- Fire Balls by Tara Lain (audio review)
Fire Balls by Tara Lain (audio review)
980 0 1 0 0 0
JB Janice Birnie Updated
A Balls to the Wall Romance
Renowned artist Rodney Mansfield stands 5-foot-6, has pink hair, six earrings, a black belt in karate - and a desperate yearning for firefighter Hunter Fallon. But Rod, the Runtback of Notre Dame, knows he’ll never land the beautiful “straight gay” guy, so Rod musters his altruism and helps his more masculine friend Jerry attract Hunter. As if a broken heart wasn’t enough, Rod saves Hunter from a firehouse homophobe - humiliating Hunter in front of his dad!
Hunter lives a dream life - his father’s dream. While he’d like to teach literature in college, read poetry in the sun, and find a strong guy to top him, he fights fires for his dad. Hunter hates flamboyant guys like Rodney. So why can’t he resist him? Maybe it’s time to admit this is one flame he has no desire to put out.
©2017 Tara Lain (P)2018 Dreamspinner Press
Two worlds collide
Fire Balls is the second novel in the Balls to the Wall series but can definitely be listened to as a stand-alone. Characters from the first novel make an appearance but knowing their back stories isn’t necessary to fully enjoy this one.
Rodney Mansfield is a gifted artist who paints under the pseudonym Roman. His magnificent artwork features beautiful nude men, and with his paintings selling like hot cakes at the Laguna beach Art Festival, Rodney should be on cloud nine. His secret crush on a stunning local fireman leaves Rodney feeling like something is missing, however. Being a sassy flamboyant young man with dyed white hair with bright pink or blue streaks, multiple ear piercings and brightly coloured clothing make him a hard man to overlook. That fact alone is enough to make the stunning fireman wary, and Rodney’s unrequited crush could be permanent; much to his chagrin. Rodney has a black belt in Karate but it’s his inner strength that has the potential to break down his crush’s walls, particularly if he can accept Rodney for the amazing man he is and ignore his preconceived ideas, and the opinion of others.
Hunter Fallon is a 6’2” hunk of a man who has spent his life trying to meet his father’s expectations. Hunter believes that his father’s acceptance of him is conditional on him being a man’s man. Living out his father’s dream of being a firefighter and dating masculine me, like Rodney’s surfer friend Jerry, might make his father happy, but Hunter is not living authentically and it’s making him question his choices. When Hunter follows Jerry’s urging to become a model for Rodney, unexpected longing takes root and try as he might Hunter can’t seem to resist Rodney’s charm. Getting bullied at the station, and talking to Rodney about poetry as he poses, sets Hunter to thinking about his long held desire to put his Masters in Literature to use teaching. Other unexpected desires are surfacing too and it all comes to a head when his family visits and Rodney confronts the firehouse bully with some skilful karate moves. A house fire that endangers Rodney’s life is the final straw, and Hunter is finally forced to face up to what he really needs to be happy moving forward.
Fire Balls is an audiobook you can enjoy, and finish, over one relaxing afternoon.
Nick J. Russo provides a flawless voice performance, perfectly capturing the character’s voices and personalities. I was very absorbed in Tara Lain’s storytelling but there were moments that felt rushed and I would have preferred Jerry and Hunter’s arc to be resolved before the relationship with Rodney progressed. This may not be an issue for other readers however and I still found Fire Balls to be a highly enjoyable listening experience.
Performance 5 stars.
Story. 4 stars.
There are no user reviews for this listing.