Lovers Leap by J.L. Merrow

LoversLeapIf they looked, would they ever leap?
Good-looking, confident, and doted on by his widowed mum, Michael is used to thinking only of himself. Getting shoved off an Isle of Wight pier by an exasperated ex ought to come as a wake-up call—but then he meets Rufus and he’s right back to letting the little head take charge. Rufus is cute, keen, and gets under Michael’s skin in a disturbing way.
Would-be chef Rufus can’t believe his luck when a dripping wet dream of a man walks out of the sea on his birthday, especially when Michael ends up staying at the family B&B. Life is perfect—at least until Michael has to go home to the mainland.
Rufus can’t leave the island for reasons he’s entirely neglected to mention. And though Michael identifies as bi, breaking his mum’s heart by coming out and having an actual relationship with a guy has never been his plan. With both men determined to keep their secrets, a leap of faith could land them in deep water.

CreativeDeedsReadsDisclosure1Okay, so there was absolutely nothing serious about this one, but sometimes that’s okay. It was a sweet, silly little romance.

Michael is spoiled and self centered, but there’s something about Rufus that makes him want to stick around. Rufus has his own secrets that he’s hidden from everyone, except for his best friend.

The comedy of errors that bring these two together and fueling the small town’s gossip mill, turned this into a light, humorous read. If you’re looking for something deeper, this one probably isn’t for you. If you’re looking for a cute, funny read, Lovers Leap will more than likely fill the bill.

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Night’s Honor (Elder Races #7) by Thea Harrison

NightsHOnorOn the run from her former employer, Tess knows that she’s vulnerable on her own amongst the Elder Races. That’s why she decides to audition to become the human attendant of a powerful Vampyre of the Nightkind demesne. But while her position affords her the safety she seeks, her protector turns out to be more than she bargained for.
The right-hand man of the Nightkind King, Xavier del Torro is both terrifying and alluring. While his true nature frightens Tess, she can’t ignore the appeal of his innate sense of integrity and self-restraint. Thrown into Xavier’s world, Tess must quickly learn to navigate the dangers—both to her life and to her heart. But the biggest threat comes from her own past….

I’m a huge fan of the Elder Races, but this is the first book that I’ve read that didn’t include the Wyrs and to be honest, at first I wasn’t sure exactly how I felt about it. The more I got into the politics and dynamics of the Vampyre community though, I stopped worrying. It’s not that I didn’t miss the Wyrs and the characters that drew me into this series. It was more because I found a whole other group of characters that I wanted to get to know better.

Speaking of getting to know someone better, Xavier wasn’t an easy guy to get close to… not that Tess had any intention of trying. She was there keep herself hidden and hopefully protected. Plus, she was totally repulsed by vampyres in general. Not exactly a normal start for a romance, but it was also kind of an interesting twist in the genre, for me anyway.

Even though Xavier was more than a little private and at times withdrawn, it was obvious that there was more to him than what he showed people on the surface. Tess slowly began to notice that he may not be as bad as she once thought, but she still wasn’t willing to give everything she asked for.

There were a lot of characters introduced in Night’s Honor. I loved the dynamic between Xavier and his attendants. Tess tried his patience, but he still respected her. How he treated those who served him and stood beside him was part of the reason why he gained my respect, and eventually Tess’s as well.

I’m kind of hoping that we see more of Xavier and Tess in the books that follow in the Elder Races. That’s entirely possible, since the next book in the series features a couple of my least favorite vampyres from Night’s Honor. I’ve already started reading Midnight’s Kiss and I’m kinda warming up to Julian, but Thea Harrison has her work cut out for her to get me to get me to really care about him. (I have no doubt she’s up to the task 😉 )

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Getting Him Back (Ethan & Wyatt #1) by K.A. Mitchell

GettingHimBackEthan may have followed his high school sweetheart to college only to get dumped his first day there, but he’s not going to let that stop him from exploring all his new life has to offer. Sex-only hookups, his photography, new friends and a campus-wide game of zombies vs humans all help keep his mind off his broken heart and move him toward building a new, better life without his ex.
And then there’s Wyatt. Mysterious, grouchy—hot. And possibly not gay. But Ethan’s not going to let that stand in the way of figuring out what makes Wyatt tick. New college goal? Get Wyatt into bed and into Ethan’s life.
Step one: arrange a “tutoring” date. Step two: “accidentally” bump into Wyatt as often as possible. Step three: explore the sexy body under that ever-present hoodie. And when their friendship deepens into something neither of them expect, convince Wyatt he’s not just a pity fling or a one-time hookup, but that Ethan is in it for the long haul.

