Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Janitor




Title: The Janitor
Author: Jan Irving
Publisher: Loose Id
Publisher URL: http://www.loose-id.com/
ISBN: 978-1-59632-938-6
Genre: LGBT Erotic Contemporary, M/M
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Everyone deserves a David, a champion to rally for their cause, a hero capable of squashing Goliath regardless of his form, a person who believes in him or her and shows them the road to confidence and freely given love. For Noel Atherton, his David comes in the form of gay janitor and boxer Dane Connelly. Dane isn’t brilliant, truth be told he has a limited education, but his compassion and commitment to friends surpasses anything others would deem lacking. Dane looks at Noel and knows he would do anything to gain his affection, but what does he have to offer the intellectual young man?

Dane draws the painfully shy Noel like a moth to a flame. While Noel isn’t sure he’s even gay, he is clear on the fact that Dane pushes his buttons and makes his aggressive sexual desire come to the surface. The men have time to form a strong friendship; unfortunately, Noel’s father is aghast by their connection and will do anything to put a stop to the relationship. How far will Dane and Noel go to make their new commitment permanent?


Jan Irving’s The Janitor takes us into the lives of Dane and Noel. While Noel is rich and educated, he seems far poorer than Dane. Dane’s sweet nature draws people and has people in his life who care for him. Both men have predators in their lives, trying to gain the upper hand. The character’s flaws made them real and permitted them to find a soft spot in my heart to call home. The brilliantly written settings allowed me to smell the old paper of the books and the gym’s sweaty testosterone scent. I rode an emotional rollercoaster while reading this book, from happiness to sorrow, then passion, pain, and finally shock and fury. There was so much to take in. Dane and Noel both wanted love and learned to accept it from one another. I watched that love help heal, protect and aid in confidence levels increasing. I truly believe their relationship made them better men. Jan Irving has earned a spot on my list of authors to watch for. I found the story entertaining, invigorating, and wonderfully written and would recommend it to all who enjoy reading the genre.

Hunter's Dawn: Laying the Ghosts


Title: Hunter's Dawn: Laying the Ghosts
Author: Meg Leigh
Publisher: Torquere Press
Publisher URL: http://www.torquerepress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60370-709-1
Genre: Contemporary M/M Paranormal Romance
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

Despite being raised by a mother who believes in tarot card readings, crystals, sprits and things that go bump in the night, Jack Stephens is a skeptic. In fact, he lectures in Parapsychology at a local community college, and spends his spare time de-bunking claims of paranormal activity by using scientific techniques. It’s during one such case that Jack meets local psychic, Casey Lambeth. Jack thinks Casey is a con man out to fleece an elderly woman, and Casey thinks Jack is an arrogant, close-minded, opinionated jerk.

When these two men of differing backgrounds, attitudes and opinions work together to help an woman whose house is being haunted by the ghost of an angry young woman, the sparks between them fly. It’s only when the case gets more dangerous that both men must learn to trust and depend on each other. If they don’t, neither man will survive their encounter with a ghost who is far stronger than anyone expects.

Hunter’s Dawn: Laying the Ghosts is the first book by Meg Leigh that I’ve had the opportunity to read and it won’t be my last. This contemporary M/M/ romance is well-written, with an intriguing and complicated plot that grabbed my attention from the very beginning.

Jack and Casey start as such adversaries that there were times when I wondered if they could ever work together, much less develop their association into something more. Jack is so hide-bound in his way of thinking that he was nearly blind to the possibility of anything existing that he can’t see or touch, and Casey is just the opposite. These disparities in attitude makes the tension, sexual and otherwise, between the two men grow and grow, until they finally give in to their mutual attraction, making for tender, yet blistering hot sex. That’s one thing I enjoyed about this book. Ms. Leigh didn’t allow the men to jump into bed immediately. She gave them a chance to develop a relationship before they took the step of becoming physical, and when they did…watch out for the sparks.

The secondary characters are very important in this story, and Ms. Leigh does a wonderful job making them come alive, which is saying something, considering that two of them are ghosts. Ms. Leigh displays her talent in her vivid expression of the fury and pain experienced by the young ghost. The author did an equally nice job in the creation of Casey mother, Alyssa. She might be acting as her son’s spirit guide, but Alyssa’s definitely more mother than spirit in her loving, protective attitude toward Casey.

It wasn’t until I’d already read Laying the Ghosts when it came to my attention that there were other stories written before this one, making this release in actuality, a prequel. I look forward to reading more about these two complicated men again in the future.

