“We can change so many times in our lives. We’re born into a family, an it’s the only life we can imagine, but it changes. Buildings collapse. Fires burn. And the next second we’re someplace else entirely, going through different motions and trying to keep up with this new person we’ve become.”– Lauren DeStefano
Author: Skylar M. Cates
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages/Word Count: 246 Pages
Rating: 4 Stars
Blurb: Work in The Guy Series
Anthony Carrino loves his big, gregarious Italian-American family, even if his sisters are interfering, and his dad, the local sheriff, knows everything going on in town. He’s happy as a middle school guidance counselor. Despite helping kids and their parents fix their problems, Anthony can’t manage to get his own love life right. If only everyone would stop calling him the “nice” guy.
Dean Pierce doesn’t do relationships. A tough-minded military man, he is dedicated to his job as a Night Stalker, flying Chinook helicopters and not speaking much to anybody. He certainly doesn’t want to deal with a mess of emotions. But when tragedy strikes, Dean finds his hands full with his troubled niece, her irresistible guidance counselor, and a meddlesome family, which includes a rather large puppy.
Review: Dean Pierce had a terrible childhood in Glamour. The town, not the magazine. He left as soon as he turned 18 and he joined the Army. He is now part of the elite Night Stalkers who fly helicopters into dangerous situations and perform rescues impossible for other soldiers. Dean has been gay forever, but he can’t be out in the Army, even with the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. He has men under his command and if they knew he was gay, they would lose respect for him. He gets his sex when and where he can. It is always fast and dirty, and he never gets emotionally involved.
Dean is shocked to get a phone call that his older sister Jenna has died, and that her 13 year old daughter is in temporary foster care. He didn’t even know he had a niece, and now he has to go back to the US, to a small town he hates, to find a proper foster home for her. While waiting for him to return, Nikki is staying at the home of her school guidance counselor’s family. Anthony Carrino’s parents have been foster parents for years but are retiring, so they can’t take Nikki permanently. Anthony is living there temporarily after a bad break up with his cheating ex-boyfriend. It is just until he can find a place of his own.
When Dean returns to Glamour, and the memories of his childhood, he is faced with a teenage niece who is a stranger to him, an immediate and hot attraction to Anthony, Nikki’s puppy, who won’t stay small for long, Anthony’s family of buttinskis, and the mission of finding the right foster home for Nikki. All Dean wants to do is get this mission accomplished so he can return to where he belongs, the Night Stalkers. That is the only adult life he has known. He doesn’t know how to relate to civilians in general, and 13 year old girls and their hot guidance counselors in particular.
Skylar Cates writes a great story in The Guy from Glamour. It is about love on so many different levels. It is deeply gratifying to see Dean and Nikki come to know each other and eventually love one another. Dean’s commitment to his return to the life of a soldier wavers for the first time in his life. He is actually able to see that there just may be more to life than flying helicopters.
The buildup of sexual tension between Anthony and Dean is delicious: the “accidental” touches and steamy looks, the forced interaction to figure out what is best for Nikki. For the first time, Dean needs someone else’s help. He is going in blind and Anthony is guiding him. The two men are hot together. The sex is off the charts. I was glad that Dean chose to stay in a hotel for awhile so they were able to really enjoy each other. And I was able to enjoy reading about them enjoying each other!
The way the different strands of the plot weave together so beautifully would be a spoiler, so I won’t share them with you here. Skylar M. Cates masterfully knits, then back stitches, then knits some more until the conflicts are resolved and the final work is perfectly warm and fuzzy. I think you’ll really like this one.