This is a story about life and death. Because there has never been anyone else for Jens. He had been with Sofie almost all his life, from the day they met at school when they were fifteen, until the day she took her final breath against his chest. She was always everything to him. As he was to her. He never doubted that. Not for a minute.
This is a story of hope, where Axel Kleve keeps himself too busy to even stop and think. Work, sleep, eat, repeat. He loves his job as a Midwife at Oslo’s University Hospital, He’s good at lecturing and training, and now he has somehow been pushed into running “Ask Axel,” a midwifery blog on PNN.no, the parenting-site everyone in Norway trusts.
This is a tale of second chances. Jens, he doesn’t let himself think of Axel. He doesn’t think of Axel at all. And Axel needs to stop longing for that one crush he’s never been able to leave behind. It’s just plain ridiculous. He should have got over Jens Sommerfeldt years ago.
A song about family and love and happiness found in small doses. Of trying to parent when you don’t know how. Of finding love where you always knew it lived.
This is the story of a little harbour. The place in your heart you didn’t know was there.
Little Harbour by Sophia Soames from December 17 – 21.
Genre/s: M/M, contemporary romance
Heat Rating: 4 flames
Length: 135 377 words/468 pages
It is a standalone story and is the first book in series of stories set in Scandinavia.
A story of love and grief, second chances, and family life. An M/M GFY-ish romance, featuring a hoard of feral children, a stolen pram, a Midwifery blog and an ill advised stint on TV. Oh yes and a Man who has lost hope and another who never gave it up.
“Can I have a hug? Please?” Axel asks. He can’t help it. He needs one. He needs to know that Jens is still Jens. His Jens. The one who hugged him every time they met up all those years ago. Jens always hugged him to say hello. Always hugged him goodbye. Always. He needs Jens to still be Jens.
Jens doesn’t hug him. Jens body slams him, so hard Axel thinks he might fall over. Stumbling backwards while Jens’ arms are squeezing him, so hard he can’t breathe, and there is hot breath against Axel’s neck and it is so Jens. All-consumingly Jens. Allhim.
“I fucking missed you so much.” Jens whispers, his voice hoarse and quiet.
I’m all yours.” Axel whispers back. “I always was.”
Where to start…..
I guess, first, hey hot cover! Second…we have Jens, who we meet about a year after losing his wife. He’s left with 4 kids varying in ages, 16 to 2 and he’s having a hard time doing it on his own. All of that though, takes a backseat when he runs into a blog/forum on where to get his 2 year old fitted for new shoes.
Now, Axel is a midwife, never settled down because he’s always loved Jens and starts a blog right when he gets reintroduced to his long lost friend, Jens. I was confused, because I thought it was supposed to be a mommy blog sort of thing, or like, a midwife kind of blog, but it’s really just a journal entry about his relationship with Jens. The whole thing reads like one big journal entry… and boy is it looooong.
So, after knowing each other in school and separating because they were falling for one another and Jens had a girlfriend who later became his wife… 20 years go by before they meet again. Jens has a family and Axel never moved on, so they jump right back into this relationship that seemed to have been on pause for Axel for the last 20 years. That didn’t seem fair to me and I hated that for him.
I also didn’t like the wall of attitude he got from Jens oldest daughter, though I completely understood why she’d be huffy about it… it was just exhausting…. She’d spout off and be hateful one second and then the very next line, they were having a normal conversation…then she’d be hateful again and he’d spout something and then friendly again. I was exhausted by 15% and I wanted to slap the attitude out of her and wash her and Mortens mouth out with soap. Let my 12 or even 16 year old tell me to F off, they’d both be sporting matching fat lips. And there is texting…. Soooo….much….texting…..
I didn’t like the dialogue. Third person is hard for me. I can go a lifetime without saying someone’s name while speaking to them.. and this was like… Jens thinks Axel is tired. Axel whispers yes, Jens knows. Or, Hey, Axel, come here Axel, I need to ask you a question Axel…. Like, really? Did you need to say his name three times in one sentence? It just irks me. Maybe I’m being too picky, but it was hard for me to get over.
However…. If you can get over it, which I did, because come on… hot dad, lots of kids, second chance.. this is my kryptonite…. And it’s actually a beautiful story of second-chance romance between two men who loved each other so much, a family who needed what Axel gave to them, and a man who’d gone twenty years loving a man he thought he’d never have.
It was long and sometimes messy, but.. such is life. I kind of lost it at the end, if you read the bonus scenes, you deal with unimaginable loss and I’m hearing people react terribly about that, and normally, I’d be one of those people… but, come on… they had the rest of their lives together, forty more years together, that’s a whole lifetime to some. There’s a trigger warning, and heed that people who don’t like it, because I was left gutted. Ugly cry, for sure… but still… death happens and in my overinvested mind they met again and got to live out eternity together. Here’s to hoping at least.
If you like second chance romance with a rowdy, crazy family and two hot dads…. Don’t pass this one up… It’s long, but worth it in the end.
4 pieces of eye candy
Sophia Soames should be old enough to know better but has barely grown up. She has been known to fangirl over tv-shows, has fallen in and out of love with more popstars than she dares to remember, and has a ridiculously high-flying (un-) glamourous real-life job.
Her long-suffering husband just laughs at her antics. Their children are feral. The AuPair just sighs. She lives in a creaky old house in rural London, although her heart is still in Scandinavia.
Discovering that the stories in her head make sense when written down has been part of the most hilarious midlife crisis ever and she hopes it may long continue.
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