Six For Sunday

Six For Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Steph @ A little But A Lot. If you want to know more, or are thinking of joining in, do pop over and visit her. Prompts are published well in advance and Steph even provides banners should you wish to use them.

#SixForSunday – ‘Clever’ Characters

1. Sherlock – Clockwork Stalker
by Cari Silverwood

This is a gaslamp romance, featuring a dark, deviant Sherlock Holmes and the equally intelligent Wilhelmina Moriarty. Plus some interesting stainless steel implements and a lot of rope.

2&3. Karina & Uilleam
The Kingmaker Saga
by London Miller

Uilleam is THE man to go to if you need a job doing and are prepared to pay his price. Everything he does is to his own advantage and plays into his long game. If life were a game of chess, you’d discover that he was playing both sides, and always to his benefit. Karina is the woman who bested him.

4. Shelley – The Genius
by Elin Peer

The book title says it all. Shelly, the heroine, is a genius. Apart from when it comes to men, and then she’s definitely a novice. The Genius is a dystopian romance.

5. Toby – Fool’s Paradise
by Lilliana Anderson

Toby is a criminal mastermind, the man who keeps the rest of his criminal family safe and secure. However it isn’t the life he wants and he tries to escape. Follow his adventures in this full of feels contemporary romance.

6. Elle – Oh Henry
by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff

With a genius IQ, even if she is a nerd, Elle is the heroine of this NA contemporary romance with a hint of comedy. I adored this story, it had a little of everything and a lot of great story.

#SixForSunday

Six For Sunday – Favourite Colour

Six For Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Steph @ A little But A Lot. If you want to know more, or are thinking of joining in, do pop over and visit her. Prompts are published well in advance and Steph even provides banners should you wish to use them.

Today’s prompt is to share 6 book covers that feature my favourite colour. Part of me wants to say I don’t particularly have a favourite colour – and from my home and my clothing you probably wouldn’t be able to identify one either. I love colour full stop. However there is one colour which ALWAYS catches my eye when I see an item in it, and that’s purple. Hopefully I can find 6 books I’ve read that fit the bill!

Just An Illusion – EP by D. Kelly
A Contemporary Romance that is guaranteed to produce an ugly cry. It isn’t standalone, Just An Illusion Side also Side B must be read first. It is a great NA trilogy.

Black Light: Valentine Roulette by Various
An anthology of BDSM romance short stories. Normally I’m not a big fan of anthologies – I often only read or enjoy a few of the stories. However the Black Light anthologies always have a great cast of authors who produce some scorchingly hot BDSM scenes to indulge in.

Deacon by Kit Rocha
A hot SFR set in a dystopian future and featuring alpha males and equally strong females. This is a follow on series to the steamy adventure that is the O’Kane series. Whilst each book can be read standalone, it is one of those series’ that is best read in order.

Resistance by Pippa DaCosta
The sixth book in the science fiction/space opera 1000 Revolutions series, this can NOT be read standalone. It is a totally captivating series that will give you all the feels.

Reign to Rule by Zoey Ellis
This is third “Reign to” book and part of a fantasy omegaverse series that must be read in order. I would recommend reading the Crave trilogy first, for background, though Reign is set on a different continent and this trilogy can be read separately.

Daddy PI by EJ Frost
A DD/lg story that is one of the best kink books I have ever read. The attention to detail is fantastic and the author cleverly weaves in consent and discussions without making the book feel like an instruction manual. One of my favourite reads of 2020.



#SixForSunday – Autumn Colours

Six For Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Steph @ A little But A Lot. If you want to know more, or are thinking of joining in, do pop over and visit her. Prompts are published well in advance and Steph even provides banners should you wish to use them.

Autumn Colours

For me autumn is all about the leaves changing from green to red, gold and eventually brown. Those rich russet colours and the warm colour of sunlight were my inspiration.

The Emperor’s Edge by Lindsay Buroker is an epic fantasy adventure set in a steampunk non-Earth.

The Black Prince by Ariana Nash is another fantasy, this time set on a very dystopian future Earth, where magic, elves and dragons exist. It is also an MM romance.

Condemned by Cari Silverwood is a RH erotic fantasy romance, with a supercute mouse bot or two.

Defender by Robert J. Crane is the first book of an epic fantasy series, a real must read series.

Tempted by Felicity Brandon is the first book in a scorching hot trilogy. It’s a contemporary romance that features a power exchange relationship.

This Time by Azaaa Davis is the first book in an amazing Urban Fantasy series.

