Rating: 5 stars
Buy Links: Amazon | All Romance
Mateo Sanchez has had a tough life on the streets. The son of a known gang leader, Mateo was forced to do things he wouldn’t choose to do on his own. When his father is arrested, Mateo is sent to a foster home away from the city. Mateo knows he needs to call his uncle so that he can return to the gang, but he avoids doing so after he meets his foster brother.
Josiah Evans is quiet and shy and, for that reason, he’s bullied regularly in school until Mateo steps up and protects him. Josiah is the only person who gets to see the softer side of Mateo, the real Mateo. And he finds it so easy to fall for him.
After months together, a surprise kiss leads to a relationship that neither young man can see themselves without. But when their foster mother gets sick, Mateo leaves with the intention of giving Josiah the family he needs. And when Josiah follows him to the city, they make plans and dream of what their future will be like. Then Mateo’s uncle shows up and the only way to protect Josiah, the only way to save his life, is to lie to him and send him away.
Years later, Josiah has followed his dream to San Francisco where he works at a coffee shop. Trusting people is hard, but eventually he makes one friend. Then he meets Tristan.
Tristan Croft is one of the city’s top prosecutors, but his life hasn’t always been easy. He carries around a past full of guilt and pain. Refusing to make connections with people, Tristan finds himself walking a lonely path that leads to Josiah. He’s intrigued by the younger man. And when Josiah needs a place to stay, Tristan offers a room in his house.
A man who has no interest in relationships, Tristan finds himself building a strong friendship with Josiah over a span of several years. When that friendship turns into friends-with-benefits, the last thing Tristan expects is to fall in love. Then Josiah graduates college and both of their worlds are turned upside down with the reappearance of Mateo.
Josiah has spent years trying to get over Mateo, and when he finally moves on and falls in love again, Mateo shows up. Only Josiah isn’t sure he can turn him away, even after all the hurt Mateo’s caused him. But he refuses to walk away from Tristan. And Tristan refuses to let him.
You guys, this book is absolutely wonderful. I loved it from beginning. It’s young love meets true love then absolute heartbreak. It’s a story of healing and a journey of finding one’s self. It’s a story of forgiveness and second chances. There is so much packed into this book and I loved it all.
I have to start with the writing. I was captivated by this author’s words from the get-go. Hart immediately drew me into this story and into Mateo and Josiah’s tortured, sad, but hopeful lives. I was broken-hearted by the breakup and given hope in the next stage of Josiah’s life with Tristan. The story is separated into three parts and three relationships. In a way it is three separate stories with one common denominator: Josiah. The emotions are palpable and the story is enthralling. It’s beauty in word form.
The characters are what this story is about. It’s character-driven and the story revolves around their development, their thoughts, and their emotions. What I love so much about these guys is that they are three completely different men. They’re nothing alike, yet they balance one another superbly. Mateo with his rough background and soft heart. Josiah with giving heart and need to help and fix everything. And Tristan with his guilt-ridden past and fear of any sort of relationship. These men, on paper, shouldn’t work, but they do. And they do so beautifully.
This story is a rollercoaster ride of emotions. The ups and downs, twists and turns served to keep me glued to the pages of this story. I love a ménage. And what I love the most about a ménage is when an author can not only make it real, but bring life to it. Then the stories that revolve around the many relationships of this book—the histories, the trauma, the fear, and the heartbreak—create such a massive foundation to the finale of this book. Still, as I sit here writing this review a few days later, I’m in awe of the detail, the intricacies, and the passion that went into creating this novel.
So, yes, I loved this book, still do. Every time I think about it my heart squeezes a little. There are plenty of aww moments, a good amount heartbreak, a rather unhealthy serving of guilt, several journeys of healing, and too many tears to count. I am in awe of the fabulousness of these characters and their road to happiness. I highly, highly recommend Broken Pieces by Riley Hart.