I don't know how to classify this book but what I can say is I simply couldn't connect with it. I think it would have been better for me with dual POV. Lars' beliefs are his own and generally speaking it doesn't matter to me that he is Pagan or the specifics of it, there was just TOO MUCH of it. I've read enough Paranormal novels so I tried thinking about this one as such, but it ISN'T. While some things I CAN believe in most of his and his friends' beliefs, it was still very alien to me. I don't want to sound disrespectful because I DO realize some people live this way, including Aleksander who I've heard practices some sort of Paganism(?), I have no issue with that, on the contrary I'm a real advocate to "you do you". That being said, I'm not that curious to the "ins and outs" of these beliefs being a firm atheist.
Not much happens romantically in the first 3rd of the story. Lars Kendall has a builder company. He accepts a job fixing Rhys Turner's house. From their first meeting Lars seems more than intrigues with the guy but he is a professional so even when Rhys shares he is gay - the first move doesn't come from him. There's also a lot to be revealed about Rhys' current decisions with the house and it's location considering how he used to live before. Some was disclosed but I feel like there's still quite a lot more.
The main story wasn't Lars and Rhys but Lars' Pagan belief and his new found friendship with a group of gay practitioners. Honestly this is what mostly put me off of this story. Their overly perfect connection and the heavy emphasis on Paganism/ Magick.
I used to be the kind of person who reads cover-to-end "no matter what". But a few years a go a book friend introduced me to the concept of "If a book isn't 'good' 1/3 way in, getting to the end won't be worth it". It took me quite a while to accept that, but once I did I realized she is right. The struggle "to get there" is what ruins the book. As the book is almost always NOT the real problem. I AM. If I can't connect with a book, struggling through it won't change my feelings throughout and so it won't be worth it - FOR ME - getting to the end.
This exactly what happened to me with this book. I simply wasn't interested enough but I kept my struggle till the 33% when I said - enough. I've read A LOT of Aleksandr's books and I enjoyed most of them - this one was different from his usual work. Mostly Lars felt different. It wasn't even the plot or his journey (and not even him being Pagan). He was simply TOO PERFECT. He was good looking, had his own successful business, was a home owner to be envied of, a great cook, talented at crafts etc. While he didn't have many friends before (his only "flaw"), he JUST found this group of practitioners and became fast friends (after the first meeting). Meeting Rhys who was EVERYTHING he wanted was the icing on a cake I felt reluctant to eat..
I'm a bit skeptical myself about the next two in the series - Eagle's Shadow & Shadows Watching (co-written with Jordan Taylor) - which focus on a different couple (Tom Welsh and Sanders Templeton).
Sorry. This one clearly wasn't for me. If you're interested in Paganism, Astrology and those things maybe this one would be a fit for you. Try reading other reviews..
31 Aug. - 4 Sep. 2021