CreativeDeedsReadsDisclosure1Poor Ethan… even though I knew it was coming, his breakup with Blake was still heartbreaking. To put it mildly, Blake was a jerk. I liked the fact that Ethan didn’t let it totally crumble him though. It took him a while to pick himself up and come up with his plan, but not too long.

Wyatt was a mystery, but I still liked him. I didn’t particularly like Ethan using him to get Blake back for more than one reason. The obvious was because Blake was a jerk (have I mentioned that?) and the less obvious was that I didn’t want Ethan to ruin anything he may eventually have with Wyatt.

Besides Wyatt, Ethan had a couple other friends that were great. His roommate Connor and his friend Makayla help him to see that there’s more to campus life than classes and his dorm.

Even though I didn’t approve of Ethan’s initial motives, he came around and I ended up wanting to learn more about the mysterious Wyatt as much as he did. Getting Him Back turned into a sweet romance that I really didn’t expect. What’s even better is that this isn’t the end, which is good, because there is definitely more to their story.

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Maze of Souls (Ellie Jordan, Ghost Trapper #6) by J.L. Bryan

MazeofSoulsIt’s October, and down at newly opened Pine Hollow Farm, the ghosts are running wild! This “genuine” old-time family farm offers a big heap of fun fall activities. You can drink cider fresh from the orchard, enter a pumpkin-carving contest, and explore the five-acre corn maze. At night, if you aren’t too scared, join the haunted hayride through the woods, featuring a genuine eighteenth-century cemetery. According to local legend, the ghost of a horseman has ridden the old dirt road through the woods for nearly two centuries, menacing travelers. Hayriders beware!
Then the real ghosts start to come out, threatening visitors to the farm and the family who live there. Paranormal detective Ellie Jordan travels out to the remote farm to root out the dangerous spirits. Ellie and her assistant Stacey must move fast, because the night is coming when all ghosts will be at full strength and free to roam—the night of Halloween.

CreativeDeedsReadsDisclosure1So, it’s now officially Spring… and this book is set in October, but honestly, there’s no time set in stone to read a scary story, especially if it’s part of the Ellie Jordon, Ghost Trapper series.

As readers have come to expect from this series, there really isn’t any down time in Maze of Souls. A lot happens in this book. More than a few of those things Ellie and crew aren’t prepared for. Between the emotional moments and the scary moments, Maze of Souls may be my favorite installment in this series so far.

Ellie’s world is about to change and she’s not ready for it. She’s feeling abandoned by someone she’s close to, whether it’s logical or not, that’s how she feels. Her boyfriend semi-ignores her through a lot of the story and there are kids involved in the haunting she’s investigating, which is never a good thing. Throw in a hormonal, moody teenager and some seriously powerful ghosts and you have a story that pretty much covers it all.

There were also a few interesting twists in Maze of Souls that I never saw coming… at least not all of them. In the end (no spoilers, I promise) Ellie has to make a decision that leaves more than one person hanging in the balance. I almost forgot how good J.L. Bryan is at throwing his characters into situations that leave them just a little bit broken. (That’s an understatement in some cases – Jenny Pox (The Paranormals, #1) ) Needless to say, I’m hoping the next book can’t come soon enough.

