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Monday, January 23, 2017

Bluewater Blues (Bluewater Bay #15) [Jack & Mark] by G.B. Gordon

I'm stunned speechless. If I could give this book a higher rating than 5 stars I would. It was incredible and unique in a way I've never ever read before. The way the book, and mostly Jack, dealt with Margaret his autistic sister and Mark diagnosed with Asperger (or what used to be called that, now it's called differently) was beautiful beyond words. His whole relationship with his sister, and how much they meant for one another, how they communicated was simply inspiring. It's no wonder he connected with Mark right from the start. He could see his quirkiness but it didn't really phase him. He accepted him the way he is without resenting him even for a second for what he couldn't do or couldn't give (or be..). 

Jack and his sister Margaret grew up in a very difficult home. Though they had their loving grandmother, their mother committed suicide not long after Margaret was born and their rich father and grandfather didn't care about both kids and mostly wanted Margaret gone to an institute for being "touched" like her mother. Grandmother made sure Jack understood from a young age, Margaret should be protected at all costs and that's what he did when he realized his father is going to lock her away. Their circumstances were a lot more difficult, but I'm not going to say more about it, not to spoiler. It's exactly that secret which made them escape to a far away state with fake names to start over that also made it impossible for Jack to form any relationship. How can he built anything on lies and half truths? So even though he was interested in Mark from the first time he laid eyes on him, once he thought Mark wanted more he had to back off even though it was the last thing he wanted to do (and even though Margaret REALLY didn't agree with his actions). 

Though Mark has his social difficulties, he lives a "normal" life. He works in "Wolf's Landing" costume design department and except for Anna, the director, no one knows about his diagnosis. He doesn't want anyone's pity and he can manage, though he needs people to cooperate with the way he works. Mostly it does work and when it didn't, I enjoyed seeing how it was resolved. Mark's POV was refreshing and interesting in a way very little characters draw me in. He felt so genuine and real, not only in character, but also as someone with Asperger. Though his thought process, the way he communicated and in general managed life, I got to be inside someone who is so different from anything I'm used to, in books or in real life. It was absolutely amazing. More amazing was how much in tune Jack was with him. Allowing him to touch, though he has difficulties with being touched himself. Learning to trust Jack to NOT pressure him and allow him the pace he needs. It was so so beautiful. 

I liked that though Jack was difficult for Mark to decipher, when he pushed him away, Mark was trying his best to understand what it truly means, not just the words Jack was using but what he understood from his gestures and actions. He had a lot of respect for Margaret and it's no wonder she could see in him a match for her brother. She made excellent choices in every step of the way even if mostly only Jack could understand her. The way he was in tuned with HER was out of this world, and mostly the way he translated her behavior in his head was beautiful. Even when she used one word they meant whole sentences for him. He knew her so well.

I loved everything about this book, the whole idea behind it, the relationships between siblings, as well as between them and Mark and how they evolved. The way Jack and Margaret's issues were resolved, but also the way Mark dealt with his own little difficulty at work with Natalya. Even though this book mostly dealt with their relationship, the little we got from both their jobs helped us see who they are in real life and not just with each other. Their connection through the music was heart breakingly beautiful as everything about these two was. I couldn't have asked for anything more. It was just PERFECT. 

I could probably go on about this book for hours, it was BRILLIANT! I LOVED IT SO MUCH. But I don't want to say more because as I see it - It's a MUST READ even if you haven't read anything in this series. Every book here is a stand alone as it is - nothing to be worried about. You know what, even if you haven't read any M/M Romance novels before, I don't think it would be that problematic on the matter. There are sexual scenes but they were so special in their own way I think it only makes this book even better. 

Read on:
22-23 Jan 2017

Welcome to Bluewater Bay! This quiet little logging town on Washington state’s Olympic Peninsula has been stagnating for decades, on the verge of ghost town status. Until a television crew moves in to film Wolf’s Landing, a soon-to-be cult hit based on the wildly successful shifter novels penned by local author Hunter Easton.

Wolf’s Landing’s success spawns everything from merchandise to movie talks, and Bluewater Bay explodes into a mecca for fans and tourists alike. The locals still aren’t quite sure what to make of all this—the town is rejuvenated, but at what cost? And the Hollywood-based production crew is out of their element in this small, mossy seaside locale. Needless to say, sparks fly.

This collaborative story world is brought by collective authors, each contemporary novel stands alone, but all are built around the town and the people of Bluewater Bay and the Wolf’s Landing media empire.

1. Starstruck By L.A. Witt [Levi Pritchard & Carter Samuels] (Published 3 November 2014) ★★★★
2. There's Something About Ari By L.B. Gregg [Buck Ellis & Ari Valentine] (Published 8 November 2014) ★★★★
3. Hell on Wheels By Z.A. Maxfield [Nash Holly & Spencer Kepler-Constantine] (Published 29 November 2014) ★★★★
4. Lone Wolf By Aleksandr Voinov & L.A. Witt [Hunter Easton & Kevin Hussain] (Published 20 December 2014) ★★ (DNF 25%)
5. The Burnt Toast B&B By Heidi Belleau & Rachel Haimowitz [Ginsberg Sloan & Derrick Richards] (Published 11 January 2015) ★★★½
6. Lights, Camera, Cupid (Bluewater Bay #6) Valentine's Anthology (Published 7 February 2015) ★★★★
    [ Just Another Day [Levi Pritchard & Carter Samuels] by L.A. Witt  ★★★ ]
    [ Nascha By Amy Lane  ★★★★★ ]

    [ No Easy Way [Cary Teijan & Dylan James] By S.E. Jakes  ★½ ]
    [ Helping Hand [Lucas Wilder & Gabriel Savage] by Anne Tenino  ★★★★★ ]
    [ I'll Be There [Nash Holly & Spencer Kepler] By Z.A. Maxfield  ★★ ]
7. Wedding Favors By Anne Tenino [Lucas Wilder & Gabriel Savage] (Published 11 April 2015) ★★★★
8. The Deep of the Sound By Amy Lane [Cal McCorkle & Avery Kennedy] (Published 13 June 2015)  ★★★★
9. When to Hold Them By G.B. Gordon [Doran Callaghan & Xavier Wagner] (Published 15 August 2015)  ★★ (DNF 49%)
10. Rain Shadow By L.A. Witt [Jeremy Rose & Scott Fletcher]  (Published 17 October 2015) ★★★
11. Stuck Landing By Lauren Gallagher [Anna Maxwell & Natalya Izmaylova] (Published 12 December 2015) ★★ (DNF 38%)
12. How the Cookie Crumbles By Jaime Samms [Frederic Jackson & Blaire Caruthers] (Published 13 February 2016) ★★★¾
13. Selfie By Amy Lane [Connor Montgomery & Noah Dakers] (Published 16 April 2016) ★★ (DNF 51%)
14. All the Wrong Places By Ann Gallagher [Brennan Cross & Zafir Hamady] (Published 12 June 2016) ★★★½
15. Bluewater Blues By G. B. Gordon [Jack Daley & Mark Keao] (Published 15 October 2016)
16. No Small Parts By Ally Blue [Nat Horn & Rafael Cortez] (Published 19 December 2016) 
17. For A Good Time, Call... By Anne Tenino & E.J. Russell [Nate Albano & Seth Larson] (Published 8 April 2017)

Though I enjoyed many books in this series, I'm not going to continue past the 17th. Firstly, this series, with so many different authors and different themes and at times sub-genres made the whole experience "bumpy". I had too many books I didn't connect with and I feel like it's going to stay this way with the authors who weren't my favorite. Secondly I feel a bit unsure about supporting this publisher considering its recent revealed "shade".

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