Seeking M/M romance recs for Ham/mukah

It’s that time of year again. Yup, it’s the worst named and most absurdly conceived “holiday” since Festivus. It’s HAM/MUKAH!!!!

Every December, I try to read some non-hetero romance. My goal is to read 8 novellas, novels or short stories, and post reviews for eight days. I’ve never actually managed all eight days (I think I did 6 last year), but it’s worth the attempt for the great recs and great reads.

I’m trying to get an early start since I will away — far away — on vacation pretty much the entirety of Hanukkah, which begins at sundown on December 20.

So, have you read any great m/m in 2011? Care to share?

Thanks! And, if you celebrate, HAPPY THANKSGIVING!



24 responses

  1. Eight? I’m not sure what you’ve already read, but here ya go:

    Bear, Otter, and The Kid – TJ Klune
    Something Like Summer – Jay Bell
    Promises – Marie Sexton
    Life Lessons – Kaje Harper
    Dirty Kiss – Rhys Ford
    Come Unto These Yellow Sands – Josh Lanyon
    Scorpion – Aleksandr Voinov
    The Cranberry Hush – Ben Monopoli
    According to Hoyle – Abigail Roux
    Hammer & Air – Amy Lane

    Okay, that’s 10, but they are all, in my opinion, the best of the best and all pretty different from each other. Oh and the list is assuming you’ve already read the Adrien English series by Josh Lanyon and the Cut & Run series by Roux & Urban, of course :)


  2. I also enjoyed Come Unto These Yellow Sands by Josh was recommended as my gateway Josh by Sunita and others at Dear Author.

    Muscling Through by J.L. Merrow was a novella I really enjoyed and I now have Wight Mischief waiting on the Kindle.

    I will be watching the responses to add my list. Happy Thanksgiving to all.


  3. The only Gold – Tamara Allen
    Muscling Through – JL Merrow
    Visible Friend – KZ Snow

    Not 2011, but I highly recommend the “Fun with Dick and Shane” trilogy by Gillibran Brown, and anything by Gin Hale, “Wicked Gentlemen” especially


  4. If you’re going to do one story a day, then short is good; So here’s a list of shorter stuff that is worth a second look (if you haven’t seen them; these are not necessarily 2011 releases):

    Talker by Amy Lane
    Desert Falcon by Feliz Faber
    One More Soldier by Marie Sexton (warning – not HEA; you will cry)
    Gambling on Maybe by Fae Sutherland
    If it Ain’t Love by Tamara Allen
    Sleepwalker by Jordan Castillo Price
    Kiss and Tell by Cherie Noel (m/m/m)

    Cris’s novel list hit many of my recent favorites; any of them would be good. (For Amy Lane, I would add The Locker Room or Truth in the Dark.)


  5. Some of the good M/M I’ve read this year:

    Jay Bell Something Like Summer
    Josh Lanyon Mommy Dearest. (I recommend everything by Josh Lanyon, but chose this one for you because it is a stand-alone (so far), amusing, and a quick read.)

    A few good British-set books:

    Harper Fox A Midwinter Prince
    Josephine Myles Barging In
    J.L. Merrow Muscling Through
    Alex Beecroft By Honor Betrayed

    Finally, a classic which is worth reading any year!

    Steve Kluger Almost Like Being in Love


  6. Here are some I’ve recently enjoyed-

    Unnatural Selection by Ann Somerville
    Mongrel by K.Z. Snow
    This Rough Magic by Josh Lanyon
    How to Keep the Love of your Life by Maureen Willman
    Windows in Time by Jules Aedin
    Trinity Trespass by Val Kovalin


  7. I agree with everyone above me! Anything by J.L. Merrow, Jordan Castillo Price, Harper Fox and Alex Beecroft should be a great choice and they all have lots of novellas and short stories. The best part is that they write in a variety of subgenres: paranormal, historical, contemporary, so you won’t get bored! Happy Ham/Mukah! Can’t wait to see your picks!


  8. Knight Errant by KD Sarge
    Bob the Book by David Pratt
    The Usual Apocalypse by Christine Price (you do not need to read the first book to enjoy this book)
    Among the Living (PsyCop #1) by Jordan Castillo Price (actually, I recommend the entire series – they get better as they go, too)
    The Angel of 13th Street by Eden Winters
    Private Dicks by Katie Allen
    Life Lessons by Kaje Harper
    Barging In by Josephine Myles
    Static by LA Witt
    Dance With Me by Heidi Cullinan
    Highway Man by Eden Winters


  9. These are not listed in in any particular order – just as I thought of them. They are all books I have read this year and enjoyed. I am not saying they are all five star reads but they are the books that have lingered for me and because I am seeking out non-alpha leads. A number of these books have heroes with disabilities or who create agency to enable their lives in non-traditional (i.e. alpha-male) ways. I haven’t read the new Alex Beecroft but have heard good things.

    In Jordan Castillo Price’s Petit Mort’s series of novella’s read #10 ‘Wishink Well’. It is set in a hospice. All the Petit Mort novella’s stand alone but if you read them all a picture of Chance and his purpose is building up as the series goes on. Anything by JCP is good and I would highly recommend the psycops books too.

    ‘Urban Shaman’ by Lyn Gala (novel length)

    ‘Muscling Through’ by JL Merrow (novella)

    ‘Goldilocks and his three bears’ by AM Riley (short novel with BDSM)

    ‘Scorpion’ by Aleks Voinov (short novel in a fantasy world with warring city states)

    ‘Dance with me’ by Heidi Cullinan (novel)

    Amy Lane’s three ‘Talker’ novellas and/or the novel ‘Clear Water’

    ‘If it Aint Love’ by Tamara Alan set in the Great Depression (short story)

    ‘Captain Harding’s Six-Day’ War by Elliott Mackle is about the lives of American soldiers on the air base in Tripoli in 1966 (novel and probably gay literature rather than m/m so lots of sex and only a hint of HFN)

    ‘Coyote’s Creed’ by Vaughn Demont is a UF story with strong romantic elements but not a romance. I loved the world building and that the heroes agency lies in his ability to make friends and outhink (con) everyone (long novel though)

    ‘Simple Treasures’ by Alan Chin (novella) would be interesting to read along with ‘Muscling Through’ because both have similarly non-traditional heroes

    Happy HaM/Mukah


  10. HOT HEAD by Damon Suede.
    I *finally* started the Jordan Castillo Price PsyCops series and it’s brilliant.
    I JUST PLAY ONE ON TV by A.L. Turner.
    Anything by J.L. Merrow, esp. PRICKS AND PRAGMATISM (short) and MUSCLING THROUGH (just a bit longer, but not WIGHT MISCHIEF–m/m gothic.
    MASTER CLASS by Rachel Haimowitz — heavy BDSM, short, but VERY good.
    *Anything* by Ava March — most of her stuff is shorter, all of it historical, very angsty, very good.

    Carina has “Men Under the Mistletoe”: 4 shorts, all brilliantly good. The Lanyon, IMO, is the weakest. Amazingly good and they can count as four different stories! :)

    Have fun!


  11. I adore K.A. Mitchell. Her Bad Company. I also love her Custom Ride and Hot ticket short stories. Improper Holiday is a Christmas themed historical short from her. My favorite K.A. Mitchell is Diving in Deep which is also a quick read, but longer than her novellas.

    I loved Damon Suede’s Hot Head but it is a bit on the long side and a bit slow going in places (in a good way–lots of angst).

    I just finished L.A. Witt’s new contemporary The Closer You Get–it’s a fun spin on the reformed rake meets virgin trope. My favorite from her is 9/10 of the law.

    My all-time-favorite M/M is Marie Sexton’s Promises. ADORE. It starts a series set in the same area/circle of friends. A-to-Z stands well on its own and is a quick read–bit longer than a novella, but still awesome. Her Sinners & Saints release this year shows the evolution of her voice, and has all sorts of angst. Loved it.

    I also enjoyed James Buchanan’s Hard Fall and Spin Out, but they get slow in places with police stuff, which might not be the best for your quick reading glom.

