Wednesday, April 13, 2016

[ARC Review]: "The Heart As He Hears It"

The Heart As He Hears It by A.M. Arthur
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd. (April 19, 2016)
Series: Perspectives, 3
Genre: M/M Romance -- NA Contemporary 

Love can slip through the smallest crack in the door.

While most of his friends have moved on to “real” careers, Jon Buchanan is content skating through life as a part-time waiter and gay porn star. Firmly single thanks to a previous relationship disaster, he focuses his spare time on Henry, a dear friend dying of cancer.

And with Henry’s happiness paramount, Jon is on a mission to help Henry meet his recently discovered grandson.

Isaac Gregory hasn’t set foot outside for the past year. He has everything he needs delivered, and his remaining family knows better than to visit. When a complete stranger shows up claiming to be his grandfather—with a distractingly handsome younger man in tow—his carefully structured routines are shaken.

Despite his instant attraction, Jon senses Isaac is too fragile for a relationship. Yet tentative friendship grows into genuine companionship. And when Henry’s health begins to fail, they realize Fate brought them together for a reason.

Warning: Product contains a neurotic porn star with body image issues, a virgin hero with severe agoraphobia, and a fluffy ball of gray cuteness you’ll want to take home and cuddle. Also contains references to past abuse some readers might find disturbing. 

Where to Buy*:
More Info:

Reviews of Arthur's Previous Novels:

No Such Thing (#1) -- TBQ
Stand By You (#3) -- TBQ

The Truth As He Knows It (#1) -- TBQ
The World As He Sees It (#2) -- TBQ

Getting It Right (#1) -- TBQ
Finding Their Way (#2) -- TBQ
Taking a Chance (#3) -- TBQ

My Review:

He stopped living his life and began existing in it. 

Existence wasn't enough anymore.

It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of A.M. Arthur’s books, and especially the Perspectives series. Here’s the thing with pretty much any of Arthur’s books: if you don’t like high angst, drama, and horrible pasts for the heroes, you’re probably not going to love her books. If all of that is your catnip though? Trust me, you are in for a treat! Once again, Arthur delivers an emotional read that is just as sexy as it is sweet. You’ll love Isaac and Jon. Not to mention Bear.

Jon’s past is similar to many LGBT youth stories: once he came out to his family, they kicked him out. He struggled, he lashed out, and while he was lucky to find a great father-figure in Henry, he also fell into a really shitty relationship that caused a lot of damage. After picking his life back up again, he went into gay porn, which allowed him a safe, positive way to explore his sexuality again.

"I need to feel safe, Jon. That's why I hide. But you make me not want to hide."

Isaac’s past is also quite dark. His father was a mean drunk who beat on both him and his mother. One such attack to young Isaac resulted in permanent hearing lose. He suffered through more emotional and mental trauma before losing both of his parents (at separate times). Isaac has serious problems about being outside and being around people, and now that his maternal grandparents have passed on, too, he lives his entire life in his house, shut away from the world. Until Jon and Henry show up at his door. Oh, and Bear. We can’t forget the cuddly furball.

I wanted to give both Isaac and Jon all the hugs through the course of this book, they both went through so much. In fact, this picture (below) is one that I sent to Arthur while reading this book. J

"I'm the first person to say fuck normal. There's no such thing. All we have is reality, and sometimes reality really, really, sucks. And sometimes it's really, really scary. But we don't have to accept limitations. It's okay to push against them and try to be happy."

"But pushing means getting hurt."

"Sometimes it does. Human beings are amazingly resilient creatures, especially when we're fighting for something we want."

Watching these two fall for each other will definitely give you warm feels. Jon helps Isaac to cope and work towards going outside (slowly), and Isaac keeps an eye on Jon, too, to make sure he’s not falling back into old habits. It’s sweet to read. The sexual tension between them is great and very hot. Like I said, sweet and sexy combo for the win!

I adored Isaac and Jon. Their story wasn’t easy, but it was so well done. This is book three in the series; it’s not required that you read the previous two (you won’t be lost) but if you love one of these books, you’ll love them all. 

4 1/2 STARS! 

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I received an e-ARC of this book from the publisher, via NetGalley.

*Note: The quotes used belong to A.M. Arthur; TBQ's Book Palace does not claim them. Any mistakes or typos in the quotes are my own fault.

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Have you had that feeling before -- of wanting to protect the characters from the author? :)

Remember, since this is a Royal Pick, come back on April 28th for a chance to WIN an ecopy of your own! 


Until Next Time,


  *TBQ's Book Palace is a member of both the Amazon and Barnes and Nobles affiliates program. By using the links provided to buy products from either website, I receive a very small percentage of the order. To read my full disclosure on the matter, please see this post!

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