Review: “Bubbly” by Shea Balik

TITLE: Bubbly
AUTHOR: Shea Balik
SERIES: Uncorked
COVER ARTIST: Harris Channing
GENRE: Contemporary Romance
LENGTH: 145 pages
RELEASE DATE: October 19, 2017
PRICE: $4.99 ebook


Raise your wine glasses high to toast the men of Dahlonia while they discover the secret to happiness – LOVE.
There was no doubt about it, Macalister Whitmore was as straight-laced as they came. He worked all the time, never did anything that would be considered fun, and almost always wore a suit and tie, even in the laid back southern town of Dahlonia, where the dress code tended to be jeans and t-shirts. It was how his parents raised him and Macalister was sure even a tanning salon couldn’t change that.
David Wilson wanted to throttle his best friend for sending Mac to his tanning salon to try and loosen up the uptight lawyer. He had never met anyone that had actually worn a suit to a tanning salon before. What Mac needed was a doctor to remove that stick from his ass. Then again, if Mac continued to look down his nose at David, he would remove it himself.
Still, it seemed that opposites do attract, so they decide to give each other a chance.
Happily ever after may sound like a dream come true, but no one ever said it didn’t come with pain and heartache. Will they walk away from each other, or walk through hell for the chance to pop some Bubbly and celebrate finding their happy ending?
Male/Male romance and sexual situations.

I really enjoyed this story from this author, and I wish I could give a higher rating. If I could review it just by the story, I would have rated it a 4 star. The problem I had was with the editing. There were several times I would be reading and would turn the page in the middle of a sentence, and the next page would start a new sentence. It would not complete the sentence I was in, and it would confuse me. This got better by the end of the book which I was happy for because it is a good story and I can’t wait to see the next book.

Mac is a lawyer that appears to not enjoy life at all. He’s always in a suit and tie, even on his days off. His bosses want him to loosen up and send him to a tanning salon. His attitude towards this is not a happy one. He doesn’t understand why this would help him to learn how to have fun but who is he to question the bosses.

David wants to strangle Andy for even sending this uptight man to his business. There’s not enough wine in the world for him to put up with such a person that looks down on him. What David didn’t expect was a knight and shining armor. When David is in a precarious situation, Mac is there to the rescue.

Opposites attract they say and so is true with these two. A wonderful love story is uncovered, and I was rooting for these two. Then life and reality happens and Mac reverts back to his old ways. Will these two see their happily ever after or will the family win? Will David be able to hang on to the Mac he’s grown to love? Will Mac be able to let go of his tightwad self and learn to be happy? I’m not sure how to answer these for you. I guess you will need to get them yourself.

***I would like to thank the author for the privilege and opportunity of reading this ARC. My review is an honest opinion of the book ***


Review: “Dragon’s Heat” by Lisa Oliver

TITLE: Dragon’s Heat
AUTHOR: Lisa Oliver
SERIES: City Dragon
COVER ARTIST: Lisa Oliver/Model from Paul Henry Serres
GENRE: Paranormal; Shapeshifter
LENGTH: 158 pages
RELEASE DATE: September 17, 2017
PRICE: $3.99 – e-book / $13.50 -paperback


Dragon’s Heat – City Dragon’s Book 1
Jon Erskine had made a good life for himself as one of the top Forensic Accounts and Systems Analysts in the country. He doesn’t mind working with paranormal clients – after all, he’s a shifter himself. However, he could do without all the slurs and derogatory comments. Not all shifters are wolves, bears and other predators. Still, his expertise and reputation is solid and Jon is more than capable of holding his own. That is until Dirk Hollingsworth runs from his office.
Dirk is running out of time. He has to find out who’s been stealing from his company before his father turns up for his wedding in three weeks’ time. Acting on the recommendation of a friend, Dirk turns to Jon, or at least thinks about it. That is, until he catches the man’s scent in the doorway of his office and does a runner. Not the proudest moment for one of the proudest of all shifters, but Dirk has a responsibility to his clan and catching the tantalizing scent of a dog isn’t going to change anything. Or so he thinks.
Family betrayals, a strong-willed dragon spirit; all things collide as Jon and Dirk struggle to find common ground. Calling off the wedding is easy; staying alive might be that much harder. M/M, graphic content. Suitable ages 18+

Jon Erskine is a forensic accountant, the best in the country. Shifter dog himself, he works with other shifters and species, even if some have a prejudice against his kind, Jon doesn’t care.

Dirk Hollingsworth is a multi-billionaire dragon shifter. He runs a multi-national, and he’s the chief of his clan here in the USA. When he realizes someone is stealing his company, he hires the best accountant to track the money. But When Dirk catches Jon’s scent he refuses to meet the man and runs away.
What’s supposed to be simple and natural when 2 fated mate meet, becomes a life-threatening menace.

It was a sweet pleasurable book.

