Hello, lovelies! 🌱 I come very late sharing a mini-review of the books I read in the month of September. I usually post these reviews at the beginning of the month but October was very fast-paced for me. I didn’t have a chance to post before so, without further ado, here is the mini-review of the books I read in September.
This month I only read male romance, I didn’t feel like picking up anything else. I did listen to a bit of The Boy from the Woods but I haven’t finished it yet! Read a bit of mermaid romance which was the best 💜
- Finch (Forbidden Desires Spin-Off #3) by Piper Scott and Virginia Kelly (m/m): I’m a huge fan of this series! I was looking forward to reading Hugh’s story the most. I loved his characterization, a bit obtuse, completely straightforward, dense when it came to feelings, and not knowing what was happening around him but in love with the idea of having a family and children. Finch was also wonderful, competent, smart, and direct – tho sneaky when it came to his love for Hugh. Their interactions were very much boss and servant which was very well done since Hugh had no idea about Finch’s feelings for him. I love how Hugh would think often of Finch as someone he could not live without – at the beginning because of Finch’s excellent work ethics – and then as someone who was part of his life. The book had funny scenes, full of clichés, family moments, and deep relationships which made this a wonderful read. I do look forward to the last brother to fall in love with, I hope the author writes an extra story for Brahm. It was also wonderful to see the characters from the other books and the whole family coming together.
- Coming Up for Air by Amanda Meuwissen (m/m, violence, mafia-type, killer merfolks, non-fluffy mermaids): Oh heavens, this was so wonderful. I’m a sucker for mermaid books in general and this one was a breath of fresh air. EVERYONE SHOULD READ IT. PERIOD. We have Tolomeo (aka Tolly) – gorgeous, incredibly strong (even if he doesn’t look like it), a protector, full of patience, and above all: fierce. Tolly is merfolk, he saves Leigh from drowning and by doing this, he has one month to make Leigh fall in love with him. Because of how the ‘deal’ works, Tolly cannot tell Leigh everything, he puts a face and becomes a gentle mermaid (so unlike his real self: a hunter and killer with a monster-like appearance). Within this month, he needs a vow of true love from Leigh. Then, we have Williams (aka Leigh) – thief, good with electronics, rejects everything with love, a good neighbor, and overall a good boy with a bad past. Leigh is saved by Tolly and they establish a ‘friendship’ that little by little becomes love – even when Leigh doesn’t say so in words. This is an ‘insta-love’ but not in the way I usually see in other books. I will not say more, a must-read for everyone!
- Ripples & Waves: A Queer Retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Mermaid by L.A. Witt (m/m, homophobic talk, family rejection, murder attempt due to sexual identity): Mermaids are the best! This book was a lovely read. First, I loved the backstory of merfolks and their relationship with humans. Humans used to know about them but merfolks were not interested in power roleplays so they went back to hiding in the ocean. By doing this, they agreed that if they came up from the ocean, on land they would not be able to speak. So, back to the present: Colin almost drowns in the ocean and is saved by Lir – a merman. Lir is the youngest son of the Queen of the merfolk and enjoys watching humans, going to the surface, seeing storms, and not being stuck at the palace. His siblings are always after him, watching and making sure he doesn’t go to the surface, afraid he will be caught and killed. When Lir saves Colin, he gives Colin his name which allows Colin to call him whenever he wants. From there, they establish a friendship that becomes longing and love. I will not spoil more of the book, we have angst, romance, and a family who doesn’t support their child and eventually lets him go.
- Best Love by Lily Morton (m/m, unrequired love, past relationships): This was short – yes, sadly – but so damn good, light, fluffy and I just want to die in happiness. Since is very short I will not dive into the characterization but I will applaud Lily because she made her characters loving and relatable. Sage loving Noah in silence and Noah trying to suppress his feelings for his best friend. It was amazing seeing them together, their friendship and love. It was a happy read with a very small, small, small dash of angst but it was amazing. Imagining Sage as a tattoo artist and Noah a writer /sigh/ it was a very happy reading.
