The Angel of 13th Street

The Angel of 13th Street - Eden Winters "Please don't let them catch me"
This opening had me on full alert from the beginning. Jeremy is trying to make it home without getting caught by a group of men out to 'recruit' him for a local pimp.
Needless to say they don't care too much about whether Jeremy is actually looking for new job opportunities.
So I was on the edge of my seat crossing all fingers for Jeremy to make it home safe. Until I got to see that home and my heart just broke for him.

Noah wasn't strong enough to refuse the 'job offer' when he himself was younger. But he got out and now puts every effort into helping other young rent boys leave the life and get a chance to start over.
He takes Jeremy under his wings. There is a nearly instant attraction between the two which soon develops into a deeper connection. Jeremy makes no secret of what he wants, but Noah resists his advances insisting on just being Jeremy's friend, thinking he is too old, that it's unethical for him to sleep with someone he's saved, and most of all believing he can never be good enough for Jeremy.

As Noah helps Jeremy get his life back on track and settle into a routine, the recruiters never relent and Noah knows only one way to get them off Jeremy's back: He seeks out Willie Carnell, the pimp looking to add Jeremy to his stable, as well as Noah's old lover and probably in his mind, the one he never managed to save.

Now I won't lie. Noah's meeting with Willie was unpleasant to read. From the many times Noah's thoughts wander back to his and Willie's mutual past we know there is history and real feelings between them.
Their evening together is an odd mixture. In their current lives they are on opposite sides with Noah doing whatever he can to get as many boys as possible out of Willie's claws. Yet feelings are still there, the attraction is still there and at the same time Willie is pretty much twisting the knife in old wounds. I so did not want to see them together; it almost made me sick and yet it held a strong fascination to see how emotions of past and present were intertwined.

(On a side note, since I read that elsewhere, I did not see any cheating here. Jeremy and Noah were not in a relationship.)

With Jeremy safe for the time being they return their focus on Jeremy's school work and Noah's businesses. Way too good to last, obviously!

So yes, shit hits the fan. I don't want to reveal to many details here, but suddenly there is an awful lot of action going on. The last part of the book was certainly more fast-paced than the beginning. So I was back to edge of my seat again before getting my expected HFN ending.