Jake Moore’s world fits too tightly around him. Every penny he makes as a welder goes to care for his dying father, an abusive, controlling man who’s the only family Jake has left. Because of a promise to his dead mother, Jake resists his desire for other men, but it leaves him consumed by darkness.
It takes all of Dallas Yates’s imagination to see the possibilities in the fatigued Art Deco building on the WeHo’s outskirts, but what seals the deal is a shy smile from the handsome metal worker across the street. Their friendship deepens while Dallas peels back the hardened layers strangling Jake’s soul. It’s easy to love the artistic, sweet man hidden behind Jake’s shattered exterior, but Dallas knows Jake needs to first learn to love himself.
When Jake’s world crumbles, he reaches for Dallas, the man he’s learned to lean on. It’s only a matter of time before he’s left to drift in a life he never wanted to lead and while he wants more, Jake’s past haunts him, making him doubt he’s worth the love Dallas is so desperate to give him.
Jake has noticed Dallas before he starts working for him but Jake would never think of making a move on him. Jake is deeply in the closet and struggling with a background of severe childhood abuse, current depression and he’s caregiving for his horrible father.
As the two men start to work together Dallas quells his attraction to Jake because he realizes what Jake really needs is a friend. What follows is a very touching slow burn romance.
The romance was really believable in this because there was no magic solution that was provided due to them falling in love. They’re friends for months first. Jake goes to therapy and puts the work in. They talk and communicate over everything. Then they proceed with their relationship. I loved the fact that the author did it this way.
I thought the writing was good and I loved the character development. I felt a great connection between the two men, and I as a reader was connected to their story. I also enjoyed the side characters and they roles they played.
If you’ve read this author before you know that most of her stories contain a mystery, often a murder, and the investigation is part of the plot. This was different and focused on the relationship. It was probably her most contemporary romance to date.
There are some heavy scenes in this book and it might not be for everyone. Nothing is graphic but note this if you have triggers with stories about severe depression, child abuse or domestic violence.
For all other readers though, I highly recommend this. I enjoyed it a lot.
Published April 10th 2017 by Dreamspinner Press LLC (first published March 17th 2017)