After surviving a horrific chemical attack that turned him into a metahuman, Captain Jamie Callahan got a second lease on life. For three years he’s been working for the Metahuman Defense Force and leading Alpha Team - all against the wishes of his family. The job requires his full dedication, so it’s no surprise Jamie doesn’t have time for a relationship. An enticing one-night stand with a gorgeous stranger shows Jamie what he’s been missing. When a mission to take down a terrorist cell brings that same stranger - Kyle Brannigan - back into his world, Jamie’s life gets complicated.
Great story with interesting world building and a terrific narration, this dual POV sci-fi romance hit all the bright spots for me from the characters, to the plot, to the final moments - it was all really, really good. There was also plenty of action, both out of and in between the sheets.
Then add it being a fun listen on top of everything else and you can color me happy. Greg Tremblay, under his Greg Boudreaux pseudonym (for sexier titles), keeps a wide array of characters easy to follow along with while making all the good parts even better.
I especially loved that the story doesn't have a cliffhanger ending, even though it definitely opens up a series.
I'm really looking forward to the next book in the series, In the Ruins.
Learning to be in a committed relationship has been easy for Spencer. In fact, too easy. Andrew has fit into his life seamlessly. Spencer's let go of his insecurities and hang-ups, and he and Andrew are enjoying where things are headed. For the first time in years, Spencer's life is unbelievably perfect.
Andrew overthinks everything. So when Spencer gets a phone call from Australia, he's certain Spencer will push him away. But instead of driving them apart, maybe it will solidify what they already have.
Once again, N.R. Walker proves she can take a storyline with little to no conflict and still create situations that tug at your heartstrings. Hard. Beware - there is a scene in this that I found very sad, and coupled with Joel's performance, had me outright bawling.
Spencer and Andrew go together like Peanut Butter and Jelly...like Vegemite and toast....like Pavlova and cream. They complement each other so well, and I love how Andrew is a rock for Spencer through some pretty rough moments.
I love how much Joel Leslie seems to enjoy performing these characters. His seamless transition between accents, the easily distinguishable character voices, it all comes together to provide a wonderful listening experience. I finished it in one sitting because I could just not bear to put it down.
If I could change anything I really wish this hadn't been broken up into three parts. Especially with the audio, I wish the three parts had been put together as one long book.
I've enjoyed listening to The Spencer Cohen series so much. I would absolutely recommend you buy them (and listen to them together)!
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Nathaniel Bainbridge is used to hiding, whether it's concealing his struggles with reading or his forbidden desire for men. Under the thumb of his controlling father, the governor of Primrose Isle, he's sailing to the fledging colony, where he'll surrender to a respectable marriage for his family's financial gain. Then pirates strike and he's kidnapped for ransom by the Sea Hawk, a legendary villain of the New World. Bitter and jaded, Hawk harbors futile dreams of leaving the sea for a quiet life, but men like him don't deserve peace. He has a score to settle with Nathaniel's father.
In the year 1710 Nathaniel Bainbridge and his pregnant sister, Susanna, are traveling to a Caribbean island outpost called Primrose Isle where their father is Governor to reunite Susanna with her husband and introduce Nathaniel to his betrothed.
Before the ship can reach its destination though it's attacked by the Damned Manta, a pirate ship ruled with an iron fist by the infamous Captain Hawk.
Things go south for the Bainbridge siblings when Captain Hawk realizes who's aboard. He quickly devises a plan to hold Nathaniel for ransom and revenge on Nathaniel's corrupt father, Walter Bainbridge, who lied and is directly responsible for Hawk and his crew losing their letter of mark as a Privateer which forced them into a life of piracy.
The plan is simple: if Nathaniel's father doesn't pay 100,000 pounds ransom Nathaniel will die.
While initially they are enemies, as time and circumstances change the two begin a sexual exploration. Nathaniel is 18 and Hawk is 41, but their age gap doesn't impede the closeness that grows between them.
He was going to hell for his sinful desires regardless, so the journey might as well be worth it.
However, their strengthening relationship presents a real dilemma for Hawk - regardless of how much his heart may be engaged by Nathaniel - if Bainbridge doesn't pay the ransom Hawk will have to keep his promise to his crew to kill Nathaniel.
