Title: Passing Through
Author: Jay Northcote
Publisher: Jay Northcote
Length: 137 pages
Blurb: Don’t waste a chance at happiness…
Leo is a lonely workaholic with no time for romance in his life. His job in London takes all his energy and commitment. When he goes to Cornwall to stay with his terminally ill uncle, Edwin, love is the last thing Leo expects to find.
Tris lives in a cottage on Edwin’s land. Gay, but still half in the closet, he and Leo bond over their affection for Edwin, and the pull of attraction between them proves too strong to ignore. In Tris’s arms, in the wilds of Cornwall, Leo finds a peace he’d forgotten existed.
On his return to London, Leo finds himself grieving for more than just the loss of his uncle. When some unexpected news gives Leo the chance to return to Cornwall, he’s afraid it will be too late to rekindle things with Tris. But having learned much from his stay with his uncle, Leo doesn’t want to look back and wish he’d done things differently.
It’s time to seize the day—if it’s not already too late.
Review: A beautiful story full of love, family, grief, loss, and finding happiness.
While this is Tris and Leo’s story, from Leo’s perspective, it is also so much more. There are actually two love stories woven throughout and the pages are filled with a sense of love and the choices that these people made and how that affected their lives and happiness.
Leo is a nice man. Athletic, kind, generous and talented in his field. Leo is a workaholic with a high pressure and high stress job that leaves him little time for anything else in his life. He’s exhausted and wired when he comes, at his mother’s request, to visit his terminally ill uncle. He is not expecting to find the handsome Tris, and is completely unprepared for the intense emotions that develop as they spend time together.
Tris is a bit of a mess. Recovering from a nasty divorce from a wife who feels betrayed and deceived. Struggling with guilt and fear about coming out to the rest of the people in his life. Tris is licking his wounds and finding his footing while staying in Edwin’s cottage as he does the renovations on it. He’s as clueless as Leo when it comes to their situation.
When Leo arrives at his uncle Edwin’s home in Cornwall he finds a man whose battle with cancer has left him a shadow of his childhood memories. While Edwin is obviously very ill his humor, stubborn pride, and love of life shine through. It’s hard to watch them all struggle with Edwin’s failing health and the growing awareness that time is running out. You cannot help but love these men and the bonds of family, friendship and love that are so apparent between them. So much respect and caring. And Edwin cannot help himself from meddling in the relationship between two men he considers sons.
I loved this story. It captivated my attention and I shared the concern and dread that plagued Leo and Tris over Edwin’s health. I knew that this wasn’t something Edwin was going to recover from, but I couldn’t help wanting both his continued presence and his freedom from the pain and struggle of his illness. I shed a tear with them as the time finally came to say goodbye. And I smiled at his meddling and matchmaking. Edwin was a man well lived and he made the best with what he had. And he wanted those boys to be happy.
While a shorter read it told us a complete story that was emotional and loving. I would enjoy visiting with Leo and Tris again, of course. But even if I never do, I know they’ll be sailing and exploring the beaches of Cornwall with each other until their time comes to leave this world, happy, content and very much in love.
Reviewed by Nina