Gideon Ramsay is so far in the closet he should be a talking faun.
A talented, mercurial, and often selfish man, Gideon has everything he should want in life. Fame, money, acting awards – he has it all. Everything but honesty. At the advice of his agent, Gideon has concealed his sexuality for years. But it’s starting to get harder to hide, and his increasingly wild behaviour is threatening to destroy his career.
Then he’s laid low by a serious illness and into his life comes Eli Jones. Eli is everything that Gideon can’t understand. He’s sunny tempered, friendly, and optimistic. Even worse, he’s unaffected by grumpiness and sarcasm, which forms ninety percent of Gideon’s body weight. And now Gideon is trapped with him without any recourse to the drugs and alcohol that have previously eased his way through awkward situations.
However, as Gideon gets to know the other man, he finds himself wildly attracted to his lazy smiles and warm, scruffy charm that seem to fill a hole inside Gideon that’s been empty for a long time. Will he give in to this incomprehensible attraction when it could mean the end of everything that he’s worked for?
From the bestselling author of the Mixed Messages series comes a story about a man who needs to realise that being true to yourself is really just a form of finding home.
Snark and banter as far as the eye can see, folks!
We first met talented and successful, 39 y.o. actor Gideon in his brother Milo's story, where he was a selfish, over-sexed twat, leaving me slightly less than thrilled at the prospect of Gideon getting his own story, although now I can admit how thoroughly wrong I was in my apprehension.
As the story began, Gideon had ignored Milo's advice about seeing a doctor and contracted a near-fatal case of pneumonia, and unable to fly, a nurse was hired to care for Gideon on the old folks cruise that would take him home to England, since he couldn't fly due to a collapsed lung.
And that's where the hilarity really began.
Unbeknownst to Gideon's homophobic, asshole manager, Frankie, the nurse that he'd hired to help get Gideon back on his feet was very attractive, very male, and very G-A-Y.
But late-twenties nurse Eli's resume was too impressive for either Gideon or Milo to allow Frankie to send Eli packing, plus Eli proved himself able to stand up to Gideon's "personality", which was a must if someone were truly going to make Gideon allow his body time to heal.
Milo's strict, but simple instructions for Eli just before the ship set sail were hilarious, too, which was a prelude for great things to come.
“If I want to do something, I’ll bloody well do it because the only person who tells me what to do, is me. Now, after that instruction, is there anything else you need to tell the newest member of my staff, Milo?”I adored seeing how the previously-untamable Gideon would snark with Eli, giving in to the stubborn nurse's demands at most every turn, but usually with a good bit of clapback. Their banter was a thing of beauty, and I loved seeing that Gideon was never mean or nasty when dealing with Eli, as he would have been with pretty much anyone else on the planet.
Milo nods and turns to Eli. “Keep him away from coke and twinks,” he says earnestly.
Gideon and Eli just clicked, and seeing their slow-burn attraction and easy companionship develop, as the boat got closer and closer to England, was a thing of beauty.
The two didn't give in to those feelings until 4 months after the cruise was over, when Eli had completed his next assignment, and Gideon's attractions had been confirmed as more than simple gratitude.
During their separation, I enjoyed seeing Gideon more fully connect with the guys from Oz and Milo's stories. He'd always been a part of their group, but still sort of an outsider, until then.
Another funny part from that time, was Gideon's attempt to keep himself busy, while learning a useful skill:
“I think I’d like to take cooking lessons,” I say consideringly, and Niall chokes.OMG, Niall is fucking PRECIOUS! heh
“For meth?” he asks hesitantly.
Pretty much the *only* drama in the entire story arose from Frankie's attempts to keep Gideon under his tight control, and Eli helping Gideon overcome the nastiness whispered in his ears over the years concerning Gideon's career, should he ever come out of the closet.
Frankie was a nasty piece of work, preying on Gideon's fears and insecurities for over two decades, completely betraying Gideon's trust in the process. Seeing Frankie get his comeuppance was certainly something that I enjoyed, although, I'm not sure I would have let him off the hook quite so easily.
The steam started after the half-way mark and was what I'd categorize as moderate'ish, but the sex took a back seat to the feels in my eyes. It was there, for sure, but never overshadowed the feels.
“I just need to protect you,” and I feel something warm in my stomach at the earnestness in his words. I don’t think anyone has ever said that to me before, let alone wanted to do it. I’ve had impassioned words of longing poured into my ears, declarations of infatuation, but nothing like these simple words which are all the more touching for being plain.If I had to find niggles about this story, I guess I'd mention that the epilogue from 7 years on was on the super-sweet side, and maybe that we never actually got to *see* Gideon actually act. I mean, he is an actor, after all, soooo... :- ?
I did thoroughly enjoy the story, and may have squee'd a bit when we got a momentary crossover with Asa from "Deal Breaker", but Oz and Milo's stories were still my favorites in the series.
4.25 highly-recommended stars.
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