My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Andrew’s life is a cliché: he’s a gay man trapped in a loveless marriage, thanks to his religious, overbearing mother. Then a new couple moves in down the street, and Andrew finds himself falling for Nathan in a big way. Nathan is straight, married, and just about to be a father, but after one fateful night out together at a club, Nathan has to face the fact that his feelings for Andrew go way beyond that of a friend and neighbor.
When Andrew’s wife asks for a divorce, both men’s lives are thrown into disarray. Arguments about their responsibilities to their wives and children, doubting themselves and each other, and some harrowing lies pull them apart… but they never leave each other’s thoughts.
So what did I think?
Warning: the end of the review contains a quote which might be considered slightly spoilerish!
My expectation was that I wouldn’t enjoy the story and wouldn’t like the characters due to the infidelity – actually that sounds a bit silly given that I bought the book to read! 🙂 However, I really, really liked this book.
I loved both Andrew and Nathan. I didn’t necessarily like all their actions or agree with their decisions, but I found myself quite passionately wanting them to get together.
The books was interesting to read. The journey was not necessarily a happy one. There was lots of heartache and Andrew and Nathan weren’t together most of the time. There were a couple of moments where the story looked to take one path but diverted to another, keeping me turning the pages to find out want happens next.
The secondary characters were varied and interesting – children, wives, ex-wives, in-laws, best friends, neighbours, lovers. Everyone seemed to have an opinion on the relationship.
Although I found it hard to understand why Nathan didn’t just bite the bullet and leave his wife, his confusion and indecision was clear. He was worried about his very young children (Daniel and Jess) and his career but the person he seemed to be hurting the most was himself. “For too long now, Nathan had only felt alive when he was bathed in the warmth of Daniel and Jess or in the blazing light that was Andrew.”
It was also easy to feel sympathetic towards Andrew whose overbearing parents had forced the direction his life had taken. He had spent his life trying to do the right thing by his wife and son. At the beginning of the book he is living with his wife and son and supporting them, but it was a marriage in name only. He was honest with his wife.
The love and passion between the two men was obvious and their journey a very hard one but with the outcome I was hoping for.
“This will be difficult, and I’m not going to say it’ll be unicorns and rainbows. I’ve just got my head about being bi and I’m having a f*cking hard time coping with that, but I am in love with you. Living away from my kids is the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but you’re not asking me to do it. I’m finally making that decision for myself. I love you, and we’ve waited too damn long to be together.”
“Then we’ll find the unicorns and rainbows.” Andrew pulled Nathan into his arms again, kissing his lips, his wet eyes, the tear-tracks down his cheeks.”
For more information on Sue Brown and her books, visit her website.