Title: Steven’s Heart
Series: Sequel to Loving Aidan
Author: Ashavan Doyon
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: Novel (307 pages)
Publisher: Torquere Press (August 27th 2014)
Heat Level: Moderate
Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥ 4 Hearts
Blurb: When a love triangle breaks, Steven Everett is left alone to grieve over a boyfriend lost to someone else. Surrounded by friends too tied to Aidan’s new lover to give advice, Steven turns instead to a broken and beaten man, Aidan’s other ex, Michael Rossier, who also knows the pain of having loved and lost Aidan. Steven and Michael’s confessions grow deeper, each confiding in the other until neither can deny an attraction. But being with Michael feels like cheating, and Steven isn’t sure what to do. The connection get stronger every day and Steven realizes he’s facing an impossible choice.
To make a relationship with Michael work, Steven needs to make peace with Michael’s troubled past. Even more terrifying, he’ll have to tell Michael the secret he’s never told anyone, not even Aidan. With Michael recovering from yet another surgery, Steven leaves to face the ghosts of the past. He has to be certain. This time, Steven knows, the decision means revealing the secrets of his heart and hoping their fragile feelings can survive.
Purchase Link: http://www.torquerebooks.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=97&products_id=4263
Review: Steven Everett knew he was taking a risk falling in love with Aidan, when Aidan always loved Sammy. So when the two decide to pursue a relationship, Steven is devastated. He takes solace in comforting Aidan’s ex boyfriend Michael. He was brutally attacked on campus just days before Aidan and Sammy were.
Steven is so overwhelmed with the grief he’s feeling over losing Aidan as a lover, that it takes him a little while to recognize what he’s feeling for Michael is attraction. But Michael hurt Aidan by cheating on him, and now he’s lying in a hospital bed fighting for his life after being bashed by some of their fellow students, that are seemingly getting away with it.
Michael has regretted hurting Aidan from the moment he was doing it. The drugs warped his mind and way of thinking while he was getting high, and cost him the man he loved. Now he’s lying in a hospital bed facing losing his sight and being nurtured, nursed and befriended by the man who Aidan hurt when he chose to love another. Well, aren’t they just a pair. Michael latches onto the kindness that Steven shows him immediately, and it doesn’t take long before the two are sneaking kisses and so much more in the dark early morning hours at the hospital.
But Michael’s wounds are not just on the surface. Beaten and threatened by his own father as he grew up, rejected and ridiculed by his peers at school, all because of his sexuality. And Steven hides his fair share of grief, over losing Aidan, over issues of being able to trust Michael because he cheated and he’s a recovering addict. Steven wants to love someone and just be loved in return so badly. But there is more at stake here than just these two young men’s hearts, a secret Steven has that could destroy any chance of a relationship between them.
I’m so happy that Doyon went back and gave us Steven’s story. If you’ve read Loving Aidan, you will quickly realize this book starts while that story while still unfolding, with Steven in the hospital with Michael right after the bashing. I really enjoyed seeing how they opened up to each other, and over time shared every secret they each held tight, to eventually be able to truly love one another. I really felt like I was right there in the room while Steven fell for the vulnerable, broken and beautiful man who lay in that bed.
The story was very dialogue driven, more so than just about any book I’ve ever read, so there is a lot of conversation and truths that Steven and Michael share while they are slowly falling in love. Where the story took a turn for me was at the end when Steven took Michael home to meet his family. I seriously wanted to take Steven’s mother and brother and bang their heads together a couple of times. And Michael’s father at the hospital, that man was infuriating! The only thing that made that worth wild was the end result.
There were a couple of times that certain actions or reactions didn’t make sense to me, or threw me off, as if they didn’t fit the rest of the content of the story. But overall, this was a very intriguing story. I loved how it played out parallel to Loving Aidan, so we got to see things that were just hinted at in that book.
If you like stories about figuring out who you are, not finding yourself because Steven and Michael have already done that, what they needed was to find each other, and figure out who they were, then you will really enjoy this book. I suggest reading Loving Aidan first though so you’ll be familiar with the characters and their world.
* I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review through http://mmgoodbookreviews.wordpress.com *