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The Nothingness of Ben [Kindle Edition]

Brad Boney
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (139 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Ben Walsh is well on his way to becoming one of Manhattan’s top litigators, with a gorgeous boyfriend and friends on the A-list. His life is perfect until he gets a phone call that brings it all crashing down: a car accident takes his parents, and now he must return to Austin to raise three teenage brothers he barely knows.

During the funeral, Ben meets Travis Atwood, the redneck neighbor with a huge heart. Their relationship initially runs hot and cold, from contentious to flirtatious, but when the weight of responsibility starts wearing on Ben, he turns to Travis, and the pressure shapes their friendship into something that feels a lot like love. Ben thinks he’s found a way to have his old life, his new life, and Travis too, but love isn’t always easy. Will he learn to recognize that sometimes the worst thing imaginable can lead him to the place he was meant to be?

Editorial Reviews


"Brad Boney's debut novel, The Nothingness of Ben, is absolutely amazing. It is a beautiful story of love and hope that will completely captivate you as the Walsh siblings and Travis Atwood become a family following a terrible loss. I never felt like I was reading a book. Instead, I felt like I was right there with the characters, experiencing their emotions and reactions to events as they occurred. The Nothingness of Ben is a quiet but incredibly compelling novel. A+ and a Recommended Read." -Book Reviews & More by Kathy

"What I enjoyed the most is the slow development of Travis and Ben's relationship. Their friendship is a thing of beauty, and they have the most fun dialogue ever." -Pants Off Reviews

"Brad Boney's debut novel The Nothingness of Ben is well written, filled with characters of surprising humanity and originality; a romantic comedy where engaging, decent, funny people try to do the best they can to help one another through a difficult time." -Jessewave

"The brothers are a joy, each with his own personality, hopes, and dreams. None are cookie-cutter characters, but each shines as he must deal with the much older Ben. And Travis is the frosting on the cake, holding the entire piece snugly together. This is a book that will live in the hearts of readers for a very long time. As for myself, I can't wait to read Boney's next book. A Desert Isle Keeper Review." -All About Romance

A Lambda Literary Awards finalist.

Product Details

  • File Size: 643 KB
  • Print Length: 248 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (November 22, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00AC3D9LW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #77,363 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
There is a wonderfully engaging story here and if this is the writer's debut it certainly deserves more than 5 stars. I love a well conceived family drama plotline in my MM romance and this one certainly meets my expectation and more. Not the usual stereotype at all. I love that the centerpoint of this story is about brotherly love. This one on how 3 young brothers need their much older brother to measure up to his responsibilities amidst the tragedy is so well told. And I love that Ben becomes a better man as a result. I really enjoy the dynamics among the brothers. Quentin, Jason and Cade are such great supporting characters, each with a distinct personality. On the romance, Travis is the usual gay for you which I do not favor much. But once I got over that fact I find myself rooting for these two guys. I find the development of their romance credible and convincing and their reunion is so well done. I also appreciate that "just right" angst level here; no vindictive ex-lover, a close friend who is almost a brother and an almost friendly gay setting for the story even if it is good old Texas. I enjoy this writer's style and look forward to much more from Him. Great debut indeed! And I have to add I really appreciate just that right amount of sex here!
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended Read! November 23, 2012
Brad Boney's debut novel, The Nothingness of Ben, is absolutely amazing. It is a beautiful story of love and hope that will completely captivate you as the Walsh siblings and Travis Atwood become a family following a terrible loss.

Reeling in the aftermath of his parents' death, Ben Walsh steps up and becomes the guardian of his younger brothers, Quentin, Jason and Cade. Barely able to take care of himself, let alone three teenagers, Ben depends on neighbor and friend Travis Atwood to help him with their daily routine. Their close friendship soon turns into a romance that is quickly complicated by the stresses of Ben's new life. When a misguided attempt to introduce his brothers and Travis to his old life in New York does not go quite as planned, Ben must make some difficult decisions about his future and exactly what role, if any, Travis will play in it.

Mr. Boney's character development of lead protagonists Ben and Travis is exceptional. They are immensely likable, well-rounded and so realistic they leap off the pages and right into your heart. They are not larger than life heroes, but every day, average men trying to find their way during life's harsher moments. Their struggles are realistic and they make mistakes. But it is what they learn from their mistakes and how they find solutions to their problems that makes The Nothingness of Ben such an magnificent story.

