Book Review ‘Jason’s Fall’ (The Rift Book 1) by James Lee Hard

Jason's fall“He didn’t answer. Instead, he ripped my clothes off and tossed them aside, leaving me naked.”

Why did I decide to read this book? Firstly, who doesn’t want the man in your dreams to be a reality? The promise of a normal guy getting caught up in an ongoing war between angels and demons is something I couldn’t ignore. Additionally, A demon with an overprotective obsession with the lead protagonist Jason, really peaked my interest. I love that kind of intensity (or maybe it’s because I’ve never really had that sort of attention, therefore, I seek it out in literature).

Secondly, it’s written by a man and this was very noticeable in the sample. I didn’t expect to see a difference between male and female writing, but there is. I had to look at the author’s name to confirm the gender. I could tell the erotic thoughts were definitely from a man (lol).

Finally, I read the author’s bio and saw myself staring back. The similarities between James Lee Hard and me were uncanny and this is what sealed me reading the book. I actually got my housemate to read the author bio that I copied onto a word doc. He thought it was me.

So, what did I think? I was shocked to find I was 68% of the way through the book and we were still only in act 1. I don’t like to read too much beforehand and so I hadn’t spotted that this book is only 44 pages long. Finishing, it felt like a TV episode and I’m not sure I like this format (at the moment). I can understand the episodic nature and for a writer, it’s a great way to keep motivated. You get feedback from the first instalment to carry on and take on board readers thoughts.  I was just surprised that it wasn’t a finished piece. I think the author is trying a technique out and I can see the benefits of it.

I don’t call this a gay romance, not if we take just book 1. This is erotic, and well done, but not romance. It has an edgy, forced sex appeal to it. Tones of dominance and control, which is fine. It’s more primal and I liked that.

The beginning with Jason heading to the subway and his ‘encounter’ was the strongest part for me. This would be one hell of a teaser for the opening episode. As Jason gets on the tube all self conscious looking at everyone and realising the stains on his suit, the titles would have come up.

What lets it down for me, is that I don’t yet get a feel for Jason or his world. He’s walking around in a dream state, feeling in a bit of a rut.  At the moment, I’m not invested and don’t care about him enough. You need to feel for and know Jason, to be with him on his journey. But things happen very quickly. Jason is thrown into a world of gay sex and demons and we don’t care for him yet, so we don’t feel for him or empathise. That’s what the first act should be about. Jason should resonate and identify with the reader, but this doesn’t happen.

It’s written from a 1st person perspective which goes back to the above comments. If you are going to see things from Jason’s’ perspective for a whole book, you need to like and care about him or the audience disengages.

Saying that, I like Jason’s internal fight with himself being straight, but wanting this particular man (Blaine) and the need to give away his sexual control. This is enticing to read, and more of this struggle is needed. I could visualise ever scene and saw it all in my head clearly, together with some really nice imagery which gets a big thumbs up from me.

“The silky darkness of the night was cut in half by a lightening bolt that struck the ground.”

There’s enough here for me to want to read book 2. There is a lot of potential here. I definitely want to read one of James Lee Hard’s other completed books now.

Oh. I love the cover.

Spencer.

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Book Review ‘Don’t Stop Believing’ Gwen Hayes

27511088Simply a great Christmas short story. Totally all about the two characters, Simon and Adam. It’s a will they or won’t they story. No antagonist, just Simon’s fear of intimacy and allowing himself to love again.

Although you see the view point from both guys, Adam’s the character we probably identify with the most. Whereas, Simon is our dream guy (lol) handsome, rugged, masculine, and unemotional. He is the most interesting and I enjoyed his internal conflict.

Many times as I read I was saying to myself “go on Simon, say something to him” or “Simon, just touch his hand.”

The only negative for me was, that despite being snowbound, I would have been terrified, taken to a log cabin in the woods by a bearded lumberjack with emotional issues who doesn’t communicate  well. Maybe I’ve watched too many nasty TV series and films.

Simply a sweet story for Christmas.

Spencer

Book Review ‘Seven Psychics’ Book 1 by J.C Diem

Seven Psychics BK1What a great surprise this book was! It’s my first none ‘man on man’ book in a while. The summary appealed to me so, I downloaded a sample, loved it, and downloaded the full version.

I thought this was really well done.  I would however, argue that it’s not a romance. Looking at the cover you get the impression it’s a story about a girl who falls for a tough young military style guy, when in fact, this is the B story.  The main story is Lexi’s journey, from a girl to a woman. This surprised me, as I expected the bulk of the story to be the traditional romance and the missions to destroy ‘seven psychics’ to be what held the romantic story together. In reality, it’s the opposite, and it was terrific to see.

It’s a classic hero’s journey. You see Lexi change throughout the story, I’m not talking about physical changes. I mean, she grows as a character and she isn’t the same girl you meet at the beginning. That’s what all good stories should have. What’s even more incredible to me is that I loved this character. Usually, teenage girls appear annoying, weak and cringy, but Lexi is well developed and interesting from the beginning, she’s the reason you keep reading this story. I knew who she was and was invested in her fairly quickly. That’s rare for me to find, and the author has done a great job of writing this character.

It’s a comfortable read with a small cast of characters, which I prefer because you can picture them and get to know them well. The antagonists are varied enough to keep the interest going but not so engaging as to pull you from the main cast. Sex scenes are handled nicely considering the young age of the characters and I appreciated this.

I’m surprised it took Lexi so long to catch on (trying not to spoil it too much). A point to mention is that, this is solely Lexi’s journey, seen from first person perspective. The love interest, Reece Garrett, is not as developed and remains primarily a background character. I hoping he will become as interesting as Lexi in the sequels.

I will definitely be reading the series.

Spencer.

Christmas Alone

Christmas-living-room-with-knitted-chair-cover--Country-Homes--Interiors--Housetohome.co.ukWould it surprise you to learn that I don’t like Christmas? It’s perhaps more that I just don’t want it. I’m a family guy. I want the whole settle down package. Yet I’m still on my own, and I think that’s really sad.

Holiday season is for spoiling & sharing with people you love and care about, amongst other things.

I want to shower my partner with tinsel, trees, lights, food and traditional music. But there’s no point when I’m on my own. Seriously it’s a chore to get through. Which is strange because, I would be the biggest holiday elf you could imagine. I would love nothing more than to spoil my guy.

There is one good thing though. Man on man romance novels weren’t in my life last year. Now, I love vicariously through others, It’s not so bad & for that I am extremely grateful.