Born and raised in Cherry Creek, Edmund Fitzgerald was the sort of man who tried to find the good in all things. As a natural leader, Fitz reclaimed his trauma after half his body burned in a fire and worked his way up to Fire Chief at the local department. He had a good home, and good friends, even if his romantic life left something to be desired. In spite of his bad luck in love, he managed to keep a cheerful smile on for everyone. At least, until Antoine Tremblay crashed into town.
As the older twin with absent parents and a chip on his shoulder, Antoine and his brother grew up nomadic—the inconvenient offspring of traveling teachers who wanted nothing more than to spend their lives seeing the world. While his friends were dreaming of road trips, Antoine was dreaming of a home to call his own. Retreating into his consulting career, Antoine dedicates his life to stabilizing small town economies, and doesn’t hesitate to take a job in Cherry Creek—a town that makes it very clear it doesn’t want Antoine there. Before he even crosses the city limits, Antoine is run off the road by a wild goat, and he’s forced to accept a rescue by a wary man who makes it very clear that Antoine’s presence in Cherry Creek is not welcome.
And what’s worse, the ridiculously attractive, absolutely infuriating Fire Chief seems to be at the center of every single one of his disasters that happens after—and unfortunately there are many. All Antoine wants is to do his job and go home, but Cherry Creek seems to have it in for him, and Edmund Fitzgerald seems thrilled to watch him fall apart. It might be real hatred, or it might just be pigtail pulling, but Antoine isn’t sure which, and he’s not really sure he wants to know. After all, a place like Cherry Creek will never be his home.
Fitz has never found someone worth fighting for, and Antoine has never found a reason to stay, but they know that looking at each other leaves them absolutely breathless. Will that be enough to make a relationship work, or will they decide that their love isn’t worth the fight?
Point of view:
3rd person. Alternating POVs by chapter.
This was super bogged down with so. many. characters. There were a lot of couples or people who either had other books in different series or are going to get a book. Being unfamiliar with anything except book 1 in this “world” – it was overwhelming. I felt like so much of the story was trying to update/explain these other couples that Fitz & Antoine didn’t get enough time making me believe them as a couple. Were they attracted to each other? Yes. But it just never went beyond that in a way that made me believe the “I love you and I want forever” at the end.
I’m not sure if the goal was “slow burn” or “slow sweet small town romance”, unfortunately it missed both and long stretches just felt boring. Which was surprising given how well it was pulled off in Love Him Free and how much I enjoyed that story.
Also, either Lindsey is setting up Owen & Dmitri to get their own stories at some point or the issues that were vaguely referred to were just left hanging. It left the book feeling incomplete rather than as a teaser.
Nick Hudson’s narration is likely the only reason I finished this. He does a good job with voices, accents, & emotions.
I received a free copy of this audiobook from Gay Romance Reviews and am voluntarily leaving an honest review.
About the author:
E.M. Lindsey is a bisexual, agender gay romance writer currently living in the S.E. United States. They’re a full-time writer, Classics scholar with a penchant for Ancient Greek, and an avid collector of shoes they will never wear. When they’re not found creating happy endings on their laptop, they’re either walking their dogs, going on hikes, or enjoying their new home.
You can connect with E.M. Lindsey here:
About the narrator:
You can connect with Nick Hudson here:
My Favorite Quotes
Can you um…can you not be too nice to me right now? I feel like shit’s falling apart, and I think you being gentle is a sign of the apocalypse. – Love Him Free by E.M. Lindsey #Audiobook narrated by Nick Hudson #MM #EnemiesToLovers #Firefighter @_GayRomReviewsTweet