Book Reviews

The Love We Breathe by Adelia Everett

Genre Gay / Bisexual / Contemporary / Students/Teachers/Professors / New Adult / Romance
Reviewed by Lena Grey on 02-October-2019

Book Blurb

James Radine was your average small-town young man. Eager, excited, and brimming with youthful zest.
College promised the world, and when he arrived on campus, he couldn't wish his parents away fast enough.

But James never expected to be roomed with a boy like Ryan... a boy as gorgeous as he'd ever seen.
A boy who was openly gay, and comfortable with it.

Something about Ryan's sparkling eyes drew James in... but he was determined to resist it.

After all, he'd had girlfriends before.
He couldn't possibly like Ryan that way...

So why did he lay awake at night thinking about Ryan?
Why did the handsome, muscular boy make him think brand new things?
...dirty things...

And why did he feel so happy every minute he spent with Ryan?
They couldn't be more than just good friends...
They couldn't be!

Book Review

“I want to breathe love through your lungs. Let me hold you in my arms, ‘cause baby I want to breathe the love through your lungs. Let me feel your heartbeat going crazy…” ~ Alex Mica (Breathe)

Even though he knows he will miss his family, James is looking forward to going to college and the freedom and adventure he anticipates it will bring. What he doesn’t expect is to have a gay roommate - Ryan. From the very beginning, James has a strong reaction to Ryan that he doesn’t understand. He is not sure about the “gay thing”, although he isn’t “disgusted” by it like two of his friends are. He accepts Ryan for the nice guy he is, but as he gets closer to him, he can’t help but wonder how it feels to be gay, especially the sex part. One fateful night, as an experiment, James coerces Ryan into having “gay sex” with him. James’s world shifts on its axis when he realizes that he likes it.

Ryan isn’t sure what to do when, after having sex for three weeks, James decides that he can’t do it anymore, that their “experiment” is over. He’s hurt and confused, but, at the same time, he’s been through the coming out process. It didn’t go over well with his parents and most of his friends; he knows how hard it can be. Ryan tries to be patient with James’s ups and downs as he wrestles with his sexuality, but he’s only human and it hurts. Ryan has sworn that what they do is between them but he needs to vent so he tells his best friends. When James finds out, he’s furious; they have a huge fight. Ryan feels awful for betraying his trust and ends up sobbing.

James wants to be mad, but when he sees Ryan so upset, he can’t help but comfort him. James has never thought of the possibility of being gay. He’s full of angst about what this could mean to his life. He would have to tell his homophobic friends and his family and the possible rejection of such a revelation seems insurmountable. He’s in denial, trying to pretend that his attraction and sexual relationship with Ryan are still an experiment, that it can’t be what he really feels. Yet when he’s honest, he has to admit that sex with Ryan far surpasses anything he’s ever had with a girl. He is terrified by the implications of such a revelation. In a last-ditch effort to prove his straightness he gets a girlfriend, trying to prove, for once and for all, that he is straight. When they have sex, he realizes that there’s no emotional connection and that he is not being fair by leading her on and breaks up with her. As much as he tries, James can’t forget the strong feelings and sexual pleasure he has with Ryan, but still isn’t sure what to do with it.

I have to admit that I have mixed feelings about this story. On one hand, the balance that James and Ryan finally achieve is sweet and tender, but, after all the angst and conflict, I was emotionally exhausted. Also, I was angry at both of them; Ryan for being impatient even though he knew how hard the process can be, yet he still expected James to get there faster than he was ready for; and James for taking his confusion and denial out on Ryan. Thanks, Adelia, for putting a spotlight on how difficult the coming out process can be, yet, at the same time, giving hope to those going through it.





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Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel
Heat Level
Publication Date 18-September-2019
Price $2.99 ebook
Buy Link