- The Ghost and Charlie Muir by Felice Stevens (m/m, homophobia, death, ghosts): Ahhh, it took me a while to review this book because I was unsatisfied with the ending, I didn’t hate it, I just didn’t love it. I wanted to know about Robert and Eddie, I cried because of their past love and story. Now, as for the main story: it was so damn funny since the moment we first meet Charlie. Poor Charlie and his “Series of Unfortunate Cockblocking Events” when it comes to having some action [you know which action 😉] He was cockblocked by a ghost and it was done in the funniest way. Ian was a great character who was also very obtuse at best. His attraction for Charlie, yet his confusion for knowing he liked a man when before he hadn’t had any experience with them was very well-done. I also think his friend’s reaction was realistic, especially when they thought about Ian and Charlie with a clear head and apologized. Ian and Charlie together were funny, relatable, confusing, sad, angry, full of love – a rollercoaster of different emotions. I enjoyed reading about Charlie and his outfits, his suffering, and his happiness. I also enjoyed Ian and his family – their easy acceptance of his son’s love life. Yet, I wanted more of Eddie and Robert – their meeting once again in Heaven.
- Burning for My Prince (Meadowfall Firefighters #1) by Anna Wineheart (m/m, omegaverse, age-difference, past physical/emotional/mental abuse): I think the beginning of this book was hilarious, I was laughing so hard I couldn’t believe what I was reading. I didn’t read the synopsis that much – I always enjoy omegaverse (guilty pleasure) if done correctly. So, when I read about ‘the boyfriend’ and ‘the tub’ I did the math and I knew it would be ‘boyfriend’+’tub’=bad idea. The way York and Perry see each other again after years was just priceless, I recommend if you read this book, avoid food or you will choke laughing your ass off. I liked Perry’s attitude – he was extremely in love, and had loved York for years but was afraid of his secret. Perry who knew he was doing wrong, who was abused by past lovers, who made sure York was an adult before reaching out. I liked Perry, and his son Caleb. I also enjoyed York – his attentiveness towards Perry, always willing to help, completely infatuated, and not knowing how to forger Frog and see Perry beyond his omega scent. I liked York – tho I often got irritated about his ‘will no forgive’ kind of attitude. Overall, without saying much or this will be a long-ass review, I liked the atmosphere of the firefighters and their familiarity, their openness to welcome others into their brigade.
- Gareth’s Boy (Meadowfall Firefighters #2) by Anna Wineheart (m/m, omegaverse, age-difference, past physical/emotional/mental abuse by parents, death): As always Ms. Wineheart makes the starting of her books a surprise, and hello Flores, his overflowing washing machine, his sexy lacy underwear, his virgin ass, and grumpy Gareth. I liked Flores, his past was terrible but his love for painting and dancing was mesmerizing. His love for his teacher and only friend, his desire to paint, and do ballet, I loved his personality, his innocence. He was straightforward but also incredibly shy, fearful of his father, sad towards his mother’s lack of love for him, without friends or emotional support. Sometimes I would get mad at Gareth, for being an ass and push Flores too hard. Flores was a lovely character, and I loved this book mostly because of him. I also loved Gareth’s friends, especially Dom who is also a grumpy ass. We are introduced to new characters and there are some scenes I was about to kill someone, but Flores made this book so possible to finish and enjoy I cared for no one else.
- Secrets in the Snow (Meadowfall Firefighters #3) by Anna Wineheart (m/m, omegaverse, family-centered, stepbrothers love, past physical/emotional/mental abuse, death, mental breakdown, child abuse): One word: drama to the 1000th power. Ben and Alec – stepbrothers, not related by blood, secretly in love with each other, a grandmother who did not understand them, a mother who supported her husband beating his son because he loved his stepbrother, and a cabin in the middle of a snowstorm. I liked both Ben and Alec, Alec handsome and overprotective, Ben a cinnamon roll. I hated some scenes – the grandmother, the fire, the beating of Ben in the alley, the protesters, the ex-husband. I don’t know how to describe my thoughts about this book, really liked it but I don’t think I could read it again unless I do in a few years. There were so many things against them, family, community, ex-husband that I wanted to scream. Still, I loved Ben and Alec and wished this book would be more fluffy and not too angsty.
