Guest Review: Awakenings & French Songs by Nell Iris

An existential awakening and lots of French chansons equal a favorite neighbor seen in a new light.

Iggy Wilker never expected his 36th birthday to turn into an existential crisis. When Iggy’s friends celebrate him with his usual favorite pastime—drinking, dancing, and willing guys—he suddenly wants nothing to do with any of it. He’s fed up and ready for something else. The question is what?

Ronan Clenney has had his eye on his neighbor forever, but as a single father of a precocious eleven-year-old, he’s never believed he stands a chance. But over a late-night cup of tea, it seems that circumstances have changed. Is this the right time, finally?

Iggy has never believed in romance, but can Ronan show him he’s wrong? That love is a real thing?

Reviewer: Annika

For me, short stories are always a gamble. So many of them feel rushed, shallow or incomplete, not to mention the whole insta-love feel many of them have. Awakenings and French Songs really worked for me, It was sweet and angst free and nice escape for when you only have a few minutes over for a quick read.

It's told solely from Iggy's POV, and when we first meet him he's (not) celebrating his 36th birthday by being miserable in a bar. Deciding to skip out on the celebrations early he makes his way back to his apartment, where he runs into his neighbour and friend Ronan and gets invited over for tea. It's there, sitting at his dining room table he realises what's he's been missing, why he's felt so off lately. But Ronan being a single parent to an eleven-year old, anything between them will need to be handled with caution.

This book wasn't about passion or need. It was more of a discovery of wants and hopes. Even though this book is only about 30 pages, you can feel the history between Ronan and Iggy. They have the foundation of comfort, trust and friendship already laid, and are now working on the next step together. The attraction they've both felt and buried since the beginning is finally free to bubble to the surface, deepening to that everlasting love.

This was a sweet love story about two guys finally being in the same place and at the same time and realising that what they have is what they've both been looking for; their happily ever after.

A copy of this book was generously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review

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