Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK
Cover: Cover Me, Darling
Length: 75,000 words
Wilmington Breakers Series
Down By Contact (Book #1) Amazon US | Amazon UK
Nixon Cross isn’t wired to share his life with anyone. He’d considered a relationship once, but after the one man patient enough to put up with all his quirks shut him down, he committed all of his energy to football and helping his players. Now, one of his players need more help than Nixon can provide and his former flame is the one man who will know what to do.
Retired NAFL player Lincoln Sims had no choice but to stay in the closet; he was a professional athlete at a time when it was impossible to be honest about his sexuality. After retiring, he confessed his secret to his wife and son because he was tired of living a lie. Now, he’s ready to live his life. Nixon Cross is the man he left behind but could never forget.
Can these men find a way to recover from their false start years earlier?
Sloan Johnson is a big city girl trapped in a country girl’s life. While she longs for the hustle and bustle of New York City or Las Vegas, she hasn’t yet figured out how to sit on the deck with her morning coffee, watching the deer and wild turkeys in the fields while surrounded by concrete and glass.
When she was three, her parents received their first call from the principal asking them to pick her up from school. Apparently, if you aren’t enrolled, you can’t attend classes, even in Kindergarten. The next week, she was in preschool and started plotting her first story soon after.
Later in life, her parents needed to do something to help their socially awkward, uncoordinated child come out of her shell and figured there was no better place than a bar on Wednesday nights. It’s a good thing they did because this is where she found her love of reading and writing. Who needs socialization when you can sit alone in your bedroom with a good book?
Now, Sloan is a tattooed mom with a mohawk and two kids. She’s been kicked out of the PTA in two school districts and is no longer asked to help with fundraisers because she’s been known to lose herself with a good book and forget she has somewhere to be.
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Quite the thought-provoking story. One that brings out a somewhat controversial subject.
Through Ms. Johnson's excellent story and compelling characters we are taking into the world of college and professional sports, and what it's like to be gay and in the closet, both current and retired players. Not just the players, but the coaching staff as well.
We follow the characters and they make the tough choice, whether to come out of the closet or stay safely inside it. What would the consequences be if a gay player does come out? Would he lose out on a shot for the pros? How would his teammates react? Would they refuse to protect with him against opposing players during a game?
And what about the coaching staff? What if a coach came out? Would he lose his job? Would the players refuse to follow his instructions?
Ms. Johnson tackles these questions and more with sensitivity and compassion.
The one thing I had a hard time with is sometimes not being able to determine who's speaking in the story which is told in alternating first person narrative and dialog.
All-in-all I did enjoy the story and I give it a 4½ out of five and put it on the must-read list.