Her Private Dancer


Title: Her Private Dancer
Author: Isabella Jordan
Publisher: Amber Heat
Publisher URL: http://www.amberquill.com/AmberHeat/
ISBN: 978-1-60272-515-7
Genre: Contemporary / Multicultural / BDSM (Light) / Rubenesque M/F
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Harriet Wallace decides to attend a girl’s night out with her coworkers. They are younger and sexy so why any of the dancers would be interested in her is a mystery to Harriet. When Alejandro Campos hits the stage, Harriet can’t believe her eyes. The gorgeous dancer seems to have singled her out and Harriet goes along for the ride.

Alejandro is a grad student, making ends meet. He wants a real woman and thinks the older woman with the curvy body is just what he needs. Harriet doubts their night of passion is more than a one-night stand and Alejandro is ready to prove her wrong.

Isabella Jordan’s Her Private Dancer is an edgier younger man older woman story. While there is no doubt they are compatible in the bedroom, I would have liked a bit more interaction between the new lovers, outside the bedroom. Harriet has a stable life but lacks confidence in her ability to attract Alejandro. Alejandro knows what he wants and refuses to take no for an answer. I loved his determination in gaining Harriet. The story flows smoothly, drawing you in with its racy start.

Fantasy Knights 2: Endless Love


Title: Fantasy Knights 2: Endless Love
Author: Marilyn Lee
Publisher: Loose Id
Publisher URL: http://www.loose-id.com/
ISBN: 978-1-59632-930-0
Genre: Multicultural Vampire Paranormal
Rating: 3.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Amethyst Nymph

Erin Benson is a woman conflicted. Normally, she is attracted to black men, but finds herself drawn to her tall, blonde upstairs neighbor. Being with him feels so familiar and conjures up memories of being with him before. But how could that be since they’ve just met?

Living spirit Aleksander Storm has waited hundreds of years to hold his lost love, Erin. Waiting for her memories to return and watching her long for another has been hell on Aleksander. If giving Erin a chance to make peace with her past was the only way she would accept his love completely, then Aleksander was willing to take a chance. He was tired of sharing Erin and prayed that she wouldn’t betray his love.

Fantasy Knights 2: Endless Love has plenty of history and heat. Erin is lucky because she had not one but two great loves of a lifetime. Unfortunately, she doesn’t completely remember them and is undecided as to whom she loves the most. Memories of a past life with Malikinder and a tragic ending are the obstacles in Erin’s relationship with Aleksander. If only Aleksander was not forbidden to spill the beans, the entire mess could have been resolved much sooner. I understand that absorbing all the truths that came in bits would be enough to make anyone confused, but I wish Erin could have accepted Aleksander sooner. The plot seemed to get unnecessarily complicated but it works out in the end. Aleksander loves Erin so much and sacrifices so much to be with her that my heart wept for him. Endless Love is a perfect title for a tale that proves nothing can stop true love.

Forsaken Talisman


Title: Forsaken Talisman
Author: Ashleigh Raine
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Publisher URL: http://www.samhainpublishing.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60504-483-5
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

They say keep your friends close but your enemies closer. Craze is back, still trying to get the upper hand on the prophecy, and the Shadow Walkers have to stay on their toes.

Known for his dependability, Dusty Clements is a true friend and invaluable member of his team. When he meets Skylar, the latest victim of Craze’s demented mind, Stephan begins to wonder about Dusty’s loyalties. Skylar wants to remember her past, and being rescued by a man embedded in her mind isn’t a bad consolation prize. Craze is always one step ahead of the Shadow Walkers, but their determination keeps the fight alive. Who will be the victor this time around?

Ashleigh Raine’s Forsaken Talisman takes us into the lives of people betrayed by foe and friend alike. The story brings up subjects of disloyalty, revenge, trust and love. Some subjects intermingle to create a cross-woven fascinating plot. Skylar and Dusty have a love affair, full of passion and devotion. Watching the power and strength they share was delightful and heartwarming. Dusty’s jovial personality took a side seat to his romantic inclination and I could understand why Skylar instantly fell for the man. There were parts of this story that I had a hard time grasping, through no fault of the writer’s ability, but through the mindset of a few characters. I was truly to a point where I wished I could become an alternate character long enough to open a can of beat-them-down. While I could elaborate, I don’t want to give away the lead in to the next installment of this series. I’m crossing my fingers that what I read was a plot within a plot, and that I can leave the can firmly on the shelf with the dust still settling on it. Regardless of the hard feelings and hurt the actions evoked, I’ll be the first to admit this was definitely a great read. The story flows smoothly and the characters mesh well. Those who enjoyed the first book in this series won’t be disappointed.

