Saturday, October 17, 2009

Irrational Arousal


Title: Irrational Arousal
Author: Summer Devon
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Publisher URL: http://www.jasminejade.com/
ISBN: 9781419924156
Genre: {M/F} Paranormal
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Amethyst Nymph

Updating her résumé, calling her mom and catching up on laundry are a few to-do items that Gia plans while laying in bed. Nothing out of the ordinary for an evening at home, until arousal shoots through her chest, giving Gia the shakes. Clear as day, she sees and feels hands stroking her womanly areas, and then the pressure in her erection relaxes. Obviously some sort of hallucination has taken over, because Gia is alone and she doesn’t have family jewels.

Will’s concentration on the construction site is interrupted by freezing visions of his co-worker screwing a dark haired woman. Weak kneed and groaning, Will realizes that the vision isn’t really happening, even though he physically felt as if it was. The woman in the vision seems familiar, but how? Surely this can’t be a dream, considering Will is wide awake and working?

A double nervous breakdown or exposure to some sort of chemicals is the only conclusion Gia and Will can come to after discovering that the other person can feel their excitement. Will is more disturbed by his lack of control over the situation than Gia and convinces her that they need medical intervention. Blinding need was driving them both over the edge and that was even before they had actually touched each other. What could be a curse turns out to be a blessing in disguise for the pair.

By page three, I knew there was no way under the sun I could put this book down without finishing it in one sitting. The clever plot took twist and turns that were impossible to see coming and I loved that element of surprise. As strange as Gia and Will’s condition is, the side effects will definitely bring a smile to your lips. Their lickety split, Twilight Zone kind of union was the glue that made their sex scenes extremely hot. Also, the mystery of Edgar and 12-D is one that is too great to disappear in this one story. I am on bended knee, begging Summer Devon to continue with more explanation about these two topics, because I am dying for more. Irrational Arousal is one sickness I wouldn’t mind catching. What a way to be infected!

Control, A Hammer Story: The Three of Pentacles


Title: Control, A Hammer Story: The Three of Pentacles
Author: Sean Michael
Publisher: Torquere Press
Publisher URL: http://www.torquerepress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60370-823-4
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary BDSM
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

Jim’s just as shy and nervous as ever and crazy in love with his Master, Marcus, but he’s still having difficulty accepting his need for control in every aspect of his life. He’s so upset, cranky, and worried that he’ll disappoint his lover, his debilitating panic attacks have started again. Jim loves and needs Marcus, and it’s up to the Dom to show his hurting sub that nothing is as important as the life and love they share.

Billy and Montana’s lives are going great, and their full-time Dom/sub life is working well. The bottom drops out for Montana when his surrogate mother dies after a long illness. Montana’s upset, withdrawn, and depressed. It’s up to Billy to show his hurting sub the control he needs, forcing him to deal with the pain and hurt that’s destroying him.

Control, A Hammer Story is the newest release by Sean Michael following the members of the BDSM club, The Hammer. It’s really two stories mixed into one, with a connection portion in the middle that ties everything together seamlessly into a well-written and plotted storyline.

There’s a lot going on in this 18K story…passion, desire, fear, and uncertainly mixed in with Jim’s panic attacks and Montana’s depression. Through it all, Dom’s Marcus and Billy, are front and center, giving their hurting lovers the control and support they need. The emotional connection between the members of each couple is still as intense as ever, and the author does a great job expressing the depth of their commitment to each other and their lifestyle.

It was great seeing other members of the Hammer community introduced previously and I look forward to seeing them again in future books. I for one am anxiously waiting for the next full-length release in this keeper series.

Haunted by Your Soul


Title: Haunted by Your Soul
Author: Marguerite Labbe
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Publisher URL: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-935192-73-2
Genre: {M/M} Paranormal
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Jacob Corvin refuses to believe his lover is dead. Their link isn’t severed, and regardless of how weak it is at times, he knows Kristair is still there. Having The Syndicate hot on his trail again isn’t helping Jacob’s mental state. The emotions that are building just below the surface are more than ready to find a target to unleash its fury. Is Jacob losing his mind, or is Kristair trying to find a way to reach out to his lover?

