Before jumping into his first semester of college, Thomas Maloney decides to lose his virginity at a party to a stranger he’s sure he’ll never see again. Only the next day, he’s surprised to learn the same one-night stand will be sharing his dorm room. Thomas considers himself lucky, but his new roommate—not so much.
Closeted as they come, football jock Remington “Rem” Daniels is on track for a shot at the pros. Rem tries to play it cool and avoid falling for the confidently gay Thomas, which could hurt his chances. Dealing with their constant need to get in bed together wouldn’t be so hard if Rem didn’t have a girlfriend and Thomas didn’t have a conscience.
When she delivers news that will change Rem’s life forever, Thomas knows it’s time to move back home to Thornwood, Colorado. But neither the distance nor knowing Rem belongs to someone else helps Thomas get over him. Rem’s feelings haven’t changed either. When it comes down to love or football, Rem will have to make the hardest choice of his life and hope Thomas will still be waiting for him when he does.
This is the story of Thomas, while off to college in a new city decides to lose his virginity at a party before college starts next week. The hottie he hooks up with ends up being Rem his roommate and closeted football star with a steady girlfriend. Even knowing it’s wrong, Thomas can’t get enough of Rem and they continue sleeping together. Rem and his girlfriend end up getting some pretty shocking news and as Thomas sees that Rem will never be in a position to “come out” for him he leaves college and returns home at the end of the semester.
As time passes Rem and Thomas both have growing up to do, but their feelings never fade and only the test of time will tell if they are meant to be.
I am in awe of this book, the character development is beautiful. Rem put Thomas through some pretty crappy stuff, but Thomas made it through without looking like a doormat and I feel like Rem learned and grew from those experiences as well. He never came off as an entitled jerk.
The story takes place over several years and you get to watch the characters grow and mature. Their lives change drastically but their love is a constant, tangible thing.
I think this book was very well written. The story moved along at a good pace. It was angsty at times but it wasn’t overdone.
Being the greedy person that I am, I would have loved an epilogue to show how they were doing a year or so down the road. I can see myself rereading this one again soon.
5 pieces of eye candy
At first glance, I will admit, it sounded like it had the potential to be one big cliche. Thomas, the small town virgin, decides he’s going to lose his virginity the moment he gets to Miami, where he’s going to college. Little did he know the masked man who gave it to would be his roommate.
Rem is a very conflicted young man. He knows he’s bi, but can’t be out because he has dreams of playing pro football. Okay, I can accept that, because I believe it’s likely still a very prevalent issue. Unfortunately, his girlfriend of five years also doesn’t know that he’s bi. Or that he’s been scratching the itch, so to speak.
Even with the cheating, I was sucked into this book. My heart ached for Thomas, having to watch the man that he loved with the girl who loved him. And yes, it’s clearly pointed out that while Rem likes Amanda, he’s not in love with her. It was uncomfortable to see Amanda and Thomas becoming friends, mostly because that meant he was keeping secrets from someone who at one point told him that he’s a great friend to her.
Everything changes when Amanda announces that she’s pregnant. And this is where it gets weird… for some unknown reason, Thomas’s mother thinks it’s the perfect solution for her and her husband to adopt the baby, even though she knows her son is in love with the baby daddy. Yeah, because that wouldn’t be awkward at all. So, the three of them fly out at Christmas and when Rem and Amanda go back to Florida, Thomas stays behind because it’s too painful.
The second half of the book is a lot of phone calls. It spans years, but didn’t feel choppy. You can tell Rem was never sold on giving the baby up for adoption and loves her with all his heart. He’s glad that Thomas is in his baby’s life if he’s not. It was uncomfortable, again, but it felt real and raw.
There’s a wedding, and eventually a divorce, and Rem see his dreams come true. He falters, upsetting Thomas, which makes him realize that he can’t let him walk away again. So, they are going to make it work. He drives up to see Thomas and meet Madeline, who’s now a five year old instead of the newborn she was the last time he saw her, and Thomas takes Madeline to a game. The whole time, she just thinks Rem is her brother’s friend.
