books

Book Reports (10-16) ...

Because I've had trouble keeping up with my reading, I'm going to change my book report style a bit. Now I'm aiming to write reviews on Goodreads and simply post the link here. But I'm also going to change my star system:

* = Just not for me
** = Interesting premise but not engaging enough to complete
*** = Okay; didn't love but liked enough to finish (or at least skim)
**** = Good; liked the writing style and/or the plot enough to stick with it
***** = Loved; will definitely keep and/or re-read

*****
The Secret, by May Archer -- m/m adult romance -- Micah and Constantine are rival flower business owners, and Micah is working hard to take over and put Con out of business.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3791905764

****
The Fire, by May Archer -- m/m adult romance -- Jamie and Parker have to work out their difficulties when Jamie takes Parker in during a blizzard and after Parker's bar burns down.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3791937039

****-
The Night, by May Archer -- m/m adult romance -- Gavin comes across his husband (whom he hasn't seen in five years), and the O'Leary residents do their best to get the two of them together again.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3791952670

***+
Off Plan, by May Archer -- m/m adult humorous romance -- Mason has left O'Leary and his ex-fiancee behind and is looking for a new start on Whispering Key, a small island in Florida, but things are not as he expected, starting with the surly man who picks him up at the airport (Fenn).

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3791970370

****-
On the Run, by May Archer -- m/m adult humorous romance -- Beale is waiting for his soulmate, and Toby can't possibly be him, despite their instant attraction and connection.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3791989764

***
More than Life, by Mary Calmes -- m/m adult romance -- when a man dies on Hart's land, he has to face his past and figure out how has his back in the present.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3792013273

****
Wilde Fire, by Lucy Lennox -- m/m adult romance -- Otto and Seth have been apart for 10 years, but neither has ever stopped loving the other, even though Seth is now married (to Jolie) and has a child.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3792037470

Whew -- at least I'm caught up. Work has started again too, so I suspect my reading will slow down ...
books

Book Reports (7-9) ...

Because I've had trouble keeping up with my reading, I'm going to change my book report style a bit. Now I'm aiming to write reviews on Goodreads and simply post the link here. But I'm also going to change my star system:

* = Just not for me
** = Interesting premise but not engaging enough to complete
*** = Okay; didn't love but liked enough to finish (or at least skim)
**** = Good; liked the writing style and/or the plot enough to stick with it
***** = Loved; will definitely keep and/or re-read

So I did a bad, bad thing ... :D -- I signed up for Amazon Unlimited. We'll see how long it lasts, but I've been having great fun so far (though work starts again tomorrow, so I'm not going to have nearly as much time).

**+
The Truth App, by Jack Heath -- YA (supposedly) thriller -- Jarli has designed a truth app, but once it goes live, everything begins falling apart, starting with an attempt on his and his dad's lives.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3785708110

****+
The Fall, by May Archer -- adult m/m humorous romance -- when Everett's car breaks down near O'Leary, NY, he's 'saved' by Silas Sloane, and despite their reluctance to be in a relationship, love still overtakes them.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3785718392

****-
The Gift, by May Archer -- adult m/m humorous romance -- Daniel is hiding out in O'Leary, wanting escape from the responsibilities and headaches of his previous life, but Julian (the town vet) gets under his skin anyway.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3785731050

TBC (I have another 4-5 to share, LOL) ...
books

Book Reports (4-6) ...

Because I've had trouble keeping up with my reading, I'm going to change my book report style a bit. Now I'm aiming to write reviews on Goodreads and simply post the link here. But I'm also going to change my star system:

* = Just not for me
** = Interesting premise but not engaging enough to complete
*** = Okay; didn't love but liked enough to finish (or at least skim)
**** = Good; liked the writing style and/or the plot enough to stick with it
***** = Loved; will definitely keep and/or re-read

*****
Spooky Business, by S.E. Harmon -- male/male paranormal romantic suspense -- Rain has agreed to do a favor for the FBI and talk with a serial killer who claims that he didn't kill his wife (even though he killed many other women); Rain 'meets' a new a seemingly more dangerous ghost along the way and must figure out how to handle the new challenges while also solving the cold cases.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3771475617

****
The Shadow Box, by Luanne Rice -- adult suspense -- when Claire is beaten and left for dead, she's determined to survive and prove to the world that her husband Griffin (who is running for governor) tried to kill her (while also not alerting him to her survival).