#SixForSunday

Six For Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Steph @ A little But A Lot. If you want to know more, or are thinking of joining in, do pop over and visit her. Prompts are published well in advance and Steph even provides banners should you wish to use them.

Six For Sunday – Summer Colours

The Girl and Her Ren, by Pepper Winters, is a book that will stay with me for the rest of my life. It is hands down one of the most emotional books I have ever read, probably THE most emotional.

My Romance Curse, by Cari Silverwood, is a delightful story, filled with great characters, steamy moments and witty humour. Just mentioning the book makes me want to do a re-read!

Fresh Catch, by Kate Canterbary, wasn’t quite my first MM read, but it was the first that had me convinced by both the characters and the honesty of their emotions. In fact the author imbues her protagonists with so much life that you feel as though they are old friends, and ones you care about deeply.

Filthy Rich, by Julie Kriss. This is another author who creates characters and stories that you fall in love with. This is a good opening to a series that has only got better and better.

Bass-Ackwards, by Eris Adderley, is a book that is so very wrong in so many ways but is also absolutely amazing. Another book that I desperately want to do a re-read of.

Saving Simone, by Tiffani Lynn. This author deserves to be more widely known. One of the things that I value about her work is that often she continues the story long past the traditional HEA point, building a story that goes beyond the “I love you’s”.

#SixForSunday

#SixForSunday – Spring Colours

Six For Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Steph @ A little But A Lot. If you want to know more, or are thinking of joining in, do pop over and visit her. Prompts are published well in advance and Steph even provides banners should you wish to use them.

Today’s prompt is Spring Colours, which was more difficult to pick than I had imagined! For some reason yellow, pink and green spoke to me, so here is my selection for the week.

Frisky Business by Lila Monroe – a great rom-com with an enemies-to-lovers theme, a 4 star read. The bright splashes of colour on a white background just said spring!

Elemental Fae Academy #3 by Lexi C. Foss and J.R. Thorn – the final instalment in a reverse harem PNR and another 4 star read. It’s the pink flowers that suggest spring here.

Big Sky by Kitty Thomas – an intense BDSM erotica read that I rated 4.5 stars. The cooler tones made me think more of spring than summer for this one.

His Blushing Bride by Emily Tilton – an erotic romance, 4.5 stars. Pastel pink equals spring.

The Son & His Hope by Pepper Winters – a NA contemporary romance and a 5 star read. This book was just as heartbreaking and life reaffirming as The Ribbon Duet. The background reminded me more of a spring meadow.

Tumble by Adriana Locke – a second-chance romance and another 5 star read. This covered yelled spring, not sure if it’s the colour combo or just that particular shade of green!

#SixForSunday – Tropes

Six For Sunday –
Tropes you want to see more of

#SixforSunday is a weekly blog post where you get to share 6 books which fill a certain prompt. It’s hosted by A Little But A Lot, do go visit them and say hello!

Oops – I forgot to hit publish yesterday, never mind! I’m going to have to be careful and NOT repeat my list of tropes that I love, because those I just can’t seem to get enough of.

1. Mature Protagonists

This is a controversial one, but I’ve reached a point in my life where I find it hard to empathise/connect with heroes and heroines under the age of 30. That is STILL a lot younger than I am and also links into my avoidance of NA books.

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2. Main characters who are “average”

Especially those women who are insanely attractive to every male within a 50 mile radius but don’t even have the faintest idea of just how beautiful they are. Even when the MFC at first appears to be a plain jane, there is often a miraculous ugly duckling transformation and a beautiful swan emerges. The heroes don’t always need to have chiselled abs, a 6 pack you can bounce pennies off and that overused magical V pointing to the promised land. I get that we need to be attracted to the characters but – sigh – they could just be ‘normal’.
This also extends to jobs, though blue-collar romance does seem to be more common these days.

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3. Space Opera Romance

Ok so already I’m in the “not trope”-osphere but I love a good sci-fi story that has strong elements of romance in it. However the vast majority of what is available on the market is heavy on the romance and often lacking in those elements that make a good sci-fi story just that, good. I can find great space opera stories, but they usually lack the romance I want. Those with romance lack the “alienness” and space travel elements of science fiction.

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4. Consensual Non-Consent

I’ve just read what will remain as one of my favourite books containing this trope. My review of Cruel Idols by Sorcha Black can be found here. The author managed to give us a darker edge, hinting that maybe we had crossed the line into genuine non-consent, before taking us back to safer ground. I love darker reads, but the nice thing about CNC is that the hero can be just that, a hero, a good guy, a decent man rather than an antihero.

