Top positive review
Deftly poised between action and reflection, and ultimately enthralling
8 January 2014
Book three in Nick Alexander's 50 Reasons series starts on a high.. with Mark finally having got it together with Tom and them setting off for a long summer holiday together in a VW camper van, to Italy.
Having trouble finding space on a campsite one night, they are directed to an off the beaten track farm by an Italian policeman. Tom falls quickly under the spell of its 'off the beaten track' owner Dante, and the alternative 'opt out' lifestyle that he and the farm represent.
As Tom becomes ever more seduced by Dante's idea that to live off the land is the true benchmark of quality of life, Mark begins to have doubts and worries about their relationship, and more sinister misgivings about Dante's seeming control of Tom.
As always in this series, it is Mark's internal worries, insecurities and feelings that add real depth to the, at times, gripping action of the plot here. We can all relate to these in our own lives and our own relationships with others. Thrown in for good measure is a philosphical debate about what makes us happy in the modern day 'rat race' world.
This all leads then to a very well balanced novel, which tends to be a very rare thing indeed in the genre of modern gay literature. Having become totally enthralled by the charcters of Mark and now Tom, I am already beginning to worry about only having two more books to go in the series. What will I do when I have finished them!?