Hollywood Homecoming, CJ Lowe

Hollywood HomecomingRating: 3 Stars

Publisher: Spunk Books

Genre: Gay Romance

Tags: Christmas, Contemporary, First Time, OFY, Short Story

Length: 69 Pages

Reviewer: Cindi

Purchase At: Spunk Books, amazon.com

 This review is NSFW.

Blurb –

Two years ago, Evan Crane and Drake Teaghan went to high school together. Although they never spoke, both of them harbored a secret crush towards the other.

Upon graduation, Drake went off to Hollywood to seek fame and fortune while Evan stayed behind and took over his father’s thrift shop.

Now Drake has come back to his home town for Christmas. A chance meeting with Evan at the local gym sees them reunite and the feelings they had for each other are swiftly revived. They succumb to their passion but their joy is short-lived.

Now so used to the unprejudiced attitude of Hollywood, Drake finds it hard to understand why Evan is so closeted about his sexuality. Evan in turn, does not understand how Drake could have forgotten how unforgiving and narrow minded their small town can be, especially to people like them. And Drake’s about to get a stark reminder…

Review –

During high school Evan had a big crush on Drake, but figured Drake didn’t really know he existed. Evan was a bit heavy and more than a little shy around the other boy. Also, living in a small, homophobic town didn’t exactly have Evan running out of any closets, if you know what I mean. After high school graduation, Drake left town as fast as he could to go to Hollywood to seek fame and fortune. He kind of found it too when he was cast in a short-lived television series. Granted, the show didn’t last long, but it helped him pay the bills for a little while.

That’s not the only thing that helped him pay the bills while he was away. Saying more than that would be too telling, so you’ll have to read this to know what I’m referring to. Suffice it to say that it’s a secret that Drake probably should’ve shared the first night he and Evan spent together, especially if they were going to do more than a one-night-stand.

Hollywood Homecoming QuoteDrake comes home from Hollywood two years later during Christmas time. His mother, sadly, no longer knows who he is and is in a home. Her house (now his) is empty and lonely. He goes to the gym for a workout and is taking a shower next to another guy (Evan) who just finished his own workout. Being naked and soaped up when you see your old crush for the first time in a couple of years doesn’t sound like a bad thing, does it? Well, it kind of is in this case for Evan because he has no clue that the crush he had on Drake in high school was reciprocated or that Drake is even gay. Seeing the other man in the shower when Evan – still in the closet – is trying to keep from getting an erection? Yeah, well, that’s a bit awkward. Drake, however, doesn’t have that problem. He lives in Hollywood where the gay thing hasn’t been kept secret so he’s good with lusting after Evan in the shower. *grin*

Reconnecting at the gym begins a friendship of sorts that quickly turns to something more. When I say quickly I seriously mean that they were a couple – a real couple – in only a day or so. While I’m okay with insta-love on occasion, I felt that these guys went a bit fast considering that they knew next to nothing about each other. This ‘next to nothing’ thing ends up slapping Evan in the face by way of a local shopkeeper who feels the need to tell him (or should I say show him) certain things about his new love. When he discovers Drake’s secret there’s a bit of drama, but it doesn’t last long and they get back on track quickly.Hollywood Homecoming 2 Quote

This is a nice story but I had a couple of niggles with it. For one, I didn’t really feel these two guys as a couple. I’m all about stories with crushes reconnecting a little bit down the road, but I can’t say I was overly fond of Evan or Drake. Another thing that bugged me was that a majority of the story is about Evan being in the closet, wanting to stay in the closet, being scared to come out of the closet… and then Bam! He’s out and doesn’t care all that much who knows about it. All of this because of Drake. I’m glad when characters no longer have to hide who they are, but I found Evan to be very unrealistic in his about-face even if he was coming out because of someone he fell in love with. 

Otherwise a good, quick read.


This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.



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Kazza K

It does sound like a nice story but it also sounds like it probably needed a bit more length…if you pardon the pun 🙂

Nice review, Cindi, and those GIFS? Mmmm….