Rating: 4.25 stars out of 5
None of the matches caught his eye as much as the matchmaker himself.
Growing up poorer than poor didn’t leave Navashen Bhattathiri many options for life outside of school. All of his concentration was on keeping his scholarships. Sixteen years later, he’s fulfilled his dream and become a doctor. Now he’s returning home to Lexington and is ready to prove himself to the world. In doing so, he reconnects with Brent Carpenter—high school classmate, real estate agent, all-around great guy… and closet matchmaker.
Brent makes it his mission to help Navashen develop a social life and meet available, interesting men. Unfortunately Navashen’s schedule is unpredictable, and few of those available, interesting men value his dedication like Brent does. Brent’s unfailing friendship and support convince Navashen he’s the one, but can he capture Brent’s heart when the matchmaker is focused on finding Navashen another man?
A Matchless Man (Lexington Lovers #2) by Ariel Tachna is another heartwarming, loving romance from the Dreamspun desire. I haven’t read the first Lexington Lovers story but this one is a definite winner. Ariel Tachna uses her intimate knowledge of the Indian family unit to great advantage here with the character of Navashen Bhattathiri. Navashen is returning home to Lexington, ready to settle down with his new job, wanting to buy his forever home and finally start his new life as a out gay doctor. Included in those plans are Navashen’s parents living close by and his adult younger brother with a learning disability brought on by a premature birth and lack of oxygen to the brain.
The family dynamics are such that you get a feel not only for the adult Navashen but for the life he had as a child as well. You can sense the isolation of the mother (self imposed), the father’s role, that wonderful brother. That family, each member and its culture is vividly, sympathetically portrayed. You understand their actions, even their fears, and it makes them come alive.
That goes for all the characters here. From the other secondary ones like the retired math teacher and hardware store owner, to the other main one in Brent Carpenter, the real estate agent who helps Navashen find his “right” home, and get settled within the community. Brent too has his own issues, primarily dealing with his ex, wife that is. Brent is bi-sexual, something that confuses Navashen who is less experienced with his own sexuality.
Tachna packs this story with quite a number of themes , each is handled honestly and with delicacy and humor. Akshat, the brother especially jumps to mind with the way he’s been sheltered and now starts to assume more responsibilities when he moves in with his brother. The joy, the growth…this character just shines off the page. Yet you never forget his history or his position in the family. Its just terrific.
Also the way Brent’s bisexuality is talked about, his choices and Navashen’s as well. There is adult discussion going on here, and yes, some emotional denial, but that’s all too human as well. Tachna shows how that isolation that exists in the Bhattathira family extends in many ways to all members. In Navashen, he’s had blinders on until he finished his internships and got his degree. Now he’s still focused on the house and his brother. That’s seems very real too.
This entire story reads true.
The angst, such as it is, is believable, built on human foibles and the barriers raised up out of past fears. But watching the characters work their way through their problems to arrive at a place where they can see a future together? Beyond wonderful.
I loved this story. Now I’ll have to find the first in the series to see what I missed.
Cover art by Paul Richmond shows Navashen, a terrific representation of the character.
ebook, 224 pages
Expected publication: October 1st 2016 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN 1634773705 (ISBN13: 9781634773706)
Series Lexington Lovers – add it to your Goodreads shelf here: