Title: Hitting Black Ice
Author Name: Heloise West
Publication Date & Length: December 2, 2014 – 240 pgs
ER physician’s assistant Hunter guards his heart carefully, but that doesn’t stop him from falling for Shawn, the front desk clerk. He keeps his distance from relationships for a reason, but just can’t help himself when it comes to Shawn.
Shawn is on the run from the law and love to protect himself and anyone else involved. One man is dead because of him, and his life now is simple and easily thrown into a bag at any hint of danger— until he meets Hunter and he no longer wants to run.
Forced into a hostage situation, buried passion explodes in the aftermath, and sex in the supply closet brings their hearts back to life. Tentatively, step by step, they begin to explore a relationship together until the past catches up with Shawn.
This story contains mention of domestic violence and suicide. If these subjects bother you, just be aware.
I really LOVED this story. It was about hope, love and trusting in yourself and others to do what’s right. Hunter and Shawn have a cute, albeit a distant relationship with each other. They have “dinner” together and I thought it was such a sweet thing. Their crush brought me back to my younger days when looks across the way were all I could muster. What Shawn and Hunter’s relationship evolves in to is one of pure trust and love.
Despite the few hiccups in the beginning such as the crazy ER catastrophe and the evasiveness of Shawn, both men are able to see past their skittish exteriors deep in the soul of the other. Hunter’s past is less than rosy as well, with Jerry a constant internal reminder – the tiny devil sitting on his shoulder telling him he’s not good enough. I thought that having Jerry’s voice in the story really made Hunter’s past and struggle much more realistic. It was like having some of Jerry right in the story, despite him not really being a character.
As for the FBI and Hunter’s family – they were all great additions to the story. Hunter’s family, without question, coming to the defense of Hunter and what Hunter believed showed how true family stick together. That despite their reservations with Hunter’s ability to choose a partner well (especially after Jerry), they stuck by him, because they loved him.
I would definitely read more Heloise West. I hope she writes another story so that I can learn more of what happens after this one concludes. I would love to see where Alex’s life goes. The only little thing were the typos and missed spacing. I think one more read through with an editor and they will catch these things.
It was nine o’clock. They’d long lost the reservation. Hunter turned away from the warm lights of the restaurant, heart heavy. Shawn was too good to be true. For all he knew, he had a problem like Jerry’s, who’d often left him waiting, wondering, and ultimately fearing as dinner sat cold on the table. He gave in and took a step toward home.
He whipped around.
Shawn rushed toward him. He slipped on the snowy sidewalk, nearly going down, but Hunter ran at him, and they crashed together so hard his teeth clicked. Shawn’s arms went around him and his around Shawn, and they managed to hold each other up.
“I’m sorry,” were the first words out of Shawn’s mouth.
“All you deserve is pizza crusts,” Hunter mock-growled and kissed him, unconsciously trying to taste booze on his breath. Like Jerry and too many broken promises. Relieved it was only peppermint mouthwash, he didn’t stop kissing him.
When Hunter let him speak, Shawn said, “I’m starving, I’ll take it.” He pushed Hunter a little away from him. “Jesus. You’re freezing.”
“And starving. There’s a Greek pizza place down this way, come on—”
“I’ll make it up to you,” he said, taking Hunter’s hand.
Heloise West, when not hunched over the keyboard plotting love and mayhem, dreams about moving to a villa in Tuscany. She loves history, mysteries, and romance of all flavors. She travels and gardens with her partner of 10 years, and their home overflows with books, cats, art, and red wine.