Since he was in eighth grade, Danny has harbored a crush on the high school first baseman, Mitchel Finch Jr….so much so that he imagined that Mitchel noticed him too. Except the only noticing Danny got from anyone on the baseball team was as a punching bag as the town’s only out and proud gay student. With the ink barely dry on his diploma, Danny left town, changed his name, got a better haircut, and realized that things do get better. When his best friend from high school announces she’s getting married, Danny doesn’t think twice about going back home…until he realizes not much has changed in Peach Blossom Pennsylvania…or has it?
Mitchel’s dream of getting out of Peach Blossom died when his knee was injured playing ball in college. Forced back home, he’s surrounded by constant reminders of who he is expected to be and forced to hide the real Mitchel in a closet, only to come out on those rare occasions when he wants to take a 200 mile trip to the city for a hookup in a bathroom stall. Seeing Danny at the wedding is a temptation he might not be able to resist.
This story had such a great premise – the idea of the bullied kid returning home to the hick town he grew up in and being able to stand tall and proud of who he is and what he’s accomplished, while surrounded by all those jocks whose lives still revolve around who they were back in the day. Add in one of those jocks who isn’t as straight as he pretends to be, and this story had me hooked from the beginning. Unfortunately, despite the strong beginning, this book lost me about 2/3 of the way through when I began to realize that one of the characters wasn’t going to be the person I needed him to be.
Danny had a tough life. The son of a Mexican immigrant woman and a man who despised him because of his sexuality, Danny was the target of bullies. Now, five years later, he’s back for his friend’s wedding and determined to be who he is and damn anyone if they don’t like him. When he finds himself flirting with the object of his teenage fantasies, Danny can’t help himself from asking Mitchel to spend the night.
Mitchel has harbored a crush on his straight best friend for almost forever. Having to watch him take his vows and knowing that it would never be put a damper on any feelings of celebration. When he finds himself spending most of the reception talking to Danny, Mitchel can’t pass up the opportunity for a hookup that he doesn’t have to drive hours for.
The only problem is, Mitchel may not be a virgin when it comes to having sex with men, but there is a big difference between getting off in a club bathroom and spending the night with someone like Danny. Let’s just say that Danny knows what he is doing and is determined to let Mitchel in on the miracles of gay sex!
Instead of basking in the afterglow of the best sex of his life, Mitchel is ready to go back in the closet and doesn’t want to come out. He’s indecisive, he’s angry, and he does and says things that made me think that Danny deserved so much better. It angered me that Danny didn’t think he deserved better. Even when Mitchel does something positive, it didn’t fully redeem him for me.
Overall, this was a fairly decent story that just didn’t go the way that I would have liked to have seen at the end. It ends with a HFN, and I hope the author has more of Danny’s and Mitchel’s story to tell. As of now, this was just an okay story.