I haven't read any of the books in Claire Boston's Flanagan Sister's series, so jumping in at number four is always going to be interesting. Fortunately, although it is part of a series with reoccurring characters, it can also be read as a standalone novel.
A Place to Belong
Sean Flanagan has spent a lifetime alone and rejected, constantly hiding who he really is.
With a father who deserted him and a mother who despised him, Sean didn’t think things could get much worse … until he was kicked out of home for being gay. Now he’s discovered he has three half-sisters on the other side of the world. This might be his last chance to find people who will love and accept him. But he’s terrified that if they find out who he really is then they’ll reject him like the rest of his family.
Sean arrives in Houston and is stunned by the warm welcome he receives from his sisters. He begins to hope that maybe this time things will be different. That’s when he meets Hayden Johnson. To follow his heart means risking everything with his newfound family.
Hayden is tired of endless dating. He’s looking for a man to love, someone to spend the rest of his life with. His boss’s new brother ticks all the boxes on the attraction scale, but there’s just one problem – he’s not gay.
Will Sean let his fears rule him, or will he let in the chance of love and find a place where he belongs?
There's always a danger when you come to a series part way through, that you will struggle with the characters that are already well known to other readers. Not having read the stories of sisters Carly, Bridget and Zita really didn't matter though and didn't detract from Sean's story.
This is not just a love story, or rather not just a romantic love story. But rather a story of someone accepting who they are, learning to love themselves, find the love of their family and romantic love along the way.
Sean has lived a life hiding who he real is and what feels. Learning about his half sisters and then meeting them for the first time is is chance to have a family and people who care for him, he doesn't want to do anything to jeopardise that. He tries to hide the fact that he is gay and is attracted to Hayden, as he fears their rejection.
This was a lovely and well written story that I really enjoyed. Although it's number four in the series, I don't think that really matter. Having said that, I really want to go back now and read the other books in the series and find out what I've been missing out on.