Squared Away (Out of Uniform #5)

Squared Away by Annabeth Albert: Review by Lost in a Book


In the wake of tragedy, SEAL Mark Whitley rushed stateside to act as guardian to his sister’s three young children. But a conflicting will could give custody to someone else—someone Mark remembers as a too young, too hot, wild party boy. Even after six years, Mark can’t shake the memory of his close encounter with Isaiah James, or face up to what it says about his own sexuality.

Isaiah’s totally over the crush that made him proposition Mark all those years ago. In fact, he’s done with crushing on the wrong men altogether. For now, he’s throwing himself into proving he’s the best person to care for his cousin’s kids. But there’s no denying there’s something sexy about a big, tough military man with a baby in his arms.

As the legal details get sorted out, their long-buried attraction resurfaces, leading to intimate evenings after the kids are tucked in. A forever future is within reach for all of them, if only Mark can find the courage he needs to trust Isaiah with his secrets—and his heart.

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3 Stars

Well, *sigh* this wasn’t my favorite book in the series. I had a very “meh, this is an ok read,” vibe going on throughout.  However, I’m still a fan of all things Navy and especially all things SEALs.

Too bad Isaiah wasn’t a SEAL because this one could have been the inspiration. 🔥🔥


Did you get an eye full of the………. dog tags?

Sorry, where were we?

In Squared Away, we get to know the confident virgin, Isaiah. He’s 18 and determined to lose his virginity to the hot AF Navy SEAL, Mark. While at a family wedding, Isaiah makes his intentions clear and Mark shoots him down.

Fast forward six years and the death of Isaiah’s cousin along with Mark’s sister pushes both men together again as they attempt to pick up the pieces and determine the best arrangements for the three children left without parents. Contradicting wills set off some heated disagreements on how to proceed. Mark has been ghosting Isaiah for the past six years and Isaiah has played nanny for those children many times throughout their lives.  Unfortunately, Mark can’t get past his prior knowledge of Isaiah or take the time to process and become comfortable with his sexuality.

While I liked both men separately, they were never simpatico. I never had that feeling of them being on the same page. Mark’s very insecure, has trust issues, and his inner monologue of people always letting him down became frustrating. I don’t expect nor want everything tied up in a pretty bow but I would have appreciated them having some cohesiveness as they navigate their daily life and eventual relationship.

Isaiah is a very sexual person which is opposite of Mark’s gray ace or demisexual identity. I did enjoy how patient and understanding Isaiah was as Mark finds his comfort with intimacy. I also appreciate the diversity Albert provided with an interracial couple and a varying spectrum of sexual comfort and identity.

The kids. They were the spotlight of the story and understandably the focus of their lives. There was authenticity to their growing pains as they learn that children don’t come with an on/off switch. Especially as young as these little ones are. Isaiah and Mark learned that when life kicks you in the ass, sometimes you have to paste a smile on and give the performance of a lifetime so the little ones don’t feel the stress and grief that creep up.

Editing point of contention which I believe I mentioned in the last release were the POV and time lapses. These aren’t indicated and would randomly change in the middle of a page from one sentence to the next. Once again, I’m hoping this is sorted before the official release.

Isaiah is very relatable with his feisty personality and big heart. The men got their HEA even if it went from no I can’t have a relationship to I must be with you always within a couple pages. *shrug*

I think this is the end of the road for me- but if you’re a fan of the series, you’ll probably be a fan of this one too.

Copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Once Upon A Wolf

Once upon A Wolf by Rhys Ford: Review by Lost in a Book for @BMBR


Once Upon A Time, There Was A Wolf….

Gibson Keller’s days are fairly routine: wake up early, get some work done, drink lots of coffee, and take care of Ellis, his older brother stuck in wolf form after coming home from the war. It’s a simple life made up of long runs on two legs—or four—and quiet evenings…. Until Ellis chases a handsome man off a cliff and into the frozen waters beside their cabin, changing Gibson’s life forever.

For Zach Thomas, buying an old B&B is a new start. Leaving behind his city life, he longs to find peace and quiet, and hiking the trails behind his property seems safe enough—right up to the moment an enormous black wolf chases him into a lake, nearly drowning him. Discovering werewolves are real astounds him, but not as much as the man who rescues him from the icy water then walks into Zach’s heart as if he owns it.

