Author: Lane Hayes
Narrator: Seth Clayton
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Run Time: 10 hours and 10 minutes
At a Glance: A great addition to a series I love, and the narration really brought Tim and Carter to life.
Reviewed By: Lindsey
Blurb: Music is drummer Tim Chalmers’s great escape and the one thing that’s never let him down. But his band Spiral’s meteoric rise to fame has made it difficult for him to maintain a low profile. Unwanted press pesters him after a public breakup with a volatile ex-girlfriend who loves the limelight as much as he loathes it. Tim’s main goal is to avoid confrontation. However, when a handsome stranger in a dive bar turns out to be someone he might know, everything changes.
Carter Hamilton-Temple might be a successful financial consultant with more brains, sophistication, and charm than most, but he always falls for the wrong guys: closet cases or men with issues. He can’t fight his attraction to tattooed rock star Tim, but can he trust his own judgment? When the thrill of danger combined with a fierce physical connection proves too strong for either man to resist, a quiet liaison away from the public eye and curious friends seems like a safe bet. But some secrets are hard to keep. When rumors threaten to rock his world, Tim realizes it’s time to confront his fear with his own kind of honesty.
Review: I really enjoy Lane Hayes’ writing style and ability to create relatable and likable characters, each unique and interesting. This story was no different, and as far as I am concerned, is another winner. I had already gotten to know Tim in both the prior stories, and Carter in book two, and I’ll admit Tim was always one of my favorite secondary characters, so I was extremely excited to grab this one up.
Carter and Tim are total opposites in a lot of ways, but somehow despite their different lifestyles and background, they have major chemistry and their conversations and sense of humor fit. They definitely fit in the bedroom and there is plenty of sex—from a clandestine one-night-hookup in a dingy motel room, and then as they grow in exploring their kinkier sides in the bedroom. Their emotional intimacy grows, too.
Carter, lawd I loved his character. To the rest of the world he presents as an influential and cultured financial advisor, but he was so wonderfully dirty when it comes to what he likes in the bedroom. He has zero hold ups about what he wants and how he wants it, shedding the persona he gives everyone else.
The story is told from Tim’s POV, and he was a great choice. Tim’s the drummer of Spiral, and he is happy for their success, but he is not the front man and never wanted to be. He is a down to earth guy from Baltimore, who likes baseball, has major family issues, and would rather focus on the music than the celebrity that comes with it. He chooses to ignore the media and keep his head down rather than fueling the flames. Despite just getting out of an absolutely horrid relationship with a conniving and straight up awful human being who thrives on being the center of attention, he finds himself at an impasse. Not really used to the limelight, and in over his head with Spiral’s success, he needed something for himself. His life changed so much in such a short amount of time and finding balance with who he is at his core and what he has become is tearing him up. Carter provides the break from the celebrity Tim was becoming, and unsure how to be, and allows Tim to just…be himself.
The story gave interesting insight to the paparazzi and media stories, but that facet didn’t take over; most of the story was Tim and Carter’s relationship as it develops from a one-night hookup, to buddies who like to play in the bedroom, and finally to two men who have found in the other person who just fits.
Sometimes the story was a little slower paced than I’d like, as their journey progressed, but it also helped to just learn about Tim and Carter’s relationship not just in the bedroom or when something important was happening, but the mundane things that really set the foundation for a relationship, so I did get the reason for those moments to be captured.
The narration was really well done; I adored Seth Clayton’s voice and inflections. There was one towards the end where Carter is… well, I won’t say, but it gave me ALL. THE. FEELS. He totally captured Carter’s emotions, and I felt shattered just listening. I did notice there is sort of a halting quality to his narration, most of the time it wasn’t really something I noticed, and it kind of gave Tim a little more character, so mostly I think it worked. However, a few times it was almost too stilted, causing the flow to be broken a bit for me. I still found the sound of his voice and how he captured different personalities to be pretty spot on.
A highly enjoyable audio and a great addition to a series I love. The narration really brought Tim and Carter to life for me, and it will definitely be added to my “listen again” list.
You can buy A Kind of Honesty here: