Tag Archives: Mercury Rising

Cherry Pop (Mercury Rising #3) by Samantha Kane

Cherry Pop CoverRelease Date: April 19, 2016
Published by SK Publishing LLC
Purchased Copy from Amazon

ABOUT THE BOOK:

It was supposed to be for fun, but his kiss said forever…

Ben Heston followed his job from California to Mercury, North Carolina after his boss fell head over heels, crazy in love. Ben welcomes the change at first, still reeling from a bad breakup. The move is meant to be temporary. That is, until he meets Tripp Lanier.

Tripp was born and raised in Mercury. His family owns a local construction business and he’s next in line to take over. But as much as he loves his family and his job and his little hometown, there’s something missing in his life. When he meets Ben, he realizes what that something is.

Tripp is ready to embrace his newfound sexuality with the object of his desire. Ben, not so much, because he doesn’t believe Tripp is really gay. But Ben can’t resist the chemistry that explodes between them when they’re together.

Ben begins to love all the things Tripp loves about Mercury: night trains and tall trees, family, friends and sweet Cherry pop. Just when Ben begins to think he might be Tripp’s Mr. Right his past comes calling and old hurts and new fears might be the one thing that could keep them apart.

Warning: Contains Good Old Boys, NASCAR references, a reluctant computer programmer, an enthusiastic gay virgin and gallons of sweet cherry pop. 9 out of 10 dentists agree it could be dangerously romantic.

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OUR THOUGHTS:

Samantha Kane gives us plenty of reasons to get lost in Mercury, NC in this third installment of the Mercury Rising series.  This is small town living at its absolute best! Similar to the previous two books, this story features a pairing between a local boy and a transplant from California; while that could become redundant, Kane keeps it fresh by once again writing unique character dynamics and a different angle. In other words, who’s in the relationship makes all the difference.

In this case, local boy Tripp Lanier, heir to the Lanier Construction empire, adds a bit of redneck flair and country charm to the situation. Tripp’s charming, endearing and, best of all, straight. Or so everyone thinks…but is he?  Kane casts just enough shadow of doubt over Tripp to invoke suspicion about just what’s going on with our local hero.

A study in contrasts, Tripp befriends Ben Heston, the embodiment of every sexy, tech geek fantasy ever.  Ben’s just your average guy, working for Turnstiles to help them open the new data and education centers. In addition to being a strictly temporary resident of Mercury, Ben’s dragging around a hell of a lot of emotional baggage. He’s still suffering the aftermath of a failed eight-year relationship that’s pretty much turned him off to any kind of commitment. His outlook on romance is bleak, and he’s definitely not open to the possibility of helping his new friend discover his sexuality. Not that he’s unsympathetic to Tripp’s plight, he’d just rather spare the hurt and heartache.

Tripp and Ben’s journey is all about finding yourself. Not that either is truly lost, but they’re definitely struggling to acknowledge parts of themselves that could allow them to move forward. Add to that a town full of well meaning, busybody gossips and you’ve got potential for a lot of complications. Watching them work through it – sometimes in front of God and everyone – is totally worth it.

RATING: BADASS BOOTS!

Cherry Bomb (Mercury Rising #2) by Samantha Kane

Cherry Bomb coverRelease Date: January 12, 2016
Pulished by Samhain Publishing
Review Copy (ARC)

ABOUT THE BOOK:

Their spark could be too hot to handle…or bring a dying town back to life.

Officially, Turnstiles CEO Brian Curland is in Mercury to set up a new data center. Unofficially, he’s using this trip to re-evaluate his life, because for a man who has everything, he’s feeling pretty empty.

He could buy any car he wants. But no, he had to rent a piece-of-crap Chevy—which is now broken down on the side of the road. When he’s rescued by a sexy local, Brian does what he always does. Go for what he wants, even if it’s just temporary.

Evan Michaels stops to help because that’s what good guys do. He grew up in Mercury, eventually becoming minister of the local Unitarian church. Though everyone knows him, being gay and being in a gay relationship are two different things. He wants Brian, but their affair has to be secret or he can’t play.

When Evan unleashes his long-suppressed sexuality, Brian is more than up to handling the heat. Yet even though they fall hard for each other, it might take the whole town to convince them it’s a forever kind of love.

Product Warnings
Contains an inexperienced minister, gay comic-book role play, dirty dancing in antebellum mansions, and some very naughty fireworks. Protective gear recommended.

 

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OUR THOUGHTS:

Samantha Kane continues the Mercury Rising series with Evan’s story, Connor’s lifelong friend and Mercury’s Unitarian minister. The glimpse we get of him in Cherry Pie is just enough to get the idea that he’s a good guy – honest, caring, trustworthy and all that.  Kane elaborates on that, demonstrating Evan’s complex character as a study in contrasts; he’s a minister, but he’s also human. Keeping an impeccable image and reputation for his congregation sometimes gets in the way of his own wants and needs. He’s managed to ignore those needs for seven years…until the day he meets Brian Curland.

Brian is nothing less than what I’d expect from John Ford’s billionaire friend and business partner. He’s the reason Mercury’s buzzing with excitement over the potential for growth and opportunity with the new data center coming to town. Brian’s in town to reconnect with his old friend and check up on the project – kind of. He quickly gives up on the pretense of visiting John and luring him back to Cali when he realizes that his reasons for heading to middle-of-nowhere North Carolina are much deeper than that.

Kane’s impressive storytelling easily weaves together the lives of unlikely bedfellows in a compelling, emotional tale. While the premise isn’t new – big city meets small town – it’s done so well and with such depth that it feels different. The characters give it life and interest that is unparalleled in similar tropes.  Brian and Evan share a mutual respect and honesty that makes it hard to dismiss what’s building between them no matter how hard they try to deny it.

Mercury, North Carolina has a way of changing people – both those who visit and those who call it home. It lures readers in with its colorful characters and captivates you with its small town magic. No wonder all who visit have trouble leaving.

RATING: ONE BADASS BOOT, ONE STILETTO

Cherry Pie (Mercury Rising #1) by Samantha Kane

Cherry Pie CoverRelease Date: September 16th 2014, 2nd Edition
Published by Samhain Publishing
Purchased Copy from Amazon

ABOUT THE BOOK:

John Ford packed up his life a year ago and moved from LA to small Mercury, North Carolina after the death of his long-term partner. He’s been living in a kind of suspended animation, fixing up the old house he bought there, reclusive and alone. Until the day Connor Meecham appears.

Conn Meecham has returned home, only to find it isn’t his anymore. Someone else owns his mother’s house now. But Conn needs that house to find the man he left behind more than eight years ago–before the drugs, before prison, before his life derailed. Lonely, desperate, lost, Conn finds in John a kindred soul.

Mercury is a dying town. But John sets out to change that when he learns what it means to Conn. Through home improvements, sex, old friends, sex, misunderstandings, sex, and homemade cherry pie, John and Conn may finally discover that where they are now can be heaven on earth if they want it to be

Publisher’s Note: This book contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable: male/male sexual practices.

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OUR THOUGHTS:

Connor Meacham is making a soul-searching return to his roots in the hopes of regaining some semblance of the man he used to be. Is Mercury the magical solution to restoring his former glory and, more importantly, his confidence? It seems that battling all those inner demons would take its toll after a while.

This story is on emotional overload. There’s so much to sort out with Connor’s feelings about returning home, Connor’s feelings about John, John’s feelings about his past and how to deal with Connor and moving forward. I have a love/hate relationship with the emotional tension Samantha Kane develops between John and Connor. Readers will have no trouble understanding it – neither of these guys has had a simple life – but sometimes it becomes the elephant in the room. It’s a huge obstacle preventing them from going after what they really want, that is if they can be honest enough to admit what that is.

If you’re looking for a sexy romance complete with complex characters, complicated situations, and angsty tension, Cherry Pie is for you. At just under 200 pages it’s a quick, entertaining read, certainly well worth the time for this satisfying story.

RATING: ONE BADASS BOOT, ONE STILETTO