Gabbi Reviews: His Mossy Boy by R. Cooper

Title: A Beings in Love Story: His Mossy Boy

Author: R. Cooper

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Pages: 350

Characters: Martin Dyer, Ian Forrester

POV: 3rd

Sub-Genre: Urban Fantasy, Series

Kisses: 5

Blurb:

A Being(s) in Love Story

Years ago, a very intoxicated Martin nearly died in the woods outside Everlasting, and a beautiful creature saved him, although Martin’s done his best to forget it. He spends his time in a haze of weed as he avoids his emotionally abusive mother—and the way he feels about men. Martin is already a weirdo in his isolated small town; he doesn’t need a sexuality crisis too. He’s a mess, but someone—or something—always seems to take care of him, usually a tall, sarcastic deputy by the name of Ian Forrester.

No one knows much about Ian, which is how he and his family prefer it. Ian has resigned himself to a lonely life keeping his secrets and guarding his forest. It’s safe to dream of Martin, because Martin never remembers Ian helping him. Besides, Martin barely speaks to Ian, so nothing can ever grow between them. Right?

But with the dragons—and the magic—back in Everlasting, suddenly anything seems possible, even a happily ever after for two men who never expected one.

Review: 

I am a huge fan of the Being(s) in Love series. To me, it is so easy to get wrapped up in the lives of Ms. Cooper’s characters. Each person is unique and well-written and I can’t help but quickly become enamored with them.

Treasure for Treasure is one of my favorite books, so I was incredibly excited to read His Mossy Boy. Both Martin and Ian played a strong role in the Treasure for Treasure, so I was thrilled to see them get their own book and the story they told did not disappoint. I loved this book almost as much as I loved the first one and I hope Ms. Cooper continues writing more about these amazing characters.

Martin knows he is a disaster. He lives his life to please his horrible mother and because he is in denial of his bisexuality and other things he continuously represses, he is a borderline alcoholic and pothead. Because of his low self-esteem, Martin believes he is nothing but a big disappointment to everyone he knows and feels like he must apologize for everything he does.

Martin’s sadness and low self-worth really pulled at my heartstrings. I truly felt bad for him, especially when it came to having to deal with his HORRIBLE mother, so I was glad to see his character truly evolve as the story progressed. Martin is far from perfect and, even in the end, he is still edgy and afraid to believe he deserves happiness, but it’s because of this, that I thought his character was pretty realistically written. Sure, I wanted to bop him upside the head a few times. Throughout the story, Martin allows his fear to take over his life, so he makes a few terrible choices. What I liked about him is that he is learning to let go of this fear and allowing himself to be happy.

Ian also goes through a lot of self-growth. Because of how he was raised, he’s been pushing others aside and it’s this fear that has kept him lonely. I loved Ian because of his selflessness and need to take care of others…especially Martin. Though he is a caretaker at heart, Ian needs someone to look after him too, so I was thrilled to see Martin work hard to be that person for him. As a reader, I enjoyed watching Ian truly go through the process of learning to trust and giving in to his instincts, which allows him to become part of a small circle of friends. Through Martin’s adoring eyes and eventual acceptance, Ian I loved seeing him blossom into a happier and more fulfilled hero.

His Mossy Boy will not be for everyone. Ms. Cooper writes stories with heroes that go through a lot of push and pull and self-awareness and growth before they get anything close to a happy ending. Her stories are well-written and gripping to me, but they are also slower paced and thoughtful. So, if you want a quick resolution and prefer fast-paced stories, then most of her books, including this one, may not be for you. Personally, I love the slow-burn her novels give me and highly enjoy getting to know her characters and the world she creates. To me, His Mossy Boy and her other books give me everything and more when it comes to reading romance and I love every minute I spend reading her books.

