Sunday, 17 March 2013

Age, Love, and Understanding, Evan Gilbert

Age, Love, and Understanding

A fifty-eight year old man battles his feelings for a man young enough to be his son.

- Review by Cindi

Aaron Bancroft is a successful law professor after years spent fighting for the rights of homosexuals for his lucrative law firm.  He is eighteen months past the end of a twenty-four year relationship that ended when the other man realized that he was no longer enough for Aaron.  Aaron is slowly making his way back into the gay scene when he is at a gay club that caters to the older set and he meets Rafael Gomez, a hot twenty-five year old man.  

Rafael (or Rafe) has a thing for older men so unlike friends his age, he hangs out in a club that caters to them.  He approaches Aaron and a little while later they are having sex in a small motel room.  At the end of the evening, Rafe wants more.  He wants to date Aaron.  Aaron has a problem with this because of the age difference between the two.  Reluctantly they meet up again and a back and forth relationship is born.  Aaron is out and proud.  Rafe was raised in a strict Catholic family and has remained in the closet.  The only people who know that Rafe is gay are his very close friends.  He goes out of his way to keep it from his family knowing he would be cast out of the family if it was revealed.  

I am a huge fan of books where the two main characters have a substantial age difference.  Granted, fifty-eight to twenty-five is a bit of a stretch for even me but I was eager to see how it would work out.  Unfortunately, I could not get a feel for these two men together.  I am not saying the story is bad.  I'm saying that I felt that I was being told a story instead being shown.

Aaron is big on the age difference between him and Rafael.  Instead of having an adult conversation with the other man he chooses to withdraw. 

Rafael at times comes across as much younger than his years.  Twenty-five is relatively young to begin with but I saw a much younger man than that in Rafe.  I like his character but he has that "clingy, don't leave me" type of vibe going that bordered on stalking when it comes to Aaron.  

Aaron has a hard time understanding his feelings for the much younger man.  He ends up doing something that was extremely close to the kiss of death for me in the books I read.  He actually went a little beyond it being completely innocent and at that point I almost stopped reading the book though it was around the 85 to 90% mark on my Kindle.  

There is a legal issue that comes up early in the story in regards to Rafe's brother, Julio.  It was a nice touch but I would have liked to have seen a bit more in regards to it.

Aaron has a problem with Rafael being in the closet with his religious family.  Instead of thinking back to his own coming out years earlier he put too much pressure on the other man in my opinion and ended up forcing him to do something that it was obvious he was not ready for.  I was not overly thrilled with how that played out and it made me dislike Aaron more than I did when he almost did something stupid earlier in the book.  Everything, of course, comes together in the end though I felt there were certain things left unfinished.

Overall, the story was okay for me.  As mentioned above, I devour enjoy books with couples with large age differences.  But I had a problem with both characters. I could not quite feel much good for either of them especially Aaron and the story line seemed to be too much at times.  Others may love this as the sex (when it happens) is pretty good.  The story just didn't fly for me unfortunately.  


  1. I saw the blurb and thought that it sounded good but it was obviously middle of the road for you. Good review, Cindi. Not sure if I would be interested really.

    1. Thanks. It started out well enough but the rest didn't do that much for me unfortunately. I'm sure others will enjoy it.