Heart of the Race by Mary Calmes

HeartoftheRaceLGTitle: Heart of the Race

Series: 2013 Daily Dose: Make a Play

Author: Mary Calmes

Genre: Contemporary

Length: Novelette

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (June 1st, 2013)

Heat Level: Low

Heart Rating: ♥♥♥2.5~3 Hearts

Reviewer: Thommie

Blurb: Varro Dacien spends his life riding toward the next adventure. Brian Christie, his best friend and touchstone, the one person who’s always truly seen him, plays sidekick on these madcap adventures and subsequent trips to the hospital until he can’t take it anymore. While Brian can see Varro, Varro has never caught on that he’s breaking his best friend’s heart.

Without Varro, Brian builds himself a life that’s all about just getting by, doing his best to ignore the hole in his heart and his life. Without Brian to balance him, Varro pushes harder and takes more risks to reach that ultimate high. His job racing high-octane bikes on suicide-level courses makes it easy to get that rush… until it’s no longer enough and Varro realizes it’s not the race, but who’s waiting at the finish line that truly matters. Now he just has to convince Brian to be there.

Product Link: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=3930

Review: It was love on first sight when Brian was nine and Varro was ten, even if he didn’t know it yet back then. By fate they were joined in family as Varro’s parents took Brian in foster care and the two have never been apart since. But, growing up things changed when their sexuality clashed; Varro being quite the lady-killer and Brian finding and admitting to being gay. How did he know? Well, easy enough when your best friend/brother is the star of every fantasy you have.

As they took separate ways in college, Brian took the decision of distancing himself from Varro in order to keep his sanity. But, yet again that couldn’t be so for long as Varro needed him to have him by his side when he raced. Being the only one in his life never to ground him or say no, or be careful, Brian’s presence was like breath in Varro’s life. Yet, he never saw how much that hurt Brian to be near him and not be with him. Not until Brian left for good to try to make a life outside all that fantasy and wishful thinking.

This story is the classic boy-crush with best friend and gay-for-you type. I’ll admit I’m not very fond of the idea, but the entire story till it got to the point that everything changed was very engaging. The boy-crush was fascinating. The way the two characters worked with each other was adorable and the way Varro affected Brian was downright frustrating. I didn’t liked the fact that Varro was the lady-killer and not even contemplated being gay until Brian walked out of his life for good. And I didn’t like the 180 turnaround he did after that. It was just too surreal and the story, that had been quite fun till then, lost all credibility. The final confrontation between the two character, which by the way happened by phone, was a bit over the top, too. With Varro repeating the same things and Brian asking the same things over and over. And everything changes as if by a magical hand. As for their first time together, well, while hot and sexy and all laden with the longing and the wildness that was expected, it still was a bit too much and too smooth for a first timer that had no clue on how to be with a man.

Nevertheless as I said the story was fun and enjoyable in a wistful and overly romantic kind of way. With the motto love conquers it all in full display. Recommended for the fans of high-speed, sexy and wild characters that challenge life head on.