His Mossy Boy is part of the Being(s) in Love series. Each and every story brings something very special into the world that Ms. Cooper has created. If you haven’t read any of them and you are interested in reading this one, I would read Treasure for Treasure first. Why? Because all of the characters play an important role in both books and I think Treasure for Treasure is an essential read before you read His Mossy Boy. I personally love all of the books in this series, so I highly recommend all of them.

The Being(s) in Love books are:

Some Kind of Magic

A Boy and his Dragon

A Beginner’s Guide to Wooing your Mate

Little Wolf

The Firebird and other Stories

The Dandelion and the Tulip

Treasure for Treasure

His Mossy Boy

Reviewed By: Gabbi

Gabbi Reviews: A Dandelion for a Tulip by R. Cooper


Title: A Dandelion for a Tulip
Author: R. Cooper
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 200
Characters: Tulip, David
POV: 3rd
Sub-Genre: Fantasy, Series
Kisses: 4.5

Blurb:

David is in love with Tulip, a kind and unusually quiet fairy in his social circle. But everyone knows Tulip doesn’t date humans. David tells himself he is happy to be Tulip’s friend, because he doesn’t believe a fairy could love him and Tulip has never tried to “keep him”—as fairies refer to relationships with humans.

Fairies are drawn to David, describing his great “shine,” but David knows only too well how quickly fairies can forget humans, and thinks he’s destined to be alone. He can’t see his own brilliance or understand how desperately Tulip wants him, even if Tulip believes David can do better.

But exhausted and more than a little tipsy at a Christmas party, David makes his feelings too obvious for Tulip to deny any longer. Because of a past heartbreak involving a human, Tulip is convinced someone as shiny as David could never want a “silly, stupid fairy” in his life. Now, if he wants to keep David, he’ll have to be as brave as his shiny, careful human.

Review:

The Being(s) in Love stories by R. Cooper have made this reader fall in love with dragons, fairies and other paranormal beings all over again. Ms. Cooper has a real fresh take on a well-loved genre and I for one, can’t wait to read more about this interesting world that she has created.

It was easy to fall in love with these characters. Both David and Tulip are interesting, complex characters that live and breathe off of the written page. Thought they both are smart, strong heroes they share a wealth of miscommunication, self-doubt and other nagging negative traits that many of us share. One of the reasons why I really liked them both is because they are genuinely NICE people. It’s good to read a sweet and gentle story in where the nice guy(s) actually DO finish first.

There is something special and even believable about the world in which Ms. Cooper creates for her characters. Even though it is fantasy novel, it’s always easy to get wrapped up into the culture and traditions of her beings and I always find myself easily getting wrapped up in their lives.

A Dandelion for a Tulip is a sweet story that develops between two heroes that have a true unrequited love. Neither of them are aware of the other person’s feelings and they truly misinterpret how they like/love/feel about the other. I enjoyed watching Tulip and David’s relationship develop into something very special. There were times I wanted to shake some sense into David because of his continued unwillingness to see clearly what was in front of him, but all in all I thought David and Tulip’s story was a well-told and romantic read.

I highly recommend this series if you love fantasy romance. Also, I thing each and every story can be read as a stand-alone in this series and they are easily some of my favorites in the high fantasy/urban fantasy genre.

The Being(s) in Love stories are:

Some Kind of Magic
A Boy and His Dragon
A Beginners Guide to Wooing Your Mate
Little Wolf
Firebird and Other Stories
Treasure for Treasure

Reviewed By: Gabbi

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Gabbi Reviews: A Boy and His Dragon by R. Cooper


Title: A Boy and His Dragon
Author: R. Cooper
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 242
Characters: Arthur MacArthur, Bertie
POV: 3rd Limited
Sub-Genre: Urban Fantasy, Shifter Romance, Series
Kisses: 5+

Blurb:

A Being(s) in Love Story

Arthur MacArthur needs a job, and not just for the money. Before he dropped out of school to support his younger sister, he loved being a research assistant at the university. But working for a dragon, one of the rarest and least understood magical beings, has unforeseen complications. While Arthur may be the only applicant who isn’t afraid of Philbert Jones in his dragon form, the instant attraction he feels for his new employer is beyond disconcerting.

