Reviewed by Chris
TITLE: Two Hearts
AUTHOR: David Connor & E.F. Mulder
PUBLISHER: Less Than Three Press
LENGTH: 178 pages
RELEASE DATE: November 30, 2016
Following a lightning strike that causes his nervous system to go haywire, Frank is left unable to touch another living thing. Though resigned to being a lonely freak, he ever hopes that someone, somewhere, might love him.
But his life goes from bad to worse when someone does…
Already heavily scarred from a house fire when he was a young child, Frank is used to being on the outskirts of society. When he realized that he was falling in love with his best friend, Renny, that only made things worse. 1950’s America was not kind to his kind, and the scars on his body only made it harder to hide who he was. And if that wasn’t bad enough, one day he is struck by lightning, and cursed to electrocute any living thing he touches. Cut off from even the smallest of human contact, Frank is certain that he is doomed to live alone and unloved for the rest of his life.
But something strange is happening–even stranger than it had been–and when the son of Frank’s boss shows up, Frank’s life will never be the same.
While I liked the idea behind this book, I found that the writing style and I just didn’t mix. The overly lyrical narration and dialogue just confused me and left me outside the story. It also didn’t help that the ARC sent to me was peppered with major formatting errors. While I assume they were fixed before publishing, it made it doubly hard for me to concentrate on the story.
At times it felt like the book was trying to be Something Important, and as a consequence it forgot to focus on storytelling and plotting. I liked that the authors took the chance with the odd way Frank talks/narrates his story, but it ultimately made it extremely difficult for me to actually get into the story. The dialogue and narration, sadly, felt too fake.
There was also the fact that because Liam–Frank’s employer’s son–and Frank frequently act like little kids, it made the sex scenes a bit uncomfortable to read. Yes, they are both (theoretically) of age, but it felt off. And honestly, without giving away any spoilers, I am not so sure that Liam was in a place in his head where he could consent to anything.
This story set me at a distance from almost the beginning, and I could never really find a way to connect with it. While I think the authors took a chance with the style of writing, I wish they had focused more on the actual story telling. Pretty words don’t mean a whole lot when the story is confusing and a bit nonsensical at times.