Review: Jay Bell – Something Like Forever (Something Like #10)

Author: Jay Bell
Reviewer: Barb
Publisher: Self-published
Genre: Contemporary

Rating: ★★★★★ 

Summary:

Love, like everything in the universe, cannot be destroyed. But over time it can change.

The hot Texas nights were lonely for Ben before he met Tim Wyman, the man he would one day marry. Now, twenty years later, everything is perfect. Isn’t it? As Ben struggles with guiding his adopted son toward happiness, he begins to question his own path in life. Tim is little help, pulled away by artistic success and faced with temptation, but true love should be able to overcome such obstacles… if only their struggles ended there.

Something Like Forever is a love story spanning a lifetime and beyond as two men discover what it means to be friends, lovers, and so much more.

Review:

It’s a shame that there’s no way to squeak a higher rating than 5 in a 5-star rating system, but if there were, I’d give this story at least a 10. It’s everything I’d hoped for and more. I’m going to attempt to do this review without spoilers, so if some of the things I write seem vague, my advice is to run to your e-book reader and get this downloaded. Immediately.

Jay Bell gives us lots more of Ben and Tim. Who knew that this couple, with whom we’ve become very familiar over the course of the series, could still have many surprises for us and would continue to demonstrate a solid love and commitment to one another—one that would indeed last forever? During this story, the men have had the wedding William and Jason gave them at the end of Something Like Rain, and they now react to the SCOTUS ruling on same sex marriage when it comes, and they ultimately find a way to hold their own private ceremony, sealing their love and commitment to forever.

Have the tissues ready because we witness the death of Chinchilla, Ben’s faithful bulldog, and we face a life-threatening illness for one of our favorite couple. We get to learn the outcome of Jason’s trip to Astoria to see William (Something Like Rain) since that ended on somewhat of a cliffhanger, and we have an opportunity to visit the clearing in Warrensburg where Jace spread Victor’s ashes and Ben, in turn, later spread Jace’s. Ben has learned that Nathaniel is Victor’s son and has done his best to impart as much knowledge, gleaned from his time with Jace, as possible so that Nathaniel can learn a bit about the father he never knew. To make it complete, he even takes him to that special clearing that he’s previously never shared with anyone so Nathaniel can connect with Victor. It also gives Ben time to spend a few quiet moments of reflection with Jace.

Throughout the story, though the principal couple is Ben and Tim, the author reinforces Ben’s love for Jace. I love how he conveyed the spirit of Jace, in part through dreams and in part through memories, and I loved the way Tim always reiterated that Jace would be a part of their lives forever. Tim is more than okay with that and is totally accepting of his role in Ben’s life. It’s difficult for me to put this whole subplot into words, but suffice it to say, the author conveyed it beautifully.

Speaking of Jace, he visits Ben’s dreams throughout the years—an interesting concept of how we can stay in touch with our loved ones who have passed on to heaven. I enjoyed their time together in Ben’s dreams and recollections, and I especially liked the little hints Jace threw that later helped Ben resolve a problem—or find a missing cell phone. 🙂

Marcello is present front and center, and in the early part of the story, he’s convinced Tim to help set up a special museum for artists in Tokyo, where Tim meets Corey, a young man who had a crush on him in high school. Missing Ben so much after six weeks apart takes a toll on his libido, but I’m happy to share that Tim remained faithful to Ben. Thank you, Jay Bell!

I really appreciated the epilogue, which is approximately fifty years in the future. I not only enjoyed the follow-up on the characters still living and those who are now deceased, but I loved the twist the author gave to technology changes. Imagine being able to have a health screening in the home through use of a device similar to a television. Having witnessed a host of changes throughout my own life, I have no doubt this could easily happen.

And last but not least, I must say that although I sobbed out loud at the ending of Ben and Tim’s tale, I have no regrets. There’s joy in my heart from having known this beautiful couple and the author’s gentle handling, again with some humor, of the end of the story was absolutely perfect. I can’t begin to recommend this series, and in particular this last book, highly enough. It truly is outstanding! Thank you for bringing this to us, Jay Bell. You are exceptionally gifted.

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