(ranting) Review: A beast’s belle by J. Gambardella

 Series: Beast and Belle Series (book 1)

Genre: Erotica

Rating: dnf 28%

Cover: I’m kinda wondering why her dress isn’t yellow, but the cover’s still pretty.

Links: goodreads

Trigger warnings: sexual harassment, maybe more

Description: A Beast’s Belle is a fairy tale retold – echoing the ground-breaking BDSM Beauty books by Anne Rice.

The novel offers a twist on a classic story; Isabel is the daughter of a widowed inventor and tinkerer, but leaves home to join the indentured staff of a manor. Upon arriving, she explores the rigid structure of domestic servitude and discipline in the manor, and eventually grows fascinated with the Master of the house, a feral man with curious proclivities and voracious appetites. Isabel tries to find her way in a new life at the manor, but quickly finds herself bound up with the Master of the house and engrossed in the lifestyle and ritual the manor’s occupants share.

Review: Prepare yourself for a rant.

I want to start with a quote. This quote was part of the (probably) automatically sent email I received after my request to receive this arc on NG was fulfilled.

“If after reading all or part of the book you find the material was very different than you what expected or the genre was not to your liking, the Author would appreciate you not review the book as opposed to posting a review that would not be fair to the Author.”

And the wording… like… I expected this ARC to be good, otherwise I would not have requested it. Surprisingly I do not request arcs I hope will be not enjoyable to me. Strange concept, I know. Very strange. But that’s how I roll.

Anyway. Let’s get to the book itself. You may have guessed that I did not like it – dnfing a book is a great indicator for this kind of thing.
First I didn’t enjoy the language. Too many adjectives (I like adjectives, just not… fucking everywhere). And then… the wording. There are some scenes where the mc does something to herself (you know what kind of things I’m talking about) and instead of using ‚her‘ the word ‚the‘ is used. Like she touched the clit and not her clit (not a direct quote, but near enough).

But I could have struggled on if at least the characters were likeable, mainly the MC. Which… she is not.
There is one special scene where I was like „fuck this“. Belle is in the woods, where she often is when she wants to masturbate. She does this a lot – that is not my problem, although those scenes weren’t interesting in the least – which is my problem. That’s not what I’m talking about, though.

As I was saying, she is masturbating. In the woods. The very public and not private property woods. And guess what? She is seen. Oh no. How could he have done that? Way to ignore someones private… wait. She is nowhere private.

To be fair, there is the possibility that he followed her to the public woods (he harasses her at some point and does probably again. Although I wouldn’t know because I didn’t read any further).

But my point remains.

She tries to have her alone time at a public place and some guy who sees her is the villain. That’s not how you can see things like that.

Summing it up… there wasn’t anything that was enjoyable for me and with the e-mail thing… not a happy experience.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review (not too sure in this case if they really wanted an honest review to be honest). Thank you (?) .

Review: An Invitation by Jay Northcote

 Series: Standalone (but originally published in the Juicy Bits anthology from Dreamspinner Press)

Genre: LGBT (m/m), Erotica

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Cover: Nothing special.

Links: goodreads

Trigger warnings: None

Description: “I should put you over my knee and spank you for teasing me…”

Jake’s new boss, Cal Mackenzie, is hotter than hell. Fortified by a little liquid bravery on a work night out, Jake makes his move and finds out that Cal is interested too. To Jake’s dismay, Cal makes it clear that nothing is going to happen as long as they work together. Fortunately for both of them, this is just a temp job and there’s only a week left in the contract.

Cal admonishes Jake to behave while he waits, but as the week drags on, Jake can’t resist flirting and teasing. When Friday finally arrives, Cal shows Jake what happens to people who can’t follow his rules. Jake learns a surprisingly enjoyable lesson over Cal’s knee—one that he won’t forget in a hurry.

Review: When will I ever learn to NOT read anything by Jay Northcote when in public?!

Probably never…

This is a nice, sexy read without much plot. But I still got a feeling for the characters, which was unexpected to be honest. And I really enjoyed how there is no real life power imbalance – because Cal makes Jake wait until after he has stopped working for him.

If you’re looking for a nice, sexy read for your break at work, this is it. Or maybe better wait until you’re home… just saying.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy through the author in exchange for an honest review. Thank you

Leipziger Buchmesse 2017

Just a quick heads up from a tired blogger: I’ll be at Leipziger Buchmesse/ Leipzig Book Fair on Friday and Saturday.

I never attended that one (only the one in Frankfurt), so I’m very excited. Well, I would be excited if that were my 10th time as well, so… Anyway. I won’t write any reviews this weekend (duh), but I will probably tweet sometimes/a lot. Feel free to follow me if you’re interested!

