Too Like the Lightening
Posted in Book Reviews on June 21, 2022
Andrew's life seems to be falling apart. First, he lost his teaching job at a small college when the staff had to be downsized, and that led to the breakup of his relationship with his partner, who also happened to be the department head. To help him get some distance and a new perspective, Andrew's best friend offers the use of her husband's old family retreat in a small Florida town for the summer. On arrival at the small house in the middle of nowhere, he's greeted by the stunningly beautiful son of the caretaker, who shows him around and seems just as sweet as he looks. There's definitely a mutual attraction, but the age gap and the limited time Andrew will be around holds him back.
In some ways, “Too Like the Lightening” reminds me of an American version of the recently reviewed Davo. In broad outlines, they're very similar: Two men from very different worlds who can't help but give in to an irresistible attraction to each other despite the limited time they seem destined to have together. But, beyond the broad-stroke similarities, these are two very different stories.
The book is entirely from Andrew's point of view. A bit beaten and battered by life, he is a sympathetic character. We get a rather vivid picture of someone who probably lives in his own head just a little bit too much. He's certainly a flawed hero, but it's still easy to appreciate the seemingly no-win situation he finds himself in with Corley.
We only get to know Andrew's love interest, Corley, through Andrew's eyes. Even discounting Andrew's very rose-tinted perceptions, the young man seems very sweet. He's depicted as full of youthful exuberance and optimism, although by the end, I got the impression that perhaps Corley was probably the more mature one in the relationship. That seems to be a common aspect of age-gap relationships, even in the real world.
The Big Dramatic Event of this story is baked into the plot from the very beginning. It's no surprise, as the characters even agonize over it as the book progresses. What keeps you turning the page, or swiping left in the e-book, is seeing how it will play out. It definitely didn't go exactly the way I expected, which made it all the better.
“Too Like the Lightening” is available from Amazon.