Orion’s Way by DC Juris


Orion’s Way by DC Juris
Publisher: Torquere Press
Genre: Paranormal, Contemporary
Length: Short Story (45 pgs)
Other: M/M, BDSM, Spanking, Anal Sex
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Orion is a vampire with a tragic past. After running away from abusive parents at the tender age of sixteen, he was turned by a ruthless elder vampire and forced to torture and sexually abuse human feeders and submissive vampires. Though that’s all behind him now, he still lives in the shadow of what he was, and it’s cost him the loyalty of Xavier, the human feeder he loves. Malagan is Orion’s closest friend–the vampire who saved him from brutality all those years ago. Malagan knows the dominant side of Orion–the side Xavier needs–is still there, lurking below the surface. But if Orion’s going to find his way back to who he ought to be, he’ll need help. And Malagan is just the man for the job.

Angsty vampires? Sign me up.

I like the work of DC Juris. I have for a while. I know I’ll get hot characters who can’t wait to get together and will probably have lots of sex before the story is through. This short story was no different. Well, no. It was different, but it worked. The writing was good and I read this in one sitting, so it was a great way to spend the lunch hour.

That said, I had a few quibbles. There were a couple of spelling errors that bugged me (form versus from, for example), but once I got to the next sentence, it wasn’t as much of a problem. Another one was the story itself. Malagan and Orion are solid characters and I suspect there are more stories in this world. If there are, then reading those would definitely be a good thing. I wasn’t lost, but I kept thinking I’d missed a few things along the way. This is a very short read and while one character is pining for one character, the interaction is with another. Now, its HAWT interaction. I loved Malagan. Strong, tough, but he knows what he’s doing. Solid. Orion was plenty angsty and was good for the story. But this felt like a taste test instead of a fully fleshed story. I hope there’s another story in this world, because that door is certainly left open.

Still, it’s a hot read and anyone who likes a short, meaty BDSM story won’t be disappointed. Grab a copy and see for yourself.

Falling for Santa Claus by CJ Anthony


Falling for Santa Claus by CJ Anthony
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (48 pgs)
Other: M/M
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

When Jack Frost’s aunt dies and leaves him her house in the tiny town of Great Falls, Jack seizes the opportunity to escape the rat race of Chicago for the quaint village he loved as a child. On his first night he’s welcomed by a baseball bat and a trespassing warning from Nick St. James—longtime Great Falls resident and infamous curmudgeon.

Jack wants to give Nick the benefit of the doubt—he can’t deny his attraction to the big man—but after several run-ins with Nick’s grumpiness and closed-off heart, he’s ready to give up. Only after discovering the secret Nick’s been covering up for years does he vow to break through Nick’s walls to find the loving man hiding behind them.

Satisfying for a chilly afternoon.

I’m all for a sweet story with a happy ending. Falling for Santa Claus delivers.

The writing was spot-on and snagged me from the beginning. I liked the characters and wanted to know what would happen to them. It was cute and sweet seeing these two characters come together. The town biddies are a treat, too. They help make the story memorable. Who doesn’t know a few individuals where are a tad too pushy and nosy? That relatable quality of the characters was great.

If I have one quibble, it’s the way Jack conducted himself. He tended to be hot and cold toward Nick. I understood exactly why he’d pull back, but the push-pull (while believable) was a tiny bit irksome. I wanted him to just decide what he wanted already.

Still, it’s a sweet story and a good holiday tale. The final result is satisfying and worth it. If you want a short read for over the lunch hour on a cold afternoon, then this is the book for you.

The Kaiser Account by Louise Blaydon


The Kaiser Account by Louise Blaydon
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Genre: Recent Historical (1960s)
Length: Short Story (28 pgs)
Other: M/M, Masturbation
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

The life of an ad man in 1960s New York is all about risk-taking, but not until Evan Jones meets the man from Kaiser, Mark O’Brien, does he fully understand what that means…

It’s 1965. Evan Jones is an account manager for a major advertising company in New York City, engaged to the boss’s daughter in a halfhearted sort of way, gradually making his way up into the highest ranks of the company, and into the boss’s favor. The Kaiser Motors account is one they’ve been angling at for years, and Evan has absolutely no intention of letting it slip through his fingers.

