Title: Running with Scissors
Author: L.A. Witt
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Release Date: August 31, 2015
Page Count: 268
Reviewed by: Gigi
Heat Level: 4 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Eighteen months ago, drummer Jude Colburn made the biggest mistake of his life when he walked away from his band just as they were on the brink of success. Now, he’s got a second chance. The band’s bassist just quit, and Jude plays bass almost as well as he plays drums. The other band members aren’t thrilled, but they are desperate.
Running with Scissors needs him, but there’s one condition: no hooking up with bandmates. That’s what ruined things eighteen months ago, after all. Jude’s on board, but no one warned him about the drummer who replaced him. A.J. Palmer is shy and unassuming . . . until he hits the stage. He gets Jude’s attention from the first beat, and suddenly that “no hookups” rule isn’t so easy to follow.
Keeping secrets on a tour bus isn’t easy either, and it’s only a matter of time before the band catches on. When everything hits the fan, Jude has to choose: a second chance at the career he’s always regretted leaving, or a shot at the man of his dreams?
Running with Scissors tells the story of Jude Colburn and his childhood rock band named Running with Scissors. Running with Scissors has recently made the big time, signing with a record label and landing a headliner tour. A littler under two years ago, Jude abruptly left the band after having a falling out with his boyfriend, lead singer and childhood friend Connor. He never got to experience the fame of making it big and currently works a unfulfilling 9 to 5 job in an office.
Meanwhile, Running With Scissors’ lead singer Connor has made another romantic mistake, this time with bass guitarist Wyatt. Wyatt leaves the band in the middle of the tour and Running with Scissors finds themselves begging Jude to come to their rescue and fill in for Wyatt. Jude is hesitant because of his fractured relationship with Connor but misses his friends and the music. On the conditions that he sign as a long-term bass guitar sub so he is able to work on their next album, and with a promise that he will not become romantically involved with any member of the band, Jude quits his 9 to 5 job and re-joins the band.
When Jude returns, he gets a chilly reception from his friends and band mates because of the way he abandoned the group over a year ago. Jude knows he needs to gain their trust again and knows it won’t happen overnight. A.J. Palmer, the drummer that took Jude’s place after he left, becomes a comfort and friend to Jude during this turbulent time. The two men are incredibly attracted to one another, but both know of the no-hookup rule and keep their feelings hidden from one another for the sake of the band. Of course, that doesn’t last very long and eventually these boys slam each other into bed, throwing caution to the wind.
I loved the romance focused on Jude and A.J. The sexual tension leading up to their first coupling was thick and delicious and when these two finally hit the sheets, the sex was hot and dirty and wonderful. Their feelings for one another soften pretty quickly and they share tender, intimate moments that I loved reading.
The Running with Scissors band mates drove me nuts. All of them, with the exception of A.J., acted like a bunch of teenaged kids, bitching and moaning about every little thing. They all had very cantankerous personalities and I began to wonder how any of them were actually enjoying themselves. When Jude and A.J.’s relationship is finally discovered, his band mates are outraged and would not listen to either man’s explanation of their feelings for one another. I just did not buy the emotions these people were presumed to have for one another. There was no joy. No love. Not an inkling that these friends had grown up together.
But the romance between A.J. and Jude saved the book for me. If there had been more understanding and love between the band mates, I would be giving this one 5 stars. But they all just rubbed me the wrong way and sapped a bit of my enjoyment from the book.