Friday, May 22, 2009

You Can Leave Your Hat On


Title: You Can Leave Your Hat On
Author: Lena Matthews
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Publisher URL: http://www.samhainpublishing.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60504-539-9
Genre: Contemporary Romance, M/M
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx

Harlan Sheppard is graduating and he is not happy to be leaving Professor Sawyer Addison, his boss and the man he has lusted after for two years. Harlan has done everything he can think of to gain the attention of Sawyer to no avail. On the last day of school, Harlan decides to take extreme actions to obtain Sawyer’s notice. Sawyer is well aware of his sexy TA and is determined to wait until Harlan graduates before they can be together. Sawyer is also aware that Harlan is a stripper in a gay night club, so to resist the temptation Harlan presents, Sawyer keeps his distance. The night of Harlan’s graduation, Sawyer’s personal pledge has ended and he executes a long awaited as well as a no-holds-barred seduction.

You Can Leave Your Hat On is an incredibly romantic story. Although Harlan is a younger man, he is intelligent, in addition to knowing who he wants. Sawyer is twelve years older, which causes some concern as to whether Harlan can commit to more than a casual affair. Also, Sawyer is jealous of other men watching Harlan’s almost naked body while he dances. During the emotional turmoil that occurs in new relationship, Sawyer and Harlan soon realize they are both looking for a monogamous bond. The amazing Lena Matthews delivers a well written storyline interwoven with a dash of humor, along with breathtaking characters so sensual, they whip up the libido. You Can Leave Your Hat On is an outstanding story that I absolutely enjoyed.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Around the World


Title: Around the World
Author: Jade Falconer
Publisher: Phaze Books
Publisher URL: http://www.phaze.com/
ISBN: 978-1-59426-775-8
Genre: Contemporary M/M Erotic Romance
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Stephan took one look at Patrick, his new sexy younger neighbor, and knew he was in trouble. If Patrick was a destination then Stephan has his passport in hand, ready to map out every part of the man. After his long-time lover dumped him, Stephan focused on work and tried not to harp over their breakup. Patrick gives Stephan something to look forward to, and takes up residence in his empty heart and mind. Stephan believes that Patrick is just being a nice new friend and has no true desire for more. Given the opportunity, Patrick is ready and willing to show Stephan just how wrong that notion is.

Jade Falconer brings us a story of new friendship, love, and reawakened passion in Around the World. Patrick is full of life and spirit. He’s a young man who knows what he wants and is willing to go out on a limb to attract it. Stephan is a handsome, charming and intelligent man who has lost his confidence, thanks to his breakup. Watching Patrick and Stephan interact was entertaining and delightful. The men had a genuine attraction for one another that went beyond lust. Regardless of their age and professional differences, they had a host of similar traits and interests that allowed me to believe they could be content with one another. This was a fantastic story, and I’m truly hoping there is more to come about the twosome in the near future.

Afternoon Delight


Title: Afternoon Delight
Author: Ronna Gage
Publisher: Freya’s Bower
Publisher URL: http://www.freyasbower.com/
ISBN: N/A
Genre: Contemporary, Light BDSM, M/F Short
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Rose Nymph

It’s been such a long time since Sean’s been able to spend time alone with his wife but tonight, he and Maudi finally have the place to themselves. The kids have a football game to watch, followed by a dance to enjoy and Sean just wants to do something a little bit different for once. However, when he comes home early to surprise Maudi, Sean’s the one who gets a shock and the result leaves both of them questioning how well they really know their partner.

In Afternoon Delight, the importance of communication and the damage a lack of it can cause in a relationship is clear. Maudi has been fantasizing about adding a little bit of kink in the bedroom for a while but she’s too scared of her husband’s reaction to approach him. Sean’s been thinking the same thing and had no idea his wife had such thoughts but eventually, these things always come out and in this case, with sweltering results. There wasn’t really any time to forge a deep, meaningful connection with the characters but the author did a good job of getting the message across. The drama did walk a fine line between being believable and over-the-top on occasions, with characters’ emotions switching rather quickly at times but still, Afternoon Delight was an enjoyable piece of escapism.

Dreaming of You


Title: Dreaming of You
Author: Ethan Day
Publisher: Loose Id
Publisher URL: http://www.loose-id.com/
ISBN: 978-1-59632-922-5
Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

Aden Ingle has dreamed of his perfect man since he was a fourteen year-old boy. Now that he’s an adult and a successful restaurateur, that hasn’t changed; he’s still in love with his dream man. The idea of his perfect boyfriend has sunk more potential relationships that he cares to remember. In fact, Aden’s so enamored of the concept that he’s willing to wait for this man to walk into his life. That is until he meets Logan Price at a Hotel/Restaurant Trade Show and he’s smitten and with that one chance meeting, all thoughts of his dream man fly out the window.

It doesn’t take Aden long to learn that a flesh and blood man is much better than any fantasy one, but the problem is that he and Logan only have a few days together to cement their relationship. When the tradeshow ends, Aden will head back to Missouri and Logan will fly back to his upscale restaurant in California. Over the next weeks, through brief visits and frequent phone calls, the two men become closer. Finally, the time comes when Aden must decide whether he can uproot his entire life to be with Logan, or whether he’ll stay at home and wait for the man of his dreams to walk through his door.

