Lazlo Maguire doesn't do relationships - he does transactions. Six months of the year, he's an expensive rent boy in Manhattan, and he moves so fast that settling down could not, would not, ever enter his mind...except for once. He meets Britton Lassiter, man to man, not as hustler and mark, and it's too good to be true when the lawyer wants to keep Lazlo, even if he has to share him with the job.
But Lazlo has his reasons to walk away from the man he's grown to love. The other six months of the year, he is laid-back Laz, a shopkeeper in the sleepy coastal town of Mangrove, Florida, where the artist he never allows himself to be in the Big Apple shines through. He lives for his time by the ocean, the place he hides his secrets and nurses his broken heart.
Then fate intervenes, and Laz gets the surprise of his life when he spies Britton in Mangrove - but it's not meant to be...not until Britton sees the change in him and wants to be a part of Laz's new life so that every evening can be easy...together. Hopefully the secrets that tore them apart won't come back to haunt them.
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Greg Tremblay delivers a solid performance.
I'm so happy - why? Because I loved this installment in the Mangrove Stories series! Be advised - in my fangirling praise about to take place there may be some spoilers.
There is so much depth to the Lazlo Maguire character that melted my stony little heart.
When Lazlo meets Britton Lassiter at a party he knows he's met the man who will make him whole. It's even better that Britton accepts his life and doesn't make him feel less for it.
I was not a romantic. All that had been fucked out of me years ago as I’d allowed myself to be used for money, sometimes cruelly, sometimes painfully. But when Britton kissed me, whenever he kissed me, I felt like it was the first time and I was sparkly, shiny, and new. The difference was, I was a man, not a boy, on the receiving end.
Yes, Laz is a rent boy half the year, but that is just so he can take care of his mother and little sister. He's been doing it since his mother turned him out for tricks when he was fifteen. So when Britton asks Lazlo to give up his job and be with him only, Lazlo says no, but Britton doesn't allow him to explain why. It's just that Lazlo wouldn't give up his rent boy life for Britton because that, to him, would have been the height of selfishness, to do it for his own happiness at the expense of his mother and sister.
I coughed. “Well, see, back when I was younger, like fifteen, sixteen, my mom had me—” I put my hands over Katie’s ears. “—turn tricks to support her ’cause she was sick, but not sick enough for us to get welfare or nothin’, but—”
Britton is horrified when he learns of the reasons why Laz was selling himself. But all the pieces finally fall into place for him. (spoiler removed)
I loved this. I loved the feels, the sexy times, the interactions with all the characters we've gotten to know through the other stories...I just loved it all! Mary, you got me again! Right in the heart!
Greg Tremblay delivers a solid performance once again. Fans of his audio work on the series will not be disappointed, and if you haven't picked up one the audio for the Mangrove series, I highly recommend the audio - it just elevates the stories wonderfully.
Hysterical, sexy and fun.
Any of the books in this series.
Lazlo. He's had a shit life and when something better, something good, is standing right in front of him he is afraid to grab it. He did though, and it was such a fun ride.
Lazlo Maguire's mother put her son out on the streets turning tricks when he was barely a teenager, making him the financial supporter of her and his sister. Several years later Laz is splitting his time between that life, and his life in Mangrove. He has no regrets, well, only one... walking away from Britton Lassiter. The two met in the city when Laz was doing his six months with clients, making the big bucks so mama could sit her worthless ass at home on the couch and drink herself into oblivion. Anywho, so when Britton shows up in Mangrove, Laz thinks he is getting a second chance. Until he's slapped with a restraining order. Britton is still smarting over what he assumed was Lazlo choosing that life over him, and Lazlo is trying to figure out how to get back in Britton's good graces. Both of them have to rethink all their priorities when Lazlo gets the surprise of his life.
If you are in the mood for a fun, hysterical, series of short stories, that are all set in the same town around this close knit group of friends. Stories that have a lot of content for so few pages. Moonlight, romance, side splitting family dinners... then this series is a must. Anytime I want to smile and listen to a well written story with fantastic narration, it would be the Mangrove Stories. Mary Calmes and Greg Tremblay make a dashing couple, him bringing her words to life. Fans of the series will recognize both characters from previous books, they'll even remember the encounter that spawned the restraining order. Britton does tend to overreact a bit, ya know. I loved how he and Laz looked past their own personal issues and concentrated on what was important.
Definitely a must listen series. Seriously, listen! Trembaly is absolutely splendid voicing all these different characters. And from one book to the next the group of characters grows, but they all carry their voices so you always know who's speaking. One of my very favorite go to series when I need to laugh, smile or just say "awwwwwww"!
- Tams (TTC Books and more)