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Ryder Daniels has spent the last year recovering from rejection: his parents couldn’t accept his sexuality and his lover chose drugs over his love. The only bright lights in his life are his younger brother and his rescued pit bull. But now his mother’s punishment for his lifestyle has cut him off from his brother he loves so deeply. Devastated, he throws himself into the work of the Pit Bull Foundation he and his friends started.
Jason Mallory can no longer hide the dissatisfaction of his relationship with his longtime girlfriend. When her marriage ultimatum pushes him to break things off, he’s determined not to jump into the dating scene. But when a group of injured pit bulls are found on his construction site, he can’t forget the guy who shows up to help.
After Jason adopts one of the dogs, he and Ryder become fast friends—until one night, Ryder lets down his guard and Jason recognizes his desire. Soon, they can’t deny the passion between them but will family differences and ugly prejudices keep them apart, or can they fight to prove that love is precious, no matter the flavor?
When the writing is nice but you shake your head at…the writing. Confusing, right?
Lawyer-turned-animal-rights-activist/dog-rescuer Ryder is searching for happiness far away from his meddling hell-bitch mother who won’t accept him for being gay. Straight blue-collar construction guru Jason Mallory has had enough of his crappy girlfriend and is ready to make a change. The men meet one day while Ryder is rescuing several dogs from a home Jason is remodeling, and just a few unexplained and unwanted erections later (holy insta-attraction faux pas!), the not-so-straight Jason is ready to make Ryder all his and enjoy a happy ever after.
Rescued does have something for everyone: there’s the friends-to-lovers trope, the gay-for-you trope, the hurt/comfort trope. Still, all those things couldn’t make the story work for me. The chemistry between the MCs was definitely there, the story flow was great, and yeah, even the sex was hot. But…Ryder and Jason were written like damsels in distress in my opinion. The angst with Ryder’s mother and his family…I can’t even. It wasn’t believable. (No husband/father could possibly be that clueless about the lying, conniving woman to whom he’s married. At least I hope not.) Add Jason’s mean, over-the-top ex-girlfriend (a trope I detest) and the cheesy sexy-time talk, and I nearly ran for the hills.
Rescued is formulaic, but that’s not always a bad thing. Heck, I read—and love—plenty of authors who are formulaic with their writing. I feel like this book could work really well and be totally loved by someone who’s newer to the genre. As I said, I did enjoy the style in which Rescued was written, so props to Felice Stevens for a solid debut novel. I will try her work again in the future.