I try to write at least a few reviews next week. And of course I will write something about the Book Fair.

See you soon!


Review: What they always tell us by Martin Wilson

 Series: Standalone

Genre: LGBT (m/m), Romance

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Cover: I really like it.

Links: goodreads

Trigger warnings: mention of suicide attempt, child neglect mention

Description: JAMES AND ALEX have barely anything in common anymore – least of all their experiences in high school, where James is a popular senior and Alex is suddenly an outcast. But at home, there is Henry, the precocious 10-year-old across the street, who eagerly befriends them both. And when Alex takes up running, there is James’s friend Nathen, who unites the brothers in moving and unexpected ways.

Review: Why can’t there be more?!

There is no real end and at the same time it’s a very fitting end, if that makes any sense at all. But let’s start at the beginning.

I love how we get to read about both brothers’ life separately. Alex may be the mc, but James has his own life and he keeps living it after his brother’s failed suicide attempt. Their relationship changes because of this, but it comes back to being very sweet (unexpectedly sweet) and leaves a warm feeling inside you.

There is some romance in this novel, but it’s not the main focus. No, this is a story about recovery. And it’s a good one, a hopeful one. I still liked the pairing very much.

I enjoyed how the writing reads like the characters’ age. It’s not often done and when it is done, it can easily be overdone.

So you may ask why I’m only giving 4 stars if I enjoyed the characters, the story, the message, the writing… It’s all those girl bashing. Being female does not mean being weak. Yes I know a lot of males (and quite some females as well) see it that way, but guess what?

You can have characters being sexist and then have other characters telling them off for this! It’s not hard to do, you know? And if a character is sexist in his thoughts, you can make him change his mind. I’m sorry (no, I’m not), but this is really hitting a sore point with me and I’m not willing to overlook it because I like the book.

You should still read it.


Review: Future Leaders of Nowhere by Emily O’Beirne

 Series: Future Leaders (book 1)

Genre: LGBT (f/f, bisexual), Romance, YA

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

Cover: Somehow I really love those little leafs…

Links: goodreads

Trigger warnings: none

Description: “Finn’s solid. Not in body, but in being. She’s gravity and kindness and all those good things that anchor.”

“Willa’s confusing. Sometimes she’s this sweet, sensitive soul. Other times she’s like a flaming arrow you hope isn’t coming for you.”

Finn and Willa have been picked as team leaders in the future leader camp game. The usually confident Finn doesn’t know what’s throwing her more, the fact she’s leading a team of highly unenthusiastic overachievers or coming up against fierce, competitive Willa. And Willa doesn’t know which is harder, leaving her responsibilities behind to pursue her goals or opening up to someone.

Soon they both realise that the hardest thing of all is balancing their clashing ideals with their unexpected connection. And finding a way to win, of course.

Review: Is Emily O’Beirne even capable of writing a book I do not like?

If you follow my blog/my reviews you know that she is one of my favourite authors. But it’s not like I’m blindly liking her books – they just are really good and each one has a different story and I just love her books, okay?!


Future Leaders of Nowhere has a very interesting idea behind it. What makes one a leader? And what makes one a good leader? I think this question may be more important now than it was a few years ago. There are quite a few elections this year in europe for example and people are really confused and afraid (which is not a good combination, let me tell you).

So the game that’s played in this novel is really interesting and important. I would love to take part in it myself. But of course not only the story is interesting.

There is quite a diverse racial cast in Future Leaders of Nowhere and each character has their own personality. I really hope we will be able to read more about them in the second installment. But I really can’t wait to read more about Finn and Willa.  I enjoyed how both girls are this fierce human beings with their own thoughts and ideals instead of one being the doer and the other doing what she is told.

Their romance itself is a slow building one, full of confusion and longing and I really felt for them. Those romances are the best, aren’t they? Of course there is some drama that’s keeping them from their happiness, but it doesn’t feel forced but realistic and… it simply had to happen.

Speaking of drama: Not only is one of the characters ON PAGE bisexual, but the drama is not because of that identity! It was really refreshing to not read about a character being anxious because their partner is bi and how they of course will be missing the other gender because of that – which is plain bullshit but a lot of people believe that bullshit. I would have been very confused if Emily O’Beirne would have written something like that though.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy through the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you.

Review: Whiteout by Elyse Springer

 Series: Seasons of Love (book 1)

Genre: LGBT (m/m), Romance

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

Cover: Sooo beautiful. I had to buy the printed copy because of this cover!

