Author: Sage C. Holloway
Publisher: Loose Id
Cover Artist: Natasha Snow
Rating: 4.5 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 06/21/2016
Length: Novel (~ 50K-100K)
Genre: Contemporary, Gay Fiction, Mystery/Thriller, Trans*
When Julian Shaw’s friend Katie, an at-risk transgender teen, disappears, Julian takes it upon himself to find her. However, after arriving in Milwaukee, nothing goes according to plan. He struggles with boyfriend issues, suddenly finds himself playing foster dad to a kitten, and develops an adversarial relationship with mohawked, tattooed rebel Dashiell, who he keeps bumping into during his search.
Dashiell Sutherland hasn’t had it easy. His broken family has made him an outcast, and he’s sick of trying to fit in, sick of relationships, and especially sick of running into that entitled redhead everywhere he goes. But something about Julian makes him take notice, and soon he is entangled in the quest to find Katie.
When Julian’s world falls apart, Dashiell is there to help pick up the pieces, and an unlikely romance develops between them. But with the clock ticking on the search for Katie, and between Julian’s self-esteem issues and Dashiell’s less than stellar social skills, their relationship may have been doomed from the start.
I loved this book.
I’m sorry, I know that’s a really pedestrian way to start a review but it was the first thing that came to mind. I have no major complaints and could happily read only titles of this quality (or better) forever.
As main characters go, Julian and Dashiell could hardly be more different, from the superficial – the way they look/dress – to the deepest parts of their lives & family histories. Nonetheless, they connect instantly, and their relationship grows and changes with the narrative in a most authentic way. I felt their initial frustration when circumstances forced them to work together, and the alternating POV (which is tricky to get right IMO) filled in the important information gaps while they got to know each other. I particularly enjoyed the portrayal of Dash, and came to respect him very quickly once his secrets began to spill out.
The dangers and issues that a trans person can face are the foremost subject of The Gift of Gravity, and I was extremely pleased with the respect, sensitivity and intelligence shown them. Granted, I am a cisgender woman, so my thoughts on the matter don’t hold water, but it seemed clear to me that the author did her research on things like (for example) pronouns, body dysphoria, and the variations in the transition process itself. Also – spoiler, whoops! – the love scenes are capital letter Hot.
Overall, this is a novel well worth your money and time. I’ll be picking up Ms. Holloway’s other works ASAP and would love to get feedback from any other fans of hers.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
One random commenter with thoughtful, relevant comments will win a $25 gift certificate each month in 2016.
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