When they first met at a punk festival, Eileen and Sorrel had a fun and drunken encounter. Now, six years later, they match on a dating app, and Sorrel reaches out, hoping they aren’t too young for Eileen now, considering that was part of the reason Eileen walked away before. Sorrel is struck by how beautiful Eileen is, and wants nothing more than to just spend time with her. For Eileen’s part, she still worries about Sorrel’s age, but she’s willing to have fun with them for as long as it lasts.
Eileen is searching for a new couch, and Sorrel suggests they search together. But the attraction between them won’t be denied, and after that first date, they get together again. Things definitely heat up between them and the date turns sexual. Both Eileen and Sorrel find true satisfaction with the other. But even more than that, they find someone who can let them be who they really are.
When I read the blurb for this one, I immediately knew I wanted to read it, but I also knew it would be the perfect book to review this week for Under the Rainbow Week in our Reading Challenge Month. Eileen is trans, Sorrel non binary, and both are looking to just simply be themselves. I was absorbed in the book from the first page, and raced through each word, loving the story.
Verity crafts a tale that, even in its shortness, really conveys the depth of what these characters are going through. More than that, the author really manages to give readers an in-depth look at where the MCs are mentally and what has brought them to this point. Both characters are well developed and fully fleshed out and we see a lot of that in how they think about and react to one another. Yes, it’s short, but so much is on the page.
Part of that is, of course, the sexual encounters, and the chemistry between the MCs just leaps off the page. Part of the raw connection between them is their sexual attraction, to be sure, and just how well they fit together. But also, and perhaps the biggest draw for me, is how they made each other feel accepted and cared for, as they are, and that really made a difference.
This story worked for me on just about every level. The writing was crisp and clean, while also feeling poetic. The characters were well drawn and fully fleshed out. The romance is off to a good start, and even though it’s definitely just a beginning and an HFN, it’s not hard to imagine these two getting to a forever place if they put in the work on themselves and their relationship. Overall, this was everything a short story should be and I wholeheartedly recommend it.
This review is part of our 2021 Reading Challenge Month for Under the Rainbow Week! Leave a relevant comment below and you will be entered to win a fabulous paperback book bundle from Carina Press (you can see the details on the bundle in our Prize Preview post)! Commenters will also be entered to win our amazing Grand Prize sponsored by NineStar Press: a Kindle Paperwhite loaded with 50 NineStar Press books! And don’t forget if you read along with your own challenge book this week, you can earn ten contest entries for writing a mini-review on our wrap up post on Friday! You can get more information on our Challenge Month here (including all the contest rules) and more details on Under the Rainbow Week here.