Up to this point, I was honestly going to give the book five stars. Caitlin Ricci handled some uncomfortable topics very well and made me feel their pain. Seriously, I was bawling my eyes out through much of the book.
But then… that ending. It’s impossible for me to ignore how upset I was with the ending of the book. There were two major struggles for Rem: his career and the baby he gave up for adoption. When I read the words “The End” I knew I wasn’t going to get resolution on either point. Yes, he came out, but the reader is left with zero indication of how it was handled by the team or by the public. And yes, he mentioned possibly buying a condo in Thornwood to move closer to Thomas and get to be part of Madeline’s life a bit more, but we have no clue if that happened. We don’t know if Madeline ever learned the truth about him (which she may have, given the terms of the adoption) or if he and Thomas were a huge part of her life. Hell, we don’t know if he followed through on teaching his daughter how to throw a football. All of those issues could’ve been resolved through an epilogue giving us a glimpse into the future, but instead, they weren’t and it completely destroyed the feels I had going on before that.
3 pieces of eye candy
Hey. I’m Caitlin Ricci and I’m here to talk a bit about my new novel, About Last Night, and the tiny town of Thornwood where all of the characters in this series live.
Sometimes with a series, especially one that you don’t have to read in order, it’s hard to keep track of how everyone is connected. I’m hoping that this post helps clear some of that up.
Thornwood was first introduced in Weathering the Storm, which is a young adult novel with Harmony Ink Press. In that novel Robbie, and his brothers Daniel and Ben come to live with their Uncle Caleb after their mom dies. Dan, their dad, comes with them and for a while it works out for them. Caleb is dating one of Thornwood’s cops, Trent. Trent is the son of the Thornwood police chief.
I had so many editors ask me for Caleb and Trent’s story that the Thornwood series was born. They fall in love in One More Time, which is Thornwood book 1. Before Caleb and Trent got together, Trent had sex with Eli who works at the horse rescue where Caleb adopts a horse from in that book. Eli’s book is the third in the series, which comes out late 2017.
Weathering the Storm would come next in the reading order.
In Thornwood, there’s a diner called Rosie’s, which is really the only place to get anything to eat unless you want to go to the deli at the grocery store and get something there. Most people in town go to Rosie’s a few times a week at the very least. They have the best milkshakes.
Trent’s mom owned the diner and her best friend, Roxie, worked there. Because they both had names starting with R they decided that their children would have matching names too. Roxie calls Trent her son Thomas’s cousin. Roxie looks after Trent since his mom has passed away, but sometimes he can be frustrating. She’s convinced that Thomas is essentially a perfect little angel who can do no wrong most of the time. She was a great character to write.
Thomas lives with his mom, dad, and multiple children they’re fostering in a townhouse in the center of town. The grocery story is behind them and Rosie’s is just down the street. These are the only townhouses in Thornwood and Trent’s is just a few doors down.
The idea for Thornwood came from getting lost on my way from Denver to Black Hawk, which is our little version of Las Vegas. Only we have mountains and little creeks and old mining towns that are so tiny there are barely enough people in them to even consider them a town.
That’s the kind of place I wanted Thornwood to be. It started off as a mining town and most of the people have left. The ones who have stayed do so for the small town life. They don’t mind that I-70 often gets shut down in the winter, or that sometimes they can’t go very far because there’s a rockslide blocking the highway because they enjoy the community and the slower pace of life there where everyone knows each other and Roxie is the source of the town’s gossip.
Thank you for spending some time with me today. What would your ideal town be like?
Caitlin was fortunate growing up to be surrounded by family and teachers that encouraged her love of reading. She has always been a voracious reader and that love of the written word easily morphed into a passion for writing. She comes from a military family and the men and women of the armed forces are close to her heart. She also enjoys gardening and horseback riding in the Colorado Rockies where she calls home with her wonderful husband and their two dogs. Her belief that there is no one true path to happily ever after runs deeply through all of her stories.