    The M. Jules Aedin novella length Windows in Time had a neat 1940s sub plot/mystery. Pretty tame heat wise and not particularly graphic (about on par with category romance).

    Recently discovered J.L. Merrow and agree heartily with all the recommendations for Muscling Through–it’s fast, pretty short and fun. I also adored her Pricks & Pragmatism (possibly even more than Muscling Through–loved the cheeky, 1st person narrator here)–it’s another short & quick read from her.

    If you want a super short, Chris Owen’s Carbon & Ash is an unusual friends to lovers that manages to pack deep characters into just 26 pages. Loved. Also loved her Prove It–bit longer but still relatively short. Quick fun read. Both of hers are also lighter on the graphic love scenes if that appeals to you.


  12. Second, third, and fourth Chris Owen’s Carbon and Ash. One of my favorite favorite of all time. Brilliant. And short. :)


  13. YAY! Nothing I like better than introducing other readers to the crack that is Marie Sexton. And if she’s crack, K.A. Mitchell is my heroin. Been wandering the street muttering to myself about when Bad Boyfriend releases . . . (And this from a woman who read M/m/ for the first time this may :))


  14. Well, 2011 has been the year of M/M for me since I got my Kindle. Seconding many other commenters, if you’re going to read 8 novellas, I’d suggest you try to fit in at least one by each of the following :

    1. Josh Lanyon (Come Unto is pretty much a novel – if you’re looking for novella length I’d recommend Critics Choice, Out of the Blue or In Sunshine and In Shadow)

    2. Alex Beecroft – her novella By Honor Betrayed is just out and excellent

    3. J L Merrow’s Muscling Through is indeed great – though on the longer side.

    4. Harper Fox (I’ve read three full length novels but I know she has a novella I’ve not read – Nine Lights over Edinburgh)

    5. Jordan Castillo Price – I too was blown away by Wishink Well and since it features a terminally ill hero coming to terms with his reality, you may find this one interesting. I thought it about often in the weeks following reading it.

    Actually, there’s a fab sounding antho coming out this week with novellas by Lanyon, Fox, KA Mitchell and Ava March that would net you half your planned 8 reads.


  15. I really like just about everything by Z.A. Maxfield; my favorites are Crossing Borders and Jacob’s Ladder (Jacob’s Ladder is one of a series, but can be read stand-alone). In Crossing Borders, Tristan’s exploration of the possibility that he might be gay and his reaction to realizing, after the best sex of his life, that he really is, is both funny and touching.

    I third or fourth the recommendations of Muscling Through and basically anything by Harper Fox.


  16. Just read the list of 100 best GLBTQ books of 2011 recommended by authors of GLBTQ books and two genre books romance readers are likely to know have been mentioned. Harper Fox’ “Life after Joe” rates a mention as does the m/m genre in the rec also Jacqueline Carey’s “Santa Olivia” YA which has a Lesbian heroine

    The book with the most mentions is Bob Smith’s “Remembrance of Things I Forgot” guy goes back in time to prevent George W. Bush from becoming president and encounters his own younger self

    The Best LGBT Books of 2011: 92 Authors Select Their Favorites


  17. I have just finished Sarah Black’s “Marathon Cowboys” novella which I just love:

    ….Jesse Clayton loves painting, his cowboy grandfather, and his life as an artist with a wild abandon that leaves scorch marks on everything he touches. Budding Navajo cartoonist Lorenzo Maryboy is a hard-working former Marine: staunch, brave, and honorable. Chance brings them together on the road to Marathon, Texas, and passion flares. Just as always, Jesse puts his art ahead of everything. He betrays their growing trust, and that Lorenzo can’t forgive. But Jesse’s found something he loves more than his art, and what he does to win Lorenzo’s forgiveness is far more dangerous than either man understands.


  18. This year I read the Cut & Run series and Caught Running by Madeleine Urban & Abigail Roux. I highly recommend all of them. Each of the (currently 4) Cut & Run books were quick reads for me (under a day) and I loved them. I’ve reread the series twice now. Caught Running I’ve read 3 times so far and I still enjoy it.


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