Reviewed by JustJen
Title: Life After Living
Author: Max Vos
Heroes: Vance Spence/Wade Farmer
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 333 Pages
Publisher: Max Vos
Release Date: June 16, 2016
Available at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: Two men: each trying to cope with PTSD.
Vance Spence is suffering from yet another loss. The episodes are becoming more and more frequent. Only time will tell if he will be able to cope with yet another person leaving him.
Wade Farmer recently returned from Afghanistan only to have his family disown him for loving another man. He also is suffering from loss.
When the two are put together, neither are comfortable with the situation, but agree to give it a try. Two different lives. Two different men. Two different experiences, but common ground gives each of them understanding. Are they strong enough to battle their own demons as well as the others? Only time will tell.
Review: This is a wonderful story about recovery and starting over. Vance is trying to pick up the pieces after the loss of his husband. He suffers from episodes of PTSD attributed to events from his past. He runs a greenhouse which is sorely in need of workers. He gets some relief when he finds Wade.
Wade is a veteran trying to put his life back together after combat, from which he also suffers with PTSD. He is in a program that helps vets find jobs which lands him at Vance’s greenhouse. While both are hesitant at first, it quickly becomes clear how perfect this situation is for them. Each understands what the other is going through when they have episodes and instinctively knows what the other needs. They have an almost instant connection and their bond grows quickly. But, if you are looking for hot smexy times, you won’t get them here. There is some romance and a few scenes towards the end, but nothing is overly detailed. I didn’t miss it and had no trouble feeling the intensity and strength of their feelings.
This relationship is a bit unconventional. The men sleep together (not sexually), spend a lot of time naked (again, not sexually), comfort and care for each other in very touching ways. Neither man is ready or wanting to be in a relationship, but eventually, with the help of friends, they realize they are perfect for each other, exactly what each other needs, and that it’s okay to let themselves see it through.
There is a lot of showing in this story, often play by play accounts of their daily life. This feels awkward at first, but allows you to easily see how these guys could become so close in such a short amount of time. Everyone grieves differently and everyone lives their own lives. Who is to say what is right or wrong? This story shows that people have the right to do what feels right and what is best for them.
I absolutely loved reading a story about a program in place to help vets re-enter the workforce and help them get their lives back. In my opinion, these programs should be everywhere, and there should be waiting lists of businesses looking to hire them. If you love stories about second chances, this one fits the bill in more ways than one, and I definitely recommend you give it a try.
Overall Impression: I really liked it
*I received a copy of this book from the author in return for a fair and honest review.*