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Small Steps (Long Way to Happiness Book 1) Kindle Edition
|Length: 369 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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He begins to have feelings for Ben, but when they both find out the horrible truth, Sebastian heads into a tailspin, and Ben heads into closing himself off again.
Through time and the intervention of friends, they both find their way back to forgiveness and each other. Well written, I cried buckets and the feels were overwhelming at times. I loved it!
There were some triggers for me due to the fact of growing up with an alcoholic father. Chris wrote this beautifully. The story captured me. I would like to see Niko and Marco's story.
Ben coming into his life changes how Sebastian views the world, but he can't change his alcohol problem. At least not straight up. Then when the truth comes out about Sebastian being the cause of Ben's accident, it's that much harder for the couple of deal with. It's a very sad book and not one to read on a reader's downer day, but if you're looking for a story that will make you cry, this is the one.
Watching the friendship blossom was really awesome. Great friends, before the realization. Ben was fabulous and I really loved him. The pacing was a little slow and there was some drag to the book. I liked how it was set in Germany but I didn’t have to scrounge around to know what the heck the author was talking about because it was in English. Reminding myself they weren’t speaking English only hit me when the setting of the story was discussed.
This is a story about two men coming to terms with the cards they are dealt. Having each other help the other be stronger, braver, and believe in turning bad into good.
It’s a love story but it’s more of a living story.
Judging a Book by it's Cover:
Cover is not one I'd normally pick up to give a second look to. The composition feels too separatist. Vibrant red and yellows on an otherwise void palette feel angry and sickly. For me, it was the synopsis that grabbed my attention. Having suffered an abusive alcoholic's wrath myself, I'd wanted to see how this story would play out.
** NOTE: Sebastian abused alcohol, but was *not* an abusive alcoholic. There is a big difference between the two. Third person POV, set in Germany. Very little terminology used to remind you of that fact, however, outside the occasional mention of Frau, Herr, Euro, Kilo or Pint.
This is one of the only books that I've read where I was as disgusted and enraged at the characters as they were with themselves and/or each other. I cannot pretend to understand the situation either were in, but the continuous string of poor choices and the pity-parties were extremely annoying. I tried to like both characters and at times I truly kind of did. But, more often than not, the illusion was shattered by another poor choice. Let's say Ben is WAY more forgiving than I - which, in turn, frustrated me as well. But, in order to illicit even half of the feelings I felt, I'd have to have been invested in the book, right? Exactly! Ms. McHart wrote the book in such a way that you can and do get pulled into it, despite how you feel about the characters or subject matter. The author also somehow manages to crawl into the irrational mind of an alcoholic to portray and convey Sebastian's personality traits quite convincingly. However, in this case, I think I enjoyed the interactions of Niko and Marco more than our lead characters. The chemistry / compatibility between Ben and Sebastian was natural feeling and progressed slowly and gradually. The dialogue and interaction between characters was realistic. Ms McHart's writing style was smooth and provided an easy-to-read page-turner even when the subject matter and it's characters were not as easy. There are a ton of conflicts along the way, in which resolutions are not always resolved but rather overlooked, ignored or diverted. But, this cannot last forever. When things finally come to the pivotal climax, some better choices are made -although the pity party is still lingering. There was several minor predictions and a small minor surprise. The story ends in an epilogue that sufficiently wraps up the loose ends of the main characters while hinting at more to come from the secondary pair. I think I'd be interested in learning more about Niko's story, if there's one to come.
That all said, my ratings and score are not based on my personal experience, preference or overall opinions but rather on how well or poorly I felt the book written in general.
Heat Level: 4 [R] ~ Score: 3.9 ~ Stars: 4