Erryn reviews ‘Redemption (Men of Hidden Creek Season 4, Book 6)’ by E. Davies. The ebook was published September 20, 2019 and 352 pages. The audiobook version of this story was narrated by Nick J. Russo, released on September 9, 2019, and is 9 hrs and 54 mins long. A copy was provided for an honest review.
Why I read this book: I’m loving Hidden Creek.
“I’ll make up my own mind about you.”
Months after he was mugged in Houston, legal secretary Jasper Barnes is still hiding out in Hidden Creek. Self-defense classes would boost his confidence. Problem is, the guy offering them is Chad Allaback, and he has a reputation, to say the least. So why does Jasper feel an irresistible pull toward him?
Six months after his wake-up call, Chad is too afraid of his past to reach out to those around him in his hometown. Accepting help from Jasper, when he finds out he’s about to lose his home, is the hardest thing he’s done. Can he really change now?
Self-defense lessons quickly turn into a sizzling, secret connection. When neither man is sure if they can trust their heart to the other, they hit a breaking point all too quickly. It’s going to take a Hidden Creek miracle to heal their scars and find redemption in each other’s arms.
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 listened to on its own, but look out for familiar names around town! This audiobook contains a changed man, gossip text chains, and a sassy twink kissing his unexpected savior.
Bad boys are all the rage these days, but they’ve never been my favorite. Give me a nice sweet guy any day. That being said, a reformed bad boy? That’s a whole other situation. Chad Allaback is that former bad boy. Clearly he’s got a reputation in town and until about six months ago believed he didn’t care what others thought about him. I’m new to Hidden Creek but I suspect he’s appeared in previous seasons. Many people in town dislike him on sight. Perhaps because he hurt them or, even worse, because he hurt someone they care about. It can be easier to forgive someone who has hurt us then be willing to overlook damage they’ve done to someone else.
That being said, Chad is trying to make things right. He’s been sober since his DUI, is holding down a menial job, and is trying to stay under the radar. He occasionally goes into the local bar, but he hangs around near the back and definitely sends off ‘stay away from me’ vibes. But there are little indicators that he might be hiding a sensitive soul. More on that later.
Jasper Barnes has left a great job in Houston to move home to Hidden Creek. He’s told everyone that it’s for a change of pace, but that’s not the whole truth. He needs self-defense training, so it’s pretty clear something bad happened to him in the big city. He’s rekindled friendships and met new people in this LGBTQ-friendly town, but he lives with paranoia. He’s getting help, though, so that speaks to his strength of character. He’s heard of Chad and when the man offers self-defense lessons, Jasper figures this will be a chance to show up the man. What he doesn’t expect is a caring person who helps him confront his fear. What he doesn’t expect is physical attraction. What he doesn’t expect is that he’s coming to care for the former town bad boy.
Not so long ago, someone suggested to Chad that he should, “be the man you want to date.” That advice hit home and he’s been working on himself ever since. But he’s leery of Jasper and his intentions. Chad’s never had someone want to be in a relationship with him so he’s constantly questioning Jasper’s motives. He doesn’t want charity or to be someone’s pet ‘project’. There are several times when Chad’s self-esteem issues threaten to come between them, but Jasper is pretty intuitive and is learning how to read Chad. They form a bond. There are doubting people around town who question why Jasper would want to be with Chad, but many of those questions are put to rest when the men show up together to the ‘grannies and gays’ class at the local gym. Kick ass, grandma.
In the end, Jasper says, “I want it to be just us forever. I want to be by your side and under you and over you. No barriers, no secrets – nothing but the two of us. Raw and vulnerable. I trust us to take care of us.”
Chad replies, “I wish I could find pretty words like that.” But that’s the great thing about relationships – sometimes only one person needs to have the pretty words. As long as both people are willing to work toward happiness, that’s what really matters, right? By the end of the book, though, both men have undergone profound changes – for the better. Made my little romantic heart happy.
Nick J. Russo has narrated this entire season of Hidden Creek and I have to say he did a great job. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed all the books I’ve listened to and Nick played a big part in that. This was a great end to the season and I sure hope there are more to come.
10/10 Pots of Gold (100% Recommended) – Compares to 5/5 Stars
E. Davies was proficient in real estate ad shorthand (the old-fashioned newspaper kind) by the age of nine. Growing up moving constantly taught him what people have in common, the ways relationships are formed, and the dangers of “miscellaneous” boxes.
As a teen, he tore through a stack of found romance novels, wishing someone had written similar for M/M, though he could never find anything at Chapters or the library. Just after graduating university in 2013, semi-out and clutching his English B.A. for dear life, he stumbled on an Amazon M/M short story. It was a whole new… phrase he dares not repeat for fear of lawyers. It shone and shimmered splendidly, though.
After failing forty times to avoid crafting happily-ever-after endings for steamy short stories, he plunged into romance novels and hasn’t looked back. As a young gay author whose formative gay fictional role models were characters punished for their sexuality, Ed prefers his stories lightly dramatic, full of optimism and hope.
Now out and proud, he writes full-time, goes on long nature walks, tries to fill his passport, drinks piña coladas on the beach, flees from cute guys, coos over fuzzy animals (especially bees), and is liable to tilt his head and click his tongue if you don’t use your turn signal.
To find out when E. Davies has a new release, you can subscribe to his newsletter at edaviesbooks.com/subscribe, like his Facebook page at facebook.com/edaviesbooks, or visit his website at edaviesbooks.com.