Learned Reactions is another powerful POC romance from Jayce Ellis
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Jayce Ellis is rapidly becoming an auto read author for me with her superb glimpses into the lives and loves of queer men of colour.
I hadn’t realised when I started this ons that it would have an element of overlapping on the timeframe of book one, but now it makes perfect sense.
Carlton and Deion were already in their strange, mixed up non relationship when they were introduced in Jaq and Matt’s story and here we get the full tale.
And there were times I wanted to shake them both so hard and make them just get over themselves.
But, at the same time, Carlton’s fears that the only solid and permanent rock in his adult life would somehow find him lacking if he admitted he’d been in love with him for as long as Deion had felt the same, were heartbreakingly real.
The narrative never drags though, even while the two are not so much mis-communicating as utterly failing to deal with the serious consequences that pretending to be a family to help Carlton’s adoption of his niece caused.
It’s usually one of my most hated tropes, but Jayce gives it such weight and meaning that it would have felt completely wrong if they had just sat down and talked.
When it eventually happens, the blast point sets off a chain of events which ultimately leads to one of the sweetest chapters in the book and a fabulous ending that actually made me tear up – something I rarely do!
Wait til you read those words that pass between them and see if you can hold out better than I did!
Now, I am soooo hoping Lawrence will be next and we’ll get to find out what happened with Vance.
Given the age gap, I’m betting it’ll be a riot 😁
#ARC kindly received from the publisher Carina Press via NetGalley in return for an honest and unbiased review.