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’re all having a fabulous Christmas! We have six great Boxing Day Quick Bites for you from Kaje Harper, Tara Lain, K.A. Mitchell, Andrew Grey, Alicia Nordwell, Lisa Henry & J. A. Rock, 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.
Rating ~ 4 Stars
Simon Conley was born a werewolf, making him one of a tiny minority in a sea of vanilla humans. The safety of the pack lies in absolute secrecy, sometimes violently enforced. In a species where pack-members are born and not made, being gay is considered a perversion. So when Simon falls in love with a human man, he's twice damned. Even his Alpha's grudging tolerance may not be enough to shield him from the hatred of the other top wolves. Then his lover Paul stumbles across pack secrets Simon was sworn to keep, and if the pack finds out, they may both end up dead.
Debra’s Quick Bite
This is a great start to the series about a pack of Minnesota werewolves living and hiding amongst the human population. Paul, a veterinarian and human, finds a huge dog hanging onto life on the side of the road, saves him, bonds with him, names him Wolf and plans to keep him until he disappears. When his owner, Simon appears, Paul is less than impressed with the tale he tells. As the two form a friendship that soon becomes more, Simon, who is an outcast amongst most of the pack for the mere fact he is gay, begins for fear for Paul’s life, with good cause. When Paul discovers his secret, all bets are off when it comes to his safety.
I enjoyed the world-building and the tension in the pack made for some really exciting moments. The love story was sweet and sexy with a nice slow build. Paul and Simon struggled to make things work with several big obstacles before them. Kaje Harper’s writing is fantastic as always and I recommend it to anyone who enjoys shifter stories.
The Christmas Proposition by K.A.Mitchell
It's Christmas in Epiphany, Pennsylvania—the busiest time of year for Mel Halner. But running the family Christmas tree farm has worn down his love for the happiest season of all, and lately Mel's been wondering what if he'd said yes to a ticket out of town with millionaire Bryce Campion three years ago.
Bryce isn't used to people saying no to him, and he can't forget Mel or their brief but sizzling affair. He might not have been offering forever, but Bryce can't understand a guy as sexy and smart as Mel choosing to stay rooted on the family farm over enjoying the high life with him. He's determined to make Mel see what he's missed out on the first chance he gets.
Jane’s Quick Bite
This is a festive oldie but goodie. I first read it back in 2012 but it's one I always return to every Christmas. It is a short novella which can be devoured in an hour or two and will leave you full of the festive spirit.
Set on a Christmas tree farm it tells the story of Mel Hallner and the rekindling of an old romance with former flame, millionaire oil tycoon Bryce Campion. we also have a best friend’s wedding and some family history to delve through, so quite a lot going on in such a short story. This will keep you engrossed as will the sex scenes as they're hot, especially the one set in front of the Christmas tree. Definitely worth a read, especially at this time of year.
The Merchant of Death (Playing The Fool #2)
by Lisa Henry and J.A. Rock
All’s fair in love and war.
There’s something rotten in the state of Indiana. When con man Henry Page takes it upon himself to investigate the death of an elderly patient at a care facility, he does so in true Shakespearean tradition: dressed as a girl.
FBI Agent Ryan “Mac” McGuinness has more to worry about than Henry’s latest crazy idea. Someone is trying to send him a message—via a corpse with a couple of bullets in it. He needs to figure out who’s trying to set him up before he gets arrested, and he really doesn’t have time for Henry’s shenanigans. Then again, he’d probably be able to focus better if Henry didn’t look so damn distracting in a babydoll dress and a wig.
But when Mac discovers that Henry has been keeping a secret that connects the cases, he has to find a way to live on the right side of the law when he just might be in love with the wrong sort of man.
Mark’s Quick Bite
I just loved this series. I listened to it on audiobook but I think it doesn’t matter which medium you use or prefer this series is just brilliant. As with any good crime story it’s always a cat and mouse situation and this for me also reflects the MCs relationship too. Henry remains at least for Mac ever elusive and although Henry would so want more for Mac keeps his distance even though he feels this is not going to make him happy. This is what I’M loving so much about this story are the layers and intricacies of the characters that both authors have created. They are not easy people so would a relationship even have a chance? I can’t recommend this series highly enough so if you haven’t started on it yet, then make sure you do!
Snowbound in Nowhere by Andrew Grey
When a funeral calls his friend Martin away, sunbelt resident Chris is left alone in Martin’s cabin in the dead of winter—and in a blizzard to boot. When the power goes out, Chris thinks he’s going to freeze to death. Luckily, Horace drops in to check on him—and then runs out after a few kisses, leaving Chris upset and feeling used. Horace does come back with explanations, but is their time together keeping each other warm enough for them see they belong together? Or are these sudden emotions the product of being snowbound?
