I like romance and boys loving boys in my books.
You can also find me on my main blog.
I was mightily impressed with the writing in this book. It's like with every book this author releases, the writing gets better.
I also was mightily impressed that such difficult topics as PTSD and psychological trauma were handled with realism, insight, and depth.
Jay is the new guy at a factory, having recently moved to town. He never stays long in one place, preferring to run when the going gets tough, always trying to escape the memories of the past that are still haunting him.
Reese is the supervisor at the factory, and annoyed with Jay's being prone to temper tantrums. He sees that the tough guy persona Jay shows to the world isn't what's beneath the shell, and when Jay gets himself into trouble on the factory floor, Reese lays down the law, but gives him another chance.
See, Jay reminds Reese of someone he used to know, someone he couldn't save, someone who saw too much and never got help to learn to live after traumatic experiences in war zones.
Shortly after Reese has a come-to-Jesus meeting with Jay, a loud noise sends Reese into a PTSD tailspin, and Jay instinctively knows how to protect the other man. And then educates himself on the topic.
Their physical attraction is fiery, and they burn up the sheets. The bedroom is also initially where they are fully equal, not boss and employee, but simply two men scratching an itch. Well, at least at first it's just an itch. And then it becomes much more. Which is of course what I expected.
However, their ultimate happy ending, as promised in the blurb, is not something that comes easy. The men have to fight for it, find compromises, realize that a strong connection such as theirs doesn't come along all that often, and that they're worth fighting for. They have to overcome their personal demons, and the author did a fantastic job describing their struggles, and making me root for them both. With each setback, with each insecurity raising its ugly head, I watched them push forward and fight to get what they want, while I was cheering them on. Neither one gave up, even when it sometimes seemed easier to let go than keep holding on.
I really liked how the author allowed each man to find his stride, how both Reese and Jay grow (and in Jay's case, grow up) in realistic increments as the book progresses, and how sometimes the goal is reached with two steps forward, and one step back. The fact that the book is written in the first person present tense also really helps the reader feel as if we are right in the middle of their developing relationship, and really conveys the emotional aspects of this love story.
This was the best book I've read by this author thus far, and I am definitely looking forward to more.
** I received a free copy of this book from its author. A positive review was not promised in return. **