Handle with Care

Josephine Myles
Handle with Care
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Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
Release Date
April 2012
Contemporary Romance, LGBTQ

The best things in life aren't free…they're freely given.

Ben Lethbridge doesn't have many vices left. After raising his little sister to adulthood, he wasted no time making up for the youth he lost to responsible parenting. Two years of partying it up—and ignoring his diabetes—has left him tethered to a home dialysis regimen.

He can do his job from his flat, fortunately, but most of his favourite things are forbidden. Except for DVD porn…and fantasizing over Ollie, the gorgeous, purple-haired skateboarder who delivers it.

Their banter is the highlight of Ben's lonely day, but his illness-ravaged body is the cruel reality that prevents him from believing they'll do anything more than flirt. Not to mention the age gap. Still, Ben figures there's no harm in sprucing himself up a bit.

Then one day, a package accidentally splits open, revealing Ben's dirty little secret…and an unexpected connection that leaves him wondering if he's been reading Ollie wrong all this time. There's only one way to find out: risk showing Ollie every last scar. And hope "far from perfect" is good enough for a chance at love.

Book Review by Valentina Heart (author,reviewer)
May 07, 2012   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
207 people found the following review helpful
Even if you are not a fan of quirky characters who look like they've walked down from a manga cover and good-hearted men with health issues, you are still likely to appreciate this tale of men overcoming their issues and believing in love.

Ben has been on dialysis for a while and hates everything about it. The way he looks, how quickly he tires and has pretty much quit on ever having a life again. In addition he feels really guilty for the events that led to his state and while he is willing to admit he's had fun up to the point where the world crashed around him, he still wishes for more.

Ollie is a skateboarder who happens to deliver Ben's porn packages. He has an easy smile and is an overall bundle of energy. Quite younger than Ben, Ollie has plans for his life and Ben has trouble accepting he's pretty much the star of those plans. After all, why would his walking fantasy possibly want with an over-thirty sick guy with a mullet?

My favorite part of this story was the beginning, where Ben showed just how vulnerable he was and how the little details about his condition defined his whole life. I loved the details and the author really did a great job showing exactly how difficult it was waiting for a transplant and knowing that the chances were slim of ever getting one.

Ollie was one of those guys we all love to read about in m/m. Can I say tattoo again? Oh yeah. I loved how his shorts showed above the edge of his pants, how intrigued he was by Ben's scars and I could almost picture his art (yes, I am one of those who appreciate cyborgs with visible erections).

I thought the men were a good fit and the quick development of their relationship was almost natural. I would have wanted more of their interactions where their personalities really showed and the ending did seem like it came too fast. Maybe it was just me, but I felt the story had more to give and some parts could have been a bit more dynamic. But despite all that, I had fun reading about Ben and Ollie and their occasional bursts of British charm.

Since this is the fourth book I've reviewed by this author all I have left to say is that you can't really go wrong with her stories. There is always enough laughter and romance even for the demanding individuals. The lady sure knows how to write.
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