Sunday, June 13, 2010

The Letter Z


Title: The Letter Z
Author: Marie Sexton
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Publisher URL: www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store
ISBN: 978-1-61581-460-2
Genre: [M/M] Contemporary
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

It hasn’t been easy moving into a new community and starting a new business but with the assistance of their friends, Matt and Jared, lovers Zach and Angelo are managing just fine. Life is good, their video business is growing, and the once shaky relationship of Zach and Angelo is becoming more solid with each passing day. Problems arise when the couple makes a decision at a New Year’s Eve party that Jared doesn’t understand and doesn’t agree with, putting Angelo at odds with his lover’s best friend and straining his friendship with Matt, Jared’s partner.

A spur of the moment decision has the two couples making a quick trip to Las Vegas and just when the uneasy feelings between Jared and Angelo are being put aside, they run into Zach’s ex-boyfriend, Jonathan. It’s obvious from their first meeting that Jonathan wants Zach back in his life and seeing the two men together causes Angelo to doubt, not his love for Zach, but whether he’s good enough to be Zach’s life partner. Matt and Jared might have been able to help in almost every other problem in the lives of Angelo and Zach since moving to Coda but in this case, their feelings and opinions might cause more harm than good.

The Letter Z by Marie Sexton takes place in Colorado and follows the lives, loves and friendships of two couples who readers met in the previous releases of Promises and A to Z. To avoid confusion and thus dissatisfaction with the story, I recommend they be read in the order written. Just an FYI-while Jared and Matt play a vital role in this newest release, they are not the focus.

The story is a good continuation of the love between Zach and Angelo. It’s fast paced, with a good plot flow and deals with the differences between couples in a realistic, believable manner. Ms. Sexton also deals nicely with Angelo’s insecurities—his feelings that he doesn’t deserve a man like Zach for his partner. The other thing I really enjoyed about this story was the vivid descriptions of Las Vegas. As a person who has never set foot in the town, the details pulled me into the city, allowing me to see it ‘for the first time’ through Angelo’s wondering eyes.

Lovers Zach and Angelo are so different in every way that sometimes it’s difficult to believe they got together in the first place, much less stayed together. Yet they have, and in this release you get to see how their love has grown and changed. In the first pages of the story, an event happens that doesn’t threaten Angelo and Zach’s relationship but it does throw a wrench in the smooth flowing way all members of the two couples deal with each other. I can honestly say that when this New Year’s Eve event comes to light, I wasn’t just surprised; I was shocked, never expecting what occurred or Zach’s ready acceptance. And while I might not have liked it, Ms. Sexton did a nice job expressing the differences between couples and what one would find acceptable that another one wouldn’t. In the end, Angelo and Zach’s relationship came out stronger than before and the realization that they were both what the other needed was handled very nicely. I’m not saying that Angelo and Zach have found their rock solid happily-ever-after, but they’re getting close and I can’t wait to see what adventures Ms. Sexton creates for the guys from Coda.

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