Ex Equals by L. A. Witt

Title: Ex Equals

Author: L.A. Witt

Genre: Contemporary

Length: Extended Novella (152pgs)

Publisher: Amber Quill Press/Amber Allure (18th September 2011)

Heat Level: Explicit

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥4Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: On the first day of his new career as a community college math teacher, Chris Reuben gets an unexpected—and most unwelcome—blast from the past: one of his students is his former navy shipmate…and ex-boyfriend.

Justin Hayes isn’t after a second chance when he signs up for an algebra class taught by his ex. All he wants besides a passing grade is a chance to make amends with the man he loved and hurt while they were deployed together three years ago.

Pain, guilt, and bitterness aren’t the only lingering feelings, though, and even if three years is enough to melt the ice between them, they’ve already risked their careers for each other once. Can Justin convince Chris that what they once had is worth putting careers and hearts on the line again?

Review: I have to say that this was a great read. Chris has just started working at the college as a teacher when his ex walks through the door and he is soooo not happy to see him. Justin has signed up for Chris’s class as a way to confront the past.   He knows he hurt Chris three years ago and now he wants to make amends.

I have to say this story touched my heart.  With the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell repeal just being passed this is a fitting story. After a brief relationship that went horrible wrong when Justin got promoted and made Chris’s life a living hell it was understandable for Chris’s reaction to having Justin back in his life was not a happy one. Justin does try his best to get through to Chris but I don’t think he understood just what he did to Chris.   It wasn’t just that he dumped Chris; it was that he undermined his authority at work and made it impossible for him to carry out his job.   So even if Chris had decided to re-enlist Justin had effectively ruined his career. I found that I respected Chris more because even though he still loved Justin he would no longer let him walk all over him and I know it would have been really hard for him to forgive the way that Justin treated him.

The story flips between the past and the present from both MCs point of views, so we can fully understand what happened between them.   It also shows their fear that although DADT is no longer in effect that it won’t make much difference to the higher-ups if Justin did come out, and that he would be hounded out of the Navy.

I really enjoyed this book and I think it showed a more realistic view of how people behave when they are scared of being outed and a very valid point that although DADT has gone it won’t change some people’s attitudes. So I recommend this as a ‘must read’.




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