Monday, November 16, 2015

Promises: Part 1 by A.E. Via Blog Tour

Duke Morgan owns and operates one of the largest bail bond companies in Atlanta. Not only does he bond criminals out of jail, he and his notorious group of bounty hunters will also track them down and ensure they show up for court.

Roman ‘Quick’ Webb is Duke’s business partner and best friend. Both men are in their forties and have given up on the happily ever after with the ranch-style home, and white picket fence. They’d both tried it and failed miserably. But they have their friendship and they have the business.

When Quick’s son, Vaughan Webb returns – after seven years - from studying abroad with his law degree in hand, he’s back to claim what he’s always wanted…his fathers’ best friend… Duke Morgan. Vaughan has always claimed to be a classic gentleman with an old soul. He didn’t party and screw up in school like his buddies. He was focused and dedicated to becoming the man worthy of Duke’s love.

It’s a complex and messy situation as Duke and Quick figure out how to still be best friends when one of them is sleeping with his friend’s one and only son. But when Duke is hurt on the job, all the unimportant trivialities fall to the wayside and Vaughan and Quick put their heads together to save Duke.

Part I of the Promises story is about Duke and Vaughan. Part II will be about Quick and his realization that it’s not too late for any of them to find love.


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Book 1
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Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

If you read Don’t Judge then you remember Duke. Duke owns a bail bond company and he was lovers with Judge and thought he was in love with him and was upset when their “relationship” ended. Quick is his best friend and partner at work. They are both giving up on finding their happily ever after. That is until Vaughan, Quick’s son comes home. Holy cow, Vaughan, he has loved Duke since he was 16 years old, now a man he has come to claim Duke and boy oh boy does he! I couldn’t put this book down and read it in one sitting. I was on the edge of my seat at times, crying at others, and then so happy and blissful. The chemistry between Duke and Vaughan can be felt rolling off the pages as you read their story. This wasn’t just finding someone; it was about true love and what sacrifices you make when you are in love. We do see a little bit of Judge in this book and we also get to start seeing what is going on with Quick which will be in part two of this story. Another amazing book by an amazing author, highly recommend.

Characters: Well written and believable
Sex: Yes
Religious: No
Would I recommend to others: Yes
More than one book in the series: Yes
Genre: M/M Romance
Would I read more by this author: Yes

This was a really good story. The bounty hunter aspect was great. I'd hoped to see more of Duke's work life in the story. While Duke's job as a bounty hunter has a huge impact on the story, Promises Part 1 is very much focused on the relationship between Duke and Vaughan.

I liked this couple. They had good chemistry and I liked the mix of hard and soft, dominant and submissive. I did feel that sometimes Duke's behaviour and thoughts in the relationship were more like that of an inexperienced teenager than a 45 year old man.

My favourite thing about this story was actually the surgeon, Dr. Chauncey. He was sweet and caring and he broke my heart. I look forward to seeing him hopefully get a happily ever after in Promises Part 2.

A.E. Via is a new-to-me author.

I will preface this review by saying it is neither positive nor negative. Neutral. There were elements I enjoyed, but it just wasn't my type of read. I'm going to state a few things in my review to bring it to light for those who read books like I do. By doing so, those who don't read as I do will know they will enjoy the book. This author has a large following, but the writing style is not to my tastes.

Promises Part 1 was unexpected. After reading the blurb, I expected an entirely different type of story. I appreciated how the book began. Action-packed, Bounty Hunting. I also enjoyed Duke's narration in the beginning. The story itself took an unexpected turn, and then just sat stagnant from 20% on.

I was intrigued in the premise of reading from the perspective of an almost fifty-year-old man, as that would eliminate the insecure angst that seems to plague those with little life experience. Duke was like that at the beginning, but then he turned almost teenage-girl-ish, needy, and irrational.

Then there was Vaughan. I wanted Duke to act/think/react like Vaughan. Maturity. At thirty, Vaughan is filled with maturity, knowing what he wants and will stop at nothing to get it. But he wasn't almost too perfect. He WAS absolutely TOO perfect. No faults. Selfless. Coddling. Doting. Adoring. Loving... with no backstory as to how this love grew. Obsessed with his father's best friend, Vaughan waited until he grew up to seek out Duke's affections... and Duke was instantaneously in love with Vaughan, without any of the 'Icky-ness' I expected him to feel over lusting after his best friend's son. No conflict to be had by our couple. Ever. From page one.

I liked Duke, and I enjoyed Vaughan. But the story just sort of stagnated for 60% of the book while they convalesced from an event I won't mention. But the between the sheets action was odd, as Vaughan went from terrified over Duke's fever to initiating sexual contact while said fever was still raging inside Duke when if it spiked a few tenths of a degree, hospitalization was in order. I need to reiterate this point... Duke was 3 tenths of a degree from hospitalization. 3/10s of degree. My temp spikes when I sneeze, imagine during a climax.

At the 80% mark, the reader is thrust out of the narration from the POV of Duke & Vaughan to suddenly include Dr. C & Quick. While this whetted my appetite for their book, it had the opposite effect for the current book I was reading. I wanted Dr. C's book, no longer interested in Duke & Vaughan. I also need to state that Dr. C's angsty needs are exactly the same as Duke's, right down to the bed buddy who doesn't want more and the longing need for a partner. The only difference that made me interested was Quick's reluctance to admit he wanted Dr. C. The scene where Quick rampages in from his office, throwing the doctor out of his house, was not how a 50 year old male would behave, and neither was Dr. C's reaction. Yet again, very irrational, hormonal teenage girl.

I wanted a pair of Vaughans in place of Duke & Quick – mature, with 50 years of life experience in a hard job. Jaded. World-weary. Hard with a soft heart. Gun-toting bounty hunters. Top or bottom, I longed for masculine maturity, as what position you take in bed doesn't relegate you to the male/female counterpart in a relationship. It's a Male/Male relationship, neither has to be the ‘girl.’

I expected a Bounty Hunter story, a bit more hard-hitting and masculine, with some push-pull romance, and was given something else entirely. I'm not one for warm & fuzzy. But Promises bypassed sugary-sweet and entered unrealistic diabetic-shock territory.

I'm positive many will love this book, the series, and the author's writing. For those who want fluffy, warm and fuzzy, this will hit all the right notes.

This is a good read – I did expect it to be more action packed given the blurb, but that did not matter. It has some drama, but much of it is a gentle, intense romance. Vaughan had set his sights on his father's best friend and work partner, Duke, a very long time ago – and finally comes back to claim him for himself. His revelation throws Duke, and yet circumstances result in him finding out just how serious Vaughan is. Some of the relationships have clearly been explained in previous books, which I have not read, but it was not detrimental to the story.

I liked the dynamic between father and son in particular. Quick's story is going to be interesting in pt. II and will hopefully give us some more insight into Duke and Vaughan's future.

A.E. Via is still a fairly new author in the beautiful gay erotic genre. Her writing embodies everything from spicy to scandalous. Her stories often include intriguing edges and twists that take readers to new, thought-provoking depths.

When she’s not clicking away at her laptop, she devotes herself to her family—a husband and four children, her two pets, a Maltese dog and her white Siamese cat, ELynn, named after the late, great gay romance author E. Lynn Harris.

While this is only her eighth novel, she has plenty more to come. So stalk her – she loves that - because the male on male action is just heating up!

Go to A.E. Via’s official website for more detailed information on how to contact her, follow her, or a sneak peek on upcoming work, free reads, and where she’ll appear next.

Connect with A.E.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Promises: Part 1 (Bounty Hunter #1) by A.E. Via to read and review for this tour.

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