Book Reviews

Can't Say Goodbye by Eden Finley

Genre Gay / Contemporary / New Adult / Menage MMM / Erotic Romance
Reviewed by Bob-O-Link on 24-February-2023

Book Blurb


Our quick hellos are followed by drawn out goodbyes.

What started out as one fun night turned into a regular thing none of us ever planned for.

I can’t walk away from Kit and Prescott. Kit is the stern nurturer I need. He’s the caretaker, the solid presence. Prescott enables my wild ways. He’s someone I can have fun with. They couldn’t be more perfect for me.

But come graduation, I have to move across the country, and geography isn’t our only obstacle. Being in a relationship with two men isn’t good for my public image, my brother’s NFL career, or the media frenzy that surrounds my famously queer family.

We have a plan to meet up once a year, but with every reunion, every brief visit, we fall deeper.

There has to be a breaking point, something that will end it for us, or soon it will be impossible to say goodbye at all.

Book Review

Having recently read and reviewed the wonderful ‘Franklin U’ eight-part series, produced by eight diverse authors, I have eagerly succumbed to the next related tale, confected by Eden Finley, the ultimate and successful Franklin U seriologist!


‘Can’t Say Goodbye’ continues with the family featured in ‘Football Royalty (Franklin U 8)’. As with all that series’ installments, it promises a HEA. Nonetheless, as in a “fun” horror movie, on the path to the HEA we are induced to suffer doubts, shrink in occasional fear, and even mildly cringe. That’s akin to roller coaster riding, as well as reading some gay lit. Of course, if angst is your fetish, may I recommend ‘Anna Karenina’, ending with the heroine waiting on the rail track for the oncoming train, or ‘La Boheme’ as Mimi, despite being tubercular, loudly sings herself to death?


Here I should note that the thing about presenting a successful throuple is not merely overlapping pairs, but rather, preserving individual identities. The emotional (and sexual) chemistry seems to require three men so aligned that merely any two of them are insufficient to successfully create LOVE. So we come across the original pair, Kit and Prescott, as distinct personages (not merely bare attachments to their respective sexual equipment). “We are not a couple. We are best friends. Roommates.” That makes the eventual merging with Brady less unlikely. Brady is young and horny. Kit is a take-charge person, but quite gentle. At heart, Prescott wants more but at the same time seems averse to any emotional attachments or a ‘coupled’ future.


Damn, here is a note: Unlike many authors of erotic novels, Eden Finley’s attention to descriptive details does not require the acquisition of naked miniature doll figures to enact the sexual exploits, and just to understand the physical dynamics. Hooray for coital clarity!


‘Can’t Say Goodbye’ is a literary olio, starting out (and, thank you! continuing) with hot, explicit sex. But it also educates and elucidates about sports, sports agency, and complicated family inter-relationships. Coming out in professional sports posits the most contradictory postures between hyper-masculinity and classic fagdom. Thankfully, neither is really axiomatic in the real gay community. Author Finley has well-merged those orientations in plot and character. The main figures are real, identifiable, and recognizable. Any of them could be us – were we so lucky. Until the HEA arrives, we are immersed in genuine people and their concerns.


The reality: Prescott is emotionally distant, Kit is secretly in love with this “friend”, and Brady – though only in his early twenties, is sufficiently mature to “want a threesome, not to wreck someone’s relationship.” Brady is the most complex in his presentation: When challenged by Kit as to who is in charge, Brady “shudder(s) because it’s the exact kind of thing that turns me on. I want to ask them to boss me around. I want them to make me beg.” Both impatient and hesitant, Brady is like Tabasco or a lemon twist, as some kinks that are the exact seasoning needed to avoid a prosaic experience. Yet, Brady will become so much more as the novel proceeds – with “a natural instinct to take care of people… and the selfish need to be the center of attention in bed.” Could this be the ultimate philosophy of a throuple whore extraordinaire?


One thing that elevates ‘Can’t Say Goodbye’ from merely erotic to quality gay lit is the careful balance between the throuple’s physical expressions and their emotional growth – otherwise, the reader could just as easily settle for detailed scatological writing on lavatory walls!’


Enough! My joy in reading the book tempts me to quote and quote. Then, sadly of course, you would not need to read it yourselves. As always, Eden Finley has an exquisite touch. The story is genuine and captivating. The sex is… erotic? Explicit? Often novel? Perhaps most importantly, perfectly suitable to the characters involved as they explore the dynamics.


Unlike many quickies, geared just to find ‘em and f—k ‘em, ‘Can’t Say Goodbye’ becomes an appropriately extended saga, leaving much room for plot development and personal growth, both justifying the construct. Smart repartee, useful for flow and to ease tension, is plentiful (i.e., “Tell me, was it your humble side that everyone liked so much?” “That and my dick.”)


The novel works because, as in life, a tripod creates standing stability. Initially, Brady has it just correct: “I want to double-check that you two are cool with doing this? I want to come between you two, but I don’t want to come between you… if you get what I mean.” Ultimately, their throuple isn’t just about sex, but about owning each other.





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been purchased by the reviewer.


Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 330 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 25-January-2023
Price $5.99 ebook
Buy Link