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3771498704

**-
Don't Make a Sound, by T.R. Ragan -- adult mystery/suspense -- Sawyer returns to her home town for her grandma's funeral and uncovers more brutal secrets than expected (including those within her own family and past).

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3771518673

(I also had a couple of re-reads mixed in here, but I'll stick to first reads for now. :) )

Book Reviews (1-3) ...

Because I've had trouble keeping up with my reading, I'm going to change my book report style a bit. Now I'm aiming to write reviews on Goodreads and simply post the link here. But I'm also going to change my star system:

* = Just not for me
** = Interesting premise but not engaging enough to complete
*** = Okay; didn't love but liked enough to finish (or at least skim)
**** = Good; liked the writing style and/or the plot enough to stick with it
***** = Loved; will definitely keep and/or re-read

****+
The Cousins, by Karen McManus -- YA mystery/suspense -- three cousins (who barely know each other) are requested by their estranged grandmother to spend the summer at her resort; they each have their own reasons for going, but none of them expect what they find.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3760130438

****-
Merry Measure, by Lily Morton -- adult male/male humorous romance -- Arlo is spending Christmas in Amsterdam to support his brother (as he proposes to his boyfriend); but the challenge comes when his brother's BFF (Jack) is also there, and Arlo has had a long-standing crush that he has a hard time hiding.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3760157811

****
Save of the Game, by Avon Gale -- adult, male/male hockey romance -- Riley agrees to let Ethan room with him when Ethan joins their ECHL team; the two have to navigate their attraction and the vast differences in their upbringing and living situations.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3760171357

Top 5 5-star Reads 2020 + Top 17 4+-star Reads 2020

I only had FIVE 5-star reads this year -- these are books that I simply loved, couldn't put down, can't wait to re-read (genres: YA sci-fi/fantasy, NA parallel world? mob-like?, YA suspense/mystery, small-town male/male humorous romance):



I had 17 4+-star reads -- also books I raced through, definitely enjoyed, and will re-read in the future (genres: YA mystery, YA fantasy, YA graphic novel (lgbtqia), YA sci-fi (lgbtqia), adult romantic suspense/mystery, contemporary male/male humorous romance (and a couple sports-related), adult Christie-like mystery, adult male/male paranormal/mystery):




As you can see, my tastes tend toward mysteries/suspense (11/22 have a mystery/suspense element at their core); contemporary with solid endings and thoughtful, complex characters (6/22); romance + (both male/male and male/female -- and the *+* means it's usually not simply romance but romance combined with one of these other categories, usually suspense -- 21/22), and small-town lives with/without humor (9/22). I also love YA that fits into those categories, and you might notice that the only fantasy books I read are YA.

Can't wait to see what books 2021 will bring my way! :)

P.S. Here's my GR page, if you want more in-depth reviews: https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/93775930?ref=nav_mybooks
books

Book Reports (96-101) ...

Because I've had trouble keeping up with my reading, I'm going to change my book report style a bit. Now I'm aiming to write reviews on Goodreads and simply post the link here. But I'm also going to change my star system:

* = Just not for me
** = Interesting premise but not engaging enough to complete
*** = Okay; didn't love but liked enough to finish (or at least skim)
**** = Good; liked the writing style and/or the plot enough to stick with it
***** = Loved; will definitely keep and/or re-read

****
The Rules for Disappearing, by Ashley Elston -- YA mystery/suspense -- Meg and her family have just been relocated (for the 6th?) time to Louisiana, and Meg is tired of moving and changing her name/circumstances; this time, she's decided she's done, and she will do whatever it takes to fix her family's problems and get them out of the witness protection program.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3731107450

****
Far Gone, by Laura Griffin -- adult romantic (light) suspense -- Andrea's brother is mixed up in something wrong, and Andrea spends her time during suspension (for killing a shooter) figuring out what exactly he might be doing (and trying to save him) with the help/interference from FBI agent Jon.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3731133206

R ****+
****+
Principles of Spookology, by S.E. Harmon -- adult, male/male romantic paranormal mystery -- Rain is slowly learning how to live with seeing ghosts and using his 'abilities' to further their brand-new PTU (paranormal trauma? unit), started by his partner Danny (who cannot see ghosts); the group solves cold cases through Rain's gifts, and in this installment, Rain is trying to find out who killed Mason, a ghost who doesn't seem to understand that he's actually dead (nor does he have any idea who might have done this to him).

