Title: False Start
Author: Janey Chapel
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Characters: Tucker Locke, Whit Jamison
Sub-Genre: Contemporary Romance
It’s Tucker Locke’s ten-year college reunion, and he doesn’t have much to show for himself. Sure, he’s a successful lawyer with a nice car and a nice apartment, but his life is empty, and Tucker knows why. A decade ago, not ready to come out of the closet, he left Whit Jamison behind.
Tucker’s spent ten years pretending to be straight—ten years thinking about his mistakes. But all the time in the world couldn’t prepare him for the reality of seeing Whit again. Whit’s taller, more mature, more attractive than ever, and every bit as out and proud as he was ten years ago. Time hasn’t changed the chemistry between them, and it looks like Tucker might get a second chance. All he has to do is brush aside the years of lies and embrace one powerful truth.
Tucker Locke knows he’s a runner. All of his life he’s been running from conflicts and anything that could disrupt his carefully made existence. Most of all, he’s run away from the most important man in his life, Whit, because he was afraid to face his homosexuality and live out and proud with his lover. Ten years later, Tucker is a successful lawyer with a nice home and car, but he’s terribly unhappy. Tucker can’t forget his first and only love, Whit, and the chance he once had to build a life with him. When Tucker is invited to his ten year reunion, Tucker decides he must go, so he can see Whit and hopefully mend fences with him. Will Tucker be able to work through his fears to gain Whit’s forgiveness and love again after all these years?
I liked this book a lot! I thought the story was smoothly told and well written. Also, the heroes, Tucker and Whit, were interesting, likeable men, and I enjoyed watching them work through their issues and fears be reunited together again. Told in alternating points of view, it was easy to get into both characters’ heads and see how each man really ticked. Even though Tucker ended his relationship with Whit quite appallingly, I found him to be a sympathetic character and empathized with his inner demons. I was glad to see him work though his issues and work towards having a fulfilling life, by being with Whit and by being true to himself. Tucker does a lot of personal growth and I liked the man he came to be.
Whit was my favorite character. His zest for life and determination to live on his own terms was something to be admired. I liked his sense of humor and loved his ability to forgive Tucker’s past behavior and give his one true love another chance with him. Both men ended up being likeable characters and I enjoyed the story they each told. I do wish the book had been longer. I ended up really liking these two characters together and would love to read more about them.
This is the first book I’ve read by Janey Chapel and it won’t be my last! I really enjoyed her descriptive style of writing and her ability to really get into her characters’ heads. False Start has the right amount of angst and romance that kept this reader interested in the lives of these two wonderful characters. I’m looking forward to reading more books written by Ms. Chapel and I hope she continues writing more about Tucker and Whit in the future.
Reviewed By: Gabbi