Title: Change of Address (Hartsbridge Island)
Author: Jordan S. Brock
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Expected publishing date: October 24, 2016
Genre: Contemporary, M/M Romance
Page/word count: 312, ~81,800
Format: eBook, Paperback
Rating: 3.25 Stars
Air Force sergeant Michael Baldwin wanted nothing more than to escape his family’s political ambitions, but his dream of freedom was shattered by an enemy bullet to the head. Two years later, he and his service dog, Kaylee, resist his father’s demand to join him on the campaign trail—where a photogenic “wounded warrior” is always an asset—and instead return to the family’s summer home on Hartsbridge Island.
There Michael and his beautiful German shepherd capture the attention of Josh Goldberg, co-owner of the local bagel shop. Josh has a knack for business and a killer repertoire of his bubbe’s recipes. But lack of education undermines his confidence, and Josh’s father doesn’t share his ambition for the restaurant’s future.
Chicken soup and bacon might be the way to Michael’s heart, but he and Josh need time to learn about everything that comes after—lessons that Governor Baldwin and his relentless ambition will do anything to thwart. Letting someone in is a tall order for two men who can’t trust themselves, but if they have any hope of a future together, that’s exactly what they’ll need to do.
♦ Personal Thought ♦
The first book of Hartsbridge Island universe, Change of Address was a slow-paced and sweet story of two characters with disability, grappling to live a normal life. This is my first Jordan S. Brock‘s book and I considered this a somewhat success debut. With a couple of notes.
What I liked was the characters: former Air Force Michael, Bagel maker Josh and his father, and – of course – Michael’s service dog, Kaylee. Dad – or Mr. Goldberg – was easily the most awesome parent any offspring could ask for, especially an adoptive one. He had the kind of unconditional love no mater what sexual orientation his son had and in general saw the good in people. He quite lifted up the mood of the story for me.
On the relationship front, I loved the way Josh’s and Michael’s reluctant chemistry turned into something so wonderful and the understanding between them after was awesome. Of course, Kaylee the pup also had huge contribution to smooth their relationship.
What I didn’t get really though, was Josh’s past failures with his exes making him very self-conscious. I felt that this issue wasn’t being recounted enough; especially given how the last ex mentioned, I expected there was more story there.
The disability part was more obvious on Michael – understandable, since the impact was quite severe – yet I thought that Josh’s trouble with reading was being too simplified here. That saying, it’s really touching to read these two adapted to each other; how often early on Josh’s assumption over Michael proven wrong and he learned from those almost mistakes.
I just wish Michael’s wouldn’t be so stereotypically portrayed as they were here; ambitious
and bigot politician couple treating their progeny liked corporate assets. I also thought for all Michael’s intimated that he’s close to his sister, it didn’t really show.
Okay I’m gonna stop before I sound too fussy and nitpicking. One last thing though: what’s with the prospect of bad weather as epilogue of the story?? Seriously, personally it made me wary as if there’s bad thing looming about to happen in their near future. Perhaps it’s to be continued on the next Hartsbridge Island story, I just hope it wouldn’t be something bad.
Advanced copy of this book is kindly provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.