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3731147868

*****
Fakers, by Lucy Lennox and Mary Archer -- adult, male/male contemporary (humor) -- Brooks lets his mom twist his arm to return home to Licking Thicket (TN) for the Lickin' Fair (as Head Licker, no less), but he can't return without a boyfriend (because no one believes he's actually gay), so he finagles his colleague (and good -- straight -- friend) to play that role; at the same time, Ava, Brooks' one-and-only girlfriend (before he'd come out) is also returning and asks her BFF Mal to pretend to be her boyfriend ... and no surprise, Brooks and Mal are quite interested in each other.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3731174684

*****
Liars, by Lucy Lennox and Mary Archer -- adult, male/male romantic (humor) -- although not quite as funny, still a great story of Parrish and Diesel in Licking Thicket: Diesel is trying to win custody of his niece, and he needs to present a stable family image, so he asks Parrish to pretend to be his fiance.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3731188536

My kids (and DH) got me a full-fledged Kindle for Christmas (I've been using my phone), and to celebrate, LOL, I sought out some new authors (and/or new books). It's been a fun ride, and I still have two to go! But this wraps up 2020 in books, I'd say. :)
books

Book Reports (87-95) ...

Because I've had trouble keeping up with my reading, I'm going to change my book report style a bit. Now I'm aiming to write reviews on Goodreads and simply post the link here. But I'm also going to change my star system:

* = Just not for me
** = Interesting premise but not engaging enough to complete
*** = Okay; didn't love but liked enough to finish (or at least skim)
**** = Good; liked the writing style and/or the plot enough to stick with it
***** = Loved; will definitely keep and/or re-read

****+
The Inheritance Games, by Jennifer Lynn Barnes -- YA mystery -- Avery is named as the sole beneficiary for a billionaire she's never met (or even really heard of); from there, she finds herself in the middle of a huge puzzle, competing for the right to keep the money and possibly help out the members of the family who received nothing (including the 4 grandsons, two of whom are romantically interested in Avery).

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3706251400

***+
Right Move, by A.M. Arthur -- male/male romance -- George is working to overcome his extreme phobia of strangers and crowds of people, and when he is reintroduced to Levi and ends up taking in Levi's cat for a recovery period, something grows between the two.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3706293651

***
Winging It, by Ashlyn Kane and Morgan James -- male/male hockey romance -- Gabe is outed in a very public way, and his teammate Dante suddenly becomes more than a friend.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3706313743

****
Everybody Burns, by Victoria Sue -- male/male urban fantasy mystery/romance -- Eli is still fighting the demons of his past when one of his tormentors reappears, and his new partner Daniel (Vance's older brother) insists on helping.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3706342600

***
Face the Music, by K.M. Neuhold -- male/male romance -- Lincoln is miserable and almost suicidal in his life as a rock star and returns to his childhood cabin to figure things out, just at the same time his first (and only) love comes to stay in the neighboring cabin.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3706368893

I've also been doing some re-reads (such as the entire Enhanced series by Victoria Sue), which is why my count doesn't match the books listed here. ;)
books

Book Reports (79-86) ...

Because I've had trouble keeping up with my reading, I'm going to change my book report style a bit. Now I'm aiming to write reviews on Goodreads and simply post the link here. But I'm also going to change my star system:

* = Just not for me
** = Interesting premise but not engaging enough to complete
*** = Okay; didn't love but liked enough to finish (or at least skim)
**** = Good; liked the writing style and/or the plot enough to stick with it
***** = Loved; will definitely keep and/or re-read

***+
Giving Chase, by Riley Hart -- adult male/male romance -- Kellan has loved Chase for years (since he was 18), even though Chase 'ran off' to the army after Kellan kissed him; now Chase is back, and Kellan has to learn to build a friendship with him.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3668132435

****
Murphy's Law, by Riley Hart -- adult male/male romance -- Lawson never forgot Remington, the singer who performed on open mic night many years ago; now, Remington (a famous singer) has moved to Havenwood, and Lawson isn't sure what to do with that.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3668144344

****
Griff's Place, by Riley Hart -- adult male/male romance -- Griff and Josh have been dancing around each other for a while now (as all their friends have paired up); now it's their turn to figure out how to get beyond Josh's past and Griff's personal struggles.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3668154556

****+
Below the Bones, by Kendra Elliot (note: I read the book rather than listening to the audiobook, but this is the best pic I could find) -- adult mystery -- Cate is enjoying life on the island, but when a mystery from her past (including a dangerous serial killer) interrupts her present, she joins the fight to keep those she loves safe.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3668175986

