When Worlds Collide( Phoenix Club 4) by CJ Bishop

Title: When Worlds Collide             Word Count:123pgs

Genre: Contemporary Gay Romance

Blurb:CALEB, Part 1

What do you do when the right love finds you at the wrong time?

At age 17, Caleb Dean’s world is ripped apart in a matter of minutes, tragedy striking sudden and violent. Now, four years later, Caleb is still trying to undo what he deems to be his fault. 

Taking work wherever he can get it, Caleb finds his way to New York and The Phoenix Club. Stunning the crowd with his debut performance, Caleb quickly catches the eye of Brock Coulson, an aggressive defense attorney with a secret lust for young male strippers. 

With his brother incarcerated from an unjust sentence and the victim of brutality behind those walls, Caleb will do go to any lengths to get his brother out of prison. But his plans to negotiate with Coulson get interrupted when Caleb meets Samuel. 

He knows not to get too close, but Samuel is a whirlwind of passion, sweeping him off his feet and refusing to let him go.

Warning: This book contains homosexual relations and language not suitable for readers below 17yo.

NOTE: For those coming across the ‘Phoenix Club’ series sporadically, they were written in this order, and if possible, should be read accordingly, due to story lines that run through all the books :

ABEL

CALEB

ANGEL

GABRIEL

MAXWELL

My Review: From the first moment Samuel laid eyes on Caleb it was insta-lust. Caleb was just as smitten and couldn’t resist Samuel’s playfulness. They immediately hooked up and there was no turning back for Samuel. He told Caleb it was love at first sight. Caleb was a bit hesitant, even though he was intrigued by the chemistry he felt flowing between them. Caleb is the newest stripper at the Phoenix Club, his debut was a smash hit. He seems to be carrying a heavy load with all the personal baggage he has in his life. His  brother Nick is imprisoned and he blames himself. Caleb knows he shouldn’t be starting any new relationships, but he finds the pull towards Samuel irresistible.

The more they hook up, its the more the lines get blurred for Caleb.  He would like to keep things chaste,since he knows the line of work he is in, but Samuel is pushing for boyfriend status. Caleb only has one goal in mind and that’s helping his brother Nick out of prison.He doesn’t want to be derailed from that track by enjoying something for himself, he feels too guilty. Plus, he  knows there will be unsavory acts that he will probably have to engage in such as ‘private dances’ to get Nick out. However, Samuel seduces Caleb into being his boyfriend during the height of passion. His tactics are deliciously underhanded and it forces Caleb to accept, but a tiny part of him is thrilled to be a part of something so normal.

Dane, one of his coworkers at the Phoenix Club tries to draw Caleb into their close-knitted family. Caleb remains standoffish, because he believes the fewer people  he gets close to, the better. When Caleb decides to go visit his brother in prison, Dane offers him a ride. As much as he loathes getting close, Caleb accepts. When Caleb sees that Nick has been beaten up, Caleb once again feels guilty. It is clear to see the love between the brothers. Caleb is emotionally wrecked when he returns to the hotel and  turns to Dane in his time of need. Dane knows that Caleb is not thinking clearly , but he can’t resist the charms of this sexy young man. Dane’s interest has  been piqued since Caleb’s debut dance. Turns out that Dane is a gentleman so he lets Caleb down easy.They make their way back home in silence.

Caleb first stop is at the club, he wants to see if he can set up an ‘arrangement’ with the high powered attorney who he did a private dance for. Brock Coulson wants all of Caleb, especially his sexy little body, but Caleb knows his soul will definitely be tarnished. The parameters are set up and he has made a deal with the devil. Now , he just needs to break it off with his boyfriend Samuel before things go any further. Sweet Samuel has set up a lavish date night for him that makes it so hard to carry out his plan. Everything is going great when they are interrupted by the untimely arrival of Samuel’s mom and step-father . Caleb knows he’s in trouble when in walks Brock Coulson. His heart shatters and he knows this will tear Samuel apart. To be continued….. I give this my ratings of  3- it was ok. There is just something that was missing for me that caused me not to connect with Caleb and Samuel.