Kidnapped by the Pirate is a terrific May-December, old-fashioned-bodice-ripper-style historical romance. I enjoyed the dual POV, the story paces quickly, and I loved seeing the tough as nails alpha male pirate fall for his plucky virgin captive. And let me tell you, the sex scenes are SUPER HOT.
Cornell Collins gives an exceptional performance. His timing, pacing, and emotional performance are all on point. He brings out the innocence in Nathaniel's character without making him a shrinking violet, and the softer side of alpha pirate, Hawk, and makes sure the large cast of characters have easily distinguishable character voices.
Kidnapped by the Pirate is a sexy, sweet captivating listen with some twists and turns and a lovely, and believable, happy ending.
Fantastic narration, lovely story, great ending. *sighs* This made me a very happy listener. Recommended!
Felix - Things I expect to find at Gadleigh Castle: rare stained glass, the subject of my dissertation; peace and quiet, to finish said dissertation; an escape from the paparazzi. Things I don’t expect to find: a hidden door leading to a secret room; the most gorgeous man I’ve ever set eyes on; love. Lio - Things I know are expected of me in life: I will become the King of Liorland; I will marry a nice woman; I will provide heirs to my family’s monarchy. Reasons that might be difficult: I’m gay; I’m falling in love with Felix; He has no idea I’m royal.
Felix’s grandfathers have sent him on a special trip to Gadleigh Castle to study their rare stained glass so he can finish his dissertation and get away from the papparazi that descend on their small Texas town every time Felix’s mother, a famous (and infamous) actress, releases a new film.
When he meets Lio they both have something to hide. Felix hides his mother’s fame, and Lio hides that he’s the soon to be crowned King of Liorland.
They come from different worlds, and are going in different directions, so how hard can it be not to fall in love? Spoiler: it’s impossible.
Do you like the whole commoner falling in love with Royalty trope? Do you like super hot sex scenes? Do you like some humor mixed with your romance? Have you read anything else by Lucy Lennox and enjoy her writing style? Then run, do not walk, to pick up Felix and the Prince.
Felix and the Prince is an adorable, humorous, sexy as hell, sweet, with only a sprinkling of angst, romance with an absolutely sigh-inducing happy ending.
Michael Pauley brings the Wilde family, and Lennox’s fictional Grimaldi royal family, to life. He highlights the character’s emotions without being over the top about it and makes this an enjoyable listen. I like his character voices, and appreciate that he voices the female characters without being super high pitched. But beware of listening to those sex scenes while at work! *fans self*
When hockey star Caleb Carter returns to his hometown to recover from an injury, the only thing he’s interested in is a little R&R. He never expects to run into his onetime crush at a grade school fund-raiser. Seeing Aaron Price hits him hard. The attraction is still there, even after all these years, and Caleb decides to make a play for the schoolteacher. Aaron has been burned by love before and can’t imagine what Caleb could possibly see in a guy like him. But as Aaron spends more time with Caleb, he begins to wonder if he might have what it takes to win the hockey player’s heart.
After breaking his foot, hockey player Caleb Carter returns to his small hometown to recover and when he runs into his high school crush, Aaron Price, his fall is fast and certain. Unfortunately, Aaron has some old ghosts haunting him that prevent him from truly opening his heart to Caleb.
I enjoyed Finn Sterling's narration. He paces the story well and injects just enough emotion at all the right points. I particularly enjoy Sterling's male character voices, which he does really well. I just wish he wouldn't use such high-pitched voices for the female characters.
Told from a dual POV, I was loving this right up until the third quarter (when it unraveled with miscommunication, as Aaron pushes Caleb away, which completely frustrated me) until it finally corrected itself at almost the very end.
It's a well written story, with likable characters, an interesting romantic plot, good narration, and a very sweet HEA ending. If it weren't for the late miscommunication I would be rating this much higher. I hate unnecessary miscommunication in a story, but that's a personal peeve of mine, so your mileage may vary.
Rescued from slavers, healer novice Jaime Buchanan finds himself alone and free in Pyrderi, a kingdom of magic, mythical creatures, and a culture as open and kind as his homeland was cruel and close-minded. Despite his rescue, Jaime is not left without scars, both mental and physical. Traumatized by his experience and hiding his gift, Jaime struggles to earn his place in the kitchens of Angharad Palace, the heart of Taliesin City. His former life as a student of the healing arts leaves him at a disadvantage in the kitchens, and his damaged state is becoming more apparent by the day.
