Ex-surfer-turned-businessman Liam Mallaney moved back to Holkham, Norfolk, to mourn the loss of his husband. Grief and loneliness keep him a solitary figure, and he likes it that way. There’s no room in his broken heart for anything else.
Rentboy Zac Payne left London and most of his demons behind, but he still only knows one way to make a living. When he spots Liam in a club one night, it seems he’s found his mark. But Liam proves nicer—and their connection far deeper—than he’d bargained for.
Their arrangement quickly becomes too complicated for Zac, who has other things on his mind: namely his BFF and wayward flatmate, Jamie. Zac owes Jamie the world, and even as Jamie’s drug addiction destroys all they have, Zac won’t leave him behind.
Besides, Liam knows nothing of Zac’s home life, too caught up in his own head to think much beyond the crazy heat he and Zac share. But when trouble comes to Zac’s door, putting his life in danger, Liam must set his grief and anger aside to pick up the pieces of Zac’s shattered heart and his own.
The first thought I had when I finished Rented Heart was this… “Garrett Leigh’s super power is creating characters that are broken, giving them a glimmer of hope and then ripping it away… there’s a reason why I keep coming back for more though… *sigh* ” – It also served as my ‘place holder’ review on GoodReads. I’ve only read a couple of books by this author and both of them (Misfits & most recently What Remains) were powerful in their own right. I have to admit that Rented Heart didn’t leave me as emotionally unravelled as What Remains, but it still made me want to help these characters pick up the broken pieces of their lives and help them help each other put themselves back together.
Zac and Liam took turns pulling at my heartstrings. Liam because of his grief and Zac because of pretty much everything. They were total opposites at first glance. They turned out to be exactly what they needed to be for each other at just the right time. The closer they got, the more evident that was until one slip changed everything.
I feel really bad about getting mad at Liam at the turning point in Rented Heart. His doubt was legitimate, but I felt like he should have been just a little more trusting. Garrett Leigh’s writing does that to me just about every time.
Zac’s friend Jamie is mentioned in the description and as much as I got aggravated with him for choices that he made in Rented Heart, he redeemed himself enough by the end that I can’t wait until readers get his story. I’m pretty sure that that’s the general consensus of everyone else who fell in love with this story.