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How steamy is it? Sizzling

Publisher's Summary

It's Christmas, and all antique dealer Sebastian Snow wants is for his business to make money and to save his floundering relationship with closeted CSU detective Neil Millett. When Snow's Antique Emporium is broken into and a heart is found under the floorboards, Sebastian can't let the mystery rest.

He soon finds himself caught up in murder investigations that echo the macabre stories of Edgar Allan Poe. To make matters worse, Sebastian's sleuthing is causing his relationship with Neil to crumble, while at the same time he's falling hard for the lead detective on the case, Calvin Winter. Sebastian and Calvin must work together to unravel the mystery behind the killings, despite the mounting danger and sexual tension, before Sebastian becomes the next victim.

In the end, Sebastian only wants to get out of this mess alive and live happily ever after with Calvin.

©2016 C S Poe (P)2017 DSP Publications

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    109
  • 4 Stars
    54
  • 3 Stars
    24
  • 2 Stars
    9
  • 1 Stars
    6

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    122
  • 4 Stars
    48
  • 3 Stars
    18
  • 2 Stars
    5
  • 1 Stars
    3

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    101
  • 4 Stars
    40
  • 3 Stars
    36
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    10
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

I'm not a mystery fan - but this was very good!

I have to admit that I am not a mystery fan and so my critique of this story is more heavily weighted on the "romance" side of things than the mystery. I think, like Mary, that the mystery was pretty engaging and that fans of Poe will probably love diving into this story for all it's bloody goodness.

The fact that Neil is still part of Sebastian's life at the beginning of the story made me a bit uncomfortable, and that, coupled with how - relatively - quickly he went from Calvin being a new lover to "in love" with Calvin - didn't sit well with my sentimental heart. The initial love scene between them put a bad taste in my mouth for the rest of the story- unfortunately - and I never did warm to these two as a couple. I'm a sap and I just can't help it!

In any case, I really enjoyed Derrick's narration. He is so easy to listen to, the sound quality excellent and he has excellent timing- clearly understanding the importance as it applies to both humor and suspense. He shows a great breadth in characterization, too. He made both a convincing nerd in Sebastian and growly Alpha in Calvin - as well as some very creative secondary characters that included women! Well done!

So for the writing, mystery, romance - I'd give this a 3 of 5 stars and the narration 5 of 5 stars to round up to an overall experience of 4 of 5 stars

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic!

A brilliantly funny, marvelous mystery. Derrick McClain gives a masterful performance. A magical listening experience.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

2.5 Stars

"I was about to do something stupid…"

The narration was fine overall, and Derrick McClain does a good job with easily discernible character voices and infusing a nice amount of emotion where needed. However, unfortunately for me, the plot itself was annoying to the extreme and while sometimes great narration can save a story that has moments that annoy me, if anything, Derrick does such a great job bringing the characters to life that it tipped me even more over the edge.

Told entirely from the first person POV of antique dealer Sebastian Snow, he consistently makes the worst decision possible, even after thinking it through. Literally…Every. Single. Time. I honestly don't think he even once made a safe, sane, or rational decision. Not once. It's an almost 8 hour audio – and I spent nearly all of it exclaiming, "Seriously? Seriously!?! That's what you're going to do?!"

I'm not going to lie…I was really hoping for some redemption for Sebastian, but no. In the end, all this was for me was exhausting. (Note: On-page cheating, poor impulse control and damaged decision making skills.)

Really the only things I liked about this story was Sebastian's relationship with his father and Derrick McClain's narration. I'm sorry, but this was a miss for me, maybe YMMV.

Recommended for those that like a mystery and don't have a problem with a particularly TSTL character, cheating, or requiring a little more suspension of disbelief than usual.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant narration!

