Yuletide Treasure

Yuletide Treasure (Goddess-Blessed #3) by Eliot Grayson: Review by Lost in a Book

Yuletide Treasure (Goddess-Blessed, #3)

Blurb:

There’s not enough Yuletide spirit in the world to fix this holiday disaster…

Eben Sypeman’s world is falling apart. It’s two days before Yule and his business partner is dead, leaving behind empty accounts and looming bankruptcy. And if that isn’t bad enough, his patron goddess is irritated with him. It seems she’s tired of his tendency to mince words and avoid conflict. She’s insisting—quite forcefully—that he start being totally honest with everyone, including himself. Divinely enforced honesty couldn’t have come at a less opportune time, especially when his clerk’s tall, dark and distractingly handsome son enters the picture.

The last thing on Tim Pratchett’s mind is romance. All the former soldier wants is to fill in for his sick father at work and recover from his war wounds in peace. But there’s something about the grumpy Eben that confounds and entices him in equal measure. Their timing couldn’t be worse. They’re complete opposites. And yet…none of that matters when he’s with Eben.

But if Eben and Tim have any hope of finding their very own happily ever after, they’ll have to survive a dickens of a truth curse and the machinations of a trickster goddess—all while searching for enough yuletide treasure to save them all.

A joyous, relaxing Yule indeed. Bah, humbug.

This is an M/M romance with explicit scenes, a voyeuristic pagan goddess, and an odious nephew. Despite any other possible similarities to A Christmas Carol, there are neither ghosts nor geese, but readers can expect a happy ending and at least one use of the word “dickens.”

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4.5ish Stars

What is it about these goddess-blessed books by Eliot Grayson that have me totally enjoying them and actually liking a holiday romance for once? I really enjoy Grayson’s writing style and the way they write historical romance. I’ve reviewed the other goddess-blessed books in the series and I love that it’s completely acceptable for two men to marry in a historical romance. Obviously some creative liberties are at play here since we all know how backwards and cruel history was in its treatment of m/m love. But here it’s all rainbows and unicorns and sparkles and glitter if you’re goddess-blessed.

The blurb describes it well so I’m just gonna hop on over to Timothy and Eben. *dreamy sigh* They are adorable and left me feeling all warm, fuzzy, and practically singing Christmas carols out of my windows. (#dramatic) This book has a Christmas Carol-ish vibe and obvious character transformation that kept me hooked on the pages.

At this point I’m reading anything Grayson puts in front of me… even holiday books. *gasp* Who am I? Recommended.

Copy provided for honest review.

Release Blitz + Giveaway: Angels Sing by Eli Easton

 

 
Cover Design: Reese Dante
 
Daddy Dearest Series
 

The Daddy Dearest series features single dads. Each book in the series features a new couple and can be read as a stand-alone.

Book #1 – Family Camp – Amazon US | Amazon UK | Universal Link

 
Blurb
 

Jamie Bailey has not had such a wonderful life. He gave up his dreams of Harvard at 18 to raise his sister’s unwanted baby, and later a prized job to help a sick friend. Now the father of six-year-old Mia, and assistant manager at Raven Books, Jamie’s dreams are dashed once again when Uncle Billy admits the bookshop is in dire straights.

 
Stanton Potter, son of the most notorious businesswoman in Bedford Falls, loves his job teaching at the local elementary school. But he’s less than thrilled when he is forced to put together a Christmas pageant with first-graders, including Mia Bailey.
 
When Stanton meets Jamie, angels sing. Jamie’s gender-bending fashion sense and sweet aura have Stanton suffering through the worse crush he’s had since he was a teen. But can there be any hope for them when Jamie and Mia’s lives are about to be uprooted?
 
This Christmas, it’s Jamie’s turn to receive a little help from heaven.

About Eli

Having been, at various times and under different names, a minister’s daughter, a computer programmer, a game designer, the author of paranormal mysteries, a fan fiction writer, and organic farmer, Eli has been a m/m romance author since 2013. She has over 30 books published.

