Tied Together by Z.B. Heller
M/M Romantic Comedy Standalone
To start off the review, I must qualify this with the fact that I am not normally an m/m fan. Nor have I read the Moxie books by ZB Heller beyond a short story. But the promos were so cute, and I just love Zolie, so I wanted to get out of my comfort zone and go for it.
Sugar, spice and all things nice. If you have a schlong, you belong. If you have a cooch, you can scoot along.”
I thought Tied Together by ZB Heller would be an over the top laugh-fest, more silly than serious. And while there are some light-hearted, laugh out loud moments, this was a true, sentimental, angsty romance. And I loved every second of it.
The book was told in basically three sections spanning many years. We start by meeting Ryan. Ryan is in high school, very well adjusted, gay, and accepted by his family. He is popular, confident, and just a great, outgoing guy.
Brandon was the opposite. He lived in a trailer park with abusive, homophobe parents, and could never, ever let on that he liked boys. He just spent his time studying, and often being bullied. Until one day Ryan stuck up for him against the bullies, and they became best friends.
Brandon loved Ryan, but his fear of coming out was so strong he never admitted he was gay, so Ryan just wished for it.
To a night of friendship,” I said, clinking Brandon’s glass. What I really wanted to say was, “Here is a liquid potion that will automatically turn you gay so I can get well acquainted with your butthole.”
These guys were so close, and even with the funny and silly, they gave me all the feels. Ryan was funny, and Brandon was sad. Together they made a very interesting story, with a couple you know are meant to be together if they could both just get over their own drama, even after many, many years.
When they finally get together, I was ready to have a party.
But of course, it isn’t that easy…..
- Funny, laugh-out-loud lines.
- That it was a much deeper story than I expected.
- Not so much sex that I was freaked by it.
- A true second chance, even third chance romance.
- Just enough angst…OK, a lot of angst.
- I loved both characters.
- I enjoyed Moxie in the small dose I had.
- Lots of banter, my favorite thing.
- Well done male POV.
- Brought tears to my eyes a few times.
- Desperately needed another round or two of editing, but not so much that it detracted from the story.
- There were a few scenes that felt a bit repetitive.
- Brandon’s changes seemed very dramatic, and I would have liked a little more back story on them.
- Steve Buscemi and Brad Pitt were Ryan’s “angel and devil” on his shoulders. While it made for some funny moments, I found it hard to get it with the names, but it was better once I realized who Steve was (so look him up here)
Rating: 4.5 Stars, 3 Heat
The Down and Dirty:
Purchase Tied Together by Z.B. Heller