Chance loves his life in California, living near the beach and being a fireman. Since his last breakup he doesn’t have a steady man in his life, but he has surfing, friends, and the occasional hook up. He never had a reason to disclose his sexuality at work, a few know, the rest don’t, and he doesn’t have any reason to change that until Tucker starts working his shift.
Tucker captures Chance’s attention immediately with his indigo eyes and sexy southern drawl. Chance tries to resist him and manages successfully for an entire month until the two men cannot stay away from each other any longer.
Neither man likes to talk about themselves or what they are feeling. Both of them realize there is more than just sex going on, but they are much better at expressing their feelings with their bodies. Tucker is closed off emotionally and angry from his childhood on a Kentucky farm and Chance’s family is not the most accepting either. But the men come together and satisfy the loneliness in each other that they did not even realize was there.
But the life of firefighter comes with danger every day. When Chance is injured his recovery is painful and his depression shatters everything the men have worked hard to build together. For two men who don’t know how to talk to each other, the road back together is filled with obstacles sometimes of their own making.
Two firemen coming together. As they say, where there’s smoke, there’s fire and Heat is most definitely the correct title for this book. When Chance first sees Tucker he is aroused and stays that way for most of the book. Even when he is injured and recovering, he is aware of the fact that he is not aroused.
This book gets very into the physical attraction the men have for each other. There is a story line, sure, but the physical nature of the relationship between the men is first and foremost. They get together every place they can, as often as they can, even breaking their rule and the firehouse rule of staying away from each other at work. Their communication about their relationship is almost non existent all the through the story. Their lack of ability to communicate is addressed and they try and work on it, but neither of them has any experience talking about what they need or want. Talking about a relationship can be a learned process and both Chance and Tucker were not shown or taught that and really struggle with putting their feelings into words.
We get a bit of Tucker’s background and as expected each piece is difficult to pull out of him. Although Chance’s background is extremely different from Tucker’s, we see that Chance has a lot of family issues as well. Although, the story does not go into great detail as talking is not the number one priority.
Chance’s injury plays prominently into the storyline and further hinders their communication. There is jealousy and palpable tension of not only their physical need, but their need to share their lives together. The ending gets them on solid ground and sets up the next book, but at that point they could perhaps have found some way to have a longer conversation about their future, but some relationships don’t work that way. A story of two firemen who have a great time together, find what they need in each other, and have serious chemistry.
Chance and Tucker are back together and the heat is still dialed up on their relationship. Having come through the turmoil and separation caused in the aftermath of Chance’s injury, they men are stronger than before and Tucker is even trying to surf. Still not the best communicators, the men find their own way to commit themselves to each other.
A death in the family forces Tucker to return to the Kentucky farm he spent his life running from. Tucker has no interest in returning to the farm and his separation from Chance becomes more than he knows how to handle on his own. Chance has been promoted to captain and his time off is limited, which adds to the stress of everything Tucker has to deal with.
When Tucker starts a downward spiral, Chance heads to Kentucky. Their lack of communication and the disdain from the locals over their relationship further pulls them apart. Battling an aging farm, narrow minded attitudes, and the cold Kentucky weather, Chance tries to anchor Tucker even as it all starts to go up in flames.
Flashover picks up shortly after Heat with the firemen still incredibly hot for each other. Their communication still takes second place. Even though they are living together they still have not defined their relationship. Jealousy causes a bit of unrest until they figure it out in their own way and commit themselves to each other.
When Tucker leaves for Kentucky, his reluctance to go is tangible, and as soon as he arrives he starts a downward spiral with drinking and fighting. Dealing with legal issues over the farm, it’s the last thing he wants to do and the last place he wants to be, yet he can’t turn his back on it all. We get glimpses of more information on Tucker’s past, but his reluctance to talk leaves a lot undiscovered and the depth of either character is not fully developed or achieved. When Chance heads to Kentucky we get more of what Tucker has had to deal with being gay on a farm in this area. The story’s primary focus remains on the men’s physical relationship and attraction to each other.
They men do grow throughout the course of the two books and it’s easy to become attached to them and just want to see them work it all out and just be together. While the men have to tackle some serious issues, the character development does not dig as deep, although the men do make progress in their communication at times during the course of book. Overall, both of these books are for those who like the story of two firefighters who are incredibly hot for each other and make a relationship work on their own terms.
Note: This series of books came on my radar as there will be a new trilogy published in November and written by Tory Temple and Chris Owen. Owen is the author of Bareback, and the new series will feature Chance and Tucker meeting Jake and Tor. It will not only be interesting to see the four men together, but to see how the authors have developed their characters and writing style so many years later.