August Reading Recommendations

Hi Everyone!

Wow, this month has been all over the place for me. I’m still in COVID lockdown, so I’ve been stuck at home mostly, trying my best to maintain my sanity as I try to keep safe from the virus.

But in happier news, my new book Following His Bliss was released earlier this month. It’s currently in wide distribution, but will shortly be going over to Kindle Unlimited. Stay tuned to my social media for more updates.

And of course, I’ve been busy reading. I’ve found myself re-reading some old comfort reads while also dipping into some new entries from some of my favourite authors. Here are just a few books I’ve read recently that you might like to check out for yourself…

“Heavy Lifting” (Jocks and Nerds Book 1) by Andrew Grey

From The Blurb:

Would-be journalist Reg Applewhite is a slight, geeky guy who knows from high school experience that he’s the perfect size to be shoved into a locker. He writes for his sister’s fashion and gossip blogs and is very understandably reluctant when assigned to cover a local bodybuilding competition for material.

Jack Ponte is a physical god, with a perfect body, poise, and intense eyes. But it’s his grace that captures Reg’s attention, and when Reg asks for an interview, Jack agrees. After all, he’s looking for a life after bodybuilding, and Reg’s blogs offer a chance at something less fleeting.

During the interview, they discover mutual interests in fashion and video games that lead to friendship and deeper feelings neither expects. Reg finds it hard to believe that a god-man like Jack would see anything in him, and Jack is just as shocked when Reg seems to see beyond his looks to the person inside. But there is a price to pay for everything, and Jack draws the kind of unwanted attention that could threaten to pull them apart… or worse. Together they need to figure out a way to lift each other up and push through the challenges.

My Thoughts:

Andrew Grey returns with the first book in a new series, and with it his exceptional ability to create genuine, complex characters that the reader will quickly begin to care about. Heavy Lifting takes the usual jock/nerd instalove trope and makes it a lot more realistic. Giving each character emotional depth and showing their personal flaws allows for a more interesting story. Add in a minor stalker subplot to add an element of danger, and you have a fun weekend read.

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.

“Dom of Ages” (Collars and Cuffs Book 7) by K.C. Wells and Parker Williams

From The Blurb:

Eli may only be thirty, but he has had enough of pretend submissives. When he spies Jarod in a BDSM club, everything about the man screams submission. So what if Jarod is probably twenty years older than Eli. What does age matter, anyway? All he can see is what he’s always wanted—a sub who wants to serve.

Jarod spent twenty-four years with his Master before Fate took him. Four years on, Jarod is still lost, so when a young Dom takes charge, Jarod rolls with it and finds himself serving again. But he keeps waiting for the other shoe to drop. Because there’s going to come a point when Eli realizes he’s a laughingstock in the club. Who would want to be seen with a fifty-year-old sub?

After several missteps, Eli realizes that in order to find happiness, they will need friends who will understand. At a friend’s insistence, he visits Collars & Cuffs, where they are met with open arms. As they settle in to their new life, Eli begins to see things differently and he dares to think he can have it all. Until a phone call threatens to take it all away….

My Thoughts:

While this is Book 7 in the Collars and Cuffs series, these books can be read as standalones (although reading them in order does add a lot) but I wanted to share this one because it’s my favourite from the series.

Wells and Williams have crafted a wonderful and intricate world around the BDSM community in Manchester, UK, and in Dom of Ages, everything just shines despite a slightly dark storyline. Tackling some serious topics including grief, self harm and bullying, the book handles them all with sensitivity and care.

The characters are well constructed. Eli is the inexperienced Dom who doesn’t realise he’s making mistakes until his friends point it out. Jarod is the experienced sub who is lost after the tragic death of his Master. Their relationship has the potential to be explosive – but is that a good thing? And Jarod’s mother is one of the best side characters in any book EVER! Seriously, you will LOVE her!

All in all, Dom of Ages hits every target it sets for itself and delivers a compelling page turner that you will want to revisit again and again. Highly recommended.

My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars.

“Steamroller” by Mary Calmes

From The Blurb:

About the last thing Vincent Wade expected was for Carson Cress to ask him out. Vince is a dedicated student and a bit of a loner. Superstar quarterback Carson is larger than life, and he lives under a public microscope. There’s no way they should work.

But Vince is learning that sometimes people come steamrolling into your life and all you can do is hang on for the ride or lose your heart in the process. If their relationship can survive the fallout when an injury derails Carson’s future plans, maybe Vince can finally find something to believe in.

My Thoughts:

Another old favourite, Steamroller was recently re-released with new cover art and this novella is now enjoying a sort of renaissance amongst a new generation of readers.

There’s just something so charming and heartwarming about this book. Snarky, sarcastic shop assistant Vince, who revels in being a loner finds himself relentlessly pursued by the hot college football superstar, Carson.

The jock has gotten used to getting his own way in life, so when Vince takes him down a few pegs and puts him in his place, he finds himself experiencing a sexual awakening, having never been attracted to a man before – let alone one who so blatantly refused to stroke his bloated ego.

The stage is set for a charming opposites attract story that is super fun to read. The snarky banter is brilliant, the sex is hot and the romance (although virtually instantaneous) is easy to get wrapped up in. An enjoyable comfort read and one you’ll love to re-read in the future.

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.

Employee of the Month

Nemesis – for her excellent impersonation of a croissant!

Well, that’s me done for another month. Don’t forget to grab yourself a copy of my new book Following His Bliss NOW if you want it on Apple Bookstore, Kobo, Nook or on eBook platforms other than Amazon, as this title will be entering Kindle Unlimited next weekend.

In the meantime, take care, stay safe and happy reading. See you all next month!

Lots of Love

Alex Leslie

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