Alex & Clayton
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Alex & Clayton

2.73 of 5 stars 2.73  ·  rating details  ·  45 ratings  ·  12 reviews
After quiet, closeted years working as a librarian, Clayton decides to quit his job and use his inheritance to buy a small bookstore in the gay-friendly resort town of Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. It’s the beginning of what he hopes will be a new life free of his old repressions.

Alex, an ex-military man and former cop, decides to retire to Rehoboth and buys a house three bloc...more
ebook, 200 pages
Published March 12th 2012 by Dreamspinner Press (first published March 11th 2012)
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Story of fifty-somethings, Alex, a retired cop, and Clayton, a librarian, who meet at a time when they are both making big changes in their lives. This is my first book by this author but it's not a writing style I enjoy so it will probably be the last. It felt dry and passionless and Clayton, in particular, was very unappealing.
I really wanted to like this story. It had a great premise, but it was totally lacking in character. I wasn't sure if I was reading a bad term paper or a memo to a government agent. Just no emotion.

I got totally lost in the whole timing. It just didn't make sense. Both were born about 1953. Clayton went to college. He would have graduated in 1975. He retired after 20 years. That would be 1995. Then he moved to Delaware, where the Vice-President (from Delaware, I presume) vacationed. That would...more
Phoebe Gee
I really loved the idea of the story: A m/m romance with two guys a little closer to my own age than what you normally see. It even had a an awkward librarian/book store owner which is a favorite character type of mine(I just want to see them all dirtied up! hehehe). But, the writing felt very stilted, and during the sex scenes Clayton's verbalizations and actions just seemed totally out of character. I am sure part of the problem was as I waited for the release of the book, I was mentally writi...more
Page Crusherz
I really wanted to love this, but the dialogue...I just couldn't. It felt so rote. No one really talks like these guys,e specially Clayton. I didn't like either MC much, though Alex was tolerable. Really, I just wanted it to end. I'm so sad because I thought it would be pretty delish (hot ex cop, nerdy librarian?). I've read others by the author, and though I don't always like his writing style, I could barely finish this. I don't know if its a showing vs telling, but it doesn't work for me.

Guilty Pleasures
Angeline's review posted on Guilty Pleasures

Alex & Clayton by John Simpson is a story about two men in their forties who find love at last. Mr. Simpson takes a different approach in telling their story. The stage is set during the first 4 chapters, where the author writes of each man’s upbringing (starting at birth). I was unsure at first, but I found that it worked fine in the end. We were able to see how each man grew into the people they were before they met.

Unfortunately, I had a hard ti...more

First 50 pages were an info dump of amazing proportions, the MCs didn't meet until about page 50!
Did not like the stilted conversations, the slow pace and the passionless interactions.
Aug 25, 2012 Jane rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: dnf, m-m
Got this from the library and was chuffed but when I started reading the book just didn't work for me at all. I didn't want to hop, skip, jump through their lives like that; either start the story where they meet and reveal the back story or take longer getting to the meeting; this seemed too much wasted or not long enough spent. It fell between two stools.

Then I got to the first sex scene and I just couldn't keep going. Such awful porn magazine dialogue during the revenge sex humiliating a bull...more
I almost quit reading this book several times because it was so painfully awkward.
You get each of the MC's life story laid out up until the time they meet, some 50yrs worth. Strangely random events, uncomfortably contrived situations, atrocious dialog. By the time I got to the chapter where the 50 year old virgin gets spanked, I was committed out of morbid fascination. In the end, I realized somewhere along the line I'd begun rooting for these two guy's. Clever author!

Alex and Clayton, both almost fifty, both move to a new town and start their life after a long time married to jobs and other peoples expectations.

Alex retires from his job in the federal law enforcement, Clayton leaves his job as a librarian to start his own bookshop after his mother dies. They meet and connect, but Clayton's long life in the closet causes problems in the relationship.

A sweet story, all in all.
kindle edition.
It was interesting to read a story about people who have one whole life and then decide to move on to something else after they retire. The two main characters in this story both came to a place where this post-retirement existence was freeing for them. Free to pursue a dream job, free to pursue a dream person, free to explore things about themselves they set aside or ignored for so many years.
Dec 22, 2012 Shaz rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: mm, gfy-ofy
Unfortunately this one fell rather flat. It felt very stilted and even forced at times. The dialogue was extremely wordy and I honestly don't know anybody who would speak like that.

While the premise of the book was good, it was lacking in the execution. It was rather emotionless and even the sex-scenes didn't feel quite right. I will give the author another go though as everybody deserves a second chance.

Jilrene ♥ ★
Starts very slow. I'll try again some day.
Shannon marked it as to-read
Jun 22, 2014
Greg Doornbos-Ross
Greg Doornbos-Ross marked it as to-read
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John Simpson, a Vietnam-era Veteran, has been a uniformed Police Officer of the Year, a federal agent, a federal magistrate, and an armed bodyguard to royalty and a senior government executive. He earned awards from the Vice President of the United States and the Secretary of the Treasury. John has written articles for various gay and straight magazines. John lives with his partner of 35 years and...more
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