Friday, February 26, 2010

A Silver Mirror


Title: A Silver Mirror
Author: Roberta Gellis
Publisher: Cerridwen Press
Publisher URL: http://www.jasminejade.com/
ISBN: 9781419921766
Genre: {M/F} Historical (Medieval)
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Goddess Minx

Alphonse d’Aix is half brother to Raymond and living among the court life of the French. He makes his living from doing tourneys and he has made quite a few friends and some deadly enemies. He has known Barbara since she was a child of thirteen, and kept his love for her hidden from everyone except himself. When he finds himself being the rational voice during continuous plots by the English, he tries to stay neutral. His need to know that she loves him becomes a quest of determination.

Barbara knows that she will never love but one man and that is Alphonse. She carries a silver mirror he gave her everywhere she goes and have kept it hidden from prying eyes. When it becomes necessary for her to flee England, to escape a grasping lordling and to keep her father from murdering said lordling, she finds herself in Alphonse’s company. Now that she has accepted his offer of marriage, she wants to receive approval from her father, and becomes embroiled with the players who want to control the king of England.

A Silver Mirror is the fifth book in the Royal Dynasty series and just as intriguing as the first four books. This story centers on Alphonse and Barbara, who have loved each other for years without knowing what the other really felt. From time to time, I found myself frustrated with the decisions made by of some of the characters. The secondary characters added to the well plotted storyline and I admired a couple of the characters for sticking with their loyalties, even when it forced them to choose sides.

During the time I was reading this story, there seemed to be a lot of anger and hiding of feelings between Alphonse and Barbara. It seems they were bent on destroying their relationship/marriage very early on and they never were able to be alone to really speak their minds about how they felt. But one thing that was a plus for this couple is the hot sex they engaged in wherever they could and I expected Barbara to announce she was with child before long.

Ms. Gellis has done a realistic job of storytelling of the time of King Henry, and his son Edward. There was a few times I thought that harm would come to both of them, and found myself cheering them on with their determination to overcome all obstacle that confronted them. The scenes that she described were so believable, I found myself wanting to be there with the characters. Well done Ms. Gellis, and I am hoping there will be more of the Royal Dynasty series.

The Replacement Guitarist


Title: The Replacement Guitarist
Author: Lori Toland
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Publisher URL: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-61581-219-6
Genre: [M/M] Contemporary
Rating: 3.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

When Blaze Shinozuka gets the opportunity to audition for the position of replacement guitarist for world famous singer Cassie, he’s thrilled. He’s worked hard at school to be proficient with his guitar and he’s determined to make a life playing music, despite his parent’s disapproval of his choice of instruments. When he arrives at the audition, he catches the eye of Jason Stockton, Cassie’s manager and the sparks fly. Taking the job thrusts the inexperienced Blaze into a world capable of destroying him, but it also puts him in close proximity to a man he desires, but should leave alone.

Jason Stockton always tries to maintain a professional distance between the workers and artists in Cassie’s band. His instant attraction to the new guitarist is not only unexpected, it’s worrisome and unsettling. After his heart was broken by an ex-lover, he’s refused to allow anyone close enough to hurt him. Yet Blaze’s exotic beauty draws him like a moth to a flame and he’s willing to take the chance to get burned. Can these two men find a way to be together, or will the trials and tribulations of living in the world of rock and roll drive them apart?

The Replacement Guitarist is the first release by new author Lori Toland and it’s a look into the world of rock and roll and the people who inhabit it.

Blaze is an interesting character. He’s a dedicated young musician determined to pursue a life playing the instrument he loves, even if that mean defying his traditional-minded parents. I enjoyed his character and felt I had a good feel for the family he came from and what motivated him. While their part in the story was rather small, I enjoyed the scenes that included his grandmother and brother; these really let you see inside the person Blaze was, and why he was determined to stand on his own two feet and live life his way…not his parents. The secondary character with the biggest part to play was Jason’s trusted assistant, Jennifer. I liked her interaction with Blaze and she made her scenes come alive. In fact, I wish she’d been included more.

Jason might be handsome and come from a famous family, but he seems rather ordinary and unexciting on the surface. While I understand that events in his past caused him to act the way he did, I still didn’t feel like I had a good handle on the real man inside…the one he didn’t show to the world. Yes, I know, I was shown many things about him, but I didn’t feel them.

