Author: Ariel Tachna
Cover Artist: Catt Ford
Buy link: Amazon.com
Genre: Contemporary M/M
Length: 64 pges Novella
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 rating points
Summary Review: A very nice idea for an understated romance between ordinary men, unfortunately the overall experience is underwhelming.
Visiting the dealers room at the Houston Gay Gamers convention, Michael Donovan’s attention is caught by a booth featuring leather wear and fetish gear. Though he’s never been drawn to that lifestyle, he can’t deny his attraction to the handsome man staffing the booth, especially when he sees Lee helping to entertain another vendor’s young children. Lee soon makes it clear the attraction is mutual, but can Michael move past his preconceptions about Lee’s wares and get to know the man himself?
At an early point in this novel, while at the convention Michael is browsing a book stall, coming across a gay romance,
” The synopsis introduced two ordinary men who met in the course of their ordinary lives and fell in love.”
The bookseller goes on to say,
”If you’re looking for a sweet, tender love story, thats definitely a winner……”
The premise of the romance is delightful, it is thoughtful about not judging by appearance, rediscovering the world and love through fresh eyes. However the writing is very understated and I never engaged fully with the characters. I have no idea what Michael looks like, the description of Lee is more detailed- ordinary, but with an extraordinary smile that transforms him.
Michael had a bad experience in college with BDSM lifestyle- this was not a traumatic whips and blood deal, in fact he describes it as leaving a bad taste in his mouth. It still makes him wary of the leather scene. Lee is a leather worker not involved in any kink, and his role in the novel is to challenge Michael’ s preconceptions and lead him gently into a richer more exciting world, “Let me show you the world through a different lens.”
Lee introduces Michael to a new side of his hometown of Houston. They explore their local environment; go walking, bird watch- quietly concentrating on things that as adults they have taken for granted. There is interesting detail about Hermann Park and Brazos Bend State Park. There is a definite sense of this being a real place in which their relationship gently grows to be love.
However there is no real tension in the book once you discount Michael’s distaste for leather in kink.
As I was reviewing this book I kept searching my mind for words, metaphors to describe why it just didn’t work for me. I think that is just the point; maybe I prefer a more intense, adjective heavy style. I blame Harper Fox, Kate Sherwood and Adrien English… 😀 …. for my addiction to intensity in emotional experience.
However it is not just about the dramatic frenzy of experience that I maybe over enjoy. For I can read and reread in ‘Dark Horse’, Kate Sherwood’s description of Danny simply eating a pannini. This is because I really care about everything Danny does. I never got near to that stage of involvement with Michael and Lee.
Returning to the book Michael buys at the convention, the bookseller also describes it as,
” A slow sweet build to a romantic, emotional love scene at the end. Nothing to shock anyone’s sensibilities on a first read . “
Some of that is true of Rediscovery.
Catt Ford’s lovely cover is so in step with the concept of the book.