanton Family series, the Hard Driving series, and the Pushing the Boundaries series. She is the owner and publisher of Pink Kayak Press, which focuses on the publication of diverse romance works. Winter Rain, a Pink Kayak Press anthology, won a gold medal in the 2015 Independent Publisher Awards.

Audra enjoys speaking to writing groups and at industry conferences. She is also an avid jogger and loves running marathons. She has three children and lives with her family outside of Boston.

For more about Audra, and to sign up for her newsletter, visit

Connect with Audra:
     Twitter: @AudraNorth

To celebrate the release of Midlife Crisis, one lucky winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on September 2, 2017. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!

Review: Santa's Naughty Helper (Lawyers in Love #1) by Ari McKay

Shy lawyer Kevin Anderson is presented with an unexpected opportunity when he draws hunky litigator Erik Wilson’s name for their office’s secret holiday gift exchange. Kevin has pined for his friend for a long time, but he fears ruining their working relationship if Erik doesn’t return his feelings. The anonymity of the exchange gives him the chance to let Erik know someone is interested, so Kevin turns the gift into a game: twelve days of presents, each more suggestive, culminating with a Christmas Eve meeting—if Kevin finds the courage to see it through!

Erik is intrigued by his secret Santa, who has given him something to look forward to during the holidays for the first time in years. But as Christmas approaches, he realizes he doesn’t want a mystery man; he wants his best friend, Kevin. When his attempts to instigate something with Kevin fail, Erik accepts the dinner invitation of his secret admirer. Little does he suspect that Santa’s naughty little helper might be just the man to make all his Christmas dreams come true in a holiday friends-to-lovers romance that progresses from sweet to spicy for two sexy lawyers.

I do love summertime Jizzmas so very much. It’s my crack no matter what the calendar says to be honest, but the novelty of Christmas when temps are at their peak is a balm to my sweaty soul. The novellas are the best too, they’re generally the fluffiest and that’s what I’m after. Santa’s Naughty Helper is exactly that, a fluffy sweet novella that’ll just make you happy and anxious for cooler temps.

I’m also a huge fan of this author team and they write holiday stories that appeal to me especially. Last Leap of the First-Foot and Letters from Cupid come to mind first and On the Rocks is a must read. And while I enjoyed Santa’s Naughty Helper, it does show me how much these authors have honed their craft since this story was originally published. Kevin and Erik are best friends but their exchanges felt a little unnatural to me, they were telling me about everything instead of showing me, so the closeness between them didn’t flow as naturally as some of their later characters.

Kevin and Erik were completely charming though and it was obvious they are meant to be together. They are complementary opposites with Kevin being shy and unassuming while Erik has no problem being in front of an audience (or courtroom). They work together on projects often, balancing their skill sets nicely. Kevin is a top notch researcher and Erik is the man presenting the findings. Since these two are good pals, the angst level is very low so, I mean, you know these two are going to be a thing, so instead of being stressed about outcome, I was able to just enjoy the cuteness.

Kevin is Erik’s Secret Santa and he literally decides to go all out. Or in. And out. You know what I mean. This is his chance to come clean to Erik about how he feels and he decides not to let his shyness rob him of his chance to get his man. Kevin decided that gifting Erik with 12 days of Christmas goodies was the way to go and he upped the ante every day. The gifts quickly went from sweet to sexy, and not subtle sexy either. When Kev decides to do something, by God he does it. I gotta respect that.

Erik was on board with the gifties too which encouraged Kevin all the more, hence the absence of angst. If we take a quick step into the real world and these gifts were being gifted to your average Joe you’d have an HR nightmare on your hands, but thankfully the real world had no place here and Erik embraced the gifts with his horny holiday heart.

My fave part is the big reveal and I have to admit, I read it twice. I really like Kevin and the setup was just perfectly him along with his newfound courage. These two went from friends to in-love-lovers in literally one thrust. I had no trouble believing it for Kevin since he’s been crushing on Erik forever but I would expect Erik would need a smidge more time to process the new dynamics. But as I’ve said reality has no place here so Erik was right there with Kevin and that made me happy for my Kevin and his Christmas.

