Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Andrew Grey - A Shared Range

After a year in medical school, Dakota Holden returned home to take care of the family business full time and help his father cope with multiple sclerosis. Devoted to his family, Dakota allows himself just one week of vacation a year, which he spends in some exotic location having all the fun he can stand. On his last vacation, a cruise, Dakota struck up a friendship with Phillip Reardon, and it fills an important role in Dakota's life. So when Phillip decides to take Dakota up on his invitation to visit the ranch, Dakota is happy to see him and meet his veterinarian friend, Wally Schumacher. Despite Wally's inclination to help the wolves Dakota's men shoot to protect the cattle, he and Dakota find they have a lot in common, including a fierce attraction. But they'll have to decide if the Wyoming range is big enough for Dakota's cattle, Wally's wolves, and their love.

Comment: I got this book not very long after it was released. I got it because the blurb seemed very promising. Then I filed it and for a while I forgot about it, I admit it. Then, one day I was fixing my files and there it was, so immediately I put it on the line to be read during this year and voilá, here it is.

This is the story of Dakota, he's a rancher who gave up his dream of being a doctor after his father got worse with MS and needed care all day long. These days, Dakota only has one week of vacations each year, where he feels free and allow himself to be what he really is, gay. The story begins after Dakota returns home from a cruise. In there he met Phillip and now they are friends, which is the reason he invites Phillip to spend some time at his ranch.
Phillip accepts and brings Wally with him. Wally is a veterinarian and goes with Phillip not only because they're friends but also for a chance to study animals with the vet in that area of ranches. Of course, Wally and Dakota feel very attracted to each other and perhaps it's time to just live life...

I liked this story but I wasn't overwhelmed by it. I've previously read another book by this author and I enjoyed it too, but I found a thing here and there that I think could've done better.
The story is very clear and has an obvious message, but like it happens to most m/m books - and hetero ones at that - I think the romance was just too fast. I mean, can't people just enjoy the other's company for a while before giving in? I think it's so much more believable...oh well...
Then there is the story. I liked several parts of it, like the place where it happens, the settings and the way it developed. I just think other things, like the way the relationship between the two main characters evolved and how the focus wouldn't stay on more ranch dealings. I'd have liked to see more involvement about the ranch, about how it works, just to give the story a more serious feel, I don't know, but I think it would've been nice.

As for the main characters, in a way they suited, but I just couldn't help think they could have some polish, I didn't care for them all the time. I think the best part was when they disagreed about how to treat wild wolves - an interesting subject - and how that affects a ranch with livestock. But apart from that, their interactions seemed silly at times and to be honest I never warmed up to them.
I was more interested in all the secondary characters, to be honest.

In the end, I couldn't put aside the things I wish were different to enjoy the story more. I mean, it has an interesting plot and ideas and the message people should be respected for what they are, but in term of storyline, I wasn't as impressed as  wanted to be. So, it ended up being an average read for me.

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