Title: Tribute Act (Porthkennack #8)
Author: Joanna Chambers
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Release Date: January 15, 2018
Page Length: 206
Reviewed by: Renée
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Nathan Bridges hadn’t intended to settle down in his home town of Porthkennack—he just ended up staying after saving the family business from ruin. The truth is, Nathan can’t stop himself from stepping in when problems arise. He’s a fixer, the man everyone turns to. But even fixers can’t solve everything.
When Nathan’s sister needs an organ transplant, it’s his stepbrother, Mack, who the family turns to as Rosie’s only potential living donor. Nathan’s curiosity about the stepbrother he’s never met turns to shock when he realises that Mack is his latest—and hottest ever—one-night stand.
Nathan and Mack agree to forget their single night together, but that’s easier said than done. When Mack moves in to Nathan’s place to recuperate after surgery, it’s not just the sexual tension between them that keeps growing. Against all the odds, and despite Mack’s wariness of intimacy, the two men grow close enough that Nathan begins to wonder what it would take to mend the rift that’s kept Mack and his father estranged for over a decade . . . and whether Mack might consider staying with Nathan in Porthkennack for good.
Nathan is a fixer. He came home temporarily to fix the financial nightmare his mom and stepdad have let their ice cream shop/café become. But once it’s fixed, Nathan realizes they’re just gonna let it become what it was. Neither has a good head for business. Well, okay then, he’ll move back home and stay on as a partner. He can use his marketing degree that way.
Then his sister is diagnosed with a rare liver disease and needs a transplant. He’ll donate a portion of his liver. Except he isn’t a match, which kills this big-brother-fixer just a bit.
Mack is the hottie in a beanie that Nathan sees in a club one night. Once eye contact is made, game over. Even though Nathan doesn’t really like one-night stands, there’s something about Mack that he can’t resist.
Fast forward to Mack knocking on his parents’ door after a letter is sent from his dad, requesting he get tested to see if he matches his sister to donate his liver.
I like the stepbrothers trope, and this one was no exception. Nathan and Mack had never met before. Mack’s dad hasn’t been around in all the time he’s been married to Nathan’s mother.
Derek, Mack’s father, was a shitty dad to him. He never made the effort. He never acted like a dad. Unfortunately, Nathan had the opposite from him as a stepdad. He was always supportive, always around. This could’ve caused tons of melodrama and resentment on Mack’s behalf. But it didn’t.
What Mack is, above all else, is wary and distrustful. After his mother died, he was raised by stoic grandparents. He’s never received affection or love. Walking in on Nathan and his sister hugging causes him to look like he’s seeing an alien.
The attraction, on Nathan’s part, doesn’t die. But Mack is just so prickly and standoffish. It’s hard to crack his shell. And even after they start fooling around again, it’s impossible for Nathan to tell what Mack is thinking or feeling.
Does he even like me?
Would he stay?
Mack made it clear once he came that he’d be leaving after recovering from the surgery. And Nathan does everything he can to give him a reason to stay, including fixing the relationship between father and son.
This book packed a lot of feelz. Not only watching Mack flourish under a bit of attention and affection. From his stepmother, his sister, and Nathan.
I simply love this author and will pretty much buy whatever she writes. This is another success for her, and I highly recommend!