Eli has loved romance since her teens and she particular admires writers who can combine literary merit, genuine humor, melting hotness, and eye-dabbing sweetness into one story. She promises to strive to achieve most of that most of the time. She currently lives on a farm in Pennsylvania with her husband, bulldogs, cows, a cat, and lots of groundhogs.

In romance, Eli is best known for her Christmas stories because she’s a total Christmas sap. These include “Blame it on the Mistletoe”, “Unwrapping Hank” and “Merry Christmas, Mr. Miggles”. Her “Howl at the Moon” series of paranormal romances featuring the town of Mad Creek and its dog shifters has been popular with readers. And her series of Amish-themed romances, Men of Lancaster County, has won genre awards.

Her website is www.elieaston.com

You can email her at eli@elieaston.com

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Best Man

Best Man (Close Proximity, #1) by Lily Morton: Review by Lost in a Book for @BMBR

Best Man (Close Proximity #1)

Blurb:

Zeb Evans doesn’t do messy.

The product of a disorganised and chaotic childhood, Zeb likes order and control, and as the boss of his own employment agency he can give that to himself. Life runs along strict lines and he never mixes business with pleasure. Everything in his life lives in neat, alphabetized boxes. Until Jesse.

Jesse Reed is Zeb’s complete opposite. He’s chaos personified. A whirling cyclone of disorder. He’s also charming and funny and a very unwanted distraction.

Which is why it comes as a complete surprise to Zeb to find himself asking Jesse to pose as his boyfriend for a few days in the country at a wedding.

Zeb doesn’t do impulsive, but as the time away progresses, he finds himself increasingly drawn to the merry and irreverent Jesse. But can he bring himself to break the hard-won lessons he’s learnt in life? And even if he can, how could Jesse be attracted to him anyway? He’s so much older than Jesse, not to mention being his boss.

From the bestselling author of the Mixed Messages and Finding Home series comes a warm and funny romance about one man’s fight for control and another man’s determination to circumvent it.

This is the first book in the Close Proximity series, but it can be read as a standalone.

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4 Stars

Lily Morton has quickly become an author that I turn to for snark, banter, sassy characters, and comfort reads. Best Man fell right in line with having all of those components in heaps… just add in a 20 year age gap, hairy chest, and some OTT drama and we’ve got another enjoyable read.

The humor begins right away as Jesse and Zeb are introduced. Jesse is hired on at Zeb’s company and then they continue to work together for years.  Jesse has a hopeless crush on Zeb while Zeb has slotted him under the employee category without any wiggle room. Nada. Well, that is until Zeb needs Jesse to escort him to a wedding where his ex-boyfriend is getting married. Cue silly shenanigans, uptight Zeb, carefree Jesse, and a getaway with one bed.

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I really like the way Lily writes main characters with sass and snark. Jesse is a hilarious yet well-meaning HOT MESS! He has been giving Zeb headaches for years (although, secretly Zeb enjoys it) and has ramped up his PDA for the benefit of the jealous ex… and himself. When Zeb and Jesse finally get down to business, they’ve got some pent-up frustrations that need to be worked out and ohhhh boy do they work them out. Yowza!

Patrick the ex is an asshole. An OTT asshole. There are a few parts that are a tad OTT but things revolving around Patrick were off the charts and some of the drama felt a little unnecessary. Zeb and Jesse get their HEA and IMO, Mr. Spitfire Jesse needed a little more of a backbone when it came to overcoming his conflict with Zeb. Still, I enjoyed Best Man, especially Jesse and Zeb together, and will absolutely continue on with this new series. Recommended.

Copy provided for honest review.

Release Blitz + Giveaway: Hometown Christmas by Garett Leigh

 

 
Length: 40,000 approx.
 
Cover Design: Black Jazz Design
 
Blurb
 

Yani Nicolaou is sworn off love for good. After fleeing a bad break-up in London, the only blood, sweat, and tears he has left are for his gyro stall at the Christmas market. Rebound fling? No thanks. He’s sticking to one-night-stands.

