This is a new feature on All in One Place to highlight my increasing love for the M/M and Gay romance genre. I will be interviewing authors, spotlighting my favourite books, reviewing and inviting guest posts.
If you are an author or blogger who would like to take part please contact me via any of my social media buttons or email me . . firstname.lastname@example.org
I’d really like you to take part in my poll . .just for fun!
Today’s MALE MONDAY post is a review of the first book in this genre that I read in 2015 . . I’ll forgive you if you just want to stare at the cover for a few minutes 🙂 Enjoy!
Title: Misplaced Affection
Author: Wade Kelly
Release Date: January 1st 2015
Age Group: Mature Young Adult
Genre: M/M Romance
Clichés are overrated and loving the boy next door may not be as genuine as the love Flynn sacrifices along the way.
Knowing he’s gay and acting on it were two separate notions to Flynn Brewer until he’d met Keith, his first boyfriend, in high school. Before then, being gay wasn’t as real as the pain of living day-to-day. Flynn’s fear of coming out to his religious best friend Zach in their conservative community destroyed his relationship with Keith, but Flynn rationalized his avoidance and bottled up the truth until it was regrettably too late.
Zachary Mitchell was the perfect son and role model as far as the outside world could tell. Active in his church while attending college, Zach had a personality that could sell anything, do anything, or be anything. Except, he couldn’t sell the truth to himself. Just when he was ready to reveal his internal conflict to Flynn and expose the darkness lurking in his heart, and in his “perfect” family, Zach met a girl and got sucked deeper into his chasm of deception.
Caught in a living Newton’s Cradle of his own design, Flynn must choose between idealistic childhood fantasy, or a tempestuous passion that could ignite the very air he breathes.
I’ve left days between finishing Misplaced Affection and starting my review. It’s not that I’m lazy or I’ve been too busy, but simply because the book left me speechless (unusual!) and with too much to process. Now, I’m not sure I even have the right words to describe how I felt when I was reading the story.
I totally understand that not everyone is into gay romances and though in my eyes this book is as near to perfect as you get, other people will disagree. Neither do I want to want to start saying “if this book was based on a heterosexual romance” because it is the gay love at the centre of the story which allows Wade Kelly to address issues of religion and politics, other authors may shy away from.
Misplaced Affection is a book which grabbed me, shook me and left me bruised. Ironically the only reason I wanted to read it, at the beginning, was because there was a hot guy on the cover! The story is long, filled with emotional turmoil, developing relationships and family difficulties. Wade Kelly divides the book into three parts, with the first being the longest, narrated by Flynn, who is definitely my favourite character. At times, we definitely feel that there is a continual stream of drama, but the author reminds us that these events occur over a matter of 6 years, rather than just days or weeks.
The story is written with a sense of urgency, with each character eager to share their memories and problems. I imagine Wade Kelly as an author who allowed these young men to “speak” through her because everything they say has such a depth. They are fluid characters, with constantly changing attitudes which are formed and re-formed by everything they encounter.
Flynn is privately gay and secretly in love with his best friend. However, it is this friendship with Zach which defines Flynn, and not his sexuality. Zach takes advantage of Flynn, oblivious to the fact that Flynn wants more than a stolen kiss. Flynn is even prepared to risk his relationship with new boyfriend, Keith, to be at Zach’s beck and call. This situation becomes a relentless love triangle, made worse by the flaws in each young man; Flynn does not have the strength to say ‘no’ to Zach, or the courage to admit he is gay. Keith constantly adds to the pressure Flynn already feels and is insanely jealous (as well as being a condescending smart-arse!) and Zach is confused, needy and blind to what is around him! It is not until part 3 of the story when these now mature characters become happy and have the opportunity to redeem themselves, making life-changing and sometimes unexpected decisions.
Misplaced Affection is not only about friendship, denial, love and acceptance, but Wade Kelly asks her reader to think about the part religion plays in shaping who we are. Flynn is agnostic but learnt from his mother that peace can be found in God’s presence. Keith attends church, but his family’s beliefs are liberal. Zach has grown up in part of a fundamentalist branch of Christianity, which has forced him to question his actions and feelings and at times puts his friendship with Flynn in jeopardy. Part two of the story helps us to understand Zach more and though we may not agree with how he has treated Flynn, we definitely feel empathy for him.
Would I recommend this book? A million times over and I know it is a story which will stay with me for a long time. I finished one part sobbing and cursing Wade Kelly, entering the second phase of the story overwhelmed and uncertain and reaching the ending surprised but fulfilled. Yes, my emotions were extreme but I truly cared about the characters and their happiness.
(a very rare 6 stars!!!)
I would like to gift someone a copy of this amazing book. Leave a comment (with your email address) and I’ll pick a random winner!
I hope you enjoyed my MALE MONDAY feature . . please say hi and say if there is something you want to see more of. Thanks for stopping by xx