The sparks fly between Jason and Blaze from the moment they meet. It’s not long before they are in a committed relationship and the sex is intense, frequent and passionate. I liked Jason’s determination to include Blaze in all aspects of his personal life. Don’t get me wrong, he tried to keep their involvement professional while at work where they could be seen but at other times, he was willing to be open to the people around him. These two are as different as different can be, so I wasn’t certain Ms. Toland could get Blaze and Jason together and keep them there. Yet, she did, giving the ending a satisfying conclusion.

No Souvenirs


Title: No Souvenirs
Author: K. A. Mitchell
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Publisher URL: http://www.samhainpublishing.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60504-948-9
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx

Publication Date: March 9, 2010

Jae Sun Kim arrives late for his scuba vacation refresher class in Belize. Trauma surgeon Kim has just lost the partnership career he sought. However, rescheduled accommodations and seasickness has Kim thinking this impulsive escape to diagram a new future is a terrible idea until he discovers that his roommate is the sexy dive master, Shane McCormack. The close quarters on the ship and the mutual attraction is the perfect setting for a vacation fling.

No Souvenirs is the story of Jae Sun Kim, whom we first met in Collision Course. What started out as a vacation fling for Kim and Shane evolves into a romance after an unforeseen dramatic experience leaves them emotionally altered. When Kim returns home to Jacksonville, Florida, Shane follows him to explore the possibility of a relationship. The characters are well developed. Both men have a high degree of intelligence. Kim employs logic as well as arrogance when dealing with people, being inexperienced with relationships. His lack of skill in expressing his emotions is a source of annoyance for Shane. Easily bored and hiding behind a dumb cowboy personality, Shane avoids situations that will require dedication from him until he realizes that a life with Kim is what he wants. The secondary characters add another layer of interest to the overall plot. Interaction between Kim and Shane is sarcastic, humorous and incredibly erotic. The amazing K. A. Mitchell has produced another exciting saga that I thoroughly enjoyed.

Healing Hands


Title: Healing Hands
Author: Kris Norris
Publisher: Total-E-Bound
Publisher URL: http://www.total-e-bound.com/
ISBN: 978-0-85715-007-3
Genre: {M/F} Fantasy/Historical (Medieval)
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Satyr Vael

In a kingdom full of warrior witches, Mira, a healer, is an outcast. Daughter of Queen Vestna, she knows how much her mother despises her, so it’s no surprise when Vestna sends a prisoner to Mira for the beginning of a Ritual. Mira must lose her virginity within five days or die. Vestna is counting on Keegan to fail at the task. What no one counts on is the love that brews strong and sudden between Keegan and Mira.

Keegan, like other Garinthian men, can only perform with the woman who is his true mate. So imagine his surprise when his body and soul respond to Mira’s magical touch. But Vestna won’t give up easily. Fortunately, neither will Keegan.

Healing Hands is the first book in the Enchanted Lovers series, and what a start it is! I devoured it—from page one to the end. While some of the language might seem a bit modern, it doesn’t detract from the story at all, given the fantasy elements. The love scenes are beyond hot. More like incendiary! Keegan is the epitome of what a hero should be. Mira is strong and courageous and when she sets her mind to something, there’s absolutely no stopping her.

This is my first book from Kris Norris, but it certainly won’t be the last. I can’t wait for the next one!

Love Means …. No Boundaries


Title: Love Means …. No Boundaries
Author: Andrew Grey
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Publisher URL: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-61581-390-2
Genre: {M/M},Contemporary
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Critter Nymph

Joey is used to people no longer looking him in the eye or gasping when they see him. The accident has left him with more than just physical scars, however.

Robbie has been blind since he was a kid; however, the violinist sees better than those around him and can’t help but be drawn to the beauty that is Joey.

Love Means …. No Boundaries, the newest addition to The Farm series, is the best one yet. I loved the characters from the beginning. Joey, who works on the ranch run by Eli and Geoff, has more or less isolated himself since his motorcycle accident. Robbie, a visiting musician, needs a place to stay for a couple of weeks. The instant attraction between the two is evident from the beginning and the passion between them ranges from sweet and tender to page-burning hot. It is not only this chemistry that makes them such a wonderful couple, however. The men’s strengths and weaknesses complete each other. Watching them grow and learn about themselves, and each other, was fun to watch.

