Book Title: Wheels Down (Food Truck Warriors #5)
Publisher: Beth Bolden
Cover Artist: Cate Ashwood
Release Date: September 30,
Genre: Contemporary gay romance
Tropes: Friends to lovers, forced proximity, found family
Themes: Forgiveness, acceptance, friendship
Heat Rating: 4 flames
Length: 76 000
It is not a standalone story. It
is the fifth book in the Food Truck Warriors series.
Buy Links – Available in Kindle
Shaw isn’t his
friend—until Ross discovers he’s so much more.
Ross Stanton is having a bad week—a bad month—really, a
bad year. But the last thing he wants, after the betrayal of his friend and business partner, is
for anyone else to know just how much he’s fighting for survival.
He’s struggling to keep his food truck and to maintain
appearances, but what Ross doesn’t realize is that Shaw Finley, the bartender from the
Funky Cup, has seen right through his charade.
Shaw offers the couch in his apartment over the bar,
suggesting that saving money on rent might help salvage Ross’ failing prospects.
Even though he doesn’t really consider them friends, Ross
discovers that Shaw is great to talk to, easy to look at, and he likes him. Late nights
and lazy mornings and evenings with only the polished wood of the bar between them lead
to an attraction that Ross can’t deny—and that Shaw doesn’t even try to.
But falling in love isn’t as easy as falling into bed together,
and Ross isn’t even sure what he feels is love, until he figures out that it
couldn’t possibly be anything else.
Shaw removed his glass, replaced it with a full cup of water and ice, and then a moment
later he was back, with a plate full of delicious-smelling food.
“Steak and mushroom hoagie, with horseradish aioli,” Shaw said, depositing it in front of
him, “and our famous sweet potato fries.”
“They’re famous?” Ross wondered, even as he realized he had heard people
talking about them.
“According to our Yelp reviews,” Shaw said. “Can I grab you anything else?”
Ross was about to ask for napkins, because the sandwich looked absolutely delicious but
also messy, but then one appeared next to him, like Shaw had known he’d need
“I think I’m good, thanks,” Ross said, and picked up the sandwich. It had a surprising heft to
it, and he had to give Jackson and Shaw credit—they’d revamped the kitchen and the work
they’d put in showed. When he took a bite, he was even more impressed, half a dozen
flavors exploding across his tongue as he chewed spiced sliced steak working in perfect
complement to the earthiness of the mushrooms.
“You’re nodding over there,” Shaw said, his voice teasing. “Is that a good or a bad thing?”
Ross finished chewing and swallowed. “Really good,” he said. “I’m impressed.”
“Wow,” Shaw said, looking surprised. Too surprised.
“Am I really that notorious?” Ross asked, before he thought better of it. He ate a handful of
sweet potato fries and they were really good too. “That picky?”
He didn’t really want to hear the answer; he really didn’t want to hear Shaw’s
“Not exactly notorious,” Shaw said, returning to slicing his lemons.
“Then what exactly?”
Shaw sighed and put down the knife.
“You’re gonna get me in trouble,” he said with resignation.
Ross almost told him to forget it. After all, hearing the truth was probably not going to be all
that enlightening and might actually make the next few months of living together
Shaw smiled then, and it wasn’t the same smile he gave to all the random guys at the bar. It
was softer, sweeter, more genuine somehow. Ross had never seen it before, and it hit him
somewhere deep, a place where he hadn’t felt much of anything in years.
Maybe the last time had been when his grandmother had smiled at him, over pots and pans
and pie dishes.
“You gotta know that you’ve got the best food at that whole lot,” Shaw said. “Objectively.
The other food there is good, don’t get me wrong, but those guys? You know
why they keep you at arm’s length? They’re all terrified of you, though they’d rather die
than admit it. You’re brilliant. You should be working in the best, the fanciest, the most
expensive restaurants, and instead you’ve got this food truck and it’s just amazing. Every
time I go to Basket, I’m blown away.”
“And,” Shaw continued, leaning over, his blue eyes twinkling again, and Ross’ breath caught
in his throat, “you’re gonna get me in trouble, because Jackson would have my ass for not
thinking Alexis serves the best food on the lot.”
About the Author
A lifelong Pacific Northwester, Beth Bolden has just recently moved to North Carolina with
her supportive husband. Beth still believes in Keeping Portland Weird, and intends to be just
as weird in Raleigh.
Beth has been writing practically since she learned the alphabet. Unfortunately, her first
foray into novel writing, titled Big Bear with Sparkly Earrings, wasn’t a bestseller, but hope
springs eternal. She’s published twenty-three novels and seven novellas.
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