Smoke jumping is Garrick Nelson’s life. Nothing, not severe injuries nor the brutal physical therapy that follows, is going to stop him from getting back with his crew. But when a lost dog shows up on his front porch, he can’t turn her away, and he can’t take care of her on his own. Thankfully, help comes in the form of his new sexy, dog-loving neighbor. As they work together, trying to re-home their little princess, Garrick can’t resist his growing attraction for the other man, even though he knows this guy isn’t the staying type.
Rain Fisher doesn’t take anything too seriously. He dances through life, one adventure at a time, never settling in one place for too long. When his hot, conveniently buff, neighbor shows up on his doorstep, dog in tow, Rain’s determined to not just save the adorable puppy, but her reluctant owner as well. He never expects their flirtation might tempt him into stay put once and for all...
High Heat features an age gap and hurt/comfort overtones. Garrick and Rain are an unlikely couple, what with Garrick being a former smoke jumper recovering from a terrible accident that happened in book one and Rain being a hippy vegan.
But Garrick is pan and open about his sexuality. He loves that Rain has a femme side. Garrick and Rain bond over a lost dog that Garrick is most definitely not going to keep. Rain names the dog Cookie and makes himself useful by walking Cookie every day. It has naught to do with wanting to see Garrick. Of course not.
Garrick is struggling with his recovery. He wants to return to smoke jumping, but his body is rebelling. Garrick can walk with the help of crutches, but he mostly uses a wheelchair. He has an incomplete spinal injury and is determined to beat the odds.
My favorite thing about this story was the disability aspect. I LOVE imperfect MCs. I find it so refreshing when authors write about people who are differently abled. Garrick has some sexual dysfunction issues, but Rain is so supportive and completely willing and wanting to explore all the fun ways two people can come together.
Rain's easy acceptance of Garrick and Garrick's devotion to Rain melted my heart.
While I liked having the background regarding Garrick from the first book in the series, High Heat can be read as a standalone. This story is slower paced and dragged for me a little in the middle, but that's a minor compliant.
I can't wait for book three.
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