Monday, March 22, 2021

Heartscape by Garrett Leigh Blog Tour

Is it wrong to hope we can heal each other? Or will one of us die trying?

From award-winning author Garrett Leigh comes a gorgeous new romance in the True North world! Think: great food, burly men and good times. Beards are optional but encouraged.

I’m not the obvious choice to run Burlington’s coolest wine bar—quiet, brooding, clueless about tannin content, and always one wrong turn away from another downward spiral.

But no one seems to mind that I'm a wreck. Besides me. I just focus on getting through each shift until the night a beautiful stranger appears, looking as lost and damaged as I feel.

When a mutual friend calls in a favor, the sexy newcomer winds up crashing on my couch. I don't know if it's his melodic Cornish accent, or his ocean blue eyes, or the rock-hard body with the mysterious scars, but I get the feeling whatever happened to him runs far deeper than those wounds.

Having Jax in my home makes my chest warm. Makes me shiver. Makes me want more. But I've got a pile of baggage and I don't want to be a burden on anyone let alone a man who seems to have enough demons of his own.

Our chemistry is off the charts. His arms feel like home. The last thing I want is to screw this up. Is it wrong to hope we can heal each other? Or will one of us die trying?

Heartscape is a heartfelt MM friends-to-lovers romance in the True North world, with a brooding bartender, a rugged outdoorsman, sweet angst and lots of Shipley cider.
Triggers: contains mentions of depression, suicidal ideation and PTSD recovery.

Don’t miss our reviews of the rest of the Vino & Veritas series!
For book one, Featherbed, click HERE.


Add to Goodreads


Heartscape by Garrett Leigh

Book 2
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
Audiobook (US) <= Releases March 30th
~  Also Available with KindleUnlimited  ~




Jax kisses me. In my wildest dreams I’m expecting it, but it still catches me off guard. His lips are soft, but demanding, and there’s nothing I don’t want to give him.

So I kiss him back.

I slide my hands under his layers of winter clothing and pull him close, and we kiss and kiss and kiss as if it isn’t the first time we’ve done it.

His lips feel like home.

His soft touch dances along my jaw.

I want to kiss him forever, but we run out of air.

Startled, I draw back and instantly find myself lost in Jax’s blazing stare. His gaze usually calms me—it really is like the deepest, bluest ocean. But right now, his eyes are stormy and hot. I want to dive back in headfirst, and for once what I want makes sense.

And it’s right here. I don’t need words. I stand, cup a hand around the back of his neck, and kiss him again. Jax makes another low sound, and the fact that he’s spent the night in my bed to babysit me stops mattering. Shadows fade. Heat draws us ever closer, and it’s easy to pretend we spent all night doing this. I can’t contemplate that it has to end.

But it does end.

Jax pulls back with a rueful smile, cheeks flushed, breathing hard. “I have to go. I promised Jerry I wouldn’t be late again.”

The mention of Jerry jars something in my brain enough to form a sentence that has nothing to do with how fast my heart is beating. “How did last night go?”

“Okay, I think.” Jax steps away. “Dude talked so much I stopped listening, but the apartment was all right. I can move in whenever I want.”

I should be happy for him. I am happy for him. He didn’t deserve to lose all his things in the hostel fire, and it sucks he had to take help from a stranger when he needed so badly to depend on himself. But I’m still dazed from his kiss. I say the first thing that comes into my head. Raw. No filter. “I’m gonna miss you.”

He gives me a soft grin. “I’ll miss you too.”

Then he leaves, and the reality that it might be the last time we do this hits me like a train. Jerry’s buddy’s apartment is probably outside of the city, closer to where Jax needs to be for his work. It isn’t a million miles away—nothing in Vermont ever is—but it’s not waking up to find Jax in my bed. It’s not drinking his weird tea together or eating dinner on the couch with him. It’s not opening my eyes every morning to feel the comforting hum of his presence.

It’s not being there to let him know, every day, that he fucking matters.

So tell him now.

I lurch from my bed and snag a T-shirt from the clean laundry pile I haven’t even thought about putting away. My shoes are by the front door. I stamp into them and fish my keys from the dish. Then I make a run for it down the stairs and out into the morning gloom.

The sidewalk is icy from the plummeting temperatures that are starting to move in from the mountains. But I’m a Vermonter; I know how to handle that shit. I dash to the parking lot where Jax is waiting for Jerry, his broad back to me as he contemplates the ground.

I grab his arm. “You don’t have to leave.”



He takes my hand and leads me to my bed. We tumble down, but in truth I’ve been falling since I met him.



Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

This is the second book in a series of stories written by a collection of talented authors and set in Sarina Bowen’s True North world. (I am actually four books into the series, so do look at my upcoming reviews, as I am really enjoying the connections, and yet the variety of styles offered by the different writers). As a fan of Garrett Leigh, I was delighted that Jax is an expat of the Cornwall-based family that we know from the Skins series.

Tanner is Vino & Veritas' new bar manager – and we know from the first book in the series that this is not what he normally does, and that he has been very distant and down, and needs a new chance. He really doesn't know a lot about wine, but he is grateful for the job and doing the best he can. I love that this strand of his working life runs through the book, just subtly reminding us this is not his natural habitat.

Jax, well he really is an incredibly interesting character and as we learn more and more about him, there is this amazing backstory, of which the tragedy is not the accident which befell him... difficult to believe, but true.

These two men meet due to a mutual friend, and even though deep in their insecurities and difficulties, they can see that there is a spark between them which may just split the clouds and return the brightness to their lives. This is a book full of intense feeling and revelations that bring them closer together, and yet make them fear letting go.

Do not expect to be able to pick this up and put it down. You will need to carve out a space and some time and just find out what goodness lies within the pages – and enjoy!

Jax and Tanner meet when they’re both a little broken. The Cornish surfer and the mountaineer turned barman are an unlikely match at first, but it doesn’t take long for them to find each other. This is a story about personal growth and healing. It is also a slow, sweet romance.

I’ve not read an American book by Garrett Leigh before. I feel like some of the magic in the author’s language is muted here. The writing is still solid, but the dialogue and descriptive detail lacks the authenticity of earlier books. Tanner and Jax are engaging characters. I like how their pasts, their secrets are slowly revealed.

I love the scenery and the mountains in this story. I really enjoyed Tanner and Jax’s friends and I enjoyed some of the more exciting scenes.



Author Bio

GARRETT LEIGH is an award-winning British writer and book designer.

Garrett's debut novel, Slide, won Best Bisexual Debut at the 2014 Rainbow Book Awards, and her polyamorous novel, Misfits was a finalist in the 2016 LAMBDA awards.

When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible, all the while shouting at her menagerie of children and animals and attempting to tame her unruly and wonderful FOX.

Garrett is also an award winning cover artist, taking the silver medal at the Benjamin Franklin Book Awards in 2016. She designs for various publishing houses and independent authors at
Black Jazz Design, and co-owns the specialist stock site M O O N Stock Photography with renowned LGBTQA+ photographer Dan Burgess.

Connect with Garrett

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Blog  ~  Goodreads
Facebook Group: Garrett’s Den



I don’t want him calm. I want him in my bed and damn if either one of us is gonna be sleeping anytime soon.


Hosted by

Heart Eyes Press

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Heartscape (Vino & Veritas #2) by Garrett Leigh to read and review for this tour.

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