Beyond Duty (Expanded Edition) - SJD Peterson

Why did I wait so long to read this? So glad I finally did.

Mac and Gunny have served over twenty years in the USMC. They have been lovers almost as long. Something no one could ever know about due to DADT. They are best friends, they have each other's backs and their relationship is solid.
Now retirement is lurking around the corner and Gunny suddenly feels uncertain, no longer sure of his place in Mac's life now that everything will change and they don't have to hide anymore. Maybe Mac stayed with him because it was convenient and there was no risk of Gunny outing him since Gunny himself was in the same situation? But now? Mac can have anyone, right?
I hurt for Gunny when these insecurities surfaced. Luckily, Mac did not take long to make quite clear he had no intention of going anywhere.

There is not a lot of drama in this book. Just two guys preparing for the next phase of their lives which includes coming out to families and friends and taking their relationship out in the open.
I absolutely loved these guys. I loved how solid they were, how after so many years they know each other inside out. Nothing like two hot, grown men with some life experience (yeah, I admit, I feel kind of too old for most college boy stories...!) And the passion between them is palpable. Boy, these guys are hot together. I wish we'd gotten to see a bit more of the BDSM aspect of the relationship, but I have a feeling I will get that in Mauled (Beyond Duty, book 2).

Northern Star - Ethan Day, Jason Frazier

It's Christmas time and Deacon is having a seriously bad day. Which is saying a lot since he has generally not exactly been a winner in life's lottery.
As he is drowning his sorrows in a hotel bar, Steve walks in and strikes up a conversation. Steve is quite a bit older than Deacon (17 years, I think it was) and fresh out of the closet. The two spend an intense night together - the connection between them somehow deeper than either of them expected from a one-night stand.
But Deacon has shit to deal with and the two lose contact after that first night.
Months later, they run into each other again and reconnect. They both want more than a fling but Deacon still has shit to deal with and a past that has left him unable to believe that good things can happen to him. Luckily, he has people in his life willing to fight for him so it all works out in the end.
I liked the story and the characters a lot; the cute kid did not take over the story, the very nasty parent was not suddenly forgiven in the end (one of my peeves - I cannot stand it when bad people suddenly do a one-eighty and all is forgiven), and Steve's co-workers trying show their support for their newly gay boss by including gay topics into their usual banter and sex-talk was just hilarious.
The added bonus of the whole thing, of course, was the narration by Jason Frazier. The man is a master at the steamy stuff (well, we already knew that) but what really stood out for me in this one, were the tearful voices. Simply amazing.

Reading progress update: I've read 25%.

Beyond Duty (Expanded Edition) - SJD Peterson

One simply did not talk while devouring heroically delicious meatball heroes. Even Mac’s attention shifted, and they inhaled their meals, with only the occasional grunt or groan in true famished caveman fashion. It was a beautiful thing.


Snort – and a guy thing, I presume :)

Reading progress update: I've read 17%.

Beyond Duty (Expanded Edition) - SJD Peterson

Aww, Mac – what an amazing declaration of love. Sigh.

Reading progress update: I've read 1%.

Northern Star - Ethan Day, Jason Frazier

A new one from Jason Frazier - Finally!

On Point  - Annabeth Albert

Without a doubt the best one in the series so far.

Ben and Maddox have known each other for more than a decade. They are best friends, share a house and are on the same SEAL team.
Not wanting to risk their friendship as well as a conviction they don't want the same things in life keep both of them from acting on the attraction they have for each other.

Until their next mission goes tits up. The reminder how fragile life can be makes them take a closer look at what they want in life. Unfortunately, their life plans still don't quite mesh. Add to that Ben's ingrained fear that he will never be enough and that everyone leaves eventually, and all they can agree to initially is some kind of boyfriend/friends with benefits experiment - more than a little painful to watch.


And then there was a fallout. And there was making up. And all was fine once Ben finally realized that he really could trust Maddox to always have his back.


Maddox gave so much of himself to Ben, and for the first time, he really saw that for the gift it was.
Maddox didn't just give him the courage to be strong - he gave him the space to be vulnerable.

Reading progress update: I've read 59%.

Reclaiming Hope - Shell Taylor

”SOOOO...” KOLLIN sat back in Adam’s chair.

“Do you want me to warn you ahead of time that we’re about to have an awkward conversation, or do you just want to be surprised?”

Reading progress update: I've read 22%.

