Con Riley
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Dreamspinner Press
Release Date
September 2013
Contemporary Romance, LGBTQ

Five years ago, an accident fractured Gabe Cooper's family. Believing it was broken beyond repair, Gabe and his best friend Jamie Carlson left Minnesota behind for San Diego sunshine and college. Now another crisis brings Gabe home to help his ailing father, and he finally has to face the guilt that kept him away for so long.

Scott Stark also returns to Minnesota, with his young niece and nephew in tow, shouldering new family responsibilities. While Gabe comes to grips with his past, Scott struggles to accept his present role as a substitute parent, caring for two children, each with different needs. As Gabe and Scott get to know each other, reclaiming family life almost seems possible. Only two things stand in the way of love: Gabe's unresolved relationship with Jamie, and Scott's plan to leave Minnesota as soon as he can. Both men will have to accept past mistakes if they want to salvage a future together, and time is running out.

Book Review by Breann (reviewer)
Oct 15, 2013   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
180 people found the following review helpful
SALVAGE is so much more than your typical M/M romance. It was that too, but so much more, it was like a breath of fresh air.

Gabe was back in Minnesota after leaving for college in San Diego years before. He had left because his family experienced a traumatic event that Gabe thought they'd never be able to come back from. Their relationships were fractured in a way he had no hope to repair. Now he's back to help his sister and sick father with the business.

Gabe is working to save what's left of his relationship with his father and sister. He's desperately trying to grab all the pieces he can and fit them back together in the way they once were. But, of course, nothing can be exactly the way it was before. People change and grow, as do their relationships. I loved Gabe and his family; their interactions were so real and I could feel all the struggles they had to cope with. They were a little estranged for some time, but I could tell there was love still between them and reading about their reconciliation was so touching.

While in town, another man is struggling to get his life in order. Gabe's neighbor, Scott, had just been handed his niece and nephew to take care of and he had no idea what he's doing. Luckily, he had a great family living next door that's willing to help him out when nobody else would.

While Gabe is trying to save himself from his past, Scott is drowning in his present. He has these two kids he doesn't know very well, in a new town, trying to be the guardian they need and deserve. He was completely lost in his new situation and was, very literally, falling apart at the seams. I loved how Gabe stepped up to help Scott out, without being judgmental, but because he really just wanted to help somebody who needed it.

Scott and Gabe just simply took care of each other; they were exactly what the other needed in order to let go of what was holding them back and to look forward. The natural flow of their relationship was just that--natural. They were friends, someone to rely on and someone willing to listen when it was needed, before there was any romance. Like I said, SALVAGE was like a breath a fresh air. Give me a meet-cute and some tight bods and I'm usually all set. But this? The slow pace of the relationship, the believable relationships and the sense of family was just wonderful.

SALVAGE. I don't know if there's a more aptly named romance novel out there. The title can be taken in so many directions and applied to so many people and events in the story. These men are trying to salvage so many things in their lives and the way they were able to do this together was simply beautiful to read about.
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