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Summary

Struggling actor Dean only escorts occasionally to pay the bills. So, his first instinct on being offered a job with a strange set of conditions is to turn it down. No date. Don’t switch the lights on. Don’t touch him. I mean, what’s that all about? What’s the man trying to hide? Dean certainly doesn’t expect sex with a faceless stranger to spark so much passion inside him. It’s just business though, right? He can put a stop to it whenever he wants. 

Then, Dean meets Justin - a scarred, ex-army soldier unlucky in love. Dean’s given a chance at a proper relationship. He can see past the scars to the man underneath. He’s everything Dean could possibly wish for in a boyfriend: kind, caring, and sweet. All Dean needs to do is be honest. Easy, right? But Justin’s holding back and Dean can’t work out why. But whatever it is, it’s enough to give him second thoughts.

They both have secrets which could shatter their fledgling relationship. After all, secrets have a nasty habit of coming out eventually. The question is when they do, will they be able to piece their relationship back together? Or will they be left with nothing but memories of bad decisions and the promise of the love they could have had if only they’d both been honest and fought harder.

©2018 H.L.Day (P)2019 H.L. Day

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great characters, mesmerising story!

As a struggling actor, waiter, and reluctant escort, Dean is used to keeping others in the dark about the different parts of his life. When he meets Justin, a handsome but disfigured ex-military veteran, he finds he’s not the only one keeping secrets. This was a powerful, well-written, and tantalising story with strong characterisation and I loved every moment of it. The scenes where Dean was physically kept in the dark and struggled with his feelings and lack of control were a perfect metaphor for the rest of his life. Superb! 🎧 David Walker provided a lovely understated narration that never got in the way of the mesmerising story.

1 person found this helpful

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What a surprise

This has become my favourite book of the last 12 months. Very well written. The narrator is new to me, and he’s absolutely perfect for this story.

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Wow!

I was pleasantly surprised by this. I was expecting a bit of smut (not knocking that, I'm a big fan) but it was so much more developed! I hadn't expected to be on the edge of my seat with tension in some parts, heartbroken in others and so elated with it in general - especially at the end. Really natural and engaging storytelling without cringey over the top drama for the sake of drama. Everything felt right. The main character is a well-meaning but realistically flawed character I really warmed to and I appreciated the equally realistic guarded Justin who slowly let us warm to him as Dean does. He is also equally flawed in his decisions sometimes but incredibly engaging. All I can say is definitely one of my favourites and definitely would listen to again. I also don't know what it is but as a Brit I find it hard to get into stories with British narrators (maybe I'm offput by the sound of my own accent) but this narrator was so natural, his accents and different characters were subtly different and not cringey at all. The steamy scenes were very steamy! I can't wait to listen to more stories from him. A really engaging voice that brought this lovely story to life. If I could give 10 stars to both author and narrator I would!

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Good narration and good story

I was surprised how much I liked this book. The story was good (except the room-mate-straight-bestie was so annoying). The story is not too long and not too short, just right!
The narrator was new to me, but I loved his voice and accent.

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Secrets always comes out.

I really enjoyed this story between Dean and Justin.

The narrator David Walker did great with all of the voices.

The author H. L. Day is new to me and I’m looking forward to listen/read more from her.

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

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Hot and sweet at the same time

I loved this story about part-time escort Dean and his mystery client. Dean leads a busy life and doesn’t really date, but when he meets Justin he falls for him, despite the scarring that Justin places much more importance on than Dean does. We get the whole story from Dean’s point of view, but some things are apparent to the reader/listener before Dean catches on. Dean was a bit immature towards the end, but I perceived him as quite young and a bit inexperienced, despite his job, so it didn’t really bother me.

David Walker’s narration was flawless, I enjoyed all his voices, but especially the one he did for Tom, it was just wonderful.

