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4.10  ·  Rating details ·  134 ratings  ·  49 reviews
A 2015 IndieFab Book of the Year Award Winner, a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award for Best Gay Romance and a finalist for the Saints and Sinners Literary Festival Award for Best Emerging Author, Brothers chronicles the lives of two sets of siblings, the Corks and the Malloys.

At twenty-three, Jamus Cork’s plans are simple—graduate college, stay in New York City, and w
Paperback, 251 pages
Published December 14th 2015 by Bold Strokes Books
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Average rating 4.10  · 
Rating details
 ·  134 ratings  ·  49 reviews

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Michael Thompson
Nov 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book goes to the top of my list of all time great reads.
I honestly started reading and didn't stop until I finished the book.
A novel about family and friendship.
Jamus and his fourteen year old brother, Nicky are all each other have. A tragic car accident leaves them parentless and Jamus is left to be the sole provider of the family.
Their relationship is beautiful and funny at times. Heartwarming and inspiring.
This isn't a gay romance, full of sex scenes on ever other page; you won't find
Jun 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Sofia by: Irina
Shelves: eagerly-read, 2017


It is a quiet story, with quiet writing, no overt drama just the intricate heroic stuff we do every day and that is what makes it heroic. Our daily choices, whether to accept, love, encourage or get angry, take umbrage, hate. And then these daily choices pile up in one heroic feat, our life.

I am glad to Sean found his voice, allowed himself to get out, he had hidden away too much and he could really have disappeared. His champions Grace and Kevin were in his corner even if
Ije the Devourer of Books

A marvellous story!

Coming out, family life, brotherhood and love.

Two sets of brothers, four lives and a love which will touch them all, albeit in different ways.

This is an excellent story, well written, imaginative and engaging. It drew me in from the beginning, held my attention through out and left me wanting more. As I read this I went through a range of emotions as I shared in the joys and pains of these four people and I was taken along on a journey of love, not just romantic love, but brot
Jun 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Giulio by: Sofia
A beautiful novel, well written, with depth of characters and a great description of the town of Boston. It's more than a gay romance, it's the quiet story of two brothers and their struggle for finding their path in life. I read it almost in one sitting. ...more
Mar 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
”Here is to life being about whatever the hell you want it to be about.”
”I’ll drink to that,” he said, and they clinked glasses.

Life could be about a lot of other things.

About having lost your parents in a car crash when you were twenty and carrying the guilt of surviving the same accident with you for years, never really coping and pushing your miserable soul into books, always coming back to the same life altering event.

About raising your baby brother Nick who was only three years old when you
Nov 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm pretty easy on books; if they keep me turning pages and are decently written they'll get five stars. Because of that, this book should get a sixth star from me. Not only is the story interesting and well told with depth of character, including Matt, of whom we know the author has only scratched the surface, it is written by a talented wordsmith.

While it was on my to read list, it was due to the urging of a trusted Goodreads friend, Michael, that I opened it when I did. This was a very satisf
Feb 29, 2016 rated it liked it
3.25 stars

This book is by a debut author. While there is a love story here, I wouldn't call this a "romance". It's more the story of two brothers. Jamus has taken care of Nick since their parents died 10 years earlier. James is 32 and Nick is 14. The story follows the two of them as well as Sean, Jamus' love interest and Nick's English teacher, over the space of about four months. I love stories of men who take care of their younger siblings so I was excited to read this.

In the end, though, I c
Dec 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: queer, fiction

I have been reading a lot, and I mean a lot, of Lewis and Sherlock fanfiction lately. So I figured why not venture out into gay lit and take advantage of BSBs offerings on Netgalley and request one. The blurb of this one really appealed to me, even though it turned out to be something different than I expected.

I don't have a frame of reference for this in regard to how it fits in the greater scope of things in regard to gay lit, but I was very pleasantly surprised, especially for a book
Tracy~Bayou Book Junkie
*copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie by author/publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

At the age of 23 Jamus loses both of his parents in a horrible car accident, while they are visiting him in New York, where he has just finished Grad school. Jamus wakes up a week later in the hospital with his life turned upside down. He has not only lost his parents, but he is now the sole guardian and caregiver for his 3 year old baby brother.

Sean comes from a close knit Irish American fami
Jun 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016, ipad, for-review
I wasn't sure if I was going to like Brothers. But I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed this story. I'm glad I gave it a chance. Jamus gave up his future to raise his little brother after their parents were killed in a car accident. He hasn't let go of the guilt he feels over that accident since he was driving the car the night they died. Sean Malloy has moved back to Boston to take teach high school English. There is an interest right off the bat, but Sean is struggling with his own ...more
Nov 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: m-m
This book was amazing! It was so painful but yet beautiful at the same time too!

This was a story about loss.. About Jamus losing his parents and becoming a parent to his little brother. About learning to not blame yourself for something that was beyond your control.

There was a little bit of romance in this book but it was mostly about learning through things that happen in life and for Sean about admitting to himself and his family who is really his and how he really feels.

I loved the way thi
Nov 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, lgbt, ebook
This is a family saga, telling the story of two sets of brothers, Jamus & Nick and Sean & Kevin, and the eventual relationship between Jamus and Sean. Like all family saga’s it has a number of interweaving stories, there are bad guys (or girls) and good ones, there are ups and downs, but overall this story is about families loving and supporting each other and realising what is actually positive and not negative.

I really enjoyed this story, told from multiple points of view, but primarily from
DNF at 47%

I'm really sad to DNF it, because all my GR friends seemed to enjoy it. But unfortunately nothing worked for me here, and I decided to give up. I read all your exciting reviews and I felt like I was reading a different book. It's a very good written novel, but I couldn't connect with the characters, I can't even explain why.

I'm REALLY sad because it came highly recommended from my friends I trust blindly, but...either I am not a contemporary romance type(if I can name it romance at al
Sep 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
I really liked this book, the plot and characters were fantastic. On one hand I’m sad we didn’t get to see more of Sean and Jamus’s relationship but on the other side of that I like where he left it so I take that as a really good sign that this book left an impact on me.

I also wish there had been some closure with Sean’s family but that’s just me.

Other than that, I enjoyed his writing and I look forward to reading more of his stuff.
Melissa | Slow Readers Blog
Originally posted on Slow Reader's Blog

When I first came across this title for promo, the unassuming cover and title really had me curious. I'm constantly looking for new authors of queer romance, but finding decent work has been...difficult. So, I poked around a little and discovered that Brothers had been nominated for "best romance" by a LGBT literary group. Okay, so maybe there's something here, I thought and decided to give it a go.

My initial reaction is: this book is not a romance. Yes th
J. Taylor
Jun 12, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: brother-loving
Why did it end there? I wanted a little bit more resolution.
Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews
Rosalie's review posted at Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews

Jamus Cork wants what every young child wants out of life; he wants to move away from his parents and go to college, then live the dream of being on your own and thriving. His life was turned into a complete tailspin when his parents are killed and he becomes the sole survivor of a very young brother, Nick. Life, as he knew it, was over.

As life progresses, through Nick's boarding school, the readers actually meet another set of brothers, Se
Joyfully Jay
Jan 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: wendy
A Joyfully Jay review.

4.75 stars

This book is not a romance. You aren’t going to find hot sex scenes. Instead, this book is really two different family sagas that happen to entwine themselves near the latter part of the book as one man struggles with his sexuality, while the other finds himself ready to begin to let go of his guilt and find himself happiness.

The first family is Jamus and Nick. Jamus has given everything up for his brother – maybe a lot of it was out of survivor’s guilt, but rega
Alisa Carroll
Feb 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Ralph Josiah Bardsley's first novel is a deeply felt--and exquisitely observed--story of coming out. Bardsley has a vast talent for observation and detail, bringing the bars and brownstones of South Boston to vivid life and making moments feel cinematic, whether they contain a grand gesture, or a bead of coffee spilling over the lip of a cup. But most importantly, its a book with great heart, a story with compassion for its characters--from the haunted protagonist Jamus to his little brother, Ni ...more
Brenda Littlefield
Sep 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Loved the book! Great story and well written.....especially for the author's first novel. Enjoyed the familiarity of the Boston locations, down to the well described smells, feels, vibes that make Boston what it is....a great city.

Enjoyed the characters and the in-depth description of their feelings during different times as the book progresses. Very much looking forward to reading Bardsley's second book. Keep up the great work!

Jul 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I first started to read this story I didn't think I was going to like it. The prologue of sorts was filled with flower descriptions that didn't appeal to me. But slowly the story got involved with the characters and I started to enjoy the slice of life story about two brothers living in Boston. Although there is a little bit of romance in the book between Sean and Jamus this book shines more in the relationship between Nick and Jamus. Sean's bits in the story are fairly standard coming out ...more
Lisa The Novel Approach
Aug 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
There’s a reason Ralph Josiah Bardsley’s debut novel, Brothers, was a Lambda Literary Award finalist. There’s a reason his second novel, The Photographer’s Truth, would be an uncontested winner next year, if I had anything to say about it. It’s the same reason this author has just become an absolute must-read for me from this day forward—Bardsley’s gift for telling stories that draw me into every emotion and detail and the subtle nuances in the way his characters react to and interact with one a ...more
Helen Shaw
Nov 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 6-stars
How can it be over. ❤️😢😊
May 13, 2016 rated it liked it
If you're the type of reader who likes stories that are heavy on exposition and character growth and development, Brothers will definitely fit the bill for you. In terms of conflict and drama, there really isn't a lot in the first two thirds of the book, but during that last part things start to escalate and finally erupt, for Sean with his family but also between Jamus and his brother Nick.

For me, the first two thirds of the story moved more slowly than I'm used to, and there's a lot of backgro
A.M. Leibowitz
Jan 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I received a free copy via Inked Rainbow in exchange for an honest review.

This is one of the best books I've read, and I'm so glad I picked it up. I chose it for the setting (I love Boston) and the theme of family. It exceeded my expectations.

Mr. Bardsley's writing style is flawless and elegant. There is no fast-paced action in the story, yet it didn't drag. I couldn't put it down because I was so absorbed in the intricate relationships between these sets of brothers.

I loved the all the characte
Nov 16, 2015 rated it liked it
This book was not what I expected. The book was too slow for me. They didn't even have their first date until 61% into the book.

The plot line, though, was great as well as the characters. The characters became very real and you could really feel for them and their situations. Sean's family is awesome. The family dynamic made you want to be part of that family. Nick and Jamus's relationship as brothers is very sweet and they're very close which is great. I love that. Jamus's sacrifices that he ha
Jack Boulton
Mar 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
The author's character descriptions are incredible. The characters are people I related to and felt I knew personally as the plot developed. The story line develops around life moments many of us in the LGBT community face. You can't help but have empathy for Sean and Jamus as they struggle to find balance between family's expectations and personal happiness. The author narrated their internal strife so well, I felt like whispering "It's going to be okay, hang in there..." to them.

One particula
Marg Corjay
Oct 23, 2015 rated it liked it
I recieved this book in a Goodreads Giveaway and promised to give an honest evaluation. This was a slightly different gendre than I normally read, more family relationships than action. I enjoyed the portayal of Boston, it captured the neighborhoods in a realistic light. The writing was flat until the last three chapters when the reader got to see the emotions and motivations of the characters. This is a book that could also appeal to a mature YA audience, due to the conflicts that are experienc ...more
Jane Whitney
Jan 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a remarkable debut novel, skillfully crafted, with careful development of character in complex people, and revelation of the hard emotional truths of life and the healing powers of human connections, Some characters are straight, some are teenagers, some are gay, and some are still discovering who they are. The author's understated approach to these subjects makes the book a good read and an illuminating reference for people of all ages. ...more
Dec 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book was a terrific read where the characters drew me in from the very beginning, and I felt as though I was living Jamus' story first hand. Tragedy and the circumstances resulting from that tragedy define Jamus' throughout the story, and was wonderful to see and feel his character evolve to find acceptance and love. ...more
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Ralph Josiah Bardsley was born in a small town outside of Boston. His father was in the Coast Guard and he grew up in a lot of different places – New Orleans, Cape Cod, North Carolina and Sitka, Alaska. When he wasn’t in school, he spent most of his time in Coast Guard hangers or reading. Today he lives in San Francisco with his husband Dana. Ralph's hobbies include writing, running and wine tasti ...more

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