Only See You ( Only Colorado 2) by JD Chambers

Title: Only See You Word Count: 246 pgs
Genre: Contemporary Gay Romance

Blurb:“I might not be every gay man’s wet dream, but I always get a second look.”

Mal Copol knows who they are: Nonbinary. Awesome. Exhausted. They won’t change for anyone, but just once, they’d like to be the one with relationship potential, not the hookup. Also, not having to fight employers on who they are and how they present themselves would be nice. And while they’re at it, add not getting raised eyebrows at their high heels and tasteful makeup while discussing their latest rock-climbing trip to the wish list. Is that really too much to ask?

“Here I am at twenty-seven, embarking on life, version 2.0.”

Parker McWilliams is breaking free from the constraints of his former life and wife. He’s recapturing his zest to try new things and experience everything to the fullest, instead of the complacency he had fallen into over the past nine years. If one of those “new experiences” happens to be with a certain beautiful and intriguing nonbinary person, well, Parker’s just going to roll with it. Anything contrary to his past life is a good thing.

Mal and Parker keep surprising each other every time they meet. Despite their differences, neither has any interest in fighting their attraction. But when circumstances threaten to keep them apart, the couple must decide if that attraction is enough to overcome the obstacles they face.

My Review: Parker McWilliams has been trying to pick up the pieces of his life since he ended his marriage to his horrible Stepford wife Shelby. He packed everything and moved clear across to Colorado to move in with his gay cousin Zach. They have not always been the closest or seen eye to eye, but they both realize it was Shelby who was the problem all along. For the first time since he was 19, he is no longer under the shroud of Shelby’s control and influence. Parker has been meeting new friends and he has been reforming his self image all on his own. He is on his way to finding his true self.

On the day his cousin Zach moves out to live with his boyfriend Craig, Parker meets yet another new face. Mal Copol is one of Craig’s friends who is helping out. Mal identifies as non binary and uses ‘them, they’ pronouns. Parker is a bit confused at first and unknowingly offends Mal. Mal sets him ‘straight’ as they see that Parker is not trying to be offensive, he just doesn’t understand. Mal is intrigued by the sexy straight guy, but he knows it’s not meant to be so he sets his sights on Ben, Zach’s best friend and Craig’s current roommate.

When Mal and Ben’s date take a disastrous turn, Mal ends up taking home a drunken Ben. Mal is disappointed and a little bit upset that Ben would get so drunk. They call on Parker to help get Ben up the stairs. Parker willingly helps, but he is also upset on Mal’s behalf. He feels bad that his roommate made this sweet guy feel so crappy. Parker offers Mal coffee and one thing leads to another and before he knows it , he is pleasuring Mal. This is the most selfless and spontaneous that he’s ever been and it’s a great feeling. He is surprised at himself , since he has only ever been with one woman. Mal is blown away, they can’t belief that this sexy straight guy turns out to be slightly bent. They have never been with someone who treats them with so much care. However, they chalk it up as a one off experiment.

It isn’t until a dinner party a few weeks later when Mal sees Parker again. Mal is at an all time low after just losing yet another job due to his gender identity. Just being around Parker puts a spark in him. By the end of the night, they are getting hot and heavy in the backseat of Parker’s Volvo. For both of them, hottest sex ever…. until they are interrupted by a cop who gives them a warning. Parker feels like he’s living his teen years again in the best way, with all the fun ,spontaneity and frivolity that it brings.

Mal and Parker become even closer when they take a road trip for Parker’s father 60th birthday. Mal is on the journey as a distraction from Parker’s divorce. When they get there , Parker’s mother insistence on asking about Shelby drives him up the wall. However, it soon becomes clear that something is seriously wrong with her confused, muddled state. It hits Parker like a ton of bricks when his father explains that his mother has early onset Alzheimer’s. When they get back to their hotel room, Mal takes care of Parker helping him to relieve his tension. Their lovemaking is exquisite and something that is so so erotic and enlightening for Parker. There is laughter and playfulness, something they’ve both never experienced before. There is a definite connection between these two.

Their relationship progress nicely while they both realize they have a lot in common. They do lots of fun, outdoorsy activities and of course Mal takes lots of selfies. It is one of these pictures that would prove to be their downfall. Shelby sees one of the tags with Mal kissing Parker on the cheek and goes ballistic at one of their settlement meetings. Parker’s lawyer lets him know that she needs to check out Mal’s background so they can be on the offence. Mal is extremely upset about this as it doesn’t seem like Parker plans to fight for them. To top it off, Parker has been thinking to move back to help out with his mother’s illness. Mal is devastated, but he decides to let Parker be free to make his choices unencumbered.

Things are left unresolved between them and they both go their separate ways. Parker is trying to settle into a routine with his mom. In her lucid moments , they talk and she encourages him not to give up his life and go after Mal. It’s when Parker gets a chance to talk to her doctor who tells him that his mother could live for another 20 yrs while her condition slowly deteriorated. Parker realizes how selfish his father has been in manipulating and guilting him into becoming her permanent caregiver. When Mal has an accident while ice climbing, Parker rushes to their side.

Mal is ecstatic that Parker has come to be with them, but they’re not sure what it means. When Mal sees the vulnerability that shines through when Parker tells them that they mean the world, their heart leaps. Mal is overwhelmed with emotion that someone finally sees the true them. Parker accepts all of them and he is no longer afraid. He is ready to embrace his new identity and shout it to the world. Parker decides that for the new version of his life , he wants to live with Mal, loving him and exploring all the outdoorsy adventures they can find. With his mother’s blessing he gets her a living caregiver and move back to Colorado to his new loft with the love of his life, Mal. His divorce to the Stepford witch is final and he can embrace his freedom as Mal’s partner. I give this my ratings of 4- lose the underwear.

Snatch: Cerberus MC Book 5 by Marie James

Title: Snatch Word Count: 216 pgs
Genre: Contemporary Biker Gay Romance

Blurb:I’ve been Jaxon Donovan since the day I was born, obviously. My road name, Snatch, came years later due to my ability to literally snatch up any woman I set my sights on. I’ve always been a connoisseur of the opposite sex. Tall, short, thin, thick and juicy, my tastes knew no limitations.

I didn’t think there was a limitation to my sexuality, and I found out just how true that actually was the night my best friend took it upon himself to take me in his mouth. Sure, there’d been close calls before, the slip of a hand or misplaced lips. With our propensity to share women, it’s bound to happen. That fateful night, I was met with pure intention and an experience I never want to forget.

How do you explain to your friends, your brother’s in arms, that your extremely active sexuality has led you to your best friend’s doorstep? How do you admit, after twenty-six years of heterosexuality, that you’re into something else?

I’ll soon find out that what happens in the dark will always come to light.

My Review: Itchy and Snatch belong to the same motorcycle club. The club is comprised of all former Marines who risk their lives to save innocents. Itchy and Snatch are almost identical, they are best friends who like to share women. There is just one main difference between them, Itchy is more fluid with his sexuality and he is halfway in love with Snatch who is uber straight. Being bikers , they are never without female companionship.

The dynamics of their relationship change after they go on a mission and save a few high priced hookers . Darby catches their eye and they promise her a night filled with two of the hottest bikers. Darby is a beautiful woman blessed with a sinful body and certainly not afraid to use it. The passion surrounding these three is all consuming. It is in the heat of the moment where Itchy takes a leap of faith and take what he’s always wanted. He grabs the bull by the horns and shows Snatch where his true passions lie. Snatch is confused and definitely hesitant as he had no prior knowledge of Itchy’s sexual fluidity. Itchy reaching out to Snatch in a sexual way freaks him out for sure, but it was one of the most hottest experiences of his life. It puts a strain on their friendship, which is what Itchy was always afraid of.

Darby helps to bridge the gap , because she always wanted both men together. She facilitates a guilt free zone, where they can come together freely without any societal recriminations. Once the door is open, it is hard for Itchy and Snatch to turn back. Things go even further when they go on a mission out of country. The men are finally alone with no woman between them. The fire between these two burn hot and bright and turns into an explosion. This is what Itchy always wanted, but for Snatch he also discovers a yearning for his best friend like no other. However, he is still not ready to admit what they have going on.

It is Darby who brought them together, but in the end she pulls them all apart. Her nagging and expectations becomes too much for Snatch. Snatch refuses to indulge Darby’s notions of a love they all share. He shuts her down and rejects her thoughts of being a triad relationship. Snatch and Itchy argue over this and this brings a wedge to their already precarious situation. Darby is out of the picture and the once best friends have gone months without speaking. They each pull separate sex partners that are all left unconsummated and unfulfilled, just to make the other jealous.

