Sunday, May 1, 2016

April Top Reads #Reviews #Giveaway

Another month has come to an end. I read more books in April than I have any month this year so far. That said I have 10 books as my Top Reads this month. Technically 11 but one of them is free to buy so it’s not part of the giveaway at the end. I will however add the link so you can get the free book.
These books stood out to me. They are stuck in my head and hopefully will never leave. It needs to be said this was super difficult. I read so man amazing books and you authors really and truly rocked my world this month. So thank you!

Bound Gods: The Chimera by Adrienne Wilder


Kaleb Holten’s father’s debt to an underground group The Association has just been called in, and the man can’t pay the loan. Instead of turning over his wealth, he releases his son and Kaleb finds himself thrown into a world where a class of men see themselves as untouchable. Going so far as to call themselves gods.

After the Great Economic Collapse there are no laws that cannot be broken. And Kaleb is forced into a ten-year sentence of servitude where he will have no say, no rights, no value and yet be coveted and protected as if he were a priceless treasure.

Leo Roan, has slipped the noose the Association bound him with by breaking his addiction to ambrosia and Kaleb Holten was supposed to be his last assignment as a doxie Master. But something about the boy begins weaving a new net that will not only ensnare him but the conscious darkness inside, that craves pain, agony, suffering, and death.

My Review

I love how after chapter one of a book I immediately know I’m going to love this series! This is such a creative story. The plot is amazing and always keeps me guessing. We don’t get a lot of answers in this book, but I suspect with each book comes more information.

This book introduces Kaleb (an innocent boy/man) to Leo (Half man half chimera). We don’t really know what’s going on upstairs in Leo’s head and he’s chewing on a lot of confusion. As we all are in this book. With each layer uncovered two more grow in its place and it’s so very intriguing.
I’m deeply in love with this amazing dark erotica from Adrienne Wilder! I adore the mystery, the lust, the characters, and every possibility that will surely happen.

Adrienne Wilder is a new author to me and I must say, she’s amazing! Her writing style is wonderful and she’s created a world of darkness, pain, and oddly possibilities. I’m so excited to see where she will take us in the next book.

Strip Search (Sin City Uniforms book 7) by Morticia Knight


A sexy stripper attempts to escape his dangerously obsessed boss while searching for his missing younger brother.

Stripping used to be fun, lucrative and a place for Dakota to practice for his professional dancing career. But the owner of Glitter Boys wants Dakota for himself and will stop at nothing to possess him. When his thirteen-year-old brother runs away from home to escape their abusive father, Dakota is determined to find him before something awful happens to him on the streets.

Patrol officer Reed hasn’t been attracted to a man in a very long time, but when he’s called to an assault in progress at the LGBTQ teen shelter, a young man approaches him, begging for help in finding his missing brother. An instant spark occurs, but he pushes it away. When the same man is attacked outside a strip club later that night, he discovers the desire is mutual.

As the two men learn more about each other and become closer, the specter of his obsessed ex-boss remains. In addition to that, Dakota has to fight the system to gain guardianship of his brother and keep him out of foster care. Dakota doesn’t know if the hunky cop he’s fallen so hard for can handle a relationship with an ex-stripper struggling to raise a teenager. But, will Reed be able to give up dating women for good and dedicate himself to their new family?

My Review

Morticia’s Sin City Uniforms series is addicting. I loved the premise of Strip Search. Stripper with a bad boss, trying to save up for a dream, desperate for the safety of his brother… enter strong, gorgeous, stable Reed! Cop and a stripper! COME ON it’s a book made in heaven!

Many time with a series, with so many characters you think they all will take on the same personalities. This is book 7 and I’m amazed how Morticia has not fallen into that trap. Each character is unique and in Strip Search we meet more wonderful players.

As always Morticia has written a story with lust, love, fluff, and suspense. There’s a mixture to her work and she always balances things out perfectly. Nothing is ever saturated in one element and I always love that about her stories. This is a fabulous addition to this already wonderful series.

Beneath the Surface by M.A. Church


A whole different world exists beneath the surface.

The last thing Nisha expects while patrolling his territory is to find his mate, but his instincts tell him the handsome human diving into the surf is the one meant for him. Two bites and Kannon will be joined to him forever. But when Kannon’s father disrupts the mating process, Nisha releases his claim, hoping beyond hope his mate will one day return.

While free diving with his father, Kannon is bitten by a seductive merman. Although he swore to never go near the ocean again, the pull to return to the water and his mystery man remains strong. Finally, after fifteen years away, an impromptu wedding brings Kannon back to the Seychelles, and his destiny.

