Rating: 4 stars out of 5
This story features Jesse, a young hooker who formerly worked in the Black Lounge with Nikko (Debt) and Randy, the vice cop who was undercover in that brothel. Get ready for a lot of angst! Jesse sees no way forward to funding his MBA, or even to pay for housing, without continuing to prostitute himself as an escort, occasionally even hooking on the streets.
In the meantime, Vice is cracking down on prostitution and Randy is disgusted by the entrapment stings he and his fellow cops are working. It takes him a while, but he realizes he’s now sympathetic to the plight of these young men who saw no way forward other than to sell their bodies. He and Jesse run into one another every so often, and over time, he realizes two things: one that Jesse may be still working as a prostitute, and two, that he is sexually attracted to a man—to Jesse.
There’s lots of introspection in the story, and there’s help from Randy’s neighbor, Owen, an older gay man (who I hope gets his own story some day!) and eventually, after a fun day spent together, Randy and Jesse have sex. And that changes things once again for Randy. But Jesse? Well, he chooses to run away rather than face Randy and the impossibility of them being together. Or is it impossible? This is KC Wells, after all, and this author knows how to weave a series of complex threads to make a beautiful romance tapestry.
For me, the best part of this book was the chase and the catch, when the two finally ended up in the same place—both geographical and head space. The early stages of the story were tense and full of angst and sometimes I enjoy that, sometimes not. I wasn’t in a good frame of mind for it this time so the early part affected me a bit too emotionally. The good news is I knew the author would bring me out of my funk and give me some happy times. And she did, indeed. These two men deserved their HEA and worked hard to get it. I highly recommend this book to those who love stories of star-crossed lovers.
The cover by Paul Richmond features a photo by Ethan James Photography that depicts a young blond man, his torso naked and arms curled back behind his head. It’s very definitely Jesse and is most certainly attractive.
Kindle Edition, 1st edition, 209 pages
Expected publication: April 23rd 2019 by Dreamspinner Press
Series Love, Unexpected #2