Title: Stripped Bare
Author: Susan Mac Nicol
Release Date: July 22nd 2013
Age Group: Adult
Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance
After two years, Matthew Langer is still getting over the death of a loved one. He’s steered clear of serious relationships, but when he meets the irascible, dirty mouthed and tempestuous Shane Templar that decision has never been harder. Shane is sexy, warm and funny, and Matthew finds himself trying like hell not to care about him. Especially when Shane, with his quick wit and hacking skills, is quick to stand up for justice and avenge wrongs. Then Shane strikes at the wrong target, and Matthew realises just how far gone he already is. At the threat of losing for good yet another man who’s broken through his armour, Matthew finds his heart stripped bare. He must face the demons of his soul or a future without love.
When I realised last week that I had Stripped Bare, Susan Mac Nicol’s first novel, still unread on my Kindle, I mentally slapped myself! Since devouring Saving Alexander, I have been a huge fan of hers and credit her as one of the authors who introduced me to the M/M romance genre.
As with her other novels, in Stripped Bare Susan Mac Nicol creates two main characters who are strong, sexy, opinionated and totally adorable! So much so, that both Shane Templar and Matthew Langer have their own Facebook pages!
Both these men have issues which prevent them from totally committing to each other and Susan Mac Nicol never allows us to look at their relationship through rose-coloured glasses. She very honestly reveals their flaws and the frequent bickering between them infuriates us!
Yet the story extends beyond the intensity and passion between Matthew and Shane as they step in to defend their friend, David, against his powerful, but homophobic father. In protecting David, we see the cunning lawyer side of Matthew, whereas Shane’s growling lion emerges! These traits just emphasise the sexiness of both men, but the consequences of their actions are more dangerous than anyone could have predicted.
In Stripped Bare Susan Mac Nicol does an amazing job of creating a beautiful romance. Matthew and Shane’s relationship is definitely explosive, in terms of their temperaments and love-making, and despite the stresses of outside influences their HEA is welcome. Yes, this was Susan Mac Nicol’s debut and I have read it 18 months after its release, but as far as I am concerned my respect and fangirl adoration for her has only increased. Sheer brilliance!