Thursday, June 9, 2016

How to Save a Life by Andria Large Blog Tour

How do you save someone’s life?

There’s the obvious way of physically saving them from a tragic end.

Then there’s the more subtle way of saving someone who doesn’t know they need to be saved. Someone who is drowning emotionally and has no idea that they are slowing dying.

Ezra Whitmore is one of those people. After tragically losing his wife, he’s still going through the motions, but not really living. All he has now is his son, Spencer, and his career as a dentist. The life he thought he was going to have has been torn apart. The things he had once enjoyed no longer feel the same without the person he had shared everything with.

That is, until Ferris Jenkins crashes into his life. Not only does the lifeguard save his son from literally drowning in the ocean, but he also slowly starts to bring Ezra back to life.

As soon as Ferris lays eyes on Ezra, he can’t get the gorgeous dentist out of his head. He knows nothing will ever happen between them because…well, Ezra is straight and he’s gay. You can imagine Ferris’ surprise when Ezra gets drunk one night, kisses him, and admits that he’s always been attracted to guys. This gives Ferris hope that maybe, just maybe, he can land the man of his dreams.

WARNING: You know the drill! For mature audiences only. Contains some graphic m/m sex scenes. Please remember that this is a work of fiction and comes from my own imagination.

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So, Ezra and I head for the dance floor. We find an open spot in the midst of the crowd that is mostly girls. I find out very quickly that Ezra is a really sexy dancer. Oh, what I would give to be all over that delicious body of his. He rolls his body like a goddamn male stripper. I’m mesmerized and completely turned the fuck on.

A young girl, probably in her mid-twenties, dances her way in front of Ezra. She puts her back to him and shoves her ass in his crotch. She’s a cute girl with a nice body. Ezra’s eyebrows shoot up and his wide eyes meet mine. He actually gives me a “Help me!” look. Apparently, he’s not ready to have a young girl bumping and grinding on him. It seems that even though my friend is lonely and could use some lovin’, it doesn’t look like he’s ready to have some chick he doesn’t know rubbing herself all over him.

Ferris to the rescue!

I step closer and grab Ezra’s hand, pulling him out from behind the girl and up against my side. I wrap my free arm around his waist and pull him in so that we are touching from chest to thigh. Ezra can no doubt feel my erection against his hip, but it can’t be helped.

“Hey!” the girl, who looks downright pissed, yells over the music. “I was dancing with him!”

“Sorry, hun, but he’s with me, and I’d appreciate it if you kept your skanky ass away from his cock,” I drawl, palming Ezra’s ass for effect.

I feel Ezra’s hand snake around my waist, causing goose bumps to pop up all over my skin. The girl rolls her eyes and mutters something about all of the hot ones being gay, before stomping off through the crowd. I smile my triumph and turn to look at Ezra, who is so close that our noses touch when I face him.

My breath catches as a wave of desire hits me hard. Shit, I would love to seal my lips over his right now. I swear that same look is in his eyes again; but this time, the lust has been cranked up a notch. He looks like he’s actually thinking about kissing me, too.

“You might want to dance with me if you don’t want to get hit on,” I murmur just loud enough for him to hear me.

Ezra licks his bottom lip and gives me a jerky nod. “Yeah, okay, we can dance.”

We slowly start swaying to the music. I turn slightly so that we are completely facing each other and slip my thigh in between his. The arm Ezra has around my waist tightens, pulling me closer. His nose brushing my cheek and ear, sending shivers down my spine. We grind against each other. I keep my hand on his ass for show...okay, that's a lie; I just want to touch his ass. It's a very nice ass – firm and round – and I'm fairly certain that what I'm feeling against my thigh is his erection. Fuck me, I'm in so much trouble with this guy.

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Ezra tragically lost his wife a little over a year ago. He's learning to raise his teenage son, Spencer, on his own. While relaxing at the beach, tragedy strikes and Ezra watches as the life guard fights to save his son.

