Tag Archives: 8.50 out of 10

The Dueling Duchess, by Minerva Spencer

31 May

I started reading this ARC, after being reminded of its impending release via SuperWendy’s Unusual Historicals post for May, but stopped when I realized how much of the beginning is intertwined with the events of the first book in the series. So I read that first, then came back to this one.

Beware: explicit language; explicit sex on page; death of a parent on page; brief incident of fatphobia; mentions of miscarriage; newborn death.

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Funny Guy, by Emma Barry

15 May
Cover for Emma Barry's _Funny Guy_, shows a dark haired white man in black shirt and pants, sitting on something, raking his hair back with his right hand (where he's wearing a watch, so he's perhaps left handed). Drawn behind him, using a continuous line, is a cityscape, with the line morphing into a microphone in a stand in front of the man.

I was very happy to receive this ARC; despite having a number of Ms Barry’s works in my TBR pile, this novel is my introduction to her writing.

Beware: explicit sex, a lot of swearing; references to domestic abuse in the characters childhood; one incident of a man making it clear he won’t take no for an answer (he’s stopped).

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“The Centurion’s Choice” by Sandra Schwab

19 Apr
A white man with dark hair, long enough to flutter in the breeze, wearing a

(Note: I’m publishing this review today as a placeholder–I’m still reading my #TRBChallenge book for April)

It has been a long time since I’ve read any of Dr Schwab’s work, despite having several titles in both the print and digital TBRs. The reading slump from hell started mid-2015 and didn’t really let up until recently. However, I saw her post a promotional poster for this novella on social media and was immediately intrigued.

I had forgotten how much I enjoy her writing.

Beware: explicit sex on the page; battle, injuries and death, a bit of swearing.

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“Felix Navidad” by ‘Nathan Burgoine

24 Feb
Illustrated cover shows two white men, one clearly very cold and hugging himself, and one wearing a thick jacket and warm hat, standing on the snow in front of a cabin. There are a few trees with lights strung between, and ice and snow everywhere.

I can hear you groaning all the way over here. “Az, haven’t you hated on Christmas romances enough already?” and indeed, I have. But, hear me out:

This one is lovely.

(And I owe the author an abject apology for not reading and reviewing it on time for its release–see footnote 1)

It’s absolutely a Christmas novella, and absolutely the holiday matters, but it’s not preachy in a “your lord and savior” and “hell and damnation”, but in a, “cherish the moments with the people in your life, for they are fleeting” way, and oh, it’s lovely. (Yes, I’m aware that I said that already.)

Reader beware: death of a parent (backstory), death of a character (not on page, not unexpected), mentions of parents disowning queer offspring.

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