REVIEW & EXCERPT: BACK PIECE by L.A. Witt

Posted April 26, 2017 by MeliMel in Book Love, Guest Posts & Reviews, Home, Meli Mel Review, Release Blitz, Reviews, Special Content & Excerpts / 0 Comments

BACK PIECE by L.A. Witt

E-Original published by Swerve

Publication Date: April 25, 2017

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Colin Spencer is a tattoo artist with a past he’d prefer to keep a secret. Actually, he has a few secrets that he’d rather people didn’t know about, which is why Colin doesn’t do commitment. But when a shy sailor approaches him at the gym, Colin finds this guy pushing all his buttons.

Growing up in a conservative family, then escaping with the Navy, Daniel Moore is an unsure virgin who feels like he can’t share his true self with anyone. Seeing Colin—and his tattoos—at the gym are the sign Daniel needs to finally get those tattoos he’s always wanted, and maybe try his hand at flirting.

As Colin and Daniel spend more time together, their awkward hesitations turn into a deep passion neither expected. But with both men harboring secrets, will their relationship be able to survive their insecurities and become something beautiful?

Back Piece by L.A. Witt is a sexy, emotional journey of two people learning to love and finding acceptance for who they really are.

♥ ♥ ♥ 3.5 STARS ♥ ♥ ♥

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“I don’t know what I did to deserve you, but I’m glad I did it.”

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Daniel is in the Navy, a choice he made in order to be away from his narrow-minded hometown and religious parents. Growing up for him was not easy, especially when he is gay, something his parents would never accept. As a result, he’s now twenty-six and still afraid to come out to his parents, even though he’s pretty much out to everyone in his work. There is still that trepidation of taking that final step for fear of losing his family for good. While he’s been out in his life far from his family, he’s been unable to have an actual relationship with a man. Which means he is still a virgin.

Colin is a sexy tattoo artist that has issues of his own. He’s been struggling with his mental illness that makes himself starve for fear of gaining weight. He has image issues but he is now at a place where he is quite confident himself. However, those demons never cease to give him moments of insecurity.

Daniel and Colin meet when they are both at the gym. Colin is unsure if Daniel is interested in him but after noticing that he checks him out, he knows he is. Daniel can’t believe he’s actually talking to this hot guy. He is very inexperienced but hopes between them lead to more. Because of the abuse Colin had suffered in the past, he now doesn’t do relationships. Daniel is alright with that. This is a no strings attached situation and they both are going to make the best out of it.

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“I can’t imagine anything that would keep me from wanting to be with you.”

“Then you understand how I feel about you.”

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I really enjoyed the beginning of this story. I loved the steam and the connection between these two. I liked that despite these two not being perfect, they really worked so well together. I thought Daniel was a really cute character with his inexperience. Watching Daniel discover his sexual side was great. Colin was so flawed but he was such a beautiful character. I loved how he supported Daniel and how patient and caring he was towards him. I also loved the fact that these two talked a lot and were able to avoid unnecessary angst for the most part.

While I enjoyed the steam in this book, I did find it to become a little too repetitive at times. I would have liked more of a story and to have the sex toned down a tad bit. There was so much going on with Colin that I was waiting to see how Daniel could support him like Colin was doing for him. However, I never really got to see Daniel encourage Colin to eat so he could stay healthy or just do something to help him towards a healthier path. I also would have liked a little bit more in the ending because it did feel a little bit abrupt to me. I feel like there is still so much more for them to work on that we didn’t get to see. I think maybe we could have gotten to see their relationship grow as well as character growth if some of the sex scenes and tattoo talk were cut out. Despite all this, I did like the book. I just wish I could have loved it more. Still a pretty good read with loads of steam.

Outside, some of the guys from the gym were milling around in the parking lot, so Colin took Daniel around the back of the building where they’d have some privacy. There he stopped and faced him, fighting the urge to fidget nervously. “So, how’s the tattoo healing?”

“Good. Good.” Daniel shifted his weight. “It’s still kinda itchy, but it’s getting better.”

