Title: A Nanny for Nate
Author: Lisa Worrall
Publisher: White Stiletto Press
Buy link: Amazon.com (Second Edition)
Genre: Contemporary M/M
Length: Novella/123 pp/27.8K words
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Review Summary: Other than a bit of purple prose I enjoyed this book and the characters.
A year after his husband is killed in a hit and run, the only thing keeping Parker Adams going is his work and their son, Nate. When his regular child minder moves away, he hires a live in nanny to give Nate more stability. Due to a mix up with the envelopes, it isn’t the petite Melanie that turns up on his doorstep. Opening the door and finding six feet six of Jake Walsh on the stoop fills Parker with panic. Not that Jake wasn’t perfect for the job; he was. A little too perfect, with his dark brown eyes and easy going nature. Which is why Parker had purposely decided to give the job to the other candidate. In the half an hour of his interview, Jake Walsh had awoken feelings in Parker that he had thought were gone forever. How was he going to cope with the man under his roof twenty-four-seven?
I mentioned last week that I had read several stories with kids over the holidays, and as you can tell from the cover this is one of them. I’m happy to say that I liked A Nanny for Nate.
Parker had lost his husband Darren 13 months ago and since then he worked long hours at his legal practice to financially support his family. His son Nate took a dim view of his Pop’s work schedule as it seemed he was now deprived of both his parents and shuffled off to babysitters. When the latest sitter moved away she suggested that Parker get a live-in nanny for Nate who was accustomed in the past to his other Dad Darren working from home. After interviewing several candidates Parker made an offer to a woman he felt fit the bill rather nicely, instead of hot looking Jake to whom he was attracted, but Nate took matters into his own devious hands and hired the candidate of his choice. When Jake Walsh showed up on Parker’s doorstep he was shocked, but he didn’t have the heart to retract the offer and tell him there had been a mistake once he saw that Nate’s happiness knew no bounds, so Jake stayed.
Jake was relieved to get the job because he had been considering returning home if he couldn’t find another one soon as the day care centre where he currently worked was closing. Being Nate’s live-in nanny would be good practical experience for his degree in child care.
The attraction between Jake and Parker simmered for a while but became so obvious after Jake had been living in Parker’s house for three months that Parker could no longer ignore it. He was upset at himself that he could even think of another man in sexual terms because he was still in love with Darren, and he felt he was being disloyal to his memory. Matters came to a head when Parker, Nate and Jake went to Pacific Park in Santa Monica during the school holidays and the ride on the Pacific Wheel showed Jake’s caring in the face of Parker’s fear of heights, which changed the dynamic of their relationship.
Jake and Parker slept together that night but the morning after Parker was overwhelmed with guilt and grief as he felt as though he had cheated on Darren, who at this point had been dead 18 months. I thought this was handled well even though at times Parker seemed a bit melodramatic.
This is not a complex romance as the issues facing Parker are typical of those that most spouses left behind by a deceased loved one have to handle, but the way that Parker coped with his fear of letting go of Darren, with Jake’s help, and moving on was sensitively done. I loved how Darren was woven into the story. His humour came through loud and clear by way of his witticisms and one liners in Parker’s head at unexpected times; I thought that was inspired because it brought Darren to life in vivid colour. Jake was also great, showing Parker that there was room in his heart for both Darren and him, and the fact that Nate thought the world of Jake helped Parker to see that moving on did not mean forgetting Darren.
After that great build-up there was one downside for me. The writing was a bit purple at times with phrases like “cinnamon colored nubs stood proudly to attention” “silken shaft” and one description that seemed straight out of a het romance:
Red-brown, collar-length hair fell in disarray around a heart-shaped face, and bangs lay against a wide forehead and fell into eyes the color of dark, melted chocolate, surrounded by long dark lashes. Below them sat a long, straight Grecian nose above a wide, generous mouth that currently curved in a lazy smile…
I don’t know ANY guy who thinks this way. 🙂 There’s more, but you have to read it in the book. I prefer prose to be simple, fresh and clean without any OTT or purple prose. However other readers probably like a bit of purple in their colour palette although I prefer purple in sweaters. 🙂
If you want to read a story with three dimensional MCs, a kid who is a lot of fun, and a well executed plot I would recommend A Nanny for Nate.