Book Review by DMac: Out of the Shadows, by K.C. Wells

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Out of the Shadows, by K.C. Wells
A Dreamspun Desires Novel
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: August 15, 2017

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

summary

Can he step out of the shadows and into love’s light?

Eight years ago, Christian Hernandez moved to Jamaica Plain in southern Boston, took refuge in his apartment, and cut himself off from the outside world. And that’s how he’d like it to stay.

Josh Wendell has heard his coworkers gossip about the occupant of apartment #1. No one sees the mystery man, and Josh loves a mystery. So when he is hired to refurbish the apartment’s kitchen and bathrooms, Josh is eager to discover the truth behind the rumors.

When he comes face-to-face with Christian, Josh understands why Christian hides from prying eyes. As the two men bond, Josh sees past his exterior to the man within, and he likes what he sees. But can Christian find the courage to emerge from the darkness of his lonely existence for the man who has claimed his heart?

tropes-tags

M/M Pairing
Gay Characters
Contemporary
Friends to Lovers
Slow Burn
Isolation
Character with Disability
(highlight above for spoiler)

This book was a well written, slow burn romance with realistic relationship pacing and interesting characters. This is probably not for you if you want a steamy, fast moving book. This was a sweeter, more emotionally involved, and slower moving book.

The book was built around the premise that Christian didn’t leave the house because… reasons (no spoilers!!). But it would not have made sense if he started dating someone he just met right off the bat, and got super steamy with them. The way Wells wrote Josh coming in and getting to know Christian,  coaxing him out of his shell a little bit, made this story a believable romance. Sometimes I roll my eyes at romances where they are immediately like, “I love you!” / “You’re the one for me!” and it’s been 50 pages. Totally cool if that’s your thing but I like a realistic build-up.

I also liked how Wells balanced Christian’s insecurities by also having him push himself to go out more. Josh gave him confidence in a believable way, not forced. Part of why I enjoy romances is seeing how the author has people grow together. To me that’s what a healthy relationship (romantic or platonic) is all about, so I really like when an author writes it well.

Something else I liked was that Christian wasn’t depressed, just scared to go out (I don’t want to spoil the reveal, so I’m being vague with this!). This made the story more upbeat, despite the fact that it had a recluse in it, and also made it believable that Christian would agree to go outside his house despite not doing so in years.

There were also a group of supportive, well-developed secondary characters that added depth to the story. Josh’s friends gave Josh a way to work through his feelings without it being an internal monologue. It added depth to the story by making it not about two people in a bubble. That’s not really realistic to me, and while it can make a story low drama, it also makes it kind of flat and two dimensional.  

This book was a good romance that was focused on the emotional connection between the two MCs. There’s a lot of relationship-building before they even get together, which I really enjoyed, and this made their relationship more believable since Christian needed more coaxing than someone else would have. It made sense to have a slow burn relationship instead of them just jumping into it.  

more-from-author

K.C. Wells started writing in 2012, although the idea of writing a novel had been in her head since she was a child. But after reading that first gay romance in 2009, she was hooked.

She now writes full time, and the line of men in her head, clamoring to tell their story, is getting longer and longer. If the frequent visits by plot bunnies are anything to go by, that’s not about to change anytime soon.

K.C. loves to hear from readers.
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KCWellsWorld
Twitter: @K_C_Wells
Website: http://www.kcwellsworld.com

You can purchase Out of the Shadows from:
Publisher
Amazon
iTunes
Google Play
Barnes & Noble

Or add it to Goodreads

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I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.

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