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by hmhibbit, September 7, 2016



Steady Stroke

Off Beat, Book #2

By A.M. Arthur

ISBN# 9781250105868

Author’s Website:

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Heidi

steady-stroke-off-beat-a-m-arthurLincoln West knows what it’s like to be on the top of the world, just inches from having all your dreams come true, to only have them come crashing down around your ankles.  Last year his former band XYZ had finally gotten their big break only for the band’s vehicle to be side-swiped by a drunk driver who didn’t even stop.  A couple band members nearly lost their lives, including Lincoln.  He suffered a severe head injury, he had to re-learn how to do most things we take for granted, like walking.  He still struggles with migraines and can’t even play the guitar he loves because the vibrations of the strings make him dizzy.  His dream of performing on stage ever again is dead and he doesn’t know what to do with the remainder of his life.

Lincoln and his best friend’s sister, Roxy, are staying at Trey’s beach house for the summer, but Lincoln has been unable to find a job this late in the summer.  He’s living off the hospitality of Dominic and Roxy’s family, since his own family disowned him when he came out and his dad pushed him down the stairs breaking his collarbone and giving him his first concussion long before the car wreck that stole his dreams.

Dominic and Trey have been traveling performing their own music together, the duo now known as Off Beat, named after the little club where they met.  And, when a last minute booking for the duo keeps them from coming to visit Linc as planned, he decides to get out of the house and go to Off Beat (the club).  He sees a young busboy there that peaks his interest, but ends up taking another pick-up home.  Tom ends up being a really bad idea, but he can’t get the pale eyed busboy out of his mind.  So he goes back to the club and eventually scores an official introduction from one of the bartenders.

The busboy, Emmett, is really shy and skittish but he agrees to hang out the next day.  Linc knows he has to take things slow not to scare him away.  Eventually the two give into what is growing between the two of them. And Emmett isn’t the only thing Lincoln discovers at Off Beat … he finds a possible solution to his musical problem as well …. a new instrument that could get him right back into playing.  He even has an opportunity to play a song at Unbound again with his former band mates!

But when Emmett reveals his big secret it could ruin everything they’ve built together.

I really wanted to like this book, and it was an okay read, but sadly it just didn’t keep me glued to the page the way the first book, Off Beat did!  Emmett was a hard character for me to love since he’s just too scared all the time.  He slowly improves, with the help of Lincoln, as the book progresses.

In the beginning of the book, Emmett’s cousin, Adrian, reminded me of Stiffler from the American Pie movies.  Especially when he caught Emmett and Linc making out.  It went something like this….

Adrian also miraculously stops bullying Emmett and they become cohorts of sorts.

I love Linc of course.  And I could see the big confrontation happening from a mile away.  Although I expected Adrian  to be more at fault.  It seemed a little too convenient with the video and all.  I also don’t know how all of Lincoln’s friends could forgive him so easily, considering what it cost them all.

This is another book with very graphic gay sex scenes so proceed with caution.  I’m really hoping the next book will have a plot that will be a bit more engaging than this one was.

And for those wanting to know what Lincoln’s new instrument looks like (like actual musical instrument) … here is the Qchord.


Photo credit
*OBS would like to thank the publisher for supplying a free copy of this title in exchange for an honest review*

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