by Celia Kyle, contemporary (2010)
Liquid Silver Books, $3.99, ISBN 978-1-59578-638-8
Oh look, we have a gay romance with Rock Bottom as its title. Hey, don't laugh. The title actually refers to the mental condition of poor Jeremy, as he's taken to hitting the bottle to relive happier days when he was with Peter instead of feeling all guilt-ridden over his death. Can Jeremy ever crawl his way out of the pits? That's what you will find out when you read this story.
Rock Bottom is interesting in that this is the first time I'm reading a serious story by Celia Kyle. This is a side of the author that I have never come across before, and I'm really pleasantly taken by surprise by this story. The story is actually quite uneven, with some parts - especially those involving Jeremy and Peter's twin brother - have me scratching my head while other parts have me feeling a little choked up inside. But when the story is working for me, it really works.
For me, the best moment of this story when finally Jeremy finally opens up and describes what happened that night when Peter died - it is hard to describe how that scene makes me feel, so let me just compare it to a photograph that manages to capture a moving subject in the perfect angle and pose. That scene is darkly humorous, morbid, and heartbreaking all at once - just perfect, really. The fact that shortly after this I am treated to one of the cheesiest happy endings I've ever come across demonstrates how uneven I find this story.
Rock Bottom is a short story, but it feels complete and the pacing is fine. All in all, this is a good read that lets me know that the author is certainly capable of delivering something more than funny sexy stories.
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