Lydia Reviews: Best New Artist by BA Tortuga


TITLE: Best New Artist
Author: B. A. Tortuga
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 204
Characters: Kasey Tuffman and Jonah Littlejohn
POV: 3rd Person
Sub-Genre: Contemporary
Kisses: 4.5

Blurb:

Kasey “Tuff” Tuffman just told Nashville to kiss his you know what. After winning Best New Artist at an award show, he knows it’s time to head back home to Texas. So after a very public meltdown, Tuff makes his way to Austin, where the Red Dirt music lives large.

Jonah Littlejohn once loved KT more than anything in the world. When KT loses it on national TV, Jonah knows he has to reach out and offer his home studio as a place to heal and make music. A bad relation-ship has left Jonah broken and wary of romance, but he wants to help his old lover out.

Seeing Jonah again proves to Tuff that he’s made the right decision. Now all he has to do is convince Jonah that they’re the most perfect duet there’s ever been.

Review:

B.A. Tortuga’s newest book is Best New Artist, and it will be one you’ll want to re-read again in the future. This story brings ex’s back together for a second chance at love, and while this is not one of my favorite themes, I really loved this story.

Kasey Tuffman has been working to make it big in the country music industry for some time. When he finally gets his wish, it is not what he was expecting. Winning Best New Artist, most likely because his label made him change his looks, just proves that it is time to head home and regroup, however he could have gone about it in a totally different way. I must say, I loved the way the author starts this story and wished we could have “heard” the whole thank you speech. I also liked the way those who cared about Kasey stood by him. One of those people is Jonah Littlejohn.

Jonah is Kasey’s ex. The men started out on their music dreams together, and while he knows it is in Kasey’s best interest to appear straight, he refuses to be anyone’s dirty little secret. When Kasey’s star begins to rise, Jonah knows it’s time for him to leave, returning to Texas to follow his own dream. Things haven’t been easy for Jonah and while professionally he is at the top, personally he has hit rock bottom and struggles, even after all this time, to start anew. He doesn’t know if allowing Kasey to stay with him is smart, but he can’t seem to stop himself.

Seeing Kasey and Jonah together, it is easy to believe that they are still in love with each other. However, both men have problems and hurts to overcome and are leery about getting involved with each other again. While Kasey knows he back in Texas to stay, Jonah needs a little more convincing and Kasey is up to the job.

Jonah isn’t the only one worried about Kasey sticking around. Jonah’s friends had to pick up the pieces after his last relationship, and while they don’t think Kasey would treat Jonah the same way, they don’t want their friend hurt. As Jonah’s and Kasey’s relationship moves to that of lovers, the relationship with all the friends have to change as well, something that is hard on them. While I felt bad for Ben, I had to laugh when he went to “rescue” Jonah at the wrong moment.

Best New Artist is a great read and I am sure it will end up on many reader keeper shelves.

Reviewed By: Lydia

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Lydia Reviews: Bombs and Guacamole by BA Tortuga


Title: Bombs and Guacamole
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Author: BA Tortuga
Pages: 214
Kisses: 4.5

Blurb:

ER doctor Dusty Lowry grew up in a conservative rural Texas family that has never quite forgiven him for staying in New Mexico after his stint in the Army. Paramedic Nate Miller, Dusty’s best friend since their early Army days, has a hippie momma, a tiny apartment, and is in lust with his buddy. When their other Army friend, Kyle, gets married, they start thinking about settling down. In fact, they both know what they want: each other. Too bad they’ve never shared that goofy little fact.

A trip to visit Dusty’s family in Texas changes everything, and Dusty and Nate aren’t sure where to go from there. Good thing they’re smart guys, and between a series of bombings that target first responders, their friend Kyle’s wife getting pregnant, and more than one bowl of guacamole, they begin to figure out how to have a relationship.
But as the bombings get closer to home, Nate and Dusty must navigate love and commitment before they lose their chance.

Review:

Bombs and Guacamole is the newest book by author BA Tortuga. This contemporary story centers on a couple of hot former military men who eventually heat up the pages of this story. There’s also plenty of action and mystery in the story, so in other words this book has everything fans of the author look for when picking up one of her books.

Nate and Dusty have been friends since their first days in the military. Now Nate is a paramedic and Dusty is an ER doctor. Both men enjoy the friendship that exists between them, yet each has fallen in love with the other and is afraid to say anything for fear of losing what they have. I liked watching the way these two allowed their relationship to change. The connection between them is strong from the beginning so it is easy to see them going from friends to lovers. While a big part of this story is the men’s relationship, the author has woven a mystery through the book. The mystery is sure to keep the reader glued to the pages of the story to see how everything will turn out.

This part of the story has many little twists and turns. More than once I found myself holding my breath and worrying about our heroes. It is hard to decide what aspect of the story I loved the most, the romance or the mystery as both are well written and could stand on their own. The cover of this book claims Bombs and Guacamole to be part of the Border Crossing Series. As I have not been able to find any mention of this series, I am assuming this is the first book. I for one can’t wait to see what the author has planned next and hope we do not have long to wait.

Reviewed by: Lydia

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Gabbi Reviews: Coke’s Clown by BA Tortuga


Title: Roughstock, Book 4: Coke’s Clown
Author: BA Tortuga
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Pages: 198
Characters: Coke, Dillon
POV: 3rd
Sub-Genre: Cowboys, Romance, Series
Kisses: 5

Blurb:

How does Dillon take care of Coke when Coke’s destroying himself?

Bullfighter Coke is having a rough time in the Roughstock universe. When his dear friend Sam Bell is injured at the finals of the bull riding season, he takes that and his injuries pretty hard. His very own clown, Dillon, is determined to take care of Coke, which is tough when Coke is usually the one to care for everyone. Coke has a huge secret from his past, though, and, when Dillon digs to discover what it is, the skeletons in Coke’s closet threaten to destroy both men.

Review:

The Roughstock series by BA Tortuga is full of sexy, complex and well-written cowboys that live and breathe off of the written page. Ms. Tortuga creates a world of intriguing characters who are not only hardworking and loyal to those they love, they are just all-around amazing people I would consider myself lucky to call a friend.

I love all these men, but when it comes to Coke and Dillon, they are the two heroes in this series that has truly stole my heart. In my opinion, it is these two men that are the heart and soul of the series, and I for one, cannot get enough of reading about them.

Coke and Dillon are like beans and cornbread…they good alone but even better together. In other words, they simply make sense. They bring out the best in each other. They work through tough times together and always try to put the other man’s well-being and needs before their own. When Coke is having difficulty dealing with Sam Bell being severely hurt, it only Dillon and some well loved friends that can bring him out of his dark existence and into the light. Between the love and friendship these two heroes have for one another, I literally read through this book quickly, finished it…and read it again.

I love this couple. I highly recommend reading this book if you loved the second book in the series, And a Smile. This is the book where Coke and Dillon give into their feelings and become a couple. Watching them continuously grow and evolve together is truly one of my all time favorite things to read. I hope Ms. Tortuga writes another book about them because I for one, can never get enough.

Although you could read Coke’s Clown as a stand-alone book in the series, (don’t do it…you’ll love each and every one of these characters) I HIGHLY recommend reading these books in series order. The Roughstock characters interact with one another and each one has a story to tell. Between the dynamics of the characters and the well-told storyline, you’ll want to read each and every one of them.

The Roughstock books are:

Blind Ride
And A Smile
File Gumbo
Coke’s Clown

Reviewed By: Gabbi

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Gabbi Reviews: And a Smile by BA Tortuga


Title: Roughstock, Book 2: And a Smile
Author: BA Tortuga
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Pages: 173
Characters: Dillon Walsh, Coke Pharris
POV: 3rd
Sub-Genre: Cowboys, Series
Kisses: 5+

Blurb:

All Coke Pharris wants is for his cowboys to be safe—all of them. When rodeo clown, Dillon, sets to prove that there’s more to the bullfighter, people could get hurt.

It’s Coke Pharris’ job to save bull riders from bulls, and he takes his work very seriously. Which is why he’s devastated when one of his favorite riders gets hurt, and he’s determined to help the young man ride again. Dillon Walsh is the arena entertainer for the bull riding tour, and he wants to help. He also wants Coke, has been admiring the man for a long time. He hasn’t made a move on Coke for fear of messing up their friendship, but when he finds out Coke might feel the same way, Dillon has to try to win Coke over.

