Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Review: The Nothingness Of Ben by Brad Boney

The Nothingness of Ben by Brad Boney
Dreamspinner Press
Novel: 248pgs
4 Pants Off

Ben Walsh is well on his way to becoming one of Manhattan’s top litigators, with a gorgeous boyfriend and friends on the A-list. His life is perfect until he gets a phone call that brings it all crashing down: a car accident takes his parents, and now he must return to Austin to raise three teenage brothers he barely knows.

During the funeral, Ben meets Travis Atwood, the redneck neighbor with a huge heart. Their relationship initially runs hot and cold, from contentious to flirtatious, but when the weight of responsibility starts wearing on Ben, he turns to Travis, and the pressure shapes their friendship into something that feels a lot like love. Ben thinks he’s found a way to have his old life, his new life, and Travis too, but love isn’t always easy. Will he learn to recognize that sometimes the worst thing imaginable can lead him to the place he was meant to be?

I am surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. Most things that annoy me in other books, really worked well for this book and I am a sucker for mouthy kids (only in the best way possible not some rude douchy kids).

Ben Walsh is living it up in New York. He's a hotshot lawyer whose only problem is worrying about what to get his hot boyfriend for Christmas. When he gets a phone call saying that his parents were killed in a crash, Ben knows his life will never be the same again, because he’s got three younger brothers and they’re gonna need him (at least he thinks they might need him but maybe not so then he can move on back to his life in the Big Apple).

What he never expected was the guilt he would feel for never taking the opportunity to be a big brother. Now he has to be a guardian but first he's got to get to know them and try making it day by day without their parents. Ben knows it’s gonna be tough, but he's not completely alone. There's Travis, the redhead with the drawl that his parents all but adopted. He's there and Ben likes him there, maybe a bit too much (yeh definitely).

I was expecting serious angst (like me crying holding pillow and cursing Brad Boney) but the book is surprisingly sweet. Loved all the Walsh boys especially that sass from Quentin, boy has mouth. I loved that Ben has his doubts about raising his brothers, and he didn't become the perfect caretaker. He had moments of selfishness, which really sealed the deal for me, in liking him. If he were Mr Perfect, he would just be another one of those characters (perfect and getting shit done).

What I enjoyed the most is the slow development of Travis and Ben's relationship. Their friendship is a thing of beauty, and they have the most fun dialogue ever. Yes, there were moments where it seemed almost perfect but of course their bubble gets burst and reality sets in. As I said this book had things that worked for me that I don't really enjoy in other books. Like separation, but I think here it was the perfect move. Ben needed to have the boys alone for a while and see that that though help is appreciated, he could handle them on his own. Well Travis was just protecting his heart, and I can get on board with that. Really loved them together, their friendship from the beginning solidified their relationship.

Should You Read It? Oh please do! This has two tropes that I love (the friends to lovers and gay for you). Loved the entire Walsh family and pretty much every character introduced. I am also looking forward to more from Brad Boney; this book pretty much sealed him as up and coming.

4 Pants Off

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