Title: Bringing Him Home
Author: Penny Brandon
Cover Artist: Justin James
Publisher: Loose Id
Buy link: Amazon.com
Genre: Contemporary M/M
Length: Novel/208 PDF pages
Rating: 2 stars out of 5
Review Summary: An unlikely and unrealistic plot, but who needs a plot when there is hot and frequent sex?
Jared knew that looking for a man to love was pointless because he’d never be able to bring him home. But one chance meeting and one hot night with Kyle had Jared seriously trying to figure out if he really had to live by the rules of someone else’s intolerance. Torn between wanting Kyle and facing the narrow-mindedness of a small country town, Jared didn’t know what to do. Could Kyle really want Jared enough to deal with the town’s hostility together? By the time Jared got himself ready to talk to Kyle, to ask him, Kyle had left.
Kyle had been looking to find someone to love, looking for a place to call home, and one blazing night spent in Jared’s arms and Kyle knew Jared was just the man he was looking for. But Kyle had a feeling Jared didn’t want to bring Kyle home with him and when he found out why he had no choice but to leave. It didn’t matter that he wanted Jared, or even that Jared wanted him. The town where Jared lived was the one town Kyle swore he would never set foot in again.
I had read Blind Passion by this author a few months ago and enjoyed it so I decided to review her next offering, Bringing Him Home. I should have stopped at the first book.
Bringing Him Home is set in New South Wales, Australia. Jared met Kyle in a shower at a truck stop and fell into insta-lust with him since he was every gay man’s dream, with his perfect body and “his brilliant flame blue eyes that were looking at him with the same burning lust that tightened his (Jared’s) gut”. After they eyed each other, the man murmured “Nice” and Jared might have had every reason to be affronted by the man’s description since he thought he was definitely better than nice, with his “broad shoulders, muscular arms and legs, ripped stomach, long thick cock, even recumbent, which was doing its best to show off its full length and glory.”
They hooked up that night and had unprotected sex even though they knew nothing about each other outside of the fact that both of them swore they hadn’t had sex in 1 and 3 years respectively, never had unprotected sex before, and were therefore free of any sexually transmitted disease, so I guess it was okay. This seemed to be a little unwise, like playing Russian roulette or jumping over Niagara Falls without at least a parachute. This didn’t appear to be in character for Jared who freaked out when his condom broke during sex with a stranger in the back room of a bar, and he sweated it out until his test results came back negative.
Jared and Kyle had such a wonderful night together that Jared was seriously considering asking Kyle to go home with him to the intolerant small minded town where he lived despite the fact he was in the closet, which of course made a lot of sense. 🙁 However when he woke up the next morning Kyle was gone. Furious with himself for imagining a life with Kyle he set out for home in his 18 wheeler, but on the way there was an automobile accident; lying on the road was none other than Kyle who had been run over and seriously injured. Jared was overcome with grief and accompanied Kyle to the hospital where he stayed until Kyle recovered from the surgery. Two days later he took him home.
There is much about this book that was unrealistic, starting with Kyle’s accident. He was run over by a car and dragged several meters underneath it and the car’s back wheel rolled over his chest but the laptop he was holding saved him from certain death. His injuries were bruised ribs, a broken ankle, and a severe concussion. However, a few days later he was having vigorous sex with Jared which seemed to be a miraculous recovery or maybe the pain pills helped!! I described Kyle’s injuries to a friend in the medical profession and asked him if it were possible for someone to engage in sex so soon after being run over by a car. He laughed uproariously. I guess that would be a “no.” 🙂
Then there is Kyle’s back story. Apparently he grew up in the house where Jared now lived. His parents had kicked him out after he told them he was gay so he left his home for good, or so he assumed. His old hometown was several hundreds of miles from where they met, but I guess it was a coincidence that Jared was living in his childhood home in a town he despised.
There were enough misunderstandings to fill two books, which I suppose was not unexpected. In addition, the characters couldn’t decide if they wanted to stay together until the end of the story, so there was a constant push and pull as they changed their minds all the time, which drove me crazy. Since they didn’t communicate with each other everything they said or did was misunderstood, or misread.
Last, this book is filled with one sex scene after another and there was no real plot, only a series of incidents strung together. I suppose readers are expected to accept any hobbled together M/M story as long as there’s hot sex and prose like “….pulsing, he shuddered as his cock gushed a torrent of hot, steamy seed.” OR “Heat enveloped him, smothered him, poured over him until he was burning. He started gasping for air, his chest tight, his stomach clenching, his heart slamming laboriously against his rib cage. Pleasure, so intense as to be almost painful, hit him in waves. He cried out, some inarticulate sound that was both a warning and a plea for more.”
I don’t expect a perfectly crafted plot every time I open a book but at minimum I don’t want one I can drive an 18 wheeler through. I also want characters that are well developed, three dimensional and flawed, as well as good (not necessarily great) prose and dialogue. Perhaps my expectations for Bringing Him Home were too high.
I’m sorry I can’t recommend this book but others may have a different opinion.