Book Reviews

Lost and Found by Rick R. Reed at JMS Books

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Romance
Reviewed by Serena Yates on 07-November-2019

Book Blurb

On a bright autumn day, Flynn Marlowe lost his best friend, a beagle named Barley, while out on a hike in Seattle’s Discovery Park.

On a cold winter day, Mac Bowersox found his best friend, a lost, scared, and emaciated beagle, on the streets of Seattle.

Two men. One dog. When Flynn and Mac meet by chance in a park the next summer, there’s a problem -- who does Barley really belong to? Flynn wants him back, but he can see that Mac rescued him and loves him just as much as he does. Mac wants to keep the dog, and he can imagine how heartbreaking losing him would be -- but that's just what Flynn experienced.

A “shared custody” compromise might be just the way to work things out. But will the arrangement be successful? Mac and Flynn are willing to try it ... and along the way, they just might fall in love.



First edition published by Dreamspinner Press, December 2016.


Book Review

The characters in ‘Lost and Found’ and their dilemma – both love the same dog – made me feel for them from the moment I read the blurb. But then the beginning of the story, with Flynn realizing the dog he sees in the park a summer after he lost Barley is actually Barley, broke my heart. Flynn so clearly misses Barley, and has been beating himself up because he failed to find him, that I wanted him to “demand” his new owner return him on the spot. Only things are never that easy, and what follows is an emotional testament to the depths of love possible between a pet and his human – or, in this case, a pet and both his humans.

Flynn goes through an emotional roller coaster when he finds Barley again after having given up hope. His first impulse is to want him back, especially since Barley still recognizes him. Mac has gotten attached to “Hamburger”, the dog he rescued from starvation. Handing him over is inconceivable to him, even though he can see there is some sort of a bond between the dog and this stranger who says he used to be the dog’s owner. In fact, that attachment is so clear and strong that Mac’s only possible reaction is complete denial, a made-up story about having owned him since he was a pup, and immediate flight.

The thing is, Mac is a decent guy, so his conscience won’t let him alone. Lying, even to a stranger and for a “good cause” is just not what Mac does. Talking it through with his old landlady – who is quite the character as well as in love with the dog – only makes things worse because she makes Mac feel empathy for Flynn and that is not something Mac wants to have to deal with.

Both men have a lot to deal with as they work through their feelings, encounter each other again, and begin to understand the other’s situation. Barley gets involved in finding a resolution in his own way – and I think I liked that part most of all. What they come up with is practical at first – or so they tell themselves. But it soon leads to more and even though I was hoping that what I saw was the “writing on the wall”, as they say, there was more than one twist and a few unexpected turns in the story before all three characters - Flynn, Mac, and Barley – got the ending I hoped for and they deserved.

If you love dogs and the people who take care of them, if you think that two men who start out with opposing interests can find a way to compromise and be happy, and if you’re looking for an emotional read that is as heartbreaking as it is sweet, then you will probably love this novel as much as I do. It’s funny, true-to-life, and touched me deeply.

 

 

 

 

DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by the publisher for the purpose of a review.

Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 63877 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 06-November-2019
Price $4.99 ebook
Buy Link https://www.jms-books.com/rick-r-reed-c-224_245/lost-and-found-p-3023.html