Sunday, February 12, 2017

Release Blitz: Corporate Bodies by A.E. Ryecart (Review + Giveaway)

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

Length: 86,500 words

Urban Love Series

Loose Connection (Book #1): Amazon US | Amazon UK
The Story of Love (Book #2) : Amazon US | Amazon UK


When professional turns personal, it’s too late to step back. . .

Smart, young and ambitious, the future’s bright for Jake Stafford—except for his addiction to a man he should have turned his back on years before. When he receives news that forces him to re-evaluate his life, Jake has to kick his habit and go cold turkey for good. 

When Oliver Lester walks out on his life in New York and returns to London after an absence of more than twenty years, the biggest piece of baggage he brings back is a broken heart. Powerful and sought after, Oliver is a man whose corporate reputation goes before him but as he stares into his future he sees nothing but work-filled days and empty, lonely nights.

Free of long-term relationships which have left them disillusioned and cynical, neither man is looking to risk his heart. But an invitation to dinner leads to more, and Jake and Oliver find themselves swept up in an affair neither is seeking. Crossing the line and breaking all the rules, both men come to learn what it is to feel whole and complete as they begin to fall in love.

But the past has one final trick up its sleeve. An uninvited guest, a violent confrontation and the fear history is repeating itself leaves them reeling.

As the future they promised each other hangs in the balance, Jake and Oliver are faced with a stark question: can they find the strength to destroy the past before the past destroys them? 

4.5 Stars!

At 28, Jake Stafford has almost everything he's ever wanted, he's successful, has great friends and a bright future, if only he could shake his addiction to his on/off sort-of-boyfriend. At 48, Oliver Lester is ready to start again after ending a 20-plus-year relationship and returning to London from New York was the first order of business. Neither of them was looking for a relationship but despite the age difference and the way their last ones had ended, the attraction and chemistry between them make it impossible for them to resist for long. However, the past has a way of coming back when you least expect it.

I love May-December romances and this is a really good one. I really loved the chemistry between Jake and Oliver, they were great together both in and out of the bedroom. Oliver was older but somewhat more innocent than Jake, who seemed more self-assured in a sense. There were a few instances in which Jake felt more mature than Oliver, but for the most part, I think they were very even and that was probably why they worked so well. 

The writing was a bit choppy and didn't flow as well as I would've liked in the beginning, but it did get much better the more we advanced into the story. The pacing was very good and the progression was very realistic, these two had to work hard for their HEA. It was lovely seeing Jake and Oliver fall in love and deal with their trust issues with the help of their friends. I'll have to go and find the first two books in the series because I'm all curious about them now. 

Very recommendable!

*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie for my reading pleasure, a review wasn't a requirement. ***

4.95 Stars! 

This is up there with IMPERFECT by AE Ryecart. Sooooo hard to decide which I love most!!

Imperfect introduced me to AER, and I'm lucky enough to be a beta of hers, so I've read this book at various points of its inception, and loved it since the first read through.

It's a tale of 28yo Jake, an up-and-coming City star, who's appeared in books 1 and 2 of the Urban Love series, and Oliver, 48yo, a guy who's life has been upended and who's starting over in pretty much all things. In simple terms, they're underling and big boss, but that doesn't stop the attraction that's arced between them since their first glimpse of each other over a crowded restaurant.

I loved how the age difference wasn't at all an issue between them, and that their relationship in the bedroom was almost the opposite of their professional one, and though this book is fairly light on the sex scenes compared to AER's other tales, it was perfect for them, perfect for the tale and for their relationship. I loved how Jake went into the relationship, once he'd managed to dispose of his unnecessary, unwanted baggage, with his heart and mind open, and how he quickly he fell for Oliver. As for Oliver, I loved the vulnerable man hiding behind the successful businessman, and that he was prepared to trust Jake so quickly, despite only knowing him for a short while. It's not to say that everything was rosy and fairy-tale-like in this book, as AER likes her angst, and yes, there was angst in more than one form and more than one time, and yes, stuff caused difficulties for the guys, and lead to an eventual break-up.

But, whilst they were apart, I loved seeing into each guy's heart, loved the realisation that dawned on Oliver as he tried to get on with his life, loved (not in a nasty way, I hasten to add!) how AER made Jake fall apart over the split and how she showed his heart, damaged, hurt and yet, refusing to give up on the man he loved. Surprisingly, though, I didn't want to smack either guy, because both had their hearts in the right place and stuff intervened that made them sometimes not make the right decision. But, I did want to deal with a certain piece of baggage the way he got dealt with in the tale!

I loved this tale, don't get me wrong, and it's almost a 5* read for me, but, soppy, silly romantic that I am, wanted a tiny, tiny bit more for the guys. Was I convinced of their plans for their future and of their HEA? Yes, absolutely. Am I greedy? Yes, more than is good for me, which is why I wanted that little tiny bit more icing on my cake. I'd have loved for a certain event that's clearly going to happen to have taken place on-page, especially as this tale wraps up the series and shows us the other couples living their HEA. AER's kept it all realistic, so there aren't any fluffy bunnies and certainly no Bollywoody endings, but a fan/reader/beta can hope, right? Maybe, just maybe, if I ask nicely, she might write a mop-up novella, showing us all three couples living their HEA. After all, she ended this tale with a bit of a catch-up with the guys, and for one couple, things are about to change for the even better.

I also live in hope that these guys might make occasional appearances in the Barista Boys series, so that I can see what they're up to.

Author Bio

A E Ryecart writes mm romance/gay fiction about complex, multi-faceted men who don’t always make the right decisions. Filled with angst, high drama and emotional tension, she writes the books she likes to read. An avid people watcher, most of her writing takes place in a local café amidst the background hum of hissing coffee machines, where she can check out the other customers for character and story inspiration! 

A born and bred Londoner, she may have moved to someplace more leafy but the city is still very much part of her DNA, which is why her books are set in and around present-day London, providing a thrilling, metropolitan backdrop to the main action.


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