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Masters & Boyd by S.J.D. Peterson

Masters & BoydMasters & Boyd by S.J.D. Peterson
Reviewer:  Tj
Publisher:  Dreamspinner Press
Novella:  26,648 Words
Purchase at Amazon and Barnes and Noble
Roses:  3
 

Carrick Masters and Edward Boyd have already found true love—it’s the happy ever after that’s eluding them. Between Carrick’s job as an orthopedic surgeon and Ed’s career as a defense attorney, they have hardly any time to spend together, and what time they do have seems to be poisoned by resentment. Carrick and Ed know they need to refocus to make their marriage work, but they seriously need more than a spicy once-a-week date night to get them back on track.

Excerpt

This was a story originally done from a photo and a prompt in the Goodreads M/M Romance group.  The author has done a wonderful job within a short story format.  This is about and established couple and how their very happy marriage crumbles under real world pressures.  When the two men hit a point of their marriage almost breaking under the strain, they resolve to fix it.  The story itself chronicles their relationship for about 2 years.

Carrick is a surgeon and his husband, Ed, a lawyer.  They are both very successful but busy.  They notice that their relationship is becoming all work with the occasional night of sex.  They are losing touch with each other and the small things that mean so much to the relationship.  They finally take time to fix their marriage.  In the course of doing so they stumble across the fact that Ed likes to be spanked and Carrick likes to be in control during sex.  They start to explore this difference in their love life and find it something they both enjoy.

I thought the writer did a good job with the plot.  The whole of the story was pretty much a flash back which contains flash backs.  That sounds confusing but the writer manages to make it very smooth and with no confusion as to what is happening.  The believability of a relationship “hitting the rocks” like this makes the story interesting.  How do they change where they are headed?  And how did this vanilla couple put these kinks into their love life?

The characters are simple but easy to sympathize with.  They are made believable by how they are letting just the little stuff intrude and tear them apart.  I will say that I really didn’t connect with them though.  I think it is a bit of the nature of a short that it is very difficult to create a character that connects to the readers.  In this case I just didn’t have enough emotion devoted to the story to connect with the characters.

This is a sweet little story and good read.  I would recommend it to anyone.

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The Harvest: Taken by M.A. Church

The Harvest TakenThe Harvest: Taken by M.A. Church
Reviewer:  Tj
Publisher:  Storm Moon Press
Novel:  70,000 Words
Purchase at Amazon and Barnes and Noble
Roses:  4
 

In the year 2050, humanity finds out they are indeed not alone.

Massive space ships appear without warning above the capital cities of all major nations. The planet Tah’Nar is dying. Chemical warfare has reduced the once-intersexed warrior race to sterility. They need fresh DNA in order to reproduce and have an idea for a harvesting program… and so they turn to Earth.

Earth governments negotiate a lottery, and Dale Michael assumes he’s safe since he’s under the Harvest age limit. How wrong he is. He’s illegally harvested and claimed by Tah’Narian starship captain Keyno Shou. From the moment Keyno sees Dale, he knows he must claim the spirited human male for his own. What he doesn’t expect is a spitfire with a mind of his own—and a deadly disease that will require a risky procedure to cure.

Excerpt

This is futuristic story based on humans finding out we are not alone and the aliens are more advanced than us.  When the aliens come to Earth wanting mates the governments of the Earth hush it up as a short term need of human DNA to save the alien race since they have been rendered sterile.  Dale is a male that is “harvested” with this intent.  He is under the age limit set and cannot understand why he has been picked.  This is quickly explained to him by the alien race, he has been picked by the captain of the starship to be his mate.  Dale is horrified to learn it is a permanent situation and he would not be returning to his heartbroken family.  He is also told he was injected with alien DNA; he was actually double dosed because he was ill.  This DNA is mutating his body to make him able to have children.   His “mate” is Keyno.  Keyno is gentle with Dale and tries hard to make Dale happy even if he has been forcible taken and mutated without his permission.

I think some readers will be upset that Dale didn’t fight the situation more than he did.  I think he is still furious over it all but knows that Keyno isn’t directly responsible for it.  He hasn’t forgotten or forgiven what happened to him though.  He mentions it a lot and talks badly about it with others.  I think Dale’s change is related to the fact that since he is mutated he knows it really isn’t possible for him to go home again.  Earth will NOT accept him now that he has changed.  He also is deeply attracted to Keyno and his new physiology makes it near impossible to really stay away or mad at the man.

There is a lot that happens in the story.  The plot is very good and keeps you reading the story.  It is hard to put down because of wanting to know what would happen next.  I was disappointed it ended when it did but reminded myself that there is another coming out, which I hope happens soon!  The author did a wonderful job with describing everything.  You could picture the scenes quite clearly.  I had wished a little more went into describing Keyno.  I still don’t really have a clear picture of him.  The details that the author give really fill in the world for the reader and makes the book come to life.

The characters are quite fun.  Dale, Chad, and John are an interesting sample of the mates.  Dale is different though and always opening his mouth and letting fly before he knows everything or even if it is safe too.  I think he will be out causing trouble in the next book.  He drags Chad along.  John is a little less defined.  He brings the wonder and curiosity to the group though.  I hope he is a little more involved in the next book.  Keyno and the other aliens introduced are quite gentle and possessive.  I have to say when Keyno is protecting Dale he is massively scary!  The aliens are very interesting and I can see why the humans are so fascinated by them.

The book overall was a wonderful read with a creative and interesting world provided.  The characters bring it all together to give the reader a chance to live a great adventure.  You get a fun read that creates an emotional rollercoaster of a ride.  I really enjoyed this read and look forward to the next.

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