On the run with a stolen teddy bear and a couple hundred dollars in cash, Alex’s life takes a strange turn when he crashes his car in a freak accident. Stranded in the desert with no water, he is rescued by a crow that leads him to the home of Lars and Lars’ five-year-old niece Holly.
Lars is a man with secrets, and he’d just as soon Alex was on his way, but delays in the repair of Alex’s car compel him to offer Alex a place to stay in exchange for babysitting services. Alex accepts the offer and soon falls head over heels for Holly and the mysterious Crow.
Over the course of several weeks, Alex finds himself embracing a life he’d only dreamed of. A life of warmth and comfort—and a passion that almost makes him forget the past he’s running from. Almost.
As Lars and Alex fall in love, secrets about Lars and Holly, and a dark danger pursuing Alex, threaten to destroy their newfound family.
Alex was rescued once by the quirky crow he now lives with. Will Crow be able to save the treasure trove of a family he’s collected in Alex and Lars and Holly one more time?
- 1 To Be Read list
- 1 Read list
Publisher: Kiss Drunk Books
Heat Level: 4
Romantic Content: 4
Ending: Click here to reveal
Character Identities: Gay
Tropes: Age Difference, Families/Raising Kids, Hurt / Comfort, Love Can Heal / Redemption, Pets Are 'Portant, Rescue, Slow Burning Love
Word Count: 30,000
Setting: California desert
Languages Available: English
Kenna on Joyfully Jay M/M Romance Reviews and More wrote:
I didn’t know exactly what I was getting into when I started this book. I certainly wasn’t expecting to be blown away, yet that’s just what happened. The characters were engaging and very well written. I was immediately drawn in by Alex. He is the kind of character that you just want to win even if you can see he’s going to have to fight for the right to his HEA. He was so sweet and honest, yet afraid and running hard from his recent past.
Lars was totally different from the characters that I usually read. He has his secrets and they are biggies, yet you can just tell that he’s good at the core and you want him to find his little bit of happy. He’s that broken character that I love to watch as he struggles to find his way. He wants to be happy, but doesn’t think that he deserves it. I’ll say it again… My. Favorite. Trope! His darling niece Holly is the absolute icing on the cake. I love, love, love her. She’s so special, and I know she will be everyone’s fave in this story.
Last but certainly not least is Crow. Now, I know what you’re thinking… how can a bird be included in with the MCs? Trust me, this one can and should!
This story is billed as a romance and a suspense, but I’ve added the tag mystical. There’s a heavy dose of it to go along with a sweet romance and a great suspense! Honestly, there’s brilliant plot twists and turns as you try to solve the mystery and watch Alex and Lars work to heal themselves and try to have their HEA.
Oh. My. Goodness! This was such a great book! It positively dripped with atmosphere. It reminded me of a Tennessee Williams play…hot, dramatic, sweaty, and sexy as hell. Kayleigh Sky has written a slow burn, stunning story that really stuck with me after I read the last page, and I am so impressed.
Alex is understandably skittish. He’s trying to escape a bad situation and get as far away as possible. He, in no way, shape, or form, wants to be stuck in a small town with 250 dollars and no car. He’s young, and he’s not used to kindness, so when Lars and Holly take him in, he’s not sure what to do. I liked Alex’s vulnerability, but I also liked his growth. He didn’t want to care for Lars and Holly, but it was almost as if he couldn’t help himself.
Lars tore at my heartstrings. His main focus in life is Holly. He is so caught up, he doesn’t realize he’s not fulfilling his own needs. I could almost feel the loneliness radiating from him. He fixes people’s cars, and he tends to Holly’s needs. He’s an artist and paints, but there doesn’t seem to be any joy in his life. When he realizes he’s falling for Alex, he is taken aback, but he feels such passion. I loved reading about his discovery of himself.
When Alex and Lars came together, my heart just exploded. It was sweet, romantic, and hot. Lars tells Alex he wants to paint him, and it’s a natural progression. The writing is detailed, but there is a beauty to it that I didn’t expect. For instance:
He crossed the room. Lars opened his arms, and Alex went into them and tipped his head back into Lars’ palm. His heart thundered and he shook like somebody with a fever. Lars bent down to him, covering Alex’s mouth with his, and Alex opened with a pent-up moan that he thought maybe had been buried in him for his whole life, waiting. Waiting for a touch that longed just for him. The real him.
There’s more, but this review would be filled with nothing but my favorite passages. I’ve read their first love scene (and I mean that, they’re having sex, but it’s so much more) three times, and I’m sure I’ll read it many more.
There weren’t many background characters, but they were written very well. Holly was wonderful. She was the right mix of precious and precocious. She realizes Alex is special, and she seems very in tune with Crow. Speaking of Crow…he was great. He led Lars to Alex and played an integral role in keeping them together. There was Ev, the tow truck driver. His role was relatively small, but he was still important to the story because he was the catalyst to the climactic scene.
There is a bit of excitement and intrigue toward the end. It was nicely done, and it didn’t overwhelm what Trinkets is, which is a slow burn love story between two men who complete each other and how they make a family. I can’t recommend this one enough.