Teacher Dane Bernard is a gentle giant, loved by all at Summitville High School. He has a beautiful wife, two kids, and an easy rapport with staff and students alike. But Dane has a secret, one he expects to keep hidden for the rest of his life—he’s gay.
But when he loses his wife, Dane finally faces his attraction to men. Into his life walk two men who will change everything. He can’t deny his feelings for teacher Seth Wolcott, who is beginning his life anew. And bullied but out and proud freshman Truman Reid shows Dane what it means to love yourself, in spite of all the obstacles the world throws at you.
Coming out, coming to terms, acceptance, heartbreak and falling in love…. The first day of school is the start of a truly life-altering year for the three men, who are about to start a new journey together.
Title: Big Love
Author: Rick R. Reed
Release Date: April 4, 2016
Category: Contemporary, Coming of Age
Big Love is my first introduction to Rick R. Reed‘s writing. I wasn’t sure what to expect after reading the blurb since there were three people mentioned, one of which being a high school student. While I figured that meant it wouldn’t be a menage, I didn’t know if maybe they met and then met again years later. Anything was possible.
As it turned out, Truman was not in a relationship with Dane and/or Seth, but he did play a pivotal role in bringing the two of them together.
How you feel at the end of this book is going to depend largely on what you want going into it. If you’re looking for a romance with two men falling in love, this might not be the best book to pick up. That was what I thought I was getting into, and I felt like I didn’t really know why I should believe that Seth and Dane love one another by the end, or even what the attraction was other than both of them being gay adults in the same small town. The only intimate moments are fade to black, and even then I didn’t feel a real connection. Then, there was a truly bizarre moment that seemed out of character, both in what Seth did and in how Dane reacted.
All of that being said, if I don’t think about the book as a romance, but as a work of gay fiction, it worked well enough. Although it’s passed off as a romance between Seth and Dane, it was truly the story of Dane and Truman growing to accept who they were as gay men.
Truman, an obviously gay high school student struggling to survive day to day teenage life. Seth, a teacher new to the school and openly gay and running from a cheating ex-boyfriend. And Dane, an English teacher with two children who just lost his wife to an auto accident who has been hiding that he is gay since he was a teen.
The three lives intersect when Truman’s struggles get to be too much for him. As Truman embarks on a journey of self discovery it opens Dane’s eyes to what he has been missing out on by being too scared to be himself.
Truman must learn to be comfortable in his skin, as Seth settles into life in a new small town and Dane learns that who he is, is who he’s meant to be as long as he can convince himself and his children.
I really enjoyed this book. Truman’s struggle was so beautifully written that it made me want to just reach out and hug him. It was amazing to watch him become comfortable with who he was and add some sass to his personality. Watching Dane and Seth’s relationship develop with a slow burn was a beautiful thing.
The overall story was well developed and entertaining. I was up until 5:30 AM reading because I couldn’t put it down. My only hope is that one day Kirk gets his own story because everyone deserves happiness no matter how they start out.
4 pieces of eye candy