Title: Believing Blue (Manchester Menage Collection #3)
Author Name & Publisher: Nicole Colville (Hidden Pleasures)
Publication Date & Length: April 20,. 2016 – 525 pgs
Is there a fated path we follow, or is it simply a series of coincidental events?
Police officer Kellan Howard is rumoured to have spent too much time in sub-zero temperatures, leaving him with a block of ice for a heart and women lining up to help thaw it. Mountain climbing is his only love, leaving no time for a relationship, and although meaningless sex satisfies his physical need, it’s empty. When he attends a fatal traffic accident, he didn’t expect his entire life to change. Along with a final message, Kellan is offered something else from the dying man: the chance to fall in love. Kellan’s never considered being with a man, but when he meets Valentino, he’s instantly drawn to him.
Suffering from crippling agoraphobia, talented Italian artist Valentino has a solitary existence, only experiencing life outside the house through his partner Stuart. When their relationship comes to an abrupt end, Kellan helps ease his suffering. A deep bond binds the two men together, and the sexual tension can’t be denied, but Valentino questions if the distance between their very different lives is too much, and if they can bridge the gap by themselves.
Ballet dancer Blue has a vibrant personality which demands attention, but his humour and courageous attitude are a shield. Blue’s good at making others believe in themselves, but what he needs is someone to believe in him. He could be the bridge both men are looking for, but Blue’s never allowed anyone to get too close, and when Kellan and Valentino enter his life, he desperately tries to protect his heart and his secrets.
When all three meet, the chemistry is undeniable, but each have fears about moving forwards. Together, they learn love comes in many forms. It can’t be restrained or labelled, and it doesn’t always appear in the way you first imagined.
**Blue is a standalone book, and although characters from previous books do make an appearance, it won’t spoil their stories if you choose to read them afterwards.**
OK, let me start by stating that I have not read the previous books in this series.
Next, let me say that if you’re in to really long stories that take about 45% to get in to the actual story, then this is your book. However, it just wasn’t for me. I had a very hard time connecting with the characters and really, the only one I enjoyed was Kellan.
You start out with this tragic event that is supposed to push two of the men together. In reality, I thought that it was more of a barrier to them figuring out that they wanted each other. There was this constant ghost between them. And, while the writing wasn’t poor, it was incredibly slow. I literally kept checking the status bar to find out if I had moved at all in the story.
Then you have Blue… Oh Blue. Drama like the Kardashian’s could only dream up. He was the most annoying character in this book for me. Always with something to harp about, and although I know that for the most part it was a front for his own insecurities, it just became too much.
I did like how Colville split the men up in this story. You were given a little bit at a time rather than the whole group of them. However, again, when they came together, they just didn’t really gel for me.
Unfortunately, despite wanting to enjoy and like the characters in this story, I just couldn’t picture their story.
This is a great addition to the Manchester Menage Collection. You get to see all the previous characters and how they are doing and actually wrap up a few of their loose ends while the story of these three men unfold. It’s great to get Blue’s story after falling a little in love with him from the previous story!
I don’t think you could find three so very different men and make it work like this story does. Kellan is solid and steady but self contained. Valentino is a beautiful artist who is suffering deeply. Blue is enigmatic, energetic and inside crushed by self doubt. Through tragedy Kellan and Valentino come together to struggle through the aftermath of true loss. I was unable to deny the absolute attraction these two have and it’s well written given what is happening in the story. It’s erotic and consuming but can’t block out the real problems that come from the devastation after such a tragedy. Blue with his outrageous personality and attitude makes for some great laughs even while I wanted to shake him sometimes during the story but being such a smart ass. But he really is the balm that Kellan and Valentino need. This story really is a marathon and not a sprint so it builds slowly to the pay off for these three men. While I would have loved a bit more at the end, the end really is endearing and shows how fate sometimes steps in and puts the right person in your life at the right time.