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How the Cookie Crumbles (Bluewater Bay #12) by Jaime Samms

HowTheCookieCrumblesAfter losing a rigged cooking show competition — and a potential lover — to another baker, Frederic Jackson packs up his considerable baggage and moves to Bluewater Bay. He uses the network’s hush money to buy a new bakery where he hopes the small town’s revitalized economy will let him start anew.
Blaire Caruthers never wanted to work for his father at Caruthers Industries. He should have known that fixing the company’s show results was a mistake, and that choosing another man over kind, generous Frederic was an even bigger one. But the damage is done. As punishment, he’s been sent to Bluewater Bay to oversee the company’s interest in Wolf’s Landing merchandise.
Stuck in a small, nowhere town doing a job he hates, Blaire wants nothing more than to prove to Frederic he’s changed. However, Frederic struggles to trust the man who betrayed him once already. As Blaire loses ground with his father, and Frederic starts falling back into self-destructive habits, they both have to find the balance and control that’s been missing from their lives.

CreativeDeedsReadsDisclosure1Each time another book in this series is released I end up shuffling around my favorites. I wasn’t sure exactly where How the Cookie Crumbles was going to fall because… well… frankly Blaire sounded like an unredeemable jerk. I love it when an author can change your opinion about a character. 😉

Frederic wasn’t hard to fall for. I loved him from the beginning. I could appreciate him wanting to do everything on his own, I’m kind of the same way. Basically because I hate asking anyone for help. He took that trait to a whole new level though. On the flip side, he had a lot of amazing people jump in and insist on helping him… including Blaire.

Blaire had a lot to make up for and he knew it. Frederic wasn’t easily won over and he had a lot more going on than just his mixed feelings for Blaire. He tried to be everything to everyone and came dangerously close to falling into a position where he couldn’t even help himself. Blaire had no idea what kind of inner demons Frederic was fighting, but he was determined to prove that he had changed enough to be the kind of man to help fix it.

As with many of the books in the Bluewater Bay series, How the Cookie Crumbles can be read as a stand alone. I’ve read them all though and have found few I wouldn’t recommend. There were a couple of familiar characters that popped up, which always makes me smile. This is also the first book by Jaime Samms that I’ve read, but I doubt it will be my last. Selfie by Amy Lane is next in the series.

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Cast in Angelfire (The Mage Craft Series #1) by S.M. Reine

CastInAngelfireEighteen-year-old Marion can’t remember anything before waking up in the hospital. All she knows that a lot of people want to kill her. And her would-be assassins are not human…
Vampires are real. So are faeries and angels.
They all want Marion dead.
Surrounded by enemies, Marion turns to Lucas Flynn: a mysterious doctor who seems to know more than he’s letting on. He’s as good with a gun as he is with a scalpel. He fights like a demon but claims that he’s human. And he’s hellbent on protecting Marion.
Lucas claims that Marion is a mage: half-witch, half-angel with terrifying powers that could crack the world. But Marion can’t remember how to cast magic any more than she can remember where she comes from.
Marion must find her identity and her power…before the forgotten sins of her past catch up with her.

CreativeDeedsReadsDisclosure1If you are a frequent visitor to Creative Deeds Reads, you already know that I’m a fan of S.M. Reine. That’s probably an understatement and not earth shattering news by a long shot. You all pretty much know, if this author writes it, this reader will be reading it and in the process, trying to convince other readers to do the same. That’s what makes the next thing I’m going to tell you really hard. Don’t panic, this isn’t a lead in to tell you that this is the first book in this world I hated. It’s actually the opposite. I absolutely loved the introduction to The Mage Craft Series. What I need to tell you, even though the author herself has said that you can pick up any series in this world and not be lost regardless of where you start, just don’t. Well, I can’t exactly tell you that, because I actually wouldn’t (and haven’t) listen(ed) to that advice. What I’m trying to say, in my usual rambling, nonsensical way, is that this series would be much more enjoyable, and probably make a lot more sense, if you had, at the very least, read the Ascension series prior to picking up Cast in Angelfire. (It would be even more enjoyable if you started from the very beginning with Seasons of the Moon and Descent, but I’m not going to push it.)

