by Kate Meader
Series: Hot in Chicago #1.5
Genres: Contemporary Romance, M/M
Purchase*: Amazon *affiliate
Firefighter Gage Simpson has it all: the job of his dreams, the family of his heart, and no shortage of hot guys lining up to share his bed. “Fun and easy” is his motto—and it’s kept him sunny through a painful upbringing and steered him away from trouble. But when trouble comes knocking in the form of a sexy, scarred, tattooed chef with a harrowing past and zero communication skills, Gage can’t help but be drawn to the flame. Brady Smith isn’t fun. And easy isn’t in his vocabulary. When cocky Gage swaggers into his restaurant kitchen, the former Marine-turned-five-star-chef is blindsided by the firefighter’s beauty. Then confused that this golden guy with the sparkling blue eyes and the body of a god might be interested in him. As desire flares and temperatures rise, Gage and Brady will have to figure out if the heat between them is just a temporary flash—or the beginning of something real.
After reading Flirting with Fire by Kate Meader, the first novel in the Hot in Chicago series I was hoping we would get more of Firefighter Gage Simpson and Brady Smith the guarded, tattooed chef. The heat and humor from their first introduction had me craving more. Melting Point delivered their complicated, emotional and heated romance.
I typically do not read M/M romances, but many of the series I read from mainstream publishers have begun weaving them in. This is my second; I popped my cherry with Laura Kaye’s Hard to Be Good, a novella in the Hard Ink series and loved it. This time I grabbed Melted Point without hesitation.
Gage is flirty, drop dead gorgeous and often the life of the party. He is also a decent, well-adjusted guy whose adopted family means everything. Gage made me laugh aloud with his vivacious personality but I also felt for him as Meader shared his childhood, and the noble man he is today.
Brady is the total opposite of Gage. While he works magic in the kitchen, his social skills are minimal at best. As a former Marine who has endured the unthinkable, he carries those memories along with guilt and the fear he will one day crumble.
These two are all heat and I worried that they would burn before opening up and sharing. The romance was sweet but not without obstacles. Gage would engage, Brady would run, and then Brady would reach out. Their struggle felt genuine, as did their emotions. The tale is heated and they spend a lot of time between the sheets before finally opening up and adding depth to the relationship.
Melting Point is a novella, as was the other M/M I enjoyed. (I guess maybe the publishers/authors are not quite ready for a full-length novel.) This hurt Melting Point on two fronts. First, the romance was heavier on heat. I really enjoyed other aspects of their relationship and wanted more. It would have given the story more balance. The second aspect was that we did not get much face time with the others characters. We did see Eli, the mayor and his part in this story was strong. The more I learn about him the more I like him. I cannot wait for his story.
Melting Point delivered in giving fans Gage and Brady’s story, but I wanted more. The heat was seriously hot and genuine but the lack of pages did not give the story the depth I crave.
Lover Of Romance
It can be so disappointing when authors write a novella….that has such great potential to be a full-length novel.
The story was there too. I do love these characters though, so I am glad I read it and it was an ok read.
I don’t like it when sexy times take the place of plot. I don’t mind some and expect it in an adult romance, but it the plot isn’t fully realized, then no. It kind of makes it filler, and in a novella that means the plot suffers. At least in my experience 🙂 Great honest review 🙂
It had some depth Lorna, but not enough balance. I loved these characters and wanted more.
You DID NOT say what I thought you said!!! o.O
Super review!! This sounds so sweet – I really feel for those guys coming back from war 🙁
I so wanna know what you thought I said..lol
You POPPED your cherry!?!?!?! I think I fell out of my chair on that one!!!! You can’t do that to me mid review!!!
Bwahaha..I gotta make sure ya’ll are paying attention 🙂
I do like a good m/m novel but I do prefer them to be on the more plotty side, than the steamy side. While novellas do have their advantages, this one sounds like it could have done with being a novel proper, hopefully the next one provides a bit more depth!
I would have to agree, although I have read another that really balanced both sides
Awe, bummer that they didn’t give the men a full length novel, but I do love some good MM romance 🙂 And that cover! *swoon*
That cover is wall worthy..but the hubbs would probably nix it.
Well at least the cover is beautiful 🙂
The story was good, I loved both characters but i just needed more balance
Braine Talk Supe
Eli grew on me here. I disliked him in the first one, who knew he’ll be championing these two’s HEA?
