Melissa reviews Butt Riders On The Range by J.P Barnaby, Kage Allen, Kiernan Kelly, Shae Connor, Eden Winters, Jevocas Green, Ally Blue, T.C. Blue. Published April 29th 2015, 498 pages
Why I read this story: It was pick for me week, and Eloreen chose this one for me to read.
We were provided this in exchange for an honest review.
Do you imagine blazing gun battles, bandits, and saloons with watered-down drinks when you think of cowboys and the West? We don’t. Our minds go right to horse shifters, bull shifters, were-leopards, urban wannabes, an interrupted journey along Route 66, a man of mystery named Dr. Feel-Good, and high noon at the edge of the galaxy! The fourth time’s the charm as the Butt-Thology authors saddle up, ride their men hard, and put ‘em away wet.
Butt Riders on the Range…the bulls aren’t the only ones being grabbed by the horns!
Hung Like A Horse by J.P. Barnaby
Riley is on the run from those who wish to treat him as a lab specimen. John is a self-made man who simply wants to live his life in peace on his ranch in Elk Brush, Missouri.
They share a common secret and a common enemy. Will these two men be able to come together to face their fears, or will they be separated by time, space, and the CDC?
This was a 1 chapter read that left you with a HFN. There are some eyebrow raising moments, but it was still an enjoyable read. The writing was excellent and the characters felt real and well rounded. While the ending left me with several question as to what happens next, it wasn’t a frustrating ending.
Chinchilla Chimichangas by Kage Alan
Chris, a 22 years old aspiring writer, is on a journey on a bus, which has to detour to a “forgettable name town” because of flooded roads from a severe storm. As Chris is searching for a place to shower, he meets Cameron, who is Chris’s storybook character “Dustin” to a T. They only have the night, but they tell each other secrets they never thought to share with another. The emotions these two go through in only a 12-hour period are staggering.
Chris’s romantic plans don’t always go as smooth as planned when he suffers from his characters, Miss Kiernan and Miss Tis, constant input in his head. These two women are gossipy with a lot of snarky back-talk, always on point (to Chris’s love-life), and provide a lot of comedic relief. Without those two, the story wouldn’t be complete.
A truly enjoyable romance with a quasi-epilogue that will make you just a little emotional. This was another well written short within this anthology and I wouldn’t be disappointed to read more about all of these characters.
Squatting with Spurs On, Kiernan Kelly
Dooley McCallister is surprised to learn that he has inherited a ranch from a complete stranger. Not understanding why, but deciding he can sell the ranch, Dooley signs on the dotted line and moves in…to a dilapidated ranch house. The jokes on Dooley because not only is the ranch in severe disrepair and not even close to 20th century standards of living, but its haunted! Squatting with Spurs On is a delightfully funny tale of Dooley, a ghost named Buck, and a love that lasts through all time. While the romance was mostly off page, and it was an insta-love story, the comedy and caring the two MC’s show clearly gives credit to Kiernan Kelly’s talent as a writer. I wasn’t ready for the story to end – and even though the ending itself was frustrating in what it meant – I am happy to leave these two men to loving each other forever after.
FAUX COWBOY by Shae Connor
Jackson James is a model who was hired to wear a particular brand of clothes that represent cowboys.
Douglas Shaw is in town as a tourist and is on a search for a real man’s gay bar. The instant attraction these two share is clear to anyone who sees them and Jackson lets Doug think he’s a real cowboy, too nervous and ashamed to admit he’s a model paid to wear and be seen in cowboy chic.
I wasn’t a fan of this story. There were a lot of elements to it that didn’t appeal to me. Especially the ending. It was very quick and wrapped up in a seemingly pretty bow. It didn’t feel real. The writing was good, but I didn’t really care for the characters, but I am sure the story will appeal to a lot of people, just wasn’t for me.
HOOVES AND HORNS by Eden Winters
This is a truly romantic and hot story about Kerry/Greased Lightning, a horse-shifter who plays the rodeo circuit as both bull rider and bucking bronco. Armando/Diablo is a bull-shifter in the rodeo, as well as a bronco rider. These two men are like oil and water, and when they come together, both are in for a wild ride. Kerry broke up with Armando over Armando not being willing to come out to his family that he’s in love with a horse-shifter, which is a big no-no. That’s not the only reason Kerry let Armando go though, and when Armando takes the horse by the pommel and arranges them to work the same rodeo, Armando is on a mission to get his man to listen to him. What follows is “battle sex” with a lot of comedy in the form of unwanted pet-names and ancestral dissing. A highly entertaining read and I never once felt as if I was missing background information. The right details came into play at the right moment, and I was very happy with the ending.