So, now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, I suppose I can get on with the review… yeah, about that. There’s a lot about Cast in Angelfire that I can’t really talk about. That is, not without giving anything away. What I can tell you is that just as much is revealed as there is hidden. Since Marion lost her memory, she has no idea who she was or is or who she should trust or know and Lucas is absolutely no help. He’s obviously hiding something and more clues are given to readers than to Marion. Yet, even though I knew from the beginning who he was and what he was hiding from Marion, there was still a lot that still needs to be revealed. I may have to go back and read Sins of Eden (the final book in the Ascension series) to see if I can figure out if there’s anything I missed, but I have a feeling that readers have been kept in the dark for a reason. *sigh*

Since this is just the beginning, there is obviously more to come. There are also more characters to return, which I’m looking forward to. A lot’s happened since Genesis and there are several people who readers are curious about. I’d name them, but what fun would that be? Just know that this is the beginning of another amazing series. As usual, my recommendation stands. If you haven’t delved into this world that S.M. Reine’s created, no more excuses. My only suggestion is that you don’t start here…but it’s only a suggestion. 😉

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The Rise of Genesis (by MR Merrick) Blitz

A new fantasy series from the
Young Adult Author M.R. Merrick!


In a world where being Supernatural means you’re in danger, Ash Lawson is front and center. After years of helping others escape ATOM—a government entity known for abusing Supernaturals—he’s captured, and saving himself will prove to be the most difficult task he’s undertaken.

Tryst Rivera is a Succubus and veteran at the Academy, a facility tasked with converting underage Supernaturals into cooperative ATOM soldiers. She’s endured her time mostly unscathed, but when Ash arrives and their lives are tethered to one another, she’s placed in immediate danger.
With escape at the forefront of his mind, Ash struggles with the idea of life under ATOM’s thumb. He’ll die before he converts, but his life isn’t the only one he’s responsible for, and he already has more blood on his hands than he can bear. When a chance for freedom arises, Ash needs to decide how much—and who—he’s willing to risk for a second chance.
 
 
 

 

 

 
About the Author
 

M.R. Merrick is a Canadian writer and author of The Protector Series, and The Rise of Genesis. Having never traveled, he adventures to far off lands through his imagination and in between cups of coffee. As a music lover and proud breakfast enthusiast, he’s usually found at the computer between a pair of headphones and a large bowl of cereal.

 
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By creativedeeds

Deceived (Jade Ring #2) by Danielle Young

DeceivedLife is fleeting. No one knows that better than Jasper.
After failing his mission, Jasper puts his trust in an unseen source in order to reverse the magic that’s been done.
Unfortunately, magic of that magnitude has consequences. Only time will tell what those are, and what they could mean for magic… as well as Jasper’s heart.

This is the second book in Danielle Young’s Jade Ring series and even though it’s shorter than Guided, it’s not lacking… at all.

As I may have mentioned (actually, I think it was more of a warning) Guided ends in a cliff hanger. Thankfully, Deceived picks up where Guided left off. Unsurprisingly, that means that it starts with a heart wrenching intensity. Just so you know, that intensity doesn’t ease up or slow down through most of the book. Jasper makes a decision in those first few minutes that will pretty much lock Jo’s destiny with his in an unexpected way.

My heart broke for these two characters. They obviously cared about each other, but because of their ‘magical’ connection, neither one of them were sure what was real and what was a product of what they had gone through. That was doubly heart breaking for Jo, who had to re-live memories that she had lost.

There were quite a few revelations and more than a few twists and turns and a couple of characters that my opinion changed about… almost. One thing I know for sure is that I’m going to have to do a complete re-read of this series before the next book is released… which I’m hoping is sooner rather than later 😉

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Until September by Chris Scully

UntilSeptemberAs a teenager, Archie Noblesse clawed his way out of the poverty, heartache, and abuse of the reservation and left his family behind. Desperate to shake the shadow of his past, he reinvents himself as Archer Noble, an outspoken blogger and controversial author who lives only for himself. But when his beloved sister dies, Archer is saddled with guardianship of his niece and nephew.
Elementary school teacher Ryan Eriksson is devastated when his best friend Marguerite is killed, leaving her two young children orphaned. Helping Archer with his new responsibilities eases his grief, but when Archer offers him custody of the children, Ryan’s left with an impossible choice: get the family he’s always wanted, or respect Margie’s wishes and convince Archer to give parenting—and his heritage—a chance.
To buy time, Ryan promises to stay for the summer, hoping that Archer will change his mind and fall for the kids. But Archer’s reluctant, and the growing attraction between him and Ryan complicates matters. Legal decisions must be made, and soon, before Ryan returns to school. But with hearts involved, more than just the children’s future is on the line.

