Levi Binder is a Miami bartender who cares about only two things: sex and surfing. Ostracized by his Mormon family for his homosexuality, Levi is determined to live his life his own way, but everything changes when he meets massage therapist Jaime Marshall.
Jaime is used to being alone. Haunted by the horrors of his past, his only friend is his faithful dog, Dolly. He has no idea how to handle somebody as gorgeous and vibrant as Levi.
Complete opposites on the surface, Levi and Jaime both long for something they can find only together. Through love and the therapeutic power of touch, they'll find a way to heal each other, and they'll learn to live as sinners in a family of saints.
©2011 Amber Quill Press, LLC (P)2015 Marie Sexton
Levi is a “Mormon” bartender who literally fucks any man willing and never goes back for seconds. He’s a surfer and when his back starts to hurt he begins to see a massage therapist in the hopes of alleviating the pain. He doesn’t count on the sweet, shy, funny man who helps him with his back and later, his heart.
Jaime has a tragic past involving sexual abuse. He locks himself away and won’t allow anyone in, but when the outgoing Levi storms into his life he can’t say no, especially when it’s Levi and his bed that make him feel the safest he’s ever felt.
In addition to navigating this sometimes awkward and painful relationship, Levi and Jaime have their family demons to overcome. Both serving as a wonderful sounding board for the other on the path to healing.
Wow. This is another great book by Marie Sexton. I’d avoided it even though I’m a big fan because of the religion and the pain surrounding these guys.
I have to admit that I wanted to strangle Levi’s family. I never got them. They made some great strides – sure – but they were so stubborn and ridiculous, I can’t believe they thought that offering Levi chastity was a viable option.
I loved that Jaime was the one who helped Levi heal with his family. His desire for the closeness they shared helped Levi to get past his own stubbornness and I think, vice versa for his family.
The sexual abuse part was fairly well handled, my only issue is that I think a professional counselor really would have helped Jaime get through his issues in a better way and couples therapy would have done them wonders.
For whatever reason, listening to this was a bit easier than reading it and I really enjoyed John Solo’s narration. He doesn’t go over the top – in fact no one even has southern accents as you’d expect – but he does a nice job of bringing the story to life.
I highly recommend this to people who have an interest in the Mormon lifestyle – the author clearly did her research and she manages to describe them without villainizing them. It’s a moving love story and very well done.
I'm an unabashed fiction fan: mostly M/M, Romance, Erotica, Suspense, Thrillers, Action, NA/YA genres.
I thought John Solo did a really good job with the narration - conveying the situations presented and narrating the different character voices. I enjoyed the narration and wouldn't mind picking up other stories narrated by him.
What I liked most:
~ I loved this is a hurt/comfort story that deals with some really heavy subject matters.
~ I loved the story is told from both Levi and Jamie's POV.
~ I loved Jamie and the way Sexton handles Jamie's past trauma, the aftermath, and, ultimately, his healing. Jamie is what kept me going through the story.
I eventually liked Levi, especially his handling of Jamie and Jamie's past. It helped my respect for his character to grow, which is good because I really hated him for the first 50% of the story, then mostly disliked him for the next 10%, then eventually liked him. His actions, thoughts, behavior...I wanted to punch him. But he grows, through his love of Jamie, and that helped me like him better.
I knew going in that the story has an association with religious themes, so I didn't find the subject matter to be surprising. I did find it heavy handed at times, but those times usually passed pretty quickly and I tried not to dwell on them. Levi's family, and their religious battering, no matter how well intentioned, grated at me terribly even as I respected their growth and willingness to alter their opinions.
Ultimately, the story is about the power of healing, family and love. Fans of hurt/comfort should check this out, especially the audio version.
🌺 Lover of Amazing Stories 🌺
This was such a lovely story of family learning what it means to love unconditionally and a man learning that patience and unselfishness best 'safe place' to fall in love.
This story is about sacrificing your old habits and putting someone special first.
Levi is real shallow and take risks he shouldn't have. Then he realized that sleeping around wasnt everything. He had alot to give up before he round all of his rewards and learns family is everything.
Fantastic story and should be on your wish list for Christmas.
On one level this is an amazing beautiful story about tender love between two men, in which one of them is severely broken. It is also a story about a strict Mormon family and their gay son, who comes to terms with God and his family while remaining true to himself.
