Tuesday, February 17, 2015

He Completes Me by Cardeno C

Title:  He Completes Me

Series title:  Home,Book 2

Author: Cardeno C

Publisher: The Romance Authors, LLC

Genre: GLBT, Contemporary

(M/M, Anal sex, Oral Sex, Public Sex, Ménage)

Page Count: 363

Reviewer: Cassiopeia

 Buy link:

Publisher Blurb:

Not even his mother’s funeral can convince self-proclaimed party boy Zach Johnson to tone down his snark or think about settling down. He is who he is, and he refuses to change for anyone. When straight-laced, compassionate Aaron Paulson claims he’s falling for him, Zach is certain Aaron sees him as another project, one more lost soul for the idealistic Aaron to save. But Zach doesn’t need to be fixed and he refuses to be with someone who sees him as broken.

Patience is one of Aaron’s many virtues. He has waited years for a man who can share his heart and complete his life and he insists Zach is the one. Pride, fear, and old hurts wither in the wake of Aaron’s adoring loyalty, and as Zach reevaluates his perceptions of love and family, he finds himself tempted to believe in the impossible: a happily-ever-after.

Review of book:
Whenever I have the chance to read one of Cardeno C’s books, I jump.  She's a master at crafting plots that tug on your heart, while putting a smile on your face.  She's not all kitties and rainbows though, and He Completes Me is a perfect example. 

Zach is the poster child for dysfunction. His ultra conservative family, with the exception of his older brother, pretty much turned their backs on him once they realized he was gay.  He escaped to LA as soon as he'd graduated high school, and never looked back. I was extremely impressed by his resolve; striking out on his own like that had to take some serious cojonies.  No support, no friends or family to speak of, and he works hard to overcome and make his own way.  I admired his strength and adaptability; but it hurt to see how lonely he was.  Sure, Zach had a lot of acquaintances, not very few real friends.  He'd erected such an emotional wall around himself, I wasn't sure anyone could breach it.

Aaron did. 

When Zach finds himself back in his hometown for his mother’s funeral, he has no idea he'd be coming face to face with his future.  Aaron appeared happy on the surface.  He had a rewarding career, friends and family who loved him, and was active in the local LGBT community.  Even with all of that going for him, I felt as if Aaron was purposely making himself busy to fill time. To such an extreme where he was easily taken advantage of, often. He came across as a genuinely nice guy, but there's a difference between nice, and doormat.  I'd envisioned Zach taking him for a ride on the proverbial emotional roller-coaster, then breaking the poor man’s heart. Just when I was positive Aaron was down for the count, he surprised the day lights out of me.  He not only showed some amazingly kinky backbone, but he learned to channel his natural inclination to take care for others in a more healthy manner. I absolutely loved his quiet confidence, and as I peeled back the layers of his personality, I began to understand just how strong he really was.  Would I have loved for him to tell off Kimmy and Dean? Sure. They eventually grew on me though, to the point that I sort of looked forward to the next disaster.

I'm not usually such a fan of the love at first sight trope, but this book’s characters are so well written, it just works.  It wasn't even a case of “suspending belief” – the piece was well written, entertaining, and emotional – a total win for me. 

                                         Five Shooting Stars

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