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Hearts On Fire Reviews

We read and review for the love and joy of books.

Annabelle Jacobs – Chasing Shadows

Chasing Shadows - Annabelle Jacobs

Reviewer: Diane
Publisher: Self Published
Genre: M/M Mystery


Jamie’s brother Michael is missing and he does not accept the speculation that he drowned while out painting on the beach. He travels to Cornwall to the cabin Michael rented and is further concerned when he finds a stranger in the cabin! Felix is not exactly a friend, not exactly a stranger but he may have some ideas on what happened to Michael and who might be behind it. However, Jamie and Felix have to work through not only mistrust of one another to figure out what happened to Michael, but their attraction too.
The story is told from the alternating point of view of Jamie and Felix.

I quite enjoyed this book, I liked the characters and felt it moved at a good pace, in some places, the mystery and romance aspects were pretty balanced, while in others, the romance seemed to be the stronger part of the story, but overall, it worked. Jamie’s struggle over what happened to his brother comes through quite clear and with the details he reveals, you can tell why he is unwilling to accept the story that he drowned.
While Jamie and Felix seem to trip over each other quite a bit, I liked the fact that both acknowledged that while they did not want to like each other, they had a respect for the other. Even when Felix’s friends come to visit and they include Jamie to give him a bit of a distraction from his sadness.
About the only thing missing for me, and this will be a challenge to say and not give anything away, was some clarification of Michael’s case – how or why he met the character of Weston, why it played out as it did compared to what happened to Felix’s friend? However, that did end up being a small question for me since the focus of the book had been about Jamie’s experience and feelings, then his relationship with Felix.
I would recommend this for fans of romance with some mystery, there are some hot scenes between the two lead characters, but not excessive.

Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/review-annabelle-jacobs-chasing-shadows

Will Freshwater – Favorite Son

Favorite Son - Will Freshwater

Reviewer: Barb
Publisher: DreamSpinner Press
Genre: M/M contemporary


John Wells is chief of staff to Senator Patrick Donovan and best friends with his daughter, Melanie. He and his partner, David, live in DC, but John rarely sees him because his job is his life from sunup to sundown and longer. When the senator decides to run for President, he fires John, replacing him with a seasoned campaign strategist. Around that same time, David informs him that their marriage is not working, and he’s done with being second to everything else in John’s life. And then Melanie tells him she’s loved him ever since he met her, and his world as he knew it comes crumbling down around him.

John had a twin named Peter who died shortly after their birth and John assumes Peter’s name when he wants to be removed from the stress of his life situation. One such time leads to an encounter with a reporter who is just using John to get insider info on the senator’s upcoming announcement. When the reality of all the treachery in his life culminates in a tragedy involving Melanie, John just simply runs away and assumes the identity of Peter.

Ending up in Provincetown, Peter is befriended by a gregarious queen and an interesting old woman, both of whom make sure that he knows he’s welcome there, and neither of whom know who he really is. Over the course of the next six months, Peter becomes an assistant to a young man who is restoring a church purchased by his father before he passed away. Danny is everything Peter wants, except that he continually tells Peter he’s not gay. Whether he is or not, the two ultimately end up together until John is found by a representative of the senator and is blackmailed into returning to DC.

What I’ve outlined above I believe is true, however, it’s possible that I may have misunderstood something along the way. The narration was good, but the story was very confusing, especially at the beginning. The author’s use of John’s and Peter’s name almost interchangeably was difficult to follow for the first half of the audiobook. Listening to a story is often very different from reading it, and there are often clues to a POV change in an e-book that aren’t present in an audiobook. Whether or not that’s the case here, I don’t know. I just know that John/Peter wasn’t a likeable character at the beginning so it was even more difficult for me to maintain my interest, and to be honest, I still don’t feel much of a draw to him, even at the end. And his love interest, Danny, was so abrasive and wishy washy I found his abrupt mood swings unforgiveable.

