Title: Straight from the Heart (Wilde Love #1)
Author: Sam Burns
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: May 27, 2017
Genre(s): Contemporary M/M
Page Count: 207
Reviewed by: Susan
Heat Level: 3.5 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
On the same night that Alex finds himself disowned and sleeping on his best friend’s couch, he meets Liam, who saves him from being mugged. It’s a strange time for him to be starting a relationship, but everything about being with Liam feels right. When it becomes apparent that Liam isn’t exactly the prince charming he seems to be, Alex has to deal with some hard truths about not just his new boyfriend, but his own history as well.
Liam is just trying to do his job, but everything keeps getting in the way. First he gets assigned to watch some stranger, then somehow, he finds himself dating the guy. Even if it doesn’t offend the boss, Liam knows the wrong thing to do when he does it. He finds himself wondering, though: is his job really the most important thing in his life, or can he walk away from it all for a brand new relationship?
Straight from the Heart contains sexual scenes, and is intended for an audience age 18 and up.
I liked this! I liked that there was no relationship angst despite all the secrets Liam was keeping from Alex. I liked that Alex knew there were secrets and that Liam told him Alex would be so mad at Liam when he finds out. Alex decided to date him anyway.
Alex is a bass player in a band called Fred (love the name!), but only in his free time. He is supposed to become a lawyer, like his father. But one day Alex has had enough. He quits school and tells his mom he doesn’t want to become a lawyer. And that’s how he finds himself homeless (since his mom paid for his apartment), without a job or any money. He has friends though. So he can stay at his best friend Jake and his sister Jenna’s place.
And that’s how he finds himself at a bar with his meager belongings in a box, spending the last of his money throwing a freedom party for him and his band mates. When Alex goes to the bathroom someone tries to mug him. But a stranger comes to his aid. Since Alex is too drunk to stand on his own two feet he ends up going home with Liam, the stranger. It is in Liam’s bed that Alex finds himself the next morning.
When Alex wakes up he is afraid he had the first sex of his life and he doesn’t remember a thing. But Liam tells him he would never take advantage of anyone like that. He does tell Alex that he is interested in seeing Alex again. And Alex is fine with that. And that’s how the two of them start dating.
But what Alex doesn’t know is that Liam has been told to watch Alex by his boss, crime boss Brendan Quinn…
I liked this. Alex was just adorable, and Liam was sweet and so protective of Alex. But Liam never felt like a caveman alpha kind of guy. He was struggling with his feelings for Alex and staying loyal to his job. He felt real, and not cocky or arrogant like most
I really liked the scene where these two meet and how Alex figured out he was gay.
“You okay?” the man asked, laying a steadying hand on Alex’s right arm.
“I think that jackass had a knife.”
“He totally did,” Alex agreed, “but he didn’t stab me or anything. I think he might have been confused. He wanted my wallet, but he didn’t want me to put my hand in my pocket.”
There was a hint of a smile on the other man’s half-visible face, and Alex felt him nod.
“Muggers can be a twitchy lot. You probably scared him with your terrifying drunk-off-my-ass act.”
His voice was deep and smooth, as quiet as the mugger’s, but without the nefarious intention. It was as though that was just his natural speaking volume, and Alex found it charming. He smiled. “This is so weird. I swear, I didn’t even know I was gay.”
Alex was so earnest in everything he did and said, I just loved him. This book could have been one angst fest. Especially because Liam had so many secrets, but I was so happy to see the author didn’t go there.
Liam couldn’t tell Alex anything about his job or what he was doing (
- Liam was an undercover cop working for a crime boss as his assignment
I do think that the whole Alex being disowned thing wasn’t even necessary for the story. It definitely wasn’t that Alex was actually hurt by any of it, so no chance for hurt/comfort from that angle anyway.
But other than that this was a nice, low angst story about a sweet virgin of a guy and a secretive guy who works for a gangster,
- but who is actually an undercover cop