Daily Archives: June 13, 2013

Make A Play 2013 Daily Dose (Part 2)

Make a PlayTitle:  Make A Play 2013 Daily Dose (Part 2)

Publisher:  Dreamspinner Press June 2013

The Plan:  We have the challenge and joy to review the Daily Dose 2013 Anthology. Due to the size we will be reviewing a group at a time over the next few weeks. Also for added fun, we will be doing joint reviews for each novella. We hope you enjoy, and have as much fun reading them as we did writing them!

Note:  Most of these titles share the same cover so we placed that one at the top. For those books that have a different cover we include it with the review.

Title:  Protection

Author:  John Amory

Length:  25 pages

Rating:  B+  Cher

Blurb:  Jamie is an anomaly in the shooting world: a relative newcomer who became a leading contender overnight. He’s representing the United States at the 2012 Olympics, and people are drawn to him both for his marksmenship and the past he refuses to divulge. During his downtime in London, Jamie visits a gay bar and meets a chipper young man named Ben. Despite Ben’s heartfelt offer of succor, Jamie’s mounting nerves over the Games and his scars from the past threaten the new relationship before the night even begins.


Beans:  This was an intriguing read. It was a small novella, but full of story and people and past and the potential of a future. I really liked the backstory into why Jamie started shooting. I liked Ben being not-his-type, but honest and real. Ben being genuine made him more attractive to Jamie and I liked the way they meshed together in time and place where a hook-up seems realistic but maybe.. just maybe there could be more.

Nina:  A brief yet powerful novella. Extremely short, with flashes back in time that weave the story behind the story of Jamie. Two men who’d ordinarily pass each other by seeing something in the other that makes them take a chance, with very satisfying results. Ben was adorable, sweet and much more than the twink he at first appears to be. Poor broken Jamie, facing his fears and putting himself back together one shard at a time. I really hope that they get more time together, they’re good for each other.


Title:  Luck of the Dice

FAuthor:  Pinkie Rae Parker

Length:  30 pages

Rating:  B List  Cher

Blurb:  Gavin Gage has never been much for sports, but he does love fantasy-based role-playing games. Though his social life is quite active, Gavin feels like he’s botched his roll in the love department. Then he receives a mysterious invitation to an exclusive gaming tournament at a comic book convention, and Gavin meets a mysterious suitor. Between one roll and the next, Gavin realizes that when it comes to love, everything is just a game of chance.

Beans:  A fun novella. I hate to admit it but I might have understood his rpg gaming love and enjoyed jumping into his gaming life. I liked the secret admirer aspect and enjoyed the quirky characters we were given a look at.
Nina:  I really enjoyed this novella full of cute, sweet and fun dork love. Gavin is such a sweetheart and his sincere love for his friends and the the games they play together is endearing. I loved that this story is full of dorks, nerds and geeks in their element finding love without the need to pull in a jock or two for anyone to pine uselessly over. I loved that the author made them happy being who they are.


RidingtheBoardTitle:  Riding the Board

Author:  Cate Ashwood

Length:  46 pages

Rating:  B List  Cher

Blurb:  Blake Emmerich arrives at practice, already apprehensive, to meet his new synchronized diving partner. When he sees Nick Freeman, Blake doesn’t feel confident about their chances. The day begins with Nick pushing Blake off the ten meter and ends with their coach cuffing them together to force them to deal with each other like the adults they’re supposed to be. Synchronized diving is about trust—how can you trust someone you can’t stand, no matter how hot you think they are?

Beans:  The concept of being bound to another person for a week to get to know each other is fun. The diving aspect was also fun. As long as you can turn off the reality button of what it really would be like cuffed along side an enemy then this novella is super cute. I had a hard time. And I wanted to know more about the incident that lead to Blake needing a new partner. It was good backstory and felt intriguing. Overall an adorable story full of potential.

Nina:  I really liked this story. Divers are so sexy. I felt for Blake and the struggle he was going through to continue after losing his long-time diving partner and friend to a forced retirement. Then to find out his new diving partner was a guy he’d heard bad stuff about, who acted like a jerk, well I could see why his coach would force the situation. It is a stroke of genius, making them have to learn how to work in sync, and not allowing either dramatic man to walk away in a huff. When they finally see past the misunderstandings and judgements they’d first made and become a team, they are insanely, deliciously hot.


Title:  Contact Sport

Author:  Anna Butler

Length:  30 pages

Rating:  B List  Cher

Blurb:  Jamie Connor is a charming and sexy star college hockey player. He’s not the sort of man to be dazzled by someone who speaks in long mathematical formulas and worries about strategic thinking. At least, he wasn’t that sort of man until the college dean agrees to a scrimmage match with the nerds of the Blaine Strategic Institute, and Matt Blaine, son of the founder, captains the other side. In a sport where full body checks are a legitimate play, Jamie’s taken by surprise at just how much the King of Cool wants the King of Geeks.


Beans:  For such a short story, this one made me laugh several times. I wanted to be annoyed at Jamie for his ego but he was hilarious. The game was fun with the distractions and pet names and then the ending “five minutes” was a hot little interlude. Fun!

