Tuesday, August 11, 2015

5* review: Lonely Hearts, by Heidi Cullinan (Love Lessons #3)

Title: Lonely Hearts

Author: Heidi Cullinan

Publisher/GR Link: Samhain, GR

Genre: MM Contemporary

Vice: Abuse, Disability, New Adult

Rating: 5 Stars

Lock this book up: 4 keys.  The sex is smoking hot in here!

Length: Novel

Satisfaction: HEA

Cover Impressions: Really great, and fits in so nicely with the others.

Best Line: "I...love you.  I'm scared and I don't want to, not anybody, but I do.  Love you.  And I don't think I can stop."

SynopsisWith the quiet help of his wealthy family, Sebastian “Baz” Acker has successfully kept his painful past at bay. But as the end of college draws near, his friends—his buffer zone—are preparing to move on, while his own life is at a crippling standstill.With loneliness bearing down on him, Baz hooks up—then opens up—with Elijah Prince, the guy Baz took a bullet for last year. The aftershocks of their one-night stand leave giant cracks in Baz’s carefully constructed armor. For the first time, the prospect isn’t terrifying.

Accustomed to escaping his demons by withdrawing into his imagination, Elijah isn’t used to having a happy herd of friends. He’s even less comfortable as the object of a notorious playboy’s affections. Yet all signs seem to indicate this time happiness might be within his grasp. When Baz’s mother runs for a highly sought-after public office, the media hounds drag Baz’s and Elijah’s pasts into the light. In the blinding glare, Baz and Elijah face the ultimate test: discovering if they’re stronger together…or apart.

Impressions: I have been a huge fan of Cullinan's for years, and I read and enjoyed book one when it first came out.  For some reason, I still had book 2 on my TBR pile when I had the opportunity to read her newest release.  I settled in and read book 2 back to back with book 3, and thanked the gods for summer vacation!

Though these books can be read as standalones, I definitely think you will get the most out of them by reading them in order, and with a good memory of the main events and characters in each. And really, reading these books is a joy, and far from a burden!

After finishing book 2, I was very eager for Elijah and Baz's story.  Baz is bigger than life in book 2, and it was wonderful to get a glimpse into his life and his struggles.  Elijah is so caustic and prickly in book 2, and I could not wait to see him fight himself, and the world, and ultimately get his well earned HEA.

This book moves along at a great pace, and all of our beloved characters from books 1 and 2 are back again.  This time there is the addition of a wonderful character and I loved seeing Elijah find something like a nurturing soul inside of him.  

One of the things that I really admired in this book was the brief visits we got into Elijah and Baz's past, but the focus of the book was on their present and future.  This could have been a book that spent half of its time in flashback, but it really worked that instead we got to see these two men finding themselves and each other.

This book is warm, romantic and very sexy.  Don't miss out on books 1 and 2, and then jump right into 3.  If you've already read books 1 and 2, then I am sure nothing is keeping you from one-clicking this one ASAP!

Highly recommended.

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