Make a Right by Willa Okati

Title: Make a Right
Author: Willa Okati
Publisher: Loose Id
Genre: Contemporary M/M
Buy Link: Amazon.com
Length:  Novel (200 pgs)
Rating: 3 stars out of 5

A guest review by Kassa

Summary Review: A sweet and angst ridden story about difficult soul mates.

THE BLURB:

Stubborn, loving, and loyal, Tuck would take care of the world if the world would let him. When he loves, he loves for life. Even when he’s on the edge of a breakup with Cade he can’t give up hope for their future. Tuck knows that a painful secret from his past is haunting Cade and driving him away. He swears he’ll find out what’s wrong and make it right or die trying. When he and Cade are invited to the wedding of a pair of foster kids they once rescued, Tuck convinces Cade to go with him. They’ll pretend nothing’s wrong so they won’t spoil the wedding for the girls they think of as daughters.

Being this close to Tuck again, Cade’s resolve stumbles. He’s falling in love again–but it won’t last unless he and Tuck can reconcile their differences. Though Cade wants to tell Tuck the truth, pride keeps his lips sealed. He knows his one chance at a reconciliation is giving up his secrets. The reward would be absolute–but can Cade find the courage to take the risk and face the consequences?

Two wrongs don’t usually make a right. But sometimes–if you’re lucky–against all odds, they do.

THE REVIEW:

I chose Make a Right because I like Willa Okati’s writing and the men seemed a touch angsty, which I adore. While the story succeeded in being romantic with a lot of elements fans are sure to love, I couldn’t quite connect with one of the main characters which kept me from truly enjoying this story. The right reader, however, will find this an easy, enjoyable book to read with very strong love conquers all and soul mate themes.

The story starts with Tuck and Cade in some kind of religious home for runaway and homeless teens. After living and surviving on the streets for so long, both young men are damaged. They form a connection though and the story then fast forwards ten years of mostly blissful happiness. Yet about six months ago Cade left Tuck for reasons unknown. After being together for so long and truly believing they are soul mates meant to be together, Tuck just can’t let go. When he receives a wedding invitation from friends and near sisters, Tuck seizes the opportunity to get Cade back. The two men both have secrets, fears, hopes, and dreams and whether they can find their way back to each other is anything but easy.

Right away the story cements the concept that Tuck and Cade are meant to be, soul mates, and destined to be the loves of each other lives. So almost immediately you know it’s just a matter of time before the two work things out and get back together. The remainder of the ~200 pg story is the back and forth between the men as they try to figure out what happened and if/how they can fix things. Narrated exclusively from Tuck’s third person perspective, the story delves into the extremely complicated relationship and characters. This somewhat works as Tuck is a very engaging narrator with a lot of strength and likable characteristics. He’s stubborn, loyal, helpful, and above all completely committed to Cade. He’s rough but also tender and loving. He’s a great flawed and messy character that easily carries the narrating duties.

Unfortunately the story could have really used Cade’s perspective as well. The entire breakup hinges on this deep dark secret Cade is unable to tell Tuck and thus has made their past ten years anything but easy. The story doesn’t show any of the past ten years of happiness but instead picks up when they’re broken up so there’s very little understanding of what their relationship has been up to now. For almost the entire novel Cade is telling Tuck they’re over, to stop trying, and that he wants to be alone. Yet of course Tuck doesn’t listen because deep down Cade doesn’t really mean that. The fact that this is true and the lack of Cade’s POV makes Cade a bit of a difficult character to connect to. He’s remote, often cruel, quick to hurt Tuck, yet clearly wants to be back together. The fact that Cade forces such a long separation is difficult to understand, even considering the reason. When the final reason comes out I actually agreed with Tuck that he should leave Cade, partly because these two have such a difficult and complicated relationship full of secrets and lies that I’m not sure even a fated love can survive.

Of course I want to believe it as will most fans so hopefully others won’t be as bothered by this. The supporting characters and great background of all lend an air of angst and much needed edginess to the story. The writing and actions tend to be somewhat repetitive, we’re told Tuck and Cade are stubborn bastards over twenty times, and the cycle tends to be Tuck and Cade have sex, Cade regrets it while Tuck sees it as a step forward. For all of these potential problems, Okati writes an easy story to read with a lot of external interest in the setting and secondary characters. They’re not especially well rounded or even that important but they move the plot along and help get the two men back together. I think this type of story will appeal most to those fans of soul mates/love conquers all themes. It’s not a homerun but it’s an enjoyable enough story, especially if you can connect and feel for Cade’s plight.

 

6 comments

  • I like Willa’s writing also (“And Call Me in the Morning” remains an all time fav) so I may check this one out. Angsty stories are fine by me as well, but I agree sometimes a lighter read is nice.
    Glad you reviewed this one because I had wanted to know what the story was like.

    Reply
    • Oh I agree on that one, its a nice read. If you’re a fan and like angsty stories this one could be worthwhile. It may not live up to your favorite but you’ll probably find it worth reading.

      Reply
  • I’m just not in the mood for angst right now, which is why I. Am going to get the book Sirius reviewed (I can’t remember full name it has Yes in the title.) Thanks for the review Kassa. I really look forward to reading the reviews you do for the site!

    Reply
    • Hi Lisa and no worries. I love angst but not all readers do so that’s understandable. I’m Saying Yes is a much sweeter, longer story with more day to day details. It’s definitely light on the angst so that may help.

      Thanks!

      Reply
  • Hi Kassa

    I like Willa Okati’s writing but the level of angst in this story makes me hesitate to read it because I’m not fond of a lot of angst – it drives me nuts. Make a Right sounds very interesting and Tuck seems to be a well drawn character, but I could end up not liking Cade since we don’t get his perspective in this story and this would definitely affect my enjoyment.

    Thank you for a thoughtful and insightful review as always. 🙂

    Reply
    • Well you know I like angst so these stories tend to be more my cup of tea. I will say that the lack of Cade’s perspective is jarring. He’s the one forcing a separation due to past secrets yet we never get into his head to make us feel for him. Instead we just have to love him because Tuck does, which is ok but didn’t fully sell me.

      If that or multiple things are a sticking point for you, I wouldn’t recommend it. Some books are so great they are worth it and this one is ok but not one I’d say read anyway.

      Reply

Please comment! We'd love to hear from you.

%d bloggers like this: