Title: Storming Love: Gage & Collin
Author: S.J. Frost
Publisher: MLR Press
Pages/Word Count: 90 Pages
Rating: 4 Stars
Blurb: When Hurricane Lauris strikes, former lovers, Gage and Collin find themselves trapped together with old emotions and passion rising between them.
As a professional rider on the NRHA circuit, Gage Chapman has known success. He’s also known discrimination. Many people didn’t want an openly gay rider competing in the sport, much less winning again and again on his champion Paint stallion, The Shaman. Wanting to get away from it all, Gage had left Utah to set up a breeding farm in North Carolina and there, he found what he’d always hoped for, a man he could love.
Collin Maddox is the town deputy with his sights set on becoming sheriff someday. He knows local attitudes wouldn’t be real pro on voting a gay sheriff into office, so he’s kept his sexuality a secret for years. For all the care he has for Gage, his secret tore them apart, leaving them both with regrets and broken hearts.
Now Hurricane Lauris is coming in fast and strong. Gage has refused to evacuate and leave his horses behind. Knowing Gage is alone, Collin goes to Gage’s farm to help him, only to find himself trapped there. Hurt, anger, and passion erupts between them. As the storm rages around them, both men wonder if this is a new beginning, or the final ending.
Review: Collin and Gage have been apart for nearly three months. A closet separates them—one that Collin feels he has to hide in or lose his bid to run for the office of Sheriff. But Gage disagrees. He has been through his own personal hell, coming out as a gay rodeo circuit rider and then establishing his business on the outskirts of town as a stud farmer, featuring his prize Paint horse, The Shaman. So when Collin refuses to even acknowledge their friendship one night outside a local bar, Gage calls it quits and Collin leaves.
Now a storm is threatening both outside and in. Hurricane Lauris is bearing down on the small town in North Carolina, and Gage’s farm is directly in its path. Collin goes to lend a hand but is rebuffed once more by Gage. Despite this Collin returns, and the men find themselves trapped inside the raging hurricane, with their lives at stake. Will these two finally see what is most important right in front of them? Or will they continue to hide their real emotions deep inside?
Author S.J. Frost weaves a wonderful story of two storms—one provided by Mother Nature—the other between two men who are, in reality, deeply in love. With clear internal dialogue and heated interactions, the author swiftly gives us a glimpse of the inner turmoil each man is grappling with and hiding from the other. Collin loves Gage, but is that love stronger than this desire for the job he has wanted for the last few years? He knows there will be little tolerance for a gay Sheriff, and yet he cannot deny that Gage sets him on fire like no other. Gage, on the other hand, is seething with anger at being so callously tossed aside. Surely if Collin cares for him, he would be willing to step outside the self-imposed closet he has forced their relationship into all this time.
And so as the storm rages without, these two men must really come to terms with what is most important in their lives. S.J. Frost weaves a sweet romance into a violent storm of a novel, and reminds us just how important priorities are in our lives. She gives us two tenderhearted men whose gruff exteriors belie their gentle needs, and wraps them in an intense story of survival. A great start to a wonderful series.
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