Title: La Famiglia (Men of Gilead #2)
Author: Deanna Wadsworth
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: January 23rd 2018
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 324 pages
Reviewed by: Belen
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
A Men of Gilead Novel
Forrester Giordano comes from a huge, nosy Italian family, and with their homophobic jokes and slurs, he’s decided to stay in the closet. He finds respite in his bookstore in the quaint village of Gilead—where he has a huge crush on one of his customers, Kyle Benson.
Kyle is determined to live his dreams, and though life isn’t easy being deaf, one by one he’s making them come true. He’s scored a great job practicing law, bought a cute bungalow where he can finally have a big flower garden, and he has a dog he loves, Jasper. Now he just needs one thing to complete his happiness: a family of his own to make up for the one he never had.
Forrester and Kyle’s relationship starts off hot and heavy, and neither man can deny the depth of their connection. When Forrester’s little brother gets mixed up with their heroin-dealing cousin and his mother falls ill, Forrester has a decision to make—maybe the hardest of his life. For the first time, he’s found a man worth coming out for.
Unfortunately nothing ever goes according to plan with la famiglia.
Forrester “Frankie” Giordano has kept being gay a secret from his large Italian family his whole life. Forrester’s father was a vocal homophobe and Forrester was sure that if his secret came out he’d be thrown out of the family. When he went away to college he was out and proud, dating and being open about who he was, but after his father’s death and his grandmother’s health declining he returned home to help out.
Now he has a book store he loves in the next town over from his family, Gilead. There he is open about who he is, but at home he’s still closeted. He figures one day he’ll meet a guy who will make the drama coming out to his family will be worth it.
Then he meets Kyle. Kyle is gorgeous, successful, and a recent transplant to Gilead for his job. Forrester and Kyle have a lot of interests in common and some pretty sparking chemistry.
With a soft chuckle, Forrester claimed his delicious mouth once more, kissing Kyle as if he might never get a chance to kiss anyone again. No hesitation in their touch, they embraced, and Forrester took the kiss deeper. It felt easy, right. Brand-new, but also as comfortable as if they’d been like this a million times before.
They agree to take it slow, but that doesn’t last long, and Kyle just hopes that one day he’ll be able to be with Forrester out in the open with Forrester’s la famiglia.
I thought Kyle’s deafness was handled well and integrated into the story in a way that touched on some of the challenges without making Kyle all about it. Forrester’s family drama was pretty stereotypical with the whole big, brash, smart mouthed Italian close-knit family, and while it did provide some levity there were a couple of times it dipped a little too close to cliché before being pulled back.
All in all this was sweet, if a little slow-paced, and I loved how Forrester and Kyle were with one another.
“You’re everything, everything to me,” Forrester murmured into his nape, holding him tight. “I love you so much. You’re so beautiful. Please never leave me. Just love me forever, bello.”
I haven’t read the other books in the series, but if this sweet romance with some steam is an indication of Wadsworth’s writing, I am going to have to check them out sooner rather than later.