Reviewed by Sarina
TITLE: Making the Grade
SERIES: Cattle Valley #19
AUTHOR: Carol Lynne
PUBLISHER: Pride Publishing
LENGTH: 89 pages
RELEASE DATE: October 4, 2010
Kenny Trenton has had a crush on Cattle Valley English teacher, Eli Sanchez, since the age of seventeen. Although Kenny’s no longer a schoolboy, Eli refuses to see his fellow faculty member as anything but a student.
Eli has spent his life hiding from the outside world. When the loneliness gets too much, he decides to make the changes necessary to open himself up to friendships and perhaps a relationship.
When Eli attends a high school football game in a neighbouring community, he’s attacked in the parking lot. Although Kenny’s the one to rescue him, Eli begins to think he’s made a mistake and living in the outside world isn’t a good idea.
Kenny’s determined to keep Eli from retreating into his shell once again, but will his love be enough?
I found this latest book in the Cattle Valley Series to be a sweeter read. Books featuring characters with a significant age difference (almost twenty years) will most likely never be my ‘go to’ reads but there was just something so appealing about Eli and Kenny together. Kenny has been in love with his (then) teacher Eli since he was in High School and I honestly found the depth and endurance of his emotions extremely nice and it just made for a satisfying read.
Both men had difficult childhoods and that followed them into adulthood in differing ways; I liked seeing Eli come to the realization that he couldn’t hide himself away forever just out of fear of being hurt and it was nice seeing Kenny give him the support he needed while coming out of his self imposed exile. I also really enjoyed that you get to see events happening outside of the usual Cattle Valley setting. Don’t get me wrong, the kind of idyllic setting the characters of this setting have would be amazing to see in real life but I liked the added realism of seeing Eli somewhere else. Sadly, the events that take place there weren’t the best but it added another dimension to the story aside from just focusing on Eli and Kenny’s relationship.
Sex is kind of a secondary thing in this story, which I very much enjoyed; more than anything the focus was on the love between the main characters and I appreciated that. Not to say that there weren’t some naughty interludes but they were more a byproduct of the feelings Eli and Kenny shared rather than just fueled by lust with feelings happening later. Overall I found this to be an nice easy read that made for a good way to relax while my son was napping and I will probably read it again in the future.