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Publisher's Summary

Thanks to Paul Sturgess, his long-time family friend and benefactor, Mike Sloan has lived a comfortable existence during college as a record-breaking swimmer. He's looking forward to finishing his senior year, followed by graduate school, then a high-powered career. That's what he thinks anyway, before he meets Hank Schechter, the awkward, shy, new-transfer student swimmer. Mike senses a sensitivity to the withdrawn young man, and makes it his personal goal to bring Hank into the fold. While helping Hank to become a member of the team, Mike finds himself falling for the new guy. Mike's dear childhood friend, Rachel Levange, who is running her own private law practice, announces she's ready to become a mother. And she wants Mike to be the baby daddy. Mike may be a gay man, but he too is experiencing a sudden desire to become a father. How will he reconcile it all?

©2015 Denise Barone (P)2016 Denise Barone

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

wow hell I need to to come down!!

After a night with no sleep because of this book!!!! this is my review...( with no spoilers as always) before everything I need to say this book is not for everyone....

this book!!! Oww this freaking book !!!
when I was interested in this book I never imagined I would get this kind of story! this kind of feeling's! this kind of humanity!!!!!
you may think this is a usual gay romance but it's not ...not at all!
it's a story without labels, it's just a story that tell us about humans.... humans with mistakes, humans with false, and humans with feelings. maybe this book is not for everyone, because it sure as hell I was shocked!
it's a book about a man, a young man that is a struggle to finding one thing ...one special thing that we are all looking for. love!
simply love!
Michael is an amazing character. Hank is much more than amazing and sweet, so freaking sweet. the illness was so well described without even telling us the readers What Hank problem is.
and we knew did the problem is serious, we didn't knew he has disabilities.. but we knew that something is wrong. very very, wrong ...
every and each character in this book was in place.
it was amazing how everything collided in an amazing frustratingly good story.
I can't say everyone will love the story. I can't say everyone will say it's a good one.
no people will struggle with this book, this book is very special.
and I thought I knew the famous genre of gay men stories. but I was mistaken so much, and so badly!!!
because when I got this one I have learned the sex is just an act... an act that you can do with a woman and enjoy it with a man and enjoy it and you don't need to label. the feeling that they were looking for is love... yes they were looking for sex (like all humans)
but this book in specific is incredible and frustratingly annoying.
I don't even know how to describe it! and I don't know if everyone would love it. but I couldn't switch off the narrator for one second, I didn't sleep, I couldn't work properly until I finished this specific book.
I was thinking a lot about the score I will give this book, but I can't give anything below 5 stars... because this book made me anxious, made me mad, I felt the sweetness of Hanks disease... I felt the struggle of Mike's life.. I felt in every syllable, in every word, and in every sentence!!! what the author I meant, when he write this book!
the narrator was quite amazing... I didn't knew anything about this narrator and this writer until I heard this book, and I'm sure I will get another book from this writer even though this book was frustratingly annoying and frustratingly good. everything that happened will piss you off, it pissed me off so badly ....but I couldn't stop myself and I couldn't stop wishing that everything will be okay it just was so good I will definitely wait for more books from this author. and I will search another books of this narrator.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Different but good

This story was very different many levels of the story. Lots of angles of the characters. I do feel like a lot of details were left up in the air. The beginning was awkward. It seemed to even out but man the turns of story were just a bit much for the small amount of time the book had left. I did like it just needs more hotness:)

This is unbiased review with a credit from audiobookboom

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

One of the most complex and human MM stories

Where do I start with this? It's not exactly a romance, but a story of very different people trying to find love and get through college and life.

Mike is starting his senior year of college and just wants it to be over with and get on with his life. He has been in a relationship with an older man, Paul, who wants to marry him. Mike has feelings for Paul, but it is not love. Mike, a swimmer on his college team, meets Hank, a new student who joins the team. But Hank is a little odd and the other guys tease him. Mike feels a spark there and thinks Hank might be gay. He takes him under his wing and they go on a date, which leads to an awkward night of sex because Hank is a virgin and is a little freaked out by it. Mike decides to let Hank take his time. He finds out that Hank is interested in the Olympics and Mike is too. In fact, Paul is sponsoring Mike and Mike gets Paul to take on Hank, too. Meanwhile, Hank moves into an apartment with a woman from school. She thinks he's kind of hot and seduces him, which starts a relationship.

And Mike's best friend, Rachel, is a lawyer who has decided she wants to have a baby and wants Mike to be the father. Mike is intrigued by the idea of becoming a father. But what about Paul and Hank? Hank, we learn, probably has Aspberger's. And he isn't really sure if he is straight or gay.

Mike, on the other hand, starts sleeping with Rachel. I had a problem with this part of the story. Mike had no qualms about doing it at all, although he is gay. And it was done for pleasure, not to get her pregnant. It just did not seem realistic to me, especially when nothing was said about whether Mike had slept with women before or not.

Mike is a man who thinks he knows what he wants, but he really doesn't. The story was different because it was more like real life - the daily ins and outs, the daily confusion, the daily stress, etc, but in the end no one knew what they really wanted (except maybe Paul).

Alex Alvarez did a good job narrating, although his voice for Hank was a little odd at times. I know he was doing this because of the Aspberger's, but it just made it more of a stuttering guy who didn't know what to say. Not everyone who has Aspberger's speaks oddly like this.

Overall, an interesting story, but it doesn't leave you with a feel good ending, just that life continues and will go on, never being what people want their lives to be.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Could have been great

The storyline was interesting, but the writing left alot of much needed details out. The characters were undeveloped.

I enjoyed listening to the narrator, he did a good job with what he had to work with.

I received this audible free of cost. I freely give my honest review.

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

Interesting characters and story

This story was interesting, but I didn't love it. The characters never clicked with me, and I never felt a real connection between them. I felt like there were several holes in the story line, and I wanted to know if Mike's mom passed away before he went to the trials. I did find the idea of training for the Olympics to be really interesting, so I enjoyed that, as well as some other parts of the book. I think the narrator did a good job, and I'd listen to him again. I just wish I liked the characters more.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

An Interesting Listen From A Different Perspective

***I was given this book for free for an honest review***

I enjoyed listening to this book. The characters were multi faceted and relatable. Mike's protectiveness of Hank was touching. I sometimes actually winced at some of Hank's awkwardness but would then beam when Mike would stick up for him or encourage him, thus getting the other guys off his back. Hank was rather lovable in his awkward way and Alex Alvarez did a great job getting that awkwardness across. I recommend it.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Dive into a complex story

This book was really conflicting for me. I believe the narration really helped me pull through parts I had otherwise found difficult. Alex Alvarez has a pleasant voice and he seemed to really put his all into each character. His depiction of Hank was captivating and strange at the same time- an emotion Mike has identified with throughout the story regarding Hank. In that sense I think the narration really brought the story to life in a way that made me want to continue reading despite my reservations.

I like that fact the author incorporated a character with Aspergers and it looked like a lot of research has been made into making that subject accurate. I did have an issue with the lack of attention and counseling Hank got, that really affected my ability to connect with the story. Mike keeps saying he just wants Hank to be a “normal person” and makes it his “mission”, that really bothered me because if you choose to deal with such a complexity in a story you can’t that brush it off as Hank being “not normal”. I also was really bothered by the fact Hanks mental state was just declared as Aspergers without any professional taking part in that assessment (just Paul’s opinion base on some relative that had it). It made it appear almost pasted into the book and not really an organic part of the story. And how come no one thought to take Hank to someone that could help him, I found it strange. Another issue I had with the book was that all the relationships revolved around using people, no real connection but just “business”, and then trying to make it romantic. It was at times disturbing, like how Paul started supporting Mike, its twisted and wrong. And then you add Hank into the mix, which is bad enough, and he has Aspergers that means he has trouble responding to people emotions and intentions. It made him almost easy pray at times, his naivete in entering a friendship and physical relationship with Mike was almost assault to me. I could not get over those undercurrents in the plot and they muddled every other part of the book to me. Also portraying gay characters that then contradict that was a bit off putting because I could not find a reason for them behaving thus. The book had very complex situations and characters while remaining flat and almost too melodramatic by choosing to put these characters together. I think there were too many details and topics, not enough dealing with them individually (because there was just no room to do so).

