31 August 2011
Review: Sloan Parker - Breathe
Genre: LGBT Suspense
Length: Novel Plus
Read from my personal library
Lincoln McCaw lost everything -- his home, his job, his partner -- after he caused a fatal accident. A year later, he's drowning the guilt and despair in whiskey, but he needs to move on. His sister and her kids are counting on him. Then he meets a man who ignites a passion Lincoln thought he’d never find. Too bad one night is all they can have together. Now he needs to figure out how to turn away from the only person who makes him feel alive…before whoever is sending him threats decides Lincoln needs to suffer more than he already has.
Jay Miller is surrounded by grief and misery until he finally gives in to all those years of sexual fantasies about being with another guy. Realizing he’s ended up in the arms of the man who caused his wife’s accident, he tries to pull away. But how can he give up a friendship he needs more than anything -- a friendship and a love that could save him? He may not have time to make the choice before someone else destroys it all.
Publisher's Note: This book contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable: Male/male sexual practices.
I’ve read Breathe months ago and why I picked up this book at that time I don’t know. The blurb alone should have made me back away fast, as if I’ve burned myself. My husband just died only two months prior to me reading this book. I knew it would be very hard for an author to make me believe in a character grieving and falling in love again. However, I don’t deny myself a book when I feel the pull towards it and I started reading.
Breathe is a heart rendering portrayal of two men experiencing a horrific event from opposites sides. The situation is the death of a woman; one who caused her death, the other one who had to lose her. Sloan Parker invited me to think what would I do, what would I feel, as I experienced the painstakingly raw emotions from both sides. It could’ve easily have been handled the wrong way because how do you make the character who caused the accident and killed the woman redeemable? The circumstances for one thing and second, the way Sloan Parker delved in to the emotional psyche of Lincoln. She stayed true to both Lincoln and Jay’s emotions and simultaneously created a situation for them to meet, feel a burning attraction and recognized the desperation in each other’s eyes.
Head over heels I fell for these flawed men Lincoln and Jay are. With all the mistakes, the loss and the would’ve, could’ve, should’ve they felt, it is balanced by something new, hopeful and fierce. Initially they did not know how they were connected but when one does find out, the conflict of secrecy adds another layer to an already complex situation. Lincoln has to deal with the overwhelming guilt of causing the death of another person, while Jay has to deal with the grief of losing his wife. As their attraction turns in to a budding romance they face a real threat because someone is not happy with Lincoln’s release from jail.
Lincoln and Jay were arresting characters who came alive via the pages and have an incredible bittersweet story to tell. I felt connected to the maelstrom of their emotions and how they were battling their inner demons. In Breathe, Sloan Parker fused a beautiful romance with scintillating erotic scenes to a minor but effective emotion-driven plot, which involved both main and secondary characters. Even while I thought the ending was a bit over the top and abruptly, the journey was engaging from the first page!
Breathe is a true to life story with incredible multi-faceted characters who face difficulties which I wanted them to survive. This is a m/m suspense romance that struck emotional chords with me and made me believe in a happy ending after loss and grief!
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