Reviewed by Dee
AUTHOR: A.J. Rose
PUBLISHER: The Grim Writer Press
LENGTH: 438 Pages
RELEASE DATE: September 13, 2016
Kyle Decker knew dating Jesse McGovern would change his life. Young and in love, and with the Supreme Court ruling in favor of marriage equality, the world is theirs to conquer.
But their victorious Pride celebration ends in a savage attack, brutally demonstrating they’re far from equal. Instead of wedding planning, Jesse and Kyle face an arduous recovery and a shattered sense of their place in the world, their once-promising future suddenly something to survive.
While Jesse struggles with a permanent injury and its emotional aftermath, Kyle’s single-minded focus on Jesse’s recovery is the only thing keeping his demons at bay…for now. What was a once-in-a-lifetime kind of love is now full of lies and resentment.
With their dreams tattered and forever changed, trusting anyone—even each other—is daunting. So how can they have faith in twelve strangers on a jury? They’ve already learned the hard way it only takes a moment to become truly defenseless
The first thirty-percent of this story reeled me in something fierce. I absolutely loved these guys, Kyle and Jesse. The court trial for marriage equality was interesting, the outcome heartwarming, especially when it resulted in a marriage proposal.
As per the blurb, when Kyle and Jesse become victims of a hate crime their happy little bubble is savagely popped. This story went a long way to show that even with society making leaps and bounds, accepting people regardless of sexual orientation, there are still many homophobes to be wary of.
The attack was a horrid thing to bear witness to. AJ Rose has a vivid writing style and sticks the reader smack bang in the middle of events. The crack of bone made me literally shudder.
So with their lives turned upside down, these boys not only have to overcome their own fears but also deal with the emotional trauma inflicted upon each other. For various reasons bitterness seeps in. Secrets are kept in an attempt to spare the other more hurt, which has the opposite effect.
Even though this story is told from Kyle and Jesse’s point-of-view, the reader is privy to numerous characters thoughts and feelings – friends, family, therapists, co-workers, a good Samaritan, Liam and so-on.
This story has some adult content but the bigger story is the hate crime and how someone overcomes such a heinous attack, if ever really.
From the 30% to 80% mark, the story has a heavy focus on how such an attack not only affects the victims but everyone close to them. The trial, of course, also rehashes the events of the story. I was happy with the outcome.