Author ~ KC Burn
Publisher ~ Dreamspinner Press
Published ~ 21st April 2017
Genre ~ Contemporary M/M Romance
Tate Buchanan is a troublemaker who can’t keep a job, no matter how many times his lucky argyle sweater gets him hired. Add to that a learning disability and an impetuous nature that sends him into altercations to protect the defenseless, and he hardly manages to make friends, let alone find a man who’s interested in him for more than one night.
Most people think EMT Jaime Escobar is a player, but the truth is he wants a serious partner—he just can’t justify wasting time on guys he knows aren’t a match. But when he treats a gorgeous redhead after a fight, he finds the spark he’s spent so many years looking for.
Jaime wants to take the next step with Tate, but it’s clear Tate’s not going to curb his impulsive behavior—his next fight sends him to the hospital. Jaime’s relationship with a near criminal isn’t something his family is ready to accept, not any more than Tate is willing to be kept a secret. Jaime will need a lot of understanding—and some luck of his own—to keep them both. But this is one fight he’s going to see through to the end.
This is a sweet opposites attract, hurt-comfort romance, that also deals with some serious issues. Tate is a high school dropout who can’t hold a job, has a horrible home life and possibly anger management issues. He always seems to find a fight and is well-acquainted with the local police. Some would say he’s always at the wrong place at the wrong time, but really it’s more like right place right time as he always seems to be coming to someone’s rescue. Below the surface Tate is a sweet, lonely, neglected young man who wants to better his situation, but has never really been given the chance.
Jaime is the sexy EMT that has made appearances in the two prior books as Caleb’s (Tartan Candy) out and proud cousin. He’s been painted as a player by his friends and family, something that has led to some hurt feelings, but also something that’s not quite true. Jaime is former military and what he went through during that time has left him with a case of PTSD and has colored his view of his future. That view is immediately tested the moment he shows up on a call and lays eyes on an injured Tate.
While I’ve been eagerly awaiting Jaime’s story, it was Tate who, for me, was the star of the story. I still loved Jaime who is sweet and caring and from the start feels a connection with Tate that he hasn’t felt with any of the men he's met since leaving the military. Jaime is more subdued in this story than he was in the prior books, obviously an effect of his finding Tate. Nothing has been easy for Tate and he’s never had a real friend or a lover. As far as he sees it, no one seems to want him around unless they're trying to get something from him and he doesn't believe he has anything to offer anyone other than his body. He may have difficulties that others don’t understand (even he doesn’t really understand them) and has been told he is stupid by most people in his past, but he also has a huge heart and is willing to step in to help others. Jaime’s got his work cut out for him to get Tate to believe that he is someone worth loving.
The story touches on some serious issues. KC Burn managed to convey just how horrible Tate’s home life is and his struggles with his learning disability without getting heavy handed or having it take over the love story and Tate’s character growth. Jaime returned from his deployment with PTSD, which he has been treated for, but still lingers, mostly in the form of nightmares. The issues are always there and being dealt with, even bringing the men closer together through mutual understanding, but the main focus is always the romance and Tate trying to see himself as worthy of how Jaime sees him.
The relationship flowed so naturally and Tate and Jaime fit together so well despite the big differences in just about every aspect of their lives. Jaime really wanted to do right by Tate, show him everything that he has been missing out on, or told he couldn’t have, without forcing it upon him or making Tate feel like he’s a charity case. I was a bit disappointed that we didn’t get to see Tate’s introduction to Jaime’s extended family after it was discussed quite a bit, but there is a super sweet happy ending scene that made up for it.
Although the third in the Fabric Hearts series, Just Add Argyle works fine as a standalone. Raven and Jaime’s cousin Caleb appear again here and a few new characters are introduced as well (I absolutely adored Tate’s friend Kris) so I suspect this won’t be the last story in this world.
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Finlay McIntyre (aka Raven) is a successful adult film star with a penchant for kilts, until an accident cuts short his stardom and leaves him with zero sexual desire, lowered self-esteem, and no job. He knew his porn career wouldn’t last forever, but he wasn’t prepared for retirement at twenty-eight. While trying to figure out the rest of his life, Raven agrees to attend a high school reunion. That’s when a malfunctioning AC unit in his hotel room changes everything.
Caleb Sanderson, an entrepreneur with his own HVAC business, has no idea what to expect when he steps into Raven’s hotel room to fix his AC unit. They’re attracted to each other, but Caleb, closeted, can’t afford a gay relationship, not with his mom pressuring him to produce grandchildren. If he wants to keep Raven—who no closet could hold—he’ll need to tell his family the truth. But Raven has a few secrets of his own. He refuses to reveal his porn past to Caleb, a past that might be the final obstacle to Caleb and Raven having any kind of relationship.
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Two years after his life fell apart, Will Dawson moved to Florida to start over. His job in the tech department of Idyll Fling, a gay porn studio, is ideal for him. When his boss forces him to take on a new hire, the last person he expects is Dallas Greene—the man who cost him his job and his boyfriend back in Connecticut. He doesn’t know what’s on Dallas’s agenda, but he won’t be blindsided by a wolf masquerading as a runway model. Not again.
Dallas might have thrown himself on his brother’s mercy, but his skills are needed at Idyll Fling. Working with Will is a bonus, since Dallas has never forgotten the man. A good working relationship is only the beginning of what Dallas wants with Will.
But Dallas doesn’t realize how deep Will’s distrust runs, and Will doesn’t know that the man he’s torn between loving and hating is the boss’s brother. When all truths are revealed, how can a relationship built on lies still stand?