Monday, December 24, 2012

Review: Angel Voices by Rowan Speedwell

Rowan Speedwell
Angel Voices
Amber Allure, December 18, 2011 | 61 pages

Author’s website | Goodreads | Buy book here

Backblurb:
On a frigid winter night, college freshman Will stumbles into the shelter of a church during choir practice. His father has just discovered that Will is gay, and has beaten him and thrown him out of the house. But right now Will’s interested only in getting warm.
Will’s college roommate Quinn is a soloist in the choir, which is practicing for a Christmas program. He discovers Will in the church—and his friend’s condition. Will, who has grown up in a repressed environment, including church school, an abusive father and a passive mother, is taken aback by Quinn’s enthusiasm and determination to take care of him.
Does Will have a future after all, especially one that will include Quinn?


Genre & Keywords: M/M Romance, Contemporary, Christmas, Coming Out and Kicked Out, Abusive Father, Roommates, Young Lovers, Family

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Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Heat level: 2 out of 3 flames
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A Christmas story from last year, this was still on my to read list and it perfectly fitted my current mood of wanting to read sweet and Christmassy m/m stories. Angel Voices is great for a quick romantic fix. This short story offers the tale of young lovers brought together by sad events that made me tear up a bit. It’s beautifully written and very moving.

Will and Quinn are roommates but not very close until the evening Will’s father discovers that Will is gay and beats him up badly after which he kicks him out of the house. Will, without money or warm clothes, starts walking back the way he came and coincidentally ends up in the church where Quinn has choir practice. He is in a bad condition and Quinn has to take him to the hospital. Quinn takes Will under his wings when Will’s situation seems hopeless and introduces him to his warm family.

The young men grow closer and only after Will’s ordeal with his father they find out that they are both gay and feel attracted to each other. So, they not only become friends but tentative lovers as well. I thought this was really cute and unaffectedly done. I felt myself routing for them to take that step.

As for Quinn’s family, they were just what Will needed to keep himself away from the abyss that doomed after the abuse and the hopelessness of his new situation. Quinn’s parents are good people and his grandma is made of awesome-sauce. Fortunately, Will’s family turned out to be not all evil: Will's brother (and mother) prevented this tale from becoming totally good vs bad, black vs white. It would’ve become too much of a cliché otherwise, especially because there was not much room for character depth given the number of pages here.

Even though this was an enjoyable read with a right dose of angst and sweetness, it is not very convincing in it’s happily ever after. The story didn’t give me much reason to believe that these guys will grow old together; it feels more of a HFN ending.
The main purpose of Quinn and Will’s romance for me seemed to be letting Will see and believe that there’s hope for a better future even if it doesn’t look that way for a while. Or in short: It Gets Better. This story is a perfect example of that slogan and I liked it for that reason the most perhaps.
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3 comments:

  1. Lovely review, although it does sound like a hard (emotional) read. I do love this author's writing though - Finding Zach has me in pieces!

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    Replies
    1. It's not really emotional, because the 'hard' part's been avoided/skipped by Quinn's interference. :) It's only a short story, so it won't have you in pieces again. :)

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    2. Thank you :) Good to know :)

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