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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Almost Heaven by Kimberly Gardener

Almost Heaven by Kimberly Gardener
Publisher: Loose Id
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (100 pgs)
Other: M/M, anal sex
Rating: 4 cherries
Reviewed by Cactus

When Chris meets Kevin at his brother's school, he instantly gets hot for teacher. He can only hope that the sexy guy is gay. Later, when Kevin shows up at the gym where Chris works, Chris is sure he's got him hooked. A shared kiss is absolutely electric but then Kevin turns tail and runs. What the hell? Maybe he's in the closet.

Yes, in fact, Kevin is in the closet, Deep in the closet. He has to be. He's going to be a priest. While he's very attracted to Chris, he simply can't pursue it. Giving in to that attraction would ruin his life. Still, he can't deny what he feels so instead he vows to stay away from Chris.

But steering clear is not so easy when what you've found is Almost Heaven.

Can Chris tempt a priest to sin? Fitness trainer Chris meets priest in training Kevin at a local prep school. At first Chris doesn’t realize that he’s flirting with a soon to be father. Instead he takes advantage of their passion and initiates Kevin into some hot sex in the break room. Overcome with guilt, Kevin runs off and Chris soon learns his latest conquest is not what he thought. Their explosive attraction forces Kevin to rethink his future and Chris starts contemplating an actual relationship.

Almost Heaven is a fun, flirty tale that wrestles with the essential question of what you want in life. Kevin is nice character with a big, happy family. He’s studying to be a priest but he’s never questioned who he was. He always knew he was gay but never experienced the kind of attraction and desire he has for Chris. Although Kevin tries to fight their chemistry, he’s forced to really examine his life and future. The questions Kevin poses for himself are interesting but kept pretty light. Kevin experiences some shame and guilt over his actions but he always knows what he wants out of life. He just has to find the courage to go for it.

Chris is a good character, more simplistic than Kevin. He’s a good brother and the scenes with his younger brother are funny and heart warming. Chris doesn’t have the same angst and concern that Kevin goes through but he has some trepidation over making a commitment. The novella is too short to give a solid happy ending but it’s definitely happy for now with the hope for more in the future. Their relationship is fun, sexy, and filled with a good chemistry that is likely to carry them on.

The easy writing and good pace keep the novella very quick and light to read. The few angst scenes are handled with a light touch so this isn’t a heavy read. Instead it’s a nice addition to the coming out series and works well for fans of the author.

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