Sunrise (Down the Shore Book 3) by Evie McGlynn

Friends, coworkers, roommates, Miguel and Zach's journey to love builds over time. Support and kindness no matter what, Miguel and Zach have something that will stand the test of time.

From the Sunrise blurb:

From the time I was in elementary school, it was clear I was never going to pass for straight. It took a long time and a lot of work for me to be my authentic, fabulous self. Not everyone accepts the eyeliner, eye shadow and lip gloss along with the corsets, especially not the masc guys I’m attracted to. Until I meet Zach Kelley. Tall, dark, handsome, and straight, he tells me my makeup looks nice and that he likes the way I dress. It doesn’t at all help my straight-boy crush that he’s also super nice and hella protective. But I’ve been there, done that and almost got my head bashed in for my trouble. I won’t be going for the straight guy ever again, even if he does give the best hugs.

From the age of sixteen I have lived my life in a narrow lane of work and service. First it was taking care of my younger sister, now it’s taking care of both her and my three-year-old nephew. I don’t have much time for friends or fun working two jobs and serving my country in the Army National Guard. Until I meet Miguel Ramirez. Miguel is a ray of sunshine breaking through the clouds and he breaks me out of my self-imposed isolation. From the moment I see him, I’m drawn to him. My thoughts constantly turn to him, and I find myself watching him whenever he’s in the room. I think about him so much, I’m beginning to believe I’m not as straight as I thought I was.

SNik's review:

Third in series (Down by the Shore), can be read as a standalone but might be more fun if read in order. Hurt/comfort. Friends to lovers. Found family. POC representation. Slow burn. Dual POV. Heed content warnings.

Ever since he was young Zach has worked to care for himself and his sister, a mechanic and bartender plus being in the National Guard doesn’t leave much time for friends or romance. Miguel has a crush on his hotel coworker, Zach stands up for him even when family lets him down, but having a crush on a straight guy never works out so Miguel is just happy with their friendship.

The parts of the story focused on the growing relationship between Miguel and Zach are swoony, the supportive found family are terrific, and the realistic sometimes terrible people that cross our lives are represented as well. Both Miguel and Zach are likable, thoughtful, caring, and supportive, no matter what life throws their way. Each book in this series lives up to the anticipation, so well-written and emotional, with characters that truly deserve their HEA.

KJNRose's review:

Another great book in the Down by the Shore series by Evie McGlynn. This is a hurt/comfort, friends to lovers wonderful story about Miguel and Zach.

Autumn's review:

This book is slightly fast paced, with a good amount of steam, angst, and emotional. hurt/healing. There is found family elements that I enjoy.

Angel's review:

Miguel and Zach's characters immediately drew me into their story. Miguel's character was described with such great detail I could picture all of his outfits and his makeup in my head. His character was beautiful and so kind and sweet. He befriended Zach and got to learn just how kind, sweet, caring, and thoughtful the man truly is. All the while dealing with having feelings for Zach, who he believed to be straight. But things aren't always as straightforward as they appear. I respected his character a lot when he stood up for himself and didn't change who he is to please other people.

Zach's character is such a sweetheart, both of these MC's are. Zach has had to take care of himself and his sister ever since he was a kid. His parents cared more about booze then him or his sister, so he took on the responsibility to care for them both. Even though they are both older now Zach works 3 jobs to help out his sister and his nephew who he adores. When he meets Miguel he is instantly captivated by the kind, confident man, and throughout the story discovered that the reason he was so captivated is because he wants Miguel in a romantic way, not a platonic one.

This book was heartbreakingly beautiful. The story starts off with these two slowly becoming friends and getting to know one another better. Throughout that time, both men start to question what they are feeling for the other person, all while dealing with Miguel's sister's horrible husband. The way Evie developed these characters is truly stunning, the moment when Zach realizes that he's romantically interested in Miguel was so heartwarming. And when Miguel finally had that break through moment that he couldn't keep assuming Zach was straight, cause that wasn't fair on either of them, just really helped elevate the story. When they had that conversation talking about their feelings I was so elated for them! These two men were circling around each other and finally got to the point where they admitted how they feel. It was so cute!!

I adored how prevalent found family was in this story, it was so beautiful to read about. I loved how everyone came together to help, no matter what. What happened to Allie was horrible and everything I read after that made me cry. It hit me hard, the interactions between Zach and Miguel were devasting, and when they had to explain to Cody what happened was just so sad, and emotional. Anyone who has dealt with loss will immediately relate to these characters, whether you relate more to the position Zach was in, or Miguel's, or maybe you relate most to the position Cody was in, you'll relate to these characters in some way. I definitely did.

The epilogue was full of much needed sweetness, and it was nice to know that Nico got released. I hope that eventually we can get his story, and perhaps Gabe's too. This story was truly beautiful, and I highly recommend you read this yourself.

Sunrise is currently available as an e-book and paperback and can be read as part of your Kindle Unlimited Subscription