Title: Find His Way Home
Author: Nell Iris
Publisher: JMS Books
Length: 74 Pages
At a Glance: Though there is a romance, I found this to be a sweet little story about finding oneself.
Reviewed By: Lindsey
Blurb: Shakespeare-loving teacher Elliot Dunn has been unhappy living in the big city for a long time. He yearns for fresh air, visible stars, and stillness, but his relationship with divorce lawyer Mick Hudson keeps him from moving away.
When a dramatic event occurs in Elliot’s class, he’s shaken to his core and suddenly can’t stay anymore. He leaves his partner of two years behind and returns to the tiny town in the mountains where he grew up.
Living in a rented cabin in the woods, with only an owl for company, Elliot slowly regains his peace of mind. But being away from Mick is agonizing, and when a ghost from Elliot’s past pays him a visit, everything comes to a head.
Elliot is faced with a hard decision. Should he stay on the stress-free mountainside alone, or return to the hustle of the city and try to make a life with Mick?
Review: A quick little read, coming in at seventy-four pages, and, for its length, I found it cute. Though there is a romance, I found this to be a sweet little story about finding oneself.
Elliot is having a bit of self-crisis. He hates living in the city and he has a difficult time at the school where he is teaching. And, ultimately, an event leads to him heading home to really think about what he wants and needs.
Mick is a closeted attorney whose boss is clearly a jerk, making it difficult for him to take that final step in coming out. Elliot gets it—for the most part—but it doesn’t make it any easier, and with everything else going on, it’s just another thing adding to his current unhappiness about where he is in life.
The story mainly follows Elliot over the course of several months, as he remembers the good and the bad, and as he contemplates how to move forward. I liked the concept a lot. The story doesn’t focus on any real angst with Mick and Elliot. They love each other and communicate very well, which I always appreciate. What it focuses on is Elliot trying to figure himself out, and what he wants and what he is willing to compromise. It’s a nice little change of pace, and slightly different than what I am used to, which was definitely a plus.
Though the story was nice, and I mostly enjoyed it, there were a few things that didn’t work for me. Each chapter is a new month, and I think the model mostly worked, except there were a couple times where, in the chapter for one month, there would be a flashback to something that had occurred during the previous month. It had me scratching my head and wondering why it wasn’t just put in the month where it happened. Why was it a flashback when it could have just occurred in real time in the previous chapter? I couldn’t see a reason for it in this case.
Also, given the length, there just wasn’t a lot of fleshing out for me, and there were times I wanted to understand both Elliot and Mick more. It could have used a lot more building, and there are areas that perhaps needed a little more actualization. One of the biggest was when a person from Elliot’s past makes an appearance, and I had zero context or background on the relationship. It was never developed before or after the appearance, so it made it difficult for me to really understand the situation on the whole. Sort of like the foundation was set and the framework was there, but the story lacked the completed product in some ways. It was often like I was being told rather than shown, not experiencing it on a deeper level.
Mick and Elliot’s relationship was a nice little change, their banter was funny and charming, and I liked the fact they were both open with each other and their feelings when they spoke. The main premise was a nice change from what I usually go for, and, when it is all said and done, I still liked the story. I think a lot of people will truly enjoy this quick novella about self-discovery, and if you have an hour or so, it’s not a bad way to pass the time!
You can buy Find His Way Home here: