Boy Banned – RJ Scott

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“He liked this: being close, touching, breathing in unison with this beautiful man.”

 

In a word: Read the thing. This one was a bit different, with the whole thing taking place during a singing competition, the fictional Sing UK (which I’m assuming is something like American Idol). Our two romantic leads, Corey and Angel, start off competing against each other but then end up competing with each other (along with three other men). The story doesn’t really go into too much detail about the show and how it all works, even the details of living a celebrity lifestyle are brushed over for the most part, and is more about the relationship between Corey and Angel and the other relationships they form along the way. The story had some light-ish angst, but it was pretty sweet for the most part. An extra bonus, along with the love story, was also seeing five strangers coming together as friends and watching those relationships develop. Also, one of the romantic leads is on the autism spectrum, and that’s not something we see enough of.

 

[available for purchase at Amazon.ca, Chapters, and Barnes & Noble]

 

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What No One Else Can Hear – Brynn Stein

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“Hard not to fall in love with the little imp, isn’t it?”

 

In a word: Read the thing. This one was pretty fun, and weird. Also it’s less about the romance (although there is some of that in here) and more about the relationship between our narrator and main character, Jesse, and the little boy he can communicate with in his dreams, Stevie. The story is one part slice-of-life about the kids and staff of a residential clinic for autistic children, and one part courtroom thriller. Personally, my favourite parts were about life in the center (I was a TA in a past life), but the drama surrounding the court case and everything that followed had me hooked. There’s also a magical element with Jesse and Stevie’s mental connection (it’s not telepathy), which was explained just enough to have things make sense. The writing isn’t the best, but it’s not a disaster or anything, and it doesn’t really affect the story itself (although the plot probably tends to drag a bit if slice-of-life isn’t your thing). I enjoyed reading this, and there was enough cuteness and drama to keep me interested.

[available for purchase at Dreamspinner Press, Book Depository, Amazon.ca, and Chapters]

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Will & Patrick’s Happy Ending (Wake Up Married #6) – Leta Blake & Alice Griffiths

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“Most things in life are and we just muddle on through. Don’t let go of something just because it didn’t come in the package you expected.”

 

In a word: Read the thing! This is the heartbreaking and then heartwarming conclusion to the Wake Up Married series. Will and Patrick have come a long way since the night they got drunk married in Vegas. They’ve both changed as people and basically had their whole worldviews changed. Most of the series has been about these two men trying to figure out their feelings for one another. They’ve both figured it out by now, but that doesn’t mean things are any easier. Patrick is completely sure that Will is the only one for him, there’s no question in his mind. Will isn’t so sure; he knows he loves Patrick now, but are his feelings genuine, or a product of their situation? Unfortunately, to find that out he must do something that causes them both pain, because sometimes it has to hurt before it can get better. Emotions are running high and it seems that everyone has something to say. This series may have started out silly as all hell, but it’s become completely serious now. (Mostly.)

[available for purchase at Amazon.ca, also available in bundles]

 

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Will & Patrick Meet the Mob (Wake Up Married #5) – Leta Blake & Alice Griffiths

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“He wonders if placing doughnuts on their bed at the Tallgrass, laying them out in the shape of a heart, is a romantic idea or a stupid one.”

 

In a word: Read the thing! The pining continues in this part, with Patrick desperate to be with Will but still terrified to reveal his true feelings. However, he can’t devote all his attention to this because Will’s mobster father has arrived in town to make waves and scare the shit out of people (mostly Patrick). Now we get to learn just how big a threat the Molinaro family really is; and explore a bit of Will’s relationship with his father. How will Patrick’s feelings be affected now that he’s met the infamous Tony Molinaro and realizes just how big a mess he’s gotten himself into? (While this part has a few revelations for Will concerning his feelings for Patrick and the clusterfuck that is his family, I felt that it was Patrick and his feelings who got most of the focus.)

[available for purchase on Amazon.ca, also available in bundles]

 

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Will & Patrick Fight Their Feelings (Wake Up Married #4) – Leta Blake & Alice Griffiths

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“We’re having sex, not committing a crime. Of course it’s okay. Why make it into something it’s not?”

 

In a word: Read the thing. OMG SO MUCH PINING!! This part is all about the pining (and kink). Patrick’s feelings for Will continue to grow more and more as time goes on and he’s fairly horrified to find that he’s completely fallen head over heels for his husband. Will’s slowly getting there, but he has his own issues to work through concerning sex and relationships and how to love himself. The two men are definitely getting closer though. Maybe so close that they aren’t all that concerned with trying to get a speedy divorce (hoho)? Included in all of this is the beginning of some drama concerning one of Patrick’s patients, Will’s mother being called out on her shitty parenting (:D), and an unexpected family reunion.

[available for purchase at Amazon.ca, also available in bundles]

 

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Will & Patrick Do the Holidays (Wake Up Married #3) – Leta Blake & Alice Griffiths

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“Will swallows and looks at Patrick with such a soft expression that it makes Patrick’s insides ache. ‘You really care about me.'”

 

In a word: Read the thing! Will and Patrick celebrate their first Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years as newlyweds and it’s about as awkward as you’d expect. Also funny, and heartwarming, and then heartbreaking, because pining. Both Will and Patrick can feel their relationship with each other changing, though they aren’t really sure what to do about it. We finally meet Will’s three younger siblings, though they don’t get much screen time they are a lot of fun (and the oldest takes absolutely no shit from their mother, it’s great). Ryan shows up and continues to be infuriating, but it seems like Will is finally ready to get over him. This part definitely marks a turning point in the boys’ relationship and it introduces more seriousness than it does laughs, but I assure you that Patrick is still a delight to read.

[available for purchase at Amazon.ca, also available in bundles]

 

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Will & Patrick Meet the Family (Wake Up Married #2) – Leta Blake & Alice Griffiths

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“There’s probably nothing quite like the sweaty, nervous feeling of bringing home a stranger you had a lot of filthy sex with and introducing him to your mother as your brand-new husband.”

 

In a word: Read the thing! The second part of the Wake Up Married series continues the story of Will and Patrick and the insane situation they’ve found themselves in and I continue to love every second of it. This part introduces us to some more Patterson family members, though they sadly aren’t as cool (or likeable) as Nonna. This part also furthers the relationship between Will and Patrick as they are finding that they are actually fond of each other and that they might actually genuinely like each other (even though Patrick is an asshole and Will’s family is terrifying). Also the sexual tension shoots through the roof and these two idiots spend a lot of time trying to convince themselves that they absolutely Do Not want to jump straight into bed with each other. It’s cute watching the boys interact and Patrick is as rude and hilarious as ever. However, this part isn’t as funny as the first one because we get hints of dark backstories for both our leads, and we get just about every character (except for maybe Patrick and Nonna) just completely shitting all over Will and it’s basically tearing at his self-esteem and sense of self-worth and completely breaking my heart. We also get more of Ryan, which is never a good thing, frankly (I will never like him).

[available for purchase at Chapters and Amazon.ca, also available in bundles]

 

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