River Hag by Pelaam


River Hag by Pelaam
Book five in The Devil’s in the Details series
Publisher: Pride Publishing, Totally Entwined
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Erotic Romance, Paranormal, LGBTQ
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Sometimes, a friend in need can be deadly in deed.

Keegan has an abusive stepfather, Frank, and is bullied at college. He dodges bullies, led by Owen, by hiding close to the river. He tells his friend about the attacks and his narrow escape. The next day in college, pondweed is found in Owen’s locker, and he blames Keegan. The pondweed is sent to John Bull, and on examination is found to have a paranormal resonance, so he sends Emery, Alex and Kadin to investigate.

When Owen is found drowned in a bathtub, secured with pondweed, the team believe they’re dealing with a grindylow—a river hag. They need to establish whether the creature is acting for its own ends or at someone’s direction. Circumstances point to Keegan, but the team can’t find the connection and feel time is running out.

The next victim is Keegan’s stepfather, and with Keegan missing, Kadin decides to try to communicate with his spirit. He learns that the grindylow is protecting Keegan, but the team know that its nature means that Bo, now Keegan’s lover, will be the next victim.

But first, they need to find Keegan.

A protector that might not be so protecting after all.

I love the books of Pelaam and this was no exception. The story clips along well and got me right into the action. I didn’t feel confused because it’s book 5 and I wasn’t caught up. Instead, it reads as a nice little standalone. It’s creepy in spots, tender and romantic in others and gripping.

Keegan hasn’t had the best time in life. He’s been abused and bullied. His character is someone many can relate to. I liked how the grindylow came into the picture and how it interacted with Keegan. He needed a protector. Enter his friend.

Then there’s Bo, Keegan’s boyfriend. He’s sweet and everything Keegan needs in a lover. I liked him right away. I wanted to see them have a happy ending, too.

I liked the twists and turns in this story and can’t wait to read the others. It’s a complicated story and takes a bit of unraveling to keep it straight, but I had to know what would happen next.

If you’re looking for something that’s off the beaten path, sweet and original, then this is the book for you. Check it out.

Daddy’s Secret by M.C. Roth


Daddy’s Secret by M.C. Roth
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Erotic Romance, LGBTQ
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Moonflower

If only you were mine… If only you needed a Daddy to look after you.

This Christmas promises to be the loneliest of Sullivan’ s life and he’ s set to brave the season alone until he receives an amazing, yet heartbreaking, Secret Santa gift that was inspired by his best friend’ s pen pal, Lincoln.

What starts as a thank-you letter to Lincoln soon becomes more as Sullivan finds himself drawn to a man he’ s never met— a man who somehow seems to know him. The problem is, Sullivan needs a friend more than he needs a hookup, so he pretends to be married, taking an intimate relationship out of the equation.

Soon pen and paper aren’ t enough, and he writes his phone number in his next letter, hoping that Lincoln will call him. When Lincoln finally does, Sullivan’ s breath catches at the sound of his voice. When Sullivan pretends that his fake husband is away on a business trip, Lincoln invites himself over for a Christmas movie marathon.

Beside each other on the small couch, the lines begin to blur and Sullivan curses himself for pretending to be married. But maybe he’ s not the only one with a secret.

The best intentions can lead to secrets!

Sullivan is a big-hearted teddy bear who has recently lost his parents. During the ‘Secret Santa’ at work, his best friend presents him with a gift he never expected from her. Samantha admits that her pen-pal actually came up with the idea. Sullivan writes to Lincoln to thank him, and there we go…

This was a sweet and charming story that has some steamy scenes but low angst. I loved how the relationship between Sullivan and Lincoln grew. It made a nice change to read about a boy who isn’t a twink too! Sullivan tries to tell Lincoln on more than one occasion about his ‘husband’ but is unable to finish his confession because of one thing or another (usually Lincoln talking too much!) The list of Christmas movies made me chuckle!

All in all, a great, cozy story to warm the cockles of your heart! Absolutely recommended by me.

