Friday, October 23, 2015

Review: Deliver Me by Faith Gibson

91a8Lj46kvL._SL1500_Title ~ Deliver Me

Author ~ Faith Gibson

Published ~ 3rd October 2015

Genre ~ Contemporary M/M Romance





Taggart Lee has it all.
Everything except love.
Tag is the jaded lead singer for 7’s Mistress, the biggest rock band in the world. After fifteen years in the business, he’s drowning in it all. When tragedy strikes, he takes a break from the road and the monotony his life has become. When he meets a gorgeous man on a park bench, he sees his lifeline.
Dr. Erik Henrikson thought he’d met the one.
He had.
The wrong one.
A year after his breakup, he still has a lock on his heart. Then he meets Lee, someone whose life has just been turned upside down. When he finds out Lee’s true identity, Erik throws away the key.
Tag has two weeks to make the doctor want him. He has three months to prove he won’t hurt him.
Tragedy brings them together.
Lies and betrayal push them apart.
Is love enough to deliver them?

Alan’s Review

“Deliver Me” was a wonderful surprise. I’m a sucker for gay rock-and-roll romance, but most, to be honest, are pale imitations of the best of the genre.

“Deliver Me”, however, turned out to be a pleasant departure from the standard “singer meets guitarist” meme, a wonderful exploration of a life outside of the stage, studio and tour bus. The main characters are a wildly successful and famous rock star, Taggart Lee, frontman for 7’s Mistress, one of the hottest rock bands in the world, and a gorgeous and committed pediatrician, Erik Henrikson, his polar opposite. Erik is all about kids and family. Tag is all about fame and fortune.

What happens when they meet is nothing less than worlds colliding, leaving both men changed forever.

While out on tour, Tag gets some horrible news. His sister, who is pregnant with her first child, is in medical trouble at the local hospital, and Tag needs to hop a plane and get there before it’s too late.

He doesn’t quite make it, and arrives only to mourn his beloved sister. However, the baby survives, and his sister has left strict instructions for Tag to raise her newborn daughter as his own. Tag doesn’t have a clue about raising babies, he’s completely lost and once Dee (Delilah) is released from post-natal care, he finds his arms filled with a struggling bundle of wailing baby, at a total loss as to what to do.

Fortunately, as he awkwardly sits on a park bench, fumbling to sooth Dee, a man sits down and offers his help. Oh, for the kindness of strangers! The man picks up Delilah, who instantly calms. It’s only then that he notices that the man is nothing less than gorgeous, and obviously kind and caring. It is with gratitude and relief that he thanks the man, who generously offers tips for caring for the baby, and suggests that the baby’s formula is probably not right. How does this man know so much about babies? He’s obviously not straight, which becomes abundantly clear as their eyes lock. And he’s not some stalking fan, either, since he doesn’t seem to know or care who Tag is. The kind stranger’s final instruction is to set up the baby with a regular pediatrician; a trusted physician needs to monitor any newborn baby, especially a preemie.

Dee is rapidly becoming the light of Tag’s life, all goes well for a few weeks, but something is obviously still wrong and the time has come to find a pediatrician. He goes to the Yellow pages and finds the doctor closet to his home and (you guessed it), it’s Erik, the handsome stranger he hadn’t dared hope to see again.

Thus begins a remarkable relationship centered on a beautiful baby and two driven men with incredibly diverse lives. Is it even possible that anything can happen between them? It is, because they have one thing in common, the angelic Delilah.

Tag has a daunting issue to deal with: he has to resume his tour, but absolutely cannot bring a newborn baby on the road with him. It’s not safe, it’s not healthy, to bring a newborn child on a bus, exposed to the Paparazzi and the insane fans who mob Tag, sometimes, in their frenzy, tearing his clothing and hair from his body. He can’t put Delilah at risk. So, he consults Erik, asking him to recommend a nanny or childcare that he’d trust with his niece for three months. Erik comes up with an outlandish solution: he’ll watch Delilah while Erik is on tour. He’d always wanted to raise a child, and he’d love to have one in his home, even if it’s only for a few months.

As Erik says: “She needs someone. I need someone. We can be there for each other.”

There’s another reason, though Erik leaves it unspoken: he’s falling for Tag, hard. He’s gun-shy because he’d been betrayed by his last lover, but with Delilah and Tag now woven deeply into the threads of his life, it almost seems that providence is at work building a new family for all three of them.

There are two richly-drawn female secondary characters. Echo is a petite, but powerful, young woman who’s managed their band since the very beginning, a close, lifelong friend of all of them. She’s a great manager and confidant. She kicks butt when she needs to, rides right over their label, and cracks the whip at the venues - always in the band’s best interest. And she gives sage advice to Tag about more than his career, letting him know, in no uncertain terms, when he’s screwing up with Erik, making sure he’s always got his priorities straight.

Erik has a BFF, too, Sarah, also his closest confidant. She is nowhere near as sanguine with Erik’s relationship with a rock star, always planting a little gossip in his ear to convince him that Tag is nothing but another rock-star-slut, planting salacious tabloid articles so that Erik will see them. In fact, she’s dangerous. She obviously has her own agenda working here, and it has nothing to do with Erik having a wonderful, loving relationship.

Things do not all go smooth. Some of Sarah’s meddling inevitably gets through to Erik, who is never entirely sure that Tag is being faithful to him on the road. There’s a lot of clearing-the-air required, but these characters are two grown men, and with the help of Echo, manage to cut through the rumors, lies and fears.

In a powerful, surprising, climax, Delilah, Erik, their dog and their home are put at risk, and someone dies right in front of them as the police look on, helpless to intervene.

But no matter what happens, these three were meant to be a family, and they shall be one, come hell or high water. Ms. Gibson delivers a fully satisfying HEA to all of them.

Faith Gibson is a fine writer. Her characters are vivid and real. Tag’s terror at taking on a newborn baby is palpable, Erik’s growing love for the delightful Delilah will touch your heart. There’s more than a bit of melodrama in this book, but then again, it’s about a rock star, someone who, by his very nature, is bigger than life. She’s done a fine job with “Deliver Me” and I look forward to whatever comes next in this fascinating series. 

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