Of course, since this is part of a series, many previous characters pop in giving the readers a glimpse into what has been happening in their lives. There are also some new characters added to the growing family that makes up The Farm series, and I have to admit that after reading this story, I popped over to the author’s website to check for any upcoming additions to this series. While there is one coming up soon, it does not mention what the story is about. I can’t help but wonder which of the interesting new characters will soon be getting their own story.

His Every Breath


Title: His Every Breath
Author: Fae Sutherland & Chelsea James
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
Publisher URL: http://www.jasminejade.com/
ISBN: 9781419924965
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary
Rating: 3.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Trace Collins gains more than a surprise outing to the strip club on his birthday. He spies the angel of his dreams. He finally finds the man he wants to spend forever with and his career choice won’t deter Trace. Now if he can only convince Riley Beckett to give love a chance.

After a horrible breakup, Riley says down with love. He has no time for men, let alone customers from his club. The pain is still fresh and Riley is scared to allow even one of the bricks that guard his heart to move. However, Trace doesn’t plan to use a bulldozer. He decides to extract and destroy each brick with kindness and love until no obstacle stands in his way.

Riley has trouble with secrets and Trace is keeping a whopper of one. The truth will convince Riley to either give love a try or walk away forever.

Fae Sutherland & Chelsea James’ His Every Breath takes us to Austin, Texas. The setting bounces between three main locations. Trace’s working ranch is one of the settings and seemed to be missing dimension. There were key elements I had hoped to see, like staff. The storyline development could have been a bit stronger. While Riley and Trace are likable characters, I felt Riley was missing depth. Even after reading about his past, I felt he put Trace through one too many changes. He acted quite spoiled at times, and didn’t draw me in like I had hoped. However, I loved Trace’s tenacity and determination. His romantic nature and genuine kindness towards Riley made root for his happiness. His circumstances made him a definite candidate for the “I deserve love” group. Overall, I found His Every Breath to be a good read.

Baymore’s Heir


Title: Baymore’s Heir
Author: Lynn Lorenz
Publisher: Loose Id
Publisher URL: http://www.loose-id.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60737-513-5
Genre: [M/M] Historical
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

A lot has gone on at Baymore since Jackson took over his position of Duke and Will became his steward. Both men have worked hard to help the people of his dukedom feel happy and safe again, giving both men a deep sense of satisfaction in seeing the people and land thrive.

Despite being in each other’s company almost constantly, they manage to keep their love a secret until an ill-fated trip to Will’s home. When Duke Holcombe discovers his son and Jackson are lovers, they’re told to leave and Will is never to return. Heartbroken, Will returns to Baymore, knowing that all he has left is still the most important, his lover Jackson.

Life takes another turn when Jackson decides he needs an heir to care for the people and land after he’s gone, and requests Will to find him a bride. Devastated at what he sees as a betrayal, Will unwillingly does as his Duke requests but considers leaving when the new Duchess is ensconced at Baymore. Can duty and pride destroy lovers Jackson and Will, or can they discover a way back to each other’s arms and the life they’re built together?

Baymore’s Heir is the third and latest release by talented author, Lynn Lorenz, in her series In the Company of Men and it takes up approximately two years after Jackson’s Pride left off. It’s a well-written and plotted story and makes a great addition to a keeper series. Please be aware that Baymore’s Heir can be read as a stand-alone but for a better understanding of the relationships between the characters, and for a more satisfying experience, I recommend reading them in order.

Ms. Lorenz has once again outdone herself with the wonderfully crafted portrayal of the deepening emotional and physical bond between lovers Will and Jackson. The daily companionship they share is just as heartwarming, as their passion and desire is sizzling hot. Vivid descriptions of this medieval time period firmly grounds the piece in historical truth, easily giving the reader a sense of the lives, loves, customs and values of the day. This is particularly true of the death threat hanging over Will and Jackson’s head if their love is discovered and reported to the authorities. There’s also the issue of the Duke of Holcombe and his refusal to accept his son for what he is and who he loves, which centuries later still, unfortunately, happens all too frequently.

