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Worth Searching For (Heart of the South, #2)
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Worth Searching For

(Heart of the South #2)

3.73  ·  Rating details ·  115 ratings  ·  24 reviews
Most gay men wouldn’t expect to see their dreams come true in a small town in the Deep South. But the road to true love can lead to the unlikeliest places . . .

Disowned by his conservative Peruvian parents, Lito Apaza headed for gay-friendly Atlanta. Resilient, charismatic, and successful, he’s built a life on his terms—with a new family of friends and the unconditional l
Published February 27th 2018 by Lyrical Shine
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Average rating 3.73  · 
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Ije the Devourer of Books
2.5 Stars

This is a well written story but it was a bit too slow for me. The author has written a story that includes people of colour and she did this so well and this aspect of the story was refreshing to read. I didn't mind the slow burning friends to lovers aspect of the story but I don't like the 'big misunderstanding' trope. So even though it is a pleasant read it just wasn't for me.

Lito has been living in Atlanta but he is given a promotion and moves to work for his employees in a differ
Book Gannet
3.5 stars.

This was a sweet, slow-build romance with likeable characters and some cute dogs in an easy, undemanding read. I really enjoyed the search and rescue stuff, especially at the beginning, but it definitely tails off towards the end, which was a shame.

I liked Lito. He is out and proud, if a little touchy about being so because of his past. He’s definitely not the sort to hide who he is, which makes him extra sensitive to his surroundings in small town Alabama. He has to put up with casual
Feb 27, 2018 rated it liked it
I received a copy to read and review for Wicked Reads

This was a sweet romance and low on angst. To be honest it was super slow and even the few steamy scenes couldn't pick this book up. There was a lot of inner monologue which drives me nuts, I like dialogue. Lito and Dave are good together, it was just too slow, I found myself putting it down and coming back to it hoping I would get more into it.
JD Crittendon
Romance in a Small Town!

Lots of dogs, rescue training and lots of friends are parts of the romance between Lito & Dave. This story lost me about half way in. The connection between the MCs just stopped at mid point. No sweet interactions, no loving thoughts, not even angst thoughts. The story just seemed contrived after the midpoint. It’s readable but...!
Book  Lover 🖤
I’m glad I found this book on netgalley! This was such a sweet romance between Dave and Lito. And having dogs play such a big roll was an added bonus! I loved how Lito came back to Dave. It was sweet and swoon worthy. You can tell the struggled with their feelings for each other and they were scared of what it could become. Im glad they are together and happy again!
Cathy Geha
Feb 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Misfit –doubtless
Happy in his skin – definitely
Looking for love – debatable

Carlos “Lito” Apaza moves from Atlanta to small town Alabama with a pay raise and increased responsibility BUT he has no idea how or when he will make friends. As he walks through a pet shop in Black Lake he meets a tall manly drool-worthy male. They chat a bit and Dave Schmidt ends up asking Lito and his dog Spot to join the dog-rescue practice happening that week. Both men are attracted to one another but are not sure w
Feb 24, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5 stars - I was given a copy of this book to read and review for Wicked Reads.

This is the story of a sweet romance between two interesting and likeable men. Lito and Dave meet in a pet store and get to know each other when Lito and his dog Spot join Dave’s search and rescue squad.

I enjoyed this more than the previous book in the series but it is still a little bit too slow and a bit too cute for me. The search and rescue plot is interesting and I really liked learning about Lito’s job. Outsi
Ruthie Taylor
Feb 21, 2018 rated it liked it
~~I received a free copy of this book to read and review for Wicked Reads ~~


This is the second in the series, but is a stand alone, with a similar theme.

I enjoyed this story, but did feel that it was some how overly long. The pace was very slow, and at times the inner voice arguing with themselves about whether this was something serious or not went on for too long. For a relatively angst free plot, this indecision was at times frustrating and not news. The men were good together, and some
Dana Sweeney
Jun 09, 2018 rated it liked it
A formulaic but satisfying romance about a gay couple who meet and find love in rural Alabama. Too relatable not to read. Yee haw.
Aug 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Not as homophobic as I feared. It dealt more with Lito's own concerns about the small town sameness, and actually people were quite okay with him. Yeah his co-workers weren't terribly interested in him, but that's better than being rejected outright.

