A heart-rending tale of second chances in love and life by Tarazona (A Better World, 2014).
A chance encounter at a 1991 screening of Thelma & Louise brings former lovers Michael and Frank together for the first time since their own summer fling near the Grand Canyon decades earlier. But their meeting is cut short by the return from the restroom of Michael’s wife, Nadja, a famous novelist for whom he’d broken off their relationship long ago. More than 20 years later, in 2014, Frank’s deceased aunt, Emma—whose spirit visits him on a biweekly basis—interrupts his tryst with a hot young lover to inform him of Nadja’s death from breast cancer. Unable to avoid the memorial, Frank can’t get Michael off his mind. However, Michael is busy coping with his grief, his wife’s estate, his art-lamp business, and his sometimes-difficult relationships with his grown children. Michael and Frank go on to deal with other life-changing events, including the vandalism of Frank’s art gallery and a scary medical diagnosis. Finally, Michael decides that he wants to be with the man he’s always loved. Michael’s son, Sebastian, accepts this turn of events without hesitation, but his pricklier daughter, Helenne, requires more convincing. In this touching novel of redemption and love, Michael receives poignant, beyond-the-grave advice from Nadja; she’d recognized Michael and Frank’s abiding love and left Michael a message to “Find him, before it’s too late.” The light paranormal element of Frank’s receiving visits from his aunt Emma, who will only enjoy eternal rest once he’s found happiness, enhances rather than detracts from the plot. The story’s ending may seem a bit pat, with everyone suddenly getting along and playing at being a happy family, but it softens what would have otherwise been a heartbreaking conclusion.
A lovely, sentimental gay romance with a very modern twist.