Rating:4.5 stars out of 5
Professor Nate Reese rushes to protect a female student and is severely injured at the hands of her assailant. Traumatized by the attack, Nate sets his feet on a no-holds-barred path of activism designed to force university officials into addressing the issue of on-campus assault. To his shock, his primary frustration comes not from the university, but from his partner, David Gardener, a veteran of 12 years as a very popular Professor of Revolutionary War History.
Terrified of losing his hard-won status at the school, David is reluctant to support Nate’s militant efforts, while Nate, feeling abandoned by his partner, sees David’s aversion to his activism as indifference to the trauma he suffered. Day by day they watch as their relationship disintegrates, while still struggling to resolve the disruptive issues engulfing the school they love.
At the same time Irishman Colin Campbell, handsome and charismatic Sergeant for the campus police force, fights his own on-going war against campus assault. But behind his obsessive desire to gain justice for victims lies a devastating secret which could forever destroy his fiercely independent facade and expose his deepest fear. Ultimately, it is Colin’s powerful connection to a quiet, dark-eyed Title IX consultant which threatens to tear down his defenses and shatter the barriers protecting his heart.
Colin was the bolt of lightning that ignited Joshua Abram’s heart. Cocky and irresistible, the dynamic police officer was everything Joshua had ever longed for in a man, and despite Colin’s insistence that he didn’t ‘do relationships’ Joshua couldn’t help but fall hopelessly in love. He knew his attraction to Colin could only end in heartbreak. His quiet, introverted nature could never hope to snare the vibrant, freedom-loving Irishman, so despite the undeniable and heated passion between them, he forces himself to back slowly away.
When disagreements over an oddly disturbing case causes Colin’s hot Irish temper to erupt, their relationship is irrevocably shattered. Heartbroken, and convinced that Colin never wants to see him again, Joshua flees Charlottesville without a word, leaving Colin adrift and inconsolable.
Finally forced to admit that he desperately needs Joshua by his side, Colin must now face the dark and long-suppressed memories which are irrevocably linked to his love for the handsome, Jewish consultant. Without even a forwarding address to guide him, he vows to find Joshua and beg his forgiveness. Colin’s struggle to conquer his pride and fear in order to find the love of his life and achieve their happily ever after will touch your heart.
Four lives in turmoil fighting for the relationships they cherish, and at the heart of the struggle, a great university struggles to survive its most harrowing challenge.
Love’s Magic by Janice Jarrell is the first published novel for this author and its an amazing one. Well written, layered with multidimensional characters whose lives and situations will move you to tears and flights of happiness depending upon where you are in the book.
For me, it also has a couple of excesses (whether its due to first time “itis” or just the author’s preference). As you can tell from that very, very, long synopsis, the novel is chock full of plot and characters. It centers around not one but two couples very complicated, angst filled lives and romances.
Both couples are beautifully created and worthy of individual books themselves. In fact, because each complex situation, traumatic events that occur, and past history of the couples involved, the reader is just getting emotional involved with one couples story when you are switched out and, boom, you land in the other pair’s narrative. Then you have to remember where you are before adjusting your emotions for Colin or Nate and David or who have you.
And that’s a shame. Because the author has done a terrific job scripting out each “love story” and their journey to HEA.
The location and the author’s descriptions? Fantastic. Her way around such elements like therapy, trauma and its lasting effects, and their inclusion into her story? So well done that it provides an authenticity to the characters, makes them feel more alive.
In many ways, this book feels like going out to a terrific meal and being given too much of a good thing. You wish for less, so you can concentrate on the quality you know that is in front of you, not the quantity. Just too much for 196 pages in my opinion.
Did I tell you there’s going to be another story?
Anyway, these are my feelings. What a hardship to say about a first novel. Too much of a great thing. Yes, I highly recommend this story. And I will be waiting on the next novel to be released by this author. Second novels are so informative and I can’t wait to see what that one tells me.
Cover art of two men embracing/supporting each other is open to interpretation and is perfect for the story.
Kindle Edition, 196 pages
Published May 10th 2018 by Amazon (first published May 9th 2018)