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Phoenix

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Sometimes the end of everything… Now happily married to writer and producer Paul Marion Keane, television star J. Alex Cook’s life has been a fairytale of success and romance for years. But when an unexpected tragedy throws his and Paul’s social circle into chaos, the alumni of hit TV show The Fourth Estate are forced to pick up the creative pieces left behind. ...is just th Sometimes the end of everything… Now happily married to writer and producer Paul Marion Keane, television star J. Alex Cook’s life has been a fairytale of success and romance for years. But when an unexpected tragedy throws his and Paul’s social circle into chaos, the alumni of hit TV show The Fourth Estate are forced to pick up the creative pieces left behind. ...is just the beginning Confronted with his own mortality, Paul suggests he and Alex start a family. But figuring out what family means when your best friends’ polyamorous marriage may be melting down and you have Hollywood’s most malevolent fairy godmother to thank for your success is no easy proposition. As Alex questions whether anyone in a profession full of make believe can truly have fame, fortune, kids, and the happily ever after of their dreams, he sets out to take control of his own life and discover that the best love stories never truly end. Phoenix is Book 3 in the Love in Los Angeles series.


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Sometimes the end of everything… Now happily married to writer and producer Paul Marion Keane, television star J. Alex Cook’s life has been a fairytale of success and romance for years. But when an unexpected tragedy throws his and Paul’s social circle into chaos, the alumni of hit TV show The Fourth Estate are forced to pick up the creative pieces left behind. ...is just th Sometimes the end of everything… Now happily married to writer and producer Paul Marion Keane, television star J. Alex Cook’s life has been a fairytale of success and romance for years. But when an unexpected tragedy throws his and Paul’s social circle into chaos, the alumni of hit TV show The Fourth Estate are forced to pick up the creative pieces left behind. ...is just the beginning Confronted with his own mortality, Paul suggests he and Alex start a family. But figuring out what family means when your best friends’ polyamorous marriage may be melting down and you have Hollywood’s most malevolent fairy godmother to thank for your success is no easy proposition. As Alex questions whether anyone in a profession full of make believe can truly have fame, fortune, kids, and the happily ever after of their dreams, he sets out to take control of his own life and discover that the best love stories never truly end. Phoenix is Book 3 in the Love in Los Angeles series.

30 review for Phoenix

  1. 5 out of 5

    Crystal Lacy

    The blurb had me begin this book with a little trepidation, and the contents are, as usual, rather painful to read--but in a really good way? Maltese and McRae have managed to infuse their third book in this series with all the drama and reality that was present in the first two installments. I always feel, going in, that I'm going to get more than a romance when I read one of their books. This does mean that one ends up having to be in the mood for something heavier than some of the usual m/m r The blurb had me begin this book with a little trepidation, and the contents are, as usual, rather painful to read--but in a really good way? Maltese and McRae have managed to infuse their third book in this series with all the drama and reality that was present in the first two installments. I always feel, going in, that I'm going to get more than a romance when I read one of their books. This does mean that one ends up having to be in the mood for something heavier than some of the usual m/m romance fare, but there is definitely light and love at the end of that tunnel. If you're in for something light and happy, this isn't the book for you. If you don't mind delving into a bit of melancholy in exchange for some deep storytelling along with the romance, then maybe try this? Always a satisfying read. (If you haven't read the first two, I would recommend them first, since this follows an established couple as they work through an emotional upheaval together. There is a bundle! You should pick it up!)

  2. 4 out of 5

    Michelle Osgood

    I officially want every queer person I know to read this series. The horrible spoiler was something I didn't see coming in a million years--even knowing before I started reading that something tragic was going to happen. I was desperately unhappy about it, but as I kept reading I was slowly forced to accept the unimaginable. Though, for the record, I'm still pissed at the authors about it. I felt like I didn't get enough time with this frustrating and fascinating character, especially when it fe I officially want every queer person I know to read this series. The horrible spoiler was something I didn't see coming in a million years--even knowing before I started reading that something tragic was going to happen. I was desperately unhappy about it, but as I kept reading I was slowly forced to accept the unimaginable. Though, for the record, I'm still pissed at the authors about it. I felt like I didn't get enough time with this frustrating and fascinating character, especially when it felt like they were just beginning to be revealed to me in the series' second book. But oh, the things this series does with poly characters and relationships and families of choice! I know I'm repeating myself here, but representation matters and this series matters so, so much to me. The characters in these books are incredibly fucked up and flawed and human and real. There's an ugliness in this series that a lot of books shy away from, but Maltese and McRae aren't afraid to show us their characters at their most selfish and cruel. I love that, because it makes the moments when they shine that much more meaningful.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Maria Lima

    I almost didn't buy this particular series, because I'm not that interested in stories about actors/characters from Hollywood, etc., but it's Racheline Maltese and Erin McRae, and I love their works, so I took a chance. I am so very glad I did. Boy, are these characters Messed. Up. - and that's why I adore this series soooo much. It's great to read a book/series where every character has a complicated background and it's all intrinsic to the overarching story in a way that pulls you in as a reade I almost didn't buy this particular series, because I'm not that interested in stories about actors/characters from Hollywood, etc., but it's Racheline Maltese and Erin McRae, and I love their works, so I took a chance. I am so very glad I did. Boy, are these characters Messed. Up. - and that's why I adore this series soooo much. It's great to read a book/series where every character has a complicated background and it's all intrinsic to the overarching story in a way that pulls you in as a reader and doesn't let go until the final page. Excellent book and excellent sequel to the first two in the series.

