Sunday book recommendation

If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you know that I’ve been crazy about autumn this year. It’s never been my favorite season before, but now I can’t get enough of it. I cook autumnal food, overdose on hot drinks, burn a million candles, and of course read. Because what’s better than curling up on the couch underneath a cozy blanket with a good book and a nice cup of tea?

So today, I thought I’d recommend three books I’ve read that all take place in fall.

Three fall-themed books

I asked my dear friend Kris T. Bethke if she had any suggestions on books taking place in fall (because she’s a falloholic, too) and she promptly said Pumpkin Rolls & Porn Sounds with a chuckle. I’ve read it before, of course. It was the first book I read by Kris, and I bought it back when it was new because I loved the name so much. The book lived up to its name, and just like that I’d found a new favorite author. Full disclosure, though: I’ve never had a pumpkin roll. I’ve never had pumpkin spice anything. Am I still allowed to call myself a fall-lover? 😁

I’ve written about October Spice on the blog before and it was a given re-read for October. I love KL Noone and this short little nugget is no exception. A word of warning, though: make sure you have a snack when you read this book, because you will be tortured by “vanilla-orange petit fours” and “apple spice cake pops,” and I need an apple spice cake pop right this minute! Don’t say I didn’t warn you! 🙂

Pine Tree Mary by Ofelia Gränd was a new read for me. I bought it last year when it was released because have you seen that cover, but hadn’t gotten around to reading it yet. But when I asked my morning writing buddies if any of them had a fall themed book, Ofelia had a handy list and I picked Pine Tree Mary off it. And oh my gaaaaaawd, you need to read this book. It has one of the greatest MCs of all time, Hush. Hush is a forest spirit, a hulder who traditionally are female, but Hush is male. This means trouble for poor Hush whose family never lets him forget that he’s different and freakish. What’s so great about Hush as a character is that he’s really believable as a forest spirit. He doesn’t know much about the human world, he doesn’t understand human behavior and when he comes in contact with it interesting things happen.

It’s a lovely story about learning to accept yourself for who you are, and yes there’s a second character, yes there’s a romance, there’s even a crime-solving plot, and all that is great. But Hush steals the show. I love him. I claim him as my book boyfriend, hollow back and all. And it would be so cool to ride a moose.

Buy links:

Pine Tree Mary | October Spice | Pumpkin Rolls & Porn Sounds

Sunday book recommendation

I hope you’re having a great Sunday, everyone. Sundays are meant to be lazy days and I love spending them with a cup of tea and a good book. So I thought I’d recommend two awesome books I’ve read lately, if you need inspiration on what to read today. 

recs

The Bake Sale by Matthew Robbins is a wonderful short story, only 2419 words, but oh what wonderful 2419 words they are.

He leaned his head toward Scott at an angle that invited Scott to kiss Miles in that sweetly innocent place that was not fully on the mouth but also not quite on his cheek. 

Miles and Scott is an established couple and this is a little slice of life in their lives. It’s emotional and romantic and sweet, just the kind of story I love the most. It’s perfect if you only have a couple minutes but still want to read something good. Matthew Robbins was a new-to-me author and I’m really glad I took a chance on him. It was so worth it.

JMS Books / Amazon

Best Friends by J.M. Snyder is also a short story, albeit longer than the above one at 5599 words. It’s about two best friends; Todd has been secretly in love with Riley for ages and his heart is breaking now that Riley is about to leave for the military. 

He’s all that exists to me, in me, of me. His hands and mouth bring me to life.

Snyder has a way with words that gets to me. Not everything that she writes has a happy ending, but everything is freaking awesome. This book is no exception

JMS Books / Amazon

Tell me, are you reading something today? 

Sunday Book Recommendation

If you’ve followed me for a while, you know by now that I love poetry. I took a poetry writing course this summer, and then of course I wrote a book called Late Night Poetry, just to mention a couple things that might have tipped you off.  I also love reading poetry.

So when I found out that my publisher had published a few poetry books, I immediately wanted to read them. So today, my recommendation is for two poetry books written by two fellow authors published by JMS Books.

Naked Willem Schutte

“From within perfect darkness I have learned to shine.”

Heartbreak can leave even the strongest of men scarred. Like Icarus, I too flew too high and fell. That downward journey tore the fibre of my being and shredded my soul. The gauntlet of love should never be underestimated.

However, I had to get up again and rise like a phoenix from its proverbial ashes. And like a phoenix, I took to flight!

This is a poetic account of the journey I had to go through and a tribute to becoming a better man regardless. 

