- File Size: 943 KB
- Print Length: 433 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: Pink Kayak Press, LLC (November 15, 2014)
- Publication Date: November 15, 2014
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00PPC8F8M
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #666,572 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
|Print List Price:||$10.99|
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Winter Rain (Love in the Rain Book 2) Kindle Edition
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1) you get to give yourself a little treat
2) unlike some treats (I am thinking of you, double fudge brownies!), this book leaves you feeling more secure and strong and sexy when you are done
3) all proceeds benefit a fabulous organization that benefits women who are suffering this holiday season and all year round.
4) it does all of the above for only $4. And you can reread it any time.
So, off the top of my head, before I convince myself I can’t write a fitting review for this wonderful story, these are my impressions of “Behind the Mask.”
Beautiful word imagery. Well, of course, what else? It’s *Alexis Hall*, people. But, that said, this story is a bit of a departure from what we've come to expect from this author. A story told in a more staccato style than we are used to. Also, in the third person. Also, with an alternating point of view. Also, in the present tense. So yeah, it’s a little different.
And it all works, perfectly.
"Behind the Mask" reads almost like a play, a screen-play perhaps. Fitting, as one main character is an actor and much of the story a bravura performance. It's all snappy dialogue and narration that is almost reminiscent of stage direction. The action even plays out, rather brilliantly, in my opinion, against a backdrop of old movie sets. To paraphrase a quote from the story: “It’s theater”. Not of the absurd, but of the utmost significance.
On the surface, “Behind the Mask” is a story about super-heroes & super-villains. The characters are painted in vivid, comic-book colors: Our hero, The Ghost, in black & white, like the stark conception of good and evil you except to find in this sort of thing. His over-the-top arch-nemesis, Masquerade, in his crimson & gold. Evil minions swarming about. It’s so easy to picture it all, in your mind’s eye, like something out of the “Dark Knight” movies. Shadowy, atmospheric sets, echoing voice-overs, the characters dashing across the tops of the buildings, wheeling through the night in perfectly choreographed fight scenes, the appropriate music pounding in the background. Much of the dialogue, too, is stylized comic-book-ese, intentionally and deliciously melodramatic, the villain arch, mocking, hammy, a little camp, the hero . . . er . . . heroic and deadly earnest, as in this exchange:
“My dear Ghost.” Masquerade presses a hand to his heart. “We really must work on our banter.”
“I won’t let you hurt these people.”
“I know. It’s so terribly tiresome.”
“It ends here, Masquerade.”
“Every ending is a beginning.”
Please excuse me while I pause here, for just a moment, to say: “Squeee!” ;-)
If this was all this story was, it would still be fantastic, an amusing homage & send-up all-in-one, of the genre it apes, fun & funny & full of action and great characters, particularly the superbly entertaining Masquerade.
But of course it’s really not a story about that at all. The title tells you what it *is* about. What lies *behind* the mask. The things we are afraid to show, to be, to feel. Maybe to even *know*, about ourselves. And about the difference one person can make. One person to come looking for us when we disappear. One person to not give up. One person to care enough to pull out all the stops when it counts. One person, just one, to see, not that face we present to the world, but the real, flawed, broken human we really are, and find us, nonetheless, valuable and beautiful and lovable.
Obviously, I loved this story.
I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the stories in this anthology soon. If it’s anything like its predecessor, Summer Rain, I think I’m in for a treat :-)
Oh, & as always, my usual caveat that I’m a fan & friend of this author, so feel free to give that fact whatever weight you feel is appropriate as regards this review.
Dream by Delphine Dryden
I don't enjoy 1st person tales, but Ms. Dryden had me ROFL with her humor. She starts with Robin's dream of an elephant playing a harmonica & the tune is "DELIVERANCE" & just kept PILING ON the laughter! Not my cuppa tea writing style, but I was asked for my honest opinion, so Ms. Dryden gets my score of 2 finger up & 8 toes for her HILARIOUSNESS GALORE!
Sales Tax Not Included by Inara Scott
Nash grew up on the RICHIE side if Rowenna, NC & pixie sized Chloe calls herself the white trash of town. Can "warm honey" Nash make spiked hair, non perfect & high school dropout Chloe believe that they can make one another their BEST? With some cleansing RAIN, you out never know! Ms. Scott's squeaky clean tale is about 2 opposites making an unbelievable connection, but I am a sucker for a hilarious tale of an unconventional couple, so she gets my score of 3 fingers up & 8 toes for her quickie!