Loving a werewolf—loving Gibson with all his secrets—has its challenges but Zach believes their love is worth fighting for, especially since his heart knows the big bad wolf is really a prince in disguise.

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2.5 Stars

I LOVE Ellis. I love his wolfish shenanigans, the mystery of his story, and how far he came throughout… the problem is that it isn’t Ellis’ story. I think?


Gibson is a wolf shifter that lives with his brother (Ellis) in a mountain cabin. One day Ellis decides to play a game of chase with an unsuspecting stranger… except the stranger is terrified and slips down the mountain. Luckily, Gibson is able to rush to the aid of the badly injured Zach.

Zach is the new neighbor that purchased a bed & breakfast and he connects with Gibson *super* fast. Well, maybe not a connection but they are attracted to each other right away… even badly injured, Zach is wanting to mount Gibson (which I would totally believe if this was a mates type shifter book). It just seems a foregone conclusion that because they are the only two men within miles, they would end up together. I get it, last man on Earth and all- but it didn’t seem authentic IMO. Unfortunately there isn’t much else to the Zach and Gibson show. The romance/connection between Gibson and Zach was put on the back burner as all focus went to Ellis. Because of this, the relationship felt forced.

As the synopsis mentioned, Ellis is stuck in his wolf form to cope with the nightmares that never leave. This book provides in-depth coverage of Ellis’ status, the growth he makes, the danger he gets in, and the care he receives from Zach and Gibson. Ellis and Zach form a special bond that I believed and a connection I felt. It’s a damn shame it wasn’t their story.


One of the things I adore about shifter stories is the possessiveness. I love the growly mine and the unapologetic need to be near the other and the ultimate desire to claim them. With this book, any time Gibson showed a hint of possessiveness, he went apologetic. *sad face* There wasn’t much heat on page and I was glad for it. Without the connection between the MCs, more sex would have just felt out of place to me.

I can’t recommend this book for the MCs but I was a fan of Ellis and if he’s getting a story, then reading this would be necessary. I’ll continue on this series *only* if Ellis gets his official story.

Copy provided for honest review.


The Station- NSFW

The Station by Keira Andrews: Review by Lost in a Book for @BMBR

Two men exiled to an untamed land must capture love.

Ever since Cambridge-bound Colin Lancaster spied on stable master Patrick Callahan mastering another man, he’s longed for Patrick to do the same to him. When Patrick is caught with his pants down and threatened with death for his crime, Colin speaks up in his defense and confesses his own sinful nature. They’re soon banished to the faraway prison colony of Australia.

Patrick never asked for Colin’s help, and now he’s stuck with the pampered fool. While it’s true that being transported to Australia is a far cry from the luxury Colin is accustomed to, he’s determined to make the best of it and prove himself. Patrick learned long ago that love is a fairy tale, but he’s inexorably drawn to sweet, optimistic Colin despite himself.

From the miserable depths of a prison ship to the vast, untamed Australian outback, Colin and Patrick must rely on each other. Danger lurks everywhere, and when they unexpectedly get the chance to escape to a new life as cowboys, they’ll need each other more than ever.

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**NSFW **


4.25 Stars

Historical? Australia? Cowboys?


The Station begins when Colin is just a boy of 13 and a new stable master, Patrick (22) is hired on at his parents estate. Colin quickly becomes enamored and visits Patrick any chance he can get away. Years go by and when he’s 16, Colin spots Patrick getting it on with another man. It turns him on while at the same time spooking him. Colin has to come to terms with his sexual identity and isn’t able to face Patrick after. Pressure from Colin’s parents keep him indoors for much of his teen years. They are determined he attend university while Colin would much rather work with his hands. And Patrick. On Patrick. To Patrick. He isn’t picky, by age 19, Colin wants Patrick.

Patrick is an Irish stable master with a prickly demeanor. He’s been screwed over by people in his past and trusts no one, believes love isn’t real, and sex will only ever be about release and never feelings. Patrick also doesn’t understand why Colin stopped visiting all those years and becomes very cool to the young Lord Lancaster.


*dramatic music*

Patrick is found “buggering” a man in the stable. Colin steps forward to save Patrick and admits to having a “sinful nature” as well. Both men are spared death and end up on a prison labor ship that’s going to help colonize Australia.

