Reviewed by Ami
Title: The Second Time Around
Author: Rowan McAllister
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 200 Pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: September 11, 2018
Available at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: Though born into wealth and privilege, Jordan Thorndike can’t keep pretending. He’s never going to become the lawyer his parents hope for or provide the daughter-in-law and two-point-four grandkids they expect. Faced with an ultimatum—carry on living the lie or get out—Jordan leaves with only what he can pack in his BMW. Homeless, jobless, directionless, Jordan heads to one of his mother’s pet charities: Better the Second Time Around Rescue Ranch. With his family name and charm, he has the staff eating out of his hand in no time—except for one man. Russ has never been handed anything, and he resents the spoiled rich brat using the ranch to live out a fantasy. Though Jordan is determined to prove himself to Russ through hard work, family and old wounds complicate matters. Will Jordan realize that what he sees as an escape is real life for most people? And can Russ accept that Jordan can grow—and that he wants him?
Review: Jordan Thorndike, of the Virginia Thorndikes, arrives at B STAR (Better the Second Time Around Rescue) after his coming out to his parents didn’t end happily. Jordan has good memories of the farm and he thinks it will help him this time as well. Russ Niles, foreman and right-hand man of B STAR, isn’t exactly impressed with the idea of (what he thinks as) a spoiled rich brat slumming at the farm.
This is the second book that I read in the span of several days that deals with a character coming to an animal-rescue ranch (the first one was “Whisper” by Garrett Leigh). I enjoyed it as well, although I did get frustrated with one of the characters near the end.
I really liked the way that Jordan was determined to wear Russ down. Russ has his own judgment towards rich boys like Jordan, so Jordan wants to prove him wrong. It always amuses me when the younger man is able to do that during the ‘courtship’.
One thing I also liked about Jordan – there’s almost a two-decade age-gap between him and Russ, and I liked that Jordan kind of stayed true to his age. I mean, more often in romance with age gap, the younger one will have an ‘old soul’. Not so much here, though. Jordan admits that ‘adulting’ is hard, and he might not have much to offer in this relationship, but he wants to ‘get’ there despite his mess. I liked that spirit.
Now Russ … well, he’s the one that frustrated me at times, mostly his prejudice against Jordan. And near the end, Russ also acted a bit wishy-washy when his ex came back to town. I wasn’t happy with Russ at that point *pout*.
Overall, I personally think that this is another good read from McAllister.
Overall Impression: I really liked it!
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in return for a fair and honest review.*