The secondary characters…some old and some new, play important roles in the story. In fact, adding the new individuals allowed Ms. Lorenz to artfully weave in two additional subplots. I won’t give away any details, but suffice it to say, both have a huge impact on the lives of Will and Jackson. Take it from me, even if historical novels aren’t usually your reading genre of choice, take a chance on this intriguing series. You’ll be glad you did.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Hell Hath No Fury


Title: Hell Hath No Fury
Author: Carol Lynne
Publisher: Resplendence Publishing
Publisher URL: http://www.resplendencepublishing.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60735-113-9
Genre: {M/M} Paranormal
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Lucifer “Call him Lu” keeps the peace in The City. His job wasn’t one he requested but a requirement after breaking an Archangel Law. An old enemy is out for vengeance and Lu gains help from his brothers, in the form of a bodyguard named Dominic Ramos.

Dominic doesn’t have time for Lu, or the desire he awakens in him. The more time he spends around the fallen angel, the more his impression of Hell and Lu changes. Dominic has lived and served Heaven a long time. Is Lu’s love enough to make him switch teams?

Carol Lynne definitely surprised me with Hell Hath No Fury. I loved the different elements she added to this tale, both biblical and mythological, to create a fascinating story. She portrayed Lucifer in a very different light. I never thought I could feel bad for the devil but Ms. Lynne made my heart melt for the ultimate sinner. Hell Hath No Fury reminded me that everyone deserves forgiveness and that prejudged notions aren’t always accurate. Suspense, well-written characters, and tantalizing erotic scenes are all waiting for you in Hell Hath No Fury.

The Bad and the Beautiful


Title: The Bad and the Beautiful
Author: Jamie Craig
Publisher: Amber Allure
Publisher: www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure
ISBN: 978-1-60272-643-7
Genre: [M/M] Historical
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

All David Lonergan wants is to play music. When his cousin, Kate Ennis, is offered a job singing at the Thunderbird Club in Las Vegas, he’s thrilled at the chance to accompany her and be part of the headlining act. Used to playing piano in jazz clubs all over Chicago, nothing much about the new town dazzles him until he sets eyes on Vincent “Shorty” Accardo. The burly bodyguard draws him like a moth to a flame. The question is whether getting close to the older man will get him burned, or even worse, dead.

Being a bodyguard and hitman is in Vince Accardo’s blood. He’s loyal, dedicated and doesn’t allow anything to interfere with doing his job until he meets the club’s cute new piano player. There’s no denying the younger man is easy on the eyes, but he’s also friendly, pleasant to be around, talented and surprisingly innocent for someone accustomed to the jazz scene. It’s easy for Vince to admit he wants David as a lover, but it’s much more difficult to admit he wants more, especially with the threat of violence and death hanging over their heads.

The Bad and the Beautiful is the latest release by talented writing duo Jamie Craig. Its set in the mob-controlled, seedy world of 1955 Las Vegas. I must admit that when I read the blurb for this M/M historical, I wasn’t certain what to expect. I guess that’s because Vince’s line of work is so unusual in a primary character…bodyguard and hitman for the mob. With his occupation, I initially expected Vince to be hard, brutal and uncaring and while I’ll say he is those things, in certain circumstances, with David, he’s just the opposite. This is just one area where the author did well. It would have been easy for them to make him as expected…a rough and unfeeling killer. Instead, they created a multi-dimensional man who was willing to show a warm, tender and gentle side to his lover.

David was, also, an interesting character. On the surface, he appears innocent and rather naïve but then he makes a statement that shows his knowledge of the death and violence swirling around him. This feature of his personality, as well has his guilt over his cravings for sexual intimacy with men, is handled nicely, giving a good feel for David’s emotional and religious upbringing. When he finally gives in to his attraction for Vince, it’s a real ah ha moment which changes his life forever.

I love the setting, and from the small details in the story, can tell the authors did their research on the era. Hearing the characters mention Bugsy Siegel, the old Chicago mob, and the way Las Vegas was run in the fifties, grounded the tale in historical truth. I, for one, would love to see a sequel following Vince and David on their enforced ‘vacation.’

Catch Me If You Can


Title: Catch Me If You Can
Author: LB Gregg
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Publisher URL: http://www.samhainpublishing.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60504-950-2
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary Romance
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx

Publication Date: March 2, 2010

The gallery opening organized by Caesar Romano, art gallery assistant, is under way. He is hoping to generate interest from one of the guests, who’s another gallery owner and a better paying employer. His financial independence is dependent on the success of this gala. Caesar is having positive feelings about the event until his unwelcome ex-boyfriend shows up. Caesar also notices a mysterious interloper, Dan Green, and he seems to be intensely watching Caesar’s every move. Though Caesar finds Dan eye-catching, he is too busy to engage in flirting. Out of the blue, the opening goes to wrack and ruin; the guests are now dancing half naked to the blasting music and spilling their drinks. The next morning when Caesar arrives at the gallery, he realizes the sculpture of Justin Timberlake is missing, extortions of his friends and associates are in progress, deceptions exposed, all of them are crime suspects and Dan’s purpose, above and beyond, his endeavor to seduce Caesar.

