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Serenading Stanley

SerenadingStanleyTitle:  Serenading Stanley

Author:  John Inman

Publisher:  Dreamspinner Press

Length:  234 pages

Rating:  B List

Quad Shot of Love

Quad Shot of Love

Blurb:  Welcome to the Belladonna Arms, a rundown little apartment building perched atop a hill in downtown San Diego, home to the city’s lost and lovelorn. Shy archaeology student Stanley Sternbaum has just moved in and fills his time quietly observing his eccentric neighbors, avoiding his hellion mother, and trying his best to go unnoticed… which proves to be a problem when it comes to fellow tenant Roger Jane. Smitten, the hunky nurse with beautiful green eyes does everything in his power to woo Stanley, but Stanley has always lived a quiet life, too withdrawn from the world to take a chance on love. Especially with someone as beautiful as Roger Jane.

While Roger tries to batter down Stanley’s defenses, Stanley turns to his new neighbors to learn about love: Ramon, who’s not afraid to give his heart to the wrong man; Sylvia, the trans who just wants to be a woman, and the secret admirer who loves her just the way she is; Arthur, the aging drag queen who loves them all, expecting nothing in return—and Roger, who has been hurt once before but is still willing to risk his heart on Stanley, if Stanley will only look past his own insecurities and let him in.

Review:  I enjoyed this fun filled read with its cast of quirky, spirited and effervescent characters. Naughty antics, well meaning and whimsical behaviour fills the Belladonna Arms.

Stanley is a geeky student, a little clumsy but cute character. Although bright with an open minded outlook, he is unsure about his looks and his personality. He finds Roger is an enigma and complicates their friendship with excuses, confusing Roger. Now I did not find Stanley shy exactly, but more of an introvert, I felt that it was his self doubt that made him appear shy.

Roger is an attentive, gorgeous nurse and infatuated with Stanley. Roger is observant, he doesn’t miss a trick even when Stanley believes he has fooled him. Roger is so intent with his mission that he will try anything to win Stanley over and gain his trust. Now I was not sure what to make of Roger, is the man a soft pushover? Not ever giving up on Stanley, no matter how often Stanley pushed him away or was Roger so self-centred that he is willing to use others to help him get what he wanted?

There is a Chocolate Brownie incident that makes for some fun reading, along with the other amusing characters and scenes. Stanley finds Sylvia a sweet, delicate, and lovely friend. Arthur is a scream with a heart of gold. I thought the way all the characters came together, how they loved, laughed and supported each other like that of a family despite appearing so dysfunctional was great.
A great read that will brighten your day with a little mush in places, touching on some sensitive subjects that ended beautifully.

Reviewed by Teddy


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