Audie Barrack is in it up to his elbows with a sick calf when his son's school calls. Seems Grainger has gotten into yet another fight. When he walks into the principal's office, he's shocked to find his son has been fighting with a little girl named Randi.
A little girl with one blind dad and one dad who recently passed away.
Dixon has lost his sight, his career, and his husband. Thank God for his brothers, Momma and Daddy, and his little girl, or he would simply give up. The last thing he needs is for Randi to start trouble at school, especially trouble that puts him in contact with another dad who might expect him to be a functional human being.
Dixon is struggling to live as a blind man, Audie is terrified someone might see he has a closet to come out of, and everyone from the school to both men's families is worried for the men and their children. Unless they get themselves together and commit to change, neither of them stands a chance.
©2015 BA Tortuga (P)2015 Dreamspinner Press
It is the story of Dixon, who lost his sight and his partner in an accident. He returns home to his family with their young daughter and meets Audie, the father of his daughter's schoolmate. Dixon is having a hard time adjusting to being blind and Audie is a wonderful cowboy looking for love. The kids play a big role and there are also well meaning but overbearing moms. Not a lot of drama or angst. The narrator is a favorite and does a great job. The only issue I had was a production error. Throughout the book, at random points, the narration suddenly sounded muffled. Like they went back to correct some dialogue, but the sound quality changed dramatically. It was only for a second or two but it was enough to draw me out of the story. It was very annoying.
I'm an unabashed fiction fan: mostly M/M, Romance, Erotica, Suspense, Thrillers, Action, NA/YA genres.
I loved the plot, the characters Audie and Dixon and their character development, and the story on the whole.
What I didn't love was the choppy editing of the narration, the sound quality, and the rushed ending.
This story has a trope I really enjoy: hurt/comfort. Dixon has lost both his husband and his sight in a horrific car accident. He's forced to move home with his parents because he can't do for himself, and needs time to get better and regroup before going to a special school that teaches people how to cope with their blindness. His daughter, Randi is having a really hard time adjusting to the changes in their life as well and acting out, particularly at school by hitting another child, Grainger. Grainger's father Audie is called in and is surprised to find out that his son has been fighting, and that the other child is a girl and a little spitfire. Audie is surprised again to find out that Dixon is gay and very out with it, particularly as his own homosexuality is a closely guarded secret.
The children were well characterized, and, thankfully, not present enough to be a bother to me. I liked both Audie and Dixon, especially that they were both human and flawed and just trying to do the best they could, and in Dixon's case, making the best out of a truly shitty situation.
The two men begin to spend time together because of the children and slowly begin building a relationship. While their kids have no problem with them together, Audie's mom isn't happy about it because she wants to keep Audie's gayness under wraps, and Dixon's mom isn't so happy about it because she isn't calling the shots anymore.
I enjoyed seeing the two men's relationship grow and their genuine affection and feelings for one another, which makes it all the more disappointing that the end was so rushed. I wanted to know more about Dixon going to the school for the blind. I wanted to know more about Audie's horse farm. I wanted to know more about their lives together. Instead I got a "everything is great and they lived happily ever after!" kind of ending, which just felt way too rushed.
As for the narration, Paul Morey is splendid, as per usual, but this is one of those times where not even great narration/acting can save the audio book - and it's all because of poor editing and sound quality.
If it weren't for the poor sound quality and the ending this would have a much higher rating.
Avid reader, reviewer, blogger and budding author.
Didn't read the print, but I can tell you I loved the audio version.
The way the two men slowly fell in love and eventually merged their families.
I have and it's fantastic. Anything Morey puts his voice to is golden.
It was, it took a couple days though. It was worth it, I really enjoyed this story.
Audie lives his life under the radar. A single father to a young son whose mom abandoned him, practically at birth, he keeps his sexuality a secret from everyone but his family. Everything changes when Audie gets a call from school that his son, Grainger, has been fighting with another student. Dixon and his daughter Miranda, Randi for short, are still in mourning over the loss of a loved one. Not only did Dixon loose his lover in the wreck, Randi lost her other daddy and Dixon lost his sight. Now he spends every day in darkness, just trying to put one foot in front of the other and learn how to live again. Imagine having everything you ever dreamed of; love, life, happiness and a family; and in an instant, it’s all taken away.
