Monday, September 19, 2016

Release Day Review: OUT OF MY MIND (Browerton University #3) by A.J. Truman (Reviews + Excerpt)

Series: Browerton University #3
Author: A.J. Truman
Publisher: Self-published
Publication date: 9/19/16
Word Count: 68,000
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Mac had to be out of his mind.

Completely out of his ever-loving mind to even consider rooming with Gideon. The same guy he kissed during his freshman year who said he was straight. He’s held Mac’s mind hostage for the last two years after running out that one special night. Mac was a fan of social experiments, and this one was going to be a doozy.

Gideon doesn’t sweat anything. He was always two lies ahead of everyone. A master at spinning rock solid alibis to protect the house of cards that was his life. To Browerton University, he’s the popular guy getting over a breakup. To his family…the dutiful & responsible son. But rooming with Mac was bringing up old memories and forming new ones. First, a friendship develops, and then a late night infused with alcohol pushes them into uncharted, benefits-laden waters.

As their sexual experimentation continues, and the lies add up, both of them fight to withstand the feelings growing between them, feelings that could ruin their friendship and topple Gideon’s house of cards for good.

Out of My Mind is the 3rd book in the Browerton University series, but can be read as a standalone. It contains humor, heart, and hot guys. This book is intended for readers 18+.
Excerpt (673 Words)

Gideon didn’t like to call himself a neat freak. He merely believed that a clean living space was the key to a good life. How could a person achieve success in the world when where he lived was in disarray?
Mac was the one who called him a neat freak.
            “You are,” Mac said as he was pouring himself a bowl of Raisin Bran for dinner. Mac ate cereal for dinner, and lunch, and breakfast. Could he not rotate in some canned soup or Chef Boyardee?
            “There’s nothing freaky about wanting to have a clean apartment. You need to respect your shared living space.”
            “You sound like an RA.” Mac poured milk in his cereal. Drops splattered against the flakes and onto the counter. “I’ll try harder.”
            “You said that two days ago. You’re still on trial here.”
            “Where’s my lawyer?” Mac smiled at his joke. “I will take care of the sun room. I just got distracted with classes starting. This weekend, though.”
            Gideon didn’t believe him for a second. “How did you survive with your past roommates in the dorm?”
            “I kept my mess to my half of the room, which I’m doing here.”
            “But I can still see it. The sun porch looks like an episode of Hoarders. Your pile of shit is on the verge of collapsing. It’s not just there. You can’t leave the kitchen a mess. We don’t want to get ants.” Gideon pointed his head at the milk droplets.
            “For real?” Mac asked.
Gideon nodded yes.
“Man, you run a tight ship.” Mac whipped off his T-shirt, exposing a smooth chest rippling with muscles. Gideon cut his eyes to the floor and focused full-throttle on the specks of dust on the tiles.
He pulled the dishrag off the oven handle. “Use this!”
“This is easier.” Mac’s arm muscles jumped around as he wiped up his mess. He left his T-shirt in a ball on the counter.
“Are you going to get a new shirt?”
“Nah. It’s a white T-shirt. The milk blends right in.” Mac gave him a knowing smirk and shoveled a mountain of cereal into his mouth.
Gideon didn’t know why that threw him off so much, why it made it so hard to breathe for a moment. It was just a shock. No warning. Then, bam! Shirtless! Perhaps he wasn’t expecting Mac to be so jacked. Pittsburgh did a body good.   Gideon was regretting this two-week trial already.
            “I thought gay guys were supposed to be super clean.”
            “And I thought straight guys were supposed to be slobs.”
            Gideon cocked an eyebrow. Touché. He checked the time on the microwave.
            “I have to get ready.”
            “Hot date?” Mac asked.
            “Cool,” Mac said. He seemed surprised, and maybe a touch sad, to be right.
            “I’m kidding. We’re throwing a party for new students at Hillel tonight.”
            “Sounds familiar. Don’t give any naïve freshmen the wrong idea.”
            “I’m laughing on the inside.” Gideon entered the solace of his clean bedroom with a new bed, washed sheets, and clothes that were folded or hung up. He changed into a navy blue button-down shirt with the sleeves rolled up, khaki shorts, and boat shoes. He went into the bathroom to get his puff of hair just right and spritz on cologne.
“Stop being awkward,” he whispered to himself.
He returned to the kitchen, where Mac was finishing up the last bits of his dinner. Still shirtless.
            “I’ll be back later.” Gideon froze in place. Heat strangled his neck.
Did Mac just check me out? 
He felt Mac’s eyes travel up and down his body for a split-second. It was so quick, and Mac was back to munching on his cereal, but Gideon caught it. He had given girls the onceover plenty of times. He knew what he saw. He wondered how much times that had happened over the past week. Gideon found himself puffing out his chest.
And did I like it?
“Make sure you put your spoon and bowl in the dishwasher when you’re done.”

5 Stars

*copy provided by author/publisher and in exchange for an honest review*

Mac and Gideon meet at a party their first night away from home at college. They hit it off immediately and spend the night talking and flirting or at least Mac thinks they are flirting, but after a kiss, Gideon informs Mac that he's straight and takes off. Fast forward two years, and after being dumped by his girlfriend he was supposed to be moving in with, Gideon is looking for a Roommate. After being dumped by his boyfriend, Mac is left looking for a place to live. When Mac shows up at Gideon's front door, can they put the past behind them and live together in harmony? 

This was a great book, definitely the best and my favorite in the series so far. I loved Mac from the very first page of the book. Even with everything he's been through, he is still strong enough to be himself. Caring, sweet, funny, friendly and open. Gideon, well, I really didn't care for him at first, but once he opens up and is honest with not only Mac, but himself, as well, he jumps in with both feet and was an amazing character, also. 

Mac and Gideon shared an undeniable chemistry and a love you could feel coming off the pages at you. The story is well-written and flows well, in fact, I find each book gets better and better as A.J. Improves as a writer. I adored the secondary characters of Delia and Seth, they were great friends and supporters of Mac and Gideon. 

This was an enjoyable book packed with emotion and heart. A.J. took me on an emotional rollercoaster of pain, guilt and heartache, but also sweetness, romance, hot sex and most of all love!! Highly recommended!! 

*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie in exchange for a fair and honest review. *** Two years ago Mac kissed Gideon after getting some mixed signals and then got told he was out of his mind when he asked Gideon if they could still be friends. Now, Gideon has recently broken up with his girlfriend and needs a roommate, and Mac needs a place to live in. While they didn't end things on good terms before, both of them agree on a trial run. Mac is not exactly the cleanest of guys and Gideon loves order, but somehow they make it work and while Gideon insists that he's straight, there's a spark between them, a spark that threatens to turn into a conflagration when Gideon kisses Mac this time around. There's a lot going on in Mac's life, though, what with his estrangement from his parents and his aunt's sudden illness and Gideon's isn't a walk in the park either, what with having to become a liar extraordinaire to keep his mother happy. Mac and Gideon's attraction grows, but is Gideon willing to actually admit to his feelings or will he keep hiding behind all his lies? I'm not sure if I was especially sensitive while reading this book or something, what I can say is that it's been a good while since I cried so much with a story, in this case, with Mac's story. There was something about it that just made him relatable and all that he went through made me emotional. So yes, I guess it's safe to say Mac was my favorite character in this particular book and the rest of the series. He was sweet, charismatic and had this underlying strength to him that I found endearing. It took me longer to warm up to Gideon, actually, up until around 60% of the book, I mostly wanted to slap him silly for behaving the way he did. He had been lying for so long, that he almost believed the lies himself, but once he actually accepted the truth, well, he completely embraced it and made me fall for him. I wasn't too sure about Mac's parents, either, but A.J. Truman did a very believable job at redeeming them in my eyes. As secondary characters go, Delia and Seth were outstanding, supporting without being overwhelming, and it was lovely reading their story developing in the background. All in all, this was a very emotional read for me, so I'd suggest keeping the tissues nearby just in case. It was an amazing book, fast-paced and well-written, with lovable characters that showed a great growth throughout the story. Very recommendable! 5 Stars!!!

A.J. Truman remembers his college days like it was yesterday, even though it was definitely not yesterday. He writes books with humor, heart, and hot guys. What else does a story need? He loves spending time with his pets and his husband and writing on his sun porch. You can find him on Facebook or at

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