Reviewed by Susan65
Title: Knight of Ocean Avenue
Author: Tara Lain
Series: Love in Laguna #1
Heroes: Billy Ballew/Shaz-Chase Phillips
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 254 Pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: May 1, 2015
Available at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: How can you be twenty-five and not know you’re gay? Billy Ballew runs from that question. A high school dropout, barely able to read until he taught himself, Billy’s life is driven by his need to help support his parents as a construction worker, put his sisters through college, coach his Little League team, and not think about being a three-time loser in the engagement department. Being terrified of taking tests keeps Billy from getting the contractor’s license he so desires, and fear of his mother’s judgement blinds Billy to what could make him truly happy.
Then, in preparation for his sister’s big wedding, Billy meets Shaz—Chase Phillips—a rising star, celebrity stylist who defines the word gay. To Shaz, Billy embodies everything he’s ever wanted—stalwart, honest, brave—but even if Billy turns out to be gay, he could never endure the censure he’d get for being with a queen like Shaz. How can two men with so little in common find a way to be together? Can the Stylist of the Year end up with the Knight of Ocean Avenue?
Review: Well, I’ve learned my lesson. I put off reading this story because I was uninspired by the blurb…and I could not have been more wrong. I loved this book. Not only was it well written with amazing characters, it was also extremely interesting and totally inspiring. I should know better, I am a huge fan of Tara Lain, and I believe this is probably my favorite book by her.
Both main characters, Shaz (Chase) and Billy, are extremely lovable. I could not choose a favorite between them even though they are like night and day. Shaz is a wealthy, flamboyant stylist who dances to the beat of his own drum. Billy is a huge six foot five construction worker who at twenty-five begins to question his sexuality. Better late than never, but the poor guy was put through the ringer.
The secondary characters, like Billy’s mom and sister, and Shaz’s friend Ru and his staff, are integral parts of this story and they help create an ambiance that surrounds the friendship and love affair of Shaz and Billy in realness.
Their relationship progresses at a rate that worked for me. The emotions, the situations, the family busy-body, the ex’s, and the atmosphere totally hit all of my buttons and I completely agree with most of the reviews that I read touting the greatness of this story. I can’t recommend this story highly enough as I know you will love it as much as I did.
Overall Impression: It was amazing
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in return for a fair and honest review.*