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5. Anti-heroines

Anti-heroes are ten-a-penny, or a dime a dozen for my US friends. However books with a good anti-heroine are few and far between. Whispers in the Dark by LeTeisha Newton, Lethal Sin by Jennifer Bene and Bedroom Hymns by Morgan Reeves are some good examples of when the trope is done well.

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6. Anti-heroes who don’t turn soft

Which isn’t a trope at all but it occurs often enough that it sort of ought to be, or at least a warning should be given so that I don’t waste my time and money on the damn book. I’m ok with a proper anti-hero, a sociopath or a psychopath as the MMC because this is fiction NOT real life. You wouldn’t believe the high horses some people climb on because of the darker content of romance books. Apparently it’s going to encourage kidnap, violence and rape. Those things are fine in horror, murder mystery and suspense books but not romance, well at least according to those who like to pour scorn, shame and blame on the romance genre.
I’ve digressed. Dark romance is my favourite genre but when the hero turns into a gooey mess for the heroine then I tend to leave dissatisfied. I prefer him to make exceptions for the heroine but not change for her.

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#SixForSunday – Tropes You Hate

I’m back with another Six For Sunday, kindly hosted over at A Little But A Lot (please do visit them too). July is Trope month and so far I’m definitely enjoying it! Today’s prompt is “Tropes You Hate”.


Tropes I hate? As I started writing this I was wondering if there are any tropes I hate, but I just knew that they would start popping into my head as I typed..and…yep there’s the first one now!

Billionaires

Two years ago you couldn’t turn around in the romance world without falling over a Billionaire story. It’s still a popular trope (thank you FSoG – not) with a dedicated following.

I don’t know about you but I like a touch of reality in contemporary books, and billionaires don’t fall into that box. Particularly not when it’s a series of books about best friends who ARE billionaires or best friends who fall for them. Perhaps I’m hanging in the wrong circles, but there doesn’t seem to be a surplus of ultra rich men hanging out in the local hotspots. I haven’t even spotted one, never mind a whole gaggle of them.

Whilst the books have the guys looking like Mister Hottie McHotness in the first photo, reality is probably closer to the dude in picture 2.

Virgins

I’m pretty certain this is another trope that gained prominence in the romance world courtesy of FSoG. There are a multitude of reasons that this trope rubs me up the wrong way.

First of all, for the vast majority of us, our first time was, at best, awkward. For others it was an experience best forgotten as quickly as possible. And for a few it was a heartbreaking ripping away of their innocence by scum that doesn’t deserve the air they breathe.

Secondly it’s that reinforcement of the sexist attitude that a girls virginity is something that makes her pure and special, but is something a boy needs to lose at the first opportunity. Thankfully this isn’t too prevalent in the world of smutty romance, mainly because we’re there for the sex, the romance, the sex, the HEA and finally the sex. So preaching about how a girl is more special because she is a virgin is not going to enamour me to you. The fact that this myth IS perpetuated by some female authors is somewhat depressing.

Thirdly, which links back to firstly, if he’s as hung as the guys in a romance book, you aren’t going to be going for rounds 2, 3 and 4 with quite the speed that is implied by these books. Nor are you going to be a pro at giving head and deep throating when you’ve barely held hands with a boy before. And lord above don’t get me started on first time anal lubricated by “her juices” or (and this one has me swallowing down the vomit) him spitting on her “dark hole”. For a book that’s happy to include anal sex, to suddenly balk at calling an anus by it’s name (or at least a slang name) and insisting on some ridiculously trite euphemism just makes me cringe.

Finally are those books that have the heroine “selling” her virginity in an auction. Because of course it’s some super hot, dominant and sexy billionaire that buys her. Which again is so realistic (not). Why is a guy, who can get women without even having to make an effort, going to pay a huge amount for one? Go back to the pictures above and lets think about which of those guys is more likely to have to pay for it….

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Secret/suprise baby

Heaven forbid when this is incorporated into the Virgin or Billionaire trope, and when all three are added to the mix you can guarantee I will be handing out a 1 star rating.

I hate secret babies UNLESS the heroine tried to contact the hero but couldn’t. Any other reason is not acceptable because, although it may be fiction, denying a child the right to know a parent (unless harm could befall said child) is just plain wrong. Zero respect for someone who decides to do that.

