Rating: 5 stars out of 5
When Zack Jung’s AA sponsor and friend commits suicide, he’s desperate to hold it together, and there’s only one place he can turn. He calls Josh and Kris, and they take him back to their ranch outside Santa Fe.
A cowboy to the bone, Cimarron Duran cherishes his orderly life and routine. He likes his neighbors, Kris and Josh, but he has less than no interest in the hipster personal trainer who comes to stay with them—or at least, he plans to fight his interest in favor of his solitary life and his art.
But some things are as inevitable as the weather, and when Zack and Cimarron finally come together, they find they don’t want to let go. It won’t be easy, though, for two men with pasts like theirs to forge a happy future together.
When it comes to writing men fighting their demons, B.A. Tortuga is immediately that author whose characters come off as people leveled by life, wounded, and so believable that I expect to hear them cough and laugh and sometimes curse soundly right off the page or in my case my Kindle. Her stories… their stories are gritty, full of passion and fire, and yes, pain.
None of that is more true that Slip, the second in B.A. Tortuga’s Recovery series. The meaning of the title of the story isn’t clear until the very end. Oh but the getting there. The author takes us and her characters, Cimarron and Zack on quite the journey in Slip. It’s a revelation really because through her scenes with these hurting, damaged men we get to almost taste the rain, feel the biting cold, revel in the wildness of a primal dance, and feel the tug of not only passion but the healing nature of love that occurs over time through the relationship between Zack and Cimmaron.
From the amazing intimacy of the conversations that make us feel as though we’re standing in the room listening to something wonderful unfold to the flow of the narrative that seems as natural as the setting that surrounds the men themselves, we feel a part of this couple and their journey towards love and a home together. I became heavily invested in their future and their happiness because they felt so real.
There’s also the frank treatment of substance abuse here. How does a person live with the fact that he’s an alcoholic? How does one live with an alcoholic? The manner in which it’s folded into the story is perfect as well as realistic.
In short, I can’t rave enough about this story. From the superb characterizations to a romance that will ignite your senses to a love story that you’ll tuck into your heart…Slip is a story to remember. You don’t have to have read the first one in the series but it helps to give you a better knowledge of the people you meet here in this story. I highly recommend them all.
Cover art by Maria Fanning. Love the cover. Incorporates the right elements and does a nice job with the characters.