Title: RED SUNSET
Author: Rowena Sudbury
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Characters: Brad Fraser, Scott O’Doul
Sequel to Blue Moon
Finding love in the wrestling arena is unlikely, and a relationship based on the illusion of control isn’t easy. Scott O’Doul and Brad Fraser have managed both: one night under a blue moon’s light they found they meant more to each other than either expected. Their comfortable world is shattered when Brad is released, and he must head to Japan if he wants to keep wrestling. The work is exciting but lonely—six weeks seems an eternity. Once Brad and Scott reunite, they vacation at a lakeside cabin and find the miles apart have brought them closer—but they’ll need courage if illusion of control is to become the heart of love.
The first book in this series, Blue Moon, dealt with two pro-wrestlers who forged a convenient arrangement of sex, protection, and companionship—only to fall in love. As a result, in Red Sunset the two men are at a crossroads where they must define their relationship anew, or forget the whole thing. But when Brad is fired and Scott is not, it seems the choice to stay together is taken from their hands.
Brad is a small pro-wrestler to work as counter-balance to the bigger men on the circuit. Scott is one these men, but he is far from a violent macho battle machine. Scott is protective of Brad who is smaller in stature and who has had problems in the past, such as drugs and casual sex. Scott is dominant, yes, but he has a tender, caring side which he shows to no one else but his lover. Brad, on the other hand, craves pain during sex for a lot of reasons, and Scott gives him this, but always mixed with pleasure. As such, they complement each other perfectly. And the sex is super hot!
When the PCW throws Brad out in their campaign to smoke out smaller men in favor of the big muscled guys, the two men are forced into a situation where work puts them in different parts of the world. Staying together long-distance is not what either of them signed up for, so troubles lay ahead.
Rowena Sudbury has a curious plain way of writing that gets to me. We get very little insight into where these men come from, but we see right into their minds and their hearts, into their hopes and dreams. Even apart, the affection these two men show each other is palpable and present. When reading her books I always get the sense there’s more going on beneath the surface than what is shown with words. I like that a lot. The men are real, with real problems, and they struggle to find solutions to them. There are no easy resolutions here, and some things remain unsolved even at the final words. I’m hoping there will be more of Brad and Scott. Their dynamic has shifted toward balance, and I’m left wanting to know more about these two survivors.
Red Sunset is the second book in this series, and as a direct continuation to Blue Moon, I suggest reading these in order.
Reviewed By: Susan