Buy links: JMS Books | JMS Books but print edition

Naked musings from a broken heart by Willem Schutte is exactly what it sounds like: poems about a broken heart. They are really lovely and full of emotions, and as an added bonus, there are a few pictures in the book of the author himself.

Several of the poems touched me deeply, and I’ll definitely buy the print version (because poetry is best read in print) as soon as Amazon starts delivering to Sweden again!

deciderous jt marie

Short chapbook of 36 poems which capture the ephemeral quality of nature. In these pages, autumn’s dying leaves crumple beneath winter’s shroud of snow, and the last fleeting days of the year slip away forever.

Tragic, melancholy, bittersweet … these poems embrace and revel in the changing seasons, which mirror so closely the rhythm of the human heart.

Buy link: JMS Books

Full disclosure: the author was extremely generous and gifted me this copy, but if she hadn’t I would have bought it anyway. I want to support JMS Books, my fellow authors, and I’m crazy about poetry, so it was a no-brainer really.

I love the way she writes about nature and seasons…or is it something else? Something deeper, something more human? That’s up to the reader to interpret, but I loved it.


I give both these poetry books my warmest recommendations, so if you love poetry, please buy them. We need more poetry in our lives 😍

Tell me: do you read poetry? If yes, tell me about your favorite poem.

A new, lovely cover

Years ago (January 2018), I read and reviewed As Big as the Sky by Amy Aislin here on the blog (link here). It was a lovely book, and I loved everything about it; the story, the characters, the cover, everything.

Then some time ago, Amy Aislin got her rights back to the story and has now self-published it instead with a brand new cover. I have to admit I was a bit upset when I heard it was getting a new cover. Why would she do that, the cover is lovely? I grumbled to myself, happy that I still had the book with the old cover at least.

Then I saw the new cover and was blown away.

I mean. Look at this:

as big as the sky

old cover / new cover

I love the new color scheme, how you can see the house better, how the title fits in the hole in the clouds. Everything. I love everything about the new cover. In fact, I love it so much I bought the book again, despite already owning it 😬

And if you haven’t read this book, I highly recommend it. It’s wonderful! ❤️

Have you ever done that? Bought a book you already own because of a new, beautiful cover?

(Also, please don’t ask how many Pride and Prejudice:s I own. The answer to that question is: more than my husband deems necessary 😁)

 

Sunday book recommendation

I’ve hardly read anything this summer. Okay, that’s a big fat lie; I’ve read a SHITLOAD of stuff this summer. Textbooks, poetry books (one of them 1000 pages), and 1200 pages of kidlit, so okay. I’ve read lots of stuff.

But I’ve hardly read anything for pleasure. Not many romances at all, which of course is my preferred genre. When I’ve had a free moment between all the other reading I’ve done, I haven’t exactly been in the mood to read and instead I’ve spent lots of time on YouTube.

That being said; I’ve read three books these last couple months that I’ve really loved and thought I’d tell you about them 🙂

bookrecs

Buy links:

A Sweet Man | Of Starlit Balls and Starship Captains | When Skies are Gray

A Sweet Man (M/M contemporary, 391 pages) is the seventh book in The Men of Halfway House series. Maybe you remember me raving about the fifth book in the series and how much I loved it, so when the seventh book was released back in June, I bought it and threw myself all over it. And I loved it! Granted, not as much as I loved A Worthy Man (book #5) but it was a five-star read for sure.

If you’re a regular visitor to my blog, you also know that I’m a K.L. Noone fangirl, so of course I bought Of Starlit Balls and Starship Captains (M/F sci-fi, 6596 words), even though I usually don’t read sci-fi or M/F. But it was short and fabulous, and I loved it so much that I complained to Ms. Noone that it actually was too short. I wanted more of Kit and Arthur! Can you imagine? Me complaining about a story being too short?? 😁

The blurb of When Skies are Gray (M/M contemporary, 16 356 words) intrigued me when I read it, and I wanted to support my writing buddy Ofelia Gränd, so I bought it one afternoon when I was bored and had given myself some time off the studying. OMG, it was so good and it’s age-gap, one of my favorite tropes! I wasn’t surprised, of course, because everything I’ve read that she’s written has been great. (And if you haven’t read Trapped, you should. Immediately!) But these characters…they are extra special. I adore Levi, the big drama queen, and Doc, the most stubborn man on the planet, so the other day I stealthily sowed seeds in Ms. Gränd’s mind that I’d love to read a sequel. We shall see if she falls for my evil tricks 😁

I gave all three books five stars and I give them my warmest recommendations.