Nina:  I enjoyed this novella. Very fast and very fun. Jamie is amazing, in a funny and terrifyingly narcissistic way. He’s a contradiction and quite entertaining. Ned is great, he has the patience of a saint and is the perfect foil for Jamie’s drama. When Jamie finally meets his match in the King of the Geeks things get interesting and super sexy. I’d love to spend more time with these boys.


Title:  Press Start to Play

Author:  Briana Lawrence

Length:  61 pages

Rating:  C List  Liza

Blurb: Lukis Singleton’s once-popular sports column is fading fast, thanks to the terrible track record of the local football team. In an attempt to save the column, Lukis’s editor, John, decides he needs to go in a different direction. Video games are all the rage these days, so John insists that sending Lukis to a huge video-game tournament in Los Angeles will shake up his current readers and bring in new ones. Lukis isn’t thrilled about reporting on games with impossible powers or gamers who still live in Mom’s basement, but then he meets a tempting flaw in the gaming stereotypes of unwashed man-children. Aaron Sanders is a gorgeous breath of fresh air at the tournament who takes Lukis’s less-than-stellar view of gamers and turns it on its head, leaving Lukis to wonder if it might be worth being Aaron’s player two.


Beans:  This story had a slow start to it. Lukis’s attitude had me putting down this novella several times and I struggled to finish it. But I liked Aaron from the very beginning and by the end I did enjoy the two men together. It was a good thing Lukis is a horn dog and will try and do anything to get into Aaron’s pants.

Nina:  This was a mixed bag for me. I really liked Aaron, he was smart, charming, sexy, confident, funny, and didn’t let Lukis make him feel bad. I liked how he stood up for himself and gaming and instead of storming off he tried to help Lukis see the other side of things. Lukis is a man set in his ways, who always has to be right, even when it means he is missing out. Lukis needed the revitalization that Aaron brings into his life. Lukis came dangerously close to ruining everything. Thankfully he really wanted to get into Aaron’s pants. When Lukis finally starts to let go and just enjoy, these guys are so hot together. I think that these guys are going to be very good for each other.


Title:  Matching Vectors

Author:  Lee Comyn

Length:  52 pages

Rating:  B List  Cher

Blurb:  Fin and his racing team came to the asteroid belt to maintain their reputation as the best of the best. Fin’s race starts out easy: his biggest rival is flying like an idiot, and Fin is confidently moving toward the win. The only interesting bit is a newbie named Sean who plays with his life by cutting too close to every asteroid—and against all logic, he’s pulling it off. Then Fin takes a chance, making a decision that will change his racing and flirting forever. Can Fin come to terms with his choice and match his vector to Sean’s, or will pride rule out racing toward a future together?


Beans:  This was a fantastic read. I was sucked into the world of space racing and Fin’s team immediately. It felt familiar and exciting. During Fin’s race you sat in the pod with him during every turn and near miss. Add to that the sexy times and attraction that burned my e-reader’s screen. This was one of those books that made me scribble the authors name down because now I’m going to hunt down their back list. Great job.

Nina:  A whole world and way of life were created in this short story. A rag tag group of family and life-long friends, who are all about racing. These guys are extremely hot together, I liked that they saw each other as equals. Fin needed a shakeup in his life of routine and Sean does nothing but from the moment they meet. A fun, exciting, sexy ride of a novella.


BullyForYouTitle:  Bully For You

Author:  Catt Ford

Length:  92 pages

Rating:  B+  Cher

Blurb:  What could be hunkier than a cowboy? Not much, according to Martin Du Bois. He convinces two friends that a visit to the rodeo is every gay man’s wet dream, and so the three of them gaily (and I do mean gaily) set off to watch cowboy asses in action.
A visit to a bar after the event gets Martin closer to the action than he ever thought possible, and he meets Jesse Cumberland, the man who caught his eye in the ring and made his rhinestones sparkle. Instant attraction leads to a one-night stand that gets under Martin’s insouciant skin and causes him to rethink his determination not to get involved emotionally. When Jesse invites Martin to his ranch, the visit is almost derailed by Martin’s realization that they lead very different lives. As a flaming city queer, he sees no way to fit with the solid, athletic Jesse. It’s up to Jesse to see if he can change Martin’s mind.


Beans:  I love books that break the stereotypes. Or take them and show that love is more than that. This started funny. Men in rhinestone studded shirts all bedazzled out ready to get the crap beat out of them at the rodeo. And then a cowboy, more than one really, that saw past the fringe and to the man. They took a chance on loving someone different. Someone from outside their circle. I loved that neither one was convinced it was going to work but I loved that they tried.

Nina:  I had so much fun reading this! How can you not fall in love with Marti and Jesse? Marti was absolutely adorable. From his beautiful eyes, smart mouth, loyalty, and moxie to his sweet and brave heart. I loved that he had a big brain to go with his flamboyant silliness. Jesse was a bull rider who actually owns a ranch, come on, does it get any sexier than that? He was also sweet, charming, smart, kind, and a white knight. I loved that they wanted each other from the very start, no judgements, no desire to change the other. I loved that they both thought the other was the sexiest thing ever. I loved that they were both brave.
I loved Curt and Dale, long live the the three Cockateers! When do we get their stories? Pretty please.


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