Exposure by Serena Bell
Poor Jenny posted a NAUGHTY tweet & has been hiding in the woods ever since. Beck has always been in love with Jenny, but never confessed, so when her parents beg him (an almost couselor) to get their baby back from Timbuktu, he goes. He gets a wet NEKKID "ran out of battered for her vibrator" Jenny, a rain storm & warmth for survival & Jenny gets her much girlie parts very happy, a delayed orgasm & a wilderness love connection & they both get acceptance. Ms. Bell wrote her "AA BATTERIES REQUIRED" quickie is 1st person which isn't my cuppa tea, but her laugh a minute style saved this read for me & she gets my score of 2 fingers & 7 toes.
Sand Dollar Cinderella by Amber Lin
Poor Jaime has been smothered by her older brother & her past selfie mistakes & Ky is an ex soldier looking to put down roots in his hometown. Jamie's brother's BF has always been her secret crush, so when she is ready to unleash her inner BAD GIRL with a sexy red dress & cash her virginity check, who better than Ky to give her the 1st taste of Wham, Bam, Thank you ma'am! Ms. Lin popped more than 1 cherry in this UNDIES SCORCHING quickie & totally EARNS my top score of 5 fingers up & 10 toes for this FORBIDDEN FRUIT SYNDROME romance.
Behind the Mask by Alexis Hall
This quickie has 2 masked figures. the Masquerade & the Ghost. Both could be called heroes or villains, but they hide in plain sight. This was a slight gay romance, but mostly, with the rain falling over them, they earned 100% ACCEPTANCE. Now gay romance isn't my thing, but Ms. Hall used her males to show all that no matter who you are or what you love ACCEPTANCE is the greatest thing that one can give ALL & deserves my score of 3 & 8 toes just for that message!
Spice & Sand by Suleikha Synder
Ms. Snyder quickie is all about meddling Gods, lost & found soulmates, sexy dancing, jamming tunes & mythical NAUGHTINESS , plus she tosses all together with Hindu spices to create a twisted fairytale. Ms. Snyder gets my score of 3 fingers up & 6 toes for this far east flavored romance.
Remembering Yesterday by Stacy Reid
Ava was in a terrible car accident & lost the last 12 months of her life. She is the daughter of the town's richest family & when she see a amazing a$$ in a diner, her mind goes on overdrive as it's flooded with past NAUGHTY memories starring Mr. Specular A$$. Who is he, but the returning son of the town's dead drink or white trash as her daddy says. Can white trash claim his Princess forever? Anything can happen when the RENEWING RAIN falls. First, I have to state that Ava is a heroine who shares my own CRAVINGS for a SPECTACULAR A$$, so now to my thoughts. Now Ms. Reid is the author who asked me to review this ARC & I fell in love with her writing with her historical masterpieces, so I was humbled by her request. She always makes me smile, giggle, cry really UGLY cry, makes my pleasure center shiver & quiver & makes my FURRY reading buddy aka my furry blankie give me the evil eyeball or the angry CLAWS! Ms. Reid gets my top score of 5 fingers up & 10 toes for this fight for true love quickie & I can't wait to read the other BAD BOY Calhouns' stories!
Sometimes It Storm by Cole McKade
Ethan believes he is a damaged, disgusting & ugly soul & Aurelia suffered as a child, but she overcame it. When Ethan sees her, she is SWEET FIRE & prays she can cleanse his past sins. A heart wrenching quickie that makes this statement so true. "NO MATTERS HOW DARK IT IS THERE IS ALWAYS A ITSY BITSY LIGHT, BUT YOU HAVE TO WANT TO GRAB IT!" I am a romance sexist & don't normally enjoy male romance writers, but Mr. McKade WOWED & AWED me with this romance of FLAWED characters that need 1 another. He gets my top score of 5 fingers up & 10 toes for a tale that had tears running down my face, pulling out my dented pompoms & cheering for the glorious & so deserving healing!
Need by Tamsen Parker
Ryn (love her name) has a happy life, but craves a good man. Sam is a good ole boy farmer who calls his mom about his great dates. Opposites attract in this quickie tale written in 1st person, but Ms. Parker writes with hilariousness GALORE & has fast paced dialogue, quirky sayings & biting NAUGHTINESS, so even thou 1st person writing isn't my cuppa tea, she gets my score of 2 fingers up & 8 toes.
ARC given for my honest review.
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Winter Rain is the second anthology of short stories published by Pink Kayak press benefiting RAINN. I read and reviewed Summer Rain earlier this year.Read more
Full disclosure. I’m an unabashed fan girl for all things Cole McCade. I’ve been enjoying his twitter company for almost a year now.Read more