Author: Andrew Grey
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: MM Contemporary
Narrator: Randy Fuller
Fisher Moreland has been cast out of his family because they can no longer deal with his issues. Fisher is bipolar and living day to day, trying to manage his condition, but he hasn’t always had much control over his life and has self-medicated with whatever he could find.
JD Burnside has been cut off from his family because of a scandal back home. He moved to Carlisle but brought his Southern charm and warmth along with him. When he sees Fisher on a park bench on a winter’s night, he invites Fisher to join him and his friends for a late-night meal.
At first Fisher doesn’t know what to make of JD, but he slowly comes out of his shell. And when Fisher’s job is threatened because of a fire, JD’s support and care is more than Fisher ever thought he could expect. But when people from Fisher’s past turn up in town at the center of a resurgent drug epidemic, Fisher knows they could very well sabotage his budding relationship with JD.
The blurb gives a good overview of this story. I would only add that a huge part of Fisher’s issues are due to an accident and brain injury when he was younger. He’s really doing well enough to live on his own, but he still experiences memory lapses, and has bouts of anxiety that render him helpless occasionally.
The night he meets JD, he’s had a stressful day and had forgotten to take his meds, so he was a little out of it when JD spotted him hanging out on a park bench. JD is a sweetheart, just like all the other Carlisle cops we’ve met, including Red and Carter. In fact, they and their partners all meet Fisher the night JD takes him to dinner.
Over time, the two become closer and even though Fisher is hesitant and unsure of how he can have a long-term relationship, JD is persistent. It doesn’t help that Fisher’s former boyfriend sided with his mother and berated him for his poor behavior and bad life choices, and it also doesn’t help that Fisher sees him from time to time and he’s as frightening now as he was then. And then there’s JD’s complications, including a money-hungry, socialite mother who wants a piece—a big piece—of the inheritance JD has just gotten from his aunt, his father’s sister.
How can these two find happiness in the midst of all the emotional chaos? Add to that a drug case that JD and his fellow officers are trying to crack, and Fisher’s inadvertent inclusion in the danger related to that, and you have a nice, typical Andrew Grey romance with nice guys who find themselves in dangerous situations. Those Carlisle Cops are lucky to find such sweet men as life partners, and I was happy to see this couple get their HEA after the rocky road they traveled.
The narrator, Randy Fuller, is okay, but I can’t hear much of a difference between the voices of the MCs, and in fact, sometimes his voices sound quite young and whiny. At one point in this story, the voice of Fisher sounded remarkably like the young child of Carter and his partner. So no extra stars for narration on this one, and in fact, a bit of deduction for the narration.
If you like this series, though, pick this one up to complete the set. Both men manage to overcome their issues and readers are treated to a sweet MM romance.