Title: Yes by Brad Boney
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary, Fantasy, M/M, Romance
Length: 220 pages
Book Rating: A
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Author
What if youth wasn’t wasted on the young?
On the eve of his fortieth birthday, Ian Parker is looking for a reboot. He may be the proud owner of a trendy coffee shop in Austin called La Tazza Magica, but his love life has been MIA for years. During a trip to Denver with his best friend, Mark, Ian buys an enchanted chocolate from a mysterious candy store—then wakes up from a nap two decades younger. After the initial shock, Ian realizes a quirk of the universe has given him a second chance and, with Mark’s help, he devises a plan to start over.
With a new lease on life, Ian sets his sights on handsome architect Bartley James, a regular customer at La Tazza. He pursues Bartley as Ian’s twenty-one-year-old alter ego, Ryan, with decidedly unexpected results. Joining Ryan on his adventures are Matthew, the dreamy new barista, Jeremy, the geeky high-school math teacher, and Sam, the pizza delivery boy. Even as misunderstandings and expectations collide, Ian remains determined to right his past mistakes and find his off-ramp to happiness.
Have you ever wished you could have the chance for a “do over” for a pivotal moment from your past? This is exactly what happens in Yes, the newest release from über talented Brad Boney. This novel is another magical, fun adventure that is poignant, thought-provoking and highly entertaining.
Ian Parker is about to turn forty and while he has achieved professional success, his personal life is sadly lacking. A fateful decision years earlier leaves him longing for the chance go back and make a different decision and after he eats a magical piece of candy, he wakes up twenty years younger. He and his best friend Mark concoct a plausible explanation for his new appearance but Ian is rather surprised by what awaits him when he resumes his current life as twenty-one year old Ryan. As Ryan, Ian is able to enjoy the experiences he has missed out on for the past several years, but since his memory is fully intact, will he make wiser choices?
Ian quickly updates his Grindr account as Ryan and he is stunned by the response he receives, but Ryan/Ian is really interested in a man from his current life, Bartley James, a customer at his coffee shop. Ryan’s attempt to set up a date with Bartley makes for some fascinating but tricky conversations with Bartley both as Ryan and Ian and it is pretty amusing watching him juggle his two personas. While Ian’s confusion over Bartley’s interest in him is quickly cleared up, it is Ryan who must handle an all important face to face discussion that leaves Ian absolutely reeling and questioning what he will do next.
Ian wants to make the best of his second chance and he really enjoys his new life as Ryan. While he meets a few new people as Ryan, it is some of the acquaintances from his life as Ian that are most helpful in clarifying things for him. Ian’s relationship with his best friend Mark undergoes a bit of a change as Ryan makes new friendships but Ian turns to him for advice when he unsure of what he wants to do with some of the information he uncovers. Ultimately, Ian is facing a tough decision where he must choose between returning to his former life as Ian or remaining in his current one as Ryan.
Yes is an absolutely charming and thoroughly captivating romance and as with his earlier novels, Brad Boney once again makes the impossible seem possible. He effortlessly creates a credible scenario for Ian’s chance at a redo and his crisp, clean prose brings the story vividly to life. The incorporation of characters from previous works adds a delightful touch of whimsy to the storyline and provides readers with an opportunity to catch up with beloved friends. Highly recommend to fans of the genre.