Tag Archives: Hailey Turner

your book boyfriend's boyfriend short story reviews

Your Book Boyfriend’s Boyfriend Short Story Clear Out

Sigh, I’ve been trying lately to read a significant portion of the short stories on my shelves.* I keep saying I’m not a huge fan of them. But somehow I always download more. Usually, it’s because I don’t check the page length of something and don’t realize it’s a short, but not always. And today is one of those day.

There was a huge M/M giveaway over at Prolific Works; 116 stories and books!

your book boyfriend's boyfriendThe organizers even made a check list for readers, and I just went hog wild downloading books. Do I need more books? No. Did I do it anyway because I have no self control? Yes. So much yes.

And here’s where the sigh comes in. Several of them are what I would call short stories. I was on the ball this time and checked pages lengths (for those books that had them available). So, I did this to myself knowingly. It’s just that a lot of them were from authors I know I enjoy, were prequels to interesting looking series, and/or were part of series that have been featured on Sadie’s Spotlight. (I do try and support those when I see them.)

And since I happen to have been reading and reviewing short stories in clusters anyhow, I figured I’d just go ahead and set these aside to read all together as one more ‘short story clear out.’ This one can be the ‘Your Book Boyfriend’s Boyfriend Short Story Clear Out.’ Yeah, that’s too clunky, but I trust you get the point.

I downloaded 13 stories that I know are under 100 pages. There are a further 5 (not included in the photo) that I couldn’t find page lengths for, even after searching. Some of them may turn out to be under 100 pages and, if so, I’ll add them after the fact. But as of now, here are the stories I downloaded and intend to read:

your book boyfriend's boyfriend shorts

As an aside, what are the chances there would be two unrelated authors named Kiki?

Revenant, by Michelle Frost

The Metal and Magic series, that Revenant is a prequel of, was featured over on Sadie’s Spotlight. So, I was glad to be able to pick up this freebie and test it out. I thought that it was a little rushed, but easily readable. I liked the characters and world. I’ll happily check out the rest of the series.


Exposed, by Jamie Luther

I liked the reversal of expected roles here and the characterization of Torran and Penn. This seems like it will be an interesting series. As a personal quibble, I hate the whole “Boy” thing. I think my associations with it just aren’t the sexy kind and I find it always pulls me out of a sexy scene. But that’s just me and my preferences.


Fireman’s Carry, by Eli Easton

I enjoyed this short/intro to the Hot Cannolis series. I liked both characters and the drama was engaging. It was enough that I’d be interested in following the series when it comes out.


Just George, by Mary Calmes

It’s been several years since I read any Mary Calmes, but I used to quip that her books were like crack—almost always formulaic and often containing problematic aspects, but hitting so many emotional buttons I liked them anyway. I didn’t find much objectionable in Just George, but in classic Calmes style, the story pressed all my “Awww” buttons and I enjoyed it.


Blood Omen, by Sheena Jolie

There was too much world-building for such a short piece, especially since it tended to be info-dumped. (I sense a lot of it was simply brought over from something long, one assumes the rest of the series.) But I liked the characters and it does seem an interesting world. I’d give the series a shot.


Gravity, by Kiki Burrelli

Meh, not bad. But, while I liked the idea behind the story, I thought the whole thing felt rushed and a bit too much of a mish-mash.


Light My Way Home, by Morgan Brice

I’ve not read the Treasure Trail series (though it was featured over on Sadie’s Spotlight), but I was able to follow this story just fine. I liked both of the characters and the world. I did think it was a little heavy on the tell vs. show and it felt a little rushed in the making-the-alternative-relationship-work department. But I enjoyed it enough to give the rest of the series a try.


To Kiss a Frog, by Elizabeth Silver

I quite enjoyed this; thought it was super cute. It also feels complete, which often isn’t the case with series prequels. I look forward to the rest of the series when it comes out.


Until His Beginning Ends, by Kiki Clark

This was a sweet story. I enjoyed the characters, the writing, and the world it introduces. I’ll be interested in following the series.


How to Date a Dragon, by Louisa Masters

Meh, it was fine. The writing was readable, etc. But, despite being a .5/prequel I was pretty confused. It definitely didn’t feel like it should be read as an introduction to the world. Plus, I just thought Hagen was annoying. I get that that was kinda his whole shtick, but I didn’t enjoy him.


Mr Fairfax, Mr West and the Meet Cute, by Anyta Sunday

I really struggled with this story in the beginning. Not because of bad writing or anything. I am one of those people who suffers strongly from second-hand embarrassment. So, reading about a guy who got himself into an embarrassing bind and then had to do increasingly embarrassing things to keep from having to admit it was difficult for me. Honestly, I almost DNFed it. But luckily it balanced out and I enjoyed the last half of it a lot. The two characters are both very sweet.


Until His Soul Awakens, by E.M. Lindsey

I quite enjoyed this in a quiet sort of way. It’s a bit of a slow burn for such a short piece. But it made the payoff that much sweeter.


Dirty Magic, by Richard Amos

Meh. I liked the idea of the world. But the writing is kind of a rambling, stream-of-consciousness mess and the solution for saving the day was come across far too easily.



Of the five downloads that I mentioned not having page lengths for, I think these four are short stories. So, I’m going to read them and add the reviews as I finish.

unknown page lengths

 

A House of Blood and Gold, by Raven Abernathy

This story turned out to be 131 pages long, according to my Kindle. Which I deemed long enough for it’s own post. You can find it here.