Dirk is, at first, a real asshole with Jon. First, he refuses to mate with a dog. Second, he refuses to be with a man since he considers himself straight. And third, he insults his dragon. Yep, a real asshole, but he can’t fight against fate, and when he admits that he needs Jon more than anything, he’s ready to move a mountain and fight anyone for his mate. I love it.
Jon is smart, calm and funny. He is confident in his capacity even if he doubts of Dirk intentions at first. After being rejected, he can’t easily believe that Dirk has changed his mind.
The story and the plot are good and simple. Not really original but well written, so it works for me.

What I really love about this book, is the dragons. As Dragon Shifters, they have the ability to walk dream with their other half, and talk with them.

Their dragon part isn’t silenced, but really present, and he’s a character by itself, and it’s the thing that pleases me the most and makes this book different from another shifter books.
3.5 OptimuMM’s for the dragon and his most precious jewel.

***I would like to thank the author for the privilege and opportunity of reading this ARC. My review is an honest opinion of the book ***


Review: “Swimming to Freedom” by Robbie Michaels

TITLE: Swimming to Freedom
AUTHOR: Robbie Michaels
PUBLISHER: Harmony Ink
COVER ARTIST: Alexandria Corza
GENRE: Contemporary Romance
LENGTH: 186 pages
RELEASE DATE: November 28, 2017
PRICE: $6.99 – e-book/ $14.99 – paperback


Once, swimming was a labor of love for Brandon. Now it’s just a labor.
When Brandon’s competitive, domineering father decided to cash in on his son’s hobby, he sucked all the joy out of the sport for his son. Now Brandon’s father spends every ounce of his energy training Brandon for one purpose: Olympic gold and with it the chance to experience success vicariously through Brandon.
Brandon falling in love with Tyler, another swimmer, was not part of his father’s plan. Luckily the two young men have Joel in their corner, a straight ally who helps them find time alone. When Brandon’s father finds out about the relationship, his reaction is sadly predictable, and soon, Brandon’s new home is beneath a bridge. He finds peace swimming in the river, but feels fear as wild animals pass by his shelter during the night.
But once again, his happiness cannot last. Torrential storms are threatening to wash away his future—maybe for good this time.

Swimming to Freedom was not the book I expected from reading the blurb. I thought it would be an intense and emotional read, but I didn’t get that reaction at all. There were characters and things that I did like, but this book I just found really hard to connect with.

Brandon is seventeen years old and lives with his father who’s extremely controlling and overbearing. He has no life of his own as his father dictates his every movement, and needs to know what Brandon is doing and where he is at any given moment in time. Brandon’s life is the pool for training, school and home. Even the pool which used to be his sanctuary and escape has been taken over by his father, who goes to every training session and stands on the edge of the pool and shouts commands and instructions. The only friends he has are through the swimming team, but his father doesn’t allow him to spend time with them outside of training. Joel is the person Brandon is closest to on the team, and they only see each other more often because they live close to each other and Joel sometimes gives Brandon a ride to training because his father won’t let him get his driver’s permit to learn to drive. When Joel and Brandon are chatting as they’re driving home one day, Joel guesses that Brandon is gay, and he decides he wants to help Brandon accept his sexuality and find a boyfriend. Joel knows that it needs to be kept secret from everyone else on the team just in case Brandon’s dad hears about it.

At one of the swimming competitions the team are involved in, Brandon meets Tyler who’s on a rival team. The two boys hit it off straight away, and Tyler flirts with Brandon and asks him to go out for something to eat afterwards. With a little white lie to his father about the reason for going, Brandon finally gets a chance to do something for himself. With the help of Joel, Brandon and Tyler then begin to spend more time together, where their relationship develops. But of course, Brandon’s dad notices that things are different and doesn’t like that he’s spending so much time hanging around with Tyler. So when Brandon comes out and tells him he’s gay, his father is completely against it and isn’t willing to try and listen to what Brandon is saying or how he’s feeling, which leads to Brandon leaving home and his father telling him he’ll never be welcome back.

Brandon stays with Tyler for a while, but a morning rush when Tyler’s family are going out of town causes a mix up with some keys, and Brandon is left with nowhere to stay and no one to turn to. Brandon is left completely homeless and penniless with only the clothes he’s wearing.

I can honestly say that Joel was my favourite character and the saviour of this story and book. If it wasn’t for him, I would have probably stopped reading before the end. He’s the most amazing person and friend that anyone could want around them. He was kind, supportive and willing to do whatever it took to make sure Brandon was happy and didn’t feel like he was alone. Brandon’s father, however, had my blood pressure going off the charts. I don’t think there’s ever been a character I’ve hated so much in any book I’ve read. The man was absolutely horrid.

