Immaculate Conception

by I.J. Miller

This book was provided to me for free by the author in exchange for an honest review. 

Physically abused Alice meets mentally abused Maddie and the two of them deicide getting a child and giving it all the love in the world.

Tbh at the beginning I absolutely didn’t get into the story. It all starts in a cheap motel room where Maddie and Alice try to protect their Babyboy Jesse from the police who have already surrounded the motel they are in.

The scene is the told form Maddie’s, Alice’s and the Police officer’s point of view, but for me it somehow felt like a simple description of what everyone is doing since I didn’t get any feelings.

Every other chapter in the first part is alternately about Al’s or Maddie’s childhood. So between the scenes in the motel-room we get to know about Al’s dad who started abusing Al when she was 8 years old and how she experienced her teenage years. And Maddie’s childhood and teenage years with a mother who mentally abused her and at the same time made Maddie through autoaggressive acts to stay with her. Yet although both stories are really horrible and you get kind of goosebumps while reading, something was missing. It’s hard to describe but I was reading through these chapters, thinking ‘how awful’ but didn’t feel sad for one of the girls or angry with one of the parents.

Then the second part starts and it’s all about Maddie and Al getting to know each other. That was the moment I slowly started getting into the story. But still didn’t feel with or for Maddie or Al but for Wynn, a Canadian student who saved Al from a bunch of his mates and whose career as an athlete comes to an abrupt end through a car accident. Al later marries him – still out of thankfulness for rescuing her – so that he doesn’t have to go back to Canada. Later Al also gets his sperm so that she and Maddy can have their baby.

And that leads us to part three – Maddie’s and Al’s escape from their baby’s daddy and rich grandpa who wants to have custody. Now the story really had me. I got Al’s feelings, I got Maddy’s feelings and I felt with them, I hoped with them, I feared for them through their whole journey through the states till they see the skyline of New York.

Through this chapter you see parallels between Al and Maddie’s mum – both women want to rule over Maddie. But Maddie has her baby boy now who she has to protect – Will she manage to escape another person who tries to influence her and make her own decisions or will she do whatever Al demands even if it meant killing her and the baby?

Blue Skies (T.L. Martin)

This book was provided to me for free by the author in exchange for an honest review. And I’m really grateful because this book was simply amazing although I wished for some more chapters at the end… 🙂

Do you know the feeling when you read a book and you can’t stop reading but at the same time you want to stop because you don’t want it to end?
Well this book definitely got me into this conflict and as you may guess the ‘couldn’t stop reading’ part won. This book was simply amazing.
I read a lot of books in the last time and they were good, had good characters and you could somehow imagine the scenery. But with this book I could really get myself into the characters. I could totally get their decisions – although at one point I wished for a different one. I could get why Blue did what she did but I could also get Joshua and I felt so badly with and for both of them.
I’m definitely not someone who starts crying easily when reading a book but with this one I cried through the last chapters. I even cried when I tried telling my mum and husband about Blue and Joshua.
I’m pretty sure now you want me to tell you some of the plot, so let’s do it in some sentences. But just really briefly because I think you should read this book on your own if you are into drama.
First of all let me state that although it’s about two teenagers the book is definitely an 18+ one because of all the stuff those guys have to go through.
The book is told out of two perspectives – Blue’s one and Joshua’s one.
Let’s start with Blue. She is 18 years old, grew up in the middle of California, was homeschooled and had one and ergo best friend called Benji. She has just gotten to know her Dad to whom she is moving for a while at the beginning of the book.
Joshua is 18 too, lives in the pool house of Blue’s dad and is a kind of closed guy. Blue is the only one who he lets into his life. And they both fall deeply into each other.
During the story we get to know both of their lives and how they became the people they are. They have to deal with a parent who turns his back to his child and wife, with addiction, dementia, depression, suicide and struggling through life. Both of them have to find their way through their problems and have to learn standing on their own feet before they can finally find their HEA. The question is: Will they make it?
Spoiler alert: Course the do 🙂
And here’s the one point I’d criticize – I’d wished for at least two more chapters about their happy life together after they finally got each other – about their first evening together (I’m sure Blue took Joshua with her to her family’s movie night…) about their first time making love – like real making love and them just being them again.

Vampire Claus            

 

by Robert Winter
 

This story is the perfect short Christmas story about the best Christmas miracle or Christmas present ever – great love.

The whole story happens in one night – Christmas night of course.

We get to know the sexy vampire Claus whose good human side hasn’t been destroyed in all the years his demon-vampire has taken possession of his body. Actually, Claus even manages controlling his inner demon so far that most of the time he can stop drinking the blood of a human he is feasting on before he dies and lets him live. He just erases the memories of the vampire-bite. But nevertheless Claus is in a steady fight with this vampire housing in him.

So it’s a strange thing for Claus that when he meets Paul and comes really close to him his demon stays quiet all the time and lets him enjoy every second.

Paul is a real cute human being, kind of naïve and not afraid of anything. I just imagined him going through life with this huge puppy eyes, seeing the good in everyone and trying to turn the world into a better place. Claus falls for him and in just this one night Claus’ lonely eternity becomes a HEA.

Although the story is really short and just happening in one night you get to know both characters and their stories. And you totally believe the feelings they build up for each other. The story hasn’t many twists or turns; actually it’s quite straight forward. But it’s a real great read and you’ll get the spirit of Christmas again. I can just recommend this book to you as a real great five star Christmas-read.

A review ARC was generously provided by the author via IndiGo Marketing & Design

 

 

Reviewed by Marion, Kuschelbooks.com
This story is the perfect short Christmas story about the best Christmas miracle or Christmas present ever – great love.

 

The whole story happens in one night – Christmas night of course.

 

We get to know the sexy vampire Claus whose good human side hasn’t been destroyed in all the years his demon-vampire has taken possession of his body. Actually, Claus even manages controlling his inner demon so far that most of the time he can stop drinking the blood of a human he is feasting on before he dies and lets him live. He just erases the memories of the vampire-bite. But nevertheless Claus is in a steady fight with this vampire housing in him.

 

So it’s a strange thing for Claus that when he meets Paul and comes really close to him his demon stays quiet all the time and lets him enjoy every second.

 

Paul is a real cute human being, kind of naïve and not afraid of anything. I just imagined him going through life with this huge puppy eyes, seeing the good in everyone and trying to turn the world into a better place. Claus falls for him and in just this one night Claus’ lonely eternity becomes a HEA.

 

Although the story is really short and just happening in one night you get to know both characters and their stories. And you totally believe the feelings they build up for each other. The story hasn’t many twists or turns; actually it’s quite straight forward. But it’s a real great read and you’ll get the spirit of Christmas again. I can just recommend this book to you as a real great five star Christmas-read.

 

A review ARC was generously provided by the author via IndiGo Marketing & Design

 

Saved: an omegaverse story

By A.M. Arthur

This book was provided by the author via indieGo Marketing and Design in exchange for an honest review.

Actually this story is about the Alpha Tarek and the Omega Braun.
Braun‘s father has just died and so he is on his own now which isn’t actually allowed in the city he lives because Omegas are seen as third-class people who have no rights and mustn’t live on their own. Braun hasn’t found his Alpha yet and he is a orphan. So, he either has to go to prison until the heat is over or to a halfway-house which is kind of an orphan-home for young Omegas who are abandoned or left alone because of any other reason. Although he doesn’t want to do any of that, Braun is happy that he isn’t mated yet because he thinks all Alphas are rude like his father and his brother Kell’s husband.
Braun is eventually taken to the halfway-house but then he finds out that something awful is happening there and he flees. This is when he meets Serge again, who has nursed him at hospital. He and his husband Dex save Braun‘s life. They take him home to their place and introduce him to the Alpha Tarek. Now the lovestory starts. Tarek gives Braun all the time he needs to really trust him and commit to their bonding. And while they are trying to build the relationship they have to solve the crimes that happened in the halfway-house and rescue some Omegas, struggle through Braun‘s heat, the first birthgiving of Braun‘s brother, which nearly kills him and some other stuff. And during all that their friends Serge and Dex are always right behind them.
So it’s actually a good and exciting story but in the end so much stays unsolved. All the problems of Braun’s brother are still there and I had the feeling that the halfway-house case isn’t solved completely either. I mean the book is written like a thriller-romance so I’d wished for more conclusion of the thrilling parts too.
But now that I have finished this review, I’ve seen that there is a second part featuring Kell’s story coming soon. Can’t wait to get my hands on that!

