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Worth Keeping by [Nicol, Susan Mac]
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Worth Keeping Kindle Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Length: 308 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Language: English

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Product Description

Abused horrifically as a boy, Nick Mathers has come to terms with his existence as a man. Mostly. Other days life seems a little much. Especially when Nick knows he’ll always be alone.
On those days his thoughts turn black. He walks the Norfolk coast and considers the frigid embrace of the waves. And then, one stormy night, he finds someone who’s tasted just that. The beautiful stranger on the beach is near death, and Nick rushes him home to slowly nurse back to health. As he does, he finds a love unlike any other. Owen Butler’s body is as warm as the sea was cold, his heart as big as an ocean. And Owen is a man who swears to repay the favor. Nick can yet be saved from himself, and he will see that he is indeed a man… worth keeping.

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Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 725 KB
  • Print Length: 308 pages
  • Publisher: Boroughs Publishing Group (22 December 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00HGZE238
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #204,074 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Format: Kindle Edition
A good story from Susan, a story about Nick who lives on an Island looking after a lighthouse. He sees a man lying on the beach and goes to investigate. Owen is out cold and freezing. Nick gets him back to the lighthouse to warm. The two are a good story maybe even a bit predictable.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program) 4.3 out of 5 stars 84 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth Keeping is a definate keeper. 11 January 2014
By DJefferson - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I can say that this is one of my favorite books. It dealt with a horrific subject in a respectful and ultimatel positive manner. Nick and Owen meet under unconventional circumstances which is right in line with the story and the unconventional lives and experiences they have endured. Both MCs have pasts that haunt them, Nick more so than Owen. They are both quite masculine characters; however their pasts create a vulnerability and rawness under the facade of a tough exterior. Nick uses isolation and thoughts of dying as his escape, while Owen uses his genuine since of humor, and death as a means of escaping the emotional pain. This story needed a hero and Owen became this to Nick. He endures Nick 's resistance, tirades, and mood swings caused by the trauma.he endured as a child.

On a lighter side, there are moments that made me laugh out loud. Owen is quite funny even when he isn't try. Especially when he meets Nick 's capuchin monkey, Socks. I don't think that the introduction of humor was disrespectful to the subject of the book. His humor allowed levity to enter Nick's sad life. Ultimately, they get their happy ending and are forever changed because of each other.

Now, yes, there is a good bit of hot sex in this book; however, it definitely serves a purpose and is an integral part of the story given Nick 's background. In the story it is used to convey not only lust, passion and ultimately love, but it serves as a tool to heal. This will be on my reread list. Worth Keeping is a keeper.
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth a read 5 September 2016
By Amber F. - Published on
Verified Purchase
This was a great book that brings out all the emotions. You can definitely tell that the author did a lot of research into the mindset of an abuse survivor. Nick had lived through some of the most horrific abuses that a person can go through. Rather than glossing over the process of healing the author gives us insight into the dark and twisted path that Nick has to go through. Its not a smooth path either. There are setbacks and times when you think its never going to happen. Owen is another wonderful character. He is so strong and loving. His determination to stick by Nick endears him to the reader.

The reason that I didn't give this story a higher rating is that while I loved the overall story line, it had a very weird feel to it at times. Some of the things and people were just a little too unbelievable to take seriously within the context of the book. Some of the wording was "off" as well. for example here is a line from book. <i>Owen moaned, his lips parting and Nick slid his tongue inside, tasting the man like a lizard testing the air</i> The imagery that this creates for me personally is not a sexy one. It completely pulled me out of the moment. Also after a nightmare Nick uses the nasty sex rag from hours ago to wipe his face. GROSS! I don't consider myself a prude or anything but that is just too much. There were other things like this all through the book.

Basically there were things I loved and things I hated about Nick and Owens story. I think it is worth a read. I look forward to reading more by this author.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One Of The Best I've Read In A Long Time 12 May 2014
By Alan Arthur Katz - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've recently had some issues with British authors writing unconvincing American novels, but I do love a British author writing about Brits in the UK. And Ms. MacNicol is a star among them.

This brilliantly written and profoundly beautiful book is not an easy read. Not because of language or characters or dialogue, but because of the deep suffering that one of the main characters (Nick) still endures as a result of horrendous sexual and physical abuse as a child, and later, from a sadistic "lover".

He is living the life of a hermit, as a lighthouse keeper on the Norfolk coast. When his dreams torment him, he walks the cliffs and contemplates jumping, to put an end to the endless pain that reverberates from his youth, and the mother who pimped him out to feed her drug habit.

One day, he spies a body washed up on the beach. Barely alive, Owen had gone overboard and washed up, literally, at Nick's feet. Nick takes him in, tends to him, and the rest is well, a difficult journey to happily-ever-after.

Owen is a stunning character, so full of compassion and care, so patient, so empathetic with Nick's suffering that, in saving Nick, he saves himself.

