Jack Horwood doesn’t do families. Or Christmas. From the time his mother sold him to her pimp to the moment he walked out on the man he loved, Christmas has always been about change and painful choices. This year seems no different. Helping Daniel and Nico recover from their imprisonment and hunting down those responsible puts Jack in a frame of mind he doesn’t want to inflict on anyone. Least of all Gareth and the tentative relationship they’ve started to rebuild.
But Gareth, for whom Christmas is all about new beginnings, won’t let Jack take the easy way out. He makes him face his ghosts instead. Even when said ghosts invade their bedroom.
When Daniel’s parents are found, Jack is determined to settle the matter without involving Daniel at all. But fate decrees otherwise, and it’s Gareth who helps him finally understand that the strongest bonds are those forged together. Once he gets that, Jack can step up and make a decision designed to lay his ghosts to rest—for good.
It’s really difficult to know the right thing to do when you are dealing with emotional devastation. Jack thought he was beyond all of this. As he opens himself up to Gareth, and Christmas, he realizes that he is not quite as steady as he thought. He is also dealing with the added emotions coming from Daniel and Nico, the boys he had recently saved from untold horrors. When he wants to shut down because he doesn’t think he can take it anymore. Gareth is there to hold him and talk him down. He learns some valuable lessons about family and love.
Gareth is the backbone of this story. He is the one that sits in the background and holds Jack and Daniel together. He is quiet but has this core of strength that makes you feel safe. Nico is the wildcard in this story. He reminds of a young Jack. He is all blustery and mouthy to hide his fear of being separated from Daniel and the rest of his new family of choice.
Daniel is the most brake able of the group. He is smart but quiet, he is very easily upset. They are worried when a situation come to Jack’s attention that may involve his parents. The emotional damage this could cause is a real concern.
This book is disturbing in that they are dealing with child slavery, and children been in sold to the highest bidder. I was really impressed by the amount of emotions that I felt as I read this story. I could feel what each character was feeling. A wonderfully written story. I strongly recommend this book as long as your heart can take the workout.