Trent Farnsworth is a closeted gay man. Growing up in a strict Mormon household, he decides (while doing missionary work) to apply to college out of state, and hopefully out of his parent’s and the Church’s reach. Arriving at college, he finds out that the college overbooked the dorm rooms and he needs to find housing for himself. Forced to look into off-campus housing, Trent finds an advertisement for a roommate at 959 Brenton Street.
Trent finds the occupants of 959 Brenton Street to be unique. The house is owned by Dr. Cory Venerin, a gay man who rents rooms to Greg (a cross-dresser), Alan (bi-sexual), and David (who’s intersex). When Trent accidentally outs himself to his new roommates, he finds love and acceptance. But their individual uniqueness is tame considering that the house has “special rules” that require the tenants to face disciplinary action as a means of correcting themselves.
Despite their age differences, Trent and Cory hit it off and find themselves falling for each other. For Trent, his new living arrangements aren’t far enough away from his family or the Church as his father uses any resources he can to destroy Trent’s love for his new landlord. As Trent’s dad tries to force Trent into a hospital where they can “cure him” of his gayness, Cory has to fight to save Trent.
This story was a bit different – not bad different, just different. The house at 959 Brenton Street is anything but ordinary. Not only do you have unique individuals living there, but there is this entire room devoted to “correcting” the occupants’ undesired behaviors via a breadboard wielded by the dominant Cory. I will admit, I like a bit of BDSM in my books, but I was a bit put off by the fact that this wasn’t just a D/s thing going on, but rather a D with several s’s – one of which was his own cousin.
Trent really needs a strong, dominant partner to help him learn to be who he wants to be. His innocence – both mentally and physically – are exactly what Cory needs in his life after being hurt and jaded. As a couple, these two characters worked and I hated to see the book end.
The secondary characters, who I assume will be featured in coming books in this series, were interesting and as a reader, I wanted to know more about these characters.
My one real complaint about this book was the whole religion theme. Don’t get me wrong, it is obvious that it was thoroughly researched, but it seemed to play such a major role in the story and came across as anti-religious. I know, religion and homosexuality aren’t exactly bosom buddies, but I prefer books where there is some promise that the tide is turning, rather than books where the focus is solely on the negativity. Again, this is a personal preference.
Overall, while I wasn’t a fan of the whole faith bashing aspect of the story, I will admit, I am anxiously awaiting the next in the series because I was thoroughly intrigued by the occupants of the house at 959 Brenton Street!
A review copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press.