Release Day Review by Natalie: Worth Waiting For, by Wendy Qualls

web analytics
hit counter

worth-waiting-for-wendy-qualls

Worth Waiting For, by Wendy Qualls
Series: Heart of the South, Book 1
Publisher: Lyrical Shine
Release Date: August 15, 2017

Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
2-of-5

Continue reading

Advertisements

“This story was the ‘bee’s knees’!” — Book Review: Such a Dance, by Kate McMurray

mcmurray-such-a-danceSuch a Dance, by Kate McMurray
Publisher: Lyrical Press (October 27, 2015)
Page Count: 234 pages
Genre: Historical; Gay (M/M) Romance

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Buy Links: Amazon / Publisher
* I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review. *

wordpress blog stats

Speakeasies, the Mafia, and Broadway… it’s New York City in the 1920s, and Eddie and Lane are two men with very different lives who have one thing in common: they’re both gay men, in a time where such things were illegal.

When Eddie Cotton gives in to temptation and heads to a new queer bar in Times Square, he meets Lane Carillo, a made man who runs an illegal speakeasy that struggles to stay one bribe ahead of a police raid. Eddie doesn’t believe that two men are capable of loving each other, and convinces himself that his attraction towards Lane is purely sexual. But Lane sees Eddie as a chance to fill a void in his life, after his last lover committed suicide five years prior, and slowly teaches Eddie what it means to be loved.

As had happened in the Marigold, Lane felt a jolt when their eyes met. Lust uncoiled in his gut. He wanted this to happen, but Eddie didn’t seem quite ready yet. (Kindle Loc. 355)

There was a lot going on here. Eddie is a rising Broadway star, one half of a singing-dancing duo. Lane is a Mafia man, breaking the law for a profit. But Eddie teaches Lane to dance, and Lane teaches Eddie to open up and enjoy life, so together they become two halves of a whole.

“Here’s the crazy part,” Lane said. “I’m falling in love with you.” (Kindle Loc. 1641)

I do wish the author had lingered over crucial plot points, given them more emphasis and emotion, but instead she just skimmed over them. A climatic scene would take place, and then be brushed aside a page later. I wanted to get emotionally invested in the characters and the story, but I was never given a chance to do so.

(On a personal note, I also wish more had been explored with Eddie’s Jewish heritage. It seemed weird to put such an emphasis on his being Jewish, but then not have that show through in his character.)

This story was definitely the “bee’s knees”, and I really enjoyed it! Kate McMurray clearly did a lot of research on the time period, so it was a fascinating look into the decadence and sin of the roaring 20’s! And bonus points for having 20’s song titles as the chapter headings 😀

wordpress hit counter

Like this post? Follow me for more great reviews!

wordpress_logo_buttontumblr_logo_buttontwitter_logo_button

Blog Tour: Treble Maker, by Annabeth Albert

albert-treble-maker

Cover Artist: Cora Graphics

 Treble Maker, by Annabeth Albert (Perfect Harmony, Book One)
Publisher: Kensington Publishing (August 4, 2015)
Word Count: approx. 100,000 words
Genre: Gay (M/M) Contemporary Romance

Today is the release of the first book in a new series by Annabeth Albert about music, dreams come true, and boys in love. I’m so excited to be hosting this tour on my blog today, because I really enjoyed Treble Maker and I’m excited to give you a chance to check out an excerpt from the novel… and to enter to win a gift card! You can check out my review of Treble Maker here, and keep reading for more information on the novel!

Summary:

On Perfect Harmony, the ambitious competitors heat things up on stage and off…

Cody Rivers is determined to be a rock star, but couch-surfing between bar shows gets old fast. Joining an a cappella group for a new singing competition show could be his last chance at real fame—unless the college boy from the heart of the country messes it up for him. Lucas Norwood is everything gothy, glittery Cody is not—conservative, clean-cut, and virginal. But when a twist in the show forces them together, even the sweetest songs get steamy as the attraction between them lights up the stage. Lucas wants to take it slow, but Cody’s singing a different tune—and this time it may be a love song…

Final

Continue reading

Review: Treble Maker, by Annabeth Albert (Rating: 4/5)

albert-treble-makerTreble Maker, by Annabeth Albert
Publisher: Kensington Publishing Corp (August 4, 2015)
Page Count: 272 pages
Genre: Gay (M/M) Romance

Rating: 4 out of 5

wordpress blog stats

* I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review. *

Summary: Cody Rivers is determined to be a rock star, but couch-surfing between bar shows gets old fast. Joining an a cappella group for a new singing competition show could be his last chance at real fame—unless the college boy from the heart of the country messes it up for him. Lucas Norwood is everything gothy, glittery Cody is not—conservative, clean-cut, and virginal. But when a twist in the show forces them together, even the sweetest songs get steamy as the attraction between them lights up the stage. Lucas wants to take it slow, but Cody’s singing a different tune—and this time it may be a love song…

My Thoughts: I was hooked on this novel from the very first sentence! While the plot isn’t normally my type of read (too much like an American Idol meets Pitch Perfect, neither of which I have any desire to watch), the characters and writing were so good that I couldn’t put this book down.

The bass singer was gay. Cody wriggled his hips in an exaggerated move that always got him company on the dance floors, waited a beat, and… there. Right on cue, the curly-haired singer gave him another sidelong glance.

Annabeth Albert takes two characters who, on their own, are not the easiest people to like, and transforms them together into a beautiful couple that are more alike than they ever expected. Cody is the bad boy that you hate to love, and who distances himself from anything that might resemble an emotional bond. He’s only in the music competition for himself, and is prepared to use people, Lucas included, to get himself the spotlight he knows he deserves. Lucas is naive, sheltered, and more than happy to let other people dictate how he thinks and acts. He’s incredibly talented, but lets his faults eat away at him, and forces his needs and wants below the rules of his team, his school, and his family.

If that was it, this novel would have been terrible. Thankfully, Albert had the skill and writing chops to turn two mostly-unlikeable men into a beautiful couple, each of them chipping away at the other’s exterior until they revealed someone they (and we the readers) could love.

Unlike many novels, the background characters here were a huge benefit to the plot. Ashley and the rest of Cody’s team were supportive, funny, and human, while Lucas’ friend Trevor is everything that Lucas used to be, a static point against which we can see how much Lucas has changed.

The romance was a lovely slow-build, and the sex scenes were fantastic, managing to balance the line of hot and still showing Lucas’ reservations and Cody’s frustration.

The characters definitely made this novel. The plot was average, nothing special in my opinion, but the characters were pure brilliance.

(On a personal note, I will say that this novel makes me wonder if it started out as Adam Lambert/Kris Allen American Idol fanfic? It wouldn’t be a bad thing if it had, but there are some pretty noticeable parallels between the characters… and as someone who’s never watched the show, even I could pick up on it!)

wordpress hit counter

Like this post? Follow me for more great reviews:

wordpress_logo_buttontumblr_logo_buttontwitter_logo_button