My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Thirteen years ago, Eli went on a summer trip with his mother and never came back. Now, existing in a new life as Jacob Somerville, he’s again running from fear and memories, only to end up where he started. As Jacob struggles to reconnect with his father and brothers, he realizes that his lover, Craig Zhao, was the only thing filling his empty heart and standing between him and ghosts of the past. It will take the power of love—from his family, from Craig, and from himself—for Jacob to see that his life truly is filled with the promise of what can be.
So what did I think?
This is definitely not your standard Christmas fare! It’s a story with mystery and intrigue as Eli returns to his family after 13 years. As I read the first chapters I was full of questions – why can’t he stay? Why has he not seen his family for so long? Why has he changed his name?
This story is very much about Eli reconnecting with his family and gradually his story is unveiled. We don’t see much of Eli’s boyfriend at the beginning of the story, just being introduced to him by a phone call but he feels very much part of the story all the same. Watching him interact with Eli at the end of the book, providing loving support, is heartwarming.
It was a wonderful combination of romance (of course Eli/Jake) gets his man at the end!) but with a lovely strong focus on facing past tragedies and moving on with life. It was so lovely to see Eli get his man, Craig find his own happiness and the whole family welcome Eli back!
And today’s Christmas carol is I’ll Be Home For Christmas by Michael Buble.