Review: “Hiding in Plain Sight” by Bru Baker

TITLE: Hiding in Plain Sight
AUTHOR: Bru Baker
SERIES: Camp H.O.W.L
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
COVER ARTIST: Aaron Anderson
GENRE: Paranormal
E-BOOK: Yes
PAPERBACK: Yes
LENGTH: 256 pages
RELEASE DATE: September 18, 2018
PRICE: $4.99 – e-book/ $9.99 – paperback

BLURB:

Happily ever after is right under their noses.
Harris has been keeping a big secret for years—his unrequited mate bond with his best friend, Jackson. He’s convinced himself that having Jackson in his life is enough. That, and his work at Camp H.O.W.L., keeps him going.
Things get complicated when Jackson applies for a high-ranking Tribunal job in New York City—far from Camp H.O.W.L. The position requires he relinquish all Pack bonds… and that’s when his wolf decides to choose a mate. Suddenly Jackson sees his best friend in a sizzling new light.
Their chemistry is through the roof, but they’re setting themselves up for broken hearts—and broken bonds—if Jackson can’t figure out a way to balance his career and the love that’s just been waiting for him to take notice.


I loved Hiding in Plain Sight by Bru Baker. It’s the third book in the Camp H.O.W.L. series and the twenty-eighth book in the Dreamspun Beyond series. The book is a standalone, so you don’t have to read the other two books in the series to know what’s going on with the couple in this book but reading the other two books will only enhance your reading experience since there are cameos from the other couples in this book. And the returning characters from Camp H.O.W.L. like the camp director Anne Marie and the camp counselors, doctors, and therapists. The story was well written with a great storyline and well-developed complex characters.

I liked that in this book we get to see more of how the campers get to spend their days while also getting to watch Harris while he works through his unrequited mate bond with his best friend, Jackson.

I loved Harris. I loved his dedication to the camp as a therapist and to keeping in touch with his friends. He’s known that he and Jackson were mates for a while, but he also knows that Jackson isn’t looking for a mate and so he decides he would rather keep Jackson as a friend than to try and mess that friendship up by pushing for more and potentially being rejected. Harris knows that an unrequited bond is easier to live with then a rejected mate bond. But that can’t help him from pining for his mate. When the camp gets a new celebrity camper, Harris is assigned as her therapist and the person in charge of her. Having such a big celebrity in the camp will mean upping their security system and border patrols while she’s there and guess who put in their security system? That’s right…Jackson, who works for Jordan at Fangs and Fury in between working as a police officer. For Harris having Jackson at the camp for the length of the celebrity’s stay will be both heaven and hell. Heaven because he’ll get to be around his mate every day and hell while he waits to find out if Jackson has gotten the Tribunal Enforcer job and will be moving to New York City and will have to break all of his bonds, both pack and personal.

I loved Jackson. He’s a little oblivious to the attraction between him and Harris until his wolf decides that Harris is his potential mate. He’s completely focused on his career and doesn’t have any plans for a mate. And actually to get the career that he wants as a Tribunal Enforcer he’ll have to break his bonds with both his pack and any personal bonds that he also has. His ultimate job is to be a pack second like his dad, and he knows that if he gets the Tribunal job that he won’t have any problem getting a job as a pack second. After getting back from his interview for the Tribunal job he learns that Jordan has taken a job for camp H.O.W.L. to overhaul their security for a high profile celebrity camper. Which would normally be no problem but for some reason, Jackson’s wolf has been pushing him to bond with his best friend Harris, which with the potential job requirements is inconvenient and is making him second guess if he really wants to continue with his plans for his career or give it up and keep his mate. Poor Jackson feels like a yo-yo.

I loved this addition to the series, and I think that you will too. If you have enjoyed the other books in the Camp H.O.W.L. series, then I recommend giving this book a try.

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

Review edited by : Laura McNellis

Review: “Black Leather & Knuckle Tattoos” by JM Dabney

TITLE: Black Leather & Knuckle Tattoos
AUTHOR: JM Dabney
SERIES: The Men of Canter’s Handyman
PUBLISHER: Hostile Whispers Press, LLC
COVER ARTIST: JM Dabney
GENRE: Contemporary Romance
E-BOOK: Yes
PAPERBACK: No
LENGTH: 117 pages
RELEASE DATE: September 4, 2018
PRICE: $2.99 – e-book

BLURB:

