Author ~ Edie Danford
Published ~ 7th December 2016
Genre ~ Contemporary M/M Romance
As snow flies across Ember Peak, Jones and Tru are making their own kind of warmth, but a family secret could send a chill over their future plans.
Jones Hudson is ending the year the right way. He’s taking his sexy fiancé and his sweet dog on a fun road-trip to visit his mom’s new family. He’s found a groove with new friends at Ember Peak Ranch and his job at a local diner. And, best of all, he’s regularly basking in the flame-hot love of Tru Larkin.
But things go unexpectedly wrong when Jones uncovers news that may change life at Ember Peak forever. And when the secret detonates, the after-burn is more painful than he or Tru could have imagined.
Tru knows it might be too late to save the season, but he’s determined to move forward with his planned surprise for Jones. When a blizzard knocks out power at Ember Peak, he’s forced to rethink his ideas on giving and forgiving. Maybe it’s the gift of a simple vow that will burn brightest on a dark, starless night.
This second instalment in the Ember Peak series begins as Tru and Jones are off on a family road trip to spend Thanksgiving in Ohio with Jones’s mother and her new husband Jim. They are newly cemented in their relationship together and trying to tentatively find their way forward and this proves the first test of that. Tru has to deal with extended family, nosy questions and less than salubrious surroundings. They seem to weather it well with Tru accepting that some compromise is necessary in a relationship. Again, this is a very character driven story and it is in the interaction of Tru and Jones that the story ignites. I just adore them so much.
There are a couple of main themes to this book and one involves the secret Sandy, Tru’s sister and Jones’s best friend, harbours. She asks Jones to keep her secret from Tru for various reasons, which he stupidly agrees to. I could tell that Jones didn’t like keeping it from Tru but also didn’t want to make things more difficult for Sandy, didn’t want to her to think she had no support. He does attempt to get Sandy to spill the beans but she’s rather reluctant until she figures things out on her own. She doesn’t want to be seen as another mess that Tru has to fix. I could see the fallout coming a mile off when the secret was eventually discovered. The aftermath of which they all struggle with. This leads to a second main them of the book which is their lack of communication. We see this time and again and it leads to a whole catastrophe of events that conspire to keep them apart for their first Christmas together which both are keen to share. Jones having redecorated the lodge, a tad overkill for Tru, to try for a beautiful, snowy Colorado Christmas with log fires, fur rugs and snowy walks, whilst Tru has always preferred to spend Christmas on his family’s private island in the Caymans. Due to a complete breakdown in communication as a result of the revelation, the mix up is inevitable. At this point I wanted to bang both of their heads together and get them to talk.
They do manage to pull their heads out of their asses and both agree that the most important thing for them is to move forward together, discussing and sharing everything. We can see the advancement in Tru’s character when he doesn’t bombard Jones with exactly what he wants to do, he has actually listened and taken on board that even big, sweeping gestures should be well thought out, the timing right and then discussed so that they are taken in the manner they are offered. I really liked seeing that advancement in Tru Larkin. Jones is also more accepting of Tru and his businesses and the way he works, both professionally and personally. This leads to a more harmonious relationship for them and I really enjoyed this aspect of the book.
This book focuses on their relationship and whilst they still have work to do, what is always apparent and shines through on every page is the love they have for each other. The romance and the sweet words ramp up in this book and the hungry need they have for each other still abounds. The sex is still sizzling and we leave the hot cowboys in a good place both having agreed that they are going to move forward with the wedding as they want to share that commitment and their futures together. I cannot wait for that wedding. I hope my invite is in the post.
Tru Smoke (Ember Peak #1)
Where there’s smoke, there’s fire… Whenever Jones touches him, flames flicker in Truitt Larkin's smoky-gray eyes.
Growing up in Ember Peak, Colorado, Jones nurtured dreams as big as the Rockies. Why else would a flat-broke college student believe he has a shot with Truitt Larkin, the billionaire CEO of Larkin Corp? And, sure, Tru might own the fab, five-thousand-acre Ember Peak Ranch, where Jones is just the son of a ranch employee, but that doesn’t mean a future with Tru is doomed, does it? When he finally, finally convinces Tru to break his chiseled-in-rock no-sex-ever policy, Jones is sure smoke will never shroud Tru’s silver-flame eyes again.
But fire burns and dreams crash. And when Tru shuts down Jones’s hopes, Jones leaves Ember Peak—and a big chunk of his heart—for good.
Tru knows he’s responsible for fracturing his valued friendship with Jones. Indulging his attraction to the younger man was selfish and destructive—something he’ll always regret. When Jones returns to Ember Peak for a family wedding, Tru wants a chance to heal their friendship and give back to Jones the comfort of coming home. But sparks fly the moment they reunite, and they scramble to douse the passion that’s burned them both before. Yet a flicker of hope glows brightly, and soon they need all their courage to see their way to a future together.