Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Lane Hayes - A Kind of Home

Isaac Dalton is the guitarist for Spiral, arguably the biggest rock band in the world. The band’s meteoric rise to superstardom has its perks, but fame and fortune aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Nonstop touring and performing exhaust him, and when an overzealous fan makes it imperative that Isaac travel with a clingy bodyguard, he is ready for a break from the madness. More so when his newly single first crush shows up on his doorstep. The man is strictly off-limits. He’s a memory from a place Isaac would rather leave behind. And he’s straight.
Fun-loving former athlete slash construction worker Adam McBride desperately needs a new beginning. And New York City is the perfect place to start over and think about how to rebuild his life. A short stint as roommates with his brother’s best friend from high school seems like a mutually beneficial arrangement. However, when friendship gives way to fierce attraction, both men find themselves in unchartered and possibly dangerous territory. Isaac has to decide if he’s willing to take the ultimate risk for a kind of love and a kind of home he never dreamed possible.

Comment: Last year I've read the first three books in this A Kind Of stories by author Lane Hayes. I liked them all so I was quite happy when I saw there would be a new book coming out at the end of the year. I got the book recently and was really eager to read it and re-capture all those warm feelings I got while reading the other installments. However, while this book was still very good, it's still the one I liked the least...

In this book we have the story of the last element of Spiral to find happiness. Of the four elements, we got the full length stories of two, the notion the other is happy and now we have the fourth story, Issac's, the third member of the four who also finds a male partner.
Isaac wasn't aware of how much fame he would get when he signed up to be with the band. But he does like the guys, he feels right, he has a good enough life except it seems he has a stalker.
Isaac also needs to deal with an unwanted guest at his house: the brother of one of his childhood friends has gone through a divorce and is getting his bearings back while staying in his apartment, which Issac didn't mind while on tour. But now he's still there and Issac does remember his crush on him when they were younger.... but Adam is straight. Right?

This is a friends to lovers plot but with a slight touch of an almost "lovers reunited", which is the one I tend to dislike the best, simply due to the amount of time spent dealing or talking about past events. Since Isaac and Adam met each other in the past, come from the same town and shared some friends in common, they do talk about what their lives used to be and those scenes always feel a bit boring to me.

Isaac is an interesting character, he does feel well characterized by the author. He is a man of color, he had been adapted by a white couple but that couple separated when Isaac's biological father came into the picture and then his adoptive parents split when the mother left with Isaac's father.
Then Isaac came out to his adoptive father and he sent him away which led Isaac to go to New York and later on he got into the band. 
Issac's past is quite complicated, the issues he needs to deal with aren't something one just pushes aside. We get the notion really soon that Isaac doesn't have a good relationship with any of his parents and is a bit of a loner. This explains why he wasn't too happy about developing feelings for Adam or even about his role in the band. I think this side of things was well portrayed, not going into drama levels but interestingly done. I just think Isaac's personality came across as being a little too detached, you know, so I wasn't always very eager to read about him.

His love interest, Adam, is also a strong character. He was married and we do get to see how he dealt with that and the divorce. His approach to things seems simpler but one can get the idea it was psychologically difficult to reach the point where he's at, of just being himself.
Again, I must complain about the single person POV because while we get a good perspective on Adam's character, it's not the same just having him tell stuff through dialogues instead of being in his head.

The romance was cute I guess, the physical relationship well depicted and the scenes between them generally good.
The interactions with the band members were also important while not removing the focus from Isaac and his thoughts.
The stalking issue was dealt with but to be honest it felt really weird how things were portrayed. Or, maybe I should say the stalker's motivations were presented in a weird way. I can only suppose if someone stalks another person something isn't right anyway.

Overall, I did enjoy this story, I think the emotional content was as rich as I would expect but Isaac as a person wasn't as likable in all his behavior/personality traits so I wasn't as interested in him as I remember being with the others. But it was nice to "be" with the guys again, for sure.
Grade: 7/10

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