Drawn To You
A Beyond The Cove Novel
Release Date: 11.20.18
Cover Design: Cate Ashwood Designs
Leaving his enormous family behind, native New Yorker, Elijah, decides to move to Brighton Pier for a fresh start. Being part of a large LGBTQ community and landing his dream job at Inkubus, a local tattoo shop, is too big of a draw for him to turn down. But just when he thinks his new life is going perfectly, he finds out his burgeoning relationship is nothing more than a friends-with-benefits arrangement to the man he was swiftly falling for. Suddenly, everything that felt so right to him feels all wrong, and he wonders if New York, with his family, is where he is meant to be after all.
Jake has worked hard for the life he’s made for himself in Brighton Pier. His life as a bachelor is pretty set in stone. Running his own business and spending time with his family and friends is enough for him, or so he’s convinced himself. Though he’s met a man he cares for, he’s adamant about keeping his single life as is. He has his reasons for not wanting to commit to the beautiful man he’s irrevocably drawn to. He just hopes their friends-with-benefits arrangement will be enough to keep Eli in his life.
When tragedy strikes, and Jake’s world is turned upside down, his instincts lead him to lean on the one person who’s become someone special, despite his best efforts to try and push him away. Eli—unable to turn Jake away when a loss so great takes the strong man to his knees—steps selflessly into the void in Jake’s life, regardless of the toll it takes on him. As both men struggle to deal with their own emotional turmoil, their lives veering off course, they grow inevitably closer as the days pass. But even so, they are still left wondering—can two people, drawn together by tragedy, turn a devastating situation into a fresh start? Or is it too late for a new beginning?
July flew by and August was reaching an end. But even after the talk he’d had with Jonah over two months ago, and the promises he’d made to himself that things were going to change, he was still letting this shit happen. Eli stretched his arm across the bed and patted the cool sheets. He had no clue what the point was when he already knew, without having to look, that he was alone. Still, when he finally pried his eyes open and saw the other side of the bed empty, disappointment cut through him like a knife.
He’d let it happen again.
And every time he woke up alone, he loathed himself a little more. What single, twenty-eight-year-old was sitting around, pining over one person? Fucking pathetic.
“Way to have some fucking willpower, asshole,” he grumbled as he swung his legs off the side of the bed and sat up. He stayed there for a minute with his head hung and eyes closed, taking a deep breath. The last thing he wanted to do was see Novak at the shop, but he had no choice. He had three clients lined up for the day that he couldn’t reschedule now. “Fuck,” he groaned as he stretched his arms above his head, feeling the ache in his muscles and resenting the reason they felt that way.
It didn’t take him long to shower, dress, and eat, but he took his time walking to the shop. His first client wasn’t until eleven, so there was no point in rushing. By the time he got there, someone was sitting in the waiting area, another guy was at the front counter filling out forms, and Kenz was walking someone back to her stall. Jake and Ryder were in the middle of a conversation, making plans to go out that night and get laid. Something inside Eli snapped because it was then that he realized…he was the last resort. All too often, Jake went out with Ryder, and then ended up at Eli’s door. I’m such a fucking idiot.
Jake’s eyes landed on him and they held each other’s stare for a minute. Eli’s muscles tensed, and he ground his teeth just to keep from exploding. Abruptly, he looked away, avoiding eye contact with anyone else as he walked down the hall to his station and began cleaning and setting up for his first appointment. A knock on the door frame had him looking up to meet a pair of chocolate brown eyes. He bit his tongue and looked back down without a word.
“Hey.” Jake shifted from foot to foot in the doorway, but Eli couldn’t find an ounce of fucks to give that the guy was uncomfortable. Jake took a couple steps inside the room, no doubt to avoid nosy eyes on him. “About last night—”
“Don’t.” Eli paused with the cellophane in his hand hovering over the armrest of the chair. He glanced up at Jake then back down and proceeded to wrap the arm in the plastic. “I already know what you’re gonna say. I don’t need to hear it again.”
“I’m not cut out for that shit, Eli. You know that.” The pleading in Jake’s deep voice was too much for Eli to handle.
“What I know is that we were headed for that shit, whether you’d like to admit it or not. I don’t know what the fuck happened.” He moved over to the other arm and wrapped it tightly. “Quite frankly, I no longer give a shit.”
5 of 5 Stars
WOW! This was my first book by this author but it definitely won’t be the last. I had a hard time putting this one down. I didn’t realize this was a spin-off of sorts from her Haven Cove series but I definitely was able to read this without having read those books. Eli’s brother Jonah was an MC in the last book of that series and I suspected he had a story somewhere. I think Eli’s family wouldn’t have been as confusing at first had I read that series but the author did a good job of catching us up quickly. I will however, be going back to read that series now.
This book is not easy to read…AT ALL. I didn’t expect the tragedy (and maybe I should have) so I wasn’t prepared for it and it ripped my heart apart, repeatedly.
Jake is truly a bit of a mess, even before tragedy strikes. We just didn’t know how bad it was until the tragedy uncovered it all. At first he seems like a bit of a jerk the way he treats Eli, but as the tragedy unfolds we find out just how much of an act he’s been putting on for everyone.
Characters having a change of heart or doing a 180 on what they want in life are typically hard buys for me in books. They never seem very organic or they seem rushed. Ms. Quinn handled this flawlessly with Jake. While Jake appears to do a 180, it’s more that he finally admits what he’s always wanted. His change was gradual and subtle, although if you look closely you could see his true desires were always there he just didn’t believe he deserved them.
Eli is rock steady and pretty amazing through the entire story. I truly felt his inner struggle to protect himself and was glad when he stood up to Jake. I’m also glad that angst wasn’t drawn out endlessly as there was already enough heartache in the book.
I think the biggest endorsement I can give is I typically won’t read books including death but I’m really glad I read this book. Overall, the story is predictable…what happens with the boys, Jake’s parents and with Jake and Eli…but it didn’t feel like anything else I’ve read. I didn’t once think about an overused trope or roll my eyes at the predictability. I genuinely loved the story (even though it hurt at times).
At the end, we’re given the information that Zach’s book is next. I’m not gonna lie…I was really hoping for Avery and Ryder…but count me in for the long haul with this cast of characters.
About the Author
I have been an artist from a very young age. From drawing cartoon characters and evolving into portraits, making jewelry, photography, and now writing. I have an amazing support system in my family and friends and couldn’t be more grateful.
I live in central New Jersey, love summers at the Jersey Shore, rock music, wine, sexy men, and laughing a lot with my amazing friends and family. Sunday dinners at my parents’ house are crazy, hysterical and you can count on a movie quote…or ten…being thrown out. Insults between siblings is how we show our love for each other!
When I’m not creating, you can find me reading books from my favorite authors. I’m a hopeless romantic, starving for passionate characters and always craving that happy ending, whether in reading or in writing my own books.