Case Holden might be rich, but his life is in shambles. He leaves Denver for the small town of Clover City to stay with his aunt and get himself into a better headspace. But before he even makes it to Aunt Sylvia’s, Case’s prized car breaks down and his cell has no reception and no power. He’s rescued by the sexy sheriff, Rawley Kane, and the two men hit it off.
Rawley came to Clover City two years ago to try to heal. He’s not quite there yet, and his attraction to the bright Case is a surprise. And one that isn’t entirely welcome. But he can’t help himself from acting on it, and the two men begin a relationship. But Rawley’s past rears it’s ugly head, and Case’s comes storming in. Can the two men work past their hang ups and find a happily ever after?
When I read the blurb for this one, it hit a lot of my hot buttons. Age gap, wealthy hero, and hurt/comfort to name a few. I was really looking forward to this one, but sadly, it didn’t live up to it’s potentional for me. Though the premise is promising, it left something to be desired in the execution.
This story, in general, just skims the surface. All the right words were there, but none of the emotion that should have been. The MCs sparked, but never caught fire, and I had trouble fully engaging. Things moved too quickly, which wouldn’t have been a problem if the chemistry was there or if the characters endeared themselves to me. But as it was, it barely got past the surface.
Case and Rawley are caricatures somewhat. There were moments of depth and emotion, but they were too few and far between to really get me invested. I liked both guys, and I liked that neither man was perfect but willing to work on it. Case is young, and he’s fallen into a lot of money. Because of that, he ended up in a party lifestyle. What I really liked about him was that, even though it took him a bit, he knows that’s not what he wants out of life and he’s taking steps to change that. I also enjoyed that he had a backbone underneath, and he was done letting people walk all over him.
Rawley had the potential to break my heart. He’s had it rough, and suffered a great loss. His PTSD rears it’s head at the least opportune moments, and I thought those moment of portrayal felt realistic. But, on the other hand, there wasn’t much to him otherwise, and when he finally took steps to get closure, it seemed too fast.
Basically, the problem here was the lack of depth. None of their issues were developed enough, and almost as soon as something came up, it was resolved. I needed more, more emotion, more connection, more explanation, and I never really got it.
I think a lot of that is due to the copious amount of telling going on in this story. I felt removed from the story because I was told how the characters thought and acted instead of being shown it. Because of this, I could never really connect to them, and I didn’t feel their connection to each other. As I said, there’s a spark between them, but it never went past that, and I couldn’t understand why they seemingly cared so much about each other. There was hardly a conversation between them before they were diving in, and it didn’t work that well for me.
And then there was the ending. I won’t give anything away, but something rather big happens with only a few chapters left to go, and then last four or so chapters happen at a breakneck speed. I’ll admit I was reading quickly, not because I couldn’t wait to find out how things resolved, but because I just wanted to get through it.
So this book didn’t really work for me. I needed more to really engage. But there were some good moments and a solid premise, even if it wasn’t executed perfectly. If it sounds like your kind of story, then definitely give it a try.