Title : Cast Off
Series : Toronto Tales, Book #3
Author : K.C. Burns
Publisher : Dreamspinner Press (BUY HERE)
Genre : M/M, Contemporary
Length : 200 pages (e-book)
Published : September 4, 2013
Rating : ★★★1/2
Thirty-five-year-old Rick Haviland is a well-respected speech pathologist, but while his friends are all settling into relationships, he refuses to give up his no-strings-attached club boy sex life. For him, relationships are dangerous; he’s got a secret to hide. When he meets Ian O’Donnell, an account manager with a local tabloid, Rick figures his personal rules for relationships should be enough to keep him safe from more than a one-night stand.
When Ian comes out of the closet, tired of anonymous hook-ups and keeping secrets from his large Catholic family, Rick is right there, and he’s just the sort of man Ian might like to get to know better.Their attraction is immediate, electric and mutual. Ian convinces Rick to break more and more of his rules, and his defenses crumble. But someone watches, someone who’d like to see this new relationship fail. When Ian’s job becomes a means to expose Rick’s secret, it could destroy both their careers and their hearts.
I have to say this one didn’t capture the strong emotion of the first book in this series for me. Not every book needs that kind of heaviness and the guys had their own issues. This was a much lighter read with some humor, fun characters and cameos from favorites of the previous books.
Rick doesn’t do commitments. Ever. He has a roster of guys he screws until they get too serious or find the one they’re meant to be with. Rick doesn’t do keepers, which he considers any guy he thinks will eventually want more than sex from him. It’s just too messy to get feelings involved. He has his reasons for his rules. So when Rick meets Ian, Kurt’s big brother, at a party it should be just another hot hook up and possible addition to his rotation of men, but he finds himself breaking his rules just to get a little more of Ian.
Ian has known he’s gay since he’s fifteen. Which is why he ran out after Kurt outed himself to his family in Cop Out. Ian had built it up to be this big thing most of his life. Lived in secret afraid of what everyone would say and Kurt coming out was kind of anticlimactic. Never had a relationship that didn’t involve getting off in the bathroom or back ally of a club with a stranger. Now he thinks he’s ready to change his life. Right about the time he meets Rick. Ian and Rick have an intense and immediate attraction. They spend the night together having amazing sex but Rick sneaks out before Ian wakes up nipping anything else that may have been off. Ian’s not happy about it but he sees Rick at a club one night and the desire is too strong for either man to resist. This starts a very fragile attempt at friends with benefits. Ian convinces Rick that they should become friends before they sleep together again, creating some nice tension and conflict.
Ian ends up falling for Rick. Rick won’t admit his feelings and in fact won’t even discuss anything having to do with a relationship. Rick’s past just may cause him to his back on the one who will love him despite his past and all his issues. Ian is determined to be with Rick but Rick won’t make it easy. Since Ian hasn’t ever been in a relationship either both men just have to take their cues from each other and hope they both get the happiness they want.
This was a pretty good read for the most part. I liked Rick and Ian. Their sex was hot and the chemistry between them was good. There was quite a bit angst in this book. When will Rick give into his feelings for Ian became a repetitive theme throughout the book. The stalker stuff didn’t work for me at all. It was probably my least favorite part of the book. Who the hell ignores dead squirrels and slashed tires? Those aren’t silly teenage pranks. I guess I can make a point that Rick was living in his own little bubble and he just didn’t want to disrupt it.
Overall I’d say this was high angst sexy read with some laughs. If you liked the others in the series you will probably want to pick this one up. It can be read as a stand alone if you don’t mind not knowing the full backstory of Kurt and Davy, but I HIGHLY recommend reading that one.
Rated 3.5 stars by Whit