This story blew me away.
It’s probably the most anguished, low-angst read I’ve ever encountered. It might sound contradictory, because it is. But also, it isn’t. This story was all the emotion, all the time. But it never reached the level where I started to cry. I didn’t even come close. And still, there were all these feels.
It had me mesmerized.
Synopsis: Daniel is very much the city-boy. He’s also tough and snarky, and managed to put himself through college despite his abusive and homophobic family. When he lands a job as a college professor in the small town of Holiday, he sees it as a temporary thing. A stepping stone until a better opportunity comes along. But then he meets Rex. Big, solid, and kind, he’s everything Daniel ever dreamed of. And their chemistry is off the charts. But Rex have secrets, and Daniel can’t truly trust what’s right in front of him. Both men have been disappointed and suffered loss before. But maybe they can trust each other and build something lasting together?
(I just adore this book cover. So beautiful!)
Right. So the feel to this entire story is anguish and hope combined. Daniel and Rex are damaged and wary, but find something beautiful together. And Daniel’s constant battle to not let his own insecurities ruin the good thing he’s got going with Rex is heart-breaking and sweet in equal measure.
Despite the story arc being quite contained to Rex’s and Daniel’s growing relationship, with no major outside influences (until the very end), it never got boring. Daniel lives very much in his head and tends to ramble. But those ramblings were essential to getting to know him properly. His backstory and history with his family is mostly revealed in this way.
The guys are so adorable together I can’t imagine a cuter couple. Daniel’s outgoing when he needs to be and knows how to throw a punch, but what he craves most of all is love and security, even though he hadn’t really allowed himself to wish for those things. Rex is a teddy-bear, there’s no way around that. He is impossible not to love at first sight. That’s all I’m going to say about him.
There are lots (and I mean a whole hell of a lot) of shenanigans going on in this story. But strangely enough, it was all too heartfelt and emotional to ever feel truly raunchy. Like they were constantly making love and not just fucking because they were horny.
I never thought I’d be so enthralled by this kind of emotional, slow-mo drama, but here we are. I’m still a bit dazed and have a severe case of book hang-over.
5 stars. Highly recommend.