Saturday, October 24, 2015

Finding Zach by Rowan Speedwell (audiobook)

Title: Finding Zach
Author: Rowan Speedwell
My Rating: A
Narrator: Paul Morey

Genre: Contemporary Romance (m/m)
Series: #1
Main Characters: Zach and David
Release Date: April 2015 (audiobook)
Publisher: Dreamspinner
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
For five years, Zach Tyler, son of one of the world’s richest software moguls, was held hostage, tortured, and abused. When he is rescued at last from the Venezuelan jungle, he is physically and psychologically shattered, but he slowly begins to rebuild the life he should have had before an innocent kiss sent him into hell. 
His childhood best friend David has lived those years with overwhelming guilt and grief. Every relationship David has tried has fallen apart because of his feelings for a boy he thought dead. When Zach is rescued, David is overjoyed - and then crushed when Zach shuts him out. Two years later, David returns home, and he and Zach must come to terms with the rift between them, what they feel for each other, and what their future could hold. But Zach has secrets, and one of them might well destroy their fragile love.
My Review:
Overall: 4.25
Performance: 3.75

This book has been on my wishlist forever simply because it's on so many people's favorite m/m book ever lists. When I saw that it was available in audiobook, I took the opportunity to grab it. I'm so glad that I did because the story definitely lived up to the hype. It was really amazingly good...and tragic. Geez, this story will shred your heart. 

Zach...5 years, from the age of 15 was kept as a slave, a dog, to a sadistic sob. He was freed when a military group came in to save some other hostages, and they found Zach, a broken shell of a person who had been mentally broken. The book takes place 2 years later. Zach is home and trying to create a normal life, well, as normal as possible, for himself and not lose what's left of his mental stability. But then there's David.

David...when Zach was 15, he had the biggest crush on David...and it was reciprocated. They shared a single kiss before Zach's parents shipped him off to visit his aunt and he was kidnapped. It's been 7 years since that kiss and they haven't seen one another, although neither has ever forgotten. BUT so much has changed since then.

This book...seriously. You can read all that above and KNOW how intense and heartbreaking this is going to be. But wow...Zach is a great character. He may have been broken, but he never lost his strength. To survive what he did was amazing. To be able to function again is amazing. What he creates with David is a miracle. 

But what's even more amazing about the story is just how real it all feels. There are moments when these guys are able to laugh about how screwed up Zach is, and of course there are so many more where they cry. But all of that made it feel so authentic. I felt like I was in the story with them throughout the highs and lows. Rowan Speedwell sucked me in completely and these guys hurts and pains became mine. It was a wonderfully told story about the complexity of human spirit and about just how strong a person can be, but they are so much better when they have a support system. 

And Zach's support system wasn't just made up of David. It includes his parents, Dick & Jane, and Annie. And yes, even to a certain extent...Brian. There were so many little scenes that were nuggets of emotion and how they each worked to build up and support Zach. 

It was a great book and I loved reading/listening to it, although I will admit that there were a few times when the narrator's voice didn't change enough so I could tell exactly who was speaking.

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