Rating: 4.5 stars
Buy Link:
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Length: Novel

 

Eighteen-year-old Skyler has been misunderstood and traumatized his entire life. His parents have never understood his challenges and Skyler has been sent to one horrible facility after the next. After a suicide attempt, Skyler is now in rehab, although he’s not an addict. His parents are more concerned about appearances rather than truly getting Skylar the correct help. Skyler has never had a friend or a confidante and, when he meets Nolan, something about the older man calms Skyler instantly.

Nolan has made some mistakes and it seems he will never stop paying for them. Sober for five years, Nolan slipped in an epic way and a condition of his divorce is rehab, so he can possibly see his infant daughter again. When Nolan looks at Skyler, he thinks he sees a privileged liar, but Nolan doesn’t know anything about Skyler and doesn’t understand why a part of him craves their interactions.

Rehab is the worst place to get attached. Nolan has never been interested in men and both him and Skyler have more baggage than they can carry, but being together—that is inevitable. When a team building exercise leaves Nolan and Skyler stranded with injuries, they bond over shared trauma and mutual attraction. While being together provides them shelter from their many storms, Skyler and Nolan have a lot to sort out in their own lives and a chance to be together may be out of their reach.

I read one other series by this author and I like the intense, character-driven stories the author creates. This book is part of Unlucky 13 series, a shared world where the books take place at the Black Diamond Resort and Spa where one part of it is a rehab facility. I have not read any of the other books in the series and this book worked perfectly on its own and made me interested in searching out some of the other books in the series.

This book is about both Skyler and Nolan and I liked how it was balanced to highlight both of them. Skyler’s life has been traumatic. He has been misdiagnosed his entire life and his parents see him as an embarrassment. He has done everything they have asked of him, but at the last placement, he was abused, which caused more trauma. When Skyler meets Nolan, he is instantly drawn to him. But Nolan has his own demons and initially he has no interest in any kind of relationship with Sklyer.

What follows is an inevitable journey that brings the men together. Their chemistry is off the charts insane as they want to devour each other and can’t keep their hands off of each other. While they both know there has to be an end date to them being together, they are both devasted when their time comes to an end and that is the biggest regret for both of them.

A lot of the story was about Skyler being misdiagnosed and, when he finally got the correct treatment, I would have liked to know more about that and the steps taken as there was a time jump and I didn’t feel that all of the information was filled in.

Skyler and Nolan have an intense connection and everything about them and their relationship is also captured intensely on page. There is a lot of hurt here, but also a lot of comfort and the character development and well-layered story create the perfect canvas for their hard won HEA.