Marguerite Labbe’s Haunted by Your Soul is book two in the Triquetra series. It’s been an uphill climb for Jacob. His support system is in shambles, as well as his heart. Marguerite Labbe has a way of making you feel the character’s anguish and rage in this installment. I couldn’t imagine loving someone so completely and knowing they still exist but have no clue of how to reach out to them. Haunted by Your Soul is packed with action, suspense, erotic moments, and at least one breathtaking setting. The ending left me salivating for the next book in the series. If you’ve read the first book in the exciting series, you don’t want to miss this fantastic sequel.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Lucy’s Neighbors


Title: Lucy’s Neighbors
Author: Ava Rose Johnson
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Publisher URL: http://www.jasminejade.com/
ISBN: 9781419923920
Genre: {M/F/M} Ménage, {M/M}, Contemporary
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Amazon Nymph

Lucy is frustrated because of her non-existent love life. She is friends with two neighbors she would love to get to know better but they are a couple. She has watched them from her window for months. Lucy is also feeling trapped by her family and what she feels are her obligations to them.

Steve and Doug may be a couple, but they have been looking for a woman that will satisfy their different tastes. Up until now, every woman has only been for one night, but both men decide Lucy is the one that will complete their relationship.

Lucy’s Neighbors will captivate you almost from the start. Lucy’s feelings of insecurity and self-doubt will resonate with anyone that has had a long dry spell. Every woman would be lucky to find even one man like Steve and Doug. Both are so patient with Lucy, letting her have her space, taking things slow and supporting her when things come to ahead with Lucy’s family. The three of them, either together or in pairs, will have you getting the ice-cubes and fans out. Ms. Johnson brings you right into the story where you are a part of everything going on. Those that like m/m and ménage stories will want to add this one to their bookshelf. I will be reading this one again.

Doce, A Roughstock Story: The Ten of Wands


Title: Doce, A Roughstock Story: The Ten of Wands
Author: BA Tortuga
Publisher: Torquere Press
Publisher URL: http://www.torquerepress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60370-824-1
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary Western
Rating: 3.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

Jaoquim loves riding bulls on the competitive circuit and has a few good friends, but he’s never quite fit in. He’s Brazilian, but being raised in Texas changes his perception of life, making him a Texan, through and through, and different from his countrymen. He’s a nice guy who everyone likes and he’s shy, quiet and afraid to admit his unseemly, evil sexual feelings for Balta, another rider.

Balta has been riding bulls for years and is at the top of his game. He’s older, wiser, stiff, sore, feeling his age and feeling lonely. He’s wanted Joaquim for months and in order to avoid scaring him off, Balta plans a slow seduction to get what he wants…Joa, in his bed. Can Balta and Joa find a way to make their love work in a world filled with macho cowboys, who don’t understand men loving men, or will it drive them apart?

Doce is a short 22K story, set in the Roughstock world of competitive professional bull riders, and brings two new characters into the forefront, Balta and Jaoquim. These two men are the perfect counterpoint to each other, inside the rodeo ring and out. Balta is more boisterous and outgoing, while Joa is shy and calm. The author does a nice job expressing their differences, and an equally nice job of showing what brings them together. The scenes around the ring, bull fighters, medical personnel and competition are realistically written, as is the fear for an injured friend.

Unlike many stories, this one allows the attraction between the characters to grow and build before their relationship takes the final big step, changing it into something physical. And even then the passion and desire is gentle, caring and understanding. These two guys are nice and everyone in the story likes them, but I never felt I had a good handle on what made them tick. Instead of becoming part of the story, I felt like an outsider looking it.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Unholy Matrimony


Title: Unholy Matrimony
Author: Audra Beagle and Chloe West
Publisher: Torquere Press
Publisher URL: http://www.torquerebooks.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60370-806-7
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

Benjamin Bell is a wealthy and handsome New Yorker, who has everything a man could want in his life. He graduated from a prestigious college, lives in a stylish penthouse with his beautiful girlfriend, has a well paying job as an architect and works with his best friend. Except he’s miserable, which explains how he ends up in Las Vegas for a short weekend vacation. It doesn’t explain why he wakes next to a gorgeous blue-eyed man, who he remembers only through an alcohol-induced fog.

