Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Release Blitz: The Pet Stylist and The Playboy by Rebecca James (Reviews + Excerpt)

Release Blitz: The Pet Stylist and The Playboy by Rebecca James (Reviews + Excerpt) 
The PetStylist And The Playboy Blitz Banner
The Hedonist Book 2
RELEASE DATE: 07.07.18
Cover Design:   Reese Dante

Swish has been in love with Dante since the day the tough biker found him homeless and miserable in a gas station restroom, but Dante's never shown the younger man anything more than brotherly affection. Deciding it's time to move out of the MC's clubhouse and away from Dante, Swish takes a live-in job working in a privately-owned animal shelter where he can continue his pet stylist business. What he doesn't realize is he's not going to be as far away from the object of his affection as he thinks.
Dante's time of being a playboy biker is fast coming to a close. At summer's end he turns 30, and that means fulfilling his promise to his parents and returning to high society in the Hamptons. That dim prospect should be all Dante can think about, only Swish is moving out, and suddenly Dante can't do anything but obsess over the kid he's always thought of as a younger brother. Telling himself he's only making sure Swish is doing okay on his own, Dante takes a summer job landscaping at the animal shelter where Swish has taken a job. There he learns a few things about the young man he's never bothered to find out before, including that Swish's real name is Isaac, and he enjoys wearing a certain something under his jeans--something that Dante's surprised to find he would really like to remove--preferably with his teeth.
When Dante gives in to his need for Isaac, the playboy biker quickly finds that disentangling himself from the man he once thought of as a kid brother proves harder than expected, and that perhaps after years of one-night-stands and partying, his priorities need to change. Only not in the way his wealthy and controlling parents want them to.



I’d never seen Swish so...undressed. Despite sharing a room for two years, he’d never taken his clothes off in front of me. And those tiny bathing briefs weren’t covering up much. First there was Swish’s cute bubble butt I’d always tried to pretend I didn’t notice, then that package in front that the wet briefs did a poor job of concealing. I swear I’d seen it harden.
Realizing Swish was getting a boner, I’d met his deep, dark gaze.
“See something you like?” he’d asked me in that flirtatious manner that he fucking never directed at me. My balls had tightened, and time had stilled for who knows how long. I didn’t even comprehend what he’d called to me over his shoulder before disappearing into the house. Even then, I’d just stood there until reality had slowly started seeping in, and I’d realized I was staring at the house like an idiot.
I swung around and got to work, hammering like a fiend, but my mind kept going back to Swish in his swim briefs, and I missed the nail and hit my thumb with the hammer instead.
“Mother fucker!” Goddamn, that hurt!
Deirdre stuck her head out the door.
“You okay?” she asked.
I wanted to rail at her that no, I wasn’t fucking okay, but she was only trying to help, and it wasn’t her fault I had been daydreaming instead of watching what I was doing. Stuffing my thumb into my mouth, I nodded and gave her a rueful smile.
I hadn’t been back at it ten minutes when Swish sashayed out the front door wearing a pair of jeans and a tight T-shirt with a unicorn on it. He’d braided his long, thick hair over his shoulder, and I suddenly wanted to grab it like a rope and pull him close. I watched out of the corner of my eye as he bent to pick up a piece of wood. His shirt rode up, exposing smooth skin and a thin piece of lace just above the low waist of his jeans. This time, I caught myself before I pounded my thumb. Fumbling the hammer, I dropped it on the ground, just missing my foot.
My brain faltered, thoughts slamming into one another before backing up and restarting the flow.
Holy shit, was Swish wearing a lace thong?
Swish turned around and caught me staring. But, hell, I couldn’t look away. I was sure I’d never seen him with anything like that on his body before. Or had I ever really paid attention? Had I spent so much time trying to compartmentalize Swish, like Zeke had said, while I fucked away thoughts of a dismal future? No. There was no way I wouldn’t have noticed the single most sexy thing I’d ever seen in my life.
“What’s the matter?” Swish’s voice cut into my self-assessment.
I licked my lips, trying to get a grip on myself. I could lie, turn around and resume working, and bang my thumb all over again; or I could address the issue.
Swish had always been one to speak his mind, maybe I’d take a page out of his book and go for it. Besides, my hand couldn’t take much more abuse.
“Are you—” Frustrated at how shaking my voice sounded, I cleared my throat and blurted, “What the fuck are you wearing?”
Swish’s face shuttered, and I immediately wished I hadn’t said anything. But there was no going back now, and I couldn’t leave him with the impression I was judging him.
“I mean, uh, are those...are you wearing...” I could feel blood rushing to my face as I tried and failed to make it seem like a casual question.
“A lace thong? Yes.” Swish turned his back to me again and got to work.
I was having trouble breathing because I could see it—that thin strip of lace crossing Swish’s lower back.
I swallowed hard before attempting to speak again. “I didn’t know you liked that kind of thing.”
Swish turned on me so fast, I almost toppled over the stack of wood behind me.
“That kind of thing? You mean wearing women’s underwear? Why, yes, Dante, I do enjoy that kind of thing. I always have. Do you have a problem with that?”
An angry Swish was almost as captivating as a Swish wearing ladies’ underwear. His cheeks got red, his dark eyes sparked fire, and that quirky mouth rearranged itself into a hot sneer. He didn’t get worked up that often, but when he did, the sight never failed to raise my heart rate.
“No, of course not. I’d just never known...that about you.”
“And why would you know that? You’ve never shown an interest in my underwear before.”
I straightened and carefully stepped aside to avoid the planks of wood. “I’m not showing an interest—I was just surprised, that’s all.” I ran my hand over my hair. “Hell, lately it feels like I never knew you at all.”
Swish frowned. “You’ve never tried to get to know me.”
“We’ve talked a lot,” I objected.
“Not about anything important,” Swish mumbled, looking away. “Not until recently, when you asked about my past.”
I stood transfixed, thinking about it. We’d joked around and watched movies, but had we really never touched on anything personal? Ever, in the entire two years? I didn’t want to admit to myself I’d been so dismissive of him, or that he might have been reluctant to ask me about myself. He seemed to know just about everything about the other guys. And come to think of it, I really didn’t know a hell of a lot about them either.
“Maybe I’ve been a little self-involved,” I said. I could tell I’d surprised him. I turned away and picked up the hammer I had dropped, very aware of Swish’s eyes on me. My phone buzzed in my pocket, and for the first time ever, I was relieved to see my father’s name on the screen.

