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How can you be twenty-five and not know you’re gay? Billy Ballew runs from that question. A high school dropout, barely able to read until he taught himself, Billy’s life is driven by his need to help support his parents as a construction worker, put his sisters through college, coach his Little League team, and not think about being a three-time loser in the engagement department. Being terrified of taking tests keeps Billy from getting the contractor’s license he so desires, and fear of his mother’s judgement blinds Billy to what could make him truly happy.
Then, in preparation for his sister’s big wedding, Billy meets Shaz—Chase Phillips—a rising star, celebrity stylist who defines the word gay. To Shaz, Billy embodies everything he’s ever wanted—stalwart, honest, brave—but even if Billy turns out to be gay, he could never endure the censure he’d get for being with a queen like Shaz. How can two men with so little in common find a way to be together? Can the Stylist of the Year end up with the Knight of Ocean Avenue?
Billy can’t find a woman who “sticks”. He’s been involved, seriously, three times and they all sort of fizzle out. One day he “rescues” a beautiful redhead from a bully only to find out he’s the stylist hired to help his sister for her wedding to a rich guy.
Chase, aka Shaz, sees the hunky Billy and falls into lust. But Billy is straight, Shaz has a boyfriend and a vision of his future and that future doesn’t include blue-collar straight boys.
When Shaz and Billy spend time together “sprucing” Billy up for potential future dates with a socialite pegged to be Billy’s next girlfriend they find a mutual attraction. When Billy ends up in the same bar as Shaz one night, the attraction goes from potential to realized and now the pair have some serious decisions to make.
I loved Billy! He was a sweet, gentle soul. His heart is so big and he is just in need of someone to recognize his diamond in the rough. Shaz was the perfect shiny foil to his understated Billy’s fabulousness. The couple had amazing chemistry and the story felt real and authentic. I totally bought in and loved every minute of it.
5 of 5 hearts