A Bell for AndyRating: 4 stars
Buy Link:
Amazon | All Romance
Length: Novel

Brian and Andy became instant friends the moment they met in 1950s Boston. They attended the same Catholic school, shared a passionate interest in Ireland, and even shared a hospital room when they both had Scarlet Fever.  They grew up having the same intense dreams that took place in a time they had not lived or studied about, involving people they had never met. Their need to be near each other was something they could not explain.

Attending the same college, they remained close friends until Andy suddenly dropped out. They stayed in limited contact throughout the years and the dreams continued.

When Brian gets a call that Andy was hit by a bus, his life gets flipped upside down, and Andy’s doctor, Mark, is strangely familiar. For Andy to be saved, Brian and Mark must work together to uncover the mystery of the shared dreams and a secret history that spans time.

The trick here is to describe a book that I cannot tell you anything about. The best part of this story is unraveling the dreams, secrets, and mysteries right along with the characters.

So let’s see…The first chapter moves us along quickly through the childhood of Brian and Andy until they are in their thirties. Brian then pretty much drops everything when he learns of Andy’s accident, even though their relationship is strained. Brian then meets Mark for the first time, or is it their first meeting?

The first half of the book was intriguing and unique and this is not a story you see all the time. We get several perspectives through present day, which is 1995 in the story, along with dream sequences. We get glimpses of life in an Irish Abbey and a battle scene from the Civil War. The shifts of time and character are easy to follow. There are a few twists along the way, but then again, maybe not.

The pace of the story was moving along just fine until it just slowed all the way down. At this point, as the various stories unravel, we see the same scene a few times from different POVs. Different POV=awesome…most of the time. Here, we only get a tiny bit more of the story each time from each character, so the same scenes were replayed with only minimal forward motion.

The Catholic Church is the background to the story and at times it does venture to the foreground. There is an issue discussed about a dungeon at the Abbey and possible abuse of children by a Father was alluded to. It was over in a few sentences when one of the characters said it wasn’t important. It left me with a whole lot of questions. Also, when the nature of Andy and Mark’s relationship is called into question, a short direct answer is given but not further explored. While not the main focus of the story, these two issues were brought up only to be quickly dismissed and left holes in their wake.

Brian and Mark’s relationship is a huge focal point of the entire story. When we leave them, I was a bit deflated. Their ending scene was missing something for me to pull together all the emotions of the incredible journey they took together. Also, there is focus on the need for Andy to change; it was imperative to the story. His change came about not for the good of the others, but became more about him not being able to take it all anymore. He was supposed to have shown growth, but to my viewpoint he remained selfish all the way through.

I enjoyed the premise of this story and its somewhat unique and different spin on ultimately what was a love story. It captured my attention for the most part in wanting to figure it all out. While some of the parts remained greater than the whole, it was an interesting read overall and worth a look.

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