I already loved this story and Derrick McClain's narration is brilliantly spot on. His Sebastian IS Sebastian. He captures the nuances of this character and brings him to life in a wonderful way. As for his Calvin? Who knew Derrick could do sexy so well! That deeper, huskier voice was an unexpected delight. Cannot wait for the next audiobook in this series.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Loved the story, especially the narration

I enjoyed listening to Derrick McClain bring Sebastian Snow and Calvin Winter to life. The murder mystery with references to Poe was very interesting, together with great narration. This will be an audiobook that I'll listen to again.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Literary Laziness

Antique store owner and amateur sleuth Seb Shaw makes so many stupid choices to put himself in danger instead of calling the police or 9-1-1 that this is an extraordinarily frustrating read. Writing the sleuth to make foolish decisions to generate drama and unrealistic reveal clues is literary laziness and a failure of creativity. It is possible to have an intelligent amateur sleuth that calls the police and solve the mystery. C.S. Poe is not a bad writer, just a lazy one.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Did not live up to my expectations

Neither the story nor the narration really kept me interested in this book. I finished it, because it wasn't awful, but it wasn't that good. The story could have been much creepier, but was rushed. Sebastian was a whiny baby sometimes, and his feelings about Neil seemed shallow. I'm not sure Calvin was aware of how immature Seb would turn out to be. The narration was somewhat annoying to me. Mr. McClain had an odd gasping way of speaking that detracted from the story. It seemed to work for Seb, because it made him sound as immature as I thought he was, but it was somewhat annoying the rest of the time.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Had potential

Unfortunately like many misguided authors , this one also couldn't help herself from adding in just enough unnecessary tidbits of animal cruelty to ruin the story and make it impossible for me at least ,to continue. I was enjoying the story and the narration very much so it was all the more disappointing that I had to stop.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

One of the best audio's hands down

Any additional comments?

I read this book when it first came out and simple loved it. Love the narrator's voice so when I saw it became an audio, it was a perfect choice.

Ms. Poe, does a wonderful job bringing everyone to life for us, not just the events of the story, but the sub story, to feeling each person has, why the are having them, even if they aren't the main focus.
From the parrot that has something to share to Maggie that just loves. To Neil and Cal and the rest of the crew.
And Derrick, the narrator does such an amazing job with all the different voices, from the whiny, to the women and everyone in between.
Now I've read book two, so can't wait to hear it!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Well done Mystery

Book is interesting and factually important in expanding one's knowledge of Poe. Towards the end it does become somewhat predictable.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Fairy
  • 07-28-17

Good story

I was listening to this when I had a bad migraine and it was good enough to keep me distracted from the pain. With other similar books, this is not the only murder mystery romance with a cop and an antique book seller I have read🙊, the romance was lacking but this one was better, more believable.

My only issue was that I guessed most of the "mystery" before it happened. I wont put spoilers here, but as they uncovered each revelation I had already noticed and was not surprised at all so I feel I spent most of the book waiting for them to see the obvious.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • ReaderLoves
  • 07-17-17

Awesome

This story is beautiful and romantic and erotic. Love Calvin and Sebastian together. And the narration is flawless.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-19-17

Managed less than 5 minutes!

I can’t say if this is a good story or not, as I found the narration so irritating I listened to less than 5 minutes of the book.
He is nasal, monotone and emphasises really odd parts of sentences and words. It’s very strange.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sort by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Mitchell
  • 09-05-17

A major disappointment

I'm really into murder mystery novels but find them very biased towards hetero characters. So I looked about and thought the premise of this novel was a bit amusing and the lgbt protagonist a welcome change. Within one chapter I was done with this book.

The main character is utterly painful and emotionally vapid. To quote Henry Higgins, Sebastian Snow is an "exasperating, irritating,
vacillating, calculating, agitating, 
maddening and infuriating". By chapter three I wanted him dead on the floor with a raven croaking "never more" over him. His interactions with the two love interests are totally underdeveloped and purely there to provide smut material; which is fine if this book was advertised as such. The manner at which Snow and Winter hookup is clumsy and poorly written. It's as though the author took a beat-sex experience amd then twisted it into some kind of perverse courtship, completely ignoring several stepping stones in character development to reach an outcome.

What frustrated me the most with this story is that the mystery is sacrificed for romance/smut that isn't even good. I will definitely not be looking out for this author again.