Kindergarten teacher, Troy Canter, fell hopelessly in love with leather and tattoos at the impressionable age of sixteen when cuddly, bad-boy Win interviewed for a job with the family business, Canter Handymen of all Trades. No one compared to the large man and never would. A decade later, Brent, Troy’s father, falls ill and he needs to take over the business for a while. Interacting Day in and day out with sexy Win is a cruel punishment.
Winston Sanchez hadn’t done a thing right in his life, except interviewing for a handyman job for Brent Canter. He loved his job, but an attraction to Troy Canter complicates things. As Troy ran the business while Brent fights cancer, it has thrown the man right in his lap. When an unexpected development in the package of a four-year-old daughter throws Win into a panic, Troy comes to the rescue.
Can a man who doesn’t think he’s worth much let go enough to open himself to the love of a man who thinks he’s worth everything?


Black Leather & Knuckle Tattoos is the first book in a new series by JM Dabney. In Clifton, North Carolina there’s romance in the air if only the two MC’s would wake up and smell the roses. As a kindergarten teacher, Troy Canter is used to playing by the rules and keeping his lustful thoughts about his dad’s foreman hidden is amongst the top of that list. When his father falls ill, he’s thrust into taking over his father’s construction company. This isn’t a problem except that now he can’t escape his crush, Winston Sanchez. When the shock of Win’s life comes in the form of a miniature version of him, he runs to the only person he knows he can count on. What Win doesn’t realize is that counting on the handsome kindergarten teacher is only the beginning of the emotional roller coaster he finds himself on.

Troy was definitely a fun character to read. Troy is the product of a college relationship ending after his birth. His father, Brent, dropped out of pre-med to raise Troy alone. His father went on to become the owner of his own company while his son became a kindergarten teacher. When Troy came out to his dad, his dad acted like I’m sure most teens would hope their parents acted, like nothing was amiss. Troy found his true love at sixteen, and no other man would ever compare. He wanted the older man, the only thing keeping him from pursuing him was that he worked for his dad. My heart hurt for Troy throughout the book. He’s such an amazingly sweet guy, and when Win kept ignoring the not so subtle hints that Troy wanted the older man, it was so gut-wrenching. Where I wanted to scream and throw a natural fit over Win being so obtuse, Troy handled him with the patience of a saint and unrequited love.

Oh Win, I loved to hate you and then fell in love with you. Winston Sanchez is the sexy older foreman of Troy’s father’s company. Win has a troubled past including incarceration. When he interviewed with his boss, Brent Canter, he had a chip on his shoulder and was sure the man wouldn’t hire an ex-con like him. Ten years later, he’s Brent’s right-hand man. He always knew he was bisexual, but he never acted on it. No man had ever had an effect on him but the one he thought he could never have. When a little girl that had his features showed up out of the blue, and he was thrust into fatherhood, he ran to the only man he could trust to help. Troy fell instantly in love with the little girl and became her self-appointed uncle. And that’s where things between the two frustrating men started to get really interesting and intense.

I absolutely adore JM Dabney’s books. She has a unique style to her writing that has me consuming title after title and instantly one-clicking. Every character and storyline are so thought-out and absolutely incredible. I have such a good time reading her books. This book is no exception. It’s not a long book, and I read it in one go. I get so emotionally invested in the characters that I’m blown away by the end. I can’t wait for book two, and I’m really hoping it includes a sassy young man and a hot older construction company owner. Hint, hint.

***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 edited by : Laura McNellis

Review: “Blood and Ghosts” by Shira Anthony

TITLE: Blood and Ghosts
AUTHOR: Shira Anthony
SERIES: Blood
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
COVER ARTIST: Reese Dante
GENRE: Urban Fantasy; Vampires
E-BOOK: Yes
PAPERBACK: Yes
LENGTH: 230 PAGES
RELEASE DATE: Apr 20, 2015
PRICE: $6.99 – e-book/ $14.99 – paperback

BLURB:

Sequel to Blood and Rain
With vampire Nicolas Lambert’s marriage to a rival clanswoman only weeks away, Adrien Gilbert struggles to come to terms with his defeat at the hands of Verel Pelletier, a vampire hunter and an immortal like himself. Adrien and his former teacher, Roland Günter, begin to explore his newly acquired abilities. But without his soul’s sword, Adrien flounders.
On Nicolas’s wedding day, a two-hundred-year old secret is revealed, sending the wedding party into a blazing battle between hunters and vampires. Once again Adrien finds himself facing Pelletier’s superior strength. Just as Adrien believes all hope of a future with Nicolas is lost, he finally learns his true gift—he can turn back time. But time travel comes with a high cost. To save Nicolas, Adrien must become strong enough to use his power without descending into madness.


