Travis Miller has a machining job, a cat named Elwood, and a pathetic love life. The one bright spot in his existence is the handsome guitar player he sometimes passes on his way home from work. But when he finally gathers the courage to speak to the man, Travis learns that former novelist Drew Clifton suffers from aphasia: Drew can understand everything Travis says, but he is unable to speak or write.
The two lonely men form a friendship that soon blossoms into romance. But communication is only one of their challenges-there’s also Travis’s inexperience with love and his precarious financial situation. If words are the bridge between two people, what will keep them together?
An accident in Drew Clifton’s past left the former novelist with aphasia, unable to communicate through either speech or writing. Through sheer strength of will, he built a quiet but lonely life for himself. But now he’s fallen in love with Travis Miller.
Travis has his own issues—a permanent eye injury and unemployment. But he’s determined to help Drew find ways to engage and succeed again in the wider world, and a guitar-playing gig at a local coffeehouse seems like a good start.
Dylan Warner and Chris Nock happen to be in the audience that evening, and they have a few niggling problems of their own. Perhaps a chance meeting will provide solutions that might benefit all of them.
Wow! Just Wow!
First, Kim Fielding is an absolutely amazing writer. Both of these are short books, but they are so packed with emotion and powerful feels.
In Speechless we meet Travis, a one-eyed-gay-machinist who is scraping by, but very lonely. He walks home every day and sees a man playing guitar on his porch and becomes obsessed. He works up the nerve to finally talk to him, only to find out that Drew suffers from aphasia after a car accident. Drew can neither speak nor write but can listen and respond normally.
Despite the odds, Drew and Travis form a fast friendship. Drew listens and gestures while Travis chatters away. They soon realize they have a lot in common and in fact are quite attracted to one another.
Things are going great, they are slowly building a relationship, when disaster strikes and Travis is forced to either move to Omaha or lose his hard-won job. Travis, feeling like he can’t be a man if he isn’t working, elects to move, leaving both men broken hearted.
Fortunately, Drew’s sister intervenes and helps Travis to set his priorities straight and Travis moves back home to Drew.
In The Gig, we pick up the story where Speechless leaves off, only this time the focus is on Drew’s music. He’s performing for the first time in public and Travis is supporting him from in the audience.
As luck would have it, some nearby lovers overhear Travis’ lament at joblessness and offer him a job!
Though it took two books, we get our glorious HEA.
Though I have pretty much summarized the story lines for you I cannot begin to describe how amazingly touching these books are with just those phrases.
The deep, deep loneliness, the sense of hopelessness followed by the aching happiness that we see when the two are re-united is just amazing.
I found the aphasia fascinating (and so sad – Drew was a writer) and the fact that Travis just dealt with it like it was nothing was also amazing. I enjoyed learning about Drew’s coping mechanisms and the way his brain found to work out ways to communicate when others were taken.
You’ll be in tears when the lovers part and again when they reunite and it is so beautifully written you’ll want to ride that roller coaster again and again.
I can’t recommend these books high enough and give them 6 of 5 hearts!