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Saturday, December 3, 2016

Lights, Camera, Cupid (Bluewater Bay #6) by S.E. Jakes, Amy Lane, Z.A. Maxfield, Anne Tenino & L.A. Witt

I stared this series two months ago and while I DID enjoy it, due to lack of reading time that month had to postpone the continuation of the series for other books I was excited to read and so here I am returning to this fun series with an Anthology half of which are about couples we already met in the previous installments and all of written by authors I've already read and enjoyed. 

I'm reviewing each novella on it's own and then adding my overall thoughts and rating for this Anthology at the very end. 

Just Another Day [Levi & Carter] by L.A. Witt   ★
This was a nice continuation of Levi and Carter's story. If you loved them and wished them all the best he you can see them getting more of a HEA even if they have to first get through Levi hating Valentine's Day while Carter REALLY wanting to somehow celebrate it, or rather express how much his relationship with Levi means to him. I'm not sure why but this one didn't grab me. I liked them in the first installment ("Starstruck") of the series but this mostly scene with Levi and Carter (and the cats) was somehow TOO domestic and lacking when standing on it's own. It could have been a nice Epilogue to their book though. 

Nascha by Amy Lane   ★
I'm sitting here in tears over this amazing and sad love story. Nascha's story. A man who wanted a home but only found himself giving it to others. He was happiest with his two best friends and lovers - Kitten and Raw, but things changed once he had to take care of his sister's daughter - Beth. Everyone made their difficult choices, mostly Nascha. I don't want to say more about the plot. I'll just say that Beth's son Cal is the MC in the 8th novel in this series ("The Deep of the Sound") and so I really can't wait to grab it and get more about this special family. We get the whole of Nascha's life story in this short novella, a true heart breaking and touching story I haven't read in a LONG time.

No Easy Ways [Cary Teijan & Dylan James] by S.E. Jakes   ★★½
I was glad to see S.E. Jakes' name in this Anthology. It's been awhile since I've read a book by her. I'm STILL waiting for the last installment in "Hell or High Water" series (hope she'll get to it soon..) and I"m wondering if it means she is planning on writing a book in this series or is it just this short novella. Anyhow I really enjoyed this one. I missed her writing :) This one was sexy and heart felt. A love rekindled between Cary and Dylan. They met when Cary was in high school and ended their relationship when Dylan left without a word. Now 6 years later Dylan is back and determined to get Cary back. There were a lot of secrets back then, it's time to share them and finally be able to be together again. 
My only complaint is the fact Cary cheated on his boyfriend. While their relationship did sound strange and not that committed, I think it could have been handled somehow better.. 

Helping Hand [Lucas Wilder & Gabriel Savage] by Anne Tenino   ★
This is a short "coming of age" novella, getting us acquainted with the MC in the next (7th) installment in the series ("Wedding Favors"). I actually can't wait to read it! This one was SO GOOD! It's told solely from Lucas' POV, telling us of his home situation, growing up in a poor family of lumberjacks who can't really handle the fact that he is an artist or of his sensitive behavior. Audrey, Lucas' best friend already knows he is gay, but telling his family isn't something he planned on doing, but he found himself doing just that when he confesses he got accepted to art school. That's not the only thing Lucas has to deal with in this short novella. We also get to see what happens when Lucas' crush since forever - Gabriel - learns Lucas is gay. I loved everything about this novella, loved the realistic family relationships and how they changed, loved seeing Lucas and Audrey together as best friends. It had a few funny moments, which was a surprise! Everything else I've read by Anne was somehow more funny than this kind of emotional ride of growing up and learning to stand up as a sort of grown up. What a great teaser! :) 

I'll Be There [Spencer Kepler & Nash Holly] by Z.A. Maxfield   ★
Sadly I didn't connect with this story AT ALL. I mean, I LOVED both Spencer and Nash in the 3rd installment ("Hell on Wheels") but the story here, totally alienated me. Basically, Spencer is in a convention and Nash was suppose to take a flight there the day after Spencer but everything got cancelled due to bad weather. So the whole novella Nash is doing his best to fight the snow, storm and icy roads with his brother's help navigating the workable roads. I'm sorry I found that totally boring. Spencer was too insecure I wasn't even sure why he agreed to any of it. Basically it's a convention as well as meeting a sick and dying woman who wished to meet him. They could have met anywhere.. not where Spencer would feel so horrible with his anxieties. Nope. Just nope. 

Three out of five of these were absolutely a TREASURE in an Anthology and not even a very long one I call it a win. Also it got me really excited about the two next ones in the series by Anne Tenino and Amy Lane. 

~ Series Page ~

Additional Details: Kindle Ebook, 224 pages, 3 December 2016 / On GoodReads

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