Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Christian Grayson is a professor of sociology who comes from a close-knit Southern family steeped in values and tradition. He left Tennessee using education as his excuse for escape, when he truthfully only wanted the freedom to be who he truly was. But at age forty, he’s still in the closet and still adheres to the morals his father, a Southern Baptist minister, raised him with. This includes saving himself for Mr. Right. CJ Hata has been under Christian’s wing since his freshman year. A genius, pure and simple, he’s a senior now and no longer needs to report to Professor G, but he still seeks his teacher out occasionally for a friendly chat. When Christian accidentally outs himself to CJ while pouring his heart out about his dying father, CJ feels totally out of his element. He convinces himself to put forth his best effort because the man he’s been crushing on for four years needs a friend. In the meantime, everyone around CJ is stumbling out of the closet, but the one person he really wants to come out has barricaded himself in with the bible and his family’s expectations.
Religion must be the theme these days for me. I’ve read at least 4 books where the theme religion is really big. I was raised as a Baptist Christian so I know how it is with parents who are truly religious. I’m confused; I haven’t really gone to church every Sunday in these last few years but for personal beliefs. My thoughts are how can parents who birth these children claim to love them unconditionally, but will disown them and basically verbally abused them because of the love they have with the same gender. It bothers me drastically that people have this hatred based on what the bible say, the bible who was written by men. I can say that, I’m a Christian I’m not as devout as I was growing up but I did step away from the church because I didn’t agree. I don’t agree that because gay choose to sleep with the same sex that they will go to hell. How do we know? We aren’t god, and I’m firm believer in one sin isn’t as big or different enough from another. We’re all sinners’ people. Sorry for the mini rant.
Chikaski Hata and Christian Grayson make a really cute couple. I really liked them. Apart CJ seemed so cynical for someone so young. Here we have a 22 yr old and he almost cold, or callous for his age. I liked how he had to keep telling himself that to be there for Christian, or he thought about someone’s feelings. I totally see where he gets it. His mother is something else, but Rome wasn’t built in a day so we can only hope for him to get better gradually. I really liked CJ’s father, he was so welcoming and loving. It was nice to see a story with gay men, and their father’s accepting of his decision.
Christian was 40 yrs old and a virgin. Seeing his upbringing you kinda expect it. He could have went 2 ways. He could have rebelled and never talked to his family again, or be the good Christian boy that his parents raised him. I think it was ten times worse for him because of him being a pk’s kid (Preacher’s Kid). It was all damnation, fire, brimstone, abomination. How can we expect him to venture out in the world without feeling the about guilt he had. It was truly sad seeing his family treat him the way they did.
I found myself crying every time Christian was reassuring himself on the beauty of love with CJ. Yes, it took him awhile, and he had such bravery to admit these things on the eve of his father’s funeral, but things happen.
Let’s not forgot CJ was his student. Yes CJ was a final, and it wasn’t love over grades. It was them seeing the potential of being together after CJ having a crush for 3 years. It’s almost forgettable him being his student because all the other things going on in the story. I did find myself noticing some of the words were misspelled, the editing was okay. Other than those few instances I really enjoyed it.
Cover Art: Allison Cassatta. The guy on the cover portraying CJ to me was dead on. I really liked him. I think the guy portraying Christian needed to be a little bit more fit and rugged. He was a farmer’s son and a healthy eater, other than that I enjoyed the cover.
eBook, 224 pages
Published November 21, 2014 by Dreamspinner Press
Edition Language: English