Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
Sometimes holding on means letting go .
After giving up on his career as a country singer in Nashville, Christopher Ryder is happy enough performing at the Smoky Mountain Dreams theme park in Tennessee. But while his beloved Gran loves him the way he is, Christopher feels painfully invisible to everyone else. Even when he’s center stage he aches for someone to see the real him. Bisexual Jesse Birch has no room in his life for dating. Raising two kids and fighting with family after a tragic accident took his children’s mother; he doesn’t want more than an occasional hook-up. He sure as hell doesn’t want to fall hard for his favorite local singer, but when Christopher walks into his jewelry studio, Jesse hears a new song in his heart.
I liked it. I didn’t love it; I did feel like it’s missing that usual Leta Blake spark. I must reiterate I love Leta Blake; both of her previous books are 5 star reads for me. The sex was scorching hot. The romance wasn’t an issue at all. She definitely knows how to write those scenes perfectly. That pearls scene had me panting through it. It was so raw, and gritty. You can definitely feel what Chris feels during that scene. I might need to borrow that idea someday. Thanks Leta for that inspiration. 😀
While I found the romance and sex scenes great; I found the rest of it to be sub par at best. I really think all the time she took on the description of the setting was so time consuming, that it dragged the story out.. I got so confused by the earliest meeting of Chris and Jesse going through the park descriptions that it took away from most of my concentration of the story. I had to keep pushing to continue on as I found myself wanting to put it down around 30%. It was going so extremely slow.
Both characters had good qualities I liked and bad. Chris was easy to like. He was so “go with the flow”. I loved that he just wanted to be loved and have a family and possibly his family to spend holidays with. I liked that Jesse overcame a lot of things from his earlier childhood to become a stronger person. He was a firecracker as a teenager, and I really liked his relationship with his in laws a ton. I can’t say much without you guys figuring things out.
Another think that got under my skin was the parents, and again I don’t know what it’s like to be gay or come out of the closet. So I don’t know those feelings but I do know I won’t be abused for anyone mother, father, sister, or brother. Chris was a grown man and has to deal with that every holiday. No one was on his side but his brother in law and how long did that take. I hate his mother, she doesn’t deserve him. What makes a man put up with that?
I just couldn’t deal with the same issues throughout the book. To me acceptance is a theme in this book, so why do parents feel the need to use God as a scapegoat to disown or abuse them? When a mother gives birth to a child, I was lead to believe that they would care for them unconditionally. Yes, I understand you don’t like it, but they are still your children. What does him loving a man in his bedroom have to do with you loving him?
I do love children themed stories; I find them to be more realistic fiction which I adore. With reading books involving children, I like that the author doesn’t make everything rainbows and butterflies. L.B. did something good for me; she had one child disliking Chris from the beginning. I really enjoyed that, what kids are just going to be accepting? It’s confusing and scary and I totally get. I liked this book, it wasn’t L.B’s best in my opinion but I did enjoy it.
Cover Design by Dar Albert at Wicked Smart Designs. I think the cover was okay, I couldn’t picture either one of them being Jesse or Chris. It might just be me, but they both seem to be manly man which I enjoyed reading about. By manly, I mean the beards, Henley, jeans, sweaters and boots. I would have preferred those items on the cover.
eBook, 424 pages
Published November 14, 2014 by Leta Blake Books
Edition Language: English