#BlogTour —A Worthy Man (The Men of Halfway House) #5 by Jaime Reese + Giveaway
Title: A Worthy Man
Series: Men of Halfway House #5
Author: Jaime Reese
Genre: M/M Romance
Release: May 2, 2017
Photographer: Eric McKinney of 6:12 Photography
A story of two men and the boundless love that forever changed them.
Vannguard Shaw has spent the last ten years serving a life sentence and adjusting to the ache of solitude. He accepts his fate, a sacrifice for the only man he ever loved and the one person who saw beyond his rough edges.
Drayton grew up with a trust fund and pre-planned future, but an unexpected encounter one night forces him to abandon everything and start from scratch. He is now a self-made man and developer of one of the most sought after electric exotic automobiles in the world with a fortune greater than that of his birthright. Yet, he’d surrender it all—again—for the only man who’s still ever-present in his heart.
After a decade and entirely too much distance between them, Vann is suddenly released back into a world that has been nothing but cruel. Drayton never lost hope they would once again reunite and pick up where they left off, but Vann’s stubborn nature and repeated encounters with a heartbreaking world prove to be a challenge.
Vann needs to tap into his fighting spirit’s reservoir of strength and hope life doesn’t punish him for taking a chance. Only then will he realize his own value and feel worthy enough to finally have Drayton’s heart. And their chance at forever.
* Although part of a series, this full-length novel can be read as a stand-alone. *
Word count: 124K
“C’mon,” Drayton said, tugging Vann by the hand. After breakfast and a countertop quickie, they had immediately returned to the bedroom and had been hibernating there since. He had no objection to spending all day in bed, but he had a surprise for Vann and couldn’t stand waiting any longer. “I want to show you the rest of the house.”
“But I like the bedroom.”
Drayton chuckled, pulling him up with more force. “We can come back after.”
“Fine,” Vann grumbled, finally sitting up on the bed with a dramatic pout.
“You’re cute when you don’t get your way.”
“Cute enough to stay in bed?” He waggled his eyebrows and petted the bed. “It’s really soft.”
Drayton leaned in and gave Vann a chaste kiss, jerking back quickly to avoid his grasp.
Vann’s laughter filled the room. “Damn. You’re still super-fast.” He reluctantly stood and stretched his arms over his head.
Drayton’s lips parted, enjoying the flex of muscles.
“Like what you see?” Vann asked, delivering a cocky grin as he seductively licked his lower lip. “Let’s get back in bed—”
Drayton threw his head back and laughed. “You’re still persistent as hell. C’mon. I want to show you something.”
“I want to show you something too.”
“This is important.” Drayton crossed his arms. “We can skim the other rooms but there’s one that’s special. It’s…yours.”
Vann sobered. “You’ve given me enough to cover every event for the rest of my life and then some. I don’t want—”
“It’s also for me. I’ll watch you while you use the room.”
“Hmm.” Vann pursed his lips. “Okay, you’ve got my attention.”
After a little more bargaining, Drayton finally lured Vann out of the bedroom and down the hallway. He opened the door to his office and stepped inside. “This is the room I’m usually in when I’m here.”
He chuckled as they exited the office. They walked down the hall to the room he’d had converted into a gym.
“Damn, this is nice.” Vann checked the different weight options and looked at each of the machines.
“You’ve got everything here for all types of routines. And if you don’t like the view, you’ve got a TV.”
“The view’s beautiful.”
“Whatever we need to change out or add, we’ve still got space. I do a lot of thinking while I’m on the treadmill, so we’re not getting rid of that.”
Vann chuckled. “Okay.” He walked over to Drayton and leaned in for a slow kiss.
“Mmm. What was that for?”
“Is this the room I’ll use while you watch me? I promise I’ll make you sweat too.”
Another beautiful romance that will fill your heart with so much joy!
A Worthy Man is such a fitting title for Van and Dray's story. Ten years Vann has been in prison, alone, away from Dray, hoping, but barely hanging on. Ten years Dray has been climbing the ladder of success, alone, waiting on Vann to join him, knowing that he would—one day—be by his side. Never giving up on his dream, their dream, of building their vision together.
The only contact Vann has with Dray is through letters he gets on a weekly basis but he doesn't return any of them. He doesn't allow Dray to visit him or phone. He explains his reasoning in one letter at the beginning of his sentence and to say it was heartbreaking would be an understatement.
However, the determination and resolve only strengthened inside Dray to do everything in his power to achieve success for both he and Vann and work on getting Vann out of prison.
Vann has a big adjustment to outside life after living in a cell for ten years but with the help of Julian and Matt at the Halfway House, and Dray calling and stopping by to visit, he starts making headway but he suffers from PTSD so it's going to take some time to readjust.
The absolute most beautiful aspect of this book was the love between these two men. Seventeen years they have been together... apart of the other. Vann feels unworthy of Dray's love after being gone for so long but Dray shows him how wrong he is.
I loved watching Vann find his comfort zone working for Dray in the mail room and meeting the employees and how they all loved him. I loved how his confidence grew each day and he became stronger, emotionally and mentally. When he makes his stand against Sean, I was smiling so big my jaws were hurting but I was so happy for him. I, literally, could visualize the scene taking place and could feel the pride in Dray's chest as his man—finally—owns his place.
Gah! Such a proud moment and so hug worthy!
A Worthy Man is about second chances, personal redemption, and believing in hope.
Drayton never gave up on their love, never doubted their love or that their time would come when they would stand together as partners and lovers. He believed enough for both of them allowing Vann time to believe in himself and in each other.
A highly recommended wonderful addition to the series.
Jaime Reese is the alter ego of an artist who loves the creative process of writing, just not about herself. Fiction is far more interesting. She has a weakness for broken, misunderstood heroes and feels everyone deserves a chance at love and life. An avid fan of a happy ending, she believes those endings acquired with a little difficulty are more cherished.
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