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

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • seelk
  • Ontario, Canada
  • 11-27-17

rough gem

'Breaking Out' does have a good premise, dealing with some important issues regarding acceptance of the LGBT community in competitive sports and in general. Mike was quite lovable and following his story was heartwarming and heartbreaking at the same time. Interesting secondary characters, some added to the story, some not so much.
The flow was not quite smooth, jumping from one scene to another, some feel rushed and some of the expressions used in the book snapped me out of the story.

I enjoyed listening to Mr. Alvarez's voice, versatile and with good modulations, loved most of the voices chosen, but the delivery fell short for me. Some of the voices were switched, also not sure if this was intentional, but female's voice used for a male character and male voice for female character are not good.

I was given this free review audiobook at my request and this review is voluntary.

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

It was good, but.....

Breaking out was good, it was like nothing I had read before. I though it was an mm romance, but it's more like a m/m m/f. It starts off with Mike and Paul. Paul is older then mike, and has given mike a pretty good life. Mike is a swimmer, he dreams of making the olympics. Paul supports him a 100%. He basically pays for everything. They have a sexual relationship, Mike doesn't feel the same way Paul does. Mike then meets Hank. Hank is awkward and shy. Mike and Hank have an awkward hookup, but nothing really develops. Then we meet Rachel. Rachel and Mike have been friends since they were kids. there is some drama between Rachael and mike, but in the end Rachel saves the day. I don't think breaking out is a romance. There are some 🔥Scenes, but I think it was more about finding out who you really are. The narrator was ok.

I was voluntarily provided this review copy audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator."

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Lily G Blunt
  • 01-31-18

I have mixed feelings about this story.

It’s interesting to see this audiobook has currently been classified as Erotica/Fiction. I agreed to review because I thought it was an M/M title and, in many ways it is, but listeners ought to be aware there are M/F relationships and sex scenes within this story.

The first and last parts of the story I found interesting and enjoyable with the interaction and conflict between the three main male characters. There was the potential here for a love triangle and that was where I thought the story was heading, but I didn't think that wasn’t developed sufficiently. I was hoping the story would focus on Mike and Hank’s relationship after they hooked up, but that sort of fizzled out. Paul was generous with his financial support of Mike, but he was not a nice person. It was a two-way street—Mike used him too.

The competitive swimming and training scenes were well written and exciting, and the Olympic dreams of MIke and Hank remain a major part of the story.

But when the story goes along a completely different track quite early on I was bewildered. Mike starts thinking about being a ‘grown up’ and wanting to start a family rather than chasing his Olympic dream. Both Mike and Hank enter relationships with women and are tricked into getting them pregnant. Much of these M/F scenes are conversation heavy and domesticated. The conversation is repetitive and the sex scenes are perfunctory and not erotic in the slightest.

Mike is prepared to sacrifice his sexuality to support Rachel and her baby, and Hank happily considers that he might not be that gay after all! Hank might well have been bisexual, but I don’t think it was ever stated. There were a lot of issues dealt with in this book and not all of them entirely successfully. There were inconsistencies in the characters, as well as the timeline and events. I was left with a lot of unanswered questions at the end.

I enjoyed the sports-themed arc and the MM storyline the most, but was disappointed with how the story developed.

The narrator was new to me and easy to listen to. He matched his voice well to the various characters and he narrated the story at a clear and steady pace.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Jackie Thorogood
  • 11-21-17

Really enjoyed this book

This book is so very good, I've read a lot of mm genre, this is on another level.
Michael Character was wonderfully written,
Hank also another fabulously written character, without going into details, Hank has something serious wrong with him. He a sweet guy.
Once I became invested in the book. I was hooked. Not your average MM book. It's more.
The characters sometimes are frustrating, I wanted to say to Michael for crying out load, on a lot of occasions.
This author is new to me. But I will be looking for more books by them.
Beautifully written, great details to these characters.
I will definitely be listening to this again. Very entertaining p
Highly recommended
I was given this audible for a honest review. Which I can truly say I have.