Title: Heart Knot Mine
Author: Lily Velden
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: May 1st 2014
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 226 pages
Reviewed by: Lily G Blunt
Heat Level: 4 flames out of 5
Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5
Despite a successful college teaching career, Noah Daniels has become depressed. He feels he’s leading a monochromatic life: love has eluded him. When he’s offered a chance to teach in London as part of an exchange program, he accepts, hoping a change of scenery will do him good. But once he’s there, his outlook on love and sexuality changes in ways he never expected.
Robert Callinan is Noah’s English counterpart in the program. The men exchange not only their jobs, but also their homes, and it is what Noah stumbles across while staying at Robert’s house that sends him on a journey of self-discovery—both mentally and physically. A journey that puts color back into his life… just not in the way he expected. When the exchange program ends, Noah has to go home, but he doesn’t know if he wants to return to the life he left behind.
I always enjoy reading Lily Velden’s stories. I love her writing style and admire how she writes with humour and such passion.
Noah and Robert’s relationship encapsulates what I adore about the m/m genre. Although taking over thirty years to realize he is gay, Noah embraces his sexuality and falls head-over-heels in love with Robert. There is nothing ‘girlie’ about the depth of emotion he experiences towards this man. I relished the intensity of his feelings and their passionate lovemaking. Lily writes sizzling bedroom scenes, but for Noah it is more than just sex when he spends time with Robert. Not all men want to have casual hook-ups in bathhouses and clubs, and it isn’t just women who seek something more meaningful in their love life. Noah wants this connection with his soul mate, and his need for Robert is wonderfully expressed through his thoughts and actions.
Lily superbly shows Noah’s angst and heartache when he and Robert are apart. It hurts for him and for us as readers. This is skillful and emotional writing at its best. The scene when they finally meet again is one of my favorites in the whole book. I have read it over several times with tears in my eyes. It is so beautiful. So moving.
I loved this story and the characters portrayed by Lily, and will read the book again—a definite sign of how much I enjoyed it. My only wish is that perhaps one of the earlier sex scenes had been replaced for one at the end of the story. I would have loved to have read a final lovemaking scene and heard in more detail how Robert was feeling and suffering when the two men were apart. But that’s just me being greedy because I didn’t want their story to end.
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