Title: Take it Slow
Author: AKM Miles
Publisher: Torquere Press
Characters: Daniel Webster, Benny Adams
Sub-Genre: Contemporary Romance
When Daniel Webster returns to Nashville after two years of hell, he doesn’t go back to his dad’s house. After an amazing rescue he ends up at Mama Sasy’s diner and finds out that it’s a safe place for young gay guys in trouble. He certainly fits that bill.
Daniel has problems mentally and physically after all he’s been through, and it’s going to take a lot to get him back to any form of normal. He finds a great ally in Benny Adams and they begin a relationship. He’s so thankful for Benny, but why can’t he embrace Mama Sasy and her group of happy helpers who throw love at him left and right? Maybe because she’s so close to his dad, the one Daniel ran away from two years ago because he was so cruel upon hearing that Daniel thought he was gay. Benny makes him believe in love, and the broad spectrum of characters at Mama Sasy’s eventually make their way into his heart. As time moves forward, Daniel gets an idea about what he wants to do with his life. Benny helps him and they set forth a bold plan. It’s gonna get better, but he’s got to get them all to understand that he needs to take it slow.
Seventeen year old, Daniel Webster is confident about who he is. He’s popular at school, smart and has a very supportive father, Nick Webster, which he loves dearly. When Daniel decides to tell his father he is gay, he’s not worried. Nick Webster has always been supportive of Daniel and has many homosexual friends, so he expects his dad will take his news in stride and they’ll continue to have the well-rounded relationship that they’ve always had. To his surprise, his dad doesn’t react to the Daniel’s news at all. Nick belittles Daniel and says things he doesn’t mean, leaving Daniel with the impression that he’s now disowned by Nick and he doesn’t want him around anymore. Heartbroken and feeling more alone than ever, Daniel immediately leaves with just the clothes on his back without a backward glance.
Over the next two years many things happen to Daniel. As a runaway, at first he was able to find a very nice gay couple that took him into their home and took care of him, but when they suddenly passed away, Daniel finds himself alone again and practically kidnapped by a man who physically and emotionally abuses him. But Nick has never stopped looking for his son. He comes across, Mama Sasy, a woman who owns a diner and takes in homeless, gay youth. Soon, he enlists the help from Mama Sasy and her clan, and soon they find out where Daniel is.
They rescue him and Daniel cannot face his father without feeling intense anger, hurt and resentment from the pain and hell he’s been through the past two years. Mama Sasy immediately takes him under her care and he meets another young man, Benny, who also lived on the streets because his parents refused to accept that he was gay. The two form a quick bond and friendship and together they start to both work through their own demons as they slowly start to trust others and fall in love with one another. But, Daniel continues to hold a huge resentment towards his father and until he’s willing for forgive both his dad and himself, he will not be able to truly go forward in his life.
I really liked this book. Honestly, I’ve never read a book by AKM Miles that I didn’t like. She really gets to the heart of her characters and writes intriguing well-written heroes that live and breathe off of the written page. The story itself starts out very strong and slowly builds throughout until it reaches a very satisfying conclusion that left me with a huge smile on my face.
I thought Daniel and Benny were very good together. They truly were well matched and easy to root for. Both brought out the best in each other, and I loved how they emotionally supported each other through their difficult healing period. My only issue with the book was the intense anger Daniel had against his father. I did understand why Daniel was so ticked off, but he really becomes bitter over his father’s knee-jerk reaction of him coming out and he truly makes his dad pay for it. I was relived and happy when Daniel finally allows himself to forgive his father, (and himself) and was even happier to see them try to build their relationship again. At times, this book is difficult to read because there is a lot of angst and challenging things that goes on in these characters’ lives. Also, there were a few times I thought the book moved a little slow in parts, but it would quickly get intense again, so I still stayed very invested in the plot and the characters’ lives.
All in all I really liked this book and believe it’s a really good addition to the series. I’m looking forward to reading more books by AKM Miles and hope she continues to write more about the growth of these characters. If you are looking for an emotionally gripping read with well-written characters, Take it Easy is a book you should definitely consider. Although it is part of a series, I do believe this book could easily be read as a stand-alone. But I do recommend reading the first book, because they are a focal part of this one and you’ll really enjoy meeting and caring about these characters. Recommended!
Here are the Mama Sasy’s books in series order:
Reviewed By: Gabbi