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erotic romance

Book Recommendations Series

beneath this INK by Meghan March

beneath this INK book reviewBeneath this Ink Book Review and Recommendation

beneath this INK delivers a page turning romance starring a tattooed muscle man named Con. He’s a former foster kid with a murder to solve.   The romance between Con (Constantine, but come on now, how hot is that nickname?) and Vanessa hooks the reader.  Anger-inducing antagonists woven into this who done it plot are the cherry on top.

Vanessa, the gorgeous lady Con’s been lusting after since high school, struggles with food issues.  And I kind of love that about her.  For one, it makes her real and two, it’s a topic romance books filled with hot bodies don’t really broach enough (IMO).    She has some pretty serious hang-ups that never morphed into either anorexia or bulimia (that we know of).  But, she does mention years of therapy, so maybe that’s just a part of her past we don’t learn about in detail.

One of the antagonists, who comes across like a grade A asshole, has his own book in this series, Beneath These Scars.   All the books in the Beneath series are standalone. But I’m gonna have to read Beneath These Scars because we never find out what the fuck Titan’s deal is in INK.   And he’s sexy and tattooed too, so that doesn’t exactly hurt the appeal.

Meghan March delivers a fun sexy twisty romantic ride set in New Orleans with INK.  The New York Times called this series “deliciously addictive” and “binge worthy.”  I can see why.   Tattooed, muscle bound, sexy alphas – sign me up!

The Upshot

Book Review

Book Recommendations Series

Sinner by Sierra Simone

Sinner by Sierra Simone Book Review and Recommendation

Sinner Book ReviewIn Sierra Simone‘s own words, Sinner is a book about “God, sex, death, belief and unbelief.”  A good friend recommended this book, and I’m so glad she did.   Sinner sends your mind on twisted rides and mental digressions.

Sierra Simone paints a portrait of theodicy with skill and ease.   In Sinner, Sierra Simone makes the reader think.  My mind spun off on a dozen tangents while reading this book.  And I’m an atheist.  The book may be even more profound for a believer.  Well-crafted.  Well done.  Sean and Zenny’s love story is a love story that is so much more.

When Sean’s mother succumbs to cancer, my eyes filled with tears.  Tears because the moment is so well told it seemed I was back in the hospice room with my father.

Belief and Unbelief

As an Atheist, I would argue Sinner isn’t so much about unbelief.   Sean hates God, and you can’t hate someone you don’t believe exists.   Sean, and his family, struggle with forgiving God for horrible things.   An atheist doesn’t bear this struggle.  We don’t believe in a magical mystical superpower behind the curtain controlling everything.   Science, the order (or disorder) of the universe dictates bad things  happen to some people (good or bad).

Thousands of children have been molested at the hands of priests.   The Kansas City Bell family grapples with how to accept their daughter/sister is one of those victims.  Of course, asking adults to swear off sex increases the likelihood of said adults caving into temptation and molesting children.  Or, one could argue, the practice of giving up sex attracts sexual deviants to the religion as a way to hide from the demon within.

I find it interesting that leaving the Catholic Church for another denomination never surfaces as a possibility to these families.   Yes, other denominations don’t have the mix of saints, demons, angels and popes.   But, there are denominations that accept homosexuals and bisexuals (both families in the book have homosexuals in the family).  There are denominations that allow one to devote one’s life to the church and become some equivalent of a nun or priest AND have sexual partners.   It’s not really a zero sum game unless one sticks with the Catholic Church.

Zenny belongs to a fictional order under Reverend Mother that I kind of love.   Reverend Mother believes in a Goddess and shuns the idea of papal authority.  Without doing any research, I’m fairly certain such an order would not be seen as “Catholic” by Pope Francis.  Just a wild guess.   So, in a way, Zenny does find her own progressive denomination.   That STILL asks nuns to foresake sex.  That’s just one of my personal issues with the Catholic Church (one of many, I might add).

This book is a part of a series.   Priest is the first, and the novella Midnight Mass is book two.

THE UPSHOT

Book Review

 

Book Recommendations XXX Hot

The Perfect Formation by KB Alan

Perfect Formation Book ReviewPerfect Formation Book Review and Recommendation

Taryn, Richard and Caleb sizzle in this book that takes the traditional relationship and flips it off the mountain.   I first downloaded this book on a BookBub deal whim.   MMF can be sexy.  I was expecting a tale of sex with a little plot on the edges.

The relationship has depth.  The characters are realistic.   We meet the characters families for goodness sake.  Like, this isn’t just a drunken night or a sex club kind of fantasy exploration.   Or, as some books do, a sexual relationship only.   Nope, these guys fall in love.

It’s the good kind of MMF, meaning the men are bisexual.   It’s always a little off to me when the men don’t touch each other at all.   The chemistry between Richard and Caleb works even without Taryn in the room.

Perfect Formation is a part of a series, but each book is a true stand alone.   KB Alan rocks the sex scenes.   And reminds us that Love Is Love Is Love stands for all kinds of relationships.

THE UPSHOT

Book Recommendations

Wallflower by Krista Gold

Wallflower Book Recommendation and Review

A gardener.  Named Emilio.   Need we say more?

A long time ago, when I read Harlequin novels, I recall reading about gardeners.  It’s been a while.  Yard crews come to my house.   None of the guys cutting the grass in my yard come close to deserving a name like “Emilio.”  So, let’s just say, I like this premise.

Tessa lost her Mom, a successful erotic romance writer in a freak accident.  Her Mom kept journals.  Detailed journals.  Journals that are the backbone of her mother’s literary success.  Emilio enters the picture and she starts to live life again (ahm, who wouldn’t?!).

When she resumes living, she starts exploring her mother’s journals.  And she starts to realize there might be more to her mother’s death than an accident.  Some pages are missing.

With her first book, Krista Gold weaves an erotic romance with mystery.   First and foremost, it’s a love story.  A love story with hot sex.   And twists and turns.   I’ll be looking for more of Gold’s books in the future.   She’s an indie author with a lot of promise.

THE UPSHOT

Book Recommendations

Marriage for One by Ella Maise

There’s something about the names Jack and Rose.   I thought Titanic nailed those two into eternity, then I read this book.   Wow.  It’s like Jane Austen came back and wrote a contemporary novel.

Just look at that cover.   That’s Jack.  Yep.  Hot. As. Fuck.    Makes me wish I’d found a grumpy, serious frowner.

Ella Maise sucks the reader in with one of the best first chapters I’ve read in a long time.   Confession:  Somewhere around Chapter 2, I took note of my page number and scrolled to the last chapter just to check out the ending.   I consider that kind of draw impressive given the romance category where we’re pretty much guaranteed an HEA unless some witless writer wants to risk hate mail.

Love this book.  Even the innocent kissing scenes make my heart beat faster.  Moving forward, when I think of Jack and Rose, I’m thinking of this love story.  No longer will I wonder why she couldn’t fit him on the door.   Heartwarming romance, great story.

THE UPSHOT

Book Recommendations

Sweet Thing by JA Huss

 

What age difference deserves society’s frown?15 years?20 years?

I’m gonna go with love is love is love.   Age is a state of mind.   Now, I will always point out that if uber hot Demi couldn’t make it work with Ashton, then I’m a little skeptical the older woman thing works for the long haul.  But….. what a lucky woman with the older man, right?  I mean, when she’s 40 and he’s on the shadowy side of fifty….she’s still a hot young thing.

In Sweet Thing, you can see how it could work.  And, true to JA Huss, it’s super sexy.

The story makes me think back to when I was 18.  I sure as hell wasn’t in as mature of a place as Aria.  I needed time on my own.  There was this chef I worked with, probably around the age of Ryker (the hero in this story).   Unlike most chefs, he rocked washboard abs.  Never occurred to me, not once, to put him in the “potential fuck” bucket.   A fellow waitress my age started dating him.  Total shock.  To me.  Not to her.   But she was so much more together than me.  She ironed her uniform.  Who the fuck irons their polyester waitress uniform?  Perfect hair.  Mine was (and, come to think of it, still is) always in a messy bun.  I hunted rock bands and she’d go home to clean her apartment.   Those two might still be together.  Wouldn’t shock me at all.  She was ready.  We were the same chronological age, but that’s where our similarities ended.  Oh, and we both had to work full-time to get through college.

Anyway, I love this love story.  It’s pretty straightforward and simple, and then again, it’s not.   Eighteen isn’t really a simple age, is it?   It’s not really the kind of story I associate with JA Huss, but it completely fits within this naughty series.   Read it and enjoy.

THE UPSHOT

 

Book Recommendations

London Lovers Volume One by Amy Daws

London Lovers,Volume One includes three books:Becoming Us, A Broken Us,and London Bound. As the names imply, Becoming Us and A Broken Us tie together.   These two are essentially one book.  You’d never read Becoming Us without also reading A Broken Us.

Becoming Us covers Brody and Finley during their college years, or really, their senior year.   And, if you don’t read the second epilogue, you can close this book and be happy.  If you read the second epilogue, you’ll keep on reading to follow them in their post college years.   I kind of like this stories approach because, let’s face it, relationships in college ARE different than post college relationships.   Brody and Finely have one of the best first dates together (in college) that I’ve ever read.   In A Broken Us, the two face heartbreaking, emotional issues that ultimately brings them back together and to a more mature, solid, real place.   Yeah, you’ll cry during the second book.

London Bound tells the story of Finley’s crazy best friend Leslie and the guy that falls in love with her ‘sparkle’ at first sight.   This is more of a romantic comedy, with Leslie’s gay roommate, Frank, making the whole story fun while pushing Leslie to open up and face her issues.   This is a fun book, but series issues are interwoven and I have to say I didn’t feel like Leslie ever really DEALT with her issues.  Don’t worry – still an HEA.  It’s all happy.  But, the issues are so serious I closed the book feeling like maybe they were revealed but not really addressed.

Sensitive topics in this set:   Infertility, Death, Domestic Abuse

Again, only mentioning the sensitive topics as a warning for those who may just not be up for one of those at this point in time.

All three books are a solid three ladies part rating, meaning the sex is average for the category.   Good, entertaining, but nothing over the top.

THE UPSHOT