Welcome to What-To-Read Wednesday. Each week our Fiction Vixen reviewers will tell you about a book they think you need to read ASAP. This week Amy recommends:
Edges by Darien Cox
Rugged, lumberjack, Mick appropriately nicknamed “Mick the Dick” is a player. He is well known at the local gay bar, Stiffies (I giggled every time the bar was mentioned.) as a one night stand man who doesn’t date or do relationships. Shanti is the complete opposite. A guy dealing with guilt and grief over the death of his parents, he has been celibate for months and continues to live in a depressive funk while running his parent’s gift shop in a small ski town in Vermont.
When a day of skiing sends Shanti into a crash landing off the slopes, Mick comes to his rescue and from there a first impression is formed between both men. Mick is intrigued and a little uncomfortable with the chemistry he immediately feels with Shanti and Shanti recognizes that after meeting Mick, he finally feels something besides sadness and apathy that has plagued him for almost a year.
“What are you asking me?” Mick said. “I don’t date. I can’t say it any clearer.”
“Shanti laughed, “You’re a grown man, how can you not date? Is that some kind of macho, lone wolf bullshit, or are you trying to come off as shady and mysterious? Because frankly, a statement like that just makes you look like a tool.”
Their initial conversation ends in an argument and a passionate kiss that neither can stop thinking about.
“I think I just had my first kiss, first fight and then a terrible breakup with someone I just met two hours ago. All in a matter of minutes.”
Mick returns to Shanti’s shop the next day and apologizes for being “a tool” and from there both agree to explore the mutual attraction and chemistry they both are feeling.
I really enjoyed Cox’s voice and how he packed a great deal of emotion, vulnerability and heat in such a short novella. Mick and Shanti are complete opposites when it comes to their personal views of relationships but sexually….they are smokin’ hot take charge men. Once the physical connection is made, both men desire something more and are willing to work at a possible relationship. The courage to explore beyond their comfort zone and the will to compromise is what makes this such an enjoyable read. Well, that and the the sizzling sexy times. (There is a one time consensual m/m/m threesome. I was defiled but you won’t hear me complaining! *wink*)
“You are beautiful,” he said.
“He is isn’t he?” Mick added as he knelt down behind Shanti. “You want to kiss him again?”
“Absolutely,” Ryan said, taking Shanti’s hand and tugging him to his knees, while Mick supported his back. It occurred to Shanti then that he, clearly more inexperienced, had become the passive element in this mix, the partner to be acted upon more than the aggressor, but he didn’t mind. The way the two men discussed sharing him caused a surge of emotion, hot and searing blended with lust and surrender.
This was my first read by Darien Cox and halfway through the book I went to buy his latest release to read next. I finished Edges hoping that Cox will return to this couple in the future. At roughly 79 pages I was left wanting more of both men but also completely satisfied with a great story. If you enjoy an opposites attract theme in the m/m genre, I encourage you to give it a try.