Length: 56,000 words
Dr. Paul Johnston can't get a set of dark, somber eyes out of his head, and the timing couldn't be worse.
The last thing he needs is to fall for a patient. Not now, when he's been put on paid leave pending review of a formal complaint. One that most likely accuses him of sexual harrassment or impropriety of some kind. It's possible he let his newfound freedom as a divorced, out-of-the-closet gay man go to his head, but he's certain -- mostly -- he didn't do anything wrong. Now, he's struggling to handle the reality that his job is in danger and the only guy he wants should be off-limits.
Zane Kavanaugh is floundering, and there's only one man who soothes the storm inside him.
Reeling from an assault that landed him in the hospital and the painful estrangement from his family since coming out, Zane is trying to get his feet under him and find his independence. He moves in with a roommate and searches for a job, all while recovering from a fractured arm and cracked ribs. None of that hurts as much as the emotional damage he's suffered. When he connects with Dr. Paul Johnston outside of the ER, he's drawn to the man's calm, collected manner. It doesn't hurt that Paul's lack of experience with men is sexy as hell, and so are his over-the-top responses when Zane gets his lips on him.
There's no right time to fall in love.
Paul is afraid to start a relationship, and Zane can only handle so much more rejection. Will these two find their perfect moment, or will they realize you can't choose when and how you fall in love? If Paul can't take a risk, he may have to choose: the career he loves or the first man to capture his heart.
Bedside Manner is Book 1 of the Hearts & Health series. This is a spin-off series from the book Heart Trouble and includes characters from that novel, but it can be read as a standalone.
Bedside Manner takes an age gap romance and gives it a bit of a twist. Zane is a young college student, but after coming out to his family, then being assaulted, he’s been through a hell of a lot more than most guys his age-giving him an unexpected level of maturity at his age. Paul is a successful ER doctor, but he is pretty new to his out-of-the-closet status-so even though he is almost twenty years older than Zane, he is inexperienced in this new aspect of his life.
This setup gives the characters a chance to not only work through the expected age-gap issues (he’s too young for you, you still have your whole life ahead of you; he’s too old for you, you should stick with guys your own age—of course these things being brought up by people other than Paul and Zane themselves), but to also have a bit of role reversal thanks to their individual experiences. They both help guide each other on their individual journeys, while in the end sharing the journey together as a couple.
Paul and Zane are a bit awkward together at first, and the review Paul is under at work puts quite a bit of strain on both of them and their new relationship. When they are together, the chemistry sizzles—but the issues they face keep cropping up to leave doubts and interfere, even more so than their friends and family. Gage and Ben’s characters added quite a lot to the story, from their unconditional support of Zane to their disapproval of Zane and Paul’s relationship, to their eventual acceptance. Zane’s father was more difficult to deal with, not so much in regards to Zane and Paul being together, but just with the fact that Zane is gay. All of these things lent drama to the story—balanced out by the sweet, fun way Paul and Zane are when they are together.
I really enjoyed this story, and would recommend it to any M/M romance fan, especially if you like age gap romances. Bedside Manner gets a 4-star rating from me, and I look forward to reading more in this series. This story is for readers 18+ for adult language, M/M sexual content, and touching on some serious subject matter regarding coming out and Zane’s assault-which was handled quite well within the story.
Facebook Author Page - FB group - Mailing list! - Follow me on Twitter - Find me on Goodreads - Check out my Book Bub profile!
March 13 - Kai Tyler
March 16 - Diverse Reader
March 17 - Sarandipity, Books Laid Bare Boys, MM Book Addicts, MM Good Book Reviews, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words
March 20 - Joyfully Jay
March 22 - Wicked Faerie's Tales & Reviews, Keysmash
March 24 - The Novel Approach
March 27 - Making It Happen, Book Lovers 4Ever, Urban Smoothie Read
March 29 - MM Good Book Reviews
March 31 - Southern Babes Book Blog, Becca The Bibliophile, Bayou Book Junkie, MJ's Book Blog & Reviews, The Geekery Book Review, Jim's Blog
April 3 - Love Bytes
|Hosted By Signal Boost Promotions|