Kannon only plans to stay on the island for a week, but this time Nisha won’t let his mate go without a fight. Merfolk and human culture collide as the embers of Nisha and Kannon’s mate bond ignite, and Nisha must complete the mating before it’s too late.

My Review

So, this is the very first merman story I have ever read. When the offer to read and review it came to me I decided to step out of my comfort zone. I LOVE when I do that and am pleasantly surprised. If you have ever swayed on reading a Merman tale I suggest starting here. This is a sweet romantic story. No angst, no serious drama. It’s fantasy and love and acceptance. MA Church’s descriptions of the sea were breathtaking. I learned quite a bit about underwater life and her own mixture of creativity fit perfectly with what we all see in the ocean. Even if you read merman stories all the time this is a great one for the list. But I was leery to read it. Change is scary right? Kannon faces a ton of changes in this book so I kind of was able to experience all the newness with him which was really cool.
This is a fun and happy read. 

Prince of the Playhouse (Love in Laguna book 3) by Tara Lain


Driven by his desire to become a successful fashion designer and concerned with hiding his questionable past, Ru Maitland lets his obsession with action movie star Gray Anson on the big screen replace his social life. Then obsession and reality collide when Ru is asked to design fashion costumes for a special performance of Hamlet at the Playhouse in Laguna starring none other than Gray Anson. Gray turns out to be a compelling mix of shy and brash and, despite a high profile engagement to a female socialite, the signals Gray sends Ru have his libido doing the salsa.

Gray Anson has what most people only dream of—great wealth, huge fame, a job he loves. For that, he’s given up any semblance of privacy and the right to say no to the thousands of people who depend on him and the millions who love him. He sees everything he’s ever wanted just outside the bubble of his life, but how can he make the compromises needed to embrace it? When Ru’s shady past crashes into Gray’s paparazzi-haunted present, both men have to learn that sometimes the only acceptable compromise is the truth.

My Review

This series is my favorite of Tara Lain’s. I always look forward to a new book in this series. Prince of the Playhouse is outstanding. Ru is so much more than he seems just by looking at him… and it turns out Gray Anson is too. These are two men hiding from the things that made them. Both running from something and while they are running the crash into each other and fall in love. There’s some mystery to this tale of star crossed lovers. Both have to come to terms with their own pasts and realities and just move forward knowing that what they have is fierce and can last because they are unstoppable.
I had all the feels reading this. Seeing Shaz again always makes me smile and the pleasant surprise that is Ru was stunning to me. I “THINK” Meryl might be in her next story *crosses fingers* because he deserves his own story. He was such a fabulous secondary character.
Tara Lain has written another amazing winner!

Starting with the Unexpected by Andi Van


Zachary Blaise is having a weird week—even by his standards. Though he's gay, the radio personality has been dumped via text by a girl named Marian—and he's never even met her. On top of that, he's developed a massive crush on Marcus, the new waiter at his favorite diner. His best friend thinks the whole thing is hilarious.

Marcus’s week hasn’t been his best either. He's been betrayed by those closest to him, and although he isn't the guilty party, Marcus is the one getting harassed.

Impossibly, things are about to get even weirder. Marian has secrets, and those secrets are going to make some serious ripples in Zach's life. When he discovers that the girl called Marian is actually the man named Marcus, Zach stumbles down a rabbit hole of abusive ex-boyfriends, psychotic relatives, and revelations from his own past. If he can survive the chaos, the journey might prove worth the effort.

My Review

What’s not to love about this book? Seriously! Aside from the crazy people, I loved all the characters. Marcus is a sweet tooth lovin', outspoken, fabulous, wonderful, amazing person who by the fates meets Zach “Ollie” in what some might call serendipity. I loved the way they met LOVED it was wickedly creative, fresh, and I was giggling through so much of this book.

One of my most favorite parts was that no matter what, Marcus and Zach communicated. Many times I was like, “Oh please don’t wait.” And sure enough as if they heard me they were ADULTS and actually talked. I found that made the relationship so strong and it made the entire story way more enjoyable.

Zach is so witty, and funny, and COTTON CANDY BLUE HAIR! Omg I die!
The ensemble in this story was outstanding. The personalities melded so well together and the dialog was phenomenal!

This is absolutely a must read!!!

Escapade by Dolce


Twenty-nine-year-old Lucas Thompson is at the top of the corporate ladder. But when his lifelong friend and ex-boyfriend invites him to his last-minute destination wedding in the Bahamas, Lucas realizes his corporate success can’t hide his private loneliness. Nor will he be able to escape seeing his family at the wedding—and having to explain, yet again, why he’s rich, handsome… and still single.

Fate and a taxi ride change everything when Lucas meets the charismatic and clever Jack McQueen, who just so happens to be a male escort. Jack’s presence on Lucas’s arm at the wedding keeps questions at bay, but their pretend relationship turns into something more after ten days of sun, sand, and sex. And before the trip is up, both men will discover that what started as a simple escapade in paradise might just lead to their very own happily ever after.

My Review

From the beginning I knew this was a long story. Just look how many pages it is. This was an adventure. A love story. We have two characters who start off one place and end up in another. Teddy breathes life back into Lucas and in return Lucas let’s Teddy accept his dreams, reach his goals, and together they fall into love.

I adored the evolution of these characters. Dolce shows us their lives, their routines, their thoughts. At first I was like, “Oh this is going to drag if we are going to read Teddy’s morning rituals or Lucas’ nights alone over and over.” You don’t. Each description is significant. And it comes together, when you realize WHY you read those it clicks. The beauty of it all.

All the characters in this story from the smallest to the biggest really built this story into what it was. Yes, the destination, the places, the moments; they were all vital but the characters…. How they transform every experience. It is so wonderful.

So, yes it’s a long love story. It is detailed, descriptive, emotional, entertaining, witty, and magical. It doesn’t feel long. It feels perfect.

Guardian Angel by Hayden Thorne


When nineteen-year-old Dominic Coville’s parents die in an accident, leaving him not only alone but on the brink of poverty, he desperately searches for work and is thrilled when the post of secretary is awarded to him despite his obvious inexperience and ignorance. Mr. Wynyard Knight of Mandrake Abbey, however, gladly welcomes Dominic and earns the young man’s immediate sympathy for his fragile health as well as gratitude for the promising new life now awaiting Dominic.

Inside rock and timber, hungry shadows seek...

But unusual things soon happen and appear to focus solely on him, and Dominic begins to wonder about the true history of Mr. Knight, the strange young man haunting the third floor, and Mandrake Abbey. With the persistent and increasingly violent attempts at communication by an angry ghost shadowing his hours, Dominic struggles to unravel the mysteries of his new home. And even with the help of a handsome young gentleman who’s an aspiring supernaturalist as well as his clairvoyant sister, danger closes in far too quickly.

Then it’s only a matter of time before carefully constructed fa├žades fall away, and the sickly, decaying underbelly of Mandrake Abbey’s centuries-old collection of stone and timber will reveal itself.

Set in an alternate England sometime before the mid-19th century, Guardian Angel weaves a tangled and dark tapestry of old magic, romance, and madness, a celebration of classic gothic fiction and its macabre sensibilities.

My Review

What an awesome story OMG! Seriously, if you’re a gothic mystery fan, don’t miss this book!
This book had tendrils of fear creeping all over my body as I read. From the very first page I felt the hairs on the back of my neck stand straight up.

Dominic Coville is determined to solve the mystery of the abbey and being that it’s in his POV through the entire story you literally go through all of it with him. All the gloom, mystery, and foreboding situations. I think that is absolutely brilliant to do. I liked the not knowing and the trying to figure it out. I even liked the haunted feeling I got while reading.

This book stayed with me for a while after I finished. I actually gasped and shivered throughout Dominic’s “adventure”

I truly truly loved this story and I do highly recommend it for people who love gothic mystery, amazing writing, wonderful characters, and book hangovers… cause you’ll have one!

Bryan & Jase by A.D. Ellis


Jase Rafferty grew up hiding his sexual curiosities—until he meets Bryan Keating. Bryan’s sexual preference is no secret, and being deployed overseas together allows the two men to forge a solid friendship. The sexual attraction is undeniable, but after one lust-filled week, they must go their separate ways.
A year later, a chance meeting gives them one more weekend together, even though they know Jase can’t risk his military career or his family obligations to be with Bryan.
Several years pass before Jase finally accepts the desperate longing in his heart and body. But when fear and hatred threaten to tear them apart, Jase must make a tough decision, one that he isn’t sure he and Bryan can overcome. Together, they must choose to weather the storm or say goodbye forever.

My Review

A.D. Ellis is a writer who focuses on emotion more than anything else. Every thing a character does or says is truly felt. As a reader it is one of my most favorite things. A kiss is never just a kiss, it's mind, body, and soul and that comes across in her work.

