Head-on

John Inman
Head-on
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Publisher
Dreamspinner
Release Date
July 2014
ISBN
9781632160065
Genre
Contemporary Romance, LGBTQ

SUMMARY
At twenty-six, Gordon Stafford figures his days are numbered. At least he hopes they are. Wearied by guilt and regret stemming from a horrific automobile accident two years earlier in which a man was killed, Gordon wakes up every morning with thoughts of suicide. While the law puts Gordon to work atoning for his sins, personal redemption is far harder to come by.

Then Squirt—a simple homeless man with his own crosses to bear—saves Gordon from a terrible fate. Overnight, Gordon finds not only a new light to follow, and maybe even a purpose to his life, but also the possibility of love waiting at the end of the tunnel.

Gordon never imagined he'd discover a way to forgive himself, and in doing so, open his heart enough to gain acceptance and love—from the very person he hurt the most.

Book Review by Pat Henshaw (author,reviewer)
Jul 28, 2014   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
133 people found the following review helpful
One night of reckless behavior not only changes two men's lives but paves the way for them to remold themselves through love in this story based on unbelievable coincidences.

San Diego television weatherman Gordon Stafford is full of himself after winning a local TV award, and in a fit of incredible stupidity, not only is he driving drunk, but he's texting his triumph to all his friends. What results is a car crash killing one of the two people he hits.

Serving his minimal jail time, Gordon gets out on probation a broken man. He's working at a soup kitchen as part of his sentence, and there spies a beautiful short man whom people call Squirt. As broken and dispirited as Gordon is, Squirt trumps him, having forgotten his past including his name. One night as they duck below a bridge abutment, Gordon and Squirt watch as a group of ruffians set a homeless person on fire for sport.

This horrific act unites Gordon and Squirt because they realize together they are safer than alone. On this slim basis, they solidify a friendship and then a loving relationship, growing and prospering because of it. But trouble lurks around the corner when they discover a more troubling connection between them.

Both Gordon and Squirt were troubling characters for me. Gordon's self-loathing and wishing to become a better man was understandable. However, his disdain for his mother, who stuck with him throughout the trial and his prison sentence, was puzzling. True, as a successful realtor and socialite, the woman was something of a snob, but she didn't abandon her son during his troubles. Yet Gordon treats her abominably, not accepting that the woman is trying to be supportive while he acknowledges he doesn't know what kind of support he wants or needs.

Even more puzzling is Squirt who is portrayed as nearly child-like when readers first meet him. What Gordon sees in him isn't quite clear until he finds out that Squirt is a talented electrician, but by then I had lost interest in Squirt's naive, off-putting New Age worldview.

Most troubling for me, however, was how coincidence abounded and compounded in the story. By the end, I was shaking my head in disbelief.

I've read other Inman books which I have liked quite a bit, but this one won't ever go on my Best of John Inman list.
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December 18, 2017 07:41 AM ( EST )