Medley (Changing Lanes 2) by Layla Reyne #Audiobook #Review #LGBTQ #MM

Erryn reviews ‘Medley (Changing Lanes Book 2)’ by Layla Reyne.  The book was published April 30, 2018 and is 262 pages.  The audiobook was narrated by Nick J. Russo.  It was released November 11, 2020 and is 6hrs and 36mins.   This book was provided in exchange for an honest review.

Why I read: I enjoyed book 1.

Sebastian Stewart was never Mr. Dependable; he was more the good-time guy who only wanted to swim, party, and ink tattoos. Until he cost his team the Olympic gold four years ago. Bas is determined to do right this time around – by his medley relay team and his rookie mentee.

Jacob Burrows is in over his head. The Olympic experience – from the hazing, to the endless practices, to the unrelenting media – makes the shy nineteen-year-old’s head spin. He’s trying to be everything to everyone while trying not to fall for his gorgeous tattooed teammate who just gets him – gets his need to fix things, his dorky pirate quips, and his bisexuality.

When Jacob falters under the stress, threatening his individual races and the medley relay gold, he needs Bas’s help to escape from drowning. Bas, however, fearing a repeat of his mistakes four years ago, pushes Jacob away, sure he’ll only let Jacob down. But the only path to salvaging gold is for Jacob to finally ask for what he needs – the heart of the man he loves – and for Bas to become the dependable one.

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My Review:

Sebastian is a senior member of the USA men’s Olympic swimming team.  He was there four years ago when the medley relay team earned a silver medal.  Respectable to just about everyone except him and his teammates.  He blames himself for the ‘loss’ and has sworn he’ll do everything to make sure this time they get the gold.  He takes Jacob under his wings, planning simply to shepherd the young man through to victory.

Jacob is under a lot of stress.  He’s the youngest member of the team, and desperately wants to prove he won’t buckle under the pressure.  But he has personal issues including his father’s health to fill his mind.  He’s known as the quirky one on the team with his pirate quips.  He’s also unabashedly bisexual – something that has been more of a burden than a blessing.  There is a lot of stigma around people who are bisexual and this was portrayed with honesty and deftness.

Bas is also a tattoo artist when he’s not in the pool, and he inks Jacob – a welcome to the team.  For Jacob, this act of intimacy solidifies his romantic feelings for Bas.  Bas reciprocates the sexual attraction, but he’s been burned before and isn’t willing to risk the gold on another love affair that might go bad.  But a night of sex before they head to Spain for the Olympics?  Yeah, it’ll get it out of their systems, right?  Life is rarely that simple, and the two men discover they have real feelings for each other.  But Bas pushes Jacob away.  Then Bas’ past comes barrelling into his life and Jacob faces a crisis of his own.  The question is whether they can get their shit together to win the gold or will things fall apart yet again?

I enjoy watching the Olympics and have perceived the pressure on the athletes, but the media spotlight is intense and carrying the expectations of a nation is tiring.  I held out hope for the team, to be sure.  Alex and Dane, the couple from the last book, have come out as a couple and although that pulls some of the spotlight, Jacob and Bas are still caught up in the mayhem of the games.

This duology was enjoyable, and I’m so glad the two books came out on audio with Nick J. Russo narrating them.  Nick is an enjoyable and dependable narrator who always delivers a solid performance.  Great books.

My Rating:

9/10 Pots of Gold (90% Recommended) – Compares to 4.5/5 Stars

Website | Twitter: @LaylaReyne | Goodreads

Layla Reyne is the author of the Fog City, Agents Irish and Whiskey, Trouble Brewing, and Changing Lanes series. A Carolina Tar Heel who now calls the San Francisco Bay Area home, Layla enjoys weaving her bi-coastal experiences into her stories, along with adrenaline-fueled suspense and heart pounding romance.

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