When the Dust Settles (Belen’s Review)

when-the-dust-settlesTitle: When the Dust Settles (Timing #3)
Author: Mary Calmes
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: November 16th 2016
Genre(s): M/M Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 107 pages
Reviewed by: Belen
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 5 stars out of 5

Glenn Holloway’s predictable life ended the day he confessed his homosexuality to his family. As if that wasn’t enough, he then poured salt in the wound by walking away from the ranch he’d grown up on, to open the restaurant he’d always dreamed of. Without support from his father and brother, and too proud to accept assistance from anyone else, he had to start from scratch. Over time things worked out: Glenn successfully built a strong business, created a new home, and forged a life he could be proud of.

Despite his success, his estrangement from the Holloways is still a sore spot he can’t quite heal, and a called-in favor becomes Glenn’s worst nightmare. Caught in a promise, Glenn returns to his roots to deal with Rand Holloway and comes face-to-face with Mac Gentry, a man far too appealing for Glenn’s own good. It could all lead to disaster—disaster for his tenuous reconnection with his family and for the desire he didn’t know he held in his heart.

*sighs* I loved it.

Glenn Holloway is finally living his life the way he wants to. He has his restaurant, which is not only successful but home and family to a mish-mash group of people working there. The only thing missing is someone special in his life. The truth is, he desperately wants what Rand Holloway has with his husband, Stefan.

The craving in me could be traced back to Rand. I blamed him. I wanted what he and Stef had. I wanted the monogamous, go to bed at night and wake up in the morning with deal. A guy who would look at me like I wasn’t stupid, who thought I had a lot to offer, who would actually just see me… That’s what I craved.

When Stef calls in a favor and asks for Glenn to help Rand on a cattle drive, Glenn’s brought face to face with the sexy foreman of the Red Diamond, Maclain Gentry. Little does he realize that Mac’s had his eye on him for a while.

“How did you know there was no one for me?”
“Remember how I told you I’ve been keeping tabs on you?”
I did. “Yeah.”
“What I didn’t say was that any guy lingering around your restaurant waiting for it to close, waiting to get a chance at you… I’ve quietly discouraged them.”
“You’re lying.” I chuckled, my heart beating wildly, hoping it was true. To someone else it might seem a bit scary; to me, staking that kind of claim was crazy, stupid hot.

Told entirely from Glenn’s POV, I absolutely love how Mary Calmes writes an alpha, possessive male, without it being overly creepy or hitting my “call the police!” panic vibe. Instead she makes it hot and oh-so-necessary.

“You’re a possessive man, Maclain Gentry.”
“You have no idea, Glenn Holloway,” he said, snorting out a laugh as he nuzzled the hollow of my throat. “Man, I knew you were gonna smell good.”
“You thought a lot about me.”
“Night and day.”

Sure, the relationship is fast, with the two coming together and making promises quickly, but it works. It just all works for me.

It was scary how ready we both were to belong to another person, to start a relationship. It was like we’d both been waiting for the other to notice that forward, together, was the place we both wanted to go.


My only complaint is I wish it were longer.


Timing Series

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of When the Dust Settles (Timing #3) provided by Dreamspinner Press in exchange of an honest review.


I am an unapologetic book addict/lover. I'm happiest when reading and I spend most of my time with my Kindle, which is never far from my hand. I love to be told a good story! I mostly read fiction: Romance, Erotica, Young Adult, New Adult, Paranormal (shifters? Yes, please!), a little BDSM when I'm in the mood, and I love a good ménage story. I DEFINITELY PREFER A HFN/HEA! My biggest no-no's are cheating, miscommunication / misunderstanding plots, unnecessary angst, and cliffhangers.

A sampling of my "Favorite M/M" stories:

Carry the Ocean The Half of Us Red Dirt Heart Adulting 101 Tied Up In Knots
Shelter the Sea Manties in a Twist David, Renewed Ethan who Loved Carter Perfect Imperfections
Wolfsong Fight the Tide How to Walk Like A Man The Lightning-Struck Heart Forging the Future