I definitely do not recommend this story in the audiobook version. The narration was good, but not outstanding, though that may be unfair to the narrator who was working with a story that felt disjointed from beginning to end. If I was pressed to classify this story, I wouldn’t even classify it as a true romance. I found it to be more of a dark drama or a psychological study of how politics can ruin someone’s life. The attraction between the men was there, but it wasn’t the driving force of the story. And, though there was essentially a happy ending for the couple when Peter/John was reunited with Danny, I was simply happy to get to the end of the book.

Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/review-will-freshwater-favorite-son

Adam Carpenter – Hidden Identity

Hidden Identity: The Jimmy McSwain Files - Adam Carpenter

Reviewer: Barb
Publisher: MLR Press
Genre: M/M Contemporary


Jimmy McSwain is a twenty-eight-year-old New York City PI, a career path he chose so that he could pursue his life’s goal of finding the man who murdered his father. Joe McSwain was a NYC off-duty cop when he was gunned down in front of fourteen-year-old Jimmy. Jimmy vowed at that moment that he would find the man responsible.

As the story opens, Jimmy is finalizing a case in which he found proof that a man was cheating on his wife—but it was with men, not another woman. He’s also intrigued by a young Brit named Barry, who has just taken a job in the city. Barry and Jimmy hit it off, both in and out of bed, and it looks like they may be headed for a nice romance. But life interferes and when Jimmy takes on a new job hunting down a missing son, most of the balance in his life is upset. First, he and Barry have a major misunderstanding, primarily caused by Jimmy’s reticence to share what happened to his dad. And second, when Jimmy finds the missing man, he finds him living a new identity, and before he can report back to the man’s father, the father shows up, only to be murdered on the street outside the club.

Things are happening pretty fast in this story, setting a nice pace and keeping it interesting. Unfortunately, it’s not really a romance. There is some romance in the story, but as it ends, it’s unclear whether the couple will remain a couple or whether private eye Jimmy McSwain will start a relationship with the hot, new police captain.

The characters are quite well-developed, including the secondary characters—principally Jimmy’s family and close friends—and coupled with the amazing vocalizations of Joel Leslie, this audiobook is quite good, holding my interest throughout. In fact, the pace of the story picked up in the second half, and I found myself finding excuses to keep listening, instead of pursuing my daily activities. And then the best part—the killer was a surprise. It’s always nice when I haven’t figured out the mystery. It also appears that this will be the beginning of a series. I’m hoping Jimmy pursues one man or the other in the next book because a nice romance underlying the action and intrigue would make the series so much better.

In the meantime, if you’re looking for a new author and like mystery and suspense thrillers, consider this one. I definitely recommend it in audiobook format. The voice Joel Leslie gives to Jimmy is a heart melter.

Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/review-adam-carpenter-hidden-identity

Angel Martinez – Brandywine Investigations: Open for Business

Brandywine Investigations: Open for Business - Angel Martinez

Reviewer: Diane
Publisher: Mischief Corner Books
Genre: M/M Fantasy


Review:   If you have heard of Amber Quill Press, you may also have heard they closed down as of March 30, 2016. Thankfully, authors were given rights to their books back and in the case of the Brandywine Investigations series by Angel Martinez, Mischief Corner Books will now be the publisher of this series. To start that off, the first three books of the series – Canines, Crosshairs & Corpses; No Enemy but Time and Diamonds, Dragons & Discord, have been reedited and expanded by about 18K (mostly in No Enemy but Time) and got some brand new cover art by Mila May where she represents Hermes and Fafnir from Diamonds, Dragons & Discord.
The premise of the stories are Greek gods in our modern world since humans are not going to temples, the gods need to find other employment!
Canines, Crosshairs & Corpses is told from the alternating point of view of Hades and Ti.
No Enemy but Time is told from Zack’s point of view
Diamonds, Dragons & Discord is told from the alternating point of view of Hermes and Fafnir, although there are a few chapters told from Michael’s point of view as he helps with a case.

