Series: In Focus #1
Genres: Contemporary, LGBTQ, New Adult, Romance
Publication date: March 17, 2015
Format: eARC, 222 pages
How I got it: NetGalley
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
With his college graduation gown expertly pitched into the trash, Justin Akron is ready for the road trip he planned with his best friend Landry— and ready for one last summer of escape from his mother’s controlling grip. Climbing into the Winnebago his father left him, they set out across America in search of the sites his father had captured through the lens of his Nikon.
As an aspiring photographer, Justin can think of no better way to honor his father’s memory than to scatter his ashes at the sites he held sacred. And there’s no one Justin would rather share the experience with more than Landry.
But Justin knows he can’t escape forever. Eventually he’ll have to return home and join his mother’s Senate campaign. Nor can he escape the truth of who he is, and the fact that he’s in love with his out-and-proud travel companion.
Admitting what he wants could hurt his mother’s conservative political career. But with every click of his shutter and every sprinkle of ash, Justin can’t resist Landry’s pull. And when the truth comes into focus, neither is prepared for the secrets the other is hiding.
I’ve been excited to read Trust the Focus since Megan first began talking about it online. It’s only the second M/M book I’ve read, but it makes me want to read more… especially if they’re as well-written as this one was. In addition to loving the diversity of M/M books, I’m a sucker for the friends to lovers trope and road trip books and I’m a photographer, so I felt like this book was written just for me.
It’s really difficult to sum up my feelings about Trust the Focus. I loved that while it dealt with tough topics in a very realistic way, it never felt too heavy. I adored Justin and Landry (#JusLanFTW) and the literal and figurative journey they were on together. The characters felt so real. Their struggles were real. I’ve heard similar stories from my gay friends for years. (Maybe not the road trip…) Everything from their own acceptance of who they are to dealing with feelings for a friend to the issues less-than-supportive family members bring rang so very true. It was raw and emotional, but not overwhelming.
I think I enjoyed the setup and setting for this book just as much as I did the characters. As I said above, I love a good road trip book. This is one of my favorites. It equal parts broke and warmed my heart that Justin was taking this trip in his father’s memory. There was something really special about the way he was able to find himself while saying goodbye to his dad. There were definitely more than a few scenes that brought tears to my eyes. And, of course, the photographer part of me loved how seamlessly photography was woven into the story.
I can’t say enough about how great this book is. The characters gripped ahold of my heart and I don’t think I’ll ever forget them. If you’re new to M/M books, this would be a fantastic place to start. It was a beautiful, realistic story. It made me smile, laugh and cry. But, I ended it all with a big, goofy grin on my face. I’m already looking forward to the next book in the series.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.