Author: J.M. Dabney
Publisher: Self Published
Genre: MM Contemporary
Summary: When someone was asked to describe crazy, if they knew Lee “Lucky” Trenton they’d point at him. Accident prone and without a filter of any kind to tell him to shut up before he says something inappropriate he’s no one’s idea of a perfect partner. Growing up with parents who subscribed to a philosophy of Radical Honesty Lucky and his siblings were doomed from the womb. Lucky found a home away from home at Twirled World Ink, but he didn’t just find a place to belong. He’d found Priest.
Matthew “Priest” Beall ran away from his judgmental family the second he’d earned the money. He’d come in search of Gib Phelps a legend in the tattoo industry. If you wanted to learn the craft, then Gib was the man to beg an apprenticeship with, and he’d begged. Priest might have left the violence of his past behind, but when he closed his eyes it came back to torture him. The only place he felt safe was when his best friend Lucky let him sleep in his arms. He wanted more, but he didn’t think he deserved it.
Priest left his family behind without regret only to find a new one with the crew of Twirled World and the super weird Trenton family. Could he grab onto his new life or would the memories of the past ruin the happiness he’d gained?
Author’s Note: Although this is the first book in a series each book is standalone and every book deals with a separate couple.
Review: The hyper hippie of Twirled World Ink, brought up with a concept of Radical Honesty with a family that is really, really out there. A twin sister who is a complete commitment-phobe, a brother who is “normal” and so a cause for angst within the family, a professor dad who does anything his beloved wife wants, and the mother who is truly way past free spirit. That’s Lucky. People consider him hyper, accident prone, crazy, unfiltered, etc. He is all of those things. He is also a loyal friend, a sweet best friend and he will do anything for those he loves. He’s really happy with his life. All except how to get the man of his dreams to take the next step.
Enter Priest, another tattoo artist at Twirled World, who is really the opposite of Lucky. He’s quiet, shy and doesn’t say much. He comes from a violent episode in his past with a mother who cares absolutely nothing about him. You want to hug him. He and Lucky have been best friends since he first came to Twirled World and Lucky is his source of calm, of comfort, of safety. As they navigate life in the Twirled World together, it is Lucky who holds Priest when he has nightmares and protects him from the world.
I questioned the hatred Priest’s mother had for him. Was it for being gay or was she insane? I’m leaning towards insane. I wish Priest had never gone back but I was very glad Lucky was there for him. Priest survived the “Years of mental and emotional abuse…” but some things scar you.
Let’s talk Lucky’s family. When Lucky and Priest go for a visit, mandatory because Lucky’s grandmother is making an appearance, Lucky is hoping that his family will keep his secret. Namely, how much he is in love with Priest. I laughed at that because, Radical Honesty, Lucky. That means no secrets. I do think I’m going to be in the minority here, but I really am not a fan of Lucky’s mother, Lily. I didn’t hate her, but I definitely felt she crossed some lines she shouldn’t have (her “conversation” with Priest, for example) and that gave me bad vibes on her. I get it, she meant well, but….
A horrible blast from Priest’s past turns up to cause more trouble and Lucky (and the guys) are there every step of the way. The way these brothers band together is nothing short of awesome. We get to revisit the guys and see they are doing just fine as a family.
There are some editing issues present but nothing really jarring. “An hour later after a lunch of Vegan food.” , incomplete sentence. Some spelling errors, incorrect words being used and wrong tense used a few times.
What to say about Lucky? He is amazing. He is the epitome of what unconditional love is supposed to look like, what it is supposed to be, all wrapped up in a dreadlocked, constantly cursing, hemp loving hippie. I wish he and Priest a lifetime of happiness.