Kel Taylor has yet to come out to his conservative Christian parents. An impromptu trip home might just be the time to finally tell them, even though he’s scared. But when Kel makes it home from campus, his parents are nowhere to be seen. They’ve gone to the family’s cabin for a weekend away. With the house to himself, Kel doesn’t hesitate to offer help when he sees his neighbor, Luc Bryant, out doing yard work.
Kel has always had a thing for Luc, and unbeknownst to him, as he grew up, Luc started seeing him in a different light. Which is when, and why, Luc distanced himself. Reconnecting is wonderful for them both, but then Kel gets devastating news. Even though he wasn’t particularly close to his parents, losing them is hard, especially when there’s so much left unsaid between them.
Not knowing how to handle his despair, Kel falls into a bottle. Luc knows the younger man is grieving, but when he goes several days without seeing him, Luc intervenes. Luc’s patience and dominance help Kel begin to deal with his grief. But there’s so much more brewing between them. When they finally let themselves feel it, their relationship moves quickly. But Luc wants more than just to take care of Kel, he wants to be Kel’s daddy. Kel just needs to be ready to accept it.
Based on the blurb, I was expecting a little more from this relationship in regards to the Daddy kink than there was. So right off the bat, I have to say that there was some disappointment there. As much as I liked this story and the characters, that put a bit of a damper on things for me.
Kel is adrift in more ways than one. He doesn’t like what he’s studying in college, and he’s hiding who he truly is. When his parents pass, it’s the thing that breaks him. He doesn’t know how to handle things, and he spirals downward pretty fast. Luc sees this kid he knows and likes not handling things well and all he wants to do is help. The attraction that simmers between them adds a whole other layer to their relationship. The romance here felt natural and believable, and I was rooting for these guys.
I also liked how easily Kel accepted Luc as a dominant force in his life. I thought Wells struck a nice balance of showing Kel growing, and growing up, without it being too much as though Luc was taking over his life. But as the blurb specifically puts Daddy in there, I was expecting more development in that part of their relationship. As it was, it was more the fact that being called Daddy turned Luc on, and Kel easily accepts that. If you’re expecting something more along the lines of a Daddy/boy relationship, this isn’t it. It’s a more dominant man helping a younger, more submissive man. But there’s not that extra level of caretaking I would expect from a Daddy/boy relationship.
I also thought some of the tougher issues were resolved a little too easily, or somewhat unsatisfactorily. Kel’s downward spiral upswings simply by Luc taking over, and I would have liked to see more in-depth development about Kel’s apparent depression. Then there’s the whole storyline with Kel’s grandfather. I really wish it had resolved better. For me, the resolution was incomplete and not well enough fleshed out.
But despite my problems with this book, it was still a nice read. Wells definitely handles characterization well. And I did enjoy watching Kel come into his own. Though it wasn’t quite what I expected, it has it’s charm. If you’re a fan of this author, then I definitely suggest you pick this one up.