My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Wowzers! That’s pretty much my take on this book. I fluctuated between exasperation, exhilaration and exhaustion watching Ray and David go on their relationship journey.
I love how, in a Santino Hassell novel, the setting is another character, New York is larger than life and utterly central to everything which takes place in this romance. The Puerto Rican background for Raymond, David’s Connecticut childhood, these things are as integral to their pairing as the stupendously hot sex they have as Ray looks to explore the male side of his bisexuality.
I also love “real” and Santino is one of those authors who brings it every time. David’s fears that Ray’s bisexuality is a phase and he’ll ditch him are grounded in truths often expressed not only in literature but in “real life”. There’s angst in this one, but thankfully nowhere near the level of Ray’s brother Michael’s story and it works well with this lower level of tension.
They are flawed men, they’re not caricatures but fully fleshed out with all the frailties of humanity. Ray can’t manage to tell David how he feels, David’s scared he’s not enough and in the background are the rest of the Five Boroughs characters, intertwined and interconnected through everyone’s lives.
This is a well earned and well worked for happy ending and it’s beautiful.