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5.0 out of 5 starsExcellent
Reviewed in the United States on May 22, 2015
Well written with good character development and a story line built around people and relationships, some of which just happen to be M/M, and not focused on sex. If you're looking for a book to curl up with, this is a good one.
I am looking forward to every new book by this writer since I have tead "A note in the margin". I thought this was a very good one, however I am not sure if I can recommend it to the romance readers. The two main characters are simply not together for the most part of the book - in itself it is not necessarily an obstacle for Romance between them, but it makes much more difficult to show the building of the relationship. I do not think the writer succeeded necessarily. I think what she did succeed in doing is to writing the story of the man who was grieving the death of his long term partner and who finally was ready to move on with his life. Whether this would be long term with Paul, I was not so sure. The guys met when Caleb saved Paul's life when he got lost at the mountain, they spent three days together - talking, being affectionate with each other and then Paul went to live his life and Caleb continued to live his. Supposedly meeting with Caleb affected Paul so much that he wanted to do better about his life than what he did before - well, I could kind of buy it, maybe, he was debating maybe he felt a little bit in love with Caleb, at least we are not talking about "forever and ever" after three days. But I am sorry, for the next six months there was just *not enough communication* between them to convince me that it grew up in something big. Caleb's journey felt more real to me, because for the most part he did not properly grieve Mike's death and could not let him go - he may have wondered if something will grow with Paul, but his thoughts were mostly about Mike. I liked that it did not end with a tight neat bow, even though the guys are together, and I think this was a great romantic gay fiction , but I am not convinced that this book belongs to genre Romance.
3.0 out of 5 starsGood characters wandering an aimless story
Reviewed in the United States on June 18, 2015
In the first few chapters, “telling” was winning out over “showing” in terms of setting the scene for these characters and their stories. This is especially true regarding Caleb and Paul, the two main characters. Things improved in this area any time some of the supporting characters, especially Paul’s best friend Stewart, were on the scene.
Here’s a simple breakdown of how this book presented itself:
The prose is often beautiful. Descriptions of physical place come alive with emotion anyone would recognize and feel a connection towards. This is where the bulk of my rating comes from. This and Stewart.
The characters are a mix of interesting, likeable, and overly mysterious.
The dialogue is ok.
The plotting messy and meandering.
Given the structure employed to tell this story, it was rather difficult in getting to know Caleb, our man on the mountain. Interestingly, it was the opposite in getting to know Paul. I think that’s mostly due to his interaction with his friends and… those who are not so good at being friends. There were moments of similar experience with Caleb whenever he interacted with the animals on his ranch, but they weren’t enough to get me there. It took a good portion of the book to get a handle on him.
I understood Paul’s frustration.
The story’s structure really did seem to work against in getting that very story told. This didn’t change throughout most of the book. It’s unfortunate because, as I said, the prose is beautiful, giving me a robust understanding of the where and the why about the characters living in and their interactions with their surroundings.
Paul is trying to figure out what’s next in his young life. Caleb is trying to figure out how to break through the other side of grief. Stewart, Paul’s best friend, is supportive, funny, and everything else a best friend should be. When he and Paul are together, not only did I learn more about Paul but, Stewart shines through as possibly the most well written character in the bunch.
There are some emotional moments, especially regarding the idea of family being the one we make. Both Caleb and Paul have and do experience this, finding themselves among people who care a lot about them and want the best for them, individually and together. There wasn’t enough of this, though, to get me fully invested in them and the story.
I wouldn’t call this a romance but more of two different stories, about making progress in life, that intersect here and there, paving the way for a possible life together for Paul and Caleb.
Wonderfully written- two seemingly horribly mismatched men finding each other very SLOWLY. Where one partner was truly loved and had passed over one can expect great sadness and difficulty in saying" auf wiedersehen" and this makes for the exceedingly protracted development of this second relationship. Beautifully written- just s l o w.