Friday, October 21, 2011

The Truck Driver

Title: The Truck Driver
Author: Serena Yates
Publisher: Silver Publishing
Publisher URL: spsilverpublishing.com
ISBN: 9781920501549
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Dragon Minx 

Joshua Becket likes his job as a trucker and enjoys the independence being alone on the road allows him. He wants to buy his own rig but with the bad economy and the cut in his wages, knows he’ll never be able to save enough money. Then the company he works for gets sold and he doesn’t know what he and the other employees will do. 

Robert Oldfield moves back to Nashville and buys Gordon Trucking from his estranged parents. He hopes upgrading the company and making it succeed will give him the recognition he never had in his hometown. When he and Josh see each other, its lust at first sight but it’s soon apparent they both want more. Can these men from opposite sides of the tracks make a relationship work and what about the competitor who wants to drive Gordon Trucking out of business? 

The Truck Driver is release five in Serena Yates’ Workplace Encounters series. It’s a well written story of two interesting guys from vastly different backgrounds. Truckers aren’t often the subject of a romance, so I was happy to see that Ms. Yates chose this profession as the topic for her latest release.  

It’s an entertaining story about two likable guys that gives details on the trucking industry, how the economy has affected it and the underhanded tactics by Rob’s competitor to destroy his company. All these topics are handled well, showing how they are messing with Joshua and what he wants from life. That’s where Rob and he get introduced. Their initial meeting is fun, cute and lighthearted as these two have sparks flying in the middle of a trucker meeting. 

But their attraction can’t be denied and being confined in the small cab of Josh’s truck only brings it out in the open. I must admit that I wasn’t certain how realistic it was for Rob to leave his newly purchased company and go across country with Josh but it played out well in the story and moved their relationship along. There isn’t much conflict in their actual relationship and what is there doesn’t last long. Their problems come from the competitor threatening the company and that’s where a little danger and action gets added to the plot. I wasn’t particularly surprised with this direction of the story but it was integrated nicely and involved a few of the minor characters previously mentioned. Catching the badies was anti-climatic and took place off scene, but still gave a satisfying conclusion. So, despite a few little niggles, I still enjoyed the story and like both Josh and Rob. I look forward to the next release, The Model.

Blood of a Leo

Title: Blood of a Leo
Author: Dawn H. Hawkes
Publisher: Silver Publishing
ISBN: 9781920468125
Genre: {M/M}, Paranormal, Series
Rating:  4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymph Reviewer: Critter Nymph 

Leo was forced to become the blood slave to a coven of vampires.  He never thought he would ever leave there alive but when he gets the chance to escape, he takes it.  After he winds up in the hands of Maddox, Leo wonders if he’s gone from the frying pan into the fire. 

Blood of a Leo is the first book in the new series, Solomon’s Pride, by author Dawn H. Hawkes.  As the first book, this story does every thing it should.  Not only are you drawn in by the main characters, Leo and Maddox, but also by many of the secondary characters as well.  While the passion between the two main characters is hot and heats up the pages, it is the sub-plot that will really hold your interest.   

Blood of a Leo is peppered with a variety of feline shifters, as well as vampires.  These vamps are not your usual cuddly vamps that find their way into today’s romances.  These guys are all bad to the bone, leaving the Pride to try and police their actions.  The story has many twists and turns that will keep the reader guessing.  The ending, while satisfactory, clearly sets up the story for book two.  Shifter lovers should really give this story a look; they will not be disappointed.

Chasing Seth

Title: Chasing Seth
Author: J.R. Loveless
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
ISBN: 978-1-61372-145-2
Genre: {M/M} Werewolves
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx  

Veterinarian Seth Davies is excited about the opening of his new clinic in Senaka, Wyoming. However, that excitement quickly turns into irritation when Native American Kasey Whitedove displays an immediate dislike for the white animal doctor Seth. 

Chasing Seth is an outstanding prejudice-to-love romance.  The fast moving plot is well developed, illustrating suspense, race discrimination, snarky attitudes, heartwarming moments and exquisite lovemaking.  The characters are very convincing.  Seth has a rare gift which makes him a target. After escaping an abusive past at the hands of a gang of lowlife humans who had been turned into werewolves, Seth was in hiding for two years before moving to Senaka.   

Kasey is the sheriff, a werewolf in addition to being the future Alpha of the Senaka pack.  Kasey is also Seth’s true mate.  Kasey does not have a problem with his mate being a male; it is the fact that Seth is white.  Like most Native American cultures, Kasey believes it is the white men that raped forests and destroyed the lands and animals all for the sake of greed and progress. Nevertheless, Kasey’s wolf side does not care about skin color or gender, the wolf’s only concern is bonding with his mate.  

Seth and Kasey are well matched. Seth has an underlining strength that contradicts his fragile appearance. Kasey is a stubborn, proud warrior who is emotionally gentled by Seth’s touch. The secondary characters provide the mystery of Seth’s life and as the revelations unfolds, so does the identity of the psychotic killer stalking Seth.

J.R. Loveless has created a superb saga with a breathtaking blend of mystery and exceptionally spectacular scenes of lovemaking. I thoroughly enjoyed Chasing Seth.

Precious Blood

Title: Precious Blood
Authors: A. J. Llewellyn & D. J. Manly
Publisher: Amber Allure
ISBN: 978-1-61124-179-2
Genre: {M/M/M} Dark Fantasy Vampire Series
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Dragon Minx 

Max is still working to bring down Jimmy McGill when he discovers the charismatic and dangerous vampire is someone from his past. This time, he’s set himself up as a phony prophet with his own church and is using his deluded converts as blood sacrifices. 

Jimmy’s plans include destroying Max and part of that involves playing with his mind, which means they have a personal connection. Except because of what happened in their past, Max is unable to remember his early life as a human…his life before being turned is a blank and if he’s to destroy Jimmy, he must remember. 

All Max wants is to be left alone to enjoy his vineyard with Blue at his side but that can’t happen until Jimmy and his minions are destroyed. As the fight draws closer, important figures from the French Revolution come out of hiding and Max gathers his forces for the battle against Jimmy’s immense army. Can Max and the House of Driscoll survive? 

Precious Blood is the second release in the House of Driscoll trilogy and begins almost immediately after the first left off and because of the continuing storyline, they should be read in order. 

The writing by this talented writing duo is top notch and they’ve given us a plot and relationships that are just as complicated as before. Some of the plot threads previously left dangling have been tied up, but now that the story is focused on finding and eliminating crazy Jimmy, we’ve been given new and deeper mysteries to consider. There are also new and important characters from the French Revolution introduced that I didn’t expect. 

The description of the world in which the trilogy takes place is vividly detailed and I am thrilled with the personal background information on Max we finally got. It explained so well why he felt and acted the way he did because despite liking him, I found him rather cold and unfeeling until the later part of the story. Blue has changed a great deal since his initial introduction. I find him more intriguing the deeper into the story we get. He’s so in love with Max that it’s sad and I want this part of the plot to work out. Then there’s Galien. I really disliked him before and don’t like him much more this time, but there are some interesting and unexpected twists with him. 

There’s just so much going on. The authors have really outdone themselves in the storytelling, character development and details of this intricate and well written story. I can’t wait to see what they do to wrap everything up in the last release. Enjoy. 

Advisory: This book contains some graphic violence and blood play. May not be suitable for the more sensitive reader.

By the Numbers

Title: By the Numbers
Author: Chris Owen and Tory Temple
Publisher: Torquere Books
ISBN: 978-1-61040-563-8
Genre: {M/M}, Contemporary
Rating:  4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymph Reviewer: Critter Nymph 

Nathaniel is just about home when he realizes the area is overrun by cops and firefighters.  When he finds out that it is his apartment complex that is on fire, he fears for his pregnant dog, Q.  Thankfully, hunky firefighter Trey is there to save the day. 

Chris Owen and Tory Temple are wonderful authors in their own right, but pair them together and they are outstanding.  I loved By the Numbers from the very beginning.  Nathaniel, aka Deuce, is one of those characters that readers will fall for from the start.  His positive attitude about life never seems to flag, regardless of the troubles he faces.  The instant connection between him and Trey is evident from their very first meeting.  To say they soon burn up the pages of the story is an understatement. 

There are several secondary characters that help round out the story.  Some readers have met before and others, at times, steal the scene.  Then there is Trey’s ex, whom readers are sure to dislike from the get-go.  Yet, if you are looking for a great story then pick up By the Numbers, you won’t be disappointed.

Iron Dominance

Title:  Iron Dominance
Author:  Cari Silverwood
Publisher:  Loose Id
Publisher URL:  www.loose-id.com
ISBN:  978-1-61118-514-0
Genre:  {M/F}, BDSM, Steampunk
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer:  Amazon Nymph 

Claire has been created from several cloned parts and then trained as an assassin.  On the way to her assignment, the ship she is on crashes after being fired upon.  Theo takes her back to his house when he discovers she is one of the survivors and proceeds to seduce her.

