★★★★ Four Corners by Kate McMurray ★★★★

Four CornersFour Corners by Kate McMurray

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Blurb…

Since childhood, Jake, Adam, Kyle, and Brendan have been teammates, best friends, brothers. Then one day, when they were twenty-five, Adam disappeared without a word, devastating his friends-none more so than Jake, who had secretly loved Adam since they were teenagers.

Now, five years later, Adam is back, and he has his mind set on Jake. But those years of anger, hurt, and confusion are a lot to overcome, and Jake doesn’t find it easy to forgive. He isn’t sure they’ll ever fit together the way they did. Jake, Kyle, and Brendan have moved on with their lives, but Adam’s high-profile career keeps him in the closet-the same place he’s been for years. Still, his apologies seem sincere, and the attraction is still there. Jake desperately wants to give him a chance. But first he has to find out why Adam left and if he’s really back for good.

So what did I think?

This is a really interesting look at the relationship between two men, Adam and Jake as they deal with the emotions of meeting again, five years after Adam left without a word.

I enjoyed the exploration of Adam’s acceptance of his own sexuality and the response Jake had to his friend’s perspective. “It was okay for me to be gay but not for him. I wondered how his own self-loathing affected what he thought about me. I’d worried for a long time that any judgments he held about himself applied to gay people generally or me specifically, that he couldn’t muster up the pride to just say out loud that he was gay, that he condemned me for coming out. I guessed I had my answer.”

I think my favourite part of the book was Jake’s realisation of the difference between he and Adam. ” I finally got what he’d being trying to tell me since Wednesday night. I was capital-G Gay: I was out to everyone, I lived in Boystown, I had rainbow tags on my luggage. He was lowercase-G gay: he was attracted to men, but that’s where it ended as far as he was concerned. I was more flabbergasted than angry then, surprised I hadn’t put that together sooner, and also feeling a little hurt.”

What I didn’t enjoy was the whole on again off again thing, it mainly coloured my opinion of Adam and therefore I found it hard to warm to him initially. The whole book actually had a strange unease about it. When Adam and Jake get together it doesn’t even feel like happiness and joy. But what it does have is a sense of realism – real life has conflict and emotion and it isn’t always plain sailing.

Bonus points for the fabulous ending and sweet epilogue!

4 Stars

To find out more about Kate McMurray and her books visit the website.

Buy Four Corners from Amazon.

Buy Four Corners from Dreamspinner Press.


What There Is by Kate McMurray

What There IsWhat There Is by Kate McMurray

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Blurb…

Former professional baseball player Justin Piersol needs a new life after a career-ending injury, and his job as a high school baseball coach isn’t exactly fulfilling. Still, things are looking up: he finds the perfect room in an apartment in Brooklyn with Mark, who writes a popular column on sports statistics.

Mark is nerdy and socially awkward and intensely shy, and he immediately develops a terrible crush on Justin, who barely seems to notice him. As they get to know each other, Justin admits he misses playing baseball, that coaching doesn’t scratch the itch. Mark confesses he thought he’d be married by now, that he wants a serious relationship. So they make a pact: Justin will help Mark find a man, and Mark will help Justin find something he loves more than baseball.

They put their plan into action… and then life gets complicated. Mark meets a nice guy named Dave, and Justin is suddenly crazy with jealousy. Justin realizes he wants to let go of the past and focus on the present, but as Mark and Dave become an item, Justin fears he’s too late.

So what did I think?

This was easy reading – short and sweet. It is the story of flatmates who fall in love.

Mark and Justin are opposites, the classic athlete and the nerd. “Cripplingly shy and socially awkward. That was Mark in a nutshell.” He’s wildly attracted to Justin but has no idea how he is going to live with “ athletic dreamboat.” Of course, neither of them imagine the other wants them!

The story revolves around Justin helping Mark to find a boyfriend and Mark helping Justin to expand his horizons beyond baseball.

It was a nice story, not overly special but enjoyable all the same. The pairing of the geek and the athlete was cute and I liked the premise – you don’t know what you’ve got until someone else wants it! And of course I liked the happy ending!

“Mark had wanted Justin to find something he loved more than baseball, and Justin knew in that moment that he had. He’d found Mark.” aww

To find out more about Kate McMurray and her books visit her website.

Buy What There Is from Amazon.

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