Us Again by Nell Iris is a reread, but it’s been so long I’d forgotten the details, so it was like a fresh lovely read!
Treadmill ~ Sun., 18-Sept. > Mon., 19-Sept.
That’s a screen shot of my Apple watch workouts that were recorded while on the treadmill. My goal is to read while walking on the treadmill for at least one 30-minute mile per day.
Two 30-minute stretches were plenty for this lovely novelette.
This story is about Alex and Sammy, who are getting a second chance at love after Sammy’s brother, David, alerts Alex that Sammy is in the hospital.
Their story is told from Alex’s 1st-person present POV.
Here are a few choice snippets, mostly picked because they are lovely descriptions, something Nell excels at…
I would recognize the man waiting for me outside the hospital doors as Sammy’s brother even if I hadn’t known he’d be waiting for me. They look so much alike, yet nothing alike at all. It’s unnerving. David is much taller and broader than Sammy. Maybe twice as wide across the shoulders. They have the same high cheekbones, dark, manga-sized eyes, and wide mouth, but David lacks the softness that I love so much about Sammy.
“Yeah.” I lift my head and look at Sammy. There’s something so vulnerable about his generous mouth and big brown eyes that used to look at me like I hung the moon. Even more so now, with his eyelids closed and his lips downturned in sleep. I move the chair closer and sweep my thumb over the back of his hand before carefully brushing his hair off his face. His hair used to shine like the sun, but now it’s dull and lifeless. “My God, Sammy,” I whisper.
This one is in italics because its from a long flashback scene (the story opens where the second chance is about to happen, but it’s nice to get that glimpse into their earlier days together, too).
He finished in silence, but I didn’t take my eyes off him for a second. His skin was flawless and looked like the finest silk. When he was focused on a task, he moved with economy, so unlike the earlier fluttering. And his hair, falling over his eyes and curling slightly over his ears, called to me, and I had to sit on my hands so I wouldn’t run my fingers through it.
Alex is talking to Sammy, and David is Sammy’s brother.
His eyes are little more than narrow slits, and he squeezes them shut and opens them again slowly, as though he’s making sure I’m not a hallucination. He turns his hand and laces his fingers with mine, making my breath stutter to a halt.
“What are you doing here?”
“David called me.”
“David called you.” It’s not a question, more like an unsurprised statement. “Why?”
I sweep my thumb over the back of his hand. “Because you’re in the hospital.” I keep my voice low.
My hands twitch and I shove them under my thighs. “I needed to make sure you’re okay.”
He sighs. “That makes sense. It’s who you are. Care Bear with the huge heart.”
The sound of his old nickname for me makes my eyes and throat burn. I try to swallow it down and close my eyes, but the image of him snuggling against my chest, his fingers playing with my fur as he presses kisses to my skin, whispering, “You’re so cuddly, Care Bear,” pops up on my retinas, and I force myself to look at him or I’ll definitely start bawling.
I started out with this being a Sunday thing, but sometimes I’d rather not mash multiple books into a single post, so now, you never know when you might see one of these posts.
Rather than give a true “review,” which I’m not entirely comfortable doing as an author myself, I share snippets from books I’ve read and enjoyed, letting the authors’ words speak for themselves.
As you’ve possibly noticed, if you’ve been following along, I highlight snippets for reasons of my own which might veer from what is often seen. Sometimes my highlights have more to do with a paragraph simply impressing the heck out of me for its fabulous writerly technique, other times it has to do with the lovely way it gives subtle insight into the story/characters. Still other times simply because it made me laugh.
Anyway, I sometimes add a little commentary, but not always, which is not in any way, shape, or form, to be taken as unwritten commentary. Most likely it just means I’m short on time and/or context isn’t needed to understand what’s happening, and/or my brain doesn’t feel like putting out the effort in that particular moment.
Also, I’m going to try to spread the book love by tacking on covers of more books at the end of the post that I’ve either recently read, am currently reading, or want to read. Not seeing a full post with snippets for any of these books is not a commentary on anything other than how much time I have available in a day either to read or to create a post about what I’ve read. It might also mean I listened to the audiobook only or that it’s a reread that I’ve featured previously, or it’s not M/M so probably not a good fit for featuring on this blog.