Talbott & Burns Mystery Series Two short Stories

Homecoming.

This book was provided to me for free by the author in exchange for an honest review.

It’s the first short story of a series.

Before I start discussing this book I’ve to admit that I’m actually not a huge fan of short stories. Because most of those stories I’ve read so far leave me somehow unsatisfied because they just show such small parts of the lives of the protagonist. But this one is different.

The story is about Elliot Talbott and Jack Burns. It’s the day when Jack returns from the army and awaits being picked up from the airport by his best friend Elliot. But he isn’t there. He isn’t home either. But a welcoming badge he has made for Jack is and a message which tells Jack that Elliot is in trouble… again. So he goes rescuing his friend. And when they come back home they are not just friends any more.

This story is really well written and although it’s a short story you get to know so much about the two men and their past together and of course of the previous incident too. Elliot is the kind of human who can make jokes in each situation. Of course he can be serious too but most of the time he jokes and even tries to hide his fears behind jokes. But that didn’t make him unwanted. The opposite, I really liked him.

I really, really loved it and will definitely read the next story when it comes out.

 

 

 

The paying client.

This book was provided to me for free by the author in exchange for an honest review.

It should be the first case of Elliot Talbott and Jack Burns, now engaged to finally earn money with their business.

And I think they really do a great job although their client isn’t of the same opinion *lol*. I don’t want to tell more for not spoiling the story. But it’s really funny and great to read. It’s a-don’t-take-life-and-everything-in-it-so-seriously kind of story. So if you’re expecting a real mysterious detective or ghost story I’ve to disappoint you. But if you want a short fun read about two really lovely men I can only recommend the story.

My Boyfriend is a Dog

S A Smythe

This book was provided to me for free by the author in exchange for an honest review.

When I read the plot of the story, it sounded like an easygoing shifter story. And since I haven’t read a real shifter story so far (well except Twilight but I think you can’t count that as a real shifter story, can you?) I thought it could be a fun one to start with. And when I read the first page of the book where it is stated explicitly that it should be a funny to read shifter story and shouldn’t been taken too seriously I felt quite confirmed in my first opinion.

And the first part of the book was really good and funny to read. I actually had some good laughs. The book starts with the vegetarian Nathan being rescued from the woods by a dog err wolf who can talk. This fact actually freaks Nathan out. But since the dog insists on staying Nathan has to get used to the fact. But what he can’t quite get used to is that the dog always tells him that they are mates and belong together. Nathan tries to explain Angelo (the dog) that he isn’t into sodomy. But the dog still keeps insisting on being mates and interferes in all dates Nathan has. Finally, the town’s vet reveals the big secret to Nathan: Angelo is a shifter. Nathan gets angry with the dog for not having told him the truth and tells him to go away. That’s when Nathan finally comes closer to Jet on whom he has had a crush for a very long time. They go on a date, and end up making up in the woods where they are attacked by a wolf. Nathan first thinks that Angelo is the attacker and hits the dog but soon finds out that it is another wolf, a foreign one, and that Angelo is actually Jet who tries to defend him. Nathan saves Jet’s life and finds out that he is a shifter too. And if the book had ended here I would have given five stars or at least four. Because up to this point it was really a pleasure reading it. The only thing that disturbed me a little was Nathan’s obsessive search for a mate although he was actually in love with Jet. But that’s the only thing I could criticize.

But then the last part started and I thought I somehow had opened the wrong book. So, Nathan finds out that he is a shifter too. He is admitted in Jet’s pack, where Jet’s father is the Alpha. The first thing he has to do is eating meat. And well he enjoys it. This isn’t something I’d as a vegetarian would do but he states that he didn’t relinquish meat because of the animals but because he wanted to annoy his parents. So, I guess starting to eat meat again isn’t quite a problem under these circumstances. But this was just a small part that disturbed me. Mainly it was the punishment Jet got because of not telling Nathan the truth from the beginning. He has to watch Nathan making out with I don’t know how many shifters. And seriously??? That was kind of hard core porn. And although I don’t mind well written sex-scenes if they fit into a story I’m absolutely not into porn. So, I skipped this chapter. But it actually didn’t get much better in the next chapter. There were some funny sentences but most parts were just how they had sex…. I would definitely not read this last part again. Maybe the book should contain a warning that it contains some pornographic scenes (not just erotic ones).

The Rent Mate

By Ash Penn

This book was provided to me for free by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Wow… Just wow.

I have to admit that when I read the plot the first time I wasn’t quite sure if it was the right book for me. I actually don’t like reading about abuse or other serious topics in entertaining literature. So I was kind of afraid that there would be some romanticism of real serious problems. But this wasn’t the case.

This book is just awesome. I loved both Martin and Liam much.

Martin is a cynical character who can’t or better won’t show any feelings because he thinks that he isn’t worth being loved. He is blaming himself for an accident that actually wasn’t his fault. But he thinks it was and wants to make up for it. So he needs money. A lot of money, more than 1,000 dollars per month. And selling his own body – or better Button’s Body, not his, because Martin is never there when he is doing this – is the easiest way of getting all the money he needs. But he can’t tell anybody what he needs the money for because this would mean revealing the big secret and he can’t do that because everybody who got to know it would hate him. And most of all he can’t tell Liam about this one thing, because then Liam would hate him, wouldn’t he? And he mustn’t hate him. So Martin keeps pushing Liam away constantly, because not being liked from the beginning is better than for being hated for what he did…

I think that Martin’s (Button’s) character is really well developed and convincing. Martin became a cynical young man who tries to hide all his fears and uncertainty behind a wall of cynical und humorous statements. And this runs through the whole story. Whatever happens to Martin, he doesn’t show any feelings. Some may state now that this isn’t likeable, but it is what Martin became through his abusive past, that is why he created Button who adores every man who he is with and it is what makes Liam special. Because he looks through the mask and therefore doesn’t give up on Martin.

Spoiler alert: And although Martin, yeah Martin, not Button even dumps Liam for a rich pervert who wants Button exclusively Liam doesn’t give up and finally breaks through this hard skin and gets to know Martin’s story and the truth of his past. And guess what… he doesn’t dump him. *lol*

The character of Martin (Button) was so well described that I really felt with him. It’s hard to describe but whenever the story was told out of Martin’s view it was like the world around me had lost its color… I mean I didn’t feel hopeless because there was Liam and as long as Liam didn’t give up, there was hope… but I felt this heavy weight on my heart. There were several parts where I really had difficulties fighting back my tears.

A shame that the book had to end… I would have loved reading about Martin and Liam in their new life with a HEA. ?

 

 

 

Breaking Up With Dan, by P. Sean

This book was provided to me for free by the author in exchange for an honest review.

This book is about Gene and Josh, who were friends through High School and College but broke up when Gene got to know his belated boyfriend Dan. Josh couldn’t stand Dan because he didn’t treat Gene well. But now Dan has died and Josh comes back in Gene’s life to support him getting over the death of his boyfriend. The relationship actually was problematic because Dan betrayed Gene several times and was now ready to break up for good. But Gene doesn’t learn about this plan until the funeral of Dan where Dan’s new boyfriend pronounces this in front of all people attending the funeral. Gene’s world breaks apart.

Not only is his boyfriend dead, he now knows that he wanted to leave him. He also finds out that Dan had already submitted an offer for a house he wanted to buy together with his new boyfriend whom he also wanted to marry.

Now you should assume that Gene is devastated and heartbroken because of Dan’s betrayal and death. But that’s not the real reason for his grief. He seems to be angry because he can’t scream at Dan anymore. But actually I can’t say for sure. The problem is I couldn’t find a connection to either one of the characters. I read through the story without any kind of emotions.

If Gene had really loved Dan although he had betrayed him I’d have understood why he his grieving that much, isn’t open for a new relationship, needs therapy and so on. But he states that the relationship between him and Dan hasn’t been well since his last betrayal and okay, now he is dead and this is a real shock. And please don’t think that I’m a cold monster without feelings but I cannot retrieve that it really takes Gene that long to break up with Dan and start a new relationship with Josh who has actually been his great love and whom he loves much more than he has ever loved Dan. I mean, I’d have understood if Gene hat been afraid of losing Josh. But this is just one of the reasons and not even the most important one why it takes him so long to finally commit to Josh.

Another point that really disturbed me about Gene was that whenever he was ready for a next step or found something out about his feelings, he had to tell his therapist first before actually taking steps.

And Josh… I couldn’t find the connection to him either. He has a kind of bad boy image, who doesn’t want a relationship and enjoys just having sex with different women. But then he is acting so differently and I found it unrealistic that as soon as he sees Gene again he changes 180 degrees and is Mr. Perfect who is ready to wait for his great love as long as it takes him to commit to him and declares his love to him.

So all in all the characters didn’t convince me much. I think if it had come out that Gene had really loved Dan badly or that he was his great love. I’d totally gotten the grieving which nearly lasted one year. In that case I’d also taken three years or more grieving as comprehensible but in Gene’s case I didn’t get why he is pushing Josh away that often.

I mean this could have really been a god story if I’d found the connection to both characters and would have understood them or their feelings better. But I think you shouldn’t conclude from my review that the story isn’t worth reading. Because it really is and I’d even recommend it to you to make your own opinion because maybe you do understand Gene and Josh better than I did and can understand their behavior. If so, I’d be happy hearing from you.

All For Show: A Fake Boyfriend Gay Romance

(Rachel Kane)

I was stumbling over this book when I actually had been searching for another one. But the cover caught me because I love romances where pets are included (if they are well treated and not harmed) and the plot sounded funny. So I decided to give it a try. I didn’t expect too much of it but I actually was in the mood for an easy going holiday-read with a simple HEA without hard feelings or problem dealing couples. And that’s exactly what the story was. The language is really easy and it’s not hard to follow the plot. You can easily read it on one afternoon or evening. There are also some laughs in the story and I have to admit that I actually liked the couple.

BUT there is a real huge BUT… I got somehow angry or frustrated already at the beginning… I know many of you would ask themselves now why I didn’t stop reading then… I simply liked the two main characters and although their sentences made me frustrated I developed negative feelings against the author who let the two men talk about a serious illness as if it were something disgusting or something you should be ashamed of. I too wouldn’t like anyone to tell about me that I’m suffering from a serious illness but not because I’d be afraid that people would laugh about it. I’d feel bad for all the people who really suffer from that disease and see me making it up just for being pitied or looking good in the show.

The second huge BUT is how the author describes a person who is obviously suffering from depressions. It’s like, I had them but I’m doing better now so don’t mind, everything is good now… The author obviously hasn’t done enough research on depression to realize that this is a very serious psychological condition that is unlikely to go away that easily.

So if you like easy going stories and don’t mind some statements which really could offend some people and give you the feeling that the author either doesn’t know which illnesses she talks about in the book or doesn’t give a shit about people who really suffer from these illnesses, then you should read this book. In my opinion you shouldn’t write about lupus or depression in such a flat, trivial way. (There is definitely no funny part about these illnesses and I don’t think that people would laugh about somebody suffering from them.)

-> If it wasn’t for the BUTs I’d given 5 stars for a good easy summer read instead of 2,75 stars

A Matter of Duty

This book was provided to me for free by the author in exchange for an honest review.

This review contains spoilers!

Again a tough one to rate because I’m kind of two minds.

One the one hand I really liked the plot and the story and wanted to read more of it when the story finally got some kind of speed and drove me into it. But on the other hand there were those first chapters when it was really hard for me not to put the book away and the abrupt ending which really left me kind of unsatisfied. I’d had wished it to be more emotional.

