“Your life can change in an instant”~ Madden
I never thought a night out could change everything. All I wanted was to dance, drink, maybe take a cute guy home for a night of fun. I met the guy, but the night ended as a nightmare. Screams, and blood, and tragedy haunt my dreams. I’m alive and I owe it all to the gorgeous marine who refused to leave me for dead. But how can I start a new relationship when I’m not even sure who I am anymore?
“I’ll always save you” ~Thane
After a long work week all I wanted was to let my hair down and to meet a nice guy. When I laid eyes on the gorgeous, tattooed man at the bar, I had to have him. I never would have thought the night could end in such horror. I saved his life, and I swear I’ll save him as many times as I have to. Even if it means saving him from himself.
**This is the first book in the Heathens Ink series in which every book can be read as a stand alone.
CAUTION: this book is recommended for readers 18+ and does contain one scene of graphic violence that may disturb some readers. And, in case it wasn’t clear from the description, this is an M/M romance, man parts will be touching.
(Book reviewed here previously)
It wasn’t clear to me from the description, and it doesn’t say so in the book, but this book “felt” like it could be about any of the survivors from Orlando’s shooting. Thane and Madden hadn’t ever met before the night in the club when they end up sort of forced together after the tragic shooting injures Madden.
But… this story is more than that. Madden has a past that makes this particular crisis all the more scary and Thane has to slowly learn about it – even though they are thrown together as though they’ve been dating a long time.
I’m going to put some triggers in a spoiler so that people who have them can look and people who don’t mind can skip it, but there are SEVERAL in the story.
(spoiler) Trigger warnings: suicide, drug addiction, PTSD, pain/chronic pain ) (end spoiler)
This was a far darker story than I had anticipated and far more complex. In a way we get a bit of “insta love”. Both Thane and Madden are very interested in the other and jump very quickly into a relationship that defies explanation. It evolves as it can while the two are essentially living together as strangers and it’s a very unique situation.
The steam level is mid-level, I’d say – and sometimes it felt out of place. More than anything, this is a hurt/comfort story and though I know the two guys are attracted to each other, I think focusing on the serious issues – which were HUGE – was the main story and the sex only a side bit. For the most part, I felt this was appropriate, but there were a couple of times where I thought – “Would he even want sex now?” ‘
This was the first I’d read by this author and I’d definitely look to something from her again. I think there are some compelling new stories in store from Madden’s work crew and they look really interesting!
If you’re in the mood for dark, hurt/comfort, sorta insta-love – this is the right book for you!
4.25 (rounded to 4.5) of 5 stars
I like listening to Cooper North and thought he handled the emotions and the different character voices well. This is a great way to enjoy this story.
Overall 4.5 of 5 stars
Copy Purchased for Review