This anthology is part of a charity project to help celebrate International Take A Chance Day. Seventeen authors came together to write stories outside their comfort zones to explore gender and sexuality aspects that span the whole spectrum and genres from contemporary to sci fi to paranormal and relationships of all kinds, and with all proceeds going to the AIDS Healthcare Foundation.
As in all anthologies there are stories you enjoy more than others, but all were very well written and added something unique. My favorites were Desert Knight by D.G. Carothers, Alien Attraction by Gianni Holmes, The Twilight Hours by KC Luck, Always and Only You by Claire Marta and Abrianna Denae and The Sweetest Ache by Bretton Sans.
Desert Knight by D.G. Carothers was a sweet sci fi story containing intelligent species of all shapes, cuddle parties and a very sexy lavender skinned male with boundary issues who the space PI Tekken Mcallister can’t help falling in love with when helping him find his missing uncle and stumbling into a case of futuristic sex trafficking. Very unique but so adorable!
Alien Attraction by Gianni Holmes was another unique but adorable story about true love defying all obstacles, when an alien prince finds his chosen one in a human man and ends up fighting for his inter-species love story and the life of his unborn children.
In The Twilight Hours by KC Luck we returned to earth again in a story about how it’s never too late to find love and happiness when 60+ women Helen and Mel meets by chance at a remote campground.
Always and Only You by Claire Marta and Abrianna Denae was my absolute favorite of all the stories. It was such a gripping and heartfelt story about a lost love and second chances when Dallas comes back as a transgender man to the only boy he’s ever loved, but who he couldn’t be with until he finally was his true self. It was so raw and authentic in the way Dallas had to feel at home in his own body before he could meet Ward again. It was so beautiful about souls understanding each other, about the chemistry between Dallas and Ward and about the two of them being soul mates not because they were perfect but because their combined flaws pieced them together.
The Sweetest Ache by Bretton Sans was another gorgeous second chance romance. The Summer after high school, Travis kissed his best friend Spencer, but the next week he left for an LDS Church mission and never pretended it happened. Ten years later, he returns as a famous musician, finally out and ready for a relationship. Despite his fear of getting heart-broken all over again, Spencer agrees to go for a hike with Travis. I really loved this low-angst romance and the cute bantering between Travis and Spencer, but also the vulnerability and the sweetness between the two of them exploring what they could have had already ten years ago, if Church and other people’s opinions hadn’t stopped them.
Some of the stories were perhaps a little too much out of my comfort zone, and the anthology as a whole was a bit long; the stories were all a bit longer than usual and added up to a quite massive read in total. But all in all, I recommend this anthology with all my heart! It’s such a unique collection of amazing stories all showing in different ways that love truly is love and doesn’t see any gender, race or sexuality!
Thank you to Gay Book Promotions for the blog tour invitation for this wonderful book! All opinions are my own and I am leaving my honest review voluntarily.
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All 1 Star 2 Stars 3 Stars 4 Stars 5 Stars Abbi Glines Abdi Nazemian Adam Silvera Adib Khorram Aiden Thomas Aisha Saeed Aislinn Brophy AJ Collins Alexandra Christo Alex Beltran Alexene Farol Follmuth Alexis Hall Alex Kelly Alex Sanchez Alice Dolman Alice Oseman Ali Hazelwood Alison Cochrun Al Riske Alwyn Hamilton Amanda Ferreira A. Meredith Walters Amy Aislin Amy Harmon Amy S. Foster Amy Spalding André Aciman Andy V Roamer Angie Thomas Annabeth Albert A. Poland Ashley Poston Ashley Woodfolk Ashlyn Kane Audrey Coulthurst Ban Gilmartin Becca Fitzpatrick Becky Albertalli Benjamin Alire Saenz Beth Bolden Bill Konigsberg B.L. Maxwell Briar Prescott Bri Spicer Brooke Skipstone Cale Dietrich Cara Dee Casey McQuiston Cassandra Clare C.F. White C.G. Drews Charlie Adhara Charli Meadows Chasten Buttigieg Chris Bedell Christina Lauren Ciara Smyth Clarissa Pattern C.L. Beaumont Colette Davison Colleen Hoover Courtney Kae Crystal Frasier C.S. Pacat Dallas Smith Daven McQueen David Biddle David Yoon Dean Atta Debbie McGowan Debbie Rigaud Debbie Schrack Deborah Harkness Delia Owens D.G. Carothers Dhonielle Clayton D.N. Bryn Douglas Stuart Dustin Thao Elisa A. Bonnin Elizabeth Acevedo Elizabeth Arroyo Elle Kennedy Elle Wright E.L. Massey E. Lockhart Emery Lee Emily M. Danforth Emily Mims Erin Watt Ernest Cline Evan J. Corbin Eve Morton Everina Maxwell Evie Dunmore Felice Stevens F.T. Lukens Grace Williams Gwen Martin Hannah Grace Hanya Yanagihara Hayden Stone Heather Truett H.E. Edgmon Hettie Bell Holly Black Hope Irving H.S. Valley Hudson Lin Ingrid Sterling Jacqueline Lee Jacqueline Woodson James L. Sutter Jamie Deacon Jandy Nelson Jax Calder Jay Hogan Jeanette Winterson Jeff Zentner Jen Bailey Jenna Evans Welch Jenn Burke Jennifer E. Smith Jennifer G. Edelson Jennifer Gilmore Jennifer Iacopelli Jennifer Kropf Jennifer Niven Jenny Downham Jenny Han Jeremy Ray Jesse H. Reign Joelle Lynne John Green Jonny Garza Villa Julianne Donaldson Julian Winters Kacen Callender Kami Garcia Kara Leigh Miller Kasie West Kate Larkindale Katharine McGee Kathleen Mareé Kathy Anderson KD Casey Kendall Grey Kevin Van Whye Kiley Reid Kim Fielding Kim Holden Kim Liggett Kitty Bardot Kris Ripper K.S. Marsden Laura Hall Laura Pavlov Laura Silverman Lauren James Lauren Shippen Laurie Frankel Leah Johnson Lee Matthew Goldberg Leigh Bardugo Leylah Attar Lisa Henry Lisa Williamson Lisa Wingate Liv Rancourt Liz Plum Lola Noire Lynn Michaels Mackenzi Lee Madeline Miller Magdalena Di Sotru Maggie Doolin Maggie Stiefvater Malin Persson Giolito Malorie Blackman Margaret Stohl Marie Lu Mary E. Pearson Mason Deaver Matthew R. Corr Melina Marchetta Meredith Russo Miel Moreland Mila Gray Miranda Kenneally Moa Backe Astot Morgan James M. Tasia Nancy Garden Natalie Haynes Nathaniel Shea Nicholas Sparks Nicola Yoon Nic Starr Nic Stone Nina Kenwood Nita Tyndall Nora Sakavic N.R. Walker Nyla K. Owen Lach Penny Aimes Phil Stamper Quinn Anderson Rachael Brownell Rachael Lippincott Rachel Hawkins Racquel Marie Rainbow Rowell Ray Stoeve Renée Dahlia Rhiannon Wilde Riley Hart River Braun Roan Parrish Robin Gow Roseanne A. Brown Rowan MacKemsley Ruby Moone Ruta Sepetys Ryan La Sala Sally Green Sally Rooney Sarah J. Maas Sarah Waters Sarina Bowen Sasha Laurens Saundra Mitchell Saxon James Serena Bell Shannon O’Connor Sidney Bell Simone Elkeles Siryn Sueng Sophia DeRise Sophia Soames Sophie Gonzales S.R. Lane Stephen Chbosky Stephenie Meyer Steven Salvatore Susan Mac Nicol Suzanne Collins Tahereh Mafi Tal Bauer Tamara Girardi Taylor Jenkins Reid Teagan Hunter Terry J. Benton-Walker Tiffany D. Jackson Timothy Janovsky T.J. Klune T.L. Bradford Tobly McSmith Tomasz Jedrowski Tomi Adeyemi Tracy Deonn Tucker Shaw Val Wise Veronica Rossi Veronica Roth V.E. Schwab Wesley Chu Victor Dixen Victoria Aveyard V.L. Stuart Xan Van Rooyen Yamile Saied Méndez