I don’t read a lot of novella’s or short stories, but recently some of my favorites series have released some highly anticipated reads.
I decided that mini books should have mini reviews!
If you haven’t read any of these series, I highly recommend them.
I know I talked about how excited I was for these short stories, but I was most excited for The Summer Palace. This was the short story about Laurent and Damen, and (as cute as I thought Jord was and as much as I think Charls will be funny) getting that glimpse into Damen and Laurent’s life after Kings Rising is exactly what I was hoping for.
It was perfect. The story came full circle and past hurts were laid to rest. The men seem happy with each other, and that is exactly what I wanted for them. I particularly loved seeing Laurent live a life that made him happy. After everything he went through, after everything they both went through, I just want to see them happy.
Now there’s only one short story left, and then it’s time to say goodbye. Which is when I’ll be beginning my reread!
“Having made the decision to let Damen in, Laurent had not gone back on it. When the walls went up, it was with Damen inside them.”
I’ve been waiting so long for Josh Lanyon to write more stories, and then it was like one one swoop we got three! Even more exciting, we got a novella about Jake and Adrien, and we all thought that story was finally over. (After such a hard won battle. Those boys deserve it.)
I loved this holiday novella. Adrien and Jake went through so much angst and heartache, full of insecurities and hurt. They deserve to have a happily ever after ending, and I think that’s what So This is Christmas gave us. We were able to see Jake finally taking care of Adrien, lavishing all the love on him. Lanyon even showed us that despite everything working out, Jake still struggles with forgiving himself for the pain that he caused. I loved that he doubted himself, but Adrien didn’t doubt at all. He’d forgiven everything.
Even though things aren’t perfect, they’re both perfectly happy. That makes me perfectly happy too.
“I want you to know that I’m happy in a way I didn’t think was possible. Not for me. I didn’t think I’d ever have anything like this. I’m serious when I say if I ended tonight, I’d be sorry for what we won’t have, but what we did have these last months is worth a lifetime. I can’t put it into words, but that’s the truth. I would take these last six months with you over sixty years with anybody else.”
Renegade X is one of my favorite lesser known series. I love it so much, but the downside is that each new release takes so long to come out. Thank goodness that Ms Campbell gave us this brilliant short story to tide us over!
So, what I’ve always loved the most about Renegade X was the parallel with current events happening now. Renegade X puts a unique spin on the concept of someone being looked down on simply because of what they look like. Or in this case, simply because they’ve got that Villain’s V on their thumb. It’s extremely thought provoking.
In addition, I love the friendships that Damien has developed with people he wouldn’t have interacted with before. Particularly, I love his friendship with Riley Perkins, a ‘Hero’. The Haunting of Renegade X ties Damien’s present friendship with Riley to his past (unhealthy) relationship with his late ex-best friend Pete.
I can’t say much more, because it would spoil the series. I’ll just say, I loved it. It made the wait for another full length novel torturous!
“‘People are more than just a list of all the bad things they’ve done. We’ve been through a lot together and I’d like to think that counts for something.’
‘It does. But… you’re not mad?’
‘Who you were with Pete… It’s not who you are now. It’s not who you are with me. So maybe I’m still upset about some things, but the truth is, you’re my friend, and nothing that happened tonight is going to change that.'”