Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Review: The Little Things by Jay Northcote

Reviewed by Whuppsy
The Little Things by Jay Northcote
Dreamspinner Press
Novel: 214pgs
2 Pants Off

There are lots of things that brighten Joel’s life. His three-year-old daughter, Evie, is one. His close relationship with her mother, his best friend from university, is another. Joel’s boyfriend, Dan, adds spice to his child-free nights, and Joel is pretty happy with how things are.

Then one cold and rainy night, everything changes. Joel's life is turned upside down when he becomes a full-time dad to Evie, and his previously carefree relationship with Dan cracks under the strain.

Meeting Liam, who acts as if getting hurt isn’t a foregone conclusion, shakes Joel to the core. Their attraction is mutual, and Liam makes no secret of how serious he is about Joel. But Joel is wary. He tells himself he’s keeping Liam at a distance for Evie’s sake, when really he’s protecting his own heart. Taking a chance on this new relationship with Liam may seem a small step—a little thing—but is it one Joel can take after losing so much already?

This is the story of Joel and Liam. Now, Joel has this sweet daughter, Evie with his best friend from University and they split custody of Evie so that they both get time with her and also some child-free time to do grownup stuff. Joel has this cute, younger man as a boyfriend and things seem to be going well. Well, he has some issues with Dan, his younger man, but all in all things are flowing along.

That is until Joel gets the call that changes everything. Evie’s mother was in a car accident and she was killed. Now Joel has full custody of Evie and is trying to make the adjustment as smooth as possible while dealing with his grief and the loss of his best friend and mother of his child. He also has to deal with the ending of his relationship with Dan.

We meet Liam at the same time that Joel does. It’s the night that he gets the call that Evie’s mom passes away. Joel runs to the hospital to find out that she’s passed away and he runs into Liam literally. Liam helps to calm Joel down enough to go home and deal with everything that comes next. The next time they meet is at a club, the attraction that you just got a hint of sparks even more. The third time is the charm. Things take off from there.

Now Liam is just the sweetest guy in the world. He works as a nurse and he’s great with children and he’s amazing at calming Joel down. He works hard and yet he tries to get Joel to see that there really is something special between them. Liam is truly everything that Joel has ever wanted in a partner. He’s loyal, loving, kind and just wonderful. Hell, can I get one?

Of course there is some angst in the story, Joel feels overwhelmed with all that has happened, the passing of Evie’s mom, the break up with Dan and the new relationship with Liam. Just as happy as he is, he’s worried that it will be taken away again. That it’s too soon to really get into a new relationship. That everything is just too much.

I will say that the story was okay. It dragged on a bit and I never felt fully engaged to either character. There was really no development into Liam’s character. I know what we were shown, but you never got to hear from him. He just seemed to really just be there. I wanted to hear Liam’s voice. I think that this story would have made more sense to me then. I needed to connect to them both and I felt that I wouldn’t say I connected with Joel, but him I understood him more.

I will say that I got the book because who doesn’t love the story of a father of a little girl who would move mountains for her. Evie is a sweet child and I will say that Jay did a great job on portraying her. She was one of the more consistent things throughout the story.

Overall, the story was ok. The writing was good and there were no grammar errors that would distract from the story. I really like the premise of the story, I just felt that there was no connection with the characters and I just didn’t care about them the way that I felt I should. Therefore, it made me not really invested in the story.

2 Pants Off

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