Parker McWilliams is ready to embark on Parker 2.0. After eight years with a horrible woman and a life lived for everyone but himself, Parker is divorcing and ready to start fresh. He has moved to Colorado, gotten a new job he loves, and is making friends with the help of his cousin, Zach. Now that he is starting fresh, that includes new dating experiences, and through Zach, Parker meets Mal Copol.
Mal is fierce, non-binary, and confident in who they are. While Mal is attracted to Parker, they are not expecting much as Parker has always identified as straight. But when the two end up together one evening, it is clear that Parker returns Mal’s attraction.
Mal and Parker turn out to be great for one another. Parker is considerate and caring in ways most of Mal’s other partners have never been. He accepts Mal completely and the two get along great. Mal loves sharing some of their favorite outdoor sports with Parker and enjoys Parker’s enthusiasm for new experiences. And Mal and Parker are both hot for one another and enjoying exploring their physical and emotional connection.
But breaking free of his old life and his old ways isn’t so easy for Parker. He has spent his whole life living for others and trying to meet their expectations, and when conflict comes, his instinct is to revert back to that behavior. Now Parker must decide if he is really ready to be a new man if he is going to claim his future with Mal.
Only See You is the second book in J.D. Chambers’ Only Colorado series. I really enjoyed the first book, Only with You, and have been eager to continue with the series. So when I saw this book featured a non-binary character, it seemed like a great time to pick it up for Diverse Books Week in our Reading Challenge Month.
I really enjoyed Parker and Mal together. They seem to fit together so easily and naturally, despite differences in their personalities. Mal has known who they are for a long time and learned not to compromise that for anyone. They are often judged negatively for being non-binary and Mal refuses to care what others might think. Parker, on the other hand, has drifted along in his life on the tide of other people’s expectations and desires. At the end of the last book, Parker sort of wakes up and realizes what a mess his marriage and his life have become, and here we see him taking steps to start fresh. So learning to reach for what he wants and not what others expect takes somewhat of a learning curve, and he doesn’t always succeed at first. But I think Parker has a nice journey over the course of this story and I enjoyed seeing him reach a place of willing to stand up for himself, while still being a caring and considerate guy.
Mal and Parker have a very sweet and sexy relationship, and Chambers gives a nice tenderness to their interactions. We also reconnect with some of the other friends from the first story, including Zach and Craig, as well as Zach’s former (and Parker’s current) roommate Ben. As this is a series, I like the way the ensemble cast works here and they are a fun group of friends with loyalty to each other, but also just the right amount of snark and casualness. You could read this one without the first story, though you would miss Parker’s life epiphany that happens at the end of Only with You, and you won’t be quite as familiar with the side characters and the backstory between Parker and Zach. Still, I think this stands alone just fine.
So this was another great installment in the Only Colorado series and I am really looking forward to continuing on to the other books.
This review is part of our Reading Challenge Month for Diverse Books Week! Leave a relevant comment below and you will be entered to win one of our amazing diverse books prize packs. Commenters will also be entered to win our amazing grand prize sponsored by Dreamspinner Press (a Kindle Fire filled with Dreamspun Desires/Beyond books, plus a 3-month subscription!). You can get more information on our Challenge Month here, and more details on Diverse Books Week here, including a list of all the books in this week’s prize.