Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Raising the Bar by Leigh Dillon

Destin Bellingham has inherited a problem. Thanks to his late playboy father, Destin faces putting a For Sale sign on his family’s historic horse farm. Getting his talented stallion, Black Sambuca, into the Grand Prix show ring would put Bellmeade back on the map—if only someone could make “Sam” behave like a show horse.

Disgraced top rider Tonio Benedetto has his own problems, but he can work magic with difficult jumpers, so Destin hires him despite his bad-boy reputation. The street-smart, openly gay loudmouth from Miami and the closeted, buttoned-down son of Old Dominion Virginia make a rocky pairing, but time is running out to save Bellmeade from bankruptcy.

Opposites attract, sparks of tension grow into flames of passion. But if Tonio fails to tame Sam, will true love become a lost cause too?

States of Love: Stories of romance that span every corner of the United States.

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Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

I am really enjoying this series of novellas from a variety of talented authors. In this one we meet two men who have a mutual background in raising and riding horses, but very different views on their sexuality. As they have to work together to try and restore the fortunes of the Bellingham family and Bellmeade estate.

As Destin puts his faith in disgraced rider Tonio to tame his horse Black Sambuca, he also finds he may want to put his own happiness in Tonio's hands too. I loved the horse aspects, and the way the two men deal with the challenge of trusting each other is fascinating. I would happily have read much more about their newfound romance.

LEIGH DILLON is a native of horse-happy North Central Florida but has deep family roots in the Virginia and West Virginia areas. Coming of age in the dinosaur days of cable television, when fledgling channels filled their empty blocks of programming time by airing entire equestrian competitions, Leigh’s young brain became infected with a lifelong mania for show jumping, three-day eventing, and other exotic horse sports. Though tragically denied a pony of her own in childhood, Leigh has wreaked her revenge by including equine characters in almost everything she writes.

A bookbinder and librarian by trade, Leigh has also worked on local thoroughbred horse farms. Leigh’s short fiction has been featured twice in the Florida Writers Association annual story collection, and the Royal Palm Literary Award conferred Book of the Year honors on one of her book-length words in 2017. When not immersed in writing, creating, and curating books, Leigh maintains a backyard habitat for native bees and butterflies, with a special emphasis on growing milkweed to help maintain the population of monarch butterflies. Despite being in-town suburban, this habitat also plays host to frogs, opossums, raccoons, and the occasional urban armadillo, not to mention a dazzling array of birds. Leigh lives with one enormous black cat, two noisy parakeets, and her long-suffering mother.

You can keep up with her latest writing news and releases on her website.

Connect with Leigh

Facebook  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Raising the Bar (States of Love) by Leigh Dillon to read and review.

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