By Nicola Haken
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
When Theodore Davenport decides to switch his mundane job for a career, he walks into Holden House Publishing with enthusiasm and determination to succeed. As he settles into his new role, makes new friends, and dreams of making it to the top, everything is going to plan.
Until he meets James Holden, CEO of Holden House.
James Holden hasn’t been able to stop thinking about his encounter with the timid man he met in a club bathroom last week, and when he discovers the one haunting his dreams is an employee, he can’t seem to stop himself from pursuing him.
Just a little fun – that’s what James tells himself. He can’t afford to care for someone who can never reciprocate, not once they find out who he really is. James believes nobody deserves the burden of being attached to him. He’s a complicated man. Damaged. Difficult. Demanding.
Is Theodore strong enough to confront James’ demons? More importantly, is James?
I’m certain this one will go down as one of my all-time favorites. Amazing. Raw. Emotional. Painful. Beautiful. This one hit pretty close to home. Though not from the bipolar angle, I can identify completely with the depression and feelings of inadequacy. Completely. Utterly. Identify.
The story started out for me a bit cold – I didn’t feel connected with either Theodore or James…but just give it a little time and before long, you’ll be sucked into their lives and cheering them on. By the end of the book, I felt like I was going to miss these two in my life and knowing how it continues to turn out for them – they do have an amazing chemistry and friendship that leaps off the page. The author did a superb job connecting the reader to the emotions of both Theodore and James and their respective role in the couple. This book was so real. Too real. And for that, I applaud the author. It touched the very core and essence of mental illness. Brilliantly written.
Theodore’s true love for and commitment to James and their relationship. As the therapist pointed out, Theodore is James’ anchor. I also hang on to what a fellow patient told James: “we’re normal people, too, (but) just different”.
For some reason, I was also fixated when James continued to pick up Theodore each morning when his car broke down. That was my first inkling that James was someone special.
Gosh yes. Regardless how you feel about M/M, the story alone – and quality of writing – makes it a must-read.
Review originally posted on Amazon and Goodreads on March 22, 2016.