Canines, Crosshairs & Corpses: Brandywine Investigations #1
When Hades is served divorce papers, he’s a bit at a loss of what to do and his family are worried about him fading, which can happen to gods when they are without followers. His depression over his divorce, and perhaps, more importantly, separation from his beloved Cerberus, leads to an intervention from Hestia, Dionysus, Hermes and to his surprise, Charon. Hades decides to open Brandywine Investigations, named after the river he chooses to reside near in Wilmington, Delaware as New York City is too chaotic for him! After modifications to his helm of invisibility and the car he chooses to drive, thanks to his family, he is ready for his first case! And with Hades, of course he cannot go about building cases the normal way, so he goes out looking and finds so much more than he thought when he and Charon come across a body and a scared homeless man named Tiberius (Ti). There is adventure, humor, new beginnings for a few characters and a well written, excellent story here and for how Hades may have been presented before, I came out of this story with him as one of my favorites characters/gods!

No Enemy But Time: Brandywine Investigations #2
Zagreus (who goes by Zack) is Hades only son and he has been living with Michael, an angel who had been Zack’s guardian, but when he gave in to his feelings for Zack, his punishment was swift and after recovering from having his wings removed, has found happiness with Zack, his garden, their house and Zack’s family. Zack has a limited relationship with his father, made more challenging with his parent’s divorce and the presence of Ti, although you get the impression Hades would like a better relationship between the two of them. While visiting the city, they learn there are some chaos gods at work and they seem to be targeting fallen angels – fallen angels can sometimes go into a madness and sadly, that seems to be what happens to two people who had formerly been living happy, quiet lives. Zack is having bad feelings of whether Michael will be affected by this. Of the three stories, this one has been expanded the most, including more back story than the original, but the story is just as powerful and for this one, I expect you will need tissues handy as it is wonderful and heartbreaking at the same time. Again, the whole family is present to help, support and take on whatever threat there is and they are all incredibly well done characters!

Dragons, Diamonds & Discord: Brandywine Investigations #3
This one has a dragon, need I say more?!? Well, yes, this story is Hermes as one the main characters and it turns out someone has stolen from one of his shops – which is impressive since Hermes is usually the thief, but it is also intriguing and worrisome as Hermes figures out the pattern the thefts may take. Again, the family comes together to catch the thief, who turns out to be a dragon, but not just any dragon and not behaving the way legends suggest a dragon would when he collects treasures. A great adventure and mystery story, all the characters that have been introduced so far are brought back again to help with this case and even Michael gets to help – much to Zack’s dismay.
I would recommend these stories for fans of romance, mystery, adventure, fantasy stories or just great fiction. Angel Martinez is quite brilliant with the world building she does in her stories and whenever they are set in the human world, I feel like I should be able to go to New York or Wilmington and meet these characters there, it feels that real! Very much a highly recommended book and easily one of my favorites of 2016.

Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/review-angel-martinez-brandywine-investigations-open-for-business

Avon Gale – Power Play

Power Play  - Avon Gale

Reviewer: Barb
Publisher: DreamSpinner Press
Genre: M/M Sport


Max Ashford’s career ended abruptly after only a few years as an NHL hockey player when he fell and hit his head during the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The man who was suspended for fifteen games for causing Max’s accident was Misha Samarin—the same man who Max has just learned is now going to be head coach to the Spartanburg Spitfires, the team for which Max has just been hired as assistant coach.

But Max isn’t holding a grudge—far from it. He sees it as it is—simply an accident and it saddens him that Misha has carried the burden with him for so long. It surprises him when his new team manager uses the film clip from the game to drum up fan interest in the team, and if they expect to see the two coaches in a fight, they have another thing coming.

Max is one of the most wonderful characters I’ve ever encountered. He’s bright, upbeat, a positive role model, and sexy as sin. He not only forgives Misha for his role in the accident—It’s hockey, after all!—he also finds Misha to be one of the most attractive men he’s ever met. The tall, muscular Russian who rarely cracks a smile turns Max’s world on its axis and leaves him no choice but to acknowledge that his bisexuality is not just a maybe, it’s a definite.

The story is fast-paced as we witness the Spitfires go from last place in the league to a winning team, at the same time as we witness the charming Max working wonders on his stoic head coach’s personality. The secondary characters, which include most of the team as well as Max’s family members, are interesting, three-dimensional, and full of personality. Even the ostensibly greedy team owner has some redeeming qualities, though they aren’t revealed right away, and with the fast pace of the drama that unfolds, he makes a great character to “love to hate.”

