Genre: M/M, Contemporary Romance
You can’t choose who you fall in love with. Despite knowing from a young age that he was gay, Scott Murphy couldn’t imagine life without Shelly. He threw away the labels and had eleven amazing years with her, but now, he feels even more lost trying to figure out how to move on after Shelly’s death. After nearly a year of watching Scott fade away, Shelly’s father forces him to start living again.
As much as Chris loathes the idea of attending a bereavement group week after week, it’s one of the only places he can go in this town, other than the bar, to not feel so alone. When there’s nothing to distract him or dull his senses, he spends too much time obsessing over how he should have been able to help his sister. When Scott shows up at his group session, Chris decides that maybe some good can come out of his sister’s death.
There’s no denying that Chris is the first man to catch Scott’s attention in a long time, but how can he move on when just thinking of Shelly sends him to his dark place?
The road to recovery won’t be an easy one, but Chris is determined to help Scott see that life is still worth living. But before Scott can allow himself to admit what he feels for Chris, he knows he has to reveal the full truth about Shelly’s death.
I promised Ma that I wouldn’t drink my dinner every night, but some days, it’s impossible to keep that promise. I tell myself that it’s different on days like today because I’m not drinking to forget how much I miss Jill, I’m drinking to forget how miserable some people choose to make one another. Today, I just about lost it and told one couple that there’s no point in them even trying to get along. Unfortunately, my partner frowns upon me telling couples that sometimes two people just aren’t meant to be together, as was this case with this pair.
It takes a minute for my eyes to adjust to the dark atmosphere of Brewster’s after walking around for thirty minutes trying to tell myself I didn’t need a drink. I find an empty seat at the end of the bar and signal the bartender for my usual. Okay, so maybe Ma had a point since he simply nods and has a tall whiskey sour sitting in front of me in less than a minute.
I look around, the same way I do every night, wondering if this town will ever start to feel like home. It’s a nice enough place, but there’s a definite divide between those who are from here and those who move here at some point in their lives.
I sit a bit straighter when I see Scott, the quiet, broody guy from group, sitting at one of the high top tables in the center of the room. He looks absolutely miserable. When I catch a glimpse of his date for the evening, Adrian the annoying twink who thinks he’s God’s gift to all gay men in town, the annoyance radiating off Scott is understandable.
I nurse the first drink, rather than down it as quickly as possible. I’ve wanted to talk to Scott the past few weeks, but he’s ducked out as soon as the official meeting ends, even though Jim hangs around for a while. I’ve considered following him when he leaves, to see if I can talk to him, but then I tell myself that he must have his reasons for not wanting to deal with people and I have to respect that.
I feel like a creep, watching Adrian and Scott eating dinner, but I can’t help it. A few times, I’ve thought Scott was checking me out the same way I have been him and this is the first confirmation I have that I might be right. Scott excuses himself from the table and Adrian reaches out for him as he walks away. I laugh when Scott practically jumps back to keep from being part of an awkward and unwelcome embrace.
Once he’s in the restroom, I order another drink before putting a five-dollar bill in the jukebox. I don’t give a shit about the music, but it’s the closest I can get to Scott without following him into the bathroom, which is a level of creepy that I can’t imagine stooping to.
Nessa: Why did you become a writer?
Sloan: Honestly, I don’t know. I’ve written for as long as I can remember, and after my daughter was born, I started writing freelance articles for websites as a way to be home with her and make a living. From there, I did the NaNoWriMo challenge, and haven’t stopped since. Writing for me isn’t really a choice, it’s something I have to do to feel centered.
N: If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?
S: I’d love to go to New York City for a year. No, it’s not the most exotic place in the world, but it’s a city I would love to have time to just walk around every single day. I love watching people, and can’t think of a better place to do it!
N: If the zombie apocalypse happened tomorrow would you be ready?