And surprise babies are just not romantic/sexy to me. God mine were an effective form of contraception for several years, so reading about a couple with a newborn having constant sex just makes me laugh hysterically. What is worse is when the couple are supposedly infertile, but somehow a “miracle” occurs. To me this feels like a slap in the face to all those couples who do suffer from infertility. It’s as though somehow the book couple get a baby just by “wanting” one enough.

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Bully

This genre is on the up at the moment. Just as fashions change in clothes, so do popular tropes in romance books. Who decides what is going to be the next big thing, heaven knows. But, for the last yearish, the decree has been “thou shall write ye bully book”. Well you will if you want to jump on the latest trend/bandwagon at least.

Some of these books aren’t too awful, and indeed are just variations of the much older enemies-to-lovers trope. Romeo and Juliet anyone? However some have decided that they will combine bully with their version of “dark”. The worst one I had the misfortune to stumble across also threw in the, thankfully declining unless you read paranormal academy books, Reverse Harem (RH) trend. A dark, bully RH “romance”, though where the romance was in it I’m not sure, perhaps it was lost in the chaos of so much else going on.

Generally my gripe with these is that why on earth am I going to cheer on a character who has spent the majority of the book being a complete POS to the other main protagonist. Very often their path to redemption is far too easy and no real reparation is made for craptastic behaviour earlier in the book.

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Lets keep a big secret until the last chapter

OK so this isn’t actually trope, but it is something that has annoyed the ever loving heck out of me on more than one occasion. I love secrets and suspense but to have the whole story revolving around one big secret, dangled in front of your face like the proverbial carrot, is lazy writing. It’s not a clever plot twist but a total lack of plot.

Lily White is the antithesis of this, with an ability to weave a tale where just as one secret is revealed another one takes its place. Resulting in a pacey story where the mystery/suspense is maintained throughout the story.

Oh and for goodness sake, if you ARE going to do a big secret reveal at the end, do make sure it doesn’t nullify the validity of prior scenes. I read one book where the big exciting twist at the end sort of made everything that went before rather pointless.

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Overbearing not alpha

Yes, yes another not a trope, but it sort of IS a trope. Or at least the alpha bad boy/dominant is a tried and tested trope in romance. However some authors get very confused over what makes an alpha and what makes an asshole douche canoe. Hint – it shouldn’t include the words arrogant twat.

An alpha looks after his woman, might occasionally be a jealous idiot, but above all respects her. He might not like having to let her be independent but they find a compromise. On the other hand an alpha-hole, as I tend to think of them, keeps secrets from his beloved and makes decisions without consulting her because – oh you’re gonna love this one – he always knows whats best for her. What a pathetic, antiquated and patently misogynistic attitude to have. And yet the worst thing is that it is (usually) a woman writing this patronising garbage.

I’m not talking about Total Power Exchange books here, which are a totally different kettle of fish. In those respect for one other is paramount, and whilst the dominant partner may make decisions on behalf of the submissive, it will be because both have already discussed and agreed that he will have that authority over her. No I’m referring to those books where the “hero” knows and understand the heroine’s mind better than she does herself.

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So that’s it, six “tropes” I hate in romance books. Sorry if I’ve just dissed one of your favourites. As my dad loves to say – “One man’s meat is another man’s poison” and that meat makes me gag. Sorry I couldn’t resist that double entendre given today’s topic. Thanks for joining me and well done if you got this far. See you soon!

Six For Sunday – Tropes You Love

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#SixForSunday – Tropes You Love

Am I allowed only six? Can I narrow the list down that far? I’m breaking out in a cold sweat just thinking about it, it’s like asking me to pick a favourite child!


Yes, I’m joining in with A Little But A Lot and their weekly Sunday prompt for six books on a theme. July is all about the trope, so hopefully over the weeks I’ll get to feature all the things I love to read about in a book.

When I visit other blogs it becomes very apparent that romance, despite being the most popular genre of books, doesn’t seem to be that widely blogged about. Particularly not the indie published authors that make up my reading world. I often feel like a lone voice in a huge room, but I’m hoping the echoes reach some of you and even if only one person tries a new book then I count that as a success.


In no particular order, my six favourite tropes are as follows:-

1 Second Chance

Yep, I see the words “second chance” and I’m caught, hook, line and sinker. That’s not to say I’m not picky about the trope. First of all, I need a darn good reason/misunderstanding for the original break up. I then need us to get to the bottom of that in fairly good time. No fluttering it around but keeping it secret through most of the book. No way, Jose, that is just lazy writing. Once the reason has been revealed I then need the guilty party to earn their forgiveness. Nothing hacks me off more than an easy out. However when done well second chance melts my heart and soothes my soul like no other trope can.

