Title & Link:
Author: TC Blue
Cover Artist: BSClay
Buy Link: Elided Cadence
Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance
Rating: 1 star
A Guest Review by Sammy
Review Summary: An attempt at romance that needed both a good editing and much less repetition.
Blurb: The last thing Alan Freemont is expecting when he finishes his latest makeup gig and heads to Oak Grove, Arkansas, for a long-deserved vacation is to discover a wrecked tour bus. No. The last thing he’s expecting is for the tour bus to belong to part of Andrew Lyon’s band. Wait. No, again. The LAST thing he’s expecting is to meet Andrew Lyon and discover that the man is more than just pretty, but smart, too. And needy, because three of Andrew’s closest friends were on that bus. Only two of them made it.
Andrew Lyon has been having a relatively good year. Sure there have been disagreements between him and his record label, but what else is new? Then he gets an early morning call that changes everything. One of his closest friends is dead and two others might be following soon after. Alan Freemont, the man who discovered the accident, turns out to be a Godsend.
Can the men — one on the periphery of celebrity and the other a favorite media target — find their way to something real when intense emotions, paparazzi and an abundance of fans descend on the small town? Andrew isn’t sure. He’s already suffered enough loss already, hasn’t he?
Maybe. Maybe not. If Alan has his way, he’ll see to it that Andrew doesn’t lose anything more.
Review: I honestly do not know where to begin. I want to say to you that this novel redeemed itself at some point, that the endless, repetitive somewhat whiny thoughts and dialogues of many of the characters resolved itself into a love story that was worth all the effort. However, given the ending, I am unable to do even that. So, before you read on, please realize there are going to be many spoilers here and a restrained, yet definitive opinion on why a major portion of this novel deserved to be left on the editing floor.
First–a brief synopsis. Alan has just finished with a movie filming and is going on a much needed rest to visit his friends, Tommy and JB. While enroute, he discovers an accident involving a tour bus carrying three band members and their driver, One of the members and driver are dead while the others are critically injured. He calls for help and his friend Tommy–who is a Doctor, arrives on the scene to help with triage and transporting patients to the hospital.
When the rest of the band arrives in town, it is discovered that the lead singer is none other than Andrew Lyon, who won a national talent show and then had the clout to form an all gay male band. (We’ll get to that revelation in a minute)
As Alan draws nearer to a grieving Andrew, they begin a relationship borne out of a hurt/comfort theme but before long, the normally non-emotional, love em and leave em Alan discovers he is falling for Andrew while Andrew, himself, grapples with the idea that he still isn’t sure what love looks like. To make matters even worse, Andrew withholds part of himself, determining that the secret he holds close about his past will send Alan running from him and he fears losing whatever this thing between them is–could it possibly be love?
Please know that it is not my intent to be mean-spirited or overly critical. I let my other reviews stand as an example that I am fair handed in my criticism and always attempt to find the best in an author’s writing. I am not sure what this author was thinking when they released this work but frankly I was amazed at how poorly this novel was written.
Let’s begin with the fact that this was a sequel. No, there was no indication anywhere that this was indeed a continuation from a previous novel, but as the first quarter of this story unfolded it was apparent that you had to know who these people were in order to make sense of all the names that were dropped into the conversation. In frustration, I finally went online to make sure I had not overlooked the fact that it was indeed a sequel–nothing–no indication that it was. So why was I so very, very confused and why was this novel written as though I should know who all these people were and what their former relationships were as well? Because there had been a prior novel with these characters in it–but no indication that this novel Elided Cadence picked up where the other left off.
Believe me when I say that it was very important to understand that the main character, Alan Freeman, was a make-up artist and had been heavily involved with his friend Thomas in a prior novel. I spent the first twenty pages thinking Alan was an actor! Then when Alan arrived in Arkansas and began seeing townspeople who apparently loved him for the fact that he had “pushed” Thomas back into the arms of his former love, Johnny Boudreaux, it was completely obvious that these characters had all graced a former novel.
Now I was completely lost and to make matters worse, the author began this nickname game that nearly drove me to put the novel aside and beg Jessewave to let me take a pass on finishing it for review Here is just a little example of the “nickname” debacle I am referring to:
“Johnny–JB, or JJ as Thomas called him–smile slightly….”
and then there were multiple times of this:
“…Alan and Tommy–or Thomas, as he’d been out in L.A.”
Then there was Andrew or Andy or Drew, and Killian or Kill Kill and Carolan or Caro. or the Wonder Twins, and on and on and on. My head literally felt as though it was going to burst just keeping track of how many different names these characters had, with many of them uttered on the same page of text.
Once I had sorted out who was who, the next minefield to traverse was who had shacked up with whom. Alan had been with Tommy, Tommy was now with JB. Somebody named Robert wanted to be with Alan but wasn’t and so did somebody named Travis. Alan seemed to be a self-proclaimed manwhore and so it followed suit that in his twisted sense of reasoning the way to best comfort Andrew was to have sex with him. If I had to read one more time that the typical reaction to grief was a good quickie I think I would have flung my kindle across the room. Friends–I can state to you with all sincerity that the last thing on a person’s mind after they have found out their best friend is dead and their other two friends lay in critical condition is how fast they can get in bed with someone. I really felt this was a cheap and tawdry way to bring Andrew and Alan together. I so wish that the author could have made this more real by having Alan hold and comfort a grieving Andrew and let the attraction grow from there–with no obligatory sex, rather just a new found need for each other, a love that was beginning to take root. Call me a romantic but this would have been ever so much more plausible than the two of them falling into bed and making out like rabbits every time Andrew was sad.
Perhaps the most outlandish idea put forth in this novel was the notion of an all gay band. I understand that Andrew had some clout and wriggle room in his contract after winning the nationally televised singing competition (think American Idol) but enough for a record label to take on an openly all gay band?? I literally laughed out loud when I read this. If we were not in some alternate reality already with the idea that an entire town knew and applauded the fact that Alan had dumped Tommy so he could get back together with JB, then this factoid threw us there with a resounding thud.
And this is how the novel Elided Cadence went, one unbelievable plot point after another. We were strung along being reminded again and again that Andrew really wasn’t sure he loved Alan and even if he did after Alan learned his “secret” there would be no relationship left. So the big reveal? Never happened. Instead we were left with a HUGE cliffhanger. Not only did we not learn Andrew’s secret but we were left to believe that Alan, who had never thought he would fall in love was, in fact, head over heels with Andrew and Andrew was still very unsure if he loved Alan in return. So, in conclusion, Andrew was a major user, and Alan, who had been touted as a love em and leave em guy was, in essence, a doormat.
I can honestly say that if I had been reading this novel solely for pleasure it would have been firmly placed on my DNR shelf. Elided Cadence by TC Blue was a novel that needed both a considerable dose of reality and a really good editing. In my opinion, this novel was poorly constructed, repetitive, and completely beyond the realm of believability. I leave it to you to decide whether to take this one on. I look forward to hearing what you think about it.