Friday, December 14, 2012

Guest Review by Ashlynn Monroe

I don’t read a lot of contemporary romance. It’s usually not my thing, but I’m glad I made an exception for Friends and Lovers by Tara Mills! I adored the heroine, Lauren. Her motivations were clear and she reminded me of one of my best friends. I was so easy to adore her.
 Wes is HOT as heck. The author does a good job of making him sexy, but human. His combination of vulnerability and masculinity was great. This book was wonderful. I don’t do spoilers in my reviews, but these are the reasons I LOVED this book. I grew up in a home filled with domestic violence and the fear and abusers actions and attitude was very realistic. Sylvia Coulter’s fear and struggle is sadly too realistic in this country. Her fight for freedom and the real danger was portrayed well by the author. I love how Wes helps Lauren overcome her own tragedy and sorrow. I could see how Sylvia’s story could help a reader who hasn’t lived through that kind of fear know exactly why the heroine was so afraid of her brother-in-law getting out of prison.
1. The characters are realistic and well fleshed out. These characters could be breathing Ms. Mills does such a good job making them jump off the page and into your heart.
2. The domestic violence was realistic without it hitting the reader over the head.
3. I loved the friendship dynamic between Wes’s pregnant sister and the heroine.
4. Sherry’s pregnancy issues were realistic. (I’ve had two preemies and I didn’t feel that this was done in a generic or “over-the-top” way.
5. The sex was written amazingly well.
6. This has a wonderful HEA ending!
Without spoiling the book or spitting back the plot, I hope I’ve encouraged you to try this book if you’re looking for a hot contemporary romance with some real substance. This is a fun read, but it’s not just fluff! ENJOY!
Ashlynn Monroe

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Charlie Factor

One, recovering from near deadly injuries; the other, unaware of what he’s been missing in his life. What one man can do, may heal them both.
Charlie Baker is recovering, slowly. Nearly dying tends to make a man reflect on each day. Take into account that his injuries were caused by a premeditated murder attempt, and he certainly isn’t looking for a lover. He is barely welcoming to a friend unable to trust anyone, preferring to hide from the world hours and miles away from the memories.

Gregory Anders hadn’t intended to disturb the man in silent contemplation on the beach, but when his pup, Samson, takes matters out of his hands, he’s forced to at least apologize for his pet’s behavior. There’s no doubt for Gregory that Charlie could use a friend. Clearing the air up front that he isn’t gay helps Charlie to relax, allowing for the cautious beginning of a friendship.

Two men, both alone, for different reasons. What happens when friendship bears more? When support and affection turns into attraction?

Do you take the chance of a lifetime, for the love a lifetime?

When I started reading The Charlie Factor, I wasn't sure I'd truly enjoy it as I was not a a reader of this type of romances. Having said that, I have to say there was no doubt after the first page this book would hold my attention. Diana did an excellent job of making me a fan of m/m romances.

The characters are well written, developed and relatable. When Gregory meets Charlie he has no idea this is the man who will change his life for the better. We, the reader get a great glimpse into the mind of a man believing himself to be straight all his life who finds himself attracted to a man. Its something he's not sure about, but he's not running from it. He follows the advice of his friends, opening his heart to a man in hiding.

Neither Charlie nor Gregory are looking for love, yet they find it sneaks up on them. Their relationship doesn't always go smoothly, there are hiccups and troubles along the way, growth for both of them as well as pain and forgiveness. The Charlie Factor is a story of finding love without worrying about what the packaging looks like, about honesty, friendship, and finding acceptance in the heart and arms of someone who sees beyond the scars and expectations of others.

This is one book I would highly recommend to anyone. Its got it all, a loveable dog, a great romance, characters you can enjoy and fall in love with and the sex scenes are amazing.