2 Dystopian

I love Science Fiction, and whilst aliens, space ships, new solar systems and warp speed travel fills my little heart with joy, there is nothing I love quite so much as a dystopian tale. My love affair with this trope probably started with John Wyndham’s Day of The Triffids, and has continued ever since.

3 BDSM/ Power Exchanges

Not Fifty Shades, so much not Fifty Shades of anything. In fact Fifty Shades is as close to BDSM as Donald Duck is to farm animals. I’m probably one of the few women of a certain age who hasn’t read the trilogy, but from what I’ve heard I’m not missing out on this fanfic of Twilight.
Both in real life, and in well written BDSM romances, there are principles that should be adhered to, the main one that underpins everything else is consent. Without consent then you have abuse, which was the slippery slope FSoG slid down. Though as I’ve mentioned more than once before, it did open the door for authors who are part of the lifestyle to release books involving the trope.

4 Omegaverse

Whilst this trope (sometimes considered a subgenre of erotic fanfic) is fairly new to the playing field, it has a big following in romancelandia. Based on wolf dynamics of strong, dominant alphas, submissive, weaker omegas and betas who are generally workers with no distinct scent or ability to form a knot during intercourse. As previously mentioned, the trope began in fanfic, where it soon became hugely popular.
The first books on the market were MM preg books but when M/f entered the fray they bought with them a much darker, more violent, non-consensual edge to the trope. A world where omegas are considered ripe for any alpha to take and do with as he will. The last few years the trope has spread into fantasy, science fiction and more contemporary settings, no longer always dark and violent.

5 Dark

Dark is a rabbit hole that I have loved falling into, though it has become a very controversial trope for a couple of reasons.

The first is that Amazon likes to relegate romance books to the erotica catagory, which results in them being hidden from searches (even specific searches of the exact book title), languishing in the depths of their dungeons. Certain words trigger their “march you off to obscurity” bots, usually the ones that hint/suggest certain aspects of kink, dubious and non-consent, sexual violence and sex full stop. This means that many authors now avoid using the very words that would stop many an unsuspecting reader from getting a nasty shock.

The other reason is that because Dark is popular, in fact it’s Popular with a capital P, many have felt it’s a bandwagon they should jump on. Even when their book is really nothing more than a mafia romance, or an MC romance, or even just the story of a bad boy hero. The trouble is that readers of those books labelled as dark, have absolutely no idea what has hit them when they read the types of book that I, and many others, consider to be dark. Books with both dubious and non-consent, stories where the heroine may be mentally, emotionally and/or physically violated. Needless to say this can result in a plethora of 1 star reviews that usually contain the words “abuse”, “rape” and “disgusting” somewhere.

6 Gods/Demons/Angels

I love me a good fantasy/urban fantasy/paranormal romance. One that involved magic is always good, but all the better if there are Gods or Angels and Demons involved. Who can resist a fallen angel?……

#SixForSunday – Favourite LGBT romances

Six For Sunday – Favourite LGBT romances

There will be a LOT of overlap between this and my previous Six For Sunday posts this month, as romance is the genre from which I’ve picked all my previously featured books.

Six For Sunday is a meme hosted by A Little But A Lot, in June we are celebrating Pride Month. Do visit them and say hello.

Title – Midnight Fae Academy #1
Author – Lexi C. Foss
Genre – Paranormal/Fantasy Reverse Harem
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/49923752-midnight-fae-academy

This is a reverse harem story, 1 female and several males. However 2 of the males are already in a sexual relationship prior to meeting the heroine. I love how in this world, sexuality is not an issue. Gender is, as it’s a patriarchal society (don’t worry there’s no spanking!) though I get the impression that Aflora plans to shake that up more than a little!
My Review – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/02/23/book-review-midnight-fae-academy-1/

Welcome to Midnight Fae Academy. Home of the Dark Arts. Vampires. And cruelly handsome fae.
A forbidden bite led to my capture and recruitment. There are no flowers here. No life. Only death.
I’m an Earth Fae who doesn’t belong here. They can play their little mind games all they want, but I’m going to find a way back to my elemental world. Even if it kills me.
Except Headmaster Zephyrus is one step ahead of my every move.
Prince Kolstov won’t stop cornering me. And Shadow–the reason I’m in this damn mess to begin with–haunts my dreams. My affinity for the earth is dying and being replaced by something more sinister. Something powerful. Something deadly.
The Midnight Fae believe this is my fate. They claim that I was “recruited” for a purpose. To battle a rising presence. Or to die trying.
I don’t owe them a damn thing. But if I have to pass their trials to find my way home, then so be it. I survived a plague and far worse in the Elemental Fae realm. An ominous energy? Please. What a joke.
Give it your best shot. I’m waiting. And don’t you dare bite me. Or I’ll make you regret it.