Colin is such a bright eyed man who’s relieved that his inclinations are revealed and that he isn’t heading to college. On this long journey, Patrick and Colin form a tentative friendship with benefits but Patrick remains clear that there’s nothing more to their interactions. Trust no one.

Because they have male interests, both men hit the prisoner lottery and end up escorting a widow and cattle to her station. It’s on this station that both men find their footing- happiness, purpose, friendships, and love. It’s a slow progression with Patrick being of the anti-love and physical release only mentality. Colin wears his heart on his sleeve and Patrick is closed off but cares much more than he lets on. It’s beautiful to watch each man find themselves as individuals and then together as lovers and partners.

**Please pardon this review interruption for some gratuitous Aussie cowboy pictures. NSFW**



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The secondary characters. *heart eyes* I adored William, Robbie, and Emily. My face sprung a leak as Colin said goodbye to his cousin William. Legit tears. I think it seemed so profound because all of Colin’s family were against him and although William didn’t understand, he still loved him. Isn’t that all that should matter? *sniff* Emily, the widow is a strong, independent woman that kicks ass and takes names- usually with a rifle by her side.

This is a captivating and unique story. The part that had me a bit disappointed was the historical element. The first part of the story that took place in London had the language and feels I crave in historical romances. Once they left London, my enjoyment level remained but the historical element seemed to vanish. The language was modernized and it didn’t read any different than some of the non-historical Australian outback romances I’ve read. Again, I very much enjoyed this but historicals are my preferred drug of choice and this read didn’t fully provide the fix I was jonesing for.

I thought this would be angsty AF. It wasn’t and I’m so glad I put on my big girl pants and took a chance. When conditions were miserable, Colin still had hope, found happiness, and felt the relief of a new day, being true to himself, on an unknown Australian adventure. With Patrick. Definitely recommended.

Copy provided for honest review.


On and Off

On and Off by Jenna Kendrick: Review by Lost in a Book for @BMBR

For almost a year, Doc1984 and Wallflower have been battling it out online. There’s no subject they can’t disagree over, no end to their aggravation with each other.

Mitchell Abend and Jackson Wallach are in perfect sync from the moment they’re introduced. Mitchell’s never quite gotten over being publicly humiliated by a former lover, but Jackson’s quiet strength encourages him to trust once again. Jackson’s isolated himself after a devastating accident, but Mitchell makes him want to live again.

On and Off
Wallflower and Doc’s online battles take an unexpected turn from adversaries to friends. But when one of them discovers his online friend and offline lover are one and the same, revealing the dual connection may cost him both a friendship and a chance at love.

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 2.5 Stars


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I’ll start off by saying that for the longest time I wouldn’t read novellas because I didn’t think they could pack a full story in so few words/pages. I admit that was extremely naive and have since found some AMAZING novellas by very talented authors. However, this novella didn’t follow in the same vein. It was rushed, full of insta-love, and weaksauce “angst” to finish it off.

Doc1984 (Jackson) and Wallflower (Mitchell) have been chatting online for about a year. By chatting, I mean disagreeing and debating everything (totally foreplay). On a chance encounter, they meet at a club and hit it off. Neither man knows that they are sitting and dancing with their online crush. Things progress on and offline for these men. Mitchell has trust issues and Jackson has insecurities after an accident.

All fine right? I’m a fan of the meeting-online-and-in-person-but-not-knowing-it trope. I’m also a fan of novellas. What I’m not keen on is skipping the character and/or relationship development due to the length. Prior to the club, Mitchell makes a huge deal about how it isn’t his scene, no hook-ups, etc… Yet, literally minutes after meeting Jackson we get this gem-

“C’mon, sexy. Let’s go dance before I change my mind and lead you to the nearest bathroom stall, instead.”

The rest of the book is consistent with rushing, insta-love, lack of character development, and predictable/OTT angst. I refuse to blame the length for these issues and wish more depth was present. Neat trope and premise, missed the mark in execution.

Copy provided for honest review.


FREE Sarina Bowen Serial

Study Period by Sarina Bowen

  Male bodybuilder reading book on sofa
She’s a brilliant writing tutor. Too bad she’s tongue-tied every time he sits down in front of her…

There are 1016 people in the freshman class at Harkness College. I can’t be the only socially awkward nerd girl virgin among them. Right?

