Losing nearly everything leaves room for the one thing they can’t live without.
A few excruciating minutes pinned in a burning building cost Ryan Ward his job as a firefighter, the easy camaraderie of his coworkers, his girlfriend, and damn near cost him his left leg. Giving up, though, isn’t an option. Compared to the alternative, choosing a new profession, going back to school, and renting a room from the college groundskeeper are simple.
Until he realizes he’s falling in love with his housemate, and things take a turn for the complicated.
John Barrett knows about loss. After moving twice to stay in touch with his kids, he could only watch as his ex-wife whisked them away to California. Offering Ryan a room seems better than rattling around the empty house, but as casual friendship moves to something more, and a firestorm of emotions ignites, the big old house feels like tight quarters.
It’s nothing they can’t learn to navigate, though. But when dead bodies start turning up on campus—and one of the guys is a suspect—their first taste of real love could go up in smoke.
Contains two hot men wrestling with a shift in their sexuality, as well as a few positions probably listed in the Gay Kama Sutra. But it’s not all about the hot and sweaty—especially when your previously straight life knocks on the door and comes back to visit.
(Book previously reviewed here: http://kimichanexperience.com/the-rebuilding-year-by-kaje-harper/)
Ryan is a med student, former fireman who was injured in the line of duty, looking for a cheap place to stay while studying. He meets John on campus where John does the maintenance for the university. John is recently divorced father of two who is looking for a friend and someone to share expenses.
John and Ryan quickly become great friends and find themselves inexplicably attracted to one another as more than friends. Neither has identified as gay before but are suddenly seeing the other as very attractive.
There are a lot of hurdles. Neither is willing to jump into this without being sure of their feelings. Ryan has scars on his body that makes him leery of opening himself up to anyone. John’s wife and family aren’t going to see this as something to embrace. And – there’s a dead body found on campus and John is a suspect!
With a lot of careful movements forward and some deep discussion the couple explore their new feelings and in the end find a deep and abiding love.
This was one of the first mm books I ever read and I have re-read it dozens of times! I absolutely loved it. It’s a double GFY, both male “virgins” and they are so very sweet with each other! Kaje Harper is an amazing writer, she carefully crafts their relationship so that it is believable and romantic and yet full of realistic challenges and day to day hurdles.
I can’t recommend this book enough and I am ever so excited to read the sequel (finally!)!
6 of 5 stars
It’s so funny how different (sometimes) a book can “hit” you when you listen to it rather than read it. This was one of my all time favorite books because it does such a nice job of really exploring “gay for you” and now that I know more about sexuality, I think John is probably more “demisexual” than bi or gay. I think Ryan is probably bisexual – not that any of this matters, but I was noticing how frustrated I got when both men jumped on to the “I’m gay now” bandwagon, when really… they probably aren’t.
In any case, I also noticed how much John annoyed me with his letting Cynthia get away with murder… and how wishy washy he was at times – well – they both were at times…
But… Gomez Pugh is one of those delightful narrators who could read me (probably) any book and I’d at least be entertained if not love it! He’s a great voice actor and really knows how to handle emotions and timing.
I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this and couldn’t stop once I started.
6 of 5 stars
Copy Purchased for Review