Monday, February 23, 2015

In Another Life & Eight Days by Cardeno C.

In Another Life & Eight Days
In Another Life & Eight Days by Cardeno C.

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

These two novellas are unlike any of CC’s work that I have read before. I spent a good amount of time laughing while reading both of these stories. So not only did I get treated to the expected combination of sweet romance, sexy men, and smoldering sex scenes, but I also got to laugh.

In Another Life was an extremely touching tale about the extremes to which bigotry and bullying can drive a teen. When Shiloh decides he can no longer deal with life stretching before him as a gay man, he attempts to commit suicide. In what I found to be a rather original way to approach the act, the author gives Shiloh a glimpse into the life he would be missing out on – particularly the love of a good man. Fortunately for all involved, Shiloh’s parents find him in time to save his life. The twist to Shiloh’s story is that he meets the man his future showed him long before he was supposed to in his deathbed visions. Because Shiloh feels as though he’s been gifted with a bit of inside information, he sheds his normal shyness and sets out to make Travis his in the here and now and takes the steps needed to insure that their future is a long one. Despite the gravity of the subject of suicide, CC writes the romance in such a way that I fell in love with both men and was left feeling hopeful for their future.

Eight Days is kind of a tale of unrequited love between childhood friends. Told over the span of a couple of decades, we accompany Maccabe as he comes to terms with how he feels about his childhood friend Josh – from the first time he becomes aware of Josh in a sexual manner, to losing Josh, to learning the exact extent by which he lost Josh, and to reclaiming Josh. What I found truly endearing about this particular story is that although Maccabe hurts Josh emotionally, he does so without malice or awareness and I found myself unable to dislike him for his careless treatment of Josh. Maccabe was so focused on his career that he was unaware of the damage he was inflicting with his choices. Could he have done more after his falling out with Josh? Almost certainly. Did he do what he needed to when all the facts came to light? Without hesitation. And THAT was why I fell in love with Maccabe – Josh was a given, but Maccabe had to earn it and he did.

I don’t read many holiday-themed books, but In Another Life and Eight Days have made that very short list as rereads. Again CC has left me with an aching face from smiling so much while reading, but the added laughter was a definite balm to the heart. And I leave you with my favorite laugh inducing lines from each novella.

“You have a voice for print.” I gasped – Shiloh to Travis, regarding Travis’s singing

“You’re the only person that’s ever meant more to me than a screw, not that screwing you isn’t great too. So I guess I’m Josh-sexual, but if you want me to say I’m gay, I’ll say it.” – Maccabe

I received a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Reviewed by Angela at Crystal's Many Reviewers!

Check out the In Another Life & Eight Days Tour Stop! blog post on Crystal's Many Reviewers.

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