Every month the Sinfully team bring you our Hot Picks for the month. Check out our favourites for December and don’t forget… five lucky readers get the chance to win a Kindle eBook from our list of December’s Hot Picks. Just enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win.
Check out the rest of our Hotpicks for 2014 here –> HOTPICKS 2014
Broken Ink by Jack L Pyke
Rating: 5 Stars
Carrying a tattoo on your skin no longer just comes with a risk of infection. Get the composition right, you have the latest mind-control drug on the market. It’s the sex-traders’ dream, or worst nightmare, depending on the concentrated dose of the ink—and just who’s wearing it.
For Kiyen, the ink means he’s able to strip raw the minds of the best and worst of society. He’s one of MI7’s top killers and never more driven to select and take down a target. For Falen, the ink has ensured he’s spent his early years as a willing sex slave and low-grade empath. Hiding out in a small town and trying to bury the needs running through his body, Fal’s hoping to stay under the radar of MI7 and their specialist killers. But the ink itself has a mind of its own, wanting to ignite the natural dynamics driving a Dom and sub, so when Kiyen is forced into Fal’s small world, prejudice battles a pure need to touch. Only problem is: Kiyen’s on the run, and in a world where thought can be the worst crime of all, Fal’s in for a fight for his sanity to find out just what it is that’s making a young killer run for his life. (M/M)
Macky: It's no secret I adore a Jack Pyke tale, so I suppose it was pretty much a foregone conclusion that Broken Ink would be my pick for December. But this made it not just because I love how Ms Pyke writes; it made it because yet again the plot was innovative, intriguing, thought provoking, deliciously twisted and totally spellbinding. COMPLETELY different to anything I've read for a long time, this exceptional story and its enigmatic characters kept me glued to its pages throughout. I was truly blown away and once again left feeling in awe of this authors writing skills and talent to always surprise and take me to new, unexpected, awesome places. If you want to go down a darker road, take a walk in Jacks world but be prepared to have your perceptions messed with and your last nerve played! This was SOOOOO good!
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The Bells of Times Square by Amy Lane
Rating: 5 Stars
Every New Year’s Eve since 1946, Nate Meyer has ventured alone to Times Square to listen for the ghostly church bells he and his long-lost wartime lover vowed to hear together. This year, however, his grandson Blaine is pushing Nate through the Manhattan streets, revealing his secrets to his silent, stroke-stricken grandfather.
When Blaine introduces his boyfriend to his beloved grandfather, he has no idea that Nate holds a similar secret. As they endure the chilly death of the old year, Nate is drawn back in memory to a much earlier time . . . and to Walter.
Long before, in a peace carefully crafted in the heart of wartime tumult, Nate and Walter forged a loving home in the midst of violence and chaos. But nothing in war is permanent, and now all Nate has is memories of a man his family never knew existed. And a hope that he’ll finally hear the church bells that will unite everybody—including the lovers who hid the best and most sacred parts of their hearts.
Mark: I read a lot of great books in December and it was rather difficult to choose, but alas we have to when it comes to our Hot Picks post. So when push came to shove I had to follow my heart and go for Amy Lane’s The Bells of Times Square. Why? Well, this was just so much more than an M/M romance. Pick up a title with Amy Lane written underneath and for me personally I know that at some stage I’m going to be reaching for the tissues, red wine, chocolate, comfort blanket, basically anything that I can cry into. I had only read the first chapter of this book and knew I was going to be in deep trouble sooner or later.
This book takes on a journey, a journey of memories, some beautiful and some not so beautiful, but all the same knowing however extreme the circumstances are, wanting to be loved and being loved by someone is the most basic human need there is. A story that ends on what I can only say is a very bittersweet note. A story that is sad but also gives hope at the same time. A story that made me feel! A story that shows us the rights and freedoms we have today should never be taken for granted or lightly. The rights and freedoms that have been fought for so hard and still need to be fought for every single day. Was I sad at the end of this story? No, not really. It left me reflecting for days though on the things I have mentioned before. Thankful to all those that sacrificed so much during WWII and thankful for what we have today.This truly is a beautiful story, impeccably written, well researched historically and carries a message that is as relevant today as it ever has been.
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Caged Sanctuary by Tempeste O’Riley
Rating: 5 Stars
Kaden Thorn, a dental surgeon who lives a quiet life, has no hope of finding the love he craves. A vicious gay bashing cost him the use of his legs and confined him to a wheelchair. He has given up hope of finding a Dom or even a nonkink partner to love him. When his best friend practically forces him to attend a dinner party, the last thing he expects is a strong Dom who can see beyond his wheels.
Deacon James is an architect and a demanding Dom, but he has spent the past couple of years without a sub or partner. When an employee invites him to a dinner party to meet his girlfriend, Deacon smells a setup but agrees anyway. He prides himself on being an excellent judge of character, and when he meets the younger dentist, he sees past the chair and finds a sweet submissive man who more than piques his interest.
Kade's fears and demons continue to haunt him, challenging Deacon to use everything he's learned as a Dom to earn Kade’s trust and submission. Deacon's determined, though, willing to battle all of it to have Kade by his side and at his feet.
Liza: Take a sweet submissive in a wheel chair, and a devastatingly creative Dom and you have one of the best stories I have read in a long time. Kade hadn't always been in a chair, and after loosing the use of his legs, he built a life for himself again - alone. Being submissive and feeling that he would never be able to be all that a Dom would require, Kade had shut that part of his life away, until he meets Deacon. What follows is sweet, sexy, creative and it had me pulling out my tissues more than once. Even if you're not a typical reader of BDSM I would still urge you to try this book. The love that grows naturally between these two men is handled beautifully by this author, and the secondary characters bring a depth to the book that is not often found in the M/M genre.
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Winter’s Fire by Donya Lynne
Ex-Army sniper Sam Winter is home from the war. But it wasn’t an act of heroism that got him medically discharged. After his team found out he was gay, they beat him so severely he could no longer perform his duties. Now, at his family’s horse farm in Kentucky, Sam faces not only an uncertain future, but his father’s condemnation and prejudice, as well. The one thing he is certain about is his feelings for his best friend, Cooper Brown, who Sam has secretly been attracted to since high school. For years, Cooper has harbored his own secret attraction toward Sam, and now that Sam is home for good, he’s ready to tell him. When they finally reveal their secrets to one another, the bonds of friendship expand in ways neither thought possible, and Sam feels his future is finally falling into place. But an infernal stable fire changes everything, forcing shocking, long-hidden truths to the surface, changing Sam’s life forever.
Author’s Note: This novel is a complete rewrite of a previously published novella titled The Arms of Winter (included in this novel), which was published by Silver Publishing in 2012. Upon the return of my rights, I overhauled the story and added 40,000 words to the manuscript, altering much of the plot, as well as the ending.
Included in this limited-time-only version:
Snowed In, a m/m erotic short story - this story will only be available in the e-book until December 31, 2014. After that date, you'll only be able to get this short story in the print version, to come out summer 2015.
Lisa: Winter’s Fire by Donna Lynne is a previously published novella entitled The Arms of Winter she has reworked and turned into a full length novel. This is a heart-warming story about two men who find the courage to finally open up and admit who they are – to the world and to each other. It is a touching novel about embracing who you are and facing the obstacles that may stand in your way head on. After all, sometimes it is in confronting the scorching fires of life that we can emerge into something so sweet and pure it takes our breath away.
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Arctic Absolution by Lynn Kelling
Rating ~ 4.5 Stars
Dixon Rowe is a good man and a good cop who keeps finding himself in bed with the enemy. After he picks up a young ex-con named Jaye Larson for stealing food, Dixon is seduced by the possibility of helping someone truly in need. He tells himself he’s assisting young Jaye out of the goodness of his heart--not because of how sexy Jaye is under all of the tattoos and defiance. But temptation entangles them as the malicious ghosts of Jaye's past returns to haunt their every step. Jaye’s ghosts are bad enough, but the demon from Dixon's past is real enough to put both of their lives in danger. (M/M)
Monique: There are no unicorns and rainbows, or fluff of any kind in this book, it deals with some very hard hitting and painful subjects, abuse, rape and violence, all of which I felt Lynn Kelling dealt with brilliantly. She brings us characters that are not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, they are real, flawed, and they make mistakes, bad choices and decisions and in Arctic Absolution it definitely had my moral compass conflicted, with my thoughts and emotions shifting all over the place, much like the dynamics of Dixon and Jaye’s relationship. I found myself anxious throughout, wondering if these men would even make it out the other side. But as the layers are peeled away and we see into their psych to how damaged and broken they both are, we have a better understanding of the why’s.
Dixon and Jaye are both troubled, damaged souls that have lived through some extremely traumatic experiences, ordeals you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy. But they survived, because they found strength in each other, a spark that made them want to live again, hope for a future rather than an existence and a cleansing of sorts for all the guilt, shame and fear that had haunted them for so long.
Lynn Kelling is my kind of author and I love her writing, in this book she made me think and analyse my own feelings and emotions. Her characterisation in Dixon and Jaye is excellent and drew me in from the first page, and to be honest… I couldn’t put this book down! She writes raw, gritty kink which very often takes you to the dark side which can be hard to read, and certainly will not be to everyone’s taste, but for me, the depraved soul that I am, a lover of books that make me feel and evoke emotion… this is perfect.
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