Saturday, September 30, 2017

The Books We Fell for in the Month of September ~ and a Giveaway

Cheers, fellow readers, and welcome to our September Book of the Month picks from your friends at The Novel Approach! We’ve got an outstanding list of titles we loved this month, and, as always, there’s a chance for one of you to win two e-copies from the list. Be sure to check out the Rafflecopter widget below for entry details.

So, without further delay, here are the books we loved!


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Cassie: Bonfires by Amy Lane ~ I LOVED this story. It felt so refreshing, beginning to end. Aaron and Larx are older than the typical romance characters, they’re established in their lives and families, they know who they are and what they want, and they’re experienced enough to know how to get it. And it was FANTASTIC to read about two men who are comfortable with themselves and their sexuality. Go add this one to your library now, if you haven’t already.

The struggles in this story all come from outside the growing relationship—another perk of older MCs. They’ve got problems, because LIFE, but they’re navigating them with considerable aplomb. Aaron’s and Larx’s lives are immediately enhanced by the other’s presence, and watching them begin to intertwine their lives is extremely satisfying.

Ky: Manic Pixie Dream Boy by K.A. Merikan ~ I liked all the tropes the authors used, even the split near the end that is so common in romances. Here it wasn’t annoying; it was like something Dusk and Abe needed to go through in order to grow stronger and have a future. They got something out of their time as just friends. It wasn’t there just so there could be some drama in the story. It served a purpose.
I can’t wait to see what comes next for this band, and I’m very excited to see Dusk and Abe make appearances in the next books as an established couple.
5 shiny pink stars!

Ben: The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee ~ This is technically a historical fantasy, but I sort of waffled back and forth on whether I liked the fantastical elements. The magical box that’s supposed to be a cure-all was a glaringly obvious plot device, but it certainly got our teen trio on their way to adventure, so I suppose I can’t complain much.
I loved how the protagonist was bisexual, I loved how he was a silly goof, and I loved the historical setting. I had immense fun and gobbled the story up in less than a day. If I could go back in time to read it anew again I would in a heartbeat.
Cheers! 5 glorious stars!

Maryann: As Sure As The Sun by Elle Keaton ~ Elle Keaton really surprised me with this fourth installment of the Accidental Roots series. As Sure As The Sun takes a different turn from the previous books, as there aren’t any FBI cases to be concerned about, and I had no idea that the storyline would bring Seth and Sacha together. They have a sort of quiet but passionate connection, and it was interesting how both their childhoods had so much conflict and insecurity. I really liked Seth’s determination to do as much as he could to find Owen and TG, and Sacha supported his determination in his own way. I could not see either Seth or Sacha being any different than the way they were created.

If you follow this series, Adam and Noah make an appearance along with many of the characters from previous novels, which is always fun and interesting. Of course, there’s a sprinkle of new characters too. The Owen and TG plotline was developed from a true story about Elle Keaton’s, Great-Uncle Owen, and she provides details with a Dedication at the end.

Sammy: WILD by Adrienne Wilder ~ Honestly, I just do not know where to begin. This novel was amazing. Gutsy, raw, stunningly realistic and gripping—every single one of these epithets could be used again and again to describe Adrienne Wilder’s latest story, WILD. From the very first page to the end, this book rocketed into your imagination and took hold, never letting up, never giving you much more than a quick second to catch your breath before it dove right back into the relentlessly harsh reality that August and Keegan were living. Furthermore, when you realized that August was in this dire situation by a stroke of fate and pure bad luck, but Keegan chose to live on the edge of the wilderness with barely any hint of creature comforts and continually fighting for his life, it was just mind boggling. As the story unfolded, you began to dread what it was that haunted and hunted Keegan—both animal and human alike. To say that his past was horrific is to almost minimize his everyday struggle to survive the Alaskan frontier, which was brutal to say the least. But it was the love—the romance, the growing genuine attachment that August and Keegan had for one another, that was the real star of this novel and, in the end, it made every desperate, gut-wrenching moment worth it.