The perfect recipe for the ultimate MM romance.

Take one bruised, battered but not totally broken spy,
Add in one sassy, snarky, organised to the nth degree man called Tom,
Blend together with enough chemistry and heat to power a volcano,
Throw in great writing, a sprinkle of Walsh goodness, some sunburn and a wedding.
Shake, stir, shake some more and then sit back and enjoy this masterpiece of romance.

Title – Missing in Action
Author – Kate Canterbary
Genre – MM Contemporary Romance
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/51655390-missing-in-action

Wes is a Navy SEAL turned government agent. He grew up in a military household where his father had an ethos of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and is so far in the closet he might just find himself in Narnia.
Tom has made huge sacrifices, including his family, to be true to himself. He isn’t prepared to go back to a life of hiding and pretending. Watching this couple fall in love will give you ALL the feels.
My Review – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/03/30/review-missing-in-action/

Former Navy SEAL turned covert agent Wes Halsted spent his days —and weeks and months —being someone else. But with his cover blown and his injuries requiring months of recuperation, he must learn how to be himself again.
Only …he’d rather save his issues for another day and get to know a stressed-out, suited-up businessman instead.
Tom Esbeck has everything under control. Meal plans, workout plans, project plans, five-year plans. A plan for everything and everything according to plan.
Except there’s no plan for a surprise—and shirtless—encounter with the built-for-sin spy he’d crushed on years ago.
But crushes —and spies —burn out fast.

Title – The Thing About Us
Author – Jennifer Domenico
Genre – Menage Contemporary Romance
Goodread – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43730271-the-thing-about-us

Take two work colleagues, one who quietly admits he isbisexual, one who denies it even to himself. Add in a girl who is secretly dating them both, a fair amount of angst and soul searching, lots of hot sex and you have this great little story.
My Review – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2524377649?book_show_action=false&from_review_page=1

It was all fun and games until it wasn’t. Lies, deceit, and jealousy threaten to tear the three of us apart. We can have it all, but that’s not as easy as it sounds.
Ben
I never thought I’d show my best friend that side of me, but I had to take my one shot or regret it forever.
Luc
It was only supposed to be one night of something I didn’t understand and never wanted, but it became so much more.
Georgie
They want me to choose, but I want them both. They just have to admit they want it, too.
The thing about us? We can make it work…even if we have to fight to keep it together.

Title – Snatch
Author – Marie James
Genre – MC Contemporary Romance
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35524635-snatch

I think this might have been my first ever MM read. Both guys are in an MC club, though it isn’t your usual guns and drugs one. These are all ex-military and now do security work, riding bikes is their passion. The only thing I didn’t love were the two heroes nicknames. If you think Snatch is bad, his lover is called Itchy, and the two words together fairly makes me cringe!
My Review – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2058556554?book_show_action=false&from_review_page=1

I’ve always been a connoisseur of the opposite sex. Tall, short, thin, thick and juicy, my tastes knew no limitations. That became abundantly clear the night my best friend took me in his mouth.
Sure, there’d been close calls before, the slip of a hand or misplaced lips. With our propensity to share women, it was bound to happen. That fateful night, I was met with pure intention and an experience I never want to forget.
Falling for a friend has never been so complicated.ething else?
I’ll soon find out that what happens in the dark will always come to light.

Title – The Black Prince
Author – Ariana Nash
Genre – MM Fantasy Romance
Goodreads –

Set in the same world as the Silk & Steel series, this is the story of a dragon shifter prince and a mercenary elf. Enemies by history, this pair face prejudice because of race, not gender.
My Review – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2019/11/23/a-tale-of-dragons-and-elves/