Ex-army vet Gavin Richie has even less capacity for romance. Managing a homeless shelter while recovering from injury keeps him far too busy. So what if he’s often alone? He’s content being single, or so he thinks until a chance meeting lights a spark he can’t ignore.

Yani is the warmth and affection Gavin hadn’t known he was missing. As Christmas lights up the city, their lives entwine in more ways than one. Falling for each other is easy. Holding on is harder, unless a hometown Christmas proves their love can last longer than the festive season.

Garrett Leigh is an award-winning British writer and book designer.

Garrett’s debut novel, Slide, won Best Bisexual Debut at the 2014 Rainbow Book Awards, and her polyamorous novel, Misfits was a finalist in the 2016 LAMBDA awards.

When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible, all the while shouting at her menagerie of children and animals and attempting to tame her unruly and wonderful FOX.

Garrett is also an award winning cover artist, taking the silver medal at the Benjamin Franklin Book Awards in 2016. She designs for various publishing houses and independent authors at blackjazzdesign.com, and co-owns the specialist stock site moonstockphotography.com with renowned LGBTQA+ photographer Dan Burgess.

Website: http://www.garrettleigh.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/garrettleighauthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Garrett_Leigh

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Release Blitz & Giveaway: The Christmas Deal by Keira Andrews

 

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Universal LinkExclusive to Amazon and Available to Borrow with Kindle Unlimited

Length: 250 pages

Cover Design: Wicked Smart Design

Blurb

Will fake boyfriends become the real deal this holiday?

It’s the most wonderful time of the year—except ex-Marine Logan is jobless and getting evicted. Worse, he’s a new single dad with a stepson who hates him. A kid needs stability—not to mention presents under the tree—and Logan’s desperate.

Then he meets lonely Seth and makes a deal.

Can Logan temporarily pretend to be live-in boyfriends to increase Seth’s chances at a promotion? If it provides a roof over their heads for the holidays, hell yeah. Logan considers himself straight—he doesn’t count occasional hookups with guys—but he can fake it. Besides, with his shy little smile, Seth is surprisingly sexy.

Make that damn sexy.

Shocked that Seth has only been with one man, Logan can’t resist sweetening their deal to teach him the joys of casual sex. No strings attached. No feelings. No kissing.

No falling for each other.

Easy, right?

The Christmas Deal is a steamy holiday gay romance from Keira Andrews featuring fake boyfriends, bisexual awakening, a clueless single dad with an angry preteen, and of course a happy ending.


Author Bio

After writing for years yet never really finding the right inspiration, Keira discovered her voice in gay romance, which has become a passion. She writes contemporary, historical, fantasy, and paranormal fiction and — although she loves delicious angst along the way — Keira firmly believes in happy endings. For as Oscar Wilde once said:

“The good ended happily, and the bad unhappily. That is what fiction means.”

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Heartsong

Heartsong (Green Creek #3) by TJ Klune: Review by Lost in a Book for @BMBR

Heartsong (Green Creek, #3)

Blurb:

All Robbie Fontaine ever wanted was a place to belong. After the death of his mother, he bounces around from pack to pack, forming temporary bonds to keep from turning feral. It’s enough—until he receives a summons from the wolf stronghold in Caswell, Maine.

Life as the trusted second to Michelle Hughes—the Alpha of all—and the cherished friend of a gentle old witch teaches Robbie what it means to be pack, to have a home.

But when a mission from Michelle sends Robbie into the field, he finds himself questioning where he belongs and everything he’s been told. Whispers of traitorous wolves and wild magic abound—but who are the traitors and who the betrayed?

More than anything, Robbie hungers for answers, because one of those alleged traitors is Kelly Bennett—the wolf who may be his mate.

The truth has a way of coming out. And when it does, everything will shatter.

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5 Million Stars… Totally a thing!

Ohhhhhhh, TJ… How have we gone from pinecones and epic and awesomeness to… this? I’m not mad at it. At all… but I could have used some pinecone moments when I was getting my ass kicked by your creative genius.

Not gonna lie, I started, Heartsong and had zero clue what was happening until…

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And then it was all GASP. WtAF. And Rawwwwr. And more incoherent thoughts as I began piecing things together. Which turned into…

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Then actual footage of me coping…

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A lot happens in book #3 and giving spoilers or too much information would absolutely ruin the crazy ass (and totally amazing) dysfunctional, and horrific events that take place in Heartsong.

The love story between Robbie and Kelly is bittersweet and beautiful. I couldn’t help but feel ALL the feels while trying to calm the face leaking. Kelly is asexual and their love is sooooo pure and sweet. Don’t get all comfy cozy based on that description thinking that it’s smooth sailing. They get dragged through Hell and at the end of the day when that happens, you want your person with you through it all. Robbie and Kelly are just… so much green and then the deepest of blue and then green. packpackpack

TJ outdid himself with the horror creativity on this one. It’s a freaking rollercoaster of events/emotions that left me hanging on for dear life and unable to put it down. With all the heaviness, heartbreak, hellacious moments, and holy-shit-gory-AF, there’s comic relief with the Bennett pack that lets us catch our breath right when we are desperate for some air. Every. time.

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With the direction of the series, everything in this book is necessary and masterfully crafted with the past and the future in mind. Definitely recommended while I figure out how to get a head start on Carter’s story… like yesterday.

 Copy provided for honest review.

Gentleman Wolf

Gentleman Wolf (Capital Wolves Duet, #1): Review by Lost in a Book for @BMBR

Gentleman Wolf (Capital Wolves Duet, #1)

Blurb:

An elegant werewolf in Edinburgh…

1788. When Lindsay Somerville, the most elegant werewolf in Paris, learns that the man who held him in abject captivity for decades is on his way to France, intent on recapturing him, he knows he must leave the Continent for his own safety. Lindsay cannot take the risk of being recaptured—he may have been free for a century but he can still feel the ghost of his old chains under his fine clothes.

… on a mission…

While he’s in Edinburgh, Lindsay has been tasked with acquiring the “Naismith Papers”, the writings of a long-dead witchfinder. It should be a straightforward mission—all Lindsay has to do is charm an elderly book collector, Hector Cruikshank. But Cruikshank may not be all he seems, and there are others who want the papers.

… meets his match

As if that were not enough, while tracking down the Naismith Papers, Lindsay meets stubborn architect Drew Nicol. Although the attraction between them is intense, Nicol seems frustratingly determined to resist Lindsay’s advances. Somehow though, Lindsay can’t seem to accept Nicol’s rejection. Is he just moonstruck, or is Nicol bonded to him in ways he doesn’t yet understand?

Note: this is the first book of a duology – the story continues and will complete in the second book, Master Wolf.

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3 Stars

Hrmmm… I liked it… I think?

Let’s get some warnings out of the way first. This ends on a massive cliffhanger. No HFN/HEA in this installment, everything will be revealed (hopefully) in the next book. Gentleman Werewolf didn’t really *feel* like a romance. More like a historical paranormal that happens to involve sex? Maybe? Also, there are some trigger warnings for torture scenes and a miscarriage of a baby mentioned that took place in the past.

From the very start, this book felt heavy and has that ominous feeling throughout with very little light hearted moments to take a breath. Lindsay’s cheeky personality and his valet are about the only light hearted parts of this story. You just know something is going to happen throughout and the whole escaping imminent danger overshadowed any chance for there to be a romance. There was insta-love/infatuation but I could toss that up to Lindsay being a wolf and the whole mate feeling. Possibly?

I love Joanna Chambers’ previous books and her writing style. She writes historical books that I can’t help but devour and it worked for me in this one too. I even liked the characters by the end but there was zero closure and way too many unanswered questions with a perpetual heaviness that took away from my complete enjoyment of this book.

I’ll continue on with the series and hope for romance, some possible snark and/or lighthearted moments mixed in with the doom and gloom.

Copy provided for honest review.