Dreaming of You is the second release by author Ethan Day and it’s bright, entertaining, lively and funny and has a deep strain of romance running through it. The plot of this contemporary M/M romance is well-written and fast faced, with interesting secondary characters and snappy dialogue that had me chuckling.

Aden is definitely a dreamer, so much so that at first I was concerned he’d let a great guy like Logan slip through his fingers, just because he didn’t ‘look’ like his dream man. I was thrilled when he finally let his love life move from the world of fantasy to that of reality. I did have my moment of fear near the end, and I refuse to divulge what happened. Suffice it to say, that during that portion of the story, I wanted to shake Aden and ask what he thought he was doing.

Logan is actually the perfect partner for Aden and they make a great couple, with lots in common. I just wish that I could have seen some of the story from Logan’s viewpoint.

I look forward to Mr. Day’s next release. He has several works in progress listed on his website that sound very intriguing. Take a look for yourself.

Kingsley & I: Together


Title: Kingsley & I: Together
Author: Gary Martine
Publisher: MLR Press
Publisher URL: http://www.mlrbooks.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60820-023-8
Genre: Gay M/M, Contemporary
Rating: 3.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Critter Nymph

Can a gay man and a confused bi-sexual make a relationship work? What will happen when family and friends start putting in their two cents? Are they ready for the next step or do they need some time apart to know for sure?

Kingsley and his lover are back in Kingsley & I: Together. This second book fills in many of the gaps that were present in the first book. Still written like a journal, we learn more about the two men as careers, family, and friends are revealed. All these things round out the story, allowing the readers to actually start ‘seeing’ the characters. The sex is still hot and often, and “I” is still greatly confused, yet it seems as if it is Kingsley’s inability to see “I’s” confusion that may cause problems for this relationship.

While book two answered many of the questions left by the first story, I am interested to see how the author intends to wrap up the story of Kingsley and his lover.

Kingsley & I


Title: Kingsley & I
Author: Gary Martine
Publisher: MLR Press
Publisher URL: http://www.mlrbooks.com/
ISBN: 978-1-934531-39-6
Genre: Gay M/M, Contemporary
Rating: 3 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Critter Nymph

What happens when two men, one gay and one straight, are drawn to each other after meeting at a social function? What happens when sex is introduced to the mix? Does the straight person all of a sudden become gay? Bi? What about love? Can two men fall in love, like everyone else?

Readers are either going to love Kingsley & I or hate it. Set up almost like entries in a journal, the author tells a story of two men who meet and start to fall in love. As everything is told to us from Kingsley's lover's ( we never learn his name) point of view, we see his confusion over developing feelings for a man, his lust and then later love for Kingsley; yet the reader themselves may find it hard to form any real connection with Kingsley. There are also little to no real secondary characters in this story, leaving the two men to carry the weight of the story. The reader will also find plenty of hot sex, as the two are unable to stay away from each other for long. All in all, some will find this an interesting start to a new series.

Venice


Title: Venice
Author: Lynne Connolly
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Publisher URL: http://www.samhainpublishing.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60504-517-7
Genre: Historical Romance
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Goddess Minx


There is finally going to be a grand wedding for Richard and Rose, who have had one adventure after another along the way. Rose still needs her confidence built up by Richard, with the fact that he chose her over all the beauties in England. After the wedding breakfast, they are preparing to head off on their honeymoon, and lo and behold….trouble once again. This time the consequences are worse than expected, and Richard makes his plans to keep her safe while they travel separately to Venice.

When Rose finds herself acquainted with a couple, who are con artists, posing as her and her husband, she doesn’t know what to make of it. Although after thinking about it, she considers it might work to their good for the assassin, who is looking to kill them After they were shot at in the coach when leaving the wedding breakfast, Richard has gone on ahead to make sure that Rose will be safe during their stay in Venice while honeymooning. These two are able to think fast on their feet, and handle almost any situation presented to them.

Venice is a fascinating book that kept me reading from the beginning until the end to see how the story would finish. I was very impressed by the talents of both Richard and Rose, who are very strong characters and complimented each other well. Rose is constantly surprising Richard with her abilities to handle dangerous situations that they are confronted with, and she has the fierceness of a mother protecting her children.

This is the third book in the series of Richard and Rose that Ms. Connolly has created, and I so enjoyed reading her books. I went from laughing, to teary eyed, and then wanting to shake up some of the other characters throughout this book. As I read more of the history of Venice through their eyes, the more I want to see the sites for myself. This book can be read as a stand-alone, but you would do better to read all three in sequence to better know the characters involved.

To the Victor Goes The Spoils


Title: To the Victor Goes The Spoils
Author: Nia K. Foxx
Publisher: Loose Id
Publisher URL: http://www.loose-id.com/
ISBN: 978-1-59632-925-6
Genre: Multicultural, Shifters, M/F/M
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx

Amanda Jo Spoils is home in California after serving in the armed forces. Now she is expected to find a mate among the shifters in the Pride. Amanda is not thrilled with the selection of males or being one of several females mated to one male, so she decides to take a vacation in the wilds of Alaska to think over her options. Enjoying the seclusion of the cabin in the woods with room to run free, Amanda soon discovers three things; this is mating season, there is a shortage of females among the bear clans and two alpha shifters are determined to claim her as mate. However before the mating can continue, Amanda is called to New York to investigate an attack on a family member and the mystery surrounding an artifact concealed in an Egyptian burial site.

To the Victor Goes The Spoils is a fascinating story of shifters and their mating rituals. Amanda avoids the pampered lifestyle of the Pride by joining the armed forces and moving up the ranks to become a member of the Special Forces. However her training is no match for shifters Kam Victor and his friend Regan Nardeau. Nia K. Foxx produced a tantalizing plot that is action packed, amusing and sensual with a touch of kink. I very much enjoyed this exciting saga.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Partners in Crime #4 The Art of Dying


Title: Partners in Crime #4 The Art of Dying
Author: Josh Lanyon and Jordan Castillo Price
Publisher: MLR Press
Publisher URL: http://www.mlrpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-934531-25-9
Genre: Mystery, M/M
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx

Lovers and Other Strangers by Josh Lanyon 4.5 Nymphs
Finn Barret returns home to Seal Island in Maine after a three year absence. Finn is an artist whose almost deadly injuries in a car accident hindered his desire to paint. Recollections of a broken relationship with Conlan, in addition to a severed connection with his twin brother Fitch, provides as a reminder of why he left the island. Upon arrival at the family home, Finn begins to suspect foul play when he discovers no one has seen nor talked to Fitch, since Finn left after his lover’s betrayal. With the help of a friend, Finn investigates the events surrounding Fitch’s disappearance and realizes there was a dark side to Fitch he never saw, as well as making more than a few people a suspect, including Conlan.

Body Art by Jordan Castillo Price 3 Nymphs
Ray Carlucci happily accepts the job as driver for a senior couple who live on Red Wing Island. Ray has reached a desperate point in his life after losing his tattoo business and everything else he owned as a result of his former boyfriend’s betrayal. Another year-round resident of the island is Anton Kopec, whose sculptures, at first glance, would be considered weird. Ray discovers that he is the third driver to the couple; the other two having disappeared under mysterious conditions causes Ray to be suspicious of everyone, including his new lover Anton.

Partners in Crime 4: The Art of Dying is an intriguing anthology of murder and suspense, with a love interest included. Both stories have a northeastern island community as the setting. Overall the stories are enjoyable; however with Body Art, I got the impression I was reading a work in progress waiting for completion or maybe the somewhat confusing ending invites the reader to create their own conclusions.

Two Faces, One Life


Title: Two Faces, One Life
Author: Margaret West
Publisher: Eternal Press
Publisher URL: http://www.eternalpress.ca/
ISBN: 978-1-926647-50-0
Genre: Contemporary M/F Romance
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Rose Nymph

After suffering horrific injuries in a house fire, Sarah feels like her life is over before she’s had a chance to really live. Bitterness, frustration and despair war within her as she decides to take back the control she lost that fateful night. Her mind made up, she prepares herself for one final look at the world she’s shed so many tears over but even Sarah isn’t prepared for meeting Ted, a blind man with problems of his own but also an overwhelming attitude of optimism for life that try as she might, Sarah just can’t ignore.

Two Faces, One Life is a wonderful short story of second chances coming when you least expect them. Both Sarah and Ted have learnt the harsh reality of life, thanks to circumstances out of their control but their suffering has given them two very different outlooks on life. Sarah’s anguish is apparent from the start as she has all but given up on life. It’s difficult to read, as is the effect this character’s pain has on her parents and although I wish there was more detail on Sarah’s relationship with her family, the author deals with the subject of suicidal thoughts with great sensitivity.

Ted is a great character, who I warmed to immediately, and was so happy when he came into Sarah’s life. It is obvious that he has his own scars to bear but his optimism and love of life warmed my heart. I loved the exchanges between the two characters, the writing running smoothly making for an easy, enjoyable read. I am however left desperate for more as there is real potential in Ted and Sarah’s relationship. My mind is already wandering to where things go from here so I really hope the author is inspired to continue with their story.

Road to Paradise


Title: Road to Paradise
Author: Tianna Xander
Publisher: eXtasy Books
Publisher URL: http://www.extasybooks.com/
ISBN: 978-1-55487- 279-4
Genre: Shapeshifter, Contemporary, Ménage (m/f/m/m)
Rating: 4 nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Amazon Nymph

Nikki Stone is being stalked by a serial killer and is on the run. She and her brother arrive in Mason and are met by Jarrod and a couple of friends. She ends up in protective custody with Jarrod, while his friends take her brother to Paradise.

Jarrod calls for his best friends to help protect Nikki. After they arrive, all three men realize that Nikki is their mate. Nikki is confused about the fact that she is attracted to Jarrod, Kam, and Tony. She slowly learns to love them and accept their mating habits.

Road to Paradise was an interesting read for me. The author created a society of shifters that had been having problems surviving and eventually were trying to rebuild their society. The scenes between Nikki and each man separately as well as the mating ceremony was get-the-ice-cubes hot. Those that like to read about multi-partner relationships will want to read this one.

Heaven Sent


Title: Heaven Sent
Author: Dawn McClure
Publisher: Liquid Silver Books
Publisher URL: http://www.liquidsilverbooks.com/
ISBN: 978-1-59578-559-6
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

Gabriel McPherson is a vampire mercenary and his new assignment is to take care of a group of rogue vampires threatening the authority of the Alliance, the group that protects humans from his species. When he arrives at his destination more is going on than anyone expected, and he ends up protecting Christine Fitzpatrick from the people she loves the most…her family.

When Christine learns that her adopted family is composed of vampires, she doesn’t know what to think. What she does know is that she can’t let the vampire assassin she’s just met, Gabriel, kill the family she loves, despite his orders to do just that. While the attraction between them simmers hotter and hotter, Christine must fight to save her family from destruction. Gabriel knows something about Christine’s past that she’s long denied…she’s half demon, and he’s more than willing to use that knowledge against their opponents.

As the final battle against their enemies grows closer, Christine realizes that even though she loves Gabriel fiercely, it might not be enough to keep them together…not all love is the eternal kind…no matter how much she wishes otherwise. Yet, Gabriel feelings for Christine are far stronger than she imagines. He cares so much that he’s willing to make a bargain with Lucifer that could damn his soul forever, to save the woman he loves from certain death.

Heaven Sent by author Dawn McClure is a fast-paced and entertaining look at the paranormal world made up of good and bad vampires, demons and even good ole’ Lucifer himself. The action starts on the very first page and doesn’t let up as the well-written tale races to the end.
The physical attraction between Gabriel and Chris is immediate and intense, which initially only annoys them both. He won’t be staying after his current job is completed and she has rejection issues, stemming from an unhappy childhood in the foster care system. Yet, even though these two have little in common, the pull they feel for each other won’t be denied. .

There are many secondary characters that rounded out the cast, all of which helped not only the fight, but to propel the story forward. These individuals include Gabriel’s fighting companions, Christine’s vampire family, and her biological father. The description of Lucifer is particularly well done, giving him the charm and sexual appeal most authors omit, while keeping his underlying evil intact. The dialogue between him and Christine was often a hoot and the little fact that she had him on her cell phone speed-dial, a perfect gem.

I would like to see more stories following Mike, Stephen, Roger, Dave and Sven, as they battle the forces bent on overthrowing The Alliance. Think about it Ms. McClure.

The Greek Bachelor


Title: The Greek Bachelor
Author: Celia Jade
Publisher: eXtasy Books
Publisher URL: http://www.extasybooks.com/
ISBN: 978-1-55487- 285-5
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Amazon Nymph

Carlie is photographing some rental villas on Zakynthos at the request of her friend’s in-laws. Zoe’s brother Alex will be her host and escorting her around the island.

Carlie is not looking forward to being around Alex because she doesn’t trust playboys and they had a run in several years ago. Time together working, and with the help of Alex’s family, bring them closer together.

The Greek Bachelor is a good love story. While the sex scenes are hot, the relationship between Alex and Carlie is the focus of this story. Carlie’s insecurities come through, as well as Alex’s confusion about their growing relationship. The descriptions of the scenery on the island makes you feel like you are there. This is a fun romance story to read.

Forget Me Not


Title: Forget Me Not
Author: Adrianna Dane
Publisher: Amber Allure
Publisher URL: http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure/
ISBN: 978-1-60272-486-0
Genre: Contemporary M/M, Paranormal
Rating: 3.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Rose Nymph

Cooper Lynch knew from an early age that he wouldn’t be able to live a normal life. His family has been cursed and he is destined to live out his days protecting the people of Raven’s Cove, as his father did and his father’s father before him. However they may try, the Lynch men have never been able to escape their destiny and because of this, Cooper lives a solitary life; his only comfort being the memories of those carefree childhood summers when Ian would come to town. That was a long time ago, though, and now Cooper has a teenage son who he wants desperately to protect from the curse.