I’m sure this isn’t the last that we’ll be seeing these two. If Playing With Fire is anything like Flirting, then it’s highly possible we’ll get screen time with Gage & Brady again.
I am reading the second book now and its good..we do see a lot of Brady and he cracks me up.
Definitely sounds like something that would work better as a novel. I really love m/m romance, so I hope you find some full length novels to enjoy!
I don’t think I will seek them out, but when they appear in a series with characters I am invested in..I want a full length balanced story.
The Bibliophile Babe
That cover…! <3
mm sexy firefighters and a romance. I can definitely read this. Thanks for the review.
Yeah..I started this series because siblings/firefighters..nom!
I like M/M romances but like with all my romances I prefer less sex and more build up to it. So this might not work so well for me. I’m glad you still enjoyed it even if you had some issues.
I want balance..and this was heavier on the sex, although what emotional side we got was good..I just needed more.
I sometimes have those same issues with novellas as well. But I guess, in this case, they’re hoping they can entice their readers into ‘sticking their toe in’ with M/M. I’m sorry Melting Point wasn’t quite as fulfilling as Flirting with Fire. I do think I’ll give the series a try though. 🙂
I am loving the series, and yes you are probably right..but the story needs more balance. I loved the characters so I would have appreciated more depth.
Melissa (Books and Things)
Yea, they really shouldn’t be afraid of the full length novel. At least they are writing and publishing the stories. I’m going to have to read about all these scorching men… 😉
I am glad to see it, since I love realistic series about family/friends etc.
They might want to weave them in, but I will be weaving them out as I will not read those types of books. I am glad you enjoyed it.
Thankfully most of these type series is the kind where each book works as a standalone and the reader can decide whether to indulge or not
Well, how about that cover? Novella or not, this one packs some serious heat 😀 I haven’t read the first book, but firemen are great to read about and it’s my loss, I’m sure. Really good review!
Yeah that cover is drool worthy to be sure. These will work as standalone, but I love getting to know everyone.
I still have the first one in the series that I bought after your review. Ugh, I need to get busy and catch up. I’ve found this trend of slipping m/m novellas into series with m/f novels caught my attention, too, and I wondered the same thing. Still, its realistic to have a variety of couples so it works for me.
I am reading book two and its good..so catch up 🙂
I LOVED this book. I think I tend to see more in characters than most people do, or just view them a little differently. My heart broke like crazy for Gage and everything he endured and still is enduring. I will admit I have a clear picture of Gage and my head, but Brady is probably still a little bit of a mystery. But I completely felt the love between these two. I will also admit that I’m starting to see Eli in a new light. Playing with Fire is going to be interesting.
I felt for both of them, and connected I just wanted more story between the sexy times. I am reading Eli’s story now…lol so good. The banter is delicious!
That’s my next book, once I get all my reviews written and posts for next week done.
I loved this one. I definitely wouldn’t have minded a full length novel for them though. I also enjoy her Hot and Bothered series.
Karen @For What It’s Worth
Glad you loved it, I am enjoying this series 🙂
Braine at Talk Supe recently recommended this author to me. This sounds like a hot read but I would certainly want a balance between the sexy times and the emotional side of the relationship.
Kim, I lost my virginity to M/M books with Him by Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy. I have a feeling you would LOVE it! 😉 *hint hint*
*hint taken* I am currently reading book three of this series and enjoying it.
I admit, I have yet to try one of these but I do like the sound of Gage, he might just sway me LOL!
Yeah, it was great getting his romance 🙂
That usually is the problem with novellas, but wow, that series looks awfully tempting ^^
I am reading book 3 now, and enjoying the series. Despite wanting more depth..I enjoyed Melting Point
Faye la Patata
Damn, can we all just agree that that cover is absolutely smashing and hot and scorching?!?!?! Seriously, that sweat makes you want to lick it all off! HAHA!
I’m sorry that this one didn’t have enough pages to give it depth, though. Hopefully there will be a continuation of these two characters??
I was glad to get their romance, and enjoyed it, but yeah I wanted more:) Yes..that cover is Smokin’
That cover is scorching
Right. *fans self*
I’m always a bit out of m/m romances, they don’t make me feel that much in books I confess but I haven’t read any books about fireman so I’m curious about that.
I enjoyed their story, but it needed more substance.
I missed the other characters in this story also. As much as I liked Brady and Gage, they weren’t quite enough to carry the story. But I enjoyed it and was glad they got together finally.
Agreed, it needed more substance but I am glad we got their story.