A Perfect Beginning by Casper Graham


A Perfect Beginning by Casper Graham
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (65 pgs)
Other: M/M, M/M/M, Ménage, Anal Play
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Fern

Brandon Miller is attracted to his superior, Jacob Connors, and the man’s boyfriend, Harold Collins, but he doesn’t want to insinuate himself into another couple’s relationship. Unexpectedly, the two men ask him out on a date and invite him into their lives.

Jacob Connors is having problems with his boyfriend, but neither men is willing to end things between them. Instead of working things out in an ordinary manner, their relationship becomes more complicated when they decide to add Brandon Miller into the mix.

Will Brandon be the missing puzzle piece that completes the relationship between Jacob and Harold? Or will the three men crash and burn together?

Jacob and Harold had been together for years, their rough, aggressive sex belying just how deeply they loved each other. As good as their relationship is though, it lacked any tenderness and they both knew they needed to add some to even though both out. Jason decided adding one of his employees, Brandon, into the mix might be exactly the sort of thing they needed. Harold isn’t as sure, but is willing to try anything to help their relationship be as perfect as possible.

I found this to be an interesting take on how a committed, solid, long-term couple could include a third person and alter their relationship into becoming a ménage. Jacob and Harold were both very self-aware and honest about the issues in their relationship, and while it certainly isn’t conventional to add a carefully selected third party to balance – they were certain it would work for them. And they proved to be correct. The two strong-willed, alpha males understood themselves enough to know they couldn’t – wouldn’t – change, and Brandon acted as quite the buffer between them. I have serious doubts this would work very often (if at all) in reality, but the joy of fiction is that – for me at least – it only needs to be logical, not necessarily realistic.

This short story also appealed to me as it showed and explained quite a few of the structural changes that need to occur when two become three. Jacob and Harold were both very open to each other of what sort of fantasies they were having when they decided to include Brandon, which I found helped greatly open their lines of communication – which is critical in a ménage. Also, they didn’t rush to immediately include Brandon in every aspect of their life. I was pleased to see that they took a more careful and realistic pace to the whole matter.

With a nice slow pace, I enjoyed watching Jacob, Harold and Brandon integrate their lives together and become a threesome. With plenty of steamy, descriptive sex and plenty of alpha like passion I feel this is sure to appeal to a large audience of M/M readers.

Bouncer Bear by Julia Talbot


Bouncer Bear by Julia Talbot
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short Story (49 pgs)
Other: BDSM, M/M/M, Ménage, Anal Play, Toys, Spanking, Voyeurism
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Fern

Werebear Trey feels totally out of place when he hires on at Hot Tin Roof as a bouncer. There are all these beautiful men who dance at the club, like Sammy, and like Sammy’s bartender boyfriend, Jordan. Then there’s the fact that most guys look at a big, burly guy like Trey and think he’s a top, when Trey is anything but.

Sammy meets Trey and he knows the big guy is just the subby bottom he and his werecat shifter lover need. Jordan is such an effortless top, and he makes Sammy feel like a rock star, but they could both open their hearts to take Trey in. Can they convince this homeless bear he has a place with them?

Trey’s car is broken down and he needs money. So what’s a bear-shifter to do, but get a job at the local club as a bouncer. Sammy’s a dancer and Jordan the barman – and while each appeals to Trey in a different way, the two men are together – and a pair that Trey just can’t resist. When the three of them decide to play, can Trey manage to keep his heart intact?

I found this to be a deliciously hot ménage romance. Sammy and Jordan are delicious together and totally committed, but now and then they like to invite a third person to play with them. Both men are instantly attracted to Trey. They can tell pretty quickly that the large bear is a magnificent sub and hits the right hot-buttons for both Sammy and Jordan. I especially loved how Trey didn’t just instantly fall all over himself to hook up with Sammy and Jordan. Neither did he play hard to get or act coy. Trey has been hurt in the past and is cautious, albeit needy, in his private life. I adored how the three men needed to work to get together and how in the process this let them get to know each other better and forge an emotional connection before they burned the sheets together.