Horribly Harry by Sarah Honey and Lisa Henry


Horribly Harry by Sarah Honey and Lisa Henry
Bad Boyfriends, Inc., book 2
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Erotic Romance, LGBTQ
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Bad Boyfriend, Inc—when you can’t find a good boyfriend, why not hire a bad one instead?

To supplement his income while he’s completing his Early Education degree, Harry Townsend hires himself out as a terrible date—for a set fee, he’ll horrify parents and family members in all sorts of interesting ways. But when it comes to actual relationships—and sex—Harry doesn’t get the appeal. He doesn’t get the same tingly feelings everyone else seems to when they meet someone attractive, and he’s fine with that. He’d rather spend his evenings watching TV anyway.

Jack Windsor abandoned his uni degree to do an apprenticeship as a mechanic, much to his parents’ dismay. He’s happy with his choices, but leaving uni meant losing his accommodation, and now he’s crashing on his sister Mia’s couch. It isn’t ideal, but it’s only until he finds something else—which is proving difficult in Sydney’s brutal rental market.

When Jack almost kills Harry with a strawberry smoothie, he discovers that not only was Harry’s disastrous date with Mia a set up, but that Harry is looking for a roommate. Moving in with Harry is great, if only he wasn’t so distractingly cute—and totally uninterested in Jack. Except as they grow closer as friends, for the first time in his life, Harry tells Jack he’s developing feelings for him—tingly ones.

But how can Harry and Jack be together when Jack’s family thinks that Harry is the worst human being in the universe? And how can Jack convince them that his Bad Boyfriend is the best boyfriend he’s ever had, without admitting that Mia hired him to be terrible to them? When an approaching family event brings everything to a head, Jack’s going to have to step up to prove to Harry that he wants him in his life. And it might just take some bad timing, some good luck and the ugliest suit known to mankind.

Quirky and sweet.

I came to this book with no expectations other than to be entertained and I was. This was a fun read, sweet and quiet, too. The writing flowed well, and I was drawn right into the story. I’m looking forward to more in this series.

I love stories with a miscommunication and fumbling and this book had both. Harry’s there to be the bad guy, but he’s not all what he seems. Jack can’t help but be drawn to him. I loved their bond and the attraction that leapt off the page. This book is packed with chemistry. Jack and Harry are perfect for each other, even if Harry is trying his best to be horrible.

If you’re looking for something for an afternoon read that’s got chemistry and is a quiet, cute ride, then this is the book for you.

Bewitched by the Barista by Jason Wrench


Bewitched by the Barista by Jason Wrench
Up on the Farm, Book 2
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Erotic Romance, LGBTQ
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Finding love and coffee in the unlikeliest of places.

After finding him in bed with another man, Roger Havemeyer needs to escape his life and his ex. Dale Devereux, an old friend of his now lives up near Woodstock with his boyfriend Talgat. After visiting Dale and Talgat one weekend, Roger decides a change of scenery may be just what he needs. Roger’s job as a marketing executive allows him to work remotely now, so he puts in an offer on a house. One evening, while deleting a slew of emails, he accidentally clicks on a link to a website called CammBate. Not familiar with the website, he finds himself really drawn to one of the young models, which surprises him, since he rarely likes younger guys.

Wesley Phelps is a twenty-year-old college student paying his way through college. He has a small apartment that he shares with his best friend. A friend of his told him that with his good looks, he could make a lot of money on CammBate, so he started performing. Even as the money starts rolling in from his online sex work, he keeps his job as a part-time barista at the local coffee shop, Java Junkie Café & Roastery.

After closing the deal on his house, Roger walks into Java Junkie Café & Roastery and almost has a heart attack when he recognizes Wes. Of course, Roger is used to their ‘relationship’ being completely one-sided. Wes finds himself drawn to the attractive forty-year-old but isn’t even sure if the older man knows he’s alive.

Roger and Wes have to work to get past their twenty-year age gap, and Roger also must learn how to cope with Wes’ jobs…both of them.

Two men who probably shouldn’t work really do.

