M/M Rock Band Romance
Inevitably, Shane had to cut the apron strings. Nick reacts by crashing his viper into Saks’ window, almost killing himself and Dre, band member and friend. A court order forces Nick to a Rehab program. There he meets nutritionist Luka Novak, gentle but tough gay man, who is not impressed with Nick’s rock star status but with the man he discovers hidden under the surface of fame.
The Luckiest, 2nd installment in the Lucky Moon series by authors, M.J. O’Shea and Piper Vaughn, focuses on Nicky Ventura, the egotistical, self-centered bassist to the Luck Band and brother to lead singer, Shane Ventura.
The authors did a fantastic job developing well-rounded characterizations as I feel this aspect of storytelling was missing in Moonlight Becomes You. In this installment we get a broader sense of the character, delve deeper in the emotional landscape of Nick Ventura. I was completely engaged in reading the story, doing an internal debate on whether I liked him or not.
What I love about this installment is how the story strips Nicky of all of his devices, drugs, alcohol, groupies, and fans, down to his bare soul. Lays him out flat, and leaves him floundering in a sea of bleak white walls to stand alone for the first time ever. Shane is off with his husband, Jesse. Nick losing Shane is losing a mother, a father, and a brother. A court-ordered Rehab program is just the right place for Nicky.
With newly found clarity and lucidity, Nick rides the waves of emotional upheavals. He brings his chip on the shoulder attitude with him, looking down at the people in group therapy. The questionnaire he completes for the therapist was a riot. The answers are hilarious and so sad, and highlight how much Nicky depends on Shane.
“What do you do even though it upsets your lover? Brother. Party too much, I guess. He’s always with Jesse now anyway. What the fuck does it matter what I do?
If someone was going to meet your lover for the first time, what one thing would they need to know? He’s a punk-ass bitch now. He used to be so fucking cool. Fuck.”
Lucidity also reveals the side of Nicky I am sure no one is aware of except Luka, the nutritionist who befriends Nick and then falls in love with him. We learn the extent of the mother’s abandonment and the father’s abusive behavior. Under the bravado is an insecure man who is afraid of whom he is when not performing on stage. He gives what he thinks people wants by suppressing his true self.
Luka is just perfect for Nicky, tough, opinionated, willing to listen, and give support.
The relationship between these two is anything but calm. Hot one minute, cold the next, Nicky does something stupid and Luka is walking away. The readers will experience confrontations of misunderstanding, distrust, Nicky struggling with his identity as a rock star and as Luka’s lover. The sexual encounters, though, are hot and steamy; Luka is quite the sexy, dirty talker in bed.
I have to say this and it is only a matter of opinion. I do not think Nicky hates Jesse as much as he thinks; rather Nick would dislike anyone who takes Shane away from him.
The one aspect of the story I frown on. Not once does Nicky revert to using drugs and alcohol. As a long time user, this part of the story seems unrealistic.
I immensely enjoyed reading The Luckiest. Of the two books, The Luckiest is better written and the characters including the minor ones, more engaging. And, yes, I ended up liking Nicky a lot. Highly recommended.
Title: The Luckiest
Author: M.J. O’Shea and Piper Vaughn
Website: http://www.mjoshearomance.com; http://pipervaughn.com/
Publisher: Loose ID
Publication Date: March 2012
Ebook: ISBN 978-1-61118-803-5
Page Count: 296
Series: Book 2 in the Lucky Moon Series. Book 1 – Moonlight Becomes You