The story isn’t just about hockey—it’s about relationships—both personal and professional. And it’s about growth, again, both personal and professional. And not just Max and Misha—it’s about their players as well. This is my first book by this author, but I’m most definitely getting the early books in the series and anything else Avon Gale has written because it was just so outstanding. I found myself smiling every time I thought about the couple and the things that happened along the way to their HEA, including how clueless they both were that their team was shipping them all season!

Though this is book three in a series, it does not rely on previous characters so can be easily read as a standalone. And you don’t have to be a sports fan to read this, but if you know anything about hockey, it will only enhance your enjoyment. If you don’t know much about hockey, you’re going to want to learn more when you finish this. You might even be tempted to attend a game! But most of all, if you’re in the mood to read a remarkable story that will be hard to put down, by all means pick this one up.

Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/review-avon-gale-power-play

Lynn Kelling – Only the Lonely

Only the Lonely - Lynn Kelling

Reviewer: Wendy
Publisher: Fantastic Fiction Publishing
Genre: M/M Contemporary


Besides being the queen of stories that push conventional boundaries, I also firmly believe that no one does prequels quite like Lynn Kelling either. The “Twin Ties” series remains one of my absolute favorites. Despite the three other MCs who feature prominently in the series, at the heart and soul of it, it’s Evan’s character and the things that shaped his troubled youth that take center stage. Based on that, of course I’m going to jump at the chance to get inside his head and try to understand how it made him the person I adored and just wanted to protect as a slightly older character!


Even knowing the basic backdrop of Evan’s life growing up from reading the series, it still doesn’t compare to the first-hand account of being in the moment as the actual events unfold. My heart hurt for Evan all over again as he coped with loneliness so great it led to behaviors that put him in harm’s way over and over again. I basically knew what to expect, but it still didn’t stop my heart from speeding up and breath from hitching as his life started to implode.


And now that I’ve had the chance to devour a little bit of prequel Evan, I have an irresistible urge to re-read the original trilogy – I loved it that much! For fans of the series, this is a must read (but be aware of the side effect – wanting to gorge on more of Evan, Brennan, Alek and Luka). Loved it!

Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/review-lynn-kelling-only-the-lonely

Renae Kaye Safe in His Heart

Safe in His Heart - Renae Kaye

Reviewer: Diane
Publisher: DreamSpinner Press
Genre: M/M Contemporary


Andrew was raised Catholic and told homosexuality is a sin, as a result, he has hid his true self most of his life. He got married (which can be described as a version of an arranged marriage!), had kids and works hard at his career and refers to his true self as “The Vault”. Then he meets Paul, who is out, proud and after they start an affair, he learns Paul even goes to church – one that does not still follow the fire and brimstone version of religion and sermons. What started as an affair becomes much more complicated, but it also pushes limits on beliefs of what is right, what is true and what is possible.

The story is told from the alternating point of view of Paul and Andrew.

First off, if you’ve read the synopsis of this book or even what I summarized above, you know that this book involves cheating and readers should be aware of that. However, this book is much more than that and I do hope readers who might not normally read books with cheating give it a chance! I would say the first few chapters of the book deal with the affair portion of Paul and Andrew’s relationship, but once their real lives start spilling over into their time together, the story focus changes into all the other topics this book presents!


If you read Safe in His Arms, the first book that was about Lon and Casey, then you are familiar with the character of Paul and that he was an excellent friend not only to Lon, but even to Casey, who he thought was too young for Lon, but backed off saying that when he saw how they balanced each other out. You did hear of Andrew and perhaps, as the author intended, you shared the judgment that Lon and Casey did, that it would not end well and Paul should get out. Interestingly enough, with this story, you are presented with his hesitation about starting the affair for the exact reason that Andrew is married.


I neither condone nor excuse cheating, I am of the opinion that if you don’t want to be with the person you are with, you should break it off before you start another relationship – no matter how temporary. And to that end, the book was a slow start for me, it didn’t help that I liked both Paul and Andrew as characters! Then the cracks start to show in the façade of Andrew’s life and marriage and even though he tries to fix that, his wife leaves – but not for what you may assume, which gave a whole new direction to the story and at that point, I could barely put the book down!


For me, what I got out of the book is not only about being true to yourself, but also to question what people think is best for you, question religion, no matter how strongly you believe, you should question anyone who tries to teach faith through judgment, exclusion or hatred. And I think my favorite point out of the book, if you are in a relationship and you have children, they must always be the most important thing, no matter what you want, no matter what happens to your relationship with your partner, you had children together and they should not have to choose sides or choose who to love or like because the adult relationship has changed. This topic was dealt with beautifully!


So, this book that someone could simply write off because there is cheating, is even more importantly, about faith, love, parenthood, friendship and doing the right thing – for yourself, for your family, for your children. I loved the characters, main and secondary – for example, Andrew’s PA, Erica, is a fantastic character that you both want to have in your life and are afraid to have in your life! I would recommend this for fans of romance, there are some hot scenes between the two lead characters, but it is part of the story.

Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/review-renae-kaye-safe-in-his-heart

Schuyler L’Roux – There’s Something About A Kilt

There's Something About a Kilt - Schuyler L'Roux
Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/review-schuyler-lroux-theres-something-about-a-kilt-2

Clare London – Double Scoop (With a Kick #8)

Double Scoop (With A Kick Book 8) - Clare London

Reviewer: Lucy
Publisher: Jocular Press
Genre: MM Contemporary


Review: Finally, finally, FINALLY!! The story of Patrick the oblivious and Lee the adorable! Finally! I am a fan of the With a Kick series but I have been waiting for these two. I was very worried, since these two have been present throughout the series, wanting and not doing anything about it. Would it be as good as I hoped they’d be? Thank ice cream, YES!

Patrick is the grumpy owner of With a Kick, our favorite ice cream shop that is for more than just kids. It is due to Lee’s suggestion that Patrick even started the place and it’s Lee who helps keep it going. So many couples have come together around With A Kick, yet through it all Patrick and Lee just keep dancing around the issue. Who’s fault is that? Patrick’s! While Lee has made it pretty clear what he wants, Patrick has this idea that he isn’t enough, or maybe he’s too much, for Lee. Until that fateful day when a random spark ignites the building, with Lee in it.

The accident that hurts Lee does a number on With a Kick and it takes an army of friends to put it back together. People that Patrick didn’t even realize would want to help, because sometimes he is just so thick-headed. It is a telling thing that while waiting to hear news of Lee, make sure he is okay from the blast, a stranger gives comfort to Patrick. “Hope your son’s well again soon.” And isn’t that a big part of Patrick’s problem, that he feels he’s too old for Lee?

Sometimes the misunderstandings between the two of them make you want to clunk their heads together. I admit from my point of view, it’s Patrick. I love the guy but come on!! Under the guise of “doing what’s best” for Lee, he’s hurting him in the process.
I loved seeing how everyone we got to meet in other books rallies together to get things repaired and With a Kick open again. They work, they raise money, they put on a show, they keep the word out. It’s an awesome community.

With the arrival of Karel, we have more problems. With Patrick constantly treating Lee as the “boy”, someone of Patrick’s own age who happens to be gorgeous, smart and funny? It’s bound to cause hurt feelings, especially when Patrick’s doubts keep resurfacing. And the longer things go on, the more awkward and tense they get. What’s it going to take to get these two on the right road?

You can definitely read this as a standalone but it packs more of a punch if you’ve read the series, as you know all the people involved here but more importantly, you see how long Patrick and Lee have been sidestepping each other. And glory be, Patrick does have a romantic side. The proof is in the mug. Adorable!

I am hoping this isn’t the end of With A Kick, because I now that I know my favorite guys are all settled, Karel needs a story. Oh, Ms. London…

Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/review-clare-london-double-scoop-with-a-kick-8

Lisa Worrall – Before Sundown

Before Sundown - Lisa Worrall

Reviewer: SheReadsAlot
Publisher: DreamSpinner Press
Genre: M/M Contemporary



"I knew the first time I saw you I was in trouble, Eli Watkins."


