Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Review: Yanni’s Story (Spencer Cohen #4) by N.R. Walker

yannis storyTitle ~ Yanni’s Story (Spencer Cohen #4)

Author ~ N.R. Walker

Published ~ 27th August 2017

Genre ~ Contemporary M/M Romance

Rating

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Synopsis

When Yanni Tomaras is kicked out of his family home, his parents’ final words are religious insults and an order to never return. Homeless and desperate, he’s lured in by Lance—charming on the outside, an evil predator underneath—who abuses Yanni until he finds the courage to leave.

Yanni should feel free. But by the time Spencer Cohen finds him, he’s resigned to being handed back to Lance and once again being caged by fear.

Starting school and a part-time job, Yanni begins to reclaim his life. But a love for silent films leads him to Peter Hannikov, a man with a kind heart but who’s twice his age. An unlikely friendship between them blooms into so much more. Neither man knows what he wants, at first. Finding out exactly what he needs is Yanni’s story.

“I’d spent years as a bird, caged with my wings clipped, tormented and beaten.
I thought I’d escaped when I’d left my abuser, but in hindsight, I could see that I was still caged, this time by fear and self-doubt.
Spencer and Andrew, and Andrew’s parents, opened the door to the cage that confined me.
But it was Peter who taught me how to fly
.”

120,000 words.
Trigger Warning: Descriptions of violence, suicide, and sexual assault. Reader discretion advised.

 

Jane’s Review

Yanni’s Story can be read as a standalone but is also part of the Spencer Cohen universe. Yanni has been inadvertently rescued by Spencer, who luckily realises what is going on between his client Lance and Yanni. Yanni has escaped his abusive relationship with Lance, which came on the back of being thrown out of his home by his parents for being gay. When we meet Yanni he is truly broken, a desperate young man. Your heart will just go out to him and it got me thinking of all the other LGBT young people who find themselves in similar circumstances, it's just heartbreaking!

Spencer takes Yanni to his partner Andrew’s parents’ home. As well as being well known thespians, they run an organisation that helps people like Yanni get back on their feet, find safety, accommodation, education, employment etc. With their help we see Yanni begin to heal. Andrew's parents Helen and Allan Landon are truly remarkable people, they become Yanni's family and help not only Yanni but some other characters that we meet too. Yanni’s therapist Patrice is a big part of the story and integral to Yanni’s progress. As part of his therapy he's encouraged to go out and socialise and meet new people. Through Spencer and Andrew he meets the sweetest, older man Peter Hannikov. They share a love of silent films and so begins a beautiful friendship as neither person is in the right space to pursue anything further. Peter is such a sweetheart and he makes Yanni feel safe and comfortable, never pushing for more than Yanni wants. They start texting more frequently and this segues into a more involved, romantic relationship. The pace of this development is perfect, no instalove, no immediate sexual relationship, the timing  seems to progress alongside Yanni’s healing process.

As Peter is older he does worry about the age difference a bit more than Yanni does, but this age gap lends another layer to their relationship as Yanni is introduced to ‘Daddy/Boy kink’. This is kept quite light, no heavy BDSM just another interesting slant on their relationship and one I thought was quite fitting for Yanni as Peter is quite clearly a caretaker and Yanni desperately needs to feel safe and cared for. It's also really hot!

This book is not a hearts and flowers kind of romance, though there is plenty of that, what Yanni goes through may trigger some readers so heed the warnings. It is an emotional read because of this and NR Walker’s beautiful, emotive writing always makes me feel things so deeply. It was lovely to see Yanni heal from being homeless, desperate and not able to trust anyone to having a wonderful, fulfilling relationship, a career, a voice and family and friends. I loved this emotional May/December romance. I highly recommend this even if you haven't read any of the Spencer Cohen series before, though if you're familiar with the characters you get a bit more of a satisfying feeling as though all the loose ends have been tied up nicely. I loved it.

Purchase Link

AMAZON GLOBAL LINK

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The Spencer Cohen Series

spencercohen1Spencer Cohen Book One

Spencer Cohen is the guy who gets answers to relationship questions. Playing the role of the new lover, his job is to make his client’s ex realise one of two things: he doesn’t want to break up or he really does. Either way, his client gets answers.
The ex would either apologize and beg, or turn and walk. But in the end, Spencer’s client won. If he wanted his ex back and got him, it was great. If the guy walked away, then as hard it was for the client, he knew it was over. Regardless of the outcome, Spencer’s work was done.
Andrew Landon’s ex left him without so much as an explanation. But his sister can’t stand to see him miserable, so, much to Andrew’s dismay, they hire Spencer to be Andrew’s new boyfriend to get the ex back.
For Spencer, it is never personal. Merely a business transaction. No emotions, no strings, no complications.
Yeah right.
Even a blind man could see how this would end.

Review :: Amazon

spencercohen2Spencer Cohen Book Two

Finally going from fake boyfriends to the real thing, Spencer Cohen and Andrew Landon are trying to take things slow. They know what they have could be something special and despite the flammable sexual tension, they don’t want to crash and burn.
Spencer is learning to open up and share the secrets of his past with Andrew. Afraid to put his heart on the line but unable to stop himself, Spencer knows he’s falling in love. Andrew is petrified of leaping in blindly, yet the slower they go, the faster they fall.
As they navigate their new relationship, Spencer worries Andrew will freak out when he takes on a new client. But it’s not a normal case, and Spencer soon realises all is not what it seems. When the job takes a downward turn, Spencer and Andrew work together to help the client. They’ll need to decide if they’re ready for the next step.

Amazon Global Link

spencercohen3Spencer Cohen Book Three

Learning to be in a committed relationship has been easy for Spencer. In fact, too easy. Andrew has fit into his life seamlessly. Spencer’s let go of his insecurities and hang-ups, and he and Andrew are enjoying where things are headed.
For the first time in years, Spencer’s life is unbelievably perfect.
Andrew overthinks everything. So when Spencer gets a phone call from Australia, he’s certain Spencer will push him away.
But instead of driving them apart, maybe it will solidify what they already have. Maybe Spencer will depend on Andrew more than ever. Maybe the Spencer Cohen story will come full circle, and maybe, just maybe, Spencer will have the happily ever after he never thought possible.

Review :: Amazon

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Connect with N.R. Walker 

N.R. Walker is an Australian author, who loves her genre of gay romance.
She loves writing and spends far too much time doing it, but wouldn’t have it any other way.

She is many things: a mother, a wife, a sister, a writer. She has pretty, pretty boys who live in her head, who don’t let her sleep at night unless she gives them life with words. She likes it when they do dirty, dirty things... but likes it even more when they fall in love.

She used to think having people in her head talking to her was weird, until one day she happened across other writers who told her it was normal.

She’s been writing ever since...

Email: nrwalker@nrwalker.net

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