Summer Lessons (Renée’s review)

32447377Title: Summer Lessons (Winter Ball, #2)
Author: Amy Lane
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: November 25, 2016
Genre(s): Contemporary
Page Count: 260
Reviewed by: Renée
Heat Level:  3.5 flames out of 5
Rating:  4 stars out of 5

Mason Hayes’s love life has a long history of losers who don’t see that Mason’s heart is as deep and tender as his mouth is awkward. He wants kindness, he wants love—and he wants someone who thinks sex is as fantastic as he does. When Terry Jefferson first asks him out, Mason thinks it’s a fluke: Mason is too old, too boring, and too blurty to interest someone as young and hot as his friend’s soccer teammate.

The truth is much more painful: Mason and Terry are perfectly compatible, and they totally get each other, but Terry is still living with his toxic, suffocating parent and Mason doesn’t want to be a sugar daddy. Watching Terry struggle to find himself is a long lesson in patience, but Mason needs to trust that the end result will be worth it, because finally, he’s found a man worth sharing his heart with.

This was a really great addition to my Lane library. It felt very old-school Lane for me, and I ate it up happily.

Mason moved from San Fran to Sacramento when his long-term boyfriend cheated on him (for two years!) with Mason’s boss. As an MC, he is adorable. He’s one of those people truly missing the brain-to-mouth filter, especially when it comes to sex comments, or “penis” comments. He is all about the peen, our Mason.

Mason feels very lonely. He is really only close to his brother, Dane (great side story with Dane, btw). Mason soon discovers he’s been hanging with the wrong people in San Fran. But flirting with Skip in Book 1 has brought him a new set of friends who just might be the “right” people for him. And it’s at a party hosted by Skip where Mason meets Terry Jefferson.

At first it’s a few “hangouts” and some sex, but Mason really likes Terry, who is 12 years his junior. Mason has had several long-term relationships by the time he reaches 37 years old, and he doesn’t really need to experience dating anymore.

Terry, though……..Terry is 25 and has never dated anyone. He’s had plenty of sex and plenty of hangouts that lead to sex, but Terry is very sheltered to “normal” dating patterns. Because of his evil shrew of a mother, he’s sheltered to a lot of “normal.” Mason’s “normal” at any rate. She raised him alone and has always let him know that she could just as easily have aborted him and he should be thankful every day that she didn’t. He doesn’t know any better, quite frankly. He has no reason to believe that many other mothers don’t require their children to completely support them and have never worked a day in their child’s life. Terry pays for everything, foregoing things like new clothes or reliable transportation for himself. I know that may sound farfetched for Terry to still be buying this load of crap at 25 years old, but Lane weaves this piece of the story in a believable way. Terry’s not completely gullible to it, but he’s also never had anyone offer him anything better, if that makes sense.

So Terry and Mason spend some time together. And Mason falls hard. Terry does too, but he doesn’t realize it. He just knows that Mason is different and I think Terry thought that that was how dating went for everyone. Since it’s so different and he never dated anyone before, all dating must feel this way. He didn’t realize that Terry was special and it wouldn’t be this way dating just anyone else.

So there was a painful part of this story where Terry figures out that Mason is someone he loves, and that this relationship isn’t your average one. And it’s his journey to that discovery that kind of ripped my heart out. Lane’s good at that.

Overall, this was full of the feelz in that classic Amy Lane way, without it being the sould-crushing angst that she is capable of. I would recommend this one!

Winter Ball Series

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I love boys who love boys! I'm in my 30s, from the southern US, and my crack is m/m romance.