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Publisher's Summary

Can an older man make Jag break all the rules that keep him safe?

For the last few years, Jag’s life has been a living hell. His rules have kept him safe.

The Heaven and Hell Club was supposed to be another brief stop, but when the bereaved owner, Michael, turns his world upside down, Jag breaks one rule after another.

Being with Michael gives Jag a reason to stop running, but can he find the courage to stay?

Broken, the first book in the Heaven and Hell Club series, is a high angst, hurt/comfort romance with an age-gap relationship, pole dancing, and a HEA.

Trigger warning: Conversion therapy is mentioned and described in brief detail.

©2019 Colette Davison (P)2019 Colette Davison

What listeners say about Broken

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

and afterward many are strong at the broken places

After reading a steady stream of books from “my side of the pond,” I loved the Briticisms in this book. Between jumpers, bedsits, filter coffee, dual-carriageways and punters this book is about as firmly grounded in the British Isles as the Tower of London.

First, let's deal with a somewhat problematic premise. Jag is convinced he's running from a powerful family who are not above kidnapping him and subjecting him to yet another round of conversion therapy. To a normal person, it's unclear how Jag could still be so under the control of his family. He's now an adult. He has the ability to make a stink in the press. He can get a restraining order, no? But if we grant that premise; chalking it up to the views of a young man still deeply scarred by past betrayals and experiences, the rest of the story becomes a sweet variation on the hurt/comfort trope.

The relationship between Michael and Jag is all the sweeter because Jag insists it can't last. It's so clear to the reader that Jag's rules are unnecessary when dealing with a truly good and supportive man like Michael. But will the wounded and betrayed man-child with little sense of self worth be able to see that amid his fears? Oddly, Jag's almost paranoiac fears are manifested by him being unable to surrender control and it's quite interesting to see him taking control in the early sexual situations, while on some level, still being such a broken and brittle character at his base. That said, since “no strings sex” is one of Jag's early demands, there are plenty of scenes featuring hot action. And as the relationship becomes closer, the sex becomes sweeter but no less frequent.

Piers Ryman does a yeomanlike job in narrating this book. His character voices aren't as pronounced and his “voice acting” isn't as on display, as many of the more popular narrators out there. He mostly lets the story narrative and the character's inner monologues speak for themselves while still imbuing the character's spoken dialogue with regional accents and points of view. Initially this seemed a bit strange, but a few chapters in I was no longer noticing this as anything unusual.

While the plot's critical conflict seems a bit minor in retrospect, this is a quick enjoyable read. That it highlights an issue that still all too real in today's culture, (and the presence of an HEA ending) makes it a worthwhile one as well.

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just ok

I guess the narration was OK, but the book was just predictable and lacked alot.

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Beautiful and worth listening to!

4.5 Stars

This book made me ask myself: ‘What would I do if I was Jag? How would fear and paranoia affect me?’ I think I’d do the same thing. I’d be looking over my shoulder, full of distrust, and stay on the move. How could you not, if your fear is valid, if it’s based on truth, and founded by trauma?

I loved the way this book was written, and the characters were engaging and memorable. They were multidimensional and I could easily befriend them in real life. The author did a beautiful job with the way she wove their pasts with their present.

This is the first book I’ve read by this author, and I’m looking forward to reading more, especially in this series. It’s also the first book I’ve listened to that was narrated by Piers Ryman. He did a beautiful job bringing the characters to life. You could hear the emotion in his voice during the heavy moments and the happiness during the lighter moments. His accent was delightful, too. Overall, I really liked this audiobook, and I would recommend it to everyone considering it. It’s worth the money spent or the credit used.

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Wonderful story

This is a beautifully written story about grief and finding a way through it. Michael and Jag come from two very different places and aren't sure how to have a relationship with each other until they find themselves breaking all their rules. The writing is so good. You could feel the emotion of the characters through it. The narration was fantastic. This narrator is still a bit of a newbie, but he has the amazing skill of not only making all the characters sound unique and different, but he can evoke all the emotion in them as well. It's the perfect dynamic that had me carrying my device from room to room so I didn't have to pause it.
Colette Davison wrote a beautiful story about two men who learn that they're a little bit bent, but never completely broken, paired with Piers Ryman's narration, and you have a wonderful audiobook that will stick with you long after it's over.

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Broken but not Shattered

Broken: Heaven and Hell Book #1
MMy Thoughts Confessions and Review:

Grief... It comes in many forms. Loss of a loved one, loss of self, loss of control, loss of peace of mind. All these losses are valid, and all can incite grief in one form or another. Because we are emotional beings we deal with these losses in a million different ways.

For twenty-year-old Jag, who had his youth, sense of self, and self-worth ripped from him and crucified in front of his very eyes he trusts NO ONE! He has become a wandering spirit in an abandoned house who manages to conjure enough energy once in a while to cause the house lights to flicker so passersby will see someone is still inside the house.
It isn't until Jag wanders into the dance and strip club, "Heaven and Hell" that things begin to change for the lost young soul.

