Book Reviews

No River Wide Enough by Mel Bossa at Less Than Three Press

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Romance
Reviewed by Lena Grey on 10-May-2018

Book Blurb

Two years ago, Chris and his boyfriend escaped the turmoil of the big city to settle in a small town at the US-Canada border. Eager to settle into forever, Chris bought the Frontier Café and Bakery. A year later, his boyfriend dumps him, leaving Chris the only gay man in town and resigned to a life of romantic solitude and baked goods. 

Hank is a loner who's spent the last ten years travelling through the country for his job as a water plant engineer. Deeply closeted, he's extremely careful about the men he meets. Like the rivers he studies during his travels, he flows fast through the land, never slowing down enough to be caught.

In town only for a few weeks on a water treatment facility project, he's intent on getting the job done and returning home out west to take care of his father. But when he sets eyes on the local ginger baker standing behind a table full of decadent desserts, the temptation is too much to resist.


Book Review

“If you need me, call me, no matter where you are, no matter how far. Just call out my name, I'll be there in a hurry. You don't have to worry 'Cause baby,there ain't no mountain high enough. Ain't no valley low enough. Ain't no river wide enough to keep me from getting to you.” ~ Tammy Tyrell and Marvin Gaye (Ain't No River Wide Enough)

Still reeling from being abandoned by his ex-boyfriend, Chris, of 'No River Wide Enough' by Mel Bossa, is trying to make sense of his life without him. Trying to be philosophical, Chris admits that even without his ex, he loves the small border town, the people, and his work in the bakery he co-owns with a local woman named Drika. Chris throws himself into his baking, as he usually does when he is upset, and tries to keep a low profile, not wanting to cause any controversy about being the only gay man in town. Chris has resigned himself to a lonely, but otherwise happy life.

Things change when Hank, a water plant engineer, comes into town. After a traumatic experience of two years, Hank has decided that being out is not worth it so he avoids involvement with other men. Also, Hank's father who is an alcoholic, difficult, homophobic man makes his life even more difficult. But, when Hank meets Chris, the handsome, talented young man with baking skills out of this world, it gives him pause. Chris is almost positive that he's getting the interested vibes from Hank, yet, he is playing the pull me-push me game that Chris finds extremely irritating. Finally, Chris takes the initiative and gives Hank his address, a clear indication that he is interested. Still, Hank isn't taking him up on getting together. He wants to, but his fear is keeping him from acting on it, until Hank gets the nerve to actually make it to Chris's front door where Christ welcomes him in. Even then, Hank doesn't want to stay too long for fear that someone will see him and put two and two together. It's not the best of situations but Chris agrees to keep their relationship under wraps, at least for now.

All too soon, it becomes clear that the site in town Hank is evaluating, is not appropriate. Chris knows Hank will be leaving soon, but by this time, they are both deeply involved with each other. When Hank's job is over, he has to go back home to deal with his father who has gotten kicked out of every nursing home in the area for being so contrary. The fact is, his father wants to live with his son, but there's no way Hank can tolerate him. Hank has tried all his life to be the son his father wants but it seems like nothing he does is ever good enough. Heaven forbid that he find out that Hank is gay! Hank and Chris don't know exactly where they stand although they have promised to keep in touch; however, they don't know when or if they will ever see each other again. The entire situation leaves Chris feeling like he “let him get away” without trying to keep him there with him.

This is a great endearing, but realistic look at what being gay in the 1990s was like. The degree of tolerance varied from place to place, but I was happy to find that, for the most part, the townspeople liked Chris and accepted him for who he was – a kind, patient man with a good heart who won many of them over through their stomachs with his desserts and pastries. I loved Drika, the co-owner of his shop and a very open-minded and good friend, as well as his best friend, Shirley, whose friendship and advice saw him through many difficult times. If you like endearing stories about out and proud gay men, good baking, miscommunication, redemption, and happy endings, you may enjoy this story. Thanks, Mel, for the touching story of the power of love.

 

 

 

 

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

Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 67000 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 11-April-2018
Price $6.99 ebook
Buy Link http://bit.ly/2EDKphL