In the war-torn rubble of the human world, can a rebel elf and a lost dragon prince find love, or will a dark threat tear them and their world apart forever?
A new land, a new court, a new king, but some things never change.
Broken in all ways, Akiem fled his life as the amethyst prince only to land at the mercy of the beautiful but deadly diamond king, Luceran.
Akiem knows dragons. He knows he’ll die today, tomorrow, whenever Luceran’s executioner brings down his axe, and maybe it’s all he deserves. He’s ready for death, craves it even, like he craves the elf with flame-red hair and a sly smile, the damn elf whose stolen kiss lit Akiem up in ways he
didn’t know were possible. Akiem doesn’t do males and he definitely doesn’t do elves. But some things do change.
Drifter, mercenary, lover — Zane is all those things. He’ll do almost anything for coin. But he doesn’t do dragons and he definitely doesn’t do love. It’s not such a bad life for an elf. Better than the rest of his kin, living under the rule and whims of the dragon king, Luceran.
Working as a bodyguard in Bayston should have been quick coin in his pocket before moving on. But King Luceran has a new toy he parades at court. A dragon with eyes of gold and scales as black as night.
He probably shouldn’t have kissed him. Definitely should have killed him.
And now, moving on is the farthest thought from Zane’s mind. Because Luceran’s new toy is not like the other dragonkin. And maybe, just maybe, the terrible, beautiful beast has the key to freeing all the persecuted elves and unlocking Zane’s restless heart.
Zane doesn’t do love and he doesn’t do dragons.
But with the arrival of the Black Prince, everything is about to change.

Title – Fresh Catch
Author – Kate Canterbary
Genre – MM Contemporary Romance
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35919933-fresh-catch

Owen and Cole are such a swoonsome pair. I found myself totally believing in them as people, fully accepting their feelings for one another and fully invested in them achieving their HEA. I *may* have ugly cried reading this one.
My Review – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2111316262?book_show_action=false&from_review_page=1

Take a vacation, they said. Get away from Silicon Valley’s back-stabbing and power-grabbing. Recharge the innovative batteries. Unwind, then come back stronger than ever. Instead, I got lost at sea and fell in love with an anti-social lobsterman.
There’s one small issue: Owen Bartlett doesn’t know who I am. Who I really am.

~~
I don’t like people.
I avoid small talk and socializing, and I kick my companions out of bed before the sun rises. No strings, no promises, no problems.
Until Cole McClish’s boat drifts into Talbott’s Cove, and I bend all my rules for the sexy sailor.

I don’t know Cole’s story or what he’s running from, but one thing is certain: I’m not letting him run away from me.

Six For Sunday

Six For Sunday… Recommend some LGBT books

I generally read within the romance genre so most of my recommendations don’t delve deeply into the prejudices, barriers and myriad other issues faced by those who identify as LGBTQ+. However they do still represent non-heterosexual relationships, and hopefully go some way to moving towards a more equitable balance. That said, and “saving the best ’til last”, the final book I’m featuring does include hate crime and the consequences of it.

Five of the titles are MM romance, the other is a menage featuring M/m as well as M/m/f.

Title – Silk & Steel
Author – Ariana Nash
Genre – LGBT Dark Fantasy
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43444227-silk-steel
My Review – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2656754583

The Dragon Queen’s reign is one of darkness and death. Humans have vanished under the rubble of their world and if the queen has her way, elves will be next.
Eroan, one of the last elven assassins, lives for one purpose: kill the queen.
He would have succeeded if not for her last line of defense: Prince Lysander. Now, captured and forced into the queen’s harem, Eroan sees another opportunity. Why kill just the queen when he can kill them all? It would be simple, if not for the troubled and alluring prince. A warrior, a killer, and something else…, something Eroan finds himself inexplicably drawn to.
Trapped in a life he despises, Lysander knows his time is running out.
If the queen doesn’t kill him for his failures, her enemies will. There’s nothing left to live for, until an elf assassin almost kills him. A stubborn, prideful, fool of an elf who doesn’t know when to quit. An elf who sparks a violent, forbidden desire in Lysander.
If Lysander can’t save himself, maybe he can save the elf and maybe, just maybe… one stubborn elf will be enough to bring down the queen before she kills them all.

Duty demands they fight for their people. Love has other plans.