Emotional, romantic and scorching hot, I genuinely have no criticism for anything in this story. I adored Trey – and loved Sammy and Jordan. The Hot Tin Roof club was fun and very well written and the few secondary characters easily hooked me into hoping there were plenty more stories coming in this series. This totally stands alone perfectly and I especially loved the balance of emotional and romantic connections mingled in with the hot sex. Sammy’s dance moves and fiery personality especially made me smile and laugh, he’s a firecracker of a character and I would dearly love to see more stories revolving around this threesome.

This short story was truly amazing and I have added the series onto my (very short) auto-read list. A brilliant story and one I will eagerly reread many times to come.

A Night with Her Ex by Laura Jardine


A Night with Her Ex by Laura Jardine
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (36 Pages)
Other: M/F, M/F/F, Menage, Multiple Partners, Anal Sex, Spanking, Voyerism
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Sorrel

One month ago, Amy McNeil was dumped, and she never saw it coming. How could she have? Greg had said “I love you” for the first time only two days before. So when she runs into him at a coffee shop, she demands an explanation.

Greg Kim couldn’t imagine it working out with Amy. He sees her as the sweet girl he’d take home to meet his mother, rather than one who’d agree to the open relationship he craves. To shock her, he challenges her to come to a party at his friends’ townhome—a party unlike anything Amy’s ever been to before. Greg will sleep with other people in front of her…and punish her when she does the same.

But Amy surprises him. She wants to finally act out her secret fantasies. Will this one night lead to the untold pleasures she imagines? Can she show Greg that it’s possible for them to both have everything they desire?

“Not what I expected” is an understatement.

This book was great as an erotic read but there was not much of an actual plot in this. There are some real positives to this short story, though.  The characters are very well written even though I wanted more fleshing out of their story. The length of the story didn’t leave much if any room for growth of the characters.

That being said, one of the primary things I loved was how the story didn’t fit into a normal mold. Amy gets dumped. When she next sees him she asks the obvious question. WHY? The answer opened something and gave their relationship a chance. It also reminded me why openness between couples is so important.

This short story may not appeal to readers who aren’t into multiple partner groupings. But those who like to reach for books with hot chemistry and even hotter sex, this will be gem. As I mentioned, this book as an erotic read was truly wonderful, eye opening and worth the quick read.

Crimson Death by Laurell K. Hamilton


Crimson Death by Laurell K. Hamilton
Publisher: Berkley
Genre: Action/Adventure, Contemporary, Paranormal, Suspense/Mystery, Horror
Length: Full Length (708 pgs)
Other: BDSM, M/F, M/F/M, M/F/F, F/F, M/M, F/M/M, Multiple Partners, Menage
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Xeranthemum

In her twenty-fifth adventure, vampire hunter and necromancer Anita Blake learns that evil is in the eye of the beholder…

Anita has never seen Damian, her vampire servant, in such a state. The rising sun doesn’t usher in the peaceful death that he desperately needs. Instead, he’s being bombarded with violent nightmares and blood sweats.

And now, with Damian at his most vulnerable, Anita needs him the most. The vampire who created him, who subjected him to centuries of torture, might be losing control, allowing rogue vampires to run wild and break one of their kind’s few strict taboos.

Some say love is a great motivator, but hatred gets the job done, too. And when Anita joins forces with her friend Edward to stop the carnage, Damian will be at their side, even if it means traveling back to the land where all his nightmares spring from…a place that couldn’t be less welcoming to a vampire, an assassin, and a necromancer.

Ireland.

Ever have a book that gripped you so hard that it sucked you right into the author’s world and your own faded away? That’s what Crimson Death did to me. I only did the bare minimum of household chores. I read late into the night until it flipped to morning, grabbed a few hours of sleep only to wake up a few hours later to devour a few more chapters before having to slog off to work to simply come home to read and read some more until almost midnight the next night. Yeah, so, it took me two days to read, but what an amazing two days it was.

