Title: Damaged Goods
Author: Susan Mac Nicol
Series: Men of London #7
Release Date: April 28th 2016
Genre: New Adult MM Contemporary Romance
Touched by tragedy, love is an elusive dream never to be realised by eighteen-year-old Jax Grady–until he discovers his secret admirer and receives the sweetest gift he could ever desire.
THE SWEETEST GIFT
Tragedy and horror shaped Jackson Grady’s life, leaving him orphaned and scarred. At eighteen he’s ready to claim his future, but who could love his disfigured face and damaged soul? Definitely not a big, burly, beautiful Irish Traveller who is entirely the stuff of dreams.
Dare Rowan didn’t mean to become obsessed with the blue-eyed man he first saw across a field, but that porcelain skin and innocent air demanded another meeting. Jax has the face of a wounded angel, and the rest of the young man is as heart-breakingly perfect. Jax is beautiful in every way and teaching him about love and life will be something Dare will embrace. Like unwrapping and savouring the candy at the shop where he works, Dare will show this young man everything Jax desired but never thought he’d have, and take Jax to new highs while he holds him through the lows. Between them, they’ll find out just how sweet life can be.
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He wasn’t stalking his fantasy. He wasn’t.
Dare clamped his lips together mutinously as he hunkered down behind a towering oak. The tree lay on the outskirts, in the garden of a large Georgian house. From a distance, Dare watched as the beautiful blond man he’d been observing, thank you very much, tenderly placed what looked like flower bulbs in the rich soil. The man—whom Dare had first called Angel, though he now knew his name was Jax thanks to the younger kids playing in the garden yelling to him—leaned over. His pert jean-encased backside pushed out into the air and Dare swallowed, mesmerised by the enticing sight. A pang of guilt washed over his skin at the sneaking knowledge that yes, he could actually be deemed a stalker.
“I’ve only watched him a few times,” Dare murmured under his breath. “It’s not like I’m some pervert checking through the windows. I mean, the guy is in plain sight and there’s no boundary fence, so why shouldn’t I look? Anyone would. God, he’s gorgeous. A flawed angel with those blond curls and blue eyes.”
His wistful voice echoed in the quiet of the forest surrounding the large house called Castaways. It was some sort of place for homeless kids, Dare thought. He’d found this vantage point by accident one day when he’d been out gathering bits of greenery for his boss, Sally, an eccentric seventy-year-old woman who owned the sweet shop he’d managed for the past three years.
Some weeks ago, Sally had decided she wanted to display certain wildflowers in their place of work. She was also heavily into aromatherapy at the moment, so she sent Dare out each week to pick new blossoms and plants to further her ambitions to be a “flower child,” as Dare teasingly called it. He hadn’t minded. It had become a pleasant routine to take the short tube ride to Camden to perform what Sally loftily called his “ecological duties.” This secluded part of the woods around the area was the best place she knew of to find the flowers. Dare had caught sight of the beautiful man in the garden tending to a bunch of what looked like unruly kids, and now, having seen his Angel, Sally could send him out every day and Dare wouldn’t mind.
“But that would make me a stalker,” he said to himself. “So I’m not one now—yet.” He huffed and ducked back behind a bush as Jax turned to stare fixedly in his direction from underneath his wide-brimmed straw hat, an item Dare found rather endearing.
I loved Jax in Feat of Clay and was anxious for his story. I think I had him built up pretty high in my mind and had extremely high expectations for this story. And while it was good, it wasn’t spectacular. I loved getting to see Tate and Clay again.
Jax’s story is 100%, absolutely heartbreaking and gut-wrenching. I cannot believe he suffered what he did and is even a little bit ok. He was a bit of a brat in this book – he threw a tantrum every time things didn’t go the way he expected and I didn’t care for that too much. While he has lived more than most at his age, his immaturity is still there. I like his long term goals for his life and would love to visit them again in 5 years to see how things are going.
Dare is pretty wonderful and patient with Jax. He has a sweet heart and loves Jax perfectly. His maturity balances Jax’s immaturity and he keeps Jax grounded and on track. I’m glad he didn’t want to rush into things and was planning for the long term. He is a great older brother as well as being really good with the kids at Castaways.
I don’t know where the series will go from here. I think a book about Terry could be amazing and could keep us in touch with these two.
Read the Men of London series:
COMING SOON ~ HARD CLIMATE (MEN OF LONDON #8)
About the Author
Susan Mac Nicol is a self- confessed bookaholic, an avid watcher of videos of sexy pole dancing men, geek, nerd and in love with her Smartphone. This little treasure is called ‘the boyfriend’ by her long suffering husband, who says if it vibrated, there’d be no need for him. Susan hasn’t had the heart to tell him there’s an app for that…
She is never happier than when sitting in the confines of her living room/study/on a cold station platform scribbling down words and making two men fall in love. She is a romantic at heart and believes that everything happens (for the most part) for a reason. She likes to think of herself as a ‘half full’ kinda gal, although sometimes that philosophy is sorely tested.
Lover of walks in the forest, theatre productions, dabbling her toes in the cold North Sea and the vibrant city of London where you can experience all four seasons in a day , she is a hater of pantomime (so please don’t tar and feather her), duplicitous people, bigotry and self-righteous idiots.
In an ideal world, Susan Mac Nicol would be Queen of England and banish all the bad people to the Never Never Lands of Wherever -Who Cares. As that’s never going to happen, she contents herself with writing her HEA stories and pretending, that just for a little while, good things happen to good people.
Sue is a PAN member of Romance Writers of America and is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association in the UK.