But the man from Kaiser, Mark O’Brien, is not what Evan is used to dealing with and, moreover, is someone who hits him right where it hurts—in the long-repressed part of him that prefers men and is ashamed to admit it. When it comes to O’Brien, ‘going to any length’ has a whole new meaning, because O’Brien wants Evan—and worse still, Evan wants him back. O’Brien, in the space of a night, shows him something more than the staid life is possible. Can Evan take the risk and close the deal?

A closeted man and one he can’t quite figure out. Things can only get better, right?

Things certainly get better. I loved this book. I did. I liked the build-up between Evan and Mark. It was like watching a dance. The tension ratcheted up with each page. Ms Blaydon wrote well and I wanted to know what would happen next. I raced through this story.

Evan is very closeted and thinks he wants one thing, but when Mark shows up…he’s confused. I liked that things weren’t so perfectly mapped out. I had an idea the two would get together, but the how was intriguing. I’m glad I got to read the book.

My one quibble really isn’t much. I wish the book were longer. I liked the play between Mark and Evan and wanted to see where things would go. They’re great characters and I hope the author continues their story. I’ll happily read it.

If you want a book with heat and intrigue, but will work when you don’t have a lot of time to read, then you’ll want to pick up this book.

Handcuffed by H.C. Brown​


​​Handcuffed by H.C. Brown​​​
Cops ‘n’ Floggers Book 1
​Publisher: Luminosity Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story​ (50 pages)
Other: M/M, Bondage, BDSM, Spanking (Flogging), Masturbation, Voyeurism
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Bad boys, bad boys.

Rent boy, Maverick Slone, Ricky to his friends, finds himself in big trouble with an unsatisfied client in the back alley of Leathers BDSM Club. Little does he know the Nordic god stepping in to save him, is an undercover vice cop.

When Detective Tyler Speed offers him the chance to leave the streets behind, it sounds too good to be true, especially when the man making the offer is the Dom of his very naughty dreams.

Reader Advisory: This Erotic Gay Romance series contains scenes of BDSM and hot sexy undercover vice cops out to find their perfect subs.

Cops, heat and a rent boy with an attitude…what can go wrong?

I love the work of HC Brown, so when I saw this book, I had to snap it up. I’m glad I did. I wanted to catch up with the characters from the Cops and Floggers series – I read book 2 first. Now, reading these out of order isn’t a bad thing. The characters stand alone well and I loved it.

I had to know what would happen next because the characters intrigued me. Tyler wants to save world, one rent boy at a time. He’s strong, tough and endearing. I liked him right away. Then there’s Maverick. He’s a piece of work–which the author wrote him well, I have to say. I could see him and could hear him talk. He was that vivid. His attitude was a trip.

The one quibble I had with the book was the alternating points of view. When the story was told from Tyler’s POV, the story took place in third person. But when Maverick was telling his side, it was all in first person. While that might not be a problem from some readers, I had a hard time with it.

Still, I’m glad I read this book and can’t wait for the next one!! If you want a book that sizzles, then this might be the one for you.

Alex’s Law by Jayce Ellis


Alex’s Law by Jayce Ellis
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery/Suspense, Holiday
Length: Short Story (59 pages)
Other: M/M, Anal Sex, Masturbation
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Alex Corrigan is in love with his boss, Judge Lawson Daniels, and thinks those feelings are returned. That assumption is sorely tested two days before the court holiday party they’re organizing together, when the venue calls and cancels, followed by a snafu with the caterer. Alex could handle that, but after an intimate dinner followed by a decidedly unromantic e-mail, he’s left wondering about the future of his employment as well as his relationship with the debonair older man.

Law can’t wait to see his clerk again. But Alex is cold and distant in the light of day, and Law doesn’t understand. The party looms in the background, but Law’s excitement is turning to dread. On top of that, someone is sabotaging them, trying to get Alex fired and drive Law off the bench. If there’s any chance for a happy holiday for Alex and Law, they’ll have to find out who.

A workplace romance? Who says it can’t happen…

I haven’t read anything by Jayce Ellis, but I’m glad I remedied that. This book rocked. I loved the characters and the build-up. The author knew how to make the characters dance around each other and seem realistic. I read the author’s bio and see she’s a lawyer. This was why the courtroom portions of the book were so detailed and interesting. I felt like I was right there with Alex and Law.

These two characters were so funny in the way they couldn’t quite figure out how to say what they wanted. I rooted for them all the way. Ms. Ellis wrote with a good knowledge of law, which helped make the story better and deeper. I could feel the passion between the characters and wanted to see them find their happy ending.

