These three stories make up the First Impressions series by Josephine Myles. Since they are short, I decided to review them all in one post.
Series: First Impressions
Author: Josephine Myles
One day Jez is riding the train into the city when he is struck by the crazy socks on the guy across the aisle. The man is dressed quite conservatively, with the exception of his outrageously colored socks. The artist in Jez can’t help but be struck by the sight, and as the days pass he eagerly looks forward to seeing the man each morning on the train. Jez grows more and more interested in the man as the weeks go on, but he can’t quite work up the nerve to talk to him. Jez assumes the man is a stuffy, wealthy stockbroker who would have no interest in an artist wearing grungy clothes and blond dreadlocks. But Jez just can’t resist this guy and puts himself out there on the off-chance the guy is interested too. His daring pays off and it turns out his crazy sock man is named Steve and nothing at all like Jez imagined. And fortunately he may just be everything that Jez wants.
This was such a great little story and I loved Jez and Steve. The book is told from Jez’s POV so we learn about Steve along with him, from his early observations, through their meeting and the start of their relationship. I love how Myles plays with the idea of first impressions and how they can be so off the mark. Yet even so, that first moment that Jez sees Steve with his ridiculous socks, he made an impact on him and Jez just couldn’t let him go. The story felt quite nicely developed for such a short format and I really loved it.
Fuzzy picks up about five months after Jez and Steve have started dating. They are now living together and Steve recently broke his leg and is stuck sitting around all day. During his convalescence, he has taken on a surprising new hobby.
This is a free short and really is more of a scene than a full story. Myles does a wonderful job though of giving us a feel for where things are with Jez and Steve in such a small number of pages. I could totally feel how their relationship has developed, the close bond that has formed between them, and how they have settled into life together. Short, sweet, and very sexy!
Steve and Jez have been living together for about six months and things are going great. Steve has made himself part of the neighborhood and keeps their social calendar full. So Jez is stunned to get a letter from his estranged mother letting him know his father is dying. At first Jez refuses to even consider seeing his dad. His father kicked him out of the house as a teen for being gay and Jez has no desire to reach out to him at this point in life. For days he sits around feeling miserable until he finally realizes that he really does want some closure and Steve and Jez make the trip to visit his father in hospice care.
This is such a lovely story considering it deals with such painful topics. Myles does a wonderful job of showing the inner turmoil Jez feels and how difficult it is for him to let go of the past. We also can really see how far Jez and Steve’s relationship has come as Steve is really able to provide such support and love for Jez throughout the process. Despite the heavy issues, the story has many fun and sweet (and sexy) moments and is a really nice way to finish off the trilogy.
Overall, I loved this series and would highly recommend the books, especially if you read them all together. Jez and Steve are such great characters and a really great couple together and it is so nice watching their relationship build and deepen over the course of the stories. Myles does a wonderful job of taking us from those early days when Jez is taken by a stranger’s crazy socks up to the point where the men have built something deep and lasting. Definitely recommended.
Note: First Impressions has been rereleased by Myles and can be purchased at Amazon, Smashwords, or All Romance Ebooks. Fuzzy is a free story that can be read on Myles’ web site or downloaded from All Romance ebooks or for Nook or Kobo. Last Chance is under publication by Torquere Press and can be purchased from their site or Rainbow Ebooks.