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Romance and other things


Not really my cup of tea

Double Hue - Briana Lawrence





This review is a result of trying to be a conscientious reviewer :) – from time to time I make myself pick up a book for review by the author I never heard of. I believe this is a debut novel. I love gay mysteries, so I was happy to try this one and it seemed clear from the blurb that there is also a couple in love front and center of the events, so I was even more excited. I did *not* expect romance, I was just pleased that there would be a love story in addition to the mystery.

As you can see from the blurb Gable gets news about his boyfriend being dead, and then goes to sleep and wakes up when his boyfriend is still alive. I do not want to venture too much in the spoilers territory, but I do not think it will be a spoiler to say that Gable would want to save his boyfriend from the event which already happened.

I have to admit that even though I thought the narrative maintained tension nicely, it was not the most pleasant of the reads for me. I think that after discussing this book with someone I understand why the present tense was used, but I still really did not like it. The story written in the present tense is not an automatic turn off for me, but I have  read few books written that way that I enjoyed. I get that dreams played such an important role in the story and the present tense added that dreamlike quality to the narrative, but I also felt that the story wanted me to relate to the main character more than I usually would want and I was irritated I suppose? I guess I needed some distance from Gable and what he was doing, because at times I felt that I was going crazy with him. I also did not feel that he was all that interesting as a character and while I was entertained enough by what he was doing, I thought that narrative was pushing me into much closer connection with him than what I was ready for.

No, I am not going to tell you if Gable really was going down the crazy road and how the events in the story played out :) , I will tell you however that I was having a lot of trouble trying to figure out to which genre  this book belongs. I think publisher characterized it as a thriller and I thought it was an appropriate characterization after I finished the story. I was thinking that it was a mystery right till the villain was revealed in the middle of the story. I was both pleasantly surprised  with the identity of the  villain and extremely unhappy with that identity – I cannot explain why without spoiling the story. I also was not happy with the early reveal, because to me it was actually quite shocking. Because of such early reveal I suppose thriller with paranormal elements fits this story the best for me, and it was definitely not a romance, but two boys who are in love with each other were trying to deal with traumatic and violent events in their lives.

I was actually quite impressed that in the book which was not a romance the author showed me very well how much Gable and Avery loved each other – I guess it was partially because there is a constant danger to their lives involved, but no matter what reason I thought they had pretty strong chemistry together.

Sadly when I was done with the book I decided that besides their great chemistry I really did not learn much about them as ”people”, add to this early revelation of the villain, present tense which annoyed me pretty much throughout the story and I could not grade it any higher.