Twice Bitten, by Eliot Grayson

I enjoyed the heck out of this, which surprised me. I did not particularly enjoy The Alpha’s Warlock, with some of the same characters as in this novella. But here I liked both of the heroes, appreciated their individual struggles, thought the sex was hot, and the story felt complete, despite it being so short.

Aleric, by Taylor Rylan

Meh, I’d say it was OK, at best. The dialogue was just so stiff. It certainly didn’t tempt me to continue the series.

An Emporium of Hearts, by Hailey Turner

I thought this was very sweet. The world makes it pretty obvious the story is part of something bigger, but the little bit of story here feels complete enough to enjoy.


***

*As a personal shorthand I call anything under 100 pages a short story. I know there are variations, depending on length. I even wrote a post about it once. But for the puroses of this blog anything with less than 100 pages I call a short story.

A Ferry of Bones & Gold (Soulbound #1) by Hailey Turner

Book Review: A Ferry Of Bones And Gold (Souldbound #1) by Hailey Turner

a ferry of bones and GoldI picked up a copy of A Ferry Of Bones And Gold, Souldbound #1, by Hailey Turner on Amazon.

When the gods come calling, you don’t get to say no.

Patrick Collins is three years into a career as a special agent for the Supernatural Operations Agency when the gods come calling to collect a soul debt he owes them. An immortal has gone missing in New York City and bodies are showing up in the wake of demon-led ritual killings that Patrick recognizes all too easily from his nightmares.

Unable to walk away, Patrick finds himself once again facing off against mercenary magic users belonging to the Dominion Sect. Standing his ground alone has never been a winning option in Patrick’s experience, but it’s been years since he’s had a partner he could trust.

Looking for allies in all the wrong places, Patrick discovers the Dominion Sect’s next target is the same werewolf the Fates themselves have thrown into his path. Patrick has been inexplicably attracted to the man from their first meeting, but desire has no place in war. That doesn’t stop Patrick from wanting what he shouldn’t have. Jonothon de Vere is gorgeous, dangerous, and nothing but trouble—to the case, to the fight against every hell, and ultimately, to Patrick’s heart and soul.

In the end, all debts must be paid, and Patrick can only do what he does best—cheat death.

my review

I generally enjoyed this a lot, except that it REALLY felt like it wasn’t the first book in a series. Up until the very end, I was wanting to check and re-check that I was in fact reading the first book (other than a 13-page prequel). That uncertainty chipped away at some of my love for the book because I felt a little thrown into the middle and lost. But outside of that, I liked both the main characters, thought the plot engaging, the romance touching, the writing sharp, and the series, as a whole, worth pursuing. I’ll be looking for more of the Soulbound series and Turner’s writing.

In the Wreckage

Book Review of In the Wreckage (Metahuman Files #1), by Hailey Turner

Author, Hailey Turner sent me a copy of In the Wreckage for review.

Description from Goodreads:
A Marine with honor. 

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 is all it takes to show Jamie exactly what he’s been missing. When a mission to take down a terrorist cell brings that same stranger back into his world, Jamie’s life gets complicated. 

A soldier with secrets. 

Staff Sergeant Kyle Brannigan was only looking to relieve some stress after a long mission. He didn’t know the hot guy he picked up at a bar was the leader of the MDF’s top field team. When Kyle and his partner get seconded to Alpha Team to help fight a terrorist threat, he has to balance his desire for Jamie against his duty to keep his secrets safe. That gets harder and harder to do amidst regulations both are tempted to break. 

Two men trying to survive. 

Giving into passion could cost both their careers. Abiding by the rules will only result in heartache. An attack on MDF headquarters brings with it a choice Jamie and Kyle can’t escape—duty, or love?

Review:
Not bad at all. I quite liked Jamie and Kyle, as well as all the side characters. I liked that women were given equal time and treatment. I liked that the sex was filthy hot (a little over the top for my taste, but still hot). I liked that the two men explored power dynamics without having to formalize into BDSM or declaring “I’m your Dom and you’re my Sub.” If felt a lot more natural than a lot of authors attempts at this. I liked the idea of the world and how metahumans were created. There is a lot of good going on here. It’s well written and I’d definitely read more.

However, I also thought the sex blotted out the plot at times and there didn’t really seem to be an overarching plot line beyond ‘these are metahuman soldiers who get set out on missions.’ Yes, there were the good metahumans and the bad metahumans and theoretically neutral, civilian metahumans (though you never see one). But there was no apparent central villain or single disaster they were aiming to prevent, at least not as far as I could tell. So, it felt a little strung together and random. Plus, becoming metahuman was supposed to be rare, but there sure seemed to be an endless supply of them.

Also, while the writing was good for the most part, it did occasionally fall into heavy telling passages and occasionally the ‘I’ll use my powers to…’ came across as cheesy. There were also a few really Hollywood scenes that stretched my credulity too far.

While I really liked Jamie and Kyle and I liked them together. There was not enough development in their romance to believe. I totally saw that they clicked sexually, but then suddenly they’re falling in love and I couldn’t fallow that at all. It’s not quite insta-love, but it’s pretty darned close.

Lastly, as much as I liked everyone, I had a hard time keeping up. There were a lot of characters, all of which had multiple names and it was really easy to get lost in it.