Colin grimaced sympathetically. “That’s the worst part. The pain I can deal with, but the itching sucks. You’re not scratching it, are you?”

“No, of course not.”

Their eyes met, and they both smiled, but quickly looked away. Awkwardness didn’t even have to set in—it was already present and accounted for.

After a moment, Colin raked a hand through his hair. “Look, things went really fast the other night, and I’m sorry. I mean, maybe—”

“No. No.” Daniel shook his head. “You didn’t do anything wrong. I just kind of freaked out.”

“But . . . why?” Colin struggled to hold his gaze. “Did I make you nervous?”

“No, you didn’t. But what we were doing . . . yeah. It did. Kinda.” He paused. “Okay, a lot.”

“So, how is that not me making you nervous?”

Color bloomed in Daniel’s cheeks, but blushing wasn’t as cute this time. He seemed genuinely uncomfortable and embarrassed, and Colin’s stomach turned with guilt over putting him in this position.

Daniel took a breath and met his gaze again. “The thing is, that was . . .” He scratched the back of his neck and added a barely audible, “My first time.”

“Your . . .” Colin blinked. “Are you serious?”

Daniel was bright red now, and nodded. “Yeah. I mean, I made out with a guy while I was on cruise, but otherwise . . .” He laughed uneasily. “I’m a virgin.”

Colin stared at him. “Really?”

“Wasn’t it obvious?”

“Not from the way you kissed, no.”

Daniel gave a soft, self-conscious laugh. “Beginner’s luck, I guess.”

“Something like that.”

Daniel moistened his lips. “So it wasn’t that I didn’t want to do anything the other night. I did. And it was . . .” He laughed again and looked at Colin. “It was amazing. I know I took off and all, but it was fucking . . .” He whistled, shaking his head.

Colin smiled. “Good. I was worried I’d maybe gone too fast. Pushed you too far.”

“No. It wasn’t your fault. I mean, I liked it. A lot. And I definitely want it. More. More of it. I just . . . I . . .” He pinched the bridge of his nose, pausing as if trying to collect his thoughts. “Okay, the reason I freaked out is afterward, I thought you’d want me to reciprocate. And I . . .” He dropped his hand and stared at the ground between them. “Man, I don’t have a fucking clue what I’m doing. I guess I was scared you’d be disappointed.”

“Disappointed?” Colin shook his head. “No, not at all.”

“Yeah.” Daniel laughed humorlessly. “That’s because I left before I had a chance to make an ass of myself.”

“My God. Did you think . . .” Colin cautiously stepped closer. “You wouldn’t have made an ass of yourself.”

Daniel said nothing.

Colin advanced again, and now he had to be well within Daniel’s comfort zone. He halted, giving Daniel a chance to pull back if he wasn’t comfortable, and when Daniel didn’t move, Colin reached for him. He paused, glancing around to make absolutely sure they were still alone out here, and then slid a hand around Daniel’s waist, his own skin prickling with goose bumps even before Daniel’s breath hitched. “So you’re afraid you won’t be good at it, right?”

Daniel nodded, still avoiding Colin’s eyes.

“Is that the only thing stopping you?”

“Definitely.” Daniel hesitated, but finally made eye contact. “Because I really, really wanted to keep going last time.”

Colin grinned. “Is that right?”

“Mmhmm.”

“Well, my house is just over there.” He nodded past Daniel. “Five minute walk, and my brother works nights, so we’ll have it to ourselves.” He lifted his eyebrows. “You want to?”

Daniel gulped. Then he whispered, “Yes, please.”

L.A. Witt is a M/M romance writer who has finally been released from the purgatorial corn maze of Omaha, Nebraska, and now spends her time on the southwestern coast of Spain. In between wondering how she didn’t lose her mind in Omaha, she explores the country with her husband, several clairvoyant hamsters, and an ever-growing herd of rabid plot bunnies.

Website: www.gallagherwitt.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/AuthorLAWitt

Twitter: @GallagherWitt

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