ARC, Book Review, Books

Break Down – Rebecca Norinne

He knows his place on the pitch, but in life, it’s a whole other game.
All his life, Liam Donnelly looked and wondered. Could he? Would he? And then, finally, he did. But when he sampled a taste of that forbidden fruit, his whole world came crashing down, his position with Dublin Rugby right along with it. When the chance to ply his trade in Edinburgh comes along, Liam jumps at the offer, knowing it could be his best opportunity to start fresh and get back to the man he once was. But one look at Chef Lachlan MacLeod-his knowing, whisky-colored eyes, the abrasive scruff dotting his jaw, and the colorful ink lining his forearms-and Liam’s wondering all over again. Can he? Will he? His heart says no, but his body says yes. Too bad love is never that simple.

He’s conquered his own demons; can he help another man do the same?
Out and proud Chef Lachlan MacLeod has no problem with who he is, except he has a history of hooking up with bi-curious straight men. He’s vowed never to go down that path again, but when Liam Donnelly shows up in his restaurant, his eyes filled with heat and secret longing, Lachlan can’t help himself. He knows the closeted rugby player is a terrible idea, but the man calls to him in a way no one ever has before. What started as a safe way for Liam to explore his sexuality quickly morphs into something much deeper, and now Lachlan wants more. But can his heart reconcile what his head already knows-that loving the gorgeous, broken athlete might actually mean letting him go?

I’d like to thank Rebecca Norinne and Forever Valentine PR for sending me an e-arc of this book it is very much appreciated. This is the 4th book in the Dublin Rugby series it can be read as a standalone, but if like me you like to read them in order: Trying Sophie, Ruck Me, Scrumptious and then finally Break Down. I have loved each and every one of them and had high expectations for this 4th book and no surprise Rebecca Norinne exceeded them!

To start with it was an M/M if that isn’t your thing I don’t advise reading it, but if you’ve never read one then I would definitely say that you should give this book a chance. I felt like the representation was pretty much spot on in the Rugby setting.

I loved Liam, he made me laugh so much and I loved his personality, I did think at times he could be a little cocky and self-centred which as always comes back to bite him in the ass. It was part of his charm and I loved it. I really liked Lachlan, I loved how he spoke about food and how confident he was in the kitchen and with cooking. I really liked the scenes where they were at the restaurant.

Lachlan refused to go back into the closet and I really loved that about him, that he was willing to lose somebody he loved just so he could be happy with himself. I was really glad that he wasn’t willing to go back into the closet just to make Liam feel more comfortable with hiding his sexuality from people.

That being when it came to Liam dealing with his sexuality Rebecca Norinne it showed the confusion for what he felt and it was showed amazing! I felt she represented it correctly and right that when you are in that situation it is the things that are thought about. Lachlan does really well on trying to be supportive whilst Liam figures things out.

I loved seeing Declan in this story, as well as some of the other boys from the other novels. In the other books, we had the team aspect where they all knew each other where in this story Liam is getting used to a new team and at first he feels very uncomfortable and thinks they have a problem with him, although that’s just a misunderstanding. It was nice to see them come together as a team and even accept him for being gay.

What I thought was great about this novel was the fact that the discussion of gay rugby men, especially because there have been so many cases where people have been in the news saying that they didn’t feel comfortable enough to come out and that they have been maybe ostracised from the team because of their sexual orientation. Although as of recent years it has become more accepted and embraced but that doesn’t mean it made it any easier for Liam to accept it into his life. The book manages to perfectly represent the kind of confusion that Liam went for in terms of accepting his sexuality and how that would impact his life.

Rebecca Norinne’s writing was flawless, it made me feel their pain and heartbreak and happiness all at the same time. Her writing just makes me feel things and it was amazing.

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