Book Reviews

Living Promises (Keeping Promise Rock 3) by Amy Lane at Dreamspinner Press

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Romance / Drama
Reviewed by Christy Duke on 13-July-2013

Book Blurb

Six years ago, Jeff Beachum comforted a frightened teenager outside an HIV treatment clinic, and Collin Waters has remembered his kindness ever since. Now, after six years of crushing on the kind, brown-eyed sweetheart of his dreams, Collin is feeling adult and together enough to make his move. Too bad fate, which has never been kind to Jeff, has something else in mind.

Jeff's life had fallen completely apart before that long-ago day, and it isn’t much better now. Jeff has toughened up, become self-reliant, been the funny guy his friends turn to, the one who gives advice and comfort when needed. But every phantom from Jeff’s past is about to come out to haunt him, and the family Jeff has staked his future on isn’t in such great shape either. Collin is more than a starry-eyed kid, and it’s a good thing, because Jeff’s going to need all the help he can get. No one knows better than Jeff that life can be too short to turn your back on honest love, and that living happily is the best promise of all.


Book Review

I'm not sure but this third installment of Amy Lane's Promises series might just be my favorite if I were willing to pick a favorite! Once again I will preface this review by saying I waited until I had re-read the book before writing it.

Collin Waters has been running from safety ever since he was five and his dad had a massive heart attack in the car while they were driving. His mother is convinced that this is why Collin then spends an inordinate amount of time getting into trouble. Unfortunately for Collin, his flight into danger doesn't go his way which is how he ends up dumping all over the nice stranger outside the HIV clinic.

Jeff Beachum's had it a little rough, to say the least. A condom breaking with his in-the-closet Marine Corps boyfriend leads to him being diagnosed HIV-positive after his first year of medical school. With a little help from his self-proclaimed benefactor, he gets an internship at the VA hospital making him eligible for health insurance benefits and he starts on the road to being a physician's assistant.

Now it's five years later. Jeff's still working at the VA hospital, he's found a new family with Crick, Deacon, Jon, Amy, Benny, Andrew, Shane, and Mikhail, and a ghost from his past has popped his head up. Jeff spends his days happy to make others laugh while hiding all of his own pain. Collin owns his own garage but still fills in at his mother's diner next door, especially in the last year when he knows Jeff will be there, since Jeff's been his hero ever since the talk outside the clinic. Collin has worked very hard these years to not be so self-centered and to try to give back.

In some ways this book is almost more about The Pulpit and the whole family than it is about just Jeff and Collin. There are serious emergencies going on and the whole family pulls together even more than they always are. One of the things that is so striking to me, here, is that the age range of these characters is 15-32. There's been a whole lot of crap happening to people so very young still.

Living Promises brings hurt, pain, hope, joy, love, life, death, sorrow, laughter, and tears right to the forefront. It made me fall in love with all these characters all over again and again and again. Once again I'm not sure I've written an understandable review - sometimes I wander over my love for these books and the writing. Read it, love it. I don’t think you'll ever regret it.





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Additional Information

Format ebook, print and audio
Length Novel, 350 pages/125975 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 04-July-2011
Price $6.99 ebook, $17.99 paperback, $17.99 bundle, $19.99 audiobook
Buy Link