Coffee, m/m, Romance

[Short Story Review] Storytime By K. Lynn & Eight O’Clock Ground Dark Italian Espresso

Storytime By K.LynnTitle: Storytime
Series/Universe: Standalone
Author: K. Lynn
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Publication date: September 30th 2015
Page Count: 34 pages
Age Rating: Adult (explicit sexual scene)
How I got my hot little hands on it: Received an ARC to review
Publisher’s page: Storytime

Since the death of his partner a year ago, sci-fi writer James Murphy has lived a quiet, secluded life. But at the urging of his agent, he finally makes an effort to rejoin society. His first step is volunteering for a weekly storytime at the local library. The decision seems like a good one when he meets the children’s librarian, David.

Bright and engaging, David somehow manages to make James feel like everything will be okay. But when mutual friendship leads to a budding romance, the move forward could be too much for James. Leaving his past love behind once and for all might be a step he’ll never be ready to take.

My Review

In his first attempt to get out of the house and move on with his life after the death of his partner a year ago, author James Murphy decides to volunteer for storytime at his local library. It’s not long before he develops a fascination with the children’s librarian, David, who just happens to be the spitting image of his dead lover. The fascination and attraction is mutual and the two start dating.

Storytime is well-written, but very short and not really in-depth. It’s pretty much just a little window into the very beginning of James’s attempt to jump back into the dating world with David. The two literally meet, flirt, go on two dates and then engage in a little bit of hanky panky.

I was a little uncomfortable as it seemed throughout the story that James viewed David as Paul 2.0 (Paul is his deceased partner).  David looks exactly like Paul did when he and James first met 22 years ago. James and David go on their first date to the restaurant where James and Paul had their standing weekly date night (their second date is at the home James and Paul shared). Paul was James’s muse and now he can see David filling that role. And, lastly, James explicitly states that “no one had made him feel this way except Paul”. Now, I know there is going to be some overlap, but it kind of felt like there was some kind of transference going on – I would have loved to see that explored more.

Over all, the story felt a little incomplete to me, I would have really liked to maybe see David and James address some of the problems that arise when dating widower, but I understand that there just wasn’t time for that. Even though I wasn’t completely into this particular short story, I did enjoy the writing and would read the author again.

James and David have their first date at a nice Italian restaurant with “old-world charm”. As a perfect way to cap off a romantic Italian dinner, I recommend Eight O’Clock Ground Dark Italian Espresso – a very bold dark, rich espresso roast with a great chocolaty finish and no bitterness.

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