Bertie is a brilliant historian, but he can’t find his own notes without help—his house is a hoard of books and antiques, hence the need for an assistant. Setting the mess to rights is a dream come true for Arthur, who once aspired to be an archivist. But making sense of Bertie’s interest in him is another matter. After all, dragons collect treasure, and Arthur is anything but extraordinary.

Review:

A Boy and His Dragon is an absolute delight to read from start to finish. It is filled with plenty of intrigue and romance and I absolutely adored how the relationship between the two heroes evolved throughout the story.

This is Arthur’s story to tell. As a hero and the main character, Arthur is a very likable man. His determination to do right by his sister and try and make a better life for himself is an admirable one. Though he thinks he is somewhat unqualified to be an assistant to Dr. Philbert *Bertie* Jones, his drive and dedication to do the best job possible for Bertie was both honorable and endearing. Though Bertie is brilliant, he is very unorganized and he doesn’t take care of his things, which drives Arthur totally crazy. Arthur has a bit of OCD, which makes the relationship between him and Bertie a match made in Heaven. I loved watching these two men truly form a friendship and learn about each other.

As a reader, I also appreciated the well-written backstory and the world that was created about Bertie and dragons. Like Arthur, I found myself intrigued by Bertie and his heritage and the history of dragons themselves.

A Boy and His Dragon by R. Cooper is a book that is so easy to recommend. Between the exciting storyline and the strong and sexy romance between Arthur and Bertie, A Boy and His Dragon will be an easy favorite and a story that will live within your heart for many years to come!

Highly Recommended!

Reviewed By: Gabbi

Please NOTE:
This book is also part of the R. Cooper‘s “Beings in Love” Anthology but since I am reviewing each story individually, I have put the original artwork for each story in the book.


Click HERE for more information and to purchase Beings in Love by R. Cooper

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Gabbi Reviews: Treasure for Treasure by R. Cooper


Title: Treasure for Treasure
Author: R. Cooper
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 340
Characters: Zarrin, Joe
POV: 3rd Limited
Sub-Genre: Fantasy, Shifter, Romance, Series
Kisses: 5

Blurb:

A Being(s) in Love Story

In the nineteenth century, the dragon Dìzhèn put the small coastal town of Everlasting under her protection. Her family was supposed to carry on the tradition, but all of Dìzhèn the Great’s heirs eventually left rather than live in the shadow of such a powerful dragon.

Only the youngest dragon of the current generation remains: Zarrin, the softhearted disgrace of his family. He might be weak, small, and afraid, but he is determined to show the humans they have not been forgotten… one human in particular. The problem is, Zarrin can barely get that human to talk to him.

It should be a dream come true to have a dragon trying to get his attention. But Joe refuses to bow to Zarrin like everyone else. Yes, Zarrin is sexy, oddly gentle for a dragon, and stares at Joe with a gaze so hot it makes him shiver. But hurt, mistrustful Joe can’t believe Zarrin’s promises that he’s here to stay. Joe doesn’t realize he is the treasure Zarrin has been looking for his whole life, a treasure he once let slip through his fingers out of fear. Now, to win Joe’s trust, Zarrin has to be brave and become as strong as Dìzhèn herself.

Review:

The Being(s) in Love series by R. Cooper is one of my all-time favorite paranormal series. Each and every book is a fresh take on a well-loved genre and I love the unique and sexy heroes in all of them.

Treasure for Treasure is a highly romantic tale filled with the hope of

Reviewed By: Gabbi

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Gabbi Reviews: The Winter Prince by R. Cooper


Title: The Winter Prince
Author: R. Cooper
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 147
Characters: Kisin, Razin
POV: 3rd
Sub-Genre: High Fantasy, Fairy Tales, Romance
Kisses: 5

Blurb:

His heart stolen by a powerful pari’s magic, a young prince’s veins slowly fill with ice. That is what the stories say. Three years have passed since, and all efforts to save Kisin have failed. He won’t survive another winter. To save the prince’s life, Razin, the court wizard and Kisin’s childhood friend, plans to seek out the pari. But unbeknownst to Razin, Kisin’s heart was never stolen; he gave it freely to escape the pain of impossible love—his love for Razin.

Razin won’t accept Kisin’s fate, for reasons obvious to anyone who knows anything of love. Kisin agrees to the desperate quest, out of duty and a need to protect Razin. But it isn’t long before Razin realizes saving his prince will require more than simply retrieving his heart. Razin will have to convince him to want it.

Review:

R. Cooper is one of the best when it comes to writing fantasy and romance. I love the descriptive way she tells a story. I’m always immediately swept up into the worlds she creates and in her unique and well-written characters’ lives.

The Winter Prince reads like a fairy tale. Between the lyrical tone of the story and the tale of Kisin and Razin’s unrequited love for each other, I was enthralled by their lives, their surroundings and the story they had to tell.

Several years ago, Kinsin’s heart was taken by a parin’s magic. Because of this, Kinsin is emotionally cold and withdrawn from his family. With each passing day, Kinsin’s life hangs in the balance between life and death. When the Queen mother suggests he leave for the winter, Kinsin is dismayed by the fact his childhood friend and wizard Razin insists on coming along with him. Razin has an idea to return to the pari and demand Kinsin’s heart back. Although, Kinsin believes it is too late, in some ways he cannot deny Razin who he has loved from afar since he can remember.

I loved this story. I truly enjoyed watching Kinsin’s frozen emotional barrier thaw within the heat of Razin’s love and friendship. The journey they have is a sweet and lovely one to experience and I hated to see the book come to an end.

Between the romantic tone and the adventurous tale these men tell, The Winter Prince by R. Cooper is a book not to be missed. It’s an easy book to recommend to those who love stories of fantasy and romance.

Highly Recommended!

Reviewed By: Gabbi

Click HERE to enter the Dreamspinner Press Website

Gabbi Reviews: Dancing Lessons by R. Cooper


Title: Dancing Lessons
Author:
R. Cooper
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 129
Characters: Chico, Raphael
POV: 3rd Limited
Sub-Genre: Contemporary Romance
Kisses: 5+




Blurb:

Two years of living with his controlling boyfriend left Chico worn down long before that boyfriend revealed he’d been seeing someone else. With no other choice, Chico moves in above his cousin’s garage in a small town in the redwoods, where he merely goes through the motions. To get him out of the house, his cousin pushes him to volunteer at a local dance studio to help with their annual show.

He’s not expecting to end up in a dance class, or to start feeling alive again in the arms of his dance instructor. Rafael is the studio owners’ son and was once a well-known dancer in his own right, but now enjoys being a teacher. Although Chico likes him, he’s afraid of taking a chance. But Rafael is determined, and it only takes one dance for Chico to start to realize he might still have something to learn.

Review:

R. Cooper is a fairly new author for me. I’ve read one other book by her and enjoyed it, so I was anxious to give Dancing Lessons a try. I admit I was intrigued by the blurb and cover art and hoped this story would deliver my undying need for romance and happy endings, so I’m thrilled to say Dancing Lessons was everything I love when it comes to reading romance and more.

Dancing Lessons is definitely Chico’s story. Chico is a sweet man who has been down on his luck since the breakup of his lousy-not-so-good boyfriend. Since the breakup, Chico has been wondering around hurt and lost. He is filled with a lot of self-doubt and has been consumed with second guessing who he really is since before the breakup. When he meets Rafael, Chico is confused, scared and fascinated by the way Rafael’s presence awakens his broken heart. Chico has a sensitive, fragile side about him that really resonated with me as continued to read his story. Chico is an easy man to like and root for…both characters are. I loved how the sexy and very patient Rafael worked his way into Chico’s wounded heart. Their love and affection toward one another touched my heart several times throughout their story.

I truly loved this book. As a reader, I appreciated and highly enjoyed the journey of watching Chico’s self-discovery and recovery of being a frightened, broken man into a more confident, creative and loving man he truly was. The relationship between Chico and Rafael was so well paced and burned so intense, that I found myself anticipating what was going to happen next. The attraction between them sizzles, yet they take their time to get to know each other, become friends and eventually lovers. I was easily brought up into the lives of these two unique and very sexy men and I can honestly say…I HATED to see this story to come to an end.

Dancing Lessons is a beautifully told story between two unique and sexy men whose romance left this reader with a big smile and a happy heart. If you love romance with a slow gradual buildup AND a lot of pining between the two characters, then Dancing Lessons by R. Cooper is definitely the book for you!

Highly Recommended!

Reviewed By: Gabbi

Click HERE to enter the Dreamspinner Press Website

The Firebird and Other Stories by R. Cooper


Title: The Firebird and Other Stories
Author: R. Cooper
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Length: 350 pages
Characters: various
POV: 3rd
Sub-Genre: alternate world, urban fantasy
Kisses: 5



Blurb:

Magical creatures known as beings emerged from hiding amid the destruction of the First World War. Since then they’ve lived on the margins of the human world as misunderstood objects of fear and desire. Some are beautiful, others fearsome and powerful. Yet for all their magic and strength, they are as vulnerable as anyone when it comes to matters of the heart.

A firebird in 1930s Paris is drawn to a writer with a haunted past. Upon returning from fighting in the Pacific, a jaguar shifter finds a third-gender human on his doorstep. Early rock ’n’ roll DJ Hyacinth the fairy shocks his listeners with his admiration for his quiet assistant. During the AIDS crisis, a gruff, leather-wearing troll dreams of a settled life with a mixed-species elf across the bar. An imp, who remembers only too well how cruel the world can be, tells himself he’s content to stay behind the scenes—if only his chaotic, impish magic would stop getting in the way. And a shy human tending his poisonous and carnivorous plants is convinced no one will ever want him, certainly not the handsome werewolf grieving for a lost mate. Human or being, all must overcome fear to reach for love.

Review:

I’ve been really enjoying this series but even so, I wasn’t sure about “The Firebird and Other Stories” because it’s a collection. I shouldn’t have worried. I absolutely loved it. Five short stories that don’t feel like short stories, and a one that is a follow-on for the characters from A Boy and His Dragon.

I laughed, I cried, and I will absolutely be reading these stories again. And that bonus was that three of the stories were connected clearly, with the others connected lightly. And, as has been the norm throughout this series, you love the characters in part because of the differences in each species, not despite them.

R Cooper’s beings each have strong traits to their species, but they aren’t always traits you’d expect, or the traits don’t always manifest the way you expect. And rather than understanding each other immediately, humans and beings don’t really understand each other at all, which isn’t helped by the way we often make assumptions or generalize.

I honestly can’t name a favorite story because I loved them all: the vain firebird, the determined fairy, the lovable troll, the hurting imp, and the shy human. Each story was written from one character’s POV, which was perfect for short stories, yet the story was told brilliantly. I didn’t want to stop reading even though I had things to do. Do not pass this one by just because it’s a collection.

I would recommend this story—well, this series, really—for lovers of interracial or interspecies romance, comprehensive world building, varied societies, or complex relationships.

If you haven’t read the other books in the series I don’t think it would affect your enjoyment of this one, but you should—they’re all different, and all extremely enjoyable. Although I must admit that my favourite until now has been “A Boy and His Dragon”. It still is, as far as the longer stories go, but this one is now one of my favourite collections/anthologies. Give “The Firebird and Other Stories” a try. You won’t regret it.

Reviewed By:

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