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The Hidden Life by Erin Noelle
Genres: M/M Romance
I had a hidden life.
To everyone on the outside, I was Seth Andrews, an easy-going, fun-loving rowing coach, best friend to Colin Cassidy – the superstar quarterback of the New England Patriots, and infamous playboy.
To anyone looking in, my life was what others only dreamed of. I had the posh apartment, luxury car, and designer threads to prove it.
But what happens when the life you lead isn’t the life your heart wants? What it needs?
How long can you live your public life when the one that really makes you happy is the hidden one?
***NOTE TO READER: This is a supplemental novella to the full-length novel, The Perfect Life, and should not be read as a standalone.***
Are you ready to get Seth’s side of the story from The Perfect Life???
A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Keith Milano Memorial Fund to help raise awareness for mental health illnesses.
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This was a quick novella that was an accompaniment to The Perfect Life. If you read that book then you have already met Seth and maybe, like me, you wanted to know more of his side of the story. This whole book really showed how wonderful Seth truly was. Falling in love with your best friend is never easy. Add in that person is busy living the American dream while you are on the side lines at best a dirty secret at worst can break a person.
I loved how when enough was enough for Seth he finally drew the proverbial line in the sand and then stood his ground. Hearings Seth side as everything happens just really completes things for me. We already know what is going to happen but until now we don’t get inside of Seth’s head. He simply loved Colin and made no excuses for that.
But now, if something had happened to him… my throat began to close as I waited for her to answer.
“He’s okay, he’s okay. Don’t freak. It’s not life-threatening, but he thinks it’s a pretty serious injury to his shoulder and arm,” she quickly clarified, as my body slumped against the wall, sliding all the way down until I was sitting on the floor.
Air flow returned to my lungs as my heart began to beat again while she went on to explain he’d dislocated his shoulder in a game of pick-up basketball with some kids. As she spoke and the fear and concern gradually dissipated, anger and resentment flared inside of me and I cut her off, bitterness dripping from my tongue.
“Monroe, I don’t mean to be rude,” which I truly didn’t, at least not to her, “but I’m not sure why you’re calling me right now. I feel really terrible this has happened, because I honestly want the absolute best for him, but something like this doesn’t concern me anymore. I told you a while back at the game that I’m moving on. I can’t continue to fall back into something I know is going nowhere, and that’s exactly where Colin and I are headed as long as he wants to continue living a lie.”
She didn’t need to know that my “moving on” was more like a “stalling out.” Monroe wouldn’t judge me for my actions, but that didn’t mean I wanted her to know I was bed-hopping my way across New England.
“But… but he’s sorry,” she contended, “and you know he lov—”
“Did he ask me to come?” I interrupted her again. “Does he want me to be by his side to support him as his lover? As his boyfriend?”
Blowing out a frustrated sigh, she answered, “No, but—”
“But nothing, Roe,” I urged, sick of her defending him. “I’m tired of being his dirty secret. I deserve more, just like you do.”
She didn’t say anything right away, and I wanted to ask if anything had come of the whole Oliver thing, but didn’t think it was the right time.
“I understand. Sorry I woke you up,” she finally whispered.
“No need to apologize, baby girl,” I assured her softly, reminding myself there was no reason to be upset with her. “If you need me, call any time. You’re still my number one girl.”
“‘Kay, I will.”
“Bye, Roe. I love you.”
“I love you, too. Bye, Seth.”
I hung up the phone, but didn’t move. Closing my eyes, I tried to clear the onslaught of emotions warring inside of me, unsure if I was doing the right thing by not going to see him. I knew I was being a dick, but dammit, I was still pissed. After agreeing to give him another chance to make things work with the two of us, we had spent a couple of amazing weeks together. I really thought we were back on track… then all to have it ripped right out from under me. How could he be so thoughtless? So self-centered?
Clinging to my anger ensured that I didn’t fall back into his arms. After over seven years, it was time I stood up for what I wanted. Things that were important to me. But I knew if I saw him, there was a good chance he’d draw me back in. My brain was no match for the needs and desires of my heart and body. Not yet at least. I needed as much time as possible to build up my defenses to resist him. Like maybe forever.
Unfortunately, forever was right around the corner.
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