Rating: 5 stars
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Thomas Elkin and Cooper Jones have been together for a few months now. They still live in separate apartments and they still have separate jobs, but Tom and Cooper have learned to make the best of their time together. Tom’s son’s birthday is the first opportunity they have to present themselves as a couple to their friends and family. Unfortunately, it also means having to face Tom’s ex-wife. And in the midst of a weekend in the Hampton’s celebrating his son’s birthday, Tom comes to realize he is very much in love with Cooper, much to the dismay of the ex-wife who was maybe hoping his being gay was just a phase and maybe hoping to one day get Tom back.
After facing his ex-wife, it’s easier to face the rest of the world. First Tom finds allies in his best friends, dubbed the Holy Trinity of Architecture by Cooper, men who have never seen Tom happier. Then Tom and Cooper face Cooper’s parents who react poorly in the heat of the moment. And while Cooper is at a convention, Tom travels to see his mother and father with intentions of coming out. But when he arrives and tragedy strikes his family, Tom takes time to evaluate what is truly important in his life. And while his world and his foundation may have been shaken, his boundaries and the clarity of lines have never been clearer.
Clarity of Lines is the second book in the Thomas Elkin series by N.R. Walker. These books must be read in order. If you’ll recall, I loved Elements of Retrofit, the first book in this series. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that I loved this one as well. With Clarity of Lines, N.R. Walker adds depth, foundation, and hope to the relationship between Tom and Cooper. The whole story is precious. I loved it from beginning to end.
I am head over heels for this couple. Thomas is this world-renowned architect who is, at age forty-four, finally discovering himself with the help of the young, carefree Cooper Jones. This is a May/December relationship that is beautiful and hopeful. These men have overcome their age difference and focused on what is truly important in their relationship. And I love their relationship. I love that Thomas remains the supportive, unwavering rock. And Cooper remains the breath of fresh air. Cooper brings life and spontaneity to Thomas’ world. And Thomas gives stability and experience to Cooper’s. They are fun. And I won’t go into detail and ruin it for you, but the asking of Cooper to move in with Tom cracks me up throughout the entire book.
I love the realness of the focus of this story. Thomas and Cooper have basically lived in their own little world for the past three months. With the exception of Ryan, the rest of their family and friends had no inkling of their relationship. This author does a great job projecting the fear and anxiety that each man has while basically coming out as a couple to their loved ones. She presents the reactions of the loved ones in a way that is realistic and believable. I felt the trepidation for both sides and loved the tension of this book.
N.R. Walker has quickly become a must-read author for me. Her ability to make a story come to life is astounding. Tom and Cooper are wonderfully written and so very realistic as I’m reading. I simply can’t get enough of this series.
Clarity of Lines is a story of growth and foundations. It’s a story that brings hope and joy. I continue to adore Tom and Cooper. And I can’t wait to see what this author has for them in the future. I highly recommend Clarity of Lines. And if you haven’t read Elements of Retrofit, do so.