New Beginnings (Second Chances 2) by Megs Pritchard

Title: New Beginnings Word Count: 244 pgs
Genre: Contemporary Gay Romance

Blurb: Ben Parker
After the murder of his friend and a failed suicide attempt, Ben is left grief stricken and struggling to cope with his guilt.
Living with someone he barely knows, he lashes out and eventually leaves unable to accept the positive changes in his life after spending time on the streets.
When he realises that he can’t go back to his old life, Ben returns to the new home he’s been provided, hoping Geoff will let him return.
Accepting help, Ben begins to process and come to turns with everything he’s been through and also his developing feelings for Geoff, the man he is now living with.

Geoff Foster
Having taken in a broken young man, Geoff struggles to help him and control his growing attraction. When his offers of help are thrown back in his face, Geoff is horrified when Ben walks away, leaving with no intent to return.
Geoff, never expecting to see Ben again, is shocked when he discovers that Ben wants another chance and is willing to accept his help to move forward from his past.
As their relationship develops and deepens, each discovers emotions they didn’t know they were capable of feeling. When Ben’s past comes back to haunt him and threaten what they are building together, will it break them or make them stronger?

This books contains homosexual relations, swearing and historical abuse.

My Review: Ben Parker has been living a rough life. He is a homeless prostitute who has just lost his best friend Adam to a violent death. He feels guilty for not protecting Adam from his untimely demise. Being a rent boy on the streets of Manchester is not without its dangers, but before his death Adam was taking excessive risks that could have been avoided. They usually work in pairs so one can watch the other’s back while he’s busy with a customer. Ben takes Adam’s death to heart and has attempted suicide. He was lucky enough to be found by his other friend Tom who just got out of the lifestyle.

Geoff Foster has a lot on his plate. He has recently taken over his father’s law firm where he is one of the solicitors. To top it all off, he has acquired a new houseguest. Geoff offered to help Tom and his boyfriend Seb to take care of Ben when he was released from hospital. It’s been 2 months though and Ben doesn’t seem to be getting better. Geoff thinks that he has bitten off more than he can chew and he now realizes that he doesn’t have the tools to help Ben. It is becoming clear that Ben is not only dealing with his failed suicide attempt, but also his time spent on the streets and the horrors he lived through.

Ben is in a very dark place in his mind. He is almost catatonic and refuses to eat. He just lays around wishing he was dead. He is plagued by the ghosts of his past. Ben keeps on reliving the horrific abuse both physical ,verbal and emotional that his mom and step father doled out. The main thing that’s been embedded in his brain is that he is useless and not worth the air he breathes. He is starting to believe his stepfather’s words. Especially now he thinks that he has failed Adam in letting him die.

Geoff is at his wits end and calls in the help of a professional psychiatrist. She comes in and explains the 5 stages of grief to him. She doesn’t get much out of Ben, but he does agree to see her again and she suggests a journal. Before she leaves she reminds Geoff not to push too hard with Ben. It doesn’t take long for that to happen with Ben being in such a volatile state of mind. Things go downhill fast when he is introduced to Geoff’s brother who let it slip he knows about Ben’s past. Ben is furious and feels betrayed by Geoff. He stormed out into the night and Geoff worries he has gone back to his old life. Geoff finds out he is not wrong, when he finds Ben going into a stranger’s car. Geoff muscles him away from the car and takes him back home. He gives Ben two choices: stay with him or go back to the streets. Sadly, Ben packs a bag and leaves.

Geoff is disappointed, but he knows he has to let Ben go. He understands that there is no helping someone if they don’t want it. Geoff is worried about Ben and he hardly sleeps. It isn’t until a week that Geoff comes home to the sound of the shower running. He is shocked to see Ben, but he is so relieved. According to Ben, even though he knew that staying would be his best option, he needed to go back to the streets. He felt that was what he deserved, but being homeless again was an eye opener for him. Ben knows now that he no longer wants to live like that. He hasn’t the will to fight to survive anymore on the streets. He wants to fight to live now. Ben started writing in his journal and its as if a dam has broken. It helps him to process his pain. He explains the horrors of his childhood to Geoff, the reasons that led him to living on the streets. It is clear that Ben is ready to accept the assistance and move forward.