Catch Me If You Can is the first book in the Romano and Albright series. Set in New York, the well written mystery plot unfolds with the list of suspects, their backgrounds as well as their connection to Caesar and each other. The blackmail and side-splitting bedlam tale is well paced. Caesar is an honest, hardworking openly gay man struggling to make ends meet. He has a supportive family who loves him and is always willing to help him. However, Caesar is independent with good judgment; he refuses to take advantage of anyone, particularly his family. Dan is a straightforward gay man who is not afraid to publicly demonstrate his intention towards Caesar. Dan likes Caesar’s feisty personality and enjoys calming him down at every opportunity. Dan and Caesar’s wonderful chemistry together is exemplified in the steamy love scenes. The secondary characters are interesting and add drama to the storyline. The creative LB Gregg has an engaging flair for comedy; I enjoyed this outstanding saga immensely.

Skin Deep


Title: Skin Deep
Author: S.W. Vaughn
Publisher: Loose Id
Publisher URL: http://www.loose-id.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60737-505-0
Genre: {M/M} Urban Fantasy, Paranormal
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Will Ambrose is the radio host of a popular GLBT relationship show. While he can dish out great advice for others, Will has an uncanny knack of picking the wrong men for himself. That’s about to change when he meets Cobalt.

Being a banished Fae doesn’t bother Cobalt. His life is never dull thanks to his studio, The Grotto. On any given night, The Grotto has a mix of both Fae and human patrons alike and Cobalt wouldn’t have it any other way. While business is great, his love life is just as daunting as Will’s.

Their chance meeting leads to a strongly shared bond. Between Will and Cobalt’s former lovers, the men will have their hands full trying to survive, let alone allow love to grow and flourish.

S.W. Vaughn has created a fantastic story in Skin Deep. Will is handsome, charming and comes equipped with a strong mind and wonderful personality. Cobalt is no slouch. He’s gorgeous and has a heart to match his beautiful face. Their attraction might have been instantaneous, but S.W. Vaughn doesn’t rush the lovers. We watch their attraction build slowly then roar like a blazing fire. The scenes are sensual and passionate, erasing any thoughts that this could be a mere one-night stand.

I absolutely loved this story! Not just Will and Cobalt, but the supporting characters as well. The settings are perfect and the banter among the characters keeps the story interesting. Skin Deep begins at a good cadence and never slows. I believe there is a sequel in the near future and plan to be among the first to read it. Skin Deep is about discovering the meaning of love, survival, and finding allies in the least likely places. It’s a well-written story and I encourage those who enjoy the genre to pick up a copy. You won’t be disappointed.

Wicked Sexy


Title: Wicked Sexy
Author: R.G. Alexander
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Publisher URL: http://www.samhainpublishing.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60504-887-1
Genre: [M/F/M] Contemporary Paranormal Ménage
Rating: 3.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

Growing up in foster homes left Callie with a deep desire for a family of her own and the closest she’s ever come is being with the family of her best friend, Harrison Abbott. The Abbott’s have the kind of warm, caring and loving relationship Callie’s always craved and never experienced. They’re also powerful witches called Magians. Someone’s killing young female witches during the Triune ritual, which is where they find their two mates. When the Abbotts need her human perspective to discover the killer, she’s more than willing to help, even if it means putting herself in danger and dealing with her friend’s two brothers, Tyghe and Tucker.

Playing the part of a distant Abbott cousin brings Callie fully into the magical life Harrison and her family inhabit. Callie expects to be dazzled by their glitz and powerful world, but she doesn’t expect the blistering hot passion that ignites with the barest of touches from Tyghe and Tucker. The inferno of desire threatens to consume them and reawakens a decades old secret that could get her killed.

Wicked Sexy is the first release in R.G. Alexander’s new series, Wicked³. It’s a fast paced look into the magical world of the Abbott family. It contains a nice blend of paranormal and fantasy, with a healthy dose of lust, passion and desire mixed in.

