Take a Chance On It is a book I couldn’t wait to write—but I had to write the other Ready or Knot books before it was ready.
I love reading series romance. It gives me two of my favorite things: I get to hang out with old friends, and I get to anticipate seeing that one character—or even better, that one couple—finally get a happy ending. I know a lot of authors actually plan their series out from the beginning, but anyone who knows how disorganized I am—which is anyone who’s ever spent more than five minutes with me—knows long range planning is not my forte. My series happen because characters pop up in other stories who want stories of their own. Sometimes they drag me along against my will (Beach, I’m talking about you.)
My Ready or Knot series was different. I wanted to create a series where I knew the last couple from the beginning. I wanted them to have a history where everyone seemed to know they were meant to be except for them. My brain gave me the opening of Take a Chance On It. I saw a wedding, and a guy standing up as the best man, even though he was in love with the groom, even though their friends knew he was in love with the groom. I saw him willing his friends to keep their mouths shut when the minister asked if there was anyone who knew why the couple should not marry.
I saw Gideon.
He was hurting and fighting it hard. I swore I was going to make things work out for him. It took me three books, but I got him there. I hope readers will enjoy his happy ending.
Left at the altar by his long-time lover Spencer and in desperate need of quality health insurance, now, Dane Archer can’t say no when his best man and best friend Gideon DeLuca steps in. But Dane and Gideon have history, tangled and passionate and complicated.
After seventeen years of cat-and-mouse, Gideon has realized Dane isn’t the kind of man who ever wants to be caught, and he’s stopped playing Dane’s game.
For Dane, it’s never been a game, but sexual fidelity isn’t his strong suit. Love is too beautiful for limits, something he’s never been able to get Gideon the control freak to understand. Now Dane has nothing but limits, including the timeline on this paper-only marriage to Gideon.
Gideon’s the only person Dane trusts enough to lean on, and Gideon will do anything to get Dane through this crisis. Anything but fall for Dane again.
Living together forces Dane and Gideon to stop circling and face what’s been between them all these years. They just don’t know if they have the power or the time to make things right.
What they do know is that they’re not ready for it to be over.
Dane smiled, a sparkle reaching his green eyes. It was a shot to the heart that most people swore Gideon didn’t have. That damned happy look had been Gideon’s curse and blessing since they’d met.
I’ve got you. Always. But it was already too late for words. Gideon nodded and Dane turned back to face Spencer.
Gideon had made himself a master of staying physically present while disappearing and he drew hard on that skill to get him through the apparently endless preamble to the ceremony.
Cate, she of the flowing purple robes, spoke earnestly of the goddess’s love and nature and the perfection of unions while the breeze at her back sent patchouli washing over them. Gideon paid her just enough attention to be ready with cue to produce the ring currently residing in Gideon’s breast pocket.
In the meantime, Gideon let his attention wander. Julia, Spencer’s oldest sister and his attendant, smiled when Gideon caught her eye. Her aqua-colored sheath dress was straight and smooth to her knees. Where would she have tucked the other ring?
Gideon looked out over the guests. Spencer’s Hawthorne-Partridge contingent was there in force, ninety percent blond, ranging in shades from Spencer’s wheat color to the darker honeys like Dane’s.
They were a good match, right to their hair.
A figure came from behind the building, striding toward the last row of chairs.
Cate began intoning the old chestnut, “If anyone present has reason why Spencer and Dane may not be joined, they should speak now or…”
Christ, Gideon would have thought that crap wouldn’t make the cut for a hippie-dippy ceremony like this one. Her question froze everyone into absolute silence. Even the sound of the waves behind them seemed to fade.
Do not look at me. Despite the refrain in Gideon’s head, he felt the weight of Theo and Jax’s stares. Did they actually expect him to beg Dane to change his mind?
Gideon narrowed his attention on the figure who’d reached the last row of chairs. Late and in jeans and flannel. A lesbian?
No, probably not, given the neat goatee. The new arrival stared directly at the altar and in Gideon’s peripheral vision, Spencer flinched.
The outfit was hideous, Gideon conceded, but as the man started down the aisle between the chairs, Gideon knew Spencer’s reaction was more than just horror at the clothes.
Spencer went pasty under his tan, his expression slack with shock. Then his features sharpened under his already patrician nose, eyes drawn in with grief.
In that instant, Gideon knew. Knew before Spencer let go of Dane’s hands and stepped back. Knew before the words made it out of Spencer’s pretentious fucking mouth.
Rage flooded Gideon, curled his hand into a fist. Acrid, bitter from festering for eight—no, fifteen—years of Gideon holding it back.
Spencer’s two soft words set it free.
“Now? You do this to him now?” The punch flew out of Gideon with the words, a shot to Spencer’s cheek, the shock echoing back up Gideon’s arm and reverberating into something like relief.
Worse—goddamn Gideon’s stupid, stubborn heart—with something like happiness.
So he punched Spencer again.
Review by Claire Potterton
Such an emotional story!
In the interest of full disclosure, I hold my hands up to being a major KA Mitchell fan-girl. I’ve yet to meet a book by this author that I don’t like; sexy, romantic, emotional, hard-hitting, beautifully written stories that suck you in and keep you there to the very end. This book, however, has reached new heights in the ‘hitting me right in the feels’ department………I cried! I rarely cry and over a book?? Four times that has happened before now, and I was really not prepared for it.
The complicated relationship between Gideon and Dane made my head spin, kept me frustrated and pissed off, longing to bang their heads together and demand that they pull their heads out of their backsides long enough to see what was right in front of them! It was wonderful! They are the most impossible, mismatched couple in every way but one…..the depth of their feelings for one another, and it takes the possibility of losing that for them to really appreciate the incredible bond they share.
There are very powerful scenes in this book portraying some of the devastating effects of cancer treatment, which verged, at times, on being too much for me, they are so incredibly well done. Integral to the story, but so, so emotional.
Romance…yes, emotion….by the bucket load, an engaging story, and such deep love, make this a book I know I will go back to again and again. I can’t recommend this book highly enough…it reeled me in, chewed me up and spat me out; dazed, wrung out and happy to be alive!
Star Rating: 4.5
Meet K.A. Mitchell
K.A. Mitchell discovered the magic of writing at an early age when she learned that a carefully crayoned note of apology sent to the kitchen in a toy truck would earn her a reprieve from banishment to her room. She never stopped making stuff up and was pleased to find out that people would pay her to do it. Over twenty books later, she’s still in love with writing. Reviewers and readers alike have called her a “gateway drug” to gay romance. Although the men in her stories usually carry more emotional baggage than even LAX can lose in a year, she guarantees they always find their sexy way to a happy ending.