Title ~ I Survived Seattle
(Coming About Book #1)
(Coming About Book #1)
Author ~ J.K. Hogan
Publisher ~ Wilde City Press
Published ~ 20th March 2014
Rating ~ 4 Stars
As if being a deeply closeted gay man living in the South isn’t enough, Justice Crawford also suffers from a crippling anxiety disorder. Flying cross country to be the best man in his best friend’s wedding probably isn’t the best idea, right? Forced back into the closet after being rejected by his family, Justice has given up on the idea of finding acceptance and love. He has allowed his disorder and his troubled past to keep him from taking a chance, but love might just find him where he least expects it… in Seattle.
Sailor and charter boat captain Nic Valentine is still reeling from the unexpected death of his father, when the man of his dreams—literally—falls into his lap. He thinks he’ll never see the man again, but fate has other plans. Nic tries to resist the charms of adorably quirky, nervous Justice, because he has no desire to get tangled up with another closet case. But when life keeps throwing them together, will Nic decide that Justice might be a keeper after all?
I Survived Seattle is the first M/M book written by J.K. Hogan and I sure as hell hope it’s not the last one.
Curious how J.K. Hogan would handle this genre I was looking forward to reading her first venture into male romance. Anything that persuades more M/F fans to read M/M has got to be a good thing, right? Well, what a fantastic surprise I got! The romance is very well done and convinced me that quite a few M/F authors can write M/M very well.
Justice, a southern boy who is totally banged up in the closet and suffering from a anxiety disorder, has lost all hope of finding his true love, his soul mate. He’s a fucked up hero par excellence and has allowed his disorder and his troubled past to keep him from taking a chance in finding his true love.
“I want to get my life together. I want to get better. I want to live my life without hiding, I just don’t know how.”
When he flies to Seattle to attend to the wedding of his best friend Rory, sailor and charter boat owner Nic crosses his path. Both men feel the immediate attraction but they think they’ll never see each other again. But life has his own plans…
This book follows the start of a really beautiful relationship. Jus, captured in his anxiety disorder, realises that fighting for someone means so much more than he could have imagined. That it’s worth taking the risk to step out of the closet and leave his past behind. Quirky Justice with all his oddities is such a cute character, he definitely needs some hot man loving.
And there’s Nic, who learns that one shy southern guy is worth fighting for. Justice turns his entire world upside down and Nic learns to embrace every single second of it. He quickly realizes that the water is Justice’s safe place, that his boat is the only place where Jus can relax enough to act on his feelings and simply forget his anxiety attacks. *Sigh* I fell so hard for him. Even when at some point everything seems to break apart he isn’t willing to give up. He wants his southern boy, he is determined to get him and tells him bluntly that hiding doesn’t resolve anything.
“I’d have given you whatever you needed, had you asked, but I’m not going to help you hide from what you’re afraid off. Anxiety and fear are two entirely different animals, Justice. And I think you’re blaming the wrong one here.”
I absolutely loved watching Jus and Nic change as they got closer. It was so hot, watching Nic pursue shy Jus. Once he accepts what is happening between them we get to see a whole other side to him. He is so sexy, confident, curious, possessive and affectionate.
Overall, I Survived Seattle is a super sweet romance and I loved every minute of it. It has the perfect mix of inner struggles, angst, friendship, humour and love.The storyline is complex, the characters lovable and the writing style deeply emotional, powerful and gripping. Each scene is carefully worded to bring every emotion to life, the happiness, the loneliness, and the heartbreak. Justice and Nic’s story is simply amazing! I really enjoyed reading this. I look forward to reading the next instalment of the ‘Coming About’ series.
A Word from J.K. HoganSince I released my first m/m romance (I Survived Seattle from Wilde City Press), there have been three main questions I’ve been asked, so I thought this would be the best place to answer them!
Question #1: Who the heck are you?
