Book Reviews

Review - Cereus: Opening

Posted in Book Reviews on Feb 14, 2013

Cereus: Opening

This review originally appeared on the BDSM Book Reviews site.

If, like me, you haven't read the first collection of stories in this series, it seems to boil down to this: A dragon, a vampire and a werewolf walk into a bar... or whatever, and decide to open a resort for all the things that go bump in the night; sort of a Club Med for the fanged and furry. The first book contained stories covering the building of Cereus, and now this collection recounts three tales from the opening. Each of the short stories focuses on a different set of characters, although there are also common players that appear in all the tales.

In the first story, “Pack Rules” by BA Tortuga and Julia Talbot, werewolf security chief “Van” Donovan has to come to terms with his former lover Mik, a vampire. The two fell out some years ago over Van's need to serve his pack, but the two have never really gotten over each other, and now they're forced to work together. Van is determined not to let his 'mate' get away from him again, just as Mik is trying to avoid getting hurt by what he saw as a betrayal. He tries to keep away from Van, but the wolf enjoys a chase, just as he enjoys domination. And while vampires may be known as tops, in truth Mik likes being dominated, and even needs a little discipline from time to time. More

Review - Body For Rent

Posted in Book Reviews on Feb 10, 2013

Body For Rent

Tim isn't very happy with his life. He has a degree in counseling, but he makes better money working a dead-end job in a furniture factory. He also feels stifled in his relationship with his current girlfriend. Tim has known since he was a young boy that he was attracted to other men, but he has repressed those feelings and tried to conform to other people's expectations of him.

One night, Tim talks himself into visiting a gay bar, where he meets Troy, the owner of a male escort agency. Troy seems to think Tim might have a future as a prostitute. Despite many misgivings, Tim starts to live a double life. There's the 'straight' Tim his roommates always knew, and then there's Ben, the gay hooker. More

Review - Reclamation

Posted in Book Reviews on Feb 06, 2013


Volume 2 of Acclaimation

This continuation of the story of a developing love between teacher Michael Cassidy and his student Dominic Butler, started in Acclamation, picks up right where the first book left off, with Dominic and Michael in a London hotel room just moments after learning of the death of Dominic's father. Needless to say, all thoughts the two had of consummating their love are quickly forgotten as Michael rushes Dominic back into the arms of his family. Grief and forced separation puts a strain on the relationship, causing the first real rift between the two men.

The spat is short-lived, but as Dominic's sexual preference becomes ever more the subject of gossip and speculation in the village, how much longer can these two carry on? And how much longer can Michael keep a lid on the ghosts of his past? More

Review - Lorenzo il Magnifico

Posted in Book Reviews on Jan 29, 2013

Lorenzo il Magnifico

Luke is a young Englishman with a boring life he hates working in a Leeds call center. At the start of “Lorenzo il Magnifico” he is escaping this life for a week in one of his favorite cities, Florence, where he plans to get it on with lots of hot Italian guys as well as make a start on his masters degree, which he hopes will help him to get a job in a gallery or museum.

On his first night in Florence, Luke meets Lorenzo, a waiter - and as it turns out, the owner - at a nearby restaurant. What starts out as a vacation fling quickly turns more serious, and Luke is suddenly faced with making choices that will change his life. More

Review - Goldilocks and his Three Bears

Posted in Book Reviews on Jan 25, 2013

Goldilocks and his Three Bears

Once upon a time there was a small town boy with long blond hair named Brian. New to Los Angeles, the young twink has a thing for older men and spends his spare time in leather bars looking for “daddy”. That's just where Brian, our Goldilocks, meets Paul, a big, tattooed biker man. Paul takes Brian home and thrills him no end. The two fall into a sort of casual relationship, but the truth is that Brian has fallen hard for Paul. So, when Paul announces that he has to go away on business for a few months, and just leaves Brian hanging, it hits the blond hard.