When his little Vegas indiscretion follows him back home, Ben learns that not only did he have sex with cute Mason Hadley, multiple times, but he married him. And Mason has the legally binding marriage license to prove it. Now Ben needs to figure out how Mason fits into his life and having him staying in the guest room isn’t working. Then there’s the little matter of his girlfriend/fiancé. What’s Ben going to do when she finds out that Mason isn’t his brother, but his lawfully wedded husband? In Ben’s case what happened in Vegas definitely didn’t stay in Vegas.

Unholy Matrimony is a fun, cute and lighthearted look at what happens when Ben’s normally staid inhibitions drop and he cuts loose for the first time in his life. The authors did a nice job expressing the swirling emotions of these men and the story is much more romantic than it is erotic, but that doesn’t stop Ben and Mason from having frequent bouts of sizzling hot sex. They are so attracted to each other that the room nearly hums with arousal whenever they’re together.

I loved the bantering dialogue and plenty of places scattered throughout the story deserved a chuckle or two. The story’s pace is smooth, the premise unusual and original and the characters interesting and well-integrated. The descriptions of Ben waking in bed with Mason and those immediately after, were vividly described, giving a good understanding of Ben’s uncertainty, embarrassment and panic. Once I’d read these scenes, I knew I was in for a rollercoaster ride of fun, frivolity and mishap.

This is the first I’ve read by these authors, and it won’t be the last.

Bitter Creek's Redemption


Title: Bitter Creek's Redemption
Author: T. A. Chase
Publisher: Amber Allure
Publisher URL: http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure/
ISBN: 13: 978-1-60272-579-9
Genre: {M/M} Western Historical
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx

Eagle, a Comanche and White half-breed, keeps a low profile in town. Educated in the ways of both the Comanche and White worlds, he hides his intelligence from the townspeople and does his job at the livery stable, mostly ignored. When his one true friend comes to Eagle dying from a gunshot and asking for help, Eagle realizes he must take sides in the town’s land war. Help comes with the arrival of a stranger sent for by the dead man’s letter Eagle mailed. Eagle wants justice for his friend’s murder and this decision becomes inescapable with the mutual attraction shared with this stranger.

Bitter Creek's Redemption is a well paced action western. The impressive storyline illustrates greedy men, who all have a hidden agenda. The characters are well defined, Eagle speaks both languages, can read and write as well as being proficient in Comanche skills. Both men have emotional backgrounds interwoven with prejudice, as well as the dangers implicated by detection of their true natures; nevertheless they can’t resist each other. Also exhibited in the secondary characters is the change of their perceptions in relation to the Native American culture. T. A. Chase has delivered a wonderful saga that I very much enjoyed.

Last Call Europe: Chocolate Shock


Title: Last Call Europe: Chocolate Shock
Author: Selena Illyria
Publisher: Changeling Press
Publisher URL: http://www.changelingpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60521-297-5
Genre: {M/F} Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Amethyst Nymph

Alastrina is one Love Fairy who is sick and tired of her boss working all the fairies, as if they were mules. Having had enough, Alastrina takes the evening off, hoping for some fun of her own. For what she had in mind, any man would do until Alastrina spots a man she can’t take her eyes off.

His control is pushed to the limit the moment Garrison Fredricks spies Alastrina walking into the bar. Even his leopard side is dying to come out and play with the sassy fairy. One night was all they were suppose to have, but Garrison is planning for much longer. Unfortunately, there might be some unspoken truths that could mess up Garrison’s plan.

Last Call Europe: Chocolate Shock is an unusual, sexually charged love story that I found to be very hot. The link between Garrison and Alastrina was completely unexpected and I can honestly say that the plot was far from predictable. Their boss really enraged me with some of his actions but after I got a glimpse of the big picture, I began to like him. Readers who love a good paranormal love story will not be disappointed.

As You Are


Title: As You Are
Author: Ethan Day
Publisher: Loose Id
Publisher URL: http://www.loose-id.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60737-440-4
Genre: {M/M}, Contemporary
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Critter Nymph

Julian fell in love with Danny almost from the first moment they met. Used to being let down in the relationship department, Julian hopes, as Danny's new roommate, things will go differently. As a year of friendship rolls around, Julian begins to wonder if, once again, his hopes are about to be crushed.

I thoroughly enjoyed Ethan Day's As You Are. Written in the first person, we only get to see things through Julian's eyes. While he may be very witty with one-liners that will have you laughing out loud, he does not always see things clearly. It is also because of Julian that readers may have a hard time warming up to Danny. If I had any problems with the story, it was that we don't get to learn more of what made Danny the person he is today. We are only given a very narrow view of Danny's life.

Readers should not let this dissuade them from reading this book however. Julian, Danny and many of the secondary characters do an excellent job pulling the reader in while the author makes the story come alive with his descriptions. I dare you to read this book and not laugh over the dinner party scene.

Afterthought


Title: Afterthought
Author: Cat Kane
Publisher: Liquid Silver Books
Publisher URL: http://www.liquidsilverbooks.com/
ISBN: 978-1-59578-579-4
Genre: {M/M} Science Fiction
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx

Vance Gregory is an agent for Organization for Path Security. He is on a mission to bring down Marcus Rose, a powerful telepath who deals in mind-altering substances that allows him greater access to the human user's mind. During a surprise attack Marcus escapes; however, Ayan is abandoned and captured by OPS. Vance requests help from their captive Ayan, a low-level Path with unexplained links to Marcus. At first, Ayan refuses to help Vance and then finally agrees to the plan in exchange for his freedom. Once free, both men discover an intense attraction for each other. Their encounter with Marcus accomplished the completion to Vance’s mission, or so they thought. Meanwhile, Vance and Ayan explore the attraction between them. Their lovemaking builds a powerful mental bond, along with uncertainties, of the connection they feel. Ayan's powers begin to soar out of control and unwanted thoughts of Marcus become a risk to Vance’s psyche. The battle is not over and Vance has to decide between the adversary he hates and the man he loves.

Afterthought by Cat Kane is an intriguing story of gifted men with mind controlling abilities. Vance is a sarcastic fun loving telepath who enjoys his telepathic abilities. He adapts effortlessly to whatever circumstances he’s in. Ayan has uncertainties about his abilities and even fears what he may be capable of; however his actions are motivated by his love for Vance. The storyline is fascinating and well paced, the developed characters have a wonderful interaction and the lovemaking is sensual. I found Afterthought to be an impressive and enjoyable saga.

Seeking the Balance 3: Clutching


Title: Seeking the Balance 3: Clutching
Author: AR Moler
Publisher: Torquere Press
Publisher URL: http://www.torquerepress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60370-820-3
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary Paranormal
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

Mason Flynn is a caring man, which is only part of what makes him an outstanding surgeon, but sometimes he cares too deeply. That’s exactly the case with a young patient that he can’t save despite his healing ability, and it’s tearing him apart. Physically he’s strong but emotionally, he’s feeling a little fragile and as much as he needs his lover close, hates feeling needy. And that’s another problem. He loves Cam and he wants Cam but knows the military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy means hiding their relationship, so what’s in their future? What do they do? He’s got love, pain, uncertainty and death on his mind and they’re all driving him crazy. He needs to come to grips with his feelings. That means learning when to let go and when to grab on and hold on tight, to the things in life that matter most.

Clutching is the third and last release in the Seeking the Balance series by author AR Moler, following the lives of Lt. Cameron Bradshaw and Dr. Mason Flynn, who we first met in the Hell Dog’s Squadron trilogy. This release could be read as a stand-alone without trouble but I recommend that they be read in order, for a better understanding of the relationship between Cam and Mason and the world they live in.

Despite their love and passion for each other, living apart and having to hide their relationship is a strain on Cam and Mason’s partnership. Add in the pain and guilt Mason’s experiencing over the illness of his young patient and he’s nearly on overload. These scenes, especially the opening ones are well-written; showing pain, tension, and raw emotion, pulling the reader into the story from the very first paragraphs. But that’s just the beginning of why I enjoyed Clutching. The story has good flow, realistic emotions and plenty of angst but the best thing about Cam and Mason is their enduring love that continues to thrive and grow, even with the military policy on gays trying to get in the way of their happiness.

The paranormal aspect of Cam and Mason’s lives hovers in the background in this release, and that’s okay, at least for me. Life isn’t all about paranormal Division P stuff, but about living their lives together and the love and passion they share.

Throughout both trilogies, the relationship of Mason and Cam has grown steadily stronger and deeper; emotionally and physically and the ending, from a readers point of view, was very satisfying. I don’t know if the author has plans for additional releases featuring these two men, but I for one, because I like these guys so much, would love to see more of them in another trilogy in the future. Hint! Hint!

