Check out Simone´s thoughts about Garret Leigh´s new series, Skins. Shattered dreams, hard experiences and sexy times.

Dream (Skins, #1)Dream by Garrett Leigh
Simone´s rating: 4 of 5 stars

***4.5 Stars***

We all have our dreams. Some are small, some are big. Some are viable, others remain what they are, namely dreams. Sometimes they are the only retreat from real life, the only thing that sees us through it. And how boring life would be without them, right?

Angelo Giordano not only has a dream, he lives it. He lives it by doing something he loves, until a devastating diagnosis of a chronic disease not only ends his career as a ballet dancer, but also nearly ruins him financially. Angelo's only escape to hold up the illusion that he is still in control over his own life unfolds at Lovato's, a secret and voyeuristic sex club that fulfills any wet dream's fantasy. A club where he is Angel, a self-confident man who does not need to worry about his future.

Dylan Hart, on the verge of a new chapter in his life after ending a polyamorous relationship, is a worrier. He worries about everyone he cares for, but also about those who come within his responsibility at work as a debt advisor and it is eating him alive. On the one hand it sucks his energy right out of him, but on the other hand kicks him into overdrive, resulting in insomnia and nightmares and the urgent need to let off some steam by going to the club and hand over control to someone else.

When both men meet at said club, it is supposed to be just a living out of fantasies. An acting out on kinks. A onetime encounter. But fate has other plans. When their fantasy world collides with real life and both men are facing each other in a completely different situation, it is the beginning of a relationship originally based on worry...
"You need to live, Angelo, not just survive."

... and misunderstandings, but soon evolves into deep feelings which have nothing to do with just being friends-with-benefits, but more with love for each other. Now they just have to find a way to build up a new dream together.
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A few pages in and I had to go back to check if I unintentionally picked up the wrong book. I am still far from knowing all of Garrett Leigh's works, but as of yet this was the one with the most hot and kinky sex for me and she throws us right into a scene that leaves nothing to be desired. And this was by far not the only one. For those of you who like their smexy times in books being spiced up with a threesome: I can virtually see your ears perking up now and yes, I'm sure you will be very pleased. :) For those of you who are normally not into such a thing: no worries, it happened right at the beginning of their relationship, when there were no deeper feelings involved yet.

On a personal note, I have to thank the author for bringing Angelo's chronic disease to my attention. I didn't even know that it exists, or I should rather say that I didn't know it classifies as an illness at all. I could so sympathize with his health Situation. The bone-deep exhaustion that is still there when I drag my sorry carcass out of bed in the morning although I had a night full of sleep. The brain fog, that makes it hard to concentrate at work or even when I read a book nowadays. As for me, I blamed it on too much stress, but I always wondered about the coming and going ache in my bones without any reason to it. I won't claim that I have the same illness as Angelo or that my symptoms are as bad as his, but at least it gave me a new perspective and it might be worth letting it get checked up.

What I always love about Garrett Leigh's books is that her stories not always follow the conventional way. She adds situations or picks up a topic you normally find rarely in books and still makes it feel real. Does she go easy on the characters in doing so? No. Does she go easy on the reader? No way. But this all adds to getting invested in the characters and all the angst and suffering are so worth it in the end.

This time the solution to Angelo's financial situation was a bit too convenient for me and took away some of the authenticity here. Don't get me wrong, I'm the last to begrudge him this outcome and it was more than well-deserved, but sadly real life simply does not work this way. It was a bit too good to be true, more like the ending of a fairy tale, and I just wish the author would have found a more satisfying solution.

Overall, this was an amazing start to a new series and I hope we will get Rhys's story next. Now you wonder who Rhys is, right? He was the third party in the aforementioned threesome and if that was any indication, his book will surely be another hot addition to this series. *cough*

Highly recommended!
***ARC generously provided to me in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!***

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