Coke thinks he’s too old for Dillon, too beat up and scarred, but he can’t resist when Dillon finally makes a play for him. Dillon is like a wet dream for Coke, and the two of them have a great time getting to know each other better, at least until the danger of their job threatens to come between them. Will Dillon and Coke be able to help their friend and weather the problems that blow their way?

Publisher’s Note: This book was previously released elsewhere. It has been re-edited for re-release with Pride Publishing.

Review:

And a Smile by BA Tortuga is one of my all-time favorite books. Years ago, when I read the first edition, I immediately fell in love with the two heroes, Dillon and Coke. They have been my go-to characters when I feel a little blue or just need a cowboy fix. I think I’ve loved these two men forever and when I found out that it was re-released by Pride Publishing I couldn’t wait to read it.

The story itself still captures my heart. The story begins with Coke and Dillon who have secretly been lusting/crushing on each other for some time. Because homosexuality isn’t easily accepted in the rodeo circuit, they have kept their attraction to each other to themselves and have been content with the occasional flirtatious and friendly banter.

I LOVED watching these two men take a chance and finally admit their attraction and budding feelings they have for each other. Coke and Dillon genuinely like, respect, lust and truly fall in love with one another. Seeing their story unfold is truly a beautiful thing to watch happen. Not only do they develop an amazing friendship the sexual chemistry between them is truly off the charts HOT!

There isn’t a lot of difference between the 1st and 2nd edition. There were a few things added and I do think the editing is much tighter, giving the story itself a smoother, fluid read. If you love the first version you’ll definitely adore the second one too.

When it comes to romantic stories, And a Smile has everything I truly look for when it comes to reading romance and more. Ms. Tortuga’s characters will bring a smile on your face, warmth in your soul and leave you with a happy heart.

And a Smile is the second book in the Roughstock series. The first book, Blind Ride is amazing as well. And a Smile could definitely be read as a stand-alone book, but I do recommend reading both books in order. You’ll be glad you did! Ms. Tortuga writes amazing cowboys who are so easy to fall in love with.

Highly Recommended!!

Reviewed By: Gabbi

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Ask Again by BA Tortuga


Title: Ask Again
Author: BA Tortuga
Publisher: Torquere Press
Pages: 58
Characters: Andy Warren, Levi Gorman
POV: 3rd
Sub-Genre: Paranormal, Shifter, Romacne
Kisses: 3.5

Blurb:

Hearing that his ex-best friend is getting married might be the only thing that can lead Andy back to his wolf pack deep in the Colorado Mountains. He’s a city wolf now, leaving behind the awkward, skinny teenage geek he was once upon a time. All he wants to do is see Levi one last time, and maybe lament what might have been between them if Levi had been brave enough to leave the pack with Andy all those years ago.

Levi has been a good soldier in his Alpha’s army, the second-in-command for several years. Seeing Andy again reminds Levi how he’s toed the line, and how all he’s gotten for it is a lonely life. He’s not sure why Andy came back, and at first he’s not even happy about it. Their need for each other runs deep and strong, though, and Levi has to wonder what he would do for Andy if the man would just ask him one more time.

Review:

I’ve read many books by BA Tortuga and I’ve enjoyed them all. Ms. Tortuga writes sexy and fast-paced reads that are highly satisfying and a lot of fun to read. Her characters are always interesting and I enjoy the stories they have to tell.

Adam and Levi are mates, but as a teenager, Adam is picked on because he is considered the runt of the pack. Because of this, he’s craves a new life away from the uncaring eyes of many pack members. Knowing he must leave, he and his three brothers pack up start another life but he wants his boyfriend/mate Levi to go with him.

Levi knows he can’t leave. He’s afraid of the unknown and living life without the comfort of the pack. He loves Adam, but cannot go and when Adam still leaves without him, Levi knows he’s lost his mate forever.

Fifteen years later Adam’s grandmother calls and asks him to come home. When he finds out that Levi is supposed to be married, he can’t keep from coming and seeing it firsthand. As soon as he comes home he knows it’s a mistake and once he realizes that there’s been a misunderstanding about what he’s been told about Levi, he is determined to leave…that is until he begins to hang around his mate again.

The connection between Levi and Adam is a strong one and I enjoyed the sexual chemistry and bond they had together. There is a lot of fighting and sex between them as they try to work out their differences. The sex is pretty hot and I really enjoyed watching them come back together as a couple.

