Rating: 1 star
Buy Links: Amazon | All Romance
Cherish by A.J. Llewellyn proves the idea that sometimes when authors publish a lot, a less than stellar novel can slip through and just simply not make the grade. I have read other work by this author where the story line was solid, the plot well defined, the characters fleshed out, and the overall result an enjoyable read. Cherish simply left me lost, and, to be frank, had I not been reviewing it I would not have bothered to finish the book at all.
The story, as convoluted as it was, followed a week in the life of a Hollywood agent named Daren. He left his parent’s vineyard, a place he loved and where he lived in the shallow Hollywood lifestyle. His friends (and I use that term loosely) range from coworker, Nathan, to Daren’s friend of many years, Richard. The action opens on a sad little birthday party where none of Daren’s friends manage to buy him anything remotely near to what he desires and apparently are re-gifting a mix-tape CD with the song Cherish as its first track.
From there the story unraveled, following the idea of a major new client for Daren, a new lover for Daren, Rafael, who apparently is married and has impregnated his wife, and then a secondary mystery plot line all rolled into one. And here is where I began to realize that this story was not only a hot mess, but so loosely tied together that I would be gnashing my teeth in frustration by the end.
There was a lot of sex. There was a lot of obligatory sex…that had nothing to do with the story, such as it was. There was a lot of flowery descriptions of the sex act–and, honestly, in this day and age of a market flooded with some very fine work in LGBT fiction, surely we have moved beyond this:
“…delighting in the beads of moisture I captured with my ravenous tongue. The gleaming cockhead yearning for release from the hood of his foreskin made me happy to be a man.”
Really? gleaming? ravenous? yearning? This type of description happened over and over and, sincerely made me laugh after awhile. I would be drawn into a love scene only to be totally put off by the silliness of the inner thoughts of the main character.
I think the story tried to focus on the main love story between Rafael and Daren. Rafael, who was married and would remain so due to his need for a green card. His wife, who I think was supposed to be a lesbian, but who Daren knows is in love with his new lover Rafael. And let’s not forget she was pregnant with Rafael’s child. But then there was this new client that Daren was trying to get and then someone tried to murder someone else and none of these plot points were fleshed out and none were really exciting or interesting.