Review: Try, Take, & Trust by Ella Frank (Temptation #1-#3)


Three years after I first discovered this series on Goodreads and two years of one friend recommending the, at the the time, trilogy and coming across discussions regarding Logan Mitchell and Tate Morrison, affectionately called L&T, online and I have finally—FINALLY—gotten around to reading the books! All it took was bestselling author Ella Frank's surprise announcement that she had a second set of books about L&T that picks up their story four years after it started, and I was desperately rescheduling books I already had on my planner for review in order to make sure that I'd get the the first three Temptation novels read before the release of the fourth one—which is the first in the second batch. And lookie! I did it! I spent this past weekend getting to know Logan and Tate and now I'm a fangirl. These two had me giggling like a teenager as well as overworking my poor heart with the myriad of emotions I found myself experiencing as I met, liked, and fell for this twosome. They wooed and wowed and in return, I love, love, LOVE them and their story. This is a consolidated review of the original Temptation trilogy—Try, Take, and Trust because I felt the three encompassed the beginning of a story that makes you believe in true love.

“I want to know all the things you want to do but shouldn’t.”
Tate’s tongue came out to moisten his lips.
Logan couldn’t help himself as he added, “So, we can start crossing them off the list.”

Try is the first in the series, and it introduces us to thirty-four-year-old Logan Mitchell, a successful lawyer who has his own practice alongside his half-brother Cole Madison and is openly bisexual, and twenty-nine-year-old Tate Morrison, a bartender currently in the process of getting a divorce from his wife of four years and has always be straight. From the moment Logan enters his favorite bar and spies the new bartender, he knows that he'll do whatever he has to in order to have Tate. The fact that Tate has never been attracted to another man isn't a stumbling block for Logan, but it is for Tate. There's a great deal of contemplation and introspection that goes on for both men, what with Logan never having been in any sort of relationship ever since his first and last one in college that involved him being one guy's secret and Tate whose family is Catholic and who doesn't know quite how to wrap his head around the fact that he's attracted to a man. Book one had lots of yummy sexual tension as well as issues that had me pausing to think what I would do if I were in the same situation. L&T becoming part of each other's lives isn't an inevitability; it had to be a choice that both men needed to consciously make and accept.

“Logan?” He waited, and when nothing came, he whispered, “I love you too.”
The only sound in the car was his breathing—until Logan started the engine and revealed four words that almost shattered him. 
“I don’t believe you.”

If book one had L&T pushing each other to try something out of their norm, book two saw them having to not just recognize what—and who—it was they wanted but to actually go through with laying claim to it. Take picks up where Try left off, and Logan and Tate are in a fledgling relationship, with the new couple deciding to meet Tate's parents, hoping it'll open the doors to eventual acceptance. But as much wishful thinking as Tate may have done, not even sharing the same bloodline or DNA can guarantee what he desired from his parents and sister and it's here that his convictions are truly tested. Does he have to choose between the man he's falling in love with and the family that's always loved him while not always being supportive of him—case in point, his divorce from his then-wife who happened to be his sister's best friend and also very close to his parents. And what of Logan, the man whose independence and lack of any sort of committed relationships meant his being with Tate was a risk he was willing to take? Was he setting himself up for heartbreak being with a guy who was, prior to meeting Logan, was straight and came from a Catholic family? My heart squeezed with empathy for both of them, but more so Logan, who, at one point, had me seriously tearing up and whose reaction reminded me a little too much of myself.

“I like that. You going home to your apartment and thinking about me, curious. But you know what I love?” 
Tate studied him and waited silently. 
“You coming home with me—and being absolutely sure.” 
Tate winked at him. “I love that too.”

After everything that happened in the first and second books, one would think that Logan and Tate had been through the wringer, but what was waiting for them in Trust would test their convictions as well as their devotion to one another. They faced rejection in Take and while they did and said things that hurt one another then, they've become more formidable, knowing that they would turn to one another first before anyone else. They continue to build on their trust as their lives become even more intertwined. They're moving forward, even as parts of Logan's past return uninvited. We get to know Logan even more in this third book, and if you didn't love him already to begin with, not falling for the guy here would have been next to impossible. But just as everything appears to be headed in the right direction, takes a vicious swipe at L&T. Will one be able to be the pillar of support that the other needs? And who does he turn to when the stress and pressure get to be too great to bear? This third book redefined what family was for L&T and ultimately provided them with the kind of perspective necessary to realize that at the end of the day, they'll need to hold on and fight for their love, and see they've gain more than they lost.

“I’m Logan Mitchell, and this is Tate Morrison, and he is my partner.”

What can I say about these three books that won't make me sound like an absolute, newly minted L&T fangirl? Nothing! Once my L&T cherry had been popped, there was no going back because I finally—FINALLY!—got it. I understood why these two have the kind of following that they do, and it's the kind of following that is reminiscent of another fictional M/M couple that I adore, Ty Grady and Zane Garrett of Abigail Roux's Cut & Run series, but in a completely different light. Hey, I have enough love to go around, and if anyone deserves the love I once had exclusively reserved for Ty and Zane, it's Logan and Tate. Clearly, I know at this point that the series doesn't end here, and with some loose ends still waiting to be tied, I'm looking forward to seeing where Ella Frank takes her men—and us—next. Try, Take, and Trust is the journey that two men decide to take alongside each other and it has its wrong turns, speed bumps, and potholes, but that's all part and parcel of what makes it such a riveting ride. These books are far from my first foray into Ella Frank's writing, but they do have me questioning my sanity as to why it took me this long to actually read them. Each one gets five-plus stars, and are among my all-time favorites. ♥

Date Read: 07 May 2017

Learn more about Ella Frank.

Purchase Try on Amazon.
Purchase Take on Amazon.
Purchase Trust on Amazon.

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