A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2012 Advent Calendar package "Evergreen"
Sue’s Quick Bite
Lonely city boy, Chris, is stranded for Christmas in his best friend’s cabin during a blizzard. Luckily for him, a quiet and rather inexperienced neighbour stops by to check he is okay. But when Horace’s snowmobile won’t start he stays the night and the two guys keep each other warm in the best possible way. They gradually get to know each other and start to fall in love over the holiday. Chris knows he has to go back home soon and that holds him back for a time. After a little uncertainty for their future, the ending is sweet and romantic.
This a wonderful Christmas novella featuring two very opposite types who quickly fall in love. The audio version is superbly narrated by KC Kelly. His voice and tone perfectly suit the pace of the story and its characters, especially Horace.
Driven Snow by Tara Lain
A Pennymaker Tale
Young Snowden “Snow” Reynaldi is brilliant, beautiful, and alone. Though he’s shy, weird, and tolerated by the NorCal University students because he’s a renowned whiz at chess and helps put the school on the map, that doesn’t keep him from dreaming of the object of his desires: Riley Prince, championship quarterback.
When Riley needs a physics tutor, Snow jumps at the chance, and their relationship heats up—but Riley has to come out of the jock closet to get anywhere. Meanwhile, Snow’s one true friend and mentor, Professor Kingsley, marries a woman who secretly wants the chess tournament glory and money for herself. Soon after, the professor collapses and Snow finds himself underwater—literally. In a car!
Seven frat brothers from Grimm College rescue Snow just in time for his life to get even worse, and Snow discovers the one relationship he always wanted slipping away. With evil looming at every turn, Snow must survive if only to prove he’s the fairest of them all and regain the trust of his handsome prince.
Freya’s Quick Bite
Driven Snow is a delightful story that will warm the cockles of your heart.
The young chess master and the jock. When I first started reading this, I thought it would be a typical Nerd/Jock story. There are aspects true to that cliché, but, they fit right in with this style of story which gave me a nice comfort zone. Then, there was a twist in the plot that ripped my comfort to pieces and made it different to others that I’ve read. Who knew chess could be so intense, dramatic and colourful. I certainly didn’t. And as the tournament organisers say in the story – it’s all helps up the viewing figures.
Snow is adorably shy. Riley is the quarterback with a personality to match. The events in this story made go aww, what the hell, you bitch, oh my god, niiiccee and woohoo. The characters undergo life changing experiences, brought on by not wanting to die, realising what is important in life, and making sure good triumphs over evil. There is an excellent mixture of the good, the bad, the ugly and the downright outrageous.
Driven Snow, is a novel that you’ll put a marker in and pick it up the next morning to continue. Beware, though - once you pass a certain point, you will keep reading until the wee early hours.
Disasterastic by Alicia Nordwell
Sawyer is too busy to worry about something as frivolous as Christmas. College is hard, but he’s focused on getting into law school. Kable is studying to make the family business, Del Buon Gusto, into a successful chain restaurant. When a party debacle at the restaurant gives Kable a chance to get close to Sawyer, he’s shocked to learn Sawyer’s a Christmas Grinch. He's determined to change Sawyer’s mind, but their dates are one debacle after another. It might not be possible to make this into Sawyer's first Merry Christmas after all.
Cheryl’s Quick Bite
There is only one word to use to describe this book – adorable. The characters are adorable, the situations they get into are adorable and oh the lengths Kable goes to give Sawyer a good Christmas are utterly adorable. I absolutely adored the book.
Sawyer has grown up with parents who do not celebrate Christmas, which they consider to be nothing more than crass commercialism. Neither do they – and therefore Sawyer – eat food that is not healthy and nutritional. Therefore *gasp* Sawyer has never tasted nougat or cracked caramel toffee, or cocoa. He doesn’t even drink coffee.
Through a series of surprise dates, all of which have at least one disaster involved – from baby spiders hatching in a Christmas tree to almost breaking an ankle on skates – Kable introduces Sawyer to the spirit of Christmas, one sweet thing at a time, although the toffee eating came at a price.
With every experience, Kable and Sawyer grew closer, their love growing gently and blossoming one petal at a time. The epilogue almost had me in tears. This is a must-read for Christmas. If this doesn’t get you in the Christmas spirit then you need more help than Sawyer.