Their spark could be too hot to handle…or bring a dying town back to life.
Officially, Turnstiles CEO Brian Curland is in Mercury to set up a new data center. Unofficially, he’s using this trip to re-evaluate his life, because for a man who has everything, he’s feeling pretty empty.
He could buy any car he wants. But no, he had to rent a piece-of-crap Chevy—which is now broken down on the side of the road. When he’s rescued by a sexy local, Brian does what he always does. Go for what he wants, even if it’s just temporary.
Evan Michaels stops to help because that’s what good guys do. He grew up in Mercury, eventually becoming minister of the local Unitarian church. Though everyone knows him, being gay and being in a gay relationship are two different things. He wants Brian, but their affair has to be secret or he can’t play.
When Evan unleashes his long-suppressed sexuality, Brian is more than up to handling the heat. Yet even though they fall hard for each other, it might take the whole town to convince them it’s a forever kind of love.
There are romances and storylines that build over time that make sense and then there are storylines that don’t build at all so they do not make sense and make me growl all the way through. The latter is the case with Cherry Bomb.
Brian is coming to Mercury to convince his friend John to come back to work with him at his company in LA. On his way there, his rental car breaks down and he’s rescued by a hunky gay minister. That’s a great set up for a story right there. I was hooked. And then…
The moment Brian sees John again he gives up on his decision to try and get John back because he can see John belongs there. From one look? Really? By nightfall, he and the minister have done the nasty twice and while Evan – the minister – insists they keep their affair quiet which kind of makes sense, Brian already has tons of doubts. In fact, for the fact he is in Mercury for less than a week, all of his doubts explode really fast. What is he doing? Is he good enough for Evan? Should he do…?
The fact is I liked both Brian and Evan, but Brian’s sudden emotional changes just did not make sense. I could see if one stayed in Mercury over weeks or months that something like that might happen. But since the moment he met Evan? I couldn’t buy it. This was a story where one character – Brian – was expected to make all the changes for the other hero – Evan. I’m not sure that either of them grew during the course of the story. Brian fell apart, but I’m not sure you could call what he went through growth. I would say he had a mental breakdown.
And lastly, the decision Brian made while in Mercury about the data center makes perfect business sense. I was angry at John for being such a pain about it. He knew the people in Mercury didn’t have the education to work there and yet he blew up that Brian was set on bringing in educated workers. Evan’s reaction was more expected due to his job and what he’d been through for the previous two days.
And lastly, John’s turnaround at the end of the book toward Brian and Evan’s relationship doesn’t make a lot of sense.
There just wasn’t enough depth in the story or the characters to make me want to believe any of it.