Title – Iron & Fire
Author – Ariana Nash
Genre – LGBT Dark Fantasy
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43797623-iron-fire
My Review – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2019/04/19/iron-fire-ariana-nash/

Alliances are forged and broken, friendships shattered, and despite the odds stacked against them, two hearts collide in this explosive sequel to Silk & Steel.
From his mother’s cage to a human one, but Lysander’s captors are the least of his concerns. Rumors of a monstrous bronze dragon ripple through human camps, a dragon tearing great holes in the world as though searching for something… or someone.
It’s just a matter of time before the bronze chief, Dokul, finds Lysander and makes good on his promises. And should he find him, Lysander knows Dokul will not be merciful.
Amidst the greatest of elven victories, Eroan failed. Failed his people, failed himself, and failed the dragon who saved him. But he will not falter. The dragonkin are in disarray, there will never be a greater opportunity to strike. Eroan Ilanea will not fail his people again.
But when rumors of the dragon prince’s survival reach him, he must choose: Fight for his people or fight for the prince who nobody thought to save?

Title – Blood & Ice
Author – Ariana Nash
Genre – LGBT Dark Fantasy
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50149586-blood-ice
My Review – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2019/10/05/silk-and-steel-3-blood-ice/

An elven assassin. A dragon prince.
Three days they had together.
Three days was not enough.

There’s a traitor among the elves. A traitor who will stop at nothing to see Eroan pay for the crime of loving a dragon, and Eroan Ilanea will pay with blood.
Lysander has never been free to choose his fate. That is about to change. Finally, he learns what it means to be emerald, but knowledge is power, and power whispers its seductive curse into the ear of a broken prince.
Elf and dragon.
Leaders, lovers, fighters.
Fates entwined.
But as the dragonkin rise under a new king, will Eroan’s and Lysander’s boundless love save the world or destroy it forever?

Title – Fresh Catch
Author – Kate Canterbary
Genre – MM Contemporary Romance
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35919933-fresh-catch
My Review – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2111316262

Take a vacation, they said. Get away from Silicon Valley’s back-stabbing and power-grabbing. Recharge the innovative batteries. Unwind, then come back stronger than ever.
Instead, I got lost at sea and fell in love with an anti-social lobsterman.
There’s one small issue:
Owen Bartlett doesn’t know who I am. Who I really am.

I don’t like people. I avoid small talk and socializing, and I kick my companions out of bed before the sun rises.
No strings, no promises, no problems.
Until Cole McClish’s boat drifts into Talbott’s Cove, and I bend all my rules for the sexy sailor.
I don’t know Cole’s story or what he’s running from, but one thing is certain:
I’m not letting him run away from me.

Title – Infamous Love
Author – Livia Grant
Genre – MMF BDSM Romance
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32702554-infamous-love
My Review https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2305673996

Their love might be the only thing more powerful than the paparazzi. 
When curvy grad student Emma Fischer is stranded in the south of France, she’s short on cash and unable to speak French. The last people she expects to come to her aide at the train station are two high-demand fashion models in France for a photo shoot. Sparks fly between the threesome as they speed towards Paris in their private car.
Emma gets on the train a girl, but the intimate time spent in the dominant men’s arms over one hot weekend turns her into a woman. Walking away from her lovers to return to her average life in Wisconsin is one of the hardest things she’s ever done.
Jaxson Davidson and Chase Cartwright have been best friends and business partners for years. As A-list models they are treated like royalty wherever they go, by everyone they meet, which is why their down-to-earth submissive grad student, Emma, is something special. The men have been seeking a way to turn their friendship into a romance, and Emma is the perfect missing ingredient to make that happen.
Can a romance that started as a fun summer fling turn into something long lasting for the trio? Will Jaxson’s powerful father ruin their chance at their own happily ever after? Find out this and more in this sexy, exciting ménage novel where love might really be the only thing more powerful than the paparazzi.

Title – Temptation’s Inferno
Author – Kat Mizera
Genre – MM Sports Romance
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34609571-temptation-s-inferno
My Review https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1974893853

Two men. One threesome. Zero expectations.
Jamie Teller has had a rough year. After being blackmailed by a teammate, weathering a sex scandal, and being traded to a team on the other side of the continent, he’s overwhelmed and looking for a distraction. A sexy threesome with his burly roommate and his wife wasn’t expected–neither is his sudden attraction to a guy.

Viggo Sjoberg has been openly bisexual since he was 17, but he’d always assumed he would settle down with a woman. When he’s surprised with news he has a child from a past fling, he jumps headfirst into marriage and fatherhood, but his new wife isn’t what she appeared to be. Adding to Viggo’s confusion are the feelings aroused by his seemingly straight roommate, Jamie.
When Jamie moves thousands of miles away, Viggo tells himself it’s over. Until a life-changing event puts the two men on a collision course. Suddenly, Jamie needs Viggo—badly—and Viggo is prepared to do whatever it takes to help. Even if it means he has to give up everything he always thought he wanted.