Wednesday, December 2, 2015
Unmasking Zach by Edie Danford
Unmasking Zach by Edie Danford
Review by Lauren
Source: copy from Netgalley; all opinions are my own
Official Summary: Before heading for grad school, Zach O’Malley needs downtime from his superhero worthy schedule. Painting houses seems like the perfect summer gig for some mindless mellowing out.There’s just one wrinkle in Zach’s Zen plan. Coworker Kirby Kurtcehajic, a hippie kid who starts hitting on him with happy and hardcore voracity three seconds after they meet. And has the ability to make his mind and body leap with a single smile.Kirby would be the first to call himself a cockeyed optimist, but even he admits he’s had a tough year. After busting his knee, losing his cat, and accidentally demolishing his Vermont house, seducing way-too-serious Zach is the ideal distraction.But when another spectacular mishap lands Kirby in crisis, Zach puts on his superhero cape to come to the rescue. And as boundaries dissolve, Kirby realizes he may be in too deep. Because the end of summer is coming, when Zach will be moving on, and Kirby will have to continue his quest for independence—alone.
Review: Unmasking Zach was such a moving story and I would definitely love to read more by Edie Danford. Zach and Kirby are both working during the summer by painting a house. Kirby keeps trying to proposition Zach, but Zach doesn't do casual. He had a serious boyfriend in college and it's a story of over/sort of on pause for the summer. Zach will be leaving for grad school in the fall, so things could pick up again. However, Zach eventually gives in to Kirby's advances, with them both deciding that they can do a summer fling without getting attached. Unfortunately, things happen that keep things from going to plan.
Kirby finds himself really falling for Zach, and he tries to remove himself before getting too hurt. Zach can't really let Kirby just walk away though, especially not when Kirby obviously needs help. Both of these guys are pretty independent and strong, but Kirby definitely lives life by himself. He can't do this when he gets hurt though, and Zach is too much of a superhero to let anyone be on their own when they so obviously need help.
The differing natures between these guys definitely causes some rifts and anger, but it's obvious that they both really care about each other. But Zach is going away, and Kirby is staying. How do you reconcile that with strong feelings developing between the two? I really liked that this book is very much a story about a relationship and finding one's place in the world, without it being just the relationship. There are mature, detailed moments, but there is also a story that surrounds it. There is family, friends, work, school. There is learning to hold on, learning to let go. There is anger, love, resentment, and pain. I find that many m/m romance stories don't last all that long, but this was a longer, detailed story that really allowed me to get to know these characters.
Basically, I really loved this one. I loved Zach and Kirby, but I also loved the overall story and all the characters that inhabit their world.