Author: SJD Peterson
Reviewed by: Connie
Publisher: DreamSpinner Press
Genre: M/M Military
ISBN 13: 9781627980036
The repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell didn’t come soon enough for Gunther “Gunny” Duchene and Macalister “Mac” Jones, career US Marines who met at boot camp in the 1990s. They’ve been somewhere between best friends and lovers in peacetime and wartime both, but as the clock ticks toward Mac’s and Gunny’s retirements, the guys have much more to worry about than coming out.
Whether their relationship will survive outside of the closet they’ve had to shove it into for over two decades is a big question mark. After all, Gunny questions why a hot military man like Mac–who could get any guy he wanted, including a younger, sexier one–would want him. But as Gunny and Mac navigate emotional waters as choppy as any they saw on duty, they just might learn Semper Fi applies to more than their careers.
By now you should know who Mac and Gunny are, if not… shame on you! LOL Really, Mac & Gunny are without a doubt the hottest pairing in the MM genre right now.
I have to say I am a bit biased about these two, because alpha males, marines, tattoos, fatigue pants…I am drooling here.
It´s been a while since I read the story that was the beginning of this book. The “first” Beyond Duty was a free short part of the Love is Always Write event that the Goodreads MM Romance Group puts together every summer.
That was last year and I have missed them so much. It was a great story but there was so much more to tell about these two. In my initial review I asked for a 400 pages novella, guess what? I almost got it!
What we have here, thanks to the awesome SJD, is the rest of the story. What happened next for these two Marines, once they were out of active service.
They are both in their early 40s and it is interesting seeing them going through the coming out stage at this late age. Facing their parents as adults, after being in each other’s lives for so long, being close friends and a constant figure in each other’s family.
Those reactions are unexpected and satisfying, though Gunny´s parents take a bit more time to come to terms with it all.
There is also the coming out to their friends and colleagues, and I love how those were difficult times but were faced with pride and determination.
One of the best moments, both emotional and funny, was the retirement ceremony and speech. “Is he the best you could do?” Love the General!
And then, of course we have their relationship to focus on. So much has changed. No more deployments, no more time apart and the questions start piling up.
How are we going to be, living together? How are people going to see us now? What are we going to do next?
Retirement is not easy on these two, I can tell you. Mac is a very active, needy (LOL) man. Yes, they’ve been together for 20+ years but they’ve never shared a home.
It is so great and sweet to see them like this, to see a new facet of them both.
Who would have thought that Mac liked to cuddle? These little details are what I love the most about the book.
And even when we know they are into BDSM, the development of that part of their relationship, especially on Gunny´s side leaves a door open to more.
This subplot was again so very well written, honestly like everything else, but to see Gunny go over his needs, and be able to express those needs and fears to Mac was a huge step.
This are the things that were more about them, as individuals and partners, things that for any number of reasons they couldn’t discuss before, or couldn’t focus on before and now together they can explore, discover and enjoy.
Absolutely love this book, amazingly written there is no doubt about it, so much more than I was expecting.
The door was left open, no that it needs a sequel, but is a possibility.
Mac & Gunny will remain my favorite pairing, always.
And if the need strikes, and you SJD, want to take us on a ride with them again I´ll be there.