November Rain by Daisy Harris
Series: Fire & Rain #4
Publication Date: September 2nd 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Gay, m/m
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Detective Joe Klamath is used to guys falling on their backs at the arch of his commanding eyebrow. Yet he can’t seem to get a read on a cute, department-store sales guy. The vagrant who just walked in, though? He’s easy to read. He’s dangerous.
Joe’s training kicks in, but as he wrestles the gun-wielding man, he gets shot.
Raised in a conservative Ethiopian community, Elias Abraham keeps his natural attraction to men under wraps. But Joe’s heroism moves him to care for the man who saved his life. After all, Joe is hurt. Chances are slim he’ll demand the types of things boys in college always wanted. Sex acts Elias wasn’t—and possibly never will be—ready for.
Gradually, Joe’s easy confidence softens Elias’s resistance. But as Joe’s healing progresses too slowly for a man of action, and trouble brews in Elias’s family, Elias begins to wonder if he can handle the pressure. Because though he hasn’t given all of his body, he’s already given all of his heart.
Joe, who is a detective, is shopping for a sweater in Nordstrom. He wants to look good for his ex’s wedding so decides to see if he can find anything to wear. He likes a few sweaters but he REALLY likes the clerk who is helping him. Joe finishes paying for his purchase and is going to ask Elias out when a man who looks homeless tries to return something to men’s department. Joe senses that there’s something not right about the man and when the guy pulls out a gun he’s proven correct. Joe is shot during the scuffle but other than that no one is hurt.
Joe isn’t thrilled to be in the hospital as the bullet wound is just a graze and he makes a huge fuss until they let him go. As he’s leaving he meets up with Elias who has come to the hospital to make sure that Joe is alright. Elias ends up taking Joe home and taking care of him. They can each tell that there’s an attraction brewing but Elias is quite shy so Joe’s not sure how to handle things.
Elias is a man who has lived his entire life in America but he’s Ethiopian. His culture dislikes homosexuality intensely and while his parents no longer live in the states he does live with his brother and sister-in-law. He loves them to pieces and doesn’t want to alienate them. He wants to live his life as a gay man and he can’t do that without telling them the truth. He wants to go after Joe but he’s not sure he can live two lives. He takes care of Joe who is grumpy and caustic but they seem to do ok in bed.
Joe was hurt from his previous relationship. He was with his ex for years but they had an open relationship which eventually had his partner meeting someone else and now getting married. I think it makes Joe pissed off but also wondering what was wrong with him. He starts to really like Elias but his people skills suck something fierce. He knows he needs help with his wound and getting around but it rubs him the wrong way to ask for help – even when Elias is offering. When the police department won’t let him back to work until he gets physical therapy he grudgingly agrees. By finally going he finds some strength within himself that he had lost.
Elias is dealing with not only Joe’s issues but his own as well. He wants to come clean about his sexuality with his brother but then his sister-in-laws depression gets to a point where it’s almost fatal. Elias isn’t sure what to do and it almost breaks him and Joe apart.
The story in this book was a good one. I liked both Joe, despite his crankiness, and Elias. I thought the growth that each of them showed was important to their relationship and I was happy that they were each willing to make the effort it took to stay together.
My issue with the story was that I didn’t feel the emotion between the two. I saw the lust and the friendship and yes, their sex bouts were hot but I missed the deep emotional pull that I felt with the first book in this series, From the Ashes. While I liked I didn’t connect with either men the way I would have liked. While this story wasn’t quite as dark as the previous story in the series it had its moments. Hopefully the next book will be slightly lighter on the angst.
Rating: 3 out of 5