*cue 'I Knew You Were Trouble' to play in the background*


This is my first time reading Lisa Worrall. I'm unfamiliar with her writing style but let me tell you I was entertained. Probably for the wrong reasons, but entertained nonetheless.Trigger Warning: animal cruelty, physical and verbal abuse, attempted and off page sexual assault


Set in 1892 Texas, Before Sundown is about gay horseman & country boy Eli Watkins. He joins the Somerfield Ranch. He's there looking for more cash to send home to his family in Kansas but doesn't expect a cruel boss or his beautiful son to be as nice as his father is mean. Samuel Somerfield is the long time abused son of the owner, who is straight and is being forced into a courtship with a wealthy ranch owner's daughter he does not want. When he claps eyes on Eli, the two get off on the wrong foot, but there is an undeniable connection.


This story had a strong start. There was a frenemy vibe going on between the protagonists but the ranch owner was downright mean. And he made his presence known from the beginning. Please look at those triggers. Because the villains of the story take their villainy to extremes that really brought the story down in to OTT-ville population: them.


I'm not a fan of cowboys. Wait! Contemporary cowboys don't do it for me. I like looking at the pictures (duh) but the romances aren't really my go to. Historical cowboy romances I find I respond in a more positive light. Something about cowboys having to fend for themselves against real dangers and riding horses like the elements or starvation that I enjoy. This book read modern which was another minus for me. Though it had soap opera like antics and feels and the characters came off just as modern too, I couldn't stop reading to see what next crazy thing they'd do. This story could have easily been told in today's time just switch the horses for cars.


The men fall in love very quickly, declarations are made too soon. There is the plot line of Samuel's coming out and realizing he can fall for a man that just wasn't fleshed out enough. Add to that by 40% the men who didn't have a pot to piss in or any fighting skills, just took all kinds of silly risks that didn't jibe with the historical setting. I felt Eli was way too open. The gay secondary characters (a coincidence?) , the rapey second villain who somehow became a mind reader in the last third of the story...over the top. At points, the story felt like it was trying outdo itself with what crazy new plot device it could pile on top next instead of focusing on the romantic aspect of two damaged men finding love in 1892.


I'm on the fence with authors writing the dialect for their characters. Some authors can make it work if they don't over do it, some can't. In Before Sundown, be prepared for a heavy handed "yer", "y'all" and other heavy drawls spelled out. I felt like I was reading was reading a D rated cowboy movie at times the weird way Eli and other ranch workers spoke.


The story had good romantic scenes in the middle of the issues. I couldn't help rooting for the couple. Reading a player falling in love with that one special person is always fun to read especially when they're opposites: Eli's openly gay player who has been around the block a few times against Samuel's straitlaced hetero abused man who is realizing how to accept love, was good. Plus, double butt virgins. I wasn't mad at that, even if one sex scene got a little wonky in sticking to the characteristics of the main players.


The issues were heavy parts of why I can't rate this story higher. The cartoonish dialect, the time jumps and plot holes where characters knew what the other characters thought and planned and the horrible villains - too much.


And the way the story ended? I was shaking my head at how silly it all seemed. The entire scene at the Somerfield ranch before the grand finale...that was so unnecessary. I highly doubt the ending would have been so easy. The plot could have been more direct or maybe that plot twist could have been dropped. The final ending was rushed and after that big climax before the final score...underwhelming.


Again, I'm unsure if this is the author's style or just a one time thing.


Would I read more from this author? *squints* Maybe I'd probably try contemporary.

I think readers who like cowboys closer to the dramatic side and don't mind modern historical cowboys and the triggers might enjoy this most.


I was entertained...and needed a drink afterward.

(Fine...and during.)

Nikki Bennett – The Cattle Baron’s Bogus Boyfriend

The Cattle Baron's Bogus Boyfriend - Nicki Bennett

Reviewer: Barb
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: MM Cowboy


Review: This is a delightful story, very reminiscent of the sweet romances featuring big, strong cowboys that I used to love to read when I was a teen.