The Boy From Battalion Bluff by Jevocas Green
This is an unusual story, about aliens, or do they like to be called extraterrestrials? Anyway, I need to start off by saying I had to force myself to finish this one. This story was strictly about the sex. And I know that’s not supposed to be a bad thing, but it had an element of a porn movie. I don’t do alien stories, and sex for the sake of sex, I don’t like that either. I want the sex to mean something, and here all it meant was for the alien to get power from other’s orgasms.
Dr. Feel-Good/Johnen (alien), goes out every day to find his next “patient.” Today is the Sheriffs turn and as the Dr. walks through town, the townspeople all come out to watch to see who the next in line is, especially Toby, the stable boy. When Johnen walks right up to Sheriff Vanberbue, the innuendos begin.
There are elements to the story that I liked, but overall I just wished it would be over. It’s not that the writing was bad; far from it in fact. I just wasn’t interested in the characters or the subject matter. It was also set in the mid-west time frame, which isn’t my favorite time period to read about. There were just a lot of negatives.
The Five Hells War by Ally Blue
Now this is a sci-fi themed book that I liked. Ignoring the ridiculous town name of Burnt Butt Flats, this is a story that takes places in another solar system. Humans have expanded their home and have colonized other plants. We meet Balthazar Shellenbarger as he docks on the planet for the purpose of visiting Rocky Flint, the owner of a boomer ranch (on earth I guess they are just cows). Balthazar’s employer, Cavendish, has been trying to buy Rocky’s farm for years without success because Rocky has no interest in selling his family home. Balthazar is a lawyer and now Cavendish is resorting to underhanded methods to try and acquire the ranch. But when Balthazar meets Rocky and understands Rocky’s true love for the land, Balthazar decides he can’t do his job. Not only does he not believe in his employer, his growing attraction to Rocky won’t let him hurt him.
The fact that this story takes place on another planet is secondary to the bigger plot, which involves lawyerly stuff to make sure Rocky doesn’t lose his home.
The instant comradery that Balty (as Rocky soon calls him) and Rocky share is nice. They are friends (with heat) first, then partners on a quest, then lovers. The story was outlined perfectly and I was left very happy with how it all ended.
And The Horse He Rode In On by T.C. Blue
This was by far the best and most complete feeling story of the bunch. It didn’t read like a short story.
Tyler Caval is a horse shifter who owns a lamb farm. When there is trouble in the form of a poacher – of some kind – Tyler is not about to let that go unpunished and stakes out his heard with the help of his dog Shep.
What Tyler discovers, though, is not what he expected. A large cat, and not a house cat, comes from the trees and charges his herd. Tyler, in his horse form, is able to knocked the cat out, and Tyler is shocked again when the cat changes into a man. A very well muscled man.
Hilarity follows as these two men try to reconcile the fact that they are of two different shifter species. Jason was made into a cat, not born, and his maker told him nothing of the shifter world. Tyler gives Jason a place to live and nature takes its course.
I totally fell in love with these two men and wished I could read more about them, simply because these characters are that cute and loveable. They were given depth and feelings that made them seem very real. And Tyler’s sister! She is just a hoot and a half.
Where to buy:
Driven by insatiable curiosity, she possibly holds the world’s record for curriculum changes to the point that she’s never quite earned a degree but is a force to be reckoned with at Trivial Pursuit.
She’s trudged down hallways with police detectives, learned to disarm knife-wielding bad guys, and witnessed the correct way to blow doors off buildings. Her e-mail contains various snippets of forensic wisdom, such as “What would a dead body left in a Mexican drug tunnel look like after six months?” In the process of her adventures she has written fourteen m/m romance novels, has won several Rainbow Awards, was a Lambda Awards Finalist, and lives in terror of authorities showing up at her door to question her Internet searches.
When not putting characters in dangerous situations she’s a mild-mannered business executive, mother, grandmother, vegetarian, and PFLAG activist.
Her natural habitats are airports, coffee shops, and on the backs of motorcycles.
T.C. Blue: I was raised in and around Washington, DC, and therefore I don’t write about politics. A two year stint as a motorcycle courier, followed by varying amounts of times spent as an office worker, server, hair dresser, retail slave, casual student, and chef have led to possessing a smattering of knowledge in many areas. A Jack of all trades and Master of none, I currently live in the suburbs outside DC, accompanied by animals and people of interest. Really.