Daily Archives: January 24, 2014
Title: You Were Always the One
Author: Hollis Shiloh
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Length: 104 pages
Blurb: Max struggled through every day in high school, especially when his hormones seemed to crave boys rather than girls. His best friend Mason and Mason’s younger brother Jamie made a bright spot in his teen life, until he confessed to Mason he was gay. Mason responded by ripping away all his joy, ending their friendship, and warning Max against seeing Jamie.
Max is a policeman now, comfortable in his sexuality but private and wary, taking solace in his job and the friendship of his golden retriever, Alex. But the past he thought was behind him demands resolution when a prickly, wounded, shockingly sexy Jamie gets arrested, and Max comes to the rescue.
Review: It starts with a great idea and the development of the idea works just fine. What I think is missing is depth to the characters, I couldn’t relate to them. I find it interesting enough, but emotion-wise was detached.
Max especially, he was going through the motions, talking about the feelings, but it didn’t really transmit to the reader, felt sort of empty, his voice was strong, but emotionless.
Jamie was easier to relate to, he wore his heart on his sleeves. Even though he was scared, confused and feeling like he was not enough most of the time; which made him vulnerable, his character was profound, tridimensional.
Using miscommunication to create the main conflict is a valid plot device, as long as it is not overused. The guilt over the age difference didn’t feel like enough reason for all the years of silence and separation. There is more to it than that, and my heart broke for Jamie, he was so fragile.
This would have been an amazing book, if I could have loved and cried with them. Been angry and upset. But Max kept me at arms length all the time, he was guarded all the time, and that made the emotional connection with this book almost impossible for me.
As a young man, Max was scared and ashamed of his feelings for Jamie, his BFF’s younger brother. As an adult, he’d already accepted his sexuality and the fact that in order to live his life openly he lost not only his best friend, but little Jamie too. Meeting Jamie again brings all those memories back, and the feelings that he thought were long gone come back stronger than ever. Being able to see Jamie as a man is harder than he imagined. He will always be little Jamie in his mind.
Much had happened to all of them during this time apart, it is time to heal and move forward. Once the truth is out in the open they might all have a chance at happiness.
Reviewed by Connie