Noah and Ashton were born the same day to the same mother. But then, unknowingly, the twins were separated and switched at birth. Noah grew up with Liam, who he always knew as his twin brother, even if they looked nothing alike and barely shared any interests. Noah’s parents were wealthy and, even if his mother hovered over him, he had everything he wanted or needed. Ashton grew up with a sister and a single mother after his father died when he was young. His mother struggled to make ends meet and life was scary for Ashton at times.
When Noah and Ashton meet, their worlds are changed forever. They have an instant and deep connection and they start to want things they never saw for themselves…a family and forever. Their lives align perfectly and they can’t bear to be apart from each other, in or out of bed. But Noah and Ashton don’t know the truth and, when they do, it will change everything.
While the switched-at-birth trope is not new, I still could not wait to get to this book. However, I struggled with this story from the start. The book opens with twins being born and the lead up to the switch felt weak. The writing style wasn’t for me and I found it difficult to sink into this story, as it felt like it was fighting with itself. The dialogue was repetitive much of the time, reminding me of things that were just mentioned. Ashton is a “starving artist.” I know this because he tells us he has roommates because he’s a “starving artist”, he takes the bus because he’s a “starving artist,” he doesn’t have nice clothes because, again, he’s a “starving artist.” We are also told often how Noah and Ashton have “similar features.” I don’t have memory issues and I can follow along and I didn’t need all of these details constantly repeated, sometimes directly from one scene to the next, as it worked against the book and not with it.
There were moments in the book that were enjoyable, as Noah and Ashton find each other and build a relationship, but the dialogue is awkward, as many of the characters refer to each by their full names. Once or twice to make a point is valid, but this just made the conversations seem off. The pace of the book was off as well. The story is longer than it needed to be for me and, towards the middle, I kept waiting for something more to happen. Of course, there is going to be the reveal and there were other plot lines introduced that prolonged this, including a late in the book, over-the-top scene that had a caricature “bad guy” that was awkwardly put in and made the book messy and the pace overall could have been adjusted for a better flow.
Both Noah and Ashton are artists and Noah has had all of the advantages to make a name for himself. There is a decent amount of development for both men and there is a good sense of how they have grown up, but while the words of their connection are on the page, it never fully transferred off of it as I would have liked.
There was also one issue that made me want to stop reading when there was only about a quarter of the book left. There is incorrect medical information given that forms the basis for an important part of the story. This is not my opinion. The information is absolutely incorrect and it bothered me tremendously that it was presented this way. And, although I knew for certain the information was incorrect, a basic internet search easily confirmed this within seconds.
This book did not live up the expectations I had when I started and I will look for a better structured switched at birth story.