And now I’m in desperate need to catch up with my reading. Have any good recommendations for me? 🙂

Book recommendation

49113872._SY475_Alfie Adams comes at life sideways.

After unexpectedly losing his job in television, and having the script he’s worked so hard on unceremoniously dropped, Alfie turns up at his oldest friend, Jam’s, birthday party drunk, pretty sure his world has ended, and that he’s about to hit rock bottom with a bone-cracking thud.

But it’s funny how Jam’s little brother, Benji, seems to know exactly what Alfie needs. For the past twelve months Alfie has thrown himself into his job and tried hard not to think about beautiful punk-loving Benji—tried not to see how the sweet kid he used to look out for, and who used to trail so adoringly after him, has grown up into a big lad with an even bigger heart. As Alfie sobers up, he begins to see things with a new perspective, and Benji has his full attention.

If only Alfie can admit what it is he wants.


Last week, I read something wonderful. I was scrolling my Kindle app and found Everybody in the Place that I downloaded a few months back when it was free but still hadn’t read. So I decided that it was time, and I was delightfully surprised. Everybody in the Place is a short, slice-of-life story about two wonderful characters that touched me deeply. Everyone, including the side characters, are genuinely nice and interesting, and the relationship between Alfie and Benji (but also his BFF Jam) is very heart-warming.
But what gripped me the most was Suki Fleet‘s language. Some people just have a way with words, and Suki Fleet is one of them. Every word, every sentence, just got to me in the most wonderful way.
I mean:
I’m pretty sure I’m not walking properly, rather I feel like I’m a little glittery fish swimming across the sea of the park, pulled along by a warm safe ocean current that has Benji’s face. I could swim forever.
or
Jam joins us and the three of us dance crazily together. I am nothing but a beat. A glimmer of light. A gasp of smoke. God, I’ve missed this. 

I could fill this entire blog post with quotes from this story, but that would get me in trouble for abusing the fair use doctrine, and we wouldn’t want that. 🙂
If you’re in the mood for a short, British story about one very significant day in the lives of two young men, I warmly recommend this book. And if you, like me, are awed by beautiful language, this is a must-read.

Sunday book recommendation

Last week, I read the most breathtakingly romantic book, and I just have to share it with you. Last year, I read Galaxies and Oceans by N.R. Walker, and in my review of it, I wrote: “Galaxies and Oceans is maybe the most romantic book I ever read. Full stop.”

But maybe Galaxies and Oceans has been overtaken by this book. Or at least, it now has another book sharing first place as the most romantic book I’ve ever read.

Which book am I rambling about?


a worthy manVannguard Shaw has spent the last ten years serving a life sentence and adjusting to the ache of solitude. He accepts his fate, a sacrifice for the only man he ever loved and the one person who saw beyond his rough edges.

Drayton grew up with a trust fund and pre-planned future, but an unexpected encounter one night forces him to abandon everything and start from scratch. He is now a self-made man and developer of one of the most sought after electric exotic automobiles in the world with a fortune greater than that of his birthright. Yet, he’d surrender it all—again—for the only man who’s still ever-present in his heart.

After a decade and entirely too much distance between them, Vann is suddenly released back into a world that has been nothing but cruel. Drayton never lost hope they would once again reunite and pick up where they left off, but Vann’s stubborn nature and repeated encounters with a heartbreaking world prove to be a challenge.

Vann needs to tap into his fighting spirit’s reservoir of strength and hope life doesn’t punish him for taking a chance. Only then will he realize his own value and feel worthy enough to finally have Drayton’s heart. And their chance at forever.


halfway house

A Worthy Man is book five in The Men of Halfway House series by Jaime Reese, and I’ve read books 1-3 (pictured above) before. All three books were five-star reads for me, but when the fourth book was released, the blurb didn’t speak to me, and neither did the reviews. The fifth book, on the other hand, did speak to me, so I bought it when it was released back in 2017. But as you all know by now, I’m a short story lover, and A Worthy Man is 425 pages long. Yes. 425!! So I put off reading it because I wasn’t in a mood for such a long story…and I forgot about it.

Until last week, when I scrolled my Kindle app on my e-reader and found it. And lately I have been more in the mood for lengthy books, so I thought “Why the hell not?”

And wow. Wow, wow, wow, wow. 😍

I was hooked from the first page, and Dray and Vann’s story never let me go. It’s a pretty slow story, focused on their relationship, and those are the kinds of stories I love the most. Yes, there are secondary plots, but they never steal focus from the romance. Dray and Vann’s emotions leapt off the page and settled in my heart and my stomach…and in my tear ducts, as evidenced by my tweets below 😀

crying

And it did kill me, in the best possible way. I read it slowly because I didn’t want it to end. I re-read passages that were swoonworthy, and highlighted almost the entire chapter 9 because it was so beautiful and emotional. When I finished it, I lay slain on my couch with my e-reader pressed to my heart and stars (or maybe hearts?) in my eyes.

How will anything ever measure up to the romance level of this book?

If you’re in the mood for action or angsty or gritty or a book with the classic romance plot points where something bad happens at around 75% that makes you doubt there will ever be a HEA, this is definitely not the book for you. But if you, like me, love to read about an underdog who’s had to fight his entire life and finally gets something good in his life, if you love second chances and true love, if you love to read about people who really love each other, who’d do anything for each other, who are always there for each other, who never waiver in their feelings, this is the book for you.

Yes, it’s long. But it’s worth it.  And it can be read as a standalone even though it’s part 5 in a series.

I’d give this book ten stars if Goodreads allowed me.

Amazon link

Sunday book recommendation

There are two tropes I’m not really a fan of when it comes to romance: the fake boyfriend and vacation romance. For the first, I don’t like fake anything, and for the second, I don’t want an expiry date on my romances. I want my romances to have forever-ever-after in sight, not “two weeks, then we go back to our normal lives.”

Despite that, I just read and loved a book with both those tropes: Honeymoon Sweet by Allison Temple. The reason I even tried it was that a while back, I read a post on my friend Addison Albright’s blog, one of her “what I’m reading on the treadmill post.” In these posts, she always includes her favorite quotes from the book she’s currently reading, and for the Honeymoon Sweet post, I fell in love with every single quote. I don’t think that’s ever happened before. So I went to Amazon and downloaded the sample, loved it, so I bought the whole books.


52672329._SY475_Doug is a cheese pizza kind of guy. A honeymoon cruise around the Caribbean is the most adventurous thing he’s ever done. Going on that honeymoon alone is unthinkable, but here he is, with a luxury suite and a broken heart.

Tripp is a hopeless romantic. He’s in a sinking relationship that’s been taking on water for months. He’d throw in the towel if he had one, but he’s naked and locked out of his room.

No one should be on a cruise alone, and Tripp has a simple solution: he and Doug will pretend to be husbands and enjoy everything a week of sea and sun has to offer. But as the days and nights heat up, can a cheese pizza kind of guy be brave enough to give love a second chance?


And oh my god, the book was fabulous. Tripp is a hilarious character, and Doug is a sweetheart and I loved them together. There were several laugh-out-loud moments in the book, and my husband looked at me fondly when I laughed so hard I almost fell out of the couch, and asked “Is it a good book, honey?”

I mean:

Sometimes half the problem with sex is people take it way too seriously, when it’s really just bodies flopping around like seals and making noises your mother would tell you aren’t polite at the dinner table.

But it’s not only funny. There are many serious, heartbreaking moments, too, when the laughter got stuck in my throat and I had to hide my trembling lower lip from my husband who likes to gently tease me when I cry to books. And that’s one of my favorite kind of books: the ones that can both make you laugh and cry and that leaves you feeling happy when you’ve finished it.

Another thing I really loved about it was how distinct the voices were: the story is told in first person alternating point-of-view, and it’s really easy to know which chapters are told from Doug’s POV and which are from Tripp’s. That’s not always the case with stories told in alternating first person POV, but Allison Temple did a great job with Tripp and Doug.

All in all, this was a very satisfying read and I’m very happy that I ignored the fact that I don’t like the fake boyfriend or the vacation romance tropes. I would have missed out on a great book if I’d stuck up my nose at it just because of that reason.

I give it my warmest recommendations and send my thanks to Addison Albright for pointing me in the direction of this wonderful read.

Amazon link

Sunday book recommendations

Happy Sunday everyone! Today, I thought I’d recommend a few books to you that I’ve read lately (I feel like reading, cooking, and listening to music is all I do these days, how about you?)

So if you, like me, read a lot during these difficult times and are looking for recommendations, here are three books I read and enjoyed this last week.

sunday rec

Beautiful Boy by Grace R. Duncan (buy link) was a re-read, the first time I read it was in 2015, but I love it even more now. It’s a BDSM story with some hardcore scenes, but it’s also loving and sweet and emotional. Just like I love my stories.