It’s time I learn to talk to guys without blushing and stammering. So I take a confidence-building job at the student tutoring center. Twelve bucks an hour, plus human interaction. What could go wrong?

A fun-loving French Canadian hockey hunk, that’s what.

When Pepe St. George sits down at my tutoring table, my brain shuts off and my mouth goes right into hyperdrive. Even the sound of my name on his lips—Josephine—gives me a mini orgasm.

I want to hand him my V-card. But all I manage to hand him is…my thesaurus. And my dignity. All seems lost, until I hatch a plan to get him alone…


How This Works:

Beginning on Tuesday, March 20th, you will get one chapter each week, straight to your email inbox! Anyone who signs up midstream will immediately receive links to previous chapters. No reader will be left behind!

“Bonjour.” The deep voice—from right above me—startles me so badly that I jump. My phone goes clattering to the desktop as I whip my chin upward to see whomever snuck up on me. 

Désolé!” he says. “I should come back later?”

“No,” I say, fumbling my phone back into my bag. “Please sit down.” 

My heart is banging against my ribs, and not only because he startled me. If possible, I’m even more awkward with men than with women. It’s worse if they’re attractive.

And this guy? Very attractive. Wow. He has a wide, handsome face and coal-dark eyes ringed by impressively thick lashes, and a broad face. Broad shoulders. 

Broad everything. Wow. He must eat a lot of protein. And now I’m staring as he arranges himself in the chair opposite me and draws out a folder. He’s really handsome. One of the BPs, for sure. 

I can’t stop staring. There’s something rugged about him that’s hard to describe. There’s color in his cheeks—at least the part that’s not covered with dark scruff. And his biceps bulge from the sleeves of his T-shirt. He reminds me of a superhero going incognito, concealing his identity among the ordinary college students. 

Though the muscles can probably be explained by the logo on his T-shirt—Harkness Hockey. 

It’s always the jocks who need tutoring. I swear. Nadia I have a disagreement about this. She says that jocks are used to coaching, and thus accept tutoring help more readily than the general population.

“I think they’re just not as smart,” I always tell her.

She just shakes her head. “You say that, but you’re still intimidated by them. So which is it?”


“How can I help you,” I whisper up at this handsome giant. 

He frowns, and then folds massive hands onto the desk between us. “Excusez-moi?” 

People always tell me my voice is soft. That I’m hard to hear. He must agree, because he leans forward, those big, dark eyes blinking in close proximity. It doesn’t help the knee-knocking, teeth-rattling nerves that overtake me whenever a beautiful man looks at me.

Get a grip, Josie. “How can I help you today,” I ask carefully.

Bon. I have the paper due for English. And my English is not so excellent. So I hope you will help me find all the places I fuck it up. I bring it…” He opens a folder and rifles through some papers.

For a long moment I just blink at him. “Your English…” Did he just say that he didn’t speak the language?

“When I come to Harkness last year? I don’t speak much English at all,” he says, dropping a rough draft of an essay on the table between us. “Please help me find zhe places where I fuck up the grammar.” 

His honesty has stunned me. The Harkness students I’ve met so far would never admit to any kind of weakness. In fact, they tell me that most students wait until their grades are in jeopardy to find the tutoring center at all. 

And I don’t blame them. Struggling? That’s shameful. Harkness is a top-notch school where everyone worships at the alter of intellectual exceptionalism. With an admissions rate that hovered around nine percent, having a big brain is the only way to get in. 

Or at least I thought it was. Every year, something like a thousand valedictorians get rejections from Harkness. Who would dream of implying that he isn’t as qualified as the next student? 

This guy.


More In This Series:

The Ivy Years novels are a series of inter-connected stand-alone stories. The first book is The Year We Fell Down, available at:



Contour by Meg Harding: Review by Lost in a Book for @BMBR


Jamie “Roxy” Albright has one great love in his life and room for no other. He lives and breathes makeup. Men are nothing more than temporary distractions and romance… well, that isn’t worth his time. With a burgeoning career as a YouTube makeup artist opening doors to never before dreamed of opportunities, time isn’t something Jamie has and distractions aren’t something he can afford.

