Safe Place (Lili’s Review)

Title: Safe Place (Rainbow Place #2)
Author: Jay Northcote
Publisher: Jaybird Press
Release Date: August 31st 2018
Genre(s): Contemporary, New Adult
Page Count: 180 pages
Reviewed by: Lili
Heat Level: 2 flames out of 5
Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5


Where do you go when your home is no longer a safe place?

Alex is about to turn eighteen and is firmly in the closet. He’s been biding his time, waiting to escape to uni, and finally come out away from the oppressive influence of his homophobic father. When he flunks his exams, he’s stuck in the small town of Porthladock—and what’s worse is that he’s working for his dad. The only thing that makes it bearable is Cam.

Cam’s comfortable with his bisexuality, but he doesn’t broadcast it. Young, free, and single, his social life revolves around playing rugby and hanging out with his mates. He’s attracted to Alex, but with the six-year age gap, Cam’s wary of getting involved. Plus, he thinks Alex needs a friend more than he needs a lover, and as their friendship grows, Cam decides he’s not willing to risk ruining it for casual sex.

When Alex’s dad finds out about his sexuality, Alex is suddenly both jobless and homeless. He finds work at Rainbow Place, the local LGBT-friendly café and Cam lets Alex stay in his flat for a while. But Alex would rather be sleeping in Cam’s bed than on his sofa. With them both living under one roof, their feelings for each other grow stronger, and the sexual tension is hard to ignore. Will giving in to it ruin their friendship and complicate things for Alex even more?

Although this book is part of a linked series, it has a satisfying happy ending, and can be enjoyed as a standalone.

I’ve wanted to read Safe Place by Jay Northcote since the blurb was first revealed. I don’t know; it just hooked me.

friends to lovers + age gap + hurt/comfort

It was screaming my name!

I was kind of nervous I’d built up this book in my head- when I say I hooked, I’m not kidding. I was checking for release dates and any updates of an early release. I needn’t have been nervous as I was hooked from the start and hadn’t been for responsibilities I’d have read it in one sitting.

Some highlights

-Realness. There’s a quality to Jay Northcote’s writing style that comes off as genuine and real. These characters, their lives, and feelings could all be someone we know or walk by every day.

– Fantastic set of characters; from Cam and Alex and to their friends.

-Alternating POVs.

-Relationship development. I loved how their feelings progressed from attraction to friendship. Their friendship felt special, and it was so sweet and nurturing.

-UST. Holy. Unresolved. Sexual. Tension! The slow burn was utterly delicious.

-And the end was a strong HFN, which was perfect for Cam and Alex, with where they were in their lives anything more would’ve felt contrived.

A couple of things I wanted to address.

I’ve read some reviews where readers were frustrated with Cam because he took so long to give in to his feelings. I get it, but I wasn’t bothered by it. I’ll try to explain without giving too much away.

1. I think Cam was right with the primary reason. Alex’s age, his situation at home, and everything else going on in his life- he needed a friend more.

2. Cam had been burned before in a similar situation.


3. Cam holding out provided such delicious torture. I’d rather have less sex and instead, have more sexual tension between two people who care about each other. I love the longing and the build up.

Safe Place just clicked all the right spots for me.

4.5 Stars

Rainbow Place series

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Safe Place (Rainbow Place #2) provided by the author in exchange of an honest review.


I’m a romance junkie, who loves when books make her cry from heartbreak and happiness.

A few of my favorite tropes:

-Friends to lovers
-Age gap

NetGalley Member since 2015
2016 NetGalley Challenge 80% Professional Reader 2015 Challenge Participant

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