There was one thing that annoyed me more than anything about the story, and that was the amount of apologising. It was just too much. The word sorry was used so often that it was bordering on ridiculous, and it did have an impact on my overall enjoyment and impression of the book. The ending was right for the story, and also quite cute. I’m glad Brandon and Tyler got their happily ever after. But it just wasn’t the powerful and profound, coming-out, first-love story it had the potential to be.

***The ARC was provided by Harmony Ink . My review is an honest opinion of the book ***


Review: ” Drama Queens with Love Scenes” By Kevin Klehr

TITLE: Drama Queens with Love Scenes
AUTHOR: Kevin Klehr
SERIES: Actors and Angels
PUBLISHER: NineStar Press
COVER ARTIST: Natasha Snow
GENRE: Fantasy; Paranormal
LENGTH: 302 pages
RELEASE DATE: April 17, 2017
PRICE: $5.49 –e-book


Close friends Allan and Warwick are dead. They’re not crazy about the idea, so to help them deal with this dilemma are Samantha, a blond bombshell from the 1950s, and Guy, an insecure angel.

Allan also has a secret. He has a romantic crush on his friend, Warwick, but shortly after confiding in his new angel pal, his love interest falls for the cock-sure playwright, Pedro.

Not only does Allan have to win the heart of his companion, he also has to grapple with the faded memory of how he actually died.

This title definitely fits this book as there are a few drama queens and some love scenes. I wouldn’t consider this your typical MM read. I have mixed feelings—I think this is well written and will be loved by some. I was lost for a while from the get-go.

I mean, I understood Allan and Warwick were dead, but I felt it took forever to understand why they went through so much. I understood by the end, but it just took a long time to get there. There were times I wanted to punch them both. Allen for not letting him go and Warwick for not giving in to him.

Samantha and Guy were wonderful characters that helped them in their afterlife and unfinished business. Samantha is a 1950’s exuberant angel, and Guy is just an adorable angel that needs to work on his self-esteem. They help Allan get into the theater and direct which really fits into this whole concept. It’s a play, and it reads as one.

My major problem is all the judgment. I mean, this is the afterlife and I would like to think that I will leave all judgment behind when I go. The biggest offense was against bisexuality. I mean, common on, we can’t make our minds and are selfish. This was a big turn off of the book for me. When I get to hang out with angels, they need to be that, angels. Maybe I’m just over sensitive about this subject, but it is how I feel.

Like I said earlier, this is well written and there are lots of laughs and love. If you like the theater and drama queens, this is the book for you.

***I would like to thank the author for the privilege and opportunity of reading this ARC. My review is an honest opinion of the book***


Review: “Wheat Kings and Pretty Thing” by G.S. Wiley

TITLE: Wheat Kings and Pretty Thing
AUTHOR: G.S. Wiley
SERIES: World of Love
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
COVER ARTIST: Brooke Albrecht
GENRE: Contemporary Romance
LENGTH: 45 pages
RELEASE DATE: August 9, 2017
PRICE: $3.99 –e-book


As soon as he graduated high school, Paul Thompson fled the tiny, heavily Ukrainian town of Liddon, Saskatchewan, for bigger and better things. Now in his late thirties, Paul owns a struggling art gallery in Toronto. His grandmother’s one-hundredth birthday is approaching, and Paul will return to place where he grew up for the first time since he left.
The town—and the province—don’t match Paul’s memories. Have they changed? Or has he? He reconnects with Dylan Shevchenko, an old friend who now teaches phys. ed. in Regina. When Paul learns his grandmother had an Aboriginal son he never knew about, he wonders what else he missed while he was away. Did he make the right choice all those years ago? He receives the rare opportunity to start over when he discovers a gallery for sale in Regina. He’s faced with a choice between his youthful dreams in the big city and making a life with Dylan in a place that somehow finally feels like home.
World of Love:Stories of romance that span every corner of the globe. (less).

This was an adorable and quick read and is part of the World of Love series. This was the first I have read of the series, and I followed just fine. So it can be read as a standalone.

I found this author easy to read and the editing was good. The author did capture my heart with the two MC’s and their love affair that started over twenty years ago. The supporting characters were good, but Paul’s grandma was my favorite. She made me laugh quite often.

Paul left his hometown twenty years ago after graduating night and the kiss that shocked him. He built a life in the big city and opened a gallery with Cleo. He must return to his small hometown for his grandmother’s 100th birthday. Paul really has lost touch with anything going on in his family and home from his youth.

Dylan has never left and has built his life in his small town. He hasn’t seen Paul since he kissed him on graduating night and ran off. Dylan was not the nicest of people in his youth but has come to terms that he’s gay.

Paul and Dylan spend time together and have passion between them all while attending the celebration. They, of course, have situations come up, in which separates them again.

You ask what situations? You ask why they go separate ways if there was a strong g passion there? Can they come together again? Well, I have one response to those questions. Read the book. You will enjoy it. Happy reading.

***The ARC was provided by Dreamspinner Press. My review is an honest opinion of the book ***