Callie’s friendship with Harrison is nicely detailed, giving a good feeling of how important the Abbott family is to her life. The unexpected attraction between Tyghe and Callie was handled nicely, as was their first physical intimacy. Think blistering hot…even with a fan. Then later add in Tucker to make their threesome complete and the passion rockets skyward into the stratosphere.

I enjoyed the suspense portion of the story, and was pleased it didn’t overpower what was going on between Callie, Tucker and Tyghe. I must admit the identity of the villain surprised me. The explanation of why the killing occurred was handled well but I felt the resolution came a little quickly and would have benefited by being a little longer. Actually, a longer length would have benefited character development, since I never got a good handle on what made Tucker and Tyghe tick.

Blueprint for Love


Title: Blueprint for Love
Author: J.P. Bowie
Publisher: Total-E-Bound
Publisher URL: http://www.total-e-bound.com/
ISBN: 978-0-85715-030-1
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Kyle Rutherford thought this Valentine’s Day would be like countless others. That changes when the man of his dreams tackles him on the way to a taxi.

Architect Mason Alexander is a workaholic with high ambitions. Those ambitions got in the way of his last relationship and could possible create havoc with his budding relationship with Kyle. Dealing with Mason’s work habits seem minuscule, compared to the problems Mason’s former lover adds to the equation. With so much working against Kyle and Mason, it will take determination and trust to create their Blueprint for Love.

J.P. Bowie’s Blueprint for Love is part of the Homecoming Valentines Collection. He delivers a sweet story with two delightful characters. Kyle reminds me of the perfect mate. He knows how to take care of his man. While I was a bit skeptical over his ability to put his foot down when it came to Mason, that theory was thoroughly squashed by the final sentence. Mason left me disgusted a few times, and I was unsure if he could redeem himself. Again, I was breathless by the time he figured decided how to rectify his dilemma. Blueprint for Love is a charming Valentine’s story about love, romance and second chances.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Thunderball


Title: Thunderball
Author: Mimi Riser
Publisher: Amber Allure
Publisher URL: http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure
ISBN: 978-1-60272-646-8
Genre: {M/M} Sci-fi, Futuristic, Paranormal, Comedy
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Sylver Starr life is anything but boring. The cross-dressing werewolf has grown tired of being a secret agent for Earth Guardians, Inc. If he had a choice, he would extricate the occupation from his life and focus on doing something he likes. Being married to the boss, Hunter, a shape-shifting kitty, can sometimes be a bonus. However, Hunter knows which buttons to push to keep Sylver with the EGI. This bit of reality dims Sylver’s possibilities of gaining his wish. If Sylver is anything, he’s no quitter! He’s ready to do battle with the kitty.

Thunderball is the sequel to Mimi Riser’s Your Cheatin' Heart. It’s hard not to like this couple. They are the complete opposites that may not create images of forever for most, but I can imagine them growing old together. The story begins with action, and as always, we are squarely in Sylver’s mind throughout this tale. A death trap if you aren’t careful, Sylver has more portions of his brain functioning than any one person has a right to access. His thoughts are all over the place, but if you put on a sturdy seatbelt and bring along some popcorn, it makes for an interesting ride. I’m learning more about Hunter, Sylver’s husband, with each new story. I have a feeling we will find out why he’s so controlling and understand his apprehension for allowing Sylver to leave the EGI.

Action, suspense, and military boots that have now been added to my fetishes help to create a fast-paced story you’ll be happy you read.

Precious Jade


Title: Precious Jade
Author: Fyn Alexander
Publisher: Loose Id
Publisher URL: http://www.loose-id.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60737-529-6
Genre: {M/M}, BDSM, Historical
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Critter Nymph

For Jade, a one time child performer, having to leave the theater is devastating. Forced to take a job as personal secretary to Marcus Wynterbourne, the beautiful young man finds himself hating everything about his new surroundings. All that changes after he meets his new boss. Although he feels completely out of place in his new surroundings, Jade soon learns that maybe the things his Master can give are just what he has been looking for all along.