Book two in the Blood series and I was on the edge of my seat. This book was incredible. I was so enthralled I dared anyone to interrupt me while reading this. Once I started it, I couldn’t put it down. This installment was much faster-paced than the first, so you really have to pay attention. This book will start tying things together that happened in book one. The time travel can be a little hard to follow at times. There’s just so much happening that a few times I had to go back and reread a page or two so I didn’t get lost. The storyline again in this is fantastic. The world building and the character development is top notch.

Adrien is now an immortal hunter. Secrets about his family history are beginning to be revealed. Adrien is starting to discover truths, and it’s only a matter of time before he breaks from all the changes that are being thrust at him. He has matured a lot in this book. He’s a jealous lover but also becoming his own man. He understands Nicolas’ need to follow the path he set for himself but did it have to come at the price of Adrien’s heart? While Nicolas is spending time with his betrothed before the blood bond that will tie them together for eternity, Adrien is training with his former hunter mentor, Roland. Roland is trying to get Adrien to learn that he has powers beyond his soul sword, but Adrien is struggling. He’s lost faith in his abilities and with the upcoming nuptials, he has no reason to continue as a hunter.

Francois is Adrien’s brother whom we met briefly in book one. He’s traumatized by what happened at the hands of the hunters. The nightmares haunt him, and all he wants is for Charles to let him go. Charles is finally learning that he deserves happiness and Francois is it for him. He knows he’ll seek revenge on those who hurt Francois… he’s just biding his time.

Nicolas, that sweet, sweet vampire. He believes in sacrificing his happiness for the good of the clans and the vampires as a whole. Bringing the two rival clans together for the sake of peace he feels is his duty. Secrets not only unfold for Adrien but for Nicolas as well. Nicolas discovers who he really is and about a past that only his brother Jean and his enemies are privy to. We don’t see a lot of Nicolas in book two. Not the way we know him in book one, and that’s where the time travel comes into play. He’s still formidable as an ancient, but he’s not the same Nicolas we’ve come to love.

This book has a lot of twists and turns. The characters and plot are getting more complex, but the way the author expertly weaves it, you’ll be hooked. Definitely a page-turner and I couldn’t wait to get to book three. Highly recommend. This book is not a stand-alone. You most definitely need to read book one first. Happy reading.

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

Review edited by : Laura McNellis

Review: “All for You” by Andrew Grey

TITLE: All for You
AUTHOR: Andrew Grey
SERIES: –
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
COVER ARTIST: L.C. Chase
GENRE: Contemporary Romance
E-BOOK: Yes
PAPERBACK: Yes
LENGTH: 200 pages
RELEASE DATE: September 11, 2018
PRICE: $6.99 – e-book/ $14.99 – paperback

BLURB:

The only path to happiness is freedom: the freedom to live-and love-as the heart wants. Claiming that freedom will take all the courage one young man has… but he won’t have to face it alone.
In small, conservative Sierra Pines, California, Reverend Gabriel is the law. His son, Willy, follows his dictates… until he meets a man in Sacramento, and then reunites with him in his hometown-right under his father’s nose.
Reggie is Sierra Pines’s newly appointed sheriff. His dedication to the job means not flaunting his sexuality, but when he sees Willy again, he can’t escape the feeling that they’re meant to be together. He’ll keep Willy’s secret until Willy is ready to let the world see who he really is. But if going up against the church and the townspeople isn’t enough, the perils of the work Reggie loves so much might mean the end of their romance before it even gets off the ground….


I loved All for You by Andrew Grey. It reminded me of the Carlisle Cops and Carlisle Deputies series which I love to read. It was well written with a great storyline and wonderful vibrant characters and supporting characters. The pace of the book was steady, but it kept my attention and had me reading well into the night to find out what happened in the end. I couldn’t get enough of it. It had all of the elements to it that I have come to expect from an Andrew Grey book. I laughed, I cried, I screamed at some of the people, and I loved the chemistry between Reggie and Willy.

I loved Reggie. He’s Sierra Pines’ newest appointed sheriff, and his dedication to his job means not flaunting his sexuality, but that doesn’t mean that he will deny his sexuality if questioned. He’s been appointed as sheriff to clean up the corruption in the small town, but first, he has to wrestle control of the town away from Reverend Gabriel, which could lead to a huge power struggle if Reggie doesn’t do it just right. I loved how he was able to use the rules of Reverend Gabriel’s faith to get his way instead of using threats like the Reverend Gabriel does. I also loved that he wasn’t intimidated by the mayor or the board or anybody else in a position of power. And I loved how he cleaned up the corruption in his own department, all while having a closeted relationship with the Reverend’s son, Willy.

