LAST YEAR I WAS READING…(October 19, 2022)

Here are the rules:

Take your current read and compare it to what you reading this exact time last year. Which one do you like better? What is different about the books? Any special facts/things you want to make note of or bring attention to?

This meme was created by Reading Marie. It’s a great meme because it’s nice and easy to do.

This Year I Am Reading…

Life was easier when rival detectives, Quaid and Aslan, kept to their own side of the building. They could forget that one glorious night they shared and move on.

But when Aslan is called to a homicide and discovers one of the victims has a personal history with Quaid, he knows a confrontation is inevitable.

When news about the case spreads, Quaid can’t help but get involved. He wants answers, if not for himself, then for the families of the victims.

Joining ranks with Aslan and his partner, Quaid uncovers more than he bargained for. Too many secrets and lies. This case is dangerously personal.

Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea after all.

Plus, the more time he spends with Aslan, the harder it is for Quaid to ignore the attraction they share.

Playboy Aslan, who doesn’t believe in repeats, can’t seem to stop flirting and bantering with the grumpy MPU detective, and his rules go out the window as they’re drawn deeper into the case.

But what happens when one more night turns to two, then two turns to three?

Does Quaid want to risk his heart again?

Has Aslan developed an emotion?

Can they put a stop to their fun and walk away?

But the real question is, do they want to?

Bookshop: UK
Amazon Buy Links: Kindle | Audiobook
Amazon UK Buy Links: Paperback | Audiobook

The second book to the police procedural series, Valor and Doyle. Interesting case with a much needed closure for Quaid, but the story is a bit too long drawn out.

Last Year I Was Reading…

Novel (40 000 words) Genre(s): Horror, torture, paranormal, serial killer

This is not a romance.

Tags: graphic torture, murder, paranormal, forced incest, rape

Byron is tall, handsome, well spoken, wealthy, and has outstanding taste in wine and food. You’ll be impressed by his impeccable attire and eloquence in conversation, ranging from Baroque art to the newest advances in pharmacology. With his charming smile and elegant manners, Byron truly is the perfect date… and who doesn’t love a man who appreciates opera?

What’s the catch, you ask?

Just this: if Byron finds you suitable, he will subject you to utterly depraved forms of torture.

No, I’m not talking about S&M.

Byron will mutilate, rape, and then kill you. Don’t think that you will survive the encounter, because you won’t.

He has a perfect record.

Intrigued? Would you like me to arrange a rendezvous? It has to be in the next few days because he’s leaving on a trip south to much warmer climes, and his calendar will be completely full.

Yes? Very good. I will make a reservation for two under the name of Smith.

Who am I? I’m Gloria, his personal assistant.

Bookshop: US
Amazon Buy Links: Kindle | Audiobook
Amazon UK Buy Links: Paperback | Audiobook

One of the few MM horrors I’ve encountered. Gruesome, vile, utterly deprave, morbidly fascinating.

My 4.5-star review here.

Today we have two books on the opposite sides of the law. The current is a police procedural where the MCs are not officially partners. One of them has personal relations with the victim. Last year’s read is about a serial killer so depraved, he made the devil seem practically angelic. Both books have mystery and touch upon demons, one metaphorical, the other paranormal. Other than those, the two books don’t have much in common.

The current book is Elusive Relations. The story starts with the aftermath of Book 1, Temporary Partner, where Detectives Quaid Valor and Aslan Doyle have gone their separate ways after that unforgettable night. The two were forced to work together again when Aslan was called on a case where one of the victims was Quaid’s cheating ex.

Aslan has been working hard to stay sober after years of alcoholism. Quaid is fighting hard to shake off his ex’s hold on him after years of cheating and emotional abuse. The detective puts on a mask of grump and brusqueness. Underneath is a vulnerable man who desperately yearns for stability and true love and is constantly disappointed. It’s easy to see Aslan’s good influence on Quaid, helping the other detective see his self-worth and move on from a bad relationship.

I’m also happy to see As is winning the battle with his demons. It helped that he latched on to, shall we say, a much more positive thing to be addicted to, which is his deepening connection with Quaid. The two detectives are members of warring departments, Missing Persons Unit, and Homicide. It is an amusing gag in the series where As’s partner, Torin, grouses about As fraternizing with the grumpy MPU detective Quaid.

The Valor and Doyle stories have a certain grit to them. The dual 1st person POVs frequently describe people, places, and events in negative tones, making most characters, especially the POIs, unlikeable. It’s not my favorite style, but it’s a pretty compelling series with interesting cases and flawed characters that had endeared themselves with their hard-won battles.

Better the Devil You Know is a standalone horror novel. Not romance but a chronicle of how a brutal killer, Byron, descended to such extremes lows of depravity, Lucifer himself personally saw to his punishments.

It’s a twisty paranormal, so I’ll keep details to a minimum. The story has a lot of very graphic details of the torture done by Byron as well as those done to him. It mixes sex with blood and gore, and one must heed the trigger warnings because there are a lot!

One important character is Gloria, Byron’s omniscient assistant. Who exactly is she who seem almost too good at her job? Another mystery is Michael. Why does this young man seem vaguely familiar? There’s also a cute little connection between Luce and the killer, but I’m not shipping these two because Luce is too good for the likes of Byron. He’s that bad. Still, the man had a charisma so strong that even if you fully know what he is capable of, he keeps one curious, makes one want to stay. He even made Lucifer take a pause.

Everything came together in a thrilling climax. It was something I half expected since it felt like the logical conclusion given the setup. It’s a fucked up story with its own kind of happy ending for Luce and Byron. It’s also one heck of a job promotion!

Between desperate detectives and depraved killers, better toe to toe with the devil you know than chase dreams that never be.

I’m ending the post with a book I’m looking forward to reading.

Inspired by the meanings behind the colors of the original pride flag, this is a collection of eight romantic stories that each follow a specific theme: sexuality, life, healing, sunlight, nature, magic and art, serenity, and spirit. Each story features a man finding happiness in unexpected and surprising ways!

-A young man comes out to the desire demon he accidentally summons
-A painter finds his muse again when he meets the monster in his art
-A bullied medium finds love when he channels a widower’s lost husband

…And many more!

Amazon Buy Links: US | UK

13 Days of Monster F#cking was hella fun. Yay to more monsterrific shenanigans!

What were you reading this time last year?

(I hope it’s as riveting as Morticia’s book)

reading-gif-17 - Fumble

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