I would, as the relationship between the leads develops slowly and well over time.
I think it ended well, while Sexton could have given it a more firm ending, you have a sense of what might happen.
I've always liked Marie Sexton's stories and not for the first time, I feel that they have a larger meaning than just what the words represent. I'm not a religious person, so it is amazing to me that there is such belief in old stories written by man and acted upon by people who say they are doing God work or hurting someone in Gods name. Those who use faith as a way to isolate and condemn human beings for not living or believing the same thing. Whenever I hear about those who put those religious beliefs before love and the well-being of a member of your own flesh and blood is truly appalling to me. I'm glad that through this story, we were given a view of how one family might handle the difference in beliefs and still manage to love each other. To me, that is a true sign of God.
This was a great slow burn romance. The religious part of the story was a little too much of the story which is why I took a star away.
"Amazing story. Loved it."
My favourite story of the year. I loved Jamie and Levi's developing friendship and their slow-build romance. My heart went out to poor Levi in those family meetings.
Wonderful narration by John Solo. Just loved his voice for the main characters. Perfect.
"Well narrated, but the story was not for me"
A different story with sympathetic mcs
I love Marie Sexton, 'Promises' is one of my all time favourites, but I didn't like this book. I so strongly disliked Levi that I couldn't finish this, but John Solo did a good job with the part I listened to.
He distinguished the characters and put feeling in the book
I despised both Levi and his entire family, but as a main character he would be hard to cut, so Levi's colleague, Max, because I didn't like him either.
Two damaged characters, but Levi just couldn't grow up and get over himself. This is not romance, so if you're looking for sweet and fluffy, don't bother.
This was a good and interesting story that made you think about familial and personal obligations all wrapped up with religion, but was never preachy or dismissive. Well narrated, this works well both as a print and audio book.
"well written and narrated "
I really enjoyed this story, especially the way it got you into the heads and emotions and thoughts of the two lead characters.
A downside is there is a lot of Mormon religion within the story, which may be too much for some people and to be honest, I usually don't like it. However, the majority of it was included by way of one character explaining reasoning and concepts and thinking to another which I actually found very informative and felt, on this occasion it didn't detract from the story.
The erotic/sex elements were kept to a reasonable amount and weren't too graphic. personally I prefer more raunchy but still enjoyed this emensly.
I think I went through the full range of my emotions whilst reading this, which to me means it deserves 5*'s
This is the first book I have 'read' from this author but will definitely look for more.
Thoroughly enjoyed it and highly recommend.
"Thought provoking, yet light"
At its heart "Between Sinners and Saints" is a a sweet tender romance,and the issues of both men are treated with the sophistication and care that they dully deserve. Marie Sexton manages to walk the fine line between understanding curtain religious beliefs and the need for freedom to express ones sexuality. I loved the family meetings as a plot device for getting to know the family and discussing the issues without the story sounding preachy hehe. John Solo was faultless and the which is amazing considering how many characters there are. I did feel though, at times the book was a bit judgmental over aspects of the single gay lifestyle. Some of character developments was rushed or to my atheists mind, hard to comprehend such as Levi's complete life overhaul but over all a thought provoking read.
I was in a bit of an audio book slump, couldn't find a narrator I liked, couldn't find a book that hooked me, and then I bought this! Had I known there would be so many religious discussions I probably would have passed but whether it's because it was LDS or the skill of the writing I didn't mind it. The comparison between Levi who's family are constantly trying to get him to "give up the gay" and Jamie who was abused as a child is outstanding, the two characters grow into each other and even Levi's family redeem themselves. Eventually. This is definitely a book I will listen to again.
I loved the narration for this, I hadn't listened to any of John Solo's work before but I am looking to by more, he has a lovely tone of voice. Initially I thought the voice he was using for Jamie was too ..... simperery? .... but actually it fitted the character very well. And Max, a work mate of Levi's was great!
Book was angsty in places which is not my thing but not overly so, and yes I did laugh a few times
As I mentioned I'm not big on religion, I get very cross with the whole "gay is a sin" thing, yet the Mormanism as described in this book was very interesting, yes they are still anti gay but large parts of the religion was vary interesting so I felt educated! Of course as in all good romances it all came good in the end.
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