I Need A Hero by Peter Styles

Title: I Need A Hero                Word Count: 156 pgs
Genre: Contemporary Gay Romance

Blurb:Hurt and harassed, can his hero save him?

After a brutal sexual attack during his high school years, Harris Zelgman steers clear of the hustle and bustle of city life. Running his family’s comic book store and casually dating his friend provide Harris with all the excitement he needs. When he’s accosted and saved by a new hero, the Shadow Hunter, everything changes for Harris.

Seeking more security in a dangerous world, he enrolls in a self-defense class–where he learns more than he ever imagined. The instructor, Jonah, although strangely familiar, is sexier and more manly than anyone he’s ever known. As the two men fight against the ills of society, they learn how to truly trust each other. But when Harris discovers the truth about Jonah, his trust in his new instructor is shattered. Will Jonah prove his love and dedication to Harris and be the real hero he’s needed all along?

In this 50,000 word gay romance novel, one man discovers the hero within himself as he learns to trust his heart and life with another man. With steamy scenes and a sexy superhero, you’ll yearn for a hunky hero of your own. But with love, comes struggles and setbacks that threaten any true romance. Can one man discover how to save his heart while losing it along the way?

My Review: Harris Zelgman can definitely be called a nerd. He owns a comic book store and spends all his free time having lively discussions with his two best friends Gary and Leonard about superheroes. Harris has been hurt in his teenage years and he has allowed himself to be closed off. He is very insulated and surrounds himself with limited friends. Harris hooks up from time to time with his best friend Gary rather than trying to be in a relationship. This way of life is safe for him as he doesn’t allow himself to become romantically involved with Gary even though they have sex. Harris is very good at compartmentalizing his life and he definitely keeps their friendship separate and apart from their fling.

When Harris’ store is robbed and he is almost sexually assaulted, it brings up a lot of old residual feelings of being scared and helpless. The sexual assault is foiled by a real life superhero vigilante called the Shadow Hunter. Harris is extremely grateful and slightly in awe of his new protector. He is also a little bit attracted to the Shadow Hunter but he feels his expectations are too unreasonable where this superhero is concerned.

After the attack , his friend Christy encourages him to take up private jiu jitsu classes at the YMCA. Harris is blown away when he first lays eyes on his instructor. Jonah is a sexy hunk with muscles, in a perfect world he would definitely be the man of Harris’ dreams. Harris sees Jonah as another unattainable dream in his life. This does not stop Harris from pushing all of Jonah’s buttons. They soon form an easy relationship and Harris feels much more confident with the things he has learnt from Jonah. Jonah soon reveals to Harris that he is attracted to him and would like to pursue a more romantic relationship with him. Harris is shocked and scared to make the next step, but he really wants to be brave and move on with his life.

Things get a little bit confusing in Harris’ mind with his relationships between Gary , the Shadow Hunter and Jonah. All three men represent different things in Harris’s safe world and it starts rocking the foundation. Gary is a safe bet for him, but there is certainly no future there. He sees the Shadow Hunter as unattainable, something of a fantasy. Jonah is an unexpected, uncertain future that he would love to believe in , but feels as if he doesn’t deserve. Harris knows that he needs to make a decision once and for all.

This comes in the form of Harris having farewell sex with Gary, ending their friends with benefits arrangement amicably. It just happens that Harris puts on an erotic display for the Shadow Hunter when he notices him watching from afar. Harris explores the Shadow Hunter voyeuristic tendencies and is rewarded when the Shadow Hunter gets involved in a mini show of his own. Harris is exhilarated, but his insecurities rear their heads when the Shadow Hunter keeps away.

Harris decides to let Jonah in and share his past telling him about being sexually assaulted as a teenager. Jonah is very sad that happened to Harris and he starts revealing secrets of his own. Things come to a head when Harris realizes that Jonah is none other than the Shadow Hunter. Everything clicks in place and Harris becomes embarrassed at the things he revealed to the Shadow Hunter. Harris sees this as a breach of trust and this pisses him off enough to walk out on Jonah.

