Reviewed by JustJen
Title: In the Absence of Light
Author: Adrienne Wilder
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 333 Pages
Publisher: Adrienne Wilder
Release Date: March 28, 2015
Available at: Amazon
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: For years Grant Kessler has smuggled goods from one end of the world to the next. When business turns in a direction Grant isn’t willing to follow he decides to retire and by all appearances he settles down in a nowhere town called Durstrand. But his real plan is to wait a few years and let the FBI lose interest, then move on to the distant coastal life he’s always dreamed of. Severely autistic, Morgan cannot look people in the eye, tell left from right, and has uncontrolled tics. Yet he’s beaten every obstacle life has thrown his way. And when Grant Kessler moves into town Morgan isn’t a bit shy in letting the man know how much he wants him. While the attraction is mutual, Grant pushes Morgan away. Like the rest of the world he can’t see past Morgan’s odd behaviors Then Morgan shows Grant how light lets you see but it also leaves you blind. And once Grant opens his eyes, he loses his heart to the beautiful enigma of a man who changes the course of his life.
Review: From the beautiful cover, to the title and the story in between, this is one heck of a well-written, well-rounded story that I absolutely fell in love with.
Grant has managed to steer clear of the FBI for years, not giving them a single bit of evidence of any wrongdoings. Even his boyfriend, who turned out to be an undercover agent, couldn’t find anything. But, Grant has decided to cut and run. Before he can safely do that, he must lay low until it is safe to access his other funds. He commences his 3 year play by buying a fixer upper house in sleepy Durstrand.
This story really grabbed a hold of me once Morgan is introduced. What a wonderful character he is. He is a functioning Autistic man who has overcome an extreme amount of challenges to be where he is today. He is so strong in so many ways, yet he is also extremely fragile. He doesn’t take crap from people, can take care of himself (for the most part) and goes after what he wants. This is all a bit difficult for Grant to fully understand, and he has trouble not jumping in every time he thinks Morgan needs help. Grant also struggles a bit initially with actually having a relationship with Morgan, not wanting to take advantage. Morgan shows Grant exactly how capable he is in one of the most unique and sensual sex scenes I’ve read.
One thing I loved about this story are the various struggles Morgan faced. He is such a unique individual who is beautiful in so many ways. I also really enjoyed Grant’s struggles, as they seemed very real to me. He realizes throughout this story that he falls prey to the very things he dislikes in other people where Morgan is concerned. He doesn’t always see beyond Morgan’s tics and other issues. But, Morgan isn’t afraid to remind Grant, nor to send him packing when his actions relay more than his words.
When I mentioned the cover and the title in relation to this story, it just connects consistently throughout. Morgan shows Grant so many things about light through his glass sculptures, etc. But when he truly shows him the man he is in the absence of light, it all comes together.
This story has it all, it really does. It is heartwarming, yet also heartbreaking. It has sad moments, but there is also a lot of humor, as Morgan is a snarky little bugger. The sex is off the charts hot. You never feel as though you’ve read this story before. It is truly one of my favorites, and by far, my favorite of Ms. Wilder’s. If you enjoyed Complementary Colors, you will absolutely love this one. It has many of the same elements. Ms. Wilder does an amazing job painting vivid pictures of characters with varying disabilities, and this one is top notch. I highly recommend it.
Overall Impression: It was amazing
*I received a copy of this book from the author in return for a fair and honest review.*