Sammy: The Rules and Regulations for Mediating Myths & Magic by F.T. Lukens ~ How have I not heard of author F.T. Lukens before this? I grant you that The Rules and Regulations for Mediating Myths & Magic is only the third published novel by this writer, but it’s just brilliant. Humorous, intelligent and able to produce simply wonderful characters that make a deep impression on both your heart and mind, F.T. Lukens brings to life some of the most undeniably zany creatures you can ever imagine. From the butter and chocolate loving pixie duo of Nia and Bran to the seductive werewolf, Elena, the otherworldly beings loom larger than life in this novel, and they make what would otherwise be a run-of-the-mill paranormal sparkle and shine.

Jules: Lord of the White Hell: Book One by Ginn Hale ~ This is shaping up to be the year where I finally read a bunch of books that have been on my list forever. I dunno how I sat on this particular book for so long, but thank goodness I finally got to it because Lord of the White Hell by Ginn Hale is an absolute feast. I couldn’t be more stoked to have had the opportunity to read and review this book. As with any of Hale’s stories, once you begin it, you find yourself immediately and completely immersed in the world she has created. I could picture the grounds of the Sagrada Academy, smell the pies that Kiram and Javier stole from the kitchen windowsill, hear the blows and grunts during the battles in the autumn tournament. Every scene is so rich, every character so real and memorable, the sensations and emotions just leap off the page.

Jules: Into This River I Drown by TJ Klune ~ It is going to be extremely difficult to put into words how amazed I was by this story. I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect going in. Based on the blurb, I knew that it was going to be on the darker side—darker than other books I’ve read by Klune—and that it had a paranormal aspect. I didn’t know that it was going to be romance, mystery, suspense, and paranormal all rolled into one. Or, that it would be so incredibly gorgeous. Into This River I Drown was everything I hoped it would be and then some. Which shouldn’t be surprising at all given that it’s a TJ Klune novel, and that it won the Lambda Literary Award for Best Gay Romance in 2014.

Lisa: Be My Best Man by Con Riley ~ Yet again, author Con Riley has penned a gorgeous love story in Be My Best Man, a May/December romance between a young Russian seeking asylum in England, and a man whose once bitten, twice shy outlook on relationships has left him soured on the very idea of being with anyone long-term.

Every single moment of watching Vanya and Jason grow closer is beautiful, and I love how their difference in age was the least of the obstacles in their getting together. So much of this is owed to Vanya, to his experiences and dreams, his seeing Jason’s heart and character rather than focusing on the way time has marked Jason’s features and grayed his hair. I also love that their relationship isn’t rushed in the least. For things to have moved too quickly would have been disingenuous to their entire relationship and the things Vanya is keeping from Jason. Not to mention the fact that I wouldn’t have had the wonderful opportunity to play witness to the way the title is the heart of the story.

Lisa: Rule Breaker by Lily Morton ~ It’s not such an easy feat to find a contemporary category romance novel that rises to the top of, and even transcends, the abundance of good gay romantic fiction out there. Rule Breaker does. It makes its own excellence seem effortless, owing to the author’s way with words, sense of humor, and instincts for drawing a character such as Gabe with just enough vulnerability to temper his multitude of sins. There is a warmth to this novel that contradicts Gabe’s coldness, a sweetness that overcomes the bitter wreckage of Dylan’s heart. When the inevitable happens, the devastation is awful. When Dylan and Gabe are given a second chance, the outcome is breathtaking.

There isn’t a single thing I didn’t love about this book and the way its story and characters are crafted. Fair warning, though: this is one of those marathon binge reads. Once you start, you may not want to stop until The End. And then you may want to start reading it all over again. Yeah, it’s that good.

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And that does it for this month. Until next time, happy reading!

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THE GIVEAWAY



a Rafflecopter giveaway


Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Audio Tuesday with Jessie Potts

Hello all, welcome to another Audio Tuesday, and Jessie Potts is here again from the HEA blog to talk about some of her most recent audio recommendations.

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I have been in a mood lately, and when I get in my moods I tend to fall back on favorites in my library. Here are a few m/m romances that I constantly listen to. Enjoy!