This game that they are both playing finally comes to a head when Snatch corners Itchy in a hotel room alone. Snatch ravishes Itchy and shows him how much he missed him. Although they don’t talk about it, the love and longing between these two is palpable. They continue their charade for eighteen months hiding in secret and building their relationship. They definitely become stronger, but the secrecy is tearing Itchy apart, especially with so many profound moments happening around the clubhouse. Other members getting married and having babies, this leads Itchy to take stock of his own life and future. Itchy knows he wants more and he wants it all with Snatch. Some members are becoming suspicious. They start scrutinizing Itchy and Snatch more closely. Itchy is ready to spill the beans, but Snatch is too afraid of a negative reaction, he is just not ready to admit he is gay for his best friend.

One of the jilted club whores with the apt moniker Snapper decides to add fuel to fire. She has a private video of Itchy and Snatch in a compromising position and decides to blackmail Itchy. Itchy hates to play along with Snapper when she tells the club that they are getting married, but he would sacrifice anything to protect the man he loves. Snatch is jealous and extremely hurt that Itchy has slip through his fingers and will now bond with someone so undeserving. For him , the most hurtful part is that he was finally ready to shout it to the world how much he loves Snatch. Snapper holds the reigns so tight and intervenes anytime the men get close to each other.

Everything goes to hell in a hand- basket on their next mission. Itchy is shot and almost bleeds out. Snatch is right there holding on and professing his love for Itchy oblivious to the audience of their other team members. The team members help him to keep his sanity, but he is a total wreck over Itchy. Itchy pulls through and finally they can make plans to start their life as a couple. Fifteen years into the future shows Itchy and Snatch settled with their love going strong raising fraternal twins. I really enjoyed this author and am very happy for her foray in m/m romance. All her other novels are m/f romance. I can’t wait for her to take another walk on the wild side. I give this my ratings of 4-lose the underwear.

Trained by N.M. Pratt

Title : Trained                      Word Count:158 pgs
Genre: Contemporary Gay Romance

Blurb: Brendon is too young to be letting himself go. Overweight and desperate for a change, he goes where everyone goes for advice these days, the Internet. That’s where he finds Jared. Jared has an offer too good for Brendon to pass up; a free training program to help him build his clientele. What starts out as workout routines, and meal plans, slowly turns into friendship, all before they ever meet in person. Jared may be straight but will Brendon be able to resist his sexy trainer and friend when they finally meet and spend a night out under The Bay Lights in San Francisco? Or maybe a better question is, will a confused Jared be able to resist Brendon?

My Review: When Brendon wakes up one day and realizes that he has gained way more than the standard freshman fifteen after college, he decides to make some changes. Like most of us, he heads to an internet chat room to do some research. He is approached by Jared who tells Brendon he will train him for free. With killer meal prepping and vigorous workouts, they decide to give it a try. Even though they are not in the same city, Brendon soon starts seeing changes.

There is just something about Jared, he is easy to talk to and motivates Bren like no other. It is clear that they have formed a bond that moves beyond trainer/ client. Bren looks forward to Jared’s numerous daily texts which always leaves him smiling. Bren knows this is a slippery slope, as Jared is very much straight and has a model girlfriend. When Bren’s grandmother passed away, Jared initiates a phone conversation. He is very sincere and is there for his friend. Bren feels extremely close to Jared in that moment and he is encouraged to let lose and cry.

Things progress with them watching movies and exercising together while they talk on the phone. Their relationship is very sturdy for two people who have never met in person. This adds to the mystique however. This soon changes when Jared lets Bren know he will be going to his city for a photo shoot. They are both excited to meet each other. Nothing could prepare Brendon for the sex god that walks into the cafe where they are meeting. Jared is gorgeous and oh so sexy. He is everything that Bren would like in a man. The day is surreal but the emotions between the two men is very tangible. Under the beautiful lights of SanFrancisco, it is Jared who makes the first move and kisses Brendon. It is over before they know it and awkwardness seeps in. Jared begs and chalks it up as a stupid mistake, Bren is heartbroken at his apology.

Jared goes home and the shift in their relationship is obvious. Gone is the fun filled, flirty , easy going banter. Their texts only deals with the business at hand, workouts and food log. It takes them weeks to get over the hump and not until Jared apologizes for freaking out a bit for kissing a man. As the distance recedes , they become even closer than before. Jared starts owning his attraction to Bren. Their phone calls turn sexier as the flirting ramps up. When Jared starts inquiring about gay sex, Bren knows he is in trouble. He explains what turns him on knowing that he is revealing some of his secret desires for Jared. The unknown lures Jared in and he becomes bold with his sexy pics knowing that he is turning Bren on. Their late night calls become uninhibited and phone sex operators have nothing on them. They are wild in their explorations and all that’s missing is their physical bodies. Jared soon makes the decision to take another trip.

