Author: Shira Anthony
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: L.C. Chase
Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 09/09/2016
Length: Novel (~ 50K-100K)
Genre: Contemporary, Gay Romance, Romance
Shiver me timbers! When Professor Wesley Coolidge accepts a summer job as a historical consultant to a pirate movie being filmed in North Carolina, the last person he expects to bump into is his soon-to-be-ex, movie star Sander Carson. Just like the flamboyant pirate he’s playing, Sander, aka Sam Carr, is used to getting what he wants, and he makes it clear he wants Wesley back in his life.
Sam acknowledges it’s his fault they split up. He lost Wesley when he left their life in New York City behind for a career in Hollywood. But Wesley has finally managed to put the pieces of his heart back together, and he isn’t interested in Sam and Wesley: The Sequel. Sam soon realizes that convincing Wesley to give their relationship a second chance will take much more than apologies and reminders of good times past. If he wants Wesley back, Sam will have to show Wesley that they really can sail into the sunset together—a real-life happily-ever-after that won’t end once the final credits roll.
This is slightly confusing in the beginning: we have Wesley, a professor who is almost 40, and he’s in a relatively new relationship with Carl, who is in Guatemala for the summer, while Wesley ends up in North Carolina, consulting on a movie in which his soon-to-be ex-husband, an actor, has the starring role, a supposed favor for a friend. This was all presented rather quickly. Sometimes jumping into the middle of the lives of the characters works and sometimes it doesn’t. I’d call this a half and half jobbie.
The nature of the storyline dictates a slow, easy beginning – I know, a contrast to the set up we get related to Wesley and Sam, the soon-to-be ex.. Luckily, I was reading this on a cloudy rainy Saturday and it fit the mood for me. The fact that Sam and Wesley share the history they do, less tell and more show would have beefed things up, especially since there is time to give us the lay of the land and it’s taken.
On the flip side, the first appearance of Cyrus the studio exec, and his effect on Jeffrey, Sam’s assistant, perked me right up. I definitely want to know their story, watch it unfold. Once they’re introduced, we get more scenes with them, and both play important roles in this second chance of Wesley and Sam’s. Jeffrey and Cyrus, along with a couple of the other supporting characters, are the most enjoyable parts of this book.
Speaking of which, both of these people seem almost too good to be true, especially considering what they’ve been through according to the backstory. It makes it more of a reach to reconcile how they got to the point of divorce. This is especially true despite the memories Wesley shares with us. The reasons for how they got to this point in their lives are explained but just not enough for me to completely buy it, and therefore not enough for me to invest myself in these two.
This might not be the most memorable story around, nor the most exciting, but it is sweet, well-written, and sports realistic dialogue – this might have been part of the issue, though, with some of the exchanges coming across rather mundane and not always moving the story or characterizations forward. Writing that, I almost feel like maybe I was expecting too much? This is Shira Anthony, after all, and she is fabulous at painting wonderfully full characters in just as robust settings.
There are some emotional moments and comedic back and forth between Wesley and Sam. These two have known each other for ten years and it shows in some of their scenes, especially when they attempt to revive the friendship aspect of their relationship. This might not have knocked my socks off but, when you’re looking for a comfy contemporary read, this will probably fit the bill without much effort. 🙂 Oh, and there be pirates here. 😀
P.S.: I mean it, I would love Cyrus and Jeffrey’s 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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