Caught

Title: Caught
Buy Link: Amazon.com
Author: A.B. Gayle
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary M/M
Length: Novella (122 pages)

Rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

A guest review by Buda

Summary Review: This is a touching story that should be read slowly and savored, for the beauty lies in all the wonderful details.

The Blurb:

When Daniel’s invalid landlady asks for his help preventing a possible suicide from the clifftop near their home, he doesn’t want to disappoint her. So he grits his teeth, picks up his camera, and goes out to play the Chinese tourist. He’s done it before: befriended the lonely, lured them away from the danger zone, acted as a safety net.

This time, the figure staring out to sea is way out of his league, his complete opposite, the sort of man Daniel’s always admired from afar. Then the attractive Taylor turns the tables and lures Daniel out from behind the safety of his camera, and as Daniel finds himself fighting off an attraction he can’t deny, he realizes he’s in danger of being caught. Will the camera expose truths about himself that he wants to keep hidden?

The Review:

As the blurb states, Daniel initially makes contact with Taylor at the behest of his landlady, Connie. Daniel and Connie have done this before; in fact, part of the reason she has rented him the room is to help prevent people from jumping from the cliff near their home. They even have a complicated set of hand signals worked out so they can communicate via Bluetooth while Daniel makes his first observations and Connie watches through binoculars. But this time, Daniel is blindsided by an attraction to this potential jumper that distracts him, even while it makes him determined to keep Taylor from jumping.

Taylor is obviously in emotional pain, but even while slightly annoyed by Daniel’s interruption, allows himself to be lured away from the cliff. Daniel asks Taylor to take a photo of Daniel in front of a nearby lighthouse, part of the ruse he and Connie have devised to get the potential jumpers away from the temptation of the clifftop. After the photo is taken, the contact should end, Daniel’s good deed for the day done. But that isn’t what happens in this case; it isn’t enough for either of the men.

There are wonderfully funny moments–some even wickedly so–in this book to counteract the deep, heavy emotional baggage of both men. And, of course, there is mention of a “delectable, denim-covered ass,” which is sure to draw your attention (it certainly did mine! g). The attraction between Daniel and Taylor is nearly instant and definitely palpable. What I found most surprising and probably enjoyed the most about the book is that there is a certain moment in the book when it is clear that while Daniel has potentially saved Taylor from death, Taylor has definitely saved Daniel from a living fate worse than that.

The two men are definitely opposites in all ways: white/Chinese, tall/short, hairy/smooth. But they are also alike in their need for someone to see beyond the surface, the defensive public facade, and into the depths of who each man really is. In an exceedingly short amount of time, due to the extreme emotions both are forced to deal with, they are able to do so. What they find in each other is exactly what they’ve been needing all along.

The timetable of the book is just over/under twenty-four hours, but that time is spent well, with months worth of angst, drama and redemption superbly paced. There are two surprises in the book I’ve promised not to reveal (actually, only one was mentioned, but I liked the other so much I decided to let it be a surprise for you as well), but that are absolutely elemental in exposing both Daniel and Taylor’s inner truths.

This is the first book I’ve read by AB Gayle (I know, I know–I plan to fix that!), but if you’re a fan of hers or redemption stories or just need a little beauty in your world for the time it takes to read a book, then I can’t think of a better title than this to fulfill that need. Highly recommended.

11 comments

  • I told you I liked this book and now I’m pleased that, in this case, my tastes are the same as yours.

    The idea is original (for me, at least) and it’s beautifully developed through the book. I truly hated the ex but I loved the scene started by his arriving.

    The posing for the photo (the second one, inside) gave me goosebumps.

    Reply
  • Hey Buda boy – Great job on the review. You piqued my interest and didn’t reveal too much to spoil anything. I’m adding this to my TBR. Thanks B.

    Reply
  • Gulp. Redemption story? Angst mixed with humor? Really awesome review by Buda? Christmas money to spend? Why don’t you just gift-wrap it, shove it under my nose, and say, “Here, Eden, someone wrote a book just for you.”

    The TBR pile sways precariously under the weight of another book stacked on top.

    Reply
    • Eden – Aww, thanks for the kind words. 🙂 AB did a great job with this one. Just be glad it’s a digital book and weighs (next to?) nothing–so there’s plenty of room atop that TBR pile yet!

      Reply
  • I really need to stop reading reviews: I end lured to add yet another title to my “pending” list 🙂

    Thank you for your great review. You´re a teaser but I´m going to to find out about the surprises for sure 🙂

    Reply
    • Thank you, Lily. I was hoping to put enough out there to pique interests, but not to give a recounting of the plot or reveal secrets. I’m glad it worked! lol I really hope you enjoy it!

      Reply
  • Thanks so much, Buda for a well thought out and written review.
    I’m glad you enjoyed and appreciated what I was trying to do with “Caught”.
    Now I can stop chewing my fingernails!

    Reply
    • AB, I’m so sorry it took so long for me to post this review. Real life is a bitch some days–something Daniel and Taylor could definitely attest to!

      Now it’s my turn to say thank you for writing such a wonderful book. I know this is one I’m going to return to often. It was fantastic to spend time with your two guys. If they were to show up again later, I certainly wouldn’t be disappointed. 😉

      Reply

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