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A Work in The Guy Series
Anthony Carrino loves his big, gregarious Italian-American family, even if his sisters are interfering, and his dad, the local sheriff, knows everything going on in town. He’s happy as a middle school guidance counselor. Despite helping kids and their parents fix their problems, Anthony can’t manage to get his own love life right. If only everyone would stop calling him the “nice” guy.
Dean Pierce doesn’t do relationships. A tough-minded military man, he is dedicated to his job as a Night Stalker, flying Chinook helicopters and not speaking much to anybody. He certainly doesn’t want to deal with a mess of emotions. But when tragedy strikes, Dean finds his hands full with his troubled niece, her irresistible guidance counselor, and a meddlesome family, which includes a rather large puppy.
Can you believe that I actually read this by mistake? Yep, I was thinking of a different book when I started reading it (the book I intended to read had a similar color tone in the cover). However, this has proven to be a mistake that ended up a good thing. Because guess what, I loved this one!
The Guy from Glamour has so many elements that fall into my ‘satisfying-MM-romance’ check list – and I might have to list it down one by one *laugh*.
First, the story-line. I am a sucker when it comes to a strong silent stoic man who suddenly has to deal with taking care of a child. The idea of a single dad is one of my weaknesses – in ANY romance genre, either MM or MF. So when Dean Pierce, this tough military man faced the fact that he was responsible of taking care of his newly orphaned niece, well, it hooked me right from the bat. Dean didn’t want to deal with this mess – he was a soldier, for crying out loud. Give him a chopper to fly, and he is good with it. But a thirteen year old teenaged girl is scarier than a dozen enemies!
Second, this book had GREAT characters, from the main characters in Dean and Anthony to the secondary characters in Anthony’s family and friends. Dean is the tough man in this story but the way he becomes clueless and quickly panics when dealing with his niece is so adorable to read. In this case, Anthony Carrino, definitely has the upper arm.
And oh, Anthony, lovely Anthony *hands on heart*. I loved him so! Anthony is kind and generous and loyal. He comes from a close-knit family, with three older sisters. Anthony is a great counselor as well, he is out at school, and the fact that nobody cares about his sexuality shows that the parents trust him to do his job.
I loved the dynamic between Dean and Anthony. It’s easy to think that Dean, as the military guy, will be in charge of things, to be the ‘protector’. But it is Anthony, the family guy, who helped Dean navigate the complexity of dealing with the teenager. For me, Dean and Anthony truly complemented each other. Dean was used to flying and Anthony kept him grounded. Anthony showed Dean the joy of having family and settling down. Meanwhile Anthony was used to be in his comfort zone with his family and friends but Dean helped him to take more risks, including jumping out of a plane (literally!).
There were other strings of small plots that connected well with Dean and Anthony’s relationship. Like the issues with Anthony’s older twin sisters. One was on the edge of going back to her husband and the other one was struggling with her failed marriage. Anthony’s family definitely added subtlety to the story, made it more rounded than just a simple romance between two men with different characteristics.
Add to the fact that the story was set in a small town (Glamour, Arizona) – as I have wanted to read more about small-town romance in MM – this story just came at the right time. It was a thoroughly satisfying read. I definitely look forward to reading book two. The good news is, because I came to this series a bit late, the second book is already available (Yes!)