Ian had always felt a special connection to Cooper and cherished the time they spent together as boys but one fateful night, Ian suffers a personal tragedy that threatens to destroy him. Just when he thought all was lost, there was Cooper and somehow, Ian survived. The memories of that night still haunt Ian’s dreams eighteen years later but he never did stop thinking of his one true friend. When fate leads him back to Raven’s Cove, he’d be foolish to think things would be the same between the two of them but Ian needs to return to find out just what happened that night and to make sure that he made the right decision all those years ago.

Although the premise of this story intrigued me and the paranormal element worked well, with strong characters making an impression on me, there are a lot of questions left unanswered in Forget Me Not and these unfortunately take away somewhat from the enjoyment of the story. The circumstance in which the relationship between Cooper and Ian deepens isn’t really explained; Ian suffered a tragedy but we never really find out the details of it. The story is told from the point of view of both characters looking back at the time they spent together as youngsters, while at the same time focusing on events in their lives now. I personally was a little confused by this and think things might have worked better if the story had been set when all the trouble first started eighteen years ago.

The role the females play in this story isn’t pleasant; they are either scheming, cheating or cursing and this was a little disappointing. Although the male characters made an impression on me, neither of them were particularly likable. Ian and Cooper have suffered and the author did a good job convincing me that they are destined to be together but the ending was a little ambiguous; the problems affecting their happiness in the past not really resolved. However, I believe the underlying message here was that you can’t fight destiny but maybe, just maybe destiny will give you a break every once in a while.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

A Strong Hand




Title: A Strong Hand
Author: Catt Ford
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Publisher URL: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-935192-83-1
Genre: M/M, BDSM
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Fire Nymph

Damian Wolfe, a gay erotic photographer, is getting frustrated with his new assistant always breaking stuff, running over things and dropping his belongings in the way of clients coming through the door. However, he dealt with it because there was something about the boy that intrigued him and he needed to find out what it is.

When his friend, Ashley, hires Damian to shoot his next BDSM toy catalogue, Damian is excited about having male models dressed up in costume and bound in front of the camera; it takes Damian’s photographs to a whole new level. One night after everybody had left, Damian is trying to work out a vision for the next days photos but can’t seem to get the vision right, so he asks his assistant if he would be willing to help him. It seemed his young, straight assistant is a little too willing.

Nicholas Sayers, an art student in his senior year in London, took a job with an erotic photographer as his assistant so that he could pay for his measly apartment. Nick always thought himself straight as an arrow, female sex partners and all. He had never been attracted to another man before until he started noticing Damian Wolfe; there was something about the tall, strong, gay man that called to Nick.

When the BDSM toy shoot started and Damian had asked Nick to help him foresee a vision for the next day, Nick did not hesitate in removing his clothing and allowing Damian to strap him up in the wildest contraptions he had ever seen. Nick posed in front of the camera, but is finding one of the toys a little uncomfortable, and Damian swats him on the butt. That was the beginning of a journey of self-discovery for Nick and a journey of self-renewal for Damian.

Catt Ford accomplished what I thought was impossible. She actually had me intrigued by M/M and BDSM. I will be honest; M/M has never done anything for me and BDSM, as intriguing as it is, I’ve never really understood. Catt Ford had me turned on and wondering what it would be like to be submissive even for a few hours. Her characters opened up a whole new world for me, as well as helping me to better understand the world itself, plus I will even be picking up a few more M/M books to see exactly what I have been missing. Catt Ford did a great job with A Strong Hand; I would highly recommend it to anybody who asked, and even those who don’t. I will be talking about this book for days!

Blood & Fire


Title: Blood & Fire
Author: Mychael Black
Publisher: Changeling Press
Publisher URL: http://www.changelingpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60521-223-4
Genre: Paranormal, M/M
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

For Jason Summerfield, music is an outlet he can always count on. Being the lead singer of a metal band allows the pyrokinetic singer to demonstrate how multi-talented he is while on stage. The heavy beats carry him to a place where Jason has no worries, and the strong emotions he has to suppress don’t overtake him while he’s in his zone. Jason has a way of making the fire dance for him as no other can. He’s been traveling down a lonely road of one-night stands and Julian Kristados is here to end that.

Julian dreamed of having someone like Jason in his life. Jason’s pyrokinetics don’t frighten Julian but entices and heightens his desire for the singer. He knows his nature and past could scare Jason off, but Julian is ready to fight the good fight and stake his claim. He wants to feel the lick of Jason’s flames and won’t settle for less.