Instagram model and shirtless wonder Tyler Jackson is quickly falling for elusive Jamie. How it went from a seemingly innocent message to feelings, he’ll never know. Their chemistry is instant and fiery hot, and Tyler’s never been that good at self control. The challenges are endless, though. There’s Jamie’s walls to break through and a country worth of space between them. And just when things are starting to look up, life throws a wrench in the works.

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 4 Stars

This is such a relevant read at the moment with how on fire YouTube and Instagram are. There are millions of people who are extremely loyal to their favorite online personalities that this read hit me in my happy place. Picture it… Male Youtube make up artist (MUA) lusting over an Instagram model. Add in a private message sent and buckle in for the delicious ride.

I may be a *tad* bit in love with Jamie “ Foxy Roxy.” He’s a 20 year old MUA with a sassy personality. He’s honest yet evasive. Jamie’s unapologetic and has zero shame. Oh, and he wears MANTIIIIIIIIES. Along with the satin and lace, he has an ass you can bounce a quarter off.


Where were we? Oh yeah, Jamie. He has commitment issues and never sleeps with the same man twice. Due to his past, his ideal gift is lube and condoms in lieu of flowers #practical.  He’s also thirsty AF for Instagram model, Tyler Jackson and his two adorable dogs.

Tyler is a country boy at heart and “Instafamous”  model by accident. He has dimples, tattoos and abs for days. *growl* Tyler is also really down to earth, caring, and becomes genuinely interested in the beautiful, Jamie. What started with a flirty private message became two different yet compatible men forging a friendship and then those pesky feelings just creep up.

The thing about Tyler is that he’s a serial monogamist while Jamie favors his one and done approach. Jamie is overly guarded for fear of giving away his power. He’s closed up tighter than Fort Knox in a way that isn’t rude, just honest. He wants to be in charge of the power exchange that happens when you release the inconsequential and the important pieces of what makes up a person. Jamie has reasons and Tyler respects the boundaries while trying to find a way to chisel at the walls.

“I’m not asking you for forever, I’m just asking you for right now.”

I lovvvvvvvvvvved them together. Every time Jamie revealed a tiny piece of himself I wanted to cheer.

“Jamie was a secret I wanted to unravel. But if I pushed, he’d run, and that was the last thing I wanted.”

The messages they exchanged had me swooning and cackling at their banter. You can *see* how their relationship develops online and then when they meet in person it has a natural progression. The growth was realistic to their circumstances of living long distance. Tyler and Jamie actually communicated. *gasp* I know, I know… relationships are no place for communication but they were very adult about their boundaries, expectations, and who they are as people. Their personalities complimented each other and I was doing my happy dance all the way to an HEA.

The sex. The chemistry. The heat.

Y’all, it deserves its own paragraph. This book wasn’t a sexfest but when it did take place…


Their first time… HAWWWTT.

”I straddled his waist and started to pull my panties down. He stopped me. “Keep them on. Push them to the side.”

Not to discredit the writing of the sex scenes… but, I think what added the cherry on top for me (besides the lace thongs), was the connection and foundation they built before they had sex. They communicated for months and Tyler insisted on a date before they rode their way to orgasm.

With all this gushing over my love for Contour, I had to give it 4 stars. Why, you ask? The ending. This story drew me in right away with Jamie’s voice and had me hooked until the end. The last 10ish% left me scratching my head. The pacing throughout was great and then BAM, the end was rushed. Everything was just tied up in a fast little bow that altered my enjoyment. The “angst” and its resolution were unnecessary IMO and led to a disjointed ending where the MCs didn’t fully act like themselves.

Still, I enjoyed this book, the banter between Tyler and Jamie, and the secondary characters. This is my first book by Harding and I’ll definitely read more of her work as well as any additions to this series. Recommended.

Copy provided for honest review.


Double Dose

Double Dose by Katie Allen: Review by Cupcake


A double dose of happily-ever-after… 

Speech therapist Daphne’s neat, orderly life takes a turn for the dramatic when she’s kidnapped and spirited away to a hideout deep in the Colorado mountains. Her captors? Gorgeous men—all escaped from a secret laboratory designed to build perfect supersoldiers.

Trauma associated with his engineering left Benjy mute, and Ari thinks Daphne’s just the girl to help him recover. Held against her will, Daphne will be damned before she helps any of them—regardless of how electrifying she finds their touches.