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Psycho ( Brawlers 2) by J.M.Dabney

Title: Psycho                               Word Count: 129 pgs

Genre: Biker Gay Romance
Blurb:Welcome to Brawlers Bar…

Life wasn’t easy when you were certifiable, Gerald “Psycho” Clemons lived on the fringes of society. Five years he hadn’t thought twice about riding with a group who saw most laws as flexible. When the leader of the group turned crazier than Psycho, he stepped in and made the man pay. He’d never been rewarded for his temper before, yet that’s what happened when he earned a permanent place and a job as a bouncer. Everyone walked a wide circle around him, and he liked it that way. One look from his cold black eyes and he had people backing up. Then he met a man who had to be crazier than him. 

Decadence Bakery was Ben Morin’s dream come true, and he loved it, but he grew tired of his lonely existence. Six months earlier he’d turned on the open sign and hopefully changed his life for the better. Ben loved his small cottage in the middle of nowhere even with the 3 a.m. rumbling of motorcycles and loud music at the farm next door. Although one thing he didn’t love, was his new hobby of watching one of the terrifying men next door. What could a little harmless peek now and then hurt?

Sweet and older wasn’t his type, but Psycho couldn’t deny the need to possess the beautiful baker. It was stronger than even the insanity he barely kept at bay, could he have a man who looked passed it or would Ben run like all the rest?

My Review: Psycho, his name says it all. Psycho is one of the Brawlers crew who is known to be psychotic and crazy as hell. He has had a rough upbringing and this has defined his life to a tee. Psycho’s life is inundated with violence and tenderness is a very foreign concept. Lately,he finds himself yearning for someone to call his own. He has scrutinized his bosses Scary and Tank’s triad relationship to their husband Elijah. Reason being that Scary and Tank are rough and tumble bikers like himself and Elijah is gentle and sweet. What he really craves is the love and gentleness that he sees flowing through this triad, he wishes that he knew how to make a relationship work like that. 

Psycho is confused about dating and everything that goes into a relationship. When he meets the older sexy baker Ben Morin, he wants to see where it could lead. They have a very awkward first meeting where Psycho takes care of Ben after he has been accidentally knocked down by his employee. Psycho is extremely gentle, taking care of Ben’s bleeding nose without even thinking about it.  However, he spoils this tenderness by demanding that Ben goes home with him. Ben is definitely not used to a persona like Psycho and he is confounded by his request. As tempted as he is by the big sexy biker, he doesn’t do casual hookups. Psycho feels rejected and doesn’t even wait for Ben to explain.

Psycho goes back to Brawlers feeling dejected and sulking. It is Scary who decides to help the confused man and give him a few dating tips. Psycho is still wary, but decides to give it another shot. His chance comes when Landon ,one of the Twirled crew tells Ben about the wedding that his crazy mishmash family is having. Ben decides to make a cake for the triad wedding, leaving Elijah ecstatic. Ben has definitely found new friends with most of the partners of the Twirled and Brawlers crew. Psycho suggests nicely that they chill and watch some movies. Ben is surprisingly comforted by Psycho’s stilted conversational skills.

Their relationship starts off slow when Psycho keeps on second guessing his every move with Ben. Ben sets him at ease by telling him to be himself. He continuously reassures Psycho that he enjoys his company, verbal diarrhea and all. Once Pyscho sees this for the truth, everything takes off at full speed. It soon becomes clear that Psycho likes his sex rough and tumble, just like how he lives his life. This certainly is nothing like the vanilla sex Ben is used to , but he finds it refreshing and sexually liberating. He gets a kick out of being Psycho’s ‘boy’ and loves  it when he is spanked. This certainly leads to some sexy man on man action.

Ben soon realizes what he has set himself up for being in a relationship with Psycho, when Psycho lands himself in jail beside his friend Joker. Ben is just mad that his man is kept for over two days, he is not mad at Psycho for getting caught beating the hell out of the man who put Harper,a transwoman in the hospital.  Ben understands that with Psycho he will have to take the good with the bad. His acceptance and his support of Psycho’s personality goes along way to forging the strong relationship that Pyscho has  dreamed of recently.

Ben is honoured to be a part of Psycho’s rough, crazy biker family. He even goes so far as to befriend Psycho’s ex wife Bernie and her  beautiful wife. Psycho is so much more relaxed and secure in his love for Ben. They are even talking about kids in their future. I really enjoyed this one. I give this my ratings of 4 – lose the underwear.