Title: Full Circle
Author: Michael Thomas Ford
Publisher: Kensington Publishing Corporation
Release Date: August 1st 2007
Genre(s): Gay Literary Fiction, MM Romance, Historical
Page Count: 432
Reviewed by: LenaRibka
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 5+ stars out of 5
History professor Ned Brummel is living happily with his partner of twelve years in small-town Maine when he receives a phone call from his estranged friend–Jack–telling him that another friend–Andy–is very ill and possibly near death. As Ned boards a plane to Chicago on his way to his friend’s bedside, he embarks on another journey into memory, examining the major events and small moments that have shaped his world and his relationships with these two very different, very important men.
Growing up together through the restrictive 1950’s and confusing ’60’s, Jackson “Jack” Grace and Ned Brummel took solace in their love for each other. But once they arrive at college in 1969 and meet handsome farm boy Andy Kowalski, everything changes. Despite Andy’s apparent heterosexuality, both Jack and Ned fall hard for him, straining their close friendship. Soon, the three men will become involved in a series of intense liaisons and bitter betrayals, coming together and flying apart, as they alternately hurt, love, shape, and heal one another over the course of years. From the heady, drug- and sex-fueled days of San Francisco in the wild seventies to the haunting spectre of AIDS in the eighties and the righteous activism of the nineties, their relationship transforms and grows, reflecting the changes going on around them. Now, together again in the most crucial and intimate of settings, Ned, Jack, and Andy have another chance to confront the damage of the past and embrace the bonds of friendship and love that have stood the test of time.
...there will always be friendship and love, and between the two of them, there are mysteries enough to last lifetimes.
Sometimes the best part of a mystery is that it can never be solved to our satisfaction. Like God and death, the question of what drives the heart may be one we never fully understand.
13th November 2014, when I finished the book:
Now I’ll go for a long long walk…thinking about this book…
And then I’ll cook…thinking about this book…
Later I’ll have a glass of wine with my hubby watching the last news…thinking about this book…
We’ll talk, make plans, I’ll pretend to listen to him but…I’ll be thinking about this book…
And later I’ll try to write some lines about this book…knowing that I’ll never be able to do it right.
The book starts with a phone call in the middle of the night. As Ned Brummel, a 56 years History Professor, picks up the phone, he hears the voice of his boyhood friend Jack, whom he’s seen the last time over 12 years ago. There is a sad reason for this call. But it awakes all old memories both good and bad, sad and beautiful.
And the journey back into the past starts to go through over 50 years and ends to the present time.
Thus, the circle is closed…
The book is a heart-wrenching, DEEPLY emotional epic story of love and friendship over decades, about a male lifetime bonding, about the significant changes in the modern society, from the Vietnam war, through the gay activities in gay history, AIDS epidemic to the now-days.
BRILLIANTLY written. A true masterpiece.