Tuesday, February 20, 2018

I am so caught up in this story: Release Tour Fresh Catch by Kate Canterbary

His walls might be tall,
but I wasn't afraid of the climb.

Title: Fresh Catch
Author: Kate Canterbary
Release Date: February 20, 2018

Take a vacation, they said. Get away from Silicon Valley's back-stabbing and power-grabbing. Recharge the innovative batteries. Unwind, then come back stronger than ever.

Instead, I got lost at sea and fell in love with an anti-social lobsterman.

There's one small issue:

Owen Bartlett doesn't know who I am. Who I really am.


I don't like people.

I avoid small talk and socializing, and I kick my companions out of bed before the sun rises.

No strings, no promises, no problems.

Until Cole McClish's boat drifts into Talbott's Cove, and I bend all my rules for the sexy sailor.

I don't know Cole's story or what he's running from, but one thing is certain:

I'm not letting him run away from me.


We want to be loved. Whether or not we go looking for it, think we have time for it, or even deserve it, weighs in on the effort. These men have a (somewhat) comfortable existence in their lives. They know what they want and need. It the joy and heartache of a romantic relationship they feel is for other men. It's just the tide hasn't washed in the right man yet. 

Both characters are out. Not out and loud out. But out. Kate Canterbary though shows these men as not 'out' with who they really want to be - this is Owen and Cole's story.  Circumstances bring them together. There is a draw. However, too much unsaid hangs between them. Can they both take a chance at exposing their soft underbellies to the other? Are they willing to risk the hurt to gain the deep affection they deserve? 

There is so much more to these characters then what you can see from the top of the waters. Kate takes the reader's hand down the distance line and dives deeper than their surface. You understand the characters hesitation and missteps. But after you reach near the end of your line, Kate guides the readers and characters to a perfect break in the surface to have something to hold onto forever. 

Once again, Ms Canterbary amazes me with the depth of her characters, brilliance in writing a story that will touch you and linger there for days. It's a love story to be savored not devoured. If you are a new reader to Kate, this is a great introduction to her writing genius and devotion to telling a fantastic story. If you are a fan but new to MM genre,  you'll see its all love.  For fans of her Walsh series, she gives us an Easter egg that is always fun to read from another characters POV.  Regardless, this is a story not to be missed. 

5 plus stars and on my personal favorite's bookshelf

Interested in bonus and deleted scenes, excerpts and original stories?

Follow Kate Canterbary at Book+Main for exclusive content!


Or Read for #FREE on KU

Kate Canterbary doesn't have it all figured out, but this is what she knows for sure: spicy-ass salsa and tequila solve most problems, living on the ocean-Pacific or Atlantic-is the closest place to perfection, and writing smart, smutty stories is a better than any amount of chocolate. She started out reporting for an indie arts and entertainment newspaper back when people still read newspapers, and she has been writing and surreptitiously interviewing people-be careful sitting down next to her on an airplane-ever since.

Kate lives on the water in New England with Mr. Canterbary and the Little Baby Canterbary, and when she isn't writing sexy architects, she's scheduling her days around the region's best food trucks.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

I have been #LoveShamed and I wear my scarlet "L" heart proudly

Not slut shamed but love shamed. Let me explain how one is shamed by love. Not surprisingly I read reviews on books. Often I read them to see insight by others in a story I enjoyed.  As of late I've noticed a - distasteful to me -  habit of bloggers and reviewers using the word 'insta-love' like it's a swear word. It has suddenly taken on a life of negativity in our romance book world. Yes, romance books.  


As I am reading these reviews, I am struck with a song now playing in my head because I happen to like - no wait - LOVE what these individuals refer to as 'insta-love' trope. 

After reading not one, but many reviews using this term in the negative for again - romance books- I feel on the defense. I am now feeling like the roommate taking the walk of shame after a one-night stand hookup. 

One thing you do need to know about me is this: I am a walking, talking insta-love story. I dated my husband for six days, he proposed on the seventh, we married six months later and have been so blissfully for 30 years.  So you understand my confusion as to why this is a 'bad' thing. I turned to the Brain Trust to discuss. 

Happily I can report they are equally baffled. We discussed rationally about what could be defined as insta-love versus not. Like all good books, there is not a prescribed cookie cutter for this to fit. We've all read romance where the main characters timeline moves three days well into 50% of the book. And equally, we've read books that the timeline moves three weeks or months at 15% of the book. It can't be based on percentage read. So is it when they declare monogamy  When the first 'I like you' or *gasp* 'I love you'?  Because these poor reviewers have got to hating it when all of us declare our love of Wesley as he states VERY early on...

If there is a queen of insta-love for me, I will have to say it is the talented and lovely Katy Regnery. I have read everything she has written. If anyone falls into the type-cast, I guess her Blueberry Lane novels would. But then again, there is history for the character's relationships for some books, a connection of attraction in others and even a frenmies theme in Kiss Me Kate. However, just because I don't enjoy emotional retching reading - I am a two on the angst preference meter - doesn't mean that all the stories I read are the now hated insta-love. Example: Never Let You Go. Before I rest my argument, let me discuss the two books that got my feathers ruffled. 

Bentley by Melanie Moreland

Alright, in full disclaimer, huge fan and have been for many moons before I became head cheerleader.  I loved this story to pieces. Biggest appeal was the natural connection and progression of the main characters.  And yet, a few reviewers scoffed at the story for being insta-love. I'm not sure what book they read, but obviously not the same one as I or For The Love of Fictional Worlds did. Because this blogger explains it best, I'll let them explain what I think these other reviewers missed:
"Do you have any idea what it is like to read about a good adult relationship is supposed to be like? I get it, no readers actually want something fun and exciting to get away from their reality – BUT I HAVE A RELATIONSHIP LIKE BENTLEY & EMMY; and I know that no matter what, two people who have enough sense to understand that drama doesn’t make relationship fun, it’s how the two people interact with each other and THAT’s EXACTLY HOW THE AUTHOR SHOWED THE RELATIONSHIP IN THIS BOOK!"
Yeah, that's not insta-love folks.

The Baby Maker by Lili Valente

Once again, a huge FAN.  More silent for her than others. But she is definitely a go-to when I plan on being entertained.  And again reviews with the dirty word of insta-love.

That's me  >>  SMH

Avoiding being spoilery, first off, they have an enemy stance that has been developed prior to the story's onset. The author does a stellar job of introducing the history without bogging down the pace. So yes, they are instantly in love. And more to the point, if you are attempting to plant the seeds of human kind, well, you are going to form an attachment if you spend every evening together.  Sorry, these are also mature characters so they aren't going to fall into the hate-sex or manipulation of a younger, less experienced with life characters.  It's not a bad thing to develop a friendship and fall easily into a committed type relationship. 

So what do I ask of my fellow bloggers and reviewers? 

Use your words. Stop using 'insta-love' like a swear word and defining as something to be left out of romance if declarations are made before 91%. If you don't like the story, explain why the relationship lacked appeal or characters didn't connect with you. We expect our romance writers to give us vivid descriptions. Do them a favor: write a constructive review.  And please for goodness sake, we are reading romance. Whether they fall in love page 2 or page 222, let's celebrate the joy of it.