This story is an example of two people who shouldn’t work on paper being exactly what each other needs. I’ve read other books by Jason Wrench and enjoyed them. This one was no different. I enjoyed the story and loved the characters. I like the idea of opposites attracting, too. In this case, there’s an age-gap, too.

Wes wants to get through college and live his life. He’s relatable. He’s also having a hard time accepting there are more than one side of him. It’s a lot to handle. Then he meets Roger and he’s smitten. I loved how he had to work through their issues to make things happen. Roger is very buttoned up and work-oriented. I felt for him when he found his fiance being bad. Again, it was very relatable. I loved the way these two found their way to each other and I rooted for them.

This is a bit of a fluffy story, but it’s exactly what I needed. If you want a feel-good story that will leave you with a smile, then give this one a shot. It’s worth it.

Finding a Farmer by Jason Wrench


Finding a Farmer by Jason Wrench
Up on the Farm, Book 1
Publisher: Pride Publishing, Totally Entwined
Genre: Contemporary, LGBTQ, Erotic Romance
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Sometimes you need a new job to put the important things in life into perspective. And sometimes love finds you when you least expect it…maybe even while picking apples.

Dale Devereux is an unemployed, spoiled rich kid on the cusp of turning thirty. His grandfather, Jameson, decides it’s time for Dale to learn the family business, so he sends him to work on one of the corporate farms in Woodstock, New York.

Talgat Kudaibergen is the twenty-seven-year-old who is currently running things at Deveraux Farms Upstate. He took over operations after his mother’s and father’s deaths. Along with his younger sister and brother, Ayala and Rasul, the three siblings have kept the farm running.

Dale finds out quickly that he has a lot to learn about living life outside the big city. Talgat and his siblings grow to appreciate Dale and what he’s able to bring to the farm.

Slowly, Dale and Talgat realize that they may have more in common than either imagined. The two start to have feelings for one another, but their romance is threatened when money goes missing from the farm’s coffers.

Opposites attract and it’s so good.

I love a good “opposites attract” story and this one doesn’t disappoint. Jason Wrench is a new to me author and I’ll be reading more from this author. The characters are interesting, and the story flew along. I got right into it and couldn’t put it down.

Dale is a jerk, I won’t lie. He’s entitled and needs a bit of a knock down. He gets it when he’s got to work on the farm. He’s got no idea how to be a farmer, so it was amusing and interesting to see how he figures it all out. Tal is great at farming and doesn’t really have time to coddle Dale, but he spends time with him, and they find out they’re not totally dissimilar. The relatability of them is what really got me. The ending was a little fast, but that happens. It only made me want to read more about these characters.

If you want a book that’s cute and hot, then give this one a try. I know I’ll be looking for more from this author. Give it a try.

The Poison Bottle by LM Somerton


The Poison Bottle by LM Somerton
Treasure Trove Antiques, Book 3
Publisher: Totally Entwined, Pride Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Erotic Romance, LGBTQ, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

There’s no antidote to the malignant craving for power and wealth.

Landry Carran should know better than to get involved in yet another murder mystery, but it was hardly his fault that someone dumped a dead body on the doorstep of Treasure Trove Antiques. He can’t resist recruiting his friends to help him play detective.

Meanwhile, Landry’s partner and Dom, Gage Roskam, is doing real detective work that proves hazardous to his health and brings with it the assistance of an annoying Englishman who Gage believes should be behind bars.

The case twists and turns across Seattle’s antique trade, and the bodies multiply. As clues are solved, it becomes apparent that those closest to Gage are in grave danger. He’ll need to control his errant sub, deal with the most irritating Brit ever born and solve the case if he wants to prevent more death.

Bodies are piling up, but Landy can’t keep himself out of trouble.

I love the works of LM Somerton and when I saw this one, I had to read it. I’m glad I did. You don’t have to read the others in the series to know what’s going on, but I recommend it anyway because this is a great series. The book read smoothly, and I was right there with the characters wanting to know whodunit. I couldn’t put this one down. Good for the story, but not great for bedtime. I read way past mine, but it was worth it.

