If you'd like to see my year-to-date four-plus- and five-star recommendations, visit Robin ReadsnWrites.
* I didn't make it beyond the first 20 pages.
** I made it to the end, but I either skimmed or skipped large sections.
*** I might have skipped/skimmed, but I liked it and might read it again.
**** I read at least 95% of the book and it was good -- probably will be reread.
***** I read every word, and I loved it! A favorite and definite reread.
Witch Eyes, by Scott Tracey ****+ I definitely enjoyed this. I liked Braden, and I found his world fascinating. What I thought Tracey did really well: the reasons behind Braden's secretiveness with Trey; the tension between so many characters; the mystery (part of which is solved by the end, and part of which isn't). A couple things which were a little frustrating: I couldn't quite get a strong handle on the world-building; Trey seemed a little too rigid in his beliefs (actually, he went from rigid to almost-naive), and that weakened his character bit for me. Overall, however, I really liked the suspense and the romance, and I'll definitely be finding the next one! The story: Braden has the power to see and use magic in an unusual way -- but it all stems from his 'witch eyes.' He wears sunglasses to keep from overloading, but when he sees a vision of future danger to his uncle, he runs away to the one place his uncle's always tried to keep him from...and immediately, he's thrown into a long-time feud between the reigning families in the town. And on the day he learns he's a member of one of those families, he also falls for the son of the rival family -- and that's the least of his troubles! (YA paranormal suspense; GLBT; released 9/11; publisher: Flux)
All That Glitters, by Linda Howard *** It's rare that I don't adore her books, but this one had some elements that really bug me. First, the MC was consistently stupid in how she dealt with her problems, and it made it hard for me to sympathize. Second, the fact that she let Niko order her around from the very beginning annoyed me to no end. She was NOT a strong female character, and I found it hard to enjoy her. The story: Jessica married a much older man so he could leave her (an orphan) his inheritance, since he had no children. But as they didn't share this arrangement with anyone, now that he's gone, Jessica is lambasted by the press as a gold-digger. When a rich Greek businessman comes to town, he's intrigued by Jessica, but he believes what he reads in the paper -- and when he falls for her, his head rules his heart by treating her like the gold-digger...leading to numerous misunderstandings and trials between the two. (Adult Romance, (this version) released 12/01; publisher: Thorndike Press)
A Still, Small Voice, by D.W. Marchwell **** I enjoyed this. It's my first foray into published male/male romance, and I thought it was just as good as the traditional romances I've read (which, granted, I don't read a ton of). Just like those, there are some sex scenes (though no more than I usually see in romances), so if you don't enjoy those, be forewarned. I liked Noah, and I thought the mystery was interesting. Oscar was a great character too. The story: Noah suffers through a false sexual assualt charge, made worse because his one-time boyfriend supports the claim. He leaves the school and rebuilds his life, but six years later, the ex moves in next door. Noah doesn't know what to believe, and when his ex tries to re-establish contact, he relives many of those horrible memories. At the same time, the owner of a dance club (Oscar) where Noah volunteers begins to show interest in Noah -- and soon, he realizes he's falling in love. The ex isn't ready to let go, however, and tries to embroil Noah as a witness in a lawsuit with his ex-wife -- a mess which hints at deeper meanings behind Noah's own previous struggles with the school. (Adult M/M romance; released 9/11; publisher: Dreamspinner Press)
On Deck: Crossed (woot); Prey (another woot)