Monday, March 19, 2018

Love, Simon is...Amazing

Has anyone seen Love, Simon yet? It's amazing. I'm seriously in love with it and ready to go back and see it again. I'll have a more full review on my ShootingStarsMag blog tomorrow, if you want to keep an eye out. However, I'm also taking other people's thoughts about the movie because I hope to share those in a post this Friday. So if you've seen the movie and have something to add, let me know, or if you wrote your own blog review of the film, send me a link and I'll happily share that too!

Now, if Love, Simon is our near you and you aren't sure about seeing it...please, please do! Or buy a ticket or someone who wants to see it. Show the movie studios we want more LGBT+ movies and hopefully Love, Simon will do so well, they'll make them.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Heat Trap by J.L. Merrow

Heat Trap by J.L. Merrow
Review by Lauren
source: copy from Netgalley; all opinions are my own
Check out the summary on Goodreads
Review: I don’t want to spoil too much about this book as it’s the third in a series, which is why I didn’t include the official summary above. However, I can say that I absolutely love these books. I’m a big fan of m/m romance – as you probably know if you’ve read my blog for awhile – but I also love m/m books that aren’t just focused on the romance (though those are awesome too!) and the Plumber’s Mate Mysteries are just such books. Plus, it’s a series that follows the same couple, which can be rare – most “sequels” in m/m fiction tend to be companion novels.
While I don’t always rate books I read, I gave the first two books (Pressure Head and Relief Valve) four stars, and I rated Heat Trap five stars on Goodreads. Once again, this book features a mystery that Tom and his PI boyfriend, Phil, must try and solve. Tom’s a plumber by trade – hence the series’ title – but he also has the ability to find things that have been purposely hidden, connecting the emotion of the hider with it, so sometimes it’s a bit cheeky, but other times (in the case of murders), it’s much darker. As for Phil and Tom, they have been growing their relationship across all of these books and I love how they are growing closer, as well as getting to know more about each other. Phil and Tom knew each other in school but they hadn’t seen each other in years, and a lot happened during that time period, especially because Phil was definitely not out back in the day.
I feel like this series just gets better and better. The mysteries are all intriguing, and I love when Tom uses his abilities, but I also like the growth of a relationship across multiple books. It feels natural and realistic. I definitely recommend this series, and Heat Trap in particular.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

3 YA Books for $30 (by March 3rd): The LGBT+ Books I Bought

I can't believe that tomorrow is March 1, but I'm ready for some (hopefully) warmer weather. I wanted to stop in today and let you know that the 3 YA books for $30 deal from Barnes n Noble is ending on March 3. There are plenty of LGBT+ YA books that you can get, so hurry hurry hurry! I'd love to know which books you chose.

I've actually gotten a few books already, but I just got paid and I couldn't resist grabbing some more LGBT+ books that I've been wanting to read. Granted, two of the books I got last time were LGBT+ too - Autoboyography by Christina Lauren and Chainbreaker by Tara Sim.

This time? I got the following-

Willful Machines by Tim Floreen

The Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza by Shaun David Hutchinson (amazing author!)

The Dangerous Art of Blending In by Angelo Surmelis

What would you purchase? Are you going to take advantage of this great deal?

Friday, February 23, 2018

Etsy Pride: #FebruHARRY2018 Version!

Last month, I shared an Etsy Pride all about Dumbledore - as J.K. Rowling had revealed after the books were released that Dumbledore was actually gay. Since I'm celebrating all things Harry Potter this month, I thought I'd do a mini Etsy Pride with everything related to HP (not just Dumbledore). Enjoy!!

Etsy has TONS of amazing Harry Potter items, so I'm only sharing a very, very, very small portion here! 

Harry Potter Sock Feet Bookmarks from My Bookmark. You can choose the color/house that you want and each bookmark is $25.00. My Bookmark is from the Ukraine!

This Wizarding Waltz Candle - based around the Yule Ball in the fourth book - is from Novelly Yours, based in the U.S. This candle goes for $14.75.

Harry Potter Inspired 5- Piece Kitchen Set from Go Geek Designs, based in the U.S. This set sells for $20.

Omg, if I ever have a baby, I need this Harry Potter Milestone Blanket from Stephyyy Creations, based in the U.S. The blanket is $49.99 and if you add in the Harry Potter glasses (personally, I'd just get the blanket), it's $54.00.

And finally, you can get these fun Harry Potter Book Sleeves (choose your House) from Promiscuous Book Lover, based in the U.S. Each one is only $20.00 (and there are other HP items in the shop!)

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

#FebruHARRY2018 Giveaways to Enter!

I know I know, #FebruHARRY2018 is coming to an end soon...but don't worry! If you haven't seen the giveaways yet, there is still time to enter! I'm sorry to say that these two are both U.S. only though!!

