#ShiftWithMe: Resilience


Resilience Resilience Disclaimer MaleTAGTodd Benson almost died for the freedom to love Adam Soames. Now they face obstacles that once again place both of them in danger.

Todd Benson had figured he’d be alone forever. He had the best friend any guy could want in Gabe Staley, and Gabe’s partner Mika was okay, too. But a personal life and any kind of true happiness was out of the question. With Todd’s bigoted and violent parents, and the Sheriff he worked for trying to torture animals and Gabe, Todd knew he’d do well just to survive his job as a deputy in the small town of Shasta, Texas.

Adam Soames needed to get away from the big city. His best friend had found his perfect man and moved away, and Adam felt lost in the city. The opportunity to have his own veterinary practice in a small town sounded perfect. He didn’t know he’d soon be living a life he’d only dreamed of—or the cost he and the man he loved would have to pay.

Together Todd and Adam face seemingly insurmountable odds, from Todd’s recovery from a vicious attack to the prejudices and trials many couples have. Then there’s the big shocker of finding out Gabe and Mika aren’t humans, exactly, but wolf shifters instead, and a whole new door is opened and trouble soon comes barrelling through it.

Reader Advisory: This book is best read in sequence as part of a series and there is reference to past sexual assault and violence in this book. addtogoodreads_zps55cd15da16 Double TimeTAG Angela_s PonderingsTAG

 Unlike the previous books in the Southwestern Shifters series, Resilience does not pick up where Rendered left off and continue the series’ storyline. Instead it goes back to before Gabe met Mika in the first book of the series, Rescued, and we meet the Todd that was physically and mentally abused by his parents despite being an adult and bullied by his boss – the town sheriff that Gabe was trying to keep from killing strays by rescuing them. As painful as it was to see what Todd endured, it helped put some of his behaviors in perspective. There’s enough history provided that you understand why Gabe was so important to Todd, why Mika’s sudden appearance in Gabe’s life unsettled Todd, and why he had such a hard time interacting with Adam when the new vet moved to town and set up shop. While the timeline of Resilience overlaps with all of the previous books, its focus is on Todd, Adam, and their relationship so it’s not a replay of the other books.

 

The history that Bradford crafted for Todd is heartbreaking. I hated seeing the little bits and pieces that played out in the book because it was awful knowing that the abuse he was subjected to growing up was even worse. I was surprised to learn that Todd hadn’t confided in Gabe as to his own homosexuality and it wasn’t until Adam moved to town that Gabe finally broached the subject. Although we aren’t provided as much of Adam’s background as we are Todd’s, it becomes obvious rather quickly that Adam has his own baggage. Although Adam moved to Shasta with the intention of becoming a bit of a spinster (for lack of a better term), he finds himself attracted to Todd almost immediately. There are times when each man’s apprehension and caution are amusing, but I was relieved when Adam became aware of Todd’s inexperience and exercised patience and understanding as he helped Todd find his way. The attraction between the two men is almost immediate but because of their respective pasts and the (seemingly) bigoted nature of Shasta, they are very slow to act upon it and attempt to go the friend route first. But when they do finally get together, they are scorching hot and their subsequent couplings are increasingly so as the book progresses.

 

There is a TON of stuff that occurs in this book that I simply can’t discuss because of spoiler issues, but I will say that the action is far more intense than I expected for Todd and Adam’s book. I was glad to see that Todd’s father and boss both got what they deserved and it’s a shame that Todd’s mother didn’t as well. I loved seeing the town rally behind Todd and Adam and it was as heartwarming to see as watching Todd and Adam fall in love. It’s not often that I comment on a book’s cover, but I must say that I was surprised by the cover for Resilience as both Todd and Adam are human. It’s not until almost 80% into the book before the wolf on the cover is explained and I must admit that it was AWESOME! I really didn’t see that coming, but I shouldn’t have doubted Bradford. Resilience was an excellent addition to the Southwestern Shifters series and I’m looking forward to reading Reverence next.

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Since book 1 I’ve been wondering when we would get back to Todd and Adam. And what a book for them!

This time because Todd and Adam are secondary charaters this one starts at the beginning, when Mika and Gabe meet, but that is kinda in the background. Because again this is not there story.  But we do revisit that whole time period, bigoted sheriff and all. But we also find out what happens after that, how they finally came to terms with Todd’s coming out and Adams refusal of going in. And following along there journey was just amazing. the heartache, healing, love, pain.

And if that wasn’t enough, just as they start getting settled a crazy plot twist, that just so perfect happens and throws a wrench into every ones plans. And has them running off to Europe to well, you’ll just have to read.

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Purchase LinksTAGKindle | Nook | Pride Publishing