Guest Review: The Beginning (Starting Over #5) by Matthew J. Metzger

Is this the end of the road, or the start of a whole new journey?

Aled’s had enough. His family is hundreds of miles away from him, his job is pointless and the feeling that he’s missing out on his own life has grown too big. But how can he call time on Yorkshire when it’s the place that Gabriel calls home?

Chris doesn’t know what to do. Inheriting property in the childhood village where he felt such a freak growing up wasn’t what he wanted, and he didn’t expect to miss Aled and Gabriel as much as he has since returning to Somerset. He’s out of place yet again, but doesn’t know where to call home.

When Aled is offered a job in Cornwall, Gabriel senses an opportunity to fix Aled’s misery, shed Chris’ unhappy history and bring their entire relationship under one roof. It will be the biggest gamble Gabriel’s ever taken on them…but this time, it doesn’t feel like taking a risk.

They’re starting over at the beginning, and there’s nothing left to fear.

Reader advisory: This book contains expressions of homophobia and transphobia from multiple characters. There are scenes of rough sex, BDSM and RACK.

Reviewer: Shee Reader

This is the fifth book in the series. I have read the others, but reckon a reader would be able to enjoy this as a stand alone. The story follows a polyamorous group of guys in a complex and loving relationship. Everyone has their own needs and although Gabriel’s needs don’t resonate with me personally, I could see how his various relationships met all of his needs.

Aled is growing increasingly unhappy in his work life, but he really needs Gabriel. Could Gabriel ever consider a move across the country even if it means one of his partners would be closer, as he simultaneously leaves another further behind?

Chris isn’t sure what to do. He misses Gabriel and Aled, and has never been happy here, but he is alone with his inherited house.

It’s such a complicated scenario for a book, but is the perfect culmination to this series. We see our guys make a BIG change in their quest for happiness and balance, and fortunately this is a romance with a solid gold HEA with all the quirks!

Oh my goodness I loved this book! It is raw, somewhat gritty and a lot is outside my experience, but the writing is stellar. The characters are well formed and three dimensional, the relationships are so real I felt like they were real-life friends of mine. The pursuit of happiness in a form that is not the societal norm can be so very hard. This book is a high quality Own Voices tale by one of my favourite authors. The Trans, Poly and Ace rep are real and beautiful. This is another triumph by Matthew. I can not recommend it enough.

I received a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

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