One thing I liked a lot about Iron Dominance was that both Claire and Theo are very strong personalities.  Claire is a submissive though and as she learns to trust Theo, she seems to blossom even more.  The various personalities of the secondary characters are some that you either love or hate; there wasn’t any in-between for me. Another thing was that the author kept the angst going with Claire as she tried to navigate the questions she was asked to answer without letting on she was more than she presented herself as. 

I actually enjoyed reading this book, especially since this is the first time I have ever read steampunk.  I enjoyed the complexities of the world the author created.  The laws regarding the ‘frankenstructs’ of the various nations are tricky, to say the least.  They are slaves in some and are put to death immediately in others.  The fact that Theo kept her around while he tried to change the laws in his country was very telling about him as a person. 

I liked the fact that the author seems to be very knowledgeable about BDSM and showed both Theo’s Dom side as well as Claire’s submissive side very realistically.  Theo was extremely patient with Claire, especially when he realized she was terrified.   This book should be added to any BDSM lover’s bookshelf and is one I will be reading again.

Kye’s Heart

Title: Kye’s Heart
Author: Marisa Chenery
Publisher: Summerhouse Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-936950-50-8
Genre: {M/F} Contemporary Shape-shifter Series
Rating: 3.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Dragon Minx 

Kye’s new assignment is sole Protector to Roxie and Beowlf’s infant daughter. He isn’t thrilled, so the idea of taking the three-month old to the local zoo doesn’t make him happy. Kye’s opinion quickly changes when he meets a tantalizing woman dressed in drab brown…and his hormones kick into overdrive, letting him know the zookeeper is his mate. 

Michaela feels sorry for the hunky guy with the screaming baby and offers to help calm the adorable infant. Kye’s thrilled with her help and to show how much he appreciates it, Kye kisses Michaela and invites her to dinner. Telling Michaela of his wolfie side isn’t easy and she soon finds herself in the middle of his life as a Protector. Can she adjust to life with a fur ball or will Michaela leave, breaking Kye’s heart? 

Kye’s Heart is release five in Marisa Chenery’s series Roxie’s Protectors. It follows closely on the storyline and relationships of the previous four books and as such, I recommend they be read first.  

Despite being as big and hunky as the other Protectors, Kye’s a sweetie. And I like the premise of him being assigned to solely watch over Roxie and Beowulf’s daughter. I just don’t know where this plot thread is going and figure the author will let us in on the “why” in a later release. That Kye doesn’t know anything about infants only makes the situation more humorous…the holding of the baby and the diaper changing…they both gave me a good chuckle. And I really like him finding his mate, Michaela, at the zoo. It’s a cute idea and her liking wolves gave him and Michaela an unexpected commonality.  

Getting to see Roxie, Beowulf and the other Protectors and what was going on in their lives is nice and their integration into the plot was well done. Their camaraderie is still present …they’re family and the fun and bantering conversation between them is nice to see. Michaela fits with Kye perfectly. They enjoy each other’s company and in the bedroom their passion and desire is sizzling hot.   

Where I had a problem:

  1. The book follows a specific pattern and didn’t have any real twists or turns.
  2. Limited action that is quickly resolved.
  3. Michaela ready acceptance of Kye’s being a werewolf seems unrealistic. She even got involved in the fight with the rogue werewolves and didn’t bat an eye.
  4. Miles (the bad guy) has turned into someone not to be bothered with but they still act like he could be a problem in the future.
Well that’s it. Despite its problems, Kye’s Heart is still a cute and romantic book that can be enjoyed on a rainy afternoon.

Finally His

Title:  Finally His
Author:  Emma Hillman
Publisher:  Ellora’s Cave
ISBN: 9781419936258
Genre:  {M/F} Contemporary
Rating:  3.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer:  Amethyst Nymph 

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.  There’s only one man Lucy wants and she’s determined to have him.  Lucy upped her game, so there was no way Nick could resist her this time.  This time, he would see her as more than just a disaster magnet. 

Nick isn’t happy about being tricked into a blind date with his best friend’s sister.  Things always go wrong when Lucy’s involved and this date is no exception.  Not only does her short dress cause an accident, it also changes their relationship forever.  He’d tried everything to push Lucy away, even though that isn’t what Nick wants. 

Things were going so smoothly for Lucy and Nick and they both seemed to be on the same page.  Unfortunately, Lucy and Nick aren’t honest with each other, so their new relationship gets put to the test.  Nick is a good guy, but he has moments that made me want to choke him.  Sometimes he’s just a first class jerk to Lucy.  I know he was trying to shield his feelings for her and keep a promise to his best friend but I think he could have juggled that better.  One particular bar scene with Nick and a blonde confused me a bit, but Lucy took it in stride and made it work.  She has so much spunk and determination that I think readers will cheer to see her happy, even though Lucy had moments where she seemed to contradict herself.  On one hand, she seems bold but then she seems insecure.  That made it a little difficult to imagine her stripping by the side of the road in front of Nick.  

Finally His has a realistic approach to romance that will make readers smile and leave them with a comfortable feeling. Bad dates are something I wouldn’t wish on anyone, other than in a quirky story like this.  I had to admit, I laughed at Nick’s pain.   When a couple has history like these two, it’s easy to feel an emotional attachment with them. Love strikes when it wants and sometimes you just have to go with it. I’d say this is a great example of that.  If you appreciate diligence and torrid love scenes, you won’t want to skip this story. 

The Link that Binds

Title: The Link that Binds
Author: Dawn H. Hawkes
Publisher: Silver Publishing
ISBN: 9781920501259
Genre: {M/M}, Paranormal, Series
Rating:  4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymph Reviewer: Critter Nymph 

This is the last time Jace leaves the Pride compound.  Sent on a mission by Solomon, Jace ends up the captive of a bunch of crazy vampires.  When the Pride tries to get him back, the exchange goes bad and Jace is once again a hostage.  To top it off, it turns out his mate is a drug dealer working for the vamps. 

Book two in the Solomon’s Pride series picks up right where the first story ended so readers will need to read these stories in order.  The Link that Binds finds Jace coping with his situation the best way he can, by making snarky comments meant to set everyone off.  This character made me laugh out loud several times during the course of the story.  He makes the perfect counter point for Link, who is often times too serious.  I wondered, more than once, what the drug dealer’s story was and how the author would make him more agreeable to the readers and she did a great job turning him into a likeable guy.  The chemistry between the two men is hot with a capital H, but their relationship does not start out on the best foot, leading Solomon to step in.  The secrets Link was keeping were surprising, as was Jace’s reactions. 

The turmoil caused by the vamps continues to be an issue.  More than once, I was ready for the felines to just eat the rotten things.  I must admit that after reading this book, I stopped by the author’s website, and not only does she have several more stories planned for this series, but a variety of single titles as well.  I can’t wait to see what she has planned and will be adding this author to my must-buy list.

The Naughty List

Title:  The Naughty List
Author:  Jodi Redford
Publisher:  Samhain Publishing
Publisher URL:  www.samhainpublishing.com
ISBN:  978-1-60928-626-2
Genre:  {M/F/M}, BDSM, Holiday
Rating:   4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer:  Amazon Nymph 

Lacey has been having a lot of fantasies starring her two best friends and business partners.  Ry and Bram have been in love with Lacey for 15 years but haven’t told her because they don’t want to ruin their friendship. 

The Naughty List is the name of the list Lacey is creating to try to get her ‘mojo’ back after she dumped her fiancé a year ago.  One thing that was so true to life is that when someone is tired or in a rush, they may end up sending an email to a group of people instead of the intended recipient.  The fallout of doing that could be very bad or in this case was the catalyst that allowed three people to acknowledge their feelings after a few bumps. 

The author did a wonderful job showing Lacey’s angst as she tried to reconcile her feelings and about going public about her relationship with Ry and Bram.  The three scorched the pages so be prepared with ice or fans. One scene at Bram’s club will stay in your mind long after the book is finished.  I will be reading this one again.

Shattered Secrets

Title: Shattered Secrets
Authors: Diane Adams & RJ Scott
Publisher: Silver Publishing
Publisher URL: spsilverpublishing.com
ISBN: 9781920501709
Genre: {M/M} Shape-shifter Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Dragon Minx 

Jamie’s a werewolf living in a world where shifters are openly accepted, but even with the laws protecting them, life isn’t easy. Add being gay and having your parents throw you out of the house and things are even more difficult.  