One other remarkable character is Nick's "dad", the policeman who saved his life, as an adolescent, adopted him, and raised him as his own son. This huge bear of a man is so filled with love and acceptance that he is all that's kept Nick alive these past ten-or-so years. Now it's Owen's turn.

I know my synopsis (a poor substitute for the real thing) sounds like melodrama, but there's nothing melodramatic about this book. The writing is absolutely first-class, the characters so lovingly and realistically drawn that any pathos is both understandable and authentic. Ms. MacNicol has really gotten inside the mind and soul of an abuse survivor, and beautifully evokes his emergence from the depths of despair.

As I said, it's not an easy read. The abuse the young Nick suffered will break your heart. His progress comes in fits and starts, interrupted by anger and self-loathing, though less and less, as the relationship between the two men grows.

When all is said and done, this is a beautifully written, important book about survivors and survival. It will warm your heart and leave you with hope.

Do not miss this one. It's a gem.
4.0 out of 5 stars Engaging story of hope for those who suffer 30 March 2016
By b g nevils - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I purchased “Worth Keeping,” by Susan Mac Nicol from Amazon. The two principle characters captured my sympathy and admiration as each struggle of overcome dark back-stories to discover love.

“You shouldn’t be getting involved, Nicholas Mathers. You’re a complete f***up and he’s not much better. Stay away from this one. He’ll break your bloody heart. And he won’t want your damaged goods.” (Nick)

On a stormy night, Nick Mathers stands on the edge of the cliff with arms raised and face pelted with freezing rain. Maybe tonight his tortured life ends. A lightning flash illuminates an object washed ashore. Nick scurries to the water’s edge to find near-drowned Owen Butler. A love story begins as two tormented men find something “Worth Keeping.”

For the past year, 26-year-old Nick Mathers lives a solitary existence in an island cabin next to a lighthouse. He survives a childhood of psychological, physical, and sexual abuse. Once, a sexual assault leaves Young Nick in an alley near death, but his adoptive father’s intervention saves him. Even so, Nick’s nightmares continue; and he makes multiple suicidal attempts. Compounding his sense of worthlessness, his 2-year relationship with Brad Mayhew ends. Brad delights in contributing to Nick’s physical and emotional abuse. To compound to Nick’s sense of worthlessness, Brad berates Nick’s oil paintings as pathetic.

Twenty-eight-year-old Owen Butler cradles Jules, his lover of 2 years, in his arms. Jules suffers a gunshot during a robbery and dies in Owen’s arms. Distraught on the anniversary of Jules death, Owen jumps from the yacht of Jules’ family. Pulled from the surf, Nick Mathers lugs the semi-conscious Owen to the lighthouse cabin. Nick experiences physical attraction to the handsome, black hair, green-eyed, muscular Owen. And Owen is attracted to his wiry, bronze-haired rescuer. Their romance is a roller coaster experience of wariness, uncertainty, and rejection. When Brad discovers Nick’s location, he plans to reclaim what he considers his -- Nick. The question is whether Nick and Owen’s love can overcome their personal deficits and the attack from the outside to find in each other something “Worth Keeping.”

Mac Nicol tackles the horrific topic of childhood sexual abuse, and the havoc caused to individual lives. But her story demonstrates hope for those who suffer. Four-star recommendation.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An extraordinary story of overcoming emotional hardship 27 December 2013
By Beach Bum Books - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Two men, both damaged souls, come together at the nadir of their will and ability to deal with crushing emotional trauma. Nick was abused as a child, and that abuse is so horrific, one can understand how and why this tortured soul acts out as he does. And the abuse continued into adulthood with in a damaging relationship with a domineering, viscous bully. Nick's solution is to hide, yet he cannot hide from the nightmares consuming him.
Owen cannot move past losing his lover to an act of violence, the man dying in his arms. It's a blow to the heart that cuts him off from all but the most transient relationships, leaving him hollowed out, unresponsive but not uncaring. Compared to Nick, his choices seem self-indulgent, perhaps because we spend less time inside his head than we do with Nick. That doesn't make his pain any less, nor does it trivialize the emotional baggage he carries with him everywhere.
The character of Nick is beautifully crafted: with sympathy, not pity; with understanding and compassion for the darkness that haunts his existence. How and why he has survived to that point is a miracle, yet at no point is it set in stone that he will continue to do so, for that kind of pain can overwhelm and destroy everything in its path. Owen is an enigma, traumatized yet keeping up appearances, so much so that at first he comes across as shallow. But it doesn't take long to determine that here is a man willing to stay the course, especially when his protective instincts kick in as the puzzle that is Nick unfolds.
The author treats the subject matter with honesty, never going for the easy solution, staying the course with her characters, never dodging the realities, the legacy of this kind of abuse.
The cast of supporting characters adds depth and color, and the subplot of impending danger is artfully woven into the fabric of two men learning to overcome their own limitations, to open to the possibility of love and to redefine who they are.
When and if this comes out in print, I will want a copy, because, quite simply, this is a novel... Worth Keeping.