Gage is a great Dom and detective. He knows what he’s doing and his interplay with Landry was hot. I liked him a lot. I also liked the human quality of his frustration with Landry. It’s normal and it read like people I know. Landry means well, but he can’t seem to keep out of mischief and that was relatable, too. That’s what I liked about this. It’s relatable.

If you’re looking for a hot, kinky, mysterious book, then this might be the one for you. Check it out! I recommend it and the other books in this series.

Kinked Up by MC Roth


Kinked Up by MC Roth
It’s a Kink Thing
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, LGBTQ, Erotic Romance
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Can Trick choose between the love of his life and the sub of his dreams?

Nav can’t count the number of times he has wished he could close his eyes, hand over the reins and let someone take care of him. It’s a dream that none of his exes have been able to fulfill—not that he really understands what he needs.

At least, he doesn’t until he stumbles into a dark alley to get away from the bustling noise on the dance floor where he doesn’t belong. He’s not alone in the alley, and the stranger who gives him everything he’s longing for isn’t a stranger at all but Trick, his gorgeous neighbor who has a body that models would kill for and the softest blue eyes that Nav has ever seen.

Trick has everything he could ever wish for, including his kinky fiancé, Theo, who has been by his side for ten years. So when Trick sets up an intense scene in an alleyway that pushes their boundaries beyond anything he could have imagined, his life seems perfect. But when the alley lights flicker on, he discovers the man against him isn’t his fiancé at all.

One perfect mistake will change their lives forever.

Hot, hot, hot!

I picked up this book because I was in the mood for something kinky, no pun intended. And I got it! This book is guaranteed to melt the ereader screen. MC Roth has written a deliciously hot story with lots of kink and it’s not going to be for everyone, but it’s certainly a ride.

Nav knows he wants something, but he’s not sure what exactly. Trick knows what he’s ready to give, but he’s not intending on giving it to Nav…then a mistake happens. I liked the journey these two take. It’s not the average kink story. This one has pain play in it, so it’s not going to be for everyone, as I mentioned. But if that’s your thing or you’re interested in a dark, gritty story, this might be it.

I read this one in one sitting and didn’t want it to end. The story flowed well and kept me engaged throughout. If you’re looking for something hot and a little different, then this might be for you.

Three’s Company by Kristian Parker


Three’s Company by Kristian Parker
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Erotic Romance, LGBTQ
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Cholla

They’re the perfect throuple…if only the rest of the world agreed.

Will Johnstone’s father is desperately ill, and he races home from London to the Yorkshire village of Napthwaite to be with him. Almost immediately he meets cute postman, Hardeep and mysterious newcomer, Andrew. There weren’t handsome men like this in Napthwaite when he lived here…

Heat flares between the three very different men, passion they have no intention of resisting, or denying. But having their roots deep and their lives entwined in a small village is not like living in a bustling metropolis. And with domineering mothers, problem teenagers, sick fathers and someone’s past knocking at the door, the path of true love is anything but smooth.

Can Will, Hardeep and Andrew, three very different people, steer their relationship past the rocks and find a way into uncharted territory…together?

When Will got the call that his father was ill and needed his help, he put on the role of dutiful son and came home. However, when he arrived in the sleepy little village of his childhood, he stumbles into something he’d never anticipated. Something that could change his life – for the better – forever. But is he strong enough to embrace it?

Will’s situation was a tough one. He and his father had a strained relationship that kept them apart for various reasons, reasons that were understandable, but not insurmountable. It was stressful at first, watching their interactions, but as the story moves forward and they spend more time together, they begin to get reacquainted. Seeing their relationship mend was one of the highlights of the story, in my opinion.

Andrew is stuck in a time loop it seems. He wants desperately to move on from his previous, unsatisfying relationship, but doesn’t seem able to move on. It makes sense when you finally find out more about his past, but his entire attitude towards Will and Hardeep almost ruined it all for me. Luckily for him (and me, I suppose), his two potential boyfriends aren’t willing to give up on him.

My favorite of the three by far was Hardeep. I could relate to him being a single father and the clashes he had with his daughter felt very real. He’s also very closeted and, while I’ve never gone through that myself, I could empathize with the fear and anxiety over being discovered. He also had a very sweet relationship with both his mother and his daughter.

