Trust Trade: A Gem City Grit Novel
By Ki Brightly
Narrated by Stephen Van Doren
Length: 15 hrs and 39 mins
Life hasn’t been good to Jeb Birchman. When he attempted to escape his abusive, zealot father, he found himself on the streets, making a living the only way he knew how, the victim of more violent men – one of whom orchestrates a series of vicious attacks that leave Jeb deaf. Now that he’s aged beyond his latest client’s interest, Jeb knows he needs to escape his risky lifestyle before it’s too late. Seeing one last chance for himself, he earns a GED and enrolls in college.
Freddy Williams enjoys a life that couldn’t be more different from what Jeb has survived. He loves sports, being a personal trainer, and hanging out with friends. The son of deaf parents, Freddy is an outspoken advocate of the Deaf community and works as an interpreter at his college. When he meets Jeb at the bookstore, he’s struck by how attractive he is, and as they get to know each other, he finds Jeb’s good heart just as appealing. By the time he learns of Jeb’s past, it’s only a few steps behind them, and Freddy must make a choice between school and his familiar routine and protecting the man he’s falling in love with.
Trust Trade is a 154,000-word novel.
Enjoy this foray into the Gem City Grit Universe.
🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 5 stars
🔥🔥🔥🔥 Heat Level: 4
🎧🎧🎧🎧🎧 Narration: 5
Oh, WOW, just WOW! Cue emotional book hanger! Such a powerful, transformative, and compelling read!!
This was a powerful, emotive, complex read/listen, that deals with real-world issues, violence and sex work. I found this bold and confronting at times but still so uniquely compelling that I was right there with Jeb for every blow, twist and life moment. He is such a strong character that will find his way into your heart and not let go. He was so beautifully real and flawed you can’t help but keep rooting for him at every turn. I may have cried with Jeb, and was on the edge of my seat, hoping he would stay safe!
I loved Freddy and his attraction and acceptance of Jeb, even through some ridiculous hardships. He became Jeb’s protector and wanted to do everything he could to help Jeb and his “stepson’s” situation. Now, Jeb’s life is so removed from what I know that I found him all the more fascinating. He would just not give up, even through all he’d been dealt with. So much happens in this book, so much growth and love as well as some danger, darkness, and pain. The twists and turns kept me engrossed and I could never guess what was going to happen next and Ki does such a fantastic job of keeping you on edge. I loved the thrills, shocks and joyful moments throughout this story. I wanted to rage, cry and protect Jeb, Max, and Freddy. I loved the little family they made and that Ki kept the story real, true to life and showed beautiful growth and connection even in the face of such hardships!
I loved this story even though it took a while to recover from the book hanger! Fantastic work, Ki!!!
Stephen Van Doren does a fantastic job narrating such emotional content and truly brings Jeb, Freddy and all the charters, both good and bad, to life in this narration! Excellent annunciation, brilliant dialects, and sinister characterizations. Gave me chills and helped me connect with Jeb even more!! I loved it!!
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