Mychael Black’s Blood & Fire is a story about two men searching for acceptance and love. Each has something to share that will form an inseparable bond. Jason’s heart and body were ready for Julian, before his mind could full accept the reality of what was happening. Julian has a strength and determination that could wear down any chaste man. Together they bring the heat with their passionately raw style of lovemaking. Even without the frills during these scenes, you could feel the depth of emotion surging through Jason and Julian. The characters are personable and, regardless of their abilities, have a real feel. In addition, while the characters have attributes you’ve seen before, Mychael Black’s keen knack to create a story you won’t forget makes Blood & Fire anything but ordinary. The story has a smooth pace and delivers just enough background on the characters to understand their motivations, a silky repartee between the characters and seduction scenes that captures your attention. Those who enjoy paranormal gay erotica will find this book hard to put down.

Caught off Base



Title: Caught Off Base
Author: J.M. Snyder
Publisher: eXcessica
Publisher: http://.excessica.com/
ISBN: N/A
Genre: Contemporary, M/M, Interracial
Rating: 3 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Caen Nymph

Angelo is minding his own business when he comes across a young man standing at the side of the road. Not believing it’s his place to intervene, Angelo drives on past; however, the young man haunts Angelo’s thoughts and when he finishes work, he finds the man still standing there. Taking pity, he takes in the young man named TC, who ends up opening a lot more wounds he’d rather have kept closed.

Caught Off Base takes the character Angelo from the author's previous novel Stepping Up to the Plate. Here, Angelo gets his own story and his happily-for-now ending. The great thing about this story is it’s an interracial romance. The author doesn’t harp on about skin colour or race, but mentions it enough to make a slight distinction from the usual white-on-white male romance that dominates this genre. The premise was great and I loved the beginning of the book, although it read like a first chapter of a book as opposed to the short story it was. I felt the author had plucked the first chapter from a novel, and tried to make it into a short story. Unfortunately it did not work and when the story ended, it was anticlimactic, spoiling my overall enjoyment.

The character of Angelo has a lot of baggage that cannot be dealt with in this chosen format. Most of the time he mused about what could have been with his former love interest Stacy from the first novel. Whilst I found the budding romance between TC and Angelo sweet, I couldn’t help but feel Angelo was on the rebound. Whether that was the author’s intention, I do not know. It felt like that to me, because Angelo kept comparing Stacy to TC so much. At times, it felt awkward and I ended up pitying TC, who didn’t seem to be able to live up to the image Angelo portrayed of Stacy.

The overall construction of the story in my opinion was dealt with poorly. However, TC and Angelo were sweet enough characters and the premise held enough promise that I could easily read this story without getting too frustrated.

Dangerous


Title: Dangerous
Author: Aubrey Ross
Publisher: Changeling Press
Publisher URL: http://www.changelingpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60521- 209-8
Genre: Vampires, BDSM, Ménage (m/m/f) and (m/m),
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Amazon Nymph

The head of the Zoltan clan is trying to modernize and has decided his three sons will be the means to do this. The oldest daughter of the Vasco clan has been tasked to tutor Anthony.

Anthony sees no reason to change, especially since he knows about the modern world. Once he meets Monique though, he realizes she is probably his mate. He kidnaps her and takes her to Scotland. What follows teaches Anthony, Monique and Jacob, Anthony’s bodyguard, about themselves as well as brings an enemy to light.

Dangerous is the second book of the Station X series. The author’s descriptions of the relationship that Anthony and Jacob have, and later with the addition of Monique, took you right into the bedroom with them. I recommend you have lots of ice near when you read this one. The subplot of the enemy, while identified, is slowly unfolding as the series goes forward and does nothing to detract from the story.

Satisfaction


Title: Satisfaction
Author: M. L. Rhodes
Publisher: Amber Allure
Publisher URL: http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure
ISBN: 978-1-60272-495-2
Genre: Gay, Contemporary, BDSM, M/M
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Five months later, Jesse McIntyre and Robert Bauer are still a couple and they are having a rocky journey towards a blissful relationship. Between their disharmonious work schedules, and Robert’s extended business travel, Jesse is feeling lonely. Thank goodness, the sex is still smoking hot, or Jesse would believe there was more going on that meets the eye. However, there is more to the story and Jesse seems to have put the pieces together better than anyone in Robert’s past. Can the issues be resolved or is it time for them to call it quits?

M. L. Rhodes writes about love, trust, commitment and overcoming past demons in Satisfaction. Robert is a business owner trying to evade the economic instability of the recession. He wants his company to thrive and the people he employs to feel secure. Jesse is getting his life back on track, finally completing goals he set in prior years. To gain the love of someone and waking up feeling adored and safe was the furthest thing from his mind. Now that he has that, Jesse fears he will lose it. I could understand Jesse’s fears and his anticipation of reconnecting with Robert as well as some of the reasons Robert travels so much. The story has a well-thought-out plot and erotically laced sexual play gives it a wonderful balance. The characters have a real feel, and Ms. Rhodes gives just enough detail to the settings to allow you to imagine the surroundings without it feeling like over kill.

Satisfaction is a well-written story and I look forward to revisiting these characters for a leisurely read in the near future!