Author: Shae Connor
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Paul Richmond
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 05/11/2015
Length: Novel (~ 50K-100K)
Genre: Contemporary, Fiction, Gay, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance, Menage/Poly
Family isn’t just about blood—it’s about heart.
After his move to Atlanta and away from the influence of his conservative parents, Mikey O’Malley finally feels free to be himself: art student, aspiring animator, and out gay man. He has friends, a new job, and not one, but two men interested in him. Cory Lassiter and Jimmy Black have been a happy couple for years, occasionally bringing a twink into their bed, but only for a brief roll in the hay. When Mikey meets the pair, the attraction is immediate, and it runs three ways. Mikey just can’t believe they’d have room in their lives for a permanent addition.
When Mikey’s newfound life is shattered by a lawsuit that accuses him of molesting a child years earlier, he’s determined to face his troubles on his own, but Cory and Jimmy are just as determined that he not have to go it alone. To reconcile his need for independence and his desire for love, Mikey has to learn that being a man isn’t just about standing on your own two feet. It’s about letting yourself lean on the ones who love you.
Connor’s writing style leans more towards telling than showing, but it blends in quite well with the story and characters. Speaking of, all of the main and most of the supporting characters are likeable and fulfill believable friendships, which I always enjoy.
Mikey is the main character, one could say, as this story in the series involves his struggles with starting to live life on his own, away from his parents who are not accepting of and sometimes barely loving towards the person Mikey is, who he’s trying to be. Right by his side are Cory and Jimmy, a couple of mature guys in a long-term relationship looking for something they feel is missing, which ends up being Mikey.
Another aspect of Connor’s writing comes across as simple, open, sometimes giving me more than I’d like in terms of detail and emotion, not making me work for any of it. However, this fits Mikey’s mindset and helps to inform his efforts in finding his own path in this life, wanting to do for himself while also learning to allow others to help him, be there for him.
I felt like something was being held back while I was reading, that some unnecessary level of restraint had control of the reins. I can’t put my finger on it, and I’m not even sure it is unnecessary, but it’s there.
Either way, I got sucked into this story and enjoyed my time spent with these characters. This is especially true of the friendship between Mikey and his best friend Kitty, or Kits as he calls her. It’s lovely to see real friendships portrayed: supportive, knowing, and humorous.
Ultimately, this is the story of a young man learning how to trust and rely on that trust, allowing himself to let go and reach for what makes sense and feels right to him, and believing in the good feelings that come along with all of these things.
This book and Connor’s writing make for a great place of entry into the M/M world. A nice cast of characters of various ages, an interesting story with relationships and friendships that feels real, with some hot sex that doesn’t become the sole focus of the story.
This is book two in this series but, having read book one, this feels like a standalone in that the characters in book one made only brief appearances in this story.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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