6 stars Angst Level Audiobook Book coming of age Contemporary DA Dreamspinner Established Couple Friends to lovers Gay Heat Index High but not hopeless Hurt/Abuse Hurt/comfort m/m Mild/low level heat Morgan New Adult Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Part of a Series Purchased

Spencer: Survivor Stories, Book 3 audiobook by J. P. Barnaby narrated by Tyler Stevens


Dreamspinner Presents


A survivor story
It’s been nearly five years since Aaron woke up in the hospital so broken, he couldn’t stand the sight of his own face. The flashbacks no longer dominate his life, but he’s still unable to find intimacy with his lover, Spencer Thomas. With time, patience, and the support of his family, his therapist, and his loving partner, Aaron has figured out how to live again. The problem is, Spencer hasn’t. His life has been on hold as he waits for the day he and Aaron can have a normal relationship. Hoping to move things forward for them both, he takes a job as a programmer in downtown Chicago, leaving Aaron alone.
Reeling in the wake of Spencer’s absence, Aaron receives another shock when his attackers are caught.
Now, he must testify and verbalize his worst nightmare. Publicly reliving his trauma without Spencer at his side destroys his precarious control. But he finds someone who can understand and empathize in Jordan, who watched his brother cut down in a school shooting. With Spencer gone and the DA knocking at his door, Aaron seeks solace in Jordan, and Spencer will have to risk everything to hold on to Aaron’s love.


(Aaron reviewed here:

This is book two and it absolutely must be read in order.

I realized I had never done a formal review of Spencer when I realized that they (Aaron and Spencer) have a new book coming out – yay yay yay ! I wanted to make sure I had a good sense of the book, so I re-listened to it and – man – I am overwhelmed again with both the deeply emotional journey these guys take as well as the amazing talent of the author, JP Barnaby.

A brief summary: Aaron is a survivor of an extreme sex crime and his partner, Spencer is the son of Aaron’s psychiatrist and is deaf. This book takes place about a year or so into their relationship and it is still, very much, a developing relationship.

Even though this book is titled Spencer, and he – undoubtedly – takes center stage – this book is equally about Aaron and his journey. I don’t want to give any spoilers – but a lot happens in this book to move both Aaron and Spencer forward in their lives both separately and together.

Right from the start, we see the tug Spencer feels when he is offered a chance at his dream job but would have to live 2 hours away to take it. He knows Aaron is not ready – may never be ready?- to move away from his family and his stability but Spencer is tired, too. Spencer is ready to move on – he’s graduated from college and ready to do something more – be more than just “the deaf kid”.

Barnaby does a fantastic job of showing the tension between what Spencer wants for himself and what he wants for him and Aaron as a couple. I also thought she gave us just enough of a taste of Spencer’s new situation without bogging us down in a prolonged – day to day – sequence of events.

I also loved how Zach shows up to give a Speech – that was amazing!

Spoiler Inside SelectShow

I was so touched and warmed by the ending… so happy for our boys… and now, knowing what I do, I’m so excited to see how they are doing – years later.


Tyler Stevens absolutely OWNS this. He does Spencer’s speech pattern and Aaron’s emotions so well. I felt like these guys are real people and that’s all due to his expert portrayal of the author’s amazing words.

Highly Recommended

6 of 5 stars

Morgan - Signature-small

Copy Purchased for Review

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