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 fiancé, 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!

Monday, February 12, 2018

Relay by Layla Reyne

Relay by Layla Reyne

Review by Lauren

source: copy from Netgalley; all opinions are my own

Official Summary (add on Goodreads): Captain is not a title Alejandro “Alex” Cantu takes lightly. Elected by his teammates to helm the US Men’s Swim Team, he proudly accepts the role, despite juggling endless training, team administrative work, and helping out on the family farm. And despite his ex-lover, Dane Ellis—swimming’s biggest star—also making the Olympic Team.

Dane has been a pawn in his celebrity parents’ empire from crib to pool, flashing his camera-ready smile on demand and staying deeply in the closet. Only once did he drop the act—the summer he fell in love with Alex. Ten years later, Dane longs to cut his parents’ strings, drop his too-bright smile, and beg Alex for another chance.

Alex, though, isn’t ready to forgive and forget, and Dane is a distraction he doesn’t need on his team, until an injury forces Alex to accept Dane as his medley relay anchor. Working together, their passion reignites. When Dane’s parents threaten reprisal and Alex is accused of doping, the two must risk everything to prove Alex’s innocence, to love one another, and to win back their spots on the team, together. 

Review: I love Layla Reyne so I was really excited to check out her new series, Changing Lanes. This book deals with Olympics swimmers Alex and Dane, who had a summer time relationship as teens. Dane wasn’t, and couldn’t be, out with a preacher father and micromanaging mother. The two are on the USA swimming team and headed to the Olympics, but Dane is still letting his parents rule his life and Alex is out and proud. The two are still attracted to each other though, and Dane regrets how their summer ended. I love the setting of this book, especially with the Winter Olympics fast approaching. Both men are great guys, though it’s easy to want Dane to be his own man. Believe me, he gets there! I can’t wait for the next book…a companion novel with two characters you first meet in Relay!

Friday, February 9, 2018

Pressure Head by J.L. Merrow

Pressure Head by J.L. Merrow

Review by Lauren

source: copy from Netgalley; all opinions are my own

Official Summary (add on Goodreads): Tom Paretski’s not just a plumber with a dodgy hip courtesy of a schoolboy accident. He also has a sixth sense for finding hidden things. Called in by the police to help locate a body near Brock’s Hollow, he’s staggered to encounter Phil Morrison, his old school crush—and the closeted bully whose actions contributed to Tom’s accident.

Phil’s all grown up now, and Tom’s unwilling attraction to him is back with a vengeance. Phil’s now openly gay—and what’s more, he’s interested in Tom’s personal charms as well as his psychic talents. As a private investigator called in by the dead woman’s parents, Phil is sceptical about Tom’s unusual gift, but nevertheless quick to spot its potential to aid him in his work.

The further they go with the investigation, the less they can ignore their shared past, and the more the pressure and the heat build between them. But Tom isn’t certain he wants to know the secrets he’s helping to uncover, while there’s a murderer on the loose who won’t hesitate to kill again—and this uneasy couple is moving right into his sights.

Review: This is the first book in the Plumber’s Mate series and I’m happily going to keep reading them (I’m actually reading the sequel right now, out next month). Tom has a gift of finding things, but only if they were intentionally hidden. He’s friends with one of the cops who brings him in to help find things, and this time, he’s meant to find the body of a girl who was murdered. Of course, he didn’t plan on his old schoolmate Phil to be a private detective looking into the case. These two were, essentially, enemies in school, but Tom’s always been attracted to Phil. The eventual relationship was handled well – I thought that things moved slowly enough, allowing the two to get to know each other in the present day. Tom is also quite funny, which adds a lot of humor and fun!

Monday, February 5, 2018

Mini Review: Blood Visions by L.J. Hamlin

Blood Visions by L.J. Hamlin

Review by Lauren

source: copy from Netgalley; all opinions are my own

Official Summary (add on Goodreads): Private detective Ronan Bayne is a former cop who now runs his own agency specializing in all things paranormal. After several women go missing, and the cops and FBi are equally frustrated and at a loss, Ronan is called in to see if he can find answers they can’t.

After waking up from a terrible vision of a girl, darkness, and blood, Dustin tries to go to the police but to no avail. But on a visit to the crime scene, he crosses paths with Ronan. 

Reluctantly, the two men join forces to locate the missing, but both the case and the partnership prove to be more complicated than either man expects…

Review: I thought the mystery in this one was interesting, and I like the powers that Dustin has which allows him to help solve said mystery. I gave this one 3 stars on Goodreads, because I did enjoy it overall. However, it wasn’t my most favorite and I felt that the guy’s names were used over and over, if that makes sense.