December 31, 2017 by Valerie Ullmer
Favorite Reads – December 31st, 2017
Another year has gone and while there have been many ups and some downs, I want to take this time to wish everyone a wonderful, prosperous, and a very Happy New Year!
Here are a couple of my favorite reads for the latter part of 2017.
Few people achieve both fame and love… even fewer can handle it…
Brian Hurst has taken care of his troubled sister for the past four years after their parent’s death. Now that she is starting college, he is ready to concentrate on his own life…a calmer life. That is until his Aunt Peggy persuades him to interview as a personal assistant for her newest client, Nash Jameson – a bad boy pop star, currently topping the billboard charts. Brian is reluctant to take a job working with the difficult singer, but the pay and the fact that Nash is absolutely gorgeous is too enticing. But Brian isn’t prepared for the flirtations, enormous ego, and underlying issues that come with Nash Jameson and his celebrity life. Trying to remain professional may prove to be too much.
Talent and good looks have brought Nash Jameson everything he thought he wanted – Fame. And that fame has come with an entitlement that Nash enjoys to the fullest, including both women and men. But when he lays eyes on Brian, all that changes. Brian is the only one Nash wants in his bed. But Nash also needs an assistant to help run his life that almost seems to be breaking apart at times. And Brian is the only glue holding it together.
When I read Marissa Holt’s Book, In Southern Deep, I thought that her characters were flawed, but they needed each other and the book worked perfectly. And the relationship between Brian and Nash was realistic and heartfelt and kept me reading through one sitting, and again, the characters were perfect. And as a sign of a truly great book, I wanted more.
Brian dropped his sister off at college, and although he loves her, she’d been a handful over the years. So, of course, his aunt thinks that he’d done such a fabulous job of that, he would want to be an assistant to a rock star who keeps getting into trouble. Brian is surprised when he gets the job and his attraction to Nash is kept under wraps, but when he and Nash start tearing down the walls they both built around themselves when they get to know each other better.
The characters are unique. Nash is a rock star and while famous, doesn’t have much of a foundation for friendship, much less romantic relationships. He’s lonely and doesn’t realize it until Brian comes into his life. Although they clash, Brian makes Nash realize that there is more to life than adoration and money.
I loved this book. It’s a heartfelt look at two men who deserve one another and all the happiness life can give them. The characters are one of a kind and I encourage all romance readers to read this book.
After living on the streets and in his car, Travis has found a home in Brighton, Texas. His job as a cook at the local diner pays enough for him to afford a small apartment, and, for the first time in years, he’s able to feed his passion, buying a few art supplies so he can sketch. He’s safe, and, oddly enough, feels accepted in this small town. And, for reasons he cannot fathom, Bo Mason, a gorgeous cop, seems interested. While flattered, Travis knows if his secrets are revealed, Bo won’t want to have a damn thing to do with the likes of Travis Boone.
IS MORE THAN SKIN DEEP
From the moment he saw the new blue-eyed cook at Brighton’s diner, Bo Mason fell. Hard. And while getting close to Travis Boone has been like gentling a terrified animal, Bo knows there’s a special person hiding behind those small smiles and closely guarded secrets. Slowly, Bo starts to peel back the layers cocooning Travis and learns the heart of an angel beats inside the most beautiful man Bo has ever known.
This is an amazing book that drew me in from the beginning. It’s a story about healing, but more than that, about two men, Bo and Travis who compliment each other as much as they need each other.
Travis had gone through a tragedy in his past, losing his dad and being hurt by the event. When he moves to Brighton and finds a home and a job, his life is better, but he’s haunted by nightmares. Bo, who has liked Travis and became a friend after an accident put Travis in the hospital, cares for Travis and wants to have a relationship with him, in any way he could get. As they get to know one another, the respect and dedication becomes evident from Bo and Travis relaxes around him more and more, until their relationship develops into more.
The connection between the two men is intense. I loved how caring and loving Bo was to Travis, and although he couldn’t show his feelings at first, Travis found ways to care for Bo. In the end, you root for the two and their HEA! This was a wonderful book that I couldn’t put down. I’m going to have to read the author’s other books because this one was perfect!
Phoenix Wrenn has everything he needs – his dog, his art, and the privacy of his studio. He’s even made a name for himself as a charcoal artist. He certainly doesn’t need his high school crush stumbling back into his life. Phoenix thrives on routine, but Ace is anything but predictable.
The last place Ace Sherridan should be is back in his small town home. He left Wilmingson ten years ago to pursue journalism and coming back feels a lot like failure. He’s determined to make the most of it, though, and lands a temporary job to pay the bills. His first assignment: interview reclusive artist, Phoenix Wrenn.
Phoenix didn’t expect to let Ace into his studio, let alone his heart, and he’s certain he’s headed for heartbreak. Ace has made it clear he’s not sticking around. But as Ace’s interview project draws them deeper into each others worlds, it’ll only get harder to say goodbye.
I loved every moment of this book. It is a beautifully written story with such great characters that you love them from page one.
Ace has come home after being laid off from his job at a Boston paper, getting a part-time job with a local magazine. He is assigned to interview Phoenix, a local charcoal artist, that he remembers from high school.
Phoenix is uncomfortable with most people, noises, uncontrolled situations in general, but when he allows his high school crush to watch him work and Ace understands him the way everyone, including his parents, don’t.
Phoenix is such an original character that I loved him from the start and for the first time in a book, I wanted to protect a character. I also rooted for he and Ace to work. Ace almost broke my heart at the end (you have to read the book to understand), but in the end there could be no one better for Ace than Phoenix and Phoenix for Ace.
This is a must-read!!!