This story is a bit heartbreaking at points and yeah sometimes makes you want to scream. However it’s so well written you can’t put it down because you want to see these three men come together so badly and find some happiness and love.
I have found my next go to book. I cried. I laughed. I laughed until I cried. The story is based in England but it isn’t hard to follow along with the wording. There are many elements to this story that must be touched upon. I hope I remember them all.
As a police officer, Kellan is called upon to help when needed. He also volunteers for many extra shifts because he has no one at home waiting for him when he gets done with work. The weather has taken a drastic turn, bringing snow too quickly, causing the roads to become dangerous to be out on. He’s on his way back to town when he happens upon two officers from neighboring Manchester. They are stuck on the slick road so Kellan must help them push their car. As the three men are nearing a dangerous turn they spot a car that has crashed into the rocks. They work desperately for hours to free the driver. As the rescue team works to free Stuart, the driver, he talks to Kellan about his boyfriend Valentino. Sharing stories and secrets. Unfortunately, Stuart doesn’t survive his injuries and dies shortly after being rescued.
Valentino has lived the several years of his life through the eyes of Stuart. Never leaving the home that he and Stuart had come to share. When Kellan arrived on his doorstep, Valentino was terrified. He has been a loner for so long, he doesn’t know how to interact with anyone other than Stuart and the owner of the art gallery. His family disowned him when he was 15. He has pushed everyone else away. But, every chance Kellan gets he is banging on Valentino’s door, asking for acceptance into his life.
Blue. What can I say about Blue? He has such a strong spirit. A spirit that anyone could be jealous of. He has a supportive and loving family as well as friends. You can’t help but be his friend. You’re drawn to him when you walk into a room. Except for Kellan. Kellan can’t seem to get on Blue’s good side no matter what he does. Every time they meet its oil and water. Until Kellan has to rescue a very drunk Blue from a man who wants to rape him. The two men are able to set aside their differences and soon their relationship starts.
The three men are brought together when Blue is requested by Valentino to be his model. It is Blue who eventually brings Valentino and Kellan back together. And it is Blue who keeps the throuple together when all the dust has settled.
For me, Blue, Kellan and Valentino are the most interesting characters in this series. Kellen and Valentino meet through tragedy; Blue is Valentio’s muse and Kellen works with Blue’s friends. The relationships are complicated and the men are wonderfully original.
The triad is well balanced here and it was easy to understand the balance created by the threesome that wouldn’t have existed for two of the men as a couple. I enjoyed the lack of angst and drama in these relationships, though the tension between Blue and Kellan at the start felt a little exaggerated.
Despite some incredibly heavy topics and some serious issues each man has to work through, this remains a fun, sexy story. I challenge any reader to refrain from sobbing through the first thirty pages, but the grief and strain at the start of the story is tempered by hope and humour as the story progresses. Once these men get to know each other, there is fantastic heat between all three.
My only reservation about the story is that I’m not sure the men’s ages worked for me completely. Party boy Blue feels much younger than the other two, but he is only supposed to be a few years younger than Kellan. In the same way, Valentino, mourning his life partner, felt considerably older than Kellan. But all three men are supposedly in their early to mid twenties which didn’t quite fit for me.
This story linked in to the two previous stories more than the second one did and I enjoyed revisiting characters from earlier books. This is such a great series and this third book is a wonderful addition.
If you do not believe in fate, once you read this book maybe you will. This is a book about loss, about love, about acceptance, and about fate.
Kellan is a police officer and is straight. One night on a bad snow storm him and two other police officers come across a man that is a terrible vehicle accident, Stuart. Stuart knows he is not going to make it and Kellan will not leave his side. Stuart tells Kellan about his sole mate and the love of his life and tells Kellan to go to him and they will find love in each other.
Valentino is the man that Stuart was talking about and Valentino turns out to be exactly what Stuart said he was and so much more. Of course Valentino is heart broken and grieving. Even though he is heartbroken he and Kellan start to get closer and Kellan and start to fall for one another till Valentino pushes him away.
