Review of: Modern Gladiator by S.A.Stovall

TITLE: Modern Gladiator
AUTHOR: S.A.Stovall
SERIES: Modern Gladiator
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
GENRE: Contemporary Romance
RELEASE DATE: Mar 26, 2019


Modern Gladiator: Book One
A prim and proper aspiring doctor and a destitute martial artist—both with hurts to comfort. Each with just the cure the other needs.
Corbin Friel hates mindless sports, especially fighting and boxing. As a medical student, he wants to help others, not watch them beat each other senseless. But his sister, Lala, can’t get enough of rough-and-tumble sporting events, and she drags her brother along whenever she can.
Keon Lynch doesn’t have much going for him. He’s broke, he lives alone in a new state, and he’s estranged from his family. But at least he has his dream—becoming a professional UFC fighter. Keon trains every day, and if he can just score a few more wins, he’ll get his ticket into the ranks of professional competitors.
But an unexplained pain jeopardizes Keon’s dream. During a backstage meet-and-greet, Corbin recognizes the telltale signs of a bone infection, which could cost Keon his leg. Unable to ignore Keon’s situation, Corbin begrudgingly decides to help. And while he gets to know Keon, finding him more desirable with each interaction, Corbin’s ex-boyfriend isn’t pleased with the development….
And he’s determined to keep Corbin for himself, no matter what.

Keon Lynch has one goal, being a UFC’s fighter. He’s self-made. He trains alone in a workout gym and has no team, no support, no cornermen. Corbin Friel is a medical student, and he wants to be a doctor like his parents. He wants to save people and has nothing to do with this harsh and rough world of fighters.
Keon and Corbin are drawn to each other even if everything is against them. What are the odds for a broken fighter and a proper student to start a relationship together?

Modern Gladiator is the new book by S.A Stovall, and I loved every word.

Keon is broken in every sense of the term. His leg is hurting him, his soul, and his mind too. He’s a nobody in the fighting word, and people don’t seem to like him. He’s completely alone until he meets Corbin. They start in the wrong way, but soon, when Corbin tries to help him with his leg and starts to take care of his schedule, Keon is like a phoenix flying in the arena and in Corbin’s heart.

Corbin is uptight, a good student, and he has one goal, being a doctor. He doesn’t have a social life. He studies or hangs out with his big sister, Malala, a fan of MMA fighting. When he meets Keon, Corbin is full of judgment about this man until he realizes that Keon isn’t what he thinks he is, and he starts to get involved in his life.
I adored these two characters, really, I adored them. On the paper, they have nothing in common. Absolutely nothing, from their families, to their childhood, their manners and their dreams, but somehow, it does work for them. Corbin fights for Keon, and Keon for Corbin. They are a superb match, and I adored everything about them.
The story is told from both POVs. The plot is good and well developed as we follow Keon and Corbin becoming a couple while working to achieve Keon’s goal and avoiding the problems and threats that are thrown at them. The secondary MCs are good and funny, especially Malala. I loved the rhythm of the story. It was dynamic, funny (Corbin cracked me up a lot), and well written. I wasn’t bored because there wasn’t any useless repetitiveness. I was captivated in the book, biting my nails at each fight that was well described with some technical terms that I learned. The author must have done some search, and I appreciated it.

I recommend this book. It was a fun, fresh and very good read that I enjoyed a lot. I’m excited to know that it’s the start of a new series, so I can’t wait to read the other books. Well done Miss Stovall!

5 Stars for the gladiator and his doctor.

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

Review edited by : Laura McNellis

Review of: Keeping Them Unseen by Michele Notaro

TITLE: Keeping Them Unseen
AUTHOR: Michele Notaro
SERIES: Reclaiming Hope
GENRE: Paranormal
RELEASE DATE: Feb 12, 2019


I used to think vampires were extinct, but it turns out, they’re merely hiding. When my pack stayed with some vamps a while back, I couldn’t believe how prickly and rude they all were… all but one: Dregan. I met him and my wolf went crazy, wanting to be close, wanting to rub up on him, wanting to bite him. It makes no sense. Vampire blood and shifter blood don’t mix. In fact, I’d never survive if I ever get a taste of what I so desperately desire. But I can’t get that vampire out of my head, even weeks and months after we left him.

When a little wolf caught my attention, I was surprised but intrigued. The more time he spent in my den, the more I wanted him to stay close. This little innocent wolf was driving me mad, making me want a little taste. But there’s a reason my den has been hiding for hundreds of years, and no matter how badly I crave that little wolf, I can’t have him. I couldn’t risk him getting hurt just to satisfy my needs, so I let him go. Though, nothing I do will make me forget how good he smelled, how delicious I know his blood would taste.

With something cruel and dark hunting Dregan and with Chris’s pack hiding from an evil force, will they ever be able to come together and help one another? Or will they let the evils of the world overtake them and let fear overshadow their desires?