- Alpha in Heat (Meadowfall Firefighters #4) by Anna Wineheart (m/m, omegaverse, experiment on humans, past physical/emotional/mental abuse, death, mental breakdown, child abuse): What I loved the most: Dom and his sexual frustration towards Jesse. Also, sneaking donuts and placing them on Jesse’s locker to watch Jesse eat them, that was the cutest. Also, the fucking sex scenes [/insert anime nosebleed]. Jesse’s past was so sad, his body the proof of his survival, his need for acceptance – I loved this man and I’m sad he’s just a character in a book. Jesse was all and with Dom, he came alive, he was fierce, strong, pushing and knowing what he wanted – and he wanted Dom. It was awkward at times, it took them a couple of years but I loved the flow of the book, the rush in some scenes, the slowness in others. BUT, I hated that scene with the doctor by the end – there was no need for it, for Jesse to be so self-sacrificing. It was unnecessary – that whole thing. But, I love Jesse and Dom – their friends, family members, and love for each other.
- Screwed (Four Bears Construction #4) by K.M. Neuhold (m/m, wake up married, a bit of bully): I enjoyed Daniel’s character (I was a bit surprised he’s almost 40 when we get the feeling of him being twenty-something by the way he behaves and expresses himself). So, Daniel was a good character, funny and honest – but also childish. Daniel is a para-legal who loses his job and jump into another field – which is something I remember he enjoyed from book one. He is also an amazing friend and loves Ren like a brother. Ollie was a sweetheart, painfully in love with the idea of marriage, 3 bad marriages on the bag, and unrequited in lust with Daniel – which he hides painfully. He has given up the idea of marriage when he gets ‘Vegas’ married to Daniel. I did not like the reasoning behind the ‘stick together only for a bet’. Ollie’s friends have always made fun of his romantic notion but here they were downright jerks, mean, and just overall childish. Daniel and Ollie were good together, Ollie supported Daniel in his decision of going back to school to study interior design, but at the same time, there was always a wall in the middle that was moved for the sake of sex and a good time but not much about feelings. But, they do end up falling in love so win-win situation.
- Mastering The Muse (The Billionaire’s Consort #1) by Peter Styles (m/m, secret identity, angst): Oh boy, I finish reading this and did the review a couple of days later, and I couldn’t even remember the name of the characters. What I do remember is that these characters fell into love too fast without really establishing anything in common. It was based on sex, small ‘dates’ that had to do with sex, and yeah, that’s all. Nothing else to say. Also, the secret identity aspect was such a letdown, only made to build drama and unnecessary angst.
- Snow Falling (Haven Hart Universe) by Davison King (m/m, death, killing, prostitution): I always enjoy a good mafia book, another trope I like is the “living in the street and being rescue” one and both were on this one. I enjoyed some scenes within this book but found the last part of the book to be unnecessary. Everything Snow did in order to protect his past even when he had Christopher at his side was so over-the-top. There were so many things that this character could have done to come clean and still protect his past that it was a bit of a letdown. I enjoyed Snow’s mind and how he could memorize things, but that was all I think I enjoyed. The relationship was very flat and lacking feelings and I just couldn’t connect.
- Trouble by Devon McCormack (m/m, age different, teacher-student relationship, toxic relationship, blackmail): Uff, this cover is glorious! But, I had so many issues with this book. I will try to be short: 1. I didn’t feel a true connection between James and Kyle. Their entire relationship was an exchange of “let’s see who had the most pathetic past and parents”. Guess what: you both win! 2. The whole Sheila plot was BS. Why was James such as pushover and then by the end he did a reserve card on Sheila? Like, really. 3. I didn’t want James to get in trouble for dating Kyle while Kyle was still a student but that ending people just shrugging about it, too easy. It was a “let’s take a magic wand to fix everything and voila! happy ending. Not complaining, I do enjoy happy endings but this one was way too easy.
- Stealing His Alpha Heart by Bella Mannaro (m/m, omegaverse, criminal activity, emotional abuse): I’m so sorry but what did I just read … I won’t make this long and drag the review just pointing out the things that didn’t work: 1. The story began with the POV from the nanny. We see his backstory, his current situation, his sketchy roommate, and just how broke he is. Mind you, the story is not about him but still, the first chapters and other chapters in the book are about this character. 2. Nolan and Tanner – nothing jump for me about these two. And when I say nothing, I mean nothing. I had no interest in their background or relationship, it was just meh. 3. The backstory about the robberies took most of the plot. I do not understand why this was included in the book when it has nothing to provide. This was about the nanny and his roommate. 4. The sudden happy ending for everyone especially the nanny – who got more than I think 5 chapters, it was so like really!? This book for me did not work, the romance was blank and meh. I just did not care for the characters or the story. I was amazed that I finished it and didn’t DNF in chapter 1.
How was YOUR September?