Penned by Riley Hart, Dare to You is the prequel novella in her Wild Side series and was originally released as part of the multi-authored It Was Always You anthology. Austin Thompson is an LGBT youth counselor who has always preferred committed relationship. His neighbor and a close friend of six years Dare Nichols is a bar owner who would rather hook up, even via app. Between the two, Austin is the far more cautious one, with Dare living up to his name of daring to take chances or risks. When his boyfriends ends things and Dare rejects his advances, Austin decides that maybe it's time he take a few chances of his own. When the opportunity to hook up with a stranger comes along, Austin agrees. Surprisingly, Dare isn't too thrilled at the idea of Austin hooking up, but with Austin wanting more in a man he's with and Dare keeping people at a distance, is there hope for these two best friends?
I liked this friends-to-lovers romance. Dare and Austin share a close and comfortable friendship, even if they do happen to be opposites in a number of ways. Dare is far more adventurous, living up to the name he gave himself years ago, and he loves working at his bar, Wild Side. On the other hand, Austin loves his work at the youth center and he's pretty set in his ways, even though he knows some may think of him as boring. But as close as these two were, Dare has a bit of darkness in his past, and I liked getting to know that side of him at the same time that he was opening up to Austin. I originally read the story when it was part of the anthology and was happy to revisit it in preparation for the new release in the series and I still liked it as much as I did months ago. Set in the sand and surf of Southern California and sights and sounds of West Hollywood, Dare You To was a five-starred start to the series. ♥
Date Read: 24 April 2017
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