Review: N.R. Walker – Imago (Imago #1)

33973794Author: N.R. Walker
Reviewer: Lucy
Genre: Mm Contemporary

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Summary: Nerdy, introverted genius lepidopterist, Lawson Gale, is an expert on butterflies. He finds himself in a small town in Tasmania on a quest from an old professor to find an elusive species that may or may not even exist.

Local Parks and Wildlife officer, Jack Brighton, is an ordinary guy who loves his life in the sleepy town of Scottsdale. Along with his Border collie dog, Rosemary, his job, and good friends, he has enough to keep from being lonely.

But then he meets Lawson, and he knows he’s met someone special. There’s more to catching butterflies, Jack realises. Sometimes the most elusive creatures wear bowties, and sometimes they can’t be caught at all.

Lawson soon learns there are butterflies he can’t learn about it in books. They exist only in a touch, in a kiss, in a smile. He just has to let go first, so these butterflies can fly.

Imago is the story of finding love, bowties, and butterflies.

Review: This story is told in alternating first person point of view by Jack, the Parks and Wildlife officer, and Lawson, the genius lepidopterist who arrives in Tasmania with a special mission. I loved that we get both sides, especially in that both of these guys are lovely and interesting. Jack first runs into Lawson on the plane to Tasmania and Lawson isn’t too impressed. Jack, however, is. “If I were to look up Hottest Fucking Nerd on the Planet, this guy’s photo would be it.”
Jack gets to step in and be chivalrous when Lawson’s rental car isn’t available. While Lawson is a little reluctant about Jack, they end up with intelligent conversation. What I loved about the relationship between the two is that it develops as just that – a relationship. They go on amazing dates, they talk, they actually listen to each other. Lawson is a genius but he is also extremely blunt and a little socially awkward. “I believe in asking for what I want. There’s no point in yearning for something if you can actually have it.” I absolutely loved that and it really summed up Lawson for me. For his part, once Lawson passes the Rosemary test, Jack is all about “…working on making you happier with each date.”
This story focuses on the search for an elusive butterfly. On the slowly building friendship and more between two men who respect each other. The writing was smooth and romantic, in a way that doesn’t seem cloying or overly sweet. It is sweet but it is intelligent. These two seem to be opposites if you look at them strictly physically but neither of them, thank goodness, look at just the physical.
As they progress through the search for the butterfly and getting to know each other, they share details, share ideas and dreams about what they like or wish will happen and I can’t stress enough, these two listen to each other. There is no weird misunderstanding, no miscommunication because they two work to make sure that doesn’t happen.
I loved the dates, dinner in a bakery, the love of the bowtie, the single perfect flower. Little details that really worked so well. Jack helps Lawson in his pursuit of the butterfly and of course things are not simple. Lawson will be going home after his time here and that hangs over the two a little bit.
There is a solid HFN ending and I have to mention that the last line of the book was, in my humble opinion, absolutely perfect.


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