Rated 1.5 stars out of 5
When Scott Trask gets a job at his law firm, Preston Reynolds begins to feel the same attraction he felt for his best friend’s younger brother years earlier. But he couldn’t be sexually attracted to the young man. Preston isn’t gay.
Scott has been in love with Preston for years, but just because Preston is now divorced doesn’t mean he’s available. Yet soon enough, they surrender to their desires, and begin a passionate affair.
At first, Scott thinks he can handle it when Preston wants to keep their private life together a secret but he’s wrong. Then when Preston promises to change, there is hope. Sort of. Preston has a tough choice. Learn to accept himself at long last or risk losing Scott forever.
I always feel bad when I read a book that doesn’t work for me because I know the effort that goes into writing. But this one was nearly a DNF and I struggled to find any redeeming qualities in it. Sigh. I had high hopes for it. A “straight” man in denial about who he is coming to terms with what he really wants. I thought it would be an easy win. The problem is, Preston, the closeted lawyer, is so extremely unlikeable. Scott, the target of Preston’s attraction, is a complete doormat and it made me crazy.
This edition has two books that used to be separate and really they still are here. The first, At Long Last, end and the next, Until the End of Time, is a separate novella that happens seven months after the first. Okay, the things that didn’t work for me were big ones. Preston, who co-owns the law firm with Scott’s brother, Jack, and Jack and Scott’s father, has been married and has two children. He has never had sex or wanted sex with a man before, yet within days of Scott starting a job in their office he is all over him. I’m sorry but the way he dove into everything gay (rimming on the first time together, for example) didn’t work for me when he was so in denial and worse, homophobic about it all.
At first, I was willing to give Preston some time. After all, this is all new to him. “I’m kissing a guy” is mind-blowing for him. He then immediately (literally minutes later) jumps into rimming because, “…he didn’t want to hurt Scott either emotionally or physically by refusing to do it.” Yet just a little later, “Don’t mention anything about this to anyone, all right?” There might be some pretty words sometimes but it is sex, sex, sex for Preston.
So I thought I would at least like Scott (Scotty) but he’s very immature (showing up to work in jeans and then blaring loud rock music through the office where there are clients) and he is a total doormat. There were so many times I wanted to shake him and say, “have some self respect”! He suggests playing hooky from work for a weekend away right after he starts there and right after he and Preston are together for the first times. When the trip has Preston acting like a closeted jerk (wanting separate rooms at the hotel, pushing Scott away repeatedly, hurting him and then a quick I’m sorry to fix) Scott shouldn’t have been surprised.
Preston just never redeems himself. “He would allow the relationship to continue, but on his terms.” So hiding Scott from everyone and using him for sex. Nice, especially when it is Preston attacking Scott for sex all the time.
The killer for me was Preston’s assertion, to Scott’s face no less, that “Scott, being g…attracted to the same sex is not normal.” He can’t tell his parents because “I can’t let them know about me. I can’t have them thinking I’m abnormal.” Hold on. You are telling a gay man, one you are sleeping with, that being gay is abnormal? Why, Scott, why would you stay for that? Because of Preston there is also a terrible moment with Scott’s father and I had to wonder – you forgive Preston at the drop of a hat but won’t for your father? Scott also has a betrayal by his brother, Jack, who does love him but I thought broke Scott’s trust.
Preston never takes responsibility enough. “I think we broke each other’s hearts.” No, that isn’t what is happening. “But when someone point-blank asks you if you are seeing someone you say no. You don’t acknowledge me in any way.” It didn’t get any better in the second novella, where even though they are living together Preston is now asking his children to lie for him so his parents don’t know about Scott. He acts like the victim so often, “Scott judged his every action and found it lacking”; “Why are you being so difficult? Please, just…just try to see this from my point of view.” The problem with that is all the issues stem from Preston being homophobic and closeted.
I know this author has a very dedicated fan base so I’m going to be in the minority on this one but I also felt for the length of the novellas there was just too much sex. You fill the holes of character development with sex but here sex took the place of making the characters three dimensional. Things felt very rushed and I couldn’t see the connection between these two. I am sorry to say I can’t recommend this at all. The only thing saving it from being a one star read was I liked Marilyn, the ex-wife, and Candace, Preston’s daughter.
Cover art is two sets of legs intertwined on a bed but I didn’t feel it fit the mood of the book. It makes the book seem cute and that wasn’t really the feel.
Published June 8th 2018 by JMS Books LLC (first published July 25th 2009)
Original TitleAt Long Last / Until the End of Time
Edition Language English
SeriesScott and Preston #1-2