Rating: 4 stars
Buy Link:
Amazon | iBooks | Amazon UK
Length: Novel

 

Dr. Rosco Mortimer is an emergency room physician in a small-town hospital in rural Pennsylvania. It’s the town where he grew up, and he’s returned to do good, while raising his daughter, Posey. She was conceived with a dear friend who had intended to be a single mother, but she died when Posey was young and Rosco has been her full-time dad for several years now. He lives in his childhood home, which he purchased from his parents, but they all live together, giving Posey care and structure while Rosco works nights. Recently, Rosco has noticed a repeating figure in the ER, paramedic Miguel Sandoval.

Miguel and Rosco went to high school together. Rosco was out and harassed, often by Miguel’s football teammates, so he’s surprised to learn that Miguel was closeted all that time. While he’s definitely attracted to Miguel, he’s also harried with his life demands. Add to this a bigoted hospital supervisor with an agenda to remove LGBTQ staff from “his” hospital.

In the meantime, Rosco and Miguel start a cautious exploration of what they could become, with Posey having fun outings with Miguel and his niece and nephew, who are a similar age to Posey and whom Miguel often babysits. Their commitment to family is a connection point for both Rosco and Miguel, and it’s fun to watch Rosco’s mom maneuver to allow Rosco some quiet time with a beau. I really love how accepting their families are; there’s a lot of support for these two grown men to find true partners. Rosco’s previous boyfriends were all out for themselves, and he’s dated no one since becoming Posey’s full-time dad.

The story is really sweet, and the relationship has a reasonable growth arc. It’s not an instalove situation, yet their previous acquaintance certainly sped things along. They have a lot of respect for one another, shown through small gestures and commitment to finding even brief moments to connect with each other and their families. The conflict between Rosco and his harassing superior was telegraphed early, and given significant plot action. I liked how both Rosco and Miguel handled it, as it affected both of them personally and professionally, in different ways. Rosco’s portrayal as a savant physician with so many admirers of his medical practice seemed a little over the top, at times, but it may have been me reading it from a “big city mentality,” without appreciating the depth to which folks in a smaller community might revere a specific physician. That said, Rosco was basically a good man who worked hard to be treated fairly, and to treat his patients to the best of his ability. He sometimes read a little preachy, as a result. But, again, that may have been my take. Posey is a sweetheart, and Miguel is a good match as a lover and partner to Rosco. There’s a bit of drama regarding Posey and her health, but everyone comes out of that with stronger love and tighter bonds. Expect a happy ending.