Erryn reviews ‘Reveal (Men of Hidden Creek Season 4, Book 4)’ by H.J. Welch. The ebook was published September 6, 2019 and 323 pages. The audiobook version of this story was narrated by Nick J. Russo, released on August 31, 2019, and is 8 hrs and 47 mins long. A copy was provided for an honest review.
Why I read this book: I enjoyed another Hidden Creek book so was eager for this one.
“I wish this were real with you.”
Geeky Jason Miller has never really been with a man, and his bullying colleagues at NASA know it. But when an innocent white lie gets out of hand, Jason never would have guessed his gorgeous-but-straight childhood friend would leap to his rescue.
Firefighter Channing Forster saves people every day, so when protecting his former next-door neighbor turns into faking a relationship for a work getaway, he doesn’t hesitate. As the weekend goes on, though, Channing starts to think that he doesn’t just see cute Jason Miller as a buddy anymore.
Are Channing’s feelings for Jason real enough that he could be his first? Jason needs to accept his true self before he can love another. But when his colleagues and boss discover his many secrets, will he lose everything forever, including Channing?
Welcome to Hidden Creek, Texas, where the heart knows what it wants, and where true love lives happily ever after. Every Men of Hidden Creek novel can be enjoyed on its own, but keep an eye out for familiar faces around town! This audiobook contains not-so-fake boyfriends, a stowaway kitty, and enough fireworks to outshine the Fourth of July.
This book hit me in all the feel-good places. Fake boyfriend and gay (or in this case bi) for you are two of my favorite tropes. Add in a geek, a sexy firefighter, a sweet kitten, and a dog and it’s the perfect Hidden Creek book. I’ve listened to several books from this season and am enjoying them. I love to catch the little ways the books are interconnected. Tiberius the ‘Beast’ from Rescue makes an appearance in this book, as do the rescued dogs. Makes me want another one but one is all I can handle. Still…
The Summer Fair is going on and along with the Ferris Wheel and baking contests there are fireworks and wine slushies.
Before the main characters get to the summer fair, though, they have some other shenanigans to get up to. Jason is part of a team of engineers at NASA. He’s smart and innovative but also shy and gay. Two of those stand him in good stead at work while, unfortunately, the other two do not. He belongs to a varied group of men but they are dominated by Leroy, a true bully. In fact Channing compares him to a high school bully and that felt really apt. We’ve all had to deal with a Leroy (mine was a teenage girl, but the bullying is the same). Jason makes up a boyfriend to try to get Leroy to leave him alone. Of course feeding the bully never calms him and only Channing showing up brings Leroy down a notch. Channing and Jason were friends when they were kids and even though they grew apart, there is a fondness there.
What starts out as a fake boyfriend scenario becomes more real. Jason has to decide, though, if his feelings for Channing are mere hero worship and Channing has to decide if what he feels for Jason is real. Is he, in fact, a bisexual? There are many people in Channing’s life to help him sort through his feelings including a cousin and bisexual best friend. There are also townspeople who live their lives in the LGBTQ spectrum, mostly from previous books, I assume. Channing has watched Hidden Creek become an open and welcoming place to live and he’s thrilled for that. Perhaps that’s why he’s able to embrace this side of himself that he’d never noticed before.
There are some sexy times in this book, but it’s also a very sweet and heart-felt romance. I fell in love with Jason and Channing and was thrilled to see them finally put aside their ‘rules’ and admit how they really felt about each other.
Nick J. Russo narrates the series and I think he was a great choice. He differentiates each character nicely and I enjoy his, uh, sexy noises. Just sayin’.
There are more books in the series and I can’t wait to listen to those as well. I am definitely enjoying my time in Hidden Creek.
10/10 Pots of Gold (100% Recommended) – Compares to 5/5 Stars
HJ Welch is a contemporary MM romance author living in London with her husband and two balls of fluff that occasionally pretend to be cats. She began writing at an early age, later honing her craft online in the world of fanfiction on sites like Wattpad. Fifteen years and over a million words later, she sought out original MM novels to read. She never thought she would be any good at romance, but once she turned her hand to it she discovered she in fact adored it. By the end of 2016 she had written her first book of her own, and in 2017 she fulfilled her lifelong dream of becoming a fulltime author.
She also writes contemporary British MM romance as Helen Juliet.