Afflicted by J.M. Snyder (download link) is free, super short, and emotional. It’s a glimpse into a relationship and it left me wanting more…in a good way.

His Favorite Color is Blood by K.A. Merikan (buy link) is the antithesis of what I usually read. You know by now that I love short, sweet, fluffy, and the primary focus being on the relationship…everything His Favorite Color is Blood isn’t. It’s long, kinky af, and the non-relationship-related plot takes up a big chunk of the story. The relationship between Grim and Misha is glorious though (kinky kinky kinky…I seriously can’t stress this enough!) and that’s what kept me glued to my e-reader. I had to take a break at 71% because it was getting hella intense and I felt like my heart would give out on me. So I posted this in K.A. Merikan’s reader group on Facebook, and let’s just say that Kat Merikan’s answer didn’t really calm my frayed nerves 😆

favorite color blood

As you’ve noticed by now, I didn’t die of heart failure, but it was close 😀


If any of you have any recs for me, leave them in the comments. I’ve been on a age-gap or BDSM spree these last few weeks, so if you have a book that fits that description and that’s also emotional and focusing on the relationship, I’d be super happy!

Take care and have a great Sunday!


Don’t forget about the Smashwords’ Authors Give Back sale, where my books are at least 30% off, but many is 60%. Here’s the link to my author page where you can browse my books.

And if you, like me, has been craving age-gap lately, may I suggest His Steady Heart?

HSH blurb quote smashwords sale

Feel-good books for trying times

Ugh, I just…can’t…with life right now. Lots of stuff (on top of the virus) is making my life miserable right now, and if that wasn’t enough, I signed up for Camp Nanowrimo. So I’m supposed to write 20K words in April, when life is like this? Yeah, okay.

But…I don’t want to make the blog a depressing place, so I won’t bother you with my troubles. Instead, I’ll give you a couple recommendations of books I recently read and thoroughly enjoyed. They are great if you need some happy in your life (because who doesn’t?)


51792269._SX318_SY475_Granddad’s Cup of Tea

Widower Ewan lives a quiet life in his country village, helping out with his grandchildren and dodging his daughter’s attempts to improve his social life by signing him up for every retirement club she can find. When he meets Alex, newly bereaved and taking his first tentative steps into living out and proud after a lifetime in the closet, Ewan reaches out to offer sympathy. As their friendship deepens, Ewan finds himself questioning both his own identity and the nature of his feelings for Alex. But is it too late for a second chance at love?

 

M/M Contemporary / 41 pages

Buy link

Seriously, this book was a ray of sunshine. Ewan, a widower and granddad, is a fabulous character. I wish everyone had a granddad like him. So if you’re in the mood for short, sunshiney, and wonderful, about two mature characters (their age isn’t stated in the book, but I’m guessing seventies. Or late sixties at least), I warmly recommend this book.


37904249._SY475_Finders Keepers

Needing a change of scene, Griffin Burke moves from Brisbane to Coolum Beach to start a new job. The beautiful white sand, aqua-coloured ocean, blue skies, and summer breezes are everything he longs for. What he finds is a mud-covered dog, lost and hungry, with a nametag and a phone number.

Dane Hughes is stuck in Surfers Paradise at a week-long work conference when he gets a phone call from his distraught mother. His dog, his fur baby, Wicket, has run away. Unable to leave and feeling helpless and miserable, he gets a text from a guy. “I think I found your dog…”

Griffin and Dane start talking, and Griffin agrees to look after Wicket until Dane can collect him. With a few days left before his new job starts, Griffin takes Wicket on some coastal adventures and sends Dane photos of their fun, and so the start of something new and kind of wonderful begins.

Griffin might have moved to Coolum in search of a new life, but what he finds is so much more. What he gets to keep just might take some four-legged help.

M/M Contemporary / 220 pages

Buy link

I’m not a dog person, but Wicket was just too adorable. And the way the guys communicate (you probably know by now that I think that the only thing sexier than communication is consent!) is fabulous. And I’ve always wanted to go to Australia, and after reading this book I want to go more than ever. So if you want a cute dog, interesting side characters, and an abundance of sweetness, I warmly recommend this book.


leather and tea series

I also read the third book in the Leather and Tea series by K.L. Noone. It was wonderful, the whole series is wonderful, but I’ve gushed about it before so I won’t gush again. I’ll just quietly post buy links to all three of the books and look at you sternly until you run off and buy them.

Leather and Tea | A Leather and Tea Morning | Leather and Tea in London


Stay safe everyone, and please share whatever feelgood stuff you do to keep your spirits up in these difficult times. ❤️