Captivated by BEAR, OTTER AND THE KID–A Review

Hi there! Today I’m sharing the love for a M/M romance I’d had in my TBR for, well, TOO long. I get nervous about books not living up to their hype, and so many people loved BEAR, OTTER, AND THE KID…I was afraid I wouldn’t. Silly V!

Bear, Otter, and the Kid (Bear, Otter, and the Kid, #1)About the Book:

Three years ago, Bear McKenna’s mother took off for parts unknown with her new boyfriend, leaving Bear to raise his six-year-old brother Tyson, aka the Kid. Somehow they’ve muddled through, but since he’s totally devoted to the Kid, Bear isn’t actually doing much living—with a few exceptions, he’s retreated from the world, and he’s mostly okay with that. Until Otter comes home.

Otter is Bear’s best friend’s older brother, and as they’ve done for their whole lives, Bear and Otter crash and collide in ways neither expect. This time, though, there’s nowhere to run from the depth of emotion between them. Bear still believes his place is as the Kid’s guardian, but he can’t help thinking there could be something more for him in the world… something or someone.

My Review:

Bear McKenna is one day shy of his 18th birthday when his mother takes off with her latest loser of a boyfriend and 95% of his savings leaving Bear with $137.50 and a forged Power of Attorney so he’ll be able to manage the legalities of caring for his 6 y/o half-brother, Tyson. Mother Of The Year, right?

The story begins three years later. Bear has done a valiant job raising the Kid, as Ty Is called. Bear and his on-again, off-again girlfriend Anna and his elderly neighbor Mrs. Paquinn manage the care of Kid, but it’s nearly summer and Bear is looking forward to the return of his BFF, Creed, from college. What he doesn’t expect is the return of Oliver (Otter), Creed’s older brother, from his three year self-exile in San Diego. Otter is gay, and he and Bear shared a drunken kiss three years before, the very night Otter up and left for Cali.

Bear has always wondered why, but so many people have left him, he doesn’t expect any different.

But, things are. Otter is depressed and Creed wants Bear to find out why. Turns out Otter has silently loved Bear for a long, long time. He never did anything about it because Bear was straight, and a child, comparatively. There is an 8 year age difference.

The writing is so beautiful; we are in Bear’s head throughout and we see his slow changes, his gradual acceptance, his deep love for Kid, and Anna, and Creed….and Otter. Their summer of love is tender and tragic, by turns. It seems, this summer, all the chickens come home to roost. Some good, some vile. The absolute love that Bear has for Kid, the way his life is forfeit to caring for his wise, eccentric, ecoterrorist-in-training, 9-going-on-60 year old brother is spectacular, and humbling.

This book. THIS book. It is amazing. It is broken and tender and loving and lost and I am better for knowing Bear and Otter and the Kid’s story. I want to hug each of them, and make their sorrows cease, but I don’t have to because they can do that even better than I can.

This a romance, but it is also a story, an epic poem of love lost and gained and squandered and regained. I loved every one of the words. Even the bad words, even the hate, because it made the love that much more beautiful.

Interested? You can find BEAR, OTTER, AND THE KID on Goodreads, Dreamspinner Press, AllRomance, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble.

I’ve already bought the sequel. I’m gonna squeeze that one in just as soon as I can!

About the Author:

When TJ Klune was eight, he picked up a pen and paper and began to write his first story (which turned out to be his own sweeping epic version of the video game Super Metroid—he didn’t think the game ended very well and wanted to offer his own take on it. He never heard back from the video game company, much to his chagrin). Now, two decades later, the cast of characters in his head have only gotten louder, wondering why he has to go to work as a claims examiner for an insurance company during the day when he could just stay home and write.

He lives with a neurotic cat in the middle of the Sonoran Desert. It’s hot there, but he doesn’t mind. He dreams about one day standing at Stonehenge, just so he can say he did.

Thanks for popping in, and keep reading my friends!

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