Sunday, October 23, 2016

ARC Review: David Renewed by Diana Copland

From The Blurb:
When interior designer David Snyder buys a beautiful century-old house in eastern Washington, he is reeling with heartbreak and looking for somewhere to put down roots. Unfortunately his new home comes with a laundry list of problems: electrical, plumbing, heating… things David knows nothing about. When his mother offers him the business card of a local handyman, David pictures an overweight, balding man in his fifties. But Jackson Henry couldn’t be further from that stereotype. 
Dark-haired, muscular, and handsome, Jackson left a large construction firm in Seattle to take care of his sick mother. However, his hometown still has an active “good old boy” network, and finding employment in construction is almost impossible for an openly gay man. Determined to persevere, Jackson takes odd jobs as a handyman. He’s exactly what David needs—in more ways than one. 
David isn’t ready for his attraction to Jackson, not considering the way his last relationship ended. But as the two men get to know each other, it becomes clear that the heart often knows best, and it rewards those willing to listen.

Karen's Rating:

Apparently I'm feeling a bit rambly these days but I'm not sure how else I'm going to explain why I enjoyed this book so much. A while ago I wrote a review and in it I said the reason that I hadn't enjoyed the book was because for me a good story had to have balance and what I meant by that was. If you're going to give me characters that I really, really dislike then you have to give me someone that I can love and adore and vice versa although maybe a bit less so because the characters I love don't fill me with the passionate anger and rage that those 'I hate you characters' do. In the case of that other book there were no 'I love you' characters to be had...even the MCs weren't likable for me. So by the end of that book 'I had rage' and no warm, flurffy feelz of any kind. I just wanted it over and this is where the balance makes the difference.

There were characters in this story that I hated, I mean seriously passionately hated. They were jerks total dickheads, doorknobs...ok, I think you've probably got my point. There was of course Trevor, David's Ex and the poster child for what not to hook up with let alone live with...honestly, I could rage about this guy for hours but I don't want to spoil the fun of reading the book for anyone. Next we have Travis, Jackson's charming brother (please add copious sarcasm here). Travis was just all kinds of special, ok...NOT! He's a lawyer and a politician so feel free to stereo-type away because in this case it's accurate. Oh yeah, let's not forget Jackson's sister, Michelle whom I apparently tried to forget since I had to go look her name up in the book...sorry, being a princess doesn't excuse her from being a adult, so while I don't think she falls into the category of douchery that Travis and Trevor the A$$hat twins did, still didn't like her.

Ok that's all of the talk about the icky people we need to have because I'm feeling the rage and this is where I get to appreciate the balance and the warm fuzzies that come from the 'people I love' and it's a lovely list.

First the moms...both Jackson and David had awesome moms. Yes, David' mom was a bit more epic but Jackson's mom still loved him and appreciated all that he'd given up for her by moving back home to take care of her because his brother who's too busy and important to help out with hie sick other and sister who's too much of a princess to be expected to deal with it...see rage coming back, anyways, they both live in the same town close to mom but no Jackson who lives across the country and has a life is the one who's 'suppose' to do this and he does because it's his mom and he loves her. It's not an obligation or  even a responsibility for Jackson it's about caring for someone you love pure and guessed it, I love Jackson he's awesome and sexy and hot too...ask David, he'll agree.

Now David, yep, I love him too. He's awesome and sweet and in general I just found him to be adorable. Not to mention that thankfully his taste in men has vastly improved because Trevor to Jackson is totally a case of going from the ridiculous to the sublime.

I don't know if I'd call this one a case of insta-love or lust but in this case whatever it was it worked and I think that it was mostly because while these two men fell for each other quickly the relationship didn't progress quickly there were obstacles that kept them from really getting together so it didn't become a case boy meets boy, boy falls into bed with boy and they all lived happily ever after. There were problems and things to be dealt with and these guys talked and got to know each other and even after they did finally get to have sex and seriously it was hot!!! They still talked and not all of their interactions took place in the bedroom...ohmygod!!! Isn't that like a real relationship or something?

Ok, let's get back to what I liked. David's lawyer...her name was Karen..sue me, it's a nice name. Ok, all kidding aside there were so many characters that I like and that I would just love to know more of Michael, David's assistant who apparently doesn't do love and doesn't like that way? Yeah, yeah, sure, sure. Michael, you're not fooling anyone except yourself with that line. But yes, I really liked Michael, he was sassy and just all kinds of fun and Jackson's friend Gil, I think he's a mountain of a man with a heart sized to match and I'd love a story about these two.

Then there's Vern  with all his grump and snarl...tell me there's not a story there? While we're at it what's up with the roofing guy and his brother maybe they could show up in a future story or two so we could find out more about them.

Ok, I've saved the best for last because more than anyone else, I want a story for Manny. We got to find out a bit about him and what he's been through and if anyone deserves a book with a big, old HEA. It's Manny...Manny made me cry so I now want to have some happy tears for him too.

Balance at the end of it all it's that balance of feelings that help to make a story work. Too much hate leaves me angry and frustrated, too much sugary, sweetness makes everything just feel fake. But give me a bit of both and if you want to make the good feelz side of things a bit more that's ok just don't leave either of them out completely because it's this balance or mixture of both that makes a story feel realistic to me. Hell if you want to give me Unicorns that poop rainbows I'm down with that as long as you make me feel. Happy, sad, frustrated, scared, anxious, whatever because for me it's all about the feelings and connecting with how a character feels that puts me into the story and makes me love it.

'David Renewed' was my first read by this author and most assuredly not my last and hopefully not my last trip to David & Jackson's world either with all the potential untold stories that are there.


An ARC of 'David Renewed' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.,13736089

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