Brick by Brick by Cate Ashwood & L.J. LaBarthe

Brick by Brick Disclaimer MaleTAGThey say that time heals all wounds, but losing Parley, his one true love, left Zach with a hole in his heart that no one else can fill. After forty-eight blissful hours alone together as teens in an abandoned house, Parley disappeared. Parley is what he is, and the pray-away-the-gay camp his parents ship him to won’t change that. However, finding the balance between accepting his true nature and not losing his family means tough sacrifices.

Sixteen years later, Zach is thunderstruck when Parley stands on the front doorstep of his house—the house that had been their refuge, which Zach restored. But Parley isn’t alone, and Zach wonders if he’s found Parley only to lose him a second time. If they can overcome the terrors of the past and the situation of the present, maybe they can build a new relationship just as Zach rebuilt the house—brick by brick. addtogoodreads_zps55cd15da16 A-nony-mouseTAG

Brick by Brick was not what I expected from the start. From the way it was written, I figured it would start off when Parley returned. Nope. It starts off when the two are teenagers and for 8-9 chapters it continues on that route, telling the story of how they got to be separated. I will admit, I thought much of that dragged. The parts where they showed what was happening were insightful, but there was a lot of telling in those first chapters.

However, I am glad I persevered. Once the book flipped to sixteen years later to when Parley returns, well the rest of the book zoomed by. Zach, who has never stopped loving the only man he’s ever loved is thrilled when he sees him. Unfortunately, there are a few extra people with his old friend that might mean the two of them can never get together.

So much pain caused by religious extremists and Parley has literally been through hell. He’s found others who support and love him, but he’s never forgotten the only man he’s ever loved.

The story wasn’t too angsty – which was great for me – and the ending was actually a bit of a surprise. I was sure I could see the writing on the wall of what would happen with Parley’s ‘family’ but the authors didn’t take that route which wasn’t just a surprise, but a pleasant one.

fourstars Purchase LinksTAGKindle | Nook | Dreamspinner