Dregan is a vampire, an Elder. He’s the oldest vampire in the world and suffered a life of pain and loss because of the Dark Witch until he meets a certain wolf. Christopher is a member of the Airlin pack. He’s quiet and overprotected by his pack mates. Until he meets a certain Vampire. When the Dark Witch tracks Christopher down in order to hurt Dregan, the pack will be separated from them, and Christopher and Dregan will start a journey together to find Chris’pack and maybe themselves in the process.

Keeping them Unseen by Michele Notaro is book 3 of the Reclaiming Hope series. I adored this book, just like I adored the two previous.

Dregan is an Elder vampire, he’s the oldest among his kind. He seems to be cold and standoffish except when he’s with Christopher. The young wolf brings out the best side of Dregan, one that no one knows except maybe his fledgling Jael. I completely melted for Dregan, he lived a life full of pain, suffering and loss. He broke my heart. I loved how, despite all his pain and sorrow, he still has hope for the future. His meeting and relationship with Christopher is what will save him really. I loved him.

Chris is quiet with a big heart. Because of what happens to him at the hands of the SOB of Gregory (“How we Survive”: Reclaiming Hope #1), his pack mates overprotect him. But when Chris meets Dregan, he will have to stand up against his pack and the other vampires. Christopher is one of my favorite members of the Airlin pack with Zeke and Felix (can’t wait to have their stories btw). He’s quiet and sensitive with a big heart. I adored how he is with Dregan. He’s sassy, fights back without hesitation and very protective of him. I was rooting for them since the beginning of their journey.

I really loved this book and this series. Michele Notaro is brilliant and talented. She created a complex world between the humans, vampires, shifters, spellcasters and the worst, the Dark Witch. Each book is about a couple in the main plot, but all the books are connected together with the war in the background and Felix’s quest about his curse. She brilliantly merged all of it together without getting confusing for the readers. The characters are fabulous, well developed and complex. They are humans even if they are supernatural.
This series is, in my opinion, one the best paranormal series in this genre. A series that we should have in our PAL if we’re fan of this genre. I gladly recommend this book and the whole series. You won’t regret it at all.

5 OptimuMM for the Vampire and his little wolf.

***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 of: Fair isn’t Life by Kaje Harper

TITLE: Fair isn’t Life
AUTHOR: Kaje Harper
SERIES: States of Love
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
GENRE: Contemporary Romance
RELEASE DATE: Nov 16, 2018


Luke Lafontaine survived the past year by not thinking about the father he lost, the dairy farm he couldn’t save from bankruptcy, or his way of life that vanished with the rap of an auctioneer’s hammer. Cleaning up city folks’ trash at the Minnesota State Fair is just another dead-end job. But at the Fair, surrounded by a celebration of farm life, ambitions he’d given up on and buried deep start to revive. And seeing Mason Bell in the parade—gorgeous, gay, out-of-his-league Mason—stirs other buried dreams.
Mason left his hometown for college in Minneapolis without looking back. Student life is fun, classes are great, gay guys are easy to find, but it’s all a bit superficial. He’s at the State Fair parade route with his band when he realizes a scruffy maintenance worker is Luke, his secret high school crush. Luke should be safely home working on his dad’s farm, not picking up litter. Mason wishes he hadn’t fallen out of touch. He’s an optimist, though, and it’s never too late for second chances. Now he just has to convince Luke.

Luke Lafontaine has lost everything, his father who’s died from cancer, his dairy farm that had been taken by the creditors, so basically everything in his life. He barely survives, can barely eat and he finds himself near homeless if he doesn’t find a new job soon.
Mason is a student in psychology, he lives in a house near the campus with his roommates and plays clarinet in the university’s band. Mason was also Luke’s tutor when they were in high school.
When Mason meets Luke again a couple of years after high school, he wants to reconnect with him and more, but Luke’s past, fears, and broken life aren’t simple to deal with.
Mason will have to help Luke to find his feet again, his life and maybe love.
Fair isn’t life by Kaje Harper is a standalone in the State of Love Series. It was my first book by this author, and I can say that I completely loved it.

I don’t know where to begin. I really loved this book. It was a beautiful love story. The characters are awesome, simple and real.
Luke is broken, in everything sense of the word. He has no money, no job, and he’s traumatized by his father’s death and the bankruptcy of his dairy farm. When he reconnects with Mason, he’s torn between his desires to be with Mason and not being able to be what Mason deserves. Luke is confused and scared, but he’s also a proud man, with values, respect, and kindness. I completely melted for him, from the very first words of the book, Luke touched me, touched my heart. He’s so beautiful inside and out, so sensitive and tired by all the trials of his life that I only wanted to hug him and never let him go.

Mason is the exact opposite of Luke. He’s out and proud (not that Luke wasn’t) and doesn’t care about what people can think of him. When he reconnects with Luke, Mason wants to explore the crush he had for him during high school, but when he realizes how hard life was for Luke, Mason does everything in his power to help and support him. I loved Mason, I loved how he is with Luke, how he helps him to figure out his life, how he supports him and how he takes care of him.

Those two characters stole my heart. I also loved all the oppositions between Mason and Luke. One is small, lean and feminine, the other is tall, huge and manly. One is dominant, the other more submissive. One is confident, the other fragile. But the two together are two halves of the same heart.

