Rating: 4.5 stars
Buy Link: Amazon | All Romance
Felix Collins is travelling home in the middle of the night on a mostly deserted bus when he feels a pinch on his ass. Looking around, he sees the only other occupant is asleep. And then he hears a disembodied voice. The Voice keeps talking, Felix answers, but he thinks he’s just hallucinating because he’s overly stressed and has been working to many hours. He thinks he leaves The Voice on the bus, only to be shocked when he hears it in his bedroom too. The Voice is crude and playful, and Felix just wants it to go away. The next morning, he thinks it has, only to find out that The Voice is still hanging around. Felix has been dating his best friend Mickey for about a month, and since things are still new between them in this way, Felix is taking things slow. But when he kisses Mickey with much more abandon than normal, he realizes that The Voice has somehow inhabited him.
The Voice follows him to work. Felix is a health care aid, taking care of elderly folks who need assistance. When one of his patients starts talking to him, Felix is shocked. He thinks it’s The Voice doing something to Mr. Duncan. The message the old man has seems cryptic. But with the help of a coworker, Felix learns that Mr. D is missing his granddaughter who hasn’t been by in months. Felix decides to try and find Sally and convince her to come visit her grandfather.
Felix eventually accepts The Voice and discovers his name is Bryn. Bryn is pushy and opinionated, as well as a bit of a pervert and a voyeur. But Bryn nudges Felix into taking things further with Mickey, because it’s clear that both men want it. Bryn also calls Felix out on his treatment of his younger brother, Patrick. Patrick lost part of his arm in an accident when he was a child, and Felix is overly protective of his brother. With Patrick, Mickey, and Bryn’s help, Felix finally finds where Sally has been staying. Bryn, in fact, is more of a guide for Felix, and leads him to Sally when she is most in need of help. When Felix himself gets into trouble, Bryn is there to protect him. But once Felix reunites Sally and Mr. D, Bryn fears his “mission” might be over and he’ll no longer be able to stick around.
I wasn’t exactly sure what I was going to get when I opened this book, but it was so much more than I ever expected. The ghostly presence of Bryn intrigued me right from the start and I was very curious as to where London was going to take this story. I really liked the idea of a ghostly guide, and I thought this was a fantastic little story.
Felix’s parents’ passed away and he took his responsibility to care for his younger brother very seriously. Because of Patrick’s disability, Felix’s protectiveness is even deeper. He just wants to keep his brother safe, and he fails to see the capable young man that Patrick is. Add to that a healthy dose of self-esteem issues, and Felix is extremely cautious and wary. Even his relationship with his best friend Mickey, whom he’s known and adored for years, makes him nervous. He can’t understand what the gorgeous and much richer Mickey could possibly see in him. I loved Felix’s huge heart, and his need to care for others. I wanted nothing more than for him to see his own self-worth, to realize where he was going wrong, and for him to grow. And he does. Over the course of the story, we get to see Felix taking steps toward a more fulfilling life. He’s got all the pieces to work with already, he just can’t see it himself. But with the help of Mickey, Patrick, and Bryn, he becomes a better version of himself.
Though Felix’s relationship with Mickey is an important part of the story, and his acceptance of Mickey’s affections really makes him blossom, it’s Bryn that’s really the other major character in this book. A ghost, for lack of a better term, with a sad story all his own, Bryn is about as opposite from Felix as one can get. He’s bold, brash, and doesn’t hesitate to say exactly what he thinks. And Felix really needed someone like that in his life. It’s Bryn’s attitude and needling that get Felix out of his shell. Bryn made me laugh, and tugged at my heartstrings. I pretty much adored him from the beginning, and I loved watching him help and guide Felix. Both Felix and Bryn benefit from their growing friendship. Bryn is one of the best non-corporeal characters I’ve ever read. His presence was large enough that he didn’t need a body.
Guys, this was just a really great story with an interesting premise that kept me entertained the whole way through. A light and easy read, with just a bit of angst an emotion to give it a real feel, I really enjoyed No Angel.