***+
Fatal Shadows, by Josh Lanyon -- adult male/male mystery/suspense -- Adrien's friend is murdered hours after they fight, and he becomes the prime suspect; however, Adrien knows he's innocent, so he sets out to find out the real killer as a detective shadows him.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3668184268

****
Shattered Glass, by Dani Alexander -- adult male/male police procedural/mystery -- Austin sees Peter while waiting for his snitch in an investigation, and he's instantly smitten; only problem is, Austin is straight and engaged ... but when Peter ends up being an integral part of the investigation, Austin must come to terms with his own sexuality and his goals in life.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3668201005

****
Here Comes the Flood, by Kate McMurray -- adult male/male romance -- Isaac and Tim are in the Olympics, one as a swimmer and the other as a diver; each is trying to overcome past media 'scandals' and negotiate a new relationship on top of it (and, you know, maybe win a medal or two in the process?).

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3668218269

****
Fix It Up, by Mary Calmes -- adult male/male romance -- the third in the Torus Intercession series (a security company) where Locryn is given charge of Nick, a just-out-of-rehab rock star who needs boundaries (LOL), and Locryn provides those.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3668230785

As always, behind I am (ha) -- but I'm currently reading Inheritance Games, by Jennifer Lynn Barnes. Hopefully I'll have another couple to add before the end of the year. :)
books

Book Reports (69-78) ...

Because I've had trouble keeping up with my reading, I'm going to change my book report style a bit. Now I'm aiming to write reviews on Goodreads and simply post the link here. But I'm also going to change my star system:

* = Just not for me
** = Interesting premise but not engaging enough to complete
*** = Okay; didn't love but liked enough to finish (or at least skim)
**** = Good; liked the writing style and/or the plot enough to stick with it
***** = Loved; will definitely keep and/or re-read

****+
The High Crown Chronicles, by Jodi Gallegos -- YA fantasy -- Malory, the firstborn of the King of Devlishire, is denied her birthright when her brother works to usurp her throne; instead, she finds herself given away in marriage to the High King with the expectation that she'll spy for her father (who betrayed her) and help him gain the High Crown.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3603463486

****+
The Silence, by Kendra Elliot -- adult mystery/suspense -- Ava and Mason finally have their wedding in sight, but then a brutal murder and a targeted explosion (aimed at killing police) involve them in ways they didn't expect.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3603484743

****
Date Me, Bryson Keller, by Kevin van Whye -- YA LGBTQ romance -- When Bryson agrees to date the first person who asks him each Monday (for one week only), Kai doesn't expect that he'll also get a chance; but when Bryson says, "Yes," both boys find something they didn't realize they wanted.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3603499130

****
In a Fix, by Mary Calmes -- adult male/male romantic suspense -- Croy goes to Vegas to complete a job for a challenging client, never expecting that he'll end up in the middle of a drug sting with a playboy investigator who piques his interest.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3603516957

**
The Hitman's Guide to Making Friends and Finding Love, by Alice Winters -- adult male/male mystery? humor? -- Leland and Jackson are after the same guy, though Leland (a hitman) is working to kill him, while Jackson (FBI) wants to arrest him; when they decide to work together, a different kind of spark begins to fly.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3603533533

****+
Caulky, by KM Neuhold -- adult male/male romance -- Ren and Cole have a one-night stand, and then Ren discovers Cole is the contractor he hired for his bathroom remodel; they start an awkward friendship before both set up online profiles through a dating app -- and unknowingly start a friendship there, as well.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3603541721

***+
Nailed, by KM Neuhold -- adult male/male romance -- Stone moves in next door to Dare, and because of a misunderstanding, it's war from the get-go; eventually, the two learn to communicate and begin dating.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3603550963

****+
Hardwood, by KM Neuhold -- adult male/male romance -- Ev finally admits to himself that he's gay; now he just needs to be honest with those closest to him, including his ex-wife (especially since he's falling for his daughter's music teacher).

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3603556051

****
Screwed, by KM Neuhold -- adult male/male romance -- when Daniel and Ollie end up married in Vegas, Daniel's insistence that they stick to it long enough to win a bet ends with more than either expected.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3603561101

****+
One by One, by Ruth Ware -- adult suspense -- when a group of shareholders meet at a Swiss chalet for a working ski vacation, no one expects one of them to be a murderer; plus, the hostess has secrets of her own.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3603569824

I also re-read some of my favorite Laura Griffin mysteries ... the fun never ends. ;)