Publisher: Amber Quill Press
Date published: March 2013
Genre: M/M contemporary romance
Book format: E-book
Obtained via: Publisher Gift
Reviewed by firstname.lastname@example.org
After ten years in Los Angeles, journalist and native Australian Colin McDermott is back home in Sydney, working at a café and awaiting the green card he needs to return to his life in California. The last thing he expected was a reunion with a man he hasn’t seen in a decade—not since Australia Day a decade ago, a night which Colin ended by tossing cookies all over his date.
Set mover Ronan Hensley never forgot the quirky guy he spent the holiday with ten years ago. After the upchuck debacle Colin refused to take his calls, and Ronan eventually resigned himself to a different relationship. Finally single, Ronan learns via the friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend that Colin is back in Sydney, and decides to arrange a meeting.
The two pick up where they left off, discovering compatibility beyond what either had anticipated. Colin is thrilled with rediscovering Ronan, but what will become of Colin’s plans to return to L.A.?
With a touch of humor, the story unfolds in different locations in Sydney, including King’s Cross, the “posh end of Sydney’s notorious red light district.” Secondary characters enrich the plot, including Colin’s two brothers, his half-demented father, and café owners Frank and Nunio Rebuzzi, Colin’s employers. The occasional café coworker and patron add spice to the mix.
The ending implies Colin is committed to staying in Australia, but from the start the author makes clear Colin’s desperation to return to California, counting down the days in Sydney almost like a prison sentence.
The obvious source of conflict in the tale is Colin’s impending departure via green card, but the issue of the visa never comes up—it’s neither granted nor denied, and the reader doesn’t get to see how Colin would have dealt with this. I would have liked to have seen this play out.
Otherwise, The Cross is a satisfying read, and A.J. Llewellyn doesn’t disappoint.
This is an objective review