Oliver and Samuel's relationship is fairy-tale perfect. They share a gorgeous house in Antwerp, go out with their friends every weekend, and count down the days to their dream wedding. But their happy ending is shattered one late night, and just like that, Ollie is left bereft and alone.
The months that follow are long and dark, but slowly Ollie emerges from his grief. He even braves the waters of online dating, though deep down he doesn't believe he can find that connection again. He doesn't think to look for love right in front of him: his bisexual friend Thomas, the gentle giant with a kind heart and sad eyes who's wanted him all along.
When Thomas suddenly discovers he has a son who needs him, he's ill prepared. Ollie opens up his house - Sam's house - and lets them in. Ollie doesn't know what scares him more: the responsibility of caring for a baby, or the way Thomas is steadily winning his heart. It will take all the courage he has to discover whether or not fairy tales can happen for real.
©2016 Indra Vaughn (P)2016 Riptide Publishing
I really loved this book when I read it in ebook format and I truly believe this narrator brought out the best in this story. His voice was wonderful and his reading emphasized all the emotions this story evoke the first time I read it. I was in tears more than once over These men always missing those opportunities to be together. Omg this story was just so well done I don't know how else to show my love for it. I will def. be listening to this one again and again.
OMG. Kleenex, chocolate and wine. That’s what you need to get through this book. WOW!
If there were some angst, poured on top of an angst pie with some angst icing… that’d be this.
First, Oliver loses the PERFECT guy (Sam) to a stabbing.
Then, Sam’s family acts like a-holes and tries to take away the house they’ve been building together.
Then Sam tries to date (months later) but it doesn’t work out and then he finds out his best friend has been crushing on him all this time only he’s bi and he also slept with their female bestie while she was on a “break” with her boyfriend and then he also slept with someone else who got pregnant who then had the baby and had post partum depression and now he has to raise the baby for them both and now … gasp….
So. Much. Drama.
It felt a bit like being in an ocean. One wave would crest then another would hit and knock you down again.
I just wanted poor Olly and Thomas to find some happiness!
It does finally happen but not without a LOT of work.
So – be warned – if you’re interested in an easy-going love affair – keep looking! This is really well written but soooooo angsty.
I think there was a lot of realism in the story and that made me really happy at times but also kind of brought me down, too. I definitely didn’t get enough “it’s all good” time with our MCs – not to balance the boat load of sadness that we had to wade through to get to our happy.
However – the narration saved this book for me. I LOVED it! Craig Beck is a new to me narrator, but he was so easy to listen to. He also gave each of the characters a vaguely different accent so it was easy to tell who was speaking and it wasn’t quite British but leaning that way so it felt foreign enough to be in Antwerp (I have no idea what accents there would sound like … but I enjoyed Craig’s interpretation.)
I don’t know that I would have stuck with the book, but I absolutely loved listening to this story and was really glad I’d made it to the end.
I think, for fans of long, long heroic journeys with a SLOW burn romance, you’ll like this story.
Overall 4 of 5 stars
The author pulls you into the story quite nicely. The accent of the narration is to die for. Enjoyed the story immensely.
I love to read any genre and most topics. I like diversity and engaging characters. I write, garden, cook,craft and chill with my furbabies
Oh Yes! Craig Beck brought a beautifully written story to life. I spent the entire afternoon in tears. Some sad, some happy and even laughing.
It is hard to pick just one. I loved when Oliver changed Thomas baby first diaper. I loved Craig's cooing voice when he did all the baby talk.
or the first sex scene with Thomas and Oliver. it was all really hot...then the baby cried. I loved it when Oliver told Thomas to go get the baby, he was going to get ice packs for his blue balls.
An emotional rollercoaster of first love, losing it and a second chance for happiness.
Patchwork Paradise started out with Oliver and Samin such a perfect relationship. I liked it but thought how predictable" Then suddenly Sam was killed, and I was bawling like a baby with Oliver.
There are twists, all the way to the very end! I fell in love with Oliver. I cried with him. I hurt with him, and I cheered him on. There are so many wonderful characters as well.
If you like emotional stories, lots of angst, sad stories with a happy ending, lots of twists and some sweet, hot but tastefully done sex scenes you will love this.
I highly recommend it!
Goodreads reviewer and blogger... also dentist and wife/mom when I get the time!
*4.5 stars* - Same rating as my original ebook rating on audio reread. Lovely narrator.
This is one seriously good book. Heartbreaking, heartwarming, and really skillfully written, all fans of hurt/comfort and friends-to-lovers stories should give this one a shot.
I see you looking at that cover and I KNOW what you are thinking. And no, this book isn't cheesy or lame in the least. Despite the fact that these two look like they are in a commercial for foot fungus cream and are wearing matching cable-knit sweaters (*groan*), there is a really touching story within.
My only warning for all of you is that if you like your MCs to hook up ONLY with each other over the course of a story, don't try this one. It takes the main characters a long time to get together, and there are many bumps along the road getting to that point.
I read the book first in ebook form, so this was my second time around with this story. Audiobooks are sometimes funny things, and I book that I LOVED in ebook format sometimes has a crappy narrator or doesn't translate well when read aloud, and vice versa. This story was just as lovely the second time, and I was again impressed with Indra Vaughn's abilities as a writer. The audiobook narrator, Craig Beck, did a great job, and I'd listen to him again any day of the week.
I think some of the trickiest stories to write are those that involve people getting over the death of their first love. However, I tend to LOVE these second chance at love type stories, and they rank as some of my all-time favorites (Second Chances, After Ben). Indra Vaughn really did this trope justice. The relationship between Ollie and Sam felt authentic, Ollie's grieving period after Sam's death felt authentic, and Ollie's evolution of his relationship with Thomas felt authentic. It all felt true and heart-wrenching and meaningful.
My only issue with this story is that it takes a looong time to get to where our two MCs are together. Granted, that is a also a positive for me because the author had time to really make us know that Ollie's feelings were real, but still there are a LOT of details of our MCs with other people, which grew to be a bit distracting.
There is also the kid issue, which can be tricky in stories, but I think that the author did a beautiful job with it. The child aspect to the story really ratcheted up the emotion and intensity between Ollie and Thomas, in a good way.
This was a long, emotionally difficult story with a beautiful HEA in the end. You will be rooting for our MCs to get together and for Oliver to find peace and happiness once more. All fans of hard-fought, friends-to-lovers stories should not let this one pass them by.
**Copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review**
"I didn't love it as much as I had wanted to"
It depends on the expectation.
I went into this book with truly high expectations because of the plot. I love the stories that involve people getting over the death of their first love; when it takes the main characters a long time to get together; when the sex scenes are limited or stylistic depict and a child aspect's included . But there are many bumps along the road to be told in such short length book. Despite the fact that it is a slow-paced love story the issues that came up were a little more. Ollie was overly victimized. It seemed like every a couple chapter had some new level of angst. I felt as if a lot of themes were mixed in, without enabling every one of them to be unraveled in enough depth.
The writing in the first half and Oliver’s struggles in the aftermath of Samuel’s death were absolutely heartbreaking and outstanding.
Craig Beck did a not-bad job. Frankly, the major problem here was with Thomas' voice. It sounded too emotionally immature. The differentiation of each of characters were not maintained throughout the book.
All in all, I didn't love this book as much as I thought I was going to but it was an enjoyable read and I'm glad I didn't pass it up!
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