Title: Gasping For Air (Game Day #2)
Author: T.S. McKinney
Publisher: Painted Hearts Publishing
Release Date: April 22, 2016
Genre(s): Gay contemporary love, football player, swimmer, gang rape, mental/physical abuse, thoughts self harm, second chance happiness, BDSM
Page Count: 456 pages
Reviewed by: Natosha
Heat Level: 4.8 flames out of 5
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
How far will Trystan go to win the heart of the man he loves? All the way.
Trystan Matherly is conceited, arrogant, and rich. He has plenty of money, athletic ability, and gorgeous looks to keep the men forming a long line just to be with him. Choosing his next lover has been as simple as down-selecting to the hottest candidate.
With his sad eyes, full lips, and perfectly sculpted swimmer’s body, Dakota is just the kind of lover Trystan wants. After only one look, he knows he has to have him. Too bad Dakota seems to be totally oblivious to all his charms.
Dakota Jacobson is lonely, tired, and depressed. He’s at Alabama Temple to complete his degree, not to put up with idiots. He works diligently to be as invisible as possible. He doesn’t need friends and he sure doesn’t need lovers…especially not football titans that think they rule the world. Nope; been there, done that.
With his sexy eyes, arrogant smirk, and muscled physique, Trystan is just the kind of lover Dakota never intends to have…again. Too bad Trystan refuses to allow him to be invisible.
Trigger Warnings: Rape, thoughts of self harm, mental/physical abus.
T.S. McKinney is truly an incredible author at bringing out the emotions of the reader and this book tore me up while reading it and was able to put me back together again when I was done.
This was not an easy read because the things that Dakota went through was really close to being realistic. So much so that the abuse that he suffered at the hands of someone who should have loved him and the trauma he felt and had to deal with afterwards was just like being there with him as he went through it all.
This story was truly a heartbreaking read. I found myself at times wanting to punch someone for the things that Dakota insured and I felt murderous on his behalf other parts of the the story. I found myself crying for him and the pain and heartbreak he insured. Other times I wanted to slap him upside the head and tell him, it was not his fault so quit blaming himself. But mostly I just wanted Dakota to be able to find peace and happiness.
I truly believe that Trystan coming into Dakota’s life was a blessing in disguise for him. Trystan had to fight Dakota’s demons in order to even be given half the chance. Even then it was not an all around chance because Dakota did not trust easily. For every inch that Trystan was able to gain it felt like around the next corner a mile was put between them. But Trystan never gave up or gave in and I truly believe that is what ended up saving Dakota in the end in more ways then one.
This story truly gripped my heart and tore me up as I read it but at the same time it is a story about facing your demons head on and never giving up no matter what.
This is definitely a book that I would recommend others to read but I would also warn of the triggers I mentioned earlier in this review because some of it is graphic and could cause flashbacks to those with these triggers.