This could be the start of a beautifully romantic fantasy series.
Jaime Buchanan was captured by slavers during one of the darkest periods in his life. Reeling from grief, he contends with horrible abuse before being rescued by a twist of fate. That twist brings him to the Angharad Palace and eventually into the arms of the youngest Prince, Maxim.
The story actually begins after Jaime is rescued, and the reader/listener is only given slight anecdotal glimpses of the cruelty he lived through. When Jaime perceives a threat through a small misunderstanding he runs, but is found and elevated quickly from a kitchen boy back to a healer apprentice.
S.J. Himes and Joel Leslie continue their audio partnership and it serves them both well. They complement each other greatly with Joel bringing out a lot of nuance to S.J.'s stories that might be missed by simply reading. Joel's rich character voices, accents, and timing serve this audio beautifully.
The story moves quickly and has some time jumps, and while it has an interesting premise and world building, it suffers a teeny bit from too much telling and not enough showing. The romance is insta-love, and while I personally like instant romances I prefer to see a reason as to why the characters fall for each other so quickly, and I feel like this was missing that component.
In the end there is a lovely HFN and the story itself is a setup for a potentially much larger series. I enjoyed it overall and will definitely be back for the next installment, which I believe will follow a different couple before eventually circling back to Jaime and Maxim in a later book.
It's a fun, wonderfully narrated fantasy romance listen, that's lovely and quietly romantic, with low angst, and a HFN ending. It's a sweet beginning, but it's obvious this is mostly to set up for a series.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
I left my family and tiny Texas hometown 15 years ago to escape small-town gossips and to give my mom and sister the chance at a better life. But when a phone call from an attorney back home informs me that my sister passed away, leaving me custody of her newborn baby, I'm shocked out of the steady life I've built for myself running a tattoo shop in San Francisco. The thing is: I don't do babies. And I don't do small towns. Or commitment. And I especially don't do family.
Nico Salerno left his small Texas hometown when he was only fifteen in order to give his mom and older sister a chance at a better life when he realizes his mother’s homophobic boyfriend is never going to propose with him in the picture.
Weston Wilde has had an easy life filled with close family, acceptance, and a lot of luck and hard work, but when his best friend dies and her brother shows up to take custody of her baby he’s a lot less interested in finding out why Nico left or where he’s been then blaming him and being a pretty big jerk.
Personally, I was taken aback at how long it took for West to realize that Nico wasn’t a bad guy. I mean, a kid doesn’t leave home at fifteen without some pretty good reasons.
Lucy Lennox writes another entertaining, sexy as hell romance with a sprinkling of angst and drama and Michael Pauley does such a good job bringing the characters to life. I was invested in the listen – even yelling at the air a few times when West was being particularly hard-headed.
All in all this was an engaging listen and I look forward to continuing the series.
Sam of Wilds faced the Dark wizard Myrin and lived to tell the tale. Granted, the battle left him scarred, but things could be a hell of a lot worse. It’s not until he reunites with Morgan of Shadows and Randall that he realizes just how much worse things could be. Because the scars have meaning and hint at Myrin’s true plans for Sam and the Kingdom of Verania. With time running out, Sam and his band of merry misfits must travel to the snowy mountains in the North and the heart of the Dark Woods to convince the remaining dragons to stand against Myrin.
I'm not even going to lie, I have listened to this multiple times since I bought it approximately six minutes after it went live on Audible. I'm not even a little bit sorry. I'm actually on my fourth listen right now.
And yes, I have cried at the end every. single. time.
Michael Lesley - you're a genius and a truly gifted performer. Kudos and bravo, sir! (And, can I just say Pat and Leslie - brilliant!)
TJ Klune has long hinted that we would be mad at him by the end of this book. There is a lot that happens to build off where we've been in The Lightning-Struck Heart and A Destiny of Dragons and, because it's the penultimate in Sam's trilogy (quadrilogy?), it brings the reader much closer to what seems to be building toward the inevitable ending.
