Happy Monday y’all, hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!
What I read this week:
To See the Sun by Kelly Jensen
M/M Sci/Fi Romance
August 13, 2018 by Riptide
“I want to show you everything. One day, I’m going to show you everything.”
This is probably one of the most low-key science fiction romances I’ve ever read. I anticipated a whole lot of angsty conflict after reading the first chapter, but.. there really wasn’t too much.
The first time readers are introduced to Gael he is trying to talk himself into committing a murder. Before he can convince himself to pull the trigger, someone else does the deed for him. Which leaves him running from not only the man who just blew a guy’s head off, but also from his employers who sent him to complete the mission. The only way off the hell hole of a planet he resides on and away from the people looking for him is to accept a contract off world as a companion to a lonely miner.
The first time readers meet Abraham Bauer, better known as Bram, he is down in the dredges of his claim, trying to figure out the size of the seam he just discovered. A retired foreman with the Muedini Corporation, now he mines his own claim and farms his leased land. He’s built himself a nice homestead, but he’s lonely and wants to find a nice man and maybe start a family someday. Which is why he goes looking for love on the holo terminal and sees Gael for the first time.
Gael is running from a shitty life on a planet where the poor are basically owned by powerful families. Slavery and child labor are legal and the only way out is to become someone else and run to another planet. He takes Bram up on his contract thinking he was finally getting at chance at a different kind of life. Bram is ready for a partner to share his life and farm with. This could be something good for both of them.
Their relationship is slow, and steady, and the getting to know you is romantic. Bram is gruff, but tender. Gael wants so much to be accepted and wanted. I liked how these two fit together, different strengths, different vulnerabilities, but they fit together like puzzle pieces. I also appreciated how Bram was determined to not in any way pressure Gael into a sexual side to their relationship. By the time they finally fell into each other I was convinced that it was the exact right time for it to happen. There are some complications… a stowaway that pops up at the beginning, Gael’s past, Bram’s reservations, and the unforgiving harsh environment. But these two really want that chance at a new life together.
The science fiction aspects were done very well, and it was very easy to follow along and understand the world building. The stark, desolate surroundings leant a certain tension to the storyline, even as Bram and Gael’s relationship built slowly, but steadily. Very nicely done and I would definitely recommend.
Final Grade- B
Rick faced her. “How often do prisons allow conjugal visits?”
“Not often enough for you. I can pretty much guarantee that.”
He stuck a finger into the belt of her jeans and tugged her close. “Then let’s avoid that, shall we?”
Last time readers spent time with Sam and Rick was way, way, way back in 2007 with the release of A Touch of Minx, which was book 5 in the Samantha Jellicoe series. If you aren’t familiar with this awesome contemporary, romantic suspense series Samantha is a former thief/cat burglar/current security specialist who fell in love with billionaire Englishman Rick Addison after being hired to rob him. That was five books ago. These days Sam and Rick are getting used to settling down and living a less adventurous life on the right side of the law.
After talking down Sam from climbing the walls of his estate (trying to escape the paparazzi) Rick decides they need some time away from everyone. This might be a good time to introduce her to his family. So he whisks them away to his eight hundred year old castle in the wilds of Scotland. The estate is crumbling down and definitely needs a lot of updating, and Rick’s family is … kind of difficult, but Rick is certain Sam will enjoy herself. Maybe. Hopefully.
I kind of wondered how easy it would be to jump right back into this world after being away from it for so long, but I shouldn’t have. Right from page one I kind of fell back in love with Rick and Sam and their back and forth banter. This story was so easy to read. There’s a mystery for Sam to dive into, lots of time spent with Rick’s family, plenty of Rick and Sam navigating the ins and outs of their relationship and some damn fine sexy times. All in all, a lovely reunion with one of my favorite couples.
If you feel like diving into a great romantic suspense series, this one is so much fun.
What I read in KU:
Trigger warning for violence and rape.
I’ve read and enjoyed all the previous books in this series. These books are set on a prison planet so you absolutely know that this is not a sweet, sunny romance going in, but for some reason I found this book to be a little rougher than the rest. The heroine has a had a very, very traumatic life. Past and present. The hero is stuck on the planet because he killed a bunch of people after witnessing his wife assaulted and killed. Mallory is used to bargaining with her body for protection and offers herself to Barrett if he will let her stay by his side for safety. Barrett has suffered a traumatic brain injury and can’t speak, but he manages to let Mallory understand through grunts and hand gestures that he will never take her body as some sort of payment, and there is nothing owed between them. He will never take her without her consent.
This book is not an easy read, but once I got into it and the relationship between the hero and heroine started to develop I couldn’t stop reading. I also loved seeing familiar faces and getting to see how their sanctuary is coming along.
I think this is supposed to be the last book in this series. There is a sneak peek into the author’s next release and it looks to be a spin-off. This makes me happy.
My TBR this week:
Darkest Heart by Juliette Cross– first book in a new PNR series by a new to me author. Excited!
When a Duke Loves a Woman by Lorraine Heath– I adore this author.
Black-Hearted Devil by Sierra Dean– The third book in the Genie McQueen series
Whiskey Chaser by Lucy Score and Claire Kingsley– I think Mandi recommended this to me some time ago. I’m reading this in KU and I read the first two chapters the other day. So far I like it.
Stand & Deliver by Rhenna Morgan– This was on my list last week and I started it. Hoping to finish this weekend.