Book Reviews

Learning from Isaac (Tarnished Souls 1) by Dev Bentham at Love is a Light Press

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Students/Teachers/Professors / Romance
Reviewed by Christy Duke on 05-October-2014

Book Blurb

It’s hard to break out of a rut. For years, Nathan submerged himself into his job at St. Genevieve’s. He enjoys teaching, hates faculty meetings, loves his science and has committed himself to the cycle of college life. Along the way, he's become resigned to being a gay man in a straight culture, a Jew among Catholics, and single in a world of couples. Then the brilliant Isaac Wolf appears in his classroom. Isaac’s a few years older than his fellow students, gorgeous, self-composed and Jewish.

Isaac has his own secrets, which Nathan finds out at the racy new club downtown where the boys who dance out front can be bought in the back room. Nathan thinks he’s about to get a lap dance, but behind the beaded curtain the man on his knees turns out to be Isaac. Nathan's mind isn't the only thing Isaac blows. Afterward, Nathan can't stop thinking about that night. The question is whether Nathan can let himself fall in love with a student, much less someone with Isaac’s checkered past. Is it too late for a student to teach his professor the true nature of love and respect?





First edition published by Loose Id, April 2012.


Book Review

How is it possible that I've missed reading this author? Ah well, I'm reading her now and enjoying the writing style very much. In fact, it reminds me of a dear friend and author, who also writes wonderfully, about really nice guys. To be honest, I was also intrigued by the fact that this series, 'Tarnished Souls', revolves around the Jewish holy days. My mother converted to Judaism at the age of seventy-two, so I adore connecting with her in another way.

Dr. Nathan Kohn has been a teacher at a small, catholic college for fifteen years. His class, a yearlong survey of ecological sampling techniques, is a requirement for students in the natural resources program. It's a hard class, no doubt about it, but over the years he's had a number of students tell him it was his course which changed their lives. Nathan would like to think his class is partly responsible for the high number of graduate programs his students get into, although his department chair has spent the past five years trying to turn his class into an elective.

Nathan is lonely. His last relationship ended three years ago after Nathan discovered him cheating. Isaac is a slightly older student, although still much younger than Nathan, in his class this year. The attraction on both their sides is immediate, and, even though the college wouldn't care that Nathan is gay, there is a morals clause involving students. When an old friend drags Nathan to a new club downtown and hires him a private lap dance, Nathan is shocked to discover his dancer is none other than Isaac. Shocked, and aroused.

Isaac's parents disowned him when he came out and the only way he can afford the tuition is by dancing, and, sometimes, doing other services. But he's looking for a summer internship before graduate school and is hoping to be able to quit the club after graduation. Isaac graduates, and he and Nathan are finally free to explore this attraction between them. Of course, that doesn't stop some people willing to cause Nathan problems, in order to get what they want. And it doesn't stop Nathan from being insecure about the age difference, and stupid about Isaac's former job, and almost losing the best thing he's ever had.

I really liked this book. It was sweet, gentle, had a touch of drama, and a wonderful happy ever after. I can easily recommend it.





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Additional Information

Format ebook and print
Length Novel, 183 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 13-April-2014
Price $3.99 ebook, $9.95 paperback
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