Book Reviews

If It Ain't Love by Tamara Allen

Genre Gay / Historical / 20th Century / Romance
Reviewed by Lena Grey on 11-September-2012

Book Blurb

In the darkest days of the Great Depression, New York Times reporter Whit Stoddard has lost the heart to do his job and lives a lonely hand-to-mouth existence with little hope of recovery, until he meets Peter, a man in even greater need of new hope.


Book Review

“No matter how dark the moment, love and hope are always possible.” ~ George Chakiris


One of the most devastating things that can happen to a person is for them to lose hope. Hopelessness shakes us to our very core. Without hope, there's no joy or creativity or motivation. There's only day-to-day battle of survival, which often leaves a person wondering if they even want to go on living. This story takes place during the Great Depression and Whit Stoddard, of 'If it Ain't Love' by Tamara Allen is losing his writing abilities because his muse is as depressed as he is; his creativity and motivation is almost nonexistent. It's difficult to write effectively when there is sadness, poverty, and despair all around you. Fortunately, Whit has not given up entirely. When an opportunity to change his situation comes along, will he be able to acknowledge and embrace it?


Whit Stoddard, like almost everyone around him at the time, has almost given up hope. He's beginning to believe that the world is falling apart and no one can do anything about it. However, this is before he meets Peter. He and Peter realize almost at once that their hearts are in the same place even though their circumstances are vastly different. Whitt learned an important lesson about not judging someone until you walk in their shoes and that there's always another angle to any situation.


Peter Dorington is such an intriguing character. He has a charisma which instantly draws Whit to him. He's open and accessible, yet closed and mysterious at the same time. He's amazing and I fell instantly in love with him. Peter broke my heart as he smiled through his tears and unfalteringly held on to his memories of his father. Peter is the idealistic one, making heart-felt, but not always totally practical decisions and Whit is the voice of reason, helping Peter to temper his enthusiasm to a reasonable, practical level. They make a good team.


When I saw this book is about the Depression, I questioned the wisdom of reading it at that particular moment. I was going through a difficult time myself, I'd just lost my father, and wondered if the book would be too sad for me considering the circumstances. I'm eternally grateful that I decided to read it when I did. I was amazed about Tamara's ability to write such an ultimately uplifting, hopeful story set in such a desolate time. It helped me put my sadness in perspective and gave me hope for better days to come. Not only that, her words had just enough weight to be descriptive, making me feel like I was part of the story, yet matter-of-fact enough to keep the story going without me getting bogged down with so much angst that I couldn't breathe. Tamara accomplished more in this short story than some authors do in a lengthy novel and did it with a grace which touched my heart. I recommend this story to anyone who believes in the generosity of the human spirit to soar even in the darkest of times and that even a small gesture can have a ripple effect that can change the world. Thank you, Tamara, for your message of hope and love. I look forward to reading more of your work very soon.




DISCLAIMER:  Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book was a free read.


Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novella, 44 pages/18000 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 25-August-2011
Price FREE
Buy Link