Ferris, a lifeguard and LGBT counselor, finds Ezra extremely attractive, even if it's at the most inappropriate time. Thinking he'll never see him again, he's taken aback when Ezra and Spencer come for counseling. Spencer had just come out to Ezra and Ezra was going to do everything he could to help Spencer.

Ezra has been living his life on pause. He's ready to move on, but is he ready to be honest with himself and those around him?

I enjoyed this read and it did hit a soft spot in my heart. Having a son come out and having a family member turn their back on him, is a hard thing to watch. Ms. Large hit all those emotions for me and it was done very realistically. The section with Ferris's family and Ezra's parents definitely brought tears.

Andria Large is a new author for me and I look forward to reading more.

I really enjoyed this book. Sweet, loving, and made your heart melt. I love how great of a dad Ezra is and how well he takes it when his son, Spencer, comes out to him and how he wants to help him adjust in any way possible. Doesn’t hurt that Ezra has always liked guys but locked that part of him away when he met his former wife. Ferris is just fun loving and so full of life even though he has had his fair share of crap in his past. I love how Ezra and Ferris come together, and I especially loved how Spencer stuck up for Ferris, which eventually lead to so much more happiness in the end. Sweet love story, highly recommend.

Characters: Well written and easy to relate to
Sex: Yes
Religious: No
Would I recommend to others: Yes
More than one book in the series: No
Genre: M/M Romance
Would I read more by this author: Yes

Andria Large is a new-to-me author.

How to Save a Life starts with the saving of a life, and slowly develops into a romance between the lifeguard and the father of the boy who almost drown. I absolutely recommend this title to those who are seeking romance to be the focal point.

I have to be honest, I struggled while reading this book, finding myself skimming while forcing myself to finish. I feel horrible saying this, but the author's voice was not to my tastes.

At the start, one of the characters – Ferris – was checking out the father of the boy he was trying to save. I had a hard time falling into the story because while saving a life, your mind is on the task at hand, not the abs of the father, what he's wearing, and exactly how he looks. It jerked me out of the emotional impact of almost losing a child, because the lifeguard was narrating about how hot the dad was. I realize this is a book in the romance genre, so I am not saying this against the author, only that it wasn't the type of book I enjoy. Which is why I suggest this title to those who truly want romance and insta-lust from page one.

I'm trying not to fall down the nitpicking rabbit hole, as I had gone into editor-mode while reading. I found the run-on sentences and the overuse of 'that' to be jarring, as well as the 'voice' of the narrators. The 14 year old son spoke as maturely as his father, and Ferris's narration read younger. I'm mentioning this for those who do and don't read as I do, so they may make an informed purchase. Here is a direct quote from Spencer, the 14 year old boy, as an example.

"I've been...I find myself looking and finding guys attractive instead of girls."

As for the premise itself, the story flowed quickly from one scene to the next. (Ferris) You have a heroic young man who is a lifeguard and a LGBTQ counselor, who instantly falls for a seemingly straight widower (Ezra). Instead of only saving Spencer from drowning, Ferris saves Ezra in more ways than one.

If you're looking for a few hours of escapism filled with romance, and don't tend to nitpick as I do, then I would highly recommend How to Save a Life.

Andria is married and a stay at home mother with two crazy little girls and two psychotic cats. She doesn't go anywhere without her precious iPhone and a purse full of animal crackers. She used to be completely obsessed with the Backstreet Boys, but now is only mildly obsessed (still goes to every concert when they are in town). She loves cartoons and Disney movies, and can probably recite every line from Dumb and Dumber. Humor is a must in her life; otherwise, it would be completely boring. Pepsi is her weakness, along with anything chocolate. She can't sing to save her life, but she pretends she can when she is alone in her car with the music blasting so that she can't hear herself.

She loves to read Romance. Paranormal, Scottish, Military, Police, Firefighters, Athletes, Cowboys and M/M are her favorite. She is not so much a fan of YA, though. If you haven't been able to tell from reading her books, she likes – whether she is reading them or writing them – lots of hot steamy sex.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of How to Save a Life by Andria Large to read and review for this tour.

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