cover image The Farther He Runs

The Farther He Runs

Lynda Aicher. Loveswept, $4.99 e-book (242p) ISBN 978-0-425-28514-5

Aicher delivers an emotionally nuanced and poignant tale in her third Kick contemporary (after The Deeper He Hurts). Tanner Dorsey and Finn Kelley became as close as brothers while on special-ops duty in the Marine Corps. Tanner, still on active duty, is just back from a grueling top-secret mission when he finds out a rafting accident has killed his friend Chris, a fellow Marine and partner in their extreme-sports business, Adrenaline Kick Adventures. In that same accident, Finn was seriously injured and is struggling to recover both mentally and physically—and Tanner decides he’s just the guy to help his friend do that on his five-week leave in Oregon. As Finn heals, neither man wants to destroy their long-cherished friendship, but the explosive sexual chemistry they share is unavoidable. Can they give in to the love and lust they share, or is happily ever after just a collection of empty words? Aicher’s stoic, honorable Marines are exquisitely drawn, flaws and all. Deft plotting helps the author explore the very real struggles of two men in the post–“don’t ask, don’t tell” military, and a subplot of loss adds a painful but necessary layer to the story. This is an emotion-packed, satisfying read. (Dec.)