The Rad Babes Celebrate Pride Month! Charli’s Favorite Diverse Reads!

So before I get to the good stuff I am going to give a little bit of my background. I grew up in a Christian home (I am still a very strong Christian), but hard topics like LGBTO+ was not something that we discussed. Naturally, I was not exposed to anyone who identified as LGBTQ+ or read anything in the genre. A couple of years ago I was exposed to the LGBTQ+ genre…mainly in the form of M/M or menagerie romance. This really opened my eyes to what these characters went through in life and the strength it took to endure a cruel world who is constantly looking down on them and telling them who they can and can’t love. I found characteristics in LGBTQ+ romance that I really and truly loved because they knew who they were and were not afraid to take on the world to achieve happiness. I was amazed by the stories that I read because they made me think about things differently and challenge what I think I know, which is an amazing characteristic to have in any book that I read in life. I am so appreciative and thankful for being introduced to this particular genre for making me think about things in a whole new way.

Now on to my favorite selections! I am going to post my original review for #Junkie because reading through them again just made me want to reread them again! The others I never wrote a formal review for so I am going to give my brief thoughts on why you should read them!

#Junkie/#Rev

By: Cambria Hebert

CF0B0ABE-9194-45EB-B3F4-BC26BF9CD2C6.JPGDrew Forrester is a total adrenaline junkie.

His high of choice?

Cars.

The faster, the better.

He’s been making waves in Maryland’s underground racing circuit since he crossed the state line, and after speaking with him, we know he’s not hitting the brakes anytime soon.

So what exactly does it take to burn rubber and make a name for yourself in a world where the only rule is there are no rules?

You gotta be hungry…

You gotta have balls…

And you can never back down.

What’ve we learned here at GearShark?

Drew is all of the above.

We also know he’s got some secrets buried under his hood.

Secrets we think are loaded with octane and just might set the world of cars on fire.

My Thoughts:

I received this book in one of my Romance Reveal Book Boxes a few months ago so I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I first got this book. This was the first time for me to venture into the M/M contemporary romance department and I was a little wary about how much I would like it. By the time I was done reading the prologue, all of my reservations vanished because I knew I was going to fall head over heels in love with not just one man but TWO!

The story. I thought the story was well written and very well paced. I was so invested in the characters that I literally could not put the book down. This story is mainly about two men struggling with an unexpected attraction that eventually can’t be ignored. The angst and torment that these two went through was deliciously perfect. The side characters are two sets of couples who make up their family by choice. I didn’t know that Hebert had written each couple’s story before writing this one so I will definitely be checking them out because I really enjoyed the side characters.

Trent. Trent makes up one half of the M/M relationship, and he was definitely my favorite. I identified with Trent a lot in this book because he is the strong and silent type who doesn’t really express his feelings all that much. He is the best friend everyone likes but who no one really knows. Trent is very alpha in that he is super protective of Drew and is willing to put aside his own feelings in order to protect Drew, whether it is mentally or physically. I fell in love with the way that Trent loves Drew and the way he understands him like no one else does. I was so furious and upset when the ugly side of humanity revealed itself to Drew in a devastating way. I could honestly gush about Trent all day with how much I love him!

Drew. Drew makes up the other half of this passionate, amazing M/M relationship. I loved Drew in a different way. Drew is a risk taker who doesn’t give a flying fuck if someone has a problem with him. He doesn’t apologize for who he is and refuses to conform to the rules. He is possessive and quick to act when someone he knows and loves is being threatened. Drew is passion and fire and willing to let go of a stable life to pursue something that might never pay the bills for him.

Together, Drew and Trent, make up one hell of a couple. They perfectly balance each other out like two sides of a coin. One of my absolute favorite tropes is best friends to lovers and that is how Drew and Trent come together. The banter and content way they were around each other made me so happy as a reader. They knew each others quirks and routines, which made their budding relationship all the more beautiful to read about. I was heartbroken over how they felt they needed to hide their attraction from the world. I read how they each struggled and how in the end it is threatening to tear them apart.

I need the next book in my hands asap. I will definitely be buying the next book #Rev today so that I can get some closure on Drew and Trent. I am no longer wary of reading M/M romance because I have decided I am in LOVE with them!

Overall Rating: ★★★★★/★★★★★

Him/Us

By: Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy

38898F4B-2180-4A93-BD6D-ECBC41E175E8.JPGThey don’t play for the same team. Or do they?

Jamie Canning has never been able to figure out how he lost his closest friend. Four years ago, his tattooed, wise-cracking, rule-breaking roommate cut him off without an explanation. So what if things got a little weird on the last night of hockey camp the summer they were eighteen? It was just a little drunken foolishness. Nobody died.

Ryan Wesley’s biggest regret is coaxing his very straight friend into a bet that pushed the boundaries of their relationship. Now, with their college teams set to face off at the national championship, he’ll finally get a chance to apologize. But all it takes is one look at his longtime crush, and the ache is stronger than ever.

Jamie has waited a long time for answers, but walks away with only more questions—can one night of sex ruin a friendship? If not, how about six more weeks of it? When Wesley turns up to coach alongside Jamie for one more hot summer at camp, Jamie has a few things to discover about his old friend… and a big one to learn about himself.

My Thoughts:

If you’re a sports romance fan, especially hockey, then this is the duet for you! Jamie and Ryan’s journey was one of my favorites from beginning to end and all the deliciousness in between. These two were always best friends at hockey camp until Ryan realized he had desires for his straight friend, Jamie, and got spooked. Years later and it is still a huge regret of Ryan’s because he up and stopped communicating with Jamie, which left Jamie feeling confused and abandoned. They finally get the chance to make it right, but was once supposed to be a summer of discovery became a more permanent thing. Jamie and Ryan are beautifully perfect together. They grow to know each other so well that they know exactly what the other needs. Unfortunately, the world may not be as accepting of them. With Ryan and Jamie’s hockey careers on the line they not only have to navigate their budding relationship, but their public images.

Rule of Three Series

By: Kelly Jamieson

13445017.jpgIf you follow the rules, you miss all the fun…

Kassidy is a good girl who wants to be bad. Dag is a bad boy who is very, very good. And Chris? He likes to watch…

When wicked-sexy Dag returns to Chicago to catch up with his old college buddy Chris and meet The Girlfriend, none of them are anticipating the unexpected turn of events that switches a loving twosome into a scorching hot threesome. As old feelings resurface, and new attractions are explored, a storm of sexual sparks is unleashed that leads them into forbidden areas.

Always the good girl, Kassidy blossoms under the attentions of two loving men, but neither she nor Chris are expecting the ménage to take a quarter turn toward Dag…and his feelings for Chris. When it’s revealed that Dag’s attraction to Chris is one big reason he left town, a tangled mess of old hurts and new feelings might destroy friendship. Love. Might destroy everything.

My Thoughts:

This was my first venture into the ménage world and I absolutely loved it because it was a trilogy, which allowed me to get a full feel for the characters and their relationship. Kassidy and Chris were already a solid relationship before Dag showed up and made them all realize what they were missing. The intricacies of a triad and how careful each member had to be in order to build a successful foundation for their relationship was amazing to read about. It’s also a MMF relationship, which I enjoy more because they all hold the same passionate, romantic love for every person in the relationship. It’s so fascinating to me to see the three different relationships start and build and become what they do in parts and as a whole. I definitely recommend this trilogy to those looking to dip their toes into this sub genre for the first time.

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