Also by this author: All of You, Two of Hearts, The Darkest Flame, Three Sacred Words, Touch the Sky, The Deepest Blue, The Hardest Fall, Twelve Truths and a Lie
Series: Between Breaths #5
Also in this series: All of You
Published by InterMix on April 21, 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, M/M Romance
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From the author of All of You and Before You Break comes a new Between Breaths romance about the silent, inked up skateboarder and the tattoo artist who unravels him piece by piece…
Tattoo artist Cory Easton has worked long enough at Raw Ink to know, just by looking at a dude, what his body art reveals, what makes him tick, what even makes him scared. Until he meets the quiet and remote Jude York—so unreadable, so unreachable, and so unlike anyone else, he can’t help but arouse Cory’s curiosity.
As captivating and complex as his ink, Jude is a mystery—and Cory’s falling fast and hard under his spell. Against his better judgment to steer clear.
The rumors of Jude’s past overshadow him—whispers of prison and an unmentionable secret that’s kept him in the protective shadows of a local motorcycle club. As Cory probes deeper, he wonders how much he really wants to know. Especially since Jude has awakened something inside him that has been buried too long—and has him feeling completely alive for the first time in forever…
Erin: Christina Lee’s books are always passionate, well-written, and full of witty dialogue and interesting characters and her newest book, There You Stand is no different. It is book Book 5 of her fantastic Between Breaths series, but can absolutely be read as a stand-alone. It’s also her first foray into branching out in the M/M world and I’m here to tell you she knocked this one out of the park!
It’s no secret that I love M/M, it’s what I predominately choose to read, and I am so impressed with Christina’s portrayal of Cory and Jude. I’ve read all the books in this series and for anyone who has loved the other books and might be afraid to try M/M, I’m begging you to give this one a chance. She does a wonderful job building their relationship in a way that feels natural and authentic. I loved the slow burn in this one—the UST is off the charts intense—and since I’m a HUGE sucker for friends to lovers, I really enjoyed that aspect, too.
Cory Easton is a tattoo artist at Raw Ink and though he has popped up briefly in the preceding books, we didn’t get to know very much about him. Now we get to and he’s fabulous. A talented, calm guy completely devoted to his grandmother—his only living relative—and his art and his friends and even the dog he inherited from his ex-boyfriend. I liked Cory, a lot, and boy does he ever like the intriguing, mysterious Jude York.
Let’s talk about Jude for a moment shall we? Cory has seen Jude around, especially in the skate park where Jude can be found on his skateboard doing tricks. There are rumors swirling about Jude, and Cory is completely captivated by the enigmatic skater that appears out of nowhere and is a man of very few words. But when he speaks? It’s with a British accent that totally made me do a little squee. I mean, a bad boy skater that has an accent? Yes. Please.
Things heat up between the two when Jude enters Raw Ink and asks Cory to tattoo him. A friendship develops and it’s in those inking sessions that Jude begins to open up and Cory begins to understand the mystery that surrounds Jude. They share secrets and the pain in both of their pasts. I liked their interactions and while there weren’t a ton of steamy scenes in the book (which in this case makes total sense for the characters and the story and was actually pretty refreshing) I enjoyed the ones that were.
A whimper escaped his mouth as I kissed the center of his back where most of that tree had already begun to heal. When my fingers trailed down his spine to his narrow waist and then over the firm globe of his ass, he moaned. I swallowed hard against the raw ache in my throat.
“True of false,” I whispered into his ear. “You want me to touch you.”
He trembled. “More than anything.”
I moved back around to face him. “Then let me.”
He unexpectedly grabbed my hand and gently placed my palm against his chest, the area right above his heart. His pulse was going wild and it was if he was showing me exactly what I was doing to him.
All in all, this was a solid book. There were a few issues though. I found the link to the motorcycle club a bit unbelievable and forced. In some places the writing was a tad awkward but overall, I enjoyed the hell out of this. Jude and Cory are pretty fantastic. If you like new adult books, this one is a winner. Low angst, sweet and funny in places, sexy in others, and just enough drama to keep you interested. Christina Lee did not disappoint and I sure hope she writes more M/M because she sure knows how to write some swoony boys!