“And someone may overpower one alone, but two together can take a stand against him. And a threefold cord cannot quickly be torn apart.”—Ecclesiastes 4:12
Author: Julie Bozza
Publisher: Manifold Press
Pages/Word Count: 57000 Words
Rating: 5 Stars
Blurb: Grae Edwards and his co–stars Chris Willoughby and Ben Clyde work together well. Maybe they even have a chemistry. Certainly they are friends and Grae is tempted to ask for more … After the beautiful tart Chris has the temerity to turn him down, Grae settles into a comfortable loving relationship with the more chivalrous Ben. But the idea of Chris never quite goes away – and when Chris finally suggests the three of them spend a night together, Grae glimpses a solution he hardly dares hope for.
Review: I’m a big fan of Julie Bozza’s previous work. After my initial surprise at a ménage gay romance novel titled after a Bible verse, I found that A Threefold Cord is another great book by a favorite author. I found it to be uplifting and cleverly written. The pace, tone and narrative are all excellent, as if forming their own threefold cord.
Ms. Bozza’s characters here, especially the three MCs, are written to allow us to clearly see their flaws and fears, while almost always honest with each other and themselves. Most of the story is related from Grae’s view, but Ms. Bozza enables us some means to understand his insecurities through the (somewhat biased) viewpoints of Ben and Chris. As shown to us through Grae’s eyes, Ben and Chris develop as layered, multi-faceted characters who are willing to take a risk on love.
Julie Bozza has created a powerful and emotional novel about Grae, Ben and Chris, three men who have in common their love of theatre. Their chemistry as actors when they work together is undeniable. Their lives off stage and screen are not always so harmonious. Grae initially wants Chris, but Chris loves the freedom to sleep around too much to settle down. Ben appears at first to be a consolation prize, but he and Grae settle down into a happy, loving life together. Being in the same line of work has the three periodically encountering each other. Chris makes an offer during one of these encounters that both Ben and Grae take a chance on accepting. It is immediately evident that their on screen chemistry as a threesome spills over into the bedroom.
Ms. Bozza writes in a way that made their coming together feel very organic. I loved the way Ben and Grae found each other. It seemed important that the two of them become an established couple first, so that they were secure enough to welcome Chris’s integration into their lives. I adored the way Julie Bozza used the staging of the play to keep their relationship and the plot moving forward.
I don’t mean to imply that it was a smooth ride for our three guys. It felt real, sometimes painfully so. Every issue was faced head-on. I fell in love with these men from go. Grae is an extremely talented actor, but plagued by self-doubt and deeply torn between his love for Ben and his attraction to Chris. Ben, generous and selfless, is a talented actor and scriptwriter. He loves Grae completely and deeply, and it nearly broke my heart to see him hurt when he assumed the worst; that he would lose Grae to Chris. Chris comes off as a carefree soul but beneath that, the reader senses his loneliness, need to be loved, and his desperation to be trusted.
A Threefold Cord was beautiful, moving, and wonderful. I completely enjoyed it. The setting: the pure Britishness of it. The plot which had the theatre almost being a fourth member of the relationship between Ben, Grae and Chris. It is a beautiful and intensely emotional story.