Author: Avon Gale
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Narrator: Kirt Graves
Ryder Waites will do anything to keep the tiny town of Gallows Grove, Kentucky, from vanishing off the map—even sell his family’s whiskey recipe to Bluegrass Bourbon in Lexington. Hopeful that the larger company can provide necessary improvements to the distillery, Ryder’s ultimate goal is to get Gallows Grove on the Bourbon Trail… and bring in much-needed tourism revenue. But to keep producing Hanged Man Bourbon in Gallows Grove, he’ll have to convince company liaison, unbearably stuffy and seriously hot Adam Keller, that he’s worth the investment.
Adam comes from an old-money family, but he’s determined to make his own way in the world. When he’s sent to Gallows Grove, he questions the life choices that led him to a rented room in a funeral home, in a town full of macabre-themed businesses. And he doesn’t know what to make of Ryder, the descendant of bootleggers who’s on a mission to save his strange town from extinction. When Adam and Ryder put aside their initial mistrust, the results are as smooth as good whiskey. But after Adam’s assignment ends, he’ll have to decide if small-town life and a future with Ryder is to his tastes.
This was a nice story, but not outstanding in any way, IMO. Add to that the somewhat unemotional tone Kirt Graves gave Ryder and I wasn’t sorry that it was a fairly short audiobook.
Ryder Waites loves his home town of Gallows Grove, Kentucky, and thinks he’s found the perfect way to keep the town afloat when he sells his whiskey recipe, Hanged Man Bourbon, to a bigger operation in Lexington. The biggest problem he can see, initially, is having to deal with the stuffy suit the company sends down as their liaison to assess Ryder’s operation. But Adam’s not what he expected—and neither are the terms of the contract he signed.
On the one hand, Adam is hot—way more than Ryder’s man-deprived libido can take. On the other hand, it appears that if Ryder’s company doesn’t pass this stringent inspection, the company will produce the bourbon in Lexington, rather than keep the operation in Gallow’s Grove open and all the townsfolk that Ryder is trying to protect will be out of a job.
As the inspection proceeds, so does the relationship, and it becomes rapidly apparent that there’s more to these two than a simple fling. But Adam doesn’t want to leave his job in Lexington and doesn’t want to be in a publicly gay relationship and Ryder wouldn’t consider leaving his home town, even for Adam.
The fun in the story is the banter between the two, the spooky doll collection in the funeral home in which Adam is renting a room, and then listening to the two men fall harder and harder for each other. There’s a nice conclusion and a satisfying HEA.
As I stated, though, I don’t know if the audiobook adds any value to the story. I suspect I would have given the e-book 3 stars as well. I have friends who love this narrator, though, so it may be just me, but his style didn’t win me over in this one.