The third in Cameron Dane’s sexy Foster Siblings series …
Title: Brokedown Hearts
Author: Cameron Dane
Publisher: Loose Id
Cover Artist: April Martinez
Rating: 3 of 5 Stars
Ex-con David Joyner returns home knowing he must atone for his past sins. Working at an animal shelter, David keeps his head down, desperate to prove to a hostile town he’s a new man. The one time David looks up, he spots fellow motel dweller Ben, and is terrified by his attraction to the man. David doesn’t want to feel anything. He can only damage what he loves.
On a forced vacation, PI Ben Evans accepts a job to tail a recently released prisoner. What begins as an easy gig turns complicated when Ben, a controlled man, can’t deny the pang of empathy he feels for his subject, David. Ben can’t suppress his gut-deep sexual desires whenever he’s near David either.
Repeatedly crossing paths, David and Ben do their best to fight their growing attraction. When passion explodes, and secrets are revealed, both men have to conquer inner demons in order to accept the others love.
Someone has turned the tables on David, though, stalking him and leaving threatening notes. Will anyone believe David if he tells? And when David’s stalker raises the stakes, can Ben find the man who has become his world in time to save their love?
If M/M romance and I are in the midst of a steamy affair, then Cameron Dane is the matchmaker who introduced us. The first purely M/M romance I read was one of Dane’s, and I was immediately smitten – both with M/M romance and with Cameron Dane’s sexy, emotionally driven stories. I then proceeded to read all of her M/M books. Every.single.one.
So, I am happy to have the opportunity to read and review Cameron Dane’s third offering in her Foster Siblings stories, Brokedown Hearts. This is the story of David, the troubled young man from the first of the Foster Sibling’s books who stalked Christian and ultimately attempted to kill himself, and Ben, the ex-boyfriend of one of the characters in the second book in the series. In this book, Ben is a PI who is hired by Jonah, Christian’s lover, to watch David upon his release from prison to make certain that he doesn’t resume his stalking of Christian. Ben likes what he sees in David, and they quickly begin a relationship (of sorts).
David is a character who’s a creepy stalker in the first book of this series. When I began Brokedown Hearts, I could not imagine how his character would be redeemable. Well, he’s out of prison, after spending years in a mental institution as well, he’s now a man with a decidedly fragile psyche who is determined to stay out of trouble’s way, and to not repeat the mistakes of his past. He finds acceptance and solace working with animals at a local shelter, and he’s immediately drawn to handsome, confident Ben with whom he begins a hot affair.
I actually like David far more than I anticipated. He’s paid for his mistakes, and he’s desperately trying to carve out a life for himself among a family and town that’s openly hostile toward him. However, I do not have much affection for Ben – he’s clearly in charge of their relationship, both sexually and psychologically. I am mostly uncomfortable with the feeling that Ben takes advantage of David’s psychological vulnerability and presses him into a sexual relationship with an almost dub-con vibe. Theirs is not a relationship on equal footing and feels unhealthy, and Ben’s almost constant need for aggressive sex is not consistent with David’s need for love and support.
It’s honestly difficult for me to love a book when the relationship between the two characters doesn’t seem mutually healthy and beneficial. I can’t get past the feeling that Ben uses his knowledge of David’s past (and present) psychological issues to manipulate David’s emotions. While Ben pretty quickly grows to love David, the whole relationship just doesn’t feel … “right.”
Brokedown Hearts is not my favorite of Cameron Dane’s Foster Siblings series; however, it is a story filled with redemption, and the joy of two men who together find a second chance at their happily ever after.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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