 

The Doctor’s Orders

The Doctor’s Orders by Heidi Cullinan: Buddy Read & Buddy Review by Lost in a Book and Adam for @BMBR

The Doctor's Orders (Copper Point Medical, #3)

Blurb:

Once upon a time Nicolas Beckert was the boy who stole kisses from Jared Kumpel beneath the bleachers, but now Jared’s a pediatrician and Nick is the hospital CEO who won’t glance his way. Everything changes, however, when they’re stranded alone in a hospital elevator. Ten years of cold shoulders melt away in five hours of close contact, and old passions rekindle into hot flames.

Once out of the elevator, Jared has no intention of letting Nick get away. It’s clear he’s desperate for someone to give him space to let go of the reins, and Jared is happy to oblige. But Jared wants Nick as a lover in a full, open relationship, which is a step further than Nick is willing to go. They’ve traded kisses under the bleachers for liaisons in the boardroom… and it looks like the same arguments that drove them apart in high school might do the same thing now.

Jared’s determined not to let that happen this time around. He won’t order Nick from his shell—he’ll listen to what his friend says he needs to feel safe. Maybe this time he can prescribe his lover a happy ever after.

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2 Stars

Wow! The Doctor’s Orders is quite the interesting read but luckily we (Adam and Lost) didn’t endure the ride alone. So, sit back, buckle up and prepare yourselves for a joint review *gasp* from us, Adam and Lost in a Book.

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With this installment being the third in Cullinan’s Copper Point Medical series, we are thrust back to St. Ann’s with the CEO, Nicholas Beckert and the pediatrician everyone loves, Jared Kumpel. What once was a high school romance between these two men turned ice cold with Nick not wanting to come out and Jared not accepting anything less.

Many years go by and they find themselves in the same hospital, lonely, hurt, and quietly longing for each other from afar. Until the elevator breaks…

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It’s all quite dramatic. The elevator dangled precariously from the third floor, but given the uproar and health resulting health scares, you would think it was a twenty-story drop, at the least.

What follows the elevator incident is a rollercoaster of will they or won’t they, what will the townspeople think, shitty parents doing shitty things, a whole host of social ills, and *drum roll please* ‘is the killer inside the house?!’ (or the hospital, as it were). It was a lot.

Heidi Cullinan has a penchant for dramatic flair, which ordinarily can be quite entertaining. In this case, it quickly became too much. This time around, the plot was everything and the kitchen sink.

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Inevitably, we found ourselves skimming to get to the point.

Jared and Nicholas are endearing in their own ways and even likable together at some points throughout. However, that gets lost in the soap opera shuffle that is rampant throughout The Doctor’s Orders.

Both men go through a lot, particularly with their families. Plus, being gay men, and one of them black, in a small town comes with specific challenges. It’ll make you indignant on their behalf, and root for the two to come out on the other side happy.

But neither of us really connected to Nicholas and Jared in book #3. It was good to see them finally get their happy ending, but it wasn’t particularly memorable and by that point we were no longer invested in the story.

Of course, your mileage may vary!

 

Copy provided for honest review.

Puzzle Me This

Puzzle Me This by Eli Easton: Review by Lost in a Book

Puzzle Me This

Blurb:

Luke Schumaker designs computer games, working from his home. Every day he walks his dog in the woods nearby, never suspecting that someone who is completely smitten is watching.

The watcher is Alex Shaw, and he too works from home, designing logic and crossword puzzles. Alex’s options are limited: he’s too shy to approach Luke and his wheelchair won’t let him follow into the woods. His solution? Secret messages for Luke in the crosswords he writes for the local paper.

When Luke decodes them, romance begins, but then they face greater puzzles, like Alex’s interfering sister and what commitment to a man in a wheelchair really takes. And, most puzzling of all, how do you know if love is real?

Second Edition: The new edition coming out Sept 6, 2019 has an additional 12,000 words plus an overall rewrite.

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2.5 Stars

I was super excited about Puzzle Me This. I know it’s an older title reworked and added to, but I never read the first one so this was my chance. I loved the premise about meeting someone new and communicating through crosswords, giving an introvert an outlet to meeting someone he has clearly been crushing on for a bit… unfortunately I was underwhelmed as the plot played out.

