REVIEW: Crossing the Touchline, by Jay Hogan

Crossing the Touchline, by Jay Hogan

Title: Crossing the Touchline

Series: Auckland Med Book Two

Author: Jay Hogan

Genre: Contemporary, Sports

LGBTQ+ Category: MM, Gay

Publisher: Self

Pages: 372

Reviewer: Maryann

Get It On Amazon

About The Book

What if you’ve worked your whole life for a dream, to play rugby for the most successful sports team on the planet, the New Zealand All Blacks?

What if that dream is so close you can smell it?

What if you meet someone?

What if you fall in love?

What if your dream will cost the man who’s stolen your heart?

And what if the dream changes?

Reuben Taylor has a choice to make.

Cameron Wano is that choice.

Reuben Taylor has a chance at rugby greatness, to play for the New Zealand All Blacks. But Reuben is gay and still in the closet. He needs that All Black position to live his dream, but also to ensure he can provide for his nephew who is likely on the spectrum. Reuben’s brother is struggling as a parent, and Reuben’s dad is a viscious homophobe. Reuben just needs to keep his head down till he gets in the team and secures that position, then maybe, just maybe, he can come out.

But Reuben hasn’t counted on falling for out and proud, Cameron Wano. Cameron is everything Reuben wants and now he has a choice to make.

The Review

“Crossing the Touchline” is book two in the “Auckland Med” series.  In the first novel “First Impressions” we meet Michael Oliver, Josh Rawlins, along with ER charge nurse Cameron Wano.   

I wasn’t sure how I felt about Cameron Wanos’ character but once Jay Hogan opens up about Cam it’s a roller coaster ride.  Cam gives us a look at his supportive family from a very young age and how courageous he is through his journey as being a fem/gay man.   As an ER charge nurse he takes care of business, he’s very flamboyant but knows who he is and hides it from no one.  He already had a bad experience and swore never to be hidden in the “closet” again for anyone.

Cam first meets Rueben Taylor at a socializing event for rugby team’s and it ended in disaster.  Rueben realizes his mistake but it’s too late to make amends.

Rueben has goals to keep and a bright career as a rugby player that could change the dynamics for him, Corey his nephew and possibly Craig his brother.  His back is against the wall with his brother Craig who has a substance/alcohol problem and is under their devious fathers rule.  Along with his brothers issues Rueben takes on a heavy responsibility for his special needs nephew, Corey.  But Rueben fears he could loose everything with the secret he holds.  

When Rueben and Cam meet again there’s so many obstacles between them.  Their upbringing, support of family and friends, careers and it’s a possibility what they start could again lead to just too many disasters to follow.

This is my second read from Jay Hogan and she does a fantastic job at character building.  As I stated she really makes Cam a brave and colorful character.  She brings so much out in Rueben, his hopes, fears, and determination.   I liked Cam’s brother Mathew, who seemed to start out as an important character but he sort of drifted in and out of the story.  I felt like I needed to see more of his support for Cam and even Rueben.

Jay Hogan doesn’t so much focus on the actual techniques of the rugby game but takes a look at the business side of it: the policies and what it takes for a player to work their way up to the pro’s.   The author show’s dedication to the New Zealand, All Blacks rugby team and brings to the forefront whether there will ever be acceptance of an ‘out’ gay player in the sport.

The Reviewer

Hi, I’m Maryann, I started life in New York, moved to New Hampshire and in 1965 uprooted again to Sacramento, California.  Once I retired I moved to West Palm Beach, Florida in 2011 and just moved back to Sacramento in March of 2018.  My son, his wife and step-daughter flew out to Florida and we road tripped back so they got to see sights they have never seen.  New Orleans and the Grand Canyon were the highlights.  Now I am back on the west coast again to stay! From a young age Ialways liked to read.  I remember going to the library and reading the “Doctor Dolittle” books by Hugh Lofting. Much later on became a big fan of the classics, Edgar Alan Poe, Mary Shelley, Bram Stoker and as time went by Agatha Christie, Ray Bradbury and Stephen Kingand many other authors. My first M/M shifter book I read was written by Jan Irving the “Uncommon Cowboys” series from 2012.  She was the first author I ever contacted and sent an email to letting her know how much I liked this series.  Sometime along the way I read “Zero to the Bone”by Jane Seville, I think just about everyone has read this book! As it stands right now I’m really into mysteries, grit, gore and “triggers” don’t bother me.  But if a blurb peaks my interest I will read the book. My kindle collection eclectic and over three thousand books and my Audible collection is slowly growing.  I have both the kindle and audible apps on my ipod, ipads, and MAC. So there is never an excuse not to be listening or reading. I joined Goodreads around 2012 and started posting reviews.  One day a wonderful lady, Lisa Horan of The Novel Approach, sent me an email to see if I wanted to join her review group.  Joining her site was such an eye opener.  I got introduce to so many new authors that write for the LGBTQ genre.   Needless to say, it was heart breaking when it ended.  But I found a really great site, QRI and it’s right here in Sacramento. Last year at QSAC I actually got to meet Scott Coatsworth, Amy Lane and Jeff Adams.

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