Even though Harris feels a sense of betrayal at Jonah’s revelations, he misses the camaraderie that they shared. Harris gets a chance to forgive Jonah , but it comes at the unfortunate time of another attack. They both get attacked by the same thugs who Jonah helped to put behind bars. It is Harris who steps up to the plate this time and becomes a hero with his new and improved jiu jitsu moves. Harris takes them out once again, hopefully for good this time. He takes Jonah home pampering him and taking care of his bruises. They come to an understanding that they will no longer have any secrets between them.Flash forward three years into the future and Harris and Jonah are secure in their newfound love and enjoying a wonderful relationship. I really enjoyed this and I give it my ratings of 4- lose the underwear.

 

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Trusting Cade ( Custos Securities 1) by Luna David

Title : Trusting Cade         Word Count : 380 pgs

Genre: Contemporary Gay Romance

Blurb:At 38, Zavier “Cade” McCade has it all: a military career he can be proud of, a successful business, and a close knit group of family and friends. A former Army Special Forces Captain, Cade leaves the military to create Custos Securities, a burgeoning protection agency that provides unparalleled security for both civilians and corporations across the U.S.

After a string of disastrous relationships—and a narrow escape from an abusive partner—Braden Cross is finally putting his past to rest. Combining both his passion for baking and his knack for business, Braden owns the Sugar n’ Spice Café with his best friend who concocts exotic coffees and teas that pair perfectly with his decadent confections.

When a stalker sets his sights on Braden, the young pastry chef’s world is turned upside down. More frightened than he cares to admit, and not knowing where to turn, Braden is relieved when Cade steps in to offer his protection. Caught up in a maelstrom of threats, break-ins, and vandalism, the two draw closer together. Braden eventually realizes that he can trust Cade with his life, but he finds himself wondering… can he trust him with his heart?

Author’s Note: 111K words/approx. 444 pgs. For those of you that prefer warnings (trigger or otherwise) for your books, please use the “Look Inside” feature to find the warnings within the first few pages. For those of you that hate warnings–don’t “Look Inside” . . . Happy reading!

My Review: From the very first moment  ex army Special Forces Captain Zavier McCade, meets Braden Cross he knows they are meant to be. Braden raises all the protective instincts that Zavier possess.  Braden has been through a lot in his past  relationship where his last boyfriend almost killed him when he beat him and raped him for the last time. Through strength of will and a desperation to live, Braden had the forethought to tape the whole event. He used this as blackmail to get his bastard of an  ex Eric to leave him in peace by threatening to expose him for the monster he truly is.

Braden is content being single , he feels truly free when he is baking for his cafe which he co-owns with his best friend Maya. He runs ultra marathons and tries to be as healthy as he can  be by keeping his type 1 Diabetes in check. 

Braden has to face reality when his best friend Maya discovers some letters that he has been hiding. Maya sees the danger in the letters that he has been receiving from a stalker. Braden has to face up and realize that he needs help from security professionals. It so happens that Maya’s brother Cooper co-owns  Custos Security with his best friend Zavier McCade. They step in and take control of the situation so that Braden can feel safe again.

From the very first moment that Cade meets Braden,  he realizes something within himself that he has never experienced before. For him , it’s love at first sight and all he wants to do is to protect Braden and take care of him. This comes as a surprise to Cade, because he is used to dating guys who have a similar body type to himself. Braden is very small in stature and comes off as being delicate. Cade’s interest in Braden is noted by Maya and she warns him against hurting her best friend.  Braden also notices Cade’s interest and feels a bit intimidated by his size. Cade is physically imposing and this scares Braden, because he is afraid of all that strength being used against him.

