Book Reviews

Love's Tethered Heart by C.L. Etta

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Disability / Romance / Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
Reviewed by Serena Yates on 24-September-2020

Book Blurb

Two years ago Mico and his partner suffered a savage gay bashing that left Mico a quadriplegic—and ended his dreams of traveling the world as an archeologist. Abandoned by the man he loved, he lives in isolation, tethered to his bed by the machines keeping him alive, with only his caretakers and immediate family as companions.

Assigned to interview Mico and uncover the story behind his assault and his refusal to identify his attackers, journalist Danny is unprepared for his reaction to the other man. Mico is afraid to let Danny into his life, and Danny is unsure how to change his mind. Mico is also keeping secrets, and he isn’t the only one. Danny is determined to protect Mico, and he’s determined to show Mico that their feelings for each other can thrive amidst the mechanics of Mico’s existence.

If you enjoy romantic tales of heartbreak turned to hope, the life-affirming story of Danny and Mico will make you believe in the possibility of love for everyone—no matter what obstacles they face.



First edition published by Dreamspinner Press, January 2017.


Book Review

Full of emotions, revelations, and unexpected developments, this story pulled me in from page one. The main characters are complex, both in their own way, and the way they meet and gradually get to know each other is very well written. I expected to be upset about Mico’s fate, but a genuine tragedy of what happened to him put tears of fury in my eyes. While this novel is primarily an emotional journey for Mico and Danny, the mystery Mico keeps, its gradual unraveling, and the consequences for Mico and Danny’s relationship add an element of suspense that made the story spellbinding.

Mico is an archeologist, but he won’t ever be able to fulfill his dreams of traveling the world to unearth the secrets of the past. A savage gay bashing has left him a quadriplegic tethered to machines that keep him alive. He has come to accept his situation – as much as anyone can – but there are things that upset him. The lack of control gets to him, and his inability to move makes life boring to the point of annoying at times. The need for constant specialist care has reduced the circle of people he regularly interacts with to family and caretakers, so when Danny turns up to do an interview, the novelty of the situation alone has Mico interested. But as fascinated as he is by Danny, Mico is also scared the man will run eventually, and the secret Mico is keeping doesn’t make it easy to get close anyway.

Danny is full of questions, like any good journalist would be. He is also naturally curious, and Mico fascinates him from the first moment. Danny is surprised by the attraction he feels despite the machines, but as much as he slowly develops feelings for Mico, Danny is ill-equipped to deal with the practicality of Mico’s life. He wants to become more to Mico than a casual acquaintance, but he has much to learn. The revelations about Mico’s past are painful, but Danny is determined to make things work. I liked how he went from relatively naïve and full of assumptions about what will and will not work for Mico to more educated about his needs and finally reaches a level of love and consideration that is very touching.

If you like your romances with a significant serving of obstacles and heartbreak, if you’re ready for a tale full of hope that ultimately affirms life, and if you’re looking for a read that is as emotional as it is heartwarming, then you will probably like this novel as much as I do. It is full of fascinating insights into human nature and, above all, an ode to the determination to never give up.





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by the publisher for the purpose of a review.

Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 242 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 14-September-2020
Price $4.99 ebook
Buy Link