Story Rating: 4 stars
Audio Rating: 4.25 stars
Narrator: Kirt Graves
Length: 7 hours, 8 minutes
Ford Ashton and his four best friends own a hospitality business in beautiful Coral Pointe Inlet, Florida. Ford is a surf instructor for the Shore Thing part of the business, but he’s pulled some strings to host a long-lost beau, Abe Manning, for a week at the Coral Pointe Inn, the hotel his team owns.
Abe and Ford spent three steamy months prior to college learning everything two horny questioning teens could about sex. Ford was a football star in school, and Abe never thought he had a legit chance of anything beyond their fumbling friendship, so Abe severed ties when they left for two different schools. Ford became a real playboy at college once he decided that Abe moved on. He’s bisexual, but hasn’t found a steady partner in the 16 years since he and Abe separated. Hearing from his mother (who’s close friends with Abe’s mom) that Abe suffered a devastating break-up in the recent past, Ford extends an invitation via the mom exchange for Abe to have an all-expenses paid getaway to reset. Ford’s friends are beginning to find their forever man, and Ford’s afraid that he’s somehow broken because he can’t connect with anyone the way he though he and Abe had connected way back when. Getting together could erase the mystery of why Abe discarded him so callously all those years ago.
Abe has no idea that Ford’s behind the vacation he and his younger sister are taking in sunny Florida. Their mom pretended she’d paid for the room, but couldn’t take the trip, and these adult kids jumped at the chance for a sibling getaway. Abe’s sister knows the truth, and she’s on board to help Abe get his groove back, following the nasty breakup with his long-time boyfriend. They encounter Ford early on and Abe’s stunned, but he decides to stay and reconnect with Ford, even it’s just a fling for both of them.
This audiobook is delicious from beginning to end. Ford is the “fun friend” who’s always good for a laugh, so it’s awesome to really get into his head and recognize how insecure he truly is, and how much Abe had meant –and still means– to him. The narration really added the depth Ford needed to move beyond the wise-cracking joker he constantly projects to keep the eyes of his pals off him. Abe’s just as nervous as Ford once he meets up with his old lover. He’s got some years on him and, plus, his last relationship ended in traumatic fashion. Could Ford find him attractive? Would a fling be more danger to his heart after all this time, especially after what he’s experienced recently? Kirt Graves did a great job as narrator translating that vulnerability into the audio.
This is the third book in the Shore Thing series and fully enjoyable as a standalone. I’m a fan of the series and definitely recommend the book, as well as the audio, if you like the format. As far as reconnection romances go, this one is sweet and sexy, with great characters who need a little grace while they figure their stuff out. I’ve listened several times and my enjoyment has only increased.