Reviewed by Mandi
Welcome to Bluewater Bay! This quiet little logging town on Washington state’s Olympic Peninsula has been stagnating for decades, on the verge of ghost town status. Until a television crew moves in to film Wolf’s Landing, a hit TV show based on the wildly successful werewolf novels penned by local author Hunter Easton.
Wolf’s Landing’s success spawns everything from merchandise to movie talks, and Bluewater Bay explodes into a mecca for fans and tourists alike. The locals still aren’t quite sure what to make of all this—the town is rejuvenated, but at what cost? And the Hollywood-based production crew is out of their element in this small, mossy, seaside locale. Needless to say, sparks fly, but not every fire they set is a bad one.
This collaborative story world is brought to you by ten award-winning, bestselling LGBTQ romance authors: L.A. Witt, L.B. Gregg, Z.A. Maxfield, Aleksandr Voinov, Heidi Belleau, Rachel Haimowitz, Anne Tenino, Amy Lane, SE Jakes, and G.B. Gordon. Each contemporary romance stands alone, but all are built around the town and the people of Bluewater Bay and the Wolf’s Landing media empire. The books feature remarkable character diversity, a small town atmosphere, and behind-the-scenes Hollywood life. New titles in the series will be published every 1-3 months.
The above is from a press announcement I received from Riptide publishing. Starstruck by LA Witt is the first in this series that will feature different authors that center around the same town.
Levi has moved to Bluewater Bay because he wants out of Hollywood. Known for being a big action star, he is sick of the paparazzi and being type-cast in action roles. He now lives a very quiet life, participates in the local theater company and has become somewhat of a recluse. The fact that he is gay and in the closet has nothing to do with anything (it totally does).
Carter stars in the very popular Wolf’s Landing paranormal television show, (based on a popular book) that shoots in Bluewater Bay. It’s remarked in the story that Wolf’s Landing has brought popularity to this small town as Twilight brought fame to Forks, Washington. The producer of Wolf’s Landing has known Levi for a long time and really wants him to make a comeback on camera and star as the complex, could-be villain that will be coming up in Wolf’s Landing. She woos him and he knows this would be the perfect role for him. As he tries to decide, he visits the set and meets Carter, one of the stars. Carter has had a crush on Levi for a long time – like a big, major stalking crush. He can’t believe Levi could be joining the cast of his show. Levi knows who Carter is too, since he watches Wolf Landing. Carter is openly gay, something Levi knows. While the two of them have an attraction, Levi must decide how much of his private life he wants public.
The big theme in this book is that Levi is very much in the closet, even with his family. With Carter openly gay, Wolf’s Landing already has gay rumors swirling about it all the time. Levi is scared to be attached to that. He isn’t ready to come out. But his feelings with Carter grow stronger and stronger every day. This author really takes her time in letting these two guys get to know each other. I appreciated that. They share a love of movies, they talk…a lot. They share a kiss early but that’s all we get for a long time. The physical romance is pretty low-key in this one, but the sexual tension and angst make up for it. I also found the declaration of love at the end to be so sweet and romantic. It made me have a big smile.
I thought these two guys were pretty mature in facing their relationship fears. Levi is fifteen years older than Carter, but it was never really an issue. There is conflict because Levi is scared to come out and Carter doesn’t want a secret boyfriend, but it’s handled well by both of them. I’ll have to check out another story in this series.