Rob’s a cop working as part of a special police task force specializing in wolf / human cases. He meets Jamie in a club and embarks on a hot one-night stand that he’s more than willing to repeat, but doesn’t know his new lover is a wolf. It’s not that he has anything against shifters; he just isn’t interested in having a relationship with one. And when he learns the truth, he’s furious and throws Jamie out. 

When his unit investigates the disappearances of over a dozen female wolves, Rob learns someone is using the young shifters as sex slaves. After Jamie scents one of the victims, he ends up in the middle of Rob’s case. If Rob is to keep Jamie safe, he must shove aside his prejudices and accept his wolf lover for what he is. 

Shattered Secrets is the first book in the new series In The Shadow Of The Wolf by Diane Adams and R.J. Scott and it’s a promising look into their shifter world. I liked both Jamie and Rob, but wish their personalities had been a little more developed and that we’d learned more about their backgrounds. Their physical attraction was established before the book began, so their quick hook-up at the club was expected...and these two are sizzling hot together. After their initial bout of sex, I didn’t foresee Rob’s over-the-top reaction to the discovery Jamie was a wolf or his nasty rejection. It made him look a jerk and I thought bad things about him until things smoothed out for them. 

I appreciate the creative differences of the wolves in the story …how they matured, their transition into shifting and their mating and imprinting. I also enjoyed that while Jamie fit the mold of a typical wolf in some respects, in others he didn’t, making him a bit unique and unexpected. I do wish that the ‘breaking’ of the kidnapped wolves had been dealt with more and I’m hoping it will be thoroughly explained in the next book. 

There are numerous interesting secondary characters, most which are part of Rob’s task force and involved in the investigation of the missing girls. I really enjoyed this well plotted and executed part of the story, as well as the friendship between Rob and his partner. There’s also some good bantering conversation, anger, betrayal, pain and high emotions too. The story has a little of everything needed to be a good read, despite a few stumbles and inconsistencies. Give it a try.

Convergence

Title: Convergence
Author: Ally Blue
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-60928-555-5
Genre: {M/M} Alternate Worlds, Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx   

Publication Date: 12-13-2011  

Lynx and two other Carwin Tribe Pack members are out scouting the area when they locate their enemy’s home base camp.  Entering a building for further investigation, Lynx is captured by the Nomads and taken to an underground city where Lynx finds his long lost love and pack brother, Rabbit. 

Convergence is the third book in the Mother Earth Series.  The impressive plot has both a military system and social structure that mirrors the American Civil War.  The Nomads, also known as The Brass, is the army for the citizen farmers and their slaves, known as the Groundhogs. Each farmer produces vegetables through a complex system without using soil, a method developed during the end of the old earth.   

After his capture, Lynx could not understand why Rabbit had accepted his slave status.  However, as Lynx observed the people, he came to realize human nature directs the intelligence to make any adjustments necessary to survive, even if it means giving up some of your freedoms.  Lynx and Rabbit have always shared a love deeper than the pack bond, so after being missing for seven years, Rabbit must experience again the Pack’s strength by sharing touch, sex and a feeling of brotherhood which was forged from a lifetime of living and fighting side by side.  

Love could save a man, but only the bond could make a Pack Brother whole, this belief is reaffirmed nightly by sharing in a love fest.  When reading this story, the first question that comes to mind is why the Carwin Tribe Pack has animal names? You must read the story to discover the answer.       

Ally Blue has created an intellectually intriguing saga that I found immensely enjoyable.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Fall

Title: Fall
Author: Carol Lynne
Publisher: Total E-Bound
Publisher URL: www.total-e-bound.com
ISBN: 978-0-85715-709-6
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Dragon Minx 

After ten years, Sidney Wilks and Grady Nash are still crazy about each other.  They have good friends, a house they love, a rock solid relationship and jobs they each enjoy. What more could they want? That’s when Nash realizes that the day trader job he loves with its hours spent in front of the computer and his poor eating habits aren’t good for his aging body or health. Worried Sidney will find someone younger and in better shape, Nash sets out to get back the body he once had, no matter the cost.  

When his father dies, Sidney is so busy dealing with his feeling for the man who beat and betrayed him and learning of his new half-siblings that he misses the warning signs that Nash’s health is in trouble. When Nash starts getting irritable and his sex drive wanes, instead of asking questions, Sidney turns the problem inward and lets it slide. Can these two committed lovers start talking before it’s too late or will Nash’s health suffer irreparable harm? 

Fall is the third release in Carol Lynne’s Seasons of Love series, and because it’s a continuing story of their lives, the books should be read in sequential order. 

