Monday, March 11, 2019

Review Tour: Better Place (Rainbow Place #3) by Jay Northcote

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK 

Exclusive to Amazon and Available to Borrow with Kindle Unlimited

Length: 66,000 words approx.

Cover Design: Garrett Leigh @ Black Jazz Design

Rainbow Place Series 
Book #1 - Rainbow Place - Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 - Safe Place - Amazon US | Amazon UK

Joe deserves better. Meeting Dylan helps him see that.

After a recent redundancy, Joe takes a few months off to try and make it as a writer. His partner, Harry, is less than supportive but Joe is used to that after ten years together, just like he’s used to Harry’s controlling nature and his drinking habit.

Dylan, a server at Rainbow Place, is fascinated by Joe as he sits in the café and works on his laptop. His attempts to flirt are met with awkwardness at first, but gradually Joe opens up. Dylan is disappointed when he learns Joe isn’t single. As their friendship develops he begins to worry about the nature of Joe’s relationship, especially when he witnesses Harry’s behaviour in person. Abuse isn’t always physical, and Dylan knows that from experience. His concern helps Joe see his relationship for what it is, and gives him the courage to end things with Harry.

Free to act on their mutual attraction, Joe and Dylan dive headlong into something that becomes serious fast. Joe revels in the passion and intimacy he’s been missing out on for so long, but Dylan is worried that Joe is on the rebound. He puts on the brakes, knowing that they need to slow down to make this last. For this new relationship to work, Joe needs to show Dylan that he’s ready to move on from the past.

Although this book is part of a series, it can be read as a standalone and has a satisfying happy ending.

Ky's review:

Jay Northcote is one of the authors that never disappoint me. No matter what he writes I always end up enjoying whatever I read by him.

"Better Place", the third story in the "Rainbow Place" series, kept with the program. It was a second chance story with an age gap between the characters that dealt with an abusive relationship and new beginnings.

Dylan has recently moved to Porthladock, he's an artist and works at the "Rainbow Place" until he can support himself with his art. He was in an abusive relationship for a couple of years when he was younger and since then he is very careful about the people he lets get close to him.

Joe has been living in town with his partner of ten years, Harry, for a few years. He used to be a professor but always wanted to try his hand at becoming a writer. When he was let go from his job he decided it was the perfect time for him to focus on writing.

Joe used to go to the cafe to write some days and that's where he met Dylan. They were attracted to each other from the start and Dylan pursued him but Joe wasn't single yet. Dylan having been in an abusive relationship himself helped Joe realise what Harry was doing, see how wrong it was and get the courage and strength to change it. I only wish that Joe would have remained single for a little while before getting involved with Dylan so he could find himself again, find a new normal and fully get over his ex and a relationship that excisted for a decade. There's no cheating in this book, but Joe did jump from one relationship to the next, which was something that never sat well with me. I would have preferred for them to take it slow, as they had originally said, take their time and pace themselves.

The age difference between Joe and Dylan - about 15 years give or take - was never the focus of the story and was barely mentioned. The main plot theme was the abusive relationship that Joe was in and his effort to take back control of his life and get free of Harry.

About Harry, I want to make clear that I don't agree with his behavior, I'd never make excuses for him and I firmly agree that he was abusing Joe. At the same time though I can't help but feel pity for him and wish him a better future. The only thing he did with his days was work, drink and watch TV. He didn't go out, he didn't have friends, he didn't have any hobbies and he didn't want to change any of those things. There is nothing wrong with that if he was happy and content with his life, but I don't think that he was. He seemed sad, like he had given up on everything and didn't want to make an effort for anything. I actually wish that Jay will write his story at some point. I want to see this character redeemed. I want to see him sort himself out, get help for his drinking and for his temper and changing for the best. I wish that we'll see him happy at some point and that eventually he'll get his own happily ever after with someone.

I think that one of the next books is going to be about Lady Gogo and Wicksy, one of the rugby guys that frequent Rainbow Place and who is straight. If I'm right and they are one of the future couples, I won't be missing their story!

** A free copy of this book was provided by the tour organizer in exchange for an honest review. **

About the author:

Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England. He comes from a family of writers, but always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed him by. He spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content.

One day, Jay decided to try and write a short story—just to see if he could—and found it rather addictive. He hasn’t stopped writing since.

Jay writes contemporary romance about men who fall in love with other men. He has five books published by Dreamspinner Press, and also self-publishes under the imprint Jaybird Press. Many of his books are now available as audiobooks.

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