22 September 2015

The World As He Sees It by A. M. Arthur

Hey everyone,

I said the reviews would be coming in thick and fast didn’t I? Well here we go with another contemporary M/M romance, in fact I’ll let you in on a little secret, I read The World As He Sees It by A. M. Arthur and Almost Like Being in Love by Steve Kluger on the same day. I blame it on the plane journey! My friends and family would blame it on my addiction to books and reading.

The book:

Love knows no limits…but fear could keep them from seeing it.

Gabe lives a double life. As Gabriel Henson, he works multiple jobs to support his remorseless, alcoholic mother. As Tony Ryder, he does internet porn for extra cash and regular safe sex without complications. 

Yet when he encounters a scared young man freaking out in a night club, he’s compelled to reach out. Ever since then, the memory of that young man has haunted him.

Tristan Lavelle lives his life thirty minutes at a time. After a traumatic brain injury three years ago, he gets through his day recording his life in spiral notebooks and sticky note reminders. 

A month after Tristan’s embarrassingly public meltdown, another chance meeting with Gabe sparks a warm, emotionally fulfilling email relationship. Both men crave more, but fear of the next step stands between them. 

Until Tristan gets the opportunity to take part in a clinical trial that could improve his memory—if the side effects don’t kill him. But for Tristan, the possibility of a real life with Gabe is worth any risk…

My thoughts:

Small disclaimer to start, I was sent The World As He Sees It by Samhain publishing in return for an honest review. If your like me when you read those disclaimers you always assume the reviewer has been just let little bit more generous in their comments and rating. Maybe I’m a massive cynic or maybe its human nature. Yet I can honestly say, hand on heart that The World As He Sees It is one of the best books I’ve read this year. Then again it contains so many of my favourite tropes so the odds were in its favour.

“What sort of desperation had sent Tristan into the bar alone, knowing sooner or later hed forget where he was and why?

And why the hell cant I stop thinking about him? 

Gabe is a part-time porn star who uses the money to support himself and his alcoholic mother. I don’t know why but I nearly always enjoy books where one of the main characters has a profession in this industry. I’ve therefore read a far few and I think it would be fair to say that while A. M. Arthur doesn’t re-write the gay-porn-star-for-money concept, I did love how she wrote about it. Firstly Gabe isn’t ashamed of his job, he likes the people he works for, it’s completely safe and his boss doesn’t pressure him into any scenes he feels uncomfortable with. Even his Dads know about and support his career choice.

“Bear had always been super supportive of his work in porn, so Gabe told him about the Puppy Farm offer. There are some good-looking boys on that site, Bear replied with a big old grin. You know who youre nailing yet?

I loved the refreshing take on Gabe’s job and the fact that his career didn’t define him as a character. Is that perhaps a little unrealistic? I don’t know and part of me doesn’t care, after all this is a romance and I hardly read them for the realism! Gabe was kind, caring and honest (most of the time) and from the moment he met our other hero Tristan he was understanding and supporting of his struggles.

“The fact that you remember not only what time breakfast is served, but also dinner, is AMAZING news. I am so thrilled. Look at me smiling in that photo you have, and imagine it ten times wider. Im rooting for you so hard”.

Another trope I love is the disabled hero or heroine, again I’m not entirely sure why. Tristan was probably my favourite character in The World As He Sees It, even with what had happened to him he was an optimist, a huge flirt and yet vulnerable. With his short-term memory problems Tristan is unable to lead a normal life, which understandably he finds frustrating. His friend Noel is his lifeline, someone he knew before the accident who has stood by him through everything. The friendship between Noel and Tristan was a highlight of this book for me, even if Noel did some fairly questionable things towards the end.

How about I call you if I feel anything other than a hundred percent better? Tristan countered. He didnt want Noel hovering. Not this time.”

Despite all this Gabe and Tristan have an instance connection. They’re draw to each other like moths to a flame (too cheesy?). Their relationship is built on mutual respect and understanding with the two becoming friends first through email due to Tristan’s memory. The World As He Sees It has everything I look for in a romance, heartfelt relationship, great secondary characters, just the right amount of sass and a perfect level of steam.

This book is now available for pre-order and will be released on the 20th October 2015.

My rating:
Happy reading everyone and see you next time!