Cheers, everyone! I hope you've all had a great summer so far (or winter if you're south of the equator). We're back with a few of the best titles we read in the month of July, and we want to share them with you, as well as give you the chance to win a couple of the books we couldn't say enough great things about.
Be sure to check out the Rafflecopter widget below to see how you can enter to win.
And now, here they are, our top reads for July!
Sammy – Wildflowers by Suki Fleet – “It is not often that a story leaves me speechless. How to rate something that is so beautiful and filled with remarkably tender moments? I raced through this novella, my hands clenching my Kindle in fear that somehow this ending would not be a happy one. I can assure you that was not the case, and yet the truth is often a painful thing to deal with and to accept. Xavi must do both of those things, and hope that he is not too late to salvage the love that he hopes Sam has for him in return.
I cannot recommend Wildflowers more highly than to say this story will be one that I read again and again, and I am sure that each time I will glean just a bit more from the beautiful words this author shaped into an outstanding story.”
Cassie – Deductions by Lyn Gala – “As usual, Lyn Gala drops you into the deep end of her new world. One of the things I like best about this author is the intricate and deeply fascinating universes she puts together. They're detailed, HUGE, and almost always take old ideas and give them new and interesting life. You always get pushed in head first, and while you do end up with enough information to follow along, she's not holding your hand or force feeding you exposition. You have to keep up.
Deductions takes place in an alternate universe of magic users and mundanes. Our main character, Darren, works on the FBI's Talent Unit as the only mundane. Or so everyone thinks, including Darren. He's had serious feelings for his boss, Kavon Boucher, pretty much from the word "go," but because of the way Kavon's magic works, Darren has been kept at a painful arm's length. When suddenly he turns out to be not-so-mundane, Darren hopes this could be his chance with tall, dark, and distant Kavon.”
Maryann – Happy Independence Day by Michael Rupured – “Happy Independence Day is not just a story about Terrence and Harold growing up and finding their place in life. It’s about a time when the laws against the LGBTQ community were horrendous, and about how the mob and NYPD were in collusion. It’s a very thought provoking story with many tense moments, and I found myself fearing for each character’s life. Kelsey Ryan and Kreema Dee Kropp, are two of the most courageous characters, along with all the people who came together during the Stonewall Riots to stand-up for the freedom to be themselves.
Michael Rupured does a tremendous job of bringing historical facts and fiction together for an excellent story—his description of the clothes, music and the events will definitely take you back in time. I do highly suggest reading No Good Deed first to learn about Terrence and Harold and how they became part of Philip Potter’s life.”
Lindsey – Soul Seekers by Jake C. Wallace – “Quite literally, the intricacy and detail of this novel blew me away in the best possible way. Between the character developments, the mystery, and the world building, I was hooked. I remained hooked all the way until the end, and can’t remember a moment where it slowed down or was too rushed.
I honestly can’t think of a single complaint I had with this book. Not a one. It was the perfect combination which checked all of my boxes, keeping me totally invested in all the aspects of the story. If you enjoy a good mystery along with some paranormal elements, a cast of well-crafted and dimensional characters, this book just might be what you are looking for.”
Jules – Gays of Our Lives by Kris Ripper – “I liked Emerson. A lot. Even when he was being a pain-in-the ass, self-loathing wallower. I always got where he was coming from. But, Obie coming into his life was monumental for him. Simply by slowly showing Emerson that he wasn’t going to take any of his shit, and that he wasn’t going anywhere, even when Emerson was being a total douche, Obie was able to break down Emerson’s walls and show him that he was worth taking care of.
I also really liked the chemistry and dynamic between these characters. Emerson wants to hurt and dominate his lovers, and Obie gets off on that, but the way the author tackled the BDSM aspect—basically how they were ‘figuring things out’ and what worked between them—was refreshing and honest, and truly just fun at times. All of their reactions felt completely organic and truthful—whether it was Emerson exerting his power, or him being limited or humiliated by his MS and being made vulnerable—I loved watching their relationship grow.”
Sadonna – Valet by Jet Mykles – “*sigh* Oh, how I loved this story. I’m not a fan of regency-ish type stories—I know, how terrible of me!—but this is sort of an alternate reality/historical/steampunk world that Jet Mykles has built, and I adored it!
OMG! This is almost as bad as being the last one to read Crossing Borders! How have I not have read Jet Mykles Heaven Sent series when I’m such a fan of her writing, not to mention those beautiful P.L. Nunn covers?!?!?! The first book of hers I read was Just for You, and the second I finished, I flipped right back to the beginning and reread it. I think that was the first time I’d ever done that. This is an alternate story of the Heaven Sent characters, and I am crying for the next book already! In the meantime, I really need to get it in gear and read the Heaven Sent series.”
Carrie – Endings and Beginnings by K.C. Wells and Parker Williams – “Sniffs. It’s over. Sniffs. I loved this series. But… Yay! Cannot wait for the men of Secrets who will tell their tales beginning next year (insert fan girl squeal here).
It all began with An Unlocked Heart, and an incredible series full of depth and emotion began. Endings and Beginnings is book eight in this series, and the final book in our journey through the lives of the men who call Collars & Cuffs BDSM Club home. This series has covered so many aspects of the BDSM lifestyle and has never shied away from telling the hard emotional tales these men have. Usually in a series you know which books you liked best over the others (and I definitely have my favorites), but in this case I can say that I have truly enjoyed all the books in this series. KC Wells and Parker Williams have a writing style that is spot-on and character driven, which makes each of these books an individual treat.”
Lisa – The Photographer’s Truth by Ralph Josiah Bardsley – “If you’re a lover of books filled with engaging dialogue, intriguing characters, and enchanting settings, that is this book. The Photographer’s Truth isn’t flashy; it’s a romance that builds quietly through Bardsley’s evocative prose, and then hits its emotional peak at a crucial moment in Ian’s life—the moment he sees life through the unfiltered lens of a deep love he’d been bent upon denying himself. Of course, there’s an undercurrent that runs alongside the reader’s building investment in Ian and Luca finding a way to be together, that of the breaking up of a marriage and the breaking down of a family. The contrasts between Ian’s two lives is a conflict that causes no small amount of friction between he and Luca, nor no small amount of contradicting feelings in readers.
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