book reviews · m/m romance

Book Reviews: Kaje Harper’s “Life, Some Assembly Required” (The Rebuilding Year #2) (2015)

25157943I really enjoyed the first book in this series, but I loved this sequel even more! It’s always such a treat diving into a book where you already know and love the characters, and the characters are already together at the beginning- it gives us more time to enjoy them!

In a way this is a very simple book: a family drama. Well, step-family drama, perhaps? After all, by being together Ryan and John aren’t just building a relationship, they’re building a family, with step-children and ex’s and ex’s new partners and babies to worry about. Plus there’s the added drama of telling everyone in their lives that, by the way, they aren’t 100% straight. Not everyone in their extended families is okay with that, which naturally causes some tension as well. …maybe one day people will stop being offended when their friends or family “suddenly turn gay”, as they seem to put it, believing that said person has been “lying” to everyone their whole lives about who they’re attracted to (here I pause to roll my eyes). Well, that’s family drama for you.

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book reviews · m/m romance

Book Review: Kaje Harper’s “The Rebuilding Year” (2012)

13244400I did hesitate to read a book about not just one, but two “straight” men coming to terms with their same-sex attraction, but I took a chance with it and am so glad I did! It was a very enjoyable read. This author has a real talent for creating lovable characters that you just want to keep reading about forever- steady, sturdy, silent John and fiery, fervent Ryan.

The concept of a “rebuilding year” is surely familiar to a lot of readers: those times when it feels like you’re rebuilding your whole life from scratch when everything’s gone wrong. The first few chapters are very much in this dark, lonely place where our two main characters are settling into these new lives; they’ve established some sort of stability for themselves, but they’re far from happy. They seem to recognize that they’re both in this space, going through such big changes, and become sources of support for each other. That’s a lovely thing. In that sense there is a very sweet escapist element to this book, a chance to indulge in the idea that we could all find such sources of support, such caring people to brighten our lives.

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book reviews · m/m romance

Book Review: Kaje Harper’s “Tracefinder: Changes” (Tracefinder #2) (2016)

30047519There’s nothing as satisfying as being able to read the sequel of an amazing book as soon as you’ve finish the first! I tried to show some self-restraint and wait at least a day before I bought this book, but of course I didn’t succeed. I jumped straight into this sequel and read non-stop until it was done. No regrets!

Even though it’s Brian’s needs that form most of the action and plot of this book, I felt that Nick’s journey and development was given a lot of attention as well. His self-identity as a cop is slowly, torturously stripped away, and he has some very hard questions to ask himself about what he wants- what he needs- in life, and where his true priorities and desires lie. I think that the author has done a very good job at balancing these two very complicated characters, at such a complicated time of their lives. Both the development of them as individuals and the development of their relationship are treated with great skill and care.

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book reviews · m/m romance

Book Review: Kaje Harper’s “Tracefinder: Contact” (Tracefinder #1) (2016)

28357990Woo-hoo, I have a new author obsession!! Harper’s writing is fantastic, and there’s so many books for me to look forward to reading! I can’t tell you how thrilled I was to discover Kaje Harper. Tracefinder is my first Harper book, and I was hooked from the very first chapter.

This book has all the best qualities of the “cop drama”: the cop talk, inter-departmental tension and intrigue, the undercover mission that’s soon compromised by the feelings of the cop for those he’s trying to catch out. Chilli dogs. Dodgy bars. So good!

But importantly, it also stands out from the crowd of M/M romance in a number of ways. The author doesn’t give us two mouth-wateringly attractive, burly men; we have the (admittedly, very attractive) Nick and- Brian. Ahh, Brian. I adored him. I think many readers will as well. I wanted to protect him and give him all the good things in the world. But he’s certainly not the standard love-interest, and that is excellent.

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