- Falling Hard by Dale Cameron Lowry
Falling Hard by Dale Cameron LowryHot
Part 1: Falling Fast
Warm up with whirlwind romances that last.
Mi Alma — Ex-Mormon Alma Larsen doesn't know the first thing about alcohol, so he hires bartender Damian Banks to help out at his winter holiday party. They build a friendship that simmers with sexual tension—and possibly something much deeper. Will this Christmas bring them both a love that lasts?
Loggerhead — Soon after they fall in love, Jake makes Eric a promise inspired by an old track uniform. But demanding work schedules at Jake’s four-star restaurant and Eric’s newspaper keep them from following through. Six years later, they take the honeymoon they never had, heading to the Florida coast in search of sea turtles—and rekindling their passion for each other in the process.
Reading the Signs — The only thing twenty-three-year-old Theo De Jong expects when he enrolls in a summer school for linguists in New Mexico is to get more ideas for his master’s thesis in Dutch Sign Language. But then he meets the American sign language expert Alfonso Grossman, and sparks fly.
Part 2: Falling Fantastically
Because reality is overrated, these stories have elements of the fantastical.
Born of Fire — The fairies on Ireland’s north coast are notorious for kidnapping, and Aodhán of County Donegal has the scars to prove it. When the fairies abduct the handsome youth Cainnech, Aodhán seeks to free him—but risks losing his health and Cainnech in the process.
Ghost of a Chance — When shy Jeremy Anderson meets mysterious and dapper Frank at his spooky old university library, their connection is instant. Their romance waxes with the full moon—but just as quickly, Frank’s interest seems to wane. He insists that he loves spending time with Jeremy, but then why does he keep Jeremy at arm’s length?
Far From Home — Rajiv met and fell in love with his husband, Mateo, when they were both members of the scientific team responsible for transforming Mars into a home suitable for humans. But years into their shared mission, Rajiv is ordered back to Earth to restore the barren lands of the American Midwest. With a little help from technology, the two men find innovative ways to nurture their long-distance relationship while they wait to reunite.
Sweeter Than Blood — Keith was a vegan before a hot encounter with a stranger turned him into a vampire. In the year since, his sire, John, has tried to make up for the mistake by teaching Keith everything he knows about being a non-murderous bloodsucker. But temptation is strong in the form of Andres, a regular customer at the barbershop where Keith works. When Andres finally asks Keith on a date, the real danger begins.
Part 3: Falling Deep
The deeper the love, the hotter the intimacy.
Rough Love — Blake thinks new boyfriend Michael doesn't like French kissing. Michael thinks Blake doesn't like rough sex. Neither are virgins, except in the art of conversation. Can they set things straight before the honeymoon's over?
Pacific Rimming — On Mike's fortieth birthday, his husband, Ken, takes him on vacation to Vancouver Island in Western Canada to celebrate. While Mike mourns his loss of youth, Ken encourages him to recapture it by bedding a gorgeous twenty-something man they encounter while hiking in Pacific Rim National Park. A night of no-holds-barred passion among the three men reveals a sizzling chemistry, and when Mike and Ken return home they find themselves longing to reconnect with the young Jason. Can what started as a one-night stand transform into a threesome that lasts?
** I WAS GIVEN THIS BOOK FOR MY READING PLEASURE **
I loved that the blurbs for all stories were included at the beginning. I always read the blurb of a story before reading the book, but when there's a collection like this, it's nice and easy to flick back before starting each story to get an idea of what to expect. I also loved that there was a brief explanation of what each “Part” represented and that each story came with a heat rating. That's great information to have on hand. (Example, one flame equals no sex, two is fade-to-black and then more detailed as they increase to five flames)
Part 1: Falling Fast
I liked the use of thoughts connected to a current moment to show a relevant flashback or memory, providing us some context as well as characterisation in a nice, subtle way that didn't break the moment. The memory was short and to the point, gave us insight into who Damian was as a child and how that impacted him into adulthood, without being overbearing or overly distracting from the current scene.
A really great story that captivated me right from the start and kept me smiling until the end.
“He turned to me at one point, holding a pair of carrots for me to inspect. They twined around each other like lovers – had somehow grown that way in the ground. I hid this from the line cooks because I wanted to show you, he said. This is what's happening to my heart, with you.”
““You Americans are much more gregarious than the Dutch. In Holland, offering to spend five hours in a car with someone you barely know is about as serious as asking them to get married.” Theo instantly regretted the comparison. Alfonso was going to think he was some kind of creeper. Theo needed to learn to think first, talk later.
Part 2: Falling Fantastically
Born of Fire
“Fever makes the fires of love burn hot. I need you to quench them.”
Ghost of a Chance
Far From Home
“Mateo smiled “You're really here with me, aren't you? I mean, I know I'm on Mars and you're on Earth, but...” He pressed his hand to the center of Rajiv's chest, just above his beating heart. “Here.”
Sweeter Than Blood
““I wish you wouldn't be so cold. We're in the same boat. Why not be friends instead of just sire and spawn?”
“Michael was a bit of a genius, and funny to boot. By the time our two hours were up, I was swooning over his brains as much as his butt.”
“I have heard stranger love stories, but this is my favourite.
What a fantastic collection of stories! And, don't underestimate that tag in the title. This really is a story about men falling in love. It's not erotica. It's not cheap thrills. It's not even cheesy romance. This is real men, of all different ages, backgrounds and showing a range of diversity in various forms, sharing their stories of romance and love.
Normally, I offer a star rating for each story, but I don't need to do that here. Every story is 5 star quality. Perfection. Beautiful. Romantic. All of these stories are those things and more. Some made me cry, some made me laugh and you can bet your bottom that I was smiling through almost every one of them. They may tackle tough issues, real challenges that relationships can face, but they do it in a respectful, compassionate way that draws the reader into the story. Because these are feel-good stories of love and overcoming all the odds.
I've fallen in love with Dale Cameron Lowry's writing and I'll be reading any and every book they ever write.
The characters are diverse, well explored and detailed only enough that it feels comfortably like I know them but without drifting into excessive detail. The stories are sweet, charming and beautiful, because they place the emotional connection of the couples at the very heart of the story and only add the heat when appropriate. And the attention to detail within the worlds – whether it be sci-fi, contemporary or paranormal – is incredible. The authenticity of the characters and their struggles – race, hearing, religion and humanity – make these stories real, relateable and the kind of stories that will stick with you for a long time.
These stories have been crafted with love.
You couldn't ask for a better collection.