Justin Hawthorne worked hard to realize his silver-screen dreams, making his way from small-town Pennsylvania to Hollywood and success. But it hasn’t come without sacrifice. When Justin’s father kicked him out for being gay, George Miller’s family offered to take him in, but circumstances prevented it. Now Justin is back in town and has come face to face with George, the man he left without so much as a good-bye… and the man he’s never stopped loving.
Justin’s disappearance hit George hard, but he’s made a life for himself as a home nurse and finds fulfillment in helping others. When he sees Justin again, George realizes the hole in his heart never mended, and he isn’t the only one in need of healing. Justin needs time out of the public eye to find himself again, and George and his mother cannot turn him away. As they stay together in George’s home, old feelings are rekindled. Is a second chance possible when everything George cares about is in Pennsylvania and Justin must return to his career in California? First they’ll have to deal with the reason for Justin’s abrupt departure all those years ago.
When Justin came out to his parents seven years ago, he hadn't really expected to be rejected but that's exactly what happened when his father threw him out. He could have lived with the family of his best friend and the boy he loved...but something happened that forced Justin to leave town.
Now seven years and a successful career as one of Hollywood's leading actors later circumstances are taking him back home to the father who turned away from him and is now dying and asking him to come home.
It's Justin's good friend and personal assistant Ethan who convinces him that maybe he needs to go back one last time in order to finally put the past behind him.
Going back doesn't just mean seeing his father though. For Justin it may mean seeing the love he ran away from and the reason that he ran.
George Miller never forgot the boy who stole his heart and then disappeared with it. Seeing Justin standing beside his father's hospital bed is like having a wish come true for George...and no, I refuse to call him...'Georgie' so, no this just isn't going to happen. George knows that he's only asking to have his heart broken all over again when he invites Justin and Ethan to stay with him while they're in town but for a chance to be with Justin again even if it's just for a few days...he's willing to risk it.
"Can't Live Without You" is a second chance story about two men who are separated and then later reunited by circumstance...leaving both of them to wonder how many times can you watch your heart walk out the door before it breaks forever? Luckily for these men they've got more than circumstance trying to bring them back together one last time.
Overall I enjoyed this one a lot. I liked that even though Justin and George never stopped loving each other they also both realized that the person that they had loved wasn't exactly the same person that they were being reunited with and they were both essentially the same time and distance had brought changes to both of their personalities and especially to Justin who had gone from being the small town kid with dreams to the man who'd made his dreams come true.
I found that there were a lot little things that happened that I liked...things like Ethan. I loved Ethan and damn, I want him to have his own story because...well, he was such an amazing friend to Justin and he always had his back and he's adorable. Justin's agent, Roy...ok, so at times Roy was a bit of a jerk. But in his defense he also knew when to quit pushing and accept that what he was expecting wasn't realistic. Plus on more than one occasion it showed that he genuinely cared about Justin as a person and not just as his client. Then there was George's mother...she was awesome!!!
So all in all there were really only a couple of things that kept this one from being a five star read for me and they were a matter of personal preference and really didn't reflect on the quality of the story. First of all I wasn't a fan of how things resolved in terms of why Justin originally left his home town or maybe I should say I wasn't a fan of the fact that for me it just didn't feel like there was a resolution to this problem and the other niggle I had was Justin's father...sorry, but all things considered the man didn't deserve Justin's forgiveness and that he ran around bragging about Justin's success...really? What did he say? "I turned my back on my kid and kicked him out so he'd go to Hollywood and work his ass off to become a successful movie star? Aren't I wonderful...I think not.
As I said the niggles were mine and while I could ramble on about why I wasn't happy with these things...reality is they didn't work for me and there are probably just as many people who were ok with these aspects of the story so...personal opinion is personal opinion...not right or wrong, not good or bad...just different.
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