Quentin, Jason and Cade are typical teens. Of the three, Quentin is the most angry about Ben's perceived desertion of their family. He is skeptical that Ben will come through for the boys and he does not cut Ben any slack. In addition to his grief over his parents' death, middle brother Jason is fighting his own battles and he is keeping secrets from Ben.
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a good story November 25, 2012
By bill m
Format:Kindle Edition
Amazon should have a separate rating category for first-time authors; if it did, this would rate a 5+ on the scale. It's a well-told story and should hold your interest from the earliest paragraphs until the end. It's nice to see a talented male writer in this genre - much of the stuff written by women is unbelievable sex-drenched material without even an attempt at the thinnest plot, but maybe that satisfies the females who undoubtedly constitute the majority of buyers of romance stories. Still, gay men have a better handle on real life and m/m love than that stuff gives us credit for (which isn't demonstrated by some male authors of m/m romance, unfortunately). Boney demonstrates a lot of talent and no little erudition with this one -- he should continue to write and people should continue to read his work - TNOB is well worth both the price and your time taken to read it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars good May 16, 2013
By Mike
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I enjoyed the story. It was not necessarily new. The premise was fresh but the formula of gay romance novels was predictable. There's the stage will they or wont they. Then finally sex. Then tension. Then break up. Then make up. It's as though every one of these stories has a law to abide by.
The writer is talented and I enjoyed getting into this book as a temporary escape. I wish there were more sex though, but perhaps Im just a perv.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lovely story February 28, 2013
By Anulira
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I read this in one sitting last night, and really enjoyed it. The characters showed depth and growth over the story, and were presented as real people, humans who are unsure, full of bravado, arrogant, scared, fallible. I was initially ambivalent about the main character, Ben, as he seemed a bit too selfish to be completely likeable. However, I really grew to appreciate that he was - just as we all are - really completely human, not some plastic fictional cutout of who we think likeable people and perfect characters should be. He came across as a fully rounded "real person", warts and all. I quickly came to realise how refreshing it was to actually read a character whose motivations I CAN truly understand, because he hadn't had his rough edges and imperfections sanded down before publication.
Whilst Travis was a joy to read, a character I rooted for and liked from the start to the finish, Ben's character in the end, became the star of the show, because we were given a privileged position and access to his internal motivations, as he dealt with an exceedingly difficult situation, juggled responsibilities, tried again and again to figure out what was the right thing to do, and through all of it, grew from his lazy self-categorisation as gay hotshot New York lawyer, to parent/guardian figure, brother, confidant, friend and dependable lover.
With regards to the writing style, on the whole it was an easy, pleasant and well-written read.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars This novel is very good. Perhaps I missed something
This novel is very good. Perhaps I missed something, but I didn't understand how the title applied to the book. It seemed that Ben's life was full once he moved back.
Published 23 days ago by Charles E. Bernard Jr.
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Read
This is my first book by Brad Boney, but it will not be the last. Real people in real situations populate the story and make it hard to put down.
Published 1 month ago by Bob Palmatier
5.0 out of 5 stars <3 Ben and Travis <3
*Contains Spoliers*

Ben is a big shot lawyer in New York, he's got a life with his best friend Colin and new boyfriend David. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Jennifer Wood
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautifully written story about love, loss and finding yourself
I absolutely loved this book!! Brad Boney wrote a story that made me laugh, cry, hurt, and feel so much joy and I loved every minute of the roller coaster ride. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Dawn Honeycutt
4.0 out of 5 stars Review by Rich
The novel is essentially a relationship story between two polar opposites. A lawyer name Ben and a red neck mechanic name Travis drawn together to raise Ben much younger brothers... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Hearts On Fire Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars The Nothingness of Ben - review
Another book for the young adult and also for a wider audience. The story of the family and the devastation caused by the death of both parents in a traffic incident and the... Read more
Published 4 months ago by knj
5.0 out of 5 stars so very nearly 5 stars!
**AUDIO REVIEW** (I purchased this via

Ben Walsh is faced with bringing up his three younger brothers after the death of their parents in a car crash. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Debbie
5.0 out of 5 stars made my heart swell with love and adoration for these characters
I loooooooved this story! The journey that not only Ben and Travis took, but the boys too, made my heart swell with love and adoration for these characters! Read more
Published 5 months ago by GEG
5.0 out of 5 stars Happy Accident Find
I am so glad I happened to click on this book by accident. I was browsing some books by my favorite authors and I kept seeing them mention the book Eskimo Slugger by Brad Boney,... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing!!
Amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can't even tell you how good it was. It was amazing. Amaaaaaaaaaaaaazing!! I literally could not put it down. Read more
Published 5 months ago by J. Avila
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More About the Author

Brad Boney lives in Austin, Texas, the 7th gayest city in America. He grew up in the Midwest and went to school at NYU. He lived in Washington, DC and Houston before settling in Austin. He blames his background in the theater for his writing style, which he calls "dialogue and stage directions." His first book was named a Lambda Literary Award finalist. He believes the greatest romantic comedy of all time is '50 First Dates'. His favorite gay film of the last ten years is 'Strapped'. And he has never met a boy band he didn't like.

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