Gibraltar (Crabbypatty’s Review)

Title: Gibraltar
Author: Cristina Bruni
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: December 22, 2017
Genre(s): Historical, Novella
Page Count: 80
Reviewed by: Crabbypatty
Heat Level: 2.5 flames out of 5
Rating: 3 stars out of 5

Benjamin Scott is a fair man and a fearless sea captain, but his heart is broken. A while back, during a fierce battle in the West Indies, he witnessed the death of his best man, Jack, who fell into the sea before Ben had the chance to confess his love to him.
In Gibraltar, he happens to run into a stranger, John, who bears an uncanny resemblance to his lost love. A friendship grows between the two men, soon turning to love. This time, will Benjamin find the courage to confess his love, before losing John as well?

Captain Benjamin Scott of the Royal Navy is dry-docked in Gibraltar waiting for repairs to his ship Sunrise when he encounters a blond man in a bookstore that looks remarkably like Jack, a crew member lost at sea during a battle. Benjamin and Jack had an attraction to one another which they never acted upon, and seeing this man – who has amnesia and goes by the name “John”- Benjamin feels he has been given a second chance at love.

This novella was originally written in Italian and I wonder if perhaps something was lost in the translation. While the story has an interesting premise (a twist on the familiar amnesia trope), the writing style moves from lyrical emotions and thoughts to short brisk disjointed sentences. We don’t learn until almost 90% that the novella is set around 1800, and there is very little in the story that describes the time and place. I didn’t sense much chemistry between the two men, and the ending seemed too unbelievable. This story just did not work for me. 3 stars.

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Gibraltar provided by the Author in exchange of an honest review.


Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.  Frederick Douglas

I distinctly remember that day in school when, all of a sudden, those squiggles on the page made sense and I could read. It has changed my life in ways I still cannot comprehend.

My favorite M/M tropes are friends-to-lovers, murder/mysteries, amnesia, hurt/healing and historicals. Shifters, vampires, paranormal? Meh … not in my wheelhouse, but I’m a sucker for a well-written well-plotted book, no matter the genre.

Favorite authors includes Brandon Witt, Rick R. Reed, Abigail Roux, Jay Northcote, JL Merrow, KJ Charles, Lane Hayes, Marshall Thornton and so many more.

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