Kiss Me Again by Garrett Leigh is a worthy choice if you thrive on slow-burning MM romance with complex characters and heavy angst.
When it comes to romance, I’m an impatient reader who likes feel-good stories with a touch of humor and captivating writing. You know – the kind that pulls you in and never let’s go? I didn’t get that from Kiss Me Again. Instead, I experienced an intense, harsh love story following two soulmates as broken emotionally as they were medically – Ludo is bi-polar and impulsive while Aidan is grumpy, suffering the aftermath of a near death experience that left him with a shattered leg and chronic pain.
I struggled to stay engaged during its sluggish beginning; it was frustrating! However, I have no doubt that some readers would appreciate the realistic pace that set the stage for deeply passionate scenes between Ludo and Aidan. As far as Kiss Me Again is concerned, good things definitely come to those who wait.
Be aware that a dark cloud of insecurity and hopelessness follows each page as their friendship gradually tests its chance at romance. Leigh puts forth a tale that hardly sugar coats the complicated struggle of love between emotionally off-kilter characters who connect at their own pace; tentative and sensitive to the sore edges of their vulnerability.
The writing is well-done, very British, and fascinatingly descriptive. The story itself respects the real-life romantic experiences of those who love with a mental illness in a sensitive way that’s both admirable and evocative. As an animal lover, I appreciated how the main characters relationships with their companion animals were weaved effortlessly into the story. They brought smiles to my face when I needed it most, especially during some of the heavier scenes laced with hopelessness.
Kiss Me Again is a book that you’ll need to be in the right mood to enjoy – with ample time dedicated to engaging with the words on the page. Case in point: I found myself re-reading some parts after realizing I skimmed too fast and missed some of the beautiful details that would have helped me better appreciate the small, but meaningful nuisances that characterized Ludo’s and Aiden’s communication style, character growth, and happily ever after.
Ultimately though angst isn’t my cup of tea, I have nothing but respect for Leigh’s ability to successfully tackle such a sensitive, romantic subject with professionalism and medically-accurate depictions. As a reader, I could tell every piece of this story was crafted with heart, compassion, and thoughtfulness. Kiss Me Again is a high-quality book that a patient, “keep it real and raw” crowd would most appreciate.
Garrett Leigh is an award-winning British writer and book designer with a large portfolio of MM, bisexual, and polyamorous books. Please check her out at http://www.garrettleigh.com/
You can also check out this review on Goodreads here: 4/5 stars.
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