Rating: 3.5 stars
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Resonate is the third installment in the Something in Common series by Talia Carmichael. It is a great addition to the ongoing saga but most assuredly not a stand alone read in its own right. This series has multiple characters and back-stories that make reading the preceding novels in order a must!
This particular entry tells the story of one of the three Jenkins brothers –Wilbur, or Bur. He is a talented musician who has been living in England for some years. The death of a friend has brought him home and reunited him with his brothers. All three are now involved in building a homeless facility and Bur has moved in with Harper who recently lost his partner, Karl. Those who know the series will remember Karl being shot in the line of duty and may also recall his on the job partner, Gerald.
Gerald and Bur seem to continually clash as Gerald is under the incorrect assumption that Bur is attracted to and living off of the grieving Harper. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, Bur is attracted to the very straight Gerald and is incredibly wealthy to boot. (As a side note, the way Carmichael has the character of Gerald continually try to pay for Bur and to find him jobs while completely oblivious to Bur’s actual massive fortune is downright hysterical at times. It made Gerald so endearing, I just fell in love with him!)
As the story progresses, we watch as Gerald and Bur fall in love. We see the close knit community of friends and family join round them and protect them as Bur’s abusive parents come back on the scene and wreak havoc, nearly derailing the relationship between Gerald and Bur in the process.
The story line is very involved and, at times, even knowing the series I was scratching my head. This is a richly detailed saga and the characters are multi-dimensional—constantly growing and really fun to watch. However, I found the convenient dealing with and dismissal of Bur’s parents and the strange addition and then subtraction of a sister really too easy. I felt these two pieces were rushed and sacrificed so that we could spend more time on the relationship between Bur and Gerald.
I loved the growing love between the two MC’s and found the author’s insistence not to label Gerald either gay, bi, or straight was a fun quirk—but it went on and on and I felt that it was trotted out too often and therefore weakened its plausibility. Also, the constant reference to Bur’s “violent” side was cute at first but it was not necessary to continually come back to it just in order to help establish his backstory later in the novel.
All in all, I found Resonate to be a good and worthy addition to the series. It was entertaining, a hot and interesting love story and a humorous case of new love. However, I felt that there were times that the heavy addition of back story, multiple characters, and heavy handed use of establishing clues for us to later put together to solve a few mysterious elements often pulled me from the story and left me scratching my head.
All in all I felt that the novel could use a bit of a paring down but otherwise was a good read from start to finish,