It doesn’t take long for Braden to realize that Cade would never do anything to harm him physically or emotionally . He takes care of Bray like no other, always putting his needs first. Bray starts feeling really comfortable around Cade and reciprocates his feelings. It is amazing to watch their love blossom into something indestructible. They really start feeling comfortable with each other and this boosts Braden’s self esteem.  Cade is very positive that Braden will be his future husband. Cade can definitely picture his sweet Braden fitting in seemlessly in his life and with his close knitted protective family.

Before they can take their relationship to the next step, disaster strikes when Braden is kidnapped by his deranged ex Eric. Eric viciously beats Braden causing him to fall in a diabetic coma from insulin deprivation. Cade heart breaks when he sees all the bruises on Braden’s body. He stays by his side and prays  and hopes for the best. Cade’s security team continues the search for Eric , but his main focus remains on getting Braden well. Everything is left hanging in the balance with Braden’s recovery, but the strength of Cade’s love for his sweet man can surely overcome anything. I give this my ratings of 4 – lose the underwear. I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Consent by Bruce Rose

​Title: Consent                         Word Count : 40,510

Genre: Dark Gay Romance/ BDSM

Blurb:Only desperation could drive him to commit such a crime…

Lonely survivalist Travis Winslet has everything in his underground bunker, everything but a companion. Determined to get his needs met at any cost, Travis decides to hunt for a man the same way he does for food. When he spots a blond-haired, blue-eyed cutie who matches his requirements, he acts. Only to find his target wants to be tied up and abducted.

Kinkster Skye Randall paid his Dom for a kidnap scenario, never expecting he’d come through with a captor who was just the right combination of scary and sexy. But there’s more to his abductor than just a man willing to fulfill all of Skye’s darkest fantasies. When Travis asks for Skye’s consent, Skye realizes the true power of giving himself to his master and what it really means to be submissive.

But what will happen when Skye discovers Travis isn’t the man his Dom hired?

My Review:  Skye has been searching for most of his adult life for the perfect Dom. He yearns to have his kinky fantasies fulfilled. He goes on a camping trip with his friends, hoping that his part- time Dom who he pays will finally step up and do something intriguing.  Skye has suggested a role play where he gets kidnapped and used hard by his kidnapper.

Travis has been searching for something as well. He is overwhelmed by his need to kidnap someone without getting caught. His motive and plans for his victim are far from sinister. He just wants to push the boundaries of fear, knowing that his victims are his to control without hurting them. When he stumbles upon Skye camping, he has no idea that he has hit the jackpot  with this victim. Travis bides his time.

Skye realizes the futility of his hope of a kinky role play when his Dom Warren doesn’t show up.  Feeling rather dejected, Skye decides to relieve himself in the woods and then head off to bed. Skye is definitely  shocked and a bit nervous when Travis nabs him. His nerves come into play when he realize that the man behind him is not Warren. Skye is turned on by the grittiness and hint of danger he hears in his captor’s voice. When he is allowed to see the man’s face , he is surprised at the kind eyes that stare back at him. At this point Skye is definitely excited and elated, believing that all his dreams  are about to come true with this sexy mountain man.

Travis finds it strange that Skye is not putting up much of a resistance,  but the truth is revealed after talking to him. He realizes that Skye has mistaken his intentions as a part of his role play fantasy with Warren. Travis does not correct him. He can’t believe his luck on finding someone like Skye who is willing to play right into his fantasy. The more he talks to Skye is the more he sees how perfect he is for him.Travis shows Skye new perspective on  pleasure. He uses orgasm denial and this heightens their explosive chemistry. They talk about their wants and needs and Travis encourages Skye to live the life he’s  always wanted to live. Their connection is out of this world and they both fulfill each others fantasies. Travis feels so close to Skye , but he knows it can’t last because of his lie of omission. 

