Title: Come out with Me
Author: Cody L. Stanford, Milla van der Have, Cindy Allen
Publisher: Etopia Press
Characters: Multi-Character Anthology
POV: 1st, 3rd
Sub-Genre: Contemporary Romance, Gay and Lesbian Anthology
Three stories of first love—the awakening and the uncertainty, the torment and joy—and the journey of three gay and lesbian couples through their past, present, and future.
Come out with me is a Multi-Authored Anthology and each story is very different and unique in its own way. These stories are very short, and I wish they had all been longer. Every character was interesting and definitely had their own distinctive voice. These are not your typical romances. Each story has a somewhat bittersweet feel to them, but they also end with something we all have in life…hope, love and a determination to be true to themselves. I really liked each story and enjoyed the journey each author took me on. If you are looking for a moving, addictive read, then Come Out With Me is definitely the book for you.
And Weren’t You In Love When You Were Young by Cody L. Stanford
5 out of 5 Kisses
We all remember our first love and our first real heartbreak. In the short story, And Weren’t You In Love When You Were Young, covers all the bases of finding first love and the bittersweet heartache that can be result from it. Although the story revolves around a small group of friends, the story is basically about 15 year old Todd and his first love Adrian. It’s love at first sight when Todd meets the new boy in town, Adrian. Although, Todd hasn’t exactly hidden his sexuality from others, he’s not totally out at his school or home, but once he meets Adrian, he wants to come out and experience first love and friendship with him. The problem is: because of his past, Adrian is confused about who he really is and convinced that he can be someone he’s not. Because of this, he pushes Todd away and does hurtful things that not only will change his life, but the chance of having a love of a lifetime with Todd.
I really liked this story. I thought it was well written and interesting to see different perspectives from the other main characters in the book. Even though the story isn’t always an easy read, I thought it was realistically written because of the consequences we bring onto ourselves by the choices we make. I liked Todd and although Adrian wasn’t an easy person to always like, I did feel sorry for him because of the pain and confusion he goes through. I appreciated how strong and confident Todd became as the story progressed and even liked how Adrian is also starting to come into his own man. Although this does not have a typical HEA at all, it showed how much Todd in particular has grown, and I really liked it.
Out of the Woods by Milla van der Have
4.5 out of 5 Kisses
One day Adrienne wakes up and discovers that she’s been living a lie almost all her life. She is unhappy, just engaged to an uncaring man and needing to get back to her roots, so she decides to go back to her childhood home and try to reevaluate her life. Once she’s arrives, she discovers things aren’t always what they seem. Just when she thinks her life has hit an all-time low, a lovely woman comes to her rescue and things start to become clearer.
I really liked this story. I liked the journey Adrianne takes and the way she decides to start taking control of her life. I liked how it ended on a positive note and enjoyed watching Adrianne start to come into her own.
Ode To Joy by Cindy Allen
4.5 out of 5 Kisses
Out of the three stories, this one was the most touching/bittersweet one. The story is about two very different women who have lived their life together for over sixty years. One of them is deathly sick, and because of the law and unaccepting family members she is unable to see her partner.
Ode to Joy is a very touching, lovely story about two women whose love has endured a lifetime of happiness and hurt. My heart hurt for both characters, and I found myself wishing I could do something to help them. I was truly enthralled with their story, but I wish it had been longer. Although, it has a heavier plot, it still ended on a positive note because of one woman’s determination not to be separated from the one she loves, no matter what the cost.
Reviewed By: Gabbi