Top of the Stack: March 2017

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Welcome back to Top of the Stack!

Looking forward to the next book month? You’ve come to the right place then. Here are the top titles that we’re most excited about in March. So work on enhancing the to-read piles and enjoy…

Guns n' Boys: Bloodbath by KA MerikanGuns n’ Boys: Bloodbath, by K.A. Merikan
Series: Guns n’ Boys, #6
Release Day: March 4, 2017

Rita:  For as much as the title bugs me, I’ll never be able to say no to a new Guns n’ Boys book, and the sixth installment of this serial series, Bloodbath, was no exception. These morally ambiguous characters may not be for everyone but I’ve grown so attached to Domenico and Seth that I’m always dying to know what sort of trouble they’re going to be saving themselves from next. 

“I don’t even know who I am anymore.”
“All you need to know is that you’re mine.”

Seth would follow Domenico to the depths of hell. He promised to always be at Domenico’s side. But hell becomes all too real when they infiltrate the world of Toro – a notoriously security-obsessed arms dealer, who has eyes and ears everywhere.

Seth becomes unable to steal even a moment of intimacy with Domenico, and the tension grinds them down each day. Beyond the deceptive paradise of Toro’s villa, violence is an everyday occurrence, and the swimming pool could just as well be filled with blood. To survive, Seth has to become the man Domenico needs him to be, but in the process, he might lose who he truly is.

With Seth trained up, and Mark as backup, victory is so close Domenico can taste it. They just need to prove themselves to Toro as valuable assets. With each day though, Seth seems to be drifting away from Domenico, hidden behind a mask of cruelty and indifference. It is exactly what Domenico asked of him, so why is it so difficult to see Seth become his mirror image?

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insight santino hassellInsight, by Santino Hassell
Series: The Community, #1
Release Day: March 13, 2017
Publisher: Riptide Publishing

Kristie: For me, Insight is the one book I can’t wait for people to read. I read this in one sitting, not able to put it down. I know… I’m a huge fan of Santino’s writing, but this book solidifies for me that he can write any genre he wants and do it well. From the characters, to the settings, the relationships and the overarching story, everything is very well conceived. Insight is a fantastic start to a new series that I’m confident fans will love.

Mel: I am super excited for this, because I think Santino Hassell writing SFF is kinda the perfect combo. I loved Stygian, for example, and I’m really curious where he’s going with this new series.

Michele: New paranormal romance with psychic powers (and psychic bonds!) by Santino? Of course I want to read this 

Growing up the outcast in an infamous family of psychics, Nate Black never learned how to control his empath abilities. Then after five years without contact, his estranged twin turns up dead in New York City. The claim of suicide doesn’t ring true, especially when a mysterious vision tells Nate it was murder. Now his long-hated gift is his only tool to investigate.

Hitching from his tiny Texas town, Nate is picked up by Trent, a gorgeous engineer who thrives on sarcasm and skepticism. The heat that sparks between them is instant and intense, and Nate ends up trusting Trent with his secrets—something he’s never done before. But once they arrive in the city, the secrets multiply when Nate discovers an underground supernatural community, more missing psychics, and frightening information about his own talent.

Nate is left questioning his connection with Trent. Are their feelings real, or are they being propelled by abilities Nate didn’t realize he had? His fear of his power grows, but Nate must overcome it to find his brother’s killer and trust himself with Trent’s heart.

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Queens of Geek Jen WildeQueens of Geek, by Jen Wilde
Release Day: March 14, 2017
Publisher: Swoon Reads

Michele: I’m excited to read Queens of Geek! F/F YA with fandom and convention culture, WOC leads, intersectional feminism (and girls supporting girls!) and a character on the autism spectrum – sign me up 

Caissa: This book looks absolutely adorable. I’m pretty sure I’ve called myself the queen of geek in some way, shape, or form in my life. And I’m a huge fan of geeks and nerds ruling the world (don’t we already anyway?). I’m looking forward to seeing how Wilde writes the two love stories together at a place like a fandom conference. Props for the anxiety and autistic representations, too. I’m hopeful they’ll be written in a way that makes readers in their shoes feel like they belong.

When BFFs Charlie, Taylor and Jamie go to SupaCon, they know it’s going to be a blast. What they don’t expect is for it to change their lives forever.

Charlie likes to stand out. SupaCon is her chance to show fans she’s over her public breakup with co-star, Jason Ryan. When Alyssa Huntington arrives as a surprise guest, it seems Charlie’s long-time crush on her isn’t as one-sided as she thought.

While Charlie dodges questions about her personal life, Taylor starts asking questions about her own.

Taylor likes to blend in. Her brain is wired differently, making her fear change. And there’s one thing in her life she knows will never change: her friendship with Jamie—no matter how much she may secretly want it to. But when she hears about the Queen Firestone SupaFan Contest, she starts to rethink her rules on playing it safe.

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brother's ruin Emma NewmanBrother’s Ruin, by Emma Newman
Series: Industrial Magic, #1
Release Day: March 14, 2017
Publisher: Tor.com Publishing

Mel: It was a joy to read this book. I’m always on the lookout for empowering female representation and this book was a total winner in this regard. It’s the first book in a new series and I cannot wait to read more.