Shattered Glass by Dani Alexander, narrated by Joseph Northton
This is one of my favorite books and audiobooks because I laugh all the time. This entire story is fantastic and you will 100% feel for the MC Austin. He constantly finds himself in these situations that he just can’t help but make worse… by being himself. In the end though it all works out. The only thing that really really really really really really REALLY bothers me is that I have been waiting FIVE years for book two. What makes it worse is that the author already put the second and third covers and descriptions up on Goodreads and I don’t know when the next one will be out! 

https://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/Shattered-Glass-Audiobook/B00JG4BXAM/ref=a_search_c4_1_1_srTtl?qid=1506396610&sr=1-1

Dogwood Days & Spring Fever by Poppy Dennison, narrated by Matt Armstrong
This was such a cute read and I’m so glad that the narrator fully embraced the craziness of Holly Creek. Jefferson (and ALL the crazy characters… I’m looking at you Holly Berries) is fantastic and watching him get reacquainted with the characters and town always brings a smile to my face. Add a hot sheriff hero, mix in some heat and steam… and BAM you get a sassy southern romance to brighten up your day! 

https://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/Dogwood-Days-Spring-Fever-Audiobook/B01GP2F2BI

Little Wolf by R. Cooper, narrated by Robert Neiman
Ok so this entire series is my go to for when I need happiness, but Tim Dirus/Littlewolf holds a special place in my heart. He’s so mean and cranky, small and fierce.. I just love him! The sheriff (another hot sheriff!) is so alpha, yet so so so understanding and sweet. Their entire romance just leaves a goofy smile on my face. As I’ve listened to this series a million times… I can’t wait for Treasure for Treasure to come out on Audio! Come on!!!

https://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/Little-Wolf-Audiobook/B01EZ21P3O

 Thank you all for reading, enjoy the recs! 

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Audio Tuesday with Jessie Potts

Hello all, welcome to another Audio Tuesday, and Jessie Potts is here again from the HEA blog to talk about some of her most recent audio recommendations.

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This week I thought I would share some of my favorite romance reads that are on their $4.95 member sale! You need to pick these up before they’re gone!

Bared to You by Sylvia Day, narrated by Jill Redfield
This is a hot book that also has emotion, passion, deep characters and oh my god the chemistry!

https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/Bared-to-You-Audiobook/B008DJ074E?ie=UTF8&pf_rd_r=NTJF6NJ2G2ESNNBS9AMZ&pf_rd_m=A2ZO8JX97D5MN9&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_i=Win-Win-Sale-17-Rom&pf_rd_p=3256424482&pf_rd_s=center-8


Halfway to the Grave by Jeaniene Frost, narrated by Tavia Gilbert
This is one of my favorite series, the hero?  Crispin Bones? Geez…. Sooooo amazing and soooo hot! Add vampires and a butt kicking heroine and I’m sold!

https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/Halfway-to-the-Grave-Audiobook/B003EYRWCS?ie=UTF8&pf_rd_r=NTJF6NJ2G2ESNNBS9AMZ&pf_rd_m=A2ZO8JX97D5MN9&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_i=Win-Win-Sale-17-Rom&pf_rd_p=3256424482&pf_rd_s=center-8


Dark Lover by J.R. Ward, narrated by Jim Frangione
I enjoyed this first book a lot, I read it during a time when I was just entering the paranormal romance genre and years later? While it’s not the most original vampire novel, it is fun and the brothers are so bad ass.

https://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/Dark-Lover-Audiobook/B002VA9GXE?ie=UTF8&pf_rd_r=NTJF6NJ2G2ESNNBS9AMZ&pf_rd_m=A2ZO8JX97D5MN9&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_i=Win-Win-Sale-17-Rom&pf_rd_p=3256424482&pf_rd_s=center-8


The Sexy One by Lauren Blakely, narrated by Andi Arndt and Sebastian York
This is a hot one and has two of my favorite narrators. I have re-listened to this a few times and all I can say is that Abby and Simon are perfect for one another!

https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/The-Sexy-One-Audiobook/B01LZMHPYQ?ie=UTF8&pf_rd_r=NTJF6NJ2G2ESNNBS9AMZ&pf_rd_m=A2ZO8JX97D5MN9&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_i=Win-Win-Sale-17-Rom&pf_rd_p=3256424482&pf_rd_s=center-8


Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning, narrated by Joyce Bean
This is one of my favorite series, I mean come on, Barrons is too much on page, and in audio. Joyce does a good job and I definitely recommend this series, seriously Barrons! The romance really picks up later in the series but this is a great introduction to him.

https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/Darkfever-Audiobook/B002V8MMQO?ie=UTF8&pf_rd_r=NTJF6NJ2G2ESNNBS9AMZ&pf_rd_m=A2ZO8JX97D5MN9&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_i=Win-Win-Sale-17-Rom&pf_rd_p=3256424482&pf_rd_s=center-8


Dragon Bound by Thea Harrison, narrated by Sophie Eastlake
This is one of my favorite authors and favorite narrators. I adore the entire Elder Races series but Dragon Bound is the best! The two main character are perfect for one another and you’ll fall for Dragos I promise!

https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/Dragon-Bound-Audiobook/B005CKGELC?ie=UTF8&pf_rd_r=NTJF6NJ2G2ESNNBS9AMZ&pf_rd_m=A2ZO8JX97D5MN9&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_i=Win-Win-Sale-17-Rom&pf_rd_p=3256424482&pf_rd_s=center-8


Fashionably Dead by Robyn Peterman, narrated by Jessica Almasy
This book/series is one of the few that makes me laugh out loud. Jessica is perfect for Astrid and her Prada obsession. The romance is also really nice, but the humor is what makes this a gem.

https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/Fashionably-Dead-Audiobook/B01A7PQM5O?ie=UTF8&pf_rd_r=DQVCC1P2Z333TR5K6X8V&pf_rd_m=A2ZO8JX97D5MN9&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_i=Win-Win-Sale-17-Rom&pf_rd_p=3256424482&pf_rd_s=center-8


Shooter by Dahlia West, narrated by Mason Lloyd
This is a fantastic story that has the best banter and humor. There’s instant attraction and chemistry and my God the heat! There’s also suspense, a great plot and Mason is a great fit! 


https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/Shooter-Audiobook/B01C66M4TA?ie=UTF8&pf_rd_r=BEYJGHFQ483G9VH4Y69R&pf_rd_m=A2ZO8JX97D5MN9&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_i=Win-Win-Sale-17-Rom&pf_rd_p=3256424482&pf_rd_s=center-8

Okay all, that's it for this week, hope you enjoy the recs and happy listening. :)

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Audio Tuesday with Jessie Potts

Hello all, welcome to another Audio Tuesday, and Jessie Potts is here again from the HEA blog to talk about some of her most recent audio recommendations.

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With the rain and darkness I found myself wanting a bit more steam in my listens.  I wanted abs, chemistry and the connection of being unable to be away for even a moment. Bring on the hot heroes! We have an explosive relationship, a best friend’s hot younger brother moving in, and the fourth book in an fiery series that is just oooOOOooo hot! Enjoy!

Filthy Little Secret by Devon McCormack, narrated by Michael Pauley
This one is not one you can listen to through drive-through windows. It’s dirty and hot and man alive I had fun listening to this one. I will say that if you’re not a fan of role playing and a bit of… well edgy sex, then you might want to skip down to the next rec. For those of you who are Mark and Tim are so combustible, yet sweet. Michael Pauley’s voice wasn’t really who I thought of when reading about Mark and Tim, but after a few chapters I fell into his rhythm and cadence. 

https://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/Filthy-Little-Secret-Audiobook/B0754RC3F5/ref=a_pd_Romanc_c10_1_6_i_libvbs?ie=UTF8&pf_rd_r=0NBNZ7K3Y475GX4ERBEQ&pf_rd_m=A2ZO8JX97D5MN9&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_i=detail-page&pf_rd_p=3168634502&pf_rd_s=center-10


 The Room Mate by Kendall Ryan, narrated by Ava Erickson and Jeremy York
Ok so I will say I was drug into this by the cover… maybe drug isn’t the right word? Maybe pulled? Coerced? HAD TO LISTEN! The cover is hot and Jeremy does Cannon’s voice proud. I mean their entire romantic relationship starts by Cannon drunkenly telling her that he’s so amazing in bed and she calls him on it… yea… apparently he is! The narrators are amazing and this is the smexiest listen filled with good character development and on top of all that heat there’s a great plot!
 