I’ve been following this series for years. I’ve watched Anita view everything as black and white; a character was either good or bad, no quarter. Monsters were bad, humans could be bad too but they were human. As the series unfolds, the heroine realizes that she can no longer ignore the ‘gray’ areas; life is a LOT more complicated, and messy and as she grows, Anita realizes that gray areas not only exist, they’re huge. It opens her up to accepting and doing things she never, ever, in a million years would think or do. Following her has been an amazing journey and that journey continues in Crimson Death. Sure, there are original fans that prefer her early years when it was all about the mystery, the horror, the suspense, drama and how it affected her. I mean, first person point of view really gets into a character’s head and the author has the daunting job of staying there. Ms. Hamilton has done Anita for so long, it seems second nature – I’m always right there with Marshall Blake, even when the blood flows.

This huge novel is no different when it comes to exploring her growth, both in her personal life and in her power. Yes, there is large section that explores Anita’s power’s connection to sex within her small group of loves and lovers, but before anyone scoffs at all the sex, be aware that there are a few astounding and earth shattering revelations that ripple through the rest of the novel stemming from all that erotic sex, which includes just a smidgen of voyeurism and exhibitionism from one of mine and Anita’s favorite people. Another warning to die-hard fans – be prepared to sniffle or cry or just get serious goosebumps on what happens. The one huge tragedy that affected me the most ends up being a turning point in Anita’s life that will have ginormous ramifications for future books. I didn’t want it to happen. All I could say was ‘no! no! no!, but of course Ms. Hamilton excels at writing the hard scenes – scenes for which a reader ultimately comes to the sad but resigned conclusion that it served a valid, crucial and necessary purpose. I don’t have to like it but I recognize Ms. Hamilton is staying true to Anita’s journey.

A lot of my favorite recurring secondary/primary characters populate this novel. There is one new character that sheds some light on Edward/Ted. It was actually humorous at times, which I didn’t expect at all. I think Anita was just as bemused as I was. Thing is, she has the ability to pester him in future books to satisfy her curiosity. I’m looking forward to what she finds out.

Of course the main villain and cohorts are truly evil, nasty, horrific, sociopathic and creepy. However, not all the cohorts are there willingly and how the author dealt with them kept my heart pounding with dread. This is such a powerfully, well written book, I could not remain unaffected.

This isn’t truly a standalone read because some of the things that occur are at their most commanding and powerful if a reader is personally vested in caring for certain characters from previous stories. If a person were to just start with this book, there are mentions of past experiences that provide Anita with the power she currently has, and they might be shocked by how erotic and numerous the sex initially is, but the main mystery of trying to figure out who or what is making all these vampires and why, can carry this novel by itself. It also might capture new fans and they might be inspired to read the series from the beginning or at least a few of the books that were alluded to in this one.

I am a fan of Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, and I highly recommend this novel to fans that’ve followed her all this time. Crimson Death wowed me to the point that writing this review was a compulsion. I just HAD to tell you how marvelous and incredible Crimson Death was, and recommend it to readers with high praise and accolades.

Her Protectors by Tamsin Baker


Her Protectors by Tamsin Baker
Peacekeepers, book 2
Publisher: Self-Published
Genre: Paranormal, Contemporary
Length: Short Story (54 Pages)
Other: M/F/M, Menage, Anal Sex
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Sorrel

Jacky is visiting Alaska, on holiday’s with her best friend Karen. She’s just broken up with her horrible ex-boyfriend, and a trip over-seas to see some Polar bears and the beautiful wilderness that America offers, is exactly what she needs.
The last thing she expects when she arrives at a lodge that guarantees every visitor that they will see a Polar bear, is two men who believe she is their soul mate.

Ashten and Raylock get a phone call from their brothers that their mate has arrived. They rush home, assuming it was only Brad’s mate that had been found. Instead, their own red haired goddess is there to greet them on their return.

All is well with the brother shifters when Jacky submits instantly to their attraction and she seems to be falling in love with them. But they have enemies everywhere and when Jacky unknowingly steps off their land, she is taken by some rouge vampires.

Can they get her back in time? Or will the damage their nemesis does to her, turn her against them forever?

A good book and a neat take on shifters.