After 3 days of bliss,  Travis let’s Skye go. Skye is hurt and confused as he thought they had something that they could build on. Travis gives Skye a warning to value himself more and to be more careful. Everything is finally  revealed when Skye’s friends tell him that they thought he had died at a fire that broke out at the campsite. He realizes what a true snake Warren really is when he goes home and finds most of his stuff stolen by Warren. Skye puts all the pieces in his mind together  and acknowledges that the kidnapping was actually real. He combs through his time spent with his sexy mountain man and he doesn’t blame Travis for his actions. Skye understands the lonesome life that Travis must  lead living at his hidden bunker away from civilization. 

Skye tries to acclimate himself back to his old life, but all his routines feel tiresome. He decides to take Travis’ advice  and do things that make him happy. It takes 3 months for him to decide to try to find  Travis. He  misses him desperately . Skye experienced so much happiness , peace and contentment in 3 days than he ever did in his whole life. He sets out to find Travis’ hideaway. When Skye finds him , he offers himself up wholeheartedly to Travis. Travis knows that how he met Skye was very wrong, but it was also the most perfect unique circumstance for them. They both accept each other’s faults and foibles and love each other despite them. I really enjoyed these two characters and I give this my ratings of 4- lose the underwear.

Love in Laguna 1: Knight of Ocean Avenue by Tara Lain

Title : Knight of Ocean Avenue        Word Count : 87,263

Genre : Contemporary Gay Romance

Blurb : How can you be twenty-five and not know you’re gay? Billy Ballew runs from that question. A high school dropout, barely able to read until he taught himself, Billy’s life is driven by his need to help support his parents as a construction worker, put his sisters through college, coach his Little League team, and not think about being a three-time loser in the engagement department. Being terrified of taking tests keeps Billy from getting the contractor’s license he so desires, and fear of his mother’s judgment blinds Billy to what could make him truly happy.

Then, in preparation for his sister’s big wedding, Billy meets Shaz—Chase Phillips—a rising-star celebrity stylist who defines the word gay. To Shaz, Billy embodies everything he’s ever wanted—stalwart, honest, brave—but even if Billy turns out to be gay, he could never endure the censure he’d get for being with a queen like Shaz. How can two men with so little in common find a way to be together? Can the Stylist of the Year end up with the Knight of Ocean Avenue?

My Review : Shaz is the fabulously flamboyant stylist hired  for Billy’s sister Rhonda’s wedding. After being dumped by his girlfriend,  Billy’s family decides that he needs a style makeover if he is ever going to progress in his relationships. Billy is a big guy with a tender heart, very handsome and has no clue about  his self worth.  He is plagued by insecurities after constantly being told that he is stupid. Billy is at a point in his life where he is reevaluating everything,  wondering if he is just not good enough. Shaz is the sweetest , most kindhearted  person ever and he is uber twinky. He sees something in Billy that draws him closer. Even though they seem to be opposites, they complement each other really well. Shaz might seem flighty to others , but he grounds Billy and they form an unlikely friendship of sorts.

Billy feels a pull towards Shaz that he does not understand and this leads him to question the very foundation that his sexuality is built on. There is just one problem, his mother. His mother is very meddlesome and believes that she has earned the right to interfere in his love life. For the very first time in  his life, Billy decides to get something in his life just for him. He realizes that he really likes Shaz and they get closer and spend more time together with each passing day.

I really loved these two, they had such an easy uncomplicated relationship.  They both encouraged each other to attain their aspirations.With very unorthodox  study methods including lots of lube and dildos, Shaz is able to help his sexy construction worker to realize his dreams. On the other hand  Billy was able to guide Shaz into making sound business decisions,  so he would not be indebted to anyone.

Billy soon finds out the adversity faced by people who are gay. He makes the decision to stand up for himself and for others. He fights for the right to  own his destiny regardless of whatever fallout will come from it. Billy and Shaz were a match made in heaven. They had a beautiful sexual chemistry. This was a lighthearted  fun read, not too angsty. I give this my ratings of 4 – lose the underwear.