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Kept in the Dark

Kept in the Dark by H.L. Day
Narrated by David Walker

This is the first book I have read/listened to by H.L. Day and I have to say that I really love her writing style. This book had me hooked from the very start. Dean and Justin’s story was complicated and messy just like life usually is. This one put me through an emotional roller coaster but I loved every minute of it.

This is also the first time I have listen to a narration by David Walker. It was really good and I look forward to listening to more from him.

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Love it!

OMG I loved listening to this! When I first got this, I didn't know it would be a retelling of the Beauty and the Beast and took me awhile to figure it out since I find the Beast a beauty too ^^"

Anyway, the story never let me down, I didn't find any boring moments, it was flowing right to me, always something important happening even though it was a long book.

Of course, I don't think this book is for everyone. Dean is an escort and he take jobs that involves s*x too, he meets a man who has specific instructions: don't turn on the lights, no touching. Meanwhile, Dean meets a scarred face man and they start a relationship. You see, Dean doesn't leave his escort job because of this. So, there is lying by omission and straight out lies for both parts. (there is no cheating, you will understand when reading)

But I think the resolution of these issues was done very nice and believable, I was afraid it would be sugar coated and the problems would magically be solved. Fortunately, that's not what happen, they really did talk about their problems and the HEA was amazing!

The narrator is really good. Took me awhile to get used to his voice and his accent, but once I did it went well. The pace was spot one and I could differentiate all the characters (including Georgia) even though the changes was not so drastic. Also he made a very good jov impersonating the beast whispers!

I was given this audiobook by the author and no review was expected for me, but I gave my honest opinion anyway! :)

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Very good story enlivened with good narration.

This is a well written, angsty but ultimately heartwarming story.
Dean is an occasional escort. His ultimate goal is to be an actor, so he's waiting tables and taking on 'jobs' to help with car repairs, rent etc. One of his 'jobs' is with a man who has specific demands - no lights, must not touch and other things. Dean finds this a intriguing, if not a bit scary. The arrangement goes on, in the meantime, Dean meets a guy called Justin and they hit it off. Dean hides the fact that he escorts, but other than that they are good together. But Dean is also falling for his hidden lover and will ultimately have to choose just one.
David Walker was a great addition to the story. His narration was easy to listen to, his character portrayals believable, distinctly voiced (loved Tom's Cockney-laced accent).
This is a very well written, interesting story and the narration is a perfect way to experience the story.

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Wow! Not what I was expecting!

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 5 stars
🔥🔥🔥🔥 Heat Level: 4
🎧🎧🎧🎧🎧 Narration: 5

Wow! Not what I was expecting!

A surprisingly intriguing read/listen! I loved Dean and Justin! They both have their secrets and troubles but their connection is undeniable!

I found Dean, relatable, caring, sweet, and charismatic. The journey that leads him to 'escorting' to pay the bills is unfortunate but it leads him to a sexy stranger that makes his body sing! I loved the give and take between Dean and Justin and the slow unraveling of the intricacies between these two was done really well written. I loved Justin and how he treated and interacted with Dean. I loved that Dean didn't think twice about Justin's scars and their path to healing, love, and confidence was heartwarming.

Their in the dark connection is super hot and the narration just elevates it even more. The chemistry is off the charts and while the premise seems a little creepy I felt the way it was written and performed only added to the heat, intrigue, and passion.

These two are something special and I love their story! A great read!!

Thanks for reading!

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  • Samantha Cato
  • 25-09-19

Gorgeous!

I had read this one a while back in ebook format and loved it! Hl Day is a fantastic author and this story is so good! It had everything I look for in a romance...intrigue, strong main characters and a fast moving plot! This is a new narrator for me and wow, he did a crazy good job at bringing these characters to life! I look forward to listening to his work again! My only recommendation to the narrator is to be careful of his mouth sounds...his mouth sounds very dry and in need of hydration quite often and I find it distracting. Otherwise a lovely job!

4 people found this helpful

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  • Dennis
  • 05-10-19

Gay Beauty and the Beast

This was a audible and in many ways so true how we judge people from only the outside and never seeing the beauty. The story between Justin and Dean is story of growing together to learn from each other facing the world with their flaws and scars. Justin a military veteran with health and scars from a fire he was in while in Iran and Dean not sure how to describe him but I can say he loving and carrying but at the same time he has flaws about himself together they meet Dean as a male escort and Justin a customer. Justin with all the scars and health issues could not meet anyone who would overlook them and except him for who he was so he used the escort service and met Dean.
To tell anymore would mess up a beautiful love story I highly recommend this auibal book. The only flaw in the story was the narrator's voice used for Justin to me it did not do him fairly but the other voices was right on point.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Rebecca Azizov
  • 20-02-20

unique

It's review time 🎧

Narrator score🎧 ; it's not a well known narrator for me. but I did loved his performance. the disguised voice he gave the character was very good. I liked it.

Level of steam🔥: it's a kind of a hot book. you have complicated relationships (no spoilers ofcourse) that is kinda rolling around s** so it's a hot story.

Level of anxiety and sadness0😱😢: I don't know if I will call this book sad or full of anxiety.... it's a unique story it will make you worry for the character but I didn't felt a big sadness ... more frustration

The book itself📖: the book it self is very good not that usual story that you can find everywhere.... each character brings something very different to the unusual relationship that is building in the story. I liked it and it was good.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Esther A
  • 02-10-19

Awesome Story

An awesome story that is fast-paced and wonderfully written. Dean and Justin are great together. I love how they meet, both times! I really enjoyed watching them grow closer and I love how Dean can see past the outside to who Justin really is. There is quite a twist to this story and it was great watching everything come together. The narrator was really good with all of the voices. I voluntarily reviewed a gifted copy of this audiobook.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Dmauritzen
  • 06-06-21

Great

I enjoyed this story so much. The storyline is interesting and intriguing with lots of problems that take time to work through but Dean and Justin work well together and make things work. I listened to this book on audible and enjoyed it very much the narration was good.

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  • Queen of Halloween
  • 15-05-21

Exceptional Story

Exceptional story with likable characters. This is unlike anything I've ever read and in the best way. Wonderful, spot on narration. Highly recommend!

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  • Lady Di
  • 24-01-21

Enjoyable

This was a really short but sweet romance. Not real deep but just heartfelt sweet. Could’ve used a little more hot steam but still a good read/listen. David Walker is a good narrator however his mouth sounded sticky like cotton mouth but other than that awesome job. Hey David keep a glass of water handy and your perfect.

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  • B.McGrath
  • 09-10-20

compelling raw story I loved

Bu the end of the story my heart was so full of happiness and love for Dean and Justin that I could burst!!! Justin had been through h*ll and back, and I empathized with him and admired his strength and fortitude. Dean was a great anchor when it was all crumbling down around him. Compelling raw beautiful story. I loved it. I voluntarily listened to a free copy of this and am giving an honest review. The narrator did a great job bringing it to life.

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  • The Book Maven
  • 25-04-20

Wonderful surprise ♥️♥️

When you find something you're looking for when you're not looking. That's what this book gave me yearning meets challenge. I'm always looking for beauty, pain, a good story, and some happiness to round me out. This book all of these elements, wrapped in heat and a well built story. I'm heavily into audiobooks and I enjoyed the narration, giving each character their own voice, and the accent is always easy on the ears. This is a new to me author and I'm off to find out what else I can read of theirs. I love it when this happens and I did this in one go! Thank you

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  • Jennifer Smith
  • 08-04-20

An Exciting Story With Good British Accents!

This is a very exciting story with lots of surprises and great chemistry between Dean and Justin! Overall I enjoyed the narration. The British accents were good for the main characters, though I didn't care for this narrator's female voice or how the phone calls sounded. I'd definitely listen to it again!