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 John Inman, Hannah Dare, David S. Pederson and Jamie Lynn Miller. 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.
Sunset Lake by John Inman
Reverend Brian Lucas has a secret his congregation in the Nine Mile Methodist Church knows nothing about, and he’d really like to keep it that way. But even his earth-shattering secret takes a backseat to what else is happening in his tiny hometown.
Murders usually do that.
Brian's “close friend,” Sam, is urging a resolution to their little problem, but Brian's brother, Boyd, the County Sheriff, is more caught up in chasing down a homicidal maniac who is slaughtering little old ladies.
When Brian's secret and Boyd's mystery run into each other head on, and Boyd's fifteen-year-old son, Jesse, gets involved, all hell breaks loose. Then a fourth death comes to terrify the town, and it is Brian who begins to see what is taking place in their little corner of the Corn Belt. But even for a Methodist minister, it will take more than prayer to set it right.
Debra’s Quick Bite
This is an amazing mystery/romantic suspense story that had me guessing until the unexpected ending and left me thinking about the story for days after I’d finished. The focus may be on the mysterious and gruesome murders occurring in a small town, but there is also the story of Brian, a closeted Methodist minister (who tends to think snarky thoughts about his parishioners) in a long-term relationship with his best-friend Sam, and their struggle to stay together even though the hiding is tearing them apart.
John Inman’s descriptive writing creates a town full of characters, who are all potential victims or suspects. Family is also a big part of the story. Brian’s brother is the County Sheriff investigating the brutal murders, his teenage son Jesse has a strong bond with Brian and Sam’s aunt is both the bane of Brian’s existence and a staunch ally.
This story has well-crafted characters, a murder mystery that will keep you guessing, strong themes on family and love and even a sense of humor that pops up just when you need it. Give it a chance, I bet it’s one of those stories you’ll have a hard time forgetting.
Life in a Nowhere Town by Hannah Dare
First kiss, first heartbreak, first love, first time... but not necessarily in that order.
The hit reality show, Singing Sensation, promises to make its winners big stars - but all Conor Gillis wants is to get out of his small town. It's not the sort of place where a quiet, eighteen-year-old who loves the Beatles and playing guitar can expect to fit in.
Conor's also pretty sure he's the only gay person in town.
Well, except for one other person...
Derek Folsom is the kind of bad influence parents warn you about. He's tough, rough, and always looking for a fight. He's the last person anyone would suspect of being gay, in fact he's likely to punch anyone who does suspect it. So why is he suddenly so interested in Conor?
Conor's pinning all his hopes on auditioning for a TV show. It's his only chance to realize his dreams, and escape all of these confusing feelings. But will he be able to find his voice... and his true self?
Jane’s Quick Bite
This is book one in the Sing Out trilogy. It sees young Connor Gillis auditioning for the reality show Singing Sensation as music is his escape. He wants to use it as a means to leave his small town and pursue his musical dreams. Life is tough for Connor, he feels like he’s the only gay guy in his town. At school he has few friends and life is made harder when he comes to the attention of the school bully Derek Folsom. I really like Connor, he's a nice, quiet guy who just wants to play his guitar and sing Beatles songs. I disliked how a few people treat him, Derek and his goons were awful at times.
Derek Folsom reminds me a lot of Mickey Milcovich from Shameless. his home life and childhood have been extremely difficult and so he has built this brash, bullying exterior that he shows the world. But we get to see glimpses of the vulnerability and tenderness underneath and that is what really drew me into this story. This is just the start of Connor’s journey and you can follow what happens next in California Schemin’ and finally in The Man who Told the World. A really great trilogy, definitely worth a read.
Death Comes Darkly
(A Detective Heath Barrington Mystery #1)
Can a detective and a policeman find love amidst murder? Heath Barrington is an attractive, clever, big city detective, confident, strong, and crazy about police officer Alan Keyes. Down-to-earth, noble, and naïve, Alan struggles with his desires for Heath versus 1940s America and his guilty conscience.
Heath’s skills of deduction and reasoning are put to the test as he and Alan work together to solve the murder of an eccentric millionaire in his mysterious, isolated estate. They search for clues and uncover long buried secrets of the weekend guests while keeping secrets of their own.
It’s up to Heath to solve the mystery and convince Alan that some secrets aren’t worth keeping, and lust can lead to love.
Mark’s Quick Bite
A new author to me last year but how I enjoyed this murder / mystery story. Agatha Christie meets gay Cluedo - LOL! No seriously, I really enjoyed this book a lot. Why? Well, first of all it was a thoroughly entertaining read from beginning to end. A detective story in the best Agatha Christie tradition with all the trimmings. Detective Heath Barrington is invited to a weekend at a country residence by a billionaire after he saw a report about the successful conclusion of Heath’s last case. Heath needing a break decides to go with his lover who is also a policeman from the same precinct.
This book is first and foremost a gay themed, historical, detective story which is plot driven. The main theme is on the murder mystery and not the erotic. But adding in the gay angle then it introduces a whole new set of dynamics to the traditional detective story. This I LOVED as it makes a refreshing change for me to read something without continuous bedroom scenes. I could throw myself into sleuthing with Heath, trying to work out “who dunnit” as he goes after the clues and the murderer.
Broken Soldier by Jamie Lynn Miller
Sergeant Connor Finley and Sergeant Shawn Weller are dedicated soldiers working covert ops for Shadow Unit -- a joint UK/US anti-terrorism task force.
Partners in the field and out, they had been through hell together for the last four years and made it through standing side by side. But when their latest undercover op to bring down an arms dealer plunges them into a world of drugs, sex and violence, Shawn must literally get in bed with the enemy in order to complete the mission. And Connor is forced to watch, helpless, as his partner is broken into pieces.
Will love be enough to put them both back together or will this be their final mission?
WARNING: Contains scenes of drug use, graphic sex and realistic situations
Freya’s Quick Bite
Soldiers Connor and Shawn are members of an inter-agency group called the Shadow Unit. Its elite members specialise in undercover operations. They’re tasked getting taking down a drugs lord, who dallies in other illegal things too, but also has a penchant for western men. What the bosses of the Shadow Unit don’t know is that Connor and Shawn are lovers.
What follows is an eye-opening story about what members of our government agencies are prepared to go through for the greater good. Shawn is subjected to drugs and rape while Connor has no choice but to watch and attempt to limit the damage. Emotionally and physically their assignment is brutal. The love they share and what they go through together is lump in the throat, reach for the tissues time.
There are a number of ABC’s I could use to describe Broken Soldier. Anguish, action packed, angst, ass kicking, awesome, brutal, bastards, caring, cocky and cruel. Others include loving, duty bound and humbling.