“It’s so hard to forget pain, but it’s even harder to remember sweetness. We have no scar to show for happiness. We learn so little from peace.” ― Chuck Palahniuk
Author: Amy Lane
Narrator:: Sean Crisden
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Run Time: 9 hours, 39 minutes
Rating: 5 Stars
Blurb: Chase Summers: Golden boy. Beautiful girlfriend, good friends, and a promising future.
Nobody knows the real Chase.
Chase Summers has a razor blade to his wrist and the smell of his lover’s goodbye clinging to his skin. He has a door in his heart so frightening he’d rather die than open it, and the lies he’s used to block it shut are thinning with every forbidden touch. Chase has spent his entire life unraveling, and his decision to set his sexuality free in secret has only torn his mind apart faster.
Chase has one chance for true love and salvation. He may have met Tommy Halloran in the world of gay-for-pay—where the number of lovers doesn’t matter as long as the come-shot’s good—but if he wants the healing that Tommy’s love has to offer, he’ll need the courage to leave the shadows for the sunlight. That may be too much to ask from a man who’s spent his entire life hiding his true self. Chase knows all too well that the only things thriving in a heart’s darkness are the bitter personal demons that love to watch us bleed.
Review: Wow, what an incredible and moving story! I actually listened to this whole series before I read the books. This is an audio that you will not want to stop once you start. This is not a “feel good” story. I experienced every type of emotion in this book and for the characters, especially Chase. I felt like I was watching his entire life through a window and could not help.
This is the first story and audio where I was anxious as the story progressed. It was like watching a speeding train on a dead end track. I found myself talking to the characters (with my husband asking, “Who are you talking to?”) I would state out loud, “No,” or “Aw, Chase.” My heart actually ached through this story. I have never wanted to coddle a character as much as I wanted to hold Chase throughout this story. So, with this description of the story, I have to say, this is one of the best audios I have listened to. It is probably the first time I would say it was better to listen to this audio before you read the book, but of course, I bought the book too.
Chase, the main character, leads two completely separate lives, that of a straight, college baseball player, and a gay for pay, closeted gay man. He battles his past demons about his mother and father, which intertwine with every decision he makes. You cannot help but fall in love with each one of the Johnnies. I wanted to adopt each one of them. Even though I know in my head this is a fictional novel, you cannot help but think (know) that there are people experiencing some parts of this in their lives due to the pressures of society. Hmmmm, anyway no soapbox today…
Of course, Sean Crisden (my fav) is the narrator, and you could not have picked a better person to tell Chase’s story. Sean makes you feel every one of Chase’s emotions and choices throughout the story. He plays the fake, happy Chase, the apathetic Chase, the cocky Chase, the scared little boy Chase, sad Chase, and finally, the at peace Chase. He does an excellent job with the other characters as well. Tommy became one of my favorite characters, and I loved his voice throughout the audio. I wanted to skip work to finish this audio, so plan to listen to this in one sitting.
I have read, probably, all of Amy Lane’s books, and I have to say this is my favorite. I love this series and will definitely buy the whole series on audio. You will not be disappointed. Again, it has my two musts: an interesting story, along with great narration that made me not want to stop! Enjoy and bring tissues!