Thursday, August 18, 2016

Conversations with God Book One by Neale Donald Walsch: New Age irritation

This has some interesting gems of wisdom, but on the whole it's New Age-type vagueness writ large. Sometimes it strays into dullness, and it needed a lot of editing to make it have any kind of impact for me.

Still, I'm glad the writing of it helped the author through a difficult time, but it's curiously irritating. I won't be rushing out for the sequel!

Anne Brooke Books

Friday, August 12, 2016

Gay romance Where You Hurt The Most

Gay romance Where You Hurt The Most is now available at Amazon for only 99p!

Adrian is more than happy as high-class escort for a number of regular clients. When his boss and dear friend asks him to entertain his nephew, Adrian readily agrees, but meeting Dan challenges him in ways he'd never imagined. Dan is scarred inside and out from an accident that destroyed a promising future. Despite Adrian's loveless lifestyle and Dan's withdrawal and anger, the two men forge a deep - if unnerving - connection. Soon they find themselves questioning the choices they've made and the futures they've mapped out for themselves. 

Yet even bright young men like Adrian and Dan fear the unknown and take comfort in the familiar. Neither may be strong enough to step away from the life they know and toward the one they dare not hope for. But while it's true that love can't heal all wounds, it is the surest balm for where you hurt the most. 

Reviews

"A story of seeing and sensing the pain and the promise that lies beneath the surface of the fragile and imperfect skin, of going beyond the physical and delving into places where the strength of the man, the truth of him, resides, until, finally, he is changed for the better. This is a short but truly gorgeous story, rich with the hope found in something new." [From a 5-star review at The Novel Approach] 

"Where You Hurt The Most demonstrates perfectly the harmony that emotional impact and intimate detail can have in well-done erotica … This is the type of writing I love, simple and sparse yet used to tenderly convey a connection of spirit that defies logic or explanation." [From a 5-cup review at A Book and a Short Latte Reviews] 

"Where You Hurt The Most is a beautifully written novelette from the first-person viewpoint of a British man who is an exclusive and highly paid escort … I am always glad to snap up the latest fiction from Anne Brooke because the writing is flawless - clean, crisp, minimalist, and elegant - and her insight into the interactions between people is profound. This story fulfills both expectations." [From a review at ARe Cafe Reviews]

I hope you enjoy the read!

Anne Brooke Books
Gay Reads UK


Wednesday, August 10, 2016

The Quality of Silence by Rosamund Lupton: a wasted opportunity

The story is rather too full of cliche for me - 'woman in jeopardy', and partial 'environmental thriller' were both just a little dull here. The journey across the snow was also far too long and uninteresting and I did a lot of skipping. That said, Ruby (the daughter) has a very strong voice and is by far the most interesting character in the book. I particularly liked how Ruby describes words by taste and smell. The sign language is also well used as a key part of the plot.

I also enjoyed the mother/daughter relationship and tensions, but Matt (the father) was just far too flat and really very annoying. He appears directly in the book at far too late a stage, and then launches into a huge section of 'info dumping' concerning what exactly has gone on, which is very amateur. It would have been better if Matt could have had sections earlier so we discover things in the same timeframe as he does - this would have been far more exciting.

In general, this book could easily have been cut by a third, and I suspect the film will be far better than the novel. That said, the final scenes of drama are fun (though anything would be good after that dull trawl through the snow!), and the ending surprisingly delicate.

Anne Brooke Books

Sunday, August 07, 2016

Sweet Caress by William Boyd: an interesting failure

Key issues about this book:

1. The fiction in an autobiographical style was interesting, but not particularly attention-grabbing
2. No character grabbed me (apart from Amory's brother and sister, from whom I would have liked to have heard a lot more as they have more interesting lives) and they all seem distant. Amory was written in a very 'thin' manner, with no substance to her, which was disappointing.
3. Amory is defined by the men in her life and makes lots of really important decisions on a whim and for selfish reasons
4. The photographs in the novel are excruciatingly amateur and a waste of time
5. The story is packed with cliches - e.g. the lover's wife being in a wheelchair, the blackshirt riots, the war pieces, the hippy community crisis and the undeveloped incident with Marlene Dietrich
6. Boyd writes Amory's sex scenes as if she were a man, sigh ...

Not one I'd recommend.

