American Love Songs - Ashlyn Kane
I'm fairly certain this is the only contemporary M/M book I've read where sex has not be the dominant element of the story. Some of the characters were rather slutty, but that all happens "off screen." The reader isn't dragged through page after page of sexual encounters, and it's not the basis of the primary relationship. That is something I really appreciated and liked. Make no mistake though, it is erotica. When it does happen it goes into excruciating detail. I also liked the casual, joking style of the writing. And that most of the music mentioned is actually good music. I really didn't like the footnotes. I don't get it. Seems silly to me to take me out of the story to switch to a footnote that isn't at all worth my while. These could have easily been in the text of the story. The only ones that made sense are the ones that were signed comments from Jake or Parker. I would have understood it more if all them were like that.The story jumped around a lot. It kind of reminded me of The Night Circus (the only difference is this book actually has a story). Something would just get going and then it would jump in time and there would be no resolution of what was happening (and it was really hard to tell how much time had passed). People would show up and disappear, never to be seen again, or mentioned again very quickly (how much better would it have been to actually spend some time with Mickey and Becca and the rest of Jake's family?). There were about a thousand steps in Chris's story that were skipped for the end of the book to have the resolution it had. If you're going to introduce the side-story, don't ignore it because it doesn't have anything to do with the main point of the book. Because of this I found it hard to connect with the characters.I think that's one of the biggest problems I had with Jake and Parker's relationship. There was a disconnect for me there and I just didn't find it as cute as everyone else did. I think it's because there was a lot of telling and very little showing. We didn't really see Jake fall in love, just suddenly he was. And then it was off like a bullet train, jumping from point to point in the relationship without the natural progression of getting there. The other biggest problem I had was the way Parker reacted to Jake. I thought he was horribly unfair and had no right to question Jake to that degree or make him feel that way about himself. If you really can't trust your best friend to that degree, is he really your best friend? It made it hard for me to root for them.