Sins of Autumn anthology by DJ Manly, AJ Llewellyn and Serena Yates

Title: Sins of Autumn

Author: D.J. Manly,  A.J. Llewellyn, Serena Yates

Series: The Seven Deadly Sins

Genre: M/M contemporary

ISBN: 978-0-85715-775-1

Publisher: Total-E-Bound Publishing (November 7, 2011)

Format/length: ebook 463 KB

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥3Hearts

Reviewer: Artemis

From the Publisher:   The Sins of Autumn weaves a general thread of revelation loosely tying these tales together. Wrath, gluttony and pride are explored in these hot m/m tales involving action, burning hot sex and out-of-this-world adventures that will leave you hoping for cooler weather—soon!

About the Authors:

D.J. Manly:   I write not only for my own pleasure, but for the pleasure of my readers. I can’t remember a time in my life when I haven’t written and told stories. When I’m not writing, I’m dreaming about writing, doing something wild and adventurous, or trying to make the world a better and more open-minded place to live in.

A.J. Llewellyn:   A.J. Llewellyn lives in California, but dreams of living in Hawaii. Frequent trips to all the islands, bags of Kona coffee in the fridge and a healthy collection of Hawaiian records keep this writer refueled

Serena Yates:   I’m a night owl who starts writing when everyone else in my time zone is asleep. I’ve loved reading all my life and spent most of my childhood with my nose buried in a book. Although I always wanted to be a writer, financial independence came first. Twenty-some years and a successful business career later I took some online writing classes and never looked back.

My Review:   The first book of this anthology really grabbed me right from the start. In Hail Storm by D.J.Manly, Chance and his friends absolutely worship the rock band Hail Storm and form a tribute band in their honor. Chance doesn’t realize that he has a connection to the lead singer until they meet face to face. It turns out that Hail, the lead singer, is actually Chance’s brother and the two quickly form quite a deep bond. A little thing like falling in love with the same guy (Storm, a key member of the band) might just tear them apart.

From the very beginning of this book, I could feel the hormonal angst of a young guy and his passionate obsession with his favorite rock band. There is a lot of hero-worship going on and he cannot believe it when Hail tells him they are really brothers. Chance is torn between the loyalty he feels towards his brother and the deep feelings he develops for Storm. Hail is obsessed with Storm and Chance knows that by falling in love with him, he will bring Hail’s wrath down on both of them.

I loved the way the author portrayed the conflict in this story. Hail gives Chance everything…opening his home to him and helping him achieve his own success, but in return Chance falls in love with the man Hail wanted to claim as his own. There was no malice involved, just circumstance, and as the pages turned and the conflict was resolved I had to smile at how right things ended up in the end.

The second book of this anthology, Full by A.J.Llewellyn didn’t grab me quite like the first one did. Barney Calloway is an extremely overweight voice over actor in Hollywood. He has struggled with his weight his whole life and after a particularly embarrassing party mishap he finds a business card tucked under his windshield wiper saying one word. Full. On the back is a phone number (which he calls) and miraculously the next morning he wakes up at his ideal weight. Family members and old flames react oddly to the new Barney and he isn’t sure that being overweight was really his only problem.

The message that the author portrays here is a powerful one….our happiness cannot be achieved by being physically perfect. Barney is overweight at the beginning, yes, but after the weight comes off, he starts to realize that maybe he had a ‘fuller’ life than he thought he did. While I liked the story, I think the writing was a bit choppy. I would have liked for the pace of the story to slow down a bit, maybe have the author pick a few key characters to focus on, and still keep the same storyline. Great message, though and one Barney finally understood in the end.

In Autumn Quest by Serena Yates there is a parchment thief stealing books and scrolls from the Royal Library and he must be stopped. The Khan decides to put his youngest son, Bayar, in charge of solving the mystery of the thief’s identity. Bayer chooses an assistant…Chinux, a bounty hunter…to help him in this quest.

The contrast between the scholarly Bayer and the rough and tumble bounty hunter is quite evident. Even though Bayer should be in charge (being royalty and all), it is clearly Chinux that is leading this expedition. They are shocked to learn the true identity of the thief, but their combined strengths and talents allow them to overcome evil in the end. There is a nice bit of adventure, intrigue, and passion all wrapped up in this story. These two characters really complement each other well and I was rooting for them to not only find the thief, but maybe find a life together in the end as well.

Overall, the Sins of Autumn Anthology is a nice collection of stories that illustrate the sins of wrath, gluttony, and pride and how passion can play a part in all of them.


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