The blurb/synopsis sets up the book nicely and once the first crossword message is sent, the rest moves insanely fast. IMO an opportunity was lost to drag out the messages longer and have a little more build up from the first message to insta love. The plot was rushed yet some of the minutiae parts dragged on too long.

I love nerds. The promise of them. Hell, I’m a nerd and speak nerd. This wasn’t nerdy to me, more cheesy dialogue and sugar overload. There are also random dramas and the characters aren’t fully fleshed out.

I love Eli Easton but this one didn’t quite work for me. YMMV.

Copy provided for honest review.

Happy for You

Happy for You by Anyta Sunday: Review by Lost in a Book

Happy for You (Love & Family #3)

Blurb:

Mort wants his de facto family back. . . .
He knows he doesn’t deserve them. Not yet, anyway. Not without making up for leaving them in their time of need.
But it’s not easy to make amends. Mort must show how much he wants the Rochester family back in his life. When his best friend’s younger brother, Felix, has his license suspended, Mort jumps at the chance to play chauffeur and to win back the family he desperately wants to call his own.
Repairing his broken relationships—with all five Rochester siblings—becomes Mort’s personal mission. Especially with Felix. Felix, who used to follow him everywhere. Felix, who idolized him. Felix, whom Mort has not stopped thinking about . . .

Felix is just trying to keep it together. . . .
With a perma-smile as his armor, he’s determined to make his family happy. Determined to be a positive role model to his three younger sisters, while their mum struggles with depression after her kidney transplant.
Unfortunately, no amount of smiling can save his license when he gets pulled over for the umpteenth time, and he still needs to get his sisters to school, soccer, and dance classes.
The solution to his problem emerges in the return of their prodigal neighbor, Mort. Mort, who left their lives without a word. Mort, who was in love with Felix’s older brother.
Mort, who is the last guy Felix wants charging back into their lives. . . .

Mort and Felix. Two guys bound by a rocky past—
—a past they must come to terms with to find true happiness in the here and now.

~ – ~ – ~

Set in New Zealand, Happy For You (Love & Family #3) is an MM gay romance featuring two guys pitted together in a blue 1988 station wagon — and there’s no doubt about it, Mort is going to drive Felix crazy.
Can be read as a standalone.

Tropes: brother’s best friend, second chances, family drama, friends-to-lovers, slow burn, found family
Genre: New Adult, light-hearted contemporary gay romance
Trigger warnings: Depression and generalized anxiety (of a side character)

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4.25ish Stars

“On our way home, he doesn’t ask why I disappeared or why I’m acting skittish. I don’t tell him it’s unbearable being in love with him.”

Gahhhhh!!! Anyta spun her magical web again and pulled me right in… which is probably for the best since it seems like the story started long before the story actually starts. I’ve read the past books in the series but this can definitely be a standalone.

Mort and Felix have an entire busload of history, baggage, and emotions prior to the first words. Mort has been best friends with Felix’s older brother for much of his life while Felix pined for Mort for the same amount of time. Obviously, the brother’s best friend trope is the main show in Happy for You. As I mentioned, we are essentially thrown into the middle of Mort and Felix’s story but much has to be done in order to get to the HEA.

This is Anyta so a slow burn is guaranteed. I love Mort and Felix and I felt for them and the plethora of emotions from Mort coming back into their lives to the feeling of unrequited love. Anyta says sooooooo much with so few words that my heart hurt for them at times. There are outside circumstances that separated Mort from the family which I’m still a tad unsure if that storyline was wrapped up tight. There are lots of kids throughout and that’s usually a hard limit for me since I get plenty of kid action in RL. But, I liked the kids, their personalities, and the parts they play in this book.

Mort and Felix get their HEA after Anyta makes us burn for a tiny bit long ass time. As always, I enjoyed the writing style, the feels, and the characters. Recommended.

Copy provided for honest review.