4 Stars!

After being found in a gas station bathroom two years ago, Isaac aka Swish has been living with the Hedonist Motorcycle Club and running his small pet grooming business out of their building. But sharing a room with Dante, (the man who found him) is starting to tear him apart. Swish can’t take the revolving door of men and women Dante enjoys on a daily basis. Not when he himself is in love with the man.

So when Swish gets the opportunity to move to the private animal shelter where he can grow his pet grooming business, he decides it's for the best. He never thought Dante would end up working there too. Soon, the two men are learning things about each other they never knew and when Swish, the pseudo-little brother becomes Isaac, the attractive friend, Dante realizes he may be in trouble.

Dante’s time is running out and his freedom ends on his thirtieth birthday. He will soon have to go back to the high society world he left behind. Become the man his family expects him to be. None of that includes Isaac. Will his attempt to have both destroy the relationship he’s built with Isaac? Or will Dante realize what’s really most important in his life?

Argh! Dante pissed me off. I seriously just wanted to punch him in his stupid face. He was so selfish, in my opinion. I honestly had trouble respecting him at all and even by the end of the book, while I didn’t loathe him, I definitely did not love him.

I really liked Isaac but I’ll be honest and say I think he needed to make Dante grovel some more. I hate when characters let the other MC get away with being crappy. Now, I’m not saying Isaac was a doormat because he wasn’t, he took care of himself, but the ending was just a little too easy for Dante.

Gus was a wonderful man and I loved that Isaac had him. For someone with Isaac’s past, he needed a good father figure and someone who truly cared for him. I liked how their relationship was portrayed even if it also left me an emotional mess in the end.

As for the rest of the characters I’m excited to see what Ms. James has planned for them. Axel is tugging on my heartstrings and of course, Blaze's story feels like it will never get here. Overall, I really enjoyed Isaac’s story (even with Dante *sighs*) Very recommendable.

***Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie by the author/publisher for my reading pleasure in hopes of an unbiased opinion, a review was not a requirement.***

~5 Stars~

I really loved reading this book, it was fantastic. It’s been a while since I’ve read a book completely to the end without really setting it down, and this was a book I did not want to put down until I finished it. I was surprised by how fast I got through it and was disappointed when I got to the end because I really wanted more.

I read the first book in this series (The Ballerino and the Biker) and I enjoyed it, so when I saw this book and that it was Swish’s story, I was excited to get my hands on it. I wanted to know his story from the minute we saw glimpses of him in the first book. The plot and storyline for these two men was interesting and held my attention throughout the entire book, it all flowed well together. You just can’t help but feel all the emotions for everything these guys are put through and have to deal with in life, especially Swish. This book was a little angsty, only because of some of the character interactions with each other and others, and made me feel a bit emotional at times. But it was a good read and I was pleased with how this one turned out. I know the author throws a few warnings in at the beginning of the book, but I personally don’t think they are needed. Nothing extreme is mentioned or even happens in this book, and there is no actual cheating happening between the two main characters. Although there are talks of them being with other people; I mean we all know what a man-whore Dante is from book one, so hearing about that is to be expected.

Swish/Isaac is one of those characters you can relate to, with his feelings and his personality. He’s sweet, thoughtful and caring, loves animals and is just an extremely likable character. He’s been in love with Dante from basically the minute they met several years before, but Dante never really sees him. Dante is determined to put Isaac into the “brotherly” column and leave him there. 

I just felt so much for Isaac, he is one of my new favorite characters. Almost every interaction we have between Dante and Swish from the start of this book makes you laugh, hurt and want to cry right along with Swish. God, I just felt so bad for him with everything that happens, he just can’t seem to catch a break in life before something else happens. 

Dante is a jerk, selfish, and self-absorbed, and just so ignorant to both of their feelings because he only sees his side to everything and how it will affect him. I don’t understand how he doesn’t realize what Swish feels for him, and when he does, he just kind of blows it off, and that just makes me want to punch him. I hated the way Dante’s parents treated him and made him feel like he wasn’t enough, to make him feel like he needs to bow to them and please them in life, because they are rich entitled jerks. I think that their treatment of Dante plays a big part in how he acts and treats Swish in this book. Even though that still doesn’t excuse his actions. But I was really glad when Dante FINALLY pulls his head out of his butt and figures out that what he really needs is Swish. It only took him hurting Swish numerous times to get to that point, but at least he gets there in time for Swish to still forgive him. I’m not sure I would have been as nice about it if I was in the same position. 

This book hits all the major points for me. I will definitely be recommending it to others. And I can’t wait to see whose story will be up next in this series, I'm ready for the next book.

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

  Rebecca James Logo
II've always loved to write and have written since I was a child, usually to entertain my family. I enjoy writing m/m romance because there's nothing hotter than two men in a loving relationship. I write contemporary romance but am not limited to that. I enjoy writing alpha/omega and vampire stories, and I wouldn't rule other things out. I'm very prolific, so look for a lot of things to come!

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