Anthony Carrino loves his big, gregarious Italian-American family, even if his sisters are interfering, and his dad, the local sheriff, knows everything going on in town. He's happy as a middle school guidance counselor. Despite helping kids and their parents fix their problems, Anthony can't manage to get his own love life right. If only everyone would stop calling him the "nice" guy.
Dean Pierce doesn't do relationships. A tough-minded military man, he is dedicated to his job as a Night Stalker, flying Chinook helicopters and not speaking much to anybody. He certainly doesn't want to deal with a mess of emotions. But when tragedy strikes, Dean finds his hands full with his troubled niece, her irresistible guidance counselor, and a meddlesome family, which includes a rather large puppy.
©2014 Skylar M Cates (P)2014 Dreamspinner Press
This is a great comfort read. Dean is a Special Forces soldier who is forced to take a hardship discharge in order to take care of his niece when his sister unexpectedly dies. He travels to the small town of Glamour, AZ and meets Anthony, the local guidance counselor. One of the best things about this book is Anthony’s family; a big Italian family that loves and supports each other fiercely. It is always great to see that in an mm romance. Dean on the other hand has past demons he is trying to conquer. He was not “out” in the army and has a hard time adjusting to civilian life and his feelings for Anthony; he doesn’t think he is worthy of someone as beautiful and good as Anthony. The narrator does an amazing job. He has great voices and really brings emotions to the characters. There is a little angst and not a lot of drams. Overall, worth a credit.
I didn't quite understand the name. That is why I passed it up several times. Now I get it Glamour is the name of a town not a prissy beauty school. This was actually well written a story about a man in the military who has to leave to care for his niece and the guidance counsellor who takes her in. The narration was great especially the sibling bickering. I downloaded the next edition @audible and plan on reading the last book since it's not offered as an audiobook. I hope you give this more a modern cover. The teacher in his hot glasses and the giant pilot gazing at each other. Just saying.
🌺 Lover of Amazing Stories 🌺
Matt Baca has the most sweetest voice ever! He sounds so d@mn adorable, which would fit for a novel about a teenager. For this story, his voice just did not match the main characters and I could not listen to the erotic scenes at all. LOL.
Now, the story was decent and I was entertained, plus Matt Baca is a fabulous performer. But for this story, it sounded like a teenager playing grown-up.
Anyway, good story.
Dean gets called from active duty in Afghanistan to return to Arizona when his sister is killed to take charge of his 13 year-old niece. He’s totally freaked out because he really doesn’t want to A) leave the military B) raise a teenaged girl C) live in Arizona.
Then he meets Anthony, his niece’s guidance counselor and realizes that he is A) in over his head B) very attracted to Anthony.
Dean doesn’t have many social skills, he’s used to the military and hidden, hard, fast screwing as a means to release and he really doesn’t know how to handle things like “lovemaking”, feelings, or parenthood.
Dean was in foster care as a child, so he decides he can’t abandon his niece to the system and decides to leave the military to raise her. He works with Anthony to make this happen.
Anthony, who was used by his last boyfriend and left hung out to dry, is kind of a mess, but he really, really likes Dean and his niece, so he agrees to form a “no strings” relationship with Dean. He schools Dean both on “slow, tender, the-end-isn’t-important-it’s-the-journey” romance and tips to raise a teenager.
In the end, Anthony thinks he must sacrifice his family for Dean’s career. Dean has to confront his feelings and be willing to “come out” to his niece and accept a new life, without the military. We get a terrifically sweet HEA here and a glimpse of the pair in the future in the sequel!
Dean is sweet, closed off, hard to reach, but in the end very warm. I loved watching Anthony “train” him in the ways of tender lovemaking. I also enjoyed Anthony’s sisters, they were a hoot!
Anthony was the weakest character, but he did provide an interesting contrast in that he was kind of spineless out in the world, but totally owned things in the bedroom. In the end, he was the perfect foil for Dean.
I had originally rated this as a 3.5 when I first read it, but upon re-reading/listening to this, I upgraded it to a 4.5. I don’t know if it was the sequel, wherein everything is far more stable that convinced me, but I really enjoyed this book more knowing what I know about them in the future.
Matt Baca (previously from Into this River I Drown) did a great job. He didn’t do too much with the voices, but Dean had a nice rumbly voice and Anthony wasn’t done in any over-the-top gay-boy voice. The sisters had a vaguely Brooklyn type lilt that suited them well. I enjoyed his narration very much. 4.5 of 5 stars.
Overall 4.5 stars
Riva, a fellow reviewer who's taste I've begun to trust, got it right. A comfort read. Sweet story about an unlikely pair who get together against the odds. Light, comforting albeit just a little frivolous - but then, isn't that what we want from the genre?
A reviewer at Guilty Indulgence Review Site. I don't go anywhere without a book -ebook or audiobook.
The story was far better than the cover and title. It was actually a sweet read with an opposites attract theme. There was minimal angst and a cast of strong secondary characters, both contributing to a solid story. The narrator does a good job, bringing out the emotions in the characters. Worth a credit.
**** 4,5 big guy stars ****
Audio edition, narrator Matt Baca.
8 hours 12 minutes
This was such a gem hidden away among my shelves! I'm so happy I finally got around to listen to it!
A beautiful, slow burn love story mixed with a family theme. The story had so much going for it!
Loved Dean and Anthony. They were so different, but perfect for each other. I appreciated nothing was rushed into. I also liked Anthony's family. Their interactions and conversations were true and genuine. I liked reading about Mia, Anthony's sister and Cody. It was a little touch that made the whole book just sweeter. I honestly could have done without Rick "the prick", Anthony's ex-boyfriend. I'm not sure it added to the story. It made for some light angst, but that story line could easily have been dropped from the book, really. It would have been enough with getting to know Dean, Nicky, Anthony and his family.
I was also introduced to Aaron Weiss, Dean's army buddy, who is the main character of book 2 "The Only Guy."
Matt Baca is a new to me narrator. He did an awesome job, and I'm really impressed! He did all the voices, and the narrated sex scenes were really hot.
Very well done, Baca!
I'm so looking forward to start the second book! Recommended!
Yes, I thought it was really good. The characters were likeable without being TOO perfect. There wasn't easy solutions to problems. Tough choices and sacrifices had to be made and it gave it a more realistic feel.
I've read this one and the sequel now and am half way through the 3rd. And with all of them, I've had moments where I really liked it. And then it seems to be building to something squee worth maybe and then.....it goes back to being really good-never quite hitting that indefinable quality that puts them over the top.
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