Reviewed by Vicki
TITLE: A Kind of Honesty
SERIES: A Kind of Stories #3
AUTHOR: Lane Hayes
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 240 pages
RELEASE DATE: October 7th, 2016
Music is drummer Tim Chalmers’s great escape and the one thing that’s never let him down. But his band Spiral’s meteoric rise to fame has made it difficult for him to maintain a low profile. Unwanted press pesters him after a public breakup with a volatile ex-girlfriend who loves the limelight as much as he loathes it. Tim’s main goal is to avoid confrontation. However, when a handsome stranger in a dive bar turns out to be someone he might know, everything changes.
Carter Hamilton-Temple might be a successful financial consultant with more brains, sophistication, and charm than most, but he always falls for the wrong guys: closet cases or men with issues. He can’t fight his attraction to tattooed rock star Tim, but can he trust his own judgment? When the thrill of danger combined with a fierce physical connection proves too strong for either man to resist, a quiet liaison away from the public eye and curious friends seems like a safe bet. But some secrets are hard to keep. When rumors threaten to rock his world, Tim realizes it’s time to confront his fear with his own kind of honesty.
Oh I do like an opposites-attract story! Tim and Carter couldn’t be more opposite.
Tim Chalmers is the drummer for Spiral, the band we first learned about in a Kind of Truth, book one in this series. He was such a background character, that it took me a minute to realize who this book was about! So Tim is the drummer, he’s bisexual like two of the other band member are, but is sticking with women for the time being. Between their record company’s wishes that they keep the gay to a minimum, and his family issues, Tim is happy to date women. He’s also happy to have just broken up with his girlfriend, the nasty Miranda…. He decides he needs something different to get her out of his system, and heads to a gay bar in LA. Where he meets and fucks a sexy man. Imagine his surprise to see that same man at Benny’s birthday party, in NYC, just a few days later!
It turns out the sexy man is Carter, Zeke’s best friend/ex-boyfriend. Zeke and Benny are the couple from book two, A Kind of Romance. So Carter is a rich, handsome, successful man, who is also a lonely soul. He’s the son of an older father who died when Carter was young, and his mother hasn’t been around. He’s had a bad string of relationships and one night stands, never finding what he’s looking for. He assumes the hot, tattooed man he hooks up with, will be nothing more than a one night stand. When they meet up again, and agree to be fuck-buddies, he’s ok with that plan…
But this is a romance novel, so things are never that simple! What starts as two men getting together for sex, turns in to a friendship, then the drama starts. Tim has some family issues, he’s mom is needy, his dad is gone, his sister is in rehab, and his nephew is the only one that seems stable. There is a big thing with the nephew and his father that I won’t mention, but that added some past angst to the story. Tim has gotten himself in to such a knot, between the family and his fear of being seen with a man, that he comes pretty close to losing everything. Carter has his own trust issues, he’s been in a relationship with a bisexual man before, and ended up lost and hurt. He’s not sure he can stick around when the shit hits the fan over Tim’s ex-girlfriend issues, and his reluctance to come out. It appears he wants more than fuck buddies, but Tim isn’t willing to go there. You’ll have to read this one to see if they work it all out!
So I LOVED A Kind of Truth and A Kind of Romance when I read them, and I was very excited to see they were coming out in audible format in time to do a re-read/listen before A Kind of Honesty released. I finished listening to them and went straight in to this one, so all of these characters and stories are fresh in my mind. I hate to say it, although I really liked this book, it wasn’t quite as good as the others. I think if I hadn’t just read the last two, and had just picked up this one after the couple of months break since AKR came out, I probably would have loved it. But Benny and Zeke’s book was SOOOOOO good! It’s not fair to compare Tim and Carter to Zeke and Benny, but I can’t help it. They are still so fresh in my mind. I just didn’t bond with these two as well. I think it started with the obvious coincidence of them hooking up in LA, then meeting across the county on a rooftop at a party, and having such a close association. I’ve read that story line too many times in romance novels to find it acceptable anymore. I saw it coming a mile away. Then I got tired of Tim’s reluctance to come out. I didn’t get it after a while, with Rand already in a relationship with a man, it didn’t seem like it would really hurt Spiral if he came out. His family was already fucked up, how much worse could it get if they knew? Then when it does come out, there was very little drama, nothing like what I expected after Tim’s constant concern. The drama with Miranda didn’t quite work for me either. It came in fits and starts, something would happen with her, then she’d go away for a while. Then it would pop back up, but Tim never did anything about it. I wanted him to stand up for himself and deal with it! I don’t think I got to know Carter as well as I would have hoped, I liked him, but I didn’t come to love him. I think part of that was because we spend so much time dealing with Tim and his issues, that he doesn’t focus on Carter as much as he could, and he doesn’t know Carter that well. Since this is from Tim’s perspective, we also don’t get to know Carter as well.
I did like this one though, don’t get me wrong. But when comparing it to the first two, it was a little lacking. But I did like the story as it fit in with the other two, as part of the overall series. I loved seeing Rand and Will, and Benny and Zeke. I didn’t love Tim and Carter as a couple necessarily, but their sex scenes were really well done. I liked the playfulness of the scenes, there was something just a little naughty about them, I especially liked the dirty talk. I didn’t get as much from them emotionally as I would have liked. They would start to get close emotionally, there is a part when Tim gets sick, and I loved seeing Carter care for him, only to pull away when Tim freaked out. I wish that closeness had come across more later in the story. I liked their differences though, they both have such different backgrounds and lives. Carter the rich, sophisticated New Yorker, Tim the tattooed rock star. Everything about them showed that difference, appearances, life experiences, taste in food, clothing, etc. Yet they wanted each other…
As always the writing is excellent in this book. Lane Hayes has really become one of my favorite authors, so even though I didn’t LOVE this book, it’s still a really good book. I’m ok with not liking parts of a story, or not liking characters as well as I could, if the book is well written. And this one is. It just wasn’t my favorite of the series. Overall I liked it just fine!
If you have read the others in the series, you will want to read this one. If you haven’t, I suppose you could read this as a stand alone, but I would soooo go get the others and read them first. This is just a fantastic series, and I want more!