Title: The Marrying Kind
Series: Owen & Nathan – part 2
Author: Jay Northcote
Genre: contemporary m/m romance
Length: 35,000 words approx
Release date: Friday 17th April 2015
Publisher: self-published (Jaybird Press)
Editor: Sue Adams
Cover artist: Garrett Leigh
The Marrying Kind is a sequel to The Dating Game. It continues Owen and Nathan’s story, so I recommend you read The Dating Game first. Jay have no firm plans for more stories about Owen and Nathan. The Marrying Kind has a definite happy ending, so please consider their story complete for now.
Nathan wants to put a ring on it, but is Owen the marrying kind?
Two years on from their first date, Owen and Nathan are living together and life is good—except they’re not on the same page about marriage.
A traditionalist at heart, Nathan wants it all: the wedding, the vows, and a pair of matching rings. Owen, on the other hand, believes marriage is old-fashioned and unnecessary. They don’t need a wedding to prove their commitment to each other. Love should be enough on its own.
All it takes is one moment of weakness on a night out to force the issue. Owen finds himself engaged after a half-drunk proposal, and Nathan’s enthusiasm sweeps him along. But as the big day approaches, the mounting tension finally combusts.
If he’s going to save their relationship, Owen will need to decide once and for all if he’s truly the marrying kind.
Nathan glanced surreptitiously at Owen sitting beside him as Jack and Simon spoke their vows. Jack’s voice was quiet but sure, and Simon’s rang out clearly over the assembled crowd.
Owen’s gaze was fixed on the couple, and his eyes were suspiciously bright. As Nathan watched, Owen cleared his throat and wiped what Nathan assumed was a tear out of the corner of his eye.
Nathan suppressed a smile and turned his attention back to the groom and groom. So much for Owen’s protests that he didn’t see the point in weddings and that they were outdated, pointless events that were stupid even for straight couples unless they were religious. Even if he didn’t believe in the principle of marriage—gay or otherwise—it was nice to see he wasn’t totally immune to the emotion of the occasion. Nathan was going to enjoy taking the piss out of Owen later. But in the meantime, he reached for Owen’s hand and squeezed. Owen squeezed back.
Nathan’s eyes were moist too by the time they’d finished. The part where the celebrant said “I now pronounce you husband and husband” really set him off. Simon looked so utterly radiant after he and Jack finally stopped kissing and turned to face the wedding guests, hand in hand. Jack was flushed and awkward compared to Simon. He obviously wasn’t happy being the centre of attention, unlike his new husband, but his smile was genuine and the joy rolled off both of them, touching everyone in the room.
Nathan sighed. Owen’s hand was still in his. Their fingers were tangled together casually—just like their lives. They’d been in a relationship for over two years now, living together for half of that, and Nathan had never been happier. But looking at Simon and Jack, he wanted more. He wanted that. But he was afraid to ask Owen, because he was pretty sure what his answer would be, and it wouldn’t be the one Nathan hoped for.
I was thrilled to discover Jay was writing more of Owen and Nathan’s story. I’d enjoyed The Dating Game and as with most HFN story endings you always wonder what might happen to the happy couple in the future.
In the Marrying Kind, one character embraces the idea of marriage, whereas the other sees it as outdated, nothing more than a piece of paper, and not necessary as they are perfectly content living together and he’d be happy to maintain the status quo with the guy he loves. So, there’s a difference of opinions from the start—perfect for future conflict and angst.
And Jay’s boys happily supply us with plenty of angst-filled moments as they argue and worry about their wedding arrangements. This is so true to life. People have second thoughts about the commitment and finality of the big day, even those who believe they have found their soul mate. Don’t doubt that the boys ever stop loving each other. We still get plenty of hot bedroom scenes and tender moments within the story. We also get to build a wider picture of the characters and their family situations as the wedding plans get underway.
I’d guessed how the conflict would resolve itself before it actually happened as Jay had planted clues along the way, but that didn’t lessen my enjoyment of the book. Their story was rounded-off beautifully in my opinion.
(A copy of this book was given in exchange for an honest review.)
Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England, with her husband, two children, and two cats.
She comes from a family of writers, but she always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed her by. She spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content. One day, she decided to try and write a short story–just to see if she could–and found it rather addictive. She hasn’t stopped writing since.
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