Author: TJ Klune
My Rating: A
Narrator: Kirt Graves
Genre: Paranormal Romance (m/m)
Main Characters: Ox and Joe
Release Date: October 2016 (audiobook)
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: mild
Ox was twelve when his daddy taught him a very valuable lesson. He said that Ox wasn’t worth anything and people would never understand him. Then he left.
Ox was sixteen when he met the boy on the road. The little boy who talked and talked and talked. Ox found out later the little boy hadn’t spoken in almost two years before that day, and that the little boy belonged to a family who had moved into the house at the end of the lane.
Ox was seventeen when he found out the little boy’s secret and it painted the world around him in colors of red and orange and violet, of Alpha and Beta and Omega.
Ox was twenty-three when murder came to town and tore a hole in his head and heart. The boy chased after the monster with revenge in his bloodred eyes, leaving Ox behind to pick up the pieces.
It’s been three years since that fateful day—and the boy is back. Except now he’s a man, and Ox can no longer ignore the song that howls between them.
I had no idea what to expect from this book, but I had several of my trusted fellow bookreaders promise me I was going to love it...so I've been saving it for a special reward. And I did love it...although I'll admit, the book was still not what I expected. (Note: I listened to the book on audio. I need to read it to see how my reactions change to it. They rhythm of the book is very different and I think it would be interesting to see how that differs between the reading and listening to it.)
The book is long and it covers a long period in time, but it starts when Joe is 10 and Ox is 15. Immediately, it's obvious that these two guys have a special connection and relationship. Joe was kidnapped for a long period of time where he was tortured. When he meets Ox, it's been a year since he ever even spoke...until he met Ox, and then it was hard to shut him up.
Ox is a guy who can sometimes be a bit dense. He's a big guy and a lot of the time other underestimate him. The worst was his father who abandoned him and his mom. He constantly tore down anything even resembling self esteem in Ox. The book is told from Ox's POV and throughout the book, those harmful words from his father echo in his soul. It's painful to read.
Because the book covers such a long period of time (over a decade) it traverses a lot of highs and lows in these two guys lives. And my heart mourns for Ox. He's such an amazing character. He's underestimated at every turn, but then turns out to be so much more. I loved that for him, at the same time I mourned the issues between him and Joe. It hurts...so much...although I'll admit, a lot of my friends said this was a tissue box read. That's one of those things that I wonder if it will change for me if I read it rather than listen, because while I loved the story and the emotional angst of it, I didn't cry like I expected (and that was a little bit disappointing because I love it when a story carries me away like that.)
But even with that, this was an amazing book. I loved it so much. There were moments when I laughed out loud so hard...Joe's older brothers are my absolute favorite characters...oh, and the guys from the garage. So funny with their quips.
And I am so, so, so excited that we get to revisit this world with the upcoming book #2...Gordo and Marc's story. YES!