Freeing by E.K. Blair
Release Date: September 13, 2013
Coming of Age
Synopsis:FREEING: a companion novel to the USA Today bestseller, Fading.
Knowing who you are and accepting who you are come at different prices.
Jase Kinrick grew up in your typical, all-American household. But after the death of his sister, his parents shut down, forcing him to deal with everything life throws his way alone. Terrified of the person he’s discovering himself to be, Jase has his way with every willing girl to try and rid himself of what he fears he is—gay.
Escaping California and moving to Seattle to attend the University of Washington, Jase frees himself to the reality that he likes men. Never staying with any guy long enough to get to know them, he doesn’t realize that he’s still hiding from who he is until he meets Mark. Scared of having real feelings for another guy stirs up the questions and fears he’s fought hard to bury.
To strip away the barriers to the heart of what is real, and to be okay with what lies underneath, will be Jase’s moment of truth. But he’ll need Mark to lead him there.
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My Thoughts:This is my first m/m romance I have read and I must say it was great. In Fading, we meet Jase, Candace’s best friend; they are more than friends, they are family. Their own families have disowned them so they only had each other for the longest time. Freeing is in Jase’s POV and overlaps the events in Fading. We see Jase going through his own struggle and journey on accepting himself for who he is.
Jase grew up in California and moved to Seattle because he wanted to escape his home life. He knew he was gay in high school even though he slept with a lot of girls; he couldn’t admit it to himself and thought something was wrong with him. After his sister’s death, his parents shut down, so he didn’t have anyone he could talk to. In Seattle, Jase is still at war with himself because he admits to himself that he is gay but afraid of what people might think. It is only when he meets Candace that he can tell someone who he truly is. Even then, he is still not completely comfortable with it. He has hookups with men but never a real relationship. It is not until he meets Mark that everything changes for him.
I love how E.K. Blair writes about taboo subjects but make it bearable and not so taboo for the reader. With Fading, I was bawling my eyes in the aftermath of Candace getting raped and in Freeing, reading Jase prospective on things I think I cried even harder. The emotion the author puts behind every word is magnificent and a real talent. Not many writers can do that. I was awed when I first read Fading and I am still in awe because Ms. Blair makes you care about things or situations where you might not have cared before. While reading I put myself in Jase’s shoes, through finding out about the rape of his friend/family member, I would be angry as well if that happened to one of my close friends. I think it is a very hard situation, being supportive for your friend/family member and also knowing who did it and not being able to do anything about it.
I think that Mark is exactly what Jase needed to start accepting himself for who he is. I really liked Mark. I think it was awesome how he stepped in and helped take care of Candace. It shows the kind of person he is.
I think many people would be surprised by how the author writes this m/m romance. She will have you caring about the characters no matter your opinion on the subject. For me, this is 2 for 2 for E.K. Blair’s books; I am excited about what she writes in the future. I will gladly read it!
5 out of 5 stars
Excerpt:Everything tunnels: my hearing, my vision. My heart thuds. Hard. I drop my head in my hands, and the tears just spill out. Allie continues to talk, but I’ve already heard all my soul can handle at this point. This girl is my fuckin’ heart, and I’m terrified to see what’s left of it.
I turn to look at the nurse when she hands me a tissue, but I don’t reach out to take it. I just look at her with no words.
“I’m so sorry. You can utilize this room for as long as you need, but it’s not going to be good for her to see you so upset. You need to be strong for her right now.”
I nod my head. She’s right. I’ve got to pull my shit together. I finally take the tissue from her hand. I could sit here and cry for the rest of my life if I allowed myself, but I need to see her. So that’s what I tell the nurse. “I need to see her.”