**a copy of this story was provided for an honest review**

Review: Liar, Liar by T.A. Moore

Just another day at the office.

For some people that means spreadsheets, and for others it’s stitching endless hems. For Jacob Archer a day at the office is stealing proprietary information from a bioengineering firm for a paranoid software billionaire. He’s a liar and a thief, parlaying a glib tongue and a facile conscience into a lucrative career. He just has one rule—never get involved with a mark.

Well, had one rule. To be fair though, Simon Ramsey is dark, dangerous, and has shoulders like a Greek statue. Besides, it’s not as though Jacob’s even really stealing from Simon… just his boss and his brother-in-law. Simon didn’t buy that excuse either after he caught Jacob breaking into the company’s computer network.

That would have been that—one messy breakup, one ticket to Bali booked—but it turns out that the stolen information is worth more than Jacob thought. With his life—and his ribs—threatened, Jacob needs Simon to help him out. Or maybe he just needs Simon.

First, why haven’t I read T.A. Moore before and second, I am so freaking glad that I have now remedied this situation because this book was so damn good!

What a refreshing way to start a book, meeting our first MC Jacob as he is doing his job – stealing from the company where he is cleaning floors – and getting caught by the chief of security who also happens to be his lover, Simon. Yup, that first chapter starts off so good and I loved it so much I read it twice. But the action and adventure doesn’t wane in the book because Jacob is on to much more than he was hired to recover.
“…I’m not a con artist,” Jacob said.
“You’re a thief.”
“I prefer Confidential Information Acquisitions,”
Jacob is a liar, he admits it because it’s his job and he’s good at it. When he was hired to get information from Syntech to see if they had stolen code from PeaPod, Jacob finds the answer and then finds himself deep into the espionage between two men and the corporations they head and being this deep can cost him his life. Jacob is in way over his head and even his lies can’t get him out of this situation but he knows the man who saved his life once before, the man who shares his life and bed with Jacob won’t turn his back when he asks for help.

Simon is an ex-marine who now works for his brother-in-law after the death of his sister and being medically released from the military. Simon trusts his employer and brother-in-law Dev but Simon also trusted Jacob or rather who Jacob said he was and finding out he was lied to has thrown Simon for a loop. But Simon, as gruff and freaking tough as he is, has it bad for Jacob. And the emotions he has are hard to toss aside when the man, who’d made himself at home in Simon's apartment, life, and heart, calls Simon because he’s been kidnapped and people want him dead.


I have so much I want to say about this book and how much I loved reading it and being part of Jacob and Simon’s romance and this truly is a romance but not the sort you are used to. Kinda?

I mean, we get our couple long after the meet cute and awkward stage of newness and we are dropped into their lives as they’ve been together or months and now? Now Simon knows that Jacob has been lying but he doesn’t know what was a lie in their relationship, beyond the obvious and at times, Jacob doesn’t even know. But this is more than Jacob lying to his lover, this is a romance where when all the cards are laid out, will love win?

“Simon, fuck, this wasn’t meant to happen.”
I simply adored this so much. It was ridiculously swoony with more moments than I can count. It was action packed with both Jacob and Simon running for their lives. It was intriguing to figure out who was behind it all and it was so romantic. I can’t even begin to describe the level of feels you get in this book from simple touches and words… but this was also hilarious and snarky! Jacob and Simon truly complement one another and their banter was fun to witness. They know each other better than anyone could regardless of Jacob’s lies which honestly, we – along with Simon – never really get which was the truth and which were lies but it doesn’t matter, Simon and Jacob are meant to be and that’s it.

That end was the best thing and SO on point for the couple. I think had it been anything more, it wouldn’t have been believable but it left me with a silly soppy grin on my face that’s present as I write this just thinking about Simon calling Jacob and “asshole.” Yeah, it’s that kind of book. *winks*

Liar, Liar was one hell of a ride that I am glad I finally decide to jump on. I can’t imagine not meeting Jacob, Simon and Fozzy, witnessing the adventures they have nor being happily brain squished between the snarky and sexy sandwich they present.