La Crimson Femme
Review: Looking for Adventure by Valentina Heart
Brain cancer is a life-changing event. Jonathan has no family and few friends. He focused purely on his career. He's wealthy and successful with a large office and great condo. It's debatable if his Pathfinder defines wealth. Personally, the Porsche Cayenne screams wealthy more than a Pathfinder. The inoperable brain cancer and less than two months to live is a wakeup call for Jonathan. He's worked so hard to succeed in his life and what happens? He doesn't even enjoy the fruits of his labour. He can't recall the last time he went on vacation.
Lost and confused, Jonathan literally trips over Nino. Nino is the antithesis of Jonathan. He's the happily little grasshopper playing and enjoying life. He's never held a steady job and he lives in the moment. It's serendipity they meet as Nino is the perfect companion to help Jonathan live out the last days of his life.
This story is really a story about first times and discovery. I like Ms. Heart's stories because there is always a moral to them. Perhaps I'm reading too deeply into her stories; perhaps it's because I feel she's teaching about life lessons through a story of "what if". In this one, I learn that focus may be great, but without stopping to experience life and "smell the roses", I'll end up missing the best part to living. We can't take for granted that we will always have good health and enjoy our successes. Tomorrow are no guarantees. It's not to say that we should all mimic the happy go lucky grasshopper, but we shouldn't be the ant who works so hard and dies without tasting the fruits we grow.
Nino is able to help Jonathan enjoy his last summer by something as simple as listening to music. Jonathan learns how to interact on an intimate level that he never experienced. Essentially this last summer, away from the office, Jonathan tries to complete everything in his bucket list. Nino is there every step of the way, unknowingly fulfilling the last wishes of a dying man.
When Jonathan's condition is finally revealed to Nino, there is a terrible falling out. I'm saddened for both of them -- Jonathan for not placing enough faith in Nino and Nino for finally finding the love of his life only to have it ripped away. This summer together was a magical time for both of them. Of course, since this is a Ms. Heart story, there is a happily ever after. I recommend this story for people who need a wakeup call that doesn't involve incurable disease. Readers who enjoy m/m romances built on friendship and companionship; this is the one for you.