Cover Me


Title: Cover Me
Author: L.B. Gregg
Publisher: Aspen Mountain Press
Publisher URL: http://www.aspenmountainpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60168-245-1
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx

Max Douglas is a former Marine and now is a security specialist. On the job, he is alert and prepared to deal with any danger; however, off-duty he allows his caring side to show with Michael.

Michael Finnegan is a teacher and the drama coach at Dalton Prep, an exclusive boarding school. Nicknamed Finn by his students, he is amusing and well liked by most people.

Max and Michael had a one day fling that left Michael with bruised emotions, as well as feeling foolish. Both men are attracted to each other, nevertheless Max does not give any indication he intends to act on the attraction so Michael makes the first move, which turns into an emotional calamity for him. Months later when Max arrives at the school to protect a student, Michael considers Max his adversary. Their tempers ignite over school policy. The more they debate with each other, the more intense the sexual tension becomes. Michael refuses to believe there is a problem at school until the danger escalates and he and Max are caught up in trying to save students, along with each other.

Cover Me is book three in the Men of Smithfield series by L.B. Gregg. This is a well paced mystery romance with humorous characters and witty dialogue. The who-done-it element is exciting and realistic. The lovemaking is emotional. The secondary characters feature Tony Gervase from the first book Gobsmacked. Men of Smithfield is a fantastic series that I enjoy immensely and Cover Me is no exception.

Barside Psychology


Title: Barside Psychology
Author: Mychael Black
Publisher: Torquere Press
Publisher URL: http://www.torquerebooks.com/
ISBN: N/A
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx


Ty is enjoying life and working alongside his fiancé is the cherry on his sundae. However, when a customer questions their age difference, Ty wonders if his lover may consider him too young. Jack knows Ty is his source of happiness and has no desire to live without him. What’s an older man to do when his young lover is in doubt?

For those who fell in love with Jack and Ty from the Breakdown series, Mychael Black brings us Barside Psychology, a short story in Torquere Press’ Changeling Lives. The men are still in love and more than willing to provide proof of said feelings. Jack is the kind of lover most would give their eyeteeth to be blessed to have. He is older, wiser and hornier than most men who are half his age. Ty knows how to keep Jack’s motor running and stroke his ego without even trying. They are definitely a loving couple; something that drew me to them from the first story. It was nice to read about them once again. Pick up a copy, a hot night of sex is waiting for your perusal.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Walking After Midnight


Title: Walking After Midnight
Author: T. D. McKinney
Publisher: Amber Quill Press
Publisher URL: http://www.amberquill.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60272-568-3
Genre: {M/F} Dark Fantasy/Vampire/Suspense/Thriller
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Goddess Minx

He lives the life of the rich and famous, due to his status as Pet to the Queen of vampires. Jack Niemczyk, an FBI profiler, should be happy but his vampire lover has left him and he is feeling the absence of her connection deeply. He tries to move on, thinking to replace Baby with a human companion but he creates problems instead of healings. He is more concerned with what his co-workers and friends think of him, and he overcompensates his actions by immersing himself in his work.

Baby Roxton, the Queen of New Orleans, belongs to a master vampire and Jack is considered her pet. She knows what she wants out of life, but finds it hard to accomplish it, and is shocked when she finds out things are not what they should be. She finds that she can’t show Jack how much she really loves him and that is not something she will not stand for.

Walking After Midnight is the second in The Shield and the Darkness series and it was full of quite a few surprises. This is a book that makes you think twice about living a normal life versus what can happen if you allow others to influence you. Jack spent too much time thinking and feeling guilty over situations beyond his control, instead of moving on with his life.

One thing that I found different in Jack; he needed the honesty of others to survive. This proved to be a huge stumbling block for him, but not a downfall, that kept him from living his life as he chose. Because Jack did not have the family connection he wanted, he relied on the friendship of others to feel normal.

There is quite a bit of history given by T. D. McKinney, in regards to New Orleans, and I loved every moment of reading about the sights and sounds of this dynamic city. I am very impressed with all of the characters in this story and their connection to each other, mostly because they were family. Imagine my shocking surprise while reading about the villain, who was determined to bring closure to every victim’s life they took. I won’t give away who the villain is, but when the other characters find out, no one suspected them. I did get a lot of background throughout my reading on most of the characters, and hope that there will be another book forthcoming.