If you want a book with a touch of suspense, a little mystery and lots of heat, then this might be the book for you.

Sweet Lake by Christine Nolfi


Sweet Lake by Christine Nolfi
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Chick Lit
Length: Full Length (332 pgs)
Heat Level: Sensual
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Linnie Wayfair knows just how many people are counting on her. But knowing doesn’t make doing any easier.

Everyone in Sweet Lake, Ohio, wants her to muster all her business sense and return the Wayfair Inn to its former glory. Her parents hope she’ll forgive her scoundrel of a brother and reconcile the family. The eccentric Sweet Lake Sirens want her to open the inn—and her heart—to new possibilities. And her hilarious lifelong friends Jada and Cat are dropping none-too-subtle hints for her to ignite a romance with Daniel Kettering, the sexy attorney who’s been pining for her for years…

Now a shocking turn of events will open old wounds and upend the world Linnie has carefully built. She has to make changes quickly—and the results, though not entirely what she expected, might be what she’s been yearning for all along. ​

​Comfort food served up in a book. That’s what Sweet Lake is for me.

I’ve never read anything by Christine Nolfi and this was a great introduction to her work. The writing flows well and kept me engrossed. I felt like I needed to know what would happen to Linnie and company.

I do have to admit I’m not big into chick lit and this book felt a lot like it. There is a relationship that goes on (no I won’t spoil it) and that added to the story. But there is a deep bit of comfort to the book. I knew when I started, this wouldn’t be terribly complicated and that was fine. That’s what I wanted. There are complications, don’t get me wrong. The characters I wanted to hate I did and the ones I wanted to love…well, you get the idea.

Linnie has issues–she’s supposed to save the inn, but she’s the second child and a girl at that. Her parents believe the oldest son is the one who should run the family. Don’t we all know someone like that? Someone who is put upon by circumstances they don’t control? That’s what helped me to identify with Linnie. ​Having lived in a situation where the male of the siblings was valued over me, I could see where Linnie’s anger came from. She’s trying to do what’s right in a totally wrong situation. I rooted for everything to work out for her. She deserved a happy ending.

​If you want a book that’s got lots of drama, the whole community in on the situation, small town feel and a touch of romance, then this might be the book for you. ​

Operation: Seduce Me by Christina James


Operation: Seduce Me by Christina James
Publisher: Self-Published
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (281 pgs)
Other: M/F, Toys, Spanking, Anal Sex, light bondage
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

It seemed like the perfect solution to get their meddling moms off their backs. Wounded Navy SEAL Chance Wallace offers to pose as a fake boyfriend for his sexy physical therapist Brandi Wheeler’s week-long family wedding event and to help her avoid her mother’s matchmaking attempts. As a bonus, it also keeps his mother from visiting to help him recover and instead spend time with the intriguing Brandi.

It was the perfect solution…until their passion heats up as they indulge erotic fantasies on a sun-drenched island for a week of pure ecstasy. There’s nothing pretend about Chance and Brandi’s feelings for each other. When this fake relationship unexpectedly turns into something real, does love stand a chance?

Faux boyfriend to real? Was it possible?

I love Christina James’s books. She writes in a way that draws me in from the get-go and keeps me wanting to know what will happen. There’s tenderness and heart along with the heat. This book is no different. Once I started, I had to know how everything turned out.

Chance is a mess at the beginning of the book. He’s been shot and is suffering. I love how Brandi helps him get out of himself. She’s a trip, too. She’s a commitment-phobe, but she knows what she wants. I love her sense of adventure, too. I could identify with Chance’s doubts when he compares his life to hers. That made me root for him and her to get this all worked out.

The premise, a fake dating situation, isn’t new, but Ms. James put a definite hot twist on it. These two people, different, but the same, were really meant for each other. They add a twist of bdsm to the mix, but it seemed very organic. I liked it.

If you want a hot read with a wounded hero, a heroine who isn’t quite sure of herself and a happy ending, then this is the book for you.

Goldie by Erika Reed


Goldie by Erika Reed
Publisher: Self Published
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (82 pgs)
Other: M/F
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Goldie Locke is in love with her boss, Travis. He has always been the man of her dreams, but it’s getting harder to work for him when she really wants more. After a fire in her apartment leaves her temporarily homeless, she finds herself on her way to Travis’ cabin in the mountains, at his brothers’ insistence. She decides to use the time away to make some decisions about her future…with or without Travis.