Three’s Company is a sweet, spicy, and sometimes difficult story of finding your way through the trauma and hatred to the happiness you know you deserve. The author’s writing style is easy and flowing, and kept me engaged, despite switching between three different points of view. I was thrilled to see them find their happy ending after all they went through. Although part of a series, it works well as a stand-alone, and pertinent events from the previous novel are explained enough so that you don’t feel lost when they’re brought up. I’m looking forward to going back and reading the previous book as well, the inhabitants of Napthwaite are too much fun to leave behind.

Spotlight on Love by Kristian Parker


Spotlight on Love by Kristian Parker
Speak Its Name, book 3
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Genre: Historical, LGBTQ, Erotic Romance
Rating; 4 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

If love conquers all, George Lomax has its biggest challenge yet…

It’s 1923 and George Lomax is on the run. Not from the law but from his boss, the predatory stage company manager Waldo Waddington. George came to London from the States in a Harlem-style musical, but Waldo demands more than just a good performance on the stage from the males in his cast.

Fleeing, George arrives at Safe Haven Boarding House in Brighton and immerses himself in the loving, accepting world of Tanner, Charlie, Frank and Michael. A stroll in the local park brings him to Stanley Butterworth, a war veteran who’s experienced his own horrors, and it’s love at first sight for the two very different men.

But Waldo is hot on George’s heels, using George’s employment contract and visa to drag him back into his clutches. Can George find a way to not only be free but be free to love Stanley…if Stanley can overcome his own demons to love him back?

Two souls who should be together, searching for forever together and it’s so sweet.
I’m a sucker for Kristian Parker’s books and the moment I saw this book. I’ve loved the others in this series and knew I needed to read this one. I love that it’s interracial, I love that it’s the twenties and that these characters are so different. I’m not wild about first person writing, but this book delivers.

I love George and Stanley together. They’re great for each other and it was nice to catch up with the other characters from this series. I’m not wild about what happened to George, but I do like the twists involved. It’s good. Plus, there are moments of heat and sweetness.

If you’re a fan of historicals, want a good one that’s of a time period not often dealt with in romance, plus one that features LGBTQ characters and is well-written, then this is the book and series for you. Try it!

Call It Love by Kristian Parker


Call It Love by Kristian Parker
Speak Its Name, book 2
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Genre: Historical, LGBTQ, Erotic Romance
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Charlie didn’t believe in love…until he set himself free.

It’s 1922 and after his house guest Frank Harris ran away with the under-butler, Charlie Fitzwilliam has been summoned to face the music. With the vindictive butler Bennett now watching his every move and his father planning out his life for him, Charlie finally faces up to who he is and makes a bid for freedom.

Alone for the first time in his life, he meets Michael Leonard, a kind, caring bookseller. Convinced that sex with men is only for fun, Charlie experiences a summer of self-discovery that takes him to the English seaside, the doorstep of old friends and the arms of a lover who shakes his whole belief system.

But disowned by his parents and cut off from the life he knew, can Charlie make a future for himself…and will Michael be a part of it? Is this affair something that can be called love?

Love, discovery and acceptance. Everyone needs these and Charlie’s determined to find them all.

Once I discovered the books of Kristian Parker, I was hooked. This book was no different. I loved every page. Yes, there were times when the characters weren’t always the best, but there were reasons, and I couldn’t put this book down. It’s hard to find good historical LGBTQ romance and this one fit my bill.

Charlie’s living in a time when sex with men isn’t accepted. He knows who he loves but hasn’t found the one. He’s tired of allowing others to determine the course of his life, too. I liked Charlie, even when he could be a spoiled brat. He’s a bit young and immature, but it added to his character. It made him unique and showed his growth through the book. Then there’s Michael. He knows what he wants, too, and he’s not afraid to get it. He’s also not afraid to give Charlie the what-for. Charlie needed to be reined in a bit and Michael’s a good other half. I liked the pairing of them.

If you’re looking for a novella that’s packed with characters, story and romance, then this is the one for you. Give it a try.