Love Means…Courage by Andrew Grey

Prequel to Love Means…No Shame

Dreamspinner Press

Erotic Gay Contemporary

ISBN: 978-1-61581-060-4

Reviewed by Cassie

 

   

 

In high school, Len Parker nursed a secret crush on Cliff Laughton.  He never expected anything to come of it, despite a kiss they shared at a party.  He moved on with his life, and Cliff later married his best friend, Ruby.  Len goes to the wedding and rediscovers his friendship with Ruby.  Then Ruby is killed in a car accident, leaving Cliff alone with their little boy, Geoff.

Not long afterward, Len loses his job, and Cliff’s sister tells him Cliff needs help at his farm.  Len takes the job, but soon finds he’s bitten off more than he expected.  Cliff is shattered by Ruby’s death, and it may take a lot more than Len expects to bring him out of it.  On top of that, Len’s old feelings for Cliff seem to be returning.  Can Len help Cliff get it together without losing his heart?

Love Means Courage is a sweet story of holding onto love no matter what happens.  It was impossible not to like Len, whose caring and concern help Cliff find his way back to the world again.  Cliff is pretty great too.  He’s a wonderful father and a good man.  Secondary characters, such as Cliff’s family, Len’s supportive mother, and Cliff’s adorable son Geoff, are well-drawn and add a lot to the story.  Watching Len and Cliff find a way to be together is enjoyable in part because it’s so sweet, and also because the emotions feel authentic.  They ease into a relationship after a few fits and starts, which makes sense.  It couldn’t have been easy to come out in the early eighties, in a small town / farming area.  While some of the conflicts are resolved a bit too easily, and there’s less resistance to Len and Cliff’s relationship than I would have expected, Love Means Courage won me over with its easy pace and sweet romance.

     

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