Precious Jade is an interesting look at the BDSM lifestyle during the Victorian era. For Jade, who is the Victorian equivalent of many of today’s former child stars, the relationship he forms with Marcus quickly moves from that of boss/employer to Master/slave. Although no innocent to sex, Jade is innocent to the new world he finds himself in and the author does a great job portraying Jade’s insecurities while keeping his innocent, slightly vain personality intact. Marcus, on the other hand, is one of those characters that readers will either love or hate. A Member of Parliament, Marcus comes across as cold or unfeeling. Unfortunately, a past relationship has taught Marcus to guard his heart. When a misunderstanding tears these two apart, the reader can’t help but feel for the two men. In a time when alternative lifestyles can get you arrested, sometimes it makes the relationships all that more meaningful. If you are drawn towards stories with a BDSM theme, give this one a try.

The Mercenary Bride




Title: The Mercenary Bride
Author: Jamaica Layne
Publisher: Ravenous Romance
Publisher URL: http://www.ravenousromance.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60777-293-0
Genre: {M/F} Historical
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Satyr Vael

Lady Sabina, the eldest daughter of Duke of Angwyld a Saxon nobleman, has fled her beloved home. Running from a marriage she fears, she intends to join a convent. Then she runs into Robert de Tyre, a Norman mercenary hired to take her to her future husband, Lord Reginald de Guillaume.

Robert fully intends to follow through on his job, but Lady Sabina captures him in a way he hadn’t expected. Now he must find a way to keep her safe…while making her his own.

The Mercenary Bride is one of the most enchanting, beautifully written romances I’ve ever read. From the very first sentence, it’s clear how masterful the author is in drawing the reader into the past. Beginning to end, I was hooked.

Robert de Tyre is a gentleman, yet still a man. He does his best not to give into his desires, which is quite admirable, yet when he finally does, it’s breathtaking. Lady Sabina, while having been sheltered all her life, isn’t a wilting flower. She’s strong and determined, and although she meets Robert as a virgin, she knows what she wants.

If you enjoy historical romances—especially medieval—then you will absolutely love The Mercenary Bride. I sincerely hope Ms. Layne writes more in this time period.

Binary Stars Vol 1--Hard Lessons and Security


Title: Binary Stars Vol 1--Hard Lessons and Security
Author: Jack Greene
Publisher: Phaze Books
Publisher URL: http://www.phaze.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60659-551-0
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

Hard Lessons - 4 Nymphs
Tom attempts to keep his desire for men off the radar while he’s in college. His stature doesn’t allow for fair altercation. However, Tom’s healthy libido contends that if Shawn was involved and it was a fight to see who could take off their clothes the fastest, well he would gladly partake in the encounter. Shawn knows his future in the athletics program depends on Tom’s ability to help him with his math course. These two opposites have one thing in common - an attraction that is ready to be unleashed.

Security - 4 Nymphs
Tyler may not have a steady lover but he knows what he likes. His flourishing career doesn’t remove the ache of sleeping along. One of the security guards, Gideon, makes Tyler’s heart flutter and other parts throb with desire. However, Tyler isn’t the only person feeling the attraction. Will they stick to stolen glances or are they ready for uncontainable passion?

Jack Greene’s Binary Stars Vol 1--Hard Lessons and Security delivers two well-written scenarios for our reading pleasure. Tyler and Tom reminded me of two pushy bottoms. They never go overboard but after the long wait, they aren’t willing to risk not getting what they want. Gideon and Shawn are men designed with a certain amount of drool factor that will leave you fanning. I enjoyed this quick read and look forward to seeing what Phaze has in store for the next Binary Stars release.

When the Bluebird Calls


Title: When the Bluebird Calls
Author: Leiland Dale
Publisher: Silver Publishing
Publisher URL: http://silverpublishing.info/
ISBN: None Listed
Genre: {M/M}, Western, Contemporary
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Critter Nymph

After the break up with his longtime boyfriend and the death of his mother, it’s time for Devon to get away and start over. Selling his veterinary clinic, as well as his house, gives him just enough money to leave the city and start over in a small town in Montana. The instant attraction he feels for Greg, a local ranch hand, may be unexpected but he has no plans of walking away from it.

Greg has lived in Bridger, Montana, since he was kicked off his family ranch after his father found out he was gay. Lucky enough to find a job, he is now foreman of the Mountain Hart Ranch. When he heads into town to meet the new vet, he is surprised by the feelings the man inspires.

