Title: Stranded with Desire
Authors: Vivien Dean and Rick R. Reed
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press/Dreamspun Desires
Length: 228 Pages
Category: Contemporary Romance
At a Glance: Stranded with Desire is a cute romance that is a perfect novel to curl up with when you just want a happy ever after with little to no angst involved.
Reviewed By: Sammy
Blurb: When their plane crashed, their desire took flight.
CEO Maine Braxton and his invaluable assistant, Colby, don’t realize they share a deep secret: they’re in love—with each other. That secret may have never come to light but for a terrifying plane crash in the Cascade Mountains that changes everything.
In a struggle for survival, the two men brave bears, storms, and a life-threatening flood to make it out of the wilderness alive. The proximity to death makes them realize the importance of love over propriety. Confessions emerge. Passions ignite. They escape the wilds renewed and openly in love.
When they return to civilization, though, forces are already plotting to snuff out their short-lived romance and ruin everything both have worked so hard to achieve.
Review: With a moniker like Dreamspun Desires, you should know that any story you will be reading under this umbrella will be a romance, pure and simple, with a definite happy ever after and maybe just a touch of implausibility thrown in for good measure. But you can’t ask for a better writing team then Rick R. Reed and Vivien Dean as is evidenced by their contribution, Stranded With Desire.
Colby has liked his boss for a long time. In fact, if pushed he would grudgingly tell you that most of his waking fantasies feature Maine in them, and it’s not a business discussion that is occupying the two at the time. However, Colby is also a realist and knows full well that assistants do not end up having the love they have for their bosses reciprocated—particularly when they are straight and engaged to be married. But that can’t stop a boy from dreaming. Maine is a driven businessman who has always put others first. Be it the company and maintaining it’s pristine reputation and profit margin, his parents’ wishes for him to be the CEO, or his fiancé’s feelings, Maine has lived a half life for longer than he cares to admit to himself. In fact, it would take an act of god or some life threatening disaster to budge Maine from the idea that his desires are not important and must stay carefully locked away.
Then the plane that Colby and Maine are taking home from a business trip crashes…and everything changes. Suddenly it is vital to Maine that he makes Colby aware of a secret he has carried for years. That revelation will create a whole new set of problems for both Colby and Maine, not the least of which is what to do when you are in love with your assistant but hell bent on continuing the predetermined path that keeps you sealed away in the closet forever. When the trek to find help after the crash turns deadly, both Maine and Colby must face the fact that their love may never see the light of day.
The best thing about this story, Stranded with Desire, was the two main characters and their incredibly sweet personalities. Not cloyingly sweet—rather, you really want to see these guys get their happy ever after. You cannot find fault with Maine’s thinking that he should remain closeted—he presents as a genuinely nice person, one who would never want to hurt anyone, much less Colby.
And Colby? He is definitely in love, but he is also Maine’s best friend—he wants this guy to be happy, and if loving his man from afar for the rest of his life is what he must do, well, then he is ready for that to happen. These are two selfless men who really deserve the love they have for each other, and that is what keeps this story from being just a glorified sickly sweet romance.
While the limited mystery element concerning the plane crash and corporate intrigue that Maine’s brother, Hart, provided was a minor plot device, it was still played well and added just enough tension to the novel to quicken the pace just when it needed it. The limited amount of sex was just right and did not overwhelm the real trajectory of the story, which was, essentially, when does a person stop living for others and start living for himself? This is the question Maine faces, and I am happy to report he chooses wisely in the end.
Stranded With Desire is a cute romance that is a perfect novel to curl up with when you just want a happy ever after with little to no angst involved.
You can buy Stranded with Desire here: