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When absent-minded video game developer Jay Thurson impulsively follows his intuition westward, he never expects his rideshare to turn out to be a gun-toting madman. In an act of desperation, Jay turns to the gift he’s long neglected and feared for help and leaps from the moving car on a dark and deserted back country road.
Running for his life leads him to the doorstep of Adam Grauwacke, a roadside nursery owner and sometime vegetable farmer, whose affinity for the earth goes far beyond having a green thumb. Adam’s world is ordered and predictable, dependable and safe, but despite having his dream farm and business, he’s always felt something’s missing. When he welcomes Jay into his home, life seems to click for both men, and together they explore their gifts and their attraction.
But harmony has no value if it is easily won, and a crazed gunman and volatile ex might be their end if Jay and Adam can’t learn to trust the strength of their bond.
Jay epitomizes his element, air. He’s scattered, moves around a lot, has ADD, and is impulsive. He decides to take a trip that ends up going very wrong… then very right.
Adam is the earth. He plants roots and stays solid. In the past he’s run into trouble with relationships but he craves stability.
When Jay stumbles into Adam’s world it’s like the two were searching for one another all this time. They just “fit” together. Adam harnesses the volatile energy that Jay brings into the relationship and Jay provides that spark of light that drives out the depression on days without the sun.
The relationship moves quickly forward, but it isn’t all easy. Jay doesn’t trust the relationship and gets balky toward the end. Adam has a psycho ex who tries to drive them apart (who gets his own book next!). And both of the men are the target of a bizarre fanatic waving a gun.
In the end, however, we see that Jay is the Yin to Adam’s Yang and we have a very Happily Ever After.
There are parts of this book that just “wowed” me.
*I loved the symbolism of Jay as the Air – his personality, thought patterns, actions… all fit that element to a “T”. Adam was solid, dependable, loving, literally “grounded”, all in line with being Earth.
*When the magicky things were occurring – the thunderstorm, the fire, the gunman… these were really fun and very well written. It was some nicely developed world-building.
*The smexy times were very nice, hot, but not overbearing. You could feel their “elements” in play and it added a unique flavor to this paranormal romance.
There were parts I didn’t love as much:
*The ex and the gunman. These were definitely added to give the lovers some external hurdles and I can appreciate what they added to the story but they were done in such a way that they felt a little out of place and they were not nearly as well-developed as the rest of the story. They pulled me out of the magicky new world we’d created and they felt a bit awkward.
*The fizzled- out ending. There is a big fire toward the end and there are some pretty major things that happen around this event. When the dust settles and the smoke clears (literally) we get a few pagees of re-connection and explanation and then it ends. Now I know there is a book 2 planned and it may take off from the end of this book and make things feel more complete, but as it stands here, it felt unfinished or rushed at the end.
*As such, I felt the book either needed to be a bit longer and sort of flesh out some of these weak spots or a bit shorter and edit out some of the internal ruminations and character building to make it feel more balanced.
Overall, I was really intrigued by the world-building and enjoyed the characters and their romance very much and am looking forward to the next book eagerly!
World Building/Characterizations 4.5
Overall 4 of 5 hearts!