I underestimated this book. The “fated mates” trope isn’t new but I liked how the author presented Ashten, Raylock and Jacky’s version. It was a hot and fast love at first sight kind of story.

Jacky wanted to see polar bears. So, she came for her holiday to a lodge that promised that she would see one. However, the moment she gets there… chaos ensues.

I read a lot of paranormal and fantasy, however the beginning of Her Protectors seemed to have a little too much drama. Even so, as the pages turned the plot became more interesting. The story of the Peacekeepers and their world is truly intriguing. Since, this is the second book in the series, I could tell that I had missed some big chunk of the world that the author has woven. May need to go search out book 1 in the series to see how it all began.

The chemistry was hot. The action and the plot were well played out. This is a short read sure to heat up a cold night.

Voracious by Jenika Snow


Voracious by Jenika Snow
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short Story (81 Pages)
Other: M/M/F, M/M, Anal play, Menage
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Reviewed by Sorrel

She’s hurt, scared…and their mate.

After leaving their community due to an altercation with their shifting council, Alric and Sam, wolf shifters and mates, start their new life on their own terms. But when Dalia, a lost and injured female wolf shifter, pleads for help on their doorstep, the two wolves know they can’t turn her away. She’s hurt, scared…and their mate. With Dalia under their care, it takes everything in their power to curb the beasts inside that demand they claim her.

Running from an abusive past, Dalia will take help in any form. When she finds a cabin in the middle of nowhere, she hopes the inhabitant is her salvation, at least for the time being. What she didn’t expect to find were two savagely attractive wolf shifters who are her mates. As she heals physically and mentally, she finds herself not wanting to fight the powerful pull her mind and body have toward the two males, even if her past could destroy everything.

A Happy Ever After….

Voracious was a story line that I have read before but with the nice surprise of having characters who are memorable.

This is a short story, very well brought together and kept me in the story until the end. One thing that captured me is that this book sounded like a series, but unfortunately, it is not.

The main thing that kept this from being a truly fantastic book is that the background story seemed incomplete. I wanted to know more about how Alric and Sam came together and more about the pack they came from.

When Alric and Sam, mates and lovers, find Dalia in the front of their doorstep they’re surprised. They finally found what has been missing all these years. But their mate is in danger. The story quickly evolves but, for me, it was the perfect speed for a short story.

Alric is the Alpha and Sam the submissive in the relationship, however the relationship between them morphs into both of them becoming protectors with a few other surprising changes. The passion and chemistry between all of them was off the charts hot!

Try this one if you like a short paranormal erotic story with a bit of suspense and romance.

Jericho Junction by Marie Harte

jericho
Jericho Junction by Marie Harte
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short Story (84 pgs)
Other: M/M, F/M/M, Ménage, Anal Play
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Fern

A cat, a demon and a bear. Oh my.

Jericho Dark Walker is a Bear, born to shift into both an animal’s and man’s form. He’s second in command to the mixed group of shifters living in the Great Forest. For years it had been his dream to see his clan reintroduced to the land of their ancestors. But now that he’s back he finds himself restless, unable to find joy in even the simplest back scratch or hive of honey. The female shifters offer little challenge, more than eager to bed the Great Clan’s beta, and with everyone getting along, there’s little more for him to do than break up the rare fight.

When an opportunity arrives to represent the clan and work with the athmae to oust an evil plaguing the outer edge of the Great Forest, he gratefully volunteers. The alpha’s brother has mated with an athmae—a demon—so Jericho thinks he knows what to expect. But his new partner is anything but typical. The athmae assigned to work with him is a male demon as large as Jericho, and just as deadly. No sex demon, but a hunter with the instincts of a true predator. So why is Jericho so taken with the male, when he has only ever felt desire for a female?

And why, when they rescue an annoying, sexy cat shifter from certain death, do his instincts scream at him to claim both the feline female and the demon as his own? Bears don’t mate outside their species, yet everything inside Jericho pushes him to do just that. A cat, a demon and a bear. Oh my.