But as Daphne’s hunger for Benjy and Ari grows, so does her empathy for the other soldiers hiding out at the lodge. With danger from her own past threatening to resurface and an overeager FBI agent sniffing around, she needs to free herself, her men and the others.

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 2 Stars

Books like this make my head tilt. Just when I think I’ve gotten a handle on this suspending disbelief deal a book like this comes along and I’m all…

Those of you that have superior suspension of disbelief powers might could enjoy this, because it is very… cutesy. Instalove fans will likely adore this too. I do recognize that it’s supposed to be romantic rather than bad wrong, but it was just a little too weird for me and I was never able to alter my thinking from WTF to warm fuzzy.

Daphne is a speech pathologist and tells this story. Aristotle/Ari/A kidnaps her ostensibly to “fix” his best buddy Benjy’s muteness. Only that never happens! Apparently ole Benjy’s cup of care is empty which begs the question of why the hell his bestie doesn’t know this. Nevertheless, Benjy is WAY more interested in doing the shilly shally with her than talking, though his voice returns later under… dubious circumstances. *side eyes*

Allow me to set this stage, Ari drugs and kidnaps Daphne, takes her to a secluded compound lodge, when she wakes it’s to a room full of strangers gawking at her. She tries to escape. YAY! She’s discovered immediately and taken to Ari’s and Benjy’s loft where he puts her to bed. Like a toddler. She wakes to not just Ari but Benjy. In bed. With her. Her reaction is along the lines of, “this is cozy”. NAY!

I maybe would’ve been less floored by this reaction were it more believable gradual? But within days she’s thinking of quitting her job and staying on the compound at the lodge forever with her two dudes and the rest of these fugitives then learning how to use various weapons to aid them in fighting the baddies. Ummmm first, when did they become a committed throuple? Second…

The suspend disbelief doubled down with her being a virgin at 25 who during her deflowering was deep throating one and taking the sizable dick of the other simultaneously. Like a porn star. Approximately 2.5 seconds later she’s DPing like a champ.

I’m not sure if I was more disturbed by her meteoric rise to pornstardom or the fact that the guys essentially treat her like a fuck doll. They carry her around, arrange her like a body pillow, dress and undress her, smack her ass a whole lot and basically dictate how she spends her time. What’s more, she seems to like it! She giggles and swoons whilst walking around making the moony eyes at them.

WHAT.THE.FUCK? There’s making lemonade out of lemons and then there’s HAVE YOU LOST YOUR DAMN MIND?

The saddest part is… well, two things really, the first being I got Jedi mindtricked into believing this was MMF when in reality it’s MFM. I blame myself for this. The cover should’ve tipped me off. I clearly saw what I wanted to see, so technically I Jedi mindtricked myself which is just… sad. Second, the sex is lame. Oral and DP. Only on her though which I found unrealistic seeing as how these two dudes were sharing a bed before Dolly, I mean Daphne, came along and they never cross the swords?

I’ve not read the other books in this series and was able to catch up relatively quickly so it can be read as a standalone. The ongoing plot is a little bit sci-fi divided by cyberpunk multiplied by action/suspense with the characters from the previous books playing a significant role in the narrative. The way it concluded was much the same as the romance plot-a little bit hokey and a lot unbelievable. I didn’t hate it and can admit that there were some sweet moments but Daphne was too bizarre and that coupled with the speed of their “connection” was too much for me.

Recommend to fans of cutesy reads who can suspend disbelief like a BOSS!

A review copy was provided by NetGalley.

The Student Prince

The Student Prince FanFic by FayJay: Review by Lost in a Book

A modern day (BBC) Merlin AU set at the University of St Andrews, featuring teetotal kickboxers, secret wizards, magnificent bodyguards of various genders, irate fairies, imprisoned dragons, crumbling gothic architecture, arrogant princes, adorable engineering students, stolen gold, magical doorways, attempted assassination, drunken students, shaving foam fights, embarrassing mornings after, The Hammer Dance, duty, responsibility, friendship and true love…

Location: Find it here on AO3
Page Count: ~330

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5++++++++++ Stars

This book.

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Ok, that may be a tad dramatic but it should be a warning to all that there will be much squeeeeing, gushing, professions of love, etc., coming up in this most likely incoherent review of The Student Prince. You’ve been warned.

