This is an amazing collection of five novellas written by five extremely talented writers. They are offering this anthology for only $2.99, which breaks down to 60 cents a story. This is quite the steal, as they could have easily charged double, so you owe it to yourselves to buy this collection today.
That’s it—that’s my entire review.
Oh, did you want more information? Okay, but prepare yourself for gushing.
Appassionata is Emma Barry’s contribution. It’s about Brendan, a piano technician, and Kristy, a concert pianist. They’ve “known” each other since they were teens at the same summer program, but their paths diverged. Years later, Brendan is the only one who can help Kristy as she returns to the stage after a long hiatus. I would argue that both romantic leads come undone, as they learn to work together, manage expectations, and reach outside their closely controlled spheres. It’s sweet and tender and their communication is top-notch, as is their chemistry.
Unraveled is by Olivia Dade. It features math teacher Simon serving as mentor to Poppy, the new art teacher. Even though they are approximately the same age and that Poppy has 20 years of teaching experience, all new faculty members are paired with an experienced teacher. Their first couple of encounters lead Simon with an unfavorable impression of Poppy; in short, he’s horrified by what he perceives to be a cavalier attitude. Poppy quickly (but gently) puts Simon in his place and he opens his mind to the possibility that perhaps his style of pedagogy is not the only correct one. This was such a fun book—I have never heard of murder dioramas and now I’m *obsessed* with finding out more. Watching Simon learn to relax was such a satisfying process and Poppy is one of the coolest love interests I’ve encountered in recent memory.
Caught Looking is by Adriana Herrera. Yariel and Hatuey have been friends since high school and as the story begins, they have just hooked up for the first time. And as far as Yariel knows, Hatuey is straight. And now they have to travel back to the Dominican Republic together for a baseball clinic… where they’ll be staying in the same house. Yariel is ready to forget the whole thing ever happened, but Hatuey doesn’t want to be too hasty to dismiss their hookup as a one-off thing. OMG, this is the epitome of a friends to lovers story and I loved every minute of it. This story has it all—secrets, pining, lingering looks, private jets… and Hatuey knows exactly how to push Yariel’s buttons. I liked Yariel’s brief appearance in American Sweethearts, and I love that he got a HEA of his very own.
Yes, And… is by Ruby Lang and it begins with an accidental meet-cute when Dr. Darren goes to Joan’s improv class at the community center instead of the meditation class down the hall. Darren is supposed to be learning how to relax, but doesn’t find the meditation class very relaxing. He and Joan strike up an unlikely friendship; on a superficial level, it might seem like they don’t have very much in common. Spending time together seems to be cathartic, but they are both pent-up and fighting private battles. This was such a sweet and tender story about finding ways to connect and reaching out and trying new experiences. I enjoyed it quite a bit.
Tommy Cabot Was Here is by Cat Sebastian and it is the only historical romance story in this anthology. It’s set in 1959, and Everett teaches math at a boys’ boarding school in Massachusetts. He’s an alumnus, and has built up a carefully controlled life for himself. He doesn’t expect to see Tommy Cabot—the boy he had a secret relationship with—and everything Everett thought he knew is thrown right out the window. I can’t begin to tell you how much I loved this second chance romance. I adored everything about it: the two protagonists, the setting, the angsty feelings, the conceit of New England political dynasties—everything was wonderful.
I would absolutely recommend He’s Come Undone to everyone. This is a nice mix of tropes and dynamics; unique interpretations upon a common theme. I have already read all of a couple authors’ previous books and I am looking forward to catching up on the others’ back catalogs. This is one of the best anthologies I’ve come across and so I’m happy to share my thoughts in the hopes that it will pique your interest too.
I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.