Their weekend together is intensely good and bad. Their connection is truly out of this world, but in public Jared rejects some of the most innocent touches from Bren. Bren is hurt,but holds it all in. They have a big powwow before Jared goes home , where all the niggling doubts come forth. Jared tells Bren that he can’t turn gay for him and that’s the end of that. Jared leaves as Bren’s world implodes all around him. The silence stretches on for months and Bren is a shell of his former self.

Jared finally comes to his senses and acknowledges that he can’t live his life worrying about others’ opinions. Jared was missing a vital part of himself, his other half, his best friend. He is ready to accept his love for Bren and he doesn’t care that he is a man. Bren is afraid to accept that it is real however, but he knows he can’t live without his soul mate Jared. When they come together, it is explosive and there are no doubts about whether they were meant to be together. Ten years into the future finds them married with two children who they adore. I give this my ratings of 4- lose the underwear.

P.S. For all the unconventional lovers who have found a deeper connection, before they even met in person. This one is for you. I am happy to be among the lucky few. I love my husband to pieces, but I would be scared to try the whole internet dating nowadays with some of the horror stories about online dating that you hear. I applaud everyone who has made it work. Here is to LOVE.

Straight Guys 1: Just a Bit Twisted by Alessandra Hazard

Title : Just a Bit Twisted       Word Count : 31,000

Genre : Contemporary Gay Romance

Blurb : Just a Bit Twisted (Straight Guys) by Alessandra Hazard – Romance>Contemporary

Professor Derek Rutledge is hated and feared by all of his students. Strict, reserved and ruthless, he doesn’t tolerate mistakes and has little patience for his students.

Shawn Wyatt is a twenty-year-old struggling to provide for his younger sisters after the death of their parents. On the verge of losing his scholarship, Shawn becomes desperate enough to go to Professor Rutledge.

Everyone says Rutledge doesn’t have a heart. Everyone says he’s a ruthless bastard. Shawn finds out that everyone is right. He strikes a deal with Rutledge, but unexpectedly, the deal turns into something so much more.

Something all-consuming and addictive. Something neither of them wants.

My Review : The “hot for teacher” trope has been so overdone and oftentimes in a very tawdry way without any substance. I have put this novel off for so long , because of those preconceived notions. To my surprise, this one was very different, it was definitely intriguing.  

Shawn is a student who has a lot of familial burdens on his shoulders.  He is taking care of his 4 yr old twin sisters, after they have all been left orphaned by his parents deaths. He is struggling and failing to meet the academic requirements of maintaining his scholarship. This is due to the fact that he is working two jobs and is still hardly able to make ends meet, pay the babysitter and put food in their bellies. Things are looking quite dismal and almost hopeless. Shawn is extremely shocked when his friend Christian tells him he can butter up one of the professors by flirting with him. Shawn dismisses the idea since he is totally straight.  However,  the tides start changing when he goes to talk to Professor Derek Rutledge. 

Professor Rutledge is young but he is seen as a very hard taskmaster.  He comes off as very austere and doesn’t suffer fools in his class. When Shawn approaches him about his grades, he is very uncompromising about changing them. Rutledge doesn’t believe that Shawn deserves a second chance. Shawn is desperate so he takes Christian’s advice and offers himself on a platter. However,  Shawn is definitely not a  sacrificial lamb, he comes off as cocky even though he is  not sure what to do as he has never been with a man. Although it goes against everything he believes in, Rutledge takes what is being offered because he is attracted to Shawn. Their first time together is unforgettable and this leaves Professor  Rutledge wanting more.

Their chemistry undoubtedly changes their relationship.  They are very antagonistic towards each other with undertones of lust seeping through. Rutledge offers Shawn $3000 to be at his disposal and although he is resistant Shawn has a hard time passing up an opportunity that will surely help his family. Shawn realizes that he is not totally averse to Rutledge advances, even though he is not willing to admit that outright. 

