“[Heroes] rarely turn into heroes because they are super-humans, but because of circumstances. Heroes rarely think. Heroes just act.” – Aleksandr Voinov
BLURB: When he was sixteen years old, Rich Miller saved a young man from drowning at his local pool. Little did he know that years later, as a senior in college and Olympic diving hopeful, Rich would meet up once again with Johnny Milloway, now a big football player – and when Rich says big, he really means ‘bear’. The shy jock remembers his savior, and the two men become friends.
Johnny isn’t put off by the fact that Rich is gay. In fact, the more time he spends with Rich, the more curious he becomes. Johnny wants to know all kinds of things – what it’s like to kiss a guy, for instance. Only it doesn’t stop there…
Rich finds it difficult to believe that this relationship can go anywhere. Johnny is straight, and Rich isn’t prepared to deal with the heartache he knows will come his way in the future. He has enough on his plate as it is – the Worlds are just around the corner, his father would rather watch a football game than spend time watching his son dive… What he doesn’t count on is Johnny, who can be very determined. And having Johnny in his life proves to be a catalyst for some pretty earth-shattering changes.
Review: I am going to be totally honest with you all right from the jump. I am a huge fan of Max Vos. I love his books, I think he is an extremely sweet man, and I simply cannot wait to meet him in Atlanta. Now saying all this, I still promise to give an honest and unbiased review of this book.
When Rich and Johnny begin their friendship and start spending time together in the gym and then spend the weekend together at Johnny’s family home I could pretty much read the writing on the wall. Poor poor Rich was going to end up with his heart broken by an unrequited love interest in Johnny. He would pine for him and Johnny would hold him at arms’ length with the whole “best buddies” arrangement. Boy, I couldn’t have been more wrong!
Rich and Johnny quickly form a tight bond as friends. Johnny is almost reverent with his feelings towards Rich since the man had saved his life so many years before. One night while sharing a bed at Johnny’s family home Johnny reveals to Rich that he is curious about what gay men do together. Rich believes that Johnny means kissing, but he soon finds out that Johnny means much, much more than that.
The two men do end up being lovers. However, Johnny’s questions about his sexuality end up wreaking havoc between them at New Year’s and Rich realizes that the best thing to do is to let him go as a lover so he can keep Johnny as a friend. Johnny is not happy with this decision, but what can he do? He still isn’t sure if what he feels is really love so he goes along to get along.
Eventually the situation comes to a head and Johnny decides that if he wants to be happy he has to look deep into his heart to find the truth, then he somehow has to make Rich believe him. Thankfully Johnny has the support of his family and along the way Rich starts to rebuild the shattered remnants of his relationship with his father.
In this latest book by Max Vos, I felt as if I got to see into the heart that Max doesn’t often share so freely in his writing. Max’s books always deliver with the super hot sex scenes and he always gives great HEA, but I haven’t always felt the depth of emotions I felt in this book. This book really did tug at my heart strings, and I cried right along with Rich on New Year’s Eve. I believe this is one of the best books Max has ever written and I loved getting to see his romantic side.
This book really does have it all folks. There is the uber-hot Olympic hopeful diver, the huge bear from the gridiron and fully developed, well thought out secondary characters that keep these two on track.
So run on out and get your copy of this book, I promise you won’t be disappointed.