5 stars, fanfiction, Featured Posts, m/m book reviews

Review: The Light in the Woods

The Light in the Woods
The Light in the Woods by DiscontentedWinter

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oh, this fantasy AU is so good!

Fantasy novels often need chapter after chapter to build a new world that is both believable (in a fantasy kind of way) and interesting. DiscontentedWinter has managed (yet again) to create a fantasy world I find fascinating and she did it with only a little over 12,000 words.

In a nutshell: 5 Stars

I got out of bed long enough to sneak downstairs, brew a cup of coffee, dump it in a travel mug, and head back to hide in my bed where I proceeded to read this, UNINTERRUPTED by little people (the first day of summer vacation always sucks…my reading time is sadly reduced).

And she posted it all at once! Completed! None of that stupid delayed gratification! No waiting for an excruciating 24 whole
for updates!

It’s like Thanksgiving and Christmas and Tyler Hoechlin’s birthday all rolled into one marvelous day.

*sighs happily*

This has so many of my favorite things. Arranged marriage, magic, tragic backstories, and Peter. Yes, he’s one of my favorite things, and I’m always happy to find a not-evil Peter in my Sterek fics.

It also has a scene that had my Tolkien heart a flutter, whether by design or by accident, I don’t even care, it reminded me of the Ents and it made me smile.

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Featured, Featured Posts, Flotsam and Jetsam

I’m not just a m/m romance whore…really!

I’m not just a m/m romance whore; I’m also a pretty average mom who, without even trying, is apparently a favorite with all my 16 year-old daughter’s friends. They even wanted to follow me on Instagram and Twitter, which was horrifying until I realized I could make a second account that didn’t include pictures of mostly naked hot guys making out (or worse, better).  I don’t think that was the kind of support their high school’s Gay Straight Alliance was looking for.

Anyhoo, my daughter is a junior in HS and their band (and choir, but the rivalry is wicked so I probably shouldn’t even mention them) is traveling to New York City. . . by bus. . . 

I just spent two 3 days making 19 dozen apple-shaped cutout cookies for my daughter to take on her HS band’s 22 hour bus ride to New York. What started out as me being the crazy-but-cool mom making ‘Big Apple’ cookies for 120 people has ended with a midnight trip to Wal-Mart to get two MORE bottles of No-Taste Red icing color, FML!

I am in serious need of a Sterek margarita break!

5 stars, fanfiction, Featured, Featured Posts, m/m book reviews

Review: Little Wild Animal

Little Wild Animal Little Wild Animal by DiscontentedWinter
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

ETA: March 13, 2017:
Reading this, again. I think this must be my favorite comfort read; it’s almost embarrassing how many times I could add a ‘Date Read’ to this fic. My enjoyment of this fic is immense, but it’s not the gushing fangirl kind of enjoyment. It’s more subtle than my usual enthusiastic proclamation to ‘Just go read this!’ (though you really should go read this). No squeeing with this fic, just an incredible amount of emotions. Amusement at the kit’s initial interactions with people like Alex, who is certain the kit wants to murder him; with Deaton, who the kit probably does want to murder with each of the vet’s visits; and those poor chickens, who the kit torments with glee. There is amazement as ‘Stiles’ becomes less and less the little wild animal Derek found and more and more a real human being. A combination of anxiety and near-hopelessness as it becomes more and more likely Stiles will have his heart broken no matter what the outcome of their endeavors. And finally, happiness in an unexpected and clever conclusion that leaves me – every time – with the unique bone-deep feeling of satisfaction that only comes at the end of a remarkable story.

And I get all that for free, with one click on AO3, sent to my iPad. I get a story I come back to (often) when I feel the need to smile. I can click the ‘kudos’ button and leave a comment on AO3; I can leave a review on Goodreads sharing what it means to me that a stanger a world away from me chose to share something beautiful just because she wanted to.

And I guess if all that isn’t enough to show my gratitude I can suck it up and feel one more emotion regarding this fic: acute embarrassment every time I type in a current date in the ‘Date Read’ column.