Actually the book started really great and thrilling. But then there was this switch and everything went on so slowly… Which is not a bad thing per se. But the way the story is told and how the characters describe their feelings didn’t get me at all. The thing is, both men are actually torn between the fight they have to struggle and fall in love at exactly this unfitting time. And I mean they do state that but it didn’t get or convince me at all. This story isn’t just a romance where two men get to know each other and fall in love, it’s also about a series of rapes, a war between two Chinese gangs and two Americans getting in the middle of this. This sounds like a lot of action and emotional struggles. And I actually hoped getting that when I started reading the book. Don’t get me wrong I’m not the kind of person who is so into the action thing but when I read the plot of a book I have certain ideas where it’ll lead me and well, this one led me to crime scenes but to me they appeared as some kind of side stuff although they were the main topic of the story… I know that sounds confusing but let me explain…

The story starts with this injured girl being in real huge trouble calling her brother for help. But the thing is the girl is in Hong Kong and the brother home in the US. So when he finally arrives in Hong Kong three weeks have passed. And that’s the first point that kind of irritated me. Okay Noah, the brother, states that he didn’t listen to the voicemail message his sister left until one week later because he was angry with her. But when he finally did he immediately felt that she was in real trouble so what the sh… takes him another two weeks following her without even having a plan?

Okay I tried not to question this. So when Noah finally arrives in Hong Kong he decides asking the police for help. That’s where he gets to know Wei and feels immediately attracted to him. And then the whole love story starts… Well kind of… Because now this emotional part starts with the two men falling in love and explaining to each other why they can’t give in to their feelings which didn’t convince me at all. I don’t know why but the emotions didn’t jump onto me.

When I was at about 70% of the story I was still on the second day of the plot and Wei tells himself for the third time that he wouldn’t kiss Noah in his fragile state and Noah does quite the same except that he talks about his bad conscience thinking about sex and feeling attracted to a guy when his sister is still missing and in danger. And I mean I totally get those feelings but I didn’t feel them when they were told in that book.

I can’t even tell the exact things that disturbed me. Maybe it were those many long descriptions of the different places the characters were which really took a lot of speed from the action. Or maybe it were all the statements of the gang-members about Wei wanting Noah and having sex with him and Noah still didn’t believe it without really explaining his doubts. Maybe it was the fact that I had already read 70% of the book, was still on the second day and nothing really flashing had happened so far, except some talking and a burglary. Or maybe it was all of this that didn’t tear me into the story. But that changed when I reached that 70%. Suddenly the story gained momentum.

It comes to a fight and eventually the two guys confess their love to each other. I liked those 30% pretty much although the author once mixed the names of the two main characters which got me a little confused but wasn’t really disturbing.

One thing I really didn’t quite get through the whole story was how Noah could understand so much of the different conversations which weren’t exactly addressed to him. Maybe I should first explain that the story is told from different point of views but always in the third person. So the narrator is not an omniscient one, he is just telling the thoughts of one person per chapter. Although you or better I sometimes got the feeling that he has a hard time doing so because he sometimes describes thoughts of a person that can’t be known by the character who is in the spotlight at that moment. It’s really hard to retrace why Noah understands most of the things people talk when he is around. I mean I totally get that his friends would talk in English to him or even to each other whenever he is around but seriously two Asian gang-bosses wouldn’t fight in English just that he could follow their discussions, would they?

To summarise my opinion, all in all the idea for this story is a quite good one. But for my taste it’s developing far too slowly. And I don’t know why but I didn’t get the feelings and suffering from the two main characters which really made me kind of annoyed at the beginning. Then there was a short part when I really got attached to the two men and I thought they finally have touched me and I totally get them but then at the end there is Noah’s statement that he was somehow relieved that his sister has already been dead when he arrived at Hong Kong. He’d have tortured himself forever if she had been still alive when he came to Hong Kong and he couldn’t have saved her then. But seriously??? Why not still having this bad conscience about taking three weeks to finally come to Hong Kong???

And then there is this ending. The two men totally lost me there again because it came far too quick and there was a real lack of emotions for my taste.

But besides all these points the plot was quite interesting and I think I’ll read the next book of this series not least because I liked the two-side character Winston and Steel and the unspoken thing that goes on between them.