I do wish the book had been longer. In some ways it felt rushed and I felt a tad bit cheated when it came to really seeing the two men bond and really reestablish themselves together. There is still quite a mystery about how the brothers established themselves when they left the pack and I thought it was all a little washed over. But, I did like some of the other characters in the book, Adam’s parents and grandmother were great and even the Alpha of the pack seemed like a good guy and because I liked them so much, it made the story even more enjoyable to me.

I did like this book because it’s a solid and sexy read. I truly hope that Ms. Tortuga continues writing about Adam’s brothers. I would love to know more about them because they do sound quite intriguing. If you are looking for a quick, sexy read that will warm you up on cold winter’s night then Ask Again is definitely a good choice to read. Fans of Ms. Tortuga will enjoy this one as much as I did and I look forward to reading more books by her.

Recommended

Reviewed By: Gabbi

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Ever the Same by BA Tortuga


Title: Ever the Same
Author: BA Tortuga
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 248
Characters: Audie, Dixon
POV: 3rd
Sub-Genre: Contemporary Romance
Kisses: 4.25



Blurb:

Audie Barrack is in it up to his elbows with a sick calf when his son’s school calls. Seems Grainger has gotten into yet another fight. When he walks into the principal’s office, he’s shocked to find his son has been fighting with a little girl named Randi.

A little girl with one blind dad and one dad who recently passed away.

Goddammit.

Dixon has lost his sight, his career, and his husband. Thank God for his brothers, Momma and Daddy, and his little girl, or he would simply give up. The last thing he needs is for Randi to start trouble at school, especially trouble that puts him in contact with another dad who might expect him to be a functional human being.

Dixon is struggling to live as a blind man, Audie is terrified someone might see he has a closet to come out of, and everyone from the school to both men’s families is worried for the men and their children. Unless they get themselves together and commit to change, neither of them stands a chance.

Review:

BA Tortuga is one of my go-to authors when I’m in the mood for a sexy, smoothly written read. Her stories have entertained this reader MANY times on a cold winter’s night, and her latest novel, Ever the Same, gave me several hours of pure, enjoyable escapism that I’ve learned to expect from her.

One of the reasons why I really liked this story is because of the characters. I really found myself caring about both Audie and Dixon. Audie has a heart of gold and is a genuinely nice man. He’s a good father, hard worker and it isn’t a stretch to say he often thinks of others and their happiness before his own. When he meets Dixon, it’s not under the best circumstances, so his first impression isn’t the best, but when he meets Dixon again, it was fun to see how his feelings changed for him.

Dixon has so much going against him. He’s lost his husband, his sight and has had to give up the life he loved so much. He’s had to come to rely on his parents for help and even though his young daughter is the light of his life, living in total darkness and despair has caused him to almost give up on life. When he meets Audie, things start to change and slowly Dixon begins to really live again.

I really loved watching these two men fall into a friendship and then love. Their children are adorable, and I enjoyed how they slowly became a blended family. Although this book has some angst, it isn’t bogged down by it. All in all it is a very sweet and sexy read and I easily recommend it!

Reviewed By: Gabbi

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Cat in the China Shop by BA Tortuga


Title: Cat in the China Shop
Author: BA Tortuga
Publisher: Torquere Press
Pages: 45
Characters: Brock and Clay
Sub-Genre: Shifter
Kisses: 4






Blurb:

Were-cougar Brock wants a special gift for his folks for their anniversary, mainly to cover up his lack of enthusiasm for going back to his small hometown. When he decides on replicating his mom’s old china pattern, the last person he expects to find at the design company is his old flame, Clay.

Clay has changed everything from his hair color to the way he eats to escape his past. Can Brock convince him that it’s better to be himself, and for them to be together?

Review:

Cat in the China Shop by BA Tortuga is a fun and lighthearted story.

Brock wanted something for his parents anniversary present. When he decides to have the china they had lost in a fire remade, he makes an appointment to talk to a specialist. When he shows up to talk to the artist Brock is amazed and shocked to find his long lost love Clay. Even with his appearance changed, Brock knew right away it was Clay.

Clay had done everything he could to escape his past. He has even stopped himself from shifting. Though he knows a part of him is missing, he cannot avoid the pain when he looks back. When Brock shows up the world shifts and even Clay cannot fight it.

Cat in the China Shop is a very fun story and a quick and easy read that is sure to delight!

Reviewed By: Jerry

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