A series with plenty of potential

Lesbian Book Review of ‘Daughter of no one’ by Sam Ledel.

3.50 Stars. I thought this was a pretty good fantasy book. This is the second book I have read by Ledel and I thought it was quite a bit better than her first. It is YA or maybe New Adult since both characters are in their early 20’s. This is the first book in ‘The Odium Trilogy’ series, and while the main storyline is still open, the book ended in a good spot. It doesn’t leave you with a horrible cliffhanger feeling, you just know that more adventure is to come.

This story follows the lives of two young women. Jastyn, who is an outcast due to being born out of wedlock and Princess Aurelia. When the princess’ life is in danger, Jastyn’s extensive knowledge of the woods surrounding the Kingdom might just make her the perfect person to find the Princess. After being shunned by the Royals her whole life, can Jastyn put her feeling aside to bring the Princess home?
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‘The love song of Sawyer Bell’ will make you smile.

Review of ‘The love song of Sawyer Bell’ by Avon Gale.

3.5 Stars. I wasn’t blown away by this book but it was a fun weekend read. This book is a re-release for June under a new publisher. According to Gale not much has changed from the original story. While I have never read Gale before, I have heard of her name since she is pretty big in the M/M world. I think it’s nice to see authors like Alexis Hall, KJ Charles, and Gale, write lesfic so I finally have a chance to try their books.

I almost always enjoy books about musician or artists. I have no musical talent myself and to this day, I completely blame my parents. I had dreams of being a drummer in a rock band, but they would not let me play the drums because it would “make too much noise” so I was forced to take piano lessons by a slightly scary woman with horrible breath. Needless to say I enjoy a book like this where I can live vicariously through the characters.Read More »

The angsty road to Madison.

Review of ‘The road to Madison’ by Elle Spencer.

This is a second chance story with angst. But, aren’t all second chance stories ‘angsty’?

Madison Prescott is the only heir to a multimillion dollar company and estate. Raised by her conservative father, her path in life has been predetermined by her last name. This is derailed by Madison’s relationship with the maid’s daughter, Ana Perez when they were both kids. Now in their 30s, 15 yrs after Madison proposed then abandoned Ana, her father died. Can Madison pursue the love of her life once again, or are the wounds she created too deep for Ana’s heart to overcome?Read More »

A ‘Perfect Match’ made in Japan.

Review of ‘Perfect Match Book One’ by Mildred Gail Digby.

This was different from the usual romance books I get to read. Although still a medical romance, the setting made it seem far from what we are used to.

Megan Maier is a pediatrician returning to work after losing her partner the previous year in an unfortunate accident. She is taken by Syler Terada, a pediatric surgeon with dashing, androgynous looks. The attraction is immediate and was mildly disappointing since it happened on the heels of Megan’s panic attack. However, the rest of the interactions are great and not rushed, so overall the romance was done very well.

As mentioned above, the singular element in the book is the Japan setting. I was not sure initially where they were as it was only clear that Megan had been in Thailand the previous year. I also could not tell which language they were referencing. The narration is obviously in English, but there are Japanese words sprinkled throughout the story. The author, later on, mentions that the characters were speaking Japanese at times and even mentions how English and German are other languages spoken at the hospital. I enjoy other languages, wanted to see how Japan’s medicine was portrayed and certainly, the author showcased her knowledge of Japanese, but these words were a reading disruption for me as I did not have a clear translation readily available for many of them and I frequently found myself searching for definitions on the internet.Read More »

Review of ‘Recipe for love’ by Aurora Rey.

New Yorker hotshot chef Drew Davis has a clear professional goal to become a restaurant head chef as soon as possible. She gets the opportunity she was waiting for in a farm-to-table establishment in upstate New York. Apart from the inconvenience of having to leave her beloved city life to move to a rural area, Drew has to deal with local farmer Hannah Little who is as beautiful as obstinate and isn’t impressed by the fancy city chef. As they are forced to work together to make the restaurant a success, they both discover many things in common and a brewing mutual attraction. But Drew is only in upstate New York temporarily and will be back to NYC at the first opportunity to advance her professional career, or is she?

This is a slow-burn romance which will be appreciated especially by gourmet readers. Food is at the forefront of the story, with a particular focus on farm-produced ingredients. A farm-to-table restaurant aims to source most of the ingredients from local food producers, an apparently simple concept which presents a few challenges. Ms. Rey describes thoroughly the hard work involved in farming, the diverse types of products and the different nature cycles. As these descriptions take a big part of the book, people interested in farming, food produce and sustainability will enjoy the story much better than the rest. I personally found that there was too much detail in these aspects that distracted me from the main story.

In this novel, Ms. Rey uses contrasts expertly: femme-butch, white-biracial, countryside-city, and even including a feminine farmer character, which seems contradictory in itself. But beyond these disparities, there is an ample common ground; the appreciation of good food, the importance of family and the search of long-lasting love. The romance part of the plot is well written, and the characters’ relationship is built slowly from a strong initial antagonism that eventually changes into attraction. The author gets the butch-femme dynamic spot-on, especially in the sex scenes which, nevertheless, present a hot role reversal. My main criticism is that the characters’ main conflict could have been solved much easier with better communication.

Overall, a good butch-femme romance which will be appreciated especially by gourmet readers. 3.5 stars.

ARC provided by the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

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Review of ‘Pas de Deux’ by M. J. Duncan.

Well, I feel all I do is confess something or the other nowadays. I am a Duncan fan and have enjoyed all her novels. This author is one of the reasons I decided to renew my Kindle Unlimited membership as her books are available through this service. Of course, I figured that out after actually buying three of them. Wait, I don’t think I needed to confess that…

This is an age gap romance that sees Mallory Collingswood (age 39), a violin prodigy who has returned home to lead the London Symphony Orchestra, deal with a failed marriage proposal and give love another chance. That chance takes the form of Addison Leigh (age 24), a ballerina prodigy making waves with the Royal Ballet. Mallory is presented with a once in a lifetime opportunity to collaborate with the Royal Ballet in a project that will push her skills to the max while getting her to step out of her comfort zone in other areas. Mallory accepts and finds herself working tirelessly alongside a new and unexpected partner.

This story starts almost a year after ‘Symphony in Blue’, which was released in 2017. You do not need to read that book to get the story in this one. In fact, I wonder if it was more of a hindrance for me since Mallory was not cast in a good light in that book. I had to get over the previous feelings of Mallory being self-centered and just plain inconsiderate and warm up to her in this story. It helped that Mallory does allude to her shortcomings and shows growth through the book.

This was a straightforward tale with no angst in it. Characters were rational and took their time to know each other. The relationship developed over time and at no point felt unrealistic. Ms. Duncan does a great job describing things such as little courtesies towards each other that allows the romance to feel genuine. The author also did a fantastic job of creating the setting. The ballet scenes were great and one could feel the anxiety and magnitude of the events within the scenes. More palpable though, was the beauty of it all. And I am not even close to being a ballet fan.

On the downside, the book felt drawn out a bit. There was no conflict at all in this story except for executing the ambitious show to perfection. The age difference came up once and it was simply an acknowledgment of it. Parents loved the mains so no conflict there either. Heck, the mains’ hectic schedules did not really affect anything either. The presence of a few typos seemed uncharacteristic for this author as well. That said, Duncan kept me reading as she usually does.

Overall, a solid slow-burn romance that will especially appeal to music/dance fans. 3.5 stars.

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