Life in foster care wasn’t easy. Life after prison? Unforgiving. But I’m determined to stay out of trouble, and I’m gaining a foothold on the closest I’ve ever known to normal.
Then, thanks to a pair of escape artist dogs from the sanctuary where I’ve found work, I cross paths with my boss’s neighbor, Ty Adams. He’s a horse trainer, and winter is his quiet season. It’s also the season when he gets restless and lonely—two things I know all about. He’s not interested in love or romance. I’m just happy someone’s interested in me at all, even if emotions are strictly forbidden.
When we’re not together, I’m thinking about him. When we are together… Well, I’m definitely thinking about what he does to me and what I want to do with him.
As we keep each other warm through the Vermont winter, this feels a lot more than physical. Somehow he soothes my pain, and I wonder if I’m touching something deep inside him too. But Ty won’t let himself love anyone. I never had a chance. And now, with my past closing in, I could lose the one man I hoped I could count on. The one I thought might be different.
When his present and my history collide, is it too much to hope he’ll choose me?
CW: Sick horse and a minor accident involving a horse—no animal deaths or serious injuries/illnesses.
First, this is not a short book/audiobook. I mean let’s face it, L.A. Witt doesn’t really write short books, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. It tops out around 400 pages in the ebook, and 12 hours on the audiobook, and not one ounce of filler in there. Zero. So, plan to be engaged the entire way! I know I was.
What can I say? Landon got ALL the love from me. A really good guy (c’mon he loved animals so much!) who thanks to a really cr@ppy childhood grew up and got himself into a lot of trouble, multiple times, until he was locked up for nearly 10 years. It’s hard to imagine how someone can not come out of something like that completely changed. And to see how many people questioned him, shunned him, assumed that he was always up to his “old ways”. He took each of those blows to heart, but tried to be so forgiving, and understanding of them, that this is what he felt he deserved and always would. Yet he treated each one of those animals like they were precocious children and gave them all the love he had in him. It was hard not to love Landon from the first page.
Ty was also a really good guy, very dedicated to his career, so much so that he never saw it coming that he and Landon were just going to continue on the path toward each other. It was honestly a little funny how he kept denying it, and explaining it away as two friends just having great sex, denying it to himself as much as he did to Landon. This guy could not get out of his own head. But he quickly began to see Landon not as a friends with benefits situation, but as someone who he could depend on, and learn to incorporate into his life.
There was one thing that Ty did that, while I understood why he did it, and honestly would have likely done it myself in that situation, I was bothered that he didn’t end up telling Landon about it. I would have liked to have seen that level of honesty from Ty. But it didn’t change the course of the book, and likely wouldn’t have changed their relationship in the long run.
I will admit I cried more than once at the treatment of Landon, who just wanted to get his life on track, to put his head down and work. Meanwhile so many people would not give him a chance. It was heartbreaking. And yet, I would imagine so realistic to those who are coming to the outside after incarceration.
The knowledge given to the reader/listener about the horse world was not overwhelming, but definitely enough to make sure you knew what was going on. And with all the different personalities in the different animals, it just made it that much more fun to read.
I don’t often re-read/re-listen to books, but this one will definitely hit that list. Now that my heart isn’t in my throat wondering about the HEA (which this author always gives…but it was hard sometimes to see it coming!)
Narrator Nick J. Russo, does another fantastic job with character voices. I always appreciate a narrator who can give multiple voices to his characters, and being able to tell who was who based on voice is a talent. He did a great job of this. I enjoy his narration every time I get the chance to listen, and I will be listening to this one again!
Story: 4.5 pieces of eye candyNarration: 4 pieces of eye candy