  4. 4 out of 5

    SA

    This series is a super example of the blurb not matching the tone, plot, relationships, or intimacy of the actual story.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Shannon Brown

    As always with the books in this series, I appreciate the commitment to showing all kinds of love and relationships including, as the series spins on, all different kinds of ways to parent, which is much less common. There are two big spoilers that make it hard to discuss much without fear of ruining things for anyone else, but one is earth shattering for nearly every character and the other puts an interesting spin on some past (and present) events. But I loved getting to see new characters and As always with the books in this series, I appreciate the commitment to showing all kinds of love and relationships including, as the series spins on, all different kinds of ways to parent, which is much less common. There are two big spoilers that make it hard to discuss much without fear of ruining things for anyone else, but one is earth shattering for nearly every character and the other puts an interesting spin on some past (and present) events. But I loved getting to see new characters and new configurations of characters interacting, and how it all played out. I like the time jumps between books, which let things pick up with a totally different dynamic, but I do wish a few more details had been spelled out more clearly, including the new show and where its pseudo-villainous show runner fit into this world. I also feel that the sometimes too-analytical language can hold the reader at a distance and make it hard to feel things viscerally, but those are minor quibbles about a generally compelling series.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Becca

    Maltese and McRae have done it again. Phoenix is the third book in the Love in Los Angeles series and continues to follow the lives of Paul and Alex, Liam and Carly, Victor, and the others. Here, each couple is settled (or as settled as they can be) into married life, figuring out what it means to be a family and to create family. Each is also faced with a significant loss and abrupt shattering of their lives in ways they hadn't anticipated. The ways in which each of them adjust, grow, and gain Maltese and McRae have done it again. Phoenix is the third book in the Love in Los Angeles series and continues to follow the lives of Paul and Alex, Liam and Carly, Victor, and the others. Here, each couple is settled (or as settled as they can be) into married life, figuring out what it means to be a family and to create family. Each is also faced with a significant loss and abrupt shattering of their lives in ways they hadn't anticipated. The ways in which each of them adjust, grow, and gain more awareness is lovely and painful. This is my favorite book of the series so far. I adore Maltese's and McRae's narrative form and prose. The oft-times sparse prose balances out the overflowing responsibilities, the big-ness of fame, etc. of the characters' lives, highlighting even more dramatically what is unfolding. What initially hooked me was the realness of the characters, and that continues to be true, including the number of times I thought, "Paul, what were you thinking?!" I can't wait for book 4!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jude Sierra

    Maltese and McRae do a stellar job at turning the romance genre on its head with these books. There's romance and it's beautiful, compelling, painful and heart wrenching. You see it in many different forms between people, and I love that. That they've captured so well the complexity of people loving people in multitudes of ways. That they must constantly renegotiate how they love each other, can love each other, and maintain or evolve relationships after tragedy strikes -- is incredibly difficul Maltese and McRae do a stellar job at turning the romance genre on its head with these books. There's romance and it's beautiful, compelling, painful and heart wrenching. You see it in many different forms between people, and I love that. That they've captured so well the complexity of people loving people in multitudes of ways. That they must constantly renegotiate how they love each other, can love each other, and maintain or evolve relationships after tragedy strikes -- is incredibly difficult to pull of. And oh boy, did they ever. After how hard Doves was, subject matter wise, I wasn't sure what exactly to brace myself for with this one. It was heartbreaking, for sure, but not in the same way or with the same tone. Death as a story is fascinating to me. Watching the characters navigate the time after this person's death drives this book. Here we get to see how they struggle; some who do with growth that comes from processing and some who regress or stagnate. This requires complex relationship renegotiation and I thought that the authors handled this beautifully and skillfully.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    I have got used to the writing style more in this book. And I enjoyed it more. I think knowing the characters helps. This is the best of the series and I have enjoyed all the characters and how they intermingle with each other and lives are intertwined so well.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Claire Potterton

    Why are completely fucked up people so totally addictive??

  10. 4 out of 5

    Christine

    I continue to love this story. I cannot wait for the next installment.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Lizzie

    I love the characters and the stories but I find the writing style frustratingly sparse and obtuse. Also multiple uses of the prepositional because, which is fine for Tumblr but grating in a novel.

  12. 5 out of 5

    SB

  13. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

  14. 5 out of 5

    Marie

  15. 5 out of 5

    Anne Hill

  16. 5 out of 5

    Erin

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Cunningham

  18. 5 out of 5

    Anton Prosser

  19. 5 out of 5

    Bh913

  20. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

  21. 4 out of 5

    Skye Kilaen

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jenny

  23. 5 out of 5

    LEA

  24. 5 out of 5

    Gabija

  25. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

  26. 4 out of 5

    Tilly

  27. 4 out of 5

    Barbara

  28. 4 out of 5

    Kris

  29. 5 out of 5

    Trenna

  30. 5 out of 5

    amy

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