Ex Coast Guardian Kyle Bevins is a joker, a friend, and unlucky in love. His friends know he’s a good guy to turn to if for nothing other than a much needed laugh, but he rarely heeds his own advice. He’s content as the new co-owner of his friend’s charter fishing company in Pensacola Beach, Florida, but he’s missing the companionship of having a significant other and tired of the old hookups.Todd’s rating:
Eddy Jiminez is unlucky, period. He’s been dealt most every negative consequence of being gay. He’s also an ex-con, so he figured he’d play it safe, keep working hard and trying to forget that it was men he craved. But when he meets Kyle, he can’t stop going back for more, but tired of the lies and hurting, he doesn't want to give Kyle up.
Kyle would do anything to keep Eddy from drowning again, so he decides to see him safely into the big world of being Out but a past connection may ruin everything. Will there be a second chance for both of them, or will their relationship go under?
After reading the first book, Keep Swimming, and meeting Kyle, I was really looking forward to reading his story and this one didn't disappoint.
As the story continues, Kyle is 28 and has just bought into Heath's charter business and now own his own yacht, instead of just being captain of that boat for Heath.
Yes, he's still a smartass, but he's growing up and is still hoping to meet someone special vs. the long list of disappointing closet cases that have paraded through his love life.
Except who should walk into Kyle's favorite bar and capture his attention? You guessed it. Another guy that's in the closet.
Eddy is 30, big and muscular, with lots of tattoos. Prison tattoos to be precise. But Eddy doesn't make Kyle feel unsafe, just interested, so they end up against the side of the building and get friendly.
Both Eddy and Kyle feel an attraction, but Eddy isn't out or ready to admit what he's known for years. That he's gay and that fact is never going to change.
But the hook's been set, so when Eddy runs into Kyle again, he leaves the bar with a random woman to push Kyle away, which works until his guilt gets the better of him and he finds Kyle to apologize and they're both in too deep to let go of what might be.
His heart ached with the need to love someone, to be fucking loved. He didn’t want to be angry any more. In prison he’d known he wanted to be whole, to feel like his normal was good enough. He wanted to be with someone like Kyle and feel like it was okay and that he deserved it, even though he knew he probably didn't and never would. But Kyle, he was wonderful and he was smart and funny and he made Eddy feel.But Kyle's been burned by closet cases before, so when you add his fears of abandonment to Eddy's fears of being in a relationship with a man, they're both in for a bumpy ride.
[Kyle] was plagued by thoughts of the other closet cases he’d been involved with. All those empty promises to come out were enough to make a boy insecure as hell.But after meeting one of Kyle's ex closet cases and seeing what that type of life can do to a person, and what it can cost them, he comes to a realization and comes clean to Kyle.
“I want to be happy. I haven’t been happy for so long. Yes, you’re a factor. I don’t want to lose you because I’m a pussy. But I also am doing this for me. I’m in love, probably for the first time, and I want to be free of the chains. I’ve lived under water too long. I’m tired of looking up toward the light.”But they continue to work through their problems, breaking their own chains with help from the other, and become stronger and better for it.
So after one last revelation that their lives had intersected before and getting over those past hurts, we finally, thank God almighty, get our hard-won HEA.
Again, I really liked Kyle in this book as well, but where we only really got fun, smartass Kyle in book 1, we get the whole dramatic package this time, but it's a good package and the book is well worth the read.
The epilogue gives us a lot of follow-up information on Cary, Heath and Gus, so I'd have read the whole damn book just for that, but just to warn you, that chapter alone is pretty cavity-inducing. In a good way, like a two-scoop sundae with 27 cherries on top. : )
I did actually enjoy book 1 a bit more than book 2 (this one just felt shorter to me), but they're both gems and I honestly wouldn't read one without reading the other. That would be a bit like peanut butter without the jelly.
4 *Kyle-is-freaking-awesome* stars for this one.
Note: Due to the high degree of character overlap in this book, I would not recommend reading it as a standalone read.
My copy of this book was not provided by the publisher.
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