Were-bear Jericho finds himself unable to solve a series of murders by a magical creature that doesn’t leave scent when it kills. When his alphas suggest that a local demon kingdom has been experiencing similar problems, Jericho knows he has to go and discover what he can, if it will help his Clan. Seino is a demon, a Protector of the seventh kingdom. He’s no more thrilled with being partnered with Jericho than the were-bear is to be with him. But they both need to hunt and kill the murderer wreaking havoc in their realms – no matter the cost.

I have to be honest, I adored Jericho’s character. An enormous, grumpy-assed were-bear with zero patience for prophecies, posturing, frolicking with incubi and especially no interest in figuring out what his own foresight seems to be telling him. Gruff and no nonsense I laughed and eagerly devoured everything about this large man and loved every second of it. I found Seino to be a bit more of an enigma, and that really appealed to me too. While still intensely sexual, he wasn’t like the other demons/Kin and blatant about it. There was a subtlety to Seino that really appealed to me and I found that far sexier and more provocative than if he’d been up front or in-your-face with his sexuality.

I was a little uncertain with the addition of Anya, a cat-shifter, into their relationship. Personally I felt the balance and chemistry was perfect just between Seino and Jericho. The plotline surrounding Anya was perfect and I really enjoyed that, but I wasn’t fully sold on the fact that Anya added anything to the relationship (sexually or emotionally) and didn’t really feel the ménage was significantly better than the twosome between the two men. I couldn’t help but wonder why she was added to the relationship at all. The plot surrounding her was excellent and I completely got that – I just couldn’t see why she needed/wanted to be added to the M/M side of things. Still, for readers who prefer ménage’s to M/M Anya will probably be a welcome addition.

I found the sex deliciously hot and adored the interactions – especially between Jericho and Seino. The paranormal world was fresh and I thought the author did an excellent job of describing it without any info-dumps or cluttering up the progress of both the plot and the relationships. Overall I found this to be a really well written, well paced story with plenty of steamy sex and characters that really interested me and captured my attention.

Choices by Em Woods

choices
Choices by Em Woods
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (50 pgs)
Other: M/M, M/M/M, Ménage, Anal Play
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Fern

When a rodeo clown, a small town veterinarian and his assistant form a complicated trio, they find it’s their choices that determine who finds love.

When rodeo clown Brandt Collins is forced into retirement by an injury in the arena, he heads to long-time friend Kaden Slater’s hometown to settle down. As far as he’s concerned, if that old flame ignites into a wildfire, then all the better.

Kaden is glad to see Brandt, but a little complication in the form of Kaden’s new assistant, Mike, throws a wrench in all their plans. Sexy, smart and young, Mike wants Kaden more than he wants his next breath.

Soon, misunderstandings and the past conspire to tear the trio apart before they’ve even begun. And now it’s their choices that will determine who finds love—and who doesn’t.

At thirty five Brandt was no longer agile enough to be a rodeo clown. Kaden is a vet and has been one of Brandt’s best friends for many years. After they made their choices to remain close friends and not more, each had scrupulously kept their emotional distance from the other. Mike was Kaden’s vet assistant and while Kaden waited for his cowboy to come home, chemistry sizzled between Mike and Kaden. Can the three men come together and make choices that they can all live with?

This is a really sweet, warm-hearted short story. I loved the three characters of Kaden, Brandt and Mike and was pleased to watch these friends finally act on their feelings and become a threesome. There were some great secondary characters too. I found this to be quite a slow paced, steamy read. There is a delicious amount of chemistry between all three men – Kaden/Brandt and Kaden/Mike in particular – and watching this triangle become a menage was a lovely story. I loved the threesome scene when it finally came about – readers who enjoy a lot of buildup, chemistry and tension in their stories should not be at all disappointed.

I was impressed by the way the author kept the attraction and sexy desire between the three men simmering, with a few hot kisses and I felt the simmering sexual tension was a wonderful way to keep the eroticism of the story high without having endless, meaningless sex scenes padding the story out. This also made that final menage scene well worth the wait and hotter for all the buildup.

I really enjoyed this story and would happily recommend it to readers looking for a steamy, chemistry-strong threesome story.

