Tuesday, January 31, 2012


Publisher: Amber Quill Press
Date published: December 2011
ISBN: 978-1-61124-228-7
Gay, Contemporary
Reviewed by Helen
Obtained via publisher

Devon desperately needs a job and is on his way to an interview when his cell phone is stolen. After dramatic attempts to reclaim it, he ends up with a scratched face that is not the image he wanted to present.The good news is he gets the job. The complication is that it’s in Hawaii and his lover, Manco, has invited the entire extended family to share Christmas with them in California. Now Devon won’t be there.

It’s not surprising that Devon’s fiery Latin lover doesn’t take the news well. Not to mention that Steve, who’s been chasing Manco, tries to damage Devon’s relationship, and get closer to Manco.

This is an engaging story with lots of things happening all at once. A huge cast of characters is introduced, and all are drawn with clear personalities, even the most minor players. Hawaii is clearly described, showing thorough research and giving plenty of local color, so the reader feels as though they are present, watching Devon get lost, and seeing the sights with him.

So the plot, characters and background are all very well presented indeed. A.J. Llewellyn’s writing is as enjoyable as ever.

What prevented this book from being a keeper for me was a series of niggling minor glitches that could have been fixed in editing.

First, there was no scene at all in Manco’s POV. The entire book is told in Devon’s POV. It would have been much better to see inside the second hero’s head. The reader needs to bond with him too. Even worse, there were three occasions when, mid-paragraph, the story slid into Manco’s point of view before returning to Devon’s.
The other problems were some annoying repetition, a few typos, missed grammatical errors, a dangling modifier, and an error that contradicted earlier statements. Just enough to take the sparkly shine off the book for me.

A well-written, interesting story, with fascinating characters, but not a keeper.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

No comments: