“For better or worse, he is my soul mate. The other half of me. In many ways, he is my reflection.” ― Sylvia Day
This story had me from page one, as do all of Kol Anderson’s books. His writing just sucks you in and doesn’t let you go. His stories are dark and heartbreaking, his words play on very human emotion. His characters are so unforgettable they stay with you long after this story is over. To me, that is great storytelling.
Soulmate deals with two brothers who’ve survived a horrific childhood, losing their mother when they were young (Hunter was eleven and Kayden was four) and being left with a father who was very mean and abusive. Hunter, being the older brother, did his best to protect his younger brother, basically becoming a surrogate parent.
Knowing this story had an incest theme between brothers, I thought I knew what I was about to get myself into. But as I was reading, I found myself thinking this is so much more than just taboo brotherly love. In fact, there is no sexual interaction between the brothers at all. I don’t know the future direction of the series, but Soulmate was about two men still dealing with the fallout of their father’s sins. Words can’t describe how much I loved Kayden, he definitely has my heart. As soon as he appears on the pages, he reads like a lost soul who is just barely existing. Hunter is still that overprotective brother convinced he has to protect his brother no matter what.
As an adult, Kayden has developed a dependency on Hunter that he knows is wrong. He tries to fill the void but nothing helps. The emotional havoc has him on the path to self-destruction that he barely escapes because Hunter gets him to the hospital just in time. My heart just went out to Kayden at this point. He’s so consumed with guilt about his feelings for his brother that he tries to end it all just to make it stop.
Though the immediate danger has passed, Kayden’s jealousy of Hunter’s girlfriend brings Kayden’s feelings to light. The revelation is unlike any other incest story I’ve read, and Hunter’s knee-jerk reaction was unexpected because of it. The scene had me laughing in a way that only comes when the situation is so terrible and uncomfortable that the mind doesn’t know what to do and emotions get mixed up. I knew at some point this had to happen. I felt some kind of relief for Kayden. He doesn’t have to carry this burden all alone anymore, his secret is out. The big question now is, what’s going to happen now?
The author gave Kayden a great friend, sometimes lover, to balance out some of the crazy in Kayden’s head. Jacob is such a great character. He’s very nonchalant about Kayden’s feelings for his brother. It’s like he knows there are bigger issues to deal with and in his own way, he’s doing what he can to help. I think Jacob is going to play a positive role in Kayden’s life.
This novella isn’t done yet. So much has happened already, but the events that lead up to Hunter and Kayden dealing with their feelings seemed to come out of nowhere. This author is brilliant at making the most insane and unpredictable twists believable that I completely trusted everything would make sense. And, of course, it did.
By the end, on top of a great, thought provoking and emotional story, the reader is left with wonder for what happens next. The fate of the brothers is up in the air, and Kol Anderson can’t write fast enough.