Author: Talia Carmichael
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
POV: 3rd Person
Sub-Genre: Contemporary, abuse issues
A Something in Common novella
Del Jenkins prefers to be alone—or so he tells himself until his younger brothers try to make him a playdate with bookstore owner Harper Hillman. Del’s brothers just want him to make a new friend, but there is no way he can be friends with Harper. Not unless Harper’s definition of “friends” includes jumping into bed together and getting naked and sweaty. When Harper turns him down flat because he doesn’t sleep with strangers, Del shrugs it off and suggests they get to know each other better. He already sees something wonderful in Harper, and he won’t give up so easily.
Harper is still mourning his dead husband, and a casual sexual encounter with Del is the last thing he wants. But getting to know each other—platonically, of course—should be harmless. In no way is Harper getting close to another man. But as he and Del spend more time together, Harper realizes it’s too late—he’s already involved. His heart is set on Del, and Harper is powerless to resist.
Dillard Jenkins, affectionately called Del by friends and family, is one in a set of identical triplets; Bur and Bernie completing the set. The three brothers are all victims of repeated physical abuse at the hands of their parents. Rey (Humphrey) and Dar (Darwin) Jenkins are identical twins and the very young siblings of the Jenkins triplets and have been subjected to the same abuse.
Harper Hillman owns the 2H Book Nook book store and is friends with Bur and Bernie. Two years prior Harper lost the love of his life when his partner of 10 years, a police officer, was fatally wounded in the line of duty. He knows he must inevitably relinquish his grief and thus his mourning but is unsure of what that time period should be and is holding on for as long as he can.
Rey & Dar have been legally removed from their parents and placed in the custody of their savior and brother, Del, and they are on a mission. They successfully get Del and Harper introduced in hopes of them becoming friends because the twins are determined that Del needs a friend. Well, Del and Harper certainly become friends with Del hoping for something much deeper. But Del is harboring a secret that he is not sure anyone but himself should know. If revealed, will this secret bring an abrupt halt to the burgeoning friendship between Harper & Del? Will Harper’s resistance to move on from his grief remove him from another opportunity at happiness? And how about the twins, are they as secure within themselves and moving on from their previous life as well as they portend to be?
Talia Carmichael has given us a story of suffering and grief interwoven with love, growth and happiness; a true picture of life. Here we may certainly have 2 focal characters yet we also must contend with several secondary personalities and how their actions are impacting all those involved.
The progression of the story is parceled out in a way that kept me reading, desperately needing to know either the outcome of a particular situation or what was to happen next in the lives of this wonderful group of men in the town of Mapson.
Therefore, if you want a story that brings the reality of life to its pages and forces you to feel along with its characters, then you have most definitely picked a winner here!
Reviewed By: Jymbo