“Home is where we tie one end of the thread of life.” ― Martin Buxbaum
Aaron left his hometown some fifteen years earlier in hot pursuit of his NHL career, leaving behind his parents, his sister and the love of his life, Zach. Pushing thirty six, he finds himself heading towards retirement, the Stanley cup and his big time dreams benched due to his relative maturity. When a clumsy car wreck leaves his all-star rookie teammate with a sprain, Aaron is forced to return home and take up his place in the minor league. But with fifteen years and his rising star far behind him, Aaron is forced to find out if you can ever really just go home.
Bollocks! Who gave me a short story to review? I HATE THEM! They are real books that someone put in the wash at too high a temperature for too long. Too controversial? Oh okay, I’ll be nicer this time.
BOLLOCKS! This time I’m Anglo-cussing because I wanted it to be longer, not because I don’t like short stories, but because I loved this one too much! Jameson Dash is an all out wet dream to read. It’s a really fresh style. I must admit when I started reading it I was a tad thrown. I’ve never known an author to write third person present tense before, but you know what? It works. Aaron Buckley is this awesomely introverted and conscientious toxic bachelor, and a bit of a man-child to boot. But I loved the way he came across, Dash’s present tense delivery really adding to the desperation he was feeling as he returned to Manchester with his tail between his sexy hockey player legs.
And of course, fate is a nasty bitch so on his first day with the Manchester Monarch’s, Aaron finds himself face to face (and a rather lucky locker room wall) with his ex, Zach. Zach was a bit of a mystery character. The prose was geared, despite being third person, towards Aaron’s views of the events, so Zach was never fully examined in depth. The subtle writing however really hinted at the man’s motivations without detracting from the main character and all the emotional turmoil that was chasing him. Zach and Aaron’s relationship was so endearing to read, their previous life together hinted at so eloquently it never needed explanation. This wasn’t clichéd and overwrought romance novel love, this was the real deal, the good and the bad and all the interim ups and downs that go with it. It was written from the heart, and what a big heart Dash has!
This was a great little story that brought in all areas of fantastic male-male fiction, and made it believable. There was drama, the threat of other men, some oddly erotic dry-humping in a semi-public place. I was enraptured page after page. Since there is no such thing as a happy ever after (he said, scowling bitterly and jaded in his old age), Aaron and Zach’s second chance gets a really inspiring open end with a promise to try, and it had me hook, line and sinker as the best miniature version of a story I have read all year. Jameson Dash has released two other short stories, and my fingers are itching for a taste of what the man can offer me, his emotional and original prose both outstanding and strangely akin to Ben Ryder. I loved this story.
While I wish I could give it five stars, I won’t. It’s too short and I feel a little short changed that something so incredibly emotional left me without release, even though the men of the tale got their goods. I want more, and simply because I liked it too much. So, mysterious Jameson Dash. How’s about a follow up? Give me more Aaron and I’ll give you the extra star. Four stars with a promise of an upgrade if you write a sequel. Deal?
Get this story from Dreamspinner Press, sit back and enjoy the sublime bedtime reading of an author to watch out for; Jameson Dash.