I loved Willy. He’s young and a little inexperienced. He got a taste of freedom when he went away to college, but all of that went away when he returned home. He may be over twenty, but he still lives at home under the rule of his father. A father that used to be fun-loving and a joy to be around, but an accident in the family resulting in the death of a sibling changes the Reverend into a cold, unfeeling control freak with a short temper. Somebody that the whole family is afraid of. I loved when Willy and Reggie meet for the first time in Sacramento and Reggie saves Willy from some bullies and doesn’t take advantage of him when Willy offers to hook up with him. I loved that he was a gentleman even if he was kicking himself later. I loved watching Willy gain confidence and become a strong individual from being around Reggie. I also loved the ending of the book and that everybody gets their HEA.

Overall, another great book by Andrew Grey that I would recommend to everybody.

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

Review edited by : Laura McNellis

Review: “Broken Halo” by Michaela Grey

TITLE: Broken Halo
AUTHOR: Michaela Grey
SERIES: Mended Hearts
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
COVER ARTIST: AngstyG
GENRE: BDSM; Contemporary Romance
E-BOOK: Yes
PAPERBACK: Yes
LENGTH: 236 pages
RELEASE DATE: January 30, 2017
PRICE: $6.99 – e-book/ $14.99 – paperback

BLURB:

Micah Ellis is an affluent businessman, comfortable in his life and work, as long as nothing happens to shake up his routine. Which is exactly what one Devon Mallory does, with his bright blue eyes and dirty skin and the forceful personality that’s everything Micah desperately needs but is too afraid to ask for.
Micah and Devon enter into a Dom/sub relationship and navigate the world of BDSM and Micah’s crippling insecurities as they gradually fall in love. But Micah’s past is coming back to haunt him, and they must face it together–and that means learning acceptance and discovering that they both deserve love their way and on their own merits.


Broken Halo is the first book in the Mended Hearts series by Michaela Grey. I read the second book, Broken Rules, first. The books are standalone, so you can read them in any order. I liked Broken Rules enough that I wanted to read the first book in the series and I am so glad that I did. I loved the book. I loved that the Dom isn’t a part of the lifestyle but finds himself dating a submissive that is part of the lifestyle and can’t give it up. Instead of it being a deal breaker, he does his research and talks to the submissive’s ex, who is a Dommie, when he needs things clarified, or he wants to talk through a scene. Devon is a natural Dom, but he tries not to be hesitant during his scenes, and I loved how he took care of Micah, the sub, afterward during sub drop and vice versa when Devon has his first Dom drop. The chemistry between Micah and Devon was hot whether they were doing a scene or not.

Micah Ellis is a businessman, who’s comfortable in his life and work, but only as long as nothing happens to shake up his routine. He definitely has lots of issues. He’s a germaphobe. As a result, he doesn’t like dirt, grime, germs, crowds of people, and especially kids. And this leads to anxiety attacks and a caustic stuck-up attitude. So when his car breaks down outside an unfamiliar mechanic’s shop, he isn’t thrilled especially when he sees how dirty and grimy it is. It doesn’t even matter that the mechanic is a gorgeous hunk of a man since he’s covered in grease. In typical Micah fashion, he manages to offend Devon, the mechanic, enough that he refuses to let him pay for the repairs and tells him to leave. But Fate brings them back together, and Micah gets the chance to apologize. They end up starting a relationship which turns into a Dom/sub relationship after Micah confesses to his desires.

Devon is a mechanic that owns a shop. He doesn’t like Micah at first since Micah puts him down for being a blue-collar worker since he’s a white-collar worker and thinks that he’s better than him and Devon kicks him out of his shop without paying for the work that was done. I liked that they get the chance to apologize to each other and give each other another chance. I also loved that Devon is a sweet guy and works really hard to give Micah what he needs in their relationship even though he doesn’t know a lot about it.

I especially loved that this is a book where both the Dom and the sub end up using their safewords. I read a lot of BDSM books and in most of them during a scene, there’s the reminder to use their safewords, but they rarely use them. So I really enjoyed those parts of the book. Yes at one point there is heartache, but the book does end in a happily ever after and I was so happy that Micah’s abusive ex gets what’s coming to him at the end because he was a douchebag.

I can’t wait to read more books by this author. I might have to give her Coffee Cake series a go. It sounds promising.

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

Review edited by : Laura McNellis