Bryan & Jase is a tale that spans over time. A lust-filled week and then they are parted. Only to come together again a year later. And though you're all excited they are together again there's so much holding them back from that happily ever after.

They are so opposite in so many ways. Jase hides his sexuality where Bryan embraces it. That in itself is always a huge hurdle to get over. This story really pushes the whole "Live for yourself not for others" I love that.

There's a truly gorgeous story here and A.D. Ellis links her characters to you so well you feel their feels LOL.

I highly recommend you get your hands on this book!

Rustic Moment (Rustic book 3) by Nic Starr


Betrayal, heartbreak, and financial ruin are only the beginning.

The last few months have been tough on Grant Parnell. He discovered his boyfriend was having an affair and it’s taken its toll, both emotionally and financially. With his business facing ruin, Grant could lose everything.

Dave Monroe is excited to start a new phase of his life. He’s following his dream and pursuing an exciting career opportunity. When Grant visits his friends in the country and finds out Dave might be moving to Melbourne, he offers him a place to stay. For Dave, life’s looking good.

Dave had only met Grant a couple of times before moving in with him, but the simmering sexual attraction is undeniable. As he settles into Grant’s home, deeper feelings develop. It’s hard not to fall for Grant’s gorgeous exterior, but it’s the strong man underneath who captures Dave’s heart.

Grant always craved success. His business and his home are testament to just how far he’s come, proving his family wrong and making something of himself—or he had. Now everything is falling apart. As Grant’s world spirals out of control, Dave is the one sure thing in his life.

But if they are to have any chance at happiness, Dave will need to teach Grant what’s really important.

My Review

This is book 3 in Nic Starr's Rustic series. Rustic Moment is such a terrific addition to this already fabulous series. Dave and Grant are amazing. Different but compatible kept running through my mind as I read this. Grant works too hard. But, he's also trying to keep his business afloat and his awful business partner is destroying it. Douglas is retched I hate him! OMG so much. I needed to stop reading to concentrate on hating him. Dave is a saving grace for Grant. They start out as friends and they just build from there... LOL. Building is a big thing here. Dave builds furniture, Grants designs, and they, as a couple, build toward salvation.

This is a sweet, little angsty, emotional, but rewarding, story. I very much recommend this gem of a story.

Quillon’s Covert by Joseph Lance Tonlet & Louis Stevens


Novella 44k words / 186 Pages
Genre(s): Gay, Erotica, Romance, Taboo

Please see the tags below.

Martin is a guy’s guy, one who enjoys the simple things in life: baseball games with his son, family days, barbecues, and date nights with his lovely wife.

Once a year for two weeks, Martin takes his son, Marty, to Quillon’s Covert, a rustic family cabin secluded in the beautiful California mountains. Since before those long days of learning to play ball, Marty has loved his dad, but as Marty matures, Martin starts to see something else settle in his son’s uncertain gaze. What’s there lingers a little more than it should, and it seems far more appraising than it once was.

As Marty shows every sign of taking the lead, Martin is faced with the tough choices most parents never see: lose his son by being a father, or try to balance what’s best for their relationship by being something… more.

But with another trip to Quillon’s Covert on the horizon, has the point of no return already begun?

Note: This book contains incest


My Review

I have to praise Joseph and Louis (the authors) for tackling this subject matter. It’s difficult to put your name on this, send it out into the world, and embrace the bravery.

First and foremost there is ample warning before purchasing, even before you read it of what this is about. So, make sure you heed them.

This is a love it or hate it book. No doubt about it! Quillon’s Covert is a story of a taboo relationship between a father and a son. We follow a timeline that covers YEARS… I believe it’s 13 years. We watch the relationship grow from father son typical hero worship to more.

There’s an amazing bond between Martin and his son Marty. This book tackled a lot of real problems growing boys face from school bullies to puberty. In Marty’s case also coming out to the one man he looks up to and loves beyond all others.

It addresses real life issues! And I will say it again. If incest is a no go for you than this isn’t the book for you.

Now, yeah, it’s uncomfortable at first to grasp the, “how did this happen” mentality until you realize the relationship Martin and Marty have always had. It’s been strong since birth and through life has simply grown stronger.

I thought the authors did a wonderful job with this story and this subject matter. They managed to write a heartwarming story and I commend them on that.

Bought by R. Phoenix

(((This is the Free Book)))


When he agreed to take the fall for his pack leader's failed attempts to help the Rebellion, Jace knew he wouldn't live long enough to regret it. However, instead of the noble end he envisioned for himself, the werewolf finds himself at the mercy of a witch and his depraved games. Though he clings to his conviction that he can withstand anything his new master can dish out, it isn't long before he realizes pride has no place in his life as the pet of the controlling Elias Ivers.

Revised & expanded edition as of 3/22/16. Please note that content, publisher, and other aspects of the work have changed.

Bought is approximately 12,600 words.

(This dark erotica novella caters to those who cheer on the villains as they pursue their matter what it takes to get there. This includes Very Bad Things as well as Very Sexy Things.

Those with sensibilities will likely be offended and want to attack the author with flaming pitchforks. If this applies to you, save an author. Step away from the button.

My Review

This is book one in R. Phoenix’s Ripples in the Status Quo Series. It’s a short, dark, erotic tale. It’s the beginning of what I assume will be a crazy adventure. Jace the Werewolf is at the mercy of Elias the witch. We hate Elias. Like HATE HATE. Like if he was on fire and I had a glass of water, Id drink it. He’s horrible to Jace and my heart broke for the Werewolf. As powerful as Jace is his reason he endures it and stops fighting damn near breaks my heart even more. I’m hoping in the next book Elias is murdered horribly and slowly. I may have to hold my breath on that as I assume the author wants to torture us even more. If you love dark erotica and frustration with the hope of great retaliation than check this book out.


One person will get the chance to win one of these books. Simply enter the rafflecopter below. Contest will end on May 15th. Winner will be contacted via email so be sure to check your spam!
Thank you!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. So happy to have made your April list! Thank you!

  2. Thank you so much for including me. I'm honoured to be among such fabulous authors. :)

  3. Just started John Wiltshire's More Heat Than The Sun series and loving it!

  4. Oh, I had quite a few favourites in April. Let me see: A Summer of Guiltless Sex by Dan Skinner, Omorphi by Cody Kennedy, Imperfect Harmony by Jay Northcote and Tell the Wolves I'm Home by Carol Rifka Brunt. That last one is not MM as such but rather a coming of age story dealing with Aids in the 1980's.

    The only book on your list I have read is Quillon's Covert. It has been some time but that book made a lasting impression on me. So wonderful <3

  5. I'm honored and delighted to be on this list!! Thank you so much. *hugs* : )

  6. I am rather new to M/M romances, so a lot of my reads aren't new releases. I read a few books a week on my phone through my kindle app! Some of my recent favorites are "Finley" and the "Upending Tad" series.

  7. Thank you so much, Meredith! <3 I'm so proud to be on a list with these folks.

  8. Some of my April release favorites were: Noah, Cookies, Spencer Cohen, Finley, The Distance, Don't Ask, Falling for Matt, and Absolution

  9. Some of my favorite April read were- Finley, Fearless( Pier 70 book 2), Promise part 2: The Bounty Hunters, Suspicion,Wanted Hearts- The Cowboy Gangster book 4, & Red River: Pack Collection book 2!

  10. Guardian Angel by Hayden Thorne. I absolutely loved it!

  11. My top new release book was Prince of the Playhouse (Love in Laguna, #3) by Tara Lain.

  12. Rustic Moment - Nic Starr, Imperfect Harmony - Jay Northcote , The Wrong Man andThe Right Time - Lane Hayes, Sporting Chance - Alexa Milne, Spencer Cohen #2 and # 3 - NR Walker.

  13. fearless by nicole edwards was great

  14. Enemies of the State: The Executive Office by Tal Bauer was my favorite! Some others that I enjoyed were Beyond the Sea by Keira Andrews, The Rancher's Son by R.J. Scott, Finley by Ella Frank and The Horizons series by Mickie B. Ashling!

  15. I have been reading Nicholas Bella's The New Haven Series and Demon Gate Series! Nicholas is one of my favorite authors! He writes dark, sexy, HOTTER than Hell erotica! I'm truly a Bellaholic!

  16. I read books 6-9 of Juxtapose City by Tricia Owens and did a re-read of all the Assassin/Shifter and 12 Olympians books by Sandrine Gasq-Dion and a re-read of Cronin's Key series by NR Walker :)

  17. Some of my favorite April reads were: First & First by Santino Hassell, Timing by Ashley John, Spencer Cohen by NR Walker, Will & Patrick series by Leta Blake, and A Gentleman's Position by KJ Charles.