Linc Courtwright is a very hot, very wealthy, very manly cowboy and executive director of a Texas ranching operation that not only exports beef but also taps in to the gas and oil reserves on the land. His new assistant, Jonah Hollis, is a cutie with a big-time crush on Linc. Of course, he’d never tell Linc that since he values his life, and Linc is obviously straight.


After Linc breaks up with his sexy, gorgeous girlfriend who looks like a model but is actually a rodeo star, he asks Jonah to accompany him to the Cattle Baron’s Ball, the annual charity event that he always attends. Jonah knows it’s just a sham—a ploy to make Melissa jealous and to keep face—because he overheard Linc talking with his ranch foreman about her and his invitation to the ball.


But what he doesn’t know is that Linc is bisexual, and apparently, it’s not a sham to him. Can Jonah overcome his shyness, and his ties to the parents who have never accepted that he might not marry? And what happens when his best friend, Caylee, needs him back in Oklahoma? The anger, angst, and confusion comes to a head when Linc confronts Jonah after tracking him down and results in a surprise, but happy, ending.

I recommend this one to all who might enjoy an MM romance featuring a good guy who gets his cowboy in time to ride off into the sunset together.

Anna Martin - Five Times My Best Friend Kissed Me and One Time I Kissed Him First

Five Times My Best Friend Kissed Me - Anna Martin

Reviewer: Barb
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: MM Contemporary


Review: When I first opened this book, I thought all the heat and action was all going to be confined to the subtitle chapter: “One Time I Kissed Him First.” But I was so wrong! The author very cleverly divided the story into six chapters— one for each of the kisses (and sometimes more) mentioned in the title, and of course, one for the subtitle. But rather than proceed in chronological order, she takes us on a journey back and forth through time, establishing the friendship and, ultimately, the relationship between thesetwo thirty-somethings. A word about this up front—though I first thought it would be confusing, it actually turned out to be exactly right for the telling of the journey this couple takes over a twenty-five year time span.


We don’t learn how Evan King and Scott Sparrow met until chapter two because the story opens with the second kiss— one that occurs during a party at Scott’s girlfriend’s house at the end of summer before their senior year in high school. It ends in misunderstandings and a decision, apparently on both their parts, to forget the kiss ever happened.


The first kiss? The first kiss was between two seven-year-old boys as they were sitting in a cardboard fort they had built in Scott’s back yard. I loved this scene so very, very much that I highlighted the whole thing and plan to read it over and over again. The author captured the essence of pure innocence that can only be true of the very young. Carried away by the moment, the boys decide that since they like each other so much they should be married. A short excerpt:


“Okay.What do we need to do?”


“Well, I say I want to marry you, and you say you want to marry me, then we kiss, and then we eat cake.”


The innocence is gone by the time we witness the third and fourth kisses, but those kisses eventually lead to more than just two lips locked together. This is a beautiful love story that spans the test of time, and in fact, is reminiscent of watching time-lapse photography. Evan knows he is gay by the time he’s in his teens while Scott takes years to realize that he’s not just attracted to women. He’s known there’s something powerful between him and Evan, and he’s been attracted, but it isn’t until his sister’s wedding that he realizes just how much he cares for Evan and how much it’s going to hurt to walk away and go back to his life across the country.


Ultimately, the men do come together, and it takes a tragedy as the catalyst, but their love has indeed endured, and by the final chapter when the prediction of “One Time I Kissed Him” comes to pass, readers like me will be unwilling to put down the book until we get to share in their celebration of love.


I highly recommend this to all lovers of MM romance, and if you love slow burn, there’s very few that are more slow burn than this one, but are so worth the wait when the sparks ignite!

Wish Come True Holiday Anthology = Tour with Interview and contest


Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/wish-come-true-holiday-anthology-tour-interview-and-contest

Mia Kerick – Clean character interview, excerpt and giveaway


Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/mia-kerick-clean-character-interview-excerpt-and-giveaway

Lee James – Icarus Ascending Interview and giveaway

ia cover

Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/lee-james-icarus-ascending-interview-and-giveaway

Laura Stone – Bitter Springs excerpt and giveaway

Bitter Springs 1600px FRONT (web Smashwords)

Source: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/laura-stone-bitter-springs-excerpt-and-giveaway