“There is no such thing as a good influence. Because to influence a person is to give him one’s own soul.” — Oscar Wilde
Author: K.A. Mitchell
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Pages/Word Count: 295 Pages
Rating: 5 Stars
Blurb: The young man the world knew as Jordan Barnett is dead, killed as much by the rejection of his first love at his moment of greatest need, as by his ultra-conservative parents’ effort to deprogram the gay away.
In his place is Silver, a streetwise survivor who’s spent the last three years learning to become untouchable…unless you’re willing to pay for the privilege. He shies away from anything that might hold him down long enough for betrayal to find him again.
Zebediah Harris spent time overseas, trying to outrun the guilt of turning his back on the young man he loved. Now, almost the moment he sets foot back in Baltimore, he discovers Silver on a street corner in a bad part of town. His effort to make amends lands them both in jail.
Trapped together in a cell, Silver sits on his mountain of secrets and plans a seductive form of revenge, but finds that using a heart as a stepping stone is no way to move past the one man he can’t forgive, let alone forget.
Review: Since the first book of this series, I have been completely hooked. I didn’t think any couple could compete with Eli and Quinn for my top spot, but I hadn’t met Silver and Zeb yet.
Not many people get to meet their soul mates when they are sixteen. Of course, when you meet that one person who is perfect for you when you are that young, it isn’t usually an easy road to your HEA.
When Jordan Barnett realizes at a young age that he is gay, he knows that he will not find any acceptance in his very fundamentalist home. At the age of sixteen he meets Zeb, and he feels all the pieces fall into place. Jordan just knows that this is the man he is meant to love. Jordan is able to keep his relationship with Zeb a secret for a while, but as most secrets normally do, it comes out. When the truth of their relationship is revealed, some lies are also revealed. These lies cost Jordan everything he holds dear. He loses Zeb, his home, his family, and even his identity, all at once.
When a seventeen year old boy finds himself homeless on the streets of Baltimore, there are things he has to do so he can survive. When Jordan realizes this he changes everything about himself, including his name. At that moment, Silver is created. Silver can sleep on the streets, he can turn tricks to survive, and he can do porn to make enough money to keep a roof over his head. This works out perfectly for close to three years. He has finally got a stable home, a steady job and a few friends. All of this is threatened, though, when his friend Quinn mentions a new guy at work, who is coming to Silver’s birthday party. Silver realizes that the tiny amount of peace he has found is over, Zeb is in town.
Zebediah Harris fell in love with a boy he thought was old enough. When he finds out that isn’t the case, he decides he has to put some space between them. He has no idea what Jordan’s parents have done to him, he has no idea what Jordan has done to himself, but he does what he can for himself and leaves the country. When he returns to the states and settles in Baltimore, he is shocked to see Jordan again. The thing is, this isn’t the Jordan he knew three years ago. This man calls himself Silver, and he is certainly no longer a blushing virgin.
When a misunderstanding lands both of them in jail, it sets them on a course of not only forgiveness but of self discovery. For two men who thought they knew exactly who they were and what they wanted out of life, it is shocking when their worlds are turned upside down. With some help from their friends, Silver and Zeb navigate their way, and Silver finds his passion.
There are so many books out there that talk about growth and learning from our mistakes, but very few, if any, have made it real like K.A. Mitchell does in this book. We get to see Jordan/Silver grow from an impetuous sixteen year old to a man with goals and commitments that he actually keeps. Zeb also experiences growth in this book. He realizes that he has to forgive himself before any offered forgiveness will matter.
As a couple, these two men start out a hot mess, but they end up just plain old HOT. This is the fourth book in the series, and I believe any of these could be read as standalone titles, but really, you need to read all of these books. Ms. Mitchell has created some wonderful characters, and the way they interact and overlap is wonderful. I couldn’t recommend this book any more if I tried.