Sweater Weather by Alex Winters

Sweater Weather by Alex Winters
Hotbloodeded Holidays, Book 1
Publisher: Luminosity Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Holiday, LGBTQ, Erotic Romance
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

“Oh, the weather outside is… sexy!”

At the ripe old age of thirty-seven, Colton Masters has given up on romance, especially during the holidays. A confirmed bachelor whose job staging high-priced homes for a successful local realtor has him rolling in dough but lacking in social graces. Colton is perfectly content spending another Christmas home alone, watching, well… Home Alone! That is, until he sees his sexy young neighbor, Memphis Nash, streaking across the back porch wearing nothing but an ugly Christmas sweater — literally!

A millionaire entrepreneur who’s staggeringly rich and online famous for knitting ugly Christmas sweaters on camera wearing only… ugly Christmas sweaters, Memphis is mortified that he’s been spotted in the wild — and in the buff — by his silver fox of a neighbor. Or is he? Memphis immediately pretends to “borrow sugar” from sexy Colton, if only to make sure he hasn’t called the cops on him for indecent exposure! Thus begins a playful back and forth of introductions, flirtations and, ultimately, an invitation over for a holiday sleepover-slash-pajama party, with only the two horny neighbors in attendance. Suddenly, Colton and Memphis can’t wait to unwrap one another… one ugly Christmas sweater at a time!

Cute holiday read!

I’ve read others by Alex Winters, and I knew what to expect from this story and I wasn’t disappointed. It’s quick, the writing moves along pretty well, and I wanted to see what would happen for the characters. It was a cute holiday read.

Memphis is famous for Christmas sweaters and uses an original way to market them. I liked the originality. Colton is perfectly happy to be on his own. Then he sees Memphis and things change. I liked the organic way they got together. It was cute.

I wasn’t so much a fan of the age gap in that it wasn’t much of a gap. Yes, there’s a 14-year difference, but Colton being 37 wasn’t really that old. I liked that they were from two different perspectives in life, but bringing up the age difference was a bit much. It didn’t feel authentic at times.

Still, the romance between them sizzles and even though this is a short story, it was satisfying. The author found the right balance of getting the characters together and the rest of the story. I liked it.

If you’re looking for something hot this spring to warm up a cold evening, then this is the short story for you.

Ash & Stone by Alexa Piper

Ash & Stone by Alexa Piper
Monster Apocalypse 1
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Futuristic, Paranormal, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, LGBTQ, Erotic Romance
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Two years ago, the world ended with a wish, and it’s all Rory’s fault. Now, after he’s managed to survive all this time, it looks like karmic justice is finally coming for him. It looks like a monster is going to eat him, and Rory, while he is sorry for what he did, doesn’t want to die.

And he does not, because a stranger saves him from becoming monster food. The stranger features horns, blue skin, and too many swords. He is also really tall and muscular and handsome. In a monstrous way.

Rory might have jumped from the frying pan straight into the fire, because a big blue monster isn’t exactly Rory’s idea of a happily-ever-after. Not that he’s been thinking about that or about any sort of ravishing when the blue monster might still eat him or keep him as a pet.

But while Rory does not get eaten or ravished (sigh), the meeting with his monster mate shakes loose more revelations about what really happened two years ago than Rory is prepared to handle, especially since he was considering the comfortable life of a monster’s pet. He definitely wasn’t considering his monster’s murderous buddy, running so much, and going to another world, but sometimes, you just have to roll with the handsome blue monster the Apocalypse gives you.

Fast-paced and full of heart.

I love finding a new series and this one looks promising. Alexa Piper is a favorite author of mine and I’m glad I found this new series. The writing clipped along well, and I couldn’t get enough of Rory or Inkiri. They’re good together and I rooted for them. I also liked how there wasn’t a ton of world building, but enough to make the story flow well. I knew what was going on.

Rory has been through the wringer and he’s skittish. I liked that he showed the human side of trauma because he’s relatable. I also liked how Inkiri took care of him. He needed that. I liked the two together and for monster romance, this one sizzles. There’s a lot more going on in this story than one book, so I’m glad there will be others.

If you’re looking for a post-apocalyptic story with monsters, humans and a fleshed-out storyline, then this is the one for you. Check it out. I’m off to find book 2.

Wild Ones by Kira Stone

Wild Ones by Kira Stone
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Contemporary, Erotic Romance, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Paranormal, LGBTQ
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Billy has always been a loner, but after being bitten by a ferocious wolf, his need for solitude becomes even greater. He can’t get a handle on the wild forces now running through him. He makes the best of it by carving out a territory in the Canadian wilderness, but he’s far from happy with his lot in this strange, new life.

Luc knows Billy is just the guy he’s looking for. His small pack is made up of men who are special even among weres. Their ability to control the elements — air, earth, fire and water — makes them uniquely qualified to act as spirit guardians. But presently there are only three, and they need Billy to complete them or Luc will lose much more than his position as alpha.

It’ll take a lot of fast talking to convince Billy to join their pack, but first the Wild Ones will have to catch him…

Whoa, baby. This one is hot!

I wasn’t sure what I was in for when I picked up this book. Shifters? Yes! Hot guy on guy action? I’m in. They’re all in this together? Sold!

I liked the writing of this story. It moved along at a great clip and kept me intrigued throughout. I wanted to know how this would play out. I’m glad I kept reading. This one was hot, and I want to know more about this pack.

The pack, The Wild Ones, aren’t an average wolf pack. They each have an element they manipulate and have to come together as four to make things work. I liked the impatience and bit of fighting between them because it made them more real. I also liked that Billy didn’t just roll over and submit to them. The fight was good. I also really liked the way the four came together. I got that there were two main couples, but they all worked together and when they had their foursome…oh man.

If you’re wanting a shifters story that’s a fresh take, then this is the one for you. I recommend it.

The Don’ts of Zombie Hunting by Ashlynn Monroe

The Don’ts of Zombie Hunting by Ashlynn Monroe
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Erotic Romance, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Action/Adventure, Contemporary
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Astilbe

Coralee Bradley is the only veterinarian in the small town of Davis, Wisconsin. Everything about Davis is tranquil, except for one thing — zombies. Coralee finds herself battling for her life against the same people she called neighbors seventy-two hours earlier.

Injured, Sergeant Jordan Parks seeks refuge with an angelic redhead. When she becomes a threat to their safety there’s only one thing he can do — make love to her. One night of end-of-the-world passion will never be enough — if they survive.

Emily Bradley saved her sister’s skinny ass from zombies. She survived when almost everyone she knows is dead. Now Jordan, her sister Coralee’s apocalyptic squeeze, has led them into a situation filled with chaos and death at Fort McCoy. It’s time for Plan B, and Yankee and Thad are just what the doctor ordered.

Emily and Cora have lost their home, watched friends die, and found love. Still, they are unprepared for the decision that will change everything. Inside of them burns the salvation of humanity, if they can stay alive long enough to realize the cure.

Everyone dies, but not everyone really lives.

The end of the world as we know it doesn’t have to mean physical contact and romance are off the table, too.

Because all three of the stories included here featured the same main characters, were set in consecutive order, and were so closely connected to each other that teasing them apart would be difficult, I’m going to review them as a group.

The zombies made me shudder. This was one of those universes where things quickly spiral out of control and the characters don’t have much information about why people are coming back from the dead or how this disease began. That kept the tension levels high, and I couldn’t stop reading until I knew how everything turned out.

It would have been helpful to have a better balance between the erotic and horror elements of the storyline. There were multiple occasions where characters shared intimate moments under incredibly dangerous circumstances. It was difficult for me as a reader to understand why they kept taking those risks over and over again when they were otherwise pretty levelheaded when it came to dealing with zombies and figuring out the best way to stay one step ahead of these monsters.

The ending made me smile. I was wondering how the tension between these two genres would be resolved since horror tales often don’t end on a happy note while erotic ones almost always do. Without giving away spoilers, I thought the author did a good job of balancing the audience’s expectations in the final scene and wrapping everything up satisfactorily.

The Don’ts of Zombie Hunting was a wild ride.

Secured by Sean Michael

Secured by Sean Michael
Publisher: Self-published
Genre: Contemporary, Erotic Romance, LGBTQ
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Fern

After five years of living under the threat of a stalker, Finn Wicker is finally free. About nine months ago, his stalker was finally taken down, but not before the man shot and nearly killed Finn’s bodyguard Chris. Finn had always had a crush on Chris, but he’d never done or said anything about it because the man worked for him. But when Finn walks into the Hammer Club and sees Chris up as one of the men to bid on at the Charity Christmas Auction, all bets are off, and Finn throws his hat in the ring to win his ex-bodyguard.

Could there be more between Finn and Chris than just a former business relationship? Finn sure hopes so and all he wants for Christmas is his feelings to be reciprocated.

Almost a year ago Finn was finally freed when his stalker – who had made his life hell for more than five years – had been brought down by the police. Finn had managed to take his life back, but when he walks into the Hammer Club for their annual Christmas Auction and sees his ex-bodyguard up for bidding, Finn can’t help himself. He’s always been attracted to Chris and while Finn wants his affections reciprocated, he hopes that by bidding on Chris they can maybe finally explore if they’re compatible in more than just a business sense.

This is a fun and seriously sexy quick read. A short story, I was impressed that the author managed to pack a fair bit of history between the two characters which really helped sell the speed and sparks of chemistry between them. While there is absolutely a wonderful, albeit smutty, short story there isn’t a huge amount of plot. Finn and Chris finally getting together really is the plot. It was delightful to watch them realize they have the solid workings of a long term, committed relationship together, each of them sharing the same taste in their bedroom kink and antics. Readers looking for something heavily plotted or complicated probably won’t find this story quite to their tastes.

I thoroughly enjoyed the steamy and sensual connections and relationship that quickly built between the two men. I found with their emotional connection and strong background together the speed with which they hooked up – and the intense trust they placed in each other – was quite believable and very well written. Indeed, a part of me wondered why – even though it was a bodyguard/client working relationship – with the strength of their attraction and mutual chemistry it seemed a little odd to me personally that neither had at least tested the waters until Finn bid on Chris at the auction. This was a fairly small point though, and one I could easily overlook.

Smoking hot and deliciously kinky, this is a great quick read and one I can easily recommend.

Around We Go by Sarah Caldwell

Around We Go by Sarah Caldwell
The Loveseat Series, Book 1
Publisher: Self-Published
Genre: Erotic Romance, Contemporary
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

An elegant dress, a paid-for hotel room, and a night out with my boyfriend? What could possibly go wrong?

Around We Go tells the story of Allie, a journalist desperately in need of a good night out. Uninspired at her job and yearning for adventure, she attends the opening of the hotel that her boyfriend helped develop. Perhaps this event will provide just what she needs to rekindle her flame, and maybe even light a new one…

Fast and hot.

I picked up this book because I wanted something quick for a lunch read and this delivered. It moves at a great clip and the characters were interesting. I’ve never read anything by Sarah Caldwell and I’m glad I did.

I liked that Allie came into her own in this story. It’s refreshing to see a woman blossom this way and to realize what she deserves. The empowerment is great. I liked that she’s relatable, too. I had some issues with the way things played out, as it was almost too fast and would like to see where this goes after this book.

Still, it’s hot, fast and will singe the screen as you read. Give this short story a try!

Love’s Anchor by Mimi B. Rose

Love’s Anchor by Mimi B. Rose
The Laurentian Mountain Clan
Publisher: Totally Bound
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal, Erotic Romance
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

She’s caught between two clans. One says she’s their property, the other she’s the Fated Mate of the Alpha’s son.

After hiding from shifters all her life, Mirabelle Beauchamp finds herself caught in a deadly rivalry between two clans. When sexy Alpha’s son Maxime Ducharme helps her fend off a shifter attack, she’s thrown into the world her mother shielded her from. Maxime’s rivals return, claiming Mirabelle is one of them, but she knows she belongs to Maxime and Maxime belongs to her.

They’ll both have to fight for what they want. For the freedom to choose—and to love.

Hot, fast and shifter fun!

I’ve never read anything by Mimi B Rose and I’m glad I rectified that. This was a hot read and fast, but it moved along at a good clip. I liked the writing style and will check out more of the author’s work.

Mirabelle and Maxime are a good pairing, even if they’re from rival clans. I liked the way they had to work together and figure things out, while fighting off temptation and rivals. This story moved fast, but I liked the insta-love portion. It worked for the story.

There were a few loose ends I wanted to see tied up, but that only whet my appetite for the next book. I see this is a prequel, so I’m excited to find the rest.

If you want something hot and fast, then this might be the right story for you.

Greek Style by Stephanie Burke

Greek Style by Stephanie Burke
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal, Erotic Romance
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

All May wanted was to take pictures of poppies in the mountains of Greece. She didn’t know she was breaking a taboo and stealing male energy.

But when a satyr and a faun demand she gives back what she has inadvertently taken, the term Get Your Goat suddenly takes on a new and deliciously naughty meaning.

Hot, quick and sinful.

I love the work of Stephanie Burke. The author takes the story to places I would’ve ever expected or fathomed, and it works so well. The writing flowed along well, and I felt like I was there with the characters. I needed to know more.

May, her faun and her satyr are a good triad. I liked how things got hot FAST. This short story is intended to be scorching and it delivered. I liked that the story moved so quickly and there wasn’t much time to catch a breath—especially not for May!

If you’re interested in a hot, FAST, paranormal short story that will scorch your lunch time, then this is it!

Unkinked by MC Roth

Unkinked by MC Roth
It’s a Kink Thing series, book 2
Publisher: Pride Publishing, Totally Entwined
Genre: LGBTQ, Contemporary, Erotic Romance
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Two broken men. One secret addiction. No turning back.

When Derreck stumbles upon Maddy, who is sitting in his car and nearly sweating to death under the summer’s sun, he is at his breaking point.

But Maddy is just as lost, searching for a Dom he only knows by name and waiting in his car outside the club Unkinked on the tiny chance that the Dom might find him. When it is revealed that Derreck is the man Maddy has been searching for from the very beginning, it seems fate couldn’t get any sweeter.

Derreck invites Maddy into Unkinked as his guest, with the promise of the pain that Maddy so desperately craves. A scene that should have been simple opens Maddy’s mind to a new world and community that aren’t riddled with guilt or judgment.
Derreck knows he can’t let his sub slip away, but Maddy is keeping secrets from his new Dom—secrets that could change their relationship forever.

Tenderness that’s not always visible in some kink books.

I’ve read the others in this series and this one is my favorite so far. The buildup is great and the characters even better. MC Roth writes kink well and this book showcases that. I couldn’t get through this story fast enough.

Derreck understands Maddy in a way that few others do, and I liked the way they meshed. Maddy needs pain in his play and Derreck can give it in the way Maddy needs but also with respect. I liked that these two are hurt but find a way to work together to heal each other. The story gave me hope and I liked that.

The story took a while to unfold, but it was worth the wait.

If you’re looking for something hot and totally worth getting invested in, then this is the one for you. Check it out.

The Hunt God’s Hound by AT Lander

The Hunt God’s Hound by AT Lander
Book three in the Of Gods and Men series
Publisher: Totally Entwined, Pride Publishing
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, LGBTQ, Erotic Romance
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Heroes aren’t real, and neither is love…right?

Conall, a snarky and cynical Irish goatherd, just wants a boring life—no quests, no heroes, and definitely no curses. That all falls apart when a chance encounter with a Fomori sorcerer leaves him trapped in the body of a female wolfhound.

Arlen, a kind and noble hunter of the Tuatha de Danann, is tracking his most dangerous target yet, but his skills are not enough. To track this magical monster, he needs someone touched by its power…someone like Conall.

They strike a deal—to hunt their mutual enemy while Arlen bends the curse as much as he can. Now a hound by day and a human by night, Conall’s heart and instincts draw him to his handsome rescuer. When he goes into heat, it starts a tempest of passion and emotion that will either bring them together or tear them apart.

Can these two unlikely companions overcome an ancient evil, or will their story end in tragedy?

An unlikely pair in an unlikely situation that’s quite fascinating.

This is the story to get engrossed in. The writing is fantastical and flows well. It buoyed along and made me want to know what would happen next. I felt immersed in the story and could almost feel the details. That’s something.

Arlen is a hunter and he’s trying to conquer the Tuatha de Danann. As he does this, he encounters Conall, a man at night and a female wolfhound during the day. Conall is not used to being treated with dignity and thinks he’s not worthy of much of anything. I liked his interactions with Arlen and the way they worked together. It’s sweet, but it’s also hot. They’re a good pair and it was great to watch them through this story.

It’s a good, immersive story and has some seriously heated moments. If you’re looking for something that’s out of the ordinary, memorable and hot, then this is the book for you.