https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/The-Room-Mate-Audiobook/B01N26UST5?ref=a_a_adblbes_c3_lProduct_1_12&pf_rd_p=2449196b-e46b-49f1-a88b-4da2b4e6dab2&pf_rd_r=S9V8W1PFJBMWXJYCFMW9&


Tease by Ella Frank, narrated by Shannon Gunn
If you haven’t already… go read/listen to Try… seriously go now… ok back now? Well Shannon is the perfect narrator for Tate and Logan’s voices, for their chemistry, and for just them! While one of the middle books was just eh for me, I really enjoyed this one and watching the two men continue to grow. While there’s no longer that new honeymoon shine to their relationship, Ella keeps them hot and going strong by giving readers more insight into their personalities and the intricacies into their love.  This is a great series from an excellent author! 

https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/Tease-Audiobook/B0744R8YZJ/ref=a_cat_Roman_c5_1_3_i?ie=UTF8&pf_rd_r=0SHC252V7AN0J0HMTT6Z&pf_rd_m=A2ZO8JX97D5MN9&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_i=15243303011&pf_rd_p=2521716122&pf_rd_s=cat-5


 That's it for this week all, happy listening!

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Audio Tuesday with Jessie Potts

Hello all, welcome to another Audio Tuesday, and Jessie Potts is here again from the HEA blog to talk about some of her most recent audio recommendations.

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Kilts, abs, Scottish accents…. Kilts… I can’t get enough of Highland Romances and here are a few I’m re-listening/listening to now. We have a two complicated and intense heroes, an Outlander secondary character, and a fantastic heroine who has been told to wed the notorious Black Knight. Enjoy!

Provoked by Joanna Chambers, narrated by Hamish McKinlay
This one is hot, (the narrator man, the narrator!) and has a bit of a edge to it. I’ve read the series, but listening brought more depth to the characters and again, a darker edge that kept this historical even more engaging and appealing. While this ends in an HFN and there isn’t another audio out yet, you can always grab the second book Beguiled. I really hope the author plans on continuing in audio because the narrator is perfect for the characters.

https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/Provoked-Audiobook/B074RD4YFV/ref=a_search_c4_1_7_srTtl?qid=1504548602&sr=1-7



The Scottish Prisoner by Diana Gabaldon, narrated by Jeff Woodman and Rick Holmes
For fans of the Outlander, this is a fantastic side series that follows Lord John, and we get Jamie Fraser’s alternating POVs as well (Jamie!).  Lord John Grey is one of those characters that I have learned to love, and watching his and Jamie’s friendship/frenemies evolve and sputter with his admittance of having feelings for Jamie is so enjoyable.  While I love Davina Porter’s accent for Jamie (in the actual Outlander series) these two did a decent job. I liked Jeff’s voice better than Rick’s, but again, this entire series (and Outlander series) is just magical. I almost prefer it to the television show. 

https://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/The-Scottish-Prisoner-Audiobook/B00687N33A/ref=a_search_c4_1_1_srTtl?qid=1504549445&sr=1-1



Knight in Highland Armor by Amy Jarecki, narrated by Dave Gillies
I’m a sucker for a feisty heroine (I know some of you hate that word XD) and a brooding misunderstood hero.  I also chose to rec this book because I just downloaded the second book in the series A Highland Knight’s Desire just came out in audio and I love the hero in that book, Sir Duncan.  The narrator does an excellent job with the secondary character’s as well as the MC’s lovely voices and Amy Jarecki writes steamy romances. 

https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/Knight-in-Highland-Armor-Audiobook/B00TOT9NGA/ref=a_series_c2_1_saTtl?ie=UTF8&pf_rd_r=1VFTEWW7R4KB9SZA0EHH&pf_rd_m=A2ZO8JX97D5MN9&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_i=series-detail&pf_rd_p=1374482202&pf_rd_s=center-2


 Happy listening everyone!