Title: The Boys of Summer
Author: Sarah Madison
Genre: Contemporary (Interlude Historical WWII)
Publisher: Sarah Madison (April 14th, 2013)
Heat Level: Moderate
Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥4 Hearts
Blurb: Working for a California-based film production company, David McIntyre is the go-to man for matching the right location to the right project for the right price. On an extended trip to Hawaii, he hires Sutton’s Air Service to cart him all around to some of the most exotic locations in the South Pacific. During one of those trips, a freak tropical storm forces them to make a crash landing, leaving both men stranded without a radio and with very little in the way of food and water. Rick Sutton’s injuries make it imperative that they be rescued soon, and David finds himself calling on all his professional skills to keep both of them alive.
It takes a vivid dream about WW2 however, to make David realize that he has real feelings for Rick—more than just his natural concern that both of them get out of this mess alive. But putting his heart on the line might be the greatest risk David has ever taken—does he have the courage to make it before time runs out on both of them?
Product Link: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/306320
Review: Well, first of all, I’d like to acknowledge the beautiful cover work for this book. It’s fantastic and put me into a proper mind-space for the book.
Second, I’d like to stress the fact that this is a self-published work, so the typos and grammar errors I found on the way, especially at the second half of the book I’m not going to count all that much, mostly because they were not horrible and did not affect my reading enjoyment.
And now the story.
This is not the typical “we had a plane crash and fell in love while waiting rescue” story. From the very beginning, it had an underlined humor and a slow-build of intensity that grabs your attention. David is the character from whose point we see things and his personality comes forth early on. He’s the typical Hollywood guy, or so it seems, and everything about him screams hilarious. He’s the guy that will come up with a line from a movie for everything happening in real life and his knowledge on things is great. He is actually very intelligent, something we rarely see on Hollywood-types. Rick on the other hand is quite the opposite. He rarely speaks unless what he has to say is worth hearing; he’s serious and keeps to himself. He’s something of a mystery almost through the entire book.
So when the plane crashes you expect that Rick will take matters on his hand fending off a crazed Hollywood drama queen. Right there we get pleasantly surprised with Rick of course doing all he can, since he’s wounded, but David shows some real strength and determination, and an iron will to survive and keep Rick alive.
The second surprise that I had not seen coming was the fact that there is total lack of the “only two people on earth and let’s start screwing our brains out” factor. There is no jumping each other’s bones here while our characters are strangled in the island, only the slow build of emotions and feelings. On one hand I recognize the brilliance of this approach. It was damn invigorating to read a book where the realistic approach has been given proper weight. On the other hand though it made the ending somewhat surreal, but I’ll come back at that in a bit.
So the WWII historical story comes in the form of a dream. David has been quite stressed and exhausted trying to keep Rick in health long enough for the rescue team to find them. He’s also suffering his own wounds albeit smaller that Rick’s. The entire desperation of their situation hits him and in his dream, reality and fiction merge together. The story is quite wonderful indeed. It was partly inspired from Alan Turing’s life and work, partly on the WWII pilot’s and their sacrifices. I loved it. The thing that got me more was the fact that the author took parts of the prime story and blended them within the dream in a great way and indeed she gave life at the illusion of David hallucinating due to his circumstances.
So far I was utterly convinced that this was a 5 hearts read for me, unfortunately the end of the book didn’t satisfy me as much as I thought. David displays a side of him that I totally despised, a major drama-queen act that had my jaw hanging, and Rick; well I don’t know what to make for his final façade. If that was the real Rick than I’m very disappointed. Their relationship escalated in one go so fast, so furious that the “surreal” feeling didn’t let me go for many hours.
However, even though the end of this story let me down, I did enjoy the story in its entirety quite a lot. The writing skill was very good, the blending of contemporary and historical was of my taste and the intimate scenes as they were, were excellent for me.
So if you love a good romance with a bit war desperation blending in this is a book you’d love to read. I certainly enjoyed it.