“Adversity causes some men to break; others to break records. ” ― William Arthur Ward
The author takes the reader into the world of international cycling. For someone like me, who is rather clueless about the world of cycling, this was such a great introduction. I may not have been up on all the bike racing lingo, but in no way did it take me out of the story. The author’s visualization of the landscape in Colorado and Europe is so precise and fluid I was actually seeing it as I read, beautiful.
Christopher and Luca are the two main characters in this story. Christopher works at a local bike shop in Boulder, Colorado and writes part time for a cycling magazine, Cyclo World. Luca is a very well known international cycling pro, in town with his team for training before the cycling year begins. Luca is Christopher’s cycling idol. With a chance meeting at the bike shop and again out on the road, they form a friendship that eventually leads to a relationship. Luca has to keep their relationship a secret for fear of the repercussions if he’s outed. Chris understands Luca’s concerns, but he does feel frustrated at times when they have to hide their feelings for each other.
I really liked Luca and Chris together despite their having to hide the relationship. You just feel the passion these two have for each other. With the story focusing on Luca and Chris and the cycling world, I believe this was very much a character driven story. We really got to know these two men and all they had to show us. It’s not an overly sexy read, but the sex scenes the author did write are hot and heavy and leave nothing to the imagination. It was just enough to know these two characters were totally compatible in more ways than one.
The story is told through Chris’s POV, which I really liked. We know exactly how and what he is feeling. I believe the author does a great job in getting Luca’s feelings across on the page without his POV by his actions and words, so I didn’t feel anything was missing from Luca’s perspective.
Not to give away any spoilers, but tears will be shed. I’m not easily surprised and can usually sense when something tragic and devastating is about to happen, but I was totally caught off guard. As heartbreaking as it was, I was so thankful the author had her characters handle it the way they did. It could have consumed and changed the story, but it didn’t. It was handled in such a way that it brought Luca and Chris closer together and made their relationship stronger.
Overall, this was a fantastic read. As I said before, I wasn’t familiar with bike racing and all that goes along with it, but I have a newfound respect for the sport and all the dedication, discipline and hard work that it takes to be on the top and succeed.