Tuesday, September 23, 2014

S.A. Payne - What the Wind Carries

Doctor Thomas Lambry has lost most interest in caring about anyone, personally or professionally. His primary concern is to look out for himself and nothing more. But when he rescues a beautiful blonde damsel in distress his life gets turned upside down.
Alex isn't quite a damsel and while situations have taken a turn for the worse, he's far from helpless. Used to getting his own way and making something out of nothing, he's not used to a man scorning his advances. Challenged by Tom's indifference, Alex takes it upon himself to remind the older man what it means to be alive.
Set in the late 1800's in America, the two travel to find a home thought lost and unreachable and on the way find something more valuable and far more elusive.

Comment: This is the third story by this author I read. The others left me with different opinions, for while I loved one a lot, I was a bit depressed over the other. This one's blurb seemed promising enough and I admit I foresaw a romantic story about love.

This is Thomas Lambry tale and how he used to be a dedicated, hardworking doctor but after the death of his lover, he went into deep mourning and lost his will to be the person he was. He travels aimless and just to pass the time, because he doesn't feel worthy of living or helping others while he couldn't save his lover.
On day he rescues Alex from tree brothers who were abusing and starving him. however, at first Tom thought Alex was a girl because of his clothes. He is surprised to feel attraction and even more so when he realizes Alex likes to dress as a girl. While trying to help Alex to meet his family, will he learn to trust and love again?

While I found this story to be entertaining enough to be easy to read, I still can't say it was the greatest story ever. I don't usually read books with cross dressing heroes or heroines with the exception of this or that historical where the trope is used as part of the plot. In this case, Alex is a man who likes to dress and play the part of woman, at least in public. I don't have anything against those who feel better or more human while being like that, after all, everyone should do what it's best for them to feel they are accepted in the world. But I admit, because this isn't something I tend to follow, I didn't warm up to Alex that much. He seemed all over the place, acting a guy when it suited him, namely in the intimate moments, and being woman in public. I don't know anyone who lives this lifestyle, so I can't ask questions to see if this is close to the reality, but I assume, there's a place for everyone. In this novel, however, despite Alex' good moments, especially when he is being sensible and friendly, he seems a wonderful person. But most times I just wanted him to make up his mind about how he wanted to act to others, being it as a woman or a man.

Tom has a huge weight to carry over the death of his lover and we get to see part of the life he had with him. Those parts were sad and I confess I cried when he was feeling the pain and the hardship of memories, although his previous lover wasn't such an angel all the time. Still, the parts where we'd see Tom's memories and how much he suffers were really touching and were very well written.

The romance and plot mingle and lead towards the fact Alex and Tom have to be together. I am glad they talked and agreed to do what was best with what they had, even if the other did things not always easy to deal with by the other. This is the center of any relationship. Still, I thought Tom was much more conscious of life and the things we need to survive and Alex was still an optimistic even with all the awful things that happened to him. One could say they complement each other but I always felt some sort of unbalance between them, and not only due to their age gap.

In the end the story touched quite the intriguing themes and went a path very hopeful, but despite the writing being successful and polished enough, I still didn't warm up totally to the character's relationship and why they had to act like that. I think this is one of those stories one enjoys with time. I do admit there were good scenes and dialogs which leave you thinking and imagining what would be like if it were us dealing with those things. But overall, it wasn't a complete win for me.
Grade: 6/10

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