Saturday, February 26, 2011


by Josh Lanyon, Z.A. Maxfield, L.B. Gregg, and Harper Fox
Carina Press
December 6, 2010
ISBN# 9781426890833
Contemporary M/M Romance
E-book, 493 pages
NetGalley Review

Mistletoe at Midnight by LB Gregg
Owen McKenzie has traveled to Vermont to spend an old-fashioned Christmas with his family when he finds himself staying at the same inn as his first love. Owen is disconcerted to realize he's still attracted to Caleb Black but refuses to pursue him. Caleb left him once, and Owen's not going down that road again.

Caleb is ready for a second chance with Owen and gets it when fate and the matchmaking McKenzies conspire to strand the two men in a rustic cabin during a snowstorm on Christmas Eve. Can Caleb convince Owen to rekindle their romance so they can stop spending their holidays apart?

Nine Lights Over Edinburgh by Harper Fox
Detective Inspector James McBride is riding high on the belief that he's about to bust a human-trafficking ring. But just five days before Christmas, his unorthodox methods catch up with him and his world comes crashing down.

McBride tries to concentrate on his new day job as security for the visiting Israeli ambassador. He even starts to feel a renewed sense of self-worth when the leader of the Israeli team, the aristocratic Tobias Leitner, takes a bullet for him in the line of duty. But he can't forget the trafficking case, especially when his investigations result in the kidnapping of his own daughter! McBride has no one to turn to for help-no one, except Toby.

Can these two very different men work together to bring about a holiday miracle-and heal one another's heart in the process?

I Heard Him Exclaim by Z.A. Maxfield
Who Likes a Skinny Santa?

Steve Adams's heart hasn't been in the Christmas spirit ever since doctors put a stent in it and ordered him to clean up his act. No longer filling out his Santa suit or allowed to make merry, he's forgoing the holidays this year and heading to Vegas to indulge in the few vices left to him: gambling and anonymous sex.

His road trip takes a detour when he encounters Chandler Tracey, who's just inherited guardianship of his five-year-old niece. Overwhelmed, Chandler's on his way to deliver Poppy to his parents. But fate has other plans and, after car trouble, Chandler and Poppy accept a ride home with Steve. Though the heat between the two men is obvious, they put it on simmer while they band together to make Poppy's Christmas as perfect as possible.

Steve soon comes to believe that while Chandler is the right person to look after Poppy, someone needs to look after Chandler. Fortunately, Steve knows just the man for the job.

Icecapade by Josh Lanyon
On the eve of the new millennium, diamond thief Noel Snow seduced FBI special agent Robert Cuffe, then fled into the dawn. Now a successful novelist, Noel uses his capers as fodder for his books, and has modeled his hero's nemesis (and potential love interest) on Cuffe. Though he leaves Robert a drunken phone message every New Year's Eve, Noel hasn't seen or heard from him in a decade.

So he's thrilled when his former lover shows up at his upstate farm one Christmas Eve. Elation quickly turns to alarm when Robert accuses Noel of being responsible for a recent rash of diamond heists. Robert is all business and as cold as ice: it seems his only interest in Noel is to put him behind bars.

Innocent of the crimes and still as attracted as ever to the oh-so-serious lawman, Noel plans a second seduction-providing he can stay out of jail long enough!

My Ratings


Yes, a Christmas anthology, but it doesn’t need to be the holidays to enjoy these deliciously romantic stories. I applaud Carina Press for putting together such talent and delivering a sweet seasonal treat.

Mistletoe at Midnight by LB Gregg
Owen and Caleb fell in love during high school but were separated due to circumstances beyond their control. Now 15 years later, they are brought together, due to circumstances beyond their control. They must confront the past and hope for the future. I enjoyed the parts of the story told in flashback; getting the opportunity to watch the beginning of Owen and Caleb’s relationship. Owens’ Mom and Brother are your typical loving “interfering” family members. They are a hoot!

Nine Lights Over Edinburgh by Harper Fox
A mesmerizing story of a desperate man who loses himself in alcohol and gambling. Detective Inspector James McBride is a lonely man who feels comfortable when out on his “streets”. But his descent into the darkness has its price, and McBride must face the consequences of his actions. Just watching McBride open up and realize there are different types of love and that he is worthy of love was a beautiful metamorphosis.

I Heard Him Exclaim by Z.A. Maxfield
You couldn’t have a Christmas anthology without Santa Claus - this one even has elves! Steve has had enough problems this past year and heads to “Sin City” Vegas for the holidays. On his way he runs into Chandler and Poppy who are having auto problems. There is an immediate attraction. Chandler feels insecure and irresponsible. He isn’t cut out for the job of parenting - not ready for a kid. (Does this sound familiar to any parents out there? It did to me.) Steve on the other hand is the opposite when it comes to kids - plenty of nephews and nieces. Poppy even calls Steve “Santa Claus”. I couldn’t help but chuckle when reading the stolen moments quickie between Steve and Chandler. *grin*

Icecapade by Josh Lanyon
How can you not love a seasonal read when the leading characters are: The Diamond Thief Noel Snow and The FBI Special Agent Robert Cuffe! Those names just rock! These two have it bad. I mean B.A.D. After one hot night, they haven’t seen or spoken to each other in 10 years - 10 frellin’ years!! There is a reason to their madness. Noel and Robert had to survive their chosen career paths to reclaim a passion they once shared. Noel is surprised when Robert knows so much about him. And Robert is so, so alpha: strong, silent type.

Now, you may be wondering why only the Sexual Rating of Steamy. Yes, the man love is HAWT! But it is not the sole focus of the story. It adds to the development of the relationship between the characters. What I found present in each of the tales was a breathtaking romance.

No comments:

Post a Comment