Title : The Coil
Author : L.A Gilbert
Publisher : Dreamspinner Press (BUY HERE)
Genre : M/M, Contemporary
Length : 286 pages (e-book)
Published : October 10, 2012
Rating : ★★★★1/2
Sandwich-maker Mattie Green has one goal: escape San Diego, move to New York, and attend art school. But to make this a reality, he needs to get his GED—not easy, since he can’t read or write. Until he can, he’s stuck working at the diner and selling himself on the side.
Mattie’s legitimate job isn’t without perks. Every day the quiet, sophisticated Simon Castle comes by to work on his latest book. Mattie wants more than to pour Simon’s coffee and make his lunch, but he’s sure Simon is out of his league—until suddenly he’s not.
Simon Castle’s life is complicated, built around his career and a son who requires a lot of time and attention. It’s not a life well-suited to the inclusion of even a part-time prostitute, so he resolves to keep his relationship with Mattie casual. However, the longer he knows Mattie, the deeper his feelings become. The idea of him with another man tortures Simon, but he can’t ask Mattie to be his alone and jeopardize Mattie’s hopes for New York—no matter how much he wants Mattie to stay.
Ok… full disclosure… I only bought this book because of the cover. I thought it was going to be BDSM – I was wrong. Of course I could have read the blurb to get clued into that little fact, as well as the fact that the book had a kid in it (something I tend to steer clear of) BUT had I done so I probably wouldn’t have got the book, and therefore would have missed out on a stunning and beautiful reading experience.
Mattie has had a pretty crap life – a drunken father who couldn’t really care less about him and a mother who up and left when he was little. He fell through the cracks at school – finishing off unable to read or write. He works at a San Diego Diner preparing sandwiches and cleaning up – a minimum wage job that has him struggling to make ends meet. He has dreams though of making something better of, and for, himself. He wants to go to art school in New York. Of course to do this he needs a GED, which means adult classes, which cost money. He is also putting together a portfolio of his work to send along to the NY college, art supplies are not cheap – more money needed! How does he supplement his earnings? The only way he sees is by hooking. He hates doing it. He often hates himself but copes by distancing himself mentally from his actions by only doing certain things with the johns – keeping a part of himself separate for one day, when he meets someone special.
Simon on the other hand had a great life and he had a great family… until things went to shit! 😦 Leaving him with a son, Jamie. His long term partner Tim tried be fit in with Simon’s new life as a Dad, but just couldn’t cope and so he leaves. Simon decides that Jamie will now be his sole focus. But when he meets Mattie their connection is instant and powerful – they both feel that a casual relationship will work. This is all Simon wants; and Mattie’s “sideline” shows that he is quite capable of doing casual… so, casual is the name of the game. Riiiight.
I really hope I haven’t spoilered the book too much. What I have shared is the background story, almost like setting the scene for the main story – which, to me, is the journey of these two guys from what they have come to expect in life, to the knowledge that they can, in fact, have everything they ever wanted. Simon is just wonderful, nobly putting his son before everything – never dreaming that a guy as gorgeous as Mattie would ever want a guy like him. He is full of admiration for Mattie and the way he is trying to turn his life around, he obviously starts to fall for Mattie… hard! As Mattie does for him. But Mattie had these dreams of New York – everything he has done is geared up to moving the other side of America – how can Simon fit in? Who has to compromise? It really is a wonderful journey for these guys. They both have such good, supportive friends too – Karen, Jamie’s teacher, is an absolute rock for Simon; and Ty, Mattie’s friend, is incredible – he is there for Mattie, fighting in his corner – never letting him take his eye off the prize.
I really, really loved this book – it was so different to the books I normally make a beeline for – and I am glad to have read it. Just beautiful. Go. Buy the Book. I reckon you’ll love it too!
Rated 4.5 stars by Barb