Book Review of Acrobat, by Mary Calmes


I borrowed a copy of Mary Calmes‘ M/M novel, Acrobat. (Thanks, C.)

Description from Goodreads:
Forty-five-year-old English professor Nathan Qells is very good at making people feel important. What he’s not very good at is sticking around afterward. He’s a nice guy; he just doesn’t feel things the way other people do. So even after all the time he’s spent taking care of Michael, the kid across the hall, he doesn’t realize that Michael’s mob muscle uncle and guardian, Andreo Fiore, has slowly been falling in love with him.

Dreo has bigger problems than getting Nate to see him as a potential partner. He’s raising his nephew, trying to leave his unsavory job, and starting his own business, a process made infinitely more difficult when a series of hits takes out some key underworld players. Still, Dreo is determined to build a life he can be proud of—a life with Nate as a cornerstone. A life that is starting to look like exactly what Nate has been looking for. Unfortunately for Dreo—and for Nate—the last hits were just part of a major reorganization, and Dreo’s obvious love for Nate has made him a target too.

I’m rating this fairly highly, maybe even higher than it deserves, simply because I enjoyed it. Yes, all the Italian got on my nerves. ‘Cause, you know, I don’t speak Italian. And Nate was far, far, far too perfect a Marty Sue to be believable. Honestly, he was almost too perfect to even like (though EVERYONE seemed to). Plus, all the side characters were larger than life and therefore also irritatingly shiny. Oh, and the random BDSM references were out of left field and didn’t really further the plot any. Oh, oh and I wanted to gag for the last quarter of the book, because it was all just soooo sappy as it drug itself around to make sure EVERYONE got their schmaltzy happy ending.

So, yeah, I have complaints. But Dreo makes up for almost all of that. So does the fact that the book is a bit of a slow burn. (Though once things get started the relationship never slows down and everything suddenly feels rushed, rushed, rushed.) So, this book is one of those odd combinations where a lot of individual aspects of it annoy me and would usually put me off, but I still somehow ended it surprisingly satisfied. I guess sometimes there really is no accounting for taste…even to yourself.

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