Title ~ Out of Nowhere
Author ~ Roan Parrish
Publisher ~ Dreamspinner Press
Published ~ 29th February 2016
Genre ~ Contemporary M/M Romance
Series ~ Middle of Somewhere #2
The only thing in Colin Mulligan’s life that makes sense is taking cars apart and putting them back together. In the auto shop where he works with his father and brothers, he tries to get through the day without having a panic attack or flying into a rage. Drinking helps. So do running and lifting weights until he can hardly stand. But none of it can change the fact that he’s gay, a secret he has kept from everyone.
Rafael Guerrera has found ways to live with the past he’s ashamed of. He’s dedicated his life to social justice work and to helping youth who, like him, had very little growing up. He has no time for love. Hell, he barely has time for himself. Somehow, everything about miserable, self-destructive Colin cries out to him. But down that path lie the troubles Rafe has worked so hard to leave behind. And as their relationship intensifies, Rafe and Colin are forced to dredge up secrets that both men would prefer stay buried.
Nothing could have prepared me for this: feeling like I’m in the right place, with the right person. Like a weight I didn’t even realize had always been pressing down on my chest has suddenly vaporized, leaving me ungrounded, but free.
Alright, Roan Parish!
You have me. I am a complete and utter fangirl!
Our love affair started with your first book, In the Middle of Somewhere. Er…wait….let me rephrase that. How about…. MY love affair with you started …. Better? Anyways, I thought your debut novel was phenomenal and was obviously expecting great things with your second book. I am so glad that you delivered. Gah! My heart is still reeling!
Out of Nowhere is a MM contemporary romance and the second book in Roan Parrish’s Middle of Somewhere series. While this book is about a different couple than in book one, there is some overlap with the time frame in both books. I do recommend reading book one before diving into this one simply because I believe you’d get a greater reading experience by reading these two books in sequential order.
We met thirty-six year old Colin Mulligan in book one as he is the brother of Daniel Mulligan, one of the protagonists in that book. He came across as a complete ass-hat and bully, especially when it came to Daniel’s sexuality and his life choices. Colin’s life is actually quite sad and lonely. He works as a mechanic at the family’s auto shop and spends most of his time putting his body through physical hell to try and escape from his panic attacks and intense fits of rage. The truth of the matter is that Colin is secretly gay. He’s so wrapped up in in ensuring that he will never lose his father’s approval that he’s willing to sacrifice his happiness and, further, he frankly does not care who he hurts when it comes to hiding who he is. Colin is ashamed of who he is, ashamed of the emotionless sexual encounters with faceless and random men. His life seems like it is spiraling out of control with no way to stop the dismal fall. That is, until one day he’s rescued by a dark knight in shining armour.
Thirty-eight year old Rafael Guerrera has a dark past, one where he made copious amounts of mistakes that eventually led to him having to face some serious consequences. He has to live with his past but working with at risk LGBT youth is certainly a way for him to give back to society and somehow make amends for his bad choices. Rafe’s job may be fulfilling; however, it does not leave him much time for a social life or even a little romance. When Rafe meets Colin, there’s something about him that calls to him. He immediately sees that there is more to this self-loathing and self-destructive man and decides that he is worth his time.
Rafe is like a tornado and I meet it with everything I have, until we’re straining together, sweaty and shaking. Until I’m obliterated. Gone.
As Colin and Rafe start to build a somewhat tentative and fragile relationship, there is no denying that what they share is intense and special. It certainly has the power to change the course of their lives forever. But, is what they share enough? When you open your heart to someone it leaves you vulnerable and raw. There can be no secrets and shame if things are going to work. Will Colin and Rafe be able to withstand all the obstacles that are in their path?
At the crux of this entire story and reading experience is Colin himself. This book is told solely from his POV. I truly disliked him for some of the book, maybe even loathed him at times. He was just such an emotional wreck and was always diving head-first into a pool of turmoil and pain. My emotions for Colin mostly culminated around being completely furious at him and also being stunned and saddened at how he chooses to live his life. Usually when I read about broken and despondent characters I always want them to get to their happy place and find love. I certainly wanted this for Colin, especially as we begin to see who he truly is deep inside. I loved the fact that Rafe saw through Colin’s brutish demeanour. He saw that underneath all that gruffness was a good heart.
Despite the fact that Colin does go through a really rough emotional journey of growth and self-discovery, the love story between him and Rafe will leave you sighing and all sappy. I was completely engrossed in the passion and intensity that the two protagonists share. While this book certainly depicts and totally exemplifies how hard and painful love can be at times, Colin and Rafe somehow make it through the cloudiness and despair. They somehow withstand the challenges and are unable to walk away from one another. Was it healthy and beautiful all the time? Hell no. Was it real and achingly raw? Absolutely.
I would remiss if I did not acknowledge the fact that Ms. Parrish does a stellar job accurately depicting issues that are very real. The shame and self-destruction that comes with one’s own sexuality. How important family understanding and acceptance is. Even all the issues that Rafe’s story brings up. Such masterful storytelling! This precise and truthful interpretation is ultimately why I am giving this book 5 stars. While I most definitely disliked Colin at times and all the unpredictability and volatility that came with him, I can no longer state that I don’t understand it. At some point compassion and love needs to come into play and this is where Rafe comes in. His steadfastness, love and support is ultimately what Colin needed in this life.
All in all, Out of Nowhere is such a wonderful addition to this amazing series. Roan Parrish is definitely an author to look at for. This book was such an incredible read that I find myself still thinking about. I highly recommend it!
“Tell me, Colin. Just say it, whatever it is. Say it quick.”
I squeeze my eyes shut and breathe in the smell of his hair. “I think…. I need you.”
In the Middle of Somewhere (Middle of Somewhere #1)
Daniel Mulligan is tough, snarky, and tattooed, hiding his self-consciousness behind sarcasm. Daniel has never fit in—not at home in Philadelphia with his auto mechanic father and brothers, and not at school where his Ivy League classmates looked down on him. Now, Daniel’s relieved to have a job at a small college in Holiday, Northern Michigan, but he’s a city boy through and through, and it’s clear that this small town is one more place he won’t fit in.
Rex Vale clings to routine to keep loneliness at bay: honing his muscular body, perfecting his recipes, and making custom furniture. Rex has lived in Holiday for years, but his shyness and imposing size have kept him from connecting with people.
When the two men meet, their chemistry is explosive, but Rex fears Daniel will be another in a long line of people to leave him, and Daniel has learned that letting anyone in can be a fatal weakness. Just as they begin to break down the walls keeping them apart, Daniel is called home to Philadelphia, where he discovers a secret that changes the way he understands everything.
Currently only #99c/#99p
Meet Roan Parrish
Roan Parrish is currently wandering between Philadelphia and New Orleans. When not writing, she can usually be found cutting her friends’ hair, meandering through whatever city she’s in while listening to torch songs and melodic death metal, or cooking overly elaborate meals. She loves bonfires, winter beaches, minor chord harmonies, and self-tattooing. One time she may or may not have baked a six-layer chocolate cake and then thrown it out the window in a fit of pique.