This is a standalone Porthkennack novel.
Nathan Bridges hadn’t intended to settle down in his hometown of Porthkennack—he just ended up staying after saving the family business from ruin. The truth is, Nathan can’t stop himself from stepping in when problems arise. He’s a fixer, the man everyone turns to. But even fixers can’t solve everything.
When Nathan’s sister needs an organ transplant, it’s his stepbrother, Mack, who the family turns to as Rosie’s only potential living donor. Nathan’s curiosity about the stepbrother he’s never met turns to shock when he realises that Mack is his latest—and hottest ever—one-night stand.
Nathan and Mack agree to forget their single night together, but that’s easier said than done. When Mack moves in to Nathan’s place to recuperate after surgery, it’s not just the sexual tension between them that keeps growing. Against all the odds, and despite Mack’s wariness of intimacy, the two men grow close enough that Nathan begins to wonder what it would take to mend the rift that’s kept Mack and his father estranged for over a decade . . . and whether Mack might consider staying with Nathan in Porthkennack for good.
Chambers's painfully self-conscious second entry in Riptide's shared-universe Porthkennack series (after A Gathering Storm) mixes romance with family ties. Nathan, owner-operator of an ice cream parlor, is intensely attracted to musician Mack, the estranged son of his stepfather, former pop star Derek. The quasi-incestuous vibe is not the only potential source of reader discomfort: Nathan, as narrator, persistently body-shames himself. Mack is very much into Nathan, too, at least when Nathan is just a stranger in a club. But when Mack walks into the family home as a potential liver donor for their unwell half-sister, "it's complicated" becomes the guys' permanent status. Their medical odyssey and complex feelings about their relationships with Derek have a soundtrack: a Christmas song purportedly written by Derek, which makes the book's postholiday release a little odd. But fans of Chambers's gray-sky British settings and flat, working-class dialogue paired with volcanic feeling just below the surface won't be disappointed.