I love the concept of this four-part series and watching as Nash and Sidney move through the different phases of their lives as they grow and change with age has been a treat. It’s not something I’ve seen other authors do before and shows the creative talent I’ve come to expect from Ms. Lynne. With Fall, she’s once again given us a well written story covering issues ‘real’ people deal with every day.  There’s career satisfaction, co-worker attraction, middle-age weight gain and the desire to get back into shape, the death of a parent…in this case a despised one, friends, learning about family and serious illness. All these topics Ms. Lynne handles well, all while continuing the loving relationship of Nash and Sidney…even if they have a few realistic bumps in the road along the way. 

Besides two warm and lovable main characters, this romance has everything needed to make it another enjoyable and entertaining book. I look forward to the final release, Winter, coming after the first of the year.

Bad Boyfriend

Title: Bad Boyfriend
Author: K. A. Mitchell
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-60928-622-4
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary, Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx   

Publication Date: 12-06-2011 

Quinn Maloney needed a date to accompany him to the baptism of his former lover Peter’s son.  Quinn’s goal is to show Peter Laurent he has moved on with his life and to give Peter’s family a hint of the true liaison between Quinn and Peter.  Inviting sexy openly gay Eli Wright as his date, Quinn got more than he bargained for with the take-charge Eli.  

Bad Boyfriend is the second book in the Bad in Baltimore series.  The plot exhibits how lies are an entrapment more painful than the truth.  The characters are convincing.  Quinn’s connection with the Laurent family is because of his platonic friendship with Peter’s brother.  Quinn is accepted as a member in the family, though none of the Laurents ever questioned why Quinn and Peter chose to live together for ten years, with no indication of Quinn ever having a girlfriend. Quinn does not hide his sexuality; however, being a high school teacher, Quinn does not broadcast it either.   

Peter is an emotional train wreck waiting to happen. Peter wants to appear straight for his family and co-workers, yet his natural needs for sex with other males cannot be denied.  Eli is especially intuitive, outspoken and honest.  Eli also enjoys kinky sex. Although, I am not a fan of BDSM, taken as a whole K. A. Mitchell has created an intriguing plot illustrating love, emotional turmoil, dialog with a touch of humor, as well as enjoyable character interactions.

Ex's and O's

Title: Ex's and O's
Author: Bailey Bradford
Publisher: Total E-Bound
Publisher URL: www.total-e-bound.com
ISBN: 978-085715-702-7
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Dragon Minx 

In his hometown of Billlings, Adam Masterson tried to do the right thing and it put him in the sights of a wealthy and powerful man willing to do anything to get back at the people who crossed him. After losing his job and being evicted from his apartment, Adam is beaten.  On the run for his life, he and his mother, Charlene, are heading for a new life in Texas with friends when their car is pulled over by Officer Les Stanton. 

After talking to his friend Josh, Les already know who is inside when he pulls over a car with Montana plates for speeding. What he doesn’t expect to find is a gorgeous male driver that’s bruised, battered and in pain, or that he’s inexplicably drawn to him. Even being petrified of Charlene can’t keep him away. If Les can let go of the fear and pain of his past, it’s possible he and Adam can have a future together, unless a wealthy man swearing vengeance destroys them first. 

Ex’s and O’s is book five in Bailey Bradford’s Love in Xxchange series and because of the continuing relationships of the characters, I recommend they be read in order.  

It’s well written, has an attention grabbing storyline and characters with unique and interesting personalities. I liked Adam…a lot, and I feel bad about the terrible things that happened to him. That a rich and powerful man would reach out and destroy so many lives…his actions and the aftermath are handled well. But there is something about big and burly Les and his traumatic childhood and how it still affects him that pulls at the heartstrings.  Ms. Bradford handled Les and his reaction to Charlene exceptionally well. You could almost feel the fear and anxiety vibrating off the page and that’s definitely the sign of a good author in my opinion. These two have an immediate attraction and when their relationship finally turns physical, it’s blistering hot. It just takes a bit since Les has a little trouble dealing with his sudden desire for a man…and his confusion is so cute. 

The secondary characters are numerous, some old and some new and I particularly liked Adam’s mother. She’s a hoot and getting her involved in a relationship with Les’s boss is a nice touch. Then there’s James and Chase, involved in the Billings mess and Billy and Talbot from the Xxchange. These four guys I want to know more about and want to see again in the near future. Watch for A Bit of Me.