Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Bridge Sullivan, pickup man and best friend of Marty Fairgrave (Pickup Men) has a secret. He’s lusting after EMT Eric Palmer and the problem is that everyone, including Eric, thinks he’s straight. But Bridge knows his mind and his heart, and he’s kept his past experience with a man secret so it shouldn’t surprise him when his flirtations with Eric aren’t taken seriously.
Bridge is a nice guy—a great friend, sweet and helpful and always there when you need him—but he’s not gay and Eric has been burned much too often in the past to take a chance on a guy who might change his mind and want to go back to dating a woman. Eric is a New York City native, complete with a realistic accent thanks to narrator Dorian Bane, but he feels unworthy of love. His parents had put him in foster care when he was thirteen and told them he was gay; most foster parents wouldn’t keep him either, and then the two men he loved in the past dumped him—one of them for a woman. It’s no wonder he’s guarding his heart. And Bridge will break it for sure. That is something he’s betting on.
Against his better judgement, Eric agrees to go out with Bridge, but only as friends with benefits. No more. So when things get hot and heavy between them, and Bridge continues to tell him he wants to date and get close to him, Eric bolts. Though he doesn’t want to lose them, he leaves the close friends he’s made in the rodeo circuit. He also leaves the man he cares about because he feels he needs to go now before the pain is too great. Of course, he then finds out that the pain is already too great. Will he man-up and go back? Will Bridge come looking for him? Or will the two “let it ride”?
I enjoyed this story, and I think it may be partly because the potential between Bridge and Eric was there and intrigued me in the previous story, and it’s partly due to the narration of Dorian Bane. I actually didn’t care for the voice he gave Bridge, but I was impressed by the vast difference in the two voices of the MCs and the variety of secondary character voices, all of which were different and distinctive. And that’s the bottom line for me—how well did the narrator handle the narration and vocalization of the story. So kudos to the narrator and kudos to LC Chase for a great story. Yes, I wanted to smack Eric upside the head quite a few times because his “poor me” litany wears a little thin, but in his case, with his history, it’s a reasonable reaction. I had to stay awake last night to finish the story because sleeping while the romance was still in doubt just wasn’t happening for me. So thanks for the HEA, Ms. Chase!
Though part of a series, Let It Ride can be read as a standalone. This is a wonderful MM story for readers who like a little NYC spice with their cowboys, GFY or men new to gay sex, virgins(!), hurt-comfort, and a delightful cast of secondary characters.
Cover Art by L.C. Chase features a close-up of a handsome, young cowboy, complete with large black cowboy hat. There’s a bronco rider in the background, symbolizing the rodeo in which this MC is a pickup man—a very fitting cover for this story.
5 hrs 32 mins
Audible Audio, 6 pages
Published February 10th 2016 by Riptide Publishing (first published May 25th 2014)
Original TitleLet it Ride
SeriesPickup Men #2
Literary AwardsEPIC (Eppie) Award (2015), Contemporary Romance, Bisexual Book Award Nominee (2015)