Author: Freddy MacKay
Publisher: Mischief Corner Books
Cover Artist: Freddy MacKay
Rating: 4.5 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 04/06/2013
Length: Novel (~ 50K-100K)
Genre: Bisexual, Contemporary, Gay Fiction, Menage/Poly, New Adult
Months after waking from a car accident that took everything David held dear, he’s trying to settle into a new life at CRU. There’s only one problem. Well, three, his roommates: Bobby, Chris and Austin. They want to experience life now that they’re out from under their parents’ watchful eyes, and for David to partake in the fun with them. David feels he’s experienced enough life already and just wants to be left alone.
Bobby sees how David watches him, Chris and Austin. He’s convinced their hard-ass roommate just needs a little nudge and David would open up. When Bobby comes back to the dorm unannounced, looking for an English paper for class, Bobby finds out why David’s been holding them at arms length and becomes determined to help his roommate rejoin the world of the here and now.
The only problem is: David has more secrets he doesn’t want anyone to know about.
NOTE: There are references to rape, and some graphic violence, in the story.
PLEASE NOTE: This title was previously released under a different publisher. This is a reedited second edition.
Warnings: 1) There are m/f and m/f/f scenes in this book. So for those people who have a thing about that, this may not be for you. 2) This is not a romance. So for those people who have a thing about that, this may not be for you. 3) While this is complete novel, it is unfinished. The rest of the story is told in the next book. So again, for those people who have a thing about that, this may not be for you.
Have you ever read a book that you just did not understand? A book that was well written and pulled at your heart strings, but left you wondering why? Why things had to happen the way they did? Well this was that book for me.
I have to admit, I was unsure of what to expect from this novel. Based on the blurb, I was not really sure how I would react since I normally am not a fan of violence in my stories. But this one pulled me in and I had to keep reading. I read this in one sitting while I was supposed to be doing my job, but I could not put this one down.
This was the story of David, plain and simple. There may have been other characters, and sometimes those characters had their own encounters with others, but this was David’s story. It was David’s new beginning. It was his interactions with others and the way those lives around him were changed because of him. Each portion of this story, whether from David’s POV or from someone else’s POV was all about getting to know David and how David changed the world by just being in it.
David was such a spectacular character. So full of hurt and grief yet wanting to help others and find a way to forge a new life after losing so much. He was most definitely older and more experienced in life than his roommates, but in a way his experiences made him more childlike and fragile. He often came across as the younger man emotionally while yet still managing to be more developed. His constant state of flux was one of the things that made his character so rich.
It really broke my heart to see the way people around him just tried to take over his life. The way they never bothered to get to know him before deciding they knew what was best for him. The way people just did what they wanted and poor David was left to cope and adjust when he only wanted to be left alone. I hated the way even Bobby started off by deciding he knew how to fix David without fully understanding David’s situation. This really painted a picture of humanity that I did not like, a picture that made me stop and think of all the times I didn’t bother to think how my actions impacted others.
At the same time, it made my heart soar to see how so many people instinctively loved David and wanted to protect him. How his roommates may give him a hard time, but they also defend him to the ends of the earth. How strangers were so eager to help David become his best self. How David seemed to be the center of so many people’s desire to be protective.
It gutted me when David, who was finally making a go of it, was brutally attacked. Was it not bad enough that his childhood was horrendous? Was it not bad enough that he buried a child and best friend? Was it not bad enough that he was emotionally stunted and fumbling through life? Did he have to be brutalized as well? Why? I just didn’t understand why!!
I also found that I had a hard time following the progression and purpose of the story. Just when I thought I knew what was going on, the POV would shift or a new character would be introduced and I would have to rethink everything. I spent a lot of time wondering what the point was of the people and their interactions. I know the story was following along with David and his attempt at a new life. And I know that often life if not linear or easy or straight forward. But I just didn’t really understand the point of things for much of the story. I feel like the author had a reason for each character and encounter in the story, but hell if I know what it is. Or maybe this was the point. Maybe this was just a picture of the worst of humanity and the way one poor soul can hurt so much and yet still move forward in a sea of chaos. Maybe this was just a picture of man designed to force the reader to think and to feel and to challenge the idea that life is good for everyone if they just try hard enough.
I really liked this story and that is was not a romance yet there was so much love involved. There was the love of friends, the love of students, the love of a partner, the love of a parent, just love. Even through, or maybe because of, all the hate, there was love.
I wish I understood what the author was trying to accomplish. I know this story will be continued in book 2, but I really wish I knew why book 1 happened the way it did. I feel like this book could have been fantastic, if only I count grasp some meaning that was just out of reach. I almost feel like I am letting the author down by not connecting with something below the surface. I really did enjoy this emotional journey and I am so ready to read book 2 in the hopes that things get better. The author has given me David to love and cherish. I just feel like I am letting him down by missing out on some key fact that would bring this one together for me. Maybe I am just missing what book 2 will provide. I will let you know in my next review.
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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