Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Starting New by S.C. Wynne

Life hasn’t been good to Francis Murphy. He’s survived twenty-one years of homelessness by hooking and taking handouts where he can find them. When the local shelter is vandalized, he’s forced to seek food at the Grace and Light Church, where he runs into the pastor’s son, Randy.

Randy Wright believes the best in others. He's immediately drawn to Francis, even though Francis is hardened and wary. When Francis is attacked by one of his johns, Randy and his family take him in and offer him temporary work. Randy always thought he was straight, but something about Francis has him yearning for more than just friendship, and realizing he might be bisexual.

Francis is attracted to Randy too, and Randy and his parents say they’ve always believed in gay rights. But talk is cheap. What are the odds that these Christian parents will remain open-minded when it's their own son in a relationship with another man?

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Riptide Publishing

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

S.C. Wynne is a new-to-me author.

I wasn't sure whether or not I would enjoy Starting New after reading the blurb, finding books with a religious bent to be hit or miss. But within half a page of Francis' narration, I was hooked. I even found myself laughing, when ordinarily anything meant to pull a chuckle from me, I find over the top. But there was a witty snarkiness to Francis that endeared him to me. I understood why he thought as he did, even if I didn't agree with it.

Then there is Randy, who learned how even the best of us are able to be hypocritical, along with his giving and caring family. How you can accept a lifestyle or mentality, but face a different reality when it enters your family. I thought this angle of the storyline was perfect for showing both sides of the equation.

Francis and Randy played off one another well, a push-pull banter, will-they-won't-they tension that absolutely addicts me time and time again. In this, Francis was being the responsible party, and I respected the author for showing how Randy was lost in what he wanted, not caring about consequences because he knew his family would stay by his side unconditionally.

As for the religious aspects, in this genre, they're usually the villain of the tale, when most of us know true, giving religious individuals who are here to serve, no matter what. In this book, Randy's family is the hope Francis needed, without asking him to accept their god or ask for anything in return.

Added to the mix, a stray dog named Francis, and you have the equation to melt my frozen heart. I truly enjoyed every page of the story, reading it ravenously.

Recommended to fans of MM contemporary romance, moderate heat level with a few lusty scenes, but great tension and buildup.

S.C. Wynne started writing m/m in 2013 and did look back once. She wanted to say that because it seems everyone’s bio says they never looked back and, well, S.C. Wynne is all about the joke. She loves writing m/m, and her characters are usually a little jaded, funny, and ultimately redeemed through love.

S.C. loves red wine, margaritas, and Seven and Sevens. Yes, apparently she is incredibly thirsty. She loves the rain and should really live in Seattle, but instead has landed in sunny, sunny, unbelievably sunny California. Writing is the best profession she could have chosen because she's a little bit of a control freak. To sit in her pajamas all day and pound the keys of her laptop, controlling the every thought and emotion of the characters she invents, is a dream come true.

Connect with S.C.

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Starting New by S.C. Wynne to read and review.

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