Ben and Geoff slowly get to know each other. The attraction that has been simmering from day one, is finally revealed when Ben kisses Geoff. Geoff puts a stop to it before things get too far , there are things he needsto explain to Ben. Geoff lets him know that he would love to be in a relationship with him, but he needs Ben’s submission. Ben is wary, but Geoff explains the aspect of the BDSM lifestyle he adheres to is dominance/ submission rather than pain. Geoff gives Ben time to come to terms with the lifestyle and gives him some websites to research. Ben is nervous, but he knows deep down inside he would relish giving total control to Geoff. When he finally hands over his submission to Geoff , it is a beautiful experience. Geoff cherishes Ben and shows him that through his submission, he is actually freeing himself. It is all about Ben and his gratification.

For the first time, someone takes the time to give Ben pleasure.He is overwhelmed with Geoff’s lovemaking and the care he takes. Ben is still worried, because he is yet to reciprocate. Geoff proves to him how much he wants him the next night. All that pent up passion and dominance overflows when Geoff ravishes him. This unleashes something within Ben, causing him to be so desperate and scream for his lover. It is utter bliss for them both. They are perfectly suited.They go over a contract together outlining things that they want to try and their hard limits.

Ben knows he needs to move forward with his life in all aspects. One of the things he needs the most is closure after Adam’s death. Geoff suggests that they need to bury Adam whose body is still left unclaimed. Ben also come to the conclusion that if he wants to feel like an equal to Geoff, he needs to finish up his education so that he can pursue a career. They continue their explorations of the physical side of their Dom/sub contract. Geoff schools Ben on being the perfect submissive for him. Kinky handcuffs come in play while Ben addresses Geoff as Sir. It is such a turn on for both of them and Ben ascertain that this is what he has been missing all along.

Their relationship enters into another realm when Geoff decides he wants to introduce Ben as his partner. They go to one of Geoff’s high class work functions and Ben is remarkably nervous. It is clear how proud of him Geoff is, so that soothes his frazzled nerves a bit. That peace soon shatters when one of his former regular customer recognizes him. The man corners Ben in a bathroom and try to blackmail him into sex and Geoff into selling his business. As hard as it is for Ben, he acknowledges that he needs to trust and believe in Geoff’s love for him. They have both professed their love for each other and there will definitely be challenges. They just need to face them together and they can conquer anything. I give this my ratings of 4- lose the underwear.

Take A Chance ( Second Chances Bk.1) by Megs Pritchard

Title: Take a Chance Word Count: 225 pgs
Genre: Contemporary Gay Romance

Blurb: Can a chance encounter change your life?

Tom Carter
Kicked out at fifteen for being gay, Tom survived by selling his body on the streets. Four years later, Tom, now nineteen, doesn’t know how long he can continue living this life.
One night while out working, Tom sees a face from his past, one he had long forgotten. One he had used to fantasise about.
Seb Banks
Afraid of the reaction he will receive, Tom runs away hoping never to see him again. But Seb had other ideas.

Sebastian Banks
At twenty-five, Seb’s life is going exactly the way he had wanted. Having worked hard at University, Seb has been offered a permanent contract at a local solicitor.
While driving to a friend’s house to celebrate, Seb is shocked to find Tom, someone he hasn’t seen in years, on the streets, selling himself.
Feeling an overwhelming need to help Tom, Seb tracks him down and offers him a way out.
Is Tom willing to take a chance on Seb and accept his offer, or will his distrust of everyone from his past cause him to push Seb away?
Includes a sneak peek of book two, New Beginnings, Ben and Geoff’s story.

My Review: Tom has been existing and trying to survive on the streets of Manchester since he was 15 and his parents kicked him out. Like so many gay teenagers, he has been tossed out like yesterday’s trash by the people who were supposed to love and protect him. It’s been 4 long hard years, but through his wits and strong will Tom keeps on surviving.Tom has developed a system that gives him and his friends a modicum of security. They go out in pairs and one always looks for details of the cars that the other works.

It is on a night out that Tom recognizes someone from his past. Seb is the older brother of Tom’s former best friend. Tom is embarrassed and runs off. Seb is perplexed to see Tom and It is obvious that he is a prostitute now. Seb is out celebrating his full time position he has just secured. However, It is hard for him to enjoy his achievements, due to his worry for Tom. He can’t let it go and he goes out looking for Tom on another night. When he catches up with Tom, Seb questions him about his lifestyle choices. Tom laughs with derision telling Seb of how his parents threw him out for being gay. He also tells of how Seb’s own parents looked at him with contempt and disgust before slamming their door when he asked for their help.