Kellan is heartbroken but respects his wishes and eventually starts to move on with Blue, but once all of them come together unintentionally sparks start to fly between the three of them and they decide to become a trio. But nothing that is easy is worth it and there are so many obstacles these three men have to overcome to start towards their happily ever after.
I truly enjoyed this book. I cried with these characters. I got mad about some of the things these characters went through in the past. I laughed with them and I routed for them.
Blue is my favorite of the three I think. He is the light for all of them. He is so full of life that is hard to not to be happy when you are around him. He is full of spunk and he takes no BS off of anyone. He is just him and it is a take it or leave it type of person.
Kellan is the one that hold them all together. He is the one that is caring, compassionate, and at some points the peace keeper. He is the voice of reason and he loves these two men unconditionally.
Valentino is the one that makes these two men realize that they are worth the love they are given. He shows these two men how beautiful they are both inside and out. He is also such a strong individual and just does not realize it.
I would highly recommend this book because it is so amazing.
Kellan gritted his teeth together and stood up. “I won’t leave you like this.”
“Get the hell out!!” Valentino gripped the base of his nose, rubbing it gruffly. His eyes snapped shut, but not quickly enough.
Kellan spotted the misty glimmer in them. Whether his tears were caused through sheer frustration or sadness, it didn’t matter. Kellan couldn’t leave. He’d have to be forced from the house by an armed response team. “No!” Kellan held his shoulders firmly. “I won’t leave you.”
“God-damn it, Kellan.” Valentino’s eyes flew open, and Kellan’s hands were thrust from him with a jerk. “You’re such a pain in the arse.” He leaned forward, almost hissing his words out against Kellan’s lips. “Why don’t you just leave me alone, huh? Why do you continue to push me when I don’t want it?”
Kellan’s body brushed against Valentino’s firm flesh, and he cursed himself for responding so quickly. “Don’t lie and say you don’t want me here when I know damn well what you want.” Kellan didn’t really know for sure, but there was a heat and need between them which couldn’t be ignored anymore. Valentino needed him, and Kellan was willing to hand over whatever he could to fulfil that need.
Valentino turned those teal green eyes on Kellan’s, a soft growl spilling from his lips.
“You’re a fucking tease! A tease, Kellan.”
Kellan was about to come back with a response, like how he had no idea he’d been teasing Valentino, but he was halted by two hands on either side of his head and Valentino’s mouth being forced against his. He stopped breathing, too stunned to act.
Valentino had his face clasped tightly to his, those full lips hitting Kellan’s hard and fast, his tongue licking and seeking entrance inside.
A white hot shot of lust spiked through his body and every thought other than being against this writhing, sexy man disappeared. Kellan grabbed hold of Valentino’s hips, rushing him up against the wall and taking ownership of his mouth with a grunt.
Valentino bit down on his lip causing Kellan to pull back. As soon as they separated, Valentino had the upper hand and was spinning him around, holding him against the wall and spreading his thighs open with his knee, rubbing up against the hard length of Kellan’s cock. Despite knowing he could easily restrain Valentino and take control back, he didn’t want to. He wanted this from him. “You know what I want?” Valentino breathed out through their kisses. “You want to give me what I need, Kellan?”
Welcome to the home of bittersweet M/M romances which will leave you craving more
Nicole Colville was born and currently lives in Leeds, England. She is a wife to her very understanding hubby and mother of two young girls who somehow manages to fit in being a full time author of m/m romance and erotic into her busy home life.
She loves writing complex characters in bittersweet romances which will leave you addicted and craving more from her men.
Although best known for her popular series, Hidden and Knights to Remember, she also enjoys writing with friend, and fellow author, E.M Leya. Together they have published two books in their Sinful Temptation Collection with more planned.
Her new ménage collection based in the popular city of Manchester, England is her first solo full length novel outside of The Hidden Series and has three books planned for release in 2015 & 2016.