At loose ends, Brian is strolling down the streets one day when he meets Jim, a hippy-dippy extra furry man who makes Goldilocks feel all warm and fuzzy inside, just like a mamma bear should. Jim has a van, which is where the two men play for a while until one day he takes Brian back to the house where he lives, which turns out to be Paul's house. Brian knew Daddy had roommates, but he never met them, and he keeps the information to himself. Then one day Jim announces that he too has to go away for a while, and asks Brian to water his plants. More

Review - Aaron

Posted in Book Reviews on Jan 21, 2013


The title character Aaron is a deeply disturbed young man. As a high school sophomore, he and his best friend were grabbed off the street, beaten, raped, slashed and left for dead. His friend Juliette died but by some miracle Aaron survived. However, he is deeply scarred, both emotionally and physically. As the story opens, it's two years after the attack, but Aaron is still barely able to function. “Post traumatic stress” is altogether too mild a term for Aaron's almost catatonic state. He can't tolerate being touched, and even the most innocent question or statement can send him into meltdown.

Aaron's family treat him like the invalid that he is, but the knowledge of just how much they have had to adjust to care for him just adds to his depression. His mother home-schooled Aaron to get his high school certificate, and now his parents want him to consider going to college. The thought of being around people, who would see his scars and think of him as a freak, horrifies Aaron, but the thought that his parents might institutionalize him frightens him more. More

Review - Make Mine to Go

Posted in Book Reviews on Jan 17, 2013

Make Mine to Go

This review originally appeared in a slightly different form at BDSM Book Reviews.

Toby and Justin are married and have been together for four years. Justin is everything that submissive Toby could want in a Dom, although the two are not in a full time D/s relationship. They do have a very rich sex life, which includes the occasional group scene, although the two don't have a typical open relationship. They usually play together or with the other person nearby. Justin is very tuned to his sub's needs, and senses that something is missing for Toby even before Toby realizes it. He tries to give his lover even more variety in the hopes that it will add the spice that Toby craves. It helps, but isn't the answer. When Toby does finally figure out what's missing from his sex life, it could threaten their relationship.

What actually happens comes as a bit of a surprise, which I won't spoil by saying any more. Let's just say there's a clever little twist at the end. More

Review - Candyman (Something New on the Menu)

Posted in Book Reviews on Jan 13, 2013


Volume 5 of Something New on the Menu

Alain Roux has just lost his beloved father, who ran a world famous candy company in Chicago. Alain is very much a spoiled rich kid, but he's just short of an entitled brat. It was his father's wish that Alain take over the running of the company. Even though he doesn't have much interest in business, Alain still wants to make his father proud, and show up his homophobic uncle Jakob.

Ty Washington is a poor, young African American man going to school part time and working in the candy factory to earn money after his father threw him out for being gay. He has had a hard time accepting his sexuality, and an even harder time getting his old friends to accept who he is.

When Alain spots Ty on the factory floor, it's lust at first sight for both men, but can they overcome the differences in their backgrounds, as well as the fact they're employee and employer to find something deeper? More

Review - Magpie

Posted in Book Reviews on Jan 09, 2013


Everet (a raven) is the security chief for the nest of avians introduced in Duck. As this sequel opens, he has been called to collect Kane, a magpie, from the human nightclub where he's fallen fowl (if you'll pardon the expression) of the management. Magpies are know for their inability to resist the allure of shiny objects, and it seems that despite his talent for seducing and pleasuring men, Kane has stolen too much, too often, from the wrong people.

The raven arrives at the human club to find the magpie being beaten badly by the thugs who work for the owner. After a brief standoff, Everet manages to get Kane turned over and takes him back to the nest, where he's to be judged by the elders for bringing avians into disrepute. More

Review - Chasing Cold

Posted in Book Reviews on Jan 02, 2013

Chasing Cold

Hundreds of years in the future, humanity has grown beyond the confines of earth to occupy many worlds in their part of the galaxy. But then an alien species, the Flense, show up and decide they want the same worlds for themselves. It isn't really a war. With vastly superior technology, the Flense can simply take what they want. They're not really interested in wiping out humanity, but those who can't or won't leave the worlds the Flense want are killed without mercy. The scattered remains of humanity are left with just a few isolated refuges, on worlds that are too hot, too cold, or simply too inhospitable to interest the Flense.

One of those worlds is Frostbite, a frozen rock where the small human colony lives in a hollowed out mountain. Rogan is what passes for the city's mailman. He maintains the sophisticated antenna which provides the tenuous link with other refuges, downloads the daily batches of messages and distributes them to their intended recipients. It's a hard life, which requires him to venture out onto the ice almost daily to maintain the equipment and download the messages, but it's all Rogan has ever known. He has a close circle of friends, and the colony is very much like any small town, where everybody knows everybody. More

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