Wednesday, March 09, 2016

Review: Never Too Late (Home in the Heartland #1) by Sloan Johnson

514wKMCNr5L._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_Title ~ Never Too Late (Home in the Heartland #1)

Author ~ Sloan Johnson

Published ~ 7th March 2016

Genre ~ Contemporary M/M Romance





Dax: My life ended six years ago. No, really. I was dead on the side of the road following a gruesome motorcycle accident. From what I've been told, it's only because of one stubborn man that I have another chance to make something of my life. I no longer hate him for screwing up what I thought I wanted. I want to thank him. NEED to tell him what his actions mean to me.
Now, I’m headed back to the town I’ve never set foot in even though it’s a huge part of my life. I’m not thrilled about that, but the job offers haven’t exactly been flowing in. They’ll probably think I’m crazy, because there’s no way I won’t be able to look at every guy I walk past, wondering if he’s the one who saved me.
Michael: My entire life, I wanted to save lives. I’d earned a full-ride scholarship and had been accepted to med schools across the country. I was so close to making those dreams a reality until the night held a dying man in my arms. I’ve never been able to get the images of his lifeless body caked in mud out of my head. Even when the paramedics tried to take over trying to save him, I couldn’t let go. I never let go. Eventually, my guilt over not doing more cost me everything but my son. And now, I worry I’ll lose him if I don’t get it together.
I’ve often thought that if I could find him, maybe I could get some closure and finally get my life back on track. Now he’s here and I’m more of a mess than ever. Once the truth comes out, will he keep trying to save me or will he realize that it’s too late?


Lisa’s Review


“Uh, hate to break it to you.” Jason laughed. “Dax is a dude. One hundred percent hot, gay male. That means you’re into dudes.”

“First of all, quit saying dude. It makes you sound like you’re thirteen,” I scolded him. “Second, I’m still not really into guys. Most of them do nothing for me.

“So it really is a case of him being the special snowflake, huh?” Justin asked.

“Pretty much.”

Never Too Late is a stand-alone MM contemporary romance by author Sloan Johnson. This is a heartwarming story about two men who are linked together by one life-changing incident in their past. I enjoyed reading this tale of love that not only was a slow-burn romance but also featured an adorable little boy that stole the show. It is not always easy to find the courage to finally open up and admit what you are feeling especially when obstacles may stand in your way.

Dax Collins’ life was headed down a dark and dreary path until one accident made him realize that he needed to change his life and begin to make some crucial changes. Now Dax is headed back to the small town of Marshall. This is where the accident occurred. This is where he was saved by a mysterious man. This is where his new job as a kindergarten teacher will commence.

Michael Underwood once had it all – scholarships, acceptance into various medical schools, and a wife and child. One night, one accident changed it all. Ever since Michael held a dying man in his arms after a terrible motorcycle accident he has been consumed by guilt. He’s lost his wife, pushed his closest friends away, works a dead-end job and is barely holding it together enough to take care of his young son. It’s only a matter of time before something will crack.

Dax moves in next door to Michael and his young son, Jagger. Michael does not exactly make the greatest first impression; however, as Dax begins to get to know him he realizes that Michael is a good person and father. He’s just lost and struggling. The two men build a tentative friendship and slowly Michael and Jagger work their way into Dax’s heart. Dax is definitely attracted to Michael but there is no way he’ll make a move on a straight man, especially one that he considers a good friend. When Michael cautiously reveals that he is developing romantic feelings for Michael, the relationship between the two men goes into some unchartered territory. Can they really throw caution to the wind and take a chance on exploring “more” with each other? Is Michael even ready for something like that?

Once our two protagonists reveal how they truly feel about one another the progression of their relationship is natural and sweet. Michael may be having a hard time coming to terms with these new revelations regarding his sexuality and the ramifications these new discoveries would have on his life and his son, but he is certain about how he feels about Dax. Both men want to explore what they share between them. Michael is so inexperienced and I simply loved how supportive Dax was. The pair have a few obstacles to overcome and have a bit to work out and their happy forever is not going to come super easy; however, they both know real when they see it and what they share is worth the fight.

Ms. Johnson has written a story with two very endearing protagonists. I did enjoy this sweet tale despite some minor issues. There were some parts that were a little slow going and some confusion with some of the timeframes. Also, I did feel like some of the drama near the end was a little too contrived and unnecessary especially given how quickly it all came to an end. However, it was nice to see this emotional love story come to fruition and see just how Dax and Michael fit into each other’s lives. It really was a beautiful tale of love. I did love the slow and organic progression of the relationship. Nothing was rushed as the two men gave into the pull between them. They both had this life-altering incident that linked them together, even though they may have not figured it out for a bit. Adding the element of attraction made their blooming romantic love all the more tender and powerful.

All in all, Never Too Late is a sweet and touching novel that I recommend.

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