Strays and Lovers

Title: Strays and Lovers
Author: John Inman
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: November 30th, 2018
Genre(s): Romance
Page Count: 165
Reviewed by: Kirstin
Heat Level: 3.5 flames out of 5
Rating: 3 stars out of 5


Forty-six-year-old Eddie Hightower has a problem. He’s all alone. The only thing that saves him from facing that stark reality is the fact that he isn’t really alone at all. He has a house full of pets and a refuge full of stray unwanted animals he spends every waking hour trying to place in homes. While he loves what he does with all the joy in his heart, that same poor aging heart is still missing something. And Eddie knows exactly what it is. Romance.

But wait. Cue the music. Suddenly, beyond all hope, it happens. In the small desert town of Spangle, California, where Eddie lives, comes a sad young stranger with piercing gray eyes. They are the palest, most stunningly beautiful eyes Eddie has ever seen. Poor Eddie Hightower is swallowed up in their silver depths and disappears without a gurgle. The stranger’s name is Gray Grissom. Gray, like his eyes. Without hesitation Eddie opens his doors—and his heart—to the lost young man. After all, that’s what Eddie does. He finds homes for strays. But this is one stray Eddie intends to keep for himself.

Eddie Hightower is lonely. He’s surrounded by animals, so he’s never alone, but he has no one in his life. When he goes into town for supplies, he’s surprised to find someone new working at the hardware store. Gray has had a troubled past and uses it as an excuse not to get close to anyone, but Eddie is persistent and Gray wants to have a future.

I’ll be honest. The story was very very sweet. The words shared between Eddie and Gray were romantic and deep. The bones were all there to be a winning book. I just didn’t feel like there was anything to keep me interested. It was told solely from Eddie’s point of view and I felt like I didnt’ get enough of Gray. Gray was the MC who had the rough past and the rough life and the one who had so much going on in his head that it would have been nice to get a glimpse of that first hand. There wasn’t a build up to anything and the momentum just wasn’t there for me.

I found Eddie to be so open and honest and loving. He was obviously a very giving man and spent his life rescuing animals and giving them an opportunity to have a family and love. And he did the same for Gray, even though he was resistant.

Overall, it was a quick, easy read with a lot of sweet and a HEA to boot.

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Strays and Lovers provided by author in exchange of an honest review.


Reading has become such a huge part of my life as an adult. I love the escape, but I also try to take something from each story for myself. I am a lover of words. I love dialogue. I love a slow burn and a happy ever after. Favorite Authors: Garrett Leigh, Amy Lane, Mary Calmes, Lane Hayes, T.J. Klune, Roan Parrish, N.R. Walker, Cara Dee, Anyta Sunday