Title: Starting New
Author: S.C. Wynne
My Rating: B+
Genre: Contemporary Romance (m/m)
Main Characters: Francis and Randy
Release Date: August 2016
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: spicy
Randy Wright believes the best in others. He's immediately drawn to Francis, even though Francis is hardened and wary. When Francis is attacked by one of his johns, Randy and his family take him in and offer him temporary work. Randy always thought he was straight, but something about Francis has him yearning for more than just friendship, and realizing he might be bisexual.
Francis is attracted to Randy too, and Randy and his parents say they’ve always believed in gay rights. But talk is cheap. What are the odds that these Christian parents will remain open-minded when it's their own son in a relationship with another man?
I know that the story description talked about Randy being the preacher's son, so I knew there would be a religious element to this story. In fact, there was quite a bit of religion that came into the story. Normally, that would completely turn me off to the story, but I think the author balanced that difficult edge extremely well.
Francis is a rent-boy...and he's not a high dollar one. No, Francis is homeless, starving, and will do whatever whenever he has to, to get by. He doesn't know any different. He was raised in this lifestyle and his mother set up his first job as a prostitute. His childhood and life is truly heartbreaking.
For Randy, he can't even imagine what Francis's life has been like. He's always had a home, food...security. And although his father preaches acceptance, practicing that acceptance is certainly not as easy as preaching it...as this entire family finds. I liked that bit of realism that the author added to the story. It was really well done.
And I loved Francis and Randy together. Although I had moments of anger on Francis's behalf towards the attitudes he's subjected to, I really have to admire the author for writing a story that couldn't have been easy to write. No one in this story is perfect. They are all human with very human flaws.
But I enjoyed the story and have found a new author to follow. I liked it quite a bit and will certainly read this author again.
I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.