Michael, owner of Heaven and Hell is awestruck by the beauty filling his club as the young man flips, twirls, and works the pole on his stage in the middle of his club, as he auditions for a place among Michael's other dancers. While Michael can see how haunted and closed off Jag is, he is also drawn to the spark exuding from the young man's soul. He hasn't felt a pull like this in the many years since he lost his partner and the love of his life. Michael couldn't ignore his draw to Jag anymore than a moth could to a flame, even knowing it may mean getting hurt in the end.

Hurt-Comfort themes are one of my favorites because they are filled with healing, compassion, and tons, and tons of love. However, when that theme encompasses both MCs it can be a slippery slope because it can come off feeling like an emotional game of tug-of-war to see who has/ had it worse and therefore needs the most comfort. No need for worrying over that here though, because Colette created a beautiful waltz rather than a tug of war and the only thing that changed was, depending on the need, who led the waltz. At times Michael needed to lead, and at others, it needed to be Jag who led for Michael. What made their waltz so beautiful and captivating for the reader was their chemistry, making their change in who would lead a seamless exchange.

I loved these characters, and I just wanted to wrap Jag in my arms and hug and kiss him and tell him he was wonderful and perfect just the way he was. The mark of an awesome author who can stir those kinds of feelings in this old momma's heart. The cast in the book is small, but the ones in the story are larger than life. I appreciated just how fleshed out each one was, and even more so through the audio which brought an extra dimension to each character. The pace was steady and never lagged. I thought the story ended nicely and I am anxious to start the next book.

The Story: 4.5🌟
The Narration: 4.0🌟
Sharonica Stars: 4.25✨

I received an audio copy of this book from GBP in exchange for an honest review.💐

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I loved this story, wonderful narration!

Wow, this is one of those books that just about broke me but it was such a great story. Jag's parents forced him into "therapy" when he came out to them at fifteen. He eventually ran away, never staying in one place too long for fear that they would find him (they are very well known and influential).

Michael hires Jag to dance at his club, Heaven and Hell, and eventually they begin a relationship. Jag won't let it develop into anything serious because he knows he can't stay.

This was such an emotional story and Piers Ryman did a wonderful job performing it. His voice conveyed all of the anguish that Jag felt when he finally told Michael what happened to him. I've listened to a few other audiobooks he's done and enjoyed them, but he was really outstanding with Broken.

I loved the writing in Broken. The words flowed perfectly and the descriptions of Jag's dancing allowed me to "see" what he was doing. I was absolutely engaged with the story from beginning to end.

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Loved it

This story was soooo very good. I loved how Jag, despite being a twink, was the one who took command with sex. I get so tired of the twink always being the bottom. The author did a good job making these guys realistic and relatable.

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Emotional

Emotional journey about a club owner and boy who has been through some series rough times. Its all about healing, trust and finding a way to build yourself up after being so broken. A little slow in parts but a good read and good narration.

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Good book

"This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review."

I enjoyed the story and listened straight through. I will listen to more from the author and narrator.

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wow! so beautiful

This is one of the best MM romance I read! I loved it! Michael and Jag are lovely.
The plot is really good and realistic. The characters are beautiful and adorable. The love between them is amazing and the sex scenes so hot!
The writing is perfect. I couldn't put it down.

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  • Starwarslover
  • 05-19-20

so good

very good... good narrator.. good story.. this author did an amazing job with this series.. and this narrator did good with these characters and their complexity. i liked it

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  • HelenMK69
  • 02-13-20

Heartbreak but an HEA

A wonderful story written by Colette , a difficult subject handled very well. I cried in parts and was mad in others.
But in the end I ended up relieved more than anything. Its great when a book really pulls at your emotions, truly means your reading a book by an awesome author.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Claudia CG Lezár
  • 12-20-19

as good as the ebook

The story is always 4 or 5 stars, because if I wouldn't like the story as ebook, I wouldn't listen to the audiobook.

The performance from the narrator is also very important for me. I can't listen to a lot, because my English as a non-native-speaker isn't so perfect to follow a whole story over hours, when the narrator speaks too fast or too sloppy. Normally I have to SEE the person, who is talking to me in English. It took me a little bit, to come into the narrator, but at the end, it worked. I only have to take a few breaks between. I'm just not yet finish with the book, but I listen enough to give a review.

PLEASE READ MY RATING SYSTEM!!!

To my ratings:

5* - very very good
it's like an A+

4* - very good and will be often re-listening
it's like an A

3* - it's more then a one-time-listening.
it's like a B

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  • Mrs N
  • 12-11-19

love conquers all

This story started out pretty sad, with a broken young man trying to survive the horrors in his life. Then he gets a job and meets his new boss.
Michael took one look at Jay and felt the young boys fear , he sets out to try to help him but he could not foresee what was to come.

l enjoyed the story and the narration .