5 out of 10 stars

Anne Brooke Books

Saturday, August 06, 2016

Gay romance A Seasonal Reunion

Gay romance A Seasonal Reunion is now available at Amazon for only 99p!

Danny Brigson makes a serious mistake when he sleeps with Marty, an old boyfriend at an ill-advised reunion. He tries to cover it up, but Marty tells all, and the love of Danny's life, Jake, throws him out. 

Over the next year, Danny tries to sort his life out, determined to stop relying on drugs and drink to get him through. Can he even dare to hope that one day Jake might give him the chance to put things right? 

Reviews

"If you have the ability to enjoy a story where one person has done the wrong thing but sets about bettering themselves. And if you can understand why someone might just love a person enough to give them a second chance, then this is a nice Christmas short about the power of love and forgiveness." (From a review at On Top Down Under Reviews) 

"If you're looking for a quickie to tide you over during your afternoon cuppa, then you don't need to look further. As the blurb states, there is cheating involved and Danny is a bit of an ass. He makes good though and over the course of a year gets his act together. He wants his man back. That's something I can get behind." [From a 4-star review at Because Two Men Are Better Than One Reviews] 

"What can happen when one is unfaithful is succinctly explored in A Seasonal Reunion. I was along for the journey from beginning to the particularly suitable end. Put this one on your to read list soon." [From a review at The Romance Studio Reviews]

I hope you enjoy the read!

Anne Brooke Books
Gay Reads UK

Saturday, July 30, 2016

The Beginning of Knowledge: gay BDSM romance

Gay BDSM romance The Beginning of Knowledge is now available at Amazon for only 99p!

When University administrator Alan Castleton meets temporary worker and talented pianist Luke Milton, he doesn't expect to become obsessed with the handsome young blond. But soon he is heavily involved in a passionate and angry affair, and exploring the dark shadows of his own personality in a way he's never encountered before. 

The more Alan tries to break free from his obsession, the deeper it entangles him. The dangerous split between his reason and his sexual desires threatens his peace of mind and, when the crisis point comes, he must decide once and for all the kind of life he should lead. 

Reviews

"I want more. The characterisations were terrific, the chemistry, for what it was, perfect, the sex was dark, nasty, erotic as sin … and I LOVED it. This is one of my favourite Anne Brooke reads. I loved the dark eroticism and the excellent development of the characters. In such a short word count I felt like I knew both men well." (From a 5 star review at On Top Down Under Reviews) 

"The writing here is superb. I felt as if I knew Alan intimately only a few pages into his first person narrative because for all that he's blind to what is going on he's starkly transparent. So I commend Anne for writing a story that is indeed knowledgeable, that is informative but at the same time seductively sexy. I think you should read this one just to see what you take from it." (From a 4 star review at The Armchair Reader) 

"A dark erotic short that isn't my usual type of read … So I started reading this with trepidation and, much to my surprise, I loved it … This is a really well written story about discovery of oneself written in a very sexy way." (From a 4 star review at World of Diversity Reviews)

I hope you enjoy the read.

Anne Brooke Books
Gay Reads UK

Friday, July 22, 2016

Gay Fantasy Romance: Tuluscan Six and the Time Circle

Gay fantasy romance Tuluscan Six and the Time Circle is now available at Amazon for only 99p!

Whilst finishing up a good day’s work in the Earth Interplanetary Administration Office, Karlan Staithley is disturbed by the appearance of a strange alien called Tuluscan Six. Tuluscan tells him that in one year’s time, Earth will make contact with his people, the Lamarians, and unwittingly destroy them due to an anomaly in the planetary time lines. 

He himself has come back to warn Karlan, partly to save his people and partly as in the real time line Karlan and Tuluscan will become lovers. The two men join forces to try to save their futures, but can they in fact change time? And, if they do, how can their mutual passion ever survive? 

Reviews

"Tuluscan Six and the Time Circle by Anne Brooke is a short story with a light comic touch that may appeal to many readers, even those who tend to avoid science-fiction. The fast pace, comical details, and the single viewpoint from an appealing hero make for an immediately engaging reading experience." [From a review at ARe Cafe Reviews] 

“This short story is equal parts romantic comedy, with its snappy dialog, and space opera ... The fast pace, clear vivid writing, and light comic touch keep the reader engaged.” [From a 4.5 star review at Jessewave Reviews]

I hope you enjoy the read!

Anne Brooke Books
Gay Reads UK