Reviewed by JustJen
Title: Taking the Long Way
Author: Max MacGowan
Heroes: Rye Bellamy/Marcus Townsend
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 234 Pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: February 12, 2016
Available at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: Male escort Rye Bellamy is looking for a way out. Any way out. He’s getting older, and clients are getting more dangerous. If he doesn’t find something better, he knows he won’t survive.
He sees his chance in Marcus Townsend, a functionally blind Army veteran. Marcus, who refuses to accept his condition as immutable, has a shot at seeing a specialist who might be able to help him—but that doctor’s based on the other side of the country.
When Rye and Marcus meet, they realize they can help each other. Marcus can’t drive, but Rye can. Marcus knows what Rye is, but he likes him anyway. In fact, he more than likes him. Driving cross-country with a near stranger is a daunting task, but Rye’s biggest risk is falling for the gentle, stubborn-hearted soldier—and it might already be too late to stop that.
They plan to part ways when they reach their destination, but plans change as the affection between them grows. Now neither wants their journey to end, but continuing means finding a way to bridge the distance between who they were and who they’d like to become.
Review: A rent boy and a disabled veteran, how could I resist? Rye is the rent boy getting out of dealing with a pretty rough life surrounding his profession. He’s had to deal with a shady pimp that he is finally able to make a break from. When he meets Marcus, a functionally blind veteran, he is unable to resist helping the man.
Marcus is dealing with his blindness, though he lives a bit in denial about it. When he has a chance to see a specialist who might be able to help him, he decides to take the chance. Unfortunately, that appointment is on the other side of the country. The perfect solution is to have Rye drive him there – win/win for both of them, as Rye can escape the clutches of his pimp at the same time.
The two forge a friendship over the course of their journey which eventually turns into something more. Rye never feels he is anything more than a rent boy and not anywhere close to Marcus’ league, but he agrees to be Marcus’ first in a friends with benefits type of relationship. There is quite a bit of Rye feeling unworthy, but eventually, he realizes he has fallen for Marcus and decides to improve himself to be the man Marcus deserves.
I really enjoyed this story. I loved how Rye was everything Marcus needed, while at the same time giving him the space Marcus needed to feel somewhat independent. They were a great match once they got over their respective speed bumps. Although this slowed down a bit at times, it was a generally fast-paced read. It was beautifully written, and I never would have guessed this was Max’s first book. I’ll definitely be looking to read more in the future.
Overall Impression: I really liked it
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in return for a fair and honest review.*