First off, don't forget this great deal for some HP themed cookies! Aren't they just gorgeous?!

Now - giveaway time!

Win your very own wand! There are wizard wands, flower wands, saber wands, and more! This giveaway ends February 28th so get to entering!

Win some yummy butterbeer fudge (I tried it; it's great!) AND a movie of your choice (as long as it stars someone from the HP tons and tons of options here!) This giveaway ends on February 28th too!

That's all I have for you right now, but I DO plan on doing a Twitter giveaway and an Instagram giveaway, so if you aren't following me, please do so! Leave your username in the comments below and I'll be sure to follow you back!

Monday, February 19, 2018

Going Overboard by L.A. Witt

Going Overboard by L.A. Witt

Review by Lauren

source: copy from Netgalley; all opinions are my own

Official Summary (add to Goodreads): Second-class petty officers Dalton Taylor and Chris Ingram have been best friends since coxswain’s school. Now they’re stationed together in the harbor patrol unit of NAS Adams. They’re content as friends, but secretly, they both ache for more. Neither makes a move, though; while Dalton is out and proud, Chris is closeted—even from his best friend.

Then another coxswain’s negligence nearly drowns Dalton. After a taste of how easily they could lose each other, neither man can keep his feelings hidden anymore, and it turns out love and sex come easy when you’re falling for your best friend.

Things aren’t just heating up between the friends-turned-lovers, though. The Navy is investigating the accident, and the harbor patrol chief isn’t going to let his star coxswain go down for dereliction of duty, even if saving him means throwing Dalton under the bus.

As the threats and gaslighting pile up, Chris and Dalton need each other more than ever—as shipmates, friends, and lovers. But if their chief prevails, the only way they can save their careers is to let each other go.

Review: Going Overboard is the fifth book in the Anchor Point series - and I've read and enjoyed them all (they are companion novels, so you can read them out of order if you want, but previous couples are often mentioned). However, I wouldn't say this was my favorite in the series. I really like friends to lovers romances, but I feel like there wasn't a lot of their relationship explored in this one. It took a bit for them to get together after Dalton almost drowns, which was nice and felt realistic. That life or death moment was just a catalyst for both of them to be honest about their feelings.

There is a lot about the Navy in this one, since the accident is being investigated and Dalton is being told to basically not tell the truth and get back out on the boat, even while suffering from obvious PTSD. Chris hates seeing Dalton suffering, and it was sweet how much Chris was there for Dalton - as much as he could be though. Like I said before, I feel like there was so much about the investigation/Navy that we, as readers, don't get as much of a relationship between Chris and Dalton. Part of it might be because they were friends first, so the relationship happens kind of naturally. That's fine, but I guess I just wanted more on-page time with the two of them. At any rate, I do love this series, and I'd happily read more from the Anchor Point world!

Friday, February 16, 2018

Relief Valve by J.L. Merrow

Relief Valve by J.L. Merrow

Review by Lauren

source: copy from Netgalley; all opinions are my own

Official Summary (add to Goodreads): The relationship between Tom Paretski, a cheeky plumber with a gift for finding hidden things, and PI Phil Morrison may only be a few weeks old, but already it’s under attack. Tom’s friends and family are convinced the former bully isn’t good enough for him, and they’re not shy about saying so.

Then Tom’s prickly older sister, Cherry, is poisoned at her own engagement party. Tom’s left reeling and not knowing who to suspect. Could it be her new fiancĂ©, Gregory, a cathedral canon with an unfortunate manner and a taste for taxidermy? Or someone from her old writers’ circle, which she left after a row? Or could the attack be connected to her work as a barrister? Meanwhile, Tom’s honorary auntie’s left him a gag gift from beyond the grave that could be more significant than anyone knows.

Phil’s fighting against the clock to solve the case before somebody ends up dead. And with the poisoner hiding a dark secret, Phil’s terrified Tom could have been the target all along.

Review: The first book in the Plumber's Mate Mysteries is Pressure Head (read my review here) and I really loved it, so I was excited to get the sequel to read/review. These books are better read in order as they feature the exact same characters, following plumber Tom and his PI boyfriend, Phil. Each book has a different mystery, so they connect through the relationship, which is still going strong in Relief Valve, though Tom does sometimes feel awkward knowing that Phil was previously married.
In Relief Valve, readers get to know more about Tom's family, especially his older sister, Cherry, who is suddenly getting married. Well, until she's poisoned at her engagement party, and now Phil and Tom are on the hunt for just who could possibly want to hurt Cherry (if it was Cherry they were after).

I really liked this mystery and I didn't figure out "who done it" until the end. I won't say it's impossible to figure out, but these are the types of mysteries where I'm happy to go along for the ride. I don't try too hard to unravel the mystery because I'm having a good time following Tom and Phil on their adventures, and also watching the two of them grow closer together!