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Spark & Blaze

A Guns & Hoses Novel
Narrated by: Maxwell Palmer
Series: Guns & Hoses, Book 3
Length: 8 hrs and 14 mins
Categories: Fiction, Gay & Lesbian
3.5 out of 5 stars (3 ratings)

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Summary

Brett Malone has been working for Tampa Fire Department for over three years and the last thing he needs or wants is a rookie who can't follow orders on a scene. He doesn't need to be attracted to the rookie either, especially since his closet door at work is firmly welded shut.

All Evan Carmichael ever wanted to be was a fireman. He graduated top of his class at the Fire Academy, but nothing he learned there prepared him for the harsh reality of the job. Back to back shifts of one trauma call after another send him quickly to his breaking point.

Thankfully, support from his co-workers and the attention from the one fireman he thought hated him, helps him survive his first few brutal shifts. However, it's attention of another sort that he may not survive at all.

This book contains M/M sexual situations and is intended for listeners of legal age in the country in which they reside.

©2016 Wench Publishing, Inc. (P)2017 Wench Publishing, Inc.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Cranky Reader
  • Cranky Reader
  • 11-05-20

Passes the time, friendly secondary characters

Style note: Point of view shifts with each speaker. I’m used to POV being fixed within scenes & changing at scene breaks. Once I figured out the headhopping, things made more sense. This style was consistent throughout.

Evan is a rookie knowitall who doesn’t listen to expert advice. Brett is a closeted gay man who isn’t friendly. Evan stubbornly remains a knowitall who thinks he has to be macho to appear manly while, refreshingly, has no hangups about suddenly going gay for a grumpy coworker. So while there’s a bunch of unnecessary toxic masculinity that springs up around “being able to handle himself”, none from Evan’s side is about being gay, mostly because he likes dancing at clubs.

Brett is closeted for no reason disclosed to the reader. He has out gay coworkers who become friends (he gets friendlier). He gets panic attacks thinking about coming out, but not when he runs into burning buildings apparently. He’s super in touch when dealing with on the job feelings and, well, totally closeted about personal feelings. Except for his cat. He has a good relationship with his cat. The cat, so far as I know, never gets harmed. I admit, I barely listened to the last 30 min because it failed to hold my attention so I might have missed a late snuggle with the cat but Brett is gone from home & injured and the cat just vanishes from the story. If the reason for the panic attacks is given, I missed it.

There are some nice secondary characters who keep an eye on each other emotionally, which saves the book. There’s some ableist nonsense midway (feeling invulnerable) which is annoying.

Minor spoiler: There’s another storycrafting issue aside from forgetting the cat and Evan failing to grow emotionally. It’s why I rated ithe story 2 stars instead on 3. The problem is the stalker is not a character we meet before the reveal. Any good mystery writer knows that there has to be some setup early enough that the reader has met the whole cast before the reveal & this doesn’t happen. It was nice that no one we like from the story is evil, but it’s unsatisfying. Again, I kind of skimmed the last half hour of the story. I tried to rewind to catch this but my attention kept drifting.

Steam: Med-Hot, explicit m/m sex on page. Odd mix of well done and not quite right. Would have excused some of the oddness because it was kind of hot until the guys tried to get it on right after a bullet wound. 🙄

Narration: The narration was good enough to make me hang in on an otherwise flawed story. There were fire sound effects between scenes. It wasn’t a bad idea but sounded a bit more ominous than most of the story felt before the stalker plot got going.

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Profile Image for Fiaerfly
  • Fiaerfly
  • 25-01-20

Overall enjoyed the performance

Overall I enjoyed this audiobook. The one thing that decreased my enjoyment of the book was the repetitive nature of Brett's statements about the inside of his closet. I enjoyed the relationship between Brett and Evan and am definitely interested in reading more in this series.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • alias11
  • 18-01-20

Steamy first-time/gay-for-you theme

I enjoyed this audiobook overall, although the narration could use a little work. The narrator starts out sounding very stiff and detached, making me think I wouldn't be able to get into the story. He does better when he is voicing the characters, than when he is just describing what is going on. By the second chapter, he started to sound more natural. After that, I got into the story and didn't pay much attention to the delivery.

One thing I really liked was the realistic portrayal of the firehouse and the reactions that result after a hard shift or a bad outcome. It's not all dreams and rainbows, and the guys have to learn how to cope. The characters in this book are funny, snarky, and sexy. I especially loved the club dancing scenes. They really sounded hot and I could envision the scene. There are a lot of things going on in this story, including fears of coming out, confusing feelings of attraction, mysterious messages, drama, danger, and eventually arson. All in all, an entertaining listen.

I received a complimentary copy of this audiobook at my request from the author, narrator, or publisher and am voluntarily leaving this honest review

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Profile Image for MelRose@BlueRoseAudiobookReview
  • MelRose@BlueRoseAudiobookReview
  • 30-12-19

Hot and yummy!

Review by Mel
Genre: LGBTQIA, M/M, Romance

3.5 to 4 Blue Roses

4.5 Blue Flames

Narrator Maxwell Palmer blandly delivered a blazing hot firemen romance. His performance left room for improvement around his character differentiables.

It was difficult to listen to the dialogues between the men, but as soon as I got engulfed into the content of the book itself, the hot as fuck drama, I forgot to judge the lack of emotional input and drifted off listening to erotic scenes unfolding. The scene in the club with Evan dancing brought back so many memories. Me, myself and the I used to be the first on the dancefloor and the last ones to leave. Sexy dance moments aside, I also enjoyed some very funny moments as well. I did enjoy the audiobook so much I will listen to the rest of the series.

I do recommend this audiobook if you like hot fireman, who love other hot firemen.

Happy Listening

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Profile Image for Courtney @ Audiobook Obsession
  • Courtney @ Audiobook Obsession
  • 29-12-19

Awesome M/M

I really liked this story! I’m a huge fan girl for “gay for you” romance and this is a good one. Plus, hot firefighters! The narration was great and super hot! I’ll be looking for more from this author and narrator.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • tashamays
  • 22-02-19

Too many closet references

I almost gave up on this book because the reference to “the closet” was repeated on so often.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Shay
  • Shay
  • 16-08-18

I won't say it's bad, but it's not good.

I enjoyed the first two books in the series, but this one is really lacking (editing, continuity). One issue is in the flashback of Brett & T 's hookup they were both adamantly Tops but they found other ways to fool around, and now a year later it's reiterated over and over that Brett's preference has always been to bottom? Also, Brett & Evan are newly in love, yet Evan - the "straight" guy - is starting to lust after Tig (his friend's bf)? Maybe it's a setup for a future book in which the two couples become a foursome. (Hard pass for me, thanks) And the stalker bit (the only reason I didn't DNF) was anticlimactic. Meh.