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Friday, July 8, 2011

Summer by Carol Lynne

Summer by Carol Lynne
Book 2 in the Seasons of Love Serial
Publisher: Total-E-Bound Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (90 pages)
Other: M/M, Anal Sex
Rating: 4.5 cherries
Reviewed by Amaryllis

As Spring gives way to the heat of Summer, Sidney Wilks and Grady Nash settle into their new lives in a Chicago suburb.

Trying to fit in to his new surroundings, Nash becomes friends with his co-workers at the garage. The only hitch is he has to go back into the closet he’d finally escaped. With Sidney working long hours, Nash doesn’t feel the need to expose his relationship to guys who wouldn’t understand. The dual-life leads to misunderstandings and hurt feelings, forcing Nash to make a life changing decisions.

With Nash battling to find a purpose away from the ranch he loved, Sidney’s busy enduring long hours in an office he hates. With his prize-winning building completed, Sidney’s creativity is put to use designing buildings that don’t inspire him. When an opportunity to design the building of his dreams presents itself, Sidney’s loyalties are put to the ultimate test. Will he reach for his dream and uproot Nash from a life he’s finally settling into, or will he sacrifice his personal goals for the good of the man he loves?

It’s easy to fall in love, not so easy to make love work under the constant pressures of real, daily life. Summer picks up the lives of Sidney and Nash when they are trying to fit into their lives in Chicago. Each is having their own trouble adjusting and also coping with being a gay man in society. Sidney has a particularly hard time dealing with anti-gay prejudice in his chosen profession.

Again, depth of characterization makes this story stand out. Nash is so easy to love, he is so caring and understanding of the younger and more temperamental Sidney. Yet Nash is still very masculine and clearly an alpha. He needs space of his own to decompress yet inwardly craves intimacy. Sidney can be difficult but he is so warm hearted and open in his way of dealing with life, he’s easy to sympathize with as a character.

The sex has complex emotional depth yet still has that aspect of uncertainty and a feeling of high stakes, just as one would expect of a relationship of this length. The sexual scenes are well tied into the overall conflict between the two heroes. There are some aspects of rough sex and this story might not be for the faint hearted. I like the more raw aspects of their love; it makes this seem believable as the story between two complex and willful men. It shows their struggle to negotiate often-differing needs in an ongoing, developing relationship. This is the side of love so often neglected in love stories and it is a very refreshing story because of it.

This is a not-to-be-missed series and I am eagerly awaiting the release of the next book.

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