How can you lose one dream and still find another?
Owen King is a lonely history teacher who wants to be braver. So when Owen learns about the deceased brother he never met, he breaks free of his safety net and risks answers. Despite his loving, adopted family, Owen wonders if there are missing pieces inside of him. Visiting the seaside town of Ocean Vista, where his brother lived and died, will be no vacation.
Andrew Teagan wants to be a winner. After being dumped by his last boyfriend, Andrew is through letting others dictate his life. To prove that dreams are possible, he's going after his ambitions full force. Having signed on for a cooking reality show, Andrew's ready to make his small café into a sizzling success.
When Andrew aids Owen on the beach, what starts off as an act of kindness turns into a hot temptation. But can a sweet budding romance survive when the time comes for Owen to leave town? Both men must learn to trust each other if their love will conquer the miles between them.
©2015 Skylar M. Cates (P)2016 Dreamspinner Press
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"wonderful follow up"
Second in the series, and I have to be honest, I listened to the first so long ago (in my audio book world, I go through 5-8 a month) that I actually didn’t remember who we were talking about. I kept getting the dead brother, but until someone said “bike accident” did I realize who and what first story we were on about. With that being said, I didn’t feel lost, in the first few chapters, until that connection (in my head) was made.
This time, we are trying to heal, Owen decides it’s time. It’s time to take a stand, in life, in love, in work. And he starts by finding out about the brother he wasn’t able to meet in that life. So heading south for Spring break to the seaside, with weight of the world on his shoulders so he can at least get this one thing off of it.
As Andrew, River, Marc, Tomas and Cole rebuild a life after Brenden death; Owen walks in and stirs everything up.
Andrew first spots Owen on the beach, and even from that first encounter we can tell that this is going to be a fun, sweet encounter. Andrew being the bolder of the two, but both of them soon realizing that something wonderful is happening in around and too them.
As for the other friends, tons of drama, from friends with unresolved issues, loves and hearts that broke with Brenden’s death. Father and sons drama, new business adventures, new lives for good and bad.
All of this revolves around Andrew and Owen and the HFN they are creating.
The narrator is doing a wonderful job creating a scene, a life we all can understand. The ups and downs, heartache and pain.
"Love, loss and figuring out who you want to be."
I liked Owen and how he grew as a character from where he was when the book started, and where he was by the end. He matured and evolved a lot.
That the "face value" of the characters wound up being different than one would think.
Bradley was waaaaaay too theatrical... or dare I say, satirical.
I absolutely loved the first book in this series and wanted to continue the story, though this book could be listened to or read as a stand alone. I did not care for the narration. As I said above, Bradley's tones and inflections didn't really fit with what they should have been. Of course, this is just my opinion. I could tell by the content though, that this was another amazing story of love, loss and figuring out who you are in relation to who you think you want to be. So, my suggestion would be to read this one.
"Sweet story, great sequel"
In book one we met Andrew as a replacement in the house after Brendan died. He owns his own café, has a brother and a sister who live nearby and a mother who relies too heavily on him. He’s just gotten out of a relationship where his boyfriend begrudged him the time he spent at work and he’s recently been accepted to a reality-TV cooking show for a chance to win some money to help his café grow.
Owen is Brendan’s half-brother, but the two never got to meet. Cole was conversing with Owen via mail and finally managed to convince Owen to come meet the family that Brendan created with the guys from the house. He teaches at the private school he attended as a child, but is questioning his current contract as a morality clause has been suddenly tacked on. He is also a dedicated big brother to his special needs sister who still lives at home, near his school.
In a flurry of co-incidences, Owen and Andrew meet without knowing they share a connection through Cole first at the beach, later at a bar and finally at the house. They had a spark of attraction at first on the beach, shared a kiss at the bar and then finally admitted to wanting something more even though they know their time together may be very short.
Their relationship moves from simmering to sizzling very quickly as they realize just how easy it is to be with one another. They just click. They know the distance is going to be a problem but they resolve to work things out.
In the end, after an intense week together and several weeks of doing things at a distance, they have to decide where their priorities lie and what can they live without?
I loved that (in comparison to book one) this book is almost angst-free (relationship-wise). There is drama about the show and things in the house, but the guys fall for one another and trust that. They move from “just met” to “can’t live without one another” rapidly, but also in a way that seems really organic and authentic.
In the end this is a story of two men falling in love over a week and agreeing to take a chance on that love. It was simple and sweet and sometimes hot, but low on angst.
We also see the seeds of the future books/couples here: Morgan and River; Tomas and Marc and we get to spend a bit more time with Ian and Cole being ridiculously cute and in love.
Skylar Cates’ writing is lovely, as always, flowing and without effort. She brings depth and emotion to her characters and really bring them alive for her readers.
Fans of the series and the author won’t be disappointed with this book, and I think it does well as a stand-alone, too.
I highly recommend this book, series and author. It’d be great to see these guys more on their own (stress free) and I hope we see that in future books.
4.5 of 5 stars
Hugh Bradley is dear to me for his work on Behind the Curtain by Amy Lane. In that he was exceptional as the young and naive Dawson. I think that soft voice really suits him. He does a nice job with Tomas' accent, though it isn't perfect. He doesn't do a lot for the women's voices, but it's obvious who's speaking at all times. His Southern accent is nice, giving Owen a gentle drawl. He's great at the emotions, pacing and is easy to listen to. This was an easy listen and I think this is a great way to enjoy this lovely story.
4 of 5 stars
overall 4.25 of 5 stars
"love this series"
Yes, the narration was good and I think the story was great.
I love the school hearing, and the old teacher who made a show of standing up for the rights of the faculty.
I enjoyed this story about Andrew and Owen. The first book in the series made me cry with the loss of Owen's brother. It was a tragic loss. In this book, I felt mostly sad that the brothers had never met (Owen's mother gave him up for adoption) but the main part of this book was joy at finding love. It wasn't perfect timing for Andrew and Owen, with Owen only visiting to meet his brother's friends with plans to return to home and the teaching job he loves. There were surprises in this book for me, but the two men show incredible strength of character as they fight for their own happiness and happiness with each other.
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