I loved all the bits with the dogs. I felt the ending was rushed and left a lot of gaps that I would have liked to have read.

But lovely HEA.
Lauren loves llamas
Trigger warnings: casual homophobia, casual racism

After Worth Waiting For, I was prepared to read this book, the second in the series, with a box of tissues. Thankfully, it was a lot less emotionally wrenching than the first, though it was still delightfully angsty.

“’It’s different here.’ Painfully so. The not-rightness was hard to explain, but Lito tried anyway. ‘I’m the only man at work. Also the only non-white person, the only non-straight one, and the only one who’s ever lived within reasona
This is a fun book to read and the reader gets to learn about the amazing world of search and rescue. It is a story of a fish out of water, coming from several large city experiences to a small southern town. The character Lito has stated that he cannot hide as straight and is more obvious as a gay man.

The story is a nice story with well rounded characters that you want to know more about. The group of friends from book 1 are also included in this follow-up even though the location is not where
Mar 18, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
My Recommendation: They're a fun quick release (pun intended) when you're looking for something that's not too challenging, but surprisingly does make you think while entertaining you. Of the three, this is probably my favorite, but like most romance novels I'm not sure how much of this I'll remember 6-12 months from now.

My Response: I grabbed this, along with eight other romance novels Qualls wrote or co-wrote, when Amazon was having a sale in February. I enjoyed Worth Waiting For and figur
Sep 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
3.75 stars

I enjoyed the slower pace and interactions between Dave and Lito because I was not in an angsty mood. I really enjoyed the interactions between the two of them and the rescue group. However, outside of their "dirty talk" during their sexual encounters, there wasn't much emotional exchange between the two of them, and at times I felt that emotional, personal revelations happened off page with these two.

But, still, it was exactly what I needed after reading two intense and angst-fulled
Anu Vaarama
Quite a sweet story, but I felt I was watching other people's life for months, and not much happened. The cozyness here kept me reading on. Some errors should be corrected: Lito 'didn't know' Dave's name although it was already mentioned. Also, one person's age was suddenly changed. Otherwise all the writing was good and also I liked that many facts of dog training were real. I tend to be critical because I train search dogs, too. ...more
Jun 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Romance + dogs = yes please

This was a novella about men who love their dogs and fall in love with each other while Dave, Lumpy, and Woozy teach Lori and Spot how to do search and rescue. And I loved it. Only complaint was that I wanted more and it seems the other books in the series don't also follow the search and rescue team.
Dec 06, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
I received this in a Goodreads Giveaway awhile ago. It wasn’t the worst book I’ve read, but certainly wasn’t the best. The dialogue was cheesy, and the plot moved incredibly quickly with little build up. The storyline wasn’t very original, but the ending was sweet.
Samantha Love HEA Romance Book Blog
This book was a very sweet romance. The characters were great and well written. I didn’t exactly feel much chemistry between them though, until the climax of the book, after that they had great chemistry. The story was a little slow in some parts for me but overall was a good read.
Mar 29, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: lgbtqi, romance
Wrapped up too quickly for my taste but I thought it was a sweet story.
Jun 05, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good story.

It was a little slow getting into this story, but I did. I liked the characters. Also the story was well written.
Jul 21, 2018 rated it liked it
2 1/2 stars

It was okay. This is one of those books that sits perfectly in my 2 1/2 star rating. Good enough to finish but not good enough for me to actually say anything else about it
2.5 stars
Deb Stalker
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Jun 08, 2018
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May 27, 2018
C Brooks
rated it it was amazing
Oct 12, 2019
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Nov 04, 2018
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Wendy Qualls was a small ­town librarian until she finished reading everything her library had to offer. At that point she put her expensive and totally unrelated college degree to use by writing smutty romance novels and wasting time on the internet. She lives in Northern Alabama with her husband, two girls, two dogs, and a seasonally fluctuating swarm of unwanted ladybugs. Wendy can be found on ...more

Other books in the series

Heart of the South (3 books)
  • Worth Waiting For (Heart of the South, #1)
  • Worth Fighting For (Heart of the South #3)

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