There is a turning point in their relationship when a family emergency forces Rutledge to go home to his estranged family after 15 years. He sweetens the deal further by adding another $3000 for having Shawn accompany him to his father’s estate.  Shawn agrees to go with him, only on the condition that his siblings will get to tag along. Shawn embraces the beauty of his little poor family, when compared to the atrocious way Rutledge is treated by his family. Shawn finds himself understanding why Rutledge is the way he is and decides to show a supportive front and comes to the defense of his ‘lover’. Their intimacy doesn’t last for long after Rutledge tries to pay Shawn after a night of passion leads him to taking his virginity.

Shawn is very disappointed that Rutledge views their night together so inconsequential and breaks off their arrangement  .Things go from bad to worse when they get back to their normal lives. Rutledge treats Shawn with veiled contempt and rumours are starting about their association.  Things come to a head, when Rutledge sees Shawn with his cousin Sage’s boyfriend. He mistakenly thinks that Xavier is Shawn’s new lover and gets incredibly jealous. These cracks in his normally inscrutable facade leads Shawn to giving him another chance. They fall into a pattern which could be deemed as combative rather than antagonistic.  It is fun to watch these two strong willed men navigate the quagmire of their undefined relationship. Rutledge becomes a  stable fixture in Shawn’s life and it soon becomes clear that Shawn is very much in love with his arrogant lover. Rutledge is certainly not immune to Shawn’s  charms and finally asked him to move in with him.I really enjoyed this installment of this series and I give this my ratings of 4 – lose the underwear. 

Favorite Quotes : 1. Rutledge’s tongue pressed forward, tracing around his hole before giving it a long lick, and Shawn moaned, his thighs spreading wider of their own volition. Christ, nothing should feel this good.  Soft, and slick, he felt Rutledge’s tongue licking him, lapping at his hole with abandon. Then Rutledge’s thumbs held him open to the assault.  Fuck. Rutledge’s tongue worked into him slowly, pointing and giving soft jabs at his center, parting the muscle, coaxing it to relax, sliding inside. Eating him out. So filthy, so wrong, but Shawn made a noise that sounded suspiciously like a sob, rutting against the mattress, his cock rock hard and throbbing.  “More,” he gasped, shifting his body until he was on his knees, legs spread and head hung low.  The stubble on Rutledge’s face scratched the soft flesh of his buttocks, intensifying the sensations and reminding him once again that it was a man licking his hole. It was his professor eating him out. ( This was so raw and so illicit. I loved it 😆. )

Straight Boy by Alessandra Hazard

Title :  Straight Boy             Word Count : 12,500

Genre : Contemporary Gay Romance

Blurb : Young, blond and handsome, Sage attracts unwanted attention in prison. When his cellmate offers him protection, Sage accepts the offer, even though he doesn’t trust the guy. Little does he know how much it will change his life.

When he’s released from prison, Sage finds himself needing and wanting things he shouldn’t want. Sage is straight. He is. He has a girlfriend. What happened in prison stayed in prison—or so Sage tells himself.

Until he meets his former cellmate again. Xavier. The guy he hates and craves.

My Review : This is a prequel to a series I’m planning to delve into. Like so many people, Sage makes a life altering mistake. He drinks too much one night and unwittingly kills someone. He gets a year in prison and from the first moment he gets a rude awakening from his cell mate. Xavier explains to him how things are going to be from the get go, he is going to get his ass and in return Sage will get his protection.  Sage is very resistant at first, hanging on to all his claims that he is straight and proclaims he has a girlfriend. Xavier eases Sage into things by being dominant and firm without being forceful. He likes the challenge of taming the straight boy and he is oh so eager to wait until Sage will beg for it. When that day finally comes Sage truly becomes Xavier’s bitch and even though he is humiliated to say , he loves it and thrives on being used by Xavier. 

When Sage is finally released he finds it very hard to adjust to his previous life. Sex with his girlfriend Laura has become nonexistent.  She pushes him to see a therapist and when he goes, he tells it all. He is definitely shocked when he runs into Xavier in a secluded park and he can’t help himself from being reeled in by the power of his dominance.  Sage  kneels and worships Xavier. He has feelings of shame and confusion, but most of all he realizes what has been missing from his life. He tries to hold on to his claims that he is straight, but Sage acknowledges that maybe he is a bit bent for Xavier after all. He tells his girlfriend the truth and she dumps him. When he sees Xavier again, it is free reign for both their lust. Xavier stakes his own claim on Sage, letting him know that he is definitely not willing to share. This was a great little quickie and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  I give this my ratings of 4 – lose the underwear.