BOOK REVIEW: Spread the Love anthology by YLVA Publishing

I recently downloaded several Ylva Publishing stories on free promotion from their website, because I didn’t have enough books and stories already to read. (Yeah, I’m giving myself the side-eye. It’s ridiculous.)

As part of two challenges – #ReadMyOwnDamnBooks & The Literary Others – I decided to make my way through as many print and electronic LGBTQ+/SAGA/queer books as possible this month. Technically, this one doesn’t count for #RMODB, but anything I can do to lighten my book load in time to get more books is okay by me.

cover of Spread the Love lesfic short fiction anthology by YLVA

Book Description

“Learning to Ride” by Fletcher DeLancey
They say that riding a bike is as easy as falling in love: you never really forget how. Or is it the other way around?

“Spider Lines” by Lois Cloarec Hart
Kris loves Sandy, her workaholic partner of 14 years, but lately she’s been feeling lonely and neglected. A trip to a local gym inspires Kris to take up climbing, both as a fitness challenge and as a way to feel again the passion that her long-term relationship seems to have lost. With a fit young teacher eager to impart the benefit of her experience, will Kris’ new-found ardour for the sport extend to her climbing instructor?

“Black and Blue” by Erzabet Bishop
How long do you wait for the one you love?
Book store manager Julie has a problem. Day after day and shift after shift, she obsesses about the gorgeous woman who frequents her store and soon worms her way into her heart. But can Julie wait for Grace to see her as more than just a friend?
Grace is fighting for her life. Cancer and an abusive boyfriend drive her to the bookstore for escape, where she meets Julie. The two form a friendship based on love and support, but soon Grace has to make a choice. Will she live the life she is meant to live, or will she let the threat of domestic violence kill her before her cancer has a chance to?

“Soft Hands and Hard Hats” by JL Merrow
When first-time potholer Han takes a trip down Yorkshire’s Gaping Gill, she doesn’t expect to be hit by a crippling attack of claustrophobia—or to meet a dark-skinned beauty in a hard hat who’s more than willing to hold her hand.
Experienced caver Kim may seem calm and collected in the pitch-black underground, but it turns out she’s got fears of her own. Maybe, though, two can be braver than one.

“Touch of the Traakyn” by Sandra Barret
Reconstructive surgery gave space marine Jolyne cyber prosthetics controlled by the latest neural implants, but it will take more to make her whole again.

“Red Hot Neighbour” by T.M. Croke
In a maze of moving boxes and warm memories, Peyton flashes back to the day her neighbour, Lillian, came into her home and her life, bringing her an apple pie and leaving with her heart.

“Smoke and Swans” by Alisha Kelley
Sarah lives a carefree life of casual hook-ups and free caffeine. That is until she meets Josie, a shy, intriguing young woman with a hidden passion that piques her curiosity.

My Rating

I loved most of these stories. There are sweet ones, sexy ones, and some that break your heart – but they all end on a hopeful note, which I liked. I’m definitely going to be watching for more from some of these authors.

I give this anthology four of five stars.


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