Do you think Goodreads has a limit for that?

Original Review, January 20, 2016:
This was just…yeah, beautiful. Two nights ago I bawled my way through There Are No Wolves in California and tonight I am once more amazed by this writer (though, thankfully, this time around I’m not dripping snotty tears all over the place). I really should go to bed but I just know I’ll be searching for my next DW fix instead. Or maybe an LH fix, who knows, who cares, they are both amazing.

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5 stars, Featured, Featured Posts, m/m book reviews

Review: Disasterology 101

Disasterology 101 Disasterology 101 by Taylor V. Donovan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I don’t know how to write this review. What I really want to write doesn’t really make for a very helpful review. It would go something like, “Just read the damn book, already! You’ll love it, trust me.” But since that won’t help you out if you’re wondering what to read next I’ll try to be more specific.

Things I loved about Disasterology 101:
1. Cedric, quirks and all, is brave, funny, sensitive, and just like Kevin knows, Cedric is stronger than he realizes. And don’t forget hot. Yup, definitely hot.
2. Kevin. What to say about Kevin. I have to admit, there were times I had to remind myself that Kevin was thirty-six years old. His character just seemed to be so innocent at times. But even that fit within the story, since he was just then admitting his sexuality to himself and was just starting to make his way as a gay man. It was nice to see a MC who wasn’t a manwhore.
3. I loved reading about Cedric’s OCD. It was fascinating to realize that OCD was more than just a funny episode of “Monk” (God, I loved that show).
4. Ava and her adorable little lisp whenever she said, “birfday.”

What I didn’t like:
Only two things worth mentioning. One, there was a bit more inner dialogue than I usually care to read. They did a lot of thinking about their problems and it could sometimes get a bit bogged down. And two, Cedric’s problem with (view spoiler) was wrapped up a bit more neatly than I anticipated while reading the lead up. I would have liked to see a bit more of them working together about it.

But seriously, read the book, love the book.
P.S. I bet Cedric just loves his eReader since he doesn’t have to deal with all those pesky germs at the library.

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5 stars, Featured, Featured Posts, m/m book reviews

Review: Red Dirt Heart

Red Dirt Heart Red Dirt Heart by N.R. Walker
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

When I was little I was addicted to a cheesy sitcom set in an all girls’ school called The Facts of Life. One season had the girls visiting Australia. “The Facts of Life Down Under” I think they called it. Because of that show I spent years believing the myth that in the Southern Hemisphere, water in a toilet swirls in the opposite direction as water in the Northern Hemisphere (I was like, seven, so cut me some slack). But it was also the first time I decided I absolutely had to visit Australia.

Now, more years than I care to admit later, after finishing the Red Dirt Heart series, I think I need to revise my desire to add “Trip to Australia” to my bucket list, or at least a trip to that particular landscape. I don’t think The Facts of Life Down Under covered all the deadly little critters American agronomy student Travis Craig encountered in the series. I can’t even handle my native Wisconsin mosquitos, so I think a land filled with even scarier, deadlier critters just might do me in.

Of course, if I had someone like Charlie Sutton at my side like Travis did, I could maybe make an exception.

The romance was sexy and sweet and hot. But I think what impressed me the most were the details of life on the station. I know absolutely nothing about this topic, so I could be wrong, but the amount of detail was wonderful; not too much, just enough to keep my interest and with just enough technical jargon to seem realistic. Again, the writer could have been making it all up and I’d never know.

What I also liked was how Charlie came out. I get a little twitchy when I read coming out horror stories so I avoid those and tend to stick to the lower angst stories. I’m not saying there were no challenges for Charlie, because that would be completely untrue, but I loved how once Charlie started moving forward he kept going.

I highly recommend all four books in this series, Red Dirt Heart 2, Red Dirt Heart 3, and Red Dirt Heart 4. Not very original names for sequels, but the stories are so good the titles don’t matter.

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