 

The year is 1850 and Great Britain is flourishing, thanks to the Royal Society of the Esoteric Arts. When a new mage is discovered, Royal Society elites descend like buzzards to snatch up a new apprentice. Talented mages are bought from their families at a tremendous price, while weak mages are snapped up for a pittance. For a lower middle class family like the Gunns, the loss of a son can be disastrous, so when seemingly magical incidents begin cropping up at home, they fear for their Ben’s life and their own livelihoods.

But Benjamin Gunn isn’t a talented mage. His sister Charlotte is, and to prevent her brother from being imprisoned for false reporting she combines her powers with his to make him seem a better prospect.

When she discovers a nefarious plot by the sinister Doctor Ledbetter, Charlotte must use all her cunning and guile to protect her family, her secret and her city.

Brother’s Ruin is the first in a new gaslamp fantasy series by Emma Newman.

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leaning into the fall lane hayesLeaning Into the Fall, by Lane Hayes
Series: Leaning Into, #2
Release Day: March 15, 2017

Rafa: I’ve grown to love Lane Hayes’ work, and Leaning Into The Fall is a followup to a short, Leaning Into Love. Granted, I still need to dive into the short, but I’m looking forward to diving into a new series by her. This one takes place in San Francisco and features a genius techie, a winery owner, an age gap and oooh hopefully some wine 

Nick Jorgensen is a quirky genius. He’s made a fortune in the competitive high tech field with his quick mind and attention to detail. He believes in hard work and trusting his gut. And he believes in karma. It’s the only thing that makes sense. People are difficult, but numbers never lie. In the disastrous wake of a broken engagement to an investor’s daughter, Nick is more certain than ever he isn’t relationship material.

Wes Conrad owns a thriving winery in Napa Valley. The relaxed atmosphere is a welcome departure from his former career as a high-rolling businessman. Wes’s laid-back nature is laced with a fierceness that appeals to Nick. In spite of his best intention to steer clear of complications, Nick can’t fight his growing attraction to the sexy older man who seems to understand him. Even the broken parts he doesn’t get himself. However, when Wes’s past collides with Nick’s present, both men will have to have to decide if they’re ready to lean into the ultimate fall.

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the monet murders josh lanyonThe Monet Murders, by Josh Lanyon
Series: The Art of Murder, #2
Release Day: March 21

Gillian:  I am a big Josh Lanyon fan, so The Monet Murders is one book I am definitely looking forward to this month. This is the follow up to The Mermaid Murders and I’m excited to be reunited with Sam and Jason, seeing as the end of the first book only gave us a small clue as to where their relationship was going. Yes, yes there will be a mystery to solve but let’s face it – we just want our boys to get their HEA. 

The last thing Jason West, ambitious FBI special agent with the Art Crimes Team wants — or needs — is his uncertain and unacknowledged romantic relationship with legendary Behavioral Analysis Unit Chief Sam Kennedy.

And it seems like Sam is unsold on the idea as well.

But personal feelings must be put aside when Sam requests Jason’s help in order to catch a deranged killer targeting wealthy, upscale art collectors.

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strays garret leighStrays, by Garret Leigh
Series: An Urban Sous Story
Release Day: March 27, 2017
Publisher: Riptide Publishing

El: I would count Misfits as one of my favorite M/M books of all time, and finally getting to see Nero’s story (and maybe some cameos by Jake, Tom, and Cass?!) has me on the edge of my seat.

Michele: I like the angsty catharsis of Leigh’s writing, and the contemporary London setting is comfortable and familiar.

Work, sleep, work, repeat. Nero’s lonely life suits him just fine until his best friend, Cass, asks him to take on a new apprentice—a beautiful young man who’s never set foot in a professional kitchen. Despite his irritation and his lifelong ability to shut the world out, Nero is mesmerised by the vibrant stray, especially when he learns what drove him to seek sanctuary on Nero’s battered old couch.

Lenny Mitchell is living under a cloud of fear. Pursued by a stalker, he has nowhere left to run until Nero offers him a port in a storm—a job at the hottest restaurant in Shepherd’s Bush. Kitchen life proves heady and addictive, and it’s not long before he finds himself falling hard and fast for the man who has taken him in.

Fast-forward a month and neither man can imagine life without the other, but one thing stands in their way: a lifetime of horrors Nero can’t bring himself to share with Lenny. Or can he? For the first time ever, happiness is there for the taking, and Nero must learn to embrace it before fate steps in and rips it away.

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Honorable Mentions

(aka Mel only let us choose one each, but none of us listened… including her)

A Careful Heart, by Ralph Josiah Bardsley, Mar 1 (M/M, Contemporary)
Darkness, by Kate Sherwood, Mar 6 (M/M, Contemporary, Mystery)
Sons of Devils, by Alex Beecroft, Mar 13 (M/M, Historical)
Star-Crossed, by Barbara Dee, Mar 14 (Contemporary, Middle Grade, Theatre)
Danced Close, by Annabeth Albert, Mar 14 (M/M, Contemporary, Novella)
True Colors, by Anyta Sunday, Mar 14 (M/M, Contemporary)
There’s This Guy, by Rhys Ford, Mar 17 (M/M, Contemporary)

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Now it’s your turn:

What are you excited to read in March?

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