I think that most of the population has heard of the names Merlin and Arthur at some point. That’s pretty much my experience prior to reading this book. I knew their names and that there was a sword in a rock(stone?) but hadn’t watched movies or TV shows about them. However, you dangle the carrot of a M/M Merlin + Arthur (Merthur) and I’m all…





This turned out to be *so* much more. First point scored is that it takes place for the most part at St. Andrews which just happens to be one of my favorite places on Earth. Then we are quickly treated to the adorable, endearing, epicness of Merlin and the arrogant yet likable Prince Arthur. They both just happen to be “Freshers” at St. Andrews and the adventures that take place are insanely entertaining.

I don’t want to provide too much information because it’s truly so much fun to experience all that is this story. It’s a sloooooooooooooooooow burn but the chemistry is on point.

What else did I love besides everything?

~It’s a modern retelling with unique changes and clever characters

~There are tons of Harry Potter references. #Win

~A very entertaining dragon

~Twatwaffles as an insult… that I may steal in the not so distant future

~English accent saying Twatwaffles multiple times on the audio

~How it could make me feel so exceptionally giddy one moment and then gut punched the next


I loved Merlin and Arthur as friends as much as when they got together. They had great chemistry without the need to have a sexfest. They were quirky, witty, and lots of back and forth banter. I’m not completely blinded by my love for this that I didn’t realize there were some draggy parts (minimal) but I still couldn’t put it down and had to know what would happen next. Some of the action mentioned takes place off page. Did I care? nope. Audio is available on AO3 as well which I took advantage of for when I was driving and couldn’t read. Again, it isn’t the best quality audio but it didn’t matter. And it’s FREEEEEE. FayJay has a beautiful speaking voice that sounds so proper and made me laugh that much more when she said bad words.

This was completely captivating and I would recommend to everyone. Please excuse me while I go find more Merthur reads.



Blank Slate

Blank Slate by Louisa Keller: Review by Lost in a Book


“Glad you found time in your very busy schedule to join us.”

I only agreed to model nude for a community art class because I needed the money. I figured it would be easy-fun even. But that was before I came sprinting into the studio on the first day, late and viciously hungover, and found myself face-to-face with Axel Hawthorne. Suddenly I was stripping down in front of the very man who had blown me off after a brutally hot night on the dance floor…and letting him draw me. Hot tempered and abrasive, I knew there was more to Axel than met the eye. As the term went on I decided I was going to figure out why an award-winning artist was teaching local art classes-and why I couldn’t get his stupid, gorgeous face out of my head.

“You don’t know what you do to me.”

It had been one year since a devastating incident had robbed me of my ability to paint. I was ready to live out the rest of my days in a state of abject misery…and then Colby Stevens wormed his way into my life. Passionate, self-assured, and more than a decade younger than me-I was intoxicated by him. Suddenly I was making art again, filling canvas after canvas with his body and my desire. As our working relationship segued into something more, I allowed myself to consider that he might be the key to starting fresh. But healing would be an uphill battle…would I be able to start over with a blank slate?

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2.5 Stars

I really really wanted to love this one. A broken artist and an inexperienced nude life model had me jumping on this with alarming speed. I was also looking forward to this author’s next book because I really enjoyed the first novel, Fragile Ground. Unfortunately, this one didn’t work for me.

Colby is a senior in college, just finished his semester, and heads out to a club with his best friend and sometimes fuck buddy, Eleanor. At the club he stumbles upon the most beautiful man he has ever seen, Axel. Things get heated on the dance floor so they take it to the bathroom stall where he gets to see the “most picture perfect cock” he has ever had the pleasure of servicing. *yawn* Anyway, after the performance of a lifetime in that bathroom stall, Colby is treated to a chilled out prick when Axel makes it clear round two isn’t an option and neither is the bottomless bank account and white picket fence that Colby must be after.

Axel is a mercurial ass that lashes out at everyone because of the circumstances that led him to being a has-been artist. He’s “slumming” it by becoming an art instructor and believes the saying, “those who can, do and those who can’t, teach” is absolutely true.

Fast forward to the next morning when Axel’s new nude life model walks in for his first session and it turns out to be the guy who blew him the night before, Colby. This begins their “enemies to lovers” journey of finding common ground and then finding each other. Maybe?

From the beginning of the story I was bored and hoping that once the art stuff began my interest would increase. It didn’t. Colby was likable yet came across as one dimensional. All of the conversations with him and Eleanor were silly and induced major eye rolling. Axel and Colby’s connection wasn’t evident beyond the physical throughout the entire book. Yes, they said in their own minds that they had feelings for the other but that didn’t translate to their interactions. Axel remained very removed from anything beyond sex and art while Colby walked on egg shells in fear of scaring Axel away. I didn’t believe their feelings throughout and was underwhelmed at the end.

I’m not going to get spoilery but the BIG reveal was mentioned constantly. The drama from Axel’s past was referred to so much I just knew it was going to be EPIC when it finally came out…


Although I had heart eyes for the synopsis and Lousia Keller’s previous novel, this wasn’t my cuppa. I’ll give her next one a shot even if I wouldn’t recommend this one- but YMMV.

Copy provided by author in exchange for honest review.


On His Knees

On His Knees by Laura Kaye: Review by Cupcake

Getting on his knees makes him question everything…and want even more…

Another failed relationship has lawyer Jamie Fielding confronting the truth—he’ll never be satisfied with any woman until he admits what he needs…to submit and to be used—hard. When a friend invites him to the exclusive Blasphemy club, Jamie is stunned to find everything he ever wanted—in the fierce, ruthless hands of a man.

Psychiatrist Alex McGarry will play with anyone who craves his rough brand of domination, but what he really wants is to settle down. Which makes the submissive male he meets at his club a bad idea—the man might be hot as hell but he’s also new to everything Alex has to offer. Except that doesn’t keep them from coming together again and again, sating every one of their darkest desires.

Master Alex sets Jamie’s whole world on fire and makes him question everything—and that’s good. Because Alex won’t tolerate hiding what they have for long and he wants much more than just having Jamie on his knees…

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 2 Stars

Wellllll this sucks.

I had high hopes going in since I’d read (and really liked) Kaye before plus kink! It’s glitterkink though which I should’ve picked up on from the blurb. My bad. Glitterkink is not my jam. The protocols and honorifics were tolerable and it wasn’t overly BDSM 101 but still… glitterkink. I like the subversiveness of the club being a former church, though. That made me titter. Blasphemy indeed.

There is one force play scene that was bad wrong in the best possible way. Many things are cursorily tried and/or mentioned kink-wise-D/s, spanking, CBT, face fucking and breath play, lite bondage and humiliation, forced orgasms with mentions of orgasm denial, electroplay and impact play-but none was very inspired or intense. There was nowhere near as much PAIN as I was hoping for from a book purportedly focused on SM.

The plot is straightforward new masochist and sub meets experienced sadist and dom who is 10 yrs his senior, their kinks align and they speed race to HEAsville. Like they were on an egg timer. Fans of instalove will be delighted by this story. I found it predictable, employing a standard romance algorithm.

It’s rushed which stymied my connection to both of these characters despite having access to both of their perspectives. BOOM! Jaime realizes he’s bisexual. His tattoo artist offhandedly calls him a masochist and offers to set him up with a friend who’s part owner of Blasphemy and BOOM! Jaime’s a card carrying masochist. Master Alex shows him around on his inaugural visit and BOOM! he’s ready for him to pound his virgin ass into submission. Then BOOM! Jaime’s taking a fat cock like champ in every orifice and even some monster dildos too.

You don’t want to maybe… take a breath first? I do. I need a minute. Fast forwarding through all those major life changing events not only felt unrealistic, but I felt like I was missing all the good stuff. Like development of… everything.

On His Knees is BDSM fantasy. Those who like their kink to be realistic are not going to like this. It’s a quick read that’s low on angst and can be read as a standalone with storytelling reminiscent of Cherise Sinclair, so if you’re a fan of hers you’ll probably like this.

Some positives are they have some sweet moments, I liked how tactile they were and they have chemistry, so I was leaning towards 3 stars until the conflict which was hellafuck juvenile and stupid. I can deal with some piss poor communication but this was NEXT LEVEL ridiculous, especially given that open communication is a pillar of BDSM.

Sadly, this was not super successful for me but I think the cat’s out of the bag that I’m a picky bitch. There are already a multitude of glowing reviews for it so feel free to ignore me.

Recommend to fans of glitterkink, instalove and Cherise Sinclair.

A review copy was provided by the publisher.