Title: On Davis Row
Author: N.R. Walker
Release Date: November 27th 2017
Genre(s): M/M Contemporary Romance
Page Count: TBC
Reviewed by: Belen
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
Nearing the end of a suspended jail sentence should unlock a brighter future for CJ Davis, only the chip on his shoulder is as hard to shift as his bad reputation. Born into a family of career criminals who live down Davis Road, an address the cops have dubbed Davis Row, his name alone is like a rap sheet that makes optimism impossible.
Brand-new parole officer Noah Huxley is determined to see the good in men like CJ. After all, he knows firsthand that bad things can happen to good people. His colleagues mock his doe-eyed optimism, but Noah soon sees CJ’s bad attitude and bravado are weapons he uses to keep people at a distance.
Both men know one simple mistake can change a life forever. At first glance, they might seem to be polar opposites. Yet underneath, they’re not that different at all.
Told from both Noah and CJ’s first person points of view there’s a lovely thread of hurt/comfort throughout this story both because of Noah’s past and CJ’s entire life.
This was more quiet in tone and pacing than any other N.R. Walker story I’ve read, and while the angst level was about medium, it never overshadowed.
“You like helping people.”
“I do. It’s good to know I’m making a difference. If I can just help one person, then it’s a good thing.”
“You help me.”
He took in a sharp breath and something in his eyes sparked. I think telling him that helped him more than I realised. “Thank you. But you’re the one doing all the hard work, I’m just helping.”
“No one ever really gave a shit before.” God, I dunno why I’m telling him this. “You’re the first person to see the real me.”
I loved Pops, found Noah’s optimism and desire to help really admirable given all he’s been through, and CJ is such a strong character, bending under the weight of his father’s abuse and the reputation of their family, but never breaking. There was so much inner strength to all of these characters.
Fierce, strong, safe, and everything?—everything?—I needed. I melted against him and could literally feel him mending the broken pieces of my heart, putting me back together again.
I didn’t ever want to let him go.
If you love stories about finding your strength and second chances, check this out.