Reviewed by PizzyGirl
AUTHOR: Brigham Vaughn
PUBLISHER: Pride Publishing
LENGTH: 47 pages
RELEASE DATE: November 28, 2017
Sometimes, love is right next door.
All twenty-seven-year-old Travis Schultz is supposed to do is keep an eye on the kid next door for a few weeks while his parents are out of town. Eighteen-year-old Owen Wheeler has other plans. Newly graduated, with plans to enlist in the Army, Owen wants to get laid before he ships out and he’s had a crush on Travis for years.
The age difference and the responsibility he’s been entrusted with make Travis hesitant, but the attraction is too much to deny. When the casual one-night stand turns into something more, Travis has no idea how to tell Owen how he feels. He misses his opportunity before Owen leaves and is left at home with a broken heart when Owen cuts off all contact.
When they meet again years later, Owen is in the midst of recovery from being injured in the line of duty and Travis will have to decide if he can forgive Owen and try again.
Reader Advisory: This book contains brief mentions of PTSD and war-related injuries.
Publisher’s Note: This book was previously released as part of the Right Here, Right Now anthology with Pride Publishing.
I enjoyed this short story. Both MCs were likable and I easily understood their budding relationship.
I am glad the author set this one up as a flashback situation. She engaged me in their outcome right away so it was much easier for me to get into the mindset I personally needed to believe a romance could happen between an 18 year old and man almost 10 years his senior. I personally struggle with age gaps when one MC is so young but in this case, it was not an issue for me particularly because the MC did not read like a typical immature 18 year old.
I really liked the way the author portrayed their arrangement and their first time together. The emotions were there to let the reader know there was more to the story than just losing virginity before leaving for the army. The tenderness and care was just as easy to feel as the sexual tension. And then as things progressed into a long distance arrangement, I easily felt the emotions growing into more than just attraction. I felt for Travis as he got his heart broken and I believed it.
I do wish this would have been longer because there was a lot of telling after the men got re-acquainted. It happened in a natural way but I felt like the story was just getting started when it ended. Like I needed a bit of something more on the page to feel what their words were telling me. Granted, I understand this is a short story so there isn’t much time for development, but the story ended at 83% of the book and could easily have had one more scene to emphasize the reunion.
Overall, I thought this was a good read. It was a great history and beginning of something that promises to be long lasting. It is set up very well to be continued later should the author so choose. I would gladly read a sequel to see where these men end up in life. I am fully invested in their outcome and would love to see it turn out happy and how that happens.