Mania and Mayhem by Penelope Rivers

Heat Level 3
SKU 978-0-3695-0735-8

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Ace would do anything to protect his daughter, Felicia. He lives his life for her and never found another lover after his divorce three years back. But when he goes to his favorite author’s book signing and the man drags him on an outing to get out of work, he feels things he’s never felt before.

Before Ace knows it, Milo has found a way into his heart—and into his bed. And Felicia loves him, too. But then Milo becomes distant and Ace learns that he’s sunk into the depressive part of his bipolar cycle. Ace realizes he has to be the first person to convince Milo he is worth loving anyway.

Be Warned: m/m sex


Milo leaned back enough to peer into his face. Their eyes locked and a crazed urge to kiss this man, touch this man, filled every cell of his body. So even with all the people watching, his mouth slammed over Milo’s. The other man’s lips were damp and salty and just so damn perfect. Since Milo didn’t move, Ace worried he’d misread the signs, that he’d just kissed another dude and was about to be punched. But then Milo kissed him back, digging his hand into his wet hair. Ace lapped the saltwater off of his lips and then demanded entrance into Milo’s mouth. He responded by opening the gates, and Ace explored every inch of him, even with half of him screaming, What the fuck are you doing? You’re with a guy. It was only when Milo nipped his bottom lip that he drew back, panting, well aware of all the eyes on him. But at that moment, the only eyes that mattered were Milo’s.

“Wow.” Milo put a hand on his arm, and his energy coursed through Ace. He wanted Milo to touch him everywhere, even though the thought confused him more than rocket science. “I wasn’t sure if I could get you to kiss me.”

What the hell is wrong with me? he wondered until Milo’s words sank in. Milo had wanted him to kiss him? “Wait, you wanted it?”

“What, do you think I run up to random dudes at book signings all the time?” For the first time, Milo’s face flushed, but it was gone again in seconds. “I was hoping it would turn into something.”

“I’m not gay,” Ace said, trying to convince himself as much as Milo.

“Sure, that’s okay.” Grinning, Milo ran his thumb along his lower lip, which was still damp from their kiss and the water. “The kiss was hot as hell, though.” Milo raked his hand through brown hair, making the strands go everywhere, but the just-fucked look made him hotter than ever. Damn it. “How about we take this back to my place? I won’t do anything you don’t want. I promise.”

His thoughts battled so hard like two avenging armies. The part of himself that was used to being the person everyone wanted to be was shrieking. Yet there was the side that was completely, hopelessly attracted to Milo with his sexy, messy hair, his fiery eyes, and his enthusiastic personality. And he also didn’t want to say good-bye to Milo yet. Yes, he dragged him along on his adventures, but there was something so sweet about the way he approached life. He didn’t love him or “like” like him, but he could see himself doing it.

And the only thing that scared him more than kissing him again was not kissing him again. So he said yes.

Product Reviews

Score: 5 out of 5 (based on 15 ratings)
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Written by Cynthia B on 5th Mar 2023

Ace has custody of his daughter because his wife is unfit. Milo is an mystery writer and has a secret. Milo meets Ace at a book signing and they start seeing each other until Milo ghosts him. The only way they might make it is if Milo lets Ace know his secret but he doesn't know if he can. I really enjoyed this book.

Lovely romance
Written by Janice W on 12th Jan 2023

Ace is a straight, divorced, single dad of a sweet eight year old daughter named Felicia. When he went to a book signing of his favorite author, he somehow ended up on a date with him. On the whirlwind date with Milo, he finds himself attracted to him and is talking to himself about what he is willing and wanting to do with the gorgeous Milo. Every time they kiss, Ace is the one initiating it. Ace is soon very comfortable in expressing all the ways he is attracted to Milo. Nothing worth keeping is ever easy, so you know that Ace and Milo’s relationship is a love for the ages. This is a bi awakening, which is my favorite trope. I loved how confident Ace grew with each encounter with Milo. I did not like the way Felicia’s mom treats her, so I was so glad when Ace does what he can to protect her from her mother. The author’s handling of Milo’s mental health issues was authentically depicted. And the way Ace handled the situation was just beautiful and so full of love and respect. The MC’s had a great connection and they had amazing chemistry. I received an ARC of this book and am voluntarily leaving a review.

Great book.
Written by Elaine G on 12th Jan 2023

Ace and Milo meet at Milo's book signing and you can see the attractions between them through their interactions. Milo is fun, outgoing, has a great personality but he's keeping something from Ace. Ace is more reserve, a single dad and will do anything for his daughter. The book is is sweet, funny, romantic, bisexual awakening, and I love how Milo's and Felice interact with each other. The author did a great job dealing with depression and mental disorders. Once I started reading this book I couldn't put it down.

Great read
Written by Kwallywoman on 12th Jan 2023

This was a really good read and the fact that it incorporated a mental illness made it even better. Shows how to people can deal with things when it starts to go wrong.

How deep is your love?
Written by C. B. on 12th Jan 2023

Ace is taking time for himself. He rarely indulges in self-care, but Milo is his favorite author. He was lucky his 8yo daughter, Felicia loved to read as much as he did. Then through a little subterfurge, he was on an adventure swept up by hurricane Milo. Ace is attracted and surprised, because yeah, he's hetero. They get to know each other and Ace is surprised Milo and Felicia get along well. Then Milo's secret is revealed and moment of truth time. How does Ace handle Milo's health problem? Do Felicia and Milo get along? Is Ace open to learning about himself? Milo's condition is handled with grace and dignity. Good story. Delightful characters. Great theme. Well done!

A mixed bag, with heart
Written by Laora on 12th Jan 2023

I liked the concept of this book and there were good parts to it, however the writing style, in my opinion let the book down. For instance the repetatieve mention of 'the other man' grated on my nerves and made me feel distanced from the story. The negativity of Ace his mother, whilst asking him to come back home, and her bond to Ace his estranged wife just felt to weird. On the other hand I treasured how fierce, protective and loyal Ace was towards his daughter once he really saw how damaging her mother was towards her. Milo was just the light she needed to feel. The author gives to me a very believable portray of Milo his manic behaviour and I loved how understanding and loving Ace was towards Milo once he understood what was going on and hoe he figured how James was gaslighting Milo, who trusted James fully. So all and all a mixed bag with potential so a just scraping in as a 4 * review.

Written by SMK9 on 12th Jan 2023

Boy does Milo have troubles. He is a successful author, but he has demons to deal with. In walks Ace to get a copy of Milo's new book signed. By chance, they wind up on a fake date and it all begins. This relationship has a lot going on for both of them and it takes patience and the tenderness of new feelings for each other to keep moving toward their HEA. It is hard fought, and they both deserve to be happy. I enjoyed even the hard parts of this book.

Good depiction of bipolar
Written by Emily G on 12th Jan 2023

I enjoyed reading Milo and Ace's story. They come together in an unlikely book signing meeting and find they are drawn to one another. Ace is a quiet and lonely soul while Milo is happy and upbeat. This is a bi-awakening and nice to see Ace accepting his awakening in stride. Milo has a darker side, one that he keeps hidden from his world of book fans, that is due to his bipolar disease. My favorite part of this book was how Ace fought to support Milo and be by his side when he knew he was needed. I won't give away any plot points or spoilers because those parts are best discovered on your own - I'll just saw that Milo needs the support of Ace more than he even realizes. All in all, a pretty good read coming in at 3.5/5 stars for me.

Good read
Written by Laura C on 12th Jan 2023

Milo has lived a life full of struggles dealing with his bipolar. When he meets Ace, and his daughter Felicia, his life is changed in a way he never expected. When Ace attends his favorite author's book signing, he never expects to go on the adventure that would change his life forever. A curveball is thrown into their romance when Milo falls into his depression. Can Ace show Milo that he is more than worthy of being loved?

Ace and Milo
Written by Ddee2 on 12th Jan 2023

Ace is a divorced father of 8 year old daughter Felicia. He went to a book signing by his favorite author, Milo Kuntz, and unexpectedly ends up spending the day with him. Although Ace is straight, there is an instant sexual attraction between the two. After spending the day together, the two plan a get together the next day which ends up including Felicia at the last minute. Felicia and Milo hit it off, and all is good with the 3 of them. After about a week of the relationship moving along, several complications arise: Stacy, the ex-wife; James, Milo’s PR man; Ace’s parents; and Milo’s depression. Ace tries to deal with these problems and find solutions, support his daughter, and deal with the frustrations and uncertainties of single parenthood, while still finding a way to keep Milo in his life, as he is not willing to let him go. Ace deals with the situations with compassion, understanding and a fierce protectiveness toward those he loves in an effort to make a family that includes Milo and hopefully find a HEA. Characters are interesting, easy to identify with Milo and his moods; Ace was the kind of person you would want as a friend or lover, compassionate, loyal, a good listener, empathetic, and protective, and Felicia showed more awareness than most 8 year olds I have known. This was a good read.

All the Man I Need
Written by rjreads on 19th Dec 2022

All the Man I Need When Ace meets his favorite author Milo, he's a goner! Wait? What? Yes, though Ace identifies as hetero, he acknowledges that his attraction to Milo is unexpected territory. Luckily, he doesn't run from his awakening and embraces the attraction and feelings Milo stirs within him. It all comes together when Milo meets Ace's daughter Felicia and they bond. Soon, besides his daughter, Milo is all Ace can think about and when Milo's secret threatens their new-found joy, Ace has decide to stay or run as far and as fast as he can. Read it!

Ace and Milo
Written by Hanna B on 19th Dec 2022

This book focuses on Ace and Milo. Ace is a single dad to an amazing little girl who is his whole world. When he goes to a book signing for his favorite author, Milo, he is surprised by the feelings that he invokes in him. The connection between the two of them is instant and intense. They both know there is something special between them but when Milo starts pulling away from Ace, Ace is heartbroken. When Ace finds out what is causing Milo to pull away and hide, he knows that what Milo has needed is someone for him to lean on and love him no matter what. I loved how Ace was there for Milo when he was drowning in darkness and did everything he could to support him and help him back into the light. This was my first read by this author and I was not disappointed. This was a great story that had my interest from the first sentence and did not let up until the very end.

Milo & Ace
Written by DLB2572 on 19th Dec 2022

This is one that I have rounded up from 3.5 stars. I enjoyed the story but it did take me a bit to get into the story.

Straight to gay via a book signing and stuff that happens
Written by Uccello on 19th Dec 2022

Mayhem and Mayhem is Ace’s and Milo’s story told from Ace’s perspective. Ace is a mailman and a single dad with an eight year old daughter and the ex-wife from hell who cannot stay away. Milo is an author of dark mysteries and thrillers with a mental health disorder which should be manageable. The two guys meet at a book signing and Milo gets Ace to agree to go for a drink with him as a ruse to escape the attention of Milo’s agent. Ace has always considered himself as straight but finds himself attracted by Milo on a number of levels. The story follows the two as they come to terms with each other’s baggage, the daughter not being part of any problem but the ex-wife is extreme excess baggage. This is a great story other than a few uncomfortable / inappropriate analogies early on. Thankfully these are soon left behind. The relationship is deep and meaningful and manages to weather some dire problems. A good read.

I loved it
Written by Nasra on 19th Dec 2022

First thing first the sense of humour in this book