Sheriff Holden Titus had organized his fresh start down to the last detail. Except for the part about the bomb that blew his plans all to hell. Now he’s running out of time, without a job, without a home, and struggling to get back on his feet. Literally. Despite the impolite rejection, Drew knows he didn’t have the wrong impression months ago when he asked the sheriff to dance, but he never expected to have Holden’s life in his hands. Literally. Thanks to some meddlesome matchmaking, the two men are now temporary housemates at the Willow Springs Ranch and Drew is determined to help Holden heal, both physically and emotionally. Even if it means he has to drag the other man kicking and screaming to physical therapy…and out of the closet. In fact, that might be kind of fun. The problem is, Holden doesn’t consider himself in the closet…but not all secrets are created equal.
My Rating: 4½/5 stars
Holden Titus finally had his life on track when his world came crashing down around him. In the blink of an eye, Holden’s life was threatened and his ability to perform the only job he had ever known and loved became an impossibility.
In the wake of his accident – and I use that word loosely – Holden is taken in by Ty and Cass, his friends from Willow Springs Ranch. Holden isn’t looking for charity but even he has to admit, his situation demands he rethink his life and Ty and Cass are offering him the opportunity to take his time and really think about what he wants for his future. While he’s thinking, Cass (and ranchers in several other states) have need of Holden’s investigative skills. Additionally, the small two-bedroom house on the Willow Springs Ranch is his for as long as he needs it. The only catch, the second bedroom is going to be occupied by the local vet, Drew Van.
Drew Van is not now nor has he ever been in the closet. Oh, make no mistake, he doesn’t flaunt his sexuality but he is open and honest about his preferences. Since the moment he met the hot cop at a gay bar, Drew has carried a torch for Holden Titus. With the recent change in his veterinary practice, Drew now works exclusively in the vicinity of the Willow Springs Ranch so bunking on-site is far easier than schlepping back into town. The added bonus? Drew gets to shack up with Holden and with any luck, press his case for a relationship.
Drew’s plan is solid but he doesn’t quite count on the stubbornness of Holden Titus. Holden is trying to settle into his new reality and cranky as hell about just about everything. He doesn’t want to do his physical therapy, he doesn’t want to be indebted to anyone, and he certainly doesn’t want to admit his feelings for Drew. Holden isn’t so much in the closet as he is trying to sort out a lot of issues no one in his immediate knows anything about. Drew is patient and the close proximity to Holden certainly helps but he is no way prepared for exactly how much he cares for Holden and how blown away he is when Holden’s secrets quite literally come walking into their lives.
The Bottom Line: Whew!!! Holden Titus is some kind of sexy and he is made all the more so by his actions throughout this read. Holden had so much to deal with prior to his “accident” and he was on the road to a happy life when it all went to hell in a handbasket. Though he is reluctant to admit it, at first, Holden needs Drew in his life and it isn’t until he loses Drew that Holden realizes how much he needs the man. Drew is kind, caring, intelligent, and just as stubborn as Holden but in the moment when Holden needs him most, Drew freaks out and leaves. At the heart of this story is the formation of a family. Drew and Holden are so good together but extenuating circumstances in Holden’s life make the road to an HEA extremely difficult. Those extenuating circumstances make Hold Tight an even more interesting and dramatic read which makes the eventual HEA all the more satisfying. In fact, I found Hold Tight even more enjoyable than Ty Hard and have high hopes for the rest of the books in the series.