Damon has a great job as the band manager for a well-known music group and what he thinks is a great relationship. But when he returns home, only to walk in on his boyfriend cheating on him, his self-worth takes a hit once again. When Damon came out to his parents, he was sent to “conversion therapy” and the scars have never left him. The thoughts that if he wasn’t attracted to men, his life could be better, are on a constant loop in his head. When Damon finds ways to act out to hide his pain, it puts him in a dangerous situation and Bruno steps in to save him.
Bruno is head of the band’s security. He had never been attracted to a man before, but just as he was coming to terms with his attraction to Damon, he lost his chance with him. The distance increased between them during the past two years since Damon was in a relationship, and now Bruno doesn’t know how to even get back to being friends with Damon. Bruno will never forgive himself for taking his eyes off of Damon and then Damon found himself in extreme danger, but Bruno knows he wants everything with Damon. He just has to make Damon see his heart is in it forever.
Laura John is a new author to me and Fighting Attraction seems to be her first (or one of her first) M/M books and that showed during my reading. I struggled with this book from the start. The characters felt recycled, and the writing was cliched and awkward. The storyline also suffered from fetishization of the characters for me and there really wasn’t much I liked about this one.
Damon has an inner dialogue from the beginning of the book—a voice that loathes everything about Damon and who he is. It was difficult at first to know if these were Damon’s actual thoughts or remembered conversations between him and someone else. The thoughts were constant and became distracting and repetitive after a while.
The relationship between Damon and Bruno was also not well put together. They have a history that we don’t see and their connection was then difficult to feel. It feels like the men decided they were going to be in love with each other and then they were and the feelings behind this didn’t transfer off the page. Damon then lashes out at times and his character hadn’t been built up enough to make all of his scenes fit together.
There is a scene of assault in the book that has a trigger warning. It has a definite impact on Damon and his story, but the scene was mild and a lot of the follow up to it didn’t flow well for me either. We learn about specific episodes from Damon’s life, but his character was not well developed and both him and Bruno lacked the depth that makes a character-driven story work for me.
This book is listed as the first book in a series, but there were secondary characters from other books by the author that were written as if we were supposed to know them and their stories and that also didn’t work. The style of writing and the structure of this story didn’t work out for me and I will have to pass on future books in this series.