Because of his father, Alex can’t come out. Instead, he bides his time before he finishes his A levels with the hope of going to university far away so he can finally be himself. Only his closest friends know his truth…and those who were there they day he helped clean up after Rainbow Place was vandalized. Which is the day he met Cam.
Cam is intrigued and captivated by Alex from their first meeting, and when he sees Alex again a few days later, he takes a chance. Cam is comfortable with his bisexuality and is more than attracted to Alex. But some quiet time together and a few kisses are all they get, and then Cam finds out who Alex’s dad is. Knowing Alex has got more than enough on his plate, he pulls back and offers friendship, which is the thing he knows Alex really needs.
When Alex’s plan for university falls through, he’s both upset and relieved. And as much as he loves his friendship with Cam, he wants more. But all that goes to hell when Alex’s dad finds out the truth about him. Jobless and homeless, Alex stays with Cam and finds work at Rainbow Place. His life is finally turning around, but wanting Cam and not having him is getting harder and harder. He doesn’t know why Cam is holding back. And neither does Cam. He needs to make the move, or he’s going to lose Alex.
In this second installment of the Rainbow Place series, I was pleased to get Cam and Alex’s story. At the end of Rainbow Place, the two young men meet and there’s clear chemistry between them. And especially knowing Alex’s backstory, it was particularly satisfying to see him get his HEA. Though I don’t think it’s necessary to read the books in order—the author does a great job of filling in any would-be blanks—it does have a greater impact having read the first book.
Alex is in a terrible spot. His father is a truly homophobic and bigoted, and his home life is not good. He’s miserable and placing all his hope on being able to get out. Someday he’ll be able to live his life out and proud and as himself. Pinning his hope on that is all he has. Cam may be comfortable in who he is, but he understands Alex’s need for secrecy. The only reason he pulls back is that he can see everything Alex is going through. At least that’s what he tells himself.
The chemistry between the two MCs is wonderful. There’s a tension there that follows throughout the entire book, building and changing as their relationship does. It’s clear to see that they are meant for each other and that they should be together. But Cam’s reasoning is also sound, and that Alex goes with it shows that he needs the friendship just as much. As things change, both guys realize that their relationship can too. Cam needs to work a few things out in order to take that step, but the whole progression of their relationship was very well done.
I found that the pace of this story was a little bit quick, and there were times I wanted to know more about what was going on or to see a few things more fleshed out. I knew what to expect going in, as I’m a fan of this author, but I was also hoping for a little more resolution about some things and to see other things more developed. On the whole, it wasn’t a huge detriment to the story, but it is worth a mention.
The story is wonderful, and truly about finding a safe time and place. Both MCs, but especially Alex, are in a good place when the story ends. I’m definitely looking forward to more in this series.