Author: Cardeno C.
Publisher: The Romance Authors, LLC
[xrr rating= 4/5]
Narrators: John Solo and Nick J. Russo
In Another Life
At age 18 Shiloh Raben is tired. He no longer has the energy to deal with mean classmates, inner doubt, and fear of familial rejection, so he takes a razor to his wrist. When he wakes up in the hospital, Shiloh meets Travis Kahn, the EMT who saved him and didn’t leave his side.
Travis is handsome, smart, and funny – the type of guy Shiloh would never be brave enough to approach. But his near-death experience has an unusual side effect: The life that flashed before his eyes wasn’t the one he had already lived but rather the one he could live. With visions of a future by Travis’ side, Shiloh will find the strength to confront his fears and build a life worth fighting for.
Childhood family friends Maccabe Fried and Josh Segal have always gotten along despite having nothing in common. Maccabe is an athlete with dreams of playing professional baseball. Josh is an aspiring architect with dreams of being with Maccabe. Despite all odds, both dreams come true.
Maccabe and Josh fall into a long-distance romance, which is everything Josh thought he wanted. But after years of hiding from the world, Josh wants to bring their relationship into the open. When Maccabe refuses, Josh is faced with a tough decision: stay with the man he loves or live the life he deserves. No matter the choice, somebody’s bound to get hurt. Thankfully, in the season of miracles, there’s always hope for a happy ending.
In Another Life:
I just finished, and my only wish is that I could have this in both e-book and audiobook. I loved John Solo’s narration, but I felt lost at the end. After rereading the blurb just now, I realized I missed an important word – could – the life he “could” have lived, not “did” live. If I have one piece of advice to others, it’s that you pay attention to the beginning of this story. Apparently this ditzy old lady let her mind wander for a few minutes, because although I totally loved the story, I kept waiting for the time jump back to the future, and it never came. Now I know why. “Miss”understanding. All on me. Not on the author.
In any event, it was sweet, and Travis and Shiloh were a great couple. Their romance moved along a bit quickly because Shiloh, normally shy and sweet and introverted, knew where and with whom his future lay, so he made sure it happened, up to and including the prevention of a huge bump in their future which would have affected their road to happy destiny.
This was a nice holiday story that felt way too short to satisfy my need for spending time with Josh and Maccabe, especially once Maccabe got his head out of his baseball glove and realized what he’d lost. Friends from childhood, Maccabe and Josh were inseparable. It wasn’t until they had turned eighteen, however, that they found a new level to their attraction. Josh had been pining over Maccabe for years, while Maccabe remained clueless and went about playing sports as if playing was his life’s goal. Okay, I couldn’t resist saying that—because it was his goal.
Once they act on their sexual attraction, the two maintain that relationship through college, though it has to be long distance, because Maccabe is playing for a minor league team, and Josh is away at college. When the hiding and meeting in motel rooms becomes too much for Josh, he tells Maccabe he’s going to announce the fact that he’s gay to his family at this year’s joint family Hanukah dinner. Maccabe is against it, saying that everyone will then assume he’s gay too, and he can’t/won’t come out. Then Josh overhears and misunderstands something said between Maccabe and his sister and abruptly leaves. Not realizing he’s broken his best friend and lover’s heart, he’s shocked when Josh doesn’t appear at the dinner and even more so when seven years goes by without any contact.
Though he tried to reach Josh at first, time slipped past and Josh’s presence in his life was forgotten. It’s not until this year’s first day of Hanukah joint family dinner that he finds out Josh left because his father disowned him. And that’s when he realizes he’s allowed too many years to go by, and he mans-up and sets out to get his guy.
I enjoyed the story, the author’s writing style and sense of humor, and Nick J. Russo’s voice in this one. The only thing I disliked was how short it was. More, more, more would have been even better. I may not have mentioned this, but I am greedy when I get my hands and ears on a good audiobook.
I obviously recommend this double audiobook to all lovers of MM romance. Two great stories, two great narrators, and one outstanding author equals a few hours of pure pleasure.