Jess Candela's Reviews > Stars & Stripes

Stars & Stripes by Abigail Roux
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Aug 11, 12

bookshelves: favorites, m-m, read-in-2012

This was absolutely the most romantic Ty and Zane book yet, but not the most exciting. They're in that honeymoon phase between "Oh my god, could we actually be together? Really?! Yippee!!!" and "Dammit, you left the milk out. Again. I love you, so, so much, and I'm grateful I get to share my life with you. Really. You're the love of my life. But is it really that damn hard to put the damn milk away before it spoils so I can have some in my damn coffee in the damn morning? Dammit."

That honeymoon phase may be the happiest place in the world to be living, together long enough to believe it's real but new enough to be pinch-worthy to make sure you're not dreaming. And yes, that sentence is a deliberate contradiction, because that's what that phase feels like: you believe it and you don't; that's what makes it so magical.

Magical to live, but not the most exciting to read. Warm, mushy, "awwww how sweet" reading, yes. And this book was all of those things. It also had an adventure that enabled them to show of their skills and get badly injured, so it was definitely still a T & Z book. I'm happy for them to finally be in this place; they've earned it! And I enjoyed reading about it, I just didn't looooove reading about it.

I think Sticks & Stones is still be my favorite because that's the book in which they first start to solidly be a couple, but are still also very new and uncertain of each other. That creates a fundamental tension that makes for edge-of-your-seat excitement. I'm looking forward to Book 8 or 9 when we'll (hopefully) finally get to see them move past the honeymoon and into the real work of staying together and keeping the romance alive over the daily drudgery of years. I love books that look at long-term couples and how they stay together despite the odds, but in this book they haven't yet been together long enough to qualify as long-term.

I also found it annoyingly unbelievable that everyone in Texas referred to them as "Ty and Zane", with maybe one exception. People always refer to couples in the order they knew them, so in Texas everyone should have said "Zane and Ty". Maybe I'm too pedantic, but it pulled me out of the story for a moment each time I saw it. Since most of the people in their lives knew Ty first, it makes sense that "Ty and Zane" is the usual order, and I could imagine one of them observing how odd it sounds to hear it the other way.

Speaking of unbelievable, (view spoiler)

I'm afraid I sound curmudgeonly, and I really don't mean to. I loved this story and loved getting to see Ty and Zane revel in each other for a bit. I just didn't love it as much as Sticks & Stones.
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Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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Lenore I haven't read the book yet but somehow what you said made perfect sense.
Also, thank you for making sense without spoilering me. I really appreciate it!


Jess Candela Lenore wrote: "I haven't read the book yet but somehow what you said made perfect sense.
Also, thank you for making sense without spoilering me. I really appreciate it!"


I'm glad that made sense, it took a bit to sort it out in my mind and I wasn't sure how it came across. And you're welcome for the not-spoilering! I avoided reading any reviews until I'd read the book, for fear of spoilers. :)


Jess Candela Daisy wrote: "You make sense, definitely, don't worry.
And I agree with you partly, but yeah, I love the boys being all romantic and all lovey-dovey with each other practically all the time. But they spent three..."


Oh good, thanks! I agree they deserve the mushyness, please don't mistake me! And it is nice to see. It's just that I don't think the mushyness makes for quite as exciting reading.


Bitchie (M/M addict) I completely agree with EVERYTHING you said! Very good book, but a tiny bit much with the mushy lovey dovey, and a bit light on the action. Very good book, but not my favorite. Still, miles ahead of most of the stuff out there though.:)


Jess Candela Thanks Bitchie, it's nice to know I'm not a lone voice in the wilderness. Except when I actually am hiking and want to get away from it all, that is. ;)

And I agree completely that even with my lesser satisfaction with it, it was still miles ahead of most other stuff out there!


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