That one is pretty easy. I’m just a simple girl, really. I live in a small suburb of Charlotte, NC, and I’m pretty much a country girl at heart. This often seems to be at odds with my rather outspoken opinions on marriage equality, LGBT rights, and other liberal ideas. I have a wonderful husband and I am a stay-at-home mom of a fifteen month old boy, two dogs, and a cat. Before the kidlet came along, I was an in house graphic designer, so now I do that freelance in my spare time, including book covers (I did the one for I Survived Seattle).
I’ve made up stories as long as I can remember, and probably before—so my mom says. But I didn’t ‘officially’ write any of them down until I was 20. It was almost 10 years later before I published something, but I’ve been going strong ever since.
Question #2: Why did you start writing m/m?
This is the question I get most often. There’s a long answer, and a short answer. Long answer: I’ve been publishing m/f paranormal romance for a couple of years now and I love it, I really do. It was always important to me to have gay characters in my books, even if they weren’t the main characters, because to me, that’s normal. I read my first m/m years ago when I got a Josh Lanyon novella as a kindle freebie. J.R. Ward had been teasing me with the idea of m/m for years, so I was open to it, but had no idea where to start. I read Josh’s book—I think it was The Dickens With Love—and I never stopped. I became friends with a lot of the authors in the genre and even attended GRL last year as a proud fangirl. Finally, I just decided ‘why the hell not write an m/m romance?’ There are quite a few folks out there who dabble in several genres.
Short answer: When this plot bunny started hopping around in my brain, the two main characters happened to be men…end of story, really.
Question #3: Where did the idea for I Survived Seattle come from?
Not too long after Washington passed marriage equality, a couple of our friends decided to get married. We hadn’t seen them in a while, so my husband and I decided to take my son (then 10 months old) on his first plane ride and go to the wedding. I’d never been to Seattle, and I’d only been as far west as Jackson Hole, so it was definitely an adventure. We got to do all kinds of fun stuff, including a sailing trip on Lake Washington with one of our friends who is a nautical archaeologist and has a beautiful old sailboat. I also got to hang out with another friend and fellow m/m author Kade Boehme, who showed me around Pike Place.
As you’ll read in the story, Justice, one of the main characters, has severe anxiety. I did draw a lot from my personal experience to write about his struggle. One of his big issues is plane travel. The claustrophobia gets to him and I’m the same way. Before we left Seattle, I was lamenting to another of my m/m author friends, Cardeno C., about having to go on such a long plane trip to somewhere I’d never been before. When we got back from the trip, I IM’d and said “I survived Seattle.” CC said “that would make a great book title” and that’s when the plot bunny was born. All of a sudden, ideas of sailing and fish markets and weddings in the midst two guys falling in love seemed apropos, since we’d gone to Seattle to watch two ladies in love get married at long last.
So that’s it! I’ll continue to write m/f stories too, although I’m currently focusing on this series (ISS is book one!). I’m in love with this genre now, and I just love writing about people in love, no matter who they turn out to be. Is that too much love for ya?
About J.R. Hogan
J.K. Hogan has been telling stories for as long as she can remember, beginning with writing cast lists and storylines for her toys growing up. When she finally decided to put pen to paper, magic happened. She is greatly inspired by all kinds of music and often creates a “soundtrack” for her stories as she writes them. J.K. is hoping to one day have a little something for everyone, so she’s branched out from m/f paranormal romance and added m/m contemporary romance. Who knows what’s next?
J.K. resides in North Carolina, where she was born and raised. A true southern girl at heart, she lives in the country with her husband and young son, a cat, and two champion agility dogs. If she isn’t on the agility field, J.K. can often be found chasing waterfalls in the mountains with her husband, or down in front at a blues concert. In addition to writing, she enjoys training and competing in dog sports, spending time with her large southern family, camping, boating and, of course, reading!
J.K. Hogan is gifting one very lucky reader a copy of I Survived Seattle… all you need to do is enter the Rafflecopter below.