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Out in the Deep

Out in College, Book 1
Narrated by: Michael Pauley
Length: 4 hrs and 34 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (44 ratings)
Regular price: $14.95
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Publisher's Summary

Derek Vaughn is a little too serious. He’s a type-A controlling personality with a penchant for order and a love of water polo. But he’s determined to enjoy his last year of college. The real world with a serious job and big expectations can wait for a few months. He’s going soak up every minute on campus with his friends and teammates before he moves on. The only possible kink in his plan is the new guy on the team...also known as his nemesis. 

Gabe Chadwick has big Olympic dreams. His transfer between Southern California universities has nothing to do with scholastics. The degree is his backup plan. He’s not there to party or make friends. And he certainly isn’t going to announce his sexuality. But he can’t deny there’s something special about the uptight team captain. However, when an unwitting friendship and mutual attraction collide, both will have to decide if this is the real thing or if they’re about to lose it all in the deep.

©2018 Lane Hayes (P)2019 Lane Hayes

What members say

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Perfect Balance

Good balance of love, sex, friendship, romance, laughter, and understanding family. The narrator was exceptional as always!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Another winner from Lane Hays!

Lane Hays is a go to author for me and this book hit the sweet romance craving I had. Plus, I love Michael Pauley's voice.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Out in College #1

This was surprisingly (at least to me) angsty, and I honestly wasn't expecting it. Told entirely from Derek's POV, I would have preferred to have Gabe's POV as well. There were a couple of elements I don't personally care for in books, namely Derek's ex drama, and some miscommunication, and that's just not my cuppa. 

I liked the narration overall, especially as Michael Pauley uses distinct character voices and paces well, but I really think getting Gabe's POV would have made this a much higher rating for me.

Single POV, sports romance with enemies to lovers, some angst, plenty of heat, and a happy ending.

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  • Cassi
  • ScrolMates Blog
  • 01-31-19

Rivals to lovers

Ahh These guys are sexy together!! I loved their dynamic and progression of their relationship from rivals to friends to lovers to love. They are witty and playful, and Lanes dialogue is always awesome!

Michael nailed these guys and I adored his drunken scene.

It's a great kick off to a great series.

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Not my favorite of the series


I didn’t read this story when it was originally released because one closeted character is usually more than I can handle but two was definitely too much. I decided to dive in (ha, sometimes I amuse myself) with the audio because sometimes the performance helps me get through books I usually wouldn’t read.

Derek played a big-ish role in book two, so I knew a bit about his and Gabe’s story. I wasn’t a fan of their fighting and juvenile behavior toward each other to hide their attraction. Their initial sexual encounter and their reactions to it didn’t endear me to them. Several times these boys reminded me why I tend to stay away from the younger characters because I do not like the immaturity.

I did like the way Derek decided to come out and the way Gage supported him when he made the statement.

The vocal performance was good, and I wouldn’t have made it through the book without it. The emotions he put into the characters helped make them more likeable.

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Very enjoyable!

4.5 Stars!

Out in the Deep is book 1 in the newest series by Lane Hayes, Out in College, and it features two water polo players, enemies to lovers, UST and some very hot sexy times.

When the book starts Gabe and Derek are on opposing teams and Gabe has been the bane of Derek's existence for a long time. The last thing Derek expects is for Gabe to become his newest teammate or that the tension brewing between them will be so explosive. However things start between them, they soon find themselves in a secret relationship since they're both in the closet, but what will happen if someone finds out about them?

I loved Derek and Gabe, they were fun, sweet and relatable and were scorching hot together. While they start out as enemies, it wasn't long until that changed and I adored seeing how well they fit together.

The secondary cast was a great addition to the story, I absolutely loved Evan and can't wait to read his story. While I didn't care for Derek's ex when I first read the book, she grated on my nerves this second time around and even if I still applaud Lane's decision not to demonize her, I can't say I was all that happy that Derek apologized to her after what she did.

Michael Pauley's narration was enjoyable, for the most part. There were some instances, like the sex scenes, in which the pace felt almost... frantic, maybe? It was too fast and it pulled me from the moment. Still, Mr. Pauley's voice is quite pleasant, so even with that, this is a great choice for an audiobook.

Ms. Hayes has this knack for writing characters that I can fall in love with and this book wasn't an exception. It was well-written and had a perfect balance of sweetness, romance, hotness and angst. Definitely an audiobook you don't want to miss out on!

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Derek & Gabe

There were so many of my favorite tropes in this story: college age, athletes, closeted lovers and first time gay. I really enjoyed Derek and Gabe’s story. I found their relationship so sweet and their love story was really beautiful. The chemistry between Derek and Gabe really grabbed me. And their sexy times?! Whoa! This truly hit all my emotional feels and I found myself having to snag a tissue.

I have been impatiently awaiting for the audio of this book, and it was so worth the wait! I absolutely loved this book when it came out, and the narration of it was just fantastic!

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Michael Pauley did a great job!

I read Out in the Deep and then listened to the audio and I just love the way Michael Pauley brings these characters to life. Derek and Gabe are water polo college rivals until Gabe transfers. Now they are teammates. And they have to get along and work together. Derek doesn't like Gabe. Always found him too confident and obnoxious. Having him around gives him anxiety and he needs to focus and graduate. Gabe has watched Derek compete over the years and always had a little thing for him. When Derek gets drunk one night, things heat up between them. Hate turns into something seriously hot and unexpected. Derek always knew he might be attracted to men too, but there is something about Gabe that makes him lose his mind. Can they have a real relationship while being teammates and trying to achieve their dreams? I loved watching these two fall in love! It was sexy as sin, sweet and fun. It was all new for Derek and he was so darn cute asking questions and willing to try anything. Gabe took good care of him, let him relax and just feel. The writing is great, the story well developed and the characters wonderful!

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Pauley brings Hayes’ characters to life!

I received a free copy of this audiobook to listen to and review for Wicked Reads.

As a huge fan of Lane Hayes’ Leaning Into series, I was excited to learn that her Out in College series was being released as audiobooks, especially as more than one of my co-reviewers enjoyed the ebooks. That Michael Pauley was the narrator was icing on the cake. Double yum!

Never having watched water polo, I found the opening scene of Out in the Deep quite entertaining. I’m not sure I would have considered it to be that violent of a sport, but as competitive as Derek and Gabe were, I wasn’t surprised when one was thrown out of the game – but I was surprised to learn how convincing the other was at playing the victim. Yeah, I definitely had a snicker over that one. As hot as their first tryst was, I couldn’t help but feel sorry for both guys. Derek for being unable to admit his feelings to himself and Gabe for feeling used. Fortunately, Hayes moves the story along in such a way that the shift in their interactions from cautious-bordering-on-hostile to cautious and curious lovers to boyfriends felt natural. I appreciated that the decision to keep their relationship a secret was mutually agreed upon and mutually beneficial to both – neither was made to feel like a dirty little secret. I hated that events unfolded in such a way that Derek felt forced to come out before he was ready, even if doing so meant being true to himself and protecting Gabe. Fortunately, Hayes doesn’t shy away from emotions and even though she has no problem putting her characters through the wringer, she makes sure they get the happy ending they (and I) deserve.

There are several emotional scenes in Out in the Deep that had me on the edge of tears, including Derek’s coming out speech to his team. But the most poignant scene for me was when Derek discusses his fears about coming out with Evan. While Hayes does a great job explaining why coming out is a scary prospect, it was Michael Pauley’s performance that made this scene for me. Pauley pours so much emotion into Derek that as he confesses his fears to Evan, I could hear his voice breaking and feel the tears he was choking back – which was all it took to break the fragile hold I had on my own. Pauley did a wonderful job of bringing Hayes’ characters to life and I am beside myself with glee that I get to continue to enjoy both the author’s and the narrator’s talents with book two, Out in the End Zone, right now. Oh, the joys of near simultaneous releases.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Derek and Gabe were great together

Lane Hayes is a fairly new to me author having only read one of her books prior to this one, so I really didn't have a true sense of her writing style yet but I did know I enjoyed the first book I had read/listened to so I decided to dive into this series when the opportunity arose and I am glad I did.

I really like the way the author took two guys that really didn't like one another, almost an enemies-to-lovers but not quite, and forced them to get close, close enough that feelings started to emerge.

Derek and Gabe were both great characters and I was rooting for them right from the start. I am going to keep this vague because I don't want to give anything away but I will let you know that Gabe is gay and in-the-closet and Derek has only ever been with girls although he has been attracted to guys he never acted on it. Now that is all you're going to get out of me because that does NOT ruin the book whatsoever.

The narrator, Michael Pauley, did a wonderful job with bringing this story to life. His voice has a nice soothing texture to it and it really was nice to listen to. I'm diving into book #2 of this series and I am thrilled that Michael Pauley is narrating that one as well.

If you are a lover of MM romance with athletes I would recommend giving this book a read. It is relatively short and can be listened to in just one afternoon, but if you're like me you'll make a day of it and dive into the next book as well. Happy Reading!!!

**I voluntarily listened to an Advanced Readers/Listeners Copy of this book**

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  • edga
  • 01-23-19

great story

What a delightful story. No real angst, just lots and lots of falling in love. I adored both Gabe and Derek, they just fit. Derek was such a hot mess, he made me laugh, but I loved his reaction to his obvious attraction to Gabe. Nothing was rushed, their relationship was so organic, I found their snuggliness adorable. As usual, with Ms Lane, the dialogue and the pace of the story was spot on.

If you want what ultimately is feel good story, I highly recommend this. It's a perfect start to a new series. Derek and Gabe were perfectly written and we are also introduced to a slew of characters who are obviously going to feature in future stories.

So, a low angst love story from Ms Lane, which is a perfect read to while away a summer's day. Once again, Lane's character development is first class. I loved Derek's enthusiasm and the way in which he was all in, once he decided to pursue his attraction to Gabe. I'm already looking forward to the next book.

Excellent narration from Michael Pauley. Brought Gabe and Derek alive.