Audie winds up befriending Dix, inviting him and his daughter to Grainger’s birthday party in an attempt to help his son make new friends. It’s a rough start at first, Grainger determined not to like the little girl that socked him a good one. Eventually though, the four of them become inseparable. Audie begins teaching Randi how to ride horses while Dix teaches Grainger how to play guitar. And the two men, well they teach each other how to love and live again.
I was completely engrossed in this story five minutes in. The storyline was totally fun and care free. Of course there are some bumps in the road. Dix is bitter and lonely but once he opens his heart and lets Audie in, everything changes. Audie hasn’t lived in the closet per say, everyone just assumes that since he has a son he is straight; he does or says nothing to change their minds. But meeting Dix awakens something inside him he didn’t think he would ever experience again.
The difficulty these two face is merging their different life styles and blended families. The most strife and discord comes from their own mothers. Now that they’ve found happiness and a man that not only accepts them, faults, blindness, small children and all, they aren’t about to let anyone keep them apart.
Narrated by Paul Morey and if you follow my reviews, you know I adore his voice. He has this country gentleman tone that he uses for Audie and it is absolutely perfect. I especially liked that I could feel Dixon’s frustrations in the way Morey voiced him, it gave the story and the character so much more depth. Tortuga definitely did her research into the specifics of living life without site. Little details like the other senses becoming stronger, the anger and frustration over not being able to visualize something… I really enjoyed that she went that extra mile for the story.
I would recommend this audio book to anyone that likes cowboy romances, hopeless romantics and fans of Morey’s work.
Dixon has had to move in with his parents after losing his husband and his sight. His parents are supportive – to an extent – but there is an underlying tension in the house that keeps Dixon on the edge of miserable.
Audie is a young, single father, working his family ranch because he knows nothing else. His mother is somewhat supportive of him, but doesn’t approve of his being gay and isn’t shy about letting him know it.
Dixon and Audie meet when Randi (Dixon’s daughter) punches Grainger (Audie’s son). Audie pretty much immediately falls for Dixon but it takes awhile for that to play out.
The romance between Dixon and Audie is fairly easy going, their relationship is not. Dixon is a widower, well meaning friends and family worry Audie is a rebound man. Dixon is blind, family members worry that he won’t be able to contribute and that he might not be the best man to raise his own daughter, much less two children. Audie is a landless cowboy (he’s mother won’t put a gay boy in her will) with a child of his own.
Despite all the various obstacles and reasons why this shouldn’t work… it does and it does so beautifully.
I really enjoyed this country mouse/city mouse story. The immediate attraction and the acceptance of their romance between themselves let the rest of the story be about each of their own growth.
For all intents and purposes, one wrong decision led to Audie being a single dad, trapped on his family ranch at the age of 25. He’d never gotten to be a single gay man or do any of the other stuff that we do when we are young and carefree. As a result he’s older in some ways but still has a lot of that youth and inexperience in him that was a perfect mix for Dixon.
Dixon had been there and done that. Though he was only 33, he’d had a much more varied life, though not on a ranch! He was a bit jaded, a bit spoiled, a bit insecure, a bit self involved, but so brave. His family didn’t support him – not really – and he felt totally lost.
What I loved was that both men saved each other and the kids helped too. It’s hard to write kids because no two kids are a like and it can be hard to represent that mix of surprisingly mature things that sometimes come out of a young mouth along side the more immature tantrums and such. I think Randi and Grainger are excellent examples of kids done well. Though there were times I thought they were a little too mature, most of the time I really thought they were great.
I loved how the families were represented. They both felt very “gray” to me, meaning not all good and not all bad. So often the family is this all or nothing evil villain when in reality there is usually a mix. Dixon’s parents are well meaning if not fully supportive. Audie’s mom isn’t all bad, though she is pretty judgmental and petty.
Dixon’s reaction to being blind felt pretty appropriate as well, though I did wonder at his relative ease at getting over Ron. I also wondered why Ron’s family was so intent on keeping Randi when Dixon was the biological father, why weren’t his parents taking over?
Overall I thought this was a riveting and wonderful book and I highly recommend it.
Overall 4.6 of 5 stars!
Paul Morey did an amazing job with this. God I loved his Audey and Dix was PERFECTION. This was such a fun book to listen to with all the different southern accents! I highly recommend this as an audiobook!
6 of 5 stars
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