Escaping an abusive relationship left Luke Preston anxious and spouting panic-induced poetry. Desperate for a fresh start, Luke accepts a job remodeling a tired old beach house for a professional soccer player and his model girlfriend. While his passion is literature, not sports, focusing on the renovations eases his anxiety. Until the job he signed up for turns out to be more complicated than advertised.
Sidelined with a serious injury, soccer star Michael Martinez decides his beach house is the perfect place to recuperate. Remodeling might be the diversion he needs to keep his mind off his busted knee. Falling for the pretty designer with some quirky habits wasn't on the drawing board. Unfortunately, Luke didn't build a big enough closet for Michael to hide in. Having a star-powered sports career used to be all Michael lived for, but he'll have to reevaluate his plans and find the right words if he wants to build more than a beach house with Luke.
©2014 Lane Hayes (P)2015 Dreamspinner Press
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This was a nice, sweet story of an out and proud interior designer meeting an in the closet soccer player. A little angst and a little family drama, but mostly sweet. If you like this author's other works, you will like this one. It only lost a star because I really never warmed up to Michael and really didn't like his uncle. Michael just didn't seem very warm or likeable to me. The story is told from Luke's POV, so maybe if I had heard Michael's POV, I would have felt differently. I loved Luke, and his best friend Brandon. They were funny, witty and wonderfully supportive of each other. I just didn't think Michael deserved Luke, even though the author had him FINALLY do the right thing in the end, it felt awkward. The narrator does a wonderful job bringing the characters to life.
"Good narration, fairly good book"
Luke is just out of an abusive relationship. He’s an English major who found design as an unexpected career change where he’s got the talent but needs a job. He gets a hook up for a job through a friend to renovate a house of a professional soccer player, Michael.
Michael is an injured pro who is deep in the closet. He’s got an ex who is blackmailing him for money by threatening to “out” him.
At first Michael resists the renovation, but later changes his mind after meeting Luke. They keep the relationship strictly professional at first, but the attraction can’t be denied.
Between the blackmailing, Luke’s issues, and Michaels reluctance to be an “out” professional athlete their relationship has a rocky start but the story ends on a very sweet, and romantic note.
I fell in love with Lane Hayes through her Better Than Series. I’ve enjoyed some of the other books in the Right and Wrong Series especially book two. I guess you could say she’s hit or miss with me. I either really resonate with her characters or I don’t at all.
Unfortunately this falls more in the latter. Though I really liked Luke (we see him in later books in the series) I didn’t care for him as much here. He was a little too harsh in his judgment of Michael. Though he gave lip service to letting him come out on his own, I felt he really pushed that decision on him without giving him time to adjust.
Michael was a nice enough guy, though nothing about his personality really stood out for me. He felt a little bland. The story was sort-of a generic closeted athlete meets out and proud twink. I wanted more of his Hispanic heritage to leak through, especially considering how important that ends up being to the final decision to come out or not.
There were blocks of info-dumping (i.e. when Luke tells Michael his “story”) that felt stilted and less like a real conversation between two people and more like a way to get the story out to readers.
In general, I’m still a fan of the author and am excited to read the next installment, but this one just didn’t do it for me as much as some of her other work.
The narrator did a mostly great job with this. On the one hand Michael Ferraiuolo clearly demonstrates his ability to use a Spanish accent and to speak the language but he gave almost no accent to Michael. I’m not sure if that was intentional or not, I thought (and I could be wrong) that he’d have had more of an accent. I loved some of the other inflections he used – especially for Brandon and I think he has a great grasp of emotion and inflection while doing the dialog.
I think that the audiobook is the way to enjoy this book because he does add to the experience with his narration.
I 'read' this book via audio book. The audio is narrated by Michael Ferraiuolo who did a sterling job!
THE STORY - this story brings together a star athlete (soccer) and an interior designer. It's a great pairing. I loved Luke, adored his friend Brandon, liked his mum Mara, and saw the appeal of Michael. The story is told from Luke's point of view and is a slow build of the relationship between him and his celebrity client, Michael. It's an exploration into Luke and the way he falls head over heels for Michael but tries to pretend he's okay with a short lived romance. There were no huge drama, rather a gentle story that I thoroughly enjoyed.
THE NARRATION - I believe the story was particularly well suited to narration. Maybe it was the first person POV and the fact it was told solely from Luke's point of view? Anyway, I love the voicing of the narrator and the accents. He chararacterised each of the MC's very clearly and I LOVED Michael's sexy accent, and when he wasn't speaking English? Couldn't understand a work but drool-worthy.
I would highly recommend this book on audio. Now I'm looking forward to book 2.
(Reviewed for Divine Magazine)
"A heartwarming story!"
This story was well written. I loved the friendship in this story and how the romance slowly built. I liked watching how a person can learn to understand what really matters. It was well worth listening to and I'd highly recommend it.
"Absolutely dire - avoid, avoid."
I'm really surprised this book ever got published. The plot is tedious and poorly constructed - nothing much happens for the first half of the book. The sex scenes are tepid and slightly cringeworthy and the main love interest is very unappealing. The narrator does a decent job but with such a poorly written novel to begin with..... I wish I had not invested so many hours of my life to listening to this.
"Sweet and easy listening"
Lh writes books with heart and the MC feels like Real People without all the drama that normally makes MCs a little too Funny, sweet, Strong or dramatic as is the norm in most stories. I pesonally like the unreal drama, so it is not going to make it to my top ten. However, i still liked the story and enjoyed listening to it since the narrator has a very pleasent voice.
It needs more passion, Luck is not that likable I mean he has moments were you understand him, however when he goes in and starts telling Miachle about how he should live his life and how he should come out, I mean it got to be a little much
The soccer stud hands down I wanted to learn more about him
"- A Very Sweet Story"
This is an incredibly sweet story that has two great lead characters and one amazing narrator.
That being said, I am disappointed over the lack of interaction with the side characters, Luke's eccentric mother and his best friend, who Michael never meets and never hears the colourful woman's opinion on soccer. He also doesn't get them as accepting, extended family like he should have in the book. And on a side gripe, what was sure to be an explosive interaction between Tonio and Michael over his decision after that year (read and find out what I mean), and possibly Jamie's hissy fit after he no longer has any foothold over Michael was skimmed over.
As long as the aforementioned observances (aka: the snubbed ending) won't bother you, you'll enjoy the book; the plot flows, the characters are fun and likeable, and nothing seems fake/forced to make the plot progress/everything seems plausible, even Michael's lack of good judgement about dating a guy like Jamie.
Yes, loved the story line, characters and the narrator.
The fact that Michael and Luke were so different. One was a hot soccer player, the other a quirky interior designer.
I didn't have a standout scene but loved the banter between these two men.
Hot hot hot!
Can't wait for the next book on this series!
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