When Seb confirms Tom’s story with his parents, he is dumbfounded by the vitriol and hate that they are spewing. He is sickened by their views on homosexuality and he knows he made the right decision in not owning up to his bisexuality. He finds Tom once again and tries to apologize. Tom is scared to open up past connections as he is afraid to reopen the wounds left on his soul by his past family and friends. Tom puts on a cloak of impudence that he knows will repel all of Seb’s offers of friendship.Seb is saddened by Tom’s reaction to his benevolence, but he has no choice but to let him walk away.

Seb is very persistent and he doesn’t want to leave Tom to pursue this dangerous path he is on. Tom is at an all time low and now that he’s seen Seb again, all the memories of the past and unfulfilled future dreams comes pouring in. Seb convinces Tom to come home with him for a warm bed and something to eat. It is hard for Tom to trust, but he gives in just this once. He rests peacefully that night, but as day lights he knows he can’t allow himself to get too comfortable. This is not his life. Tom leaves while Seb pleads with him not to go.

His first night back on the streets shows Tom how dangerous is the life he leads. He tries to walk away from a john who won’t take no for an answer.He is beaten, bruised and almost raped. He shows up at Seb’s who unquestionably helps to patch him up. Tom does the unthinkable by stealing from Seb’s wallet the next morning. From the moment he does it he feels physically ill, but he knows he needs to help the others get some food. Seb is disappointed, but moreover he is wrecked that Tom didn’t trust him and couldn’t be trusted himself.

Tom is waiting for Seb on his doorstep a few days later. Seb is furious, but he almost admires the strength it took to come back and apologize. Tom decides to trust in Seb’s offer to help. They have an idyllic few days where they get to know each other and Seb takes Tom shopping for some clothes amid protests.By the end of the day Tom feels almost normal, Seb makes him feel worthy. Things move from being platonic when Seb confesses that he is bisexual and Tom was his first crush.Seb goes slowly, not wanting Tom to be wary of his intentions. Tom feels precious and for the first time he receives pleasure just for himself.

As fun as it’s been Tom knows he needs to check on his housemates. He returns ,only to here that one has been missing for days. He is worried and asks for Seb’s help in searching some of the further places. He finds his friend Adam beaten and stabbed to death. He pulls away from Seb blaming himself for not being there for Adam. When his other housemate Ben points the finger and blames Tom as well, Tom regresses. What Seb finds is a drunken Tom who tries to use his body as a shield. He tries to seduce Seb treating him like a john and belittling his concerns.

Seb is upset and pushes him away. Their relationship seem to be a cycle of hurt/comfort. Tom continuously hurts Seb emotionally and Seb continues to forgive and comfort Tom. Tom shows up at Seb’s house to apologize. The dam breaks and he lets it all out. Tom rants about being soiled goods and allows himself to feel all the pain and humiliation he’s carried over the years. He cries for his friend but most of all for his fifteen year old self that never had a chance. Seb reassures Tom that he’s is not tainted or stained by his past. Seb sees him, not as a whore or a victim, but rather as a survivor. When they come together their passion ignites and it’s incendiary. Seb gives him back the power by handing over control of their pleasure to Tom. Seb opens up a new world for Tom where he is on the receiving end of pleasure for the first time.

Seb asks Tom to move in and tells him how much he loves him. To prove how serious he is , Seb calls his parents and tell them about Tom being in his life. They disown him right away, but Seb knows that Tom is definitely worth it. Before they can start settling in , Tom finds out that another friend Ben has gone missing. He goes to Seb’s work and Seb infers that Ben might have gone to the place where they found Adam’s body. Seb’s boss Geoff is very compassionate and decides to help. After they find Ben and take him to the hospital, Geoff suggests that Ben stay with him. In the meantime, Seb has asked the other two friends Matt and Luke to move in with them.They are all very skeptical, but they know this is a chance they can’t pass up.

It has been a long hard road for all these young men, but with the love of a strong man gateways are now opening up for them. Tom decides to open his heart to the one man who cared enough to pursue him , even when he didn’t want the help or believed in happily ever afters . Seb was the only one who ever looked at him without judgement. Tom gives himself over to the pleasure that Seb can provide. He experiences so many emotions, but the ones in the forefront are love and forgiveness. Love for Seb and forgiveness for himself, for all the things he believes has tainted his soul. I give this my ratings of 4- lose the underwear.