The author wrote a beautiful love story, simple and real, well written and beautifully told. She shows a piece of life, plain and simple.
I happily recommend this book. Really, you won’t regret it, and Mason and Luke are worth it.
It’s 5 OptimuMM’s for The Clarinetist and His Cowboy

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

Review edited by : Laura McNellis

Review of: My Fair Brady by K.C. Wells

TITLE: My Fair Brady
AUTHOR: K.C. Wells
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
GENRE: Contemporary Romance
RELEASE DATE: Feb 19, 2019


A spur of the moment invitation changes two lives.
Jordan Wolf’s company runs like a well-oiled machine. At least until his PA, Brady Donovan, comes down with the flu and takes sick leave. Then Jordan discovers what a treasure Brady is and who really keeps his business—and Jordan in particular—moving like clockwork. So when Jordan needs a plus-one, Brady seems the obvious choice to accompany him. After a major shopping trip to get Brady looking the part, however…. Wow.
Brady has a whole new wardrobe, and now his boss is whisking him away for a weekend party. Something is going on, something Brady never expected: Jordan is looking at him like he’s never seen him before, electrifying Brady’s long-hidden desires.
But can the romantic magic last when the weekend is over and it’s back to reality?

Jordan Wolf is the CEO of his company. He’s successful, very successful and works hard for that. With the help of his assistant, Brady, Jordan has his weeks running smoothly. Until his PA gets sick and Jordan realizes how important Brady is to his company and his life. Brady didn’t expect that having flu would change his life forever.
My Fair Brady by KC Wells was a sweet and adorable book that I enjoyed a lot.

Jordan is the CEO of his own company. He’s powerful, hard worker and successful, but he never realizes that he can be all of that because Brady takes care of every aspect of his life. Jordan realizes soon that Brady is more than just a simple PA and at first tries to show him how grateful he is of his work until he meets the real Brady, the one in real life that he’s never met before. This Brady catches Jordan’s eyes and heart.

Brady is probably the best PA in the world, the fact he’s in love with his boss since he starts to work for him has nothing to do with his efficiently. Brady didn’t expect to see Jordan on his doorstep when he was sick, taking care of him. He didn’t expect to bond with Jordan more than their work relationship, and most of all, he didn’t expect to fall a little bit more in love with Jordan each time Jordan took care of him.

I adored these two men; they were so adorable, funny, sweet and just natural. Brady is funny and sassy; he doesn’t seem like that at first when he’s in PA mode. I love the fact that the reader meets this other side of Brady with Jordan. I loved Jordan too; he’s smart, kind and a protector. How he reacts to Brady’s absence is funny (the lunch episode made me laugh out loud), he’s completely lost without him, but when he starts to see the other side of Brady, he is hooked, just like the reader.

I loved how the author made the reader fall in love with the MCs at the same time they did. She didn’t just write their feelings; she showed them to us. I laughed and swooned for them all through my reading.

The book is only about Brady and Jordan’s story, no drama, no sub-plot. Just them and a piece of their life written with talent and it was very good.

I gladly recommend this book; it’s the kind of story that I enjoy to read and want to live.

4 OptimuMM for them.

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

Review edited by : Laura McNellis

Review of: Fox and Wolf by Julia Talbot

TITLE: Fox and Wolf
AUTHOR: Julia Talbot
SERIES: Apex Investigations
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
GENRE: Mystery/Suspense, Shifters, Paranormal
RELEASE DATE: Dec 28, 2018


Werewolf PI Dylan Weems is a hired to solve the murder of a client’s customer. As an ex-cop, Dylan is the perfect man for the job, but he doesn’t expect the complication of alluring fox shifter Rey.
Ever since finding the dead body of one of his clients, Rey Mercier’s life is a mess, and he needs help desperately. He has no idea why he’s the target of some ruthless people or what he did to anger them. Hopefully Dylan and his motley crew of shifters at Apex Investigations can help him find out, but first Dylan and Rey have to deal with literal corporate tigers and dire crocodiles shifters… all while deciding what to do about the mate bond that’s becoming undeniable. And is that even possible between fox and wolf?

Dylan is PI at the Apex Investigations. As a former cop and a werewolf, he’s good at his job, but he didn’t expect Rey, the sexy fox shifter.

Rey is desperate and scared when he crosses Apex Investigations door. His client had been murdered, and his life threatened. Dylan is the PI in charge of his case, but Rey may find more than peace and safety with him.

Fox and Wolf by Julia Talbot is book one of the Apex Investigations.
I’m going to be very honest (like usual), I disliked the book. It was too confusing, the characters barely developed, and the plot full of holes and inconsistency. I was disappointed in the book.

Dylan and Rey are sweet and could have been wonderful, but the author completely missed them, and I found them empty instead.
The writing was confusing, the author tried to alternate between too much POV, and at the end, I didn’t know who was thinking what or who was talking to who.

I’m disappointed because it wasn’t my first book by Julia Talbot and I adored the ones I’ve read, but here she completely missed her mark.

2 Stars for me.

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

Review edited by : Amber Krogh