Series Review: Spectrum Nights by Melanie Hansen

piecesofme-f500Title: Pieces of Me (Spectrum Nights, #1)

Author: Melanie Hansen

Publisher: NineStar Press

Publishing Date: January 16, 2017

Genre: Contemporary, LGBTQ, MM Romance

Format: eBook, Print

Page/Word Count: 154 / 90,400

synopsis

Deep in the heart of the Florida Panhandle, Scott Ashworth’s bleak life stretches out before him with not much hope for the future. His hardscrabble days are brightened by the arrival of a new stepbrother, Rylan Mahoney, who quickly becomes the friend Scott so desperately needs. Their relationship has just started to deepen into more, when during the course of one terrible night, what Scott overhears sends him fleeing from his home, never to return.

Flash forward six years, and Scott is now the hottest club host on the Phoenix gay scene. He takes what he wants, does what he wants, and does whom he wants. It’s a good life, but the journey to local popularity and fame wasn’t an easy one. For all that Scott’s looks are a blessing, at the same time they’re a curse—the source of his alcoholic mother’s inexplicable hatred.

Rylan dreams of photojournalistic glory. He’s in Phoenix looking for the story of a lifetime, but the project isn’t coming to fruition. Needing rent money, he accepts a gig at Phoenix Pride hawking lewd lollipops and edible condoms…all while wearing gold lamé hot pants and a matching bow tie. When Rylan’s house keys and street clothes go missing after his shift, he’s desperate, until a stranger in a convertible stops to help.

The man is absolute sex on legs, and Rylan is jolted when he recognizes him—his stepbrother Scott Ashworth, long missing but suddenly larger than life. Reunited after six years apart, Scott and Rylan are determined to put their past behind them, but fate intervenes and leaves their future in jeopardy once again.

 

seemywords-f500Title: See My Words (Spectrum Nights, #2)

Author: Melanie Hansen

Publisher: NineStar Press

Publishing Date: April 24, 2017

Genre: Contemporary, LGBTQ, MM Romance

Format: eBook, Print

Page/Word Count: 272 / 101,300

synopsis

Successful underwear model Scott Ashworth is lucky—his attack at the hands of an unknown assailant will leave no visible scars. His professional goals are still within reach, and best of all, his stepbrother Rylan Mahoney is back in his life, their teenage infatuation at last getting the chance to deepen into something more.

Thrown together by the circumstances of Scott’s injury, Rylan’s long-dormant feelings for him are quickly rekindled, though he’s haunted by the memory of Scott’s disappearance on the night of his eighteenth birthday and the six missing years that followed. Rylan pushes Scott for the truth, a firm believer in the maxim that secrets lose their power once they’re shared—but resurrecting old demons almost always comes with a price.

Before Scott knows it, his life is spiraling out of control, his toxic insecurities welling up to threaten the fragile relationship he’s building with Rylan. Learning to let go of the past and believe in himself will be Scott’s greatest challenge, or else he risks losing Rylan forever this time.

 

Average Rating: 3.5 Stars

 


 

♦ Personal Thought ♦

“It is what it is.”

“Starts as we mean to go on.”

These were the mantra that kept been saying back and forth between the two MCs; and proven to be quite a mantra.

Pieces of Me and See My Words are part of Spectrum Nights series that told the most defining journey of Scott Ashworth and Rylan Mahoney’s life. Melanie Hansen wrote a blend of fun, sweet, touching, and heartrending stories that spanned over six to seven years of the characters’s life. These books brought connected stories that need to be read in consecutive order, largely due to the way Pieces of Me ended (if you haven’t read the book, be warned: it has a cliffhanger ending.

While I’m not much fan of YA stories (and tbh, I backtrack to read Pieces of Me first, after I realized the opening of See My Words made me feel like plunging into an ongoing narrative), the first book got me hooked from the get-go because of Rylan Mahoney. This shy, awkward, skinny kid was a lion in disguise with his pluck of simply being himself and loyal to his friends. I also loved him for his cheekiness, how he kept positive thought even on harrowing circumstances.

Also, though relationship between step-siblings was not particularly a taboo, it wasn’t usually something I’d pick. That they first met on their late teenage years helped a lot.

Both book told the stories from Scott’s and Rylan’s POV alternately, with Pieces of Me covered their hi-school years and the first time they reunited after years apart. The bulk of the sorrow in this book would have readers understand Scott’s insecurities better. Granted, I wasn’t too fond of Scott though I feel for him, what’s with constant mental abuse from his own nearest and dearest. It saddened me that his mother didn’t show any good trait up to the end. At the same time, I’m quite familiar with this sort of toxic behavior which why it gave pretty realistic vibe to the whole account.

I truly enjoyed Scott and Rylan’s budding friendship that developed into more in stages. See My Words more than made up for the romance that was only touch the surface of previous books. Plus, with the Spectrum club more prominent in See My Words, this book also had more steamy moments with quite graphic scenes between two or more characters.

I got to give it to this author over the way she played with reader’s emotions by throwing ugly facts of life, in between the character’s hopeful – and sometimes fun – journey. As book #2 reveal missing pieces of Scott’s life, I felt like whisking this boy away from all the added pain he had suffered. I liked when he prove to be equally strong and finally take charge to change his life, even at a cost.

In a nutshell, Spectrum Nights to me is a raw tale of two young men with intertwined fate. If nothing, this series poked on a number of issues we overlooked in real life. It didn’t necessarily tied all the loose ends for the characters, but the possibility for brighter future was there. And this what I wish so much for both young men after what they went through in their younger life! 🙂

Copy of this book is kindly provided by the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review.


Purchase link:

Pieces of Me

NineStar Press     Amazon       Barnes & Noble       Book Depository       Kobo       Smashwords

See My Words

NineStar Press       Amazon       Barnes & Noble       Kobo       Smashwords

NineStar Press

 

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