S: I suppose it wouldn’t much matter if I was or not, but yes, we’re all set! We have our zombie apocalypse survival plan in place (okay, so it’s actually just our world catastrophe escape plan, but I think the zombie apocalypse works for that) and my children and husband have vowed to shoot me in the head if I’m turned. You know, because they love me that much…
N: If you could meet anyone past, present or future, who would it be?
S: I couldn’t really say about the future, because I don’t know who will be there yet. I would absolutely LOVE to sit down with either Stephen King or Neil Gaiman because I have mad respect for both of them as far as writers go.
N: What is the one thing your readers don’t know about you, but you wished to share?
S: There isn’t much that I hold back, but a big thing is that although I come across as bubbly and friendly online, I’m actually incredibly socially awkward. I don’t do well in large groups sometimes and need to escape. If I can get past that initial flight instinct, I’ll loosen up and have a good time, but I still have to plan in decompression time after just about any social situation.
Nessa: What was the first thought that ran through your mind after seeing each other at the meeting for the first time?
Scott: It was tough. I don’t believe in love at first sight or any of that shit, but I was definitely attracted to him. Unfortunately, I felt as if I was betraying Shelly’s memory by doing anything about that attraction.
Chris: I don’t remember much about that night, other than the fact that he confused me. I’d catch him looking at me, but then he’d pull back. And he was so quiet, I felt like I had to learn more about him.
N: Chris, how does it feel knowing that your father likes Scott better than you?
C: I’m not surprised. My dad’s kind of like a dog, in the sense that he’s a great judge of character, so when he hit it off with Scott, I knew I had something special.
N: Scott, what did it feel like when you finally let go of Shelly?
S: It sounds cliche, but it was like a weight was lifted off my chest. I still miss her all the damn time, but she wouldn’t want me to live in the past. I don’t know if I ever would have realized what I was doing to myself and others without Chris’s love and support.
N: How is it being in a relationship with a psychiatrist?
S: Not as bad as it might seem. I was a bit taken aback when I first found out, because I thought he was going to try to fix me. Luckily, he’s usually pretty good at remembering that that’s not his job. On the other hand, there’ve been a lot of times when I’ve wanted to talk to him about Shelly, and he’s a great listener.
N: Chris, if you were offered the chance to go back to being a psychiatrist, would you?
C: Probably not. I enjoyed it while it lasted, but it’s nice to be back home now. Scott and I both have our jobs on the farm and Dad is finally learning to let go of a little bit of control. I’m not sure he’ll ever officially retire, but at least now he knows he doesn’t have to be the one in charge all the time.
My Review: 5/5 Stars
Scott lost his wife and best friend. He has shut himself off from everyone that cares about him, until his father in law takes him to a group for those who are grieving.
Chris lost his sister and has been going to group for a few months. He has learned to deal with his pain though.
When they meet Scott does everything he can to push Chris away. It takes Chris hitting him with his car and afterwards Chris helping to take care of Scott for them to enter a relationship, unknowing to both of them.
Godsend was a beautiful read. It tells the story of two men coping with their grief, but at the same time making an unbreakable bond. They are both supportive of each other, the Scott has a harder time of letting go.
I honestly loved Godsend. I loved how the MC’s grew apart and together. I can’t wait to read more from Sloan.
Sloan Johnson is a big city girl trapped in a country girl’s life. While she longs for the hustle and bustle of New York City or Las Vegas, she hasn’t yet figured out how to sit on the deck with her morning coffee, watching the deer and wild turkeys in the fields while surrounded by concrete and glass.
When she was three, her parents received their first call from the principal asking them to pick her up from school. Apparently, if you aren’t enrolled, you can’t attend classes, even in Kindergarten. The next week, she was in preschool and started plotting her first story soon after.
Later in life, her parents needed to do something to help their socially awkward, uncoordinated child come out of her shell and figured there was no better place than a bar on Wednesday nights. It’s a good thing they did because this is where she found her love of reading and writing. Who needs socialization when you can sit alone in your bedroom with a good book?
*** An ARC copy was given to me for a honest review.