This is only my second book in the series and I found myself once again touched emotionally by the characters and their lives. One character, Owen Meade, was born with the birth defect of missing his left arm from just below the elbow and also developed stuttering and anxiety issues as a result of his mother’s cruel way of rearing him and an incident from high school. The other hero, Nick Reynolds, has his own dark secret to bear as well.
Owen meets Nick when the vet moves in to the lower duplex apartment. Nick is friendly and is the first person that Owen connects with in a long time who doesn’t care about his defects. Nick understands because his own sister has the same birth defect just on the opposite arm and encourages Owen to get to know June. Owen soon discovers that he is attracted to Nick and Nick to him, but Nick refuses to do anything about the attraction the two men share. Owen takes what he can get with Nick which involves taking piano lessons with June because she wants them to play a duet in an actual recital.
As the friendship and the attraction grows between the two men, Owen begins to come out of his shell and flourish. He’s still a bundle of nerves when it comes to the upcoming visit from his mother, but it isn’t until one fateful night learning Nick’s secret that Owen’s life spirals down once more leaving both men grieving in isolation.
The plot was was slow building and rich with depth which could also describe the characters. The sensitive issues in this story were handled with care balancing the angst just right. I found myself appalled by Owen’s mother whom I think somehow never got the maternal gene. Nick’s sister, June, was a hoot. It was also fun to briefly enjoy the company of the characters from previous books in the series.
This book and the series are a good fit for those who enjoy character driven m/m contemporary romance.
Thanks to Netgalley and Riptide Publishing for providing a copy of the book for review purposes.
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