Title: Lost and Found
Author: Z.A. Maxfield
Cover Artist: L.C. Chase
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Publisher Buy Link: Lost and Found
Amazon: Buy Link Lost and Found
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 148 pages
Rating: 3.75 stars out of 5
A Guest Review by Andrea
Review Summary: Despite the emotionally abusive partner, this rocky romance was surprisingly enjoyable.
Lost: one dog and two men in need of each other. Found: love.
RV resort security chief Ringo never believed in love at first sight . . . until he saw Gavin playing his sax on the beach for the tourists. But their on-again, off-again affair—even counting all the great makeup sex—doesn’t come close to the relationship he wants. All he really wants for Christmas is a commitment from Gavin.
Instead he discovers that Gavin has had surgery without telling him, so he lays down a relationship ultimatum while Gavin recuperates. Complicating matters even more, Gavin’s beloved dog Bird runs away, and Gavin blames Ringo for the disappearance.
While Ringo throws every resource he has into finding Bird, he learns deeper truths about Gavin—how hard it is for him to trust and how little faith he has in love. Maybe if Ringo can find Bird, he can salvage Gavin’s faith. Maybe this Christmas, they can all find each other..
I’m not good with emotional drama in real life. It’s draining, and I hate it. Not surprisingly, I’m heartless when it comes to on-again, off-again relationships. I don’t understand why people put themselves through all that drama and heartache. It’s not fun and it’s not something I would do. Because of that, I don’t understand the need to hang onto a dysfunctional relationship. That made for an interesting read when I decided to give Lost and Found a try.
Ringo is the head of security at an RV resort, and Gavin is a musician who lives full-time at the resort. Ringo is solid, loyal, and calm. I’m putting it mildly when I say that Gavin has some emotional issues. He is volatile, abrasive, and a mean drunk. I wasn’t a fan of Gavin for so many reasons. A lot of them were my own personal hang ups, but most of them were justified. At first, I had a very difficult time understanding why Ringo would love and want to be with a man like Gavin. Why would anyone repeatedly go back to a person who switches from hot to cold in the blink of an eye, especially when the cold straddles the line of being abusive? 😕
The pivotal moment for me was when Ringo took a step back and decided he had to break the cycle. Don’t worry, this happened pretty early on and I’m not giving away any major spoilers here. 🙂 Anyway, Ringo realizes they’re in a destructive pattern that cannot go on. He decides to change tactics when dealing with Gavin. He will no longer be the willing victim of Gavin’s rages, he will no longer pander to them, and he will demand the respect he deserves. That revelation was what did it for me. I still didn’t like Gavin, but I could support Ringo and his new plan.
I think the most surprising thing for me was that I liked this book even though I didn’t like one of the main characters. Gavin had some good qualities, but they weren’t enough to make up for all the bad ones, at least in my mind. The important thing to note here is that my opinion of Gavin didn’t matter, only Ringo’s opinion mattered. Ringo loved and wanted Gavin. I wanted Ringo to be happy, and therefore I was rooting for them to work out their differences. It was a strange position to find myself in, but an enjoyable one. Amazingly, by the end, I was thinking that they just might make this relationship work.