Tuesday, February 17, 2015

A Restored Man by Jaime Reese: #Review #Interview #Giveaway @Jaime_Reese

A Restored Man
(The Men of Halfway House, Book 3)
by Jaime Reese

Genres: M/M, Contemporary, Romance
Cole Renzo thinks his greatest challenge is to behave for the remainder of his term at Halfway House. Until he meets his new boss, Ty Calloway, a man who ticks off every box on Cole's list of interests.

A sought-after restorer and customizer of exotic and collectible cars, Ty had enough confidence to command what he wanted in life, until one fateful night changed everything. Almost two years later, he’s slowly rebuilding his life with great control. He's defied the odds and works tirelessly to be the man he once was—but he still feels broken.

Cole’s candor and unfiltered personality awaken Ty’s barely-remembered desire to greet each new day with a smile, while Ty’s unwavering acceptance of Cole’s quirks and brash humor makes Cole feel as if he fits in for the first time in far too long. When a nemesis threatens Ty’s personal restoration and the things he holds dear, Cole is determined to protect their relationship, even if that means sacrificing everything he’s worked so hard to achieve.

But Ty will have to let his guard down, surrender control, and admit he needs Cole first, even if that puts himself at risk of breaking beyond repair.
Carly: Today I'm pleased to be welcoming the talented Jaime Reese, who has graciously agreed to answer a few questions about A Restored Man! 

Boys and their toys. Who hasn’t heard that phrase? I loved how you incorporated so many sexy cars into this story. Why cars? Where did the inspiration come from?

Jaime: Thanks for inviting me for an interview! The hubby and I love cars. We go to cruise-ins, car shows, and have attended private car shows and test drives on a few occasions. We can spend hours watching a Mecum Auction on TV or watching Overhaulin’ with Chip Foose customizing and restoring cars. We usually stalk car model announcements and study the specs of new releases. It’s something we both love.

Along the way, we’ve met some interesting people. And the funny thing is, the shared love of cars opens them up and sheds their façade. The car clubs and cruise-ins are the events where they are themselves, open and honest. So rather than seeing the strict police officer, office executive or the shop mechanic, all you see are a bunch of friends hanging out together, being open and honest and simply enjoying their time together with a shared common interest.

Carly: Cole has his Cadillac coupe and Ty is restoring the Yenko. What do the boys have in common with their cars? Do cars really make the man?

Jaime: The cars parallel the men. :)

Cole’s Cadillac is a sleeper – a powerful, street-legal car under the hood, but externally looks as plain as the average car. In other words, they misjudge the power of the car because they are basing their opinion on the plain exterior.

Ty’s restoring a Yenko. When Cole first sees the Yenko, to the average person, it appears as a rusting heap of metal. But Cole clearly sees the underlying beauty and power of the car. The restoration of the Yenko is a parallel to the personal restoration Ty undergoes in the story. Little by little, Cole works to undercover Ty’s inner strength, and with his love and spirit, returns him to the strong man he once was.

Carly: In the end it’s not really the cars that count, it’s all about the people. It doesn’t matter if a man is fresh of the assembly line or has been lovingly restored. It’s how a he handles his experiences along the road of life that builds his character. What would you like readers to take away from the experience of reading A Restored Man?

Jaime: Be yourself, and the person who truly loves you will see past those traits you consider to be a flaw.

In the story, both Cole and Ty are a little lost. Essentially, life threw them a curveball and they had a very difficult time trying to adjust. In their quest for trying to find their place in the world, Cole was playing a part he thought others expected of him. And Ty was struggling trying to be the man he once was. Both were frustrated and in a rut, preparing themselves for failure rather than seeing how wonderful they truly were. It was only after meeting each other that they let their guard down and were honest with each other and themselves, filling the void and awakening their inner strength to be the men they could be.
"I thought those were the service bays," Cole said, thumbing over his shoulder.

"They're for the traditional shop work my techs do on a daily basis. These are my service calls. Side project I'm doing and there's no money in it for the guys so I don't really want to burden them. I figured we could work on them and, in between, we could tinker with the Yenko if you want or wrap up the last few details on the Drayton rig. I worked on most of it over the weekend but there are still a few things to finish up."

Cole stopped walking. "You'd let me work on the Yenko with you?"

Ty nodded. "Sure, why not. I've seen how picky you are with your work."

"So it's my reward for helping you with your service calls?"

Ty chuckled. "Do you do tricks too?"

Cole raised an eyebrow and half smiled. "Oh, I've got a lot of tricks I can show you." He smiled at the rush of color to Ty's cheeks, loving the way Ty always reacted to his teasing.

"You do realize you're an HR nightmare," Ty said, looking at Cole with that glimmer in his eye.

Cole's pulse raced. "HR?"

"Human Resources. Sexual harassment, all that," Ty said, trying to look serious and indifferent, but failing miserably.

Cole belly-laughed so loud it echoed in the shop. He then stilled, straightened his shoulders, and mocked a serious tone. "I could, of course, be completely professional and proper with you, Mr. Calloway, if that is your preference," he said, mimicking Matt's formal tone.

Ty turned to face him, the mock seriousness transitioning into something more genuine. "And I, of course," he said, reciprocating Cole's tone, "would be deeply disappointed."

He looked up into those brown eyes and smiled. "My army of superheroes and I would be as well." He bit back a smile and bowed.

Ty's low rumble-laugh shot straight to Cole's dick.

Cole straightened. "Admit it, you like me."

Ty raised his hand and put his thumb and index fingertips together with only a sliver of a gap between them. "Maybe a little bit."

Cole looked at Ty's fingers then glanced back at him with a huge grin on his face. "It's a start," he said before walking off to the two cars parked in the bay.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Men of Halfway House is one of my all-time favorite series. I love the hurt/comfort aspects, the strong characters, and that it's the place where everyone deserves a second chance. Ty and Cole's story has all that and more. Both men have experienced more than their fair share of judgement, as the people around them seem to continually make assumptions based on their outward appearances. Damaged by guilt and weighed down by pain, the duo discovers that, together, they just might find a way to forgive themselves and have a love worth fighting for.

Watching the characters grow and develop over the course of the story is a thing of beauty. Once again, Jaime touched me with her well developed story, detailed world building and heartfelt emotions. I absolutely adored the boys in A RESTORED MAN and am already looking forward to book four!

View all my reviews
A Better Man
(The Men of Halfway House, Book 1)

A Hunted Man
(The Men of Halfway House, Book 2)
Jaime Reese is the alter ego of an artist who loves the creative process of writing, just not about herself. Fiction is far more interesting. She has a weakness for broken, misunderstood heroes and feels everyone deserves a chance at love and life. An avid fan of a happy ending, she believes those endings acquired with a little difficulty are more cherished.


  1. Thanks so much for the great review and for hosting me today! :D

  2. Huge fan of Jaime Reese!! Looking forward to reading book 3. Thanks for the giveaway!!

  3. Thanks, aventura! I hope you enjoy the story. :)

  4. Omg all the books look good together. Im reading soon Jaime!

  5. I enjoyed the first 2 books in the series

    1. Thanks, Denise! I tried for a slightly more light-hearted tone in Cole's story (because of his personality). There’s a little angst, maybe a few tears, and hopefully, plenty of smiles and laughter. I hop you enjoy it!