Book Review – Holiday Outing by Astrid Amara

Genre: Contemporary Gay Romance / Mystery
Publisher: Loose Id, LLC | Date published: 12/23/2008
Language: English
ISBN: 9781596328426

About the book:

“Jonah hasn’t seen his family in twelve years. They don’t know he’s gay. Now he’s trapped with them in the storm of a century. A family heirloom has been stolen. And now, his childhood rival, Ethan, has arrived to steal his heart.”


Yes, it’s in my hated format of a novella – but at least, Astrid Amara writes smartly and is able to draw non-caricature, very human AND very likeable characters – which goes a long way to make me accept the novella without complaining too much about lack of length.

Jonah Levinson, a successful gay novelist, goes home to his parents’ house for Hanukkha (after hiding away in Seattle for 12 years) where he is unfortunately not only back in the closet, but the entire extended family somehow think he’s kind of a failure. To add insult to injury, Dr. Ethan Rosenberg, his mother’s best friend’s son, and his high school crush AND high school homophobic tormentor is staying at the house too. Now, as anybody who has had a terrible time in high school will know and attest to, yes there are some stuff that you can’t quite get over with even when you’ve turned into a confident self-sufficient adult.

However, Ethan is now apparently out and proud, and wastes no time in letting Jonah know that he’s interested in him. Add to this mix, the family and entire extended family is stuck in the home when a blizzard arrives (and the author totally milks this part, with Jonah’s weird, quirky and very funny family members bringing a lot of laugh-out-loud moments in the story). Finally, a beloved (and priceless) family heirloom goes missing, prompting Jonah and Ethan to play detectives while trying to navigate a budding romantic relationship between the two of them.

Trust me when I say that the whole novella is a delight to read, and Jonah and Ethan are two of the most smart-mouthed quick thinking characters I’ve met in this genre. Ms Amara has a very smooth, easy reading, easy flowing writing style, with a lot of humor and light-heartedness. I’m liking this author and totally going to check out her other books!

Other reviews of Holiday Outing are found at Racy Romance Reviews and Good Reads.

Check out Holiday Outing and help support Astrid Amara.


~ by RandomizeME on November 7, 2009.

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