When Oz locks eyes with John walking through the streets one night, he impulsively follows John into a gay bar. Oz had only been in one other gay bar before and while he has never been with a man, he knows he wants John. Fast forward over five years later and while the men are no longer together, the memory of the few months they spent together still lingers.
John is on his way to Denver to spend Christmas alone. A snow storm is quickly approaching and John plans to hide away in his cabin and try and forget it’s holiday time. Except, he runs into Oz in the airport. John never understood why Oz pushed him away and while Oz was supposed to be just a fling, John fell hard and fast. He wants to tell Oz to get lost, but Oz is not alone and he may have just found the reason that Oz walked away from him.
John can’t just leave Oz stranded at the airport over Christmas and invites him home. This holiday season may lead the men to the second chance they never thought they would get.
The prologue for this story reeled me as we get to see how John and Oz met and the chemistry that was sparking between them from across the street. Oz cannot take his eyes off of the well put together, blonde haired man and the men flirt with each other all night long. Then (sigh) I was quickly pulled out of the story as chapter one opened.
Chapter one is over five years after that night and the men are not together. Not only are they not together, but we aren’t shown anything other than the night they met. We aren’t shown Oz’s first time with a man or what was between the two of them that still affects them all these years later. This created a complete lack of connection between the men and didn’t work for me. We are shown little glimpses along the way, but it wasn’t enough for my tastes. I felt here that this was a case of the author knowing the story and the history of the characters, but not having the page count to get it all down. When the guys meet up again almost six years later, they are still strangers to us and their second chance then all got lost for me.
John welcomes Oz into his home without a second thought and we see how much Oz still gets to him. John was in love with Oz and he probably still is even after all the time has gone and even after the way Oz treated him. We get brief scenes of Oz ending their relationship and after what he said to John, I was looking for Oz at least to offer some type of apology before they get into bed, but that doesn’t happen. He barely apologizes at all, takes advantage of John’s kindness, and then well…let’s just say Oz hasn’t changed much. Added in is the holiday and the reason that Oz pushed John away in the first place and none of it appealed to me because the characters weren’t developed enough due to the way the story was structured, and I felt like I was missing so much of the story. We see their earliest beginning and then their reconciliation, but none of the middle where they had a relationship.
This book is also tied into Drake’s holiday story from last year, Walking on Thin Ice, and the MC from that book, Spenser, is John’s best friend. I have not read that book and was able to follow along here fine as a standalone, but if you are interested in seeing Spenser get his happy ever after, you can also find that here.