Rating: 4..75 stars out of 5
Finding and keeping love can be a challenge in the modern world of blogging, social media, and online dating, as one man will learn in this trilogy.
VGL Male Seeks Same
Poor Ethan Schwartz. At forty-two, he’s alone, his bed is empty, and his HDTV is overworked. He’s tried bars and other places where gay men are supposed to find each other, but it never works out. Maybe he should get a cat?
But his life is about to change…
Poor Ethan. He’s received the most shocking news a gay man can get—he’s HIV positive. Until today his life was perfect, with a job he loves and Brian, who could be “the one.” The one to complete him and fill his lonely life with laughter, hot sex, and romance.
But Ethan’s in for another shock. Could Brian have infected him?
Alone again, Ethan wonders if life is worth living, even with a cat. When an old nemesis sends a Facebook friend request, Ethan is suspicious but intrigued. It seems this old acquaintance has turned his life around, and the changes might hold the key to Ethan getting a new lease on life… and love.
I truly can’t imagine reading M4M by Rick R. Reed as anything except one deeply moving story…to me it doesn’t even register as three separate tales. Rather three stages in one man’s life, two so heartrending that the tissues seemed inadequate at times to stop the amount of tears that flowed. Even now just thinking about Ethan and his journey, I start to choke up which is funny because I wasn’t sure I was even going to connect with Ethan at the beginning. Or even like him.
That would be at the start of VGL Male Seeks Same when Ethan wants to date and after a shocking lack of response on a dating website, makes a rash decision. This section of M4M made it harder for me to connect with Ethan. Understand him? Yes, but like him? Not quite. That came at towards the end of this section of Ethan’s life when everything changed for him and me as a reader. I started to love Ethan which made the next two section all the more moving and devastating.
Rick R. Reed does a beautiful job of making me love all the people who surround Ethan too. Ok maybe not Bubbles at the beginning. But Brian, how I took Brian into my heart. And Jan? I’d love to have Jan as my friend. They also hold the key to making M4M so real, so poignant and moving that I can guarantee it and these characters will stay with you long after the stories are done. The church aspect as a panacea is an element that I didn’t really connect with but that doesn’t matter. It was the vehicle that delivered Ben and hope to Ethan and that’s what counts.
M4M by Rick R. Reed is a beautifully written, incredibly moving story about love found, profound loss, grief, recovery and the ability to find hope and perhaps love once more. That it includes two men who are HIV positive? Part of the huge picture, not the picture itself….that was part of their individual story and journey too. The HIV element seemed authentic (as it should…read the author’s note), but M4M is about life. Ethan’s life. It’s a story you will want to read about, a man you will want to get to know. Have your tissues handy!
Cover art by Reese Dante is perfect for the story.
Amazon Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/M4M-Rick-R-Reed-ebook/dp/B0732LXD95
ebook, 2nd edition, 200 pages
Expected publication: July 10th 2017 by Dreamspinner Press