As M/M Reviewers, between us we have read thousands of m/m romance novels over the years and we would like to share our favourites with you, those reads that have been 4+ stars for us. So every Monday we bring you our Quick Bites, short reviews of our recommended reads.
Hope you all had a fabulous weekend! We have four great Quick Bites to brighten up the start of your week from Heidi Cullinan, Ross A. McCoubrey, Harper Fox and Charlie Winters. Don’t forget you can can also enter the giveaway below for your chance to win a Kindle eBook of your choice from this weeks Quick Bites.
Carry the Ocean by Heidi Cullinan
Normal is just a setting on the dryer.
The Roosevelt, Book 1
High school graduate Jeremey Samson is looking forward to burying his head under the covers and sleeping until it’s time to leave for college. Then a tornado named Emmet Washington enters his life. The double major in math and computer science is handsome, forward, wicked smart, interested in dating Jeremey—and he’s autistic.
But Jeremey doesn’t judge him for that. He’s too busy judging himself, as are his parents, who don’t believe in things like clinical depression. When his untreated illness reaches a critical breaking point, Emmet is the white knight who rescues him and brings him along as a roommate to The Roosevelt, a quirky new assisted living facility nearby.
As Jeremey finds his feet at The Roosevelt, Emmet slowly begins to believe he can be loved for the man he is behind the autism. But before he can trust enough to fall head over heels, he must trust his own conviction that friendship is a healing force, and love can overcome any obstacle.
Warning: Contains characters obsessed with trains and counting, positive representations of autism and mental illness, a very dark moment, and Elwood Blues.
Debra’s Quick Bite
One of my favorite books of last year, this book touched me beyond words and I don't think I can even explain how much I enjoyed it. I laughed, I cried, my heart broke and was put back together again. Heidi Cullinan has created an amazing hero in Emmet without trivializing or romanticizing his struggles. The writing was superb, the story had a little bit of everything and it all felt very real.
Emmet is autistic, but his wants are the same as anyone else, a friend, a boyfriend, independence and happiness. Jeremey is suffering from untreated depression and anxiety, and it is only getting worse. Emmet becomes a ray of sunshine in his life and it was a joy to watch the two men come together and accept each other for who they are with their conditions, not in spite of them. There are a lot of struggles for them, including Davic, a quadriplegic with a bad attitude and a big mouth who you will love nonetheless.
An unconventional love story, with unforgettable characters, I recommend this book to everyone.
One Boy’s Shadow by Ross A. McCoubrey
Fifteen-year-old Caleb Mackenzie doesn’t put up a fight when his father announces the family is moving to Stapeton, Nova Scotia. In fact, Caleb looks forward to a fresh start in the scenic little area. Their new home, Wakefield House, sports large rooms, a big barn where Caleb can work on cars, and acres of forested land for privacy. But it also has a troubling past. In 1943, a boy who lived in the home vanished.
Caleb hears the stories about what may have occurred so many years ago, but he passes them off as folklore until one day he’s alone in the woods and hears the faintest whisper. Did someone in the distance just call his name? And what about his discovery in the hayloft? Could there be something to those old stories after all?
The initial need to dismiss everything as coincidence becomes a soul-searching journey into the past where Caleb is determined to uncover the truth about what really happened to the missing boy. And in the process, he learns even more about himself and what’s really important.
Sally’s Quick Bite
I’m not sure whether this would be classed as Young Adult or New Adult. But either way this is a terrific, touching, beautifully described, coming out, coming of age, love story with an eerie bittersweet paranormal thread running through it.
Caleb’s family move to Nova Scotia, a bit of an upheaval for any fifteen year old, but he soon begins to make friends, including Shane who becomes mor important to him as the story progresses. He also hears rumours about their new house, a haunting and a tragedy that may have occurred many years before. Fascinated by the mystery and the increasing evidence that the stories of ghosts may be true, Caleb and Shane begin to investigate the story and turn up far more than they could ever have imagined.
Recommended for readers who enjoy a novel that builds slowly and who love experiencing a sense of place described by an author who clearly loves it.
Third Solstice (Tyack and Frayne #6) by Harper Fox
Gideon’s managed to swing a few festive days off, and he and Lee are looking forward to celebrating their little girl’s first birthday. But duty calls, and Gideon is too good an officer to ignore the summons. He finds himself on the streets of Penzance, helping police the midwinter Montol celebrations.
It’s his third winter solstice with Lee, and disturbance, danger and magic are in the air. His daughter is beginning to show some remarkable gifts, and not all the family can cope with them. As the Montol festivities reach their fiery heights, will Lee and Gideon find a way to keep those they love best on the right side of the solstice gate?
Mark’s Quick Bite
I just love this series and my QB this week is currently the final book in the series. If you haven’t started this series yet then I’m hoping I can entice you do it as I promise you won’t be disappointed. You couldn’t imagine my glee when I found out that Harper had released another Tyack and Frayne mystery just when you thought that their run had come to an end. If I have got you interested then go > HERE < for more details on the full series.
I just loved this whole story, intricate plot, full of mystery and atmosphere and beautifully written Harper Fox style. This story seems to bring everything in Tyack’s and Frayne’s lives full circle just as the Winter Solstice would I guess. I loved how everything plays out in this book. I could feel the love that Lee and Gideon have for each other now, a couple of I have accompanied from their first shaky beginnings to a beautiful mature relationship. All with the air of Cornish mystery and a murder or two to solve along the way. A complete family and not to give anything away even Zeke, Gideon’s older brother, has a surprise up his sleeve for everyone. If this should now really be the last book in the Tyack and Frayne series then I feel it is most definitely a fitting and wonderful end to what has been a fantastic and endearing time with these characters. They are among my all time favourites and will remain with me for a long time. If it’s not the last book then I’ll be waiting around the corner to snatch up the next one for sure.
Fin and Matt by Charlie Winters
Fin MacAuliffe had always been less than masculine; never truly confident enough to be himself. He’d long known he was gay – he’d just never shared it with anyone, not even his own free-thinking, liberal parents. Sure, they knew. Yet, they never quite gave up on linking him to some respectable girl with good genes and a generous bank account. Fin’s own account was nothing to be ashamed of, but even with all of the advantages, the only true thing he longed for was companionship.
After dragging himself back home to Missouri after graduation, Fin prepared to start his adult life – beginning with taking a new job as a music teacher at a private school. He was set, at least by the traditional standards. On his very first day, he saw him...
If there was a God, he made Matt DiFiore personally. Disheveled, straight black hair which appeared to be self-cut. Chiseled cheekbones. Tanned smooth skin.
Fin knew he was staring. Matt’s lower half was covered by track pants with side snaps, but Fin knew that beneath those snaps housed the most glorious legs in existence. Those full lips wrapped around an apple, biting down as a small smile formed and he turned to walk… Fin’s… way.
Macky’s Quick Bite
If I had to pick one word to describe this story, it would be... 'lovely'...because that's exactly what this story was; a lovely reading experience about two men in love in the true sense of the word. A gentle, touching exploration of a relationship between two soul mates who, quite simply, were obviously fated to be together.
Two halves destined to meet to form a (near) perfect whole! I think this might actually be one of the most sexy, sensual, romantic books I've ever read, because it had me believing that a love like that could truly exist, and honestly, despite the odd blip, there was NEVER a time when I didn't think that these two beautiful men wouldn't make their life together work. The love scenes are hot but again they're beautifully portrayed because of the soul connection between its two MC's. Just gorgeous!