Hi, there! Welcome to another gay book review! And I have another one scheduled for later, mwahaha mwahaha! *evil laughs* I think I should change my blog’s name to The Gay Book Adventures of Annelise Lestrange, haha! Just kidding, not going to happen, but I’d do this name a lot of justice.
ANYWAYS, let’s talk about the star of this review? I received The Hidden Life, by Erin Noelle, from Love Affair With Fiction in exchange for an honest review and to do my blog stop today 🙂 The Hidden Life is a spin-off novella of The Perfect Life, but I didn’t need to read The Perfect Life to understand and love The Hidden Life 🙂 Erin advises us readers not to do that; she says you should read The Perfect Life first, so I apologize by being a rebel and ignoring her warnings, haha!
Seth and Colin are the best of childhood friends. They are that kind of duo that does everything together and is on that intimacy level in which they can read each other’s minds just by standing near each other.
However, Colin has a secret. Something he thought he hid well enough and that absolutely no one knew. Colin is a gay boy in the middle of a feverish Catholic family and is the quarterback of their high school team – aka, the most popular guy ever.
What Colin didn’t know was that Seth had two secrets. First, he knew about Colin. Second, he wished to be with Colin. After whoring his way on Colin’s rejected girls for years, Seth realized that the only bed he truly wanted to be in was Colin’s.
And that was the begging of two things: their romance and their hidden life.
Just remembering that those were my impressions and opinion as a reader 🙂
OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG I HAVE NEVER READ ANYTHING LIKE THE HIDDEN LIFE OMG!
Seriously, this book was so intense, so realistic, full of feelings and unusual that I read it all in one sitting! When I blinked, it was all over and I was left DESPERATLY NEEDING MORE! Not enough to actually take an interest in The Perfect Life (we’ll talk more about this later), but enough to wish that this book was a full novel instead of a shy spin off!! Due frustration over its size and thinking that three key scenes on Colin and Seth’s amorous life were missing on this novella, I give it 4 proud stars!!
The narrative style was first person from Seth’s point of view. We get a Colin glimpse on the Epilogue, but I wish I could have seen more of him telling the story, haha! I loved Seth since page one, he is just brilliant AND HE IS A FREAKING JOURNALIST JUST LIKE ME OMG!
Noelle’s writing style is a work of art on its own. Simple, delicate and strong, she grabs your heart and twist during the whole novella, making you grab your seat and the paper bag of the nervousness to accompany you on this adventure. Often enough you could find me like this last night:
AND IT FELT SO GOOD! *–*
The plot was simple and complex at the same time. I quoted Frank Herbert a couple of times already, but once again, his words are true here: “There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story”. Being in a gay relationship on a scenario that makes it even more socially harder than it sadly is only increases the stress and problems of the couple. I wish Noelle had took her time to develop more their history together, their romance, and not just knitted together some of the major turning events of Colin and Seth’s lives. Noelle had such a wonderful idea for The Perfect Life, why couldn’t she fully tell this story again from another perspective? I doubt her fans would mind and she would win bores like me as additions to her fan base.
You may argue back: “oh Annelise, but the author already wrote the book, why don’t you get your ass out of this computer and go reading it?” Well, because I’m a true bore with my straight contemporary romances 😦 I don’t feel I could finish a book from Monroe’s point of view, as I didn’t like her enough for that. Especially a first person narrated book. I’m almost positive that I would end up being mad at Monroe and this would ruin the rest. The only case scenario that I can see myself reading The Perfect Life is if someone showed up and gave me a paperback copy of it, haha! See why I wished The Hidden Life was more complete?
Also, I felt that three key scenes were missing on this novel, being it told from Seth’s point of view. I can’t say which those are due spoilers, but I can tell you that there is no sex in this book, just a bit of foreplay. And surprisingly so, the sex was one of the key pieces here.
But moving on to good aspects: characters! I may have not cared much for Monroe, but I can’t say a thing against her construction. All characters were awesome and I felt their identities as I read the novella. Noelle is that kind of writer that makes the reader feel like they always knew how the characters are, as if we all are great childhood friends. HOW DOES SHE DO IT?!
Obviously Seth made it to My Bookish Boyfriends list, being awesome, hot and a journalist 😉 I didn’t add Colin because while he is all hot and perfect, he is also a big egocentric type. Only Seth can throw Colin out of his pedestal, so no Colin for me, haha!
Overall, if you like contemporary romance, quick reads, jaw-dropping twists, hot journalists and unusual marriage arrangements, you should grab The Hidden Life 🙂
Thanks for reading my review! I’ve done a big book blitz post for The Hidden Life earlier this week, so I’ll ask you to read it here for info on The Perfect Life, where to purchase both books, about the author and regarding the amazing giveaway that is being hosted for this tour 😀
Also, a big thanks to Love Affair With Fiction for my review copy! The Hidden Life blew my mind away 😀