Never fear, there are no spoilers here. Which is so hard - you don't even know. BUT SO NECESSARY. I wouldn't have wanted someone to warn more about what happens in The Consumption of Magic, because, even though it damn near killed me, it fits so brilliantly into this story.
So what can I tell you? Well, I can give you hints TJ himself has let slip -
* I can tell you Prince Justin is back with the group in a major way and he's redeemed a lot (in my opinion)...
* I can tell you that Consumption has some of the biggest action scenes from the series...
* I can tell you the mated Northern Dragons are everything you could hope they'll be and more...
* I can tell you it has the longest sex scene TJ's ever written...
* I can tell you it has some twists that you won't see coming.
* And I can tell you by the time you finish you will have run through an entire gamut of emotions: You will laugh, gasp, hope, and suffer from Wookiee Cry Face.
This was my initial reaction after reading the book -
I'm having a hard time processing my feelings for this. I'm absolutely heartbroken. I know they are just characters, but I have read and listened to the stories in this series so often I could recite whole chapters verbatim. And I love these characters, okay? I love them. And this...I thought I could see it coming. I thought I knew what was going to happen. I didn't. Not at all. And my heart. is. broken.
5 devastated stars
This series is phenomenal, no lie, but the audio elevates this to a whole other level. This is NOT a standalone. BUY THIS SERIES. Read this. LISTEN TO THIS. RECOMMENDED.
"A warning. All of you will not survive until the end. There will be loss, Sam. And it will burn like nothing has ever burned before. You must remember to keep in the light, even when the dark begins to curl around your feet."
1 of 2 people found this review helpful
Spencer Cohen is the guy who gets answers to relationship questions. Playing the role of the new lover, his job is to make his client's ex realize one of two things: he doesn't want to break up or he really does. Either way, his client gets answers. The ex would either apologize and beg, or turn and walk. But in the end, Spencer's client won. If he wanted his ex back and got him, it was great. If the guy walked away, then as hard it was for the client, he knew it was over. Regardless of the outcome, Spencer's work was done.
A wonderfully written setup to a terrific series with exceptionally entertaining narration by Joel Leslie.
Told from the POV of Spencer, a fix it man hired by people who have been dumped to make their exes jealous and restore the relationship or prove once and for all that the relationship is over. Spencer is great at his job, mainly because he excels at keeping an emotional distance.
When Spencer’s takes on Andrew as a (reluctant) client it’s pretty clear from the start Spencer’s emotional distancing isn’t really working with Andrew. One of the best parts about this series is getting to know both Spencer and Andrew’s emotions and pasts.
IMO you should really listen to Book One and Book Two together. I think the two books work best together because Joel is a maestro who give a great performance with emotional nuance that I didn’t want to stop listening to.
But two things you should know before starting: there’s no sex, only a single kiss, in Book One. This works perfectly as the characters are set up and getting to know one another, and you get tons of sex in Book Two. Another reason you should read/listen to them back to back is Book One ends almost abruptly, but if you pick up Book Two immediately after it flows brilliantly into how the relationship between Andrew and Spencer grows.
Low angst, fun, funny, with great feels and wonderful narration.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
When a blown tire leads directly to mind-blowing sex with a white knight named Dakota, pro-hockey player Bryce Lowery discovers he is most definitely gay. Being with Dakota opens up a whole new world. Bryce can’t imagine life without him. But he refuses to be Bryce's dirty little secret. If he wants to keep Dakota, he's either going to have to come out publicly or retire and walk away from millions of dollars. Bryce Lowery feels like the answer to all of Dakota's prayers. But is Dakota willing to leave the only life he's ever known?
Sexy, fun, adorable, sweet...I love a good fish out of water story and when combined with an age gap between partners, great side and secondary characters, and a happy ending I'm a very happy camper. City Boy offered not only romance, but some twists and turns that kept the story flowing well and me interested throughout.
I enjoyed Michael Pauley's narration overall and thought he did a good job bringing the story to life and giving the character's personalities a chance to shine.
Note for sticklers: Michael Pauley's tone and inflection sometimes gets a bit too breathy and he slipped out of the character voice for Dakota a few times. Enough that during dialogue portions I sometimes had to rewind to listen to a section and listen again to understand what was happening.