When the Bluebird Calls is the first book in the Heart of the Mountain series by Leiland Dale. If the other books in this series turn out as good as this one, the readers will have to find more space on their keeper shelf. The characters, Devon and Greg, are strongly written and the chemistry between them intense from the very beginning. When they get together, they burn up the pages. The character’s personal stories are compelling and will pull the readers in as neither man has had an easy time of it. When Devon’s ex shows up, readers will be surprised by the turn of events. There are also many secondary characters that call out to have their own stories told. As When the Bluebird Calls wraps up, readers will be left anxiously waiting for the next story.

Major Pleasure


Title: Major Pleasure
Author: Denise A. Agnew
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Publisher URL: http://www.jasminejade.com/
ISBN: 9781419925900
Genre: {M/F} Contemporary
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Amazon Nymph

Blayne has always wanted Jemma, but she is his best friend’s sister. He comes back to town, after getting hurt on his last deployment and runs into Jemma, while he is looking for her brother.

Jemma has been attracted to Blayne since she was first introduced to him, but doesn’t really want to get involved with a soldier because of her father’s issues after he came back from Viet Nam. She notices that Blayne is almost ready to pass out and drives him home then gets trapped at his apartment, due to a snowstorm.

When Blayne and Jemma get together in Major Pleasure, the pages burn, so keep the ice handy. The book is mostly about the two and their reactions to each other before, during and after they are together in Blayne’s apartment. The few times they talk, you learn more about them and why they react in certain ways. I understand both Blayne’s and Jemma’s feelings and some of the issues they faced. If you want a purely sexual love story, this is one for you.

Coming Home


Title: Coming Home
Author: Ava Rose Johnson
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Publisher URL: http://samhainpublishing.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60504-895-6
Genre: {M/M}, {M/F}, {M/F/M} Ménage, Western
Rating: 3 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Critter Nymph

When Cade left home he never thought he would return a few short years later to bury his parents. He also did not expect to get the opportunity to act on his feelings for Brett.

Brett is devastated by the loss of his parents. He does not have what it takes to deal with Cade at the moment but it does not look like he has much of a choice.

While I though the premise of Coming Home - two men coming together after the death of their parents - was a good one, I had a little problem with the characters. Brett is straight and always has been. Cade is bisexual and has had a thing for Brett since the two were teenagers. The readers would expect both men to experience grief over the sudden deaths of their parents, uncertainty over taking over the huge ranch they now share, confusion on Brett’s part for the feelings he is developing for Cade, a renewal of feelings Cade has always had for Brett and they get all those. What they don’t get is any real chemistry between the men. Cade and Brett spend so much time having casual sex, either between the two of them or with the female characters in the story, that there does not seem to be any real bond, beyond sex. This lack of any real connection between Cade and Brett made if difficult for me to really enjoy this story.

Kidnapping Casey


Title: Kidnapping Casey
Author: Laurann Dohner
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
Publisher URL: http://www.jasminejade.com/
ISBN: 9781419924552
Genre: {M/F} Sci-Fi
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx

A persistent former boyfriend has Casey facing two options, being hauled off to jail or escaping from the local law. She decides it’s better to run and fight another day then put her Nikes to good use by taking a dash through the woods. The tides change in Casey’s favor during an unrelenting chase when Argernon decides to step in and help.

Argernon is a warrior from Zorn. Since the warriors learned of Earthling women, some have decided they would be perfect mates and he chooses to see what Earth has to offer. Argernon wanted a mini vacation with the opportunity to explore this new world, only to encounter Casey, a damsel in distress. One innocent moment as a hero changes when their instant attraction comes full force and Argernon decides the only way to keep the beauty is by Kidnapping Casey.

This is no Red Riding Hood adventure, and the roads don’t led Grandmother’s house. However, sharp teeth are definitely still included in the story. Laurann Dohner’s second book in the Zorn Warriors series, Kidnapping Casey is one you won’t soon forget. The story has action, suspense, a few soft BDSM moments that explode into sensationally written sex and a dose of humor that makes this book worth of a read or three. I absolutely love Casey’s character. She’s a mixture of sugar and steel and while she has a rough edge when pushed too far, Casey never lets you doubt that she is a woman through and through. I dubbed Argernon “Mr. Arrogant” while reading this story, and had to take his title back slightly towards the end. The man knew how to weld all means of weaponry, and wasn’t afraid to use it to get what he desired most, Casey. I’m anxious for the next installment, and recommend this book to those who enjoy the genre.