Links: goodreads

Trigger warnings: Suicide (I’ve got no memory of this but since I wrote this in my notebook… it’s no big part of this story for sure!)

Description: Noah Landers wakes up one day with a headache and no memory of where—or who—he is. Jason, the man taking care of him, tries to fill in some of the blanks: they’re in a cabin in Colorado on vacation, and Noah slipped on ice and hit his head. But even with amnesia, Noah knows Jason is leaving out something important.

Jason O’Reilly is sexy as hell, treats Noah like he’s precious, and seems determined to make this the romantic getaway they’d apparently dreamed of together. But Noah’s more concerned that he’s trapped alone with Jason in the middle of a blizzard while his slowly-returning memories bring hints of secrets and betrayal.

Noah’s not sure what’s the truth and what’s a lie. But as he learns who he is—and who Jason is to him—he’s forced to reevaluate everything he believes about himself, about loyalty . . . and about love.

Review: Plot twist! would be a great way to sum this one up.

I did not expect this. Not at all. Not saying I expected it to be bad (I wouldn’t have bought it if that were the case), but I wasn’t expected to be that… manipulated. In a good way. You usually know what’s going on in amnesia stories, don’t you? Not in this one. I was so sure and then suddenly everything did a 180 and when I say everything I mean everything. Plot, setting, characters…

I love how this book starts with drama and then the aftermath of said drama develops before the readers’ eyes. Usually you get drama near the end, it’s resolved, end of book. And while I do like reading those things, I didn’t know what I was missing. It was so great to be able to read about Noah’s growth because of said drama – and may I add that this growth is a sure case of showing instead of telling?

To be honest Noah made me think of myself and my life a little. The things I did and did not do… But I feel like I’m (finally) on the right track, so enough about me.

There are little tidbits in this novel that show the author herself. And I love how I can see her in this first published work of hers. It made me wanna go and see way more musicals, too and who can say no to Harry Potter references?

Like I said I loved Noah’s development and I really enjoyed the romance between him and Jason – especially because there is so much focus on them as individuals. It’s Noah and Jason, not Noah-and-Jason. But the character I loved most is Abby. She is only a side character in Whiteout, but she will be getting her own story in Thaw (YAY!). I can’t wait to read her story. An ace librarian? Count me in!

If you’re looking for a slow building and thoughtful romance, go and buy Whiteout. What are you waiting for?

Review: Rock Hard by Olivia Cunning

 Series: Sinners on Tour (book 2)

Genre: Erotica, Romance, LGBT (bi side character)

Rating: 1.5/5 Stars

Cover: Overdone tbh

Links: goodreads

Trigger warnings: sexual harassment, drug addiction, slut shaming

Description: An ultimatum can break your heart…

Every night lead singer, Sed Lionheart whips thousands of women into a frenzy with his voice alone. But the stage is the only place Sed feels any passion since he lost Jessica…

If you’re not willing to break all the rules…

It shattered her heart, but law student Jessica broke off her engagement to Sed, determined to be successful on her own terms. But no other man can ever hold a candle to Sed…

Then a chance meeting and tortuously close quarters lead to uncontrollable flares of passion and rediscovery of their unique penchant for public encounters. Now, in addition to the risk of mutual heartbreak every time they get together, they’re in danger of truly scandalous public exposure…

Review: Can they stop fucking for a minute? OMFG!

There’s a lot of sex. End of review.

No, seriously, I can’t tell you a lot about this book because it’s seems to be only about fucking. Which would be alright if it were only erotica, but it’s supposed to erotic romance… and you need plot for romance and character development and so much more.

You’re probably already guessing that I did not ship Jessica and Sed. At all. Not even a little bit. Honestly I wasn’t giving a chance to start rooting for their romance because there is none.

And to go even further… I kinda despise them. Little spoiler ahead probably, but I won’t be giving too much away, I think. One of their friends is addicted to drugs and they help him get clean without a hospital. While he is in withdrawal they have to fuck right next to him because they just can’t help themselves. What. The. Fuck. Empathy levels are below zero. How can you be horny in a situation like that?! And then go through with it…

The only parts I liked in this novel where those featuring Trey. He is one of my favourite characters in this series and the following one.

Okay, that’s not entirely true. At the beginning I did like Jessica. I was so proud of her for taking her life into her own hands and not giving a fuck about the future Sed had planned for her. God, was he an asshole… And at first I thought there would be no female hating/slut shaming. And then it began and become worse and worse and worse.

FYI: After writing this review I’m lowering my rating from 2 stars to 1.5 stars. I wasn’t aware of how much I hated this book until I started putting it into words and now it doesn’t feel like two stars book to me anymore.