Travis Baer had always prided himself at making his construction business a success. He is a man who goes after what he wants, but what he desires more than anything is Goldie. After being tricked into a weekend alone with his gorgeous assistant, Travis is determined to finally make Goldie his, and reveal his true feeling for her.

Could their weekend retreat be the beginning to the fairytale ending Goldie has always wanted?

This sure isn’t the fairytale I remember…it’s more.

This is my first read by Erika Reed and I’m looking for more of her books. This is a short read, but it’s packed with heat. Ms Reed has penned an interesting take on the Goldilocks story. It didn’t take me long to read this book, but I assure you, I’ll be rereading.

Goldie works for Travis. It’s a great set-up, although not all that original. Doesn’t matter. The chemistry between this woman with some body issues and this hunk of a man is off the charts. They sizzle. I couldn’t get enough of them together.

I do realize this book was part of an anthology, so that’s probably why it’s so short. I’m not complaining. I get the length limits, but on the other hand, I wish the story was a little longer because I wanted to know more about these characters. Grin. They were that fun.

If you want something hot, short and just right for lunch hour reading, then Goldie might be the one for you.

Reining in the Billionaire by Dani Wade


Reining in the Billionaire by Dani Wade
Publisher: Harlequin
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (217 pages)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

An instant billionaire wants revenge…and more!

Mason Harrington grew up as a rough-and-tumble stable boy. But a shocking inheritance enables him and his brothers to return to their hometown and settle some scores. First on the agenda: take over the elite horse farm belonging to the woman who once broke Mason’s heart when her daddy said he wasn’t good enough.

Despite Mason’s motives, EvaMarie Hyatt has no choice but to stay on at the ranch and work for him. Soon it becomes clear Mason wants more than revenge. Even more surprising: EvaMarie’s willingness to succumb. But will new misunderstandings derail their renewed passion, or will this second chance lead to forever?

He’s hot, rich and looking for revenge…until she walks in the door.

I haven’t read anything else by Dani Wade and this was a great introduction to her work. The writing flowed well and drew me right in. I cared about the characters and wanted to know more.

This is a fairly simplistic storyline. Mason has inherited a bunch of money and is back home to buy the ranch belonging to the woman he once had to let go. He’s a complex man with demons, but he’s determined. I liked him and rooted for him to get what he wanted–the horses and the girl. I liked how he wasn’t sure he wanted her to begin with. That twinge of “will they, won’t they” was good. Then there’s EvaMarie. She’s more than I thought and I’m glad. I had sort of a picture of her in my mind and as I kept going through the story, she grew. I loved how she came into her own.

If you want a story that’s hot, but sweet and has horses, then this might be the book for you. It’s light reading, but sure to satisfy!

Hot For Heather by Caitlyn Lynch


Hot For Heather by Caitlyn Lynch
Publisher: Self-Published
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (27 pages)
Other: M/F, Anal Play
Rating: 2 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Heather is a quiet classical pianist lacking in a social (or sex) life. One day, she’s utterly shocked to find out that the hot delivery guy she accidentally flashed in the hallway is actually her brand new neighbour, Mike, a soldier recently back from deployment. And Mike’s very interested in getting to know the gorgeous girl next door who makes such beautiful music. He’s especially interested in getting know her on top of that piano. And on the piano stool. And anywhere else in her apartment she’s willing to let him…

Holy piano benches, Batman!

This story sizzled. I won’t lie. There were parts of this short story that had me squirming in my seat. The piano… I’ll never look at a baby grand ever again the same way.

There wasn’t much meat to this short story. The author got right to the point right away. I had to keep reading because I had to know how it would end. Of course it didn’t take long, but still. I had to know.

The premise of the story was hot. Sexy military man and the geeky pianist. Good combination. But there were a few quibbles. While this was erotica, some of the terminology ripped me right out of the story. I wanted to buy in, but I couldn’t… not throughout the book. I had a hard time picturing the hero and heroine together because of the nearly foot difference in their height. I had to reread to figure out some of the choreography. One example: the pianist considers herself short, but not small and wonders how the hero can pick her up, yet he tosses her around. I had a hard time picturing what was going on. The other big quibble was how fast the two characters got together. Some readers might not have a problem with the briskness with which they climbed onto the piano. Others might.

That said, the short story has lots of promise. With a little more editing for content and maybe lengthening the story out a bit more, it could really shine.

If you want an erotic short story that will singe your screen, then this might be the book for you.