Lady*M's Reviews > On My Knees

On My Knees by Tristram La Roche
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Jun 13, 11

bookshelves: contemporary, m-m-romance
Read from June 13 to 14, 2011

3.5 stars

It was really difficult for me to rate this story. On one hand, I liked the narrator and his voice very, very much. On the other, the insta-love scenario and supporting characters were major letdowns.

Mark is a man with a lot on his plate. And I mean, A LOT. He is pushing forty, struggling with depression and alcoholism. He acknowledges that he's gay for the first time and initiates a divorce. His business is failing and he begins a new relationship. The author did a great job to describe the chaos that he is living in, the emotional whirlwind he found himself in after waking from a coma his life turned into. It was painful and fun at the same time to read about it. The description of Mark's thoughts and actions felt real - gritty and schizophrenic and elating at once.

The stakes for Mark are high: his sanity, his heart, his life. The potentials for the story - enormous. The payoff? Well, that's the problem. Attila as love interest is unsatisfactory to say the least. Who is Attila? It's hard to say, since his personality changed several times during novella. From understanding, gentle guy to prick, from man misunderstood by his former boyfriends to self-professed man-slut. Also, I could see how someone as lost as Mark would attach himself to the first person who paid some attention to him. Falling in love in a couple of hours, though? No. Having his feelings returned after two-three nights together? Unrealistic.

Aside from Alex, Mark's colleague and best friend, who seemed like nice, understanding guy (even if he is an alcoholic as well), we are also introduced to Mark's wife Diana and another potential love interest - actor Justin. Diana is a crazy person, a bitch and a cheater, something that became such a cliché in m/m romance that it's painful to read about. She has no redeeming qualities and apparently no motives for being a bitch, bad wife and generally miserable person. I had high hopes for Justin, who seemed sweet, until it turned out he was a liar as well. I suppose, that was done to justify Mark being a jerk to him and going with Attila.

I mentioned potentials this story had. The author hints that Mark was abused by his father; there are hints of Attila's life in the U.S. as well as Mark's financial problems. Mark asks his doctor to look after Diana, which implies of some additional relationship between them. Non of these things as well as Mark's depression and drinking problem were addressed although there was material in Mark's story for another novella if not for the entire novel. It's a shame, because I feel this author has the means to tackle complex subjects and do them justice. The writing is solid and the story kept my interest. I really liked the character of Mark. However, that wasn't sufficient enough to make On My Knees entirely satisfactory. The nature of the story which describes the changes in one's life is to leave certain things open. I felt though that we were left with too many unknowns. I hope the author will give us more stories about Mark (and Attila, although only because of Mark). I will certainly pick up another author's story because I can see enormous potential here. In the end, I can recommend the story with some reservation.
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Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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message 1: by Tristram (new) - added it

Tristram Roche Lady*M, thank you. I appreciate that you took so much time to write a detailed and intelligent review. Your negative comments I will put in my experience account, whilst enjoying your positive ones. I'm going to try and get 4 stars fro you on the next one! Thanks again.
Tris


Lady*M Tristram wrote: "Lady*M, thank you. I appreciate that you took so much time to write a detailed and intelligent review. Your negative comments I will put in my experience account, whilst enjoying your positive ones..."

Hi, Tris! Mark was really a wonderful character. I think you can guess how invested I was in him, because I wanted a better boyfriend for him and less job troubles and drinking and... yeah. I really hope you will give us more of him. I've seen that you have more stories coming up and I'm looking forward to reading them. :)


message 3: by Tristram (new) - added it

Tristram Roche Just wanted to let you know that my next novella will be out early August. It's called Lorenzo il Magnifico and you can check out the cover here: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?i...

Tris


Lady*M Tristram wrote: "Just wanted to let you know that my next novella will be out early August. It's called Lorenzo il Magnifico and you can check out the cover here: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?i......"

Thank you, Tris!


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