Book Review & Giveaway: Rock Solid by Riley Hart

Rock Solid by Riley HartTitle: Rock Solid
Series: Rock Solid Construction, Book #1
Author: Riley Hart
Genre: Contemporary Romance, M/M Romance
Sensuality Rating: Erotic
Source: Bought
Published: April 27, 2015 (self-published)

Trevor Dixon has made too many mistakes to count. Sober for thirteen months, he’s determined to do the right thing: rebuild his relationship with his family, and help his brother get Rock Solid Construction off the ground. Failing them again isn’t an option. Too bad the first estimate Trevor goes on alone is for an uptight doctor with a superiority complex.

A hand injury took away the only important thing in Dr. Simon Malone’s life—performing heart surgery. He doesn’t do well with people and has no family, but being a damn good surgeon? He always had that. Now, he doesn’t know who he is. The last thing he wants to deal with is the young construction worker who blows his shot at remodeling Simon’s home.

Trevor and Simon form an unlikely friendship. The more time they spend together, the more Trevor starts wondering if maybe Simon’s not as straight—or uptight—as he thought…and maybe Trevor’s new attraction for Simon runs both ways.

There are too many reasons they shouldn’t be together: they have little in common, their age difference, Trevor needing to focus on his sobriety…yet there’s something about each other that they just can’t shake. They don’t feel so lost when they’re together. But with their footing so unsteady, forming a relationship that’s rock solid seems impossible. There’s blow after blow, and the last one just might be powerful enough to crack their foundation for good.

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Reviewed by: J9 and Crissy

Joint Review

J9: I fell in love with Trevor and Simon from the very beginning of this novel. They’re both at important junctures of their lives so readers get to witness both their falling in love but also their character development. Trevor is a recovering addict and Simon is a surgeon who has lost his ability to perform surgery because of an injury. These are both lonely men, not sure what they want out of live and I totally fell for them!

Crissy: I liked them a lot from the beginning, but it took me a bit to get warmed up to them. I felt like as lonely as they were, they whined an awful lot about their situations instead of actually doing something about it. This doesn’t mean I didn’t like them, I just felt that there were pieces of their story in the first 50% or so that could have been cut or simplified to make tighter, easier to relate to characters.

J9: Oh, really? I loved the character exploration though agree the men often get lost in their own heads in the beginning of the book.

Some readers want perfect leads in romance but I’m the opposite. I like my characters flawed but still find their HEA and that’s what I got in Trevor and Simon. Simon and Trevor mess up with each other as they navigate a relationship neither expects and this was romance gold for me! They lose themselves in each other, both sexually and emotionally, and I loved this intensity. They both say often how they wish their worlds were only them in a bed--total romance perfection for me!

Crissy: I definitely agree here. Give me the gritty, broken, tortured characters any day. I was broken for Simon and Trevor, but I especially liked their connection in relation to Trevor’s addiction. I liked that Simon was that one person who understood, but didn’t judge him or treat him with kid gloves. They were able to grow individually as well as in a relationship because they each understood the other in ways no one else could or tried.  

J9: I also liked the secondary characters here, Simon’s ex-wife/friend, and Trevor’s twin brother especially. Having personal experience with addiction in families, I could totally relate to Trevor’s brother and Trevor both as they try to rebuild a new relationship since Trevor’s sobriety. I hope book two will be Blake’s story, that’s for sure!

Crissy: I had a love/hate relationship with Blake. Like Trevor, I wanted him to be more supportive, where everyone else failed. I think Blake and Trevor’s relationship could have used a little more focus for healing. There was a lot there, like when Blake throws out that he thinks Simon is Trevor’s new addiction. This is never resolved--not really. It’s basically forgotten in the big drama of the story. But it was a big jab and I wanted something to come from it. I was hoping for the “twin connection” to be strong in this story, because Trevor needed that--in my opinion--more than anything, but I feel like it wasn’t up to par.

J9: Yeah, I agreed Blake and Trevor didn’t have the relationship resolution they needed. I’m hoping this is because we’ll get the full closure in Blake’s book.

As much as I loved these characters and the romance, this book wasn’t perfect. Too much happened too quickly at novel’s end for me. The leisurely unfolding of the relationship without a mystery or big external tension was lush and rich for me but then BOOM! So much happened with only 15% of the book left! It really felt rushed and frankly, forced. The relationship, in my opinion, had enough tension without adding this twist that I can’t spoil. How it unfolds had huge consequences for Trevor especially and not enough time in the book was left for the resolution, for me.

Crissy: I was definitely taken by surprise by the twist. I agree that they had enough tension, but on the other hand, I also felt like there needed to be that one thing to push Trevor over the edge, to challenge him to face his demons. If it hadn’t been there, I think I would have been disappointed, especially since 80% of the story is his struggle with wanting to fall back into his old demons.

J9: To be fair, the epilogue was well done but again, it felt forced to straighten out the ending that derailed the story.

Crissy: I think the entire second half of the book is what saved it for me. Without the back and forth, then the plot twist, I’m not sure I would have finished it. I needed that drama and tension to make it for me.

J9: It’s funny how two readers can feel totally opposite! I liked the first half so much better than the second and you needed it flipped to even finish the book! Still, I greatly enjoyed this quick read and think it’s an above average read.


J9’s Rating:
4 Frogs

Crissy’s Rating:
3 1/2 Frogs


Thanks to Riley Hart, one lucky winner will receive a digital copy of Rock Solid. Good luck to all who enter!

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About J9: Vegan. Avid runner. Android addict. Never without a book in hand. Currently devouring MM romance but reads historial romance and paranormal romance as well. Follow J9 on Twitter.


  1. I love reading books about people who over come problems in life. Two working together makes for great reading.

  2. I've read other books by Riley Hart and have enjoyed them.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. I love m/m and haven't read any Riley Hart yet, plus the review makes it sound appealing!


  5. I love reading m/m and I love a book that has character development and allows readers to follow along as the two main characters fall in love.

    - H.B.

  6. I've heard good things about Riley Hart's books and I like a good angsty romance (which looks like this one has in spades!).

  7. The cover and the blurb caught my attention. Great reviewing thank you.

  8. The cover? The summary makes it sound like a story of two people rebuilding their lives at the roughest point--and who knows what else may happen?


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