Reclaiming Hope - Shell Taylor

“Oh, loosen up. It‘ll all be fine.” Kollin grinned.
“Look how well this is turning out. We haven’t even been on our first date, and we’re already fighting like an old married couple. This’ll be epic.”



Nothing like a good dose of optimism ;)

Unscripted Love  - Aimee Nicole Walker

Unscripted Love is the first book in a spin-off series of the Curl Up and Dye Mysteries. And it went pretty much like the first book in Curl Up and Dye as far as the relationship part goes: One amazing guy chasing after a somewhat flighty one who runs hot and cold on him for most of the book. It drove me nuts then and it drove me nuts here.
And Unscripted Love didn't have a murder mystery to go along with the drama so I basically ended up feeling cheated. I had hoped for more, but I will probably still read the next one as there are some interesting characters waiting to get their story.

Reading progress update: I've read 1%.

Unscripted Love  - Aimee Nicole Walker

Kyle inhaled deeply through flared nostrils like he was working to calm himself. I expected him to yell, or walk away from me, but never would I have guessed that he would toss me over his shoulder caveman style and carry me out of the party.


Off to a very good start, I’d say :)

Reading progress update: I've read 51%.

Fish & Chips - Sean Crisden, Abigail Roux, Madeleine Urban

Finally, Ty swallowed hard and looked back up. “Zane,” he said hoarsely. Then he stopped and looked down again quickly before meeting Zane’s eyes again with determination. “You’re everything I need you to be,” he whispered.

Reading progress update: I've read 7%.

— feeling big smile
Fish & Chips - Sean Crisden, Abigail Roux, Madeleine Urban

“Do you realize what kind of shitfit Grady’s going to have over this when this is all done?” Zane asked McCoy as they walked down the nondescript hallway of holding and interrogation rooms. “Oh, I’m looking forward to it,” McCoy said with relish. “I want pictures, Garrett. They’ll be great for the newsletter.”

Reading progress update: I've read 5%.

— feeling happy
Sticks & Stones  - Abigail Roux, Madeleine Urban

At least he wasn‘t humming or whistling anymore. Or, God forbid, singing. Zane always knew there was trouble coming when Ty started making up his own words to “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”


Second re-read and this is just the kind of quote that gives me that warm feeling of ‘coming home’. I am crazy about these two.

Hard Wired - Megan Erickson, Santino Hassell

We’ve heard about Jesse and Ian in the first books of the series. They are the mods of Kai’s Twitch channel. The two work well together but they have never met in real life. FallenCon changes that and things quickly get heated between them.

And then my problems with this book started; Ian is not using his real name online and Jesse flips his shit when he finds out that mod Cherrycakes is not a girl but instead a sexy male artist. Sure, Ian should probably have told him sooner that he is Cherrycakes, i.e. Jesse’s co-mod, but the whole thing made it seem as if Jesse had a problem with the concept of someone not wanting to show their true identity in an online world. I mean, really? That’s what people do. It’s called trying to stay safe!


Ian has apparently had some serious, nasty stuff happen to him as a child. He doesn’t trust people in the real world and uses different personas when entering that world to protect himself. His past experiences has led him to believe no one wants to see or know the real Ian. No one until Jesse. They start building something of an online relationship and both start opening up to each other.

And up comes my next issue with Jesse’s behaviour; he keeps pushing Ian to be himself. Telling him he doesn’t need to hide behind a different persona only to later on tell Ian he doesn’t need to keep the personas separate from his true self because they are part of his personality. I just didn’t get that part – is it a persona Ian can just drop if he chooses, or is it an integral part of his personality? Make up your mind, Jesse.

Quite possibly I just lack the knowledge of human psychology to follow here, but it sure did confuse and annoy me.


The ending, sweet as it was, was a little rushed to me. Ian seemed to overcome most of his issues rather suddenly.

All in all, I did like Ian and Jesse quite a lot but I couldn’t help focusing on the negatives so I didn’t enjoy this book as much as the first ones in the series.




Reading progress update: I've read 1%.

Cut & Run  - Abigail Roux, Madeleine Urban

One of the first books/series I read after discovering MM. Now, over 1000 books later, to me, they still set the bar...

Euro Pride Con

Back in the office after an amazing weekend at Euro Pride Con in Berlin. Thanks to the organizers for a specacular job and everyone else who helped make this such great fun.
Hope to be back next year in Amsterdam.

EPC on Twitter (pictures etc.)

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