CreativeDeedsReadsDisclosure1After reading the description and to be honest, the first few chapters of Until September, I wasn’t really sure how I felt about Archer. I know it’s the mom in me, but I couldn’t wrap my head around the idea of someone, especially family, not wanting to be a part of a young child’s life. There was also the fact that everything about Archer was borderline offensive and he worked hard at it.

Ryan was his complete opposite. He was the living embodiment of everything that Archer was against. There was no way that these two could have been tolerable acquaintances, much less lovers. Nothing is ever exactly what it seems though and Archer was a perfect example.

I’ve said before that for me to enjoy a book with kids as an important element of the story, they have to be… well, important. Not just ‘props’  that an author uses to make things interesting. Dillon and Emma definitely passed the test. I loved those kids and the way that they wormed their way into Archer’s heart of steel. Ryan was more than happy accept Archer’s offer because he loved Dillon and Emma too. He knew he was setting himself up for heartbreak, because he wanted a family more than anything. Spending a summer with them, trying to convince a confirmed, unlovable bachelor that being a family was important was futile. I’m not sure which one of these characters my heart was breaking for more by the end of the story. All of them had lost so much, but together they had a fresh start.

I should probably also mention that this is the first book by Chris Scully that I’ve read, but it most definitely won’t be my last. The author did an amazing job of turning a totally unlikeable character into someone I ended up rooting for. ❤

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Bitter Taffy (Candy Man #2) by Amy Lane

BitterTaffyRico Gonzalves-Macias didn’t expect to fall in love during his internship in New York—and he didn’t expect the boss’s son to out them both and get him fired either. When he returns to Sacramento stunned and heartbroken, he finds his cousin, Adam, and Adam’s boyfriend, Finn, haven’t just been house-sitting—they’ve made his once sterile apartment into a home.
When Adam gets him a job interview with the adorable, magnetic, practically perfect Derek Huston, Rico feels especially out of his depth. Derek makes it no secret that he wants Rico, but Rico is just starting to figure out that he’s a beginner at the really important stuff and doesn’t want to jump into anything with both feet. 
Derek is a both-feet kind of guy. But he’s also made mistakes of his own and doesn’t want to pressure Rico into anything. Together they work to find a compromise between instant attraction and long-lasting love, and while they’re working, Rico gets a primer in why family isn’t always a bad idea. He needs to believe Derek can be his family before Derek’s formidable patience runs out—because even a practically perfect boyfriend is capable of being hurt.

I’m really loving this series. I knew when Derek was first introduced he was a special kind of guy. I love it when I’m right. I also love it when that special kind of guy finds some one just as special. Even though the only interaction that readers had with Rico in The Candy Man was through phone calls and text messages with Adam, those conversations and the way Adam talked about his cousin were enough for me to gain respect for him. Yep, lots of reasons to fall in love with this series.

Rico wasn’t quite as broken as Adam even though he came from the same crazy family. He carried a lot of guilt though because he hid who he was. What Adam went through proved to Rico that their family wasn’t one he could come out to without serious repercussions. Crazy doesn’t even begin to describe their family. Honestly… Derek was patient and yeah, pretty much perfect, but he was also leery and as much as he cared about Rico and wanted it to work, he didn’t want to risk getting his heart broken.

As much as I loved Rico and Derek’s story, I really enjoyed the fact that the characters from the previous story were not only back, but they played an integral part. I love the quirkiness of Darrin and the way that Finn’s family adopted Rico as their own simply because if he was Adam’s family, he was theirs. Rico found out that there’s more to family than blood and sometimes the family that chooses you cares a lot more about you than the one you were born into.

It probably comes as no surprise that I can’t wait to start the next book in the series, Lollipop. Readers have met both of these characters too and it promises to be another interesting addition to the Candy Man series. 😉

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