Friday, September 25, 2015

Release Day Review: Blue by D.P. Denman


Title ~ Blue

Author ~ D.P.Denman

Publisher ~ North Shore Press

Published ~ 25th September 2015

Genre ~ Contemporary M/M Romance



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Long before he was a successful songwriter and black-belt badass, Blue was a survivor.

He escaped a program designed to cure him. Instead, it left him near death with nothing to rely on but the kindness of a stranger. Hostile and headstrong, Blue needs a calmer influence to balance his fury. Someone to save him from himself.
Brady's life was quiet and orderly until fate sent him a blue-eyed hurricane. Bursts of temper and flashes of despair batter his efforts to quiet the storm in a man he doubts he could tame. One drowning in the wreckage of his past.
With a head full of lies and a body full of scars, Blue works to rebuild his life with the help of a man determined to prove sometimes trust is worth the risk.
Blue features one of the most popular characters from the Saving Liam saga! Destined for greatness, he reveals the past that made him the scarred bad boy readers love.
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Macky’s Review

I'm so glad DP decided to give Blue and Brady a spin off book. A couple of interesting, intriguing characters I really took to, and wanted more of when they became an integral couple in her poignant Saving Liam series. Blue in particular because the snippets we got of his disturbing past history, suggested yet another harrowing back story.

Like Liam and Justin's story, this highlights the heartbreaking plight of homeless LGBTQ teens rejected and turned onto the streets by asshole parents, because of their sexuality; only to be then targeted by unscrupulous predators or unconscionable, so called religious groups, whose idea of 'saving' these already confused, emotionally browbeaten boys is to beat, torture or brainwash the gay away!  

After escaping one of those godawful conversion therapy camps— badly beaten, physically branded and frozen to the point of almost being half dead— a fortuitous twist of fate leads Blue to the much older, established business man who becomes his saviour. Drawn to this damaged boy with no recollection of who he is or what has happened to him at this point; Brady ends up taking him into his home and with the help of Mary, his kind hearted nurturing housekeeper begins the long at times arduous journey of mentally and physically healing the young man, who because of his striking eye colour, he names "Blue".

It’s a special person who without thought or condemnation takes on such a momentous task and it soon becomes clear just how bighearted and caring Brady is. His well off financial status means he can afford to get the sort of medical help Blue needs and supply him with the materialistic things that could help aid the process. Things that as he slowly begins to heal start to give him a sense of purpose again and a reason to want to get through the emotional anguish, but it's Brady’s unselfishness, uncomplicated sympathy and unwavering patience with the skittish, unstable younger man that really shines through. Like Justin is to Liam, in the series that spawned this offshoot love story, Brady becomes Blue's rock. His safe place. Although being so damaged he doesn't always see that, so there are a few rocky moments between them.

And again DP Denman takes her two protags on a slow burn romantic journey. There's no insta love. No overt flirting. No jumping into bed within days of meeting...for a long time Blue is far too damaged to even let Brady touch him in a non sexual way...but there is a tentative attraction simmering gently in the background, growing slowly over the two year span of the book, and it's only after a lot of therapy, intense patience and the power of unconditional love that the situation feels right enough for Blue and Brady to contemplate taking their relationship to a more sexual level. When sex does finally enter the equation it's hot and sensual but also tastefully choreographed and appropriately placed in the progression of their realistically paced relationship.

Kudos to Ms Denman for pairing a man on the cusp of forty with a late teen/early twenties guy, who has so many issues and sexual hang ups you cant ever imagine him fully getting past them. Handling it so beautifully and sensitively that said age difference didn't even appear as a blip on my radar...and that's from a reader who isn't a lover of May to December based romances.

I have to say calm, centred but still passionate Brady was absolutely perfect for conflicted, dysfunctional Blue. All I saw was a touching love story unfolding between two men who despite their obvious differences, were quite simply meant to be together and it was lovely witnessing Blue find his safe haven with the lovely man who let him get there in his own way.

Out of all the books I've read by DP Denman, Blue is now my favourite. I thought it was beautifully written, moving and shouts loudly that this is an author who cares deeply about the subject matter and characters she writes about...and she made me care too.

Personally, I'd liked to have been taken even further into the darker side of Blue's past before he found Brady. It's addressed but as this is more about his healing, the horror is not made any less, but it is slightly muted because of being told in retrospect rather than experienced.

I love having my emotional reactions pushed to their limits so if I'd 'lived' Blue's time at the hands of the men who broke him, this book could have had me sobbing at those moments. As it was I didn't actually cry but I was deeply moved. I think had I been ‘shown’ more it would have made top stars but it's still a very strong, compelling read and I loved being a part of Blue and Brady's path to love. Recommend this highly.


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Connect with D.P.


DP Denman writes character-driven m/m romance about survivors. Her stories are real and intense but always resolve in the type of ending that makes readers want to start the book all over again. She is from the Pacific Northwest and bases all of her stories in Vancouver, British Columbia, a city that is dear to her heart.
In her spare time she is a dedicated gay rights activist fighting for those who have been marginalized and abused. To that end, 25% of the royalties from every book go to support LGBT charities.


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