Bite Me by Jenika Snow

biteme
Bite Me by Jenika Snow
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Genre: Paranormal, Contemporary
Length: Short Story (83 Pages)
Other: M/F/M, M/F/M/M, Anal Play, Menage
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Tulip

With no idea where she comes from, or who she is really is, Ruby has gone through life focusing on her passion for science. But for the last seven years she’s dreamed of the same three men.

It isn’t until she’s drawn to barren and icy Alaska for her research that she comes face to face with the men from her dreams…men who are also shifters. They tell her she’s their mate, and the three of them will share her. They’re dominating and possessive, and want her to be their first and only. When they mate it’s for life.

She knows she can run, but Ruby also knows they’ll chase her. What she doesn’t know is if she’s ready to accept everything they want, and everything she finds out.

This was a sweet sexy shifter story. It was short but interesting and I enjoyed reading it.

The plot of this story was interesting and the characters were likeable but I was expecting more than the bit of low suspense. Ruby stood out to me as a very strong heroine who was willing to stand up for the right thing for everyone. She took the situation in stride at discovering her origins and that she would have three shifter mates. Get ready for some hot mating sex in this one. I was fine with that part but felt that the conflict ended a bit too suddenly. I liked the story, but it was missing something for me. To sum up my opinion, it was nicely written but not very exciting. A good read for a couple hours, anyway, and onward to the next book by this author.

I recommend this short sexy book as a quick and satisfying read for those who enjoy hot shifter romance.

Shifting Forces by Cassidy McKay

forces
Shifting Forces by Cassidy McKay
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short Story (71 pgs)
Other: M/F/M, Ménage, Anal Play
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Reviewed by Fern

Aurora Monroe has detailed plans for her life — and not one of them includes being barefoot, pregnant and under the thumbs of two decidedly alpha males. But what’s a girl to do when she has two sexy shifters both trying to claim mating rights?

When two paranormals on opposite sides of the war save an injured human, they unintentionally mark her as their wife. Bonded by blood, fire and passion, the gryphon and phoenix shifters do everything they can to keep their new human mate safe.

Getting her to go along with the plan is a different matter. She has no intention of following their orders. Found in defiance of both human laws and paranormal traditions, the battle for their rights turns into a fight for their lives.

Sex between a human and her two shifters can be spectacular, but is it worth risking everything for a chance at forever?

Kender is a gryphon shifter and because he’s part of the military he’s kept his little paranormal secret deeply under wraps. Varick is a phoenix shifter and at loose ends. He lost his house, his job, everything when he admitted he was a shifter. And Aurora is a red headed package of trouble, a human who uses her right to free speech to argue for shifter rights. Caught up in an unexpected brawl, she’s saved by both Kender and Varick – both of whom mark her as theirs near-simultaneously. So what’s a girl to do when claimed by two sexy shifters? Why try a threesome, of course.

This is a fun and interesting paranormal ménage story. I was a little confused initially as each chapter is told from one of the three main character’s points of view, and is oddly titled as part of their blog. Even after finishing the book I’m left quite puzzled as to why their chapters are titled blogs – ie “Autora’s blog”, “Varick’s blog” etc. I presume it’s meant to indicate that each progressive chapter is sort of like a journal entry on how they met and came together, but it’s told in the third person – not first. Blogging/journal writing is usually first person “today I did such and such”. If there was some other meaning behind why the chapters are blogs then it was completely lost on me. So that caused me confusion each time I came to the next chapter – being reminded that I didn’t really know what was going on with that.

I did enjoy hearing the story from all three main characters. This really helped me see not only into their personalities but also helped me understand the very quick attraction between them all. While I felt the chapters were a little short – and thus it felt a little jarring jumping from one to another’s perspective all the time – I think the solid understanding of all three characters outweighs the niggle of the head hopping that happens throughout the whole story.

The sex is smoking hot and really well written. I thoroughly enjoyed it and feel it complimented the plot and world the author described perfectly.

For a sizzling hot ménage story set in an interesting alternative, paranormal world this is a great short story. I feel a broad range of readers should enjoy it and am definitely interested in trying out more of this “Protect and Serve” series myself.