Title: First Season
Author: RJ Scott and V.L. Locey
Series: Harrisburg Railers #2
Publisher: Love Lane Books Limited
Release Date: 9/27/2017
Genre(s): M/M Contemporary Romance, M/M Coming Out, M/M Sports Romance
Page Count: 204
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Layton Foxx works hard for what he’s achieved. The condo, the career, the chance to make his mark…it’s all down to the sacrifices he’s made. With tragedy in his past, he doesn’t want or need love. Then he meets Adler Lockhart, the extroverted, sexy winger for the Harrisburg Railers, and abruptly he can’t avoid love even if he wanted to.
Adler Lockhart has had everything handed to him his whole life. Cars, villas, cash, college tuition at the finest Ivy League schools. The only thing he doesn’t have is parents who care, or the love of a good man. Then Layton walks into his privileged life and shows him what real love can be like.
Layton wants success, Adler wants a family…how can love make both these things possible?
Bumping to 4 stars because I absolutely loved one of the heroes
First Season Is the second book in the collaborative series by V.L. Locey and RJ Scott. There is considerable carryover from book one, but First Season features a different couple and can be read as a standalone without issue. This happened to be one of those books that surprised me with just how much I enjoyed it. That isn’t to say that I didn’t have a few nagging issues, but I really liked these characters and was drawn to their story.
There are simply some characters you connect with, and Adler was one of those that just got to me. The authors did a really great job at presenting this boisterous character who was almost too much to handle at first, then peeled back the layers steadily to reveal an emotional, sweet man who was incredibly eager to find acceptance amongst his peers and unconditional love. The small exposures to his underlying fears of being dismissed or worthy were poignant and heartbreaking and were delivered in such a way that it was natural without being the sole focus of the story (no poor me heroes here). I also really liked the contrasting personalities of Adler and Layton. Though the jock and nerd pairing isn’t anything new, the authors played up their differences while also highlighting the similarities that made them really work as a couple. I especially loved how intuitive they were of one another’s needs, reaffirming that soul-deep connection they had immediately.
However, as much as I liked the couple, particularly Adler, I can’t help but feel there were missed opportunities. As in the first book, once the couple gets together, the reader didn’t get to see the emotions building between these two. There was a little bit, but the majority felt skimmed over and it was readily apparent when that contrasted with the in depth descriptions of the characters’ emotions regarding their pasts. I also couldn’t help but feel the ending was a bit rushed. There was a happy for now conclusion and I wasn’t left unsatisfied per say, I just felt a little shortchanged with some of the story arcs getting a quick cap rather than playing out completely. Overall, I enjoyed this book more than the first and definitely look forward to reading the third Harrisburg Railers story, and I certainly wouldn’t complain if we get a bit more Adler/Layton time- even just as secondary characters.