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 Cardeno C, Sam Starbuck, Rodd Clark and John Inman. 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.
Wake Me Up Inside (Mates #1) by Cardeno C
A powerful Alpha wolf shifter and a strong-willed human overcome traditions ingrained over generations and uncover long-buried secrets to fulfill their destiny as true mates.
Regarded as the strongest wolf shifter in generations, Alpha Zev Hassick is surprised and confused by his attraction to his best friend. His very human, very male best friend. A male shifter has to mate with a female shifter to keep his humanity, so shifters can’t be gay. Yet, everything inside Zev tells him Jonah is his true mate.
Maintaining a relationship with the man he has loved since childhood isn’t easy for Jonah Marvel, but he won’t let distance or Zev’s odd family get in their way. When unexplained ailments begin to plague Jonah, he needs to save his own life and sanity in order to have a future with Zev.
Zev and Jonah know they’re destined for each other, but they must overcome traditions ingrained over generations and long-buried secrets to fulfill their destiny.
Debra’s Quick Bite
I really loved this book and didn’t want it to end. There is no doubt that Zev and Jonah are meant to be together. They have known and been drawn to each other since they were one year old. What Jonah doesn't know is that his best friend and lover is also Pup, the wolf he has known all his life. The relationship between the two men is strong and solid, but 12 years of physical separation, while Jonah attends college and medical school, with only sporadic visits are taking their toll. When Jonah's health begins to decline, his search for answers leads him back to Zev.
I thoroughly enjoyed Cardeno C’s version of shifter lore. The chemistry between Zev and Jonah is off the charts. It took a little bit to get used the narrative as much of the early parts of the book are flashbacks and alternating viewpoints, but it worked well to bridge the long relationship and separation. There is a bit of angst, but since it’s a Cardeno C book you know the sex will be hot, the men sweet and the ending very happy.
The City War by Sam Starbuck
A Warriors of Rome Story.
Senator Marcus Brutus has spent his life serving Rome, but it’s difficult to be a patriot when the Republic, barely recovered from a civil war, is under threat by its own leader. Brutus’s one retreat is his country home, where he steals a few precious days now and then with Cassius, his brother-in-law and fellow soldier — and the one he loves above all others. But the sickness at the heart of Rome is spreading, and even Brutus’s nights with Cassius can’t erase the knowledge that Gaius Julius Caesar is slowly becoming a tyrant.
Cassius fears both Caesar’s intentions and Brutus’s interest in Tiresias, the villa’s newest servant. Tiresias claims to be the orphaned son of a minor noble, but his secrets run deeper, and only Brutus knows them all. Cassius, intent on protecting the Republic and his claim to Brutus, proposes a dangerous conspiracy to assassinate Caesar. After all, if Brutus — loved and respected by all — supports it, it’s not murder, just politics.
Now Brutus must return to Rome and choose: not only between Cassius and Tiresias, but between preserving the fragile status quo of Rome and killing a man who would be emperor.
Sally’s Quick Bite
We all know the story of how Julius Caesar grabbed power in Rome until men who had previously been close friends and supporters took against him and struck him down. Well this is a retelling of the tale from the point of view of Caesar’s friend Marcus Brutus, commonly held to be the best and most honourable of Romans. Despite having quite literally stabbed Caesar in the back.
Marcus is a superb character, moral and honourable and politically astute. He can see the dangerous path along which Caesar and his legions are leading them and knows that sometimes desperate measures are called for. Helping him make his decision is Cassius, his lover of many years, who is also taking a dangerous route to power. But Brutus can also take comfort from his new servant Tiresias, who has some startling secrets of his own.
I adore historicals and this is a particularly appealing one from my point of view. Meticulous historical fact merges with an unusual imagined romance to make for a really satisfying read.
Torn and Frayed (A Gabriel Church Tale #2)
by Rodd Clark
“Conscience isn’t something all people are born with . . .”
Gabriel Church is a portrait in contrast. It would be easy to get lost in his pale-blue eyes, ache with the need to feel the strength of his masculine frame. He appears to be nothing but animal and instinct. The only people who know the full depth of that truth are dead, murdered, or two thousand miles away.
Gabe is a serial killer. For the first time in his life, he has more on his mind than his own survival. This time he is running from Seattle to protect the only person he thinks innocent in his laundry list of crime and murder: Christian Maxwell, his biographer and unexpected lover. Drawn to a place he never thought to return, Gabe finds new and different realities. Realities that insist he let go of his tragic past, those incredible perceptions of God, and his own divinity. He must open his eyes to what the love of a good man can do to heal a broken soul.
But when the killer is confronted by his own willingness to love and sacrifice, he is forced to ultimately ask the question: Just how far will he go to save a life . . . when all he’s ever done is take them?
Mark’s Quick Bite
If you love the dark and twisted then you’ll love this series. The second book in the series continues the story of serial killer Gabriel Church and now the chase is on or it was and then it wasn’t! I must admit this second book had me intrigued from the word go. In the first book, Rubble and The Wreckage, Gabriel leaves Christian and hits the road. Once again driven by self-preservation and not wanting to get Christian tangled up in his life.
For me this book is a great psychological thriller with a warped M/M romance thrown in. The writing of Rodd Clark is detailed and empathetic of his characters, letting the reader delve right into the psyche of Gabriel Church. Maybe it’s a place you want or don’t want to go but just the thrill of going somewhere you normally wouldn’t, pushing your boundaries, questioning rights and wrongs, makes for a super book and an exciting read. Can’t wait for the next book and hope it comes soon.
Loving Hector by John Inman
Dillard Brown has a mother who's determined he's straight, a writing career that’s going nowhere, and at thirty, he’s never been in love in his life. But thanks to a ten-pound ball of fluff and energy named Chester, one of Dill's circumstances is about to change. Maybe even all three.
Who would've thought one little stray dog could change Dill's world—and not by accident either. The damn dog has it planned. If not for Chester wandering into Dill's life and into his heart, Dill would never have met Hector Peña—and tumbled headlong into love at last!
But for all Chester's efforts, happiness for Dill and Hector is still not assured. Hector's evil ex, Valdemaro, is dead set on holding on—even if it means kidnapping Hector to keep him from Dill forever! Now Dill has to pull an army together to rescue Hector, and just where the hell is he supposed to find an army? Gads, if only Dill could write books this interesting!
Macky’s Quick Bite
ROFL! This didn't just tickle me pink it tickled me every colour under the sun. It tickled me a rainbow which is kind of appropriate really because this is a gay, madcap romantic comedy, filled to the brim with quirky, characters and laugh out loud antics that showcase just how funny John Inman is, and how great he is at transferring that witty, dry humour of his to paper.. Or electronic page, as it happens to be in my case.
But don't be fooled because amongst all the frivolity and snarky slapstick is a sweet, sometimes poignant and often very loving romance that as well as having me giggling like a kid, also had me sighing like a lovesick fool when Dill and Hector where together on page. Despite the banter, there are moments of real emotion and tenderness between these two loveable guys. Mr Inman does insta love so well that I never question it and as for the love scenes .. Well phewee!! Its a matter of " is it hot in here or am I having a hormonal relapse??"
My type of humour to a tee!