Jude is a character with a lot of potential and an endearing personality. Unfortunately, he gets lost in the convoluted plot and trying-too-hard banter, and he never seems to connect with David, whose attraction to Jude isn’t conveyed well. The secondary characters, like Jude’s best friend Keisha, are well-rounded, but the plot itself isn’t, and Jude’s poetry seems to mainly consist of silly limericks. What might be a cute read for the characters is missing the romance entirely.
Jude Biggerstaff is out and proud. He’s working in a vegan cafe when he spots martial arts instructor David. When the hot sensei saves him from a hate crime one night, Jude falls head over heels. But David isn’t out, Jude’s mother is trying to pretend she’s younger than she is and Jude is trying to take care of everyone while furthering things with David and working on his poetry. (SAMHAIN, Apr., 272 pp., $15.00)