Friday, March 20, 2015

ARC Review: Trust the Focus (In Focus #1) by Megan Erickson @MeganErickson_

22663603.jpgWith his college graduation gown expertly pitched into the trash, Justin Akron is ready for the road trip he planned with his best friend Landry— and ready for one last summer of escape from his mother’s controlling grip. Climbing into the Winnebago his father left him, they set out across America in search of the sites his father had captured through the lens of his Nikon.

As an aspiring photographer, Justin can think of no better way to honor his father’s memory than to scatter his ashes at the sites he held sacred. And there’s no one Justin would rather share the experience with more than Landry.

But Justin knows he can’t escape forever. Eventually he’ll have to return home and join his mother’s Senate campaign. Nor can he escape the truth of who he is, and the fact that he’s in love with his out-and-proud travel companion.

Admitting what he wants could hurt his mother’s conservative political career. But with every click of his shutter and every sprinkle of ash, Justin can’t resist Landry’s pull. And when the truth comes into focus, neither is prepared for the secrets the other is hiding.

Title: Trust the Focus (In Focus #1)
Author: Megan Erickson
Publisher: Intermix
Publication Date: February 17, 2015

Brooke's Review:
I want to thank Intermix for providing me with a copy of this book to read and give an honest review. Receiving this book for free has in no way altered my opinion or review.

So, I'm a huge fan of Ericsson's Bowler University series. It's cute and quirky and just plain old fun. When I heard she was publishing another book, I immediately added it to my list. And then when I found out it was a male romance, I got really excited. I haven't ever read a male/male before and I knew Megan would do it right. It didn't disappoint.

I think my favorite thing about a romance, my favorite way to read one, is friends to lovers. And this book does just that. Meet Justin. He's in the closet. And he's in love with his best friend. And he has NO idea how to go about coming our or telling Landry. His life is on a course, which does not include him being gay or him not doing exactly what his mother wants him to do.

I love that Justin has other plans. That he takes the opportunity of one last summer to explore not only his feelings, but what makes him, well, him. We get him from two perspectives, which is also nice. First there's the boy/man who is missing his father. The one who wants to honor him by traveling around the country and visiting the places they were to visit together. Throughout the book I feel Justin's pain at the loss of his father. But I also feel how he comes to some closure, some form of peace by doing these things.

Then there's the Justin that needs to man up and face the fact that he's in love, with his best friend, who has no idea that Justin is gay. And to top it off, he's been holding it in so long, he's scared to tell Landry. But when it finally comes out, sparks fly and the chemistry between the does not disappoint.

I like how Erickson really makes this book about exploration. There are parts that are sad, parts that make you made, but above all parts that show you how finding who you are brings you peace. Her writing is easy and paced well, though I do wish she would have had a bit more build up between the two men. I feel like they kind of crashed together too early and I needed more of the pining. And I never say that!

I will say that Justin stewed a bit too much for my liking. I felt like he was on a bit of a pity me trip. But, at the same time, I totally understood how his dilemma. How his mind was torn in two between being the person he has been put on a path to be and being true to himself.

In the end, he's certainly true to himself. And he's able to even work things out with his mom, which definitely gives the warm and fuzzy feels I am looking for.

Overall, I really enjoyed my first venture into a book about two gay young men who find each other and at the same time find themselves. I'm looking forward to see what Erickson does with her second book in this series.



Megan worked as a journalist covering real-life dramas before she decided she liked writing her own endings better and switched to fiction. 

She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, two kids and two cats. When she's not tapping away on her laptop, she's probably listening to the characters in her head who won't stop talking.

For more, visit meganerickson.org



4 comments:

  1. Glad you loved this one, Brooke! I haven't read Erickson's Bowler University series, but I see they're on sale. Super cheap! I have read one of her Brazen books and looooved it (Brazen for the win!). There have been so many other bloggers that enjoyed this book! I hope you love the rest of the series! :)

    Awesome review, Brooke!

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was different for me. But I did enjoy it. My only complaint was that Justin was a bit too whiney for my taste. I hope you enjoy her books when you read them.

      Delete
  2. Amazing review. I've saw this one in their email and thought... "eh". I am unfamiliar with the author and sometimes m/m romance can be hit or miss. However, your review has changed my mind. I have got to get my hands on this book. It sounds awesome.
    Kristin @ Book Sniffers Anonymous

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was my first m/m. I didn't know what to expect. I like that the sex aspect is not too overdone. There was a little too much pining for me and I think the actual build up could have been stretched a little more to really grab the reader, but overall it was a nice story. I will say I prefer her Bowler series to this one, but I will keep reading.

      Delete

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