Book Reviews

Blue Notes (Blue Notes 1) by Shira Anthony at Dreamspinner Press

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Artists/Actors/Musicians/Authors / Romance
Reviewed by Lena Grey on 25-January-2013

Book Blurb

Blame it on jet lag. Jason Greene thought he had everything: a dream job as a partner in a large Philadelphia law firm, a beautiful fiancée, and more money than he could ever hope to spend. Then he finds his future wife in bed with another man, and he’s forced to rethink his life and his choices. On a moment’s notice, he runs away to Paris, hoping to make peace with his life.

But Jason’s leave of absence becomes a true journey of the heart when he meets Jules, a struggling jazz violinist with his own cross to bear. In the City of Love, it doesn’t take them long to fall into bed, but as they’re both about to learn, they can’t run from the past. Sooner or later, they’ll have to face the music.


Book Review

“Life's gonna take you, where you never thought you'd go....When you finally think you've got it down, It isn't so. It's not always getting what you want, but wanting what you get...” Carrie Newcomer

In a drastic moment of truth, Jason Greene of 'The Blue Notes' by Shira Anthony gets a reality check. In the flash of an eye, he realizes that his life, everything he's worked so hard to achieve, doesn't exist. As painful as it seems, Jason is actually receiving a very precious gift; rather than going along blindly pursuing what he thought he wanted, he's put in a position to question and re-evaluate himself. Jason learns that, in the journey of life, it's not what we achieve, as much as it is the joy the accomplishments bring us.

Jason Green doesn't realize how unsatisfying his life is until he's forced to think about it. Everything in his life seemed so perfect—perfect fiancée, perfect job, perfect life, but it isn't true. His fiancée is unfaithful, his money brings him no joy, nor does his job for which he gave up his first love, music. Jason is understandably confused and mournful since his world is turned upside down. He's invested so much energy in manipulating his life, that he's thrown the baby out with the bathwater. He's hidden parts of himself that are now screaming to be expressed and he feels lost and vulnerable, not knowing what to believe. When he escapes to Paris to re-group, he meets Jules, a compassionate, delightful, talented, and sexy young man, who has him questioning his own sexuality, something else in his life that Jason has tried to control because it didn't fit into the master plan for his success. What he leans in Paris is that instead of being in control, he's let circumstances control him. What he needs to learn is that life and feelings can't be controlled or manipulated; they just are.

Jules encompasses everything that Jason is running from. He's strong, independent, a musical genius, and has a sensuality which proves to be irresistible; but Jules has his own demons to fight as well.  Although Jason doesn't realize it at the time, Jules is his guardian angel and knight in shinning armor at the same time. Jules helps Jason see the true misery inside; he holds up a mirror and reflects his feelings back to him. Through his persistence and intensity, Jules helps Jason accept parts of himself that have been buried for a long time. He helps Jason tackle what Jason has always considered his weaknesses and failures as he learns to accept himself for the wonderful person others see. In a similar way, Jason does the same for Jules. Jason combines that which was good in his old life to help and influence Jules. As they learn to love themselves, they also fall deeper in love with each other. Ultimately, it's their love and appreciation for music which strikes a cord with both men, enabling them to find redemption and peace of mind and spirit.

It's difficult to imagine a more romantic setting for a love story than Paris and a more healing one. Music, the universal language—enjoyable, inspiring, soothing, and healing. Shira shares her love and appreciation for both in this intense, but pleasurable story of love. She finds a way to be tour guide, mentor, and story-teller all in one, helping us appreciate the city, but also music as she beautifully words phrases which express the emotion involved. I love this story and, although Jason is a marvelously crafted character, Jules is the one who totally won my heart.  I recommend this to everyone who loves music and appreciates its intrinsic soothing abilities and enjoys a touching, realistic romance with some complications along the way and definitely a happy ending. Thank you, Shira, for the beautiful, heart-felt story, the Parisian tour, French lessons, and most of all for introducing us to Jason and Jules.  





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by Dreamspinner Press for the purpose of a review.

Additional Information

Format ebook, print and audio
Length Novel, 230 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 30-December-2011
Price $6.99 ebook, $16.99 paperback, $16.99 bundle, $19.95 audiobook
Buy Link