Best friends since grade school, lovers since high school, Sean Delahunt and Rusty Duchene thought nothing could ever tear them apart. Then Sean graduates college and his world changes, while Rusty’s stays the same.
Offered a job in Boston, Sean knows asking Rusty to leave New Orleans is a big sacrifice for his soul mate, who has a successful career and supportive family.
Abused and rejected by his own family, Sean struggles with self worth and thinks this career opportunity will give him a new life.
Rusty wavers in his trust but takes a chance and agrees to follow him to Boston.
Alone for several weeks in a strange city, Sean is determined to make friends on his own. When Rusty arrives, this new Sean makes him feel insecure. Crushing student loans, being unable to find a job and suspicions about the nature of Sean’s friends strain an already tenuous relationship.
A trip home for the holidays reminds both men of all they’ve left behind and makes them reevaluate what they want in their future.
On the verge of wedding vows, a career crisis threatens to bring their lives back full circle.
Money, moves and men…will this longtime love last forever or will life in the big city destroy their young love?
Was this it? Was this the end of them?
No. It couldn’t be.
Sean bit his knuckles using the pain to clear his tears. “I have loved you since the first time you scooted over to let me sit with you at lunch. Do you remember, Rusty?”
Please, remember, Rusty. Please remember who we’ve always been to each other. Who we are to each other. Please be my lover. My love. My soulmate. My completeness.
Magnificent in his nakedness, Rusty nodded once. His dark curls tracked down the nape of his neck. Sean knew that whispering kisses right there, right where that bottom curl rested, drove Rusty wild.
“I was the new kid and nobody would let me sit with them. But you did. You pushed Toby McClellan off his chair and told me to sit.”
Rusty’s shoulder blades tightened. “You looked so sad. So lost. But you had this look in your eye, like you dared anyone to pity you.”
“So you did.”
“No. I didn’t pity you. I admired you. I admired your courage. Your bravado.”
Rusty hugged himself.
Sean wanted to go to him. To wrap his arms around the boy who always included him, to the man who always comforted him.
Instead, he squeezed the pillow tighter and willed Rusty to turn around. If he would just turn around.
“Bravado. It was all bluff. I was scared shitless. Every time we moved, I was scared shitless.”
“What were you afraid of?”
“Of being alone.”
“Is that why you’re with me?” Rusty unfolded his arms and scrubbed both hands through his curls. “No, of course not. You would never have to be alone if you didn’t want to be. With the way you look, with the way you are, you’d just have to give a guy one of those sideways looks and he’d follow you anywhere.”
“No, Rusty. No. They wouldn’t. I wouldn’t.”
“You did. You said you really wanted to go to Boston.” Rusty turned around. The tears streaking his face broke Sean’s heart. “And I said I would follow you anywhere.”
“And now you don’t want to.”
My Rating = Five Stars!
*ARC provided by the author in exchange for my honest review
This story just touched my heart from beginning to end and I didn’t want to leave Rusty and Sean. However by the way it ends it leaves the door open for more so I hope there is.
This is a collection of novellas with each covering a part of their transition from boy to man and within that their relationship with each other. I’m glad I was able to read all in succession as I don’t think I would have coped with the leaving them at each stage, I wanted it all in one swoop!
Rusty Duchene and Sean Delahunt have been together most of their lives, from best friends to lovers, they both discovered themselves and each other. They knew who they were from such a tender age but each experienced a different support path and with that it created such deep insecurities in both but for differing reasons.
Rusty is the youngest in his family – the baby born late to his wonderful parents. I just loved this family! The love and support was overwhelming and so joyful to read. This is how it should be. Sean on the other hand has not been so lucky. His father has always dismissed and ridiculed him and finally disowns him when Sean is thrown out at sixteen. But in the background was the loving Duchene family waiting in the wings for him. They have always understood the bond between both boys and when they announce they are finally boyfriend and boyfriend it is simple acceptance of what was meant to be. From that day forward Sean becomes another son to the Duchene family.
The story takes us from them living together whilst Sean is at college, to moving away from family and support to standing on their own in another part of the country.
This was a total journey of a read and really invites the reader in to experience each step they take with all the angst and insecurity involved. I loved how the story evolved from Rusty being the strong one (or appearing so) who you felt Sean relied on so much but then when Sean goes to set up in a new job in Boston the tables turn. It’s at this point that I feel the ‘boys’ grow into men.
What I loved most was that they angst wasn’t overly done and that the lines of communication between the two was open and enables them to strengthen their relationship.
The secondary characters were an integral part to the story, especially Dad and Mom Duchene (everyone should have these in their lives!) that it made the story so real and believable. Yes there was some bigotry but on the most part it was acceptance.
I love how Chris Cox writes, it made the read so involved that I felt like a part of the story. It was like a virtual hug!
The ending was fantastic and I need to know if what was asked is answered with a Yes! The next book is Levi’s story so I hope we get some Rusty and Sean intermingled so I get more of my boys. However I can’t wait for sexy Levi to reveal his true self.
Great series and a new author for me to follow. Definitely looking forward to more of the Bayou Boys!
In Chris Cox’s stories, men climb steep mountains of emotion and brave treacherous valleys of personal growth on a journey to love. The Bayou Boys series is about deep relationships, about finding yourself as well as your soul mate, and about learning to feel right in your own skin.
Sexy and complex, Chris’ writing delivers the stories that touch readers’ hearts. Born and raised in Louisiana, Chris worked as an electrical engineer before chucking the corporate ladder and becoming a full-time writer. Chris resides in